India is a country with full of natural beauties always calling the travel crazy people to feel the essence of most picturesque , breath-taking , must-visits places. Still there are so many undiscovered locations waiting for the LOVE to TRAVEL visitors to discover the in-depth culture , awesome architecture , yummy cuisine and smiley inhabitants.To rejuvenate your mind and body from the daily hustle-bustled busy schedule,you need to explore India at its most.The more you travel here the more you can discover her beauty.
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LOLEYGAON / LOLEGAON
Kalimpong hill Loleygaon is a stunning offbeat tourist destination.If you are looking for a break from the modernized travel destinations and want to spend few leisurely days in the vast natural canvas thrown open before you ,Loleygaon is the best bet.Nestled atop of
a flat hill on a forested at an altitude of 5500 ft.Loleygaon/Lolegaon is a place of ethereal wilderness & tranquility.Basically a small Lepcha village also known as Kafer,Lolegaon is a recent inclusion in tourism map for its magnificent view of greater Himalayan snow
ranges over the entire horizon.Viewing sunrise over the snow peaksfrom Jhandidara a wooded hilltop- is perhaps the most treasured memory of being at Loleygaon.In a clearday all major peaks of kanchenjunga massif can be seen from Jhandidara.Even the glorius Mt.Everest can be seen from Jhandidara(Jhandi-Flag,Dara-Top) as your eyes sweep across the layers of mountains & valleys and reach at the distant corner, where the highest peak in the world is touched by the first rays of the Sun.
Loleygaon is a fabulous destinations for the lovers of wildlife in their natural habitat.The age old forest of towering pine,cypress & oaks with their mossytrunk is an ideal place for endangered Himalayan species like black bear and mountain goats,numerous colourful birds,butterflies & rare orchids. The Heritage Forest at 10 minutes walking distance is the place to feel the exquisite wealth that nature has showered here. The recently built wooden hanging foot bridge over canopy of the huge trees is a special attraction. Popularly known as ‘The Canopy Walk’ offers anunforgettable experience, which allows you to get close to the trees.Loleygaon offers some exciting short treks in the remoteKalimpong Hills.A day trek to Samthar or Rally in the unseen lower Himalayas can be a real opportunity to know the different aspects of lives in Indian Countryside.
Accessibility : Loleygaon can be reached from Siliguri with a 4 hrs. drive covering 124 kms. Via Kalimpong and Lava.Kalimpong, the nearest town, 55 kms. from Loleygaon.One can visit also Rishap alongwith Lava & Kalimpong.
TRAIN OF THOUGHT
A Trip To Darjeeling Gets You Thinking About The Links Between The Plains And The Hills-
The Toy Train winds its way through the Darjeeling Hillside
U make a rain-wet trip to Darjeeling, taking advantage of the relatively thin tourist presence in the Hills at this time of a year.The sun do not come out much and the ranges are for the most part wreathed in impenetrable clouds.U do some touristy things but also spend some time being educated about roads and railways in the region.Why is it,for instance,that there are still so few roads connecting the plains with the hills ?
The earliest road laid down by the British between Siliguri and Darjeeling was the Military Road,a remnant of which rises steeply from Punkhabari to Kurseong.To this day,the Punkhabari Road is preferred for descents from the mountain,but not the other way round owing to its steep gradient.For ascents,one uses the Hill Cart Road.Between 1861 and 1865,the Darjeeling-Kurseong portion of the road was completed,but the rest much later.According to O'Malley : "This road, which is nearly 49 miles long,with an average breadth of 25 feet,and a ruling gradient of 1 in 31,is one of the best mountain roads in India".The third important road which was built in this region was the Teesta Valley Road,which provided access to Sikkim and Tibet.As all travellers to the region will know,there is a 12-mile road from Siliguri to Sevok,and a bifurcation at Teesta Bridge,where one road goes goes to Darjeeling,and the other branches off to Kalimpong,"mountain over 3,000 feet in 8 miles,the ruling gradient (1 in 15) being so severe that carts are unable to take a heavier load than 8 maunds up it."The responsibility for the roads was shared by several agencies,chief among which was the PWD.
Surprisingly,O'Malley does not wax eloquent about what is now the biggest tourist draw in the hills :the Darjeeling-Himalayan Railway,more popularly known as the Toy Train.The steam tramway being dignified with the name of Railway,a ' wonderful piece of engineering work' .
Kangra — a name which spells a rich history. A capital citywhich the Katoch dynasty guarded for ages. A Pandora boxwhichattracted many plunderers. An alcove where bloome the famousKangra school of art.
Tour this ancient town of Kangra that lies over looking the gushing torrents of the kanganga River, a tributary of the Beas rising from the southern slopes of the milky Dhauladhars. But saying simply that Kangra is an ancient town is not enough; it has the distinction of being the site of the oldest recorded war in human history. The Rig Veda (approximately 1200 BC), one of the oldest texts in the world, mentions the 12-year war between Divodas (king of the Aryans) and Shambar (king of the hill regions when the Aryans first arrived in India) being fought here. That was around 1500 BC. The land also figures in innumerable episodes of history, legends and folklore. It even finds a mention in Alexander’s (around 326 BC) war records. The great Indian epic Mahabharata cites this wonderful Kangra as Trigarta.
The present name — Kangra — given to this area is no very old. It came into vogue in the late medieval period and is supposedly derived from the term kanghara (a place where ears are cast). But it is not known why the term came to be applied to this place, probably because of some long-lost legend or folktale.
Today Kangra is also known as Bhawan or Nagarkot. Bhawan because of the Rajreshwari Devi Temple, and Nagarkot because of the fort Nagarkot. The cruel earthquake of 1905 saw to it that Nagarkot’s impermeability became a thing of the past. The place where the dilapidated fort mutely stands is called Purana Kangra or Old Kangra. The other attractions of the town are the Gorakh DibbiTemple, the old Jain Temple and the Gupt Ganga Temple.
Although Kangra served as the hotbed of power in the olden times, all the hustle-bustle of a capital city has now shifted elsewhere — to Dharamsala, the present, district headquarter. Leaving Kangra with memories of a glorious past andmaking for a destination par excellence.
