A land of mystical wonders and deep-rooted tradition, India is a plethora of glorious religious shrines! Although dominantly a Hindu nation, the democracy celebrates the Muslim, Parsi, Sikh, Jain, and Christian religion’s equally and also sees preserved ancient churches, mosques and synagogues in all parts of the country. Very few people in the country are atheists, so you will find a sacred structure or figure of the mythical lords at every nook and corner. There many ancient exquisite religious places in the country, each a masterpiece. However, if you had to pick the top five religious places to see before you die, it has to be these –
The work files will keep piling and home errands will never end; many a times you just wish to shove all this under the table, put up your feet and relax. If you have experienced this syndrome, your prescription says ‘weekend trip.’ Lock up your routines and change your scenery. South Africa is globally renowned for its rivers, plains, tree houses, and valleys so make good use of this opportunity; Here is a look at a few great weekend getaways in and around Joburg, within a distance of one to four hours, that will rejuvenate your body through and thorough.
Myanmar (Burma) is being applauded for fighting carbon emissions and having the lowest carbon in the entire world. All credit going to the spreads of green landscapes and a simple lifestyle in the land. When you walk on the lands of Myanmar, you will reminiscent of how simple, beautiful and talented our surroundings used to be. Evolving with the present world by moving towards democracy, the Aung San Suu Kyi led country has the best preserved Asian culture, spectacular landscapes and architecture and Spartan kind of lifestyle. You will not only witness all this on your visit, but also feel the strong and pure Buddhist devotion in the air as you walk around.
Australia’s east coast boasts of close to 18,000 km of coastline covered with talcum powder like sand and crystal clear turquoise water! From the world’s most favourite surfing spots, to the Great Barrier Reef, to lush green wilderness, to the Blue Mountain and of course the dazzling beaches, this region is purely magical. It may take a lifetime to experience but if you want to get a glimpse and know what the hush-bush is about, then this itinerary is the best possible one.
The vibrant and lively aura of Spain makes any trip to this country a fiesta. There are splendid beaches, historic monuments, interesting architecture, endless cobbled streets and mouth-watering gastronomic delights here. When you have a week in Spain, you should try to get the best possible exposure to this vivacious culture, so here is an itinerary for those of you who want to travel down the Spanish road but have some limitations –
Food is the way to the heart of any traveler ! You become one with any city when you relate to the crux of its soul; and here is what you should be doing for that – tasting the food! Local spices, local cooking styles and local dishes will be like a ‘love at first sight’ moment between you and the city. Take a look at some of the top food cities of the world and what to eat there. (Note: These dishes are available on every street, so do not miss out of any of them) Continue reading
Vegetarian and vegan dishes are oh! so popular in most countries around the world. Gone are the days when herbivores used to be sceptical while travelling to the west or middle-east or even Asian countries. If you don’t believe that, take a look at the top vegetarian and vegan destinations in the world-
“Does the property have a pool?” is a question that runs across all our minds while reserving a hotel. Actually many a times the swimming pool is what lures travellers into booking a property. So how about you have a look at some of the most sought after pools in the world; it will help in planning your next holiday.
- Hotel Caruso, Italy
Hotel Caruso in Ravello is a renovated 11th century property. The gorgeous hotel has an infinity pool built on a cliff overlooking the sea (also the highest point of the city) and opens up to the Amalfi Coast. Mountains, the ocean and green landscapes are all your companions from this balcony. Already feeling serene, are you?
- Ubud Hanging Gardens, Bali
Ubud is all about rice fields, rainforests and tranquillity. So why not experience this serenity while floating in a pool of water overlooking dense foliage? In fact, the Ubud Hanging Gardens is actually perched amidst a rainforest. In that case, you can certainly imagine the coolness of this property!
- Bondi Icebergs Club pool
Sticking to the cliff of the ocean and appearing like a natural landscape, the Bondi Beach has been around for more than a century. An iconic spot of Sydney, swimmers actually swim in the waves of the Tasman Sea as the waves not only hit the pool, but also come into the pool! It is an Olympic size pool and is open to the public too. Well, sounds like your next trip to Sydney will be quite fun!
