Cruises For Senior Citizens – Excellent Vacation Option

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Why have cruises for senior citizens become so popular over the years? They offer the best accommodation and service at affordable rates, especially to senior citizens. Also, retirees have all the time on their hands to go on a slow cruise with a full gamut of fun-filled entertainment options. Companies owning cruise liners are vying with each other to offer the best discounted cruises specially designed for senior citizens.

Why are cruises a good holiday option for seniors?

Cruise ships offer you a memorable holiday by providing:

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1.Accommodation that is very comfortable and comparable with star hotels. You will be staying on the ship so you don’t need to book hotel rooms at every place where the ship docks.

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2.  Multi-cuisine dining which will leave you licking your fingers. Of course, you will not cheat on any diet restriction imposed by your doctor!!

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3. An opportunity to make new friends

4. Besides, you can choose from a number of onboard activities like swimming, destination based activities, destination special festivals,  watching for whales, dolphins, and other sea creatures in their natural habitat. Or you can just sit back on deck chairs and enjoy the sea breeze, read or play board games with fellow passengers. You can also participate in a wine tasting and/or culinary demonstration fest on board the cruise ship. Different liners offers different forms of entertainment for senior citizens.

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5. You can explore new countries and cities wherever the ship docks. Visiting the tourist attractions is usually part of the package.

Things to consider before you book a cruise

There is no limit to information online. Take your time and search for the best deals. There has to be a good balance between choosing a cheap cruise and coping through the voyage. So there are few things you need to keep in mind before selecting an option:

Itinerary – Check the schedule and itinerary of the cruise ship online. By definition a cruise is leisurely so a fast paced cruise that covers too many destinations is not a good idea, unless you are confident you can cope with all the sightseeing when the ship docks.

Secondly, lifestyle diseases like arthritis can be very painful in cold weather. So choose your cruise wisely so that you do not experience discomfort at any point and can enjoy every aspect of voyage. Why not try a tropical one?

Type of ship – There are small cruise ships with a limited capacity offering personalised service and then there are huge cruise liners with a capacity of nearly 6000 passengers. If you like families and youth around you, choose the latter. But if you are looking for a quiet, slow pace choose a smaller one.

Avail of senior discounts – Most cruise packages offer heavy discounts for senior citizens usually without compromising on the quality of their services. Check online which would suit your budget and still give you the best experience.

Travel insurance – Ships are at sea for days at a time and access to emergency medical facilities is a complicated issue. The cruise package includes insurance but the coverage is very limited. So it is always sensible to opt for comprehensive travel insurance. These policies cover the cost of urgent medical expenses, emergency evacuation, unexpected illness or accidental injuries during the period of the cruise.

Gather information – Whether you intend going on one cruise or more, it is worth subscribing to newsletters of a few cruise lines that you found interesting. They will email their special offers and you might get a real bargain next time.

So go ahead and add a cruise to your bucket list. Better still, book one today and explore the world. Enjoy your retirement.

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Senior Citizen Travel Tips

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“I’ll travel around the world once I retire?” Haven’t we heard this often? This is how most of us think and this is what we budget for. But if we plan well and take a few precautions, senior citizens too can go on their dream voyages. Here are some senior citizen travel tips that will definitely help you to explore the wonders of the world without hesitation…

Pre-planning for maximum comfort

Make it easy for yourself by enlisting the help of a younger family member in planning your trip. List out all the tourist destinations you had longed to visit since a long time. Then choose one from the list and make reservations, keeping in mind senior citizen discounts.

Group travel: Travelling with your family is the best way for senior citizens to travel. But if the younger members of the family are not free to travel with you at the time, look out for the best group travel options. Most agencies offer affordable and comfortable packages specially designed for senior citizens.

Non-stop flights: If an agency is not booking your fares and you are doing it on your own, choose non-stop flights even if it is not the cheapest option. Changing planes can be very stressful. When you take a direct flight there is no chance of missing connections and you will actually save travelling time.

