Trips and Itineraries for Sanauli
Exploring The Roof of the World – Royal Enfield Tour of Nepal 2017 (Leg Two)
On our last day in Nepal, we departed from the beautiful lake town of Pokhara to Bhairahawa (also called Siddhartha Nagar), situated close to Sanauli border....
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239 Kms from Sanauli
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One of the most colourful and indiscreet cities of India, Varanasi is one of the seven holiest cities for the Hindus. Also known as Kashi and Benaras, this place is known for its temples, ghats and the colourful people. The narrow alleys and crowded streets seem to be extremely blissful in spite of all the noise and chaos all around. People come here just to take a dip in the holy waters of the Ganges. Varanasi is also known as Uttar Kashi and is situated on the western banks of the Ganges. It is said that a dip in this river frees one from a lifetime of sins. People even say that death here is auspicious as people attain moksha if they die here. Some people also come here tp creamate their loved ones and the sound of the holy temple bells are really soothing music to the ears.Read More
It was my friend's wedding for which I was going to Varanasi and was too excited to explore the city of ghats, narrow streets, crazy crowds, and to taste the food of varanasi that to by my own. I reached Varanasi at around 5 PM in the evening as my train got delayed by around 6 hours due to foggy weather.After reaching my friend's home and getting some special treatment from the groom's family I got ready as baraat was about to leave. After dancing alot in baraat and enjoying the delicious dinner of wedding I was there enjoying the wedding ceremony with the whole family. I left for friend's home around 3 am in morning as I need to explore Varanasi in the morning.
Not to forget that Varanasi is one of the most culturally sensitive towns in the nation; screening people by religions across most religiously auspicious ghats. Also, it is advisable not to use photography at cremation ghats, especially Manikarnika Ghat, Harischandra Ghat and the other cremation ghats.
Varanasi, or Benaras, is a spiritual escapade. Rightly considered as one of the most colourful places on earth, the spellbinding beauty of this city will imbibe in you a sense of wonder. Take a dip in the holy Ganges to wash away your sins and experience a transcending aarti on the ghats. Varanasi is magical and will leave you with a sense of peace.
One fine morning when I woke up , I found cool breeze touched my face . It seems last night rain made the weather pleasant, so I thought to enjoy it . Then I discussed with my family decided to visit two beautiful waterfalls in chakiya region of varanasi which is around 70 km from varanasi.We started making preparations and making arrangements to carry lunch and snacks for the trip. We started at 10:00 AM from our home and took the NH19 and then SH 37 . The road from national highway to state highway is really scenic , The field on both sides were like Green carpet is rolled on both sides laden with freshly sown Paddy saplings.
The train was 1 hour late. Not bad for the month of March 2017. To make it a perfect backpack trip, I didn't book any hotel but an amazing hostel chain for backpackers, Zostel. The beautiful graffiti on the walls will definitely make you gaze those and imbibe a strong positive vibe. Don't forget to make new friends at Zostel. You are bound to find like-minded travel enthusiasts along the way.We were hungry and the caretaker suggested us a street shop for kachauri and sabzi. Coming from Kolkata, we jumped at the idea of street food. It was hardly a 4-5 minutes walk and kachauri-sabzi was simply mouth watering. We decided to eat our breakfast there on Sunday as well.We wandered on the narrow lanes and felt the warmth and charm of the old city. Its an art to walk on those lanes without bumping into another person or crushing the tail of a cow. People were busy in their daily lives and I was beguiled. Oldness has its own pristine charm. My cousin gestured using his head, tilting little right, raising both the eyebrows if I would accompany him in eating garam jalebi. 'Of course, Yes!!'We went to the museum of BHU and saw the hugeness of the campus around and afterwards took a boat ride on the Ganges. It showed us most of the ghats. Being a bong, it was important for us identify and locate the ghat from the movie 'Joi Baba Felunath'. It was Munshi Ghat. Oh! what a delight it was to see that ghat. It was a sheer joy. We felt as if we were the characters from that movie. We quizzed each other on the story and characters of the movie. My cousinwon! By sundown, we were closer to Dasashwamedh Ghat for Ganga aarti, an elaborate experience. Everyone around us chanted mantras.After an entire day's wandering and exhaustion, we started to wander again! This time it was almost 8 pm now. Our caretaker from Zostel again recommended us to try flavoured lassi from Blue Lassi shop. Never-ending walk through the twisted-curvy narrow lanes, we landed in a 15ft by 8ft shop. Just name a flavour and you'd get it. They do not prepare it using any mixer grinder, only hands! And if you love the lassi, don't forget to paste your pic with a message on the wall.
