25 July 2014

Delhi Tourism HOHO Sightseeing Service

As mentioned in my previous posts, our second day tour in Delhi was booked with Delhi Tourism HOHO sightseeing bus. They have two, full day routes which cover most of the sightseeing places of Delhi, you can either go for one day tour or cover both routes in two days. They also have Delhi Tour by evening, but only during weekends, I would definitely want to go for this during my next trip to Delhi. You can make an online booking at their official HOHO website. Tickets can even be bought on-board.
As soon as you board the bus, you will be given the route map and time schedule of that route. You can plan, which places you want to visit and alight accordingly. You can also purchase entry tickets to the monuments on-board, that way you save your time at the ticket counters, at every monument. Its an AC bus with on-board guide, they brief you about the upcoming sight in both Hindi and English. 
The guide
The best feature of this bus is, unlike the regular sightseeing bus, there is no time constraint. Their buses pass every destination, once an hour, you can catch any of their buses. They have specified bus stops at every destination. You also have flexibility of visiting places of your interest. Like we didn't want to visit markets and shopping malls, and spent more time at heritage sites. 
HOHO Bus stop at Qutab Minar


They have 24/7 customer support to guide you, we might have called them at every destination, to confirm we had not missed our bus, lol.
Two routes, Red route and Green route
Rates:
Rs. 300/- per ticket for one day, single route.
Rs. 500/- per ticket for two days, combined route.
Rs. 300/- per ticket for evening tour, though their site says both Saturday and Sunday, its presently running only on Saturdays.
First bus starts at 8:30 am and last at 4:30/4:45 for each route(if you board last bus, all sights will be drive through).
They don't operate on Mondays, as most of the monuments in Delhi are closed on Monday.

Related Posts: Check out the complete series on Golden Triangle Tour.

21 July 2014

Add Zest to your Life through Travel!!!

Zest, mean and sound different to every individual. Yes for me its traveling and traveling, with family just next to me. A drive with family, what better can rejuvenate your busy routine. Five things from my travel, which adds Zest to my life,
The Journey: I always believe, an awesome drive is a wonderful trip in itself. The drive through those rocky mountains, or flower flood plains, or beautiful ghat on a rainy day, quenching my thurst of drenching in the rain, smelling the wet soil. The drive in itself leaves me rejuvenated, adding Zest to my trip and life.
Drive through Malshej Ghat in monsoon
Exploration and Adventure: Exploring a new city, learning its history and culture, leaves me with positive vibs from with-in. The lives of those eminant rulers and magnificant architecture, leaves me with passion to reach such high glory in life.
A mountain trek or underwater diving, safari in a dessert or skiing in the snows, all rejuvenate the energy in me, to get back fresh, adding zest to my routine.
Desert Safari in Dubai
Food: Tasting the sumptuous cuisines, especially when am bored of my regular bread and butter, and get to taste some yum local food. From Dal Baati in Jaipur to Khandvi in Vadodara, or Mysore Masala Dosa in Bangalore to rasgulla in Kolkata, food adds delight to my travel and life, just like the zest of orange adds flavour to the cuisine.
Gujarati Thali
People: Yes meeting different people from different walks of life, from a Syrian tea seller to a belly dancer, a fisherman at a beach to my travel guide, they teach me thousand lessons of life. Only to make me realise who blessed I am, to lead such a wonderful life, and I am back with more enthusiasm to take up my routine after my vacation.
Syrian tea seller
Shopping: Oh yes, how could I forget shopping. Shopping has always been an energy booster for girls. Colourful dresses and accessories, which I shop as souvenir, adds fun and joy to my travel.
A shop at Dilli Haat, Delhi
This post is a part of the #ZestUpYourLife activity in association with TATA Zest and BlogAdda.com

18 July 2014

Skywatch Friday - Sabz Burj

Heritage reflects in every structure of Delhi. Sabz Burj(Green Tower) at Mathura Road is yet another structure, reflecting history and heritage. Its a roundabout at the junction of Mathura Road and Lodhi road. Its locally referred to as Neeli Chattri (Blue umbrella).
 
