Posts

in Kinnaur district

Nako, Himachal Pradesh – This is a fairyland in Kinnaur district named after the picturesque Nako lake

[AdSense-A]

Located along the Tibet border, at an altitude of 2950 m, Nako is a small hamlet in Kinnaur district of Himachal Pradesh. It is an important pilgrimage of the Buddhists. The place shares its name with the lake which is also named as Nako. This picturesque lake forms the boundary of the village. As per the popular belief, the site is the heavenly realm of fairies. You will prominently find the footprints of these fairies in the nearby caves. This picturesque location consists of the green paddy fields and the houses are traditional mud houses.

Places to see at Nako: The sightseeing destinations at Nako mainly include:

Nako Monastery

The monastery stands at the western edge of this little village. The simple outside appearance will surprise you completely with its contrasting intricate sculptures inside. There are total four temples of which the two temples are of prime importance here, the Main temple and the Upper temple. These two temples are considered the oldest of the structures, still preserving their original clay sculptures, murals and ceiling panels. The main and the largest temple temple is also known as the Translator’s Temple. This is the oldest monument in the village too. The third structure in the monastery is the Small White temple, though almost broken, is worth a visit for its wonderful wooden door-frame depicting the different scenes of the Life of the Buddha carved over it. The fourth structure is almost of the equal size of the Upper Temple and is situated beside. The temple is today known as the Temple of Wide Proportions.

Nako lake

An oval shaped lake, Nako lake is encircled with mountains, valley and whitewashed village thus making it a picturesque spot. The tourists can enjoy boating in the summer season here along-with the marvellous scenic beauty. In winter this frozen lake makes an ideal base for ice skating.

Things to do in Nako: Just unwind yourself completely and enjoy the natural beauty of the surroundings.

Best time to visit Nako: The best time to visit Nako is from April to October, at this time its scenic beauty is at its height.

How to go ?

By Air

The nearest airport is at Shimla. Shimla airport is connected to Delhi and Kullu. Taxis are easily available from Shimla to Nako.

By Rail

Nearest railway station is also Shimla and it is around 283 km from Nako. Taxis are available from here to Nako.

By Road

Daily buses and regular taxi services are available from Shimla and Rampur to Nako. You can also reach Nako from Lahaul and Spiti.  Malling Nullah near Nako on the route is landslide prone.

[AdSense-B]

Where to stay ?

There are very few accommodation options at Nako. Some of these are:

Kinner Camps: +91-09805841273  Website: www.kinnercamps.com
Amar Home Stay: +91-094186-23453, 01785-236080
Lake View Home Stay:  094187-59493, 01785-236041

Note : Phone numbers given above are according to the information available with us. If you find any contact number/s given above is/are incorrect or not in use, please let us know.

[AdSense-C]

Jamnagar

Jamnagar, Gujarat – Place of unspoilt Islands & Beaches, Hills, Temples, Palaces, Forest, Bird Sanctuary & Marine National Park

[AdSense-A]

Jamnagar is the fifth largest city of Gujarat. It is the Jewel of Kathiawar, and is on the coast of Gulf of Kutch. Built by substantially by Maharaja Kumar Shri Ranjitsinhji in the 1920s it was known as Nawanagar formerly. The city lies just to the south of the Gulf of Kutch and is 337 km west of the state capital, Gandhinagar.

Places to see in Jamnagar: The places of attractions of Jamnagar include:

Lakhota Palace and Ranmal Lake

The Lakhota Palace is situated on an island in the middle of the Ranmal lake in the shape of the large bastion. The palace once belonged to the Maharaja of Nawanagar. An arched stone bridge with decorative short pillars connects the LakhotaPalace with the town. It was constructed as a famine relief work in 1839-45 AD. This royal entrance gateway with carved jharokhas at upper level, overlooking the lake, with the distinct blank wall at the base, gives it a look of indestructible fortification. This palace now houses a museum and is a striking building with some fine woodcarving, good collection of sculptures, pottery found in the ruined medieval villages, coins, copper plates and inscriptions. The walls are adorned with frescos portraying the scenes of battle fought by Jadeja Rajputs against various enemies. The Renmal lake itself is a scenic breath of fresh air.

Kotha Bastion

The Kotha bastion has an old well used for drawing water by blowing into a small hole in the floor.

Solarium

Jam Ranjit Singhji constructed the Solarium under the supervision of the French Doctor Jean Saidman. The motorized movement was synchronized with the movement of the sun to provide maximum protection to the patients of TB, skin diseases and rheumatism.

Bala Hanuman Temple

At the Bala Hanuman Temple on the south eastern side of the Ranmal lake, there has been continuous chanting of the prayer Shri Ram, Jai Ram, Jai Jai Ram since 1 August, 1964. This devotion has earned the temple a place in the Guiness Book of World Records. Early evening is a good time to visit as the temple and whole lakeside gets busy.

Jain Temples

In the midst of bustling Chandi Bazaar are four beautiful Jain temples. The larger two, Shantinath Mandir and Adinath Mandir, is dedicated to the 16th and first Tirthankaras, in front of the post office near the Darbar Gadh, explode with fine murals, mirrored domes and elaborate chandeliers. The Shantinath Mandir is particularly beautiful, with coloured columns and a gilt-edged dome of concentric circles.

Ayurvedic University

The India’s only AyurvedicUniversity runs many courses in Ayurvedic medicines, including a full time 12 week introductory course teaching basic theory and medicine preparation, as well as diploma and degree courses. These courses are set up for foreign nationals with medical qualifications. Hatha Yoga, Massage, Steam bath and mud therapy can also be had here. It also has a good library and workshop and had been a place of research and international seminars on Ayurveda.

Bardar Sanctuary

Bardar Sanctuary is situated 16 kms. south of Jamnagar. Bardar Sanctuary is a gentle mountain range filled with crumbling temples and ancient town settlements. It makes for a fabulously isolated, out of the way road trip.

Darbargadh

The Darbargadh is the original residence of Jam Sahibs and has evolved over centuries. It reflects the fusion of Rajput and European architectural styles. Jam Rajit Singhji patronized two important urban design projects in front of the Darbargadh, namely Wellingdon Crescent and Chelmsford Market. The market in front of the Darbargadh – Wellingdon Crescent is a two storeyed arcade with semi-circular arches at both levels and decorative plasters terminating in balustrade.

Nearby attractions from Jamnagar: The excursions from Jamnagar is a must to the places like:

Khijadiya Bird Sanctuary

About 18 km northeast of Jamnagar, Khijadiya Bird Sanctuary lies on the Jamnagar coast in Gujarat. Spread over six sq km, the park is a paradise for birds as around 300 varieties of birds, both migratory and resident, are seen here. The small Khijadiya Bird Sanctuary is unique bird sanctuary. Encompassing the salt and fresh-water marshlands, this is a small bird sanctuary.  Lots of cranes come here from September to March. The best time to visit this sanctuary is during sunrise.

Marine National Park

About 55 km west of Jamnagar, Marine National Park has the distinction of being the first marine park in India and is blessed with a great diversity of habitats, coral reefs and mangroves. The park covers 163 sq km and is spread over an archipelago of 42 tropical islands. It is situated along the northern coast of Jamnagar district and southern coast of Kutch. The park area is part of the Marine Wildlife Sanctuary which is spread over 458 sq km.

Things to do in Jamnagar: Make a visit to the bird sanctuary to view different species of birds. Apart from that the place is also dotted with a number of water bodies like lakes, ponds where you can also catch a glimpse of the varied species of birds.

Best time to visit Jamnagar: The best season to visit Jamnagar is from October to January.

How to go ?

By Air

Jamnagar has a major airport that is located at a distance of ten kilometres from the main city. This airport caters to domestic flights, and regular flights will be available to the city of Mumbai.

By Train

Regular trains will be available from the cities like Mumbai, Kolkata, Delhi, Chennai, Bangalore to Jamnagar, as the city has a major railway station.

By Road

Buses will be available from the city of Jamnagar to many other major cities in Gujarat like Surat, Ahmedabad and Gandhinagar. Both air conditioned and non air conditioned buses will be available to Jamnagar from Ahmedabad.

[AdSense-B]

Where to stay ?

Jamnagar is loaded with plenty of accommodation facilities. Some options are:

Hotel Regency: +91-0288-2551877, 2551977 Website: www.hotelregencyjamnagar.com
Hotel President: +91-0288 2557491, 2557492, 2558492, 2558493  Website: www.hotelpresident.in
Hotel Celebration: +91-0288-2555523, 2550777, 2662224, 25  Website: www.hotelcelebrationjamnagar.com
Hotel Ashiana: +91 – 0288 – 2559110, 0288 – 2559187 Website: www.ashianahotel.com

Note : Phone numbers given above are according to the information available with us. If you find any contact number/s given above is/are incorrect or not in use, please let us know.

[AdSense-C]

Cochin

Cochin, Kerala – Where the blue water of the Arabian Sea merges with Kerala’s Emerald Backwaters

[AdSense-A]

Flowing alongside the Vemnad lake Ernakulam or Cochin is the commercial capital of Kerala. It is the land of back waters. Ernakulam has derived its name from the name of a very famous temple of lord Shiva, called the Ernakulathappan Temple. Ernakulam has also been said to derive its name from the word ‘Ere Naal Kulam’, which means “pond for a long time”. A booming business metropolis, a fascinating mixture of the old and the new, Cochiin is having the finest natural harbours in the world. Cochin nick named as the ‘Queen of the Arabian Sea’, was once a major centre for commerce and trade. At Cochin, the blue water of the Arabian Sea merges with Kerala’s Emerald Backwaters. Even today, Cochin continues the tradition of welcoming visitors with its customary warmth and hospitality.

Places to see at Cochin: Cochin is dotted by a number of tourist places.

Bolgatty Island 

This is a long narrow palm-fringed island which is easily accessible from the mainland and it is here where the Bolgatty Palace is situated amidst 15 acres of lush green lawns. Built by the Dutch in 1744, it became the seat of the British Resident later. In 1976 the palace was converted into a hotel under the Kerala Tourism Development Corporation. The Cochin Golf Club’s course is on the palace grounds.

Art Complex – Madhavan Nayar Foundation

This Art Complex is 10 kms north of Ernakulam on the way to Alwaye. The centre also exhibits certain larger-than-life mural reproductions of ancient Indian Art. The complex consists of two units: the Gallery of Paintings and Sculptures which presents over 200 original paintings by contemporary Indian artists, some of them internationally acclaimed, and works of reputed Indian sculptors. The other unit, the Centre for Visual Arts is reserved for authentic reproductions of selected world masters from Leonardo da Vinci to those of the present century.

Chinese Fishing Nets, Fort

These fixed, cantilevered fishing nets, at the entrance of the harbour and along the backwaters, were introduced by traders from the court of Kublai Khan. As the records show that they were first erected between AD 1350 and 1450. The best place to watch these nets is from Vasco da Gama square, a narrow promenade that lies parallel to the beach.

Cherai Beach 

The beach is located 25 kms from Ernakulam in a typical village ambience this lovely unspoilt stretch of sand, ideal for swimming. But if the sea and sand still do not whet your appetite, there are many numbers of food outlets and ice-cream parlours to do so. At Cherai, life guards are always on the look out for the over adventurous. Dolphins are also commonly seen in the waters.

Ernakulam Siva Temple 

The temple is facing the historical Rajendra maidan and is a famous temple, considered to be amongst the most ancient in central Kerala. Though no historical records exist to indicate a precise date, an inscription found above the main entrance in Vattezhuthu, an antiquated script, suggests that the sanctum was built in the year 1614. The deity is popularly referred to as Ernakulathappan. The temple’s 8-day annual festival is celebrated in the month of Jan-Feb with colourful rituals and exciting cultural events. The bathing of the idol, on the eighth day, is particularly significant here. The ceremony of Ashta Bandham Kalasam, where the deity is anointed in a herbal paste, is performed once in 12 years.

St. George Forane Church

The church is an important pilgrim centre, this Roman Catholic church was built way back in AD 593 in a plot of land donated by the Raja of Edappally. After the seven churches were founded by St. Thomas, the Edappally church is considered to be one of the oldest in Kerala. The new church beside it was built in 1080. Historical records have it that a session of the Synod of Diamper (Udayamperoor), 1599, was held here. The church is also well known for its annually held nine-day feast in April/May.

Voc Gate, Fort

Facing parade ground is this large wooden gate with the initials ‘VOC’ carved onto it representing the monogram of the once mighty Dutch East India Company. The inscription also indicates that it was built in the year 1740.

Museum Of Kerala History 

This Museum is located along with the Art Complex at Edappally, it is a Sound and Light show presenting thirty five scenes from the political, social, and cultural history of Kerala.

Marine Drive

One side of the Marine Drive is backwater while the opposite side is 70-ft Road, city’s widest road. At the place of ruined old jetty there is Marine Drive Promenade. Sit here and watch the backwaters and the FortKochi beyond. The world’s highly densely populated VypeenIsland is in clear view from here.

Mount Carmel Church 

The most interesting things are the Portuguese church bells. This 1642 church is the second Indian vicariath established by Holy See after Goa.