Mark Twain has said - "Benaras is older than history, older than tradition, older even than legend, and looks twice as old as all of them put together!"Burning Ghats in contrast to the glittering Ghats, Ghats which are an irony! The Ghats and river Ganga are here since forever, even before mankind. The place might have many names- Kashi, Benares, and Varanasi but there is one soul, a soul difficult to understand, easy to connect, positive vibes to breathe from and a collective feeling to cherish forever."The city illumines truth and reveals reality. It does not bring new wonders into the scope of vision, but enables one to see what is already there. Where this eternal light intersects the earth, it is known as Kashi" – said by Diana L. EckPeople are the streetscape here at Varanasi! They add beauty to the ageing buildings, dilapidated structures, and cramped lanes! Like a typically unplanned sprawling Indian city, Varanasi attracts attention mainly due to the Aarti at Ganga Ghats. In a span of 5 days in Varanasi, I witnessed the Ghats thrice which to me were still less. I wish I could visit more.Epic Cycle Rickshaw Ride & witnessing the Magnificant Ganga Aarti from far for the first time.I was excited to take a ride in the highly glorified Cycle Rickshaw of Varanasi and the ride was really epic. It was thrilling to see bikes, cars, buses and cows all trying patiently to find their way towards their destination.[Ghats in Varanasi are riverfront steps leading to the banks of the River Ganges. The city has 88 Ghats , Most of the Ghats are bathing and Puja ceremony Ghats, while a few are used exclusively as cremation sites.Most Varanasi Ghats were built after 1700 AD, when the city was part of Maratha Empire, The patrons of current Ghats are Marathas, Shindes (Scindias), Holkars, Bhonsles, and Peshwes (Peshwas). Many Ghats are associated with legends or mythologies while many Ghats are privately owned. In Hindu traditions, cremation is one of the rites of passage and the Ghats of Varanasi are considered one of the auspicious locations for this ritual. At the time of the cremation or "last rites", a "Puja" (prayer) is performed. Hymns and mantras are recited during cremation to mark the ritual. The Manikarnika and Harishchandra Ghats are dedicated to the cremation ritual. (Wiki)]The evening Aarti starts at 7:00 pm at Dashaswamedha Ghat, so we managed to do a small ride before that and anchored by 7alongside the Ganga Ghat to witnes the magnificent Ganga Aarti. One can see the pyres burning throughout the days and nights at Manikaran & Harishchadra Ghats.Our Boat being way too big, we couldn’t see the Puja from up close. Aarti is carried out in various stages - Aarti with incense, Incense smoke, Aarti with tiered lamps. A group of priests daily perform Aartis here to worship to Fire wherein a dedication is made to Lord Shiva, River Ganges, Surya (Sun), Agni (Fire), and the whole universe.After the morning visits to Sarnath, Dharmarajika Stupa from the pre-Ashokan Era, Ashoka pillar, the Ganga Ghat evening visit was difficult to understand. Mostly ruins & silent prayer places at Sarnath, we were struck by Paradox already![Morning Raag] at River Ganga.Ganga was silently flowing and the few Ghats were starting to wake up, it felt as if everyone was waiting for the sun to peep out of his cozy blanket of clouds. The sun rose slowly changing the color from blue to an orangish shade. As mere spectators we couldn't do much, just experience everything around. Singer Bhonu emerged from one of the boat with a melodious morning Raag, Bhonu is well known in the Ghat as someone who gives melodious unplugged versions to the morning spectators. The sound of water crashing coz of the oars gave the Raag its perfect beat. His voice still rings in my ear. There were people bathing on the Ghats, fires were still smoldering and a slight mist over Ganga.Elahi ! It was one blissful ride; it was one of those morning rays which make you feel one with universe! I have inhaled them and I know how it feels!Dreamers are the moon gazers and believers the sun gazers. That soulful experience to watch sun rise, it gave way to dreams, belief, assurance, a chance and everything you have dreamt of in the previous night. Squinting through the light, you start believing in freedom, you start understanding the language of earth and everything to do with the dreams. As someone has said you discover the great longing of life to hold and be held.The wow factor was spoting "The leaning temple of varanasi" (Just like leaning tower of Pisa) It is hard to miss this, famously and largely photographed Ratneshwar Mahadev temple. They say it is believed to be 400-500 years old. The leaning is probably a