Fairy chimneys – that’s what Cappadocia in Turkey is famed for. No not man-made, no not those in children’s fables, no not a few in a garden for a birthday party! Spread all over the 100 sq kms of Goreme National Park and beyond, formed naturally from the volcanic ash of eruptions, shaped over the years by wind and water erosion.Read more
On our last day in Istanbul (Turkey) we took a walking tour exploring the Chora Church, Greek neighbourhood Fener and old Jewish quarter Balat on the southern shore of the Golden Horn. We ended the day with the popular Bosphorous tour at sunset, nay ending the day looking up to the imposing Galata Tower.Read more
During our staycation in the hills at a nature retreat surrounded by a mixed forest around Shimla in Himachal Pradesh, the verdant and sylvan surroundings were home to many different species of birds. And here, I was blessed to sight these beautiful creatures time and again in their various moods; about 35 different species of birds out of which 25 I managed to capture through my lens, a mere 300 mm. Here I share some of my birding encounters and experiences with pictures.Read more
The lure of Wayanad, in Western Ghats (Sahyadri) in northeast Kerala in India had been lingering in our consciousness for many years and we finally ended up here in March 2020. It was for us the kick off for a 2 week long road trip across Kerala and Karnataka and we were here just for a couple of days. We wanted experiences which would remain ingrained in our memories, unmarred by having been stuck at crowded tourist traps. For us less is always more!Read more
Crossing into Kerala, we chanced upon Ranipuram boasting of a thrilling trek to Ranipuram peak. Compelled by our strong desire for adventure we stayed overnight at a nondescript lodge. That’s what defines travel – opulent resorts or just a bed somewhere! An exhilarating 3.5 hours hike, at the summit we were rewarded with breathtaking views!Read more
As the Sun’s orange glow spreads,
The monsoon clouds stop still,
By its soft radiance.
They wait awhile before washing
The valley back a verdant green.
The sky acquiesces to Surya
And rich hues cover its canvas.
(A feeble attempt to atone for the devastation of nature by trying to appreciate its beauty and magic through free verse.)
At Fethiye by the Mediterranean Coast of South Western Turkey I hadn’t ever imagined that the Saklikent Canyon tour would include a challenging river walk to Gizlikent (Hidden Waterfall), a pit stop at Tlos – an ancient ruined Lycian hilltop citadel, an adrenalin rushing river tubing and a wacky mud bath. Each experience was an adventurous memorable first.Read more
It is truly romantic for a nature lover to be staying at a coffee plantation. Anyday! Certainly if it is like the Old Kent Estate in Coorg (Karnataka, India). A ruminative evening walk transforms into an indelible affair for us. Col W.R.Wright an officer in British India and also a poet and writer, created this plantation in 1864.Read more
The tale of our jeep safaris and sightings at Nagarhole National Park (Tiger Reserve) in Karnataka, South India. My impressions of the imperial beast were only from William Blake’s The Tyger, Maneaters of Kumaon, Life of Pi and Nat Geo Wild inspite of having visited many sanctuaries earlier! Did the much anticipated encounter with the regal predator happen?Read more
George Town is part of Penang island and the capital city of the Western Malaysian state. Ranging from Colonial and Chinese to even Thai and Burmese besides of course Malay, Penang offers a diverse experience and a tremendous mix of culture and history contained in its architecture, temples and bylanes. However, the interactive street art stole our hearts.Read more