Silent Sunday: Images that speak..

IMG_2786_pic_edit_201805211741096485573420228384770_pic_edit_20171213160554-01Images that speak (2)Assam & Meghalaya trip (7)IMG_0248
Bhutan Diaries (8)Karma

Stret photography, Police bazar, Shillong (8)

Meghalaya Faces (9)Images that speak (1)IMG_21996485708083503044338_pic_edit_20171130114811-01.jpegPattadakal paintingImages that speak (1)

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A beautiful day: Exploring Perambikulam Tiger reserve, Aliyardam & Masanamman temple

Day 1: We started from Coimbatore at around 8:00 AM in the morning then we had a stopover at Pollachi for Breakfast at the popular vegetarian Gowri krishna restaurant. The tiffins here were delicious. Then we started to Anamalai Masani Amman temple which is located at Annamalai Hills, in Coimbatore district, enroute Topslip.

Masani Amman Temple: “Goddess of Justice”

This temple is believed to answer the prayers of the devotees in 3 weeks! Masani Amman Temple, also known as Annamalai Masani Amman Temple is located around 25 kms from Pollachi in Tamil Nadu.

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The temple is dedicated to Goddess Arulmigu Masani Amman who is believed to be a ‘Goddess of Justice’.

Interesting Stories behind the temple:

According to an interesting legend, during the Sangam Era, Annamalai was ruled by a chief called Nannan. He had a big mango grove and was so possessive of it that he appointed check post officials to guard the trespassers. It so happened that one day a woman was bathing in the Aliyar River and a mango came floating to her in the waters. Unable to resist tasting it, she bit it. This was reported to the ruler and the innocent woman was produced before him. She pleaded that she did not steal the mango. Nonetheless, she was executed. Angered by the unjustifiable ruler, her kins killed him in a battle. People then started worshiping her to honor her martyrdom and soon a temple was built for the same. Since the lady was killed, the deity was called as Shmasani, which in Sanskrit means ‘graveyard’. Later, the deity came to be called as Masani.

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Furthermore the temple is said to bless barren women with children and pregnant women with good health..

The Deity of Masani Amman Temple, is one who grants justice to her strong believers. The 15ft long idol is in lying position with four hands, each holding snake, trident, skull and drum respectively. The Neethi Kal, or the Stone of Justice, is a stone that is present in the temple that is believed to have unique powers. Devotees who lost their belongings or were cheated in business by their enemies etc. come here seeking justice. They grind red chillies with the stone and pray. This is believed to free them from all kinds of evil in life.

Then we headed to Topslip, which is at a distance of 30 kms from Pollachi & 76kms from Coimbatore,.Perambikulam (12)

Topslip is the Tiger Reserve Forest in small part of Annamalai Tiger Reserve, which is separated from the Nilgiri Hills by Palghat Gap in north. It got its name during British era, as lots of its timber slipped down to the plains below. It is famous for the elephant camp, wildlife safaris, pleasant weather and beautiful views of Annamalai Hills.Perambikulam (15)

Forest Department organizes elephant safaris and jeep rides into the sanctuary. A four hours trek around the forest along with a guide is also available here. Unfortunately due to some issues, forest department  had temporarily closed elephant safari & jeep safari.

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Beautiful view 

Parambikulam: Well maintained Tiger reserve

So we drove to Parambikulam which is just 4 Kms from Topslip. Parambikulam Tiger Reserve is a well protected ecological portion in the Nelliampathy – Anamalai landscape of the Southern Western Ghats in India. It is located in the Palakkad District of Kerala.

Considering its biological richness, abundance of wildlife and landcape beauty makes Parambikulam Tiger Reserve  one of the most attractive places in the entire stretch of Western Ghats.

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Journey itself was a destination..

Since we went on a day trip we took Van safari which was Rs. 200 per head. They wont start the trip until they’ve minimum of 20 passengers. So we had to wait for around 30 mins for the other passengers to gather.

What did we spot?

