Top station,Munnar – Feeling of being on top of the world

Hey all!

     Hope you are all doing good. Yeah it had been a very long time since I wrote. I had to face lot of unexpected situations and health issues due to weather change which kept me away from writing. However, I am doing perfectly fine now.

     So here I come to share my amazing experience that I had at Top Station few weeks ago. Kerala had always been on top of my wish list for its Beauty, Food and friendly People. Especially Munnar. Munnar is known for its scenic beauty that has wonderful tea plantations. Few of my friends who had been brought up in North Eastern states of India where there are tea plantations also said that Munnar is something else when it comes to the beauty and the taste of tea(Yes I am a tea addict😁) . So I decided that this is going to be my next destination. 

     Munnar welcomed me and my friends with beautiful weather. As soon as we got down the bus, those words said by everyone about this place felt true. We could see hills surrounded by us which were covered by fog and clouds. 

Munnar Tea Plantations

     We had booked a room in 3rd floor of an hotel which had Balcony. Entire Munnar city could be seen by the Balcony and the view was just breath takingly Beautiful. By the time we got freshened up and came out of our rooms to have lunch, it had started drizzling. We had mouth watering authentic Kerala food i.e Appam, Fish Curry, Fish fry and we were all set to roam around the city.

View from Balcony

First we went to the most known place for tastiest tea which is Kannan Devan Hills and had tea that was made from fresh tea leaves. The auroma of it itself is just enough to get addicted to it. Next we visited Tea Museum where they show how the tea powder is made. On the way we visited rose garden, Mattupetty Dam, Echo Point which are all the must visit places in Munnar. Since the town is small, all these places can be covered in half a day. Boat riding and elephant safari is available in few of the places. 

Kannan Devan Hills

     Beware to carry warm clothes because nights in Munnar are freezing cold. You just cannot step on the floor without wearing socks. All you feel like doing is just curl upon the bed and enjoy the sound of rain and the view from Balcony with yummy food(Yes I am a foodie too😋).

     Next day our destination was Top Station which is 30 kms from Munnar town. There will be cabs arranged by hotel itself which can take you to Top Station. We left the hotel at 7.30 AM and by the time we reached Top Station it was 9.30 AM which was just the opening time of the ticket counter for the entrance. 

Top station

      On the way towards Top Station, I bet that you won’t stop Awwwing at Nature. We were the first customers to buy entry tickets for the day. From the entrance, we followed the trail which lead towards several view points. I have no words to describe the feeling that I felt. I had never experienced that Calmness, that Peace surrounded by the hills before. All we did was sit and listen to nature with soothing music.

Into the wilderness

We also found that there is trekking and camping in Top Station. Had we known earlier about it, had we not booked the return tickets for the same day, definitely wouldn’t have missed it. I usually say at end of my blog that there are lot more places to visit there. And yes I am going to tell you the same today as well. There are lot of places in Munnar which makes me want to go back again. Once again mesmerized by the work of Creator.

Bliss

Place : Munnar

Places to visit : Kannan Devan Hills,Tea Museum,Top station,Rose Garden,Mattupetty Dam,Echo Point,Shooting point

Best time to visit : Throughout the year

Cost of entire trip per person : ₹3000

Safety : Safe (Safe for only girls trip too)

I hope you all enjoyed this journey of Munnar with me. Let me know your opinion in comments below. Make good memories you all until I say Hi the next time….

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Wayanad – Gateway to heaven

Hello everyone!!

Most of the people who travels bring some or the other thing in the remembrance of the place they visit. What matters the most is bringing back those heart warming memories. 

Recently I visited Wayanad in Kerala and I have brought some very good memories from there. I hope this will help you to plan your next trip.

Let me first tell you how did it all start. Me and my four other friends were looking for a weekend getaway and one my friend took the initiative of choosing the place. Since Wayanad is in every south Indian’s bucket list ,my friend suggested Wayanad. And we were more than happy for the suggestion.

We were all set to leave Bangalore on a Saturday morning. We left Bangalore by car at 3.30 AM. The route we chose was Bangalore – Mysore – Gundlupete – Bandipur – Wayanad. One can enjoy the wilderness in Bandipur as it is completely forest area. We reached our homestay in Waynad at 9.30 AM.

 Bandipur – on the way to Wayanad


We fell in love with our homestay ‘Western Ghat Holiday Homes’ which was midst the nature. It had balconies with amazing view of Banasura Hill. And the owner was friendly and helpful in suggesting the places to visit.

 Entrance of homestay


Balcony view


Mandatory crazy pose of the trip



We all got freshened up and headed towards Banasura Sagar Dam. The weather complimented the drive. It was drizzling when we reached the Dam view point. Its a pretty good place covered in all green at one side and the river on the other. One can get a closer view of Banasura Hills from the river side. And if you are a pickle lover, you should definitely try it on the entrance of the Dam.

