Daily Archives: 15.03.2014

Greenland – Exploring the Arctic



Greenland – Exploring the Arctic

The ice-country located far North between the Artic  and the Atlantic Oceans, Greenland has been voted as the world’s largest island. With a population of just 56,370 in 2013, it is the least populated country in the world. Being ruled by Denmark-Norway for centuries, Greenland has developed a rich culture in various towns across the Island. A list of towns and cities across Greenland, identify with its rich culture and history.

Nuuk

Nuuk-picture

The capital city of Greenland, Nuuk is known as a place where the past, present and future meet in a Greenlandic way. Also known as the headland the city is one of the oldest town and the world’s smallest capital city with just 16000 inhabitants. The city has beautiful old buildings as well as renovated and roof-covered structures. The attractions include the National Museum that reflects the history of Greenland, a cultural center called Katuaq, the University of Greenland and the cathedral dating back to 1849i . Nuuk is also a center for high quality of art and craft work. There is an  airport located 4 km (2.5 mi) to the northeast of the town center, from where domestic and international flights ply. There are a number of shops in Nuuk and a 140 room Hotel Hans Edge. Around 72 buses and 2570 cars operate in Nuuk.

 

Ilulissat

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Ilulissat means iceberg in the local language. The town is filled with majestic icebergs produced from the glacier called Sermeq Kujalleq, spreading across 60km. Ilulissat Ice Fjord was included in the UNESCO’s list of World Heritage Sites. Ilulissat sustains 4600 people and at least 3500 sled dogs. Dogsleds are important transport even in this modern town. Just few kilometers from Ilulissat is the beautiful valley of Sermermiut that displays stunning picturesque view of the nature.

Upernavik

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Situated far north, Upernavik gives its visitors the feel of standing on the top of the world. The place has got unique wildlife and also has the world’s largest bird cliff called Apparsuit. The area is ideal for kayaking. The weather is stable and calm. Rowing through the large chunks of ice with an essence of serenity is altogether different experience Upernavik offers to the tourists. The best tourist attraction is over the Davis Strait. This area has been used by the locals for fishing. The site can only be reached by dog sledges during the winter when the sea is frozen. Upernavik has around 100 lakes that are perfect for kayaking. To get most of the spectacular scenery of the icebergs one can opt for sailing up to Upernavik Icefjord which also includes whale safari. Upernavik can be reached from Kangerlussuaq international airport via Ilulissat. Transport to and from settlements takes place via helicopter.

 

Qeqertarsuaq

Qeqertarsuaq

The town lies on the southern islands of Qeqertarsuaq island, on the western coast of Greenland. Quqertarsuaq literally means big island in the local anguage. The place has beautiful snow-covered cliffs, along with hot springs, lush green hillsides and valleys. It is also known by the word Disko. The sea-life is dominated by humpback whales and bowhead whales during spring time. With a mere population of 900, people here are friendly and display kindness and hospitality. Being in the land of midnight sun, the daylight from mid May to mid August a big opportunity for a vast number of activities during summer time.  The ferry links Qeqertarsuaq with Ilulissat during summer while the helicopters are an aid during winters.

 

The East Greenland

The part of the Greenland to the East was under the shadow quite some time when expeditions were carried out and the place was only open to scientists and other explorers. Now the place has been easily accessible to the tourist. The land offers a treat for the people seeking adventure. The nearest airport to the place is Kulusuk. As you get down the airport, the clean air and the serenity of the place takes you to yet another world. The place has a lot to offer once you set down to exploring the area.

Tasiilag

tasiilag

Tasiilag is the capital of East Greenland. It offers enthusiast opportunities of skiing and dog sled trips of varied lengths. There is a little museum built inside the town’s old yet beautiful church which gives you an insight of the East Greenland’s culture including fine decorations and figures made out of teeth and bones. Continuing up the hill, you will come across Filatelia from where stamps are sent out to collectors all over the world, through daily tours. Further uphill you reach the Valley of Flowers. This place gives a feast to the eyes with its display of vast carpets of differently colored flowers over the sides of the mountains. At the end of the valley is a big lake. To get a whole view of the valley you may walk up-to the mountain ridge to the right of the lake. The way back is a gravel path that takes you back to the town.The town has a book café’ and sort of meeting place for the locals and the tourists where teas, coffees and ice-cream waffles are sold. Another main settlement of the district is Tinitegilaag. It offers a stunning scenic beauty with plenty of icebergs. The distances are met by sleds and snowmobiles. There are yet other places isolated places which can be reaches via helicopters. If you are lucky you can catch a glimpse of the whales and polar bears on the trip.