Jewish Synagogue 

This is the oldest synagogue in the Commonwealth which was built in 1568. The Great Scrolls of the Old Testament, copper plates on which the grants of privilege made by the Cochin rulers were recorded, gold and silver crowns gifted by various patrons to the synagogue, exquisite Chinese hand-painted willow patterned floor tiles, and the synagogue’s elaborate lighting are of interest.

Hill Palace Museum

The Museum is set on top of a hillock, these prodigious palace-turned-museum display 13 categories of exhibits, including paintings, carvings and other royal antiquities donated by the Cochin and Travancore royal families and the Paliam Devaswom. The HeritageMuseum, located on the rear side of the palace buildings, familiarizes you with the traditional lifestyles of ancient Kerala. The museum premises have also been converted into a botanical garden with exotic tropical trees from Central America to Australia.

Sree Poornathreyesa Temple

The legend says that Arjuna, the great archer and warrior, had established this sanctum. Formerly belonging to the Cochin royalty, this temple has Maha Vishnu as its presiding deity. The annual temple festival is held in Nov-Dec, while the colourful Athachamayam, a cultural extravaganza, is celebrated every year during the festival of Onam.

Nearby attractions around Cochin: From Cochin you can make a trip to

Thripunithura

Excursions from Cochin can be made to Thripunithura, 12 km southwest of Cochin. The Hill Palace Museum at Tripunithara houses the collections of the Cochin and Travancore royal families.

Parur

35 km north of Cochin, here you will find a synagogue, a Syrian Orthodox Church, a Krishna Temple, and a temple of goddess Mookambica.

Chennamangalam

Chennamangalam is 4 kilometers away from Cochin and houses the oldest synagogue in Kerala. There is also a Jesuit Church and ruins of a Jesuit College.

Things to do in Cochin: There are varied options available to travelers in Cochin. Cochin, with abundant widening and narrowing canals and lakes is best experienced with a houseboat cruise. Houseboat is the best way to enjoy the labyrinthine of Kerala backwaters these backwaters have always supported a unique waterfront lifestyle for the people of Cochin. Tourists can experience this unique lifestyle by renting one of the large thatched-roofed house boats known as “Kettuvallams”. They usually come with a captain, a cook and a steward. Cochin is also acclaimed as the birthplace of Ayurveda, a trip to this fabulous land is never complete without a visit to one of those refreshing Ayurvedic spas. Another famous characteristic of Cochin is the exotic Kathakali dance forms, in one of the various centers located in and around the heritage areas of Fort Cochin- Mattanchery or Ernakulam.

Best time to visit Cochin: The peak season to travel Kochi is between October and April, when hot and dry climate prevails.

How to go ?

By Air

The Cochin International Airport is well connected to major cities all across India and the world. From the airport, the main city centre is about 29 kilometres away.

By Train

Cochin is well connected to all the major railway stations in India.

By Bus

Cochin has a strong network of Kerala State Run Transport Corporation (KSRTC) bus services that connects it to all the major cities in Kerala and with some of the major cities in Tamil Nadu and Karnataka.

[AdSense-B]

Where to stay ?

There are many accommodation options in Cochin.

Bolgatty Palace and Island Resort (KTDC): +91-0484-2750500, 2750600  Website: www.bolgattypalacekochi.com
Hotel Piazza Residency: +91-0484-2750456
Hotel Paulson Park: +91-0484 237 8240  Website: www.hotelpaulsonpark.chobs.in
Hotel Excellency: +91-0 484- 2378251, 2378258  Website: www.hotelexcellency.com

Note : Phone numbers given above are according to the information available with us. If you find any contact number/s given above is/are incorrect or not in use, please let us know.

[AdSense-C]

Alappuzha

Alappuzha, Kerala – Streams, lakes and river makes it an wonderful tourist destination

[AdSense-A]

Alappuzha has always enjoyed an important place in the maritime history of Kerala. Previously known as Aleppey its present name is Alappuzha. Ala means streams and Puzha means river. With streams, lakes and river Aleppey is a wonderful tourist destination. Today, it is famous for its boat races, backwater holidays, beaches, marine products and coir industry. Alappuzha beach is a popular picnic spot.

Places to see at Alapuzha: There is some marvelous sight seeing destinations at Alapuzha which include,

Alleppey Beach

Alleppey Beach or Alappuzha Beach has a long stretch of sandy beach with a lighthouse and a pier jutting out into the sea, a reminder of its age-old maritime importance.

Mullakkal Bhagavathy Temple

Mullakkal Bhagavathy Temple in the heart of town dedicated to Goddess Rajarajeshwari gives the feel of a typical Kerala Temple.

Mannarasala Temple

It is like a pilgrimage destination for the followers of Nagaraja or the serpent god. The Mannarasala Temple has over 30,000 images of snakes and special procession and offerings are made to celebrate Mannarsala Aayilyam, the main festival of this temple.

Alappuzha CSI Christ Church

Built in 1818 by the first Church Missionary Society, Allappuzha CSI Church was the first church established in Travancore.

Nearby attractions around Allepey: A tourist can make excursions from Alleppey to nearby historic places and scenic spots.

Pathiramanal

A beautiful little island in the Vembanad Lake, Pathiramanal, can be reached only by boat and is a newly developed tourist spot.

Sri Krishna Temple

Just 14 km from Alleppey, the Sri Krishna temple at Ambalapuzha is among Kerala’s most famous temples with the typical temple architectural style of the state. It is also known for its palpayasam, sweet milk porridge offered to the diet. Close to Ambalapuzha, the village of Karumadi is famous for its Karumadi Kuttan a black granite figure of Buddha, said to belong to the 9th or 10th Century. During his visit to Kerala in 1965, the Dalai Lama worshipped at this shrine.

Arthinkal

Arthinkal is known for the St. Andrews Church established by Portuguese missionaries in 1951, and is near Sherthallai, 22 km north of Alleppey. The feast of St. Sebastian is held here every January. On the Pamba river is Chambakulam, the site for the famous boat regatta held during August/September, which has traditionally involved the participation of all communities.

Krishnapuram Palace

The 18th Century Krishnapuram Palace, built during the reign of the Travancore monarch, Marthanda Varma, houses one of the largest mural paintings in Kerala, called the Gajendra Moksham. A short distance from Alleppey, is Punnapra, a village which has gone down in history as the scene of a battle between the Communists and the Travancore State Police in the Punnapra-Vayalar Communist Uprising of 1946.

Ambalapuzha

It is situated 14 kms. away from Alleppey. In its architectural features, the SreekrishnaTemple confirms the typical Kerala style. The temple is famous through out Kerala for ‘Palpayasam’ a milk porridge of exceptional sweetness offered to the deity.

Karumadikkuttan

Situated 3 km east of Ambalapuzha, this village is known for its 10th century Karumadikkuttan statue, a black granite figure of the great Buddha, the founder of Buddhism. There are many interesting legends connected to this idol.

Champakulam

Champakulam – the water logged village is also the place of oldest angadi (market) known as Kalloorkkadu angadi. The St. Mary Forane Church built in 427 A D is another major attraction famous for its beautiful mural paintings for both tourists and believers. In Champakulam you can see Nadubhagum and Champakulam snake boats which take part in the annual snake boat races.

Things to do at Alappuzha: Unwind yourself fully in the water kingdom at Alappuzha. If you visit the place don’t miss the house boat cruise. The ones you find in the backwaters of Alappuzha are in fact reworked version of Kettuvallams of olden times.

Best time to visit Alappuzha: December to February is the ideal time to visit Alappuzha.

How to go ?

By Air

The Cochin International Airport, located at a distance of 75 kiolmetres is the nearest airport to Allepey. The airport is well connected to major cities in India as well as abroad.

By Train

The Alleppey Railway Station lies within the city limits and is well connected by rail to Cochin and Trivandrum.

By Road

Kerala State Run Transport Corporation buses connect Alleppey to most major cities in Kerala.

[AdSense-B]

Where to stay ?

There are many hotels available suitable to budgets both government and private.

Hotel Tamarind (KSTDC): +91-0477-2244460
Hotel Arcadia Regency: +91-0477- 2230414 – 417  Website: www.arcadiaregency.com
Keraleeyam Ayurvedic Resort:  +91- 0477 -2231468- 2236950  Website: www.keraleeyam.com
Green Palace Health Resort: +91-8289 933 715  Website: www.greenpalacekerala.com

Note : Phone numbers given above are according to the information available with us. If you find any contact number/s given above is/are incorrect or not in use, please let us know.

[AdSense-C]

Kollam

Kollam, Kerala – The land of back waters & the centre of the India’s cashew industry

[AdSense-A]

Located beside the Ashtamudi lake, Kollam is the centre of the country’s cashew trading and processing industry. It is said that the present town of Kollam was built by the Syrian Merchant; Sapir Iso, in the 9th Century A.D. Newly named as Kollam the Kollamplace was originally named as Quilon. Kollam is known as the land of back waters. Praised whole heartedly by Marco Polo and Ibn Batuta in glowing terms, this famous port on the Malabar Coast was once part of the international spice trade. The renowned Ashtamudi Lake covers the historic town by thirty percent. The district also has some interesting historic remnants and a number of temples built in the traditional ornate architectural style.

Places to see at Kollam: A popular tourist destination, Kollam is dotted with multiple tourist attractions which include,

Ashtamudi Backwaters

The major tourist attraction in Kollam is the Ashtamudi Backwaters. Ashtamudi Lake is the gateway to the backwaters. This 16 km long lake is the second largest in Kerala, finding its way into the sea through the Neendakara estuary. The District Tourism Promotion Council (DTPC) Kollam provides boat rides as well as houseboat cruises. The trip between Kollam and Alappuzha is one of the most popular and longest backwater cruises in Kerala. The eight-hour journey gives an intimate experience of the famed waterways. You may catch a glimpse of one of the many splendour of Ashtamudi backwaters. As the boatman gently dips his paddle, without disturbing the prevailing calm, the ripples spread out gently in the shimmering golden hue of the sun.

Kollam beaches

The charming Mahatma Gandhi beach lies at a distance of 2 km from the town at Kochupilamoodu. The white sand beaches undoubtedly take the prime spot in Kollam’s tourism map. The beach and its adjacent park attract hoards of tourists. The sun-kissed golden sand beach at Thirumullavaram is yet another popular beach attraction here. The beach at Thirumullavaram is safe for swimming and to indulge in water sports.

Thangassery Light House

The 144 ft. Thangassery Light House, built in 1902, is a centre of attraction.  The AnandaValleswaram Temple here, attracts people on almost all days.  There are several Churches and Mosques in and around Kollam.  The Pullichira Church was established in 1700 A.D.  One of the oldest and most important Mosques in the Chinnakkada Palli.  The Thangal Kunju Musliar College of Engineering, the first of its kind in the private sector in the state,  is at Kilikolloor, about 7 Kms. east of Kollam town.

Thenmala Eco Tourism Centre

Thenmala is the meeting point of Kollam-Shencottah road and Trivandrum-Shencottah road, surrounded by dense forest, 66 kms east of Kollam. There are a large number of rubber and tea plantations in Thenmala. Timber of all varieties are exported from here to all parts of the country. Themala Dam site is open for tourists. Eco tourists center is situated at Thenmala. All buses passing through Kollam-Shencottah road stop at Tenmala. There is also a Railway Station here.

Palaruvi Water Falls

The famous waterfall in Kollam District is situated at Palaruvi near Aryankavu, Kollam – Sencottah NH 208. Season to visit the places is from June to January.

Adventure Park 

This delightful amusement park is located near the Kollam bus stand and never fails to amuse kids and adults alike. 

Jetayu Para

Jetayu Para, a huge rock, is another attraction in Kollam district. This huge rock is in the Chadayamangalam village on the M.C road. The name comes from the epic Ramayana. It is believed that Jatayu, the giant bird in the epic, fell after failing in its attempt to spot Ravana from taking sita away. The rock is ideal for trekking by the lovers of adventure. The rock can be seen from the Chadayamangalam junction. itself.

Ariankavu Pilgrimage 

This pilgrimage center is located at some distance from Kollam, yet is worth the visit. The temple holds its annual festival in December and is a grand spectacle to watch out for.

Alumkadavu

Alumkadavu located at 26 Kms from Kollam City and on the lakeside of Kollam-Alappuzha National Water Way. The “Green Channel Back Water Resort” at Alumkadavu makes itself a tranquil location for both foreign and Indian Tourists. The scenic beauty of blue green stretches of serene back water and rambling gardens of hundreds of coconut palms give the Green Channel Resort an incomparable beauty.

Apart from providing tasty Kerala/North Indian/Chinese dishes the resort offers excellent facilities like comfortable accommodation, Back Water Cruise, visit to Matha Amritanandamayi Asramam, which is only 4 KM away, House Boats, Ayurvedic treatment for rejuvenation of body by qualified and experienced Ayurvedic Practioner, canal tour with the unique opportunities to experience the true village life and do fishing leisurely.

Ashramam picnic village

The Park is located along the banks of the scenic Ashtamudi Lake. Ashramam picnic village lies at a distance of 2 km from the town on a sprawling 48 acre lush foliage. There is also an excellent children’s play area inside the park. Other facilities include boat rides for enjoying the scenic backwaters and avenues to enjoy water sports. 

