Month: October 2015

Karva Chauth: An Occasion to Celebrate Love

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From ‘Big Screen’ to ‘Small Screen’, actresses to next-door women, Punjab to Rajasthan – what seems common to all is the celebration of the beautiful occasion of Karva Chauth. Thanks to our very own Bollywood and the so-different-yet-so-similar stereotypic Hindi serials, Karva Chauth has been glamorized to an unimaginable extent. Their larger than life portrayal of every aspect of the occasion has surely been successful in sketching filmy imaginations in every young woman’s mind.

Honestly, I feel nobody really cares as to how and why this event came into existence but what really appeals is the pampering and indulgence associated with it. Every woman enjoys a day of complete gratification. From her husband, in-laws to parents, everybody and everything seems to revolve around the fairer sex. So what if this comes with a day of complete fasting, young people are anyway used to dieting on a regular basis for maintaining their hour-glass figure.

Karwa Chauth 2

 

Karva Chauth is mostly limited to the northern and western regions of India with much prominence in Punjab, Haryana, Rajasthan, Himachal Pradesh and Uttar Pradesh. The day brings with it hopes, aspirations and wishes for a long and blissful marital life. Women, beautifully decked and dressed, are seen praying for the health and longevity of their husbands. Though rituals could be slightly different in respective states yet they follow a general pattern.

Morning Shows the Day

First and foremost comes Sargi, an assortment of sumptuous goodies comprising of fruits, Indian bread, fried potatoes, meethi matthis, phirni and milk-based sweets along with a basket of gifts, apparels, dry fruits, jewellery and loads of love, gifted by the girl’s mother-in-law. In few places, idols of Shiva, Parvati, Ganesh and Kartikeya are worshipped as well. As strenuous fasting follows until night, hence women are expected to grab a wholesome bite before sunrise.

 

Sargi 3

 

Pamper Yourself

For the major part of the day, ladies are seen coddling in the parlour, getting their curls right and faces bright. Each mehendi-designed hand looks amazing with deepening colour instilling unmeasured happiness in their hearts.

Mehendi1

Getting Dressed

With evening starts the major part of the ritual. Brightly-coloured suits, sarees, ghagras or lehengas, along with the traditional red dupatta on the head, are seen draped around bright-eyed women flaunting their bridal finery. With scintillating exteriors and bubbling interiors, they sit around the idol of Goddess Parvati, placed on the sanctified ‘kharia matti‘, listening to Vratha Katha narrations. Each woman places a red thread-tied karva full of water with seven pieces of pua in front of her and sprinkles water, aipun, roli and rice on the deity.

karwa-chauth-ceremony

The Moon Finally Shines

Ladies are gathered in large numbers listening to tales and praying for their husbands’ welfare until the moon finally shines in the night sky and the day-long wait comes to an end. With lit-earthen pots, water-filled containers, chhanni or sieve and eager faces, the moment seems magical with a romantic spark in the air when each wife looks into the eyes of her husband through the sieve. Her fast finally ends with her husband feeding her water and a morsel of food.

Close-up of a young woman looking through a sieve

The eternal bond of marriage simply strengthens with time. Little gifts and heart-felt expressions just add to its beauty. Even romantic songs sprinkle magic in the air. Bollywood is totally ecstatic about romance and has revived the concept of love time and again through its evergreen films like Hum Apke Hain Kaun, Dilwale Dulhaniya Le Jayenge, Kabhi Khushi Kabhi Gham and so on.

Now ladies, with Karva Chauth just round the corner, plan everything before-hand to make your day simply perfect and gentlemen, fully explore your cities to discover the best gift for your better half.

Six Romantic Indian Destinations to Honeymoon in Bollywood Ishtyle

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As wedding bell rings, two humans start weaving their fairy tales, whose every chapter gets entangled with their souls for eternity. The sweet, traditional, ritualistic and most memorable chapter of marriage gets followed by honeymoon-a vacation that takes the couple to the helm of affair and let them unwind amid some priceless beauties of man and nature.

