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Paris is regarded as a city of love and fragrances and deserved to be visited with your partner. Make your romantic moments more memorable in Paris as it embraces your Valentine's trip with a lot of romantic and nostalgic activities this year. Love is in the air and it’s even more beautiful because you see people of different countries and ethnicity being together, madly in love!

Paris is the stunning city you ought to visit soon. Every spot is Instagrammable. Whether you are up for a romantic getaway or for a solo trip, Paris should be on your bucket list for sure. Don't just add it to your bucket list, get ready to stroll around the drop-dead gorgeous city of France.

Regardless of the fairly bad reputation of the surrounding area, the Gare du Nord is one of the most beautiful in Paris. It is also Europe’s first railway station in terms of traffic. The railway station was featured in the movie, le Fabuleux destin d’Amélie Poulain, one of the most famous French movies abroad.

Why is Paris so amazing? Because a very early sunlit walk through its deserted streets, except for tradesmen setting up their market stalls, is an experience like no other, anywhere. Interrupt the walk only for coffee and a croissant.

Celebrate the special day with a lot of joy and sweet memories. To visit Paris this year, you have to get to some instant activities on your fingertips.

things to do in Paris on Valentines day

Here are some top Valentine's Day activities for you to make your day more special and sweet in France.

1. Candlelight Dinner in Île Saint-Louis

Find a good place in town and book your private table with a good romantic environment to have an opportunity for a very romantic candlelight dinner in Paris. If you want your eve to be more romantic, you can also opt for cruise dinner at Seine River. Eat good, and make your memories together in a city of romance.

Tourists traps are more of less the same everywhere, so be aware of shady offers, unlicensed taxis, taxi-bikes. Paris is full of these parasites and unfortunately, tourists are still falling for it. A golden rule: a restaurant with a guy standing outside and trying to lure people in is not a good restaurant. And you’re not in a good area to have dinner.

If you don’t speak any French and want to book a restaurant, one of the easiest way is to use an app. You can get pretty good discounts as well.

2. Dance, Swing, Whirl along the Pont des Arts

Paris is like a garden of the world where people come to feel the actual vibes of love, kiss, and dance. Learn some steps of the couple dance before visiting Paris. Not in the mood to dance? No worry, you can sit and take the pleasures to see the couples dancing on the edge of the river.

This can never be missed mind it because this dance is organized every evening and you can avail the chance of dancing on the romantic beats any eve in your Paris.

3. Plan a romantic movie in Opéra Bastille

Travelers mostly have a love of film. Traveling on Valentine's day with your partner in Paris would need to get a chance of a romantic movie in any of the good cinemas in town. Sit in La Peniche Cinema, and Gaumont Opera and have a good experience of watching a movie. You can also opt for the open-air cinema. Check whether are they planning to play a movie of your choice or not.

4. Visit the Trocadéro Gardens

Get a good offline map on your smartphone for the city and public transports. It would be a great idea to get into the very huge Aquarium in Paris. There are more than ten thousand species for you to get the wonderful views of your partner. You would also find a restaurant associated with the Aquarium so if you feel hungry, you can sit in the restaurant.

Interesting Reads: Romantic Restaurants in Paris

5. Moulin Rouge is looking your way

It is a perfect time to take the right sips and dance on the romantic, fast or thrilling beats in the nightclubs of Paris. A number of pubs are there in Paris looking your way. The reputed names are Frog Hope House, Ha’Penny Bridge Pub, Little Temple bar, or O Brien's. Sit on the Green Goose, and in the Quiet Man. You should also move to any of the good pubs and take the opportunity to de-stress and relax your nerves.

6. Hot Air Balloon ride in Parc André Citroën

It is the most romantic activity being in Paris. There are companies in which you can get your own self online or by getting there to book your ride. By the way, travel companies that are responsible for your package also can help you book the two seats in a very interesting air balloon ride.

7. A very famous Eiffel Tower visit

How is that possible if you visit Paris and miss to visit the Eiffel tower and take your memorable pictures there? It is the most romantic place to get I suggest. In day time or even at night, you can visit the Eiffel Tower with your partner and make your golden memories along with the twenty thousand gold lights of Eiffel tower. Surprised? Let's book to visit the place and explore.

8. Visiting Louvre Museum

Paris has a lot of history and with that comes a lot of museums. One thing that not many know is that many places in Paris are free to visit on the first Sunday of every month. Louvre Museum is one of the most important in the world. Map out where you would like to go, and what you would like to see. This is a MASSIVE museum, and chances are you will not see everything.

The Louvre has a glass pyramid in the yard in front of it and is a famous castle turned now a museum in Paris. It contains so many famous paintings and sculptures such as Mona Lisa. It is a place to visit when you are in Paris but it will take you days before you see everything. On a guided tour you will see the most famous works that houses this museum, such as the Mona Lisa and the Venus de Milo.

Although, you should know that precisely because a visit to the Louvre is one of the best things to do in Paris, it's also one of the most crowded places. Lines for entry can be pretty long and excruciating, and they might take up hours of your day. We are not saying this fact should deter you from a visit to the Louvre - quite the contrary. The sights will be well worth it.

Another must-see museum is the Musee d'Orsay, which exhibits an important collection of Impressionist paintings.

9. Sit on the Romantic Cafes in Place du Tertre

Paris is all about romance. Every nook of the town owes romantic vibes for you, either you are strolling into the alleyways or sitting on the cafes, sipping warm coffee or tea of your choice. Get arms in arms with your partner and sit on any of the well-known cafés in Paris. We had perfect memories still in the pictures I had taken.

Interesting Reads: Best Hotels in Paris
  • 0
  • Friday, January 31, 2020
Kalyan Panja Kalyan Panja Author
National forests cover much of northern Georgia, eastern Tennessee and western North Carolina, offering many opportunities for mountain hiking in the Blue Ridge and other mountain ranges in USA. The Appalachian Trail begins at Springer Mountain in Georgia and climbs over 2,000 miles to Maine.

The trail passes through the Great Smoky Mountains National Park in Tennessee and North Carolina, providing spectacular views of snow-capped peaks, deep and wild forests, roaring streams and waterfalls. Appalachian Mountains are part of the impressive views of this park, where the Cherokee native Indians used to hunt.

Smoky Mountains National Park imposes strict camping permits which must be secured ahead of time and displayed on your pack, except for a few spots in shelters each night for thru-hikers. A good portion of the trail is a thin ribbon of right-of-way with private property on either side. There are about 250 shelters along the trail open and available for users on a first come, first serve basis.

However, in the thru-hiking world, during a rainstorm, the shelter ain’t full till everybody is in there. In addition, tent campers are welcome to camp in the immediate vicinity of most of the shelters. And there are about 100 designated campsites in addition to the shelters. Beyond that, many areas, but not certainly all, allow you to practice Leave No Trace low impact camping.

This means camping at least 70 feet away from a water source, and a further distance from the trail, roads, or trailheads. In general though, provided you are not near a developed area or in a specially designated park, if you camp late at night and leave early the next morning and leave no evidence (no trash, no visible campfire/coals/ash, no tent footprint), you will rarely, if ever have any issues.

The Clingsman Dome observatory is the highest point from which you can enjoy the most spectacular images of the place. Through one of the paths that run through this great forest, you can reach Cades Cove, a valley where there are still the wooden huts and churches that populated this place in the 19th century.

In total, the Appalachian Trail is about 2,200 miles long and it passes through 14 states. It starts in Georgia at one end, and starts in Maine at the other, and stretches across these other states: North Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia, West Virginia, Maryland, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, New York, Connecticut, Massachusetts, Vermont, and New Hampshire.

It’s quite an amazing thing and hiking any length of it (no matter how long or short) is a great experience that you will remember for the rest of your life. Each year, thousands of people jump on the Appalachian Trail at some point and travel a specific distance so they can say they took a piece out of the historic trail.

If you are preparing to hike the Appalachian Trail, you might want to do some planning. And you'll definitely want to do some strategic packing. Hopefully, you know all this already, or you might want to do some major research into just how big the Appalachian Trail is.

National Geographic actually explored the long path and released a 50-minute documentary that you can view on Netflix. The trail goes directly through the town of Hanover, New Hampshire. Mount Washington in the White Mountains of New Hampshire is not a particularly scary place. Just avoid the place in winter!

The beauty of hiking Mt Washington is that literally millions of people have been there before you. Barring bad weather, it’s difficult to get lost. The trail is well worn and well maintained. There are frequent cairns showing you the way, which you absolutely need when it gets foggy, which is almost always.

If you take it slowly, bring lots of water and hot soup, and be prepared and dress properly. You can do Mt Washington in about 4 - 6 hours. You should start early. Many hikers are at the start by sunrise. This is because you never want to get caught on Mt Washington at night or in the dark. Going up is one thing, but getting down is another.

It’s almost always more difficult to go down than up and that is when most people get hurt. On the other hand, Mt Washington offers a benefit most mountains do not have - it has a cog railway to the top. If you climb up and are simply too tired or uninterested in climbing down, you can purchase a 45 dollar ticket (standing room only) for the 90 minute ride to the bottom. It’s a huge bonus.

There are many cool things on top of Mt Washington including the Tip Top Hotel, which used to be a working hotel and now is a museum and place for rangers to camp, a radio station, a weather observatory and two restaurants, not to mention the train station. There used to be a newspaper published up there and the paper would be put on a flat board with wheels and a man would ride it down the mountain on that board using a stick as a brake.

This was in the 1800s when people came to the My Washington Valley in the summer to escape the heat of the city. The Mt Washington Hotel is the last of those resorts and well worth the visit, especially for Sunday brunch. Yes, a beginner can make the climb to the top. Take it slow, be prepared and start very early and you can make it.

Hike the Appalachian Trail

Here are some things you should definitely pack when preparing to hike on the Appalachian Trail:

1. Bug Spray

The Appalachian Trail has been known to have its fair share of insects, which is never enjoyable. Keep these little buzzers away from you with a good bug and insect repellent that has been made specifically for hikers.

2. Flashlight

Even if you decide to stop hiking before the sun goes down, you will likely need a flashlight for when you are among the trees. Find a high-quality outdoor flashlight to bring with you and you’ll be thankful.

Whether it’s for going to use the washroom in the middle of the night or in an attempt to keep going after the sun slides below the skyline, a good outdoor flashlight is an invaluable hiking item that you’ll use every single day while hiking the Appalachian Trail.

