I founded an ethical travel company that specialises in high-end travel experiences that combine 3 magic ingredients to create life changing, transformative wellness journeys for highly-stressed professionals. Ask me anything.

Manjul Rathee
May 10, 2018

Soulscape is the brainchild of Manjul Rathee, a traveller and a social entrepreneur who has spent her life so far creating products and services for the greater good.

Growing up in India she travelled far and wide to some of the most fascinating and remote regions. But life changed fast. As a ‘grown up’ she was slogging in the city, completely wired with at least 3 mobile devices at all times living the fast life that made it impossible to even stop and take a deep breath. This is probably the story of many.

Tired of long working hours and the never ending stress despite a fat paycheck, Rathee had started planning regular breaks to do a ‘full system reboot’ (as she calls it) where each of these breaks had traces of creativity, culture and wellness. This self made formula had starting working well for her, so much so that she launched her own travel company that enables her to share her magic potion with others ensuring each Soulscape experience comprised of these 3 carefully balanced components.

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What are the values of Soulscape and why did you choose these particular ones?
May 15, 11:08PM EDT0
What does the 7 nights stay in Alchi include and cost?
May 15, 5:58PM EDT0
What is Thangka painting and why have you included it in your list of activities?
May 15, 11:19AM EDT0
Who are the members of the Soulscape team and why have they specifically been recruited for Soulscape?
May 15, 4:37AM EDT0
What are the requirements an activity or destination must have in order to be included in your travel experiences?
May 15, 12:23AM EDT0
Which destinations have inspired you the most this year, for their innovative initiatives?
May 11, 9:27AM EDT0
How long did you live in India for? What all personal experiences have you used to get started with the travel company?
May 11, 2:34AM EDT0
Even though your services are exclusively for the professionals who are stressed out, they still feel a need to stay connected for some reason. Do you offer wifi at your destination?
May 11, 1:41AM EDT0
What is the average number of people that you allow in the tour/travel package?
May 10, 5:45PM EDT0

Hi Cenja, our experience only allow for up to 8-10 guests max.

May 12, 4:33PM EDT0
One of the destinations in your service list is "Alchi in the Himalayas"? What sort of collaboration have you done in this place in Leh? Is there a retreat, homestay or anything that you can tell about?
May 10, 2:03PM EDT0
Which are the main barriers with regards to succeeding as an entrepreneur and developing successful travel based services?
May 10, 12:35PM EDT0

The main barriers are usually within yourself. Having to push beyond your comfort zone and having the balls to take risks and just go for it.  Pushing beyond self doubt and trusting that what you're doing could make a positive impact in people's lives. Building a team to support your vision and finding the right people who share similar values.

May 10, 1:39PM EDT0
When did you realize personally that you needed "full system reboot"?
May 10, 11:56AM EDT0

There have been many times throughout my adult life where I've needed a "reboot". Through self funding my way through university, through working my way through various careers. It wasn't really a realisation, just something I've always seeked out.

May 10, 1:33PM EDT0
How's your journey from starting from the city life to developing an experience for others to get away from the fast-paced environment like? What did you learn in this journey?
May 10, 11:28AM EDT0

My journey began a few years ago. I was tired of long working hours, and of the never ending stress. I found myself planning regular short breaks to do a ‘full system reboot’ where I included elements of creativity, culture and wellness. These breaks were like a super pill, short, intense but incredibly meaningful.  I founded this company so I could share this magic potion with others and invited 8 like minded professionals to join me on the first Soulscape experience to Santiniketan last November. What I learnt was, people are so wired - and this experience is a real game changer when it comes to supercharging the start of your wellbeing journey.

May 10, 1:29PM EDT0
Where are you currently based? How often do you travel to India?
May 10, 10:52AM EDT0

Hi Sarah, I'm currently living and working in London but travel to India around 4-6 times a year if not more to scout new locations and spend time with my family.