Amritapuri

Matha Amritanandamayi Math, one of the most popular pilgrimage centers in the state is located at Vallickavu, at a short distance from Kollam. The huge temple and Math are constructed near the place of birth of Matha Amritanandamayi Devi or Amma (meaning mother) – as she is popularly referred to. Many throng to the Math to catch a glimpse or ‘darshan’ of Amma and to seek blessings and consolation from her.

Punalur 

Having a 400 ft. long suspension bridge built in 1877 across the mighty Kallada River, which is acclaimed as the only one of its kind in South India, Punalur is a town surrounded by many plantations. The scenic town of Punalur is located at a distance of 45 km from Kollam. The famous Punalur Paper Mills which started operations way back in 1885 lies near the town. The town is a major center for trade in timber, pepper, tropical cash crops et cetera. 

Neendakara

Neendakara is the hub of Indo-Norwegian Fisheries Project, established in 1953. This small fishing hamlet is located at a distance of about 8 km north of Kollam. Neendakara is widely known for its Fishing Harbour and has a Fisheries Training Institute, ice factories, refrigeration plants, and Chinese fishing nets dotting the area.

Kulathuppuzha

The area is a favoured tourism destination for exploring the exotic tropical greenery and for catching a glimpse of wild animals. Kulathuppuzha has a famous temple dedicated to Lord Ayyappa. The quaint town of Kulathuppuzha is located at a distance of around 10 km from Thenmala. The area is surrounded by virgin forests, a well known safe haven for wild elephants. 

Kottarakkara 

The place where Kerala’s world-famous dance drama of Kathakali caught on and grew in popularity under the royal patronage in the 19th century. The erstwhile capital of Elayadathu Swarupam, a branch of the Travancore Royal family, is located at a distance of 27 km from Kollam. Kottarakkara has many ancient temples and churches. 

Thevally Palace 

Savour magnificent views of the beautiful Ashtamudi Lake could be enjoyed from the palace. This palace, located in Kollam town, is now open to tourists after renovations done in the recent times. This palace still holds a romantic charm, as it is the setting where a noble lady of the palace fell in love with a British officer who lived across the lake. It is said that the faithful dog of the British used to swim across the lake to deliver his masters letters to the lady. Today a crumbling pedestal stands as a memorial to the dog’s loyalty. 

Palaruvi Waterfalls

‘Palaruvi’ means a stream of milk the milky white foam of the waterfall aptly justifies its name. The mist-clad rolling hills and stunning greenery creates a perfect setting to enjoy this magnificent waterfall. This beautiful waterfall is located amidst dense tropical forests at a distance of about 75 km from Kollam.

Munore Island

This Island is 27kms. from Kollam and is formed by the backwater of Ashtamudi Lake and Kallanda River.

Nearby attractions from Kollam: From Kollam you can make excursions to places like:

Achencoil

Situated about 80 kms from Punalur is an important pilgrim center. The Sastha temple here, situated amidst dense forest. The idol of Sastha is supposed to have been installed several centuries before the Christian Era. The two important festivals of this temple are Mandala Pooja (December-January) and the festival held at ‘Revathi'(January-February). The two notable features of the festival are the Therotam (chariot festival) and Pushpabhishekam (offering of flowers). In no other temple of the South India are flowers offered to the deity so lavishly as at Achencoil.

Anchal

Situated 13 kms south of Punalur, Anchal is known for its cattle market held twice a month. The Mudi festival of the Bhagavathy temple here, conducted once every 12 years, attract huge gatherings.

Chavara

Chavara is situated 14 kms north of Kollam on the Kollam-Alappuzha road. Thousands of tonnes of mineral sand are exported from Chavara to various countries. The Kovilthottam port is situated within the limits of Chavara Panchayat. Four major industrial establishments 1.Indian Rare Earths 2.The kerala Premo Pipe factory 3.Kerala Mineral and Metal factory 4.Titanium Complex are in Chavara.

Karunagappally

Karunagappally is situated 27 kms north of  Kollam. It is linked with Kollam by rail and road. There is a mini civil station at Karunagappally .Padanayarkulangara, which forms part of the town, was once the military station at Kayamkulam Rajas. An idol of Buddha, recovered from a local tank here, is now preserved in the Krishnapuram palace the headquarters of Kayamkulam Rajas situated north of Oachira. The town has a temple dedicated to Lord Siva, two old mosques and a mar Thomas Church.

Kottarakkara

Kottarakkara is the headquarters of Kottarakkara Taluk. It is linked by both rail and road, a distance of 27 kms. It was once the capital of Elayadathu Swarupam, a principality ruled by a branch of the Travancore Royal Family. The internationally famous dance drama-Kath kali had its small beginning in this town and it flourished under the patronage of Raja of Kottarakkara.

Mayyanad

Mayyanadu,10 kms south of Kollam is noted for its shrines and temples. The most important temple is the one at Umayanallor, dedicated to Lord Subramanian. The shrine is said to have been consecrated by Shri. Sankaracharya of Kaladi. Besides the temples, there are three churches and a Mosque. Cotton weaving and oil pressing are the main occupation in the village.

Things to do at Kollam: Enjoy the lush landscape of this land by boarding a houseboat.  The eight-hour boat trip between Kollam and Alappuzha is the longest and most enchanting experience on the backwaters of Kerala. The eight-hour boat trip between Kollam and Alappuzha is the longest and most enchanting experience on the backwaters of Kerala. Kollam is the hub of India’s cashew processing industry which also make up a must buy on a shopper’s list. All the major shopping areas and the town markets have shops that sell raw and processed cashew. One can explore the place at your own sweet pace and watch the charms of nature unfold before your very eyes. This is one of the best ways to enjoy the quaint towns and the countryside. You may also enjoy a refreshing swim in one of the gorgeous beaches in Kollam. For those having an adventurous bend of mind an exhilarating trekking expedition or mountaineering in one of the many ideal settings around Kollam without much hassle is worth. Jetayu Para and Thenmala are some of the places where one can enjoy trekking. The opportunities are numerous and you are certain to enjoy trekking in the exotic wilderness of Western Ghats.

Best season to visit Kollam: The best time to visit the place is from August to March.

How to go ?

By Air

Thiruvananathapuram International Airport situated at Valiyathura is the nearest air connection which connects the city with other major Indian and international cities. Indian Airlines has connections with Delhi, Mumbai, Bangalore and Chennai while overseas cities include cities in the middle east, Male and Sri Lanka.

By Rail

Kollam is an important railhead of the south railways where all the major trains on the route take a halt.

By Road

An excellent network of roads connect Kollam with other cities in Kerala. KSTRC (Kerala State Road Transport Corporation) buses ply regularly between Kollam and other neighbouring cities.

 [AdSense-B]

Where to stay ?

There are a adequate accommodation facilities in Kollam. Some options are:

Tourist Lodge (KSTDC): +91-0474-2745538
Hotel Sudarsan: +91-0474-2744322 Website: www.hotelsudarsan.com
Hotel Kailash Residency:  +91-0474-2766511
Hotel Karthika: +91-0474-2745538

Note : Phone numbers given above are according to the information available with us. If you find any contact number/s given above is/are incorrect or not in use, please let us know.

.

[AdSense-C]

Mankhim

Mankhim, Sikkim – Site offers spectacular views of Mt.Kanchenjungha & the lush green “boot-shaped” Lampokhri Lake

[AdSense-A]

A hilltop adjacent to the popular destination of Aritar Mankhim lies in the village of Dalapchand under the Rongli Sub-Division of Eastern Sikkim.  The site offers spectacular views of Mt.Kanchenjungha and the lush green “boot-shaped” Lampokhri Lake at the same time. Mankhim consists of a small temple on the hilltop, a few homestays and a monastery, just a walk away. This place is Mankhimidyllic for spending some days in complete seclusion. The main activities here are bird watching, paddle boating and nature walking. You can tag in Reshikhola, Sillery Gaon, Pedong or Kalimpong with Mankhim. You can also take a day-trip to Kupup lake, Zuluk and the world’s highest golf course from Mankhim.

Places to see at Mankhim: Mankhim is a hilltop near the popular destination of Aritar, which is famous for its Lampokhari Lake. This vast human foot shaped lake is flanked by emerald green forest of Pine and Fir. The lake is ideal to enjoy paddle boating. There is also a Lodge and cafeteria beside the lake. The Changey waterfall boasting a height of 50 meters is located near Mankhim.

You can also visit the nearby Aritar Monastery, which houses some remarkable painted murals, rare manuscripts and Buddhist artifacts. The Dak Bungalow popularly called Ari-Bangla is an age-old British bungalow, built under the supervision of James Claude White in 1895.

The little temple of Mankhim, belonging to the Rai cult of Hindu origin at Maity Village overlooks the Lampokhri and the mighty Kanchenjungha. The view point near the temple offers a panoramic view of the mighty Mt.Kanchenjungha and its allies, Aritar town, rolling hills and the silk route upto Zuluk. You can also visit the Ever Green Nursery and Ram Gauri Sangrhalaya, which is a nursery and museum, displaying some nice collection of drift wood, botanical and some exotic varieties of flowers.

MankhimNearby attractions of Mankhim: You can visit nearby Reshilkhola, Sillery Gaon and Pedong in West Bengal from Mankhim. You can also visit the famous Ramitey View point for viewing the 14 turns of River Teesta with Kanchenjungha in the background. Some other nearby attractions are Kupup Lake (BitangCho Lake), world’s highest golf course and Zuluk in East Sikkim. If you are in the mood of little trekking, then try Mulkarkha Lake trek that is famous for holding the reflection of Mt. Kanchenjungha on its waters. You can also visit the ruins of historic Damsang Fort and the famous Cross Hill.

Things to do at Mankhim: There is a long jungle path acroos the hills covering may view points from Makhim to Lampokhri. You can take a nature walk along this path to Lampokhri Lake from  You can organize picnics at the popular picnic spot called Love Dara, located near Mankhim. The place is also ideal for the avid bird watchers. You can also enjoy boating in the Lampokhari Lake, trekking and rock climbing to nearby hilltops and nature walking.

Best time to visit Mangkhim: You can visit Mangkhim any time of the year. The winters are best for viewing the sunrise over Kanchenjungha and the summers are best for beating the heat of the plains.

How to go ?

You can also hire vehicles from Siliguri and reach Aritar in 5 hours. the route is Teesta Bazar – Kalimpong – Algarah – Pedong – Reshikhola – Rhenock – Aritar – Mankhim. If you are coming from any destination in Sikkim, you have to come via Rangpo – Rorathang – Reshikhola – Rhenock – Aritar – Mankhim. Many tourists also hire vehicles and make tour to Aritar and Mankhim from Gangtok in roughly 3 hours.

[AdSense-B]

Where to stay ?

There are few homestays in Mankhim offering lodging and dining facilities. Few cottages offering nice, clean, basic facilities overlooking the rift, Lampokhri Lake and the entire Mt.Kanchenjungha range are available here.  There is also glasshouse-type cottage with an incredible view of Mt.Kanchenjungha from bed just on the edge of the ridge. Food is basic in nature but fresh and authentic. You can enjoy a whole lot of momos during your stay at Mankhim. One option is Heaven Valley Homestay.

[AdSense-C]

Aritar

Aritar, Sikkim – A serene hamlet that boasts a picturesque scenic landscape and a beautiful lake

[AdSense-A]

A serene hamlet nestled in the Eastern border of Sikkim under the Rongli Sub-Division, Aritar is a relatively new tourist destination, that boasts a picturesque scenic landscape and a beautiful “boot- shaped” lake called Lampokhri. Covered with lush green forest, mountains, stepped farmlands and waterfalls the place is unique in its own way. Enjoy the amazing view of Mt AritarKanchenjunga and some great nature trails, monasteries, view points, bird watching opportunities and village tour options. Aritar is also known for one of the best heritage bungalows of Sikkim – The Aritar Dak Bungalow. Built in 1896, Aritar Dak Bungalow is a typical British bungalow that is recently restored by the Sikkim Govt. for tourists.

Places to see at Aritar: Aritar is famous for its Lampokhari Lake. This vast natural lake shaped in the form of human foot is flanked by emerald green forest. You can enjoy paddle boating in the lake. Beside the lake there is also a cafeteria. A well-maintained jungle path with view points and gazebos skirts through the jungle and climbs up to the Aritar Top, also called Mankhim from where you can catch a panoramic view of Mt.Kanchenjungha.

Visit the nearby Aritar Monastery, which houses some remarkable painted murals, rare manuscripts and Buddhist artefacts. The Dak Bungalow popularly called Ari-Bangla is an age-old British bungalow, built under the supervision of James Claude White in 1896. Of late, the bungalow has been transformed into a guest house for tourists.

The temple of Mangkhim, belonging to the Rai cult of Hindu origin is located at an altitude of 6500 feet at Maity Village overlooking the Aritar. The viewpoint near the temple offers a panoramic view of the mighty Eastern Himalayas, Aritar town, rolling hills and the Silk Route. You can also visit the Ever Green Nursery and Ram Gauri Sangrhalaya, which is a nursery and museum, displaying some stunning collection of drift wood, botanical and some exotic varieties of flowers.