3. Cookware

Depending on how long you are hiking the Appalachian Trail, you’ll need different amounts of camping cookware. I recommend doing your research to find the best backpacking cookware that will serve all of your needs while not being too large and heavy to carry every day.

This type of cookware has been extensively researched and designed to make it easy on the hiker, while also being able to feed them enough over a long period of time. If you are hungry while hiking, you’ll begin to feel sluggish and won’t be at your best. Bring some good equipment and you’ll be much better off.

4. Rain Gear

The rain is always a pain while hiking, but is especially annoying if you are hiking for multiple days. There is nothing worse than going to sleep wet and waking up wet. A good set of rain gear can be your best friend in the wild if you get hit by rain. Focus on gear to keep your feet and torso dry in particular – those are the main areas where rain can really drench.

5. Water Purification Kit

They say water along the Appalachian Trail is drinkable but you should definitely take a water purification kit with you to make sure. It would be horrible to have the trail's water negatively affect you during your hike and is not something you should risk. A simple purification kit won’t take up much room and can be extremely important while hiking for long periods of time.

6. First Aid Kit

This is an obvious one that could become very important to you on your hike for the wrong reasons. The best-case scenario is that you bring a First Aid Kit with you and never have to open it, but it’s better safe than sorry. Find one that has all the necessities packed into as small a pack as you can find.

7. Clothes

The clothes for hiking should be of a breathable material such as Cotton. Plus, the temperature plays a very important role here, as the layers of clothing depend on it. Also, there are good quality readymade trousers and shirts available in stores these days but anything breathable should work.

8. Guidebook

My final item to bring along as you hike the Appalachian Trail is an official guidebook. You will use it over and over to map your route and see your progress. As we mentioned above, these trails are gigantic and span a ton of ground, so you’ll need one of these guidebooks to help you along the way.

Don’t find yourself lost in the woods without a guidebook to use for reference – I’ve done it on a much smaller hiking trail and it’s not a good feeling!
  • 0
  • Thursday, January 30, 2020
Kalyan Panja Kalyan Panja Author
Triund trek is one of the most famous treks in Himachal Pradesh along with the Hampta Pass Trek. This trek is like the jewel of Dharamshala where you will experience the majestic views of Dhauladhar Himalayan ranges, marvelous Kangra Valley and the most amazing sunrise and sunset. Triund trek is the easiest trek for all kinds of travelers of different age groups.

It is easy to trek and the beauty of this trek is incomparable with other trekking routes. The route of this trek goes through forests of Deodar Trees, Oak Trees and Rhododendron trees. Along the way, you will find small shops of tea, coffee and snacks. The total distance of this trek is 9 km which can be easily covered in approx 5 hrs by an average physically fit person. It is one of the most popular treks of Himachal Pradesh.

The Triund Trek is a serene, easy and one of the most pleasant treks in Himachal Pradesh, and it is one of the most popular treks in the country. It is situated in the midst of the cloudy Dhauladhar ranges, with the amazing Kangra Valley on one side, the Triund trek is perfect for first-time trekkers just as experienced trekkers or experience searchers.

Trek alongside the oak and rhododendron forests and exciting curves while getting a tea and snacks at rest stops. There are rock-cut gives in after the trek endpoint, which is one of the interesting things about this trek. Remember that the Triund Trek is very simple to do without a trekking guide.

triund trek in mcleodganj for beginners

Triund Trek Itinerary

Day 1: Arrival at Mcleodganj

After overnight journey reach at the Mcleodganj, check-in at hotel or guest house, take some rest and get ready after breakfast to explore the beautiful Mcleodganj. The point of attractions in Mcleodganj are Bhagsu Falls, Namgyal Monastery, Tsuglagkhang Complex and many more. After the whole day of sightseeing, return to the hotel for rest and dinner.

Day 2: Dharamkot to Triund

Dharamkot is 2 KM away from the Mcleodganj. You can drive to Dharamkot from Mcleodganj. From there you will start trekking for Triund. Now be ready for the most scenic views which come through your way. From Dharamkot, trek to Bhagsu Nag. Here you can hire a guide if you want however, the path is entirely all-around checked and with the assistance of local people, you will be effectively ready to explore the way yourself.

The starting path is quite direct and simple for the initial 5 kilometres. However, after a steady climb, you will find some tricky curves, yet sensible 22 curves before you reach Triund. The path is understandable all through and you will go over numerous trekkers on their ascent and descent, you won’t get lost.

After trekking 5 hours you will reach the Triund Top. There you will be welcomed by the breathtaking view of Dhauladhar Mountains and picturesque views of lush green Kangra valley. You may run over Buddhist priests looking for comfort, and friendly local people who run the slows down along the path.

Now the main excitement is awaiting you. Today you will experience the memorable sunset which you will have never seen before. After observing this magic of nature enjoy bonfire with dinner and share your experience with your trip mates. Stargazing will be the addition of the campsite.

Day 3: Return to Mcleodganj

Wake-up early before the sun awakes you. Again there will be the new wonder that will amaze you that is the most beautiful sunrise. After experiencing the sunrise rest for a while, have breakfast and get ready to head back to Mcleodganj. Experience again the scenic views on the route. As you reach Mcleodganj take some rest and have some snacks and then board on the bus for your ongoing journey with your best moments.

Things to Carry on Triund Trek

Trekking Pole, Trekking Shoes, Jacket, Woolen Clothes, Sunglasses, Sunscreen Lotion, Water Bottle, Thermo Flask, Led Flashlights, First Aid Kit, General Medicine Kit, Backpack, Personal Toiletries, Sleeping Bag, Some Snacks, and Garbage Bag

Triund Trek Tips

1. Take a lightweight and comfortable backpack and remain hydrated all through the trek. Carry only necessary items in your backpack it will help you to keep minimum weight and will provide ease on the trek.

2. Carry essential identity proof with it will help you to avoid any kind of difficulty with the authority. Acquire permit/license before the starting of the trek.

3. Take a pain relieving spray, if there should be any injuries.

4. The use of drugs and any other kind of toxic chemical is not allowed on the trek. It may lead you in the difficulty and also it is illegal.

5. Do try to have heated arguments with co-travelers if you have any issue then report immediately to the team leader.

6. Try not to litter and don't be noisy.

7. Carry a light sweater or coat if not going in winter.

8. Pack a power bank, a Swiss blade and shades.

9. Wear great climbing shoes and take additional pairs of socks.

10. Try not to stress over carrying lots of food, there will be a lot of options on the path.

Best Time For Triund Trek

The best time to attempt the Triund trek is March to June and September to December. During these months the weather remains pleasant and suitable for trekking. This area receives heavy rain and there may be the chances of the storm or landslide so it is not advised to attempt in the monsoon.

The atmosphere is always wonderful and can get cold around evening time. Monsoons are also a decent time to trek however you might not have any desire to camp overnight, wherein case you can remain at a guest house in Triund. Winters are extremely cold here, however you can go in winters as well. The trek will be less packed. In the months of January to February this trek remains closed due to heavy snowfall.

How to Reach Triund Trek

Dharamshala or Mcleodganj both are the best places to reach for the Triund trekking. The trekking from Triund starts from Galu or Dharamkot where both the places are nearby Mcleodganj.

By Road: Mcleodganj is well connected with Delhi in means of road transportation. You can take government bus from the ISBT or private buses available from the Majnu Ka Tila bus stand. After an overnight journey, you can reach Mcleodganj, reach Dharamkot in 3 hours by taxi, and begin your trek. Taxis at Dharamshala airport is not a big deal. You can book a self-drive taxi from Delhi to Dharamshala, which you can benefit all through your remain and for your return journey..

By Air: The nearest airport to reach Mcleodganj is Kangra Airport strongly connected with the Delhi airport and also connected with other major airports via Delhi. After reaching there you can hire a private tourist taxi.

By Train: The nearest Railway station is Pathankot from there you can take a bus or hire some private taxi to reach Mcleodganj. Numerous Jammu Trains stop there. To go to Delhi from Pathankot, book tickets on Delhi-Pathankot Superfast Express or in case you're originating from Mumbai, attempt Mumbai-Jammu Tawi express. Take a bus or a taxi from Pathankot to Dharamshala which is around 2 to 3 hours away.

Triund Trek Cost

Travel: Bus from Delhi to Dharamshala will cost Rs. 600 to Rs. 1300 relying upon whether you book a customary or a Volvo transport. Taxi fares from Dharamshala air terminal to Dharamkot will cost around Rs. 2000. In case if you book a self-drive vehicle with a driver on the web, a 3-day outing would cost around Rs. 10,000.

Food: Food will cost Rs. 500 to Rs. 1000 every day.

Accommodation: Accommodation will cost around Rs. 500 to Rs. 1000 every day.

Triund Trek Packages

Trek administrators will charge around Rs. 1500 for Triund trek (does exclude transport charges or food charges).

Where To Stay at Triund

Most trekkers like to camp for the night under the stars. You can remain at Triund Mountain Lodge, Moonlight Rooms or Forest Department Rest House. But if you like, you can complete the trek and drop by late night and remain at numerous moderate hotels in Dharamkot. There are numerous hotels accessible at Bhagsu moreover.

Also you can stay at a youth hostel in McLeodganj. Hotels or hostels will charge you around Rs. 1000, there are also some better hotels with better amenities that will charge from Rs. 2000 onwards.

What to Eat at Triund

There are such a large number of diners and curious little bistros beginning from Mcleodganj, Dharamkot, Bhagsu as far as possible up to Triund. The food is moderate and flavorful. You will discover bistros giving Indian, Chinese, Tibetan and Israeli foods. The laidback bistro culture of Dharamkot will be a relaxing and amazing experience.

This is all about the Triund Trek. Triund trek is as simple as it is charming. So stay blessed and keep trekking in the Himalayas.
  • 0
  • Wednesday, January 29, 2020
Kalyan Panja Kalyan Panja Author
When we talk about India, the first image that comes to our mind is the scenic beauty of multi religions people living together happily. The snow-capped mountain ranges in the north, lush green Sundarbans in the east, golden city Rajasthan in the west and Indian ocean in the south. India itself is a treasure that holds several treasures inside her womb.

Being a secularist country, India is a place with different culture and treasure some of the magnificent scenic beauty of the world. If you ever plan to visit India there are a number of places that grab your attention and you may get confused about which one to choose for your first visit. Do not worry about the visa, as India's visa can easily be accessed via the e-visa service.