Jet bridges: Choose bigger aircraft rather than smaller jets. Boarding on / alighting from bigger airplanes is easier because they usually provide a jet bridge. You won’t need to climb/descend steps.

Suitable timing: Choose flight schedules that suit your personal body clock. Some seniors like to wake up very early in the morning. Others find it difficult to take on any hectic tasks till mid-morning. So choose your departure times to suit your own pace.

Travel insurance: At 60 years and above, there is a greater risk of falling and getting injured or falling sick in a foreign land. One does not usually carry extra foreign exchange to pay for medical attention. Besides, your travel plans may need to be changed at the last moment and you will have to pay for local accommodation to continue treatment. To keep such contingencies in mind it is advisable to go in for travel insurance.

Travel tips once you reach the destination

To stay safe and enjoy every aspect of your vacation, you just need to keep a few tips in mind once you reach your destination:

Regular medication: At our age we are probably taking at least one tablet for some lifestyle disease like high blood pressure, arthritis, diabetes, heart, etc. Missing ones medication is the biggest mistake one can make while travelling. The maintenance dose(s) will ensure your wellbeing and help you to enjoy your trip to the fullest.

Book cabs at reception: Every time you go out sightseeing or shopping do not go out alone and hail a local taxi even if the place is safe and tourist-friendly. Sometimes language issues can create a lot of problems. Book a cab through the reception desk. This has two advantages:

  • They will provide a driver who knows English and can help you with your day’s plans,
  • The driver will ensure you return to the hotel safely.

Housekeeping: If you want the room cleaned in your absence, request the staff at the reception desk to tell housekeeping. It is better than just hanging the sign on your doorknob.

Don’t leave your passport or other important documents, jewellery or expensive gizmos for charging in the room while you are away.

Tourist activities: If you are travel with a group then the entire trip including sightseeing is planned and arranged by your agent. But if you have done all the bookings on your own, then plan your sightseeing activities so that you do not feel too exhausted at the end of the day. Most hotels have a travel desk and they can give you tips on the best tourist attractions, distances and travel time. Take on only those activities that you feel are hassle-free.

Eat right: Choose what you eat very carefully. Keep in mind any allergies you have, any diet restrictions recommended by the doctor, etc before ordering a dish. In general, avoid very high protein dishes, spicy/oily curries or sauces, eating at roadside food malls, etc.

Sensible footwear: Flat, canvas shoes or sneakers are the most sensible footwear while travelling. There are fewer chances of you tripping/falling and hurting yourself.

Inexpensive accessories: Never ever carry gold ornaments, designer wristwatches, or other expensive accessories while travelling. Keep a set of “to-wears” in a separate travel pouch to use on your trips.

Keep family informed: Keep in touch with your family and friends via Facebook and whatsapp. Keep uploading statuses and forwarding pictures at regular intervals. Most cities and towns around the world have reasonably good 3G connectivity (at least) so keeping others in the loop will not pose a problem. The local time and exact location will get logged into the apps automatically.

Of course, senior citizen travel is the easiest and most hassle-free when it is a group tour. I have already written about “Benefits of group tours for women” in a previous post and the information applies to senior citizens as well. Hope this has helped you plan your next trip and I do hope you enjoy it very much. Happy travelling…

My Favourite Tourist Attractions Of Gujarat, India

Last year I went on a pilgrimage tour in Gujarat, India with a cousin. It was a wonderful experience and I can still relive every beautiful moment. We flew from Pune to Ahmedabad and then drove around the state of Gujarat along the coast. We visited the island city of Dwarka and the islet of Bet Dwarka. Then took the coastal road southwards along the Arabian Sea to Somnath temple. This is the first of the 12 Jyotirlingams (primary Shiva temples). Then we came back eastwards and stayed in Gir Forest.

On the way from Ahmedabad (in the middle of the state) to Dwarka (an island city) on the west coast, we stopped at the Swaminarayan Temple. This is a quieter and a more peaceful version of the famous Akshardham Temple in Ahmedabad. Although it is comparatively new, the architecture emulates ancient Indian style. Going around the temple was a fascinating experience.