Waiting for our HOHO bus at the entrance of Humayan's Tomb, clicked this pic of Sabz Burj.
You can find details about this structure here.
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14 July 2014

What's in my Suitcase??

We all love traveling and yes, for me traveling and exploring new places is beyond joy. But, have you ever got pissed off for the sake of carrying your bulky baggage or ever missed that one important stuff back home, for which you had to compromise your joy of traveling.
Here is a check list for my travel, which keeps my travel out of worries, so that I can enjoy my trip to the fullest.

A check list
Its always better to have a check list before packing, it definitely helps with proper packing.

 Travel and Communication
An international holiday? Yes passport, air ticket and travel insurance. Baggage weight to count in, to pack your stuff accordingly. Always get your currency exchanged at your local Foreign exchange agent, as it costs higher at their airport counters. Carry your international credit and debit cards. Don't forget to get international roaming activated for your mobile. 
Carry your ear and eye cover and neck pillow, for your journey. Though most of the airlines provide you with these, if you suffer from cabin pressure, then a no from airline might really cost you.
International Power Adapter Plug, chargers and batteries for your camera, laptop, mobile. Carry extra memory cards for your camera. Power bank portable charger really turns out to be handy for travel. I always carry multi-port charger too, that way I can charge, most of my gadgets at a time.
Scribbling pad and pen, along with list of important contact numbers.

Less is More
Its rightly said, Less is More, especially while packing a suitcase.
I always carry travel packs of all my beauty essentials, that reduces my baggage.
Go for dual purpose clothing, like those inside out jackets or a pant which could be turned into shorts. And choose pants and shorts which could be teamed with most of your shirts/tops, that way reducing your extra cloths.
Packing your cloths in vacuum bags brings down most of your suitcase space. 
A portable cloths press iron is always preferred.
A slip on/flip-flop, along with your formal wears.

 Personal, health and hygiene
A mini medical kit, with essential medicines, and a list of medicines you are allergic to.
Carry packs of Energy bars and cookies.
Travel sanitizer and wipes packs, sunglasses and swiss knife are something, which always go into my handbag, even for a normal go out. 
Pack of Zip pouch, whether for packing your dirty cloths or packing your slippers, they come for your rescue.

Now that we have a travel check list, here is a virtual international trip.

Travel and change of place impart new vigor to the mind. - Seneca(source)

But what if I promise your travel to be accompanied with some pampering, fun, play, party and lots of shopping, then why not plan a trip soon. Its no where than ARIA Resort and Casino in Las Vegas.
The Aria Las Vegas, with all of its great attractions, can certainly fill up your day quickly.  Whether it’s lunch at one of the many restaurants like the Bar Mesa or Five50 Pizza Bar, swimming at one of the Aria’s three pools, or dinner and the Cirque du Solei’s “Zarkana” show, there are many different occasions.
So what are your Suitcase essentials?? Do you have any add-ons to the list, then do leave a comment below..
This is part of #Ariaessentials by Vegas.com

9 July 2014

Beauty has an Address - Oman

"Hey, where are you heading to, this Eid Holidays?"
"To Musandam, and you?
"Me, to Salalah.."
This used to be the topic of our lunch hour chit-chats, at my office in Dubai. Oman which shares border with UAE, was an easy option for short weekend drives or a long tour from Dubai. Musandam and Salalah were the only places I had heard(and been) of Oman, let alone Muscat the capital city. Only now, Oman Tourism introduced me to lot more than these places.
Collage of pics from my tour to Musandam and Salalah
Have been experienced camp fires on the beach, raced with dolphins while cruising on a traditional Dhow, diving and snorkeling in deep seas at Musandam and been enjoyed the beauty of Wadi Darbat(a Oasis in the desert), been spotted Flamingos at Khawr Rawri, during my visit to Dhofar(for Khareef Festival), its time for me to explore the unseen(by me) Oman, if I get to visit this country again.
video
Dolphins racing with our dhow in Khasab, Musandam
Collage of pics from my tour to Musandam and Salalah
My tour of Oman would start with exploring the capital of Oman, magical Muscat. A tour of historic Muscat, with a visit to its Forts Al-Jalali and Al- Mirani, and museums, Museum of Omani Heritage, National Museum of Oman, Oman children's Museum al Zubair, Omani French museum, Sultan's Armed Forces Museum. Sultan Qaboos Grand Mosque is another in my, to visit list.
Sultan Qaboos Grand Mosque(Image source Wikipedia)
Al Jalali Fort(Image source Wikipedia)
Would like to visit Ras Al Jinz, to watch Turtles. To feel how the heavy mother, which struggles to protect its egg in the sands and the new born struggling for survival, till it reaches the water. 
Turtle watch(Image source Oman Tourism)

