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Exclusively in Dubai: 16 Unusual things to do

Dubai is a treasure trove for tourists which combines the Mystique and history of the Arabian desert with the gleaming amenities of a modern metropolis.

If you and your family are looking for the top things to do in Dubai, here is the most recommended list of best things to do in Dubai.

1. Enjoy the beautiful view of the city from the Burj Khalifa.

Burj Khalifa, the magnificent structure is a highlighting tourist entry in Dubai. With its superfast elevator it reaches the 124 floors in 60 seconds. Just hold your breath and you will be at the top to experience the night/day view of Dubai.

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2. Watch the musical performance of the dancing Dubai fountains.

One of the best thing to do in Dubai  – is to watch the musical performance of the fountains found in the Dubai mall. These can also be viewed from the top of the Burj Khalifa. With the gleaming lights this dancing fountain is a must to galore and adore!

Dancing Fountain Show

Dancing Fountain Show

3. Go on a shopping spree in the Souks.

Souk is an Arabic word which means ‘market’. Prior to the lavish malls in Dubai, there were souks that were used to buy things. If jewelry is your thing then head to the Gold Souk and get lost in a wave of glittering golden watches, bracelets, pendants and everything in between.

Naif souk, is the oldest souk in Dubai, which was earlier used as a market-place by the Bedouin tribes to trade camels. Now Naif Souk is one of the busiest souks in Dubai. When traders from around the world would come here, they’d unload their stuff at these souks. Which explains why most of the souks are located on either side of the creek. Many other souks are however spread all over the city. All these souks are mostly open till 10:00 AM to 10:00 PM, but few shops within these souks may close down for lunch.

Spice Souk

Spice Souk

The narrow streets bustle with shoppers and have a very vibrant atmosphere. Bargaining is a common rule in these souks, wear a comfortable outfit and carry lots of water and sunscreen to accommodate your shopping spree. Located right next to the Gold Souk, this street is one of those whose aroma would last in your mind forever.Yes, the Spice Souk is filled with colourful spices, such as cinnamon, saffron, cloves etc., coming in from various countries around the world.

Though you can buy perfumes from even the independent stores in the malls, if you want variety, then Perfume Souk is your place. This street is a collection of Perfume shops, in Sikkat al Khail Roads, Deira. It has the traditional Arabic ittars and also the latest collection of perfumes. Some shops even offer to create your personalized fragrances! This souk is well-priced, and bargaining is a custom here whether you want to buy perfumes, ittars, incense sticks and more. The souks and shopping malls here make Dubai a ‘Global Shopping Destination’.

4. Dash the sand dunes with Dubai desert safari and a special BBQ dinner.

Go for the desert safari and experience the thrill when the jeep bashes the sand dunes. Reach in the middle of the desert and get yourself clicked with the sand or with the ancient eagle or vultures.

Enjoy the sunset views in the Desert

Swap the city life for solitude moments in the desert. Observe the camels roam in the habitat.

 

Feel the grains of the sand on your fingertips!

Feel the grains of the sand on your fingertips!

5. Visit the historical Dubai Museum.

When you visit the Dubai Museum – housed in the Al Fahidi Fort which was built in 1787, one of the oldest existing building in the city – you’ll encounter colorful dioramas and exhibits that depict everyday life in the days before the discovery of oil.

The museum, which was opened in 1971, features galleries that recreate historic Arab houses, mosques, Souks, date farms and desert and marine life. It also includes an exhibit on pearl diving, with sets of pearl merchants weights, scales and sieves. You can view artefacts from Africa and Asia, as well as local finds from several archaeological digs that date back to the third millennium BC.

6. Have fun in the Jumeriah beach.

The glorious Jumeirah Beach lies along Dubai’s coast, providing stretches of soft white sand on which to relax and play. Visitors to Jumeirah’s hotels, like Burj Al Arab, enjoy private beaches offering water sports. If you’re not a hotel guest, you’re welcome to relax at Jumeirah Beach Park, the public portion of the beach. You can barbecue, stroll around the café, or simply grab a mat, lay back, and take it easy while the sun sets.

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Here am I, posing like Shah Rukh Khan at the Jumeriah beach.