AritarNearby attractions around Aritar: You can visit nearby Reshikhola, Icchey Gaon, Sillery Gaon and Pedong in West Bengal from Aritar. Some other nearby attractions are villages that used to fall on the Old Silk Route like Kupup Lake, Menmecho Lake, Nathang, Padamchen, Zuluk and Lungthung. If you are an adventure lover then a trek to Mulkarkha Lake can be rewarding. You need to travel few km uphill from Aritar to locate this lake in an isolated forest area. Savour the beauty of the surrounding area of the lake adorned with jungle of exotic orchids and colossal mountains. On a clear day, you can see the reflection of Mt.Kanchenjungha on the placid waters of the Mulkarkha Lake.

Things to do at Aritar: You can organize picnics at the popular picnic spot called Love Dara, located at Aritar. The place is also ideal for the avid bird watchers. You can also enjoy boating in the Lampokhari Lake, trekking to nearby hilltops, enjoying village walks and nature walking.

Best time to visit Aritar: You can visit Aritar any time of the year. The rains shroud Aritar with greenery and clouds whereas in winters, you can get a great panoramic view of Mt.Kanchenjungha.

How to go ?

The nearest airport of Aritar is located at Bagdogra, from where you can hire car and drive for 4-5 hours to reach Aritar. The closest railway station of the location is at New Jalpaiguri, which is well facilitated by trains from all parts of the country. You can also hire vehicles from Siliguri and reach Aritar in 5 hours. Many tourists also hire vehicles and make tour to Aritar from Gangtok in roughly 3 hours. If you are coming from Kalimpong, then the route would be Kalimpong – Pedong – Reshikhola – Aritar. If you are coming from Sikkim, then the shortest route would be Rangpo – Rorathang – Rhenock – Aritar.

[AdSense-B]

Where to stay ?

There are some hotels and homestays in Aritar but the best place to stay is the Aritar Dak Bungalow. Decked with period furniture, fireplaces in every room, wall to wall carpets, extra large couches and English glass windows, this 120 year-old British heritage bungalow is a true gem of Sikkim. Recently renovated, the Aritar Dak Bungalow is located amidst sprawling lawns and gardens with great views of the rolling mountains. There are three Master bedrooms (triple bed) with attached bathrooms, a huge sitting room and a dining hall in the bungalow. Staying in the Aritar bungalow is like re-visiting the days of the Raaj. The staff at the bungalow prepares great food for the guests, which is essentially Indian cuisine. For booking details you may visit www.heritagebungalows.com 

Other options are:
Lampokhari Village Resort: +91 9903295920
Hotel Chittiz:  +91-98325 44438 9832038462 /  7407181895 

Note : Phone numbers given above are according to the information available with us. If you find any contact number/s given above is/are incorrect or not in use, please let us know.

[AdSense-C]

Chaaya_Taal

Chaaya Taal, Sikkim – Pack your bags to take the pleasure of an itinerary this weekend

[AdSense-A]

Staying beside a placid lake and enjoying the picturesque view of Mt. Kanchenjungha is a long cherished dream for every urbanite tired of the polluted city life. Pack your bags to take the pleasure of an itinerary this weekend. Chaaya Taal is a mixed magic bag consisting of waterfalls, monasteries, dense forests, largest prayer wheel in the world, rhododendrons, red pandas, water gardens, 65 species of different birds and activities like boating, village walks and trekking. The place is located almost 136 kms from New Jalpaiguri, and just a km above Hee Gaon. It is one of the newest spots on the tourist map of West Sikkim. At the foot of Chaaya Taal is located the twin villages of Hee and Bermiok. The nearby attractions include the Srijunga waterfalls, Vanjhakri Waterfalls, Yuma Samyo Manghim temple, Phurtsa Chu hotspring and Rabindra Nath Tagore Smriti Van. You can also visit the nearby Barsey Rhododendron sanctuary famous for Red Pandas and Rhododendrons from Chaaya Taal. For trekking lovers, an eight-day trek is arranged that will take you to Phoktey, which is one of the very few places on earth from where you can watch sunrise over Mt.Everest and Kanchenjungha, the highest and third highest peaks in the world at the same time.

Places to see at Chaaya Taal: The spell-binding views of Kanchenjungha from the balcony and a turquoise lake beside your guest house with boating facilities makes Chaaya Taal one of the most beautiful destinations of West Sikkim. The twin villages of Hee and Bermiok are located in the foothills of Chaaya Taal. Then there is the famous Yuma Samyo Manghim, the temple where the believers of Yuma Samyo – the great saint from Nepal worship. In front of the temple is a big stone from where this great saint used to deliver sermons to his followers.

About a km westward from the nearby Bermiok Bazar there is a cave on Niya Bhir cliff known as Alley Gufa, where Lord Shiva is worshiped. You would also find a watch tower located just above this Alley cave temple at upper Martam from where you can get a beautiful view of Kanchenjungha. The beautiful Vanjhakri Waterfalls also known as Pheng Doje Falls descends in an isolated destination near Hee-Gaon along the Hee River. However, the biggest attraction of Chaaya Taal is the water garden at the bank of Hee Khola where you would find the world’s largest Buddhist prayer wheel powered by water current, a swimming pool, a cafeteria and few Gazebos.

Also, within a kilometer at the bank of River Kalez lies the sleeping statue of Buda Neel Kantha. On the hill top of Mt. Yumang Thegu (the hill overlooking the lake) a 65 feet high statue of Teyongsi  Sirijunga is under construction. Along with this is, the work of constructing the Sirijunga Study Centre with all the facilities to study and research about Guru Sirijunga is in progress too.

Nearby attractions of Chaaya Taal: One of the major sightseeing options here is the Srijunga waterfalls about an hour’s downhill walk from the Yuma Samyo Manghim. There is a holy cave at the foot of this waterfall in Phagudara village where according to legends the great Guru Srijunga is said to have hidden his mysterious box full of knowledge. Presently, there is a temple located at the confluence of River Reshi and River Kalez which houses a black block of stone which is believed to be the same box of knowledge, now turned into stone.

You can also visit the nearby village of Berthang at the confluence of River Rangsang and River Kalez to see the erstwhile tiny kingdom of Berthang Berfok Mangerjong. The Manger kings ruled this tiny Himalayan Kingdom till 18th century when their last ruler Dal Kinari Khapangi Manger was killed in the battlefield. The locals worship this place as ‘Raja Bhajey Dham’ where he was killed. About 10 minutes’ walk above Bermiok 13th mile village is the ancient cave temple – Kailash Pati Gufa. Hundreds of people come here to offer Puja on Shivaratri every year.

Another popular nearby destinations is the Phurtsa Chu sulphur hotspring which is famous for its ‘medicinal water. It is located below Legship – Jorethang Road between Reshi and Legship along the bank of Rangit River. You can also visit the Rabindra Nath Tagore Smriti Van located at Megie Dara, about a furlong eastward from Rinchenpong Bazar. Though the exact account of this visit to this place is not available, the novel laureate had once arrived here somewhere in the first quarter of 20th century. This is a beautiful place and it can be guessed how the imaginations of the Novel laureate might have soared on his arrival here. There is also a beautiful monastery at Rinchenpong.

You can also visit the famous Reesum Monastery from Chaaya Taal. To reach this monastery, you have to hike over 600 steps but the effort would be rewarded with one of the most magnificent views of Mt.Kanchenjungha. You have to leave Chaaya Taal at around 3:30 am to view sunrise from Reesum Monastery. The car would take around 40 mins to reach the base of the hill from where you have to trek for another 40 min to reach the monastery.     Other than the nearby sightseeing destinations, the major spots of West Sikkim like Pelling, Pemyangtse, Uttarey, Kaluk and Richenpong are all within an hour’s distance.

Things to do at Chaaya Taal: Boating at Chaaya Taal is a wonderful experience. You can also catch the glimpses of Kanchenjungha from your balcony or from the various viewpoints located all around Chaaya Taal. You can take long nature walks and be a patient listener to the quarrels and songs of the birds. If you are an adventure lover then the Everest Singalila trek covering the higher reaches of the Barsey Rhododendron Sanctuary can be your itinerary. This trek is famous for its flowers and spectacular views of Mt.Kanchenjungha and Mt.Everest. After you cross Thulo Dhaap the trail climbs up to the Singiila Ridge and from Phoktey you can see the sunrise on Mt Everest and Mt.Kanchenjungha – the highest and third highest peaks of the world at the same time.

If you love re-discovering ethnic cultures then try to visit here during the Kalez Valley Heritage Festival held every year from 10th to 13th May. This colourful festival showcases multi ethnic cultural practices, cultural dances, demonstration, mountain biking and traditional cuisine.

Best time to visit Chaya Taal: You can visit Chaaya Taal any time of the year. However, if you want to trek at Barsey Rhododendron sanctuary and see rhododendron in full bloom then visit during March- April.  Also the Kalez valley Heritage Festival is held every year between 10th and 13th May.

How to go ?

Chaaya Taal is located above the twin villages of Hee-Bermiok. New Jalpaiguri is around 136 kms away and it takes around 4 hours to reach. The usual route to be followed is Melli – Jorethang via Mangalbaria, Rinchenpong – Kaluk – Hee Bermiok – Chaaya Taal. You can also come via Nayabazar – Soreng – Kaluk- Hee Bermiok.

[AdSense-B]

Where to stay ?

There is only one guest house named Chhayatal Village Guest house with four Double Bedrooms at Chaaya Taal. The accommodation is decked with all modern facilities like hot water, television and attached bathrooms. The guesthouse faces Mt.Kanchenjungha and overlooks the lake. Both vegetarian and non-vegetarian food is available at the guesthouse. Treks to Singalila Ridge and Barsey Rhododendron Sanctuary can be arranged from the guesthouse itself. For booking details you may contact:

Chhayatal Village Guest house: +919434012213 / 9775915168.

Note : Phone numbers given above are according to the information available with us. If you find any contact number/s given above is/are incorrect or not in use, please let us know.

.
[AdSense-C]

Bhopal

Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh – The land of Lakes

[AdSense-A]

Located on the Malwa plateau Bhopal the capital city of Madhya Pradesh combines both the scenic beauty and the modern urban planning. It is a city of lakes. The city also has rich historical heritage. It was founded by Raja Bhoj in 11th century and was originally known as Bhojpal. The city today has an all round development. Loaded with various market places and fine old mosques and palaces Bhopal still bears the aristocratic imprint of its former rulers. Besides the broad avenues, the exquisite parks and gardens, and the modern edifice makes Bhopal a real urban city.

Places to see at Bhopal: A city of history Bhopal is dotted with numerous historical sites mostly. However there are also other sites of tourist attraction.

Jama Masjid

Gold spikes crown the minarets of this beautiful mosque built in 1837 by Kudsia Begum.

Taj-Ul-Masjid

The Taj-ul-Masjid is one of the largest mosques in Asia, built by Nawab Shahjehan Begum around a courtyard with a large tank in the centre and with an imposing double storey gate-way with 4 recessed archways and 9 imposing cusped multi-foiled openings in the main prayer hall. The Quibla wall in the prayer hall is carved with 11 recessed arches, while the mimber is made of black basalt.The structure is enlivened by the limpid expanse of water in the tank outside the northern wall. The monumentality of this structure was much greater originally when it faced the towering bastions of the Fatehgarh Fort. A three-day Ijtima congregation held here annually draws people from all over the country.

Moti Masjid

Architecturally akin to Delhi’s Jama Masjid, this imposing mosque was built by Sikander Jehan, daughter of Kudsia Begum, in 1860.

Shaukat Mahal And Sadar Manzil

Situated at the entrance to the Chowk area in the heart of the walled city, Shaukat Mahal is an architectural curiosity. Its mixture of styles in Occidental idioms sets it apart from the predominantly Islamic architecture of the area. It was designed by a Frenchman, said to be a descendent of an offshoot of the Bourbon Kings of France. Post Renaissance and Gothic styles are combined to charming effect here. Nearby is the elegant once-opulent Sadar Manzil, Hall of Public Audience, of the former rulers of Bhopal.

Gohar Mahal

Situated behind Shaukat Mahal on the banks of the Upper Lake is Gohar Mahal, which is an architectural gem dating back to the times of Kudsia Begum, also known as Gohar Begum, who built this sprawling palace in 1820. The Mahal is a magnificent expression of the fusion of Hindu and Mughal architecture.

Bharat Bhawan

One of the most unique national institutes in India, Bharat Bhawan is a centre for the performing and visual arts. Designed by renowned architect, Charles Correa, the contours of Bharat Bhawan merge in exquisite harmony with the landscape creating a visual impact of spacious and natural elegance. The centre houses a museum of the arts, an art gallery, a workshop for fine arts, a repertory theatre, indoor and outdoor auditorium, a rehearsal room and libraries of Indian poetry, classical and folk music. It remains open from 2 pm to 8 pm every day except Mondays.

Indira Gandhi Rashtriya Manav Sangrahalaya (A Post Colonial Museum)

The Indira Gandhi Rashtriya Manav Sangrahalaya (National Museum of Mankind) is a unique Museum, spread over 200 acres of undulating land on the Shamla Hills on the Upper Lake front. It is situated in a prehistoric site and may be the only museum in the world strewn with numerous prehistoric painted rock shelters. It is a post-colonial museum of communities rather than objects, dedicated to in situ revitalisation of local knowledge systems and life enhancing traditions rather than ex situ display of objects. It is engaged in recollection rather than collection. The museum display has been curated directly by the folk and tribal communities, camping at site, to create a miniature presentation of Indian folk ways through display of eco-specific habitations & subsistence practices in the tribal, coastal, desert, and Himalayan habitats. The library, audio-visual archive, computerised documentation and the collection of ethnographic specimens in the Museum, though modest in size are among the best in the world.