May 10, 1:23PM EDT0
Which major trends do you observe in travel/tourism right now which might support or threaten the ability of businesses or destinations to offer more peace and earthy experience?
May 10, 9:26AM EDT0

I'm seeing a trend in "wellness destinations" where huge corporations are building luxury spas. Buying land and killing local culture with these exclusive resorts and retreats - the opposite of what Soulscape is about. As an ethical travel company, we strive to work with local people and offer sustainable experiences that support the local infrasturcture and community.

May 10, 1:22PM EDT0
What remote areas of India did you travel and what did you learn from such travelling experience?
May 10, 3:05AM EDT0

The most fascinating thing is the richness of culture from village to village, from city to city. The landscape changes, the language changes, the cuisine changes, there are so many nuances and variations. For example, in Meghalaya a state in the northeast of India where women are the head of the household. The remote areas of India hold hidden gems of knowledge and culture.

May 10, 1:19PM EDT0
How would you explain a high-end travel experience? What all packages are included in your service?
May 9, 11:22PM EDT0

High-end travel means the level of service you receive before, during and after your experience. We provide a seamless end-to-end, hassle-free experience. We ensure the location, activities and foods curated within that experience are authentic and bullshit free. 

For example, included in our Alchi in the Himalayas experience:

  • Hassle-free as we plan every little detail from your arrival to your departure
  • Transaction-free leaving you no ‘extras’ during your Soulscape experience as we pay mutually agreed and fair renumeration to all our collaborators, and advise against tipping
  • Dedicated one to one support before, during and after your Soulscape experience
  • 7 nights stay in Alchi, in your own private, ensuite, solar-powered eco-hut on a cliff overlooking the Indus River
  • Complimentary 1 night stay at a 5* hotel in Delhi with spa facilities – incase of a lay over. Click here for information on flight booking
  • All ground transport during your experience, including airport transfers on the 4th and 12th of August
  • Abundant natural space to free your mind and body to wander, heal, dream
  • Exclusive access to lesser known places
  • Immersive learning from local craftsmen, artists and experts
  • Experience local cultures from the inside (rather than an outsider)
  • Daily yoga and meditation from a genuine, experienced and friendly Indian yoga expert
  • 3 daily healthy, organic and local Ladakhi vegetarian meals plus drinks and snacks to keep you nourished
  • Small groups – we never have more than 10 participants at a Soulscape experience and you have complete control over your level of interaction
  • Ethical travel experience where we make more sustainable choices and believe in building relationships with local communities rooted in honesty and respect.
May 10, 1:09PM EDT0
Why did you select Leh, Ladakh in the Himalayas as your prime location for this travel startup? How do you contribute to the development of local community>
May 9, 7:12PM EDT0

I've spent half my life in India, so was already familiar with Leh, Ladakh when scouting for a summer location. One of the important factors was to choose somewhere that would offer a warm and sunny climate, but not unbearable heat. I also wanted somewhere that was a contrast to the lush green farmlands of Santiniketan (our Winter location) and Alchi, steeped with it's history, incredible landscape and rich culture seemed fascinating to me on so many levels.

One of the ways we contribute to the development of local community is we develop relationships with local people to curate authentic experiences  - even the accomodation has been considered which are solar-powered eco huts .

May 9, 7:30PM EDT0
What have you planned for your company for 2018? The season must have begun by now. How's the turnover of the clients so far?
May 9, 6:17PM EDT0

After the success of the first experience in Santiniketan last November we plan to add a new destination every year. 2018 saw us curate our new experience, Alchi in the Himalayas - we've only just opened up bookings but there has already been a lot of interest so far. 

May 9, 7:10PM EDT0
What is the story behind the name of the company "Soulscape"?
May 9, 5:58PM EDT0

The concept behind our wellness travel experiences is to curate a holistic approach to improve not only one’s physical and mental wellbeing but also one’s spiritual wellbeing. The word “Soul” for me encapsulates both the tangible and intangible aspects of those elements combined. It represents the core essence of our being.

“Scape” represents the physical and spiritual landscape that we curate, where each experience is an incubator for an individual’s complete wellbeing.  To Soulscape is to leave behind the noise of everyday life and fill this void with creative learning, cultural immersion and wellness activities. To Soulscape is to allow oneself to feel lost, feel found and feel nourished.

May 9, 7:05PM EDT0
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