7. Tour the snow-white Jumeriah Mosque.

One can gain an insight into Islamic life at this beautiful mosque. This mosque is one of the most iconic and much-photographed landmark in Dubai, especially when lit up against an evening sky, it’s also the only Dubai mosque to open its doors to non-Muslims.  Tours to the Jumeirah Mosque are organised six days a week from Saturday through to Thursday at 10:00am. You don’t need a reservation to attend, but you should arrive at the main entrance to the mosque at around 9.45am.

The tour, which is as much fact-finding as it is sightseeing, lasts around 75 minutes. Please remember to wear modest dress – however if you need it traditional attire can be borrowed from the mosque.

Most unusually, photography inside is allowed, so it’s worth bringing a camera.

 

Jumeriah Mosque

8. Marvel the stunning Burj Al Arab.

The distinctive sail-shaped silhouette of Burj Al Arab Jumeirah is more than just a stunning hotel, it is a symbol of modern Dubai.

Yet for all the wonder this stunning structure provides when you finally see it in person, it is the service within that really makes the Burj Al Arab Jumeirah so extraordinary.

 

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The magnificent Burj Al Arab

9. Ski or play a game of bowling at the mall of Emirates.

Ski Dubai, located in Mall of the Emirates offers a variety of activities and gives you a chance to ski, snowboard, toboggan, zip line, take a chairlift ride and enjoy the views or just take part in a friendly snowball fight with friends and family in the Snow Park and experience a penguin encounter all under one roof. Magic Planet is the leading family entertainment center in the region. For those after a more laid-back experience, bring your friends and family to the incredible Yalla! Bowling and battle it out to see who can walk away with that top score at this state-of-the-art attraction.

10. Stroll down the Dubai creeks to get a picturesque view from a Dhow cruise.

Dubai Creek is one the Emirate’s most picturesque locales that particularly stick out for its traditional aura and charm. Running through the heart of the city, the creek segregates Dubai into two major districts: Bur Dubai and Deira. A retro feel is evident in every nook and corner of the creek and its surrounding areas. Old-style buildings that reflect rich Arabian hospitality, traditional style wooden dhow, and bustling souks – all make Dubai Creek a must-visit landmark of the city.

Cruising down Dubai creek is a novel experience, one which you cannot miss when in Dubai. Imagine yourself on having dinner on a Dhow Cruise with the fascinating lights of Dubai creek with Music and Tanoura Dance show with a sip of your favorite drink and BBQ buffet dinner.

 

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Night view of the Dhow Cruise in the Dubai creeks

11. Spend a day at the Atlantis Palm.

The legend of Atlantis comes to life in Dubai and it more than lives up to the myth! This lavish marine-themed resort combines luxury with a whole host of unique attractions that will keep you and the kids awe-struck from the first day of your holiday right through to the last.

12. Get spinned by the Tanoura dance.

Tanoura means skirt in English and Tanoura dance is a kind of folkloric dance which is very common in Islamic countries. The tanoura dance developed from sufi dance in Turkey and Egypt, distinguished by the use of a multicolored skirt.

The philosophical basis for the spinning is from the idea that says the movement in the world begins at a certain point and ends at the same point, therefore the movement has to be circular.

When the tanoura dancer moves he is like the sun and the dancers around him are like the planets.The dancer unties and removes four different skirts during the finale.Their various roundabouts symbolize the succession of the four seasons and their anti-clockwise movement is exactly like the movement around the “Kaaba” (the holy Shrine in Mecca) When the dancer raises his right arm up and points his left arm down, this represents the joining of earth and heaven together.

When he turns himself around, it is said that he enters a trance-like state, trying to become light and go up to heaven.

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Tanoura dancer performing during the BBQ dinner in the deserts

13. Capture the best sunset in the deserts.

Let the setting sun’s warm glow caress your mood. Sunset is still my favorite color!

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14. Wonder the twist on the Cayan Tower.

Built at a cost of around Rs. 1578 crores, the 80-storey residential Cayan Tower is  twisted at 90 degrees from top to bottom and boasts 570 plush apartments.

Twisted Cayan Residential Tower.

