Home 2018 August

Monthly Archives: August 2018

Exploring Kashmir: A heavenly experience

0
Source: Beautiful World

Nothing can touch a little kid’s heart more than the divine touch of a drop of beauty. And that drop of beauty which shines so charmingly in this vast expanse of India’s terrain is Kashmir. True, I was a little kid when I traveled to Kashmir, excited for a four or five-day trip, which would assemble for me loads of memories, but never did I realize that even years later, the same heap of memories would stay afresh in my mind, mesmerizing me even more and more. That’s the captivating charm of Kashmir, beholding your breath and taking you far along, away from the agonizing miseries of this world.

So here is day-wise experience of my 5 day long trip to Kashmir

Day 1: Delights of Dal Lake

After an hour-long flight from Jammu, we reached Srinagar. The first sight of Dal Lake was quite appealing. More than the deluge of water along its banks, what captured my attention was the dozens of houseboats which held their head high amidst the gush of that splendid lake. I remember shouting those exceptional houseboat names shining on each one’s roof. But what seemed more fascinating was the joyful Shikara ride which would actually take me to those heavens in water.  Things seemed fun – the boat ride was exactly a joyride. But what grabs my attention now is- how peaceful it was, the exquisite view of the mountains on one side, whilst you are sitting in the lap of the magnificent lake. Even loneliness would seem a perfect companion when you are bounded by this picturesque. Down below, I could notice a marsh, and growing in it was a gorgeous pink lotus. I had never seen a lotus in my life.

Source: Beautiful World

Our houseboat was a warm place. With beautiful engravings on the walls of our bedroom and living room, it was a treat to live in the midst of the vast lake. Especially at night, when lights sparkle around the mountains and you can sit on your balcony to gaze at the beguiling sights. Our caretaker Abdul was kind and caring. He would serve our meals on time and clean our rooms during the day. He also took us on a trip around the lake. It was indeed a soothing experience. It seemed these people have raised a whole society in water- from markets to houses and what not! Yet they have their share of struggles and the tales of dark mysteries related to this era old lake, inflicted pain in our heart. The beauty has survived, and it will keep on surviving, with such courageous and intellectual citizens.

Day 2: The Mughal Formations to Kashmir

God carved it this way so that the title JANNAT was apt for it. Maybe that’s why even our ancient Mughal emperors did not leave without the indications of their love for Kashmir. Proofs reside in Mughal gardens like Shalimar Bagh, Chashmeshahi, which harbor lively tinted flowers and swiftly cascading springs. We spent much of our time, sitting and adoring the beautiful gardens of Nishat Bagh. Also meaning the ‘Garden of Joyhour-long these gardens are situated very close to the Dal Lake. These gardens were planned in such a way so that they can fit the water source conditions.

The layout of these twelve terraces is unique and signifying the meticulousness of the Mughals. Similarly, Chashmeshahi, which was a gift from Emperor Shah Jahan to his son Dara Shikoh, was built around the fresh-water spring and its topography is majestic. Shalimar gardens are the largest of all the Mughal gardens in Srinagar.

Nishat Bagh in Srinagar

Later, we explored the local markets around Shankaracharya temple, which boasted of intricate Pashmina shawls, sold by the natives of this area.

Day 3: Glorious Gulmarg

Gulmarg is a beautiful hill station which lies in the heart of Kashmir valley, around two hours from Srinagar. We hired a taxi and reached the hour-long mountains of Gulmarg. I would have loved viewing heavy snowfall, but maybe luck wanted me to enjoy the green expanse which was just everywhere. Thanks to the Gulmarg Gondola which runs a few feet high and gives you the best moments to cherish. We had a great time landing close to the snow-covered peaks. Where we enjoyed activities like sledging on the patches of snow, along with a hot cup of coffee to warm up our chilled senses. We could not visit the Apharwat peak, which lies in the second phase of the Gulmarg Gondola and is a premier ski resort. However, skiing activities are open mainly from December to February.

On our way back, we stopped at Pahalgam to sit by the Lidder Lake. The river is surrounded by meadows, majestic hills & tall pine trees. Sitting by this river, I got absorbed in the solace inundating it. The water was too cold to touch, yet it was a wonderful adventure climbing on the rocks and getting clicked with the breathtaking view.  It was indeed great place for camping and photography!