Parambikulam- Aliyar Project: Top ranked Embankment dam

It is an embankment dam on the Parambikulam River in Parambikulam tiger reserve. It ranks number one in India as well as in the top ten embankment dams in the world in volume in the year 2000.

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Parambikulam Reservoir view

Kanimara Teak Tree: India’s oldest tree

The bus safari took us to Kanimara Teak tree  which was 450 years old. And it is believed to be one of the oldest tree in India.

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Enroute Kanimara Teak tree

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Captured by Gopro hero5. This is Kanimara Teak tree, India’s oldest tree..

Sunset at Aliyar dam:

Aliyar Dam Reservoir Park is located on the way to Valparai from Pollachi. Placed at the foothills of Valparai. The dam has a park, garden & play area for kids. The dam offers a relaxing environment as the surrounding is beautiful with mountains and greenery all around. A nominal entrance fee is charged for entry into the dam premises..

We managed to explore a historical temple, An adventurous tiger safari & a soothing sunset at Aliyar dam all in a day. Then we headed to Valparai. Overnight stay at Valparai. ..

Info from my perspective:

  1. Parambikulam Park entry fee  is Rs. 23/head for Indian citizens and Rs.300 for foreigners. Vehicle entry fee for  is Rs.70 for car, Rs.50 for a still camera and 200 for a video camera.
  2. Jungle Safari per head Rs.250. Safari duration 3 to 3.5 hours. Timings 7:00 am to 3:00 pm.
  3. Aliyar dam entry fee Rs.5/head. Timings: 9:00 AM to 6:30 PM.
  4. You can enjoy your trip leisurely by staying in Tree house & going on a night safari.

Stay tuned to see Valparai through my eyes

Mystic Meghalaya: Shillong Street foods

For me the taste of street food is always better than  a fancy meal at a fine dining restaurant. Street Food culture in Shillong is very vibrant. The roads of Shillong are filled with colorful carts serving special foods. Any dish on this street is packed with an abundance of flavors at a minimum price.

Well!!  coming to Police street, this is the biggest market place and is located in the heart of the city. It is filled with street shops selling dresses, bags, umbrellas, woolen clothes, accessories etc.  From traditional hand looms to the multinational brands, from budget hotels to the luxury hotels, from street foods to the fancy expensive meals etc., This is really a good place to shop and it is a paradise to all the foodies..

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Busy making Kebab..

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Mouth watering Kebabs.. I’m missing them already 😉  

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Very spicy Shillong street Noodles

Travel diaries of RoRboyz: Thailand & Cambodia

Encountering the colorful cultures, great food, Historical temples and superb beaches on a 12-day journey to Cambodia & Thailand. The highlights of our trip includes Bangkok, Phuket, PhiPhi Islands, Ayuttaya, Siem reap, Etc.,

Watch it 1080p..

If you like our video please subscribe to my channel…

Fantastic Friday: A Day at Karon Beach

Beach is a place where I relax by looking at the beauty of mother nature. I go to the beach to get away from all the hustle bustle of city life & work tensions. To feel the grainy sand all under my feet. To sit there under the shade of a tree & feel the cool sea breezes. Not only to feel but to hear the waves is the ultimate relaxation.

 Karon beach at afternoon..

Hot Beach, Cold Beer & Crazy friends… What a combination…

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Home-made delicious donuts..

Old man selling Home made Donuts..

My feet stories: Happiness comes in Waves

After a visit to the beach, it’s hard to believe that we live in a material world.     

    How many of you like the Beaches??

 

A Journey with Rorz-Royce

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RoRs Royce followed his heart and it led him to the Beach..

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Rorz-Royce @Karon viewpoint, Phuket

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The Journey doesn’t start at the beginning, it begins at the end.

 

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RorzRoyce always chooses the adventure..

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I love the wheels, I mean steering wheel.

A Timelapse Journey through Angkorwat Temple, Cambodia

A Timelapse Journey through Angkorwat temple ‘world’s largest Hindu temple’, Siem reap, Cambodia. Watch it in HD.

More videos and posts will be updated soon. Stay tuned my dear friends.