Dream Destinations in India

Let's plan for the tour. After reading about some of the most visited places in India you must be really excited to have a look at these places with your own eyes. Let's not make you wait any longer:

1. Shani Shingnapur, Maharashtra

There are many places of Shani Dev in Maharashtra, but Shani Shingnapur has different importance in them. There is Shani Dev at this place, but they do not have a temple. There are many houses of people here but no house has a door. Yes, this Shinganapur village of Shani has a population of about three thousand, but no house has a door.

Locking is not done by latch and link anywhere. Not only this, the people here do not keep the cupboards, suitcases, etc. It is said that Saturn is done by the command of God. People use bags and cans or strings to keep valuable household items, ornaments, clothes, rupees, and money.

2. Ratnagiri, Maharashtra

Ratnagiri proudly adorns the birthplace of the most dynamic leaders India has ever seen – Lokmanya Bal Gangadhar Tilak. Lokmanya Tilak’s native home has been turned into a museum which showcases the life of young Tilak. The 400 hundred years old temple Swayambhu Ganpati Temple is one of the major pilgrimage centers. The idol of Ganesha is a self-created monolithic, made from pule (white sand) and it is said that it was discovered 1600 years ago.

Prachin Konkan celebrates the rich history and cultural heritage of Konkan. It is one of the few open-air museums that depict the life of Konkan 500 years back. Experience the authentic lifestyle of Ratnagiri at Prachin Konkan.

Jaigad Fort symbolizes victory. The intelligent and brilliant planning used in constructing this fort is simply amazing. The vivaciousness of this architecture makes Jaigad a prominent tourist destination of Ratnagiri.

The amazing architecture and the scenic beauty around the Thiba Palace is beyond the imagination of any tourist. This luxurious palace was in fact the place for house-arrest of King Thiba. When in Ratnagiri, don’t forget to appreciate this architectural masterpiece.

If adventure sports leave your adrenaline pumping, then you will fall in love with the thrilling water sports of Ganpatipule. The raging waves of Ganpatipule beach and the roaring winds make the atmosphere blissful.

The loud rumbling sea waves and howling breeze surround the beach of Velneshwar. This crescent-shaped beach never fails to mesmerize the tourists with its crystal clear water and clean, sandy coastline.

3. Jaisalmer, Rajasthan

Jaisalmer is one of the most visited tourist places in India. It is located in Rajasthan. In the heart of the Thar desert, Jaisalmer is also known as the Golden City. Jaisalmer is called the Golden City because of the golden sand that inhabits the great desert of Rajasthan.

Jaisalmer is famous for its huge Haveli (big bungalow), huge lakes, and Jain temples. It is best enjoyed from the back of a camel. There is magnificent Jaisalmer Fort and there are intricately carved Jain Temples. Enjoying the mesmerizing view of the crystalline sand and spending nights under the clear in the golden desert is on the heaven of feeling.

Jaisalmer Fort stands at the center of the land and the people reside around the castle for generations.

4. Gangtok, Sikkim

Gangtok is the capital city of Sikkim and is located at the edge of the Himalaya mountains. It shares its borders with China. Mount Kanchenjunga (third highest peak in the world) is one of the best touring sites in Gangtok, that flock tourists all around the world. The mesmerizing beauty of the mountain view and greenish plain is a sight to behold. Gangtok needs to be into your to-do list of dream destinations in India.

5. Kalimpong, West Bengal

Kalimpong is located in West Bengal and is one of the best places to visit in India. It is situated at an altitude of 1250 meters. It is renowned for its lush green, scenic views, monasteries, churches and the Tibetan handicrafts. If you ever visit Darjeeling, you must spare some time for Kalimpong. It is just at a one-hour distance from Darjeeling.

This place is famous for adventure activities, fishing in Teesta River, paragliding, parasailing, rafting, and tubing, for instance.

6. Pune, Maharashtra

With unending coastline, forts, enlightening pilgrim sites, and mesmerizing hill stations along with World Heritage Sites and wildlife sanctuaries; one cannot get enough of this state!

Are you and your partner looking for hill stations near Pune and a place where you can get into some action by enjoying some adventure activities. Khadakwasla is a dam situated 20 km from the city of Pune. In the surroundings of Pune you can visit the Sinhagad, Torna, Purandar and Shivneri.

Going for a short hike, savouring some delicious cuisine or just enjoying some privacy in the room from the height of a luxury hotel, Lavasa is simply the place to be. In Lavasa, there is something for each type of party. With lush miles landscapes, some of the best restaurants and bars in Maharashtra, glamorous Bollywood sites and the sun almost all year round, Lavasa is simply romantic and you will never get bored of this city.

Situated on the banks of Karwha river, Saswad holds history of the Peshwa era.

Sinhagad is a comparatively larger fortress and requires more walking. This fort has a very rich history about which you will get to read there. During monsoon it looks the best, although please carry a raincoat too. It even has a small pond inside,

7. Yavatmal, Maharashtra

Located in Yavatmal district of Maharashtra, the Tipeshwar Wildlife Sanctuary derives its name from Goddess Tipai located near Tipeshwar village in the sanctuary area.

8. Nashik, Maharashtra

Nandur Madhmeshwar Bird Sanctuary is one of the finest bird sanctuaries of India. Rich in forest cover & surrounded by cool water bodies, this place has become an ideal home for various bird species. It is also described as the Bharatpur of Maharashtra.

Misal Pav of Nashik is not something you can have in your nearby restaurant. Misal Pav is considered as one of the spiciest cuisines of Maharashtra and no doubt Nashik has excelled in the preparation of this dish.

9. Raigad, Maharashtra

From having a romantic walk along the coastline, to enjoying water sports right in the middle of the sea; Alibaug's pristine beaches has got everything for you. Situated in the laps of the vast Arabian sea, explore these surreal beaches of Maharashtra. Driving along Konkan beaches in monsoon is an unforgettable bitter-sweet experience.

With roaring sea on one side and lush greenery on the other, it is pure bliss! The major attractions are Alibaug beach and fort, Kashid beach, Murud janjira fort, Shrivardhan, Harihareshwar beach and temple etc.

10. Sindhudurg, Maharashtra

Dotted with cashew and coconut trees, Redi is small coastal village situated in Sindhudurg. In the small village lies the abode of a divine and supernatural power – Ganpati. The divinity of this place attracts many devotees every year.

Sindhudurg Fort even after 300 years, still proudly flares the victory flag of Maratha Empire. The mighty walls of the fort hold the glorious history of Maharashtra. The construction of this enormous masterpiece still amazes today’s engineers.

Rock Garden is one of the many prime attractions of Sindhudurg. Surrounded by huge boulders, this place stands strong against the continuously crashing waves of the Arabian sea. This garden is decorated by the presence of rich marine life.

If you are a beach person, then Vengurla is a must-visit destination for you. Along with sublime beaches, the unending coastline of Vengurla is blessed with many pilgrim places and magnificent temples. Located in the Sindhudurg district of Maharashtra, Vengurla is a charming city known for its temples, white and clear sand beaches, Vengurla rocks, mango and cashew plantations, and its folk art called Dashavatra.

The famous temples here are Shri Vithoba Temple, Sageshwar Shiva Temple, Mauli Devi Temple and Sateri Devi Temple. Bharadi Devi Mandir is predominantly known for its vibrant festival – Anganewadi Jatra. Situated in the village of Anganewadi, this pilgrimage is considered to be the one with high spiritual power. The popularity of this temple attracts many tourists every year.

The popular beaches are Shiroda Beach, Nivati ​​Beach, Vayangani Beach, Mochemad Beach and Sagareshwar Beach.
A variety of water sports is also available, along with delicious Konkan delights and seafood. Located in the Sindhudurg district of Maharashtra, Parule village is sandwiched between the most popular Tarkarli beach to the north and the crystal clear waters of Bhogave to the south.

But what really sets Parola apart and has led to a surge of interest in recent years is the rich Konkan culture, which is both welcoming and enriching. Several popular farms and nature-friendly experiences have sprung up nearby and promise holidays that are both therapeutic and fun. Head to Maachli for a magical experience in the farm stay, or go for a lazy stay in the bamboo chalets of Bhogave.

Devbagh beach has an unblemished play of vast sea and soothing sun! This coastline opens a world of serenity and discovery. Tourists can enjoy a wide range of water sports from snorkeling to parasailing.

And if you are looking for something a bit more mainstream, the breathtaking views of the Nivti Fort sunsets and snorkeling or water sports in Tarkarli are within walking distance. Situated in the delta of Tarkarli river, the Tsunami Island is a fiesta for every tourist. With an abundance of adventurous water sports, this place is a real-life heaven for travel enthusiasts.

With the Arabian Sea to the west and Sahyadri Hills to the east, Sawantwadi is a lovely but unconventional day trip option from Goa. The unique feature of this place is the old card game called Ganjifa and the art of making wooden toys. In fact, wooden items are the best purchases here.

Other features that make the two-hour trip from Goa to Sawantwadi worthwhile include the tranquil atmosphere, the majestic Lake Moti Talao, the Sawantwadi Palace and quintessential Konkani food. Konkani cuisine is by far the most unexplored and unvisited cuisines in India.

Konkani cuisine is know for its fish and use of coconut and not many like that but the most commercialised dish among all dishes in Konkani cuisine are prawn curry, vindaloo and sorpotel. The sorpotel one gets in these multi-cuisine restaurants is no where like the sorpotel which is made in the house of the konkani people.

Vindaloo is another lip-smacking Konkani dish which is traditionally made by the Konkani people and its praises are heard world wide. The prawns curry called sungtachi kodi is an emotion which all konkanis foster.

Solkadhi is an appetizer drink usually served along with a regular meal in parts of Konkan and Goa. A blend of dried kokam and shredded coconut goes well with non-vegetarian cuisines.

Hot and spicy chicken curry, when combined with crisp and thick vade (typical bread of Konkan region) results into an amazing and drool-worthy dish – Komdi Vade. It is an iconic dish of Sindhudurg and is truly enjoyed by many foodies. Shark curry is another lip-smacking dish that Sindhudurg has given to the state of Maharashtra.

The aroma of the meat of baby sharks perfectly molded into thick and strong curry mesmerizes every person on the dining table.