Day 4: Stunning Sonamarg

We drove to Sonamarg, around 3 hours away from Srinagar which is also called the ‘Meadow of Gold’. It gives rise to some great Himalayan glaciers, which shine from a distance. On our way, we also crossed Nallah Singh, a major tributary of river Jhelum.

It was time to explore the peaks of Sonamarg on the back of a horse. As a kid, the very fear of getting up on those dark brown horses named ‘Badal’ or ‘Ramesh’ smacked a big NO out of me. Deep gorges below, and a whole line of these ‘Badals’ walking up in procession, looked good but scary. Now I realize!! Sitting there on the top of a horse, looking below to see Gondola mountains merge with the green panorama would have been pleasurable.   

Gondola, it would have been captured in my heart for a lifetime! The view of the Thajiwas glacier is hour-long must watch, when you reach Sonamarg.

I explored other options. I got myself pictured with the adorable furry sheep, that ran about in their vast territory! Do get pictured with them in the vicinity of their freedom, and if they aren’t infuriated when you touch them, you could get a lovely masterpiece for your homes!

We had snacks at some local shops which heralded the mountains. If going back home wasn’t on our agenda for the next day, I would have never left this heavenly place for a few more days!

Day 5: Adieu to heavenly days

It was time to bid Later, to Srinagar, Dal Lake, Shankaracharya temple(visible from our houseboat) and our caring houseboat keeper! For we had a flight back to Jammu, followed by our drive back to my city in Punjab.

Given a chance, I would love one more trip to Kashmir in my lifetime. As now I have a list of 5 reasons to visit Kashmir. I know it would welcome me lovingly with those moments of immense peace once again.

Mumbai-Pune-Mumbai: 10 wildly beautiful unexplored places nearby

4
Panaromic view of nashik, maharashtra

Have friends in Mumbai Pune and want to spend time together or want to have a perfect relaxing weekend with your family? But aren’t we all tired of taking the weekend trip to the same old Lonavala and Mahabaleshwar? So if you are young at heart and do not look behind easily on the paths less traveled, so here is a list of,

10 untrodden locations/places to visit near Mumbai-Pune.

Valley of Flowers: Kaas plateau

Serenic view of plateau during monsoon at valley of flowers
Serenic view of plateau during monsoon

A UNESCO world heritage site, Kaas has colorful wildflowers from purple to white to green to yellow, stretching over a 1000 hectare area. The serene landscape and picturesque greenery are overlooked by a 16th-century Ajinkyatara fort from a height of 3300m. Approximately 01 km away from the plateau is Kamudini Pond dipped in fog, covered with thousand of Kamudini Flower floating on it and lots of cactuses at the edges. One can also visit Bamnoli lake; 10 km away from Kaas Plateau.

Best season to visitDuring and after Monsoon
Distance from Pune137
Distance from Mumbai267
Things to doPhotography, outdoor camping, trekking and caving

Crocodile and Dolphin Safari at Dapoli

Rare close view of crocodile at crocodile and dolphin safari at dapoli
Rare close view of crocodile

Want to see dolphins and crocodiles closely but never got the chance? Want to enjoy a weekend leisurely? A weekend to Dapoli not only offers you tranquil waves crashing on to sand but also amazes you with adventurous water sports activities. “Crocodile Safari” in Maldoli backwaters of Vashishth River gives you an opportunity to spot crocodiles basking on the bank of backwaters. Whereas a boat ride from Karde beach to deep sea offers you early morning Safari, sighting Dolphin Pods. Unhavare about 20 km from Dapoli is known for hot sulfur springs believed to have medicinal value. Enjoy a dip in the hot spring if you are on a long holiday in Dapoli.

Best season to visitSeptember to February
Distance from Pune184
Distance from Mumbai267
Things to doSightseeing, safari, dip in hot spring, water sports, Konkani cuisine

Cherapunji of Maharashtra: Amboli

Flabbergasting Falls at amboli
Flabbergasting Falls

Amboli lies in the Sahyadri hills of Western India, one of the world’s “Eco Hot-Spots”. It’s a paradise for Amphibian and Reptiles lover. You may have heard experts saying that “Forest gets Alive at night.” It’s time to come and feel it in Amboli, during exclusive “Night Trails”. And even if snakes and amphibians is not your calling, Amboli is enchantingly beautiful just after the monsoons, when the entire region is covered in a lush green carpet, with flowers blooming everywhere! Mist shrouded jungle paths and huge waterfalls are some of Amboli’s magical sights.