- The Library, Koh Samui
If the same old blue pool is un-cool for you, how about a red pool? You heard right. The Library in Koh Samui has designed a pool with orange, red and yellow tiles which make the water body appear red. It may seem bloody at first, but swimming in a pool of red feels quite heroic!
- Pamukkale Thermal Pool, Turkey
Well, blue pools are just too common. It is the generation of variety, and that is what you will get at the Pamukkale Thermal pool made up of natural sparkling white sedimentary rocks, travertine. Obviously, the colour of the pool is pure white! If utopia is what you are looking for, you have found it here.
- San Alfonso del Mar Resort, Chile
This luxurious resort in Algarrobo claims to have the largest pool in the world. That’s right. It is a one kilometre salt water pool right by the ocean. It is not just swimming that you can indulge in here; if you feel like kayaking or sailing you can do that in this pool as well. Now that’s the coolest of them all, right?
- Regis, Tibet
Another unique experience is swimming in a gold pool. St. Regis in Lhasa not only offers flabbergasting scenes of the Himalayas, but also a completely novel swimming experience. The pool is constructed with gold-coloured tiles. The effect of the pool rejuvenates and energizes you like no other.
- Intercontinental, Honk Kong
The rumours of luxury in the Intercontinental Hotel Hong Kong have been doing the rounds for quite some time and rightly so. It is the largest outdoor pool in the city with a stunning view of the Victorian harbour. Moreover, this infinity pool can be turned into hot tubs too! While you are relaxing in the pool, you will more often than not feel like you are swimming in the Harbour rather than the Intercontinental.
- Huvaen Fushi, Maldives
Resorts in Maldives are always introducing one star invention after another. One amongst a platter of opulent servings in Maldives is the sparkling swimming pool at Huaven Fushi Resort. The pool has incorporated over 1000 fibre optic lights inside which gives an effect of a glittering starry night. So if you feel like gliding by a cool night blue sky, just slip into the pool at Huaven Fushi Resort!
- Nandana Villa, Bahamas
Pools by the ocean are to-die for. The feeling of stepping into a pool that opens up to the ocean shows you the mammoth of the water we are surrounded by. In the Bahamas you will get the perfect introduction to this because the pool at this Asian-styled villa resort is adjoining the Atlantic Ocean. Here, you are bound to wonder whether you are swimming in the ocean or in the pool.
- Chongwe River House, Zambezi
Car safaris are one thing, but have you ever thought of spotting animals in the wild while you are lying in a pool. Well, at the Chongwe River House in Zambezi national park that is what you will exactly do. Nothing grand about the construction, but the pool directly falls over a river where wild elephants and antelopes wander. So while you are sipping on a cocktail in the pool, don’t forget to say hi to elephants you are surrounded by.
- The Cambrian, Switzerland
There is nothing more magnificent than the snow covered Alps in the Swiss air! And at the Cambrian you can admire the magnanimous white formation from a jaw-dropping infinity pool. You will be stumped by the design and architecture of this heated pool which gives you a 360 degree view of the Swiss Alps.
- Hotel Villa Mahal, Turkey
Infinity pools with their dramatic backdrop are simply magical! The 55-foot long at swimming pool at Hotel Villa Mahal in Kalkan Bay allows its guests to view the beautiful Lycian coastline which has stunning beaches and historical sites. An added perk to this – a jacuzzi in the pool!
- Marina Sands Bay, Singapore
This is the largest and highest infinity pool in the world! Singapore’s skyline is extremely doted in the world and the best place to enjoy this glitter is by gazing at it from 57-floor high pool. You will be thrilled to be on the edge of the world here in Singapore.
A new city, a new excitement, a new memory – exploring a new land is such an enriching experience that it may be as wonderful as overwhelming. Since you are travelling outside of your comfort zone (and spending your hard earned money) make the most of it without leaving a nuance of hesitation. Here is a short pep talk that will guide you on how to explore a new city –
- Wear comfy shoes
Experiences and memories are not always made with dressy outfits and great hair dos. In fact most of your outstanding incidents come at unexpected times, irrespective of what clothes or shoes you have on. Remember, you have gone to discover the city, know about the famous monuments, eat local dishes and soak in a new culture and your best buddy in this time is a comfortable pair of shoes.