fault in foundation or the silt, but of course there are legends involved.A chance meeting with our early morning rickshaw guy helped us in discovering a small town Lallapura & the authentic small silk factories. We witnessed some of the best handloom work of Varanasi.During the day we visited the house of India’s 2nd Prime Minister Lal Bahadur Shashtri at Ramnagar. The caretaker narrated few mind boggling stories while we roamed around this typical rural house with pride. We left the place with a heartwarming & a happy feeling.Ganga Aarti few feet awayLeaving my fellow companions who were shopping I headed straight to the Ganga Ghat to witness the Aarti from close. It was an awesome feeling to see the same from just 10 feet away. Delightfully dressed priests performed the Aarti, the sound of ringing bells, the fragrance all around, floating diyas & the cool breeze I will never ever forget in my life. Witnessing such things makes you believe in the power of positive energy, believe in the power of a prayer, believe in the power of a mother, and believe in the power of the universe.The trip ended with these extraordinary vibes this place gave in, the intense experience I will carry it with me when I depart. I feel happy and blessed that I could witness the most colorful, picturesque, mysterious, progressive and regressive, ancient and modern city in my little life!“It is so difficult, this thing to be on fire and still somehow be at peace! Be filled with wonder and still be touched by peace! Live in the moment and forever still be at peace!” – Gauri ArgadeAll hail to the universe!For video compilation of the trip click – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dh54rMYnn78&t=3s
6. Spend your mornings on the ghats of VaranasiSpend a quiet weekend on the ghats of Benaras, a spot that must be on your Indian travel bucketlist. Travellers can take the overnight train, Swatantrta S Exp, from Delhi to Varanasi. Mata Anandamai Ghat, Assi Ghat, Manikarnika Ghat, Munshi Ghat and Raj Ghat are some of the river banks you can pick from to walk along and enjoy the morning sun. Take a boat ride on the Ganga river and enjoy the sepia-tinted sunsets in this historical city that inspire beyond measure.
I danced with Shiva again in the Ghats of the holy city of Banaras which is an abode of Shiva himself. Legends has it that the city rests on Shiva’s trident. Banaras is the town where the journey of every Hindu comes to rest. The Hindus bring their dead to Banaras and burn them on the Ghats of the Ganga. Funeral pyres are lit continuously one after the other. Assi Ghat is one such Ghat where pyres have been lit for thousands of years without a break. This is the land of death, the shamshaans of Shiva. On the Ghats wander the flesh eating aghoris and the nagas who are the children of Shiva. Shiva, the lord of shamshaan, the ultimate destroyer watches upon this holy city of Varanasi. Banaras is also known for Hindutva and its great universities like the Banaras Hindu University. It is the homeland of poets like Nirala and Kaka Hathrasi. Still, Shiva is omnipresent here, making even tourists from Europe and America come to Varanasi in search of nirvana, the ultimate salvation. Seekers come here to gain enlightenment on the banks of the Ganges. Pilgrims bathe to purify their sins and get ready to sin again.
60 Kms from Sanauli
Lucknow or the City of Nawabs sitting on the banks of the Gomti river, is regarded as North India’s cultural capital. Uttar Pradesh’s capital, Lucknow is replete with historical elements dating back to the colonial era that are known over the world for their Awadhi-style architecture. But Lucknow’s ethos lies in its delectable cuisine and its unique Chikankaari (shadow-work embroidery) garments that are must-buys if you are in the city. Lucknow is also known for its sweeping gardens and pure Kathak dance-forms that are showcased in numerous events held across the city. The city is also thriving with a lovely Urdu poetry scene. The ginormous tomb complex of Bara Imambara is home to a stunning labyrinth and neighboured by the equally popular mausoleum of Chhota Imambara, the Husainabad clock tower and a fantastic art gallery. And while in Lucknow, feast on its delightful assortment of Awadhi and Mughlai food that comprises of everything from kebabs to the makhan malai (a saffron-flavoured local ice-cream). Read More
From Agra, leave for the capital of Uttar Pradesh, Lucknow. A foodie's paradise, Lucknow is known for the world-renowned tunday kebabs. But there's much more to explore in this underrated city. Buildings reminiscent of the British Raj, mausoleums, and a bhool bhulaiya (maze) to get lost in this city, make it a fun place to visit.