Best season to visitAugust to March
Distance from Pune348
Distance from Mumbai489
Things to doSightseeing, safari, photography, Konkani cuisine

Troplical Paradise: Maachli Farmstay

4. Life amidst nature at maachli farmstay
Life amidst nature

Situated in beautiful village Parule, on Konkan coast and in Sindhudurg district of Maharashtra, Maachli offers tropical paradise away from all the hustle bustle of the cities. The Cottages are conceptualized as Maachli which is a regional term for the huts made to protect the crop. The cottages are tucked away in a very dense plantation, thus offer abundant, rich, pollution free and healthy environment for the Nature lovers. A 15-minute drive from the property enables you to be amidst the near-white beaches along the seas. The host’s mother herself strives to provide Saraswat cuisine to the guests. It’s a treat for food lovers.

Best season to visitAll Year Long
Distance from Pune412
Distance from Mumbai555
Things to doHikes, pottery, sightseeing, boat ride

Dual City: Nashik

Panoramic view of Nashik
Panoramic view of Nashik

Famous for its numerous temples, the city is also much famed for its numerous vineyards and wine tasting tours. Sula Vineyard is popular all across the nation for being the finest place in the country to produce wines. Then, what can be better than packing your bags for a tour to these vineyards and getting a chance to taste the wines relaxing in the vineyards itself? Offering many thrilling activities as well for the travellers to indulge in, Nashik is a good option for a driveable vacation.

Best season to visitOctober to March
Distance from Pune211
Distance from Mumbai182
Things to doHikes, caving, wine tasting, adventure sports, pilgrimage, sightseeing, shopping

Turtle Festival: Velas

The turtle beaches
The turtle beaches

Velas is a small eco-village in the Ratnagiri district of Maharashtra. It is well known for its beaches which reflect nature in its best preserved and pristine form. An NGO named Sahyadri Nisargmitra and the villagers committee has taken the initiative to conserve Olive Ridley Turtles by providing protection to their eggs till they hatch. It’s indeed a magical moment to see a baby turtle coming out of the egg and then finding its way to the sea by taking those little baby steps. Besides Velas beach, there are several other tourist attractions like the Bankot Fort and the Harihareshwar Temple.

Best season to visitFebruary to April
Distance from Pune194
Distance from Mumbai224
Things to doBird watching, ferry rides, sightseeing

Blessed with all: Bhandardara

Image of camps at Bhandardara

Bhandardara, in the Sahyadri ranges, is bestowed with all the nature’s blessings. From lush greenery to waterfalls to the mountains in the backdrop, it becomes a perfect weekend gateway for city dwellers. Apart from its scenic beauty, Bhandardara has its share of historical places too. If you are a history buff, make sure you visit Ratangad Fort. Amruteshwar Temple and Kalsubai Temple are the known temples in this hill town. The place also hosts fireflies’ festival in the pre-monsoon season.

Best season to visitAll Year Long
Distance from Pune172
Distance from Mumbai163
Things to doCamping, trekking, bike and cycle rides, ecotours, caving

Abode of peacocks: Morachi Chincholi

Dance your soul with peacocks at Morachi Chincholi
Dance your soul with peacocks.

A village with more peacocks than people, Morachi Chincholi is actually an unofficial peacock sanctuary. It’s a great weekend getaway for natural rejuvenation. The mango farms, the tractor ride, the bullock cart ride and the peacock dances give a glimpse of rural life. One can also visit Nighoj village around which is famous for the potholes of river Kukadi & hub of other birds.

Best season to visitJune to January
Distance from Pune55
Distance from Mumbai188
Things to doBird watching, star gazing, magic and puppet shows

Durshet

Scenic beauty of durshet
Scenic beauty of durshet

Set against the stunning Sahyadri ranges, Durshet is situated between two Ganesh temples of Pali and Mahad and is just off the highway near the village of Khopoli. Nestled amidst a pictorial landscape, resorts in Durshet are ideal to rejuvenate your mind and put your soul at ease. It offers a plethora of activities such as butterfly trails, nature trails, waterfalls exploration to name a few. The proximity of this place with famous attractions like Sidi Ashtavnayak Temples at Pali and IMAGICA Park are some other added perks that make this escapade worth visiting.