A paradise perched on an average 11000 ft above sea level.Hilton or no Hilton,Tawang has been the closest thing to Shangri-La for thousands of tourists the world over.Tawang Monastery,a must visit for Buddhists from far and wide.According to the Buddhist Monpas who dominate the landscape,the name derived from the breathtaking surroundings.Some say it was given by the holy Merak Lama Lodre Gyatso,who established the Tawang Monastery,in the 17th century.Tawang covering an area of 2085 sq.km,and bounded by Tibet in the north and Bhutan in the west.The 360-km road to Tawang from garrison town Tezpur-also Assam's cultural capital-is perhaps the shortest distance in India where one can move from humid floodplains,wetlands,sub-tropical forests and temperate territory to frigid heights.In essence,a trip to Tawang is the seemingly incompatible blend of adventure and spiritualism.One needs to be armed with an Inner-Line Permit,available at Arunachal Pradesh Government's liaison office in the metros,to cross into India's 'Land of the Rising Sun' at Bhalukpong.If u are the adventurous type,u can opt for Assam Tourism's Eco Camp at Nameri,through which the road passes.The camp entails stay in tents and angling on the fast-flowing Jia Bhoreli River that flows down from Arunachal Pradesh.Barely 5km from Bhalukpong is Tipi Orchidarium,which houses the widest variety of orchids found anywhere in India.Further ahead is Nechiphu,a breathtaking paragliding point at 5602 ft,and the nip in the air here is an indication of things to come.The temperature increases a few notches as u descend towards Tenga Valley,a massive army base before dipping at Bhalukpong,approximately the midpoint between Tezpur and Tawang.This town at 8000 ft offers fabulous hiking trails and sprawling monasteries such as the Gaden Rabgyelling Monastery with a guesthouse and of course,the mid-town Craft Centre where u can get the best of dragon carpets,thangkha wall hangings,paintings and masks.Dirang,another tourists point,40 km ahead.Blessed with salubrious conditions.Dirang grows the best of apples,walnuts and a heavenly fruit called kiwi,originally a 'native' of New zealand.The kiwis of Dirang are one up on their kiwi counterparts in taste.
Dirang also has some frontline resorts and hotels to enable you to draw in the sights and sounds for a longer period of time.From Dirang begins the real ascent until one reaches Selia Pass after 60 km.Selia is the second highest mountain pass in India and the scene of a bitter battle during the Sino-Indian war of 1962.The descent towards Jang town-the waterfalls by the name is a Blollywood staple -takes one through Jaswantgarh.From Jang is the final ascent to Tawang.Other than the landscape,the place to visit at Tawang is the 400-year-old Galden Namgyel Lhatse or the Tawang Monastery,one of the largest lamaseries of the Mahayana sect of Buddhism in Asia.Do not forget to visit the Sangetsar Lake further up on the road to Bumla,where travel requires clearance from the army.Next time u plan your holiday,preferably between April to October,try making to Tawang.U have the option of flying a chopper from Guwahati to Tawang if the weather permits,but u get a better taste of heaven by road.
The name of Tawang is derived from the beautiful landscape.Tourists who have visited the place have been captivated by the breath-taking scenery
Kolli Hills in Tamil its Kollimalai is a small mountain range located in TamilNaduState of India. The mountains are about 1000 to 1300m in height and cover an area of approximately 280 km2. The Kolli Hills are part of the Eastern Ghats, which is a mountain range that runs mostly parallel to the east coast of South India. The mountains are relatively untouched by tourism and still retain their natural beauty. A popular attraction on these mountains is the Agaya Gangai waterfalls. Reaching the waterfalls requires an hour long hike through a steep trail, and hiking back uphill is not recommended for those who dislike physical workouts. They can however take a dip in the river near the beginning of the trail. The end of the trail is separated from the base of the waterfalls by a body of flowing water, and is just an easy swim away. Adventurous hikers are recommended to follow the course of the river down from the base of the waterfalls where it flows through large rocks and provide serene solitude as well as a good workout. To reach the top of the mountain we have to come across several hair pin bends.
The mountain is also a site of pilgrimage, the important destination being the Arapaleeswara temple located nearby. It is believed that the temple has a secret path to the Shiva temple in Rasipuram. The Shiva temple is said to have been built by Valvil Origin the 1st or 2nd century when the ruled this area.
The government also maintains a pineapple research farm where hybrid varieties are created. Research about medicinal plants is also pursued on these mountains. The government holds a tourism festival in August, and mountains can be reached by road easily from Trichy (80 km) or Namakkal (50 km) or Salem (100 km) or Rasipuram (35 km). The drive is scenic and is a steep climb through 72 hairpin bends. It’s a nice get a way for a day trip that has many hair pin bends but no decent hotels to stay there.
A less well-known, but splendidly beautiful hill resort, in the southern range of shayadri hills. Amboli at an altitude of 690 m. is the last mountain resort before the coastal highlands settle, with a sigh, to form flat beaches. Visit the numerous view points for the pleasant view of the lush hills and fertile plain. Amboli is on record as the wettest place in Maharashtra, with an average of nearly 750 centimeters (269 inches) of rainfall a year, falling between June and October. In rainy season, the hill station is wrapped in mist.
Sea view point offers a rare view of the land all the way to the golden Konkan coast. Spend hours by yourself angling for a fish at Hiranyakeshi or a picnic at Nagatta falls, Mahadev gad And Narayan Gad. Submerged by dense forests and steep valleys, this tranquil mountaintop offers some of the best panoramic views of the Konkan coast.
The bauxite mine 10 K.Ms. away, is a pleasant and very different excursion. If you are looking to spend a few days in splendid isolation with your family Amboli is an idea resort. Amboli has a cool and invigorating climate—a welcome respite in summer.
Places of interest:NargartaFalls, Narayangad, Hiranya Keshi. How to reach: By Air: Nearest airport is Belgaum, 64 kms. By Rail: Sawantwadi 28kms. on Konkan. Railway is a convenient railhead. By Road: Mumbai-Amboli, 549 kms. Pune-Amboli 390 kms. Ratnagiri-Amboli, 215 kms.
Climate:Lashed by the rains from the Konkan and as cool as Satara through the year, Amboli has an exhilarating climate in summer, which acts as a welcome respite.
Even The Summer Takes A Vacation Here
From upper left-Yelagiri,Ooty,Kodaikkanal and Yercaud
When the heat begins,shift base to the hill tops of Tamil Nadu, where you can enjoy some of the finest hill stations in India.Cool,EvergreenOOTY,KODAIKKANAL,YELAGIRI and YERCAUD await your arrival.Come on up!
Tamilnadu has a long list of places to see,things to do.There are beaches,forests,hill stations,waterfalls,temples,islands,bird sanctuaries,spiritual retreats,hill temples,mangrove-lined backwaters,heritage sites and palaces,just like its 1500 km coastline.U can plan for a long stay.
For TTDC'sattractive package tours with excellent accommodation ,transport facilities,E-mail at : firstname.lastname@example.org
U start from the Thattekad Bird Sanctuary,71km from Kochi airport.Pineapple plantations and rubber estates dot the road as u ride along the banks of the Periyar River.Following the uphill trail to Adimali,hilly Munnar is a picture postcard destination.Uget a superb view of the mountains and tea plantations plus u can even take a peek at the Madhuvans,the local tribals.The journey continues through Chinnar Wildlife Sanctuary to the Indira Gandhi National Park in the Annamalai hills.The greatest challenge comes in the form of the 24 'hair-pin' bends on the way to Valparai in the Annamalai where u can watch the endengered lion-tailed macaques.From here u pedal downhill through spectacular forest patches of Sholayar to see the cascading Vazhachal Falls.