Dosa is an essential part of South Indian cuisine and is very famous among Konkani people as well. It is a very important breakfast dish in Konkani households and is usually accompanied with chutney or sambhār, some konkanis love to have dosas with ambott (tangy Konkani gravy) and they are perfect accompaniment with fish curries and sukkhes (stir fired side dish similar to Kannada gojju or pallya).

Masala dosa literally has demi-god status in the whole of South India relished by Tamilians, Malayalis, Telugus, Kannadigas and Konkanis. This is so popular that even among the North Indians it has a huge fan following. The red chutney inside the dosa is called tambdi bhaji in Konkani and the potato stuffing of dosa is called batata bhaji and this is a very special dish prepared by konkanis for breakfast.

Udid Maidya Polo is made chiefly of maida or wheat flour and urad dal. This is a typical konkani dosa and is a common sight in a Konkani household early in the morning. Pan Polo literally coconut dosa in Konkani, well known neer dosa from Tulunadu, is commonly had with chutney or ghee roast(chicken ghee roast, prawns ghee roast, paneer ghee roast and what not). Pan in Konkani means leaf and polo means dosa so literally pan polo means dosa which is as thin as a leaf which is literally how the dosa is.

Sanna Polo is a spicy dosa variety usually eaten at lunch accompanied by rice and daalithoy (konkani daal). This is a stark orange colour dosa which is extremely flavorful and sumptuous.

Patolli is a variety of sweet dosa usually prepared as offerings during any auspicious occasion in Konkani households. The special thing about this dosa is that it is steamed in turmeric leaves and not pan fried like other dosas. Surṇaḷi is another variety of sweet dosa prepared in Konkani households. These are really rich and sweet dosas usually had as breakfast or late evening snacks.

Doddak is a thick dosa made of urad daal. Unlike other dosas which one can eat 3 to 4 at a time,this Doddak is so filling that at a time you can eat only one. Phanna Doddak is a type of Doddak where they put even sesame seeds.

So, what are you waiting for, grab your things, pack them up, and tour these places to experience the heritage and culture of India.
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  • Tuesday, January 28, 2020
Kalyan Panja Kalyan Panja Author
Planning a winter vacation can be hectic even for a seasoned traveler, especially when it comes to choosing the right destination to visit and the right activities to take part in while there. But deciding to take a leap of faith and travel in winter could be the best decision you’ve made yet. There are many places in the world that are surreal but are known too many people which takes the uniqueness right out of it.

Winter might be the most magical time to kayak the Swedish archipelago. The Argentine Puna, on the other hand, is mesmerizing in any season, just remember that daytime temperature differentials are extreme in this eerily remote, high-altitude desert. A backpacking trip through Central America, starting in Mexico and going all the way to Panama is good at this time. Don’t miss Belize!

Hopefully having mostly rearranged themselves after the hurricane season, a cruise in the Caribbean can be a nice way to prepare for Christmas. Or just travel to an island in the area and relax for many days. Enjoy the roars from the waterfalls in Iguazu. Make sure you visit both the Brazilian and the Argentinians sides of the spectacle. They are quite different experiences.

December marks the onset of the holiday season and winter. If you are looking forward to planning a luxurious holiday with an easy travel loan, you can explore countries that are bustling with activity this time of year. While you can do so within your country, you can also consider visiting an international destination.

The holiday is that the whole family dream. But sometimes it can be difficult to agree on what and where, a destination that makes everyone happy. Anyone wanting to experience as much culture as possible, someone loves sports and some just want to relax on a beach. Today we give you tips on destinations where many different interests can be combined.

Football matches, golf, shopping, sunbathing or sightseeing - find the favorite to suit everyone in the family.

Top Places to Visit in Winter

Here are few destinations you can consider for your winter holidays.

1. Bora Bora, French Polynesia

Bora Bora is an island in French Polynesia located north of Tahiti, 260 kilometers from the capital of Papeete. If you want to enjoy a show of Polynesian dances, forget about those organized by the hotels. Throughout the month of July a Festival of Polynesian dances is organized throughout the country called Heiva, which you can attend for free. Discover it in Bora Bora. Possibly it is the most beautiful lagoon in the world.

One of the most beautiful and photographed motus of Polynesia is the Motu Tapu. From Bora Bora you can see the nearby islands of Tahaa, Raiatea and Maupiti. Do not forget the drinks, the delicious cocktails such as maitai (rum mix, fresh pineapple and Cointreau) and Banana Coralia (fresh bananas, lemon juice, strawberry syrup and coconut).

Luxury hotels abound, with Polynesian-style bungalows built on the waters of the Bora Bora lagoon, where breakfast can arrive on board a canoe. In addition, the national television channel also broadcasts Heiva live, so if you fall far or do not coincide you can see it quietly from the hotel room. In Tahiti rent a car and go around the island.

The best season to travel to Bora Bora is during the months of May to October. Hurricane storms are common during the rest of the year. For scuba diving in Bora Bora, the best months are from April to June.

The Rangiroa Atoll is the second largest atoll in the world and is a spectacular place to dive. A perfect place to drift dive, the tropical waters are full of dolphins, sharks, and green sea turtles. Very few people come here, making it the perfect place to get away from hordes of tourists and enjoy a truly unique dive.

2. Australia

You have New Year’s Eve and/or Australia Day in Sydney as huge highlights. Don’t even consider going into the hot red centre of the country, though.

3. Noumea, New Caledonia

South Pacific is known by tropical islands that feature sandy beaches, turquoise waters, an abundance of the underwater world and not so many people around. Noumea, on the contrary, is the capital city of New Caledonia located on Grand Terre Island that enjoys the status of the fastest growing city in the region.

If you’re looking for a comfortable vacation with your family where everything is just minutes away from your resort, then Noumea might be the place for you. All major beaches are just a walk away from the city and you can expect nice infrastructures such as plenty of water activities, beach bars, and cozy restaurants.

If you’re looking to do some snorkeling or diving, heading to Amedee Island and exploring the crystal clear waters and coral reefs is a perfect choice. Looking for an adrenaline boost? Check out Rainforest Canopy Adventure which features a zipline ride through diverse Koghis Forest.

4. Bhutan

Why not head to the happiest country in the world? Bhutan is home to a world of scenic Himalayan landscapes and rich culture. Entrenched in traditions while also embracing the changes in the world, Bhutan is known for its highly sustainable tourism, which protects its environment and its cultural identity.

With its unique Buddhist culture, pristine scenery and fresh mountain air and a country that still retains its medieval features and traditions, Bhutan attracts tourists by its original beauty, pristine, majestic, changing through each festive season with colorful folk, with movements of makeup, masks and unique dances.

You can explore the pristine landscape of the Himalayas, featuring traditional architecture, ancient Buddhist sites, visiting the happiest local lives, spectacular festivals, and dynamic rich wildlife.

Gangkhar Puensum in Bhutan is the highest virgin peak in the world with a height of 7,570 meters. Soak in a bath after a long day of exploration, visit the monasteries, and even hike to Tiger's Nest. Pack your bags to unpack the secrets of this happiness!

Popularly known for being the happiest country in the world, its people will definitely make you feel that way. Your journey begins with the stunning, clear view of the majestic Himalayan range. Take a trip to one of the many monasteries that the country has, including one of the most daring treks to Tiger's Nest.

Or head to Dochula Pass, from where one can see 108 shrines overlooking the gorgeous valley. Try to pass by Dochula pass in the afternoon to witness panoramic view of 5 peaks of Himalayas on a clear day. Usually, this place is covered in mist majority of the time blocking the view of Himalayan peaks.

Take a walk on the longest suspension bridge near Phunaka Dzong, for some amazing photographic options (and if you're a fan of unique art, then you have to see the fertility temple at Phunnaka). Adventurous folks can even enjoy white water rafting!

Bhutan is a country that strongly protects its culture and traditions. Some consider it to be the last Shangri La, with an impressive landscape of illustrated fairytale, where the snow-capped peaks of the Himalayas rise over shady gorges lined with virgin forests, and dzongs that rise like majestic forts and monasteries.

Bhutan is famous for having created Gross National Happiness as opposed to Gross Domestic Product based on 4 pillars of sustainable tourism, preservation and promotion of local culture and traditions. In few countries of the world such great importance is given to the local culture, conservation of the environment and good governance.

Bhutan has only one international airport that is in Paro, the third city in the country. Paro is 1 hour by car from the capital of Bhutan, Thimphu. It usually appears on lists of the most dangerous airports in the world, although there are no records that there have been accidents in it since 1950. Only two airlines fly to Bhutan and both are local with Druk Air and Bhutan Airlines.

In Thimphu, the great Buddha Dordenma, from the top of a hill, leads the whole valley. Tamchhog Lhakhang, a small private temple accessed through a suspension bridge, and the Tashichho dzong, Buddhist monastery and fortification, imposing and harmonious, are essential visits.

The national animal of Bhutan is called Takin and is a interesting mammal that looks like a mixture between a goat and a cow. The trip to climb the Temple of the Tiger's Nest takes around 4 hours. It can only be accessed on foot or horse, after a long and intense road, but it is definitely worth it. The Tiger's Nest, called Taktsang Monastery, was built in 1692 around a cave in which a monk named Padmasambhava meditated.

This monk was the one who supposedly introduced Buddhism to Bhutan. The temple is spectacularly built on a cliff above 900 meters above the Paro Valley and 3120 meters above sea level. A few hours away from Paro by the highest passable road in the country, the little frequented Haa valley houses magical hermitages nestled in the rock, ancient temples and charming villages.

The Punakha Dzong fortress is the most impressive in the country and the second oldest. Chimi Lhakhang, the temple of fertility, is a beautiful traditional architecture and colorful decoration inside. Go through the Phobjikha valley and see the black-necked cranes that migrate from Tibet, one of the birds most valued by the Bhutanese. Trek the Dochula mountain pass, with its 108 stupas and the temple on top of the hill.

The routes of Bhutan are physically demanding but at the same time very rewarding like Bumthang and Jomolhari and are ideal for day trips. While on a road trip, Phuntsholing is the official entry and exit points to Bhutan from India.

The best month to visit Bhutan is March. Then is the spring festival where you can find monks and laymen celebrating the festival, together. This festival is commonly known as Tshechu in Bhutan. Tshechu is celebrated all around Bhutan on different months. During Tshechu, men and women are beautifully dressed.