Government Archaeological Museum

A fine collection of sculptures are on display here from various parts of Madhya Pradesh. Highlights of the collection are: paintings of various schools, copies of paintings from the Bagh caves near Mandu and the statues of Alakshmi and the Buddha. The museum is closed on Mondays.

Laxmi Narayan Temple and Museum

This beautiful temple on the Arera Hills has a Museum attached to it which houses a collection of sculptures from Raisen, Sehore, Mandsaur and Shahdol districts of Madhya Pradesh. The museum is open from 9 am to 5 pm every day except Mondays.

Van Vihar

This safari-park is located on a hill adjacent to the Upper Lake, with an area of 445 hectares. In these natural surroundings, wildlife watchers can view a variety of herbivorous and carnivorous species. Open everyday, except Friday, (Timings: 1st April to 30 September, from 7:00 AM to 7:00 PM and 01 October to 31 March, from 7:00 AM to 6:00 PM)

Regional Science Centre

Basically a science museum, located on the picturesque Shamala Hills, Regional Science Centre houses about 300 participatory exhibits distributed equally in ‘Invention’ & ‘Fun Science’ galleries, and a ‘taramandal’ (Planetarium). The museum remains open from 10.30 am to 6.30 pm on all days except Mondays.

Chowk

In the heart of the city, the Chowk is lined with old mosques, havelis, reminds of a bygone era. The shops in its narrow alleys are treasure troves of traditional Bhopali crafts : silver jewellery, exquisitely fashioned bead work, embroidered and sequinned velvet fashioned purses and cushions.

Upper and Lower Lakes

The Upper Lake is divided from the Lower Lake by an over-bridge. M. P. Tourism’s Boat Club on the Upper Lake provides facilities for exciting trips by sail, paddle and motor boats.

Aquarium

Facing the Lower Lake, the fish-shaped aquarium houses a number of fascinating species of fish in all shapes and sizes.

Nearby Attractions from Bhopal: Tourist visiting Bhopal can arrange for some interesting trips to nearby destinations.

Islamnagar

Islamnagar is 11 km away from Bhopal. It was a palace of the Afgan rulers and built by Dost Mohammed Khan.

Kerwa

17 km from Bhopal, Kerwa is a dam and an ideal picnic spot.

Raisen

Another renowned nearby tourist destination from Bhopal is ancient fort of Raisen on the Bhopal-Sagar road. The fort was built in the early 6th century. It is situated on a high hill and once had 84 lakes and ponds, of which only 15 remain. The fort was under the famous Hindu king Rai Puran Mal before it was seized by Sher Shah and brought under Afghan control.

Ginnorgarh

The historical fort standing on an isolated hill about 1,127 metres long and 266 metres broad is situated 3 km away from Delawadi. Buses ply the route, but from Delawadi to the fort one has to travel on foot. The fort was once a stronghold of Gonds, but fell to Mohammad of the Bhopal State.

Delawadi

It is 62 km from Bhopal. Situated in a lovely forest glade, Delawadi is a picturesque picnic spot, rich in scenic splendour.

Things to do in Bhopal: In Bhopal you can enjoy a ride to a toy train look alike open bus. This trip is called Bhopal on wheels. It departs from a place called Palash Residency and winding through the hills stops at some definite destinations. The bus contains minimum five passengers.
The MP tourism boat club offers motorboat rides, pedal boats and even jet skiing.
Lake Princess one of the famous lakes of Bhopal also arrange a cruise trip for 45 min provided the water levels are high.

Best time to visit Bhopal: Throughout the year.

How to go ?

By air:

Regular flights connect Bhopal with Delhi, Gwalior, Jabalpur, Indore and Mumbai.

By bus:

Regular bus services connect Bhopal with Indore(186 km), Mandu(285 km), Ujjain(188 km), Khajuraho (383 km), Pachmarhi(195 km), Gwalior(423 km), Sanchi(46 km), Jabalpur(295 km) and Shivpuri(311 km).

By rail:

Bhopal is on the Delhi-Chennai main line. Major trains going from Mumbai to Delhi via Itarsi and Jhansi also go through Bhopal.

[AdSense-B]

Where to stay ?

Bhopal being a celebrated tourist destination is dotted with a number of hotels.and lodges suited to all budgets.

Hotel Kamal Regency: + 91-755-4042400, + 91-755-4042401
Hotel Kasturi Continental: 0755-4277789
Hotel Reva Regency: 9993160487, 9425944802
Hotel Sarthak: 0755-4023200, 4023220

Note : Phone numbers given above are according to the information available with us. If you find any contact number/s given above is/are incorrect or not in use, please let us know.
.

[AdSense-C]

Dhuturdaha

Dhuturdaha, 51 KM from Kolkata – Place is dotted with endless fishing lakes, vegetable gardens, ponds, palm trees & mango groves

[AdSense-A]

Dhuturdaha is a serene village located just 51 km from Kolkata. The place is dotted with endless fishing lakes (bheri), vegetable gardens, ponds, palm trees, mango groves, and local temples. Here you will experience different shades of village life. This spot is ideal for stress removal after a whole week of hard labour in your workplace. The vast endless sky touches the green horizon here. Enjoy a get together with your family and friends beside the pond, or do some fishing in the lakes. Dip your tired legs in the cool water of the pond and you will feel completely relaxed. Dhuturdaha is not only a remote village without daily facilities. Some of the best resorts in Kolkata are located here with AC rooms, swimming pools, landscaped gardens, dining halls, conference rooms, gazebos within water and all other amenities which makes life comfortable. Dhuturdaha is a perfect blend of ethnic charm with modern facilities.

Places to see at Dhuturdaha: The main attraction of Dhuturdaha is the numerous fishing lakes. These lakes stretch as far as you can see over the horizon. The village is dotted with vegetable gardens blooming with all types of vegetables from cabbages and cauliflowers to ladies fingers. You can also visit the local temple under the shadows of a Peepal tree or watch the local women sifting rice under the wood-plaque (Dheki). Village life is Dhuturdaha’s main attraction – ducks puddling around in ponds, farmers ploughing their fields, fisherman casting their nets and the local shopkeeper selling groceries.

Nearby attractions of Dhuturdaha: The nearby destination Malancha is just 15 km from Dhuturdaha. This small town has one of the biggest Fish Markets in West Bengal. At Malancha you would see the mighty Icchamati River meeting the Vidyadhari River. You can also stop over the bridge over Vidyadhari River and enjoy the sunset. This side of the riverbank is dotted with brick kilns and their towering chimneys line up the riverbank for miles – it’s an amazing sight. On the way to Dhuturdaha from Kolkata, you would come across Ghusighata Lock gate, where few local canals meet – this is nice stopover too.

Things to do at Dhuturdaha: The best thing you can do here is to watch the slices of village life pass around you. You can do casual birdwatching of some local birds around Dhururdaha and walk around the fringes of the fish lakes. You can also enjoy boating within the resort and try your hand in fishing. You can also play outdoor games in the nearby fields and take long village walks. If you are planning to stay a little longer, then try to visit Malancha. You can watch the sunset over the Bidyadhari River from here or take a country boat to cross over to Chaital on the other side. A visit to a nearby brick kiln can also be a nice experience. There is one more thing you can do – if you love eating fish. You can stop at Malancha’s Fish market to buy some freshly caught fish at great prices while returning from Dhuturdaha.

How to go ?

If you are going by car, then you have to take Basanti Highway from Science City and reach Minakha. From Minakha, you can take the road going right to Dhuturdaha. All Buses connecting Malancha from Kolkata will cross Minakha. You have to get down at Minakha and take a local Auto Rickshaw to Dhuturdaha.

[AdSense-B]

Where to stay ?

Dhuturdaha has a number of luxury, ethnic and budget resorts with facilities for accommodating guests. You can stay overnight or visit the place for a day trip or picnic. The resorts have all the facilities for supporting corporate picnics, family getaways and individual nature lovers. The spacious Double Bed AC rooms of the resorts have attached western bathrooms, period furniture, television and minibars. The resorts at Dhuturdaha are well equipped with swimming pools, conference rooms, boating facilities, angling facilities, lawns, dining halls, kitchens for picnic groups, spacious dining halls, landscaped gardens, parking lots and children’s parks. The resorts are available for day picnic groups as well as for individual guests who want to stay overnight.

Few options are:

The Pacific Resort: 9830985968
Shilla Villa Resort:9836229187, 9830163896

Note : Phone numbers given above are according to the information available with us. If you find any contact number/s given above is/are incorrect or not in use, please let us know.

.
[AdSense-C]

Purbasthali

Purbasthali, South Bengal – The birds watchers will thoroughly enjoy here

[AdSense-A]

A small town Purbasthali is just 120 km from Kolkata. It is located in the district of Bardhaman, between Katwa and Nabadwip. This town perches on the banks of a beautiful oxbow lake that is created by the River Ganga. The length of the lake is 2 to 3 km and it attracts lots of migratory birds during the winter season. The birds-watchers will thoroughly enjoy here. Purbasthali also known as chupir chor, is covered with fruits and flower garden and profuse vegetation. The place is too small to allot tourism but it is littered with many Zamindar palaces.

Places to see at Purbasthali: There is a small oxbow lake by the side of the Ganga and is known for its clear water and heavy growth of sweet water plants. This lake attracts a lot of migratory birds during the winter months and becomes a favourite place for bird watchers. Besides, there are some fruit and flower gardens to check out for.

Nearby attractions Purbasthali: There are some places of attractions like Nabadwip, Krishnanagar and Mayapur located nearby. Nabadwip is famous as the birth place of Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu, a Hindu Saint and also as a onetime great seat of learning in Bengal. Mayapur is the headquarters of ISKCON.

Things to do Purbasthali: You can enjoy boat ride on the clear water of the lake. The water is so transparent that you can see the underwater vegetation for a long distance.

Best time to visit Purbasthali: The best time to visit the place is during the winter months of October to February. You must go for bird watching either during the early mornings or late afternoon.

How to go ?

Purbasthali is located towards the north of Kolkata and you need travel till Krishnangar. From there, you have to cross the Chaitanya Bridge over the Hooghli River to reach Nabadwip. Follow the same road that will take you to Purbasthali Bazar and a right turn from the railway station will take you behind the station from where, after a drive for sometime, you will reach the place where boats are available. You can also visit Purbasthali by taking a direct train from Howrah heading towards Katwa. It would take around 2.5 hours to reach Purbasthali Station. Catch a rickshaw from the station to reach the Chupir Chor area.

[AdSense-B]

Where to stay ?

At Purbasthali there are no such accommodation facility. You can stay at Nabadwip having plenty of refuge for the tourists. Some options are:

Nadia Lodge: 9434450710
Bibekananda Hotel & Boarding: 9932297098
Chaitanya Bhawan: 9337441517

Note : Phone numbers given above are according to the information available with us. If you find any contact number/s given above is/are incorrect or not in use, please let us know.

[AdSense-C]

Pelling

Pelling, Sikkim – At an altitude of 7200 ft the place is bestowed with magnificent natural beauty

[AdSense-A]

Located in the district of West Sikkim Pelling is bestowed with magnificent natural beauty. It lies at an altitude of 7200 feet, and from here you can catch a glimpse of the snow-capped peak of Mt.Kanchenjunga and other peaks of the Eastern Himalayas. Pelling comprises two localities – Upper Pelling and Lower Pelling. Pelling is the tourist hub for travelling to various nearby destinations of West Sikkim like Khecheopalri Lake, Rimbi Waterfalls, Kanchenjungha waterfalls, Temi Tea Garden, Rabdentse Ruins, Sewaro Rock Garden and Pemyangtse. Besides the panoramic views of the Himalayas, Pelling is also famed for being the home to some of the oldest Buddhist monasteries in Sikkim like the Pemyangtse Monastery and Sang Da Choeling Monastery.

PellingPlaces to see at Pelling: Savour the panoramic view of the splendid Kanchenjangha and other snow covered Himalayan peaks from Pelling. Pelling offers wonderful view of some peaks like Rathong, Frey, Kabru Dom, Pandim, Narsing, Tinchikhang, Siniolchu and Kanchenjungha.  You will be truly amazed by viewing the earliest monastery of the region, the Pemayangtse Monastery, belonging to the Nyingapa sect.

The monastery offers visual pleasure by its impeccable sculptures and wall paintings. If you are visiting the monastery in January-February, you can witness a religious dance called ‘Cham’. Locate the Rabdantse Ruins, which is 10 minutes walk away from the Monastery. You will also find a forest area nearby, admired with some exotic orchids and few lakes. Pelling also features a helipad ground, though there is no provision for regular air service.

