Monthly Archives: February 2014

A journey to Visakhapatnam

Visakhapatnam is also popularly known as Vizag. It is an industrial city located on the coast of Andhra Pradesh and overlooks the Bay of Bengal. It is well known for its steel plant and also for its huge naval base of the country. Since the last few decades or so, vizag is also being counted as a major tourist destination.  It is a city full of surprises and if you ever happen to visit it once, you would like to go back their yet again.

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There are several hotels at Visakhapatnam and thus accommodation is never much of a concern.  When you are at the city, some of the nearest attractions that you can visit include the Rushikonda beach and also the Ramakrishna Beach. The Ramakrishna Beach is yet a virgin and thus is less frequented by people. So if you are looking for some serenity in your trip, you can always drop in here for a stroll in front of the vast expanse of the sea. Near the beach there is also the Kursura Submarine museum where you can walk in for a look. It is one of its kinds in the Asian continent.

The Rushikonda Beach instead is a crowded one and yet one of the most visited places in Vizag. Apart from the beaches, you can also visit Kailasha giri which is a 45 minutes bus ride from Vizag city. It is a mountain top that offers excellent view of the city with mountains stretching in between. You can also have a panoramic view of the city of Vizag from the mountain top. There are also huge statues of Lord Shiva and Parvati perched on the rock amidst the garden.

Next you can visit the Araku Valley and the Borra caves which are famed tourist destinations. You can visit the tribal museum where you can check out the lifestyle of the tribal people with life size models. Borra Caves on the other hand are dark and huge but they were illuminated with the help of fluorescent lamps so that you can see the stalactites and the stalacmites formation within the cave. They are formed as a result of deposition of the calcium bicarbonate.

You can visit Vizag from Hyderabad too. There are many cheap hotels in Hyderabad and the place is also great with several visits worthy locations like the Charminar, Mecca Masjid, Salarjung Museum etc.

Go Goa: Its carnival time!

If you are an adventure freak, you can plan an awesome road trip from Hyderabad to Goa. Goa is approximately 540 km away from Hyderabad. The shortest route on road is of course when you start from Hyderabad and take on the NH7 towards Raichur. From Raichur, you have to take the SH 20 which is in the state of Karnataka and take up the Lingasur, Hungund, Bagalkot, Yergatti, Belgaum, Londa and finally to Panaji.

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The road condition is great and there is less traffic too. Once you are in Goa, there are several marvelous things to do. Goa is an exotic state and is the smallest in the country. The tourism sector in Goa is busy all throughout the year and now they have decided to focus more on the promotion of the festival tourism in the state. Goa is known not only for its sun kissed beaches and the silvery white sand, but also for the carnivals and the other festivities that are spread all throughout the year.

For instance, the Goa carnival this year is happening on and from March 1st till 4th and there are some grand plans for the same. The carnival will be celebrated across seven cities and the main parade would be held at Panaji on 1st March. It is imperative to say that the carnival is a memorable experience not only for the locals but also for the tourists and visitors from different parts of the world.

It can be difficult to find accommodation at such times in Goa since tourists from different countries of the world flock to Goa in hordes to be an active participant in the carnival. But if you are planning to visit Goa during the carnival, you can book your tickets and the accommodations early in order to grab a decent staying place. There are several luxury resorts in Goa which you can avail if you make your bookings early.

Hyderabad on the other hand is a fast growing technological hub of India, holding the second place to Bangalore. Unlike Goa, Hyderabad has a lot of ancient history associated with the city. It was named in honor of Hyder Mahal, the wife of Quli Qutub Shah who was once the ruler of Hyderabad. You can visit Hyderabad on a weekend trip and explore the city. You can select some of the best hotels in Hyderabad for staying purpose. Some of the posh areas in the city are Banjara Hills, Ameerpet and Punjagutta.

 

Incredible India- the incredible Ooty!