Best season to visitSeptember To February
Distance from Pune98
Distance from Mumbai76
Things to doBird watching, star gazing, magic and puppet shows

BhimaShankar

En-route bhimashankar
En-route Bhimashankar

Bhimashankar is a popular temple town. It is among one of the twelve traditional ‘Jyotirlingam’ shrines in India. For people having a great interest in nature and trekking, Bhimashankar is an ideal destination to visit. The Bhimashankar Wildlife Sanctuary has rich fauna and numerous sacred groves, making it a beautiful place to visit especially during the offset of the monsoon season. Lush greenery and calm surrounding make it the best picnic spots near Mumbai and Pune.

Best season to visitOctober to March
Distance from Pune127
Distance from Mumbai213
Things to doTrekking, pilgrimage, wildlife safari

20 most popular places to visit in India during Monsoon

0

Monsoon is a great time to pack up your bags and do the outbound to observe nature at its raw best. Touring in a country like India, which is rich in its natural heritage. Here is the list of places you can visit to look for the pleasure of monsoon in India. These places are best to visit in India during July-September.

List of 20 most popular places one can visit during monsoon.

Saputara

Falls amidst greenery

Gujarat’s solitary hill station is a popular tourist spot as soon as the rains begin. With the tourism department organizing the monsoon festival every year. It is a perfect place for a weekend getaway. Relax at the lakeside with corn on the cob. Paddle boat with friends in the lake. Witness the magnanimity of Gira Waterfalls. Get awed by the variety of flora at Waghai Botanical gardens and get familiar with the Warli paintings and art, as you breathe in a bit of Gujarat.

Lonavala

Photo of Lonavala, Maharashtra

This one needs no introduction, as it stands out to be every Mumbaikar’s and Punekar’s favourite weekend destination. Located exactly at the midpoint of two cities, the journey is as pleasant as the destination. Mumbai-Pune express highway offers a completely different sight in the monsoons, with waterfalls mushrooming all along the road. Enjoy the long drives with near and dear ones while having a bite at the famous Chikki and jelly chocolates.

Matheran

Ways in Matheran. Clicked by Krutarth Vashi

India’s smallest hill station offers you the biggest of surprises in the monsoons. As the entire area gets covered with a blanket of greens, the viewpoints present a soothing view to sore eyes. The entire hill station is a no-vehicle zone. The only way to explore is by foot or horseback, which is an excitement in itself. Witness the sunrise and sunset behind the hills in the company of macaques while sipping a cup of tea among the clouds.  

Tips, Advice & Plannings for your first trip

Lavasa

A planned city in Maharashtra

For those looking for a peaceful weekend, India’s first planned hill station is where you need to head to. On the banks of an artificial lake, stands a peaceful town, away from the hustle and monotony, with lovely views all around. There are lots of waterfalls on the way to the city and the valleys offer breathtaking views. In short, an ideal place to visit for spending a lazy weekend. Counting in the list of places to visit near Mumbai and Pune during monsoon.

Goa

For all those who think Goa is a beach destination, they must visit Goa during monsoon to see its other side. Charao Island, a little-known place just 30 mins from Panaji is the place to be in Goa when it rains. For hikers and nature lovers, Dr Salim Ali Bird Sanctuary is equivalent to a utopian society. But the cherry on the cake is the magnificent Dudhsagar Falls which offers a completely mesmerizing view of the monsoon. Explore an unknown side of Goa at a dirt cheap rate while devouring the Goan Fish Curry and nip of Fenny.

Agumbe

Forests in Agumbe

An absolute gem of a place in the heart of the Western Ghats. The serpentine roads lead you up to the peak which offers a breathtaking view of the forests. The ruins of Kaveladurg fort are perfect for a day out. Trek across the paddy fields enjoying the nature at its very best and hike all the way to the endpoint to witness a spectacular sight on three sides.  

How to become tourist guide in India?