The journey from Bhairahawa to Lucknow marked the final leg of TON 2017. After crossing the border (which happened surprisingly quick), we traversed 360 km of Indian highways through Gorakhpur and Faizabad to arrive at Lucknow. There was celebratory ceremony marking the conclusion of this epic journey. Receiving certificates of completion made the riders ecstatic and emotional which was evident in farewell addresses by fellow mates and crew members.
The Nepal journey began from Lucknow at the Golden Tulip Hotel. It felt like déjà vu entering the hotel lobby, seeing the riders wait with their riding gear and luggage with curiousity and high hopes in their eyes. Some of the people from the Bhutan team were back again for this one and I could completely understand the excitement in their hearts as we caught up and discussed old episodes.The highlight of the team this time were the 4 female riders who had joined us from Bangalore and Aurangabad. They seemed confident, experienced and ready for the challenging ride with all their charm.Day zero was First aid training by Tarun (Rashtriya Life Saving Society) followed by tour brief by Shawn Dsouza and Rohan Pimpley (RE team) with a thorough Q&A session breaking the ice and setting the tone right for the team to kickstart the journey next day.
We started from Lucknow, aka The City of Nawabs & reached Gaya Junction, the nearest railway station to Bodhgaya after a twelve-hour journey by train. Without any delay, we took an auto-rickshaw to Bodhgaya that is around 17 km away. You can find a number of transport facilities to go Bodhgaya from Gaya Junction.Where to Stay –
Lucknow, also known as the city of Nawabs has developed over the years but hasn't lost its rich cultural heritage. The city is divided into two parts the old city and the new city . The old city primarily consists of the Imambaras (shrines), the monuments, the very famous tundey kababs. The new city has the malls and the parks. There is a startling difference between the two, the new city is cleaner , better roads and it's easier to get a mode of transportation, whereas the old city is dusty and the main mode of transportation is cycle rickshaw, electric rickshaw and shared autos, however, it has most of the places that are worth seeing.
The flight reached Lucknow at 8:25 a.m. At the airport we took the taxi for 250 rs. At the prepaid counter it was told 300 rs. You can bargain for around 200. We reached the railway station to pick up our bikes by 9:30 a.m. but the counter at the railway station opens only by 10-10:30.We paid 550 to the guy as a bribe though the actual amount is 350 for 24 hours. Checklist: A swiss knife to remove packing from bikes else you will have to pay someone to remove the packing. 5 liter empty can as bikes won't have petrol while packed and transported and in case the petrol pump is far A good cloth actually multiple number of clothes to clean bikes. A right turn from the railway station and around 3-4 km you can find a petrol pump. Our route of 324 km which we planned for this day was Lucknow -> Faizabad -> Basti-> Bhairwah->Saunali Here we took the diversion to Naugarh instead of going to Gorakhpur. Unfortunately, this route was very deserted and roads were pretty bad. We kept riding till evening and late in the night at 12 a.m. #Stay Some people suggested us Sanju lodge but we were so tired that we took the first lodge we found named Niranjana.
326 Kms from Sanauli
Day 4, PokharaHeading to Pokhara with 7 hours Journey in the afternoon from Nagarkot, it was really long journey but also worth to see the sight seeing along the road way to Pokhara, we reach there in the evening, our Hotel near the Phewa Lake.. Cant see to much in evening...but we really exciting to wake up very early morning as we are planning to discover Phokara and the lake...And... this is what we saw in the early 5.30 am from outside our the Hotel after 15 minutes walk heading to the street..Read More
Day 4, PokharaHeading to Pokhara with 7 hours Journey in the afternoon from Nagarkot, it was really long journey but also worth to see the sight seeing along the road way to Pokhara, we reach there in the evening, our Hotel near the Phewa Lake.. Cant see to much in evening...but we really exciting to wake up very early morning as we are planning to discover Phokara and the lake...And... this is what we saw in the early 5.30 am from outside our the Hotel after 15 minutes walk heading to the street..
The following morning we headed back to Pokhara taking the same route. Morning showers turned the route slushy making the descent more challenging than initially thought. Moving ahead, the riders literally stopped and kissed the road as we hit leveled tarmac after 3 days. It had been quite a spell.
After a hail storm the previous night, we woke up to a rainy morning all set to ride out to Pokhara. After a quick briefing about risky terrains, we rode in moderate showers through extremely slushy roads out of Kathmandu. The condition of roads improved as the skies cleared. Munching miles through the twists and turns, we rode through the serene valley along the Trishuli River.