The real name of Ooty is Ootacamund which is colloquially known as Ooty. It is the capital of the Nilgiris district in Tamil Nadu and is also known as the Udhagai or the Udagamandalam. Ooty is best known for its numerous tea plantations and estates and is also known lovingly as the Queen of hill stations in India.

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It is needless to say that Ooty is also one of the most popular hill stations in India and is a land of beautiful sceneries and picturesque landscapes. This is a small town that is located at an altitude of around 2240 meters above the sea levels. There are dense forests, lofty mountains, miles of greenery, tea gardens and estates and also wide grassland with scenic beauties all over the town. All these sceneries attract tourists in hordes from different parts of the world.

Did you know that this hill station was also a popular getaway for the British during the weekends and the summer? This town was also the summer capital for the Madras Presidency during the rule of the East India Company. Even the soldiers who were wounded in the war were sent here to recuperate; such is the miracle in the climate of this small scenic town.

When you are in Ooty, you must take a trip on the Nilgiri Toy Train as the trip without the train ride would be judged as an incomplete one. The slow toy train connects the town of Ooty with Mettupalayam which is located at the foothills of the Nilgiri Mountains. Ooty can also be a fun place to shop around. Would you believe that you can get the winter clothes like the hats, gloves and also the jackets at a price of Rs 100 at this present day? Well, in Ooty, you would get such winter clothes at such amazing prices.

The main areas for shopping include the commercial road where you can visit the government outlets and shops. Since the main production in this town is tea, you can get a variety of tea for purchase and also tasting. You can also purchase the various organic products and honey that are bought to the market by the local farmers.

If you are in Ooty, places to stay are ample in number and accommodation is not a problem since the area is an attractive tourist spot. Places to stay in Ooty is several ranging from the luxurious ones and also the budget hotels. There are even the dormitories available for the students.

Hyderabad- The city of Pearls

Hyderabad is also known as the city of pearls and has a deep rooted history behind the origin of the city. It is also gaining popularity as the software capital of India. It boasts of some worth visiting landmarks like the oldest mosque in India the Mecca Masjid and also the Charminar.

The name Hyderabad was given in honor of wife Hyder Mahal by the ruler Qutub Shah. Hyderabad is also the capital of Andhra Pradesh and the fifth largest metro city in India. It is a city of multi ethnicity and secularism has been deeply rooted for centuries and Hindu Muslim live in peaceful coexistence. The people of Hyderabad have now developed a distinct life style and culture that is nothing but a fusion of the Hindu traditions and the Islamic cultures.

While in Hyderabad, some of places that you must visit include the Charminar, Mecca Masjid, the Jama Masjid, Hussain Sagar Lake, Gulzar Houz, the four gateways by the name- Sehr-e-Batil Kaman, Charminar Kaman, Kali Kaman, and the Machli Kaman, the Chatta Bazar, Dewan Devdi, Asif Jahi Court and also the Paterghatti Market and the Alauddin Building etc.

The Andhra Pradesh Film industry is also the third largest in terms of the film productions in India on an annual basis. In fact the industry also holds the Guinness World record for the largest facility of film production in the world. One of the main attractions in Hyderabad is also the Ramoji Film city where people flock from the rest of the world to check out the various leisurely recreations and entertainment. It is in fact counted as one of the fastest growing tourist spots in India.

When you are in Hyderabad, you would definitely want to purchase some local products to take home as mementos. For the same, you can make your choices from the conventional Bidri items like the Huqqa bases, jewelry boxes, vases, bowls, trinkets, glass bangles etc. Some of the areas in Hyderabad that are shopper’s paradise include the Laad Bazar, Somajiguda, Panjagutta, Ammerpet, Begumpet, Nampally, Basheerbagh etc.

There are numerous staying places in Hyderabad and there are ample facilities in and around the city. If your budget is stringent, you can opt for the cheap hotels in Hyderabad and if you are willing to dish out more on the comfort and staying pleasure, you can also opt for the more posh hotels Hyderabad that are mainly located in and around the posh areas of the city like the Banjara Hills.