India is a land of romantic sagas of lost empires that bring to forefront many of its bewitching destinations. Those stretches of snowy mountains, water bodies, lush valleys and golden deserts have come up time and again in Bollywood movies. The locations are not only remembered for their settings, but also for epic love songs screened there. If you wish to spend your honeymoon in Bollywood style, take a look to these evergreen numbers Goibibo lists below:

Kashmir

Nothing can be better than the postcard-like landscape of Kashmir. The soothing melodies of ‘Chupke Se Sun’ from Mission Kashmir along with a romantic Shikara ride on shimmering waters of Dal Lake carry with it the unbound beauty of the valley. The thick green meadows of Gulmarg and localities of Srinagar, which once served as scenic backdrop of ‘Yeh Hasi Vaadiyaan’ from Roja, can now be your honeymoon destination. With Zabarwan Mountains at the backdrop, the green meadows of Pahalgam is perfect to dance like a free bird to the track ‘Jiya Re’ from Jab Tak Hai Jaan‘.

honeymoon

Kerala

Your affair can attain heights at Kerala backwaters. The soothing rhythm of Dil Se’s Jiya Jale Jaan Jale in the background makes the perfect setting for a romantic evening . Undulating tea plantations of Munnar and gushing water of Athirapally Waterfalls reverberates lovey- dovey memories of Aiswariya Rai dancing in the lyrics of ‘Barso re Megha Megha’ from ‘Guru‘. Luxuriant grasslands, verdant hills and misty valleys of Munnar create an idyllic setting to weave epic love story on the lines of ‘Bann ke titli dil uda uda’ of Chennai Express.

honeymoon

Darjeeling

The hill station of Darjeeling in West Bengal has been featured in several Bollywood numbers like ‘Kasto Mazaa Hai Lelaima’ from Parineeta, Mere Sapno Ki Rani from Aradhna and Mein Kya Karoon from ‘Barfi‘. If you dream to cherish your honeymoon memories like those couple, then a joyful Himalayan toy train ride, walk along tea gardens, sunrise over snowy Himalayan mountains and breakfast at Keventers await for you at Darjeeling.

honeymoon

Rajasthan

Weave your love stories like those royal prince and princess amid the historical forts and palaces of Rajasthan. Be it Le Kabira from Yeh Jawani Hai Diwani or ‘Gulabi’ from Shuddh Desi Romance, Udaipur’s Taj Lake Palace, Jaipur’s City Palace or Jodhpur’s Mehrangarh Fort bring alive the beauty of the epic love stories of the royal land.

honeymoon

Tamil Nadu

Tamil Nadu might sound bit offbeat for honeymoon. However, remember the track ‘Mast Magan’ from ‘Two States‘? The scenic gorgeousness of Ennore Beach, Chennai and beautiful craftsmanship of a Mylapore temple create a unique rendezvous between you soul mates. Give a try!! ‘Chal Chaiya Chaiya Chaiya Chai, Chal Chaiya Chaiya Chaiya’… wow!! Aroma of tea and coffee plantations, misty clouds adorning the Western Ghats and seductive climate.. Ooty boasts of a true setting for a romantic escapade in Nilgiris.

honeymoon

 Madhya Pradesh

Madhya Pradesh is known for many reserved forests. However, the small village of Bhedaghat gained popularity amongst couples after the song ‘Raat Ka Nasha Abhi’ from Ashoka was screened there. Dhuandhar Waterfalls and boat-ride in Narmada River amidst natural marble rock formations create the most beautiful honeymoon ever.

honeymoon

The magic and mirth of nature is crisscrossed through India. Sit back, allow your wandering heart to dream of your honeymoon just like those Bollywood couples in pictures. Then open your eyes to see that you have landed in the most astounding, blissful and romantic locales of the country kissed with bounteous beauties of nature.

Get Transported to the Satyuga Era with Delhi’s Ramlila!