Banasura river view


Banasura Dam view

Banasura Hill view in rain


Next we headed towards our home as we wanted to rest a bit. Wayanad tea, hot yummy pakodas and rain; what else is needed for a memorable evening.

 Tea and snacks in rain


In the night we all got dressed up and headed towards ‘The Bungalow – Best Western Plus Ekobarn’ as the dinner party was on my friend as it was her birthday. Its a decent place and the food was yummilicious. It was a perfect first day at Wayanad.

Wood fire feel at ‘The Bungalow – Best Western Plus Ekobarn’

Yummy food at ‘The Bungalow – Best Western Plus Ekobarn’


Second day we all woke up early and got ready as we had planned to trek the highest point of Wayanad which is Chembra Peak that has heart shaped lake in the peak. We reached the ticket counter of Chembra at 8.30 and the tickets were sold out by then. We were told that they start issuing the tickets at 7.00 and only 200 people are allowed to trek per day. Hence we didn’t get the tickets for trekking but sight seeing. I have to admit that this was the biggest disappointment ever. If you are planning to Chembra Peak, please do be there by 7.00 AM. We still got to see some beautiful views from the sight seeing we went.

Sight seeing at Chembra


Wayanad tea plantation


Our next destination was Edakkal Caves. We have to trek 1.5 kilometers 1 side to reach the caves. It was concrete floor which was indeed very steep. Initially we were all in hurry but then realized we have to be slow. After 30 minutes of walking, we reached the ticket counter. From there we could see the stairs heading towards the caves. There are good number of stairs which will take you through the smaller caves. By the time we reached the main cave, we were completely drenched in sweat and were all very tired. The view from the top is good. And the cool temperature inside the cave felt relaxing for the tiredness. Inside the caves are the pictorial writings which is believed to date atleast 6000 BC. The stone age carvings of Edakkal are considered to be rare. You can choose this place only if you are a person who is interested in history. If you are not into history, then you would feel like it is not worth trekking 1.5 kilometers.

Steps leading towards caves


Stone age carvings at Edakkal Caves


View from the top of Edakkal Caves


Next we contacted ‘Muddy Boots’ as recommended by the owner of our homestay. Muddy Boots conducts several activities like cycling, zipline, bamboo rafting etc. It has the Waynad’s longest zipline. As we were already tired by the trek, we felt it would be good to be around water. Hence we chose Bamboo rafting. Bamboo raft is made by tieing several Bamboos together on which the bed is put where people can sit. It was a peaceful 1 hour.

Bamboo rafting


There are lot of other places in Wayanad for which I will definitely go back. The nature,people, food,weather everything makes me miss Wayanad so much. 

I hope this blog was helpful. Do let me know your opinion through comments. Happy weekend!!

Pondicherry – A Tiny French of Hindustan

Hello folks!

Hope you all had a great week. Today I am going to tell you all about a Tiny French that is in India. Wondering what am I talking about? Yes, you read that right. If you ever want to experience French in India, backpack right now and head towards Pondicherry.

Pondicherry which is also called as puducherry is one of the union territory of India. It is affectionately called ‘Pondy’. When the British gained control of whole India in the late 1850s, they allowed the French to retain their settlement in the country. And that is when puducherry was formed. 

If you are planning for a weekend getaway with your friends to experience something amazing in a foreign manner, this is where you should go. 

Those buildings!!!



Reaching Pondicherry early morning ,me and my friend called the owner of the homestay. The owner asked us to take an auto to French colony. We had no idea how to communicate with auto drivers as most of them were speaking in Tamil. So we thought why not use Google translator. By using Google translator I phrased a sentence in Tamil and walked up to an auto-driver. We were taken by surprise by how the driver responded in English by seeing us struggle to speak in Tamil. By this we got to know that communication wouldn’t be a problem.

We had booked our stay in ‘French colony’. As soon as we got down of auto,we were amazed to see the colorful buildings and the clean streets that were lined up by trees. The roar of the waves of ‘rock beach’ which was just 100 meters away added to the beauty of French colony.

We got freshened up and were all set to try some good French food. So we walked to ‘Cafe Des Arts’ as recommended by our host. It was a perfect start for the day ahead. The ambiance, the food, the service everything was excellent.

At Cafe Does Arts


Our next plan was to photoshoot in French colony. So we wandered around the streets of French colony adoring everything around us. We found lot of French people who spoke friendly and shared their experience of Pondicherry. Few of them were the residents whereas few were the travellers.

A candid photograph from French colony


We found lot of french cafes and were totally confused in selecting the good one because every Cafe looked up to the mark when it comes to ambiance. I have to tell you that Pondy has the best French and Italian food. 