15. Eat Dates

While in India, I rarely eat them but in Dubai, dates are part of my nutrition. Try out dates – they are healthy, vegan, sweet, and a traditional snack of that region. They also make a great gift for your loved ones back home, so why not buy a little package when in Dubai Deira?

16. City Walk

There are so many new areas in Dubai that you might not be able to visit all, but add City Walk to your itinerary. Whether you visit with kids (they surely will love it wit all the activities they offer for younger tourists) or as an adult.

It is an interesting place to stroll along – especially in the evening when all the stores and places get illuminated and you have a lovely view of Burj Khalifa.

Dubai Street Art

Dubai Street Art

You will even find some street art there and you have plenty of options to dine here, too.

Enjoy your time in Dubai!

I Love Dubai

I Love Dubai

…The end 🙂 Though I could probably add many more things, I stick to these great things to do in Dubai.

Hope, this list inspired you and you´ll have found great ideas what to do when in Dubai.

 

Merlion

Stunning Singapore – A man made beauty!

Singapore !!!!

It’s a total man-made beauty. A small and beautiful country. The country known for its cleanliness, which also wears the crown for being the most cleanest country of the world !!!
Singapore is just a 5 hours flight from Mumbai. As soon as you land, be ready to enter the best airport in the world called the “Changi Airport”. Let me tell you that it has already won the award for being the Best Airport 5 times in a row up till now.
There is no best time to visit Singapore. It is an all year destination as the weather is almost same throughout the year. However, if you want to enjoy the Christmas celebration and decoration then December is the best month (which was my travel month too).

 

The climate is mostly rainy here. You can expect 15-20 mins heavy showers almost daily but after that it is dry as a desert. The temperature is always around 25 – 30 degrees Celsius and very humid. So while roaming, don’t forget to carry umbrellas or your rainy wears!
Singapore government claims of having one public transport at a distance of 300 meters from any part of the country, and to my surprise the claims are true! At any point you will find a bus stand or a metro only at a walking distance of 300 meters. The tickets available are at nominal rates and cheaper for Singapore residents. Other than this, Uber has its presence here.

 

At the Changi Airport

At the Changi Airport

Places to Visit:

  1. Universal Studios –

    Universal is basically part of Sentosa island. But you actually need to dedicate one entire day to enjoy all the rides and shows here.
    I would advise you to visit this on a week day, as on weekends it is generally way too crowded and you will spend most of your time standing in those long queues.
    Universal Express Pass is one of the way to avoid those long queues.And is two times your normal ticket price.So weekends can get sorted after buying this pass. Recommended Rides are Transformer and Gallatic.
    Other than this, they have the Mummy, the Shrek and Jurassic Park, etc.

    Universal Studios

    Universal Studios

  2. Sentosa –

    Sentosa island is basically a place where you can find s.e.a aquarium, resort, trick eye museum, sky luge, etc. Trick eye is a place, where you can find illusion creating things to click photos. S.e.a aquarium is a well maintained aquarium with different species of fishes.

     

    S.e.a Aquarium

    S.e.a Aquarium

    Aquarium

    Aquarium

    Sky luge is a different experience. It’s a type of go-carting where you have to drive a luge on a track. In Madame Tussaud’s museum, you will discover the statues of many renowned Bollywood and Hollywood celebrities. You can avoid this, if you are a little tight on your budget. I avoided this as I was least interest in doing it. Wings of time is the best laser fountain show.

    Trick Eye

    Trick Eye

    Cable cars help you travel to and fro Sentosa island from the start point i.e. Mount Faber. You will find many bells hanging here, it is said that these bells are to bring in good luck. These bells can be brought from the local vendors available there.The cable car also has an amazing VIP arrangement where the car is given to you for 45 mins along with which you get a complimentary dinner with wine/champagne to enjoy the beautiful view of Sentosa island. Sounds like a perfect romantic date. But yes it’s a bit on the high-end.