Day 5 was my day of facing my fear. My fear of heights. It had rained very hard the whole of last night so we received a message from the paragliding company that they might have to cancel the flight. Secretly I was very happy about it. I registered but it didn't come through because of the weather. Yes, no one could blame me now for being a wimp but then things panned out differently. We went to the paragliding office at the designated time and they said the weather condition has improved so the flight is on. Damn! My heart drowned. I put up a brave face and hopped on to the car with a few other passengers and the pilots. Once we reached atop the valley (from where we had to take off) we were informed that we will be given enough time to prepare ourselves mentally however my pilot (Patrick from France) decided that we will be the first ones to jump as the wind was strong and the weather could get worse so he didn't want to waste any time and started preparing for the jump. I froze. Patrick started harnessing me and asked me to run as fast as possible when we hit the edge of the valley. I literally froze at the edge but it was too late by then. I was pushed by my pilot and within the next five seconds I was flying with the birds in the middle of that ravishingly green valley. I felt liberated. I felt happy. I was so numb with happiness that I couldn't react. I just surrendered myself to that moment of unbelievable happiness.
Day 4 we headed to Pokhara, almost six hours bus ride from Kathmandu. This place boasts of laid-back charm but it turned out to be a haven of adventures and misadventures for us. First of all, we got lost while locating our tiny hotel. Post that we headed out for a walk, lots of shopping and of course some dinner and drinks. We were doing good so far but some live music in a corner took us to a pub nearby and we walked there, ordered a few drinks but soon realised that the pop music was not our scene. Oh by the way, I registered myself for paragliding (yes, that was the big surprise). So yes, we exited the pub and started walking back to our hotel but soon the weather threw a big shock. It started pouring, so heavily that we had to take shelter. No restaurant visibly open at that hour, we started running faster but the rain was so heavy we could barely manage to walk. We had to pause. We looked around and found a small restaurant that was still open however we didn't know how to get there so we hopped from one balcony to the other to reach their balcony. We knocked on their door and were greeted by rather surprised but very welcoming restaurant helpers who were on the verge of shutting down the restaurant. We were literally shivering from that rain water exposure and they were kind enough to offer us a drink. They even decided to escort us to our hotel under the huge umbrella (the one that we see outside a hotel balcony).
We felt relief after taking the bags off, freshen up and went for the walk around lakeside. We enjoyed lakeside music along with the tasty food including Thakali rice as dinner. As we were to move to Dhampus early tomorrow, we returned back to the hotel on time and it was already the bed time. I wished ' good night' with the silent desire of getting beautiful window view of Mount Fishtail, tomorrow morning.RAIN, RAIN AND RAINAs I woke up in the morning at around 7:00 with the sound of thunderstorm, my wish to see the mountains went in vain. All I can see was clouds and rain. We waited for few hours but there were no symptoms of minimizing it rather it was going heavy. As Bikash had some work in the Internet, we left the hotel room and went to the nearby cyber café. He took some time to finish his work, as we stayed there watching the rain. We had no chance to move as planned, we didn't even have raincoats to cover us as well as our backpacks. And another bad thing - similar weather was on the forecast at least till the afternoon. It was frustrating time till. Despite all frustrations we had lunch on time, came back to room and slept more.
The bike ride to Pokhara is somewhat easy one during the daytime but it's quite challenging during night. Because of the varying terrain, the road condition also varied in different sections. Our ride was pleasant except for few places. During the ride we once stopped in the roadside café to have tea and few times in the middle of nowhere due to the insects over the highway, which loves to come closer to the eyes and once it enter to the eyes, you have to stop everything, relax and remove it.
After darshan at the temple we took lunch and done little shopping as a sovereign and get back to the hotel by trolly. We pick our luggage and leave for Pokhra- a city famous for it's night life. On the way to Pokhra we took some stops in between like Davis Fall-a Swiss couple Davi went swimming but the woman drowned in a pit because of the overflow. Her body was recovered 3 days later in river Phusre with great effort. Her father wished to name it "Davi's falls" after her. After that we move to Mahendra's cave. This deep cave includes Shivling, Ganpati idol etc etc then go to Phewa lake . Here we took boat ride . This lake is 20 Mtrs deep and we all scared when there was totally black all around but it was thrilling as well as amazing boat ride. After that we reached Pokhra city nearly 9 PM and took the room in the hotel for overnight stay. Then we explore the market and took dinner in the restaurant & met with some foreigners & back to the hotel for overnight stay.