Rocks Park(Image source Oman Tourism)
Visit to Oman is incomplete without a visit to  Rocks Park in Al Wasta. Naturally sculptured rocks in the shape of animals, birds and human parts, leaves visitor mesmerized by natures creation.Deserts Safari is a must do thing when you are in a dessert country. At Bawshar Sands, would love to go for a thrilling dessert drive and a climb to the top of the hill to enjoy sunset.
Desert Safari(Image source Oman Tourism)
Traditional Souk(Image source Oman Tourism)
No tour is complete without shopping and tasting local cuisine. Gulf is well known for its traditional souks(markets), a visit to souk to shop traditional Omani artefacts as souvenirs and the staple fruit of Gulf, the yummy dates. And with the holy month of Ramadan on, tasting Shakana is a must. And how could I miss Leben, my fav drink from Gulf, which I have been missing after leaving Dubai for good.
Courtesy Oman Tourism
My tour to Oman would be a combination of culture, heritage, nature and adventure.
PS: This is part of #BeautifulOman by Oman Tourism and Indiblogger.

4 July 2014

Skywatch Friday - Gurdwara Dam Dama Sahib

This white structure attracted my sight from the terrace of Humayun's tomb. The grey sky, green palms and the red sandstone railing, enhanced its beauty. Only after browsing on Google, I got to know it is Gurdwara Dam Dama Sahib, and its historical importance.
This place dates back to 1707 and commemorates the meeting place of Tenth Sikh Guru, Guru Gobind Singh and Bahadur Shah, then Prince Muazzum. Prince, who wanted to possess the throne of his father Aurangzeb after his death by defeating his brother, met Guru Gobind here, seeking his help and planning strategy for battle.
Though I couldn't visit the Gurdwara, am sure its one of those beautiful worship places..
Top post on IndiBlogger.in, the community of Indian Bloggers 
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3 July 2014

Yes, Car(Drive) and Connect(Travel) go together !!!

My hubby is fascinated of driving, he started his motor blog too, few years back, but with no time to update, its lying with few of his posts on automobile and auto-shows. And me being a travel freak, both our interests go together. He enjoys his drive and me my tours. Though we are still to plan a long trip by our car, the so called long drives we have covered is Mumbai to Bangalore, Dubai(UAE) to Musandam(Oman), keeping apart, few weekend destinations from Mumbai and Bangalore. With our daughter's academic calender out for the year, our travel plans too start for the whole year as per her vacation. And hubby plans his leaves. So a perfect tour does need a good planning.
Car Connect, so as it called is all about Cars and Connect(connecting you to cars or connecting different places through drives), for all those travel freaks, who love driving.

Cars: The website updates you with Car News and Car Launch, keeping you updated with everything going on in the automobile world. The best feature which I like is Compare Cars, if you are planning to buy a new car and still in the dilemma of choosing the better one, this feature helps you. Just enter the two car details and their expert team will guide you with the features of both cars, accordingly you can choose your pick as per your requirements. Also you can find the reviews of cars from fellow uses, which makes your choice easier.
Car description, feature along with links to reviews of the compared car