Swaminarayan Temple
Swaminarayan Temple

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It took us 7 hours to drive from Ahmedabad to Dwarka city. Most of the original kingdom of Dwarka is submerged under the sea. But a small portion of the land where the original Dwarkadheesh Temple (Lord Krishna temple) and Bet Dwarka temples were built still exist!

Dwarkadheesh Temple
Dwarkadheesh Temple

Bet Dwarka – reachable only by ferry

Bet Dwarka
Bet Dwarka

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Near Dwarka there is the Nageshwar Temple which is also considered one of the 12 Jyotirlingams. We paid our respects to Shri Nageshwar and proceeded south along the coast.

Nageshwar Temple
Nageshwar Temple

We proceeded to Somnath Temple which is in Prabhas Patan on the Arabian Sea coast.

Somnath Temple
Somnath Temple

Note: To maintain the sanctity of the Lords no one is permitted to take photos inside the temples. Hence I do not have pictures of Shri Dwarkadheesh, Shri Somnath, Shri Nageshwar. But when you read on Google that there are more than 1,00,000 visitors per day at these temples you can imagine what an awesome experience it is!

Once the pilgrimage part of our holiday was over, we looked forward to some adventure. Now we moved back eastwards to Gir Forest, which is the only place where you can find Asian lions in their natural habitat.

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Pride of lions sitting in the shade
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The King of the Jungle at siesta time

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Our air-conditioned Tent Accommodation in Gir Resort

On the way to Ahmedabad airport we visited the ancient stepwell built by Queen Rudabai in 1499 to prevent drought in her kingdom. It is another architectural marvel. It takes all day to explore the landings and steps. If you zoom in you will see what looks like a never ending array of landings…

Adalaj ni vaav (stepwell)

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At the end of a wonderful week, my cousin and I drove back to Ahmedabad city and returned home with more than 1000 photos and a lot of stories to tell. BTW, Gujarat is definitely the cleanest state in India! Even small villages and fishing hamlets are surprisingly clean. I hope to go again soon…

Travel Clothes And Accessories For A Tropical Summer Vacation

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Some of the most exotic holiday destinations, like India, are in the tropics where the heat can be extreme. Your dilemma is not just how much to carry but also what clothes to carry. So here are some very useful tips on travel clothes and accessories for a tropical summer vacation.

Clothes for the tropics

Cotton garments are the most practical in the heat but ironing can be tedious. So let’s find a sensible solution:

Tops – Synthetic sleeveless tops/spaghetti straps in white or light pastel shades will keep you cool. Carrying one long top is a good idea in case there is a dress code at some tourist attraction.

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Leggings – Denims are the usual choice while travelling but in the hot tropical summers leggings are more suitable. Carry one pair each of white, beige, red and blue and mix-n-match these colours with any top.

Cotton innerwear – Cotton material lets your skin breathe. It also absorbs perspiration and keeps the skin cool. Some of us are prone to rashes and prickly heat so it’s best to wear cotton innerwear.

Denims – If you must have denims then take one pair of capris and one pair of shorts. Denims are heavy, so the more pairs you carry the bulkier your luggage will be.

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Hoodie – Just 1 of these are more than enough. Sometimes it rains in the tropical summer season. If you are visiting a hill station and it begins to rain, the weather will suddenly turn chilly.

Party dress – If you are on a group tour the agents usually organise a party for the group on the last day of the trip. So get along a party dress and a few inexpensive accessories.

Accessories you will need

When choosing accessories for your summer trip into the tropical regions, comfort takes precedence over style. But again we can cater to both:

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Stoles – Synthetic, lightweight stoles (maybe 3 or 4 different colours) have multiple uses while travelling:

  • You can cover your head and shoulders in the afternoon heat during sightseeing,
  • You can cover your head and shoulders while visiting a place to adhere to dress code,
  • If the evenings are too breezy and cool (but not cold enough for a sweater) a stole will come in handy,
  • And last but definitely not the least – just for style!