Kalypso Adventures has a 10-day package at Rs.45,104 per person on twin-sharing basis for a minimum of two people and a maximum of 10,incudes all meals,accommodation and transport.Accommodation is in lavish colonial era estate bungalows and eco-lodges.For more details,e-mail at:email@example.com
Explore charming Shimla with its mountains and lakes before moving onto the Sangla Valley.At an altitude of 8,900ft,Sangla is picturesque to say the least.As u cycle to Kalpi village silhouetted against the Kinnaur Kailash range ,u are greeted by orchards and chilgoza pine forests and the landscape gradually transforms into stark mountains and stunning gorges.Visit Kanam Monastery as u move to Nako Village.Dhankar Lake amidst lush green pastures is an idyllic camping site.The Ki gompa near Kaza is the largest in Spiti.Pedal to Kibber Village 11km away,reputed to be the highest village in the world at an altitude of 13,943ft.The route to Manali lies through Rohtang Pass.The meandering trail through the manificent mountains makes for an incredible journey.
Adventure & Expedition Travels has a 15-day package from Delhi at about Rs.4280/- per day per person on a twin-sharing basis for a minimum of four people,includes accommodation in standard hotels (shimla & manali) and tents,all meals and transportation .For more details e-mail at:firstname.lastname@example.org
Leh is the capital of Ladakh has a number of famous gompas to visit.The ascent of Khardung La Pass at 17,582ft is arduous followed by a steep descent down rocky and slippery terrain to reach Sarai Village.The trail to Khalsar village along the Shyok River is rough.And so it continues over the next 18km as u ride over arid,sandy terrain before reaching Sumur,home to the Samsthanling gompa,built in 1841.U crossover to Panamik,the last halt 19km away,riding over a difficult stony road to be greeted by an opulent valley dotted with apple,apricot and mulberry trees.Explore the local cuisine and culturein Tigar village before u journey back to Leh.
Ladakh Safari has a 9-day package fro Leh for Rs.23,100/- per person on a twin-sharing basis for a minimum of 4 people,includes accommodation in standard hotels(in Leh)and tents,all meals,permits and taxes.For more details e-mail at:email@example.com
In adventure tourism ,Sikkim,house to world third highest peak Kanchanjanga ,is focusing on mountain biking,river rafting and trekking.Sikkim has successfully developed world-class destinations like the 135 ft statue of Guru Padmasambha and the upcoming 105ft metal statue of Lord Buddha.Atop the mountain cliff,Bhaley Dhunga ,to woo more tourists to the state.The proposed skywalk bridge stands at an elevation of 10,102 ft where the cliff is connected by a ropeway from a nearby town Yanggang in South Sikkim,about 56 kms from capital city Gangtok.
Tourist Circuit-Gangtok to Rangpo
Melli to Jorethang
Jorethang to Rishi
Rishi to Ranipool to Gangtok.
Home to thousands of migratory birds,the bird sanctuary in Joggonagar,Santiniketan,is an avian lovers' paradise!
HOW TO GO : Santiniketan is accessible by train/bus from Kolkata.Joggonagar is 15 kms from Santiniketan.
BIRD SPOTTING SEASON : Arrival mid-April,hatching mid-June and fly back time mid-September.
ACCOMMODATION : Santiniketan Tourist Lodge,Mark & Meadows; Camilia , Chhuti and a number of budget hotels and guest houses.
PLACES TO SEE : Bansuli Temple,Sriniketan,Kenduli,Visva-Bharati University,Uttarayan Complex(Tagore family abode),Kankalitala Temple,Bakreshwar hot springs which are 58 kms away,Ballavpur Danga(the birth place of Nobel Laureate Amartya Sen),the Ballavpur Wildlife Sanctuary which is home to the black buck,spotted deer,jackals,foxes and a variety of water birds.
Storks have no syrinx and are mute,giving no bird call.Bill-clattering is an important mode of stork communication at the nest!
DID U KNOW?
When the mandibles of open billed birds are closed,a wide gap remains,except at the tips,probably for snails.And that is why tey are called open billed birds !
One state.Many worlds
Karnataka is a rare tourist attraction.To add more zing to an enviable palette of tourist attractions like waterfalls,hill stations,beaches,wildlife,culture,adventure ,cuisine,outdoors and heritage sites,Karnataka is transforming itself into an one roof destination in tourism.It is estimated that 0.5 million international tourists visit karnataka every year along with a staggering 27 million from across India.Krnatak Tourism is to set up theme parks,international convention and exhibition centres,ropeways and cable cars,and world-class adventure/camping facilities across tourist destinations in the state.
World Heritage Sites : Along with the heritage belt,there are boutique resorts,theme parks that can cater to the increasing the number of tourists visiting heritage sites including the world famous,Hampi and Pattadakkal.
Adventure : Across the nature/wildlife destinations,Karnataka Tourism ,providing more services to camping and trekking facilities to enable nature lovers to get as close to nature as possible.
Nature & Waterfalls : Karnataka has countless hill stations and waterfalls along with more experience-resorts,spas,and camping facilities.
Coastal Belt : Across the 320kms of pristline coastline,beach resorts,mini convention centres and adventure activities like snorkelling,scuba diving and parasailing are the most attractive points to the tourists.
Tourism Locations : Pattadakal,Belur,Marwanthe,Kodachadri and Talakad,amongst numerous others.
The actions is never tame in a tropical evergreen rainforest.Tigers,elephants,lions,wild gaurs,leopards and bisons roam free across the five national parks and twenty-one wildlife sanctuaries.Want to go wild?
Replay the glorious past in the world's largest open air museum.Listen to the echoes of thundering hooves and changing swords.Go back in time across India's cradle of stone architecture.Rev up your time machines.
India's most exotic wildlife sanctuaries and some of the world's largest heritage sites.Where else but in KARNATAKA !
HAMPI - Asia's Biggest Heritage Destination
Hampi,located on the banks of the breathtaking Tungabhadra River,is the world's only inhabited heritage site of its size.This ancient city,famed for its beautiful architecture,is just an hour away by air from Bangalore.The Hampi Heritage Tourism City,complete with luxury,boutique and budget hotels and resorts,theme parks,ethnic villages ,restaurants,entertainment centres,wayside amenities,etc.
For anything ,mail at firstname.lastname@example.org
For more details,visit www.karnatakatourism.org
THE DAL LAKE
The floating Paradise on earth
The Dal Lake is the very essence of Kashmir.Once here,u will first be mesmerised ny the shower of white snowflakes and then charmed its beauty.The thick blanket of snow covering the shirakas,the dripping curtains of mist and the reflection of the twinkling houseboats make the place even more magical.And as your shikara glides on the silent waters,don't forget to enjoy a cup of kabva in the blosom of nature.