After Breakfast, enjoy a visit to the Bindya Basini Temple and the Gupteshwar Cave, considered the longest cave in Nepal where the Shiva Lingam is preserved. Finally visit the Davis Falls and Seti River George, a fascinating waterfall locally known as the Patale Chhango (Nether Fall), which means Underworld Waterfall.
Today, proceed on a picturesque drive to the enchanting city of Pokhara. Its pristine air, snowy peaks, peaceful lakes and beautiful greenery make it 'The Jewel in the Himalaya'. On arrival, check-in to your hotel. The rest of the day is at leisure or one can enjoy boating on Phewa Lake. Overnight in Pokhara. (B, D)
157 Kms from Sanauli
Best time to visit - January,February,March,December
Allahabad enjoys the prestige of being one of the four holiest spots of India and thus host Maha Kumbh in every 12 years, Ardh Kumbh in every 6 years and Magh Mela once a year. The fact that it encompasses the confluence of the most sacred rivers of India- Ganga and Yamuna makes it all the more special. It has its own culture of religious and literary overtones. You not only find a number of famous temples around the city of Allahabad but also places of historical significance like Anand Bhawan having produced 5 consecutive generations of able politicians of the nation, Akbar’s fort built following the common Mughal tradition of fort construction by riverside, Khusro Bagh housing some other Mughal remains. One can't miss the famous Allahabad museum! You could take with you, religious paraphernalia, books on local literature and vintage handicrafts as mementos of the lovely city. From taking a dip in its holy waters , to enjoying a boat ride in Prayag, from throwing away coins to pay visit to Patalpuri temple, to roaming in Mughal era monuments, there are certain things unique to the city!Read More
As I commence this blog I tend to wonder how am I going to put an end to it. The experience of this Excursion is so vast and Mystical that it gives complex to our minuscule lives. I'd never seen such an ebullient environment in my life and it is officially stated as the largest human gathering in the world. People perform bizarre acts in the name of Religion, which they certify as Religious devotion, which to me is amusing and absurd. But then- my thoughts are of an individual! Although it does seem that my tasks to accomplish are in process. My Reincarnation in this lifetime as a Hindu has led me to this festival called the Maha Kumbh Mela 2013 at Allahabad! I felt blessed because to Hindus this event is imperative. I mentioned about my lecturer from "Delhi School of Photography" Mr. Jotirmoy Das in my First blog and his persuasive nature. After the two trips I took with him I was sure of him to baffle everyone, so much that it has evolved into a talent from his nature and somehow I'm enthralled by it now. But when he spoke to me about this Photography Jaunt the tone was different. It was so genuine as if the Head of a Religious Community defined Proclivity for Religion. And when you are at a start of your creative career every prospect seems enticing even if you have to click pictures or write an article amidst a Dunghill. With his sincere coaxing I agreed and when he told me that I have to board the train from Old Delhi Railway Station, the thought of going there was repugnant to me. But being a natural traveller that I'm there's always adrenaline that gets me going and I love to challenge comfort sometimes. When I reached the Rusty Red most crucial Station of the country I wonder where People come from, there are so many of them that anyone will think of it as a whole universe instead of a railway station. At the station I met Mr. Das along with Mr. Deepak Virmani , the owner of Delhi School Of Photography and 3 American Educators teaching at The American School, New-Delhi and Mr.Vijay. All of us being Travel & Photography enthusiasts out to explore an overwhelming event seemed nonetheless than National Geographic employees. The moment I heard that my ticket is unconfirmed I was infuriated and couldn't help with an outburst of profanity. I agree that I have a habit to condemn my country because of poor Infrastructure, Government and much more. But I have decided that this habit shall soon stop. Mr. Das told me to just board the train with no doubt assuring me that he would take care of it and I must say with his glib talking to the Ticket Checker I was stunned. It took no time to settle the adverse situation. The train Journey was marvelous probably because of the company that I had, The Americans with us were engrossed in playing board games such as chess and some mathematical game which was out my league but I did try my best to play and compete despite being a mathematical illiterate. The mobile network was atrocious in the train hence I couldn't speak with my girlfriend who now happens to be an ex-girlfriend, she had to mail me a goodnight message hoping I will get it by the time I reach Allahabad and I was a young man who was in love and just a message could put me to sleep and so it did indeed a tranquil sleep. I opened my eyes to the beautiful light of Allahabad's dawn and saw millions of people scattered throughout the city with a firm belief to take a dip in the living goddesses river