    Sentosa

    Sentosa

  3. Marina Bay Sand –

    A must visit luxury seven star resort with an excellent view. To stay here will be a dream for so many and the view from the top is something that can mesmerize you and just so we don’t miss the view, the hotel has made a Bay deck which is accessible for other people as well. If you are doing this, you can avoid going to Singapore flyer as the view which both of them offer is same and hence no point in spending double. In my opinion, Marina Bay is far better option than flyer as you have freedom to move anywhere you like, unlike flyer where your moments are restricted to a small cabin. The flyer ride is of 45 mins so you can imagine how slowly it is going to move.

  4. Gardens by the Bay –

    Gardens by the Bay is a nature park spanning 101 hectares of reclaimed land in central Singapore, adjacent to the Marina Reservoir. The park consists of three waterfront gardens: Bay South Garden, Bay East Garden and Bay Central Garden

  5. Singapore zoo –

    For those who love to visit zoo especially family along with kids, this place will definitely surprise you. Famous among tourist is the opportunity to have a breakfast with the orangutans. From polar bears to Giraffes, from cheetah to White tiger to Kangaroos, you will find all the known and some unknown species of animals and birds here. This zoo is well maintained with sections dedicated to species from various continents of the world. Kids are definitely going to love this. One of the another attraction at the Zoo is River Safari. Here you can also see pandas which generally are only seen in China. On this ride, you are taken around the zoo in a boat.

    Singapore Zoo

    Singapore Zoo

  6. Shopping – Mustafa

    A super market where you can find anything and everything from a needle to a wedding gown. And also remember that they claim NOTHING can beat their price here as it is the cheapest market in entire Singapore.

 

Food options:

If you are an Indian and plus a vegetarian like me then there are food options outside Mustafa shopping centre. This place is like Mini India. They have Balaji, Kailash Parbat and many more Indian Vegetarian Restaurants where you can enjoy your food. But other than this part, Singapore is little difficult for vegetarians as you hardly find pure veg food anywhere.

It was an awesome vacation. We had a fabulous time, and I would change absolutely nothing. We did a lot but it was all fantastic and achievable in our time frame. I recommend everything we did.
It is really an amazing place to visit, believe me, just do it!

 

Thank you Nikita Mehta for sharing and contributing your travel experience about Singapore. Get in touch with Nikita on Facebook by clicking here.

 

Dubai – The Queen of the East

 

You can take everything I have,

You can break everything I am,


But you’ll never tear me down,


As I’m rising from the ground.


Like a skyscraper.


– Demi Lovato

Dubai, the Queen of the East is a city of superlatives. With all the record-breaking landmarks and destinations, it also has kept it’s most of the old charm preserved. Allow me to present to you – the most well rounded experience I’ve had during my stay in Dubai.

Just a three hour flight away from Mumbai is this epic city where one can drive a Ferrari or a Hayabusa on the roads.They have lots of cool cars!

The work week of the Arab world is from Sunday to Thursday. Working on Sunday might seem a little boring but who wouldn’t if you have to pay no income taxes…..hahaha!

Playing in sands is so fun!

Playing in sands is so fun!

A great expanse of the Arabian desert surrounded all around with sand dunes and palm trees that will overwhelm you. Then comes the buildings, neatly arranged like monopoly houses, roads which are ruler-straight. Then you see the human habitation and suddenly realize that the desert is gone. Wow!

Dubai skyscrapers

Dubai skyscrapers

Dubai is divided into two main parts: ‘New’ and ‘Old’ Dubai. New Dubai has all the expensive malls and stores and large skyscrapers. The conservative culture of this Middle Eastern city with strict laws don’t really apply here. The Old Dubai has all the Mosques, Museums, Souks and the Dubai river where one can afford a budget living and mixing with the locals. You are unlikely to see a place where the divide between the “have nots” and the “have yachts” is so apparent.

Rain in Dubai is similar to a drink that we drink so fast after the marathon exertion has just passed… hahahahah and don’t forget that water is expensive here!

Also, Dubai is located in a stable zone with minimal risks of Tsunamis or earthquakes.

Best time to visit

The best time to visit Dubai is in between February and April when the temperatures are in twenties but this is also the peak season. Remember that during the Ramadan most of the restaurants are closed and this lasts for a month.

How to save money?

Dubai is expensive, so be prepared to pay! You can still save a little by using some of the following tips:

  • Use Local Transportation – Metro pass for a day costs 14 AED. This is the best option over taxi services. You can also try the bus.. although I haven’t.
    View of a tunnel from a metro.