Land Of Paradise - SRINAGAR
Srinagar is a beautiful town with some of the finest shops of handicrafts,woodencrafts and carpet.It also has some shops and restaurants with pretty funny names.On Residency Road,there is a restaurant called 'Mummy Please',there is a wood carving shop called 'Suffering Moses' and there is a taxi stand called 'Zero'
soak in the natural beauty of the amazing Andamans
As much a visual delight as a naturalists wonder,the Andaman &Nicobar Islands,an archipelago of 572 islands,islets and rocks is brimming with options for adventure,relaxation,nature walks or cultural feasts.Here 's how the luxury traveller can make the most of it :
How to get there :Port Blair is connected to Kolkata and Chennai by air.Book your tickets and look up rates at www.jetairways.com or www.indian-airlines.nic.in
Stay at : Welcomegroup Bay Island(Marine Hill,Port Blair) is a five -star hotel.Other premium hotels include Megapode Nest,Peerless Beach Resort,Sinclairs Bay View(sinclairshotels.com) and Sentinel (Phoenix Bay,Port Blair).Barefoot at Havelock is a great option.
Spot picks : There's no reason to stick around one island - explore connecting islands,which are all connected by boat and are worth the travel.There are Havelock,Neil Island,Long Island (the sea around the island is frequented by dolphin convoys).Rangat (close by is Curtbert Bay beach - a turtle nesting ground ),Mayabunder,Diglipur (famous for its oranges,rice and marine life) and Little Andaman Island (with a beautiful beach at Butler Bay,a waterfall and plantation of oil palms).
Sip 'n' bite : Try Mandalay Restaurant and Nico Bar at Bay Island for north Indian and continental.Try the Jungle Resort and the Pristine Beach Resort at Havelock for some great food.
Adventure call :At the Andaman Water Sports Complex at Aberdeen Jetty,Port Blair,enjoy aqua-sport facilities like water-skiing,sailboats,windsurfing,and speedboats.Go angling,snorkelling or scuba diving and enjoy the underwater marine life.
Shop stop : Port Blair has local products like rare shell craft,woodcraft,bamboo-cane craft,shell jewellery and interesting furniture made from local padauk wood.Visit the Cottage Industries Emporium or Gram Khadi Commission or the souvenir shops at Aberdeen Bazaar,Middle Point,Goal Ghar and Junglighat.
570 emerald islands
And endless fun. And.......
For more details,log on to http://toursm.andaman.nic.in
Rajasthan is culturally rich and has extensivetradition in art and culture,which reflects Indian way of life.
Rajasthan is a colourful desert.The unconvincingThar Desertand with it all the barren land of Rajasthan has much to offer through the plethora of celebrations.Festivals and fairs,music and dances,turn the land to a creative fertile basin.Season heralded with a festive fervour and cattle marts turn into delightful fairs.Pageantry is in the form of weddings or rituals,or to promote trade.Each region has their own form of Folk entertainment ,own traditions,own dialect adding to the Indian diversity.Pushkar Fair,Desert festival,Elephant Festival and Camel festival are internationally famous are not to be missed.This spirit of celebration is like Desert Rains,hidden in the Aravalli bosom,unfolding its feather with each festival.
Music and Dance
TRADITIONAL FOLK DANCE
Music sung by women is mostly about water and the style is called Panihari.The Thar Desert of Rajasthan comes alive when its dancers take the centre stage.Thar is the most colourful desert in the world.Ghoomar,a community dance for women performed on auspicious occassions.Gair,Ghoomar,Raika,Jhoria and Gauri are particularly of Bhil tribe.
PALACE ON WHEELS
Travelling on the famed Palace on Wheels is one of the most memorable ways to explore India's stately splendour.The Palace on Wheels is one of India's most fascinating sojourns covering the pink state capitalJAIPUR,the golden citadel Jaisalmer,the blue city of Jodhpur,the National Park Ranthambhor,the symbol of chivalry Chittorgarh,romantic city of Lakes Udaipur,the bird sanctuary at Bharatpur and the mughal capital Agra before returning to Delhi.
LUXURIOUS SALOONS - The Palace on Wheels has been rated one of the ten best luxurious train journeys in the world.The coaches are named after erstwhile princely states of Rajasthan.This is the place to sit and be seen sitting and talking while sipping a drink or simply watching the countryside through large panoramic windows.
THE CALM OF KASAULI
A typical British hill station,dotted with bungalows and churches and quaint little shops on the mall,Kasauli offers a breath of fresh air for the urban traveller seeking solace among rhododendrons and pines.
Kasauli has a bit of everything : A colonial feel,evident in its cobbled pathways,characteristic British bungalows and charming cottages overwhelmed by the wild beauty of rhododendron bushes as well as ornamental flowers,'haunted houses abounding with tales of horror.....The quaint,small hill town has an abundance of hawthorn hedges,which grow nearly everywhere.Amidst all this,the call of the woodpecker or the magpie trnsports you to another world.Be ready with your binoculars to spot these chirpers.Churches with stainted glass windows are another reminder of this town's British past.Those who love nature and solitude will relish the long walks under the shade of oaks,pines,cypresses and chestnuts with not a soul in sight for long distances.....There is no way you can miss the Upper andLowerMalls on one of these expeditions.The Upper Mall will lead you tothe town's famous landmark-Kasauli Club.Keep walking and you will reach the town's highest point,Monkey Point,which offers a breath-taking view of the surrounding areas.Don't worry,there are no monkeys here for the name comes from mythology....They say when Lord Hanuman was flying about in search of the sanjeevani booti,he rested his feet here ! And yes,there is a monkey temple too,the Baba Balak Temple,where you can offer prayers.
Quiet,clean and green could be one way of describing this cantonment town offering a magnificent view of the snow-clad Dhauladhar range.Charmed by its beauty,litterateur Khuswant Singh is believed to have called it " the place where kissing is always in season" !The nonagenarian author holidays in this town almost every year.Explore the town and you will find stores selling local fruit wines.They taste great,are affordable and come in flavours like peach,strawberry,apricot,grape,rhododendron and apple.While on the wine trail,visit the Kasauli Brewery,the world's highest brewery and distillery.which once belonged to Edward Dyer,father of the notorious Brig general Reginald Dyer of Jallianwalabagh (in) fame.If u want to indulge in a bit of shopping,check out the stores on the mall or traipse via the Tibetan kiosks.Bring back some mementos as well as lovely memories !
Getting There :Buses and taxis are available from Delhi,Kalka,Chandigarh and Shimla.The nearest airports are Shimla and Chandigarh.The nearest railhead is Kalka.
Best Season : April-June and September - November.
Staying There : Kasauli has many good hotels like Regency.Kasauli Castle Resort,Bliss Resorts ,Hotel Alasia and Bird View Resort.
Places To See : Monkey Point (offers a grand view of Chandigarh an a clear day as also of the Sutlej,has a monkey temple).Dharampur (houses one of the best hospitals for TB treatment in India).Lawrence School in Sanawar,beautiful old churches,cantonment town of Sabathu,the sleepy and picturesque hamlet called Dagshai at the foothills of the Shivaliks,Kasauli Club and Kasauli Brewery.
HOT TIP !