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Flat canvas slip-on shoes – These are an indispensable part of my travel gear. Canvas shoes are all-terrain and all-weather footwear and most suited for the tropics. Tying laces is tedious and a slip-on pair will save time when you are in a rush.

Slippers – At most of the religious places you have to leave the footwear outside. A simple pair of slippers will come in handy. To speak the truth, floaters are impractical on beaches or anywhere!

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Sunglasses – Don’t ever forget your sunglasses when you visit the tropics in summer. Sightseeing is done in the day time and the glare can be really bad. Sunglasses will protect your eyes from UV rays and prevent headaches.

Other essentials

Three types of creams should always be a part of your travel kit when you plan a summer vacation in a tropical country:

  1. Sunscreen lotion – This should be the first on your list when you are braving the summer in the tropics.
  2. Tan removal cream – All day you plan on visiting one tourist attraction after another. The sun can be unrelenting when you are busy admiring the views and clicking pictures. A tan-removal cream applied at bedtime and left overnight will bring back the fresh look.
  3. Insect repelling cream – You will have taken the necessary shots advised by the travel agent before venturing into the tropical zone. Even so it is always advisable to carry a tube of insect repellent.

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Multipurpose pen knife – Carrying a foldable penknife cum bottle opener can prove very useful. Keep it in your check-in luggage during air travel or it will be confiscated. Transfer it to your tote bag while sightseeing.

Of course, you will drink plenty of water, juices and cold soups to keep cool I am sure. I have given some more tips in a previous post “7 Beauty Essentials While Travelling”. Enjoy your tropical summer vacation and let me know whether this post helped.

 

 

 

Our Holiday at Orange County Resorts – Where Luxury Meets Nature

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Our daughter had just completed her 10th grade. My husband and I wanted to give her a nice break before she went to college. Our idea was to get away from the hectic pace of city life. Friends told us about Orange County Resorts, Coorg, Karnataka, India. And what they said turned out to be spot on, “At Orange County luxury meets nature.”

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The resort is built within a 300-acres coffee plantation so you can guess how green and picturesque it is. They are proud of their  image as an eco-friendly resort so the only mode of transport within the resort is battery powered buggies or bicycles.

WHAT WE DID AT ORANGE COUNTY RESORT, COORG

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Our typical day began at 6 AM with a bicycle ride around the plantations. Every vegetable and fruit is home-grown and freshly picked for the guests. Cereals and pulses too are from their own farms. Now we are really far away from the city, eh? No processed food!

By the time we returned at 8 AM we were ravenous. After a quick breakfast we went to their reading room. We can either borrow their books or read our own. Using the premises comes with a bonus – complimentary cup of freshly ground coffee.

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Now it is time for a short walk around the resort. We saw some staff members decorating the open-air restaurant for dinner (not lunch!). Every night they have theme based decorations. The staff members begin putting up festoons, coloured lights, flowers and table decoration in the afternoon. We saw women drawing beautiful rangoli with coloured powders.

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After a leisurely lunch, we sat in a pavilion and watched a potter making clay jars, bowls, pots, and lovely curios. One of the guests tried her hand at making a pot. It is a unique experience for city folk!

At 3 PM we went for a coracle ride (circular boat seen only in South India). The boatman rowed down the tranquil Cauvery River behind the resort while we absorbed the essence of nature.

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Dinner is an amazing experience. The buffet is laid out outdoors. We can watch live performances by local artists while we eat. The menu was a great mix of International cuisine and Coorgis specialties. We enjoyed the spicy local fare while we watched local villagers perform a “warrior dance”.

The resort staff saw to our every need. The food was superlative and the housekeeping was spotless. The room service was surprisingly prompt considering that the cottages are spaced apart. Senior citizens can just call the reception and ask to be dropped at the restaurants, and promptly a buggy will be at your doorstep. Remember, you are in the lap of luxury.

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Next day, we visited the Namdroling Monastery which was about one and a half hours drive from the resort. We loved the monastery. Despite the constant stream of tourists, the place is a symbol of inner peace. The gold statues of Buddha and his disciples and the colourful wall murals were definitely worth seeing.

