Wisdom of Tradition : Food in Indian Baltistan

As a region, Baltistan refers to the area after the end of Nubra Valley in Ladakh. Before the partition of undivided India in 1947, Baltistan was a part of Ladakh. Presently, most of the region comprising Baltistan comes under Pakistan occupied Kashmir (PoK) and only a small part of Baltistan lies in India. Baltistan was once…

Top Experiences and Places to Visit in Barot Valley

Normally I take my own sweet time to pen down memories from various journeys. Sometimes a post that I share now may stretch back even to a few years! After all the fun lies in sharing secrets hitherto safely confined to memory. And yet, there comes a experience, out of the blue – that has…

A Fruit Holiday in Ramgarh, Uttarakhand

It was the epic summer of 2015 and I had come to Haldwani for the third time, trying to return to Jaipur. I had slow travelled to almost all parts of Kumaon over the last two months and predictably the heat of Haldwani had resulted in me turning back to cooler climes the first two…

The Shimla of Old : Life at Chapslee

While I backpack on most of my journeys, I enjoy experiential luxury once in a while, and when it is the home of the grandson of the erstwhile ‘Raja of Kapurthala’; you say yes! Chapslee has an evocative air to it and is one of the oldest houses in Shimla. The Kalka – Shimla Toy Train …

Top Memories of Nainital

It sure must have been a good omen when I reached Kathgodam in the wee hours of the morning. After all I was aiming to spend a long summer exploring all parts of Kumaon. The station was spic and span and the green mountains in the distance seemed happy to receive me. As soon as I walked…

A Backpacking Guide to Meghalaya

I explored a few parts of North East India in February; my journey started from Guwahati and continued around parts of Meghalaya, Assam and Arunachal Pradesh. In money terms, I spent on an average 800 Rupees per day including all expenses. Out of these I thought Meghalaya was really easy to navigate and being in close proximity to…

Leh-Ladakh : Amalgamation of Cultures

Strategically located on the Old Silk Route, the caravan town of Leh has over the centuries developed into a major entrepôt giving it a very cosmopolitan air. A walk through Leh almost feels like arriving back in time to a Central Asian capital, with a mixed racial composition of its inhabitants providing a cultural experience…

Leh in Winters : A Snapshot

When I had first booked a flight to Leh in the winter of 2013, it was really uncharted territory. Everyone said that all hotels in Leh are closed in the winters and I will freeze to death. By then I had travelled to remote areas on my own and known that most things are hearsay…

Hello from the Coolest Chai Café in India

Sounds of a guitar interrupt my walking reverie in the dusty town of Bundi in Rajasthan. Its been two days of lazy ‘sightseeing’ here and it is now time to walk the streets of Bundi and savour its culinary delights. It is evening and there is no rush, we have no check list and we aren’t looking…

Street Food in Varanasi

It was the middle of October and we were well and truly in the midst of an old fashioned October heatwave. I was here on an official invite from the Uttar Pradesh Tourism Board and had decided to stay back and wander around Varanasi in my own inimitable style to really explore it. While I…

McLeodganj – Best Cafés and Restaurants in the Himalayas?

McLeodganj as a getaway has everything going for it in the past decade or so. New age spiritual seekers have long been attracted to the zen-like calmness of the Buddhist monks. Dharamsala is the home of Dalai Lama and the headquarters of the Tibetan Government-in-exile. McLeodganj is 12 kilometres away from Dharamsala (Pronounced Dharamshala). As a tourist…