Things to do in Goa

Goa is a popular tourist destination for the domestic as well as the international tourists from across the world. Goa has one of the best coastlines in the world and is complete with serene and tranquil surroundings; sun kissed silvery sandy beaches, the ancient churches and the temples are all worth a visit at least once in a lifetime.

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Goa is one of the best tropical destinations of the world and to captivate the essence of goa, you must be prepared to explore the area after you have made proper research. Goa is a state in itself and the tourist destinations are divided into three segments, the north Goa, the south Goa and also the Old Goa. Goa can be rather mesmerizing with its white beaches and vibrant fields, the coconut grooves and the dense forests, the palm trees, and of course the turquoise waters.

Goa boasts of a mix of culture cuisine and also the excellent architecture with the grand mansions and also the baroque churches that dominate the landscapes. The climate of the state is excellent with moderate temperature all throughout the different seasons. Avoid the monsoons and instead if you can manage the tickets to the state and also the accommodation at the hotels in Goa during the carnivals during the winter seasons, you can certainly visit the state. During the carnivals, goa is one of the best places to be in.

Since Goa boasts of multi ethnic residents and tourists from all parts of the world makes visit to goa all throughout the year, it celebrates many different festivals in the state like Christmas, Ganesh Chathurthi, New Year’s Eve, and the Shigmo festival among others. They are not only great for attracting the hordes of tourists but also are the various form of celebrating the multi ethnic people and their bonds between each other.

If you want to stay in the best hotel in goa, there are several other activities that you can participate in like the several water sports activities, the spotting of the dolphins and the crocodiles, the bird watching, and the hiking and the trekking. You can also visit the various night clubs in the state as the partying and the nightlife of Goa is famous all around. You can also go around visiting the different forts, temples and the churches and other nature resorts. You can also indulge in various spa services and other ayurvedic spa services.

Have fun and frolic in Goa

Goa is the hot and happening tourist spot in India. Or you can say it is the coolest place in India to be. Depending on your perspective, Goa can either be super cool or super hot. Keeping the debate aside, it is fair enough to say that Goa is such a place that you can visit over and over again and not get bored with. Goa is a state in its self and that too the smallest one in India. It is located on the coastline and is dotted with lots of palm trees.

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This state can be divided classically into three segments worth exploring, namely the Old Goa, The north and the south. You can again categorize the areas into further sub divisions like churches, forts, beaches, bazaars, temples, food shacks etc. Of course depending on your interest, you can choose and make selective visits or you can check out as many of them as possible in a day.

There are several good hotels in Goa and looking for the perfect budget accommodation is not much of a trouble. The state is easily accessible from the rest of the country by roads, rail and air. People from different parts of the world visit Goa in search of sun and sand, surf and beer. You can opt for the various sightseeing cruise that are available all around Goa. Especially the Dolphin sighting is a popular tourist attraction in Goa.

If you start the trip at Old Goa you would be transferred to the days of the Portuguese.  There is an ancestral Goa which is a recreated village where you can see the various exhibits of period homes and also the lifestyle of the people back then. There is also a shrine of Big Foot within the premise, on which you can place your right palm and make a wish. Check out the Mirabai’s Laterite sculpture, the Basilica of Bom Jesus which contains the relics of St Francis Xavier, the saint. Check out the St Catherine’s Chapel, St Cajetan Church, and the Augustine Tower all of which are located within the Old Goa.

When in South Goa, you can check out the various beaches like Palolem beach, Patnem beach and have your brunch at one of the several sea side food shacks. Driving up towards the north of Goa, you can stop at the Chapora Fort to get a panoramic view of the Vagator Beach and the River Chapora. Stop at Calangute Beach and the Baga beach, check out the Anjuna beach all of which boasts of silvery white sand and turquoise water.

