Wished i could smell the sweet newness.. I could fly or i could sail.. Be it summer or be it winter.. Wished I could venture into the realms of the world.. Go far far away miles after miles after miles..
Well, Here comes something i’m so very passionate about. Something that gives me a mind boggling break through, immense pleasure, feeling of liveliness. And thats ………………travel.
Every place has its own beauty. A specialty that you can capture and imprint the memories into your heart. Here i say, my fabulous experiences in the most exotic places of our country, about some of the peculiar customs i have seen, some of the odd adventures i’ve had, fantastic journeys with some of the best people, varieties of cuisines, festive colors & a lot more…
And here i go, starting with the most wonderful place i’ve ever been to
Shimla & Kulu Manali
The most memorable trip in the month of January, 2006. The winter was at its peak. We, a bunch of 40 college friends in a full excited mode planned to escape and dwell at a place far away from home where it could have been only us amidst the icy Himalayas. The marvelous time spent in the north east, it had its own superb incomparable essence. To give you a short glimpse of what we did there, a lot of activities. The travel amidst the shimla mountains, our tourist bus going round about the steepest mountains i had ever experienced, the freaking cold throughout, Never to be forgotten horse ride on the shimla mountains-woooaaaaa. It was just amazing. The snow skiing at kufri which is the ice point – a complete fun. You can ask me how many times i tumbled down. Ooof..this reminds me of a crazy friend who pushed me down from the back and zooooom i went…ooooooo and on the ground thussshhhhh…. A splash in the white snow!
The spectacular view of the himalayan mountain range from the Manali hill top was simply amazing with a variety of vibrant colors shading in the sky and snow capped peaks. A truly dream come true experience.
Manali is indeed a beautiful place, the roads magnificently lighted up at night, chilled breeze blowing wildly making us almost numb, a camp fire in the icy land, slides in the snow-land thrashing the snow flakes on one another, a walk by the river Beas, basement shops, wonderfully mixed colored shawls, ice creams during the chilled dusk to add to the numbness, delicious north indian food, lots of masti time with college buddies, Almost 5 days of a train travel, lots of games, crazy perpetual discussions till dawn.. WOW!!!
Shimla & Manali, I’d love to visit you again! 🙂
A peaceful hill station in Tamil Nadu having a beautiful kodai lake. It was due to this Kodai to Munnar trek that i got a divine experience to enjoy the mystique beauty. The Berijam lake, one among those wonderful star shaped lakes is known for its pure water. Our trek was through Shola forest, one of the tranquil jungles with evergreen flora which actually has a pattern of shrubs, grasslands, pines and stuff. That memorable evening walking through the fields whilst the sun was about to wave good bye for the day! Such a pleasure spending moments amidst the nature and only nature 🙂
A cycling around the kodai lake, we had a cycle race..all the way we went fighting & arguing ultimately reaching the destination all together ;).. sheer joy. How can i forget to mention the most awful leech bite i had ooops.. while trekking. O my!!! It has left on my feet a scar seems like it etched the memory of my ventures into its realm. Anyways, i don’t quite blame them.
Aren’t the snaps splendid?
One of the glorious places visited during Dassehra 2009. This was a divine experience at this lively city in the company of the most magnanimous people i’ve known since past two years. This was my third visit to the serene city – yet not tired of it. The land is a part of deccan plateau and beautifully extends into the horizon – i’m thankful we opted for a 2 hr train journey. The entire city was decorated with bright lights & colorful patterns. The evening spent at the jewel of the city – Mysore Palace.. Waah!! & we were lucky to attend a live musical concert put up in front of the palace darbar.
The splendidly illuminated palace night view is indescribable. Gracious!!
Have a look yourself here!!
Our chase for merriment does not end here. Exploring the classy city at the best times, we did visit chamundi temple early the next day morning breathing the fresh air whilst at the peak. Not to be forgotten, the visit to St. Philomena’s church as we realised we had some extra hours before we could board the train back. And let me tell you, this is one of the most magnificent churches with a twin spires heading towards the blue cascades of sky. Peace!
Well, what to mention when it comes to one of the most aspirational cities of our country! one of the most brilliant memories i have associated with Aamchi Mumbai. I have been to Mumbai several times during my childhood days, but the visit during 2007 was i must say the most remarkable experience of life. The year was when I stepped into the IT industry & got myself re-located. I headed towards Mumbai after the last few days of college finishing the final exams and waving a good-bye to all my pals till we meet again. Monsoons in Mumbai – indeed an adventure in the city. Overflowing nalla’s, stuck trains, roads full of muddy water, shabby market places.. oooff! Heavy non-stop rains drenches the whole city no use of any umbrellas or rain coats as it usually rains cats & dogs & you will anyways be completely drenched.
We, A bunch of 180 college freshers from across the country, All together for an induction program. People from various regions with diverse cultures, speaking varied languages, so many different styles of living – all united at one place under one roof. A typical “Unity In Diversity” and one of the most happening crowd i’ve been with!