Kudremukh

Trek routes

A trekker’s paradise and a bike rider’s holy grail, Kudremukh National Park is yet another hidden gem of Karnataka. It springs to life during monsoon. If green pastures, misty backdrops & cool breeze are your things, Kudremukh should be on your bucket list. These places are best to visit in August in India. 

Gokarna

Beachside in Gokarna.

For those who feel that Goa is too mainstream, Gokarna is where you must head to. A few hours ride from Goa, Gokarna is an amalgamation of beaches and mountains. It has the lesser hustle and is more peaceful than any of the beaches in Goa. The beaches are secluded, peaceful and offer a beautiful view of the sun setting into the Arabian Sea. Relax on the shacks of the beachside cafes with chilled beer and Chicken Ghee Roast. Its the speciality of the region, while enjoying the stunning view around.

Munnar

Serene tea plantations

The gorgeous tea estates will escort you all through curvy roads of this tiny hill station hidden in the Western Ghats. More reasons to visit Munnar in August of 2018 is the blooming of  Neelakurunji, a rare blue flower that blooms once in 12 years, covering the region in a blanket of blue. Witness the raw beauty of nature at Eravikulam National Park. The enigma of nature in Neelakurunji Flowers, freshness of the tea gardens and the aura of the indigenous Nilgiri Tahr at Munnar this August.  

10 Places in India to visit for your Bachelor Trip

Alleppey

Sailing houseboat.

Pristine and surreal backwaters surrounded by the beautiful paddy fields and coconut plantations on either side await you as you set your foot aboard the houseboats and sail lazily into them. August marks the harvesting festival, Onam, in Kerala and is celebrated with great pomp and gaiety. The snake boat races are the main attraction of Onam and it is one experience to witness them. 100-120 men row the boats in an absolute synchronization while singing “Kuttanadan Punjayile” in the spirits as high as the coconut trees surrounding the area. Such places are must visit in August in India with family.

Wayanad

Surreal steps in nature

Adorning the northern hills of Kerala is the beautiful district of Wayanad. This area is famous for its large amount of camping and trekking trails, breathtaking waterfalls, caves, bird watching sites, flora, fauna and an overall plethora of magnificent sights. At Neelimala’s summit, you can get a view of the Meenmutty Falls, the largest of its kind in Wayanad. Get delighted by the range of exotic products including spices, coffee, tea, bamboo products, honey and herbal plants available here. Release your tensions with the Ayurvedic massage and get refreshed by the aura of the place.

Andaman Islands

View from the Island. Clicked by Krutarth Vashi.

Far off the mainland, there are a group of 400 little islands collectively known as the Andaman and Nicobar Islands. The volcanic islands are home to the best beaches in India. A rich underwater diversity makes it a top spot for scuba diving and snorkelling. Relive the moments of Indian Freedom Struggle at Cellular Jail. Witness the architectural genius at Ross Island. Get awed by the beauty of Radhanagar beach. Swim with fishes at North Bay Island and get lost in the mystical Chidiya Tapu beach while witnessing the unaltered beauty of nature.  

Meghalaya

Live root bridges.

‘It always rains in Meghalaya! That’s why it’s so beautiful!’ Meghalaya is gaining a reputation as a natural adventure playground, a prime destination for trekking, caving and canyoning and tribal encounters. Clouds and forests all around, Meghalaya has the best of the natural heritage in India. Be it the natural root bridges at Khasi hills or the clandestine caves at Jaintia. The magnanimous Nohkalikai waterfalls, these all are unique in their own ways. Experience the spectacle of rains and virgin beauty of the wettest place on earth like never before.

Valley of Flowers

Blooming flowers at the Valley

Perched at an altitude of 14000 feet above sea level, with the verdant beauty of the snow-capped Himalayas in the backdrop, the green meadows and cotton-like clouds blend in to make a dreamlike valley of flowers trek. Known as the most beautiful trek in the world with the blue Primula, Valley of Flowers Uttarakhand is a must do the trek for nature lovers. Blessed with exotic flowers, faunas and magnificent views this trek will take you to the world of snow clad mountains and high cliffs.  Listen to the sound of birds chirping and the musical sound of the stream during the trek. The soothing breeze and the enchanting beauty lure away nature and the photography lovers.