Connect: This section is the one of my interests. A place, you get to read travel  experience. Planning your trip and searching travel destination becomes more easier with Car Connect. Select your start point under Long Drive, you will get a list of travel guides shared by fellow travelers. Share your travel experience with Car Connect friends. They award you too, with fancy badges, to flaunt on your profile. Share more to grab more badges. Invite your facebook friends to read your travel experience. You also have Chat Room to chat with Carconnect members and expert team, to get instant advice.
My Car Connect Profile
Scope of Improvement of the website:
  • More options to log into your Car Connect account, with email id or twitter account, as the only option now is with your Facebook account. 
Happy Driving and Sharing, with Car Connect!!!
This is a review of Car Connect

1 July 2014

Humayun's Tomb, Delhi

After Red Fort, we had to catch our HOHO bus. The Green route of HOHO service would start with India Gate, followed by NGMA. India Gate been visited the previous day and skipping NGMA, we reached Humayun's tomb, then after to start our day tour with HOHO. 
I had heard a lot of the two main railway stations of Delhi, New Delhi and Nizamuddin and always thought Nizamuddin station was somewhere at a distance from Delhi city. Only to my surprise, when my rickshaw wala told me, Humayun's tomb was in Nizamuddin, quite near Nizamuddin station, which was just few minutes drive from Chandni Chowk. 
With the main entrance to the west gate closed, we were asked to take the other entrance on the Bharat Scouts and Guides Marg. A few minutes walk left us to ticket counter.
Humayun's tomb
Humayun's tomb, is the tomb of Mughal Emperor Humayun, built by his first wife Bega Begum in 1569-70.
You enter the complex through Bu Halima's Garden. To the right is the Tomb and mosque of Isa Khan, thinking of visiting while returning back from the main tomb, we headed further. To the left is Bu Halima's tomb, though there is no much records on Bu Halima.
Bu Halima's Tomb
Next is the Bu Halima Gateway, which was under renovation, and said to be built in 16th century.
Bu Halima Gateway
Ahead is West Gate, which is presently the main entrance to the tomb. The gateway is 16mtr high with rooms on either side of the passage on the ground floor and courtyards on upper floor. The rooms on the ground floor have Archaeological counter with miniatures and photographs of the complex.
West Gate
A photograph of ariel view of the tomb at Archaeological counter
From the West Gate you enter the main complex and get to see the main tomb of Humayun. On either side of the path way is the lush green garden, called Char Bagh(four gardens) built in Persian style.
The tomb is said to be the first garden tomb in Indian subcontinent and first structure to use red stone at such a scale. Its said that it was Babur, Humayun's father who started the tradition of being buried in Paradise Gardens, which created a precedent for mughal architecture of royal mausolea, which reached its Zenith with Taj Mahal in Agra.
Humayun's tomb
The building was first to use its unique combination of red sandstone, white marble and several elements of Indian Architecture, like small canopies, or chhatris surrounding the central dome, popular in Rajasthani architecture.
Humayun's tomb
This main tomb also has the graves of Bega Begum, the lady who built the tomb, Hamida Begum and Dara Shikoh(son of Shahjahan), and other Mughal emperors.
West Gate with Char Bagh garden on either side, as seen from the tomb
There are many other tombs in the complex, Nai-ka-Gumbad(Barber's tomb) which is said to belong to one of the royal barbers, Afsharwala Tomb - of a nobleman in Akbar's court, Nila Gumbad - of Miyan Fahim, a servant. Arab ki Sarai is another small complex, said to be the restroom for the craftsmen who came from Arab for the construction of the complex. Sarai, which means restroom and so called Arab ki Sarai, restroom for Arab craftsmen.
Arab Ki Sarai Gateway
Of the other tomb's in the complex, Isa Khan's Tomb is one, which is said have been built even before the construction of the main Humayun's Tomb. Isa Khan was a Afghan nobel in Sher Shah Suri's court. It is a beautiful octagonal structure built in an octagonal garden with a mosque on one side, entire family of Isa Khan was buried in this complex.
Isa Khan's Tomb


Travel Info:
Humayun's Tomb is on Mathura Road. Nearest Metro station is JLN Stadium.
Entry fee:
Indian tourists: Rs. 10
Foreign tourists: Rs. 250
Open all days from sunrise to sunset.
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  Related Posts: Check out the complete series on Golden Triangle Tour.