All posts tagged: Offbeat Places

Bylakuppe: A Visit To The Tibet Of South

If you catch it at the right angle, where I found myself sitting, inside the premises of Namdroling monastery, in Bylakuppe, surrounded by the bright and cheerful company of Buddhists, among which many were the first generation Tibetan immigrants, it can give off something of the light of a fairy-tale. Speaking of the fairy-tale, one of the greatest miseries of the human condition is that we are not always keen to give up on our fairy tales. We expect our lives to turn into something magical, something extraordinary from the moment we are currently living in. “We are like dogs barking at the injustice of the universe when our keeper goes out, to buy us some more food” William James Most of the people of the 21st century are found either making such false promises to their future. But the people here, as it seemed, were all dedicated to their present. They appeared to have no more interest in the projections of romanticism than in the delusions of cynicism. A Buddhist, if you speak to one, …

Life In The Backwaters Of Alleppey, Kerala

Tourists in their fancy houseboats seemed high in spirit, with their impressive camera doing most of the work. But in the local ferry, the atmosphere was rather regular. Here, no one appeared to be in hurry or amazed by the arresting beauty of the backwaters in Alleppey – one of the prime highlights of tourism in Kerala. I heard a lot about the backwaters of Kerala. I heard that tourists here hire a floating houseboat and wander through its maze of interconnected lagoons, canals, lakes and inlets – home to a dazzling assortment of flora and fauna, and local villages. I heard that they spend days sitting on the deck, experiencing the tranquillity of the backwaters in Kerala, with a book in their hand, while swiftly sailing through one village to the other. I wanted to explore this place too but in my own way. And there I was, in a government ferry, surrounded by a bunch of locals who were heading back from the mainland Alleppey, with all the ration they needed, and a newspaper …

Majuli Island: In Photos

My first sight of Majuli island (as you can see in the photos below) was on a humid afternoon in June when I arrived on the morning ferry from the city of Johrat. For about ten minutes, the adjoining land was aswarm with activity as people poured forth from the ferry to find a place in the already waiting sharing jeeps and buses, and made their way into one of the many small towns of Majuli. Then abruptly all became silence and I found myself left behind, wandering through the empty shores – waiting for another ferry to arrive and share a jeep with its people. This is how my unforgettable journey to this surreal, almost magical place began.  Soon, its pristine beauty left me startled, craving to stay there for ever. Let’s walk on a photo tour to know more about this place. [Also Read: Revisiting Majuli Island, 2 Years After This Trip] To reach Majuli Island you are required to cross the Brahmaputra River in a ferry (or in a comparatively small boat) full of people, …

Nongriat, Meghalaya: In Photos

“This north-east Indian village with root bridges is by far the best place I’ve seen in your country.” I still remember how my friend expressed his excitement, as we clambered over the lofty and vainglorious mountains of Uttarakhand, last year. His voice – a perfect invitation for me to amble – kept reverberating in my head for a long time until when I finally set off to see this place with a few other north-east Indian places that turned out to be no less than a Shangri-la. From being a place where it (almost) rains the most in the world to being a home to one of the amazing tribal community in India – there are many reasons why you should visit Nongriat. But the undisputed highlights are its lush forest, magnificent valleys, countless natural pools, living root bridges and the Bananas with seeds. Here, some unforgettable moments I clicked in and around Nongriat (eastern Khasi Hills): The entire east Khasi Hills in Meghalaya is like a secluded oasis of silence in the vastness of nature. And Nongriat – …

A Walk Into The Himalayan Woods

Travelling alone has its own benefits. It gives you that control where you can set an itinerary and then you can ditch it. Spending days in solitude also makes you more eager to chat with locals, absorb their culture and team up with them to make your journey more interesting. And that is exactly what happened to me when I was on my way to trek all the way to Deo Tibba. Deo Tiba is basically a 4 to 7 days trek depending upon how far you want to go. The base camp takes 7 days. The elegant Deo Tiba peak which is 6001 m high looks like half oval shaped egg. The journey starts from Jagatsukh village (about 20 kms from Manali), in a motorcar, followed by a great deal of walking through Himalaya’s pristine and untouched beauty, laced with the amazing forests and snow-clad peaks. But let’s not waste too much time speaking about its specifications, because we aren’t even going there. So as I said, travelling alone has its own benefits. And this journey just proved me …

The Journey That Brought FootlooseDev Into The World

“It’s amazing how small life experiences leave an imprint on us,and force us to change our life one way or the other” I found this statement more truer than ever, back in 2014, while I was travelling in the lofty and vainglorious mountains of Uttarakhand, and got bit by an unsettling travel bug. At that time I had no idea that I’d soon quit my job to travel. But I guess, as they say that life experiences aren’t something to be denied, but to be celebrated, I think I just happened to celebrate my experiences so strenuously that it eventually became a way of life. My first solo-travel experience took place in 2014. It was a 2 day trek in the snout of Gangotri Glacier to reach place called Gomukh, from where Bhagirathi River originates. I was constantly feeling a certain springy keenness the day I started the trek. Though factually I was walking with a group of other hikers, whom I met in Gangorti, technically speaking I was on my own, as I hardly knew …