All posts filed under: PLACES

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A Blossoming Crowd at the International Cherry Blossom Festival Shillong,2017

  Not long after the first International Cherry Blossom Festival pulled in almost 30,000 tourists from the nearing states to Shillong last year, Meghalaya yet again geared up for the second international cherry blossom festival. It was held at different locations across Shillong from the 8th November – 11th November 2017 to commemorate the cherry blossom spread through out the state. A quick look back!  The Himalayan cherry blossom grown wild in Meghalaya has long been associated with Japan. This annual festival is a reminiscent of the local heritage with its white and pink blooms all over the hills of Shillong. With around 5,000 trees planted along the Umiam Shillong road, Mawphlang and Ward’s Lake, the government of Meghalaya further targets to plant 20,000 trees by the festivals’ 50th anniversary. Day One of this years’ event kicked off at the 5th Ground, Polo Grounds, Shillong hosted by the Meghalaya Minister for Forests & Environment, Clement Marak. The opening day was marked by a pleasant painting and drawing competition followed by story telling, local folklore and fashion show accompanied by a great display of lights at …

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Unearthing Manipur’s Pristine Beauty at Biisho Village | Travel

  Biisho is a beautiful village of the Poumai Nagas in the district of Senapati in Manipur. The village’s soil is known to be very fertile as it sits on the banks of Barak and Darai rivers.  The village is known for its lush valley called Zhophao, which is a vast meadow that serves as a pleasant spot for backpackers to set up tents. The valley serves travelers with a perfect weekend escape to the hills and the rivers. With some pretty unique experiences hidden in its depths, Biisho is more than just a destination to experience waking up to mist ladened mountains. As you enter the village, you will be greeted with excited and beautiful smiles of the locals. On a lazy afternoon, you will mostly find the villagers nonchalantly sipping a hot cup of tea sitting on their porches made of bamboo or by the verandah. A sight that is only but a slight cue of the simple joys of life that the blissful village enjoys. Bissho was once explored by travelers far and few. The village has …

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Faces | A Detox from Delhi Smog at the Ghats of Yamuna River

  “This is a shot of my friend, Emily, captured one beautiful morning around 5 a.m. at Yamuna Ghat in New Delhi. I love shooting portraits and exploring spaces with unique surroundings. My friends and I made this spontaneous plan to have a photoshoot at this location early morning. What began as an impromptu shoot ended up being a wonderful, fun experience. It was about an hour and a half drive away from the place we were staying. Devotees often come here early to bathe in the holy water and feed the birds. The birds you see behind in the picture are Siberian Seagulls. Hundreds of them migrate every year during winter season (between October and March) and flock across the holy rivers of Yamuna. We were told by the boatman that feeding the birds is often believed to bring good karma.  This was my first visit to Yamuna Ghat and it was truly an awe-inspiring sight watching the seagulls swivel around the rivers as we fed them, while riding on our boat. That was the exact moment I captured this photograph! The ambience …

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Farmstay & Experiential Travel : A Dash of Heritage and Beauty with Palighar Homestay | Kalimpong

  “Oh! Heaven is a place on earth.” December is almost here, and most of us are feverishly looking all over the internet for a great winter getaway to usher the New Year. Well, aren’t you the lucky one today? Because we have found you just the right place to be at when you step into the first day of the coming new year.  PaliGhar is a countryside farm-stay that’s situated in a small town called Echhey in West Bengal’s scenic destination, Kalimpong.  Kabir Pradhan, the founder of PaliGhar homestay, tells us why PaliGhar is more than just “another hotel”, and how they’ve worked on keeping the place connected to its roots, heritage and culture without compromising the quality of comfort and service they offer their guests. Tell us a bit about yourself. I am Kabir Pradhan and am 32 years old. After completing my Bachelors in Commerce at Calcutta University, I realized that the subject didn’t interest me much. I then pursued a Post-Graduate Diploma in Travel & Tourism Management from the Indian Institute of …

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A Cafe for Serious Coffee Lovers | Graph Cafe in Chiang Mai, Thailand

  To travelers who are familiar with the city of Chiang Mai in Thailand, many would agree that cafes are showing up in almost every corner of the city. Yes, there’s a vibrant coffee culture that is brewing within the heart of Thailand’s cultural capital – driven by the popularity of coffee+ leisure among the local youth and travelers alike.  It’s in the middle of this chaos, that ‘Graph Cafe’, tucked away in one of the old town’s streets, caught our attention. Meet the owners of  ‘Graph Cafe’- Kharuaporn Satraphai, 39 and his wife, Pae – Ajaree, 33. Thee gave up a lucrative job in Bangkok where he worked as an engineer to pursue his dream of owning his own cafe business. Despite no experience in the cafe business, the couple have managed to take their dreams to the next level with lots of passion, hard work and coffee – of course. They now own two outlets : Graph cafe and Graph Table Why did you name your cafe ‘Graph Cafe’? This is inspired by our journey …