Kumarakom- the backwaters Paradise

Are you planning a trip to south of India? In that case, the state of Kerala is the ideal place to start. There are several small unexplored or nearly virgin spots that are worth making a visit, for instance, Kumarakom.

Kumarakom is located around 16km away from the Kottayam City in Kerala. It is one of the most popular destinations that thrive on backwater tourism in Kerala. Kumarakom is a small cluster of islands located on the Vembanad Lake. On the other hand, the Vembanad Lake is the largest fresh water lake in Kerala that also is a popular back water tourist spot in the state.

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Apart from the back water tourism, there is also a huge bird sanctuary in Kumarakom that is spread across an area of around 14 acres. It is a preferred place for the migratory birds and also the ornithologists alike. If you are fond of bird watching or would like to try it as a hobby, you can visit this sanctuary since here you can spot several species of birds like the Darters, Egrets, Water Fowls, Herons, Teals, Wild zDuck, Siberian Stork, Cuckoo etc. Kumarakom also is the home to a huge range of stunning fauna and flora.

Among several activities in Kumarakom, you can also opt for some of the luxurious options like the fishing and boating etc. Since the town is surrounded by salt and the fresh water, fishing is a thriving business here. If you are fond of eating fish, this is the place to be as you can gorge on different marine and other fresh water fishes like the Shrimp, Karimeen, prawns etc. In fact, Kumarakom is one of the most popular Kerala tourism places to visit.

The best time to visit this small fishing town is during the months of September to March. The climate remains ideal for all kind of sightseeing, and other tourist activities. It is an ideal tourist destination and has a lot of animals, plants, reptiles, and different species of fishes, crabs, shrimps, squids, birds etc which makes this place worth a visit.

In the back water zone, you can hire the houseboat for staying purpose and experience the lagoons, lakes, aquatic life and also the canals that all spell scenic beauty at its best. After a wonderful stay at the houseboats, you can also visit Trivandrum, the capital of Kerala. You can stay at the budget hotels in Trivandrum.

Sunset at Kovalum Beach is a memorable experience

Trivandrum is the capital city of Kerala and is also known as Thiruvananthapuram. It is located very near to the Kovalum Beach and is thus a tourist destination too. The city boasts of plantations like the rubber, banana and the pineapple. Some of the places that are worth visiting in the capital city of Kerala include the Shanghumugham Beach which is located around 6 km from the center of the city and is much closer to the airport.

Kovalum Beaches

You can also visit the Veli Tourist village which has a lake surrounding the park in the village area. The sea is so nearby that if you cross the bridge within the park premises, you can also view the sea from the place. There are also many restaurants within the premises, one of which is a floating restaurant. There are different types of butterflies in the park that makes the place a colorful and a vibrant one. If you have enough time in your hand, you can visit the Sri Chitra Art Gallery and also the Napier Museum. There are also many other attractions within the zoo complex of the city. There is also parking available in case you have opted for the car rental service.

The napier museum is worth a visit as it has a great collection of different antiques like huge statues, old coins and many other art forms. There are also statues made from ivory that are worth seeing. Next in the list is the Puthenmalika palace that is located next to Padmanavaswamy temple. It remains closed on Mondays and make sure that your date of journey to this temple is on other days than Mondays.

Kovalum beach, as mentioned earlier, is a beach that is known for its beautiful sun set. It is a beautiful beach shaped in the form of a crescent. There are three parts of the beach namely the Samudra Beach, the Eve’s Beach and also the Lighthouse Beach. There are ample hotels and restaurants right there on the beach from which you can have a delightful evening next to the sea and enjoy the panoramic view. All those eateries also offer freshly caught fishes, crabs and lobsters. All you have to do is choose the fish and they will get it cooked for you right there instantly.

If you are looking for budget hotels in south, Trivandrum fits the bill perfectly. The Trivandrum hotels are not very costly and can fit your budget well and the amenities provided by them are also great.