When in Kasauli,do make time for a toy train ride on the Himalayan Queen from Kalkaji to Dharampur,it is an awesome trip !
ASSAM ----- The Land of Mystic Splendour
Elephant Safari- Kaziranga National Park..
Avail trips to the famous World Heritage Site -- Kaziranga National Park.Enjoy Water - Sports,Bird Watching,Trekking, Nature Walk etc.at Nameri& Bhalukpong (near Tezpur).
Experience Culture & various Art Forms at Majuli,Visit Old Relics,Museums,Temples at Guwahati,Tezpur and Sivasagar.
Hajo,Sualkuchi,Madan Kamdev are few kms. away for great day trips.And many more exciting destinations.For your comfortable stay Assam Tourism have lodges in all major tourists destinations.For more details informations,do visit -www.assamtourism.org www.assamtourismonline.com
Painted havelis,forts,castles,temples...Shekhawati in northern Rajasthan is the perfect getaway this 'freedom' weekend.Rediscover India's rich heritage and get into a time warp as you explore the fascinating desert landscape !
There is a timeless appeal about forts,palaces and princes.The history ,the heritage and the culture....all combine into one grand spectacle and that is sure a visual feast for any tourist.Shekhawati in northern Rajasthan is one such cultural palette,that offers a kaleidoscopic peek into a grand past of India.Shekhawati,better known as the open art gallery of Rajasthan,the Shekhawati region is famous for its havelis and mansions embellished with bewitching murals and frescos.The intricacy of the latticed,carved wooden windows,the painted jharokhas,ceilings,walls,courtyards...will leave u spellbound.Drive down to any of the towns like Jhunjhunu,Nawalgarh,Churu,Dunlod,Ramgarh or Mandawa for a look at these desert artworks.Some of the famous havelis are Anandilal Poddar Haveli,Aath Haveli,Hodh Raj Patodia Haveli,Bansidhar Bhagat Haveli and Chokhani Haveli.
OF FORTS AND PALACES
Once you are through with fresco-spotting,u can check out the Raghunath Temple paintings and some of the famous forts,including the Mukundgarh fort in Dunlod.Worth exploring,here,is the handicrafts market.Those who like adventure can indulge in a desert safari on a horse/camel back or in a jeep ! The journey will take u through dry terrains,sometimes dotted with date trees.Typical Rajasthani villages will come your way as u criss-cross through the colourful countryside.Mandawa is famous for its 240-year-old castle where caparisoned camels carry guests inside.So make sure you're there to get a warm welcome with the drum beats.Time permitting,u can check out the Gajner Palace in Bikaner,built on the embankments of a lake over 6,000 acres ! It was the hunting resort of the maharajas and the British,now a deluxe hotel.
FACT FILE :
Getting there : The nearest airport is Jaipur.U could take the Shekhawati/Pink City Express from Delhi to Jaipur.Jaipur is 185kms away from Shekhawati.There are buses plying between various towns in Shekhawati.
Staying there : Top-end hotels would be Roop Niwas Palace Hotel,Nawalgarh ;Piramal Haveli Hotel ; Dunlod Castle and Desert Resort Mandawa among others.Budget hotels would include Hotel RTDC Jhunjhunu ; Hotel Shekhawati Heritage Jhunjhunu ; Piramal Haveli.If u want to really go economical,there are a lot of circuit houses and dak bungalows belonging to the electricity board/PWD.
Shopping : Check out the rustic,carved wooden low tables,chairs and chests.Quaint wooden items belonging to the19th or 20th centuries can be found everywhere.Textiles,tie-and-dye fabrics,bangles,metal artefacts and handicrafts are very popular.Frescos painted on paper and cloth make excellent gifts.
Must-See : Mandawa,situated in the Jhunjhunu district,is famous for its captivating havelis and castles.The Mandawa fort,presently a hotel,houses some magnificent paintings,alongwith a museum.
Nawalgarh :Apart from its two magnificent forts,the town is also famous for its havelis.The carvings,beautiful paintings and mirror works on the walls are fascinating.Churu : Another town famous for its grand havelis and forts.There are temples,chhatries (cenotaphs),johra (water tank) and wells adorned with colourful frescoes.
Name Game- Shekhawati owes its name to its erstwhile ruler,Rao Shekha.India's premier business community,the Marwaris,hail from here and spread out to various parts of India in the 18th-19th centuries.
THE VALLEY OF SILENCES
A view from the Borong Hillside
To escape the scorching summer,Sikkim has always been on top of everyone's list of getaways.During your trip,u can discover a new haven for nature and mountain lovers at Borong,located in south Sikkim.
Borong ,nestled among the Maenam hills at an elevation of approximately 6,000 ft,commands a different view of the mountains.This remote valley,with all its offbeat characteristics, offers an ideal retreat for the quiet holiday seeker.Falling in love with Borong at first sight is easy.This picturesque village is surrounded by alpine vegetation,complete with dense forests and wildlife.Far from the hustle and bustle of familiar tourist spots, Borong offers a natural healing effect in a serene setting.
On the way to Borong from Namchi,u can visit the 135-ft,unique statue of Guru Padmasambhava at Samdruptse,the Temi Tea Garden of Sikkim and the Ravangla and Ralang monasteries.The day-long journey could be ended at the doors of the Wild Flower Retreat,a luxury eco-tourism resort with a lush ambience.
Set in the middle of the pristine valley,the view from the cozy log huts of the resort is spectacular,especially the sunrise on the snow-capped Mt. Norsing,Pandim and Siniolchu.Bird cries are the only sounds in this 'silent valley'.
Borong is also home to the hot spring of Borong Tsa-chu.A short trek to the spring through the forests will surely be a memorable experience.U must-see the monastery,the balance stone,the majestic silver falls and the floating bridge - named Bermili - all at walking distances in and around the village.
There is a handmade paper factory within the vicinity of the resort,which is an interesting place to see with the raw materials sourced from a local plant named argul.
THE LADAKH FESTIVAL 1-15 September 2008
Acultural extravaganza,where the clocks stop....And time comes to life ---------
The Festival is for a fortnight.The celebrations,Timeless : The festival provides an opportunity to witness and experience the lifestyle and cultural ethos of a people who have lived for centuries on the crossroads of Asia,receiving and harmonizing socio-cultural and religious influences from their neighbouring socities.
How To Reach There : Major airlines operate daily flights from Delhi to Leh.
Highlights of The Festival :
Music concerts and mock marriage ceremonies Mask dance-drama by Lamas in the Spituk Monastery Ladakh Festival Cup-Polo Tournament at Leh Traditional Archery Festival at Skara,Leh Central Asian/Silk route mart at Leh/Nubra Exhibition of traditional lifestyle of nomadic tribes Festival of traditional food of Ladakh Exhibition of Thangka and religious artifacts in the Municipal Building,Leh Exhibition of local handicrafts...... and much more
clockwise- Suru Valley,Indus Basin,Polo,Mask Dance
anticlockwise-Traditional Archery,Pangong Lake
For further informations,log on to www.jktourism.org
Enchanting Tamil Nadu
If u have the time,bring it.
