AdventureIndiaPhotogallery

Spectacular views from the Station at the Top

It had started raining when we reached the parking area of Top station. Weather in Kerala have been a unpredictable lot these days and every rain reminded of the floods that traumatised the state just a couple of months back. However Munnar region is generally unpredictable about its weather, than the other parts of Kerala, with more likelihood of rains, as the Neelgiris form the first mountain wall in the way of clouds coming from the Indian Ocean. Even the day before, it started raining in the second half, although it wasn’t heavy. That day, it was clear, when we left Munnar, and after a couple of mini halts, we thought that it was better to go to farthest place first and see other things on the way back to Munnar. Hence we drove to Top Station. Clouds kept gathering as we moved close...

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AdventureIndiaPhotogallery

Everything you need to know for planning a trip to Eravikulam National Park

Earlier, I had planned to include all this vital information in my previous post about Neelakurinji trail in Eravikulam National Park. But then I stopped myself, as it would have made the post very long. I would have to either reduce the number of images from that post or cut short on the information. I didn’t want to do any of these. Hence, I decided to do a separate post and try to give every layman information possible to plan a trip to Eravikulam National Park. Read: On the Neelakurinji trail at Eravikulam National Park Landscape around Eravikulam National Park Reaching: Eravikulam National Park is 12 kilometres from Munnar town on the Munnar-Udumalpet road. It takes roughly 15 to 20 minutes to reach there on the winding hilly road. Road is good and safe. You can travel by ...

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IndiaPhotogallery

On the Neelakurinji trail at Eravikulam National Park

It was heartening to see the long queues even if it meant long waiting for us to board the bus that takes you inside the Eravikulam National Park. It was after all good to witness tourists returning in large numbers to Kerala  just weeks after devastating floods, said to be most fierce in last almost hundred years. Indeed, most of the tourists might be locals or from nearby places as that was the long weekend because of Dussehra falling on Friday. Initially, I had planned this visit for August. As, the only motive was to document the blooming of Neelakurinji flowers, hence the visit was timed as per their expected blooming. Strobilanthus kunthiana, commonly known as Neelakkurinji (Blue Kurinji), grows in colonies stretching to acres and acres across the Neelgiris – a name ascribed...

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AdventureIndiaPhotogallery

Silver sand dunes and a double humpy ride

Silver coloured sand dunes of Hunder in Nubra valley of Ladakh have gradually become a part of the must-see itinerary for tourists to Ladakh. Its a very unusual landscape, no doubt about it. In a single frame, you can see sand dunes, river, forest as well as snow clad peaks. You even have camels for desert safari, albeit double humped ones. Its a rugged landscape all around, but Hunder seems like out of world for this region. It has got so many colours and textures in one place, that you can't stop admiring. https://www.instagram.com/p/BoeBAPYHXwH/?taken-by=swamiupendra Colours of nature! These sunsets never fail to amaze you whether it is in hot deserts of Thar or cold deserts of Ladakh. You can see the Karakoram ranges in the background, behind whichnot too far is located the hi...

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AdventureIndiaPhotogallery

Diskit monastery which braved the Mongolian invaders

You won’t find much of a difference on either sides of Khardungla Pass, until you reach Khalsar. Here the valley widens. But still, it is only until we reach Diskit, that we get to notice the mixed landscape of sand dunes, Shyok river, mountain ranges as well as Karakoram wildlife sanctuary. Since 2010, Diskit pronounces its existence from a fair distance through the large statue of Maitreya Buddha, which is visible from a distance string on a top of a hill. Due to lower elevation and milder climate, this valley has lush vegetation and Diskit has its own healthy share of apricot and apple orchards in this oasis. Diskit Monastery Diskit is administrative headquarter of Nubra valley. Diskit monastery is also the biggest in valley on this side of Khardungla. Diskit indeed has a ver...

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AdventureIndiaPhotogallery

Harsil – a mystical gateway to other world

Harsil is a land of mystique. Although it still doesn’t have that tourist rush but it has already collected many adjectives, more than many other places in the region. It is often dubbed as mini Switzerland of India. But it indeed is more than that. It is surely one of the most beautiful places in whole of Uttarakhand, but it is actually a gateway to something more beautiful than what we see at Harsil. It opens to some uncharted territories, yet to be explored- some spiritual and some natural. I had heard and read lot about Harsil. But never had been able to go towards Gangotri valley, until in summers this year riding the first ever Bloggers Bus of Uttarakhand Tourism. It could have seemed like a mission accomplished but actually it left me wanting for more. Its not a place to be s...

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AdventureIndiaPhotogallery

A photo journey to Shitlakhet, a hidden gem in Kumaon

I had been hearing about Shitlakhet for almost ten years now, ever since I started visiting the Almora region more frequently. I even made some flying visits to the village, and had some incredibly tasty maggi. But never got an opportunity to stay overnight and explore the place until last month when I was there as the part of the Bloggers Bus of Uttarakhand Tourism. Although a one night stay is just not enough to do any justice to this place, but we tried to extract  as much experience as possible. Shitlakhet is certainly not a happening place. But I can bet, it is unimaginably beautiful. It is just a small village at the end of the mountain ridge. But it is full of adventure and it is certainly a photographers paradise. Hence, I though that it is better to talk about this ...

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AdventureIndiaPhotogallery

Get ready for a Holi with Butter at Dayara

Holi in monsoon and that too with no colours but butter and curd milk! Well, nothing to be surprised. India does have such a vivid culture that there are scores of different festivals held every now and then. Many of them are unique and few of them have roots in remotest of places. Some of these places, which were not known so far are slowly getting popularity due to increased tourist activities. Raithal in Uttarkashi district of Uttarakhand is one such place. Raithal is popular among adventurers as it is also the base for trekking expeditions to Dayara Bugyal and further. Raithal is also an ideal tourist village also known for its rich history and cultural heritage. Included in this heritage is this festival which is almost unique in Indian traditions. And interesting thing is that...

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AdventureIndiaPhotogallery

Whispering winds, hovering clouds and a ghost which wasn’t there!

If I would have been believing in ghosts than I could have said that this ghost certainly loved nature and he lived in most exotic of locations. Ghosts or not, this place known as Abbott Mount certainly had a captivating charm. It did create a magnetic pull on us. As soon as I came to know that there is this haunted place, in no time I was just running on the mountain trail towards that spooky mansion on the top the mountain along with two others. I felt just like a member of ghost busters team on a mission. Other members of our Bloggers Bus team stayed back, few may be because of fear, few due to disinterest and remaining for hating to walk so long. Prelude But there is very interesting prelude to this visit. We reached Lohaghat on fifth night of our roadtrip in Kumaon region of

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AdventureIndiaPhotogallery

Myth and mystery of the cave 90 feet deep

Patal Bhuvaneshwar temple was in and out of our itinerary for the Bloggers Bus at various points. It was no where in the initial plans, but  when a fellow blogger asked for it than it was included in the programme. By the time we reached from Kausani to Chaukori, KMVN official in-charge of our trip came up with the information that it wasn't safe to go inside as there would be lack of oxygen inside the cave and it was also raining continuously in the region. There was another catch, we were told that cameras are not allowed inside and all phones and cameras have to be deposited at the counter outside the cave. Most of our interest got diffused because of that too. Going to a new place and not able to photograph it was somewhat turn-off.  It rained whole night at Chaukori and that al

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