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With the ongoing festival of Navratri, everyone is in festive mood and the much awaited Ramlila programmes of Delhi have already started in full swing. Organised by different Ramlila committees of Delhi, each one of the committees tries to outrun one another in performances, grandeur, costumes, special effects etc. Usually, performed in the evening, they tell the classic story of victory of good over evil, the inherent message of the much loved Indian epic Ramayana. As the effigies of Ravana, Meghnath and Kumbhakaran burns down, the common man’s belief that ‘Sachhai ki hamesha jeet hoti hain’ gets more firmed. Being in the capital city at this time of the year is the best thing to do, as one can enjoy live performances of Ramlila apart from indulging in sightseeing, shopping, eating and merrymaking. Here is our list of top 5 Ramlila committees of Delhi:

Luv Kush Ramlila Committee

Asrani-in-ramlila-as-narada-muni, lav-kush-committee

When: 13th October to 23rd October

Where:  Lal Qila Maidan or Red Fort Ground at the Red Fort.

Timings: 7 p.m. onwards

Established in the year 1979, this committee is famous for inviting celebrities and putting on a lavish show with hi-tech special effects. This year, with a budget of Rs. 3 crore, it has roped in around 30 television and film actors in the cast including Asrani, Shakti Kapoor, Ranjeet, Ravi Kishan, Dolly Bindra etc. Selfie lovers will be glad to know that they will be allowed to take selfies with cutouts of the actors, and gods and goddesses. For foodies, there is a food court run by LS Caterers & Co from Chandni Chowk that features 12 stalls and mouth-watering street food like vegetable kathi kebabs, aloo chaat, pav bhaji, golgappa and bhel puri.

Shri Ramlila Committee

Shri Ramlila Committee

When: 13th October to 23rd October

Where: Ramlila Maidan, Asaf Ali Road

Timings:  6 p.m. onwards

Regarded as one of the oldest and most traditional Ramlila committees of Delhi, it was started around 180 years ago by Mughal king Bahadur Shah Zafar for his army men and people. Presently, everyday before the show starts, a parade of costumed performers takes place through the lanes of Chandni Chowk, Nai Sarak and Sitaram Bazar to the Ramlila Grounds. The distinguishing feature about this Ramlila is the use of fireworks in place of modern day special effects to mark the occasion of Dussehra.

Shri Dharmic Leela Committee

Shree Dharmic Ramlila Committee

When: 13th to 23rd October

Where: Bagichi Madho Das Maidan, Chandni Chowk

Timings: 7 p.m. to 9 p.m.

The Shri Dharmic Leela Committee, being branched off from the Shri Ramlila Committee too uses firecrackers to celebrate the burning of Ravana. Every year, new lesser known episodes from the Ramayana are added to the show to make it more different from other Ramlilas. Apart from the large effigies of Ravana, Kumbhakarna and Meghnath, it is extremely popular because of its chaat bazaar, featuring street food from all over India.

Nav Shri Dharmik Leela Committee

Nav Shree Dharmik Leela Committee

When: 13th to 23rd October

Where: Red Fort Lawns.

Timings: 7:30 p.m. onwards.

Nav Shri Dharmik Leela Committee has been in existence since 1958 and boasts of making the tallest effigy of Ravana every year during Dussehra in Delhi. Thanks to Salman Khan’s song ‘Chal beta Selfie le le re’ in Bajrangi Bhaijaan, the trend to take selfies with one’s favourite Ramlila character is getting popular day by day. So this year, the committee is promoting its performance by allowing selfie lovers to click a ‘Selfie with Bhagwaan’ and upload it on the committee’s Facebook page. The person who will get maximum likes on his/her picture will be awarded by the committee.

The Shriram Bharatiya Kala Kendra

Shriram Bharatiya Kala Kendra stage Ramlila at  Shri Ram Centre of New Delhi

When: 13th October to 9th November

Where: Shriram Bharatiya Kala Kendra theater, 1 Copernicus Marg.

Timings: 6.30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m.

The Shriram Bharatiya Kala Kendra is a centre of music, dance and performing arts. One of its well-known performances is the Ram Leela dance-drama on the story of Lord Rama that it has been showcasing since 1957. This performance beautifully blends folk and classical dance, acting and special effects, thereby creating a one-of-its-kind Ramlila show. Another highlight is the recent practice of showing the English translation of the show on the projector screens.