called The Ganga or Ganges to wash away their sins or rather as they say 'It's a direct entry to heaven sir'. The campsite, our abode for the next couple of days was about an hour and half away from the railway station. For the next five days we lived like Gypsies in tents, there were people from all over the Globe. It was a land of hash, everyone just smoked joints & chillums, from sadhus to tourists. I hardly inhaled any fresh air instead it was so much hash that I myself felt like a passive charras smoking sadhu. The sadhus have a quaint way of expressing their devotion towards religion. Some of them have sacrificed their arms by keeping it in air and not cutting their nails, some sadhus tie a rope to their testicles and lift up seventy kilos of bricks; one particular sadhu applied the same procedure but tied it to pull a car with people in it. They call these acts 'Yoga' to suppress their sexual desire. Some haven't slept in a decade and just been standing. Men who aspire to become sadhus have to give up all contact with their families and become a devotee to a Guru and get their heads shaved. I was unaware that there is even a criterion for the path to spirituality. The methodology for God's creation of the Universe should be un- equivocal, God has sent each of us on earth as per our karmic deeds from our past lives. Although I don't hold any special rights to say this or to impart the limited knowledge I have but I just say what God has made me feel. We all our God's children, in-fact God is our only parent, we live our lives according to how they want us to live. To me sacrificing things to the extent sadhus do is not necessary, we could just practice the art of simplicity and be good human beings, love each other and do what we love and that's how God will be with us constantly. I'm not saying that these sadhus are wrong; after all it is their personal belief and maybe God wants them to be this way. But just looking at them was an adventure. Their dedication was inspiring that I could stay there for some more days and just contemplate them, but even they would have left. We all depart for our cocooned shelters eventually. I want to share some important information. The Maha- Kumbh Mela happens every 12 years, specifically when the planets Sun, Moon and Jupiter are in a particular alignment. The entire set up of Mela was constructed before the event, so it was a temporary arrangement, but it was so large that it could be seen from space. And the Legend says it that the rivers Ganga and Yamuna met they together met the river Saraswati and that is when the battle between gods and demons occurred and hence the drop of immortality nectar was spilled. I don't know if I learnt something from this trip, but being there made me feel as if God told me that people listen to him because God hears us all when we talk to them, And we all shall appreciate and have gratitude for the beautiful life we have.
3. PrayagTHEN: Lord Rama along with his wife Sita and brother Lakshman crossed the river Ganga from here to go beyond their kingdom. The trio spent some time at the Ashram of Sage Bharadwaj here, before travelling ahead.
278 Kms from Sanauli
Best time to visit - November- March
This is a town in the Chhattarpur District of Madhya Pradesh. Mainly known for the ancient Khajuraho Temple Complex, this is the main attraction of this place apart from other small temples and old monuments. The temples in this complex are not just beautiful and grand, but each one of them are different from one another. The temples here represent royalty, culture, taste of the early kings and their devotion towards gods and goddesses. Most of the temples and monuments you will see here were built by the Chandela Dynasty rulers and their religious secularism is evident from the presence of Buddhist and Jain temples in which they had supported along with the famous Hindu Temples. The main temples of this temple complex are the Kandariya Mahadev Temple, Brahma Temple, Varaha Temple, Lakshmana Temple and others.Read More
In Khajuraho, learn the art of Kama Sutra through the delicate but intricate carvings on the temples. The stunning sculptures are living proof of the advanced thinking and ideologies of our ancestors. Don't be put off by guides or kids giggling at the erotic carvings. Khajuraho is standing proud, showing off to the world how us Indians mastered the art of lovemaking.
Looking for a blend of antiquity, beauty, and marvelous art? Planning a short and crisp tour to take a break from your tiring work?Make it immensely worthy. Here is a place which perfectly makes your trip antique yet memorable. The place Khajuraho reminds you of beautiful, artistic temples in the marvelous city of Madhya Pradesh. It is one of the most visited historical sites and one of the best tourist places in Madhya Pradesh occupying a spot on every foreign traveler's list. Let's explore more of this heavenly historic beauty...
KhajurahoThe third day was the show-stopper. If I had to describe Khajuraho in one word, it would be - Breathtaking. The temple architecture was nothing less than awe-inspiring. It breathed of the aura of grandeur. The statues with their intricate carvings seemed to dance & talk of the bygone era of the Chandellas.