When confused which restaurant to get into


Since it was Sunday, we also got a chance of shopping in the Sunday flea market. I could find all the trendy clothes there at cheapest price possible. You have to believe me when I say that I bought 5 awesome dresses at a cost of thousand bucks.

See you all next week. Until then keep travelling, make memories.

My reasons for visiting Udupi

Whenever we plan for a holiday, its normal that we search for the places of our kind in internet or get suggestions from our friends. It was one such holiday that I was planning it to be adventurous and also peaceful. So I chose Udupi. Are you wondering what is it that made me choose Udupi. Here are my reasons

1.Parasailing – Fly high to touch the sky

 As I already mentioned above that I wanted my holiday to be adventurous, I thought Parasailing is a good choice. Now that you already know Udupi has parasailing, you need to know in which beach exactly is the Parasailing done. Malpe beach which is 6kms from Udupi is one of the famous tourist attraction and that is where you get the treat of parasailing. It is handled by expert professionals at a very low cost of ₹800. This depends highly on weather conditions. I have to tell you that parasailing is one of the best feeling ever, looking at the calm sea underneath you and flying high to touch the Sky.

Best time to visit : October to March

Cost for parasailing per person : 800

Difficulty level : Moderate

Safety : Safe

Timings : Mon-Sun 8.00 AM – 5.00 PM

Duration : 5 -10 minutes

One of my favorite clicks of parasailing from Udupi


Sunset at Malpe Beach


2. St.Mary Island – A Paradise

Me who had never visited any island before, was pretty excited to visit St.Mary Island. It takes 20 minutes of boat ride from Malpe Beach to reach the island. Entire island can be covered by walking in 20 minutes. The boat from Malpe Beach to island comes for every 1 hour. So everyone can spend good time of 1 hour in the island and boat will take us back to Malpe beach. The island is filled with coconut trees and different types of seashells. This is one of the best place for photography. And camping is strictly prohibited.

Best time to visit : October to March

Cost per person to reach via boat : 300

Safety : Safe

Timings : Monday to Sunday 8.00 AM to 5.00 PM

That peace in St.Mary Island


Beautiful rock formation at St.Mary Island



3. Kapu Light House – Where the sea speaks

 Kapu light house is located in the town Kaup, which is on the way to Mangalore from Udupi. Kapu beach is one of the cleanest beach and is less crowded. Kaup lighthouse adds to the beauty of the beach. People are allowed to go to the top of lighthouse at a cost of ₹10 per person. The view of the beach from lighthouse is breathtaking. Entire Kaup town, St.Mary Island and Malpe Beach is visible from lighthouse. One can also enjoy the view of beautiful sunset.

Best time to visit : Throughout the year

Cost per person : 10

Safety : Safe

Timings : Monday to Sunday 10.00 AM to 6.00 PM

The inside of Kapu lighthouse


Kapu lighthouse during sunset


View from the top of lighthouse

Cost of total trip per person : 2500

Do let me know your opinion about the blog through the comments. Have a great week.

Gokarna-Land of Peace

Have you ever been in a situation where you badly need a weekend getaway but you are running low on money. That is when one of my other friend who had already been to Gokarna suggested this place mentioning that it has cleanest beaches. And this is also an alternative to Goa. Goa is a party place whereas this is peaceful.

So me and my friend backpacked and left to Gokarna on a Friday night from Bangalore. We reached Gokarna on Saturday early in the morning. We had booked a cottage by name ‘Paradise Cottage’. It was a fantastic stay in the hut and the staff were friendly and helpful. 

First day: Finishing breakfast at cottage we got ready for sight seeing.With 10 minutes of walk from the cottage,we reached ‘Kudle Beach’. It is one of the cleanest and peaceful beach with very less people. You will fall in love with this beach at a very first sight. There are few cafes on the beach which serve very good sea food with alcohol. 

Our next destination was ‘Om Beach’ which we had to reach either by beach trekking or by boat from Kudle.We chose for beach trekking.It takes 15 to 20 minutes of beach trekking. We were able to follow the trails and reach easily. Trust me it was worth walking.You will get to see the scenic beauty of Gokarna.Banana boat ride,speed boating is available. Few cafes ,temporary tattoos and boat rides completed the good day.

Second day: Checking out from the cottage,with our backpacks we went to say good bye to ‘Kudle Beach’. Took a boat in which we covered Om beach, half moon beach, Paradise beach, light house for 350 per person. Staying at half moon beach and Paradise are not allowed for obvious reasons. At last by evening went to the main town of Gokarna to do shopping and enjoyed sunset at Gokarna beach.

Place: Gokarna.       

Best time to visit: October to April

Places to visit: Kudle, Om, half-moon, Paradise (beaches),Gokarna main beach

Cost of entire trip: 3000

Safety : good (good for only girls trip too)