So, this Dussehra, reconnect with your culture, traditions and mythology by being a part of the grand celebration of victory of good over evil, light over darkness and hope over despair.

Durga Puja in Kolkata: a Vibrant Camouflage of Fashion and Tradition

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For a Bengali out of Kolkata, Durga Puja is the time when the city is missed to its peak. However, this time I am not gonna let this happen. After all, my leaves are already approved.. Yeipiee!!

I cannot dare to sit back at work when my ‘City of Joy’ gets decked up with colourful lights and is filled with sound of ‘dhaks’, chores of colorfully dressed Bengalis and non- Bengalis and aroma of chops, cutlets, jhal- muri, chicken roll, biriyani and etc etc. October is that time of the year when my heart beats fast to meet old folks, dance with ‘dhunuchi’, wear traditional ‘Bangali’ saris and ‘adda’ (gossip) over most stupid and unrealistic topics.

This time I wish to take you along to my incredible Bengal- that part of India where Durga Puja is not merely a religious festival, but a mega carnival frequently compared to the famed Rio Carnival of  Rio de Janeiro.

The old thin alleys of Kumortuli in north Kolkata take you along the journey from collecting hays and clays to giving final touches on Durga idols. Here, the hard work and detailed craftsmanship of potters gets clearly reflected on the plethora of artistically designed and bejewelled Durga idols piled along the lanes. The alleys become a photographer’s paradise as they try to capture every moment of the creation.

Durga Idol in making
Photo Courtesy: Masum Kanjilal

 

The gorgeously decorated ‘pandals‘ are mostly theme based. What not is used for making such splendid impressive temporary shelters for the Goddess- earthen lamps, plastic bottles, match boxes, hay, etc etc. And when the pandals are so artistically made up, who can I not include ‘pandal hopping’. It always excites me to hop around from pandal to pandal with friends and get swayed by those impressive creations. Come join me..

 

Durga Puja Pandals

While south Kolkata is known for extravagantly lit up and themed pandals, north is celebrated for immaculately designed Durga idols in different styles and patterns. Few pujas of south Kolkata that steals your eyes include Ekdalia Everygreen, Suruchi Sangha, Badamtala Ashar Sangha, 41 Pally, Bosepukur, Naktala Udayan Sangha, Behala Srishti. The artistically crafted idols of Bagbazar Sarbajanin, College Square, Ahiritola, Kumartuli Park, Laketown Sribhumi and Mohammad Ali Park bring to forefront the brilliance of potters who are actually unknown to the outside world.

Be there at Deshapriya Park in south Kolkata this time as it is going to have the tallest Durga idol of all festive seasons.

Kolkata mesmerizes me with its impressive lighting. From narrow unknown lanes to famed avenues, every corner of it gets dressed in a confluence of colourful lights. Interestingly, the lighting are also theme based at times. The panoramic vista of the entire city is spectacular and  incredible.

Bengali’s love for food is eternal. On the eve of Durga Puja, my food list stretches from street side chicken rolls, mutton rolls, fish fry, biriyani, phuchka, papri chaat and egg devil to the Chinese delicacies at China Town and Sizzlers and Chelo Kebabs at Peter Cat. Huh!! I don’t mind waiting in the queue for hours. With those tantalizing food comes non- stop adda sessions especially at Madox Square.

food Durga Pooja

The sound of amazing ‘dhaakis‘ wake me up every morning during the five days of puja. Traditional drums with kash flower embedded sticks soothes my ears with holy rhythm. It is also difficult to resist tapping my feet to the beats till my energy is drained out.

dhakis Durga Pooja

Dashami marks last day of the festivity. From traditional ‘dhunuchi‘ dance to sindoor khela, the sight of vermillion smeared faces of married ladies captivate your eyes every time you attend the last day of the celebration. The Visarjan (immersion) brings tears to my eyes and I hold my breathe till next year. What all I can say is ‘Asche bochor abar hobe’ (next year it will happen again). As we all bid farewell to the Mother with sweets, vermillion and betel leaves, men with music, drums and crackers proceed in processions to immerse the idols in water. Make sure to visit Babughat on the eve of Visarjan. Come folks, join me for the same.

dussera Sindoor khela

Lights, cheerful crowd, holy chimes, food, fiestas and more – ahh!! Chalo lets go to Bengal and make unforgettable memories with Bangaliana on 2015 Durga utsav.

