Bangalore: Thoughts and Helpful Hints

dsc00025India had never been a place that held much appeal for me and I didn’t have plans to ever visit. However, when a close friend was sent there on business and asked me to tag along at the expense of his company I jumped at the chance. My destination was Bangalore in the south of the country, affectionately known as the Garden State. This article covers my thoughts and experiences in the city and offers a few suggestions to help you prepare and survive if you decide to follow in my footsteps. Continue reading

Advertisements

Bangalore: Eat, Drink and Stay

Places to eat and drink

queens2

Queen’s (Indian)

As lost and confused foreigners in hectic Bangalore, my friend and I asked a local about his favourite place to eat and he was kind enough to take us here. From the outside Queen’s Restaurant looks pretty rundown and unremarkable but once you step in and give the food a try, you’ll find that looks can be deceiving. It turned out that the local person’s recommendation was a very good one indeed! Continue reading

Q&A: Is Bhutan for me?

dscn4925Thinking about a trip to Bhutan but unsure if it will be worth it? Getting to the last Shangri-La is admittedly pricey and, owing to the manner in which you have to pay, it can be a chore to arrange. However, you are guaranteed to come away with lasting memories from one of the world’s most unique and untouched cultures. I have put this Q&A together to better help people decide if a visit to the Kingdom of the Thunder Dragon is truly for them. Continue reading

Bhutan: Arriving in the Kingdom of the Thunder Dragon

planeviewBhutan. The land of the thunder dragon. A tiny country nestled between China and India, directly atop the Himalayas. All of the research I did on the place before I headed there promised that the mountain views, rolling valleys and endless terraced rice fields would be spectacular. Boy did Bhutan deliver on this front, starting with arguably the most incredible airport descent on the globe. Continue reading

Paro: In and About Town

dscn5074Paro, although not a must visit destination in Bhutan, still has a number of interesting places worth a look. There are a number of dzongs in the vicinity of the tourism-oriented town, including one of the oldest temples in Bhutan, and it also claims ownership of the country’s National Museum, International Airport and the valley that houses Bhutan’s most wondrous treasure, the Tiger’s Nest. Continue reading

Thimphu: A Jaunt Around Bhutan’s Capital

dscn4795Thimphu is Bhutan’s capital and most densely populated city with roughly 91,000 citizens residing there. It is the base for the country’s government and houses the palace of the current king and queen. When you arrive you will get your first chance to see the traditional design of Bhutanese homes, all of which must follow a certain theme as set by royal decree. Sights here include the impressive Tashichhoe Dzong and the Buddha Dordenma statue which offers some glorious bird’s-eye views of the capital nestled in the valleys below. Continue reading

Punakha: aka the Place with all the Penises

dscn4864Our second day in Bhutan involved a long and arduous drive to the district of Punakha. Although the distance between Thimphu and Punakha is only 70km or so, the drive took us well over three hours due to the terrible state of Bhutan’s mountainous road network. Punakha is famous for its picturesque dzong which is situated between the meeting point of two raging rivers and Chimi Lhakhang otherwise known as the Temple of the Divine Madman. There was, however, a far more juvenile reason for my excitement for this leg of the trip… Continue reading

Tiger’s Nest: The Jewel in Bhutan’s Crown

dscn5023Tiger’s Nest is likely to be the main factor in most visitors’ decisions to come to Bhutan. Despite being a country of almost unrivalled beauty, Taktsang is by far and away the jewel in the crown of this tiny Himalayan kingdom. Perched precariously at the very edge of a sheer mountain face, the location of the monastery almost defies belief and the views from the hike on the way up are unparalleled in their splendour. A visit to Bhutan would not be complete without stopping at this amazing landmark. Continue reading