Rishikesh

It is every adventure enthusiast’s dream destination, Rishikesh offers you a plethora of options to try to satiate the adrenaline appetite. The gushing waters of Alaknanda create roaring rapids as you paddle your raft through them without ending up in the water. Rishikesh also hosts India’s highest bungee jump platform, paragliding, hang-gliding, kayaking and bridge slithering among various activities one can choose from. Camp by the riverside with barbeque and music for a perfect ending to a wonderful adventure. Also, soothe with some peace through yogic training.

Riverview in Rishikesh

What is your travelling activity

Hampta Pass Chandratal Trek

Five days of Hampta Pass & Chandratal Lake trekking will enable you to spend ample time amidst the flabbergasting serenity mixed with fun and excitement. The Chandratal Lake Trek is a treasure trove for the ardent as well as amateur trekkers and holds the charm and allurement like any other treks in the Himalayas. The scenic landscape exposes trails that meander through alpine forests, huge rock formations, and remarkably rich vegetation. Chandratal Lake trekking experience introduces you to the captivating beauty of the Himalayan meadows, flora and fauna of the Lahaul and Spiti valley. It also gets you close to the life and spirit amidst the lofty peaks. With easy gradients, climbs and descends, this trek will definitely satiate all your quench for trekking in the Indian Himalayas. It is the best place to visit in August in Himachal.

Trek Route at Hampta Pass

Create Your Trek Story at Hampta Pass

Forts of Maharashtra

The forts have been strongholds of the Maratha rulers since the reigns of Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj. Tactically built over hilltop overseeing the valleys, these forts provide a gem of a sight after the rains turn everything green. Lohgadh, Raigadh & Sinhagadh forts are the most famous of the forts, offering a stunning view alongside a brilliant architecture. Visapur fort, Harihar fort and Torna fort are a few other in this long list of breathtaking beauty and architectural marvel. Be amazed by the rich history and the magnificent view of the Maratha bastions this monsoon in Maharashtra.

Pondicherry

Magnificent view at Pondicherry

Bonjour’ is what you’ll say as you step foot on the erstwhile French Colony in India. The hotels, restaurants and ‘lifestyle’ shops sell a seductive vision of the French-subcontinental aesthetic, enhanced by Gallic creative types and Indian artists and designers. The internationally famous Sri Aurobindo Ashram and its offshoot just north of town, Auroville, draw large numbers of spiritually minded visitors. Pondicherry’s vibe: less faded colonial-era villa, more bohemian-chic, New Age–meets–Old World hang-out on the international travel trail. The beaches are just as peaceful as the city, making it a must visit place for seeking inner peace.  

India Loves To Ride: Buddy for all your bike tours, thrill and adventure

Udaipur

Lakeside palaces

Rajasthan’s best-kept secret, shining on the shores of the shimmering Lake Pichola and surrounded by the brilliant Aravali ranges, Udaipur has a romance of setting unmatched in all India. The grandiloquent palaces, havelis & the narrow streets add a human touch to the city’s natural charms. For a tourist, the tranquillity of boat ride on the lake, colourful bazaars, lively arts and the tempting shops along the lovely countryside that can be explored and enjoyed to the fullest. Make it more enriching while feasting on some of the most delicious street food the city has to offer.

5 Best Water Sports Destination in India

Kausani

Panoramic view of hills

Situated on a ridge, above a dense alpine forest, a small village in the Uttarakhand offers lovely panoramic views of the snow clad mountain peaks, fresh air & relaxed atmosphere. Kausani is a backpacker’s happy place and an author’s dreamland, offering exquisite views of the massive Nanda Devi and Panchachuli Peaks. The glory of the views reaches its pinnacle at dawn and dusk. Sun-rays turn the peaks into golden during sunrise and crimson at sunset, making a spectacle to observe and relieved in the memory box.

Dear couples, this might also solve your problem. These are the best honeymoon destinations in India during monsoon. Breeze with your partner in the ‘awesome mausam’. 

There you have the best 20 places to visit this monsoon, so pack up your bags, pick up a place or two and blend in the surroundings of the mesmerizing places of our Incredible India. India is happening during New Year’s too. So also have a look at New Year celebrating destinations of India.

FOLLOW US

452FansLike
1FollowersFollow
1,031FollowersFollow
52FollowersFollow
756FollowersFollow
20FollowersFollow
6SubscribersSubscribe

POPULAR ARTICLES