India Round Up
From tropical beaches, magnificent mountains and desert landscapes, to posh metropolitan cities and spiritual temples – India has it all.
I was lucky enough to travel through India for three months last year and fell in love! How do I even begin to describe such a special place?
It has this mysterious and enticingly exotic charm to it. It’s bold and chaotic, marching to the beat of it’s own drum. It is diverse, culturally rich and spiritually awakened. The vibrant sights and sounds captivate and overwhelm the senses – It can be infatuating and infuriating all at the same time. It’s the kind of place that will test your patience and your character; it will open your eyes and challenge your beliefs; it’s a place where comfort zones dissipate and life lessons are unveiled…and to top it off, just when you think you’ve begun to figure it out, India will blow your mind all over again.
I really could not have imagined a more fulfilling experience, which is why I want to share it with you! I will work to write more in depth articles on each destination, but for now here is a round up of my 3 month journey through India.
3 Months in India:
Neyarr Dam, Kerala
Neyarr Dam is a small rural village approx. 30km outside of the larger city centre Trivandrum (Thiruvananthapuram), were I began my journey. From there I set off in search of Neyarr Dam’s serene ‘Sivananda Yoga Ashram’ founded in 1959 by Swami Vishnudevananda. Located on the waters of the Neyarr river, the ashram is as peaceful as it gets, where your days will be filled with meditation and yoga practice.
Varkala is a tiny, touristy beach town on the Western coast of India. Atop the cliffs you will find various shops, cafes and restaurants overlooking this beautiful beach, perfect for a few days of rest and relaxation.
Kochi (Cochin) is a port town off the West coast of India, known for its rich history of trading on its shores. As such, Kochi is known for its spices. Take advantage of this and learn how to cook traditional Indian cuisine.
Munnar is home to Kerala’s lush green tea plantations. Discover how tea and cardamom are grown while taking in the picture-perfect scenery.
Explore the vibrant markets and busy streets of Mysore – the sights and sounds will be sure to wow you!
The architecture and geographic landscapes in Hampi are incredibly beautiful and intriguing. Take a tour of the UNESCO World Heritage Sites to learn about Hampi’s past and present gems.
With roughly 12 million people, Mumbai (formerly Bombay) stands out as the cosmopolitan jewel of India, offering a diverse range of cultures, religions, and cuisines. Its posh restaurants, shopping malls and nightlife are sure to provide tons to keep you occupied during your stay.
Udaipur is an exquisite lakeside town in the state of Rajasthan, boasting dreamy sunsets, an eloquent palace on the water and romantic outdoor restaurants.
Take a camel-back, camping trip through these dunes in the Thar desert – it’s one of the most incredible experiences I have had! Sleeping out in the open under the stars, you can feel the immense silence and darkness envelop you and calm your senses. The sky is so clear, you may just see out into the galaxy!
With palaces and old-world kingdom walls, the history and architecture in Jaipur is not to be missed! Not to mention the famous Lassiwala shop!
Agra, Uttar Pradesh
The world famous Taj Mahal is sheltered within Agra’s city limits – the ivory white mausoleum is quintessential to any trip to India!
India’s capital city has much to see and do! For world class food, historic sites, theatre, shopping and culture – look no further!
Manali, Himachal Pradesh
Manali is known for its laid back mountain vibes, positioning itself as a perfect base to explore the himalayan mountains. Take a time out from the hustle and bustle of Indian cities, and find a trekking group to set out in the heavenly himalayas.
Dharamshala, Himachal Pradesh
On the edge of the Himalayan mountains, this city is home to the Dalai Lama’s temple and a rich Tibetan culture. Learn about the Tibetan government-in-exile, partake in some meditation courses at the Tushita Tibetan Buddhist centre or get some fresh mountain air in the himalayan foothills.
Best known for its treasured Golden Temple, pilgrims come from across the world to to bathe in its sacred waters, which are said to be blessed. In the temple complex, you can literally feel the positive vibrations as hundreds of people simultaneously pray and chant to pay homage to the Sikh holy book.
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