The city has a major airport, Tasiilag Heliport, facilitating both domestic and international flights. It is about 2 km from the center of Tasiilag. Another major airport is Kulusuk Airport located 24 km from Tasiilag. You will get a lot of hotels within 739km of Tasiilag like Hotel Budir and Hotel Keflavik.

 

Southern Greenland

southern greenland

Southern Greenland is known for its mountains lush beauty and abundant flowers. There are glaciers, ice-bergs in all shapes and colors and not to be missed the spectacular Northern Lights which can be seen at the end of month of August. The enormous sheets of ice cut off the boats from visiting the towns and settlements. The helicopters offer the best and only choice to reach from town to town. This reduces the time to reach various towns and one can have opportunity to experience towns, settlements, cultures, historical mountains, glaciers and icebergs all of them in one go.

Vienna – The Imperial City of Europe



Vienna – The Imperial City of Europe

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One of the politest, most livable and friendliest cities in the world Vienna is a place for some old-fashioned talk and romance. The city which lies almost in the heart of Europe is one of its most celebrated, decorated and sophisticated cities. The city is the capital of Austria and is the largest city of the country by virtue of its population as well as size. It is also the cultural, economic, political and music heartland of Austria and the second largest German speaking city in Europe. Vienna or Wien is considered to be the ‘City of Dreams’ by virtue of it being the city of birth of the Father of Psychology Sigmund Freud as well as the ‘City of Music’ due to its marvelous musical legacy which is still carried out in the underground cult-status music stores and in of course the more sophisticated Philharmonic Orchestra. The city of Vienna has consistently topped international ranking for being the most livable city in the world a status it has been able to retain this year too.

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Like many other big cities in Europe Vienna have a history and a much decorated one at that. The city which was formed in the low-lying region of the Danube was home to humans from the Paleolithic Ages with the Celtic Tribes being the dominant race. The Romans were the first to establish the city in its current place as a military garrison to keep an eye on the ever-invading Germanic tribes. In the coming centuries after the fall of the Roman Empire in the 4th century A.D the region in and around Vienna became home to many Irish Monks who established monasteries throughout the region some of which have stood the test of time. By the 10th century A.D the Babenberg Dynasty started ruling the region under the Duchy of Austria and by the 12th century A.D Vienna was under its control and soon became their capital.

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The 15th century marked the start of a glorious period in the city’s history which continued on till the first half of the 20th century, because at this time the Habsburg Dynasty came to power in Vienna. It was the de facto capital of the Holy Roman Empire from the 15th century till the 18th century at which time it enjoyed the status of being the cultural and musical center f Europe, set standards of class and courts in the continent as well as functioned as an influential center of arts and sciences. With the fall of the Holy Roman Empire the city became capital to another great empire known as the Austrian Empire in 1804, in 1867 the Austro-Hungarian Empire was conceived with Vienna as its capital. During the whole century Vienna remained the focal point of culture, arts and music with the beginning of the First Viennese School of Music. The city saw massive development during this time which dominates the city’s classical landscape today. In 1919 Austria became a republic with Vienna as its capital.

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Vienna is divided into 23 districts in a circular formation with the first district forming the bull’s eye of the city. The first district houses most of the earliest remains of the city with the castle and the fort and is thus the heart of the city. The first district is encircled by a ring formation boulevard which has on its corners some of the biggest and most famous building of Vienna such as the Town Hall, the Parliament, the Hofburg Palace, the State Opera House, the Natural History Museum and the Museum of Art History. The Second District Leopoldstadt is kind of an island on the Danube River which has thich forested but also famous neo-Baroque architecture. The third district, Landstradt, is the shopping area of Vienna with very nice shopping markets such as Landerstradt and Hopstradt, you can also get a taste of the 20th century housing project which are famous for their architecture. The sixth district of Mariahilf houses most of the modern aspects of the city with neighborhoods full of bars and Bohemian haunts along the Gumpfendorfer Stadt and also the most popular shopping street in Vienna the Mariahilferstardt.

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Getting into Vienna is now hassle as the Vienna International Airport connects you to almost all the