Navratri Celebrations- Dance Your Way into Gujarat!

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India, the land of culture, the land of traditions has yet another reason to be ecstatic, for the festival of light, music and ‘nine nights-long dance’ is all-ready to begin. Yes, Navratri, credited to be the ‘World’s Longest Dance Festival’, is right at the doorstep with yet another season of uninterrupted fun, fervour and excitement. With ‘Shakti’, the divine power of Goddess Amba, seated at the core of every ritual, every puja and every heart, one just remains startled at the heightened spirits of ardent devotees who dance their hearts out even after intense fasting during ‘Devi Puja’.

Though it would not be wrong to say that the whole world dances to the beats of dandiya but nowhere is this grand event celebrated with as much zeal and fervour as Gujarat. It is flamboyant, colourful and magical. Let us take a deeper insight into the different facets of Navratri to help you relish this once-in-a-lifetime experience for those who have not been lucky enough to spectacle this resplendent occasion.

Shimmer in Traditional Wear

chaniya choli

As impressive as it seems, Navratri involves the non-stop throbbing of feet and hearts to the beats of Garba and Dandiya. Brilliantly-dressed men and women with traditional chaniya-choli, kafni-pyjamas, kurtas adorned with beads, shells, mirrors and embroidery works along with ethnic jewellery, necklaces, bindi, bajubandh, chudas and kangans, are seen moving their hands, feet and colourfully-decorated sticks in unanimity to local beats, folk songs, DJ collections and celebrity performances.

Satiate Your Taste Buds

food during navratri fast

Gujarat is all about food. At any time of the year, its platter boasts of Methi ka Thepla, Bardoli ki Khichdi, Dhokla and Khandvi, but Navratri brings-in some special flavours that adds to the beauty of the festival. As fasting is an inseparable ritual of this fiesta, so people opt for recipes made of sago, potato and Singhare ka Atta viz Sabudana Khichdi, Mandvi Paak, Singoda ni Kheer, Moriyani Khichdi and Dudhi no Halwo.

Feel the Pulse of Gujarat

Though Navratri is celebrated all-over Gujarat, yet few places would definitely score high over others for being exceptional in their own rights.

In Vadodra one gets to behold a spectacular sight, when more than 35,000 men and women, from all walks of life, come together and dance at Navlakhi Ground, organised by United Way, an annual fund-raising event.

Maa Shakti Garbha Mahotsav is one grand show of music, dance, light and life. With more than 40,000 participants, it has already registered itself in the Limca Book of World Records. Held in Godhra, it definitely comes as a show not to be missed.

The largest city of Gujarat, Ahmedabad observes Navratri with amazing grace and grandeur. Hosted at the GMDC Ground by the Gujarat Tourism Board, Navratri is accompanied by exhibitions, kid shows and state-level garbha competitions. One gets to witness Sheri Garbha here.

ahmedabad

In Saurashtra and Kutch, this grand event is marked by people performing traditional folk-style Garbha and Raas dandiya with laathis and swords.

Take Home Memories

Navratri sees Gujarat at its cultural, traditional and culinary best. People just love to go shop-hopping for handicrafts, metal-oxidised jewellery, apparels, heavy-work dupattas, Kutchi Kotis, kurtas, mirror work and embroidered chaniya-cholis and souvenirs. You could really have a blast with your bargaining hats on.

Shopping-gujarat

Explore Gujarat

garba

One should definitely keep one’s energy and spirits in store for the exquisite dance carnival but the days could be spent exploring the city and nearby areas. One could go to Champaner and Pavagadh Hills while in Vadodara, Gandhi Ashram and Adalaj Vav, once in Ahmedabad or the Gir National Park, if in Jamnagar.

