|India through your eyes. Your feedback of places and people, of a time and a space. Click HERE to send feedback.|
* Me KS Krishnan(85) regularly access your very interesting, absorbing, inspiring website, recalling some of the places you write about, sharing your ethos so well communicated, all using my wife Lalita's ipad with my failing eyesight. Having just registered for your monthly newsletter to which I ardently look forward, I can only simply pray for you and your family; your contributors, each a gem; and your vast readers
Warm regards and a BIG thank you
KS Krishnan c/o Lalita Krishnan
* An excellent effort made and achieved. Undoubtedly the best travel site for India. Keep up the good work.
Deputy Financial Adviser,
South Eastern Railway, India.
* This site is unique. While going through it, it seems
like you are not just reading an article but visiting
the place. I just don't have words to explain my feelings about
this site. Keep adding new articles.
* Hi to everybody who had made this site available to us.
I must say that this is a wonderful site. The content is detailed and interesting to read. I have already become a regular visitor of this site.
Your detailed articles ranging from trips/excursions to profiles of Indian
personalities is very nice. I have found such depth in articles only in one more publication i.e. The New York Times.
Thanks for putting this up.
* A great web site. Keep up the good work.
I visited your site for some travel information. I must really say that your site is a real treasure for data on Indian travel. It's really good.
* Your site has been very informative especially for NRI's (maybe for Indians staying at home also). Good coverage. Do include more unexplored parts of India.
I started surfing your site recently and am fascinated by what your site has
to offer. The writings are very good and interesting. Being an avid
nature lover who loves to travel, I appreciate your work.
* Hi there,
Excellent website with valuable information on travelling around India. Having been to India 3 times, and spending 6 months there last season, I can compliment you highly on the site. Hope it helps all those about to embark on their travels (I am jealous!!)
Just a bit of advice for girls, to be extra careful in northern India where you get groped for a cheap thrill, but it can be quite scary if alone. Best advice is to travel in twos or more.
* Having tried out some of the "surfing sites" of this wonderful virtual world, I find India Travelogue not only one of the most sympathetic websites on India, but also - at last - a place where good taste is supreme. Where
else can you find people who share your amazement at the
most beautiful Sun Temple in Modhera or enjoy Ahmedabad with its superb
collection of Islamic architecture, instead of just complaining about
the traffic jams?
* Your article Bollywood: Dream Capital of the World by Manohar V. Rakhe is excellent. As a Bombayite now settled in the US, I read each and every sentence with pride, sometimes tears rolling down my eyes. My 27 years
in Bombay brought out indelible memories and nostalgic ones, too. Many thanks to Manohar Rakhe for this wonderful article on Bombay. "Amchi Mumbai, Sarvanchi Mumbai".
It already made me regret not visiting Pandua (West Bengal) while I was
in Calcutta. I'm sure I will return to this site to get new inspiration
when I plan to visit India again.
So, please try to keep this site alive and kicking!
Mahesh Bhanumurthy, U.S.A.
* I am very pleased to read Sumanta Roy Chowdhury's article on Puri, Orissa. Keep publishing such great articles, which will bring awareness among the people in India and abroad about the hidden beauty of the eastern part
of our country.
* I liked your articles about Mumbai, living here for the past 23 years. I belong to the Himalayas where my town is air conditioned and the people are friendly. But the charm of Mumbai is something more than just making money. Here the people are also very tolerant, not seen anywhere else in the east or west that I have visited.
Norwegian New Year: Thanks for Sharing! Nice hints and links (Transformation Game, Art of Travel)
Indonesia, Working Abroad: Very nice and sweet twist at the end, about what the irritants might or might not be.
* I read the article Lakshadweep: Islands of Adventure by Manuel Fernandes. It was really a good tourist note and I enjoyed reading it.
However, may I point out a small mistake in that article which says
Kavaratti is the largest Island ? This I think is not true as by area wise, Minicoy
is the largest (may be Androth also), and Kadmat is the longest. Yes, Kavaratti is the capital of-course.
I thought of writing this because I was born in Minicoy and brought up in
Kavaratti and Adroth Islands.
Many thanks to Manual Fernandes for writing such a beautiful article about
Lakshadweep on the web.
Sreejith Kunnathery, UAE
It was a very sensitively done piece on Almora. My wife, Tara was from Almora
and she was the one who introduced the hills to me. She passed away in '99 but for me she lives on as the Kumaon hills. Its only when you lose someone close that the real balm of the mountains become evident.
Today when I sit for long hours at Kasar Devi, all alone,I realize what
Almora is all about. I'm really grateful to you for letting me recall Almora in my mind whenever and wherever I want, just by going through your impressions.
