Darjeeling: Sipping Tea In The Himalayan Foothills

darjeeling_himalayan_railway

The CuLT Post

The trip into the mountains is always interesting. The old Hill Cart road, the hustle bustle, students coming home from school, small towns packed with both vehicles and peoples and yes, there is a railway track on the right hand. The train just passed through here. I am going up to around 7000ft. to see the town of Darjeeling made famous as a British hill station. Thus, I am ascending through the clouds, imagining those bygone days which seems not so difficult. It’s June, a good time of the year for the clear skies. But, it’s raining up here. So, my hopes will go higher than the clouds for better views.

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As I move higher into the hills and another train passes by, it does seem to be clearing a little. Now that I have reached the town through the scenic route which constitutes small towns of Kurseong and Ghum…

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CARDAMOM HILLS

Enchanted Forests

Last of the Mountains  as the land mass of the Indian Subcontinent gives way to the gushing waves of Seas and Oceans.

rock hill Tail of The Western Ghats

Surrounded by Coconut Nut Trees and Neem trees these Rocky hills are called Cardamom Hills and are the tail end of one of the Oldest Mountains of India , The  Western Ghats.

the mountain Framed By Trees

Some of the Hillocks are capped by Temples which tell Tales of a time long gone by.

temple on the hill Dravidian Temple Architecture in Kanyakumari District 

The Western Ghats are a unique Biodiversity Hot Spot. Enchanting ??

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Agra on the Yamuna River

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agra octagonal

yamarella

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Usually in our armchair travels the last place we visit before moving from one country to the next is the capital city. In this case I have made an exception and left the city of Agra as the last city we’ll visit in India. This is because this city is home to the fabulous Taj Mahal. Agra sits on the banks of the Yamuna River in the northern state of Uttar Pradesh.

agra Taj-Mahal-Agra-Indiaagri taj mahalThe Taj Mahal is one of the finest monuments ever built. In 1983 it became a UNESCO World Heritage site. This world-renowned wonder at times is referred to as the epitome of love. It was built by Emperor Shah Jahan as a memorial to his beloved wife Mumtaz Mahal. Construction was started in 1632 and completed in 1653. The lovely monument sits on the bank of the Yamuna River. There are two smaller red stone buildings, one is…

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Jaipur the Pink City

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India - Jaipur the Pink City_03

yamarella

jai 2

Our armchair travels had taken us to Jodhpur the Blue City now we go from blue to Jaipur the Pink City. Jaipur is the capital of the Rajasthan state in India. The city was founded in 1727 and now is known as the Old City or Pink City for the trademark color of its buildings.

jai mubarak-mahal-jaipur

Mubarak Mahal  (Wekcome Palace) part of City Palace was built in the late 19th century for Maharaja Madho Singh II as a reception center for visiting dignitaries. It is a multi-arched and colonnaded construction built in a mix of Islamic, Rajput and European styles by architect Sir Swinton Jacob. Today it is part of the Maharaja Sawai Mansingh II Museum where you can see a collection of royal costumes and impressive shawls. An incredible exhibit is the capacious clothing of Sawai Madho Singh I. They say that he was 2m tall, 1.2m wide…

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Jodhpur the Blue City

yamarella

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No this city is not sad. In this case it is a blue city because the dominant color of the buildings and walls in the Old City is blue as far as the eye can see. There are many wonders that Jodhpur can offer and is located in the Thar Desert of the northwest Indian state of Rajasthan.  Traditionally, blue signified the home of a Brahmin, but there are non-Brahmins here too. The blue appears to glow with a mysterious light and the blue tint is thought to repel insects. It is also known as the “Sun City” because the city enjoys bright and sunny weather all through the year. The Old City circles the fort and is bounded by a wall with several gates. Of course this city has now expanded greatly beyond the Old Blue City.

jod mehrangarth 2Mehrangarh is one of the most awesome and magnificent forts in India…

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