Shall we talk a bit about Kabini? Because I don’t think we have done that enough. Even though it’s quite popular amongst a relatively small group (inclusive of many novice as well as some professional wildlife photographers), it’s almost unknown to the rest. So what is Kabini or rather where is it? At the origin of it all, there is a river – a river called Kabini. It’s a short and sweet river that starts somewhere in Kerala and runs across the state of Karnataka touching upon many villages and towns on its way. But it’s not the start that concerns us, nor does the end. It’s actually a patch in between, somewhere in its path, where it passes between two beautiful forests. Or rather it divides a forest into two parts – Bandipore National Park and Nagarhole National Park. Around this place the river also gets wider as a result of a manmade dam ahead on its route. And this is the area that is famously known to tourists as Kabini and this is the area I am referring to in this blog.complete article
If you are a wildlife enthusiast you may have heard of Bhitarkanika National Park. Or if you live in some specific cities of Odisha, you may have known of it as a weekend gateway. But mostly Bhitarkanika is not a popular name amongst tourists. I had stumbled upon it only due to my connection to East and even then getting all information about the place wasn’t easy. In fact I was only half-prepared when I made my trip and eventually it turned out to be the worst planning of my life. In fact, I wasn’t able to reach Bhitarkanika. So technically I have never been there. But you can learn a lot from a failed attempt as well and that is the knowledge I would like to share here today.complete article
Finally my north-east trip was over and it was time for me to head home, or in this case travel to Kolkata. The journey was quite straightforward and uneventful. But still in order to give closure to the whole series I decided to write this piece. Even though the journey took me little over two days, I will try to keep it short. So here it goes…complete article
Last night had been cold and painful. A chilly wind blew relentlessly across the field outside and poured inside through the countless holes of my bamboo cottage. On top of that, my leg muscles screamed their presence with rigorous aching, an aftereffect from the cycling earlier that day. My stuff were scattered across the room, some on the other bed, some hanging and some inside the almirah. I knew I had to pack. But neither getting out of bed, nor engaging my legs into any activity sounded appealing at that time. So I gave in and let myself fall asleep under two warm blankets. This morning, however, was sort of a miracle. I woke up feeling neither cold nor pain. I was as fit as I ever could be and the thick fog outside meant that the temperature had increased significantly. I got up, got ready, packed up and walked into the foggy morning outside to start off my long journey for Kohima.complete article
Second destination on my north-east itinerary was Majuli, The large river island. I had to reach there on the same day after leaving Nameri, which meant travelling 230 km on land and 12 km in water. While this wasn’t my most tiring experience in this trip, it surely involved most number of vehicles. This is the route I took: Hotel – Nameri Bus stand – Charduar – Balipara – Tezpur – Jorhat – Nimati Ghat – Kamalabari Ghat (on boat) – Hotel at Majuli.
Here’s the full story…complete article
Why Nameri? I am not sure. It just felt right. When I started planning this trip, my first trip to north-east India, I was overwhelmed by the sudden realization of how vast it is. I had 10 days in my hand and there were precisely 7 states to consider. So like everyone else, I went with order of popularity. First there was Meghalaya, with the most popular name Shillong and other more beautiful destinations like Cherapunjee, Dawki etc. But I rejected Meghalaya considering the huge crowd at Shillong during this time of year. Next in line was Arunachal. But I found Tawang too cold for my taste and hence had to drop this route as well. At that point I thought of focussing solely on Assam, which meant tea-gardens and forests. With that in mind and factoring in my special interest towards forests, Nameri felt like the most convenient and desirable choice. And so I started my north-east trip with a visit to Nameri National Park.complete article
Growing up in India, the idea of Goa gets introduced to us much before we actually start traveling or at least start traveling as an adult. The dream of Goa lives in every teenager’s heart in our school days and even afterwards, until we finally make plans for that perfect holiday and explore those beautiful beaches. But that first plan can be overwhelming. Given that there’s a whole state to explore and those movies that enticed us in the first place didn’t really provide us with a roadmap for perfect location, a lot of researches need to be done before heading there for the first time. Hope this helps as a guide for the people planning their first trip to Goa...complete article