A lot of people have done a lot of things in Tamil Nadu.The Aryans set up Hinduism,and then the Egyptians,Greeks,Romans,Danes,the French,and the British imparted a fair share of history and culture.We ourselves wrote some of the oldest and best-remembered poetry in the country.May be that's why the world has made a habit of spending time in Tamil Nadu.For,cramming 300,000 years of one of the oldest living cultures in the world will take quite a lot of it.
Weaving in the past and the present,heritage tourism is the buzzword in Tamil Nadu........
Heritage tourism ,has been getting a lot of thrust,considering that five out of the 26 Unesco-declared monuments are part of the Tamil Nadu map.The five heritage sites include Mamallapuram,Thanjavur,Gangaikonda Cholapuram,Darasuram and the Nilgiri Mountain Railway.
The myriad areas getting attention include eco-tourism,rural,medical,cultural,heritage and pilgrimage tourism.With the industrial and commercial boom in the region,business tourism is also catching up in the state.As a result,tourism packages in the state have evolved from hurried trips to Ooty,Kanchipuram and the Marina beach to options that have a strong dose of tradition and cultureFor example,Chennai Sangamam,a two-year-old annual event that showcases the traditions of the state,is becoming a big draw among domestic and international tourists.
Tourists circuit :Elagiri,Tranquebar,Kolli Hills,Bhavani Kooduthurai and Vedaranyam.
'TN domestic tourism sees a lot of variation.There is family -oriented pilgrimage and heritage tourism'-A triangular circuit around Madurai,Kanchipuram and Mamallapuram similar to the Delhi,Agra and Jaipur circuit - best go places for the international tourists--
READY RECKONER :
Rail - cum - Road Tour to Tamil Nadu-
Places to be covered up : Mamallapuram,Pondichery,Thanjavur,Rameswaram,
For details on tours with excellent accommodation and transport facilities,log onto : www.tamilnadutourism.org
for reservations,log onto : www.ttdconline.com
The perfect Himalayan getaway,this Uttaranchal hamlet is a balm to tired souls.Take a holiday here to feel the power of nature.....
It's an absolutely idyllic locale,bathed in mists and magenta sweet peas,all interspersed with lush ferns and vibrant calendulas...Calls of a bulbul or a parakeet occassionally break the silence.Indulge in a walk in the clouds through majestic deodars and pines ! Take in lungsful of the mountain air,feel the freshness.It's a awesome ! I bet u have never experienced nature so intimately before.
After a 7-hour road trip from Delhi,when u reach this Himalayan 'hideout' at a height of about 8,500 ft near Mussoorie,u feel u are one with nature.Unspoilt and untouched by the ravages of time and the world outside,this picturesque hamlet stands out like a metaphor for peace and rejuvenation.And like any hill station,Kanatal offers magnificent views of snow-capped mountains,acres of woods with brilliant flora and fauna,gurgling rivulets and thatched cottages.Kanatal's virginal splendour is relatively unexplored by tourists and (thank heavens !)realtors.Its benign bliss makes u feel that time has come to a standstill.Its serenity provides the perfect backdrop to commune with nature.Relax,meditate,walk...Do anything to feel the power of the sublime,the mystical appeal of Mother Nature.
With temperatures ranging between 10 degree C and 25 degree C in summer,this is a great retreat from the heat and dust of urban cacophony.But,in winter,temperatures can drop to -5degree C ! From December to February,the hamlet turns into a fairytale wonderland,carpeted with snow ! For honeymooners,it is sheer paradise...
Best way to enjoy the place ? Walk.After breakfast,venture out into the woods nearby.Trek through tall alpine trees and a ground cover of mosses and lichens.The adventurous can indulge in paragliding,horse riding and mountain biking.And those who like solitude can simply soak in the beauty of a sunrise or a sunset from their hotel balcony Ah...bliss !
Enjoy natural healing through wellness spa treatments at some of the best Himalayan spas in Kanatal.Unwind,unblock and rejuvenate !
Getting there :From Delhi,it's a 7 or 8-hour drive.
Best season :All year round
Some places to stay in : The Terraces,Kanatal Resort & Spa,Hotel Hermitage
What to see : Kodia Jungle-Opens up to a vast expanse of undulating hills and valleys.If u are lucky,u could spot some barking deer and wild boar.Grunt !
Surkhana Devi : A temple dedicated to Sati at 9,995 feet above sea level.Legend has it that Lord Shiva brought Sati's body here,all the way from Haridwar,on his trishul.
Tehri Dam : Being built on the Bhagirathi,amid protests.Once completed,it will be Asia's tallest dam and the world's fouth tallest earth and rock filled dam !
Pant Research Institute : Explore the various species of fruits and plants grown here.
Adventure seekers can also go over to DHANAULTI for a spot of paragliding,rafting,trekking,horse riding and mountain biking.Geronimo !
It's a picture postcard town with colonial cottages bathed in snow in winters,hills shrouded in woods of deodars and firs,cascading waterfalls,placid lakes ....No wonder Mussoorie is called the Queen of Hill Stations !
Even the seemingly mundane in Mussoorie can surprise.Take the Mall for instance.Now u would not want to stay on the mall,would u ?Yet,the mall can be a lot of fun only if u know where to look.On a ridge astride the mall is one of Mussoorie's oldest buildings - Kasmanda Palace build in 1835.Kasmanda has a grand facade but a cozy lived - in feel with red curtains and large rooms with even larger bathrooms !There are magnificent views of the Doon from the grassy knoll in the backyard.Kasanda is a royal house near Lucknow whose rulers were under the influence of the house of Awadh.
As u enter,an imposing staircase in rosewood greets u,flanked by big game on both sides.A tiger shot in the 60s glares down at u and it is an impressive specimen at about 9 feet.There is another,smaller tiger and a couple of leopards on either side of the staircase.That's not all,facing u are other trophies - an enormous Indian bison along with a rhino shot in Chitwan back in the 60s.So u sit in the balcony with the game around u and sip cold beer with a great view of the valley.
Next day is for a long brisk walk.It's Destination Landour,a cantonment town which is a good three quarter of an hour's climb.Here,in the middle of Deodar forests is the old unchanged Mussoorie.Landour was originally built as a sanatorium for soldiers.It has a unique beauty with hills shrouded in deep woods of deodar and fir.It's astride the old road to Tibet which has been unused since the 1962 war with China.The same old set of buildings nestled among the deodars and four small shops in the middle of the place for provisions.Add to that a lovely church,a language school and the word quaint suddenly has new meaning.Landour,of course,is justly famous as a setting in many stories by Ruskin Bond.After a night of blissful sleep u can drive down to Rishikesh.Her u can head for the Himalayan adventure camp some 30 kilometres upstream from Rishikesh town.U can take treks,from the easy ones like Har Ki Dhoon to tougher climbs to the great glaciers of Uttaranchal such as Piindari.U can choose the thrills of river rafting.Every leadership skill imaginable can be tested here - from risk taking,to team work,from initiative to cutting losses in risky situations.What with the Jolly Grant airport becoming international,Dehradun is likely to see a rush of serious trekkers heading for the higher reaches of the Himalayas every year.Be sure u are one of them !