    View of a tunnel from a metro.

  • Try local food – The local food is a must try..if you still don’t like the Sultan dishes then try the hoppers
  • Shopping – Try the Souks and the Kamara instead of the expensive malls for souvenirs.

Save all this money and wait for my next article to do amazing things in Dubai!

Do you think, Dubai is a sustainable city? 

With its Skyline being the most sparkling in the Middle East…are the grounds on which these skyscrapers built struggling from environmental problems? Do comment what you feel until my next article.

A Trek to Dugarwadi through the Woods

Water flows across the rocks,

The beauty seems to make the time stop,

A waterfall, stands so tall,

A beauty not often saw!

– Pixie Young.

The monsoon rains are here, pouring down, flowing fast in the drains. Monsoons – where the sky decides to undress it’s blue skin and yellow soul with rays of light caressing the warmth, trees with wet green eyes, dark clouds above the sea and the waves laughing out showing its white teeth.

Such was my experience when I visited the Dugarwadi waterfalls in Nasik.

Mountains of Trimbakeshwar road. Image courtesy: Atharav Joshi

One rainy day we decided to just get wet and ride on our bikes to explore Nasik and witness the pristine surroundings. So we moved on to the Trimbakeshwar roads where it’s a pleasure to ride with lush greenery everywhere. We went straight upto the checkpoint of Trimbakeshwar and there were 2 ways to go.. first one was to enter the Trimbakeshwar which I had seen before twice or thrice and the second was the unexplored way. It seemed like it was calling me! And then we took a right from the checkpoint towards Dugarwadi (till then I had no idea about this place). On the way, the mountains of Trimbakeshwar road were covered with clouds and fog and they mesmerized me with their serenity.

Beautiful wet roads

It was a beautiful journey from Trimbakeshwar checkpoint towards Dugarwadi. The scenic views took my heart away. This impressive waterfall is 30kms away from the main Nasik. There are very few people who know and have visited Dugarwadi and hence it is clean, clear and unexplored.

Sight while moving towards Dugarwadi

The fresh air, the water streams and the dense forest were being seductive while moving towards Dugarwadi.

After reaching the place, we had to park our bikes and trek down to 1-2kms to witness the beautiful Dugarwadi waterfall. It’s a descending trek via the hills where river guides you with its flow. After reaching a point you can see the beautiful Dugarwadi waterfall flowing, cascading like a never ending stream. A flow, a single direction with no beginning and no end in sight to be. From this distance, it makes perfect sense to this beauty. There is also a rope tied to get into the running waters of this waterfall. Some adventurous people try out that as well. But make sure that the water level may rise anytime and you can get trapped into the rushing waters.

From this point you can decide whether you want to stay up or go down via the rope into the rushing waters.

Dugarwadi waterfall view is breathtaking and spectacular for those who want to witness the nature at its best in Nasik monsoons. I recommend that while visiting this waterfall, people should go in groups and not alone or in couples, it’s not safe.

Responsible Travel Note: I suggest that we should not litter when we visit such places. It’s our responsibility to keep our Mother Earth clean and pure. Carry all the trash that you make or find on your way and dump it into your Dustbins once you are home. 

Responsible Travel to Dugarwadi

My choice is to support and minimise the environmental impact because it’s a more immersive way to travel. What’s yours? Would you like to visit the lovely but the lonely Dugarwadi waterfall? Comment to let me know.

The Liebster Award 2017

It feels amazing to get my first nomination for a blogging award, yuppie! How lucky do I feel(really grateful and honored)! It seems like the people on the internet are enjoying reading my blog-posts…phew! The super coolest thing in the Blogosphere is this ‘Liebster Award’.

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So what is Liebster Award? – Basically, it’s a virtual award passed on by bloggers to other bloggers…the idea is to connect to and promote other bloggers in the community.

I would like to thank Alina Marcu of Ask the doctor. Break the fog. for the nomination. Alina is a lovely person who is also a qualified Doctor, Nutrition and Lifestyle Consultant. She promotes healthy lifestyle and strives hard to get you disease free!

