All posts filed under: Places Travelled

Mercedez Benz Museum In Stuttgart

Stuttgart, as a town, has been around since the early 10th century, and its numerous cultural and historic buildings are definitely a sight to behold. But out of all architectural marvels, and museums that this tiny little town had to offer, my favorite turned out to be the popular Mercedes-Benz Museum. It showcases the company’s (and moreover the man’s) very first models of automobile… while finding a perfect harmony with the cars of past and of future. So yea, when you think of Germany, and Stuttgart in particular, it’s cars and cars only that should first come to your mind, after all it was the region of Stuttgart that gave the man its first vehicle designed to be propelled by an internal combustion engine – the technology we are still using more than 100 years later. Suttgart is the only place in the world with two car museums, and that too belonging to brands like Porche and Mercedes. On my #VisitStuttgart blog trip, I happened to visit the home of Mercedes Benz, the only exhibition of its kind in the world to document a 130 year …

24 Hours In Zurich

If I am going to fly cross continent from India to Europe, I am always going to want to make the most of it and choose the best of all destinations. So as I decided to backpack across Europe for almost two months, exploring eight countries in total, I used it to my advantage by starting the journey from one of the most beautiful countries in entire Europe. Yes, I am talking about Switzerland! And in Switzerland, the hub of all activities and cultural treats: the town of Zurich! As I stepped out into the Zurich airport, and headed to have my first couch-surfing experience ever, I was more skeptical than ever. I had the impression that it would feel sterile and bounded with punctuality and rules, but it wasn’t anything like that. My 48 hours in Zurich went just as smooth and happening as I wanted it to be. My couchsurfing host turned out to be one of the amazing people I’ve met in my life and so were the other locals I interacted with, during …

Mount Titlis: A Day Trip From Zurich You’d Not Want To Miss

Switzerland, for Indians, has always remained a county with beautiful countryside and well distinguished farmlands. It’s a country to skip the big towns, wander off the highway onto the back roads, and experience those unforgettable bollywood movie sequences we’ve gown up watching. From Sangam (released in 1960s) to Dilwale Dulhania Le Jaege, Indian cinema’s fascination for romantic songs and dreamy sequences, to be shot in Switzerland, never took a step back. And to personally experience the never-ending fascination Swiss countryside and its Alps, I decided to leave Zurich behind, and do a day trip to the mount of Titlis. For those who don’t know, Mount Titlis is a mountain located at 10,000 feet above sea level, in the Urner Alps of Switzerland. It can be easily accessible from Zurich, via train, but the best way to explore it is by booking a day trip from a tour company. This is for two reasons, one: because it’s convenient and saves you time, and two: because by doing so you get to explore another highlight in Switzerland, and that is …

Before 58 Days In Europe : The Planning Phase

Yesterday, on my Facebook page, I posted the route-map that I’ll be following during my upcoming 58 day backpacking trip in Europe. And one of the comments on the post, written by Mohit Agarwal, gave me a bright idea. The comment read “Have a great journey…. waiting to hear about your planning phase and the trip”. I realised that I seldom talk about the planning phase of my journeys. And if I don’t talk about that, how can I consider them as journeys. Planning is, after all, just as important to a journey, as the journey itself — you plan better and you will thank yourself throughout the trip! Planning becomes even more important when you want to travel under a budget, and/or you are travelling outside of your country. And on my upcoming 58 days backpacking trip, I was doing both! Hence, I planned enough! However it’s a different thing that I still do not know if I am going to follow the exact route-map I’ve created at the moment, or I’ll still alter it and …

How To See Delhi In 2 Days

Despite Delhi being one of the places I personally don’t endorse, there’s much to see and do here for a tourist here. Delhi is rich in culture and history. After all, there must be a reason why it was declared as Republic of India’s first capital city. So visit to Delhi can’t be denied, and if you finally end up here, being a first timer, and aren’t sure from where to start and end your day, this two day travel itinerary will set you up for a real Delhi experience. This is Delhi on a fast-track… Day 1 Start from the hub of all activity in central Delhi, by taking a metro to Patel Chowk, and then a brief tuktuk ride to the iconic India Gate. This 42 meter structure is the nation’s pride with its two columns inscribed with martyred soldiers names. There is no visitor or photography fee in and around India Gate. Located on Rajpath and close the Parliament house, India Gate is the perfect destination to start with your Delhi tour, …