When Spring provides abundant colourful flowers and its freshness, it is the perfect time for the lower altitude treks in the north-central and southern areas of Bhutan.

For those people who visit Bhutan solely to trek, the seasons play a big part of when you can trek certain traits. Autumn, from October to November, is one of the best time to trek in Bhutan when Summer rains retreat, revealing glorious mountain views. The high altitude treks are best done in Bhutan.

Some people mainly visit Bhutan to see Thimphu; the capital city of Bhutan. October is the best month to visit Bhutan to see Thimphu because the weather is moderate and, most importantly, the most popular festival of Bhutan called ‘Mask Dances’ is celebrated during the month of October for three days in Tashichho Dzong.

Eastern Bhutan is rarely visited by travelers, and there is much to see on this side of the country. Discover secluded valleys and nature reserves, experience night life in Thimphu by going at local club, pubs and karaoke. Try local made wine called (Ara), don't try doma, a combination of lime and betel nut, you will regret immediately .

5. Hong Kong

Hong Kong is done with cyclone season, so it’ll be nice and sunny and great for exploring both the busy city and the quiet green parts of the islands. Get some great deals on camera equipment while you’re there.

6. Lesotho

This is the only country in the world situated entirely over 1,000 metres above sea level, and one of two where the average altitude is more than 2,000 metres. Hence, it’s often referred to as the Kingdom of the Sky.

Lesotho is called the kingdom of heaven, home of the traditional Basotho people, where the shepherds take care of the sheep on the slopes and riders wrapped in mantles ride through the mountains. Lesotho is a tremendously undervalued destination. It is safe, cheap and very accessible from Durban and Johannesburg. In addition, it offers excellent opportunities for hiking and the infrastructures of its national parks progressively improve.

In the low lands (above 1000 m) the simple way of life of its people takes place, and in the ​​Teyateyaneng and Maseru area there is magnificent craftsmanship but we must not stop exploring the valleys and mountains crossed by streams that once were a playground for the dinosaurs.

Sani Top is on top of the pronounced port of Sani, on the only reliable (albeit sinuous) road that crosses Lesotho through the Ukhahlamba-Drakensberg mountain range, in KwaZulu-Natal. Sehlabathebe National Park, the most undervalued reserve in the country is as remote as it is steep and beautiful. Katse houses the highest dam in Africa (1993 m), whose serene reservoir, surrounded by steep green hills, is a good place to make a stop.

Nestled in the bowels of the rugged Maluti mountains, Ts'ehlanyane National Park protects a beautiful area of ​​unspoilt nature at high altitude, which covers the only native forest in the country. The Maletsunyane waterfalls are an hour and a half walk from Semonkong. Mokhotlong is the main town north of the port of Sani and evokes a Wild West style environment.

7. Madagascar

Excluding Antarctica, Madagascar was the second-last significant landmass to be reached by humans - it was only settled at around 500 AD. And despite it being less than 400 km off the African coast, African colonists were beaten to the island by Austronesians from across the Indian Ocean!

With an area of over 587,000 square kilometres, Madagascar is the fourth-largest island in the world, after Greenland, New Guinea and Borneo. This large island off Africa was isolated from the landmass for 88 million years, and is home to an abundance of plants and animals found nowhere else on the planet. It is nicknamed the 8th continent.

There are paradise spots on the coast that are equipped for tourism, but the inland is only for the adventurous, as conditions are rough.

Madagascar possesses species of animals and plants unique in the world as a result of the isolation produced after the separation, millions of years ago, from the rest of the African continent and later from India. This fact favored that the evolution of flora and fauna there has been different from that of any other part of our planet and hence its exclusivity.

Can there be a better reason to visit a country than to see species that you have never seen before? This guide is designed to help the independent traveler who is planning his trip to this country. The visa can be obtained on-arrival at the Ivato airport. What to see in Madagascar?

The grand Tsingy de Bemaraha is known for its pointed rock formations, karstic mountains molded by the underground waters that have eroded it to give it that peculiar shape, so seen in the Madagascar guides. Undoubtedly one of the most famous places in Madagascar is this avenue in which the protagonists are the baobabs.

The avenue is very close to Morondava. The Anja reserve is very close to the town of Ambalavao. In this small reserve enjoy the catta or ring-tailed lemurs, the best-known animals of this island of Africa. Very close to the small town of Andasive is the Analamazaotra reserve, one of the parks where you can see the indri, the largest lemur of all.

Unusually, all the rodents on Madagascar belong to a single African family - the nesomyids. The most well-known would be the Malagasy giant rat, pictured, which has the size and appearance of a rabbit, and can jump a metre into the air. Another interesting one is the beautifully named bastard big-footed mouse.

Among its bird-life are many beautiful feathered friends, such as the Madagascar blue pigeon. Madagascan fish-eagle is possibly the rarest species of raptor in the world. Vangas are a group of birds which are typically black and white, resembling shrikes. However, there are several interesting variations and outliers - namely, the helmet vanga, which has a thick, bright blue bill, the sickle-billed vanga, which uses its thin, curved beak to probe soil, and the brilliantly coloured blue vanga.

The cuckoo-roller, a single species which has an entire order to itself, the Leptosomiformes. It’s quite strange for many reasons - it has an oversized head, with a stout beak and eyes set back far. Its feet are zygodactylous, with two toes facing forwards and two backward. Also, they’re unique among birds in that they are sit-and-wait ambush predators.

The asities are some of the planet’s most beautiful perching birds. The males of most species have brightly coloured fleshy wattles on their faces. The colour of these wattles is created by arrays of collagen fibres which reflect light in a specific way - in fact, no other animals have this. Additionally, asities have some of the shortest tails of any birds.

As well as mammals, Madagascar is also well-known for its chameleon fauna. In fact, about half of the world’s chameleon species live in this one island. Among them is the world’s largest chameleon, the Parson’s chameleon. As well as the world’s smallest, Brookesia micra. At around an inch in length, it’s also one of the world’s smallest reptiles.

And there’s also Labord’s chameleon, which has the shortest lifespan of any land vertebrate. It lives for only 4–5 months! They always hatch in November, then reach adulthood in January, mate and lay eggs in February, and die shortly thereafter. Because of this life cycle, there is an annual 7-month period when the species is extinct in the wild.

Coincidentally, Madagascar is also the only home of the world’s longest-lived land vertebrate, and it too is a reptile - the radiated tortoise. Tu’i Malila, a captive individual, died in 1965 at the age of 188. This makes it the oldest tetrapod whose age has been determined with certainty. That being said, there is currently a living Seychelles tortoise who might be 187, and one Aldabra giant tortoise died at an unverified 255, so it might lose its crown in time.

The two Madagascar blind-snakes, which are the sole species in the family Xenotyphlopidae. As its name suggests, it is completely blind. The head has a tough shield, used for burrowing, which makes it appear almost perfectly vertical. Sadly, it’s critically endangered, and may inhabit only about 10 square kilometres of land.

The also critically endangered Madagascan big-headed turtle. As its name suggests, its most noticeable feature is its very large head. Evolutionarily, it’s highly unique, having diverged from all other turtles 80 million years ago. Because of this, it is the highest land vertebrate on the EDGE list, which ranks species based on their endangerment as well as their uniqueness.

There is a near-endemic family (also found in Mayotte, a small island) known as the mantellas, which are essentially the Malagasy answer to Latin America’s poison dart frogs. Another example of convergent evolution at work. Another notable group are the tomato frogs, in which the females are very large and bright red.

The giraffe weevil, a favourite of many a macrophotographer. As you’ve probably guessed, the reason it’s called the giraffe weevil is because of its huge, extended neck. Males, which are 3 times bigger than females, use it for fighting other males, whereas females use it for building nests. They do this by rolling leaves into a tube.

There are many species all over the world in this group, but Madagascar has an especially high number of them. They’re famous for their macabre habit of drinking the blood of their own larvae in lean times. One Madagascan species, Mystrium capillae, can snap its jaws shut with dumbfounding speeds of 90 metres per second.

Mayflies are usually a few millimetres in length, but the larvae of this genus reach seven centimetres. They’re aquatic, and have rows of feathery gills on each side, which ripple in an almost mesmerizing way. Madagascar is a hotspot of mayfly diversity, with around 200 species (of which all but one are endemic).

The Madagascan fire millipede is the most beautiful myriapod in the world. Scientifically termed Aphistogoniulus corallipes, its carapace is scarlet red and black, while its legs are a fiery orange colour. Because of their attractive colours, they are popular as pets.

The Madagascar shell-squatting spider, Olios coenobiticus uses threads of silk to hoist snail shells off the ground, creating a home for the spider which is sheltered and safe from predators. This could even be seen as tool use. Unfortunately, very little is known about the shell-squatting spider, and the photos we do have of them aren’t of the best quality.

Darwin’s bark spider, even more amazing than the previous arachnid. The webs they build are the largest in the world, with 2.8 square metre surface areas. These webs span across entire rivers! The silk they use to build these webs is the toughest biological material in the world by a factor of two, ten times stronger than Kevlar. They also have fascinating mating habits, but that’s a story for another day.

To top it all off, there are many unique plants in Madagascar, some of them entire unique families. Baobab trees are an absolute icon of the island, and six of the world’s nine baobab species are only found on Madagascar. This includes by far the largest and most spectacular one, Grandidier’s baobab. There’s also the bizarre-looking octopus tree, which is 10 metres tall and densely covered in spines.

Madagascar periwinkle might look normal enough, but it’s the only source of the important drugs vincristine and vinblastine, used in the treatment of cancer.

And that’s just the extant wildlife of the island. During the last Ice Age, there were lemurs as big as gorillas, giant eagles, giant fossas, giant tortoises, and the largest birds of all time, all on Madagascar. Living alongside them were dwarf hippos (the only ungulates ever to inhabit the island) and crocodiles.

From the point of view of animals and plants, Madagascar is one of the most unique and interesting places in the entire world. And that’s not to mention some of its amazing landscapes, such as the world’s largest stone forest.

The Andasibe-Mantadia National Park is located about 20 kilometers from Andasive. The main protagonist is the dreaded fossa, the largest predator in Madagascar. Visit the Grand Tsingy de Bemaraha. There’s even a muskrat-like aquatic species. Surprisingly, tenrecs are more closely related to manatees than they are to any of these animals - a great example of convergent evolution. The fastest option is to go by road to Belo-sur-Tsiribihina and from there to Bekopaka.