1. Travel to the heart of India in KhajurahoA convenient place near Delhi for weekend, Khajuraho remains a trending destination to visit during winters. Travellers can board a direct overnight train to Khajuraho from Nizamuddin Railway Station, Delhi. The 22 temples constructed by the rulers of Chandela dynasty between 950 AD and 1050 AD still survive and can be your window to learning the cultural nuances that are part of India's rich history.
This article is about my most memorable trip Khajuraho, one of the most popular tourist places in Madhya Pradesh. Famous for its erotic sculptures, this place is best example of ancient architectures in the world.The temples built by the Chandela Rajputs are depicting various concepts of art, meditation, lifestyle etc. The unparalleled beauty of its sculpture make it one of the famous World Heritage Sites in India.
At Jhansi station just at the border of Madhya Pradesh, a bit worried about how I would reach in time, I frantically looked for something that would take me to Orchha. Two minutes later, a voice entered my ears. "Orchha, sir Orchha chalenge?" - just got lucky! I rushed towards the shared auto where people were actually flowing and hanging out. I somehow managed to 'adjust' myself onboard, finishing a 5 minute ride to the Jhansi bus stop. Here, I bumped into the backseat of another auto. This one was rather too comfortable. Me and my backpack were chilling like two bottles of beer on a banana beach. The ride to Orchha for merely Rs 20 completed in around 30 minutes. Discovering the perfect route, the journey was fun and now here I was at my destination - Backpacking is indeed a learning and accomplishing process.This time, I decided to explore the northern and eastern part of Madhya Pradesh which are not at all far from Delhi, starting my journey from quite-a-city Gwalior to the Kingdom-miniature Orchha(via Jhansi) to the R-rated Khajuraho and finally ending safely in the safari of Tala(also known as Bandhavgarh). Here's the recollection of all my memories from the invaded roads, transitioning between cities, talking about how I found the best food & my journey around the bunch of people I met on my way. Gwalior
A tryst with history is what your holiday in Khajuraho and Orchha will be. Those who are very fond of historical details will specifically enjoy travelling to these two destinations, because they are home to the most sensual architecture ever created in this world. Khajuraho is 172km away from Orchha and on your way you will come across countless magnificent waterfalls and other beautiful sights.How To Reach: Khajuraho has its own airport and the nearest railway head is in Mahoba, which is 63km away. Khajuraho is also well-connected by roads.
Points to look out for: the grand structure, use of symbolism, spatial organization, North Indian Nagada style of architecture, sculptures, intricate detailing.4. HampiThe medieval Islam ruled capital of Vijayanagara Kingdom from 1360-1565 A.D was one of the richest cities of its time. History speaks about its glory even now in every nook and corner of the village. Once the largest city of India has become a tiny archaeological village situated on the bank of river Tungabhadra in the Bellary district of Northern Karnataka. Temples, ruins, archaeological remains all made it a place worth the UNESCO World Heritage Site tag. Hampi is 12 km away from the nearest railway station in Hospet. Bellary is 74 km and state Capital Bengaluru is about 353 km away.
Khajuraho!! which literally means ‘Carrier of date palms’, is the land of the plethora of Hindu and Jain temples. The glory of Chandela’s, are known for their intricacy of carvings are also referred as the Kamasutra temples. But yes hold on, they neither have connection nor were inspired by Vatsyayana’s Kamasutra. These erotic temples which are now a UNESCO World Heritage site is located in a small town of the Chhatarpur district of Madhya Pradesh were build between 950 and 1150 were once forbidden and completely infamous.These 10th-11th century temples have a very interesting legend behind them. According to popular beliefs, Hemvati, the daughter of Hemraj was bathing and this attracted the attention of the Moon God, who then descended to earth and seduced and ravaged her. Their union gave birth to Chandravarman, founder the Chandela dynasty, and from then Chandravarman went on to rule Khajuraho.The sculptures around each of these temples depict not only erotica but also sees couples in courtship, royal scenes, battles, marriage, meditation and more. In mythology and also in Kamasutra erotic depiction has been considered auspicious.The fine finish of these carving leave you spellbound and one of the most famous sculptures is a man, pleasuring three women at the same time. This is a combination of Yoga, Tantric Sex and the Karma Sutra. The sensual world got a lot from India.With the sense of beautiful aesthetics these artists created magic. Each female figure carved pretty voluptuous and strong shows that even then women were quite powerful. Not in many places in the world one can see such both craftsmanship of sculptors.
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