Watch tea leaves picking while holidaying in Coorg

Coorg is also known as Kodagu and is a hill station in Karnataka. It is also a great summer retreat and tourists from all over the world and the country visits this hill station during the summer times. Coorg is famous for its tea and the coffee plantations. It is also known as the “Scotland of India” and the “Kashmir of the south”. Coorg is a famous retreat in south and is well known for its cool climate and the majestic charm of the nature. It is located at a height of 3500 feet above the sea level and on the majestic greeneries of the Western Ghats.

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As far as the history of the city of Coorg is known, the famous seven south Indian dynasties, namely the Cholas, Gangas, Rastrakutas, Kadambas, Chalukyas, Hoysalas and also the Vijaynagar Rayas all had their reigns over this city at different times.  At present, although the major ethnic group in Coorg is that of the Kodavas, there are also many other ethnic communities of diverse cultures residing in Coorg.

There are several places to stay in Coorg and several activities that you can participate in while you are stationed at Coorg, like trekking, angling, fishing and even golfing. In fact, some of the most challenging trekking areas in Coorg are the peaks of Puspagiri, Brahmagiri, and Tandianamol. If you are not a trekker, you can still soak in the lush greeneries all around with acres of tea and the coffee plantations in and around the hill station of Coorg. There are also many wellness spas and other ayurvedic retreats that you can visit for 30 minutes sessions that are rather cheaper.

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It is always advisable that you make the accommodation bookings done much in advance for your trip. The hill station is very popular and thus there are always hordes of tourists visiting the place. In fact, most of those who visit south India make sure to drop by the hill station of Coorg. Thus it is always a good idea to make the bookings for the accommodations first and only then make the journey. There are budget hotels and also the luxury hotels and their prices differ according to the amenities offered by the hotels. Usually, most of the hotels also organize the sightseeing and the trekking trips and also the day long visits to the tea and also the coffee plantation in the area directly from the hotel. You can also avail such packages along with the accommodation and complete the tour within your budget.

Places to explore in Bangalore

Bangalore was earlier known as the Pensioner’s Paradise. But now, it is a fresh and a dynamic city. There is a lot of things to do in Bangalore and lots of places to explore. There are great eateries to try out the special south Indian cuisine, luxurious accommodations, quaint boutiques, wellness retreats, and lots of gardens and parks to explore.

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The climate of Bangalore is essentially mild all throughout the year and the environment is fresh with lots of greeneries. Bangalore is also a major starting point for visiting the other Karnataka tourism places like the tea plantation of Coorg, the ornate areas of Srirangapatnam and Mysore, the silk factories located in Ramanagaram and also the ancient temples of Somanthpur for their excellent architecture.

There are lots of places worth visiting in Bangalore. Some of them are mentioned below:

The Tipu Sultan Palace and Fort

Tipu Sultan was also known as the Tiger of Mysore and he was a prominent ruler of Mysore. The fort of Tipu Sultan was originally built in 1537 and was established by Kempe Gowda and much later expanded by Tipu Sultan. It is also known as the Abode of Peace and is famous for the gorgeous looking architecture along with excellent carvings from teakwood. The fort also has a lot of hidden chambers worth exploring. There is also a museum within the fort compound and there are excellent collections of historical photos.

The Bangalore palace is yet another place worth visiting. This palace is built as a replica of the Windsor Castle in London and is now used for hosting public events and private parties as well. You can also explore the gothic windows along with the huge turrets and the ivories and enjoy the serenity of the palace in the midst of the busy streets of Bangalore.

The vidhana soudha is the home for the state legislature and is conceived by the chief minister of the then Mysore state, Kengal Hanumanthaiah. The public entry is restricted otherwise and if you intend to explore this excellent splendor, you must arrange for necessary permissions earlier than your trip.

Places to stay in Bangalore

Bangalore boasts of several accommodations. There are many 5 star resorts in Bangalore that are worth staying in. Apart from those, there are also of course many other budget hotels and home stays available in the city. Thus accommodation is not must of a cause for concern when you are busy in planning for a city ride.