Embark on the adventure of descending by canoe down the Tsiribihina River, camping on the river bank and being surprised discovering the wildest fauna. Antsirabe is located in the central area of ​​the country. Ambositra is the capital of craftsmanship in Madagascar, a town in the central lands where you can find wood carvings, raffia baskets or marquetry.

Morondava is a quiet coastal town in western Madagascar famous for being only a few kilometers from one of the most visited places in the country, Avenue of the Baobabs. Morondava is divided between the coastal town and the area of ​​Nosy Kely, near the beach of Bethany. Despite being the capital of the country, Antananarivo is not what one imagines and has nothing to do with a big city.

8. Seychelles

Seychelles islands are often perceived as one of those destinations unattainable by elitists and very expensive and an Eden reserved for patricians or wealthy newlyweds eager to celebrate love by spending money in handfuls. This being true, it is also true that there are ways to travel to Seychelles for a couple of weeks for much less.

Well, the first thing is to get to Mahé, where the international airport is. In it you can find the highest peaks of the islands of the Morne Sychellois and the Trois Frères. The capital of the Seychelles, Victoria, is located in Mahé. Continuing down Benezet street you can reach the Sir Selwyn Clarke Market, which on Saturdays offers a special spectacle of color and bustle in the middle of the different stalls.

The Francis Rachel street is known for the many shops that are located in it, by Kenwyn House, traditional style house and by the bust of Pierre Piovre who encouraged the cultivation of spices in the islands. Beau Vallon is the most popular beach in Mahé with three kilometers in the shape of a half moon. This beach has fairly swell waters so it is ideal for windsurfing.

In Seychelles, the world famous, top-ranked beach Anse Source d'Argent alone is enough to catapult Seychelles near the top! But there are even better, lesser known oceanfront areas including Anse Intendance and Anse Georgette!

Anse à la Mouche is much quieter and you can practice swimming and water sports with complete peace of mind. Baie Lazare is a pleasant fishing village with a beach shaded by trees that grow near the shore. Punta Noroeste, with its typical rocks and its exuberant vegetation, is one of the most beautiful beaches on the island.

The Baie Ternay Marine National Park is also very pleasant, less congested by tourists than Sainte Anne and in a better state of conservation.

Praslin is the second largest island in the Seychelles. Perhaps the greatest attraction of Praslin is the Vallée de Mai. In this valley the Coco de Mer, one of the symbols of the Seychelles, is preserved. Even quieter than the previous ones, La Digue is full of pink granitic rocks that have given it worldwide fame. On this island you can see great constructions of Creole style.

Anse Patate is a good bay to bathe before entering the wild coast where the wind blows with great force as in Anse Gaulettes, Anse Grosse Roche, Anse Banane and Anse Fourmis.

The islands are expensive and do not stand out for their great gastronomic offer. There are, of course, fish and fruits. But everything else is imported. So spending on food is as flexible as you want.

9. Kyrgyzstan

Cholpon Ata is one of the best-known towns of Issyk-Kul, the second largest salt lake in the world after the Caspian Sea and, the highest, after Titicaca. Issyk-Kul Oblast is located east of Bishkek and occupies an important part of the national territory. The fact that in Kyrgyzstan there is no sea beach makes the Issyk-Kul is chosen by the vast majority of the Kyrgyz (and even Kazakhs or Russians) as a destination to spend a few weeks on vacation.

Another one of the busiest is Bosteri. To go from Cholpon Ata to Bosteri we took a marshrutka that took us to Bosteri in 10 minutes. The marshrutka was going to Karakol but we asked if they could leave us there. Upon arrival we find the craziest site in the entire Issyk-Kul.

Bosteri is full of beach bars of all kinds of food, in addition to the corresponding street vendors. There is everything, even souvenirs, but mostly what you will find is typical food from Kyrgyzstan, such as manti or pelmeni, since it is a food that is eaten a lot. You can also find places to buy hamburgers, frankfurt, kebabs, shawarmas, soft drinks, etc. And all at an incredibly cheap price.

In the whole country you will find ice cream street stalls, written Морoженое in Russian. Yes, buying kumis in Bosteri is also possible.

10. Iceland

If Iceland can still fit another tourist, go on a road trip and see some excellent Game of Thrones locations sprinkled with snow, lie in hot springs and look up at the Northern Lights.

11. Armenia

Armenia is a hidden country among all Asian countries. Many of you have never heard the name or don’t know the exact place of Armenia on the map.

Armenia is tucked away and is unknown to most of the world but it is very surreal and is an ancient country with a long history and rich culture. The natural landscapes are so beautiful and are dotted with churches that are almost 2000 years old and other structures that date back to antiquity. Armenia is an open air museum and is unknown to the rest of the world but has some very surreal places that will impact you forever.

In the central part of Yerevan is the opera and ballet theater. A symbolic historical attraction is the Erebuni fortress. For hundreds of years, the city was the capital of the prosperous city of Urartian. Nagorno-Karabakh could be an independent country, except that no member of the United Nations recognizes it as such.

Although recognized by the United Nations as part of Azerbaijan, in practice the only way to get to Nagorno-Karabakh is by Armenia. Artsakh is mountains, for something it is called Nagorno.

Tatev Monastery built over a thousand years ago into the cliff side was a huge walled monastery complex in medieval Armenia. You can get there by taking the longest aerial cable-car in the world extending around 6 kilometres!

Echmiadzin Cathedral is the oldest cathedral in the world and was built in 303 AD in the holy city of Vagharshapat. It has been repaired and rebuilt subsequently in history.

Temple of Garni is the only Hellenistic Temple in the entire post Soviet Union area.

The cuisine also pretty much resembles the East. Armenians eat a lot of Dolma. Grape leaves (sometimes cabbage and tomato) stuffed with meat, are some of the most favorite meals here. It does have its varieties in other South and West Asian countries.

Average prices of hotels in Yerevan start from 20 $ per night. Hostels and guesthouses start from 10$. It depends on the location of the properties if it is right in the center the cost is higher than others. Taxies are cheaper than in Europe, and the USA. A normal tariff is 600 AMD (first 5 km) - 1.24 USD, then every 1 km is 100 dram. If you sit taxi and check the cost on the taximeter , no one can ask you to pay more.

Metro also costs 100 dram - 0.20 USD and it is faster and out of the city’s heavy traffic. Food is also cheap, of course, if you’re not eating in a luxurious restaurant. You can have dinner with 10 $.
  • 0
  • Monday, January 27, 2020
Kalyan Panja Kalyan Panja Author
One of the best things to do in Alaska is being outside on a clear night and seeing the Northern Lights. They are beautiful and it's a great way to spend a clear night; if it's not freezing! Among the most beautiful places in the world, Alaska is one of the stunning places to see the Northern Lights conveniently in a nice city, cute town or a stunning National Park!

At a latitude of 66-69 degrees north is the band across the globe known as the Aurora Zone or Northern Lights Zone. This is the ideal location to see the dance and beauty of the Northern Lights. These countries include, Canada, Norway, Finland, Iceland, Sweden, Scotland and Greenland. A lot of places to see Northern Lights!

The lights are the result of colliding, fast moving electrons in the magnetosphere and oxygen and nitrogen molecules in the upper atmosphere. The different colors are the result of whether the electrons collide with oxygen or nitrogen and with how much energy. Just because you can't always see the Lights doesn't mean they are not there. Apparently, they are always there, just not to the naked eye.

Sightings of the Aurora Borealis has been recorded as early as the 500's, even some ancient cave paintings believe to have depictions of this natural phenomenon. There's an app for that! The Aurora Forecast is a downloadable app that tracks such variables as solar rays, wind speed and density.

where to see northern lights in Alaska

If you are wondering on where to see northern lights in Alaska, here are some of the best places:

1. Fairbanks

Fairbanks, at latitude 65 is the best place in Alaska to see northern lights. The viewing season begins in late August and ends around mid-April. Summer is the time of midnight sun and you can’t see the aurora. Green and white Auroras are the most common colors of the Aurora Borealis. You want to be between 65 to 70 degrees north latitude. The arc of activity varies from night to night.

March is the month of clearest skies in Fairbanks. Even so, only about 50% of March nights are clear in Fairbanks, so plan to spend a few days visiting. Book your hotel well in advance because you probably don’t want to camp in freezing weather. You don't need to trek to some remote spot for Aurora viewing.

Fairbanks is 150 miles south of the Arctic Circle and has many spots with no or low light pollution, so you don't need to go far to enjoy a evening light show! Since Fairbanks is a large city it's easy to find spot and tours to see this natural wonder!

Fairbanks has some top notch spots for easy and prime viewing, like Chena Lake and Murphy Dome. Tours are offered to these spots, renting a 4 wheel drive truck is another option if you are not a tour person. Hot Springs are a fantastic spot for getting a birds eye view of this stunning natural phenomenon.

Chena Hot Springs is 60 miles from Fairbanks and is to located under one of the most active of the Northern Light bands in the state. The resort offers some good choices of specialized Aurora tours.

Some Native's believe that if you whistle loud enough you can make them dance! I actually saw this once. We were outside of Fairbanks and it was dark, clear and not too cold. The Lights were green and very low to the ground with a big band. I was there with 3 of my friends who could all whistle-I still can't! Anyway, they whistled really loud and yea, they waved a little bit! It was cool.

2. Denali National Park

There aren’t too many national parks that have just one 92-mile-long road, most of which is closed for eight months of the year, and where rangers use dog-sleds to patrol nearly 9,500 square miles. Well that majestic park is Alaska’s Denali, home to the tallest mountain in North America.

Alaska has many beautiful national parks, Denali is one of the states outstanding gem! The park has no light pollution and it's altitude will afford many spectacular spots to see the Aurora Borealis. Bring your camera for the light show and the amazing animals! Nome and Barrow: These small towns are remote and frigid but you could simply look out your window to see the Northern Lights. Both towns have cultural and historical significance.

Lack of light pollution and a clear night are two of the most important elements when trying to optimize the viewing experience. The University of Fairbanks has a geophysical institute that has a aurora forecast that is an invaluable tool!

3. Glacier Bay National Park and Preserve

The descent of the glaciers from the snowy peaks to the bay of the glaciers creates one of the best landscapes in the world to observe the creation of icebergs. The most famous glacier in the Glacier Bay Basin located on the Pacific Ocean coast of Alaska, is the Muir Glacier, 3 kilometres long and 80 meters thick. Until 1750 the bay was a huge glacier.