Culture Bridge: A way of Life

A Small interaction with a 67 year old Zhang: A migrant worker in Beijing who migrated from a small village near Chengde, Hebei province.Beijing

Q1.When did you first come to Beijing? Why did you decide to become a beggar?

A.Many men from my village moved to bigger cities for better jobs and pay. They moved all over the country. The men went to the cities as laborers, while the women went to work in factories. I decided to pursue the trend, though I was too old & frail to continue doing manual labor. I decided to go to Beijing and become a beggar. That was 5 years ago. I feel this is the only job I can do at this point in my life.

Q2.Tell me about your early life?

A.I am a farmer & I’ve a son & 2 grand children.We have a three room own house now. Due to ill health my wife passed away few years ago.

Q3. Did you attend school?

A. I attended 1 year of elementary school, but then dropped out to work on the farm. I can’t read & write.

Q4. Can you describe a regular day in your life? Where do you “live”?

A. I sleep on the ground under the bridge near Liangmaqiao. I wake up at 5 or 6 am and then begin wandering throughout the city. I make it back in the late evening and sleep.

Q5. How much money do you usually make per day?

A. On average, I make 1,500 RMB ($220) per month in total.

Q6. What do you do with your money?

A. I spend very little, no more than 5 to 10 RMB per day on meals. I actually go home each month to visit my family.

Q7. How do you go back home?

A. I sneak onto a train and sleep between the railway cars. It’s a 7 hour train ride.

Q8. Have you ever been caught?

A.Yes, I’ve been caught several times, but the train staff pitied me. Only once have I been required to pay for a ticket, after being caught.

Q9. Do you ever dream at night?

A. My best dream is that a blowing wind carrying tons of money towards me.

Q10. If you won 100,000RMB what will you do with that money?

A. I will go back to my village & start a small business & also solve my health problems.

Q11. If you could visit anywhere in the world, where would u go?

A. I would go to America. Heard that It is beautiful.

Q12. Do you have any plans for the future?

A. I will work here for 2 or 3 more years, then will retire for good.

Silent Sunday: Landscapes From My Travels with Quotes

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The Poetry on Earth is never dead. -John Keath

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Nature is not a place to visit. It is home. -Gary Singler

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Every single thing that has ever happened in your life is preparing you for a moment that is yet to come……..

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Look at the trees, look at the birds, look at the clouds, look at the stars… and if you have eyes you will be able to see that the whole existence is joyful. Everything is simply happy. Trees are happy for no reason; they are not going to become prime ministers or presidents and they are not going to become rich and they will never have any bank balance. Look at the flowers — for no reason. It is simply unbelievable how happy flowers are. ~Osho

Sunset at aguada fort

The sky takes on shades of orange during sunrise and sunset, the color that gives you hope that the sun will set only to rise again

 

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A traveller without observation is a bird without wings…

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I felt my lungs inflate with the onrush of scenery—air, mountains, trees, people. I thought, “This is what it is to be happy. -Sylvia Plath, The Bell Jar

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There’s nothing better than dying while doing what you love most.

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Sunset is a wonderful opportunity for us to appreciate all the great things the sun gives us..

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Looking at beauty in the world, is the first step of purifying the mind. -Amit Ray

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Mountains are the beginning and the end of all natural scenery.” -John Ruskin

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“The earth has music for those who listen.” — William Shakespeare

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When nature speaks one have to listen..

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Cities have the capability of providing something for everybody, only because, and only when, they are created by everybody. -Jane Jacobs

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“The sea is emotion incarnate. It loves, hates, and weeps. It defies all attempts to capture it with words and rejects all shackles. No matter what you say about it, there is always that which you can’t.”
—Christopher

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Life is a journey that must be traveled no matter how bad the roads and accommodations. ~Oliver Goldsmith

Tiger’s Nest Monastery(Paro Taktsang): A trek of a Lifetime

Paro Taktsang (also known as the Taktsang Palphug Monastery and the Tiger’s Nest) is a prominent Himalayan Buddhist sacred site and the temple complex is located in the cliffside of the upper Paro valley in Bhutan.

Why Tigers Nest..?