We bought a few knick-knacks from the shops run by the resident Tibetans. Crockery with oriental designs, prayer bells, religious books, yak-fur shawls and jackets, jade jewellery and many other interesting things are available. I suggest you bargain a little because they quote a higher rate expecting you to haggle.

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We were back at the resort by 6 PM and had a drink while we watched the sun set over the Cauvery River flowing nearby. At dinner time again we enjoyed watching dances, this time performed by women.

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If you ask me, “What did you do at Orange County?” Here’s my answer – We ate wholesome food, slept like babies, walked in the wilderness, cycled through plantations, took a coracle ride on the river, saw beautiful flowers, trees, coffee plants, and let our bodies and minds relax! To me that sounds like BLISS. How often does one get this kind of opportunity? I hope I can go again and relive the experience.

Best time to go – November, December or January.

Royal Bengal Tiger – Our Tryst With His Highness

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The Royal Bengal Tiger is an elusive creature. Some return to their hometown with just a glimpse of his/her Highness or no sighting at all!

In 2006, like most tourists we visited the Kanha National Park with great hopes of a tiger sighting. And we were in luck! My teenage daughter shot these videos from a moving jeep while his Highness followed with his characteristic regal gait. We are not professional wildlife photographers, so this chance sighting was a real treat and an awesome experience!

BEAUTY THAT IS OVERSHADOWED BY THE TIGER

We saw plenty of other wild animals like Indian Chital (spotted deer), monkeys, peacocks, Gaur (Indian Bison), etc. They have their own beauty and attraction, but tend to get overshadowed by the tiger. Here are some glimpses of our memorable trip:

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KANHA NATIONAL PARK – LIVING IN HARMONY

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KANHA NATIONAL PARK – IT’S SHOWTIME FOLKS!

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KANHA NATIONAL PARK – SMALLEST JUNGLE WATERHOLE!! 
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KANHA NATIONAL PARK – ALWAYS ALERT
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KANHA NATIONAL PARK – PEACOCK

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KANHA NATIONAL PARK – GAUR

SOLO TRAVEL AND HOW I MANAGE IT

 

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Solo travel can be one of the most exhilarating experiences in life. So I decided to plan my vacation systematically and enjoy safe vacations. With every holiday I return with a rich treasure of memories and pictures.

I travel sometimes to explore and at times to just be in a different place and relax. All holidays are not necessarily meant for combing the geography of a place. So here’s how I manage…

HOW I PLAN MY SOLO TRAVEL

RESEARCHED: I Google searched the safest places for solo women travellers and found many blogs giving the necessary information.

DOWNLOADED THESE APPS:

  • Google Maps: Gives me directions and information on tourist attractions, food malls, shopping areas, etc.
  • World Tourism app: This app is available in Google Play for Android mobile devices . It helps me to search for cities and towns, gives information on the local currency, time zone and the local language.
  • GateGuru app: Available both in Goggle Play and App Store, this app is compatible with both Android and iOS devices. I can search for the best hotels, the best amenities at every airport terminal on my journey, flight status, etc. And most importantly it gives information about the expected waiting time during security checks.

ASK ABOUT DRESS CODE: Why enjoy at the expense of someone else’s displeasure? That’s my motto. I usually enquire with the agent while booking my fare (or research on Google) about the dress code in the destination country.

WHAT I DO AT THE DESTINATION

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Chat with the hotel staff: Not just managers or those at the Reception; but even waiters and concierge can give you an insight into the safe places to explore. I asked at the Reception for all the local emergency phones numbers. God forbid that I ever need them, but even so it’s best to have the numbers with you.

Keep family in the loop: Facebook and Whatsapp are my constant companions on my every trip. I use the CheckIn on Facebook to let my family and friends know where I am at a given time. Whatsapp chatting and calls assure them that I am safe at all times.

Always use hotel transport: If I am not using the taxi service through the hotel, but are using a local taxi, I always click a picture of the registration number and the driver before I get into the vehicle. I send it to friends via Whatsapp so that it is on record.