How to go : There are regular flights from Delhi to the Doon Valley.From there one can take buses,taxis and hired cars to Mussoorie.It takes about two-and-a-half hours.One can also take the overnight Mussoorie Express from the capital,Delhi to Mussoorie is 290 km by road.Dehradun to Mussoorie is 35 km.There are direct buses from Delhi to Mussoorie ,along with private taxis.Buses ply every half hour from Dehradun to Mussoorie.
Best season :April-June,Sept-Nov
Where to stay :Sterling Holiday Resort,Park Plaza Stlverton,Dunsvirk Court,Shiva Continental,Hotel Country Inn,Hotel Savoy,Hotel Honeymoon Inn,Hotel Connaught Castle and Emerald Heights
What to see :Lal Tibba,the highest point of the town ; Camel's Back which is ideal for pony riding ;Gun Hill which is the second highest peak of the town;the beautiful Kempty,Jharipani and Bhatta Falls;Mussoorie Lake and Jwalaji Temple
THE ROAD TO ETERNITY
The road to Taglang La offers spectacular mountain views all the way
The Manali-Leh road trip makes for the ultimate Himalayan experience---
The Manali-Leh Highway is one of India’s ultimate road trip experiences, an encounter with extreme landscapes and climates and if u love the mountains, it’s a trip u can not miss.NH21, Delhi to Manali, is just the beginning of a journey,not of the body,but the spirit as well.
Big stop : Rohtang,13,050ft.Even early morning,there is a turnout of tourists,locals,dozens of mountain ponies walking up the road.It’s eerily silent,in a thick mist that mutes all sound,and visibility of just a few metres.
Rohtang is the last milestone for the silk and spice traders crossing the Himalayas from Persia and for many it was their last resting place.The word ‘Rohtang’ letirally means ‘Pile of dead Bodies’.Heading deeper into the Himalayas,u can see landscapes perceptibly changing.Sunshine floods the valley,the mist disappears,and the great trans-Himalayan rain-shadow desert starts appearing.In under an hour,all greenery vanishes.
The sunshine is harsh,unfiltered by cloud and dust.The air is so thin at these heights that oxygen levels halve.Through this comes pure sunlight,skewering u in a pitiless,blistering glare.But remember ,Ladakh is where u get sunburned and frostbitten at the same time.The shade is bitterly cold,wind knifing through sweater and skin straight to bone.Near Jispa, army bulldozers clear a landslide.The army stations one every 5km,to keep the roads operational. Remember Dorcha petrol pumpis the last fuel stop for the next 65km.God help u,if u run out of petrol.In the afternoon u stop at Bharatpur ‘Biker City’ and have a simple meat-chawal lunch at a parachute tent dhaba.These tents are ubiquitious, all along the route-they are hotels,hospitals,restaurants,supply centres and supermarkets rolled into one.
Baralacha La,16,500ft.This is an eerie place,quiet as a graveyard in the evening hush.All around are rock cairns,religious symbols of Buddhist locals. As evening draws on,u look around vast moraine fields gouged out by the glaciers, and feel insignificant,yet proud.At sunset,u can settle into Sarchu camp-tents in an empty valley.As dusk falls,there is a silver moonrise, and the wind picks up in one of the coldest places u have ever been to.Next day, the road winds u past endless switchbacking loops,narrow passes and fantastic wind-carvings,Nakeela,Lachlang La,fuel dumps abandoned trucks,till u reach the Pang Gorges.
Pang’s a slice of Arizona landscape suddenly transplanted into India.It has towering red cliffs,blazing sun,and blowing desert sand.Pang is followed by the world’s highest plains,Morey which has surreal picture-postcard landscape. Taglang La,the last pass at 17,592ft, u descend again into the valleys of the Indus and finally to Leh,Ladakh’s capital,the centre of Little Tibet.
Getting there : Road--Drive from Delhi/Chandigarh :Highway NH21.Volvo AC Buses also ply from Delhi overnight.
Train—Nearest stations are Chandigarh,Kalka,and Pathankot in Punjab.Then u can take local buses/taxis.
Air—Jagson Airlines,IA and Air Deccan fly to Bhuntar,50km from Manali.
The Road Trip : The Manali-Leh road can be done by private taxis,own car,or Enfield/Bullet bikes for the ultimate biking experience.
According to Hindu legend,Manali in Himachal Pradesh,derived its name from Manavalaya or the abode of Manu.According to the myth,Manu the divine law-giver,was the only survivor of the Mahajal Pralay – the great flood – and is said to have fathered the human race.
THE CHARM OF CHAMONG
Chamong Tea Plantation
Rain,thunder or clod,this lush tea estate in the hills of North Bengal is serenely blissful and anonymous.Welcome to God's own patch of beauty !
The most beautiful thing about Chamong is its people,particularly women.They are out of this world - coy,always smilling and giggling.These neither-hot-nor-cold women,mostly working in tea gardens, and many carrying a doko each (where they keep plucked leaves)tied with namlo(sling) are stunningly simple but sexy.Rain,thunder or cold,Chamong,their land,keeps smilling in its world of serenity,a world in which words like money are abstractions.In every sense,it's God's own patch of beauty,a painter's award-winning canvas.
The people of Chamong begin their day early.In misty semi-darkness,they set out for the tea gardens,where they hum,sing in joyous gyration as they pluck leaves.That's their daily call.
A WORLD OF SILENCE
A Woman With a 'doko'
There aren't many places to stay in Chamong.If you come,never come in a crowd.If you are ready to come in a small group,a beautiful British bungalow awaits you.This place is specially recommende for honeymooners.This bungalow,once the residence of Chamong Tea Garden managers,has been converted into a guest house with a surreal touch.There are three rooms with wooden floors,the rooms are majestic,has the grandeur of no less than a penthouse,yet simple.Some rare photographs of planters and their people enable you to take a peek into the past.
In Chamong you get people who always whisper,never walk or run,but tip-toe without creating any noise,lest their elite guests get disturbed ! The man at your beck and call never wears shoes,not even in extreme cold.That's the practice here.This is their way to show reverence.
Chamong Guest House
U drive about 70 km from Siliguri on your way to Chamong.The road goes up to Ghoom,7,000-plus above the sea level.Then comes a sharp descent of 3,000 feet.The car goes down and down for about an hour on a spine-chilling rough,narrow road.But u are perfectly safe.
When the car stops at the bungalow gate,u are greeted with smiles and flowers.There is a royal cellar,containing whisky,rum,vodka and,of course,a grand assortment of wine at the resort.U can gulp down any amount and taste some local delicacies
It's a different world up there at 4,000 feet : the twinkling lights of huts,the deafening silence,the arome of the garden,the call of a bulbul that makes your heart cry out in joy.You are very close to nature.Just surrender !