One of the main reasons for my travel to Bhutan was to trek the Tigernest monastery. It is the most iconic Buddhist temple in Bhutan. It is set on an almost vertical cliff about 900 meters above the Paro Valley with fabulous views.

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A view from the top of the cliff..

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Nature always wears the colors of the spirit. ~ Ralph Waldo Emerson

Change of Plan..

Our initial plan was to visit the monastery first in early hours. I always believe the finest exploration always lies with the individual instincts. That’s why I spend considerable time with locals to understand the dynamics of the places planned and local cuisines. Through them got to know that Chelela pass was quite an amazing place and it is one of the must see places in Bhutan. Most importantly it is a 3 hour journey from Monastery. So we added it to our list just the day before we visited this place. When any last minute inclusions ends up to be the best part of our trip then nothing beats it.

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Prayer Flags are colorful rectangular pieces of clothes inscribed with prayers, mantras and auspicious symbols often hung in high passes, mountain ridges in the Himalayas.

On Saturday…

Our First stop, the famous Paro museum. As the Museum gets closed at 11AM on Saturdays, we had to rush with a quick stop at the viewpoint post Museum tour where Paro airport is visible.

Got ready to head towards Tigers Nest…

It all started this way….

Exploration of Tigers nest started with a trek for about 7 KM’s at 12:30pm. With a hiking stick in hand and a backpack on my back we decided to trek anyway. In my backpack, I had water bottles, a hand towel, Medical kit, a camera with 18-55 lens, 50mm & 55-250lens, Iphone, and other accessories.

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While trekking to the summit of Tigernest..

The “Trek of our Lifetime”

We hiked at our own pace. The hike is 14kms to and fro not including nearly 1400 steps which take you to this wonderful monastery. A big waterfall on the way, serene temples, Buddha statues and wonderful views are unforgettable.

 

As it got steeper breathing became more challenging. The thinness of the air was a challenge. This is the reason why you MUST DO THIS TRIP AT THE END OF YOUR HOLIDAY. Good that we went there after 3 days, we acclimatized during our journey around Bhutan and we managed this better as a result. What’s awesome is seeing the monastery getting larger and larger from being a distant icon to looming up and being within reach. From a distance it is meant to resemble the guru Padmasanghava AKA guru Rinpoche (who brought Buddhism to Bhutan in the 8th century) riding a tigress.

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…Rorboyz…

Waterfalls, Caves and Temples..

On our way we had to pass by the beautiful waterfalls, bridge and then reached the Monastery. There you have to lock up your belongings – no bags or cameras allowed in there. There’s a safe box system. Don’t even think of sneaking a camera in ;). Inside you are directed through this labrynthine building containing various caves and temples and a yak butter candlelight room. There is a tranquil and special atmosphere here.

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Closeup View of Tiger’s Nest Monastery. The rock slopes are very steep (almost vertical) and the monastery buildings are built into the rock face. Though it looks formidable, the monastery complex has access from several directions, such as the northwest path through the forest, from the south along the path used by devotees, and from the north (access over the rocky plateau, which is called the “Hundred Thousand Fairies” known as Bumda.

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View of the Taktsang Lhakhang a.k.a tiger’s monastery

This is most unique experience of our Bhutan trip, although I kept saying that to a lot other places in this lovely country. But the experience of walking up the fairly tough path up the mountain, while seeing a breathtaking view of the mountains, valleys, and the monastery peeping up from the fog is sheer magic.

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Yayie!! We are almost there…!!

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Taktsang lhakhang a.k.a Tiger’s monastery as a backdrop

My descend was quicker than expected; but had to be careful at the muddy slippery stretches, but equally dramatic. You feel calm and relaxed from inside after this spiritual journey.

Click here for our video:Travel diaries of Rorboyz

Tips from my perspective:

  1. Timings: 8 AM to 1 PM and 2-5 PM daily, October – March Until 6 PM, April – September.
  2. Start your trek in the morning
  3. Carry enough water bottles, hiking sticks,medical kit etc.,
  4. There’s a cafeteria, One can have a quick bite.