My First Snowboarding Experience

Confidently balancing on my board, gliding down the slope with all the grace of a gazelle, I slid for a few metres before finally landing on my chest. The last night’s snow absorbed the hit pretty much every time I crashed, while trying to polish my left and right turns while snowboarding, with a little to no luck. But I was firm on my goal! A few weeks ago the lovely folks at NorthlandAdventures, in Manali, invited me to try a few days of skiing or snowboarding with them, at their ski hotel, Sethan Heights, in Hamta Valley, Himachal. And as soon as they first mentioned it, my (first) reaction was ‘oh, bum … I can’t ski!’. Then I realised, this would mean gaining a new skill, and I spat a big yes… Though I was still unsure about it! For the next few weeks, the crashing, getting uncontrolled, and other hazards made me wince every time I thought about my decision. And I sure didn’t want to crash in front of others. But To hell with it… I’d …

Sethan Village In Himachal: A Place To Relax, Unwind And Just Be!

After a few nights in Charanag, a small town tucked away from the crowds connecting Kullu-Manali, in Himachal Pradesh, it was time to lose myself in oblivion, yet once again. And Sethan, as my next destination was called, sounded like a perfect option. Located approximately an hour’s drive from Manali, Sethan was definitely a place for slow travellers – at least during winters, when the snow still claimed the ground and any movement beyond this tiny Buddhist town, was pretty much impossible – unless you’re conquering glaciers. I sure wasn’t! In the month of March, and with mercury still falling beyond zero for most of the hours in a day, the valley here was draped in white. Little flakes of happiness were everywhere! From Sethan, one can see the towering Dhauladhar ranges surrounding the village, and the river Beas flowing right next to it – perhaps a few thousand feet down. The inhabitants here were originally migrated from Tibet, and represent a Buddhist community who share their roots being horse herders in in their past. …

Seven Amazing Things To Do in Lonavala

The diverse land of Maharashtra offers plenty of opportunities for tourists and professionals to have a quiet and sober time.  But if you live in and around Mumbai, Lonavala might just be your answer for an easy escape from your daily bustling life. With an elevation of over 2,000 feet, and a wide range of activities like camping, waterfall rappelling, rock climbing and trekking, among others, this place has something for everyone. Whether you’re an adrenaline junky, or someone who only fancies cozying up and staying under covers, be rest assured that Lonavala won’t let you return unsatisfied. When I first arrived in Lonavala, for a short trip, with a group of friends, I had no idea about what to expect. I thought even a weekend might feel too long here. But it turned out that this tiny little place had too much to offer, and cramming it all in a few days of itinerary, was a total injustice. But whether you come here for a day, a week, or a fortnight, if I were …

Want To See Local Art Forms In Kutch? Try Nirona Village

Kutch has always been known for its wealth of culture and handicrafts. And when you’re here on a holiday, one thing that you really do not want to miss is exploring a few local art forms. Kutch produces some of the world’s most unusual textile products, as well as intricately crafted metal works. In the book, Kachchh: The Last Frontier, author Tejinder Singh sums it up pretty well: “The intricate embroidery stems from the Kutchi lifestyle… One can see the influences of the Cretan stitch of Greece, surface interlacing stitches from Armenia and the French tambouring techniques. It is a reflection of their lifestyle… of camels, peacocks, parrots, flowers, trees and women churning milk. Each pattern tells a story.” The best way to experience local art forms in Kutch, however, is by village hopping. As you pass through various artisan villages of the indigenous tribes that inhibit the district of Kutch, you find a striking contradiction. But one needs days to explore them all, or perhaps even a week. But those who have only one day …

Lakhpat: The Ghost Town Of Gujarat

We all have heard of Ghost Towns – towns that have been deserted owing to natural calamities, some buried under the empty grounds and others, left behind with their undying tales of wonder. Lakhpat for me was one such story – a bustling town emptied owing to an incident, a town that still exists but does not, a town that speaks of a gloomy past as you walk through its emptied, abandoned streets. I was suggested a visit to Lakhpat, a god forsaken place, by someone whom I met in Bhuj. Liakatali, a local guide and a journalist with BhujMitr, a vernacular Kutchi newspaper, was born and brought up inside the boundaries of Lakhpat, before finally moving to Bhuj to pursue his higher studies. “It used to be the biggest and richest settlements in all of Gujarat” he provided, still sounding hopeful. “There were more than 15,000 people residing inside the forted walls, now only 566 have left. You must visit it now that you’re here. I’m sure you’ll like it” Hopelessly driven by his …