Nearby attractions of Pelling: You can make a trip to visit some of the prominent locations around Pelling. The Changey Waterfall, located at a distance of 10 km. from Pelling is worth visiting.  Tourists also travel a distance of 28 km. to view another Pellingspectacular waterfall, the Kangchendzonga waterfalls. Make a trip to the site of Khecheopalri Lake, highly acknowledged as one of the holy lakes in Sikkim. Surprisingly, there is not a single leaf on the lake surface, which is said to be cleared by birds. The other two major tourist attractions are the Rimbi Water Falls and Karchen Power House. You will truly enjoy your visit to the Sewaro Rock Garden, admired with flowers, fountains, spectacular gardens, ponds, swimming pool, cafeteria and well-maintained rocks. A fair called Maghe mela is also celebrated at the site.

Things to do at Pelling: Peling is a great place for monastery trek. You can take part in a 3 day trek, from Pelling to Kechapalari lake and then to Yuksum and finally to Tashiding. Enjoy a nature walk along the pathways of Pelling. You can also try your hand in fishing at Rimbi, where you can angle a local fish called Assala. There are few shops in Pelling, displaying an array of gift items, post cards, maps etc. You need to bargain a little, if you intend to buy from those shops.  You can also take a short 30 mins nature walk to Sang Da Choeling Monastery – which is one of the oldest monasteries of Sikkim. Pelling is also popular as a bird watching destination.

Best time to visit Pelling: You can visit Pelling round the year, though it is good to avoid the rainy season.

How to go ?

The nearest railway station of Pelling is located at New Jalpaiguri at a distance of 135 km. There are regular trains like Darjeeling Mail, Kachenjungha Express, Kanchankanya Express, Teesta Torsa and others from Howrah to New Jalpaiguri. Hired cars are available from New Jalpaiguri, Siliguri, Gangtok, Kalimpong, Jorethang and Namchi to Pelling. The nearest airport from Pelling is the Bagdogra airport.

[AdSense-B]

Where to stay ?

Himalayan Retreat and Resort
Ph: (+91) 9007358444 /  9432324780
Kolkata Office :  (+91) 033 24309371 / 033 32941172

Hotel Sikkim Aurora
Ph.:  (+91) 9732258987, 9434591378

Norbu Gang Resort:
Ph.:  (+91) 03595-258272, 919933004492/93/96

Note : Phone numbers given above are according to the information available with us. If you find any contact number/s given above is/are incorrect or not in use, please let us know.
[AdSense-C]

Raidighi

Raidighi, South Kolkata – On the way to Sunderbans, this place is truly cast a magic spell on you by its enchanting beauty

[AdSense-A]

The hustle and bustle of the city life seems to have bored you a lot. Need a break ? Then pack your bags to escape from these crowds and visit Raidighi, located on the way to Sunderbans.  This place is truly cast a magic spell on you by its enchanting beauty. The location offers a multiple package something for each kind of traveler like a nature lover or religious or adventure minded tourist.  Located just seven km from Raidighi is Jatar Deul. Enjoy a boat ride along the fringes of Sunderbans to have an experience of a lifetime. Do watch the mesmerizing view of the sun set in the Sunderbans.

A popular gateway of Sunderban, Raidighi offers a real visual treat to the nature lovers.  The place is adorned with emerald green vegetation and forest whose view is enthralling. The site is also a haven to some exotic wildlife and birds. The River flowing through Raidighi contains loads of fishes and crabs. The place also has religious importance, housing a number of temples and shrines. Added to all these some remarkable architectures belonging to the Maurya, Gupta, Pal and Sen Periods also reminds of the golden era of history.

Named after a large water body, Raidighi was known as Rainagar in the earlier days. During 1489 AD, Rainagar was established by Shubuddhi Ray, who was the ruler of Gour. Afterwards, in 1492 AD, his son, Durgadas Ray, dug a huge water body spanning an area of 33 acres and the name of Rainagar was also changed to Raidighi. Even today the prime attraction of Raidighi is this massive water body.

A fort called Raimangal Fort found in the north-east corner of the water body, was attacked by emperor Akbar in 1595 AD, where he wage a war against Rangeela Ray, the son of Durgadas Ray. Want to enjoy the essence of rustic Bengal, Raidighi is undoubtedly one of the prime destinations.

Places to see at Raidighi:

Raidighi is a small town lying on the fringes of the Sunderbans. You can take a ride in a launch and roam around the rivers of Sunderban and watch the wonder of nature and wildlife unfolding. Sunset over the Sunderban is a spectacular site.

Temple of Tripura Sundari: 

This age-old temple is located just five minutes away from Krishnachandrapur. The temple is noteworthy as it was blessed by Sri Chaitanya on his way to Nilachal. The four handed deity of the Goddess of Shakti, worshipped in the temple truly evokes a sense of spirituality.

Padapith Tirtha:

During 1510 AD, people at Gaur were experiencing unrest, due to the war, which broke out between Hussain Shah, the Nawab of Gaur and Prataprudra, the King of Orissa. At this point of time, Sri Chaitanya, who preaches the doctrine of peace and love, visited the house of Ramchandra Khan, a reputed scholar in the village. Now, the footprint of Sri Chaitanya has been preserved at the place, which gradually became popular as ‘Padapith Tirtha’.

Jatar Deul:

This huge deul measuring 60 feet in height is a historical structure. It was built by Raja Jayanta Chandra during 975 AD.

Temple of Andhamuni:

This temple is located nearby Andhamunitala. It is a strong belief of the locals that a number of ailments, especially related to eye are recovered by offering prayers in this temple.

BarashiShivaTemple:

This is an ancient temple of Shiva located at a distance of one km from Kashinagar or half km from Srimatiganga. Here lord Shiva is popularly called ‘Bojurkinath’ and worshipped with much pomp and gaiety every year. Beside this, prayers are also offered on every Monday and Friday.

KhariChatrabhogMuseum:

This museum, maintained by Dinabandhu Nashkar is located within close proximity to Kashinagar. The museum preserves some ancient historical articles like coins and statues belonging to the Maurya, Gupta and Pal dynasty.

MaibibiTemple:

This temple is located in the Kashinagar Bazar. The temple is mention worthy as both Hindu and Muslims offer their prayers here.

Raidighir Dighi:

This is a huge water body spanning an area of 33 acres.

Ruins of the Palace of Shewt Raja:

To reach this historical site you need to cross River Mani. Some portion of the site has been excavated, which reveals some specimen of an ancient civilization. It is believed that many unearthed palaces, temples and houses will surface out if the site is excavated by the archaeologists.

House of Pilkhana:

Nearby the ruins of the palace of Shewt Raja, there are remnants of some prehistoric houses, which have been engulfed by River Mani. Surprisingly, the structure and size of the bricks found at the ruined site has similarity with the remnants of the palace of Shewt Raja and Jatar Deul.

Nearby attractions around Raidighi:

You need to drive along the meandering roads of the villages of Raidighi, to reach Jatar Deul, located seven km from the town. The journey is quite pleasurable. Moreover, the breathtaking view of this Jatar Deul, a grand temple devoted to Lord Shiva is really charming. This 60 feet structure of the temple is a treasured piece of architecture, constructed in the 11th century by a king belonging to the Pala dynasty. A fair is held during the Baisakhi, centering the temple.

Things to do at Raidighi: Your trip to Raidighi will remain incomplete without a launch ride around, which offers a spectacular view of the Sunderban Forest and the surrounding islands. You can reach the famous Kumari forest in just an hour’s ride by the launch. Forests like Dhanche forest is equipped with watch towers, while other forests like Chamta are the haven of Royal Bengal Tigers. The launch ride will also take you around the desolated island of Nagchara, which is the home of snakes. If you are enough adventurous, arrange for an over night stay on the launch. You can also savour the spectacular sunset from the deck of the launch. The chirping of the birds is truly enchanting.

Best time to visit Raidighi: You can visit Raidighi any time of the year.

How to go ?

It is truly fascinating to find the town of Raidighi, nestled amidst a tranquil ambience, located just 110 km from the pulsating city of Kolkata. Raidighi is accessible from Kolkata by both bus and car and it takes around four hours to reach the destination. Buses to DiamondHarbour are available from Esplanade in Kolkata. From there you need to board another bus to reach Raidighi. You can also travel to Bishnupur by bus. Autos are available in Bishnupur heading to Raidighi.

Luxury buses are available to Raidighi from Esplanade in Kolkata. Moreover, you can also avail bus, auto and trekkers from south Bishnupur to reach the place. You can also drive along Baruipur, Jainagar and south Bishnupur to reach Raidighi. If you want to commute by train, then avail trains heading to Lakshmikantapur, Kakdwip or Namkhana from Sealdah railway station. You need to drop down at Mathurapur Road Station from where trekkers, autos and buses are available to Raidighi.

[AdSense-B]

Where to stay ?

Raidighi has few accommodation facilities.
One option is Hotel Mahamaya: 9734650122.

Note : Phone numbers given above are according to the information available with us. If you find any contact number/s given above is/are incorrect or not in use, please let us know.

.

[AdSense-C]

Ranchi-Tagore Hill

Ranchi, Jharkhand – The city of hills, waterfalls and forests

[AdSense-A]

The term Ranchi has been derived from a local word “Archi,” which means bamboo forest.  It is a quaint destination resting in the Chota Nagpur Plateau and surrounded by different beauties of nature like hills, waterfalls and forests. It is also endowed with Ranchivarious religious destinations. It is shrouded with emerald hilly areas, barren rocks and lush green valleys. Ranchi is also called the ‘city of waterfalls’ for you will find a number of gushing fountains from here. From here you can visit the nearby destinations like Hundru Falls, Jonha Falls and Dasham Falls. Ranchi is the present capital of Jharkhand state in India

Places to see in Ranchi: Nature has bestowed Ranchi with endless natural beauty. A number of tourist attractions furnish the place. The Rock Garden, located near the Albert Ekka Chowk is a must visit for all tourists in Ranchi. Spend some quality time in utter desolation at the top of Tagore Hill, named after the Nobel laureate Rabindranath Tagore. Visit the Divyayan and Agararian Vocational Institute and the Ramakrishna Mission Ashram nestled at the foot of the Tagore hill. You will truly admire the majestic sight of the Kanke Dam in Ranchi nestled at the foothills of the Gonda Hills. The serene atmosphere, unpolluted air, secluded ambience and pleasant weather makes this lake a favorite spot for tourists yearning for seclusion and relaxation.

RanchiThe religious minded tourists can visit the temple of Lord Shiva, locally known as Pahari Mandir, located at the top of Ranchi hill, boasting an altitude of 2140 feet from sea level. You can savour an enchanting view of the entire Ranchi city from the temple premises. At the base of this colossal Ranchi hill, you will also find a pristine lake. You will be amazed to find that the Jagannath Temple of Ranchi features the same architectural style of the renowned Puri Jagannath temple. Tourists are mainly attracted to this temple during the festival of Rath Yatra, celebrated with much vigour and pomp. The Deer Park of Ranchi is also a central tourist attraction, which is home to hundreds of different species of deer. The park is decorated with splendid gardens, parks for children and well laid pathways. You will truly enjoy the park safari at the location.

Nearby attractions of Ranchi: Numerous waterfalls are located near Ranchi, the most popular being Hundru Falls, Jonha Falls, Dasham Falls, Hirni and Panchghagh Falls. River Subarnarekha features many waterfalls on its course among which Hundru Falls is the most admirable, falling from a towering height of 320 feet. Hundru Falls makes a scenic landscape and is a favourite picnic and resting spot of tourists in summer. The picturesque Jonha Falls formed by Kanchi River is popularly known as Gautam Dhara named after Gautam Buddha. Other nearby waterfalls includes Dassam falls and Sita falls. However, you need to step down around 500 steps to admire the natural splendour of the Johna Falls. The marvellous sight of the Panchgagh waterfall comprised five waterfalls cascading in a row offer ultimate visual pleasure.

Tourists can also make a tour to Birsa Zoological Garden, located near Ormanjhi on the Ranchi-Patna National highway, close to Ranchi. This eco friendly tourist spot is a safe retreat of several wild life including tigers, lions, monkey and deer.

Angrabadi temple complex, placed amidst a calm and tranquil atmosphere is a legendary temple complex in Khunti, located nearby Ranchi. Tourists visit this temple to uplift their spirituality by offering prayers to Lord Shiva, Ram-Sita and Hanuman.

Things to do in Ranchi: Boating in the Ranchi Lake or in the pool made by the Hudru falls is a real wonderful experience. You can also organize picnic near the Kanke dam or the Hudru falls. Enjoy a park safari at the Deer Park. Visit the fair organized near the Jonha Falls on every Tuesday and Saturday. If you are adventurous, experience the challenging hilly safaris. Above all, savour the eternal beauty of this exotic location.

Best time to visit Ranchi: Ranchi welcomes tourist all throughout the year. However, you can avoid the peak summer season.

How to go ?

Ranchi airport is situated at Hinoo, nearly 7 km from the city centre. The closest international airport is at Kolkata, located 400 km from Ranchi. Ranchi railhead is well linked with all important rail routes of the country, the nearest station being located at Hatia. Ranchi is well connected with bus routes from Bokaro, Chaibasa, Dhanbad, Patna and Jamshedpur.

[AdSense-B]

Where to stay ?