Gujarat seriously has something nice to offer to every eager soul. So if one wishes to taste an unforgettable experience and witness an entire state reverberating in the same energy level, then do plan a visit to the state of Gujarat during Navratri.

5 Amazing Resorts near Delhi for Corporate Weekend Getaways

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A short weekend trip is good enough to bring you out of that tired week-long workaholic mood. A vacation is not always with home-members, but can also be with a new family that we create in our workplaces, something we refer to as our second home. As our hectic schedule keeps us busy at work, we hardly get time to interact with workmates. Corporate weekend getaways is something that reward us with recreation, self actualization and definitely good friends.

With the capital surrounded by mountains, lakes and rivers, you can plan a group outing with office members at ease. A weekend trip on the lap of nature with work mates enable you to mingle with each other away from the four walls and computer desks. Lets find the best 5 destinations and resorts near Delhi that are ideal for corporate weekend getaways:

Alwar Bagh Sariska by Aamod, Alwar

Alwar Bagh Sariska

Perhaps the oldest of all Rajasthani kingdoms, Alwar is a coveted tourist destination located around 160 km far from Delhi. Many erstwhile royal palaces have been converted into hotels in Alwar, all of which are ideal for royal weekend tour. Alwar Bagh is one such heritage style property set amid lush green and unpolluted environment. It opens up to panoramic vistas of Aravalli mountain ranges. The entire property is equipped with contemporary luxury amenities ideal to accommodate small or big corporate teams.

Where: Jaipur Road, Village Dhawala

What to see in Alwar: Company Bagh, Bala Quila and City Palace

Special activities: Historical monument hopping, exploring wildlife at Sariska National Park and nature walks.

Neemrana Fort Palace, Neemrana

Weekend getaways
Neemrana Fort Palace, Neemrana

It takes maximum 120km from Delhi to reach Neemrana, a town of splendid historical monuments at the backdrop of Aravalli ranges. Neemrana is popular among western and Indian travellers because of the 15th century heritage resort, Neemrana Fort Palace. It creates a splendid setting for magical weekend getaways where you and your work mates can get revitalized with leisure facilities like Ayurvedic spa and swimming. Here, revival of ruined architectural wonders provide palace-style accommodations with royal treatments. No doubt, Neemrana Fort Palace is one of the best and unique resorts near Delhi for weekend breaks.

Where: 122nd Milestone, Delhi-Jaipur Highway

What to see in Neemrana: Siliserh Lake, Vinay Vilas Mahal

Special activities: Hanging gardens trail, camel car rides, vintage car rides, multimedia tours, zip- lining and cultural performances.

Best Western Country Club Resort, Manesar

Weekend getaways
Best Western Country Club Resort, Manesar

For a corporate event or weekend getaway, Best Western Country Club Resort at Manesar is a good choice. Manesar is basically a fast growing industrial town situated some 45 km away from Delhi on NH8. Out of a plethora of luxury resorts speckled all over Manesar, Best Western tops the list with its scenic setting in an unpolluted environment adorned by green blanket of fields, paddies and hills. The resort’s elegantly designed banquet halls can also be utilized for for evening cocktail parties.

Where: Mohammadpur Road, Pachgaon, Gurgaon, on Jaipur Highway

What to see in Manesar: Damdama Lake, Sohna Lake.

Special activities: Adventure games like Hot Air Ballooning, Helicopter Joy Rides and other indoor leisure activities.

The Lake Resort, Naukuchiatal

weekend getaways
The Lake Resort, Naukuchiatal

It is time to get lost amidst miles of oak and pine trees planted on woody slopes of Kumaon Himalayas. Here, the Lake Resort with its aesthetically designed accommodations offer captivating views of Naukuchiatal Lake and green towering mountains. It takes you all to a world of solace, rejuvenation and ethereal beauty. It is spread over 70 acres of green lawn where activities like camping and team building can be organized.

Where: Naukuchiatal, Dist. Nainital

What to see in Naukuchiatal: Naukuchiatal Lake, Hanuman Temple.

Special Activities: Outdoor activities on the lake like kayaking, paddle boating, trekking and floating.