Why I started this blog (Endlessly Exploring Earth)?
My story is that, I started blogging because I wanted to express what I think about Travel and be a source of information for as many people as I can by sharing my experiences about the places I have discovered. And in return create a brand name for myself.

How I started blogging?
In the month of March’17(yes, my blog is pretty new), I was sitting in office and uploading a picture on Facebook about my honeymoon where this idea clicked in. Instead of describing the things in short for every picture I thought it was better to write down a post about the climate and scenery I witnessed. So I did a quick research on how to start blogging and create your own website. And I followed all the steps…voila! I’m here!

LIEBSTER AWARD 2017:

There are a few steps you have to take as you accept this award:

1.Write a post about how and why you’ve started this blog.

2. Include the person who nominated you into your post, add a link to their blog and a short description.

3. Nominate 15 other bloggers for this award.

4. Give new bloggers two pieces of advice.

5. Notify the bloggers you have nominated for this award and provide the link to your post.

New Bloggers, Welcome to the ‘Blogosphere’!

My list of Nominees:

  1. Komal Karnani of Zistboon
  2. Marina Ninuška Gradac of Moonstears
  3. Yash Dodeja of Techsoid
  4. Indya Shaw of The small adventurer
  5. Anushka Aggarwal of Roam on ur own
  6. Jenny Edwards of Jenny Rose
  7. Michelle Largen of Our Endless Journey
  8. Hermine-Jane Bagumyan of Hooked on stories
  9. Ana Martins of UARTSTYLE.COM
  10. Teri Stephens of Buy this Cook that
  11. Vedant Choksi of The Random Buzz
  12. Yvonne Jinx Patrick of THAKICKFIEND
  13. Christoph Mauer of Trendablaze
  14. Ashley Odekirk of Little rays of life
  15. Soniya Saluja of The belly rules the mind

My advice to the bloggers would be

  • Experiment –
    Write a list post. Write a short story. Have an experience and then write about it. You often don’t know what’s going to resonate with readers when you’re starting out, so don’t be afraid to experiment and try a bunch of different styles. Once you find one or two that fit, keep testing them out.

  • Be helpful –
    Most people say “add value” – but that really doesn’t mean anything. Instead of “adding value”, be helpful. Ask people questions and then answer those questions. If you don’t know the answer, do the leg work to find out and then share your research with them. It’s 1,000 times more valuable than trying to “add value” abstractly.

Happy Blogging!

 

 

 

Cryptic Chamarel

Cryptic because its hard to understand Chamarel.

Chamarel is nothing but the 7 coloured earth in Mauritius. This geological formation is a relatively small area of sand dunes comprising of seven distinct colours of sand(approximately red, brown, violet, green, blue, purple and yellow). The main feature of the place is that since these differently coloured sands spontaneously settle in different layers, dunes acquire a surrealistic, striped colouring.

Chamarel in the Afternoon

Chamarel in the Afternoon

The different colours of the earth are caused by decomposed basalt gullies, turned into clay. The colours are created by the chemical content present in the soil. It is said that if you mix the colours together, they will separate on their own.
Chamarel is a wonderful mountain hamlet and an alternative to coastal Mauritius and all those beaches.

Photo credits : Tourism-Mauritius.mu

Photo credits : Tourism-Mauritius.mu (http://www.tourism-mauritius.mu)

At first you’ll notice shadows on the hills, creating the illusion of different colours, but soon you will realise that the colours are real and the shadows were the illusion.
The best time to visit the Chamarel is during the sunrise. The sun rays distinguishes each and every colour of this 7 coloured earth. Nowadays the 7 coloured earth is protected by a layer of fence as the number of tourists have increased.
The unique site of these coloured mounds is the perfect place to weigh in on the misery of their formation. And that’s the reason of this natural phenomena in Mauritius to make it the most prominent Tourist destination.

Me in the Botanical Gardens

Me in the Botanical Gardens

You can stare at the wonders of nature or make friends with the giant tortoise or walk the botanical gardens near Chamarel.

Old Giant Tortoise

Old Giant Tortoise

 

Travelling is truly cathartic. I think it caters to the child inside each one of us, who wants to explore, discover, experience and ultimately become wiser by the accumulation of memories and aggregation of friends.