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Jaintia Hills in Meghalaya | Places to visit in and around Jowai

Folks we are in Meghalaya today. Let us explore the Jaintia hills – starting from Jowai, which is the business and education hub of the region.  Jowai town in itself, is not the ultimate  ‘tourist location’ in the area, but it is surrounded by many local hotspots – so let us take you through some of them.  Jowai town is situated around 65 kms from Shillong (~2 hours ride). It’s a beautiful scenic town sitting shy on a plateau surrounded on three sides by the Myntdu river. “I love coming back to my hometown Jowai every once in a while – to escape from the noise, and to enjoy the fresh air and solitude. We have some really beautiful picnic spots – complete with luscious green grass and pink wild flowers. Aren’t these photos like a dream? Must visit! ” @orangesarelemons Syntu Ksiar is about 5 kms away from Jowai and is one of the most popular hangout spots for locals and tourists alike. People usually come here for picnics, and to enjoy an afternoon of fresh air and angling. …

Travel Diary of Anangsha Alomyan | Adventurer and Traveler from Assam

Weekends are always about the sudden urge to travel to some place new and getting away from the hustle of the city life. But then we always stop short of actually getting out to turn those travel plans into reality. Not all of us.  Meet Anangsha Alomyan, a 23-year-old student from Assam, a national level lawn tennis player, who’s an avid traveler and a big lover of the Himalayas. So Anangsha, tell us a bit about yourself. I am originally from Assam and am currently pursuing a masters degree in sociology from Delhi School of Economics. I have been interested in extracurricular activities since childhood. Most of the time, I devote myself to tennis and fitness, meeting friends and listening to music. And when I’m not playing doing any of that, I’m usually into photography or drawing. How did you develop a passion for travelling? Tell us about the places you’ve been to. I only started travelling exclusively since last year (in May 2016). I embark on trips depending upon my schedule. Sometimes I take …

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Visiting Nagaland | People, Sunsets and More

“We are visiting Nagaland for a friend’s wedding. We’re on our way to Noune resort* and had to stop for a shot of the sunset. So beautiful  . . . just like the people here – so calm, warm . . . and in a quiet beautiful world of their own” *Check out details about Noune resort here. Chilling in the Longchen Homestay (which is like super homely and everything there is made with bamboo and wood) – before heading out to explore Nagaland 🙂

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My Experience at Nagaland Hornbill Festival 2014

Our reader Priyanka Mhatre from Mumbai, shares her Hornbill festival with Roots and Leisure.  In December 2014, one of my friends Radhika asked me to join her on a trip to Nagaland. It was a random plan with a fleeting mention about a festival called Hornbill. I always loved impromptu plans, so I agreed to go with this one as well. Luckily, we had a friend from Nagaland, who helped us book our tickets to reach the festival through a convenient route. With just a week left for the trip, I thought of looking up the web  to learn more about Nagaland and the Hornbill festival. My Google search results threw up pictures that looked amazing. Apparently, the festival was organized in a hilly area where the local tribes participated to showcase their culture and lifestyle. I also came to know that our Prime Minister, Mr. Narendra Modi was scheduled to grace the festival with his presence. This wasn’t some obscure festival after all. I was going to be a part of something big! I …

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Come, Be a Part of Nagaland’s Hornbill Festival 2016

Hello there! It’s time to set sail on a journey to discover the undiscovered. The “festival of festivals”, Hornbill Festival 2016 is set to enthrall visitors from across the globe in the mystical North Eastern state of Nagaland. About the festival The Hornbill festival is named after the Hornbill bird, one of the state’s most venerated bird species that finds mention in a number of tribal cultural expressions. As one of the largest celebrations of indigenous warrior tribes of Nagaland, it is only fitting that the festival draws its name from Hornbill. The Hornbill Festival is held at Naga Heritage Village at Kisama near Nagaland’s capital city, Kohima. The Nagaland state government organizes the Hornbill festival every year from December 1 – 10. The first festival was held in the year 2000. This year, three other districts in the state : Dimapur, Mokokchung, Phek– will be given the opportunity to host the mega festival this year – so the festival will be spread across multiple districts this time. The aim of the festival is to revive and protect …