Keep up the great work.
With best wishes,
Dr H.Naidu, Lucknow
* Could you give me the e-mail id of Mr. Sandeep Guhagarkar who went from Mumbai to Khardung La on his moter cycle? I am planning a similar trip.
Sandeep has not been in touch for sometime, and his last known e-mail id has
changed, so until he writes to us again, we don't have his contact details.
When he eventually surfaces, as most of them do, I can pass him your mail.
Presuming that will not help much in your travel plans, I am forwarding your
letter to two biking enthusiasts, one of whom, Parag, has been by bike and
by car from Baroda to Leh. The other, Sumanta is looking for company to bike
in the direction of Spiti and Lahaul.
I have travelled by car, cross country several times, and am equally familiar with the nuances of long-disatnce hauls on bike, so if you have any
specific questions, I may also be able to help you.
Do stay in touch with the site, if you have unusual travel hobbies, because
the site is an interactive shared space for those who have common
travel-related passions. Since we handle huge volumes of mail, may I suggest
that you send me the occasional reminder of your hobby, or send a travelogue
of a particular biking holiday, so it remains in top-of-mind recall !
Take care and have fun,
Thank you very much for your reply. I least expected that you could lead me to people having similar plans. I was struggling to find people to accompany me. So, just was
planning to gather enough information before coercing one of my
friends/colleagues to come along. But you have made things much easier
Thank you again.
* Read the travelogue Mumbai to Khardung La by Road by Guhagarkar. A very lively and
fascinating account. As globalization continues faster than modem speed, many young travellers from India are now seen at exotic places from Queenstown in New Zealand to Santorini in Greece and Lima, Peru.
* Thanks for such nice travel experiences about Himalayan adventures. I would love to live in the Himalayas for a few years. I belong to Chandigarh. Each time I go to India I spend a few days in Himachal Pradesh, and I say to the mountains, look I am here once again.
* All the trekking travelogues are simply superb. I would like to have the e-mail address of Mr. Sumanta Roy Chowdhury. He has vast trekking experience which can be very valuable to a novice like me.
* I have checked with the Uttaranchal Forest Dept tours, and they will not do a Valley of Flowers tour unless there is a group of 5. Is it do-able alone? Are there local guides that one can take along? I know there are private tour operators, but they will also need a group of 5 or more.
I just wanted to know if the trek itself was safe to do alone. I'm not terribly fit, but its not a long trek. I have heard its steep.
Do I have to book accommodation in advance ? It wont be so crowded that I won't get accommodation, will it?
One last question: Is it better to approach it from Rishikesh, or from
Dehradun? From where is it better connected?
I went to Valley of Flowers last month, alone. It is do-able alone. You have to be very familiar with the Himalayas and trekking to do a solo trek anywhere. I would not advise a
solo trek unless you are very confident of your own skills.
How fit are you? How used are you to trekking? It isn't quite that short a
trek. Govindghat to Ghangria is 14 kms. The path is steep: not a killer, but not a breeze. It is an easy solo trek in terms of the fact that there are plenty of tea-stalls en route, and it is really not a hassle to find accommodation, and there are no shortage of trekkers till Ghangria. The route to Ghangria is cobbled, which means that you do not slip and slide in the rain, but that your knees take a beating downhill.
From Ghangria, the trail to the valley bifurcates and is is about 5 kms, plus you would want to wander around an additional 2-3 kms into the park. Camping at the Valley of Flowers is not permitted any longer. You can return the same day and stay the night at Ghangria. If you are very fit then you can walk back to Govindghat and stay the night again at Joshimath. I would not recommend it, if you have spare time, as it can be quite a gruelling day, then.
The best season to catch the flowers in full bloom, is mid-July to mid-August. When I went, the route had not yet been opened, so it involved crossing glaciers and ice-sheets, and the trail was not being used at all. The trail is very well-marked out, and you can't get lost, unless you try very hard. It is best approached through Rishikesh, then Rudraprayag, Joshimath, Govindghat (by road).
For the trek you can either take a porter from Joshimath or organise one
after reaching Govindghat. Charges should be about Rs. 250 per day, plus his food etc. You can take the porter till Ghangria if you wish, leave your luggage at Ghangria, go to Valley of Flowers or Hemkund Sahib for a day visit, on your own.
There are private lodges to stay at Govindghat from where the trek begins,
but I would recommend that you stay at Joshimath (20 km away ). Take an early morning bus/jeep to Govindghat and proceed 14 km to Ghangria. The traffic is directed one way at a time. Check the timings of the Gate beforehand so that you don't waste time waiting for the gate to open.