A number of hotels, lodges and guest houses are found in Ranchi suitable to all budgets. The accommodation also arranges for decent dining facility. Few options are:

Radisson Blu Hotel: (91) (651) 6602222, 800 180 0333, 800 616 1263 (Toll-free) Website: www.radissonblu.com
Hotel Ranchi Ashok: (91) (651) 2480759-765 Website: www.hotelranchiashok.com
Capitol Residency: (91) (651) 6607777 Website:www.capitolhotels.in
The Pinnacle Hotel: (91) (651) – 2212348, 2212384, (91) (651) 2212348 Website:www.hotelthepinnacle.com

Note : Phone numbers given above are according to the information available with us. If you find any contact number/s given above is/are incorrect or not in use, please let us know.

[AdSense-C]

Sahebganj

Sahibganj, Jharkhand – A place where time stands still

[AdSense-A]

The picturesque town of Sahibganj or Sahebganj rests on the southern bank of the River Ganges in the north eastern region of Rajmahal subdivision of Jharkhand. It is a place where time stands still. The town has some historical significance. From the notes of Megasthenes to the decisive battle of Sher Shah and Humayun, from the Santhal Rebellion of 1855 to the Freedom of India, Sahibganj has played a very crucial role. Here the ancient royal palaces with the riches are full of dirt and the landscape is dotted with twin lakes, bird sanctuaries and the mighty Ganges. Moreover, the exotic landscape of the region features plenty of fossil remains of flora preserved as casts, impression and petrifaction.

Sahebganj-Udhwa-Bird-SanctuaryPlaces to see in Sahibganj: Sightseeing in Sahibganj is truly a visual pleasure. There is a natural twin lake at Sahebganj, called Udhwa Lake attracting tourists to enjoy the charm of its beauty. The lake is a safe refuge for different exotic species of birds. Moreover, migratory birds from as far as Siberia also visit the lake every year in huge number. You can also visit the Udhwa Bird Sanctuary, the sole bird sanctuary of Jharkhand nestled in the nearby village of Udhwa also known as Patauda.

On your way to Sahebganj, you will find the beautiful ruins of Sangi Dalan built under the benefaction of Raja Maan Singh between 1580 and 1600 AD. The meandering River Ganga flowing next to this edifice offers a visual splendour. There is a historical well in Sahibgang, built in 1915, which is locally called ‘Bhagwa Kuan,’ constructed to commemorate the memory of Edward VII. You can also visit nearby Mandro to see the fossils of trees and animals.

Nearby attractions around Sahibganj: Sahibganj is ornamented with a number of historical attractions. An experience of visiting the historical city of Rajmahal near Sahibganj is truly a pleasure to watch. It was established by Emperor Akbar long back Sahebganj-lakein the 15th century. The place is a major witness of a number of significant battles. The town houses some remarkable monuments, which include  Akbari Masjid, Singhi Dalan,Tomb of Maina-Bibi and Tomb of Miran. Nearly 13 km north-west of Rajmahal town there is a serene village called Kanhaiyasthan, which owes its name to the shrine of Lord Krishna (Kanhaiya). It is said that Chaitanya Mahaprabhu on his way to Brindavan from Bengal stayed at this place and received the vision of Lord Krishna. The impression of the step of Chaitanya  Dev has been preserved at the site.

You can also visit the ruins of Jama Masjid at Hadaf in Rajmahal, built under the reign of Raja Maan Singh in 1592 AD, which was once recognized as the most elegant building of Gaur (Bengal). In close proximity from the location, you will find Bara Darwaza, a unique fort located at the top of a hillock. The fort features 12 identical doors. The Archaeological Survey of India has declared the remaining of the fort as a heritage site.

You will also find a number of temples in the neighbouring areas of Sahebganj. The temple of Shiva in Barhait is truly adorable. The place is frequented by disciples during the month of Shravan and the Mahashivratri. You will also admire the Binduvasini Temple near Barharwa railway station. Thousands of devotees assemble at the place during Ram-Navami when a grand fair is also held for nine days at the site. There is also a temple at Mirzapur village, known as Shukravasini Temple.

There are ruins of an ancient fort called Teliagarhi near the Karamtola station. It was named after its builder Teli  Zaminder. Do not miss a trip to Bhoganadih, the historical village of Sido and Kanu, the two legendary brothers who triggered the Santhal revolt in 1855. The village is considered as a sacred location by the tribes. The village also houses a memorial to pay tribute to the sacrifice of the brothers. You can also visit Panchkathiya, the place where these siblings were hanged by the British. Moreover, Malda in West Bengal is around 2.5 hours away from Sahibganj.

Things to do in Sahibganj: Sightseeing is the major activity of the people visiting Sahibganj. Try to visit the mela held on every full moon of Magh month at Rahmahal. The mela is mainly dominated by the tribals gathering from all over the district.

Best time to visit Sahibganj: You can visit Sahebganj any time of the year.

How to go ?

To reach Sahebganj you have to travel upto Ranchi by rail or road .

[AdSense-B]

Where to stay?

Decent accommodation and dining facilities are available in Sahibganj. Some options are:

Hotel White House: (06436) – 223355/9798117311 Website: www.hotelwhitehouse.yolasite.com
Priya Hotel: 06436 223 369

Note : Phone numbers given above are according to the information available with us. If you find any contact number/s given above is/are incorrect or not in use, please let us know.

[AdSense-C]

Deogarh

Deogarh, Jharkhand – The abode of gods

[AdSense-A]

A trip to Deoghar, which is one of the most esteemed religious centres in India is really worth for enjoying complete solace. It’s the best place for understanding the religion and culture in its simplest forms. Deoghar literally means “the abode of gods”. The temples, ashrams, gods and immortality are not the only factors here. Deoghar, the most naturally beautiful destinations is adorned with hills, rivulets, serene lakes, forests and colonial buildings of Zamindars and Seths. The place is a popular tourists hub that holds a unique ‘old world charm’ that was quiet common in old days in small towns once.

Places to see at Deoghar: There are a number of sights of religious importance in this holy town of Deoghar. One of the most remarkable tourist interests is the age-old temple of Baidyanath Dham, named after Lord Shiva. Thousands of pilgrims visit this temple, especially in the month of ‘Shrawan,’ particularly on ‘Mondays.’ The earliest educational institution of Ramakrishna Mission, known as Ramakrishna Mission Vidyapith, established in 1922 is also located in Deoghar.

Moreover, you will truly admire the enchanting beauty of the Nandan Pahar, also known as the Nandan Hill Park, edging the town of Deoghar. The hill also hosts the famous Nandi Temple and flanked by a beautiful lake attracting tourists. The beautiful Navlakha Temple housing the deity of Radha-Krishna and boasting its sheer architecture is a worth visit for all tourists. Satsang ashram in Deoghar is one of the most sacred sites as Thakur Anukul Chandra, spent the last 25 years of his active life here.

Nearby attractions of Deoghar: A number of nearby attractions adorn the place. Tapovan located 10 km from Deoghar houses a temple of Shiva, called Taponath Mahadeva, which is the prime attraction of the place. The internationally famed Rikhia Yogashram established by Swami Satyananda Saraswati is perches at a serene hamlet called Rikhia in Deoghar District. The ashram is mainly visited by the tourists during the annual fair held in the months of November or December.

Just 43 km from Deoghar, there is a beautiful temple of Shiva at Basukinath, where holy water is offered by the visitors to Lord Shiva. Trips are also made by pilgrims to Trikut, located 24 km west of Deoghar. This hill temple is made of huge boulders. You can also visit the temple of Kundeshwari, located one kilometer away from Chandi Hill. Idols of Mother Parvati and Lord Shiva, Lakshmi and Ganesh have been preserved here.

The Ashram of Pagla  Baba located 8 km from Tower Chowk is also worth visiting. Idols of Radha-Krishna made of eight metals are installed in this ashram. In the east of Deoghar you will find a small hillock called Hathipahar or Mahadevatari. The hillock is called Hatipahar because from a distance it appears like an elephant. Nearby the hillock, there is a small stream, the water of which is believed to contain medicinal values.

A tour to the Devasangha Math, located 2 km from Deoghar railway station is also quite refreshing. The NavaDurgaTemple at Devsangha Math houses a deity of Goddess Durga in the Bengali style. Bulk of devotees visits the place mainly during the Durga Puja celebration.

Those who want to explore further afield can make trips to Dumka (65 km), Massanjore Dam (98 km) and Giridih (112km).

Things to do at Deoghar: Sightseeing to various temples and ashrams is a major activity of the people visiting Deoghar. Pilgrims visit in thousands to Deoghar during festive times. You will experience a spiritual enhancement while visiting the religious places dominating the district. Some recent trek routes have also opened in this area like the 110 kms long trek from Kanwar of Sultangang to Deoghar.

Best time to visit Deoghar: You can visit Deoghar any time of the year but the month of Shravan in Hindu Calendar (which corresponds to July and August) there is a huge rush of pilgrims to the Baidyanath temple.

How to go ?

Deoghar is well accessible by roadway from Kolkata (373 km), Patna (281 km), Ranchi (250 km), Dumka (67 km), Shimultala (53 km) and other places. Regular buses also run to Deoghar from surrounding towns. The closest railhead of Deoghar is Baidyanath Dham. The nearest main railway station to Deoghar is Jasidih around 10 kms on Howarah – Patna – Delhi line. There is another Railway Station named Baidyanath Dham (Deoghar) which is a terminal station of a 7 kms branch line originating from Jasidih Jn. There are regular trains from Howrah to Jasidih and connecting trains from Jasidih to Deoghar Station. You would also get trekkers, buses and auto rickshaws from Jasidih to Deoghar.

[AdSense-B]

Where to stay ?

In Deoghar, you can stay at the Jharkhand State government accommodation managed by Jharkhand Tourism or in some private hotels located all around. For booking details you may visit their official website www.jharkhandtourism.in

Some other options are:

Hotel Yashoda International : 090 51 211105
Hotel Yatrik: 9234742759
Hotel Mahadev Palace: 06432 292 739

Note : Phone numbers given above are according to the information available with us. If you find any contact number/s given above is/are incorrect or not in use, please let us know.

[AdSense-C]

Giridih

Giridih, Jharkhand – A very old and pristine small town

[AdSense-A]

Giridih is a very old and pristine small town that is located in the central part of Jharkhand and attracts lots of visitors. This place is mostly favoured by the tourist of West Bengal. There are several age-old temples, meandering rivers and quaint tribal villages in Giridih. This place is one of the most popular Jain pilgrimages. Those having adventurous bend of mind may visit the place to Giridih - Parasnath Hillenjoy the opportunities like rock-climbing, kayaking, para sailing and boating. The beautiful Lake of Khandoli is inhabited by many migratory birds. Near to it is the Parasnath Hill – the highest hill in Jharkhand from where you can savour the marvellous views of the rock strewn plateaus and lush jungles. Emboldened by hills and hillocks, Giridi would surely make you fall under its charming spell.

Places to see at Giridih: Giridih is  admired for a number of exotic locations which is a delight to explore. You can visit the village of Madhuban, housing a famous temple of 200 years old, the Samosharan temple, Bhomiyajisthan and a Jain Museum. You can savour a clear sight of Parasnath Temple from the balcony of the museum using a telescope. You should also make a visit to Baidadih for its large well whose water contains vital minerals having medicinal values. A huge fair is geld here during the celebration of Lakshmi Puja. Visit the quaint village of Dalgando, known for hosting a huge fair during Shivaratri.

Nearby attractions of Giridih: The majestic view of the towering Parasnath Hill, the highest hill in Jharkhand, boasting an altitude of 4480 feet truly offers a visual splendor. The Parasnath Temple is considered one of the most sacred destinations of the Jains. A trip to Harihar Dham located around 60 km South-west of Giridih is worth visiting as the temple houses the largest Shiva Linga across India. Amidst the ranges of the famous Parasnath Hills, the Ushri River streams down from a steep gorge. The spot is located about 14 km from east of the Giridih town. Around 8 km Northeast of Giridih headquarters there is the Khandoli water reservoir, which is one of the best sites for bird watching and water related adventures. The place features a hillock of 600 feet and a watch tower, offering a pleasant view of Khandoli site. The Langta Baba Samadhi Sthal is another notable nearby location, where chadars are offered to the Samadhi of Langta Baba by pilgrims seeking his blessings. While returning from Langta Baba Samadhi, stop at the Surya Temple mirzaganj, which is a nice temple built in the pattern of a lotus flower, nestled in the middle of a lake. You can also make a trip to Deoghar, a notable pilgrimage centre, located 112 km from Girdih.

Things to do at Giridih: Make a trip to Khandoli to enjoy some water related sport activities. The camel and elephant safari is truly enjoyable there. You can also try rock-climbing, kayaking, parasailing and boating at the location. The place is also a heaven for avid bird watchers. Explore the jungle near the Parasnath temple and you can also trek the Christian hill. Visit the Beniadih coal mines and enjoy a trek from Bengabaad to Pachamba through the forests. The site of the Ushri Fall is an ideal location for picnic.

Best time to visit Giridih: You can visit Giridih any time of the year. It has pleasant climate throughout the year.

How to go ?

Madhupur located 294 km from Kolkata has a branch line to Giridih. There is a single passenger train running five times a day through this line and it takes about an hour to reach Giridih. Parasnath railway station is located 48 km from Giridih. You can also avail regular buses connecting Giridih, Dhanbad, Munger, Koderma, Bhagalpur and other places. Dumri on Grand Trunk Road is around 45 km from Giridih.