4. Sitka

Sitka is gorgeous and well worth visiting, containing a staggering 4,811.4 square miles of land and water! That's more than three times the size of Rhode Island! In fact, Sitka is larger than the land area of three US states and territories - Rhode Island, Delaware, and Puerto Rico - and it’s virtually identical to the land area of Massachusetts!

Sitka’s city limits contain more than 143 times the land area of Manhattan, the well-known New York island. Sitka is larger than 40 different countries, surpassing each of the 40 smallest nations in the world including Singapore, Samoa, and Luxembourg!

5. Anchorage

If you are in Anchorage smack in the middle of winter when the temperature is extra biting-cold and the skies are extra clear of clouds, look up and in the direction of Eagle River/Palmer and you might get lucky!

August is a lovely time to visit. Come in the last half of the month and enjoy the cooler temperatures. The average temperature in Anchorage around that time is about 58°F. Dress in layers. Because, at times, it can be unseasonably warm.

Best Time to See Northern Lights in Alaska

Generally, the optimal conditions for viewing the Aurora Borealis in Alaska is around the times of equinox (mid-March and mid-September) when the earth’s tilt and solar winds are in sync.

The best time to see Northern Lights in Alaska is late August through early April, but the period between late September to February or March can be very cold in Alaska! September and October are also perfect time to see northern lights in Alaska and the Spring Thaw in late March or early April can be fun filled as well as Aurora viewing filled!

When planning a trip to Alaska to view the Northern Lights be aware that late night to early morning hours are the best (10pm-3am) and the darker the night the better your chances. The clearer the sky the better and understand that many light displays may only last a few minutes; although they may come back. Auroras will be more vivid and frequent during high solar activity and high sunspot activity.

The Northern Lights, like all of nature, is unpredictable and will not show up just because you will it. But with tips, science, and the right conditions you can experience this wonder of wonders!
  • 0
  • Sunday, January 26, 2020
Kalyan Panja Kalyan Panja Author
Heading out on a road trip is a great way to spend time with friends, family and loved ones or to experience new things on your own. There are many great places to go and planning a road trip can be almost as much fun as living it. Some of the best road trip destinations can be found nestled within the mountainous regions of the world. These areas are often rich with history, natural beauty and diversity.

Road Trips have their own fan base. Nothing compare to the thrill of a road trip where you are the in-charge, guide and explorer.

Best Road Trips in the World

Here we will look at some of the top road trips in the world.

1. Glacier National Park, Montana, USA

America is made for road trips. The interstates and cities were all designed for cars. The scenery is constantly changing, dramatic, bold, rugged, silent, you’ll never get bored. Do not just fly between major cities on your visit, you’re missing out big time.

Commonly referred to as the American Alps, the mountains which make up this park provides a stunning environment for a nature based road trip. It would be hard to find an area in the United States that rivals the natural beauty or environmental diversity found here. It is home to the largest number of glaciers in the lower 48 states, some of which can be accessed via short, relatively easy trail hikes.

There are also dozens of large lakes, hundreds of small lakes, rivers, streams and miles of hiking trails to enjoy. The park is large enough and remote enough that you can experience true isolated backcountry camping at it's finest. For a more civilized stay there are numerous tent and RV campgrounds within the park and the surrounding areas. There are also several lodges and inns within the park.

Glacier has Going-to-the-Sun road. One of the biggest attractions in the park is Going-to-the-Sun Road which is only open from around the first of July until the first snow in the fall. This 50 mile long road crosses through the heart of the park and offers many stunning views along the way. This road is considered one of the most beautiful mountain drives in North America.

It's not for the faint of heart. If you have a severe fear of heights or a strong aversion to narrow mountain roads you can leave the car behind and take a shuttle from the ranger stations at either end. There is also the Red Bus Tours which allow you to enjoy the road in old school style inside a vintage 1930's bus.

There is also a lot to do in the areas surrounding the park. The Flathead River is a great place for white water rafting and there are several outfitters in the area where you can book a trip. The nearby town of Whitefish has a great western/artsy/mountain vibe with some great restaurants, bars and stores to visit.

Glacier National Park is home to the Rocky Mountains, some of the most beautiful and awe-inspiring scenery in the US. This remote location was described in the movie Forrest Gump as he recounted the experience of the beauty of the clear mountain lakes as he ran down the Going to the Sun Road.

The open road itself was built between 1921 and 1932 and traverses the park from Apgar village on the west end to St Mary's lake, where the Forrest Gump footage was shot, on the east side. Much of it is carved right out of the granite face of the mountains and it provides amazing views of the remote mountainous regions of the park. It is often referred to as the Alps of the United States.

Glacier National Park and the surrounding national forests make up a vast wilderness area that would take a lifetime to explore. In addition to traveling the Going to the Sun Road there are opportunities for boating, fishing, wildlife viewing, hiking and whitewater rafting.

The neighboring town of Whitefish, MT is a great place to visit with a clean, welcoming native american town center and plenty of dining and entertainment options to choose from.

RVing here is easy. There are RV sites available on the east and west end of the parks, with the west side having the greatest selection and access to more local resources. There are also numerous campsites available in the park with Apgar Village being the largest area.

The incredible thing is this is a great jump off location for other amazing locations nearby while traveling America. You can choose to head over to the Pacific Northwest for vast stunning coastline and rainforest along the Columbia river, or you can head south to Yellowstone National Park for a look at the immense power of Old Faithful.

2. Astoria, Oregon, USA

It is a beautiful town. Just getting there is nice, you have to cross narrow roads between green forests with giant trees, or go through majestic bridges without being able to avoid remembering scenes from other movies. Enjoying the trip and not just the destination is one of the motto. So to see yourself in a vehicle and traveling around is an unforgettable experience.

Among things to do in Astoria, buildings such as the prison, the bowling alley, the history museum and of course, another of the emblematic locations took us to Cannon Beach. That coast is a natural spectacle, and those beaches of the Pacific are another story. Cannon Beach is part of a nature reserve.

Here you can walk through its forests facing the sea, see surfers on the waves or take a walk around the center of the town to eat and enjoy seeing the beautiful houses facing the ocean.

3. Great Sand Dunes National Park, Colorado, USA

Did you know Colorado is home to some really large sand dunes? That's right! Great Sand Dunes National Park is located in Southern Colorado. It is the perfect road trip destination to add to your trip! Check out everything you need to know, it may just inspire your next trip! The journey from the city of Denver takes about 4 hours because the dunes are about 384 km from this city.

The Great Sand Dune Park and Reserve is located in the south of the state of Colorado in the San Luis Valley. The largest dune rises to more than 750 feet. While atop the massive dunes, you can catch an entrancing view of the desert which stretches beyond what your eyes can see. You can also gaze on snow-capped mountains from here. The little cloudiness makes the days sunny and the nights full of stars.

If you visit this place near the new moon, we recommend you to stay and see the stars. The lack of clouds, the little light pollution (there are no big cities nearby) and the beautiful landscape will make this one of the best nights you can see in your life. The Great Sand Dunes National Park is one of the most beautiful places in the world to visit.

4. Sioux Falls, South Dakota, USA

One of the most pleasant drives is I-29 down the eastern end of the Dakotas between the Canadian border and Sioux Falls. No major cities. Minimal traffic and scenery, but also not an entirely unpleasant landscape. High speed limits. Just fill up, set your cruise at 85, and relax.

They’re much more enjoyable than scenic mountain roads where the weather can change in a minute and the driver is too busy to enjoy the scenery, or those maddeningly interesting roads in major cities where, again, traffic never moves, and they often charge you for the privilege of driving there. South of Sioux Falls, the road runs into the Missouri River, which at least gives it some definition and curves the rest of the way to Kansas City.

Even North Dakota - often thought to be a place with nothing to see - has over 100 worthy stops on a road trip. North Dakota is one of the better places to take a road trip in the contiguous United States! I-90 between Rapid City, and Rochester is a relatively flat road that crosses the flat Great Plains like every other road between I-20 and I-94, but this one again has a slightly extraterrestrial feel due to elevation and the northern clime.

Also, by the time you get out of the Black Hills, you have the Badlands to look forward to, and then endless fun Wall Drug and Burma-Shave signs to entertain you for hours. Before you know it, you’re in Minnesota, and then it’s a short drive to run into the nicely forested and curvy Mississippi River and the woodlands of Wisconsin.

Located in the Black Hills of South Dakota, Mount Rushmore has something to explore for everyone. The popular landmarks of the place are the statutes of George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Theodore Roosevelt and Abraham Lincoln carved into the mountain. From the outdoor adventure and American history to an array of beautiful wildlife, it is a large-scale mountain sculpture visited by millions of people from all over the world.

5. East Coast, USA

On I–95 once you get into New Jersey what is at that point the NJ Turnpike, South Jersey from the bottom of the state to at least exit 9 is mostly all wooded, especially the area north of exit 4. There the road goes through a forest of tall trees on each side with no billboards or signage other than the highway signs. In the fall it’s incredibly beautiful.

Then when you get into New York, just north of NYC take the Hutchinson River Parkway (the Hutch) for a much prettier alternative to 95 which it runs parallel to. It’s a very pretty, wooded windy parkway which becomes the Merritt Parkway in Connecticut which is also very pretty (and even more wooded).

6. Pacific Coast Highway, USA

Taking Highway 101, is a scenic albeit slower route. If you’re planning on staying overnight while driving from San Diego to San Francisco, then you might as well take this option. San Luis Obispo is a great midpoint. Pretty much all of San Luis Obispo County is good. The city of San Luis Obispo is the best locale for an overnight stop in that county. It’s a college town with old architecture and cool shops and restaurants.

There are several smaller towns in the county that are good options as well. Pismo Beach is a great beach town, and other towns such as Avila Beach, Paso Robles, Arroyo Grande, and Atascadero are worth considering. Some of them might be a few miles off the main highway, but worth stopping in.

Aside from a more Spanish colonial feel around parts of Southern California and parts of the Bay Area, and the Mexican influence around SoCal, there is more uniformity to the 3 states that make up the West Coast. While there are certainly differences between Seattle and Portland, and even Washington and Oregon, it's nothing like the difference between Maine and South Carolina or Boston and Jacksonville.

