Sunday Brunch Ep 4: Rannvijay Singha On His Favourite Biking Trails In India

by Kamiya Jani
https://www.youtube.com/embed/-dIh1H2oc4I

You may know him as the tough guy from Roadies. But when you meet Rannvijay Singha, you realise that he is a complete softie at heart. A family man through and through, we decided to take this opportunity to sit down with him and quiz him about riding, travelling and his food habits. And the man sure as hell didn’t disappoint us. So, here’s taking a look at what went down at the Sunday Brunch with Ranvijay Singha.

Sunday brunch Rannvijay

Kamiya Jani: So, Rannvijay, the first thing that comes to mind when I speak to you is Roadies and your passion for bikes. I believe that is the reason why you participated in Roadies because you would get a free bike out of it.

Rannvijay Singha: I was going to join the army then. My father just retired a couple of years ago and it’s a family tradition. 5 generations of my family are already in the army. I would have been the 6th and the eldest. I had a two month holiday before joining the army and I saw this ad on MTV that you could win a bike if you won the show. I thought that was a pretty cool proposition and that I could win a bike and spend the money I earned on other things.

KJ: As of today, how many bikes do you have?

RS: I have one bike that I use for meetings and daily chores or coffee and stuff. If I want to go on a longer ride, then I have another bike for that. And if I want to feel full of culture and heritage then, I ride my Royal Enfield.

KJ: What’s your favourite terrain to ride in India?

RS: In the past 15 years, I have done this one ride and 17 times because, in some of the years, I have done it a couple of times. It’s the toughest. For me riding is very therapeutic and it’s like meditation for me. Because when you are riding, there are no phones. You are just one with the road and you don’t have to worry about taking phone calls and other stuff. There’s not a lot of interaction when you are riding. But as soon as you sit down with that plate of Maggi or Wai-Wai then you get to discuss things. When I ride, I either have a GoPro on my helmet or on my bike. I took my dad with me on one of the rides. He had just retired from the army. I told him that the ride was starting from Chandigarh and that I had organised a bike for him along with 30 other riders. I was really nervous throughout that journey because my dad was riding and he is 61. And I captured all of it on the camera and when I showed it to my dad, he was really impressed.

KJ: Are you a bigger traveller or a bigger biker?

RS: I am a bigger traveller. I travel for work, sports and for experiences. Now that I have a daughter, I want to scratch everything off and start afresh and see everything with her.

KJ: I have been stalking you on Instagram and I saw the video that you posted from Mehrangarh Fort. What’s the experience like recording everything as you are travelling?

RS: For a vlogger or for a person, going to a place and setting up a camera and taking a shot is pretty easy. If I were to do that with a camera crew then that experience would get ruined right then and there. And if you are with your family then you attract unwanted attention from the people around. So, most of the times I just use a GoPro because it is so easy to carry it around and with its different mounts, I don’t even have to use my hands at times.

KJ: Does it get annoying for people that you travel with when you have a camera with you all the time? Especially when you are with your wife.

RS: If you have noticed, she’s barely present in my videos because she knows what kind of a guy I am and that these moments are very precious for me. She does her own thing and she’s okay with me taking the camera around.

KJ: You are originally from Jalandhar but because you are an army kid, you have been to 9 different schools. What’s your favourite city?

RS: As a guy who represents travel, biking and sports, I only recommend one place to the people I meet. And that place is Leh. As an athlete, you get challenged because you are at 11,500 ft. And you realise just how insignificant you are in this world and just how vast nature is. Everyone knows where they stand when they visit Leh because you can’t just run around there. Your body needs to acclimatise to the climate. If people have more time then I suggest that they go to Rajasthan. There’s a lot of culture, heritage, forts and food there. And if you have still more time then you need to go to Kerala. It’s completely different from the other two places. The food is different. And if you have even more time, then I suggest going to the North East of India. I have been lucky enough to go to places like Tawang, Ziro and more and it is quite an experience. If you want to explore further, then you should go to Delhi and the places surrounding it. See the Taj Mahal and Red Fort at least once in your life. Wear a mask and go around. If you are tired, then go and holiday in Goa. When I travel abroad, I tell people that there isn’t a single geographical territory that you won’t find in India. We have waterfalls, we have the Himalayan range, seas, oceans, beaches, plateaus. We have fort, temples, different cultures, it’s absolutely crazy.

KJ: Coming to food preferences, you are a Punjabi. And I don’t know any Punjabi who doesn’t like indulging in Pindi Chole, Rajma Chawal and Butter Chicken. Does the same apply to you?

RS: Rajma Chawal is a staple at home so it is not special. And when it comes to Butter Chicken, people have a very convoluted idea about it. They think that butter chicken is just cream and sugar. But when I go to Delhi or Punjab, I know just where to eat butter chicken.

Now, the man loves his food quite a bit. And he is pretty knowledgable about it too. So, we decided to put him to a taste test where we blindfolded him and made him taste dishes and guess what he was eating. And the results were fantastic! He managed to get everything right and we have to give him credit for that.

KJ: Do you have any dream travel destination?

RS: I actually really want to go and see the Northern Lights. But they are so unpredictable that you have to take out quite a bit of time to go and see them. But my wife doesn’t like the cold so the plan hasn’t materialised yet.

KJ: A lot must have changed with marriage, right? Also, considering that you have a daughter now and you are such an avid biker and traveller. 

RS: That’s what most people think but my wife married me because of the person that I am. When she was pregnant, I went to the Siachen Glacier, She was stressed because she couldn’t get in touch with me. And I hadn’t gone to the army base, I had gone to the glacier and there’s absolutely no network over there. You live in tents and even those aren’t permanent. I think she liked that about me. The fact that I go out there and do crazy things. But now she is more emotionally attached to me and the idea of me going on a bike ride for 15 days and more doesn’t go down well with her. But if I start changing myself it won’t work. So, you have to find a balance because I love spending time with my daughter and my wife.

And then Kamiya decided to play a fun game with Rannvijay. A rapid-fire, he had to answer the questions within 5 seconds. His responses were hilarious and had us all in splits. You can take the man out of riding but you can’t take riding out of a man and Rannvijay is living proof of it.