In fact, this habit turned out to be very useful. Once I left one of my bags in a cab in Barcelona. The hotel staff helped me to find the whereabouts of the driver and retrieve my bag with its contents. But I have always taken the cab through the hotel service ever since.

By following these simple rules I have comfortably managed my solo travel to many different parts of the world.

TOURISM IN INDIA – EXPLORING THE JEWEL OF THE EAST

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GUEST BLOGGER: NEENA VILAS TALPADE

From ‘Golden Sparrow’ to ‘Incredible India’, India has traversed a long journey, always attracting the attention of the outside world. Of course, tourism in India is not restricted to foreigners. Indians too love the excitement of exploring the myriad choices that the country offers.

PLETHORA OF TOURIST ATTRACTIONS

We have hill stations, beaches, islands, adventure, deserts, religious places, historical places, wild-life sanctuaries.

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Sun, sand and sea: Stretching right from the west coast to the east coast, some of these are:

  • Agonda,
  • Ganpatipule,
  • Kovalam,
  • Cherai (better known as the Princess of the Arabian Sea).

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The cool slopes: The grandeur of the snow-clad Himalayas is so mesmerizing and awe inspiring, and challenge others in the South:

  • Dharamshala – North India
  • Darjeeling – North India
  • Coorg – South India
  • Munnar – South India

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For adventure buffs:

  • Kaziranga wild-life sanctuary
  • Mountain-treks like Triund
  • Desert trips to Jaisalmer

A peep into the past:

  • Sinhagad fort
  • Pratapgad fort
  • Ajanta and Ellora Caves
  • Badami
  • Ayodhya

These delve into epochs of time gone by.

 

For the heart and soul:

There are pilgrimage tours to visit Ashtavinayak, Jyotirlingas, The Shakti Peethas of the Goddesses, Meenakshi Temple, Kamakoti, etc.

These are so ancient that at many places, the stone steps have eroded to a silky smoothness. The very names evoke faith and surrender and we bow our heads in silent prayer.

DRESS CODE AND LOOKING GOOD TOO!

Dress according to the weather. India is vast. Climate varies widely. Dress according to the place that you are visiting. Casuals are appropriate in most places. (However, revealing clothes would draw stares!) Enquire at the hotel reception about the dress code in religious places. Better still – research on Google and you can pack accordingly.

All the instructions and caution that brochures put forth regarding ‘Tourism in India’ are meant as guidelines only. Don’t lose momentum!

Your actual experience is sure to be mind-blowing!!

4 BEST WEEKEND GETAWAYS NEAR PUNE

Long vacations are great but at times we come home feeling more exhausted than rested. But weekend getaways are rejuvenating experiences. You come back feeling refreshed because a rest is what your mind and body occasionally need. Some of the benefits of weekend getaways are:

  • Family bonding,
  • Rekindling romance,
  • Fresh air and greenery,
  • Relaxation of the mind,
  • Rest for the weary body, etc.

I live in Pune and the city has an abundance of weekend getaways that are within a distance of 50 to 200 kilometres. You can pick and choose the places depending on whether you have senior citizens and little children in your group. There is a choice for every age group. Most of us have gone to Lonavla-Khandala-Matheran and Mahableshwar-Panchgani. So let’s see what else is there around Pune…

FORT JADHAVGADH

This is a beautiful resort built in an ancient fort just 30 Kms from Pune city. It is surrounded by pristine forest land and has awesome landscape. We started from home at 6 am and reached in time for breakfast. This place is away from the maddening crowd and is great for families as well as couples.

DIVEAGAR (SHRIVARDHAN TALUKA)

Just 160Kms from Pune is a wonderful, unspoilt beach called Diveagar. The place is safe, clean and perfectly suited for family groups. Being a fishing village there is no 5-star accommodation and choice is limited. But you will still be very comfortable because of the hospitality of the people and the clean sea breezes that are an essence of Diveagar. Don’t miss out on the local cuisine…it’s superb!

