Patan and Modhera are lesser known but very culturally attractive centres in Gujarat. They have extravagant architecture and the essence of the traditional Gujarat. The places are centuries old and store a lot of spellbounding visions and stories. PatanDistance from Ahmedabad: 125 kmsTime required to reach: Approximately 3 hoursBest time to visit: March to SeptemberSuggested mode of transport: By Road ( A Bus, Car) Patan was found before the Solanki dynasty and was attacked by the Delhi sultanate.Patan is still historically significant as some famous monuments still survived. Patan is very famous for the Rani ki Vav which is an underground stepwell. The intricately designed building attracts tourists. The designs are mostly of Gods and Goddesses. The Rani Ki Vav was built by Udaymati in memory of her husband, Bhima I and completed by Udyamati and Karna. Rani ki vav stepwell is also the oldest and the deepest among the 120 other stepwells in Gujarat.Patan is also additionally famous for its ‘patan na patola’ which is basically a hand weaved silk saree and is very costly because of the hard work that goes into making them.As per wikipedia ‘There are only two families making patola sarees. They don’t teach this art to other family members. Only their sons are eligible to learn.’There are other places of worship in the city to explore too. Some of them being, Jagannath Temple, Ramji Mandir, Sai Baba mandir, Sheikh Farid no Rojo and more. ModheraDistance from Ahmedabad: 98 kmsDistance from Patan: 34 kmsTime required to reach from Ahmedabad : Approximately 2 hours, 10 minsTime required to reach from Patan: Approximately 40 minsBest time to visit: March to SeptemberSuggested mode of transport: By Road ( Bus, Car) Modhera was built when the Solanki Dynasty ruled and it is during that time that the architecture in Gujarat was at its best front. The town lies in Mehsana district is located on the bank of river Pushpavati.As per Wikipedia ‘The town was known as Dharmaranya during Puranic age. It is believed that Lord Rama had performed yagna here to cleanse the sin of killing Brahmin Ravana. He had built Modherak which was later known as Modhera’The most famous attraction for tourists in Modhera is the Sun Temple as it is very carefully carved and sculpted. Gyaneshwari stepwell is another lesser known monument in Modhera. Modhera also hosts a famous dance festival in January to look out for. The festival celebrates dance, music, art and culture in all its glory. The festival celebrates culmination of the festival of Uttarayan and lasts about 3 days. The festival is an ideal opportunity to experience the culture and celebration closely.
The northeast India is slowly becoming a favourite part to take trips to for the locals and the international travellers. It is fresh, beautiful and less populated. Even though it is becoming pretty popular among the tourists, it still has people concerned about safety. We are still to decide how tourist friendly the northeast is and therefore; here are some tips that we want you to keep in mind while you travel there. You may need special permits ( for example; the Protection Area Permit) and other documents to travel there. An Indian visa is obviously a must but do your research before you take the step. There are eight states, several districts and villages to cover, therefore, plan a tour with good amount of time in hand. A well planned trip is a better way to go here. Read and study about the locals, tribes, food and culture beforehand. You wouldn’t want to offend anyone, right? This will also let you have a better interactive experience. Be prepared for the rains. The northeast receives a decent amount of rainfall especially during monsoons. Best travel time is between October and April. Get yourself hotels and hostels pre booked as this area still has a developing hospitality sector. One is suggested to carry multiple simcards as the landscapes don’t permit very good connection. Immerse yourself in a natural lifestyle there and do not expect amazing internet access. You should even be prepared to lose it every now and then. Keep saved the emergency contacts at all times. And lastly; keep expecting the unexpected! The northeast India is wonderful and so is travelling and to keep the experience smooth, do look up Trabug- India’s First Travel Phone that will keep you from being distracted by travel hurdles while that you are there. Check this link for more About TrabugTrabug is india’s first Travel phone that comes with a 4G connection and a voice plan. It is a phone for anyone and everyone who travels to India on business or leisure. It helps you stay connected in a foreign land and makes your stay hassle free. What Our Customer Has To Say “I absolutely love it! we always had perfect signal and the wifi hotspot worked for two devices even far in the Thar desert 👍🏼 The trabug support team was always reachable and really helpful. I highly recommend this for long stays in India, it also has great tourist tips and maps…restaurant and hotels list as reliable as in tripadvisor. Thank you for the service!!” Nayeli Contreras Mexico
Colourful and bright costumes, bold makeup, bolder emotions and a spellbounding storyline is what I can say if you ask me to describe Kathakali in a single sentence.But since I have the luxury to describe it; here’s what I want you to know about it. Kathakali is one of the major and most popular classical dance forms of India. It is as much a dance form as it is an art of storytelling. It is an ancient art and holds within itself traditions and culture that goes back centuries. It is a dramatic expression of emotions that is expressed through a very neatly assembled combination of dance, drama, music, costumes and makeup. The acts usually adapt stories from hinduism. It also takes its references and learning from the Natya Shastra.Someone has beautifully mentioned that; ‘Kathakali brought humanity into Hinduism to express emotions that go beyond words. The temple rituals, first performed in secret, evolved into a vibrant drama that embraces the essence of what it is to be human.’ If you are still pretty curious about this dance form; here’s something that will make a very interesting read. The article is titled Dance of Kerala,The Entrance to God’s domain and is published by india travelz Read it yourself here; to know why this art form of kerala is also called The Dance Of Gods The article also takes you through lives of the artists associated with it. A line from the article is as follows. ‘Only men are allowed to be Kathakali actors. The training starts at the age of ten and the student stay with his guru for seven or eight years in order to learn from him how to master the basic techniques’ Read the full article here: http://indiatravelz.com/dance-of-kerala/