Joshimath has GMVN ( Garhwal Mandal Vikas Nigam) as well as private lodges.
The accommodation includes the UP tourism guest house, old and new, the
Nanda Devi Hotel, Birla Dharamshala etc. GMVN may well be full.
At Joshimath the GMVN no is:
Old Guest House: 01389 22118
New Guest House: 01389 22226
At Ghangria there are no phones and bookings have to be done from the GMVN office at Dehra Dun. You can stay at the gurdwara at Ghangria but it is very crowded. There is GMVN accommodation and opposite it are some basic but serviceable private lodges.
A cable car ride from Joshimath to Auli is also recommended.
Take some salt in your pocket for places where there might be leeches,
particularly in the monsoons. Drink only boiled/mineral water and carry some chlorine or iodine water purification tablets. Despite all the precautions I always take, I returned from my extensive sojourn in the Himalayas with typhoid! I do recommend you take preventive
measures against typhoid/cholera.
* Hi! I came across your website and found it simply amazing. This is a fantabulous site 4 everybody. Well Done! Just by reading people's accounts and experiences, I am fascinated. I want to learn Scuba Diving.
Thanks once again.
iver Keku Writer's poem
is worth every dive. Good analysis . Very well written . Fluid and honest.
* Dear Bittu,
I have so appreciated the articles you have written. My heart is very sad that money and power and selfishness is murdering our environment - it is sinful and a desperate situation. I live in South Africa and we too have our areas of controversy. I feel so powerless but none the less try and do my bit. I have spent time to help save the African penguin (endangered) of which 40,000 were involved in an oil spill off our shores. It was so sad to see these beautiful creatures being put through such hardship and stress thanks to mankind!
Please keep up your good work and good luck.
* Bittu Sahgal has taken up a very important though uphill (actually overhanging!!) task of getting humanity closer to nature. The human mind is so difficult to convince...it does not see beyond its own benefit. I wish Bittu all the best and hope more courageous people like him would join the fight against human greed.
I do my bit to clean up the environment and if we all do our little bits…then that's all we would need.
Harpreet Dhillon, Australia
* Dear Romola,
Just chanced to read your interview of Kiran Nagarkar on India Travelogue. Thank you for giving the reader a glimpse into Kiran Nagarkar. I have just finished reading Cuckold (the reason I came looking for him on the web pages) and I think it is the most brilliant novel ever written. I am very keen to make contact with Mr.Nagarkar to thank him for this wonderful book. Would you have an address or an email by which I can contact him?
Thank you again for throwing some light on the author.
* Dear Romola,
I enjoyed your article on Kiran Nagarkar It was fascinating. I really, really want to communicate my admiration and
gratitude to the author of a book as brilliant as Cuckold.
Can you help me communicate to him?
Pratibha Jain, Chennai
I have forwarded your mail to Kiran, and I am sure he will acknowledge it.
So glad you enjoyed the article. As a reader-driven site with the intention
of providing a forum to pursue common passions in niche interest areas, we
welcome readers contributing to any section, and would welcome your
India Travelogue has been created and developed as a shared space for
travellers, to successfully promote responsible eco-tourism and provide the
inspiration to explore and discover the rich diversity and cultural heritage
of our homeland.
India Travelogue is not just about journeys and destinations - it is about
an entire attitude to living that enhances life though the ability to convey
the spirit of India, promote its culture and values and express the warmth
and joy of a people who have much to share.
Do stay in touch,
Among the many approaches I made towards a search for Kiran Nagarkar, yours was the fastest and most helpful response. Thank you. I now await the author's mail with a greater hope.
I read some of your other articles: Atul Dodiya and Pilot Baba,
and was fascinated with these travelogues
- of places and of the mind as well. Your writing
reflects a keen interest in the world around you. The
style is simple and candid. So simply put, and thus
effective - "Somehow 'miracles' have never fascinated
me. They seem very ordinary." Pilot Baba's article
left me wondering if you will meet him again. It is an
article more about you than him, and that is where one
finds him. But when he said to you, "You will not need it
again... You will never have a guru." what did he
mean? And how did you interpret these observations of
his in the ordinariness of everyday life? How did
these remarks affect your own perception of yourself?
Atul Dodiya's article was so reflective, I almost felt
that I knew the man. The detailed description of his
paintings was like watching them. Are you such a keen
observer of art as well? But I did not quite understand how one can examine the unconscious mind - "Having assimilated his early experiences, he was able
to experiment with free flowing thought, examining his
conscious, subconscious and unconscious mind to
develop an individual insight that seeks a unique
Thanks once again.
Awaiting your response,