Spen sometime planting a tea shrub in the garden.You can even give it your name ! You'll cherish the experience.
How to go : You can take a flight to Bagdogra or a train to New Jalpaiguri Station.Chamong is about a 3 hours drive from Siliguri.
Best season : March-May and Oct-Feb,you can plan a trip for puja.
Where to stay :Chamong Chaibari Resorts.A double room comes for Euro 150 on a twin sharing basis.There are no other hotels here,so book in advance.
What to do :
Relax and enjoy the beauty and silence of the estate.Go for long walks and take in lungs full of air.
Go on a tour of the estate,visit the tea factory and indulge in a tea-tasting session.
U can also check out the nearby villages by going on a day trip
Darjeeling is close by,so go check out the old beauty
Shopping :Explore the tribal villages for souvenirs and make sure you carry home enough packets of the famed Chamong tea !
BEAUTY OF BENGAL
West Bengal allures tourists with its rich cultural heritage,lush nature and the vibrant city of life of Kolkata-
Good tourism creates unforgettable memories.The impact is pleasing,meaningful and positive.The world is moving towards seamless travel across oceans,thereby unifying nations in an unprecendented realm of exchange,cultural and emotional.
Tourist arrival in India is increasing by 20% annually,as is travel by Indians within the country and overseas.In eastern India,West Bengal holds the pride of place as the most frequently visited state.The primary reason is the huge diversity of tourist attractions;the hills of Darjeeling and the growing traction for tea tourism,the enigmatic forests of Sundarbans and Dooars with its distinctive identity and terrain,the cultural lure of Santiniketan,the art of Bankura,the history of Bishnupur and Murshidabad and the undeniable popularity of the beaches of Mondarmoni and Shankarpur.
Above all these,the city that is the crowning glory of Bengal,is Kolkata.Most love it,some are indifferent,but none can ignore the impact it has on them,when they visit.Kolkata is addictive in its presence,cerebral in its influence and sensual in embrance.
Travellers to West Bengal are enamoured by the small train in the Darjeeling hills,the mangoes of Malda,the vivacity of the Kolkata city life.However,there is newness in what everyone knows as Shonar Bangla.To attract the tourists, new initiatives are being implemented in the thrust areas of tourism development like introduction of luxury steamers for overnight river cruises to Murshidabad and Sundarbans.The hills are offering a whole new experience in the form of tea tourism.Good tea estates such as Glenburn,Makaibari,Happy Valley,Puttabong and a few others are offering small bungalows on the estate for the tourists to experience the hills off the beaten track.
The forests of Bengal have always held mysteries that have drawn people from far and wide.Gorumara National Park,Jaldapara Wildlife Sanctuary and Buxa Tiger Reserve in the Dooars region boasts of the rare single-horned rhinoceros,elephant,deer,wild boar,bison and the winged species of hornbills and peacocks.And in the south,the mangrove forests,the mesmerising rivers like Matla,the majestic Royal Bengal tigers - 269 of them,the Olive Ridley turtles at Kanak and white-bellied sea-eagles,whimbrels and terns at Lothial Island,the folklore of mysteries unsolved,all within a steamer ride away in the World heritage site of Sundarbans.The earth beckons----
Good tourism teaches lessons that are enriching and adds value to our appreciation of life and our natural heritage-----
Thinking of a break ?
Mandarmani Sea Coast
Darjeeling - Hill Station
Sunderbans - Deep Forest
Shantiniketan - Rabindranath Tagore's Land
Bishnupur - Pilgrimage Zone
Dooars - Wildlife
MAKE WEST BENGAL your dream holiday !
One state many amazing holidays
Beautiful Bengal - Best Tourist Attractions In Bengal - Best Picturesque View - Best Panoramic View - Trully Stunning--------www.westbengaltourism.gov.in
A WALK IN THE WILD !
Gorumara in North Bengal offers all the thrills and spills of a vacation that promises an encounter with the beautiful wild.Gurgling streams,deer,elephants,rhinos keep you on the edge. Shhh…is that the call of a peacock ?
As u touch Sevoke Road,the dense forests of the Dooars welcome u with their wild and infinite beauty.It is a 75 km-drive from New Jalpaiguri Station.The asphalt road wound its way into acres of lush green tea plantations.
It’s a great experience exploring the Dooars .Those who love nature and a brisk with adventure ,the Gorumara forest is one of the best destinations.The 80 square kilometers area of the park starts from the banks of the Jalonaka river bordering the Bhutan hills and spreading across the Lataguri forest range .In 1949,this forest was declared a wildlife sanctuary and in 1992,it was given the status of a national park.
You take a right turn from the Chalsa crossing towards the Gorumara beat.The Murti flows between Gorumara and South Dhupjhora forming an idyllic locale and a perfect backdrop for a stay in the wild.
Brush With Nature
Spend a night at resort and head for Gorumara next morning.U will be pleasantly surprised by the sudden sight of a deer crossing the forest path and disappearing into the forest.There is a watchtower ,Jatraprasad close to the river Murti offering a spectacular view of the area and also the rare sight of animals coming to the bank for their salt-lick and to drink water.Early in the morning u will be thrilled to spot bisons,deer,wildhogs and rhinos near the bank.If u are lucky,u can also see a leopard crossing a lone deer,separated from its herd. From Jatraprasad watchtower you can go for another trip to the Elephant Camp.
It’s a picturesque journey into the deep keeping the gurgling Murti on the right.A patient wait can fetch you a prized shot of a rhino playing in the riverbed.Near the Camp there is another watchtower on top of a tree.Finally the road ends at the camp where the elephants take visitors on a ride inside the forest.Those who want to experience the savage beauty of the forest,can stay in the tree house next to the camp.So slip into your jungle boots and get ready for some real adventure !
How to go : Bagdogra is the nearest airport and New Jalpaiguri is the nearest railway
Station .Mainaguri and New Mal railway stations are within 30 kms.From
New Jalpaiguri ,it’s a two-and-half hours drive to Gorumara.
Where to stay : River Wood Retreats,Ca-cur Bari Resort,Silver Ridge Resort,Panchavati
Resort ,Forest dept. tree houses and bungalows inside the forest.
Best season : September to March
What to see : Baksha Tiger reserve and the forests of Chapramari,Khunia,Lataguri and
Elephant safari/Night safari : The two trips at dawn and night take visitors right into the
the core area of the forest
Wear shoes during the jungle walk.Rubber sole is preferred.Take a small container of salt to avoid leech bites.They often drop from tress.Forest guards often burn paper and use ash to stop bleeding after a leech bite.
Don’t smoke or consume alcohol inside the forest.Similarly don’t use perfumes during your jungle tour.Move silently.Don’t go close to animals,even the tamed elephants of the forest department.Always move with experienced guides.