Another attraction here is the Suvarna (Gold) Ganesha Temple which is more than 300 years old. The 24-inches tall Ganesha is carved out of a solid lump of 24 carat gold. So Diveagar is worth visiting at a weekend for its golden Ganesha as well as golden sands.

 SULA VINEYARDS & RESORT (NASHIK)

Sula is a connoisseur’s delight. It has amazing scenery, peaceful surroundings, attractive resorts (Beyond Sula), and their restaurant. You can go on a tour of the vineyards and also take part in the wine tasting session. This is a very popular with families as well as youth.

AJANTA & ELLORA CAVES (AURANGABAD)

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Situated about 200Kms from Pune, Aurangabad is the home for the most beautiful pair of caves in the world – the Ajanta caves and the Ellora. Famous for their carvings and murals, tourists come from all parts of the world to see these wonders. There is a constant stream of visitors all year round. If you haven’t seen them you have really missed a crucial part of ancient Indian culture.

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Nearby is also the Shri Grishneshwar Temple. It is one among 12 Jyotirlingams and only the truly blessed will get a chance to visit the temple. There is a dress code to enter the temple so make sure you find out about that. I have performed abhishek there and it is an awesome experience. Aurangabad has many resorts from medium priced to 5-star so there is no shortage of accommodation. The locals are polite and helpful.

All the places mentioned above are a photographer’s delight.  A weekend getaway is the perfect break one needs from the hectic life of the city. The pure clean air, beautiful surroundings what you need to get rejuvenated. Enjoy little breaks and enjoy life.

Note: The images are for the purpose of illustration only and have no commercial intent.

Benefits Of Group Tours For Women

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Travel agencies across the globe are offering specialised group tours for women travellers. Byond Travel, Women On Wanderlust (WOW) Club, Gutsy Women Travel, etc are some of the few that cater to the women-only groups. There are many reasons for their increasing popularity:

Affordable

Money saved

When you travel in a group, the accommodation is usually on twin-sharing basis which is a lot cheaper than single occupancy. Also, the agents can avail of heavy discounts on air fares because it is a group booking, and this advantage is passed on to the tourist. Also, most hotels offer discounted rates for agencies that give them regular business. You can therefore get better hotel accommodation at affordable rates.

Pre-arranged

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Relax! You don’t need to spend a lot of time on Google searching for the best cheapest air fares and rooms. The tour operators are constantly looking for competitive prices in travel and hotel accommodation. They organise the travel from your city to the holiday destination, airport pick-ups and drops, accommodation, local sightseeing, and ensure that you have fun. The guide knows which restaurants serve the best local cuisine at the cheapest rates. Also, you are not at a loss because you don’t know the language.

New buddies

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Let’s say you are on a 10-day vacation with a group of women, going around Europe. During the course of that time you get to meet many other women. You will make new friends and share memorable experiences. The number of selfies you have clicked will show you how many new friends you have made.

Safety

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This is one of the biggest advantages of group tours for women. There is definitely safety in numbers. When you are a group of 50 or more women with a tour guide, there is no worry that you might miss a connecting. Also, they know which parts of a city are safe for tourist and which are not.

Experienced guide

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Tour operators will tell you a short history of the place; which you would have been compelled to research on your own as a solo traveller. The guide has already visited the cities and attractions many times with other groups and can give you a lot of inside information about the place. There are some places that have unusual operating hours but the guide will make sure that you don’t miss any sightseeing.

Souvenirs

tourists shopping

Of course you want to shop for souvenirs! Besides the pictures you have clicked during your holiday, you also want to bring back a memento, a speciality of the place. When you are a solo traveller, you are at a disadvantage. The package tour guide knows all the bargain shops and best prices available. You can bring back small items like coasters, pen stands, key chains, satchels, scarves, stoles, etc that typical of that region.

When you travel alone, it doesn’t mean that you do not gain knowledge or experience. But with group tours for women you not only learn about the holiday destination, you also learn something about the women of different cities and ethnicity. You gain knowledge of their way of life. The trip becomes a learning process and you have a lot of fun too.