- Walk it, bike it, bus it
Walking and cycling on the streets of a new city will introduce you to gems that nobody told you about! Bus or trams are also recommended for a complete homely feel. It is best to research about the local transport before reaching your destination so that you don’t miss out on any special episodes. For example, travelling in the trams of San Francisco is a must-do travel experience.
- Discover the local market
Any local market is the lifeline of a city. Be it a vegetable bazaar, seafood market or night market, when you stroll by a local market you will understand what the lifestyle is like. The kind of food, the kind of people, the music, the hustle and bustle all speak a lot about the culture of the city, so discover the most authentic experience on this outing.
- Use the internet smartly
The internet is a complete revolution! There are endless apps that will guide you through the city; whether it is local concerts or shows, the most popular eating joints, or information about sightseeing venues it is all available on a silver platter on the internet and via apps. Do look up helpful apps before you leave your home.
- Learn basics of the local language
Language can become the biggest barrier in a new place, so some background research is a great idea before you catch your flight. Even if you don’t do an entire course, at least learn the basics which will all get you through the day. For instance “How are you?” “Where is this?” “What is your name?” and “How much?”
- Read about the city
Don’t be ignorant about the place you are visiting; be aware of the history of the city. Read history books, research on Google and follow blogs – all the information you acquire from these platforms will add the extra cherry to your trip.
- Act smart, even when in doubt
Locals can easily spot a new person in the city and however friendly or safe the city is, you must not get carried away. Tourists are the easiest targets for any mischief so always be confident and act smart! Even when you are unsure or completely ignorant, never show it on your face or actions.
- Write about your stay
Maintain a diary and note down a daily account of episodes that touched your heart. You can also write a blog and create your very own travel story. This not only keeps records of your several travel accounts which you can read years later, but also helps creating a reputed profile in the blogging community.
- Be a tourist!
At the end of the day you are a tourist, so don’t be shy about behaving like one. Click all those touristy-pictures, ask questions to locals, and keep an open mind always. Above all, don’t be conscious and remember to have the time of your life!
Sydney – heard about it, dreamt about it, but have you experienced it? The world is raving about the Opera house, the harbour and over a 100 gorgeous beaches, so is the capital city of New South Wales that great? With close to 5 million residents, this metropolitan houses eclectic pleasures. Sydney is a perfect blend of everything – a melting pot of cultures, a family destination, nature dedicated, and plenty of entertainment! So here is what you ought to do to on your visit to Sydney, mind you, you don’t want to miss of on some exciting stuff!
- Watch an opera, a rock concert or a play at the Opera House
- Go kayaking on the bay to discover deep gorges, crooked creeks and unknown spaces
- Go for a picnic amongst fragrant and tropical greenhouses at the Royal Botanical Gardens
- Experience High Tea Gunners Barracks or Observatory
- Stroll by the Bondi coastline and click some breathtaking ocean views
- Take a ride on hired bikes in the Centennial Park
- Meet and greet animals at Taronga Zoo
- Climb up the soaring Sydney Harbour!
- Wander around The Rocks to explore the first European settlement in the country
- Relish some fish and chip at Sydney’s voted number 1 shop, Fishmongers
- Enter the White Rabbit Gallery for some quirky dedicated to Chinese art
- Shop for interesting souvenirs at the Paddington Market
- Eat a katsu sandwich – you will love the meat!
- If you are an antiques fanatic, walk down Rozelle Market
- Soak it up in the second-oldest park of the world – the Royal National Park
- Spot healthy marine life in its very own comfortable habitat at the Shelly Beach
- Capture amazing views of the Harbour from the entertaining Luna Park
- Dress up and dine at fine restaurants like the Quay and Sepia who have won global accolades
- Enjoy some outdoor activity at the Sydney Olympic Park which extensive green parklands
- Step into the past and discover convict past at the Goat’s Island
Sydney will steal your heart like no other. You will fall head over heels for this Australian city since it is a complete package to live, love and laugh!