[AdSense-B]

Where to stay?

You will find a number of budget hotels as well as comfort hotels at Giridih, equipped with all kinds of modern amenities. The hotels provide decent dining facilities and you would also find some local eateries at the place offering meals at affordable rate. Some options are:

Hotel Ashok International: 6532-250700, 9204856846
Hotel Manosarovar: 6532-227516, 8084802492
Swagat Hotel: 6532-226207

Note : Phone numbers given above are according to the information available with us. If you find any contact number/s given above is/are incorrect or not in use, please let us know.

[AdSense-C]

Hazaribagh

Hazaribagh, Jharkhand – A place that is adorned by thousands gardens

[AdSense-A]

The literal meaning of Hazaribagh is a place that is adorned by thousands gardens. The district lies on the Chota Nagpur plateau of Jharkhand. The panoramic natural beauty of the destination located amidst the lush green dense forest and enriched with exotic flora and fauna will amaze you.

Places to see at Hazaribag: Hazaribagh which is primarily a health resort is admired by a number of tourist attractions. The HazaribaghHazaribagh Wildlife Sanctuary, nestled in the low hilly region is worth visiting. The site extends over an area of over 184 sq. km. of plains, steep hills and nullahs, covered with lush green grass meadows and tropical forest. The sanctuary is refuge to a number of wild animals like Nilgai, wild bear, Chital, Sambhar, tigers and panthers. The sanctuary features several watchtowers to facilitate a close encounter with the wild.

Another popular attraction is the Hazaribagh Lake, which is also a sought after picnic spot and a popular site for water sports. You can also pay a visit to the Canary Hill, lying adjacent to the town, which is admired with a nice park and three small lakes and a watchtower. You can enjoy the spectacular view of the town from the top of the hill.

Nearby attractions around Hazaribagh: The magnificent Parasnath (90 km.), the highest hill in Bihar located in the eastern margin of the Hajaribag plateau, is truly charming. The hill located in the Giridih district is also home to the ParasnathTemple, Hazaribagh-Wildlife-Sanctuaryfrequented by the Jain pilgrims. You can also visit the temple of Rajrappa, renowned for housing the idol of Ma Chhina Mastika. The site is also famous as the confluence of rivers Damodar and Bhera. The Tilaiya Dam, located 52 km from Hajaribagh is another spot of tourist attraction, which was built by the Damodar Valley Corporation across the River Barakar, mainly for controlling floods. Tourists are really enthralled by viewing the extensive reservoir and the spectacular hillocks.

You can also drive along the GT road to Hari Har Dham, located at Bagodhar, renowned for housing a Shiv Ling measuring 52 ft. Hundreds of tourists also visit Surajkund, 65 km from Hazaribagh, famous for hot water spring. Conducted tours are also organized by the Bihar State Tourism Development Corporation.

Things to do at Hazaribagh: The Tourist Complex built few kilometers away from the Tilaiya Dam, is a perfect place for the sport enthusiasts, where they can enjoy several water sports and boating as well. The Hazaribagh Lake is also a popular place for water sports. You can also enjoy a nature walk, savouring the spectacular view of the town.

Best time to visit Hazaribagh: The best time to visit Hazaribagh is between October and April.

How to go ?

There are a number of options to reach Hazaribagh. You can avail buses from Ranchi and Patna heading to Hazaribagh. Luxury coach services are also operated by Bihar State Tourism Development Corporation via Hazaribagh. Kodarma is the nearest railway station from the destination. If you want to avail flight, the nearest airport is Ranchi.

[AdSense-B]

Where to stay ?

You can spot a number of private hotels at Hazaribagh. Some options are:

Hotel Satkar Guest House: 9431153830
Ganga Palace: 6546-234457, 9835789987
Devi Rest House: 9234078888,9234019380
Hotel Aranya Vihar: 9234043037

Dining facilities are also offered by most of the hotels. If you are a street food lover, you can try out snacks like bada, aloo chop, samosas, tikki chat, matka kulfi or steaming maal pua.

Note : Phone numbers given above are according to the information available with us. If you find any contact number/s given above is/are incorrect or not in use, please let us know.

[AdSense-C]

Padua

Padua, Odisha – An island with a serene lake, surrounded by hills covered with forests

[AdSense-A]

Padua near Koratpur is an island with a serene lake and surrounded by hills covered with forests. The nature is very generous here adorning the place with lakes, rivers, hills, forests, valleys and miles and miles of paddy fields. It extends over an area of around 50

Padua

Padua

sq. km, and perches at a height of 3500 feet above sea level. It is midway between Araku and Koraput and tourists visiting Araku, can easily make a trip to Padua just 30 km away. You can also reach Padua from Koraput, located at a distance of 70 km. In Padua, enjoy the boating and angling in the Macchkunda Lake, take nature walks and treks on the nearby hills and keep romancing the moonlight amidst the music of wilderness.

Places to see at Padua: Padua is an outstanding destination with an array of impressive attractions. If you have planned for a two-night stay at Padua, then visit the nearby Nageshwari Caves, Duduma Dam, Rani Duduma waterfall and Sili caves. A visit to Deomari, the highest point of Eastern Ghats is also a wonderful experience. The Macchkonda Lake along with Macchkonda powerhouse is also worth visiting. Walk down to the nearby tribal village of Kulabi, inhabited by the local tribal people.

Nearby attractions of Padua: Padua is 30 kms from Araku valley, 130 kms from Vishakapatnam and 70 kms from Koraput so you can tag Padua into your Vizag – Araku itinerary too.

Enrich your experience of touring Padua, by making an enjoyable trip to the Koraput in Orissa. The picturesque landscape of Koraput admired with verdant hills, meandering streams, lush green valleys, spectacular caves and wonderful waterfall, bring heaven to the earth. The prime attraction of Koraput is “Sabar Shrikhetra,” a modern temple of Lord Jagannath, built on a hilltop. Do not miss the Tribal Museum and Nisanimunda, located a few kilometers away from the temple.

Padua

Padua

From Padua, you can also visit Araku Valley in Andhra Pradesh. Araku attracts tourists mainly for viewing its rich landscape, hills and valleys. Travelling to Araku by train from Vishakapatnam truly offers an unique experience. On its way to Araku, the train needs to cross a total of forty-one tunnels and a number of bridges. The Ananthagiri hills found on the way to Araku Valley is famous for coffee plantations and panoramic views of the entire Araku region. It lies on the Eastern Ghats of India, and is mainly the refuge of tribal people. There is also a TribalMuseum in Araku displaying tribal handicrafts and lifestyle. Araku Valley is also a superb base for sightseeing. You can visit Katika waterfalls, Ananthagiri hills, Chaparai River and Padmapuram gardens from Araku. While returning Vishakapatnam you can also pay a visit to the Tyda forest.

Another most enchanting attraction is the Borra Caves, located 49 kms from Padua. This enthralling tourist attraction, nestled at an altitude of 705 m is primarily noted for the stalactites and stalagmite formations. The caves are located in the Araku Valley of the Ananthagiri hill range and drained by the Gosthani River. At the entrance point, the cave measures around 100 m horizontally and 75 m vertically. You can also trek 4 kms to reach the nearby Nageswari caves and have a panoramic view of the  Machkunda Valley. Here you can meet the tribal people and even try to discover a part of the Nageswari caves.

Things to do at Padua: Padua is an ideal place to enjoy nature to its fullest. You can enjoy nature walks and treks over the green hills and surrounding landscape. There are also provisions of boating to the island, which still doesn’t have a name (Maybe you could be the first one to name it!). You can also do some angling in the lake. While lazing on the verandah of the resort in Padua, savor the spectacular sight of sunset over the Macchkonda Lake. You can also interact with the local tribal population to gain knowledge about their livelihood.

Best time to visit Padua: You can visit Padua any time of the year.

How to go ?

Howrah – Koraput Express connects Howrah and Koraput via Sambalpur. It takes around 23 hrs to reach Koraput. Padua is 70 kms from Koraput – you can get hired cars connecting Koraput and Padua. However, the best way to reach Padua is from Vishakapatnam. You can board the Howrah Yashwanthpuram Express to reach Vishakapatnam at 11:00 am next day (it’s a 14 hrs journey from Howrah). You can enjoy the sea beaches of Vishakapatnam the whole day and hire a car or take the 1VK (Vishakapatnam – Kirrandul Express) next morning to Padua. The 1VK Express stops at Padua station for a few minutes after crossing Araku. You can also reach Padua from Araku by road (which is just 30 kms away). If you are travelling by car from Vishakapatnam, then Padua is around 130 kms from Vishakapatnam.

[AdSense-B]

Where to stay ?

There are not many accommodation facility in Padua. There is only one resort in Padua with five excellent cottages under the

Padua Diamond Lake View Resort

Padua Diamond Lake View Resort

shadow of the surrounding hills. Painted in white, this charming resort stands amidst green hills beside the Machkonda Lake. The resort is well equipped with all modern amenities offering excellent lodging and dining facilities. You would get electricity, television, mobile connectivity and whole lot of other facilities too. The resort also arranges Pick-Up and drop facilities from Koraput, Vishakapatnam and Araku.

DIAMOND LAKE VIEW RESORT
{On Araku-Jeypore highway,30 kms from Araku.Beside Jolaput Lake}
Opp: Police station ,Padwa-764038 Odisha
(Tel) – 06868-275444 , 06868-275666

30, Jadunath Dey Road, 2nd floor, Opposite: Indian Airlines Office, Kolkata 700012
Tel : 033-22259639
Website : www.diamondlakeviewresort.com

Note : Phone numbers given above are according to the information available with us. If you find any contact number/s given above is/are incorrect or not in use, please let us know.

[AdSense-C]

Mangalajodi-odisha

Monglajodi, Odisha – A Village of Bird Protectors

[AdSense-A]

Monglajori or Monglajodi, a village of bird protectors is located about 60 km. southwest of the city of Bhubaneshwar off NH5 and 4 km. southeast of the Tangi town. It nestles in the Khurda district of Orissa. The region is primarily a marshy land consisting Monglajodi-1of fresh water, and spotted at the northeastern corner of the Chilka Lake. This wetland of Monglajori is fed by a number of channels crossing the reed beds along the brackish water of the Chilka Lake. The area is covered with lush vegetation and reed beds, comprising mostly of Phragmites karka and Typha angustata. The prime channel flows from north to south for around 3 km. and features a nature track, running parallel to it for around 2 km. ending in a watchtower.

Mongaljori Ghera’ is a refuge of the waterfowl, which attracts a number of winter migrants. Monglajori, recognized as an IBA, supports around 200,000 – 300,000 waterfowls during the winter along with populations of around 15 other species, exceeding 1% of their bio-geographical population. The population includes Red-crested Monglajodi-2Pochard, Tufted Duck, Fulvous Whistling-duck, Asian Openbill, Purple Swamphen, Grey-headed Lapwing and Cotton Pygmy-goose. Some other species found in adequate numbers are Northern Shoveler, Northern Pintail, Black-tailed Godwit, Ruddy Shelduck, Garganey, Clamorous Reed Warbler, Eurasian Wigeon and other resident birds. The preying birds include Brahminy Kite, Eurasian Marsh Harrier and White-bellied Sea Eagle. Whiskered Tern is also found in plenty in the season.

Few years back, hunters were very active at Monglajodi, who used to travel around this wetland with loaded guns in search of migratory birds. However, lately, bird poaching is not practiced anymore.

Places to see at Monglajori: Monglajori is an extensive wetland spanning an area over 300 sq. kms. The area is a safe haven of around 236 species of birds, among which, most of them are migratory. The tourists are truly thrilled by watching various species Mangalajodiof birds, which include Northern Shoveller, Pintail, Brahminy Duck, Bar headed goose and others. Moreover, the tourists can also closely observe the nesting, breeding of some regional wetland birds like Open billed stork, Purple moorhen etc during the rainy season.

Another major tourist attraction of the site is an age-old and largest temple of the village, popularly known as the PatitaPabanTemple. The village also houses some other notable temples like, Gupteswar Temple, Maa Mangala Temple, Nilakathaswara Dev Temple and Maa Balimajhi Devi Temple. There is also a picnic spot surrounding Maa Balimajhi Devi Temple.

Nearby attractions of Monglajori: The nearby prime spots of tourist interest are the Chilka Lake and Nalabana Bird Sanctuary. ChilkaLake is a salt water estuarine lagoon, which is the haven of seven to eight lakh birds, comprised of 121 species.

Things to do at Monglajodi: Monglajodi is the heaven for the avid bird watchers.

Beat time to visit Monglajori: The ideal time for visiting Monglajori are the months between November and March.  This is the best time for bird watching in Monglajori.

How to go ?

Balugaon is the closest rail station of Monglajori, which is accessible via Tangi by roadway.

[AdSense-B]

Where to stay ?

An eco-tourism camp is operated by private organizations in Monglajori. For booking details you may contact:

Mangalajodi Ecotourism:
Phone: (+91) 88952-88955, 97766-96800.
Website: www.mangalajodiecotourism.com

However, better lodging facilities are available at Balugaon, Kalupada and Khurda Road.

Note : Phone numbers given above are according to the information available with us. If you find any contact number/s given above is/are incorrect or not in use, please let us know.

[AdSense-C]