Being in foreign land always challenges one on the communication front, especially when the languages differ very much. In India, a land where you will find more than 700 different languages out of which 22 are listed in the constitution, it most definitely becomes a task to reach out to and understand everyone. Even though English has continued to be an important language; it is Hindi (No, it’s not the same as Indian, there’s no language such as Indian) that is widely spoken throughout the country. Here’s a preliminary guide that includes basic words, phrases and expressions that could help you communicate when you are in India. Emergency phrases: Help! - Bachao, Madad karo Fire! - Aag lagi hai Stop- Ruk jao Call the police- Police ko bulao Call an ambulance - Ambulance bulao I need help. - Mujhe madad chahiye I am hurt - Mujhe chot lagi hai Basic words: Hello, Hey - Namaste/ Namaskar Yes - Haan No - Na , Nahi Okay - Theek hai Bye - Phir milenge Good Morning - Suprabhat Good Night - Shubh Ratri Sorry - Maaf kijiye Thank you - Dhanyawad/ Shukriya Please- Kripaya Let’s go - Chalo/Chaliye Question words: What? - Kya? Why?- Kyun? When? - Kab? How? - Kaise? Who? - Kon? Where? - Kahan?/ Kidhar? Directions:
India is very popular among foreign nationals for its Ayurveda. If you are unaware what it is, Ayurveda is an ancient system of life and medicine. It is used to heal people and has been in India for thousands of years. It uses minerals and naturally occurring substances to heal. To get yourself a better insight; here are a few pieces we invite you to read. This first link will introduce to Ayurveda and its benefits. The article is titled ‘Ayurvedic Massage- Ancient India’s Best Kept Secret’. It will reveal to you ayurveda’s therapeutic benefits, the elements it uses and the experience that one has while getting a massage session. This blog is must read before one sits down for a massage for the first time. You can read it here:http://www.ayurveda-retreat.co.uk/ayurvedic-massage-about/ This second piece is the one titled ‘Top 16 Healing Ayurvedic Treatments for Total Body’ and is written by Deblina Biswas. She starts off by telling you what is ayurveda in her opinion and what benefits it has. The most essential part of her blog are the 16 ayurvedic treatments that she has listed with a brief summary of each one’s boons. Read here to know about them:http://www.thefitindian.com/best-kerala-ayurvedic-treatments/ After knowing about the ayurvedic massages; if you are keen on experiencing one yourself, here are a few places in India which are famous for them. The article was published in Time of India and is called ’India’s 5 leading Ayurveda destinations’ The places that this blog describes are Kerala (one of the most famous ones), Uttrakhand, Goa, Udaipur. Read here to know where in these cities will you find a good place for it:https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/Indias-5-leading-Ayurveda-destinations/articleshow/15339457.cms This blog is a personal experience account by Claire Salter who loves exploring the world and finding the under appreciated places in the world and showing them off. Her article is titled ’Experiencing an Ayurvedic Massage in Kerala’ under which she documents her experience with an ayurvedic massage at a village called Vythiri in Kerala, India. Read it here:http://keralablogexpress.com/2016/03/10/experiencing-ayurvedic-massage-kerala/ Trabug - India’s First Travel Phone will be a tool that will help you explore India and will make your precious trips more enjoyable and completely hassle free. Time is of value and Trabug helps you save time everywhere as Trabug is loaded with recommendations about places to visit, to eat and about things to do. It also keeps your budget in check.
Pongal in South India, Lohri in North India, Uttarayan in Gujarat and Makar Sankranti in the rest of the country, these festivals are called by different names and are celebrated differently but what they all have in common is the spirit of the celebration. They are celebrated at the same time in January. The festivals celebrate the new year, the harvest, the oncoming of spring, offset of winter and the love and joy of living life. Read about each one here: PongalPongal is a 4 day celebration from January 14th to January 17th and is mostly celebrated in South India. It is also sometimes known as the Indian thanksgiving as people give thanks to the Sun God for the harvest. It is a very widely celebrated festival in Tamil Nadu and has been celebrated for over 1000 years now. The festival has 4 days namely Bhogi, Thai Pongal, Maatu Pongal and Kaanum Pongal. It is celebrated with loads of festive cooking and especially observes boling the first rice of the reason. Read these two blogs to know more:http://www.bitofvacation.com/blog/indian-thanksgiving/ http://isha.sadhguru.org/blog/sadhguru/pongal-significance-of-harvest-festival/ LohriLohri is an important festival in North India and is celebrated on 13th or 14th January. It is fondly known as the bonfire festival of Punjab. The festival holds a special significance for the Punjabi community. The festival also marks the offset of winter and the oncoming of the spring season. The Sun is thanked and fire is prayed to. A bonfire is lit. the offerings and prayers are made to it. The celebrations include merry singing, cooking and dancing and singing folk tunes. The children have their little trick or treat where they receive rewari, gajak, jaggery as treats in exchange for good singing. Read these two blogs to know more:http://eleanorandtheelephants.blogspot.in/2012/01/lohri.html