What do you think about this article?

Comment below to let me know whether you would drive to see the natural phenomena in Mauritius apart from taking a dive at the beaches.

Raise your glass at Sula Wines

 

“Language is wine upon the lips.” Rightly said by Virginia Woolf.

 

To taste the best Indian wine one should definitely try to visit Sula wine which delivers the part city, part country side kind of wine in taste. This is my favorite place, whenever I’m in Nasik I definitely hang out here. The atmosphere here is awesome! The sky is so tragically beautiful that at night it seems like it is a graveyard of stars!

Vineyard view from the rooftop restaurants

Vineyard view from the rooftop restaurants

Nasik is known as the Wine Capital of India and it has the most suitable climatic conditions for grape cultivation. Sula Vineyards founder Mr. Rajeev Samant took up the challenge of transforming barren lands of Nasik into wine farming stations. Sula Vineyards was officially established by Mr. Samant and Mr. Kerry Damskey, who happens to be an eminent Californian winemaker. Proud of its Indian heritage, Sula wines names the region on its bottles and uses an Indian logo – the sun signifying wine from warmer regions.

Pyramid of Sula Bottles piled up

Pyramid of Sula Bottles piled up

Sula wines is about 170 kms from Mumbai. These days with the help of NH160 it takes one to reach in just 3 – 4 hrs with some halts in between. So yes, some weekends the wine lovers can definitely raise their glass at the Sula wines.

Sula has a 1.5 acre Greek-style amphitheatre with professionally landscaped lawns. Its semi-circular seating makes the young crowd to enjoy the coolest festival – SulaFest at its best in the month of February. Sula also has camp outs planned under the smiling moon & twinkling stars. This location transitions easily from daytime to evening events, with the cool breeze from the Gangapur lake and the setting sun providing stunning backdrops for celebrations. I personally like to ride on a bike in winters to chase the winds and watch the birds in the vast blue peppered sky.

Sunset at the Gangapur Dam

Sunset at the Gangapur Dam

The tasting tour involves of a knowledgeable guide who introduces Sula wines history and the making of your favorite wines. Tours and Tastings are conducted every day, throughout the year. Except Dry Days. Tours & Tastings are held every hour from 11:30am to 6:30pm of the week. Their wine tasting sessions cost Rs. 250 per person (the amount may vary.)

Grape stomping– the best experience in the wine making is mostly carried out in the month of March. So plan your trip accordingly if you really want to stomp those grapes hard.

Wine Making Process in brief

Wine Making Process in brief

Once the tasting tour culminates, you can head to the roof top restaurant. The roof top restaurant gives a breath taking view overlooking the vineyards. Sula has a souvenir shop that sells mugs, t-shirts, key chains and a lot more creative stuff. They also have a wine shop where one can purchase Sula wines below MRP.

Sula wines illuminated at night

Sula wines illuminated at night

Sula also have 2 restaurants:  Soma – the Indian restaurant and Little Italy – a vegetarian chain serving Italian cuisine. 3 kms away from the vineyard location is the resort of Sula Vineyards called as Beyond. The resort is a beautiful place to say with almost 40 rooms and one Villa to occupy. You will be mesmerised by the infinity pool, pleasant weather and bespoke services.

Beyond- Sula Wines Resort

Beyond- Sula Wines Resort

The best time to visit Sula according to me is during December – March

 

Would you like to unwind with a glass or two at the Sula wines? Wine lovers should definitely take this trip.

If you have visited this place before and have a different story to share, please comment below to let me know how you have explored Sula Wines.

 

Victoria Terminus – Mumbai’s Hogwarts

 

Victoria Terminus – Mumbai’s Hogwarts

 

Victoria Terminus, now rechristened as Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus (CST) is undoubtedly the famous architectural landmark in a Gothic-revival style. Complete architecture is worked with carved stone friezes, stained glass windows and flying buttresses. This monumental train station is the city’s most extravagant Gothic building and an aphorism for colonial-era India. But still to the 2.5 million commuters who push past its massive portals everyday, this is still VT, the pulse of a throbbing city.