The West Coast is slower paced, less crowded. But it counterbalances the East Coast with Hollywood and the Bay Area, the movie and tech capitals, both of which are in California giving the state a cultural heft rivaled by no other. Seattle is also a major tech hub and an information center. Also, the West Coast, from Seattle to San Diego has a spectacular coast line. The Pacific Northwest is beyond gorgeous and has bigger mountains.

7. Blue Ridge Parkway, USA

Blue Ridge Parkway is one of the most scenic drives in USA and one of the best road trip destinations. You can go on a road trip of 470 miles through the Appalachian Mountains from North Carolina to Virginia. You can get incredibly close to the grandiose natural scenery from the comfort of your vehicle. This is one of the best national parks in USA.

8. Icefields Parkway, Canada

The road runs between, over and among mountain ridges for close to 300 kilometres. Not far north of Glacier National Park in the Canadian Rockies lies the town of Banff. This is a quintessential mountain town located within Banff National Park a natural attraction known worldwide. In town you'll find great restaurants, boutiques and shopping mixed among the many mountain style hotels and lodges.

The national park grounds surrounding Banff are home to a lot of wildlife including Grizzly Bears, Elk and Moose. Like most national parks, it is an outdoorsy person's paradise with great opportunities for hiking and mountain biking. In fact, Banff is the starting point of the Tour Divide Mountain Bike race each June where riders race unassisted 2745 miles along the Continental Divide to the US/Mexico Boarder at Antelope Wells, New Mexico.

At the Icefields Parkway you turn left or right at Jasper for further adventure. Now that's a road trip!

9. Nordkapp, Norway

During a road trip in Norway you will come across the most beautiful natural sights anywhere on your travels. The Skipsfjorden bay is undoubtedly one of the favorites. In the beautiful Seibukta Bay there is a parking lot next to the E69 road from which the snow is removed during the winter. There you can observe the aurora in an environment full of peace.

Tufjorden fjord, on the coast of the island of Magerøya is a viewpoint on the way to the North Cape. The unaltered landscape allows to take time-lapse without interruptions. In Honningsvåg the electric lighting is so scarce that a dim corner is enough to admire the northern lights as much as possible. Around the North Cape you can also find small towns and places like Kåfjord, Repvåg, Skarsvåg, Nordvågen, Kjelvik, Valan, Gjesvær or Kamøyvær.

If you are fortunate enough, you will surely see the Northern Lights and the memory if going to live with you forever. Hotels are expensive. Campground cabins are more reasonable but will still add up. The cheapest way to stay is to bring your tent and camping gear. A spot in a campground with bathrooms, shower facilities, and often a kitchen will run you $20-$25.

If you really want to rough it, you can literally camp out in the woods for zero kroners, as long as you don’t need a hot shower in the morning and you follow a few simple rules. Bring a cold-rated sleeping bag and a proper pad. It gets cold at night, and the ground can suck the heat out of you. Do not eat out. For the love of Freya, do not rely on eating out.

Even junk food is expensive. Bring basic camping cookware and get groceries at the local Kiwi or Rema 1000 like everyone else. If you’re out by the ocean, you’re free to fish your own dinner and lunch, no fishing permit or license required.

10. Mumbai-Goa, India

This route starts from Alibag to dapoli and all the way goes through west coast of India. You might be knowing about raining in Konkan, its too much.. so can’t expect nice roads here but those are good to ride. The feel you get while riding near coast and beautiful small beaches you cross in a dim sunset, its great.

The coastal route from Diveagar beach to Harihareshwar is best time in all route. Its all around 20 kms you are following the Sea. Another feel good factor here is the ferry rides, you will get 2 ferry rides in this route where you have to carry your bikes/cars in ferry boat from one shore to another due to gulf area and its nice thing to experience. And last but not the least, tasty Konkan food.

There are some other countries too where you can see Northern Lights, one of the famous destination is Iceland. You can also visit Iceland because the chances of Northern lights in Iceland are high as also you can see Northern Lights in Sweden.

Of course, when your vehicle doubles as a home, there are many other great places to go. The destinations are endless. Places like Estes Park, CO, Seattle, WA, The Austrian Alps, Central Spain, and the many mountain villages of western France. With so many great places to visit, choosing one may seem difficult. Just remember that the destination is less important than the experience, so get out there and experience as much as you can.
  • 0
  • Sunday, January 26, 2020
Kalyan Panja Kalyan Panja Author
Don't you want lush green mountains, clear air, which makes you drunk, and nature walks when you wake up in the morning. Just dive into the beauty of Wayanad, which can be in top vacation destinations. The beauty of Wayanad attracts a lot of tourists throughout the year. Therefore it is one of the best places to visit in Kerala during the summer.

This district of Kerala is dripping with the beauty of nature and is a perfect paradise for nature lovers. There are many forests, waterfalls, caves, hills and water bodies to visit and explore. Adventurous people can enjoy hiking, rock climbing, trekking, camping, bicycle tours, forest walks and safaris here.

Packed with the beauty and calmness of nature, Wayanad is an abode for all nature lovers. Known for its cool atmosphere, Wayanad is abundant with waterfalls, forests and home to wild animals. It is also a place for those who love adventures.

Chembra Peak, Phantom Rock, Pookode Lake, Meenmutty Waterfalls, Edakkal Caves, Tholpetty, Muthanga, Lakkidi, Kuruva Islands, Nagarhole, Bandipur Tiger Reserve. Mudumalai National park, Kuruvadweep, Sulthan Bathery, Vythiri, Thirunelly, Pookode, Edakkal Caves, Soochipara Waterfalls and Banasurasagar Dam are some of the best places to visit in Wayanad.

Find one of the best nature resorts or wildlife resorts in Wayanad to make your trip memorable.

Wayanad is a rural district situated in Kerala known for its soothing temperature all around the year. The rich soil of this hilly district is favourable for growing coffee, tea and spices. Wayanad located on the higher elevation of Western Ghats has different altitudes ranging from seven hundred meters to twenty-one hundred meters.

Wayanad is home of three major towns namely Sulthan Bathery, Mananthavady and Kalpetta. It is also home to many indigenous tribal communities. Some of the major tourist attractions of Wayanad are Wayanad Wildlife Sanctuary, Edakkal Caves, Karapuzha Dam, Paddy fields, Chembra Peaks, etc.

Wayanad is known for its rich soil and predictable climate. Horticulture is practised on a large scale here. Natives of Wayanad rely on agriculture for their subsistence. A major portion of areas in this district is utilized for agricultural purposes. Some of the important crops grown in this area are vanilla, tea, cocoa, pepper, coffee, ginger, rice, plantain, cardamom, etc.

farm stay in wayanad

Here are the different types of plantation stays in Wayanad:

1. Spice Plantation Stay

You must have noticed different spices like pepper, cinnamon, etc stored in the tin boxes by your mother. Did you ever wonder how these spices found their way into the kitchen? Well, thanks to Kerala. Kerala is known as the spice garden of India. Spice plantation is a common phenomenon in the state of Kerala. You can find both rich and modest-income households having a kitchen full of different spices.

Do you like experimenting with your food? If yes, black pepper is the spice you would add to your food to give it the much-needed taste. Not so surprisingly, black pepper is grown in Kerala amongst other spices. It is also referred to as black gold. No wonder it’s used sparingly in the dishes prepared in the kitchen.

It’s a known fact that Europeans came flocking to India in groups to trade in different spices. Black gold is one spice known to lure them to India.

2. Rice Plantation Stay

Not long ago, Wayanad was home to more than hundreds of varieties of rice. Today, you can find around 50 varieties of paddies in Wayanad. Matta rice has been grown in Kerala for hundreds of years, historically popular for it's unique taste. Red rice is used in many traditional Kerala dishes, like appams and idli, and is also a staple grain.

Most of the tribal communities, living in Wayanad, treat farming akin to a festival. They do not deem it an economic activity like us. If you wish to partake in this celebration and enjoy the rich culture of farming and harvesting, you should visit Wayanad in the months of harvesting. You will cherish this enriching experience, years down the line.

3. Coffee Plantation Stay

Coffee is grown simultaneously with fruits. This is so because the fruit trees provide shade to the coffee plants, they act as a canopy, they shelter the coffee plants from all kinds of turbulence in the atmosphere. Apart from that, in the areas covered with sloping terrains, fruit trees prevent soil erosion and prevent the plants from collapsing.

Coffee plants are harvested around November to January. If you take a walk through the farm of coffee plantation, you will spot coffee berries. These berries are green in colour and small in size. If you think these berries taste anything like coffee that we drink, you are misleading yourself. Pop one berry in your mouth and you will realize they taste nothing close to a coffee.

They are bitter. Wondering what gives it the taste of coffee that we are mad after? Well, these coffee berries taste like the ‘regular coffee’ after being through a roasting process.

4. Camping in Tea Plantations

Even though people think that Wayanad is all about coffee and spice plantations, only a handful of them know that it is also one of the most favourable places for tea plantations. This culture of growing tea is Wayanad is almost a hundred years old.

A bunch of Englishmen came to Wayanad looking for gold. They dug here and there but left with disappointed face. But before leaving they gave a personalized touch to the breakfast table. They passed on their habit of sipping tea. Since then, this habit of growing tea has gone down to many generations.

It continues even today despite not being as famous as growing crops or spices. Some of the areas in Wayanad known for tea plantations are Vythiri, Thondernad, Pozhuthana, Tavinjal, Mananthavady, Muppainad and Meppadi.

The district of Wayanad is not only known for growing tea. Instead, it is also famous for manufacturing and transportation of tea across different cities of Kerala and states of India. Even though done on a small scale, tea plantation in Wayanad is just as important for its economy as coffee and spice plantation.

Booking your stay with one of the best luxury tea plantation resorts in Wayanad would help you enjoy the various activities such as a plantation walk, cycling through the plantation, tasting the tea and spices, etc.

If you have always wondered about different ingredients such as tea, coffee and spices that find their place into your kitchen, you should plan a trip to Wayanad. Don’t worry, you won’t be the only one going on this journey in the history of Wayanad. A vast majority of tourists find their way to Wayanad to walk through the tea, coffee and spice plantations.

You will learn about the different soils in which they are grown, different methods of harvesting them, etc. You must have learnt about these plantations in your school books. It’s time you learn something by experience. So, what’s spotting you? Book your tickets for Wayanad and get ready to process some information. Good luck!
  • 0
  • Friday, January 24, 2020
Kalyan Panja Kalyan Panja Author

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