Namah Resort,  Corbett

Weekend getaways
Namah Resort, Jim Corbett National Park

Jim Corbett National Park can be visited any time of the year. For those planning corporate weekend getaways, can move to a world of wilderness where the luxury of Namah will be the sole thing to pamper yourself with. Located on the bank of Kosi River, Namah Resort offers spacious, elegantly designed and modernly equipped rooms and suites. Plunge into the swimming pool, take fun of indoor recreational group games or get the thrill of outdoor activities like rope climbing and bungee jumping. The resort’s tranquillity and friendly hospitality add on to your comfort. A weekend is enough to experience the warmth and scenic setting of Namah.

Where: Dhikuli Road, Ramnagar

What to see in Corbett: Jim Corbett National Park, Kosi River, Corbett Falls

Special Activities: Rope climbing and bungee jumping

As New Year is hovering round the corner and Delhi NCR is bustling with weekend getaways, it is time you warm up for an outdoor office trip near the capital and bond with colleagues like never before.

Top 5 Adventure Activities in India

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Helen Keller, the first deaf and blind person to earn a Bachelor of Arts degree aptly said, “Life is either a daring adventure or nothing at all”. Though, not everyone is an adventure lover, one should at least try one exciting and thrilling sport option in his/her lifetime. India, with its diverse landscape is bestowed with towering peaks and mountains, gorgeous rivers, challenging terrains and crystal clear blue sea waters, thereby becoming a perfect destination for adventure seekers. With the coming summer season and post exam break, most of you must be planning a holiday. So why not plan an adventure holiday where you can indulge in some heart-racing adrenaline rushing activity? Here are five of the best  jaw-dropping activities that offer the desired kick to adventure junkies.

1. Trekking

Adventure

Name: The Shepherd Trek

Where: Himachal Pradesh

Altitude: 4450 mts

Duration: 18 Days

Starting Point: Outskirts of Manali

Ending Point: Bara Bhangal village

Difficulty Level: Moderate

Season: Mid April to June & September to November

What to Look out For: Dhauladhar mountain ranges, river Ravi, sparkling Birch and Rhododendron trees.

2. Hot Air Ballooning

Adventure

Where: Jaipur, Rajasthan

Duration: Approximately 1 hour

Operator: Sky Waltz Balloon Safari

Price: Rs. 12000-13000.

Starting Points: Delhi-Jaipur road, Shiv Vilas, Amber Fort and Jal Mahal.

With its stunning royal palaces, Jaipur provides a marvelous backdrop for hot-air balloon rides. A sight to behold, the popular tourist attractions Amber Fort and Jal Mahal along with the whole city appear minuscule as one drift up into the open skies. Enjoy the thrilling experience and feel like ‘on top of the world’!

3. Paragliding

Adventure

Where: Bir Billing, Himachal Pradesh

Best Flying Season: September to November

Starting Point: Billing (2400 metres)

Stopping Point: Chowgan Village, Bir

Distance Covered: 200 km

What to Look out For: A bird’s eye view of picturesque hills and green fields.

4. Bungee Jumping

Adventure

Where: Village Mohan Chatti, Rishikesh

Operator: Jumpin Heights

Bungee Jump Height: 83 metres

Age Requirement: Minimum 12 years

Weight Requirement: Minimum 40 kg & Maximum 110 kg

Closed On: Tuesdays

Designed by David Allardice of New Zealand, the bungee jumping spot in Rishikesh is built over a rocky cliff overlooking a rocky river Hall, a tributary of River Ganga. After the jump, don’t forget to collect your Dare to Jump Certificate.

5. Jet Skiing

Adventure

Where: Calangute Beach, Goa

Price: Rs. 400, 1000, 1500 for 2, 10, 15 minute trips respectively

Best Season: October to April

Locally referred to as water scooter, Jet Skiing is one of the most sought after water sports in Goa. Operators make it mandatory for riders to be accompanied by instructors to avoid any mishaps. However, once the instructor is satisfied that you can handle the scooter, you are allowed to go for a solo trip.