CST illuminated on Republic Day

CST illuminated on Republic Day

On every 26th January (i.e. on The Republic Day), CST is illuminated in the tricolor lights. CST has 18 bay platforms: 7 are for local suburban trains on the west side of the station and 11 are for long distance out-station trains on the east side of the station.The station has been the location of filming the “Jai Ho” song in Slumdog Millionaire and Ra.One. Also in 1956, the station was also featured in the film C.I.D. during the song “Yeh Hai Bombay Meri Jaan“. The Gateway of India, hotel Taj Palace, Colaba Causeway are just 10 mins from the CST.

 

If everything around you was beautiful, would you notice it at all if you crossed it every day? More than 3 million people pass through this terminus daily, this seemingly mundane hub is being missed.

See more about exploring in and around Mumbai. 

 

 

 

The Gateway of India – Grandeur of the city

 

The Gateway of India – Grandeur of the city

 

A trip to Mumbai is incomplete without a visit to the Gateway of India as the place is full of fun and excitement. It’s a gathering point for locals and a popular spot among youth and couples.

The Gateway faces the vast Arabian Sea, flanked by Mumbai’s another attraction, Marine Drive, a road running parallel to the sea and the world famous architectural marvel Taj Mahal Palace Hotel at the forefront. The Mumbai CST station is not far away too. A lot of ferries ply from Gateway of India to the Elephanta Caves.

Gateway of India has seen a number of terror attacks. The first major bomb blast was witnessed in 2003 which killed many tourists and the last infamous attack on Taj, Mumbai in 2008 where Gateway of India was the arrival point of the terrorists. In these attacks more than 200 people lost their lives and after that Gateway of India wore a deserted look for a few days.

The monument has become a site for all kinds of peaceful protests. Candle light marches are a common sight at this historical place.
The majestic monument is a must-visit at night, in its pristine glory against the backdrop of the sea. It is visited by millions of people across the world every year and is a very significant figure in the lives of the people of Mumbai, as the Gateway defines the grandeur of the city that is a culmination of both, historic and modern cultural environment.

 

What’s YOUR take on this? Do you agree or disagree with me? I’d LOVE to hear your thoughts. Comment right away!

Also let me know whether you would recommend this article to anyone.

 

Mystical Mumbai – The city that never sleeps

Mystical Mumbai – The city that never sleeps

 

“They call it a city that never sleeps,

Dreams at large; everything in heaps,

Buzzing all the time, different people different cons,

It has got its roses and its thorns.”

People here will always say that they are busy with their afternoons making them lazy and with night plans like crazy. Trust me, life in Mumbai is not easy! The city has a lot of masti and a little of maska but it cannot live without the Bollywood Chaska.

It’s the City of murmuring traffic and twinkling cars, the multi-millionaires & the movie stars. We’ve got it all, the vada-pav and the dance bars.

Mystical Mumbai – where the local trains usually run on time & violently rushing for a seat is not a crime. Here, its as usual, 3 PM for lunch and 12 AM to dine. People face hardships, but still say “it’s fine”.

Multi-lingual, multi-religious, city of unusual weather, I wouldn’t be wrong; if I say, it’s a city where the country comes together.

Mumbai is the commercial capital of India and has evolved into a global financial hub. Most of the buildings are during the British period, such as the Victoria Terminus (In 1996, the Minister of Railways, Suresh Kalmadi, changed the name of the station to Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus in honour of Great King Chhatrapati Shivaji, the founder of the Maratha Empire). Their architectural features include a variety of European influences such as German gables, Dutch roofs, Swiss timbering, Romance arches, Tudor casements, and traditional Indian features.There are also a few Indo-Saracenic styled buildings such as the Gateway of India.

The Gateway of India is a major tourist destination and a popular gathering spot for locals, street vendors and photographers In February/March they are joined by classical dancers and musicians who perform during the Elephanta Festival. Boats depart from the gateway’s wharves for Elephanta Island. Art Deco styled landmarks can be found along the Marine Drive.

Mumbai has the second largest number of Art Deco buildings in the world after Miami. In the newer suburbs, modern buildings dominate the landscape. Mumbai has by far the largest number of skyscrapers in India.