City is awake almost 24 hrs. Go wherever, you’ll find crowd & crowd. You find people rushing to catch the local trains at any point of time – the funda being the train stops for 15 seconds exactly at a station during which people get in, get out so you better be prepared to face the rush minute and make sure you know where your compartment would land well before hand. Oof and for those who are new – do expect some dhakka and do not feel disgusted or get irritated as there is no point – no one cares even if you fall they’l jump over you. I remember one of my friends was just pushed out of the door before even the train had stopped, nothing but i burst out laughing as usual. 😛 Chaos and only chaos.
“Aiye dil hai mushkil jeena yahaan… zaraa hatke zaraa bachke yeh hai mumbai meri jaan”
When you travel in the second class ladies compartment, Jesus Christ, all sorts of ladies like fisherwomen screaming on top of their voices, chatting end to end, ladies carrying their so-many kids scattered across the place shouting & finding their way in, young girls always hanging at the doors with their ear phones tightly plugged in, we were also one among them – a gentle reminder of the saathiya movie scene. Romance thoughts in disgust! 😉
The stroll down the Marine drive – never to be forgotten evening on a glittering street during the dusk facing the illuminated city view. A feeling of being in a Mumbai’s Manhattan and to find the only place to breathe in some good fresh air. I had almost forgotten what is fresh air during this span of time. And than, yes, a complete freak-out place – Juhu Beach where we relished the famous Mumbai Sev puri, Paani Puri, Vada Pav, Kulfi’s, Gola’s and many more of such yummy foods that ravish your taste buds. The Taste Of Mumbai!!
Yet another fun was at the famous amusement park – The one and only ***Essel World*** Amazing, joyful rides and a fantastic fun with the group comprising of the best buddies i’ve known. The esselworld is located at Borivali, west Mumbai on the Gorai island. Thats a beautiful landscape where you can rejoice while having a ferry ride to reach the other side of the river where dwells the esselworld. It has almost 38 major rides that includes tora tora, roller coasters, Maha nimbu dive, slippery sultan, Rock-o-plane. Also ice skating rink, bowling alley, dance floor…. how does it sound??
It’s a whole new world of excitement and entertainment.
Lucky we, happened to attend an outbound program at YMCA international camp located at the village Nilshi in the western ghats between Mumbai and Pune. This was a great adventure where we had rock climbing while it was drizzling :), rappelling, swimming, a short trek, sports, overhead crawl, web cobbing and a lot more. Nilshi is a beautiful village full of greens stretched far across the land. Heavenly nature with streams, fields, animals with the monsoons adding to the beauty.
There is something about this cosmopolitan city that has captured my heart. No matter what, i love the city. The long drive at Haji Ali, Shri SiddhiVinayak temple, Gateway of India has imprinted the memories on my heart. Come festivals and nothing can beat Mumbai. Entire city lighted up to celebrate the Ganesh Chaturthi during which we also had a divine darshan of Navsacha Raja Ganapati and Dandiya raas during the navratri. Not to be forgotten Shri Krishna jayanti (Gokul Ashtami) when the localites form the pyramid and break Dahi Handi. Indeed the most happening city of India.
My journey pages continue & now its Delhi – capital of my beloved country! Visited during the winter again and it was extremely cold. Yet another adventurous city where you got to be careful every single minute. I remember karol bagh where we went shopping and gosh! we had some of the most unpleasant experiences where the vendors just spoke out any rate that could strike their mind, so you got to be a proficient bargainer! Cannaughts place was yet another shopping spot. Well, we hardly had any shopping desires but still whatever stuff we wished to purchase we were taken for a ride. We did not prefer to spend much time here as we had to head towards the symbol of love – Taj Mahal @ Agra. The only places visited were Lotus temple, India Gate, Qutub Minar, Indira Gandhi museum, Rashtrapati Bhavan.
Agra, quite a prominent place and a centre of culture, art and religious philosophy where dwells the most fascinating and beautiful monument – Taj Mahal. Stunning appearance, even from a distance you can’t stop but keep staring at it in amazement. We did observe it like a mirage from the Agra fort from where shah jahan used to stare at it as a prisoner eighty years back. The most fine architecture of the monument, indeed a wonder! If at all you visit the beautiful city, do try out the sweet Agra ka Pettha, Its delicious! 🙂
Recently, I got a great opportunity to go trekking at savanadurga hills, Bangalore. This was on 26th of January 2010. A last minute trip planned and some 15 of us got together heading towards Kanva reservoir – a serene place in B’lore.And than to savanadurga which is suppose to be 1226 m above the sea level. Hills mostly comprising of laterites and granites. A good vertical for rock climbers and a medium level for trekkers. Folks residing in bangalore, I suggest find a day off and venture into these hills (of course, not during summers).
A few years back, somewhere around Dec 2005, I went trekking as one of the participants of Saahas Academy. This was one of the most amazing, adventurous trek that started from Valpoi, Goa and ended at Belgaum, karnataka via Western Ghats. An extensive one week trek. The trekkers were from all over the nation, nearly around 120 of us – An extremely high-spirited, exuberant crowd. One huge gang of explorers we all, went venturing through the wild western ghats.
India, and its here that all the aspects of humanity meet. No words no pictures can fully illustrate the legendary land. Beautiful architectural monuments, museums, unique cultures, art, nature & scenic beauty, people, seasons.. a perpetual discovery.
This post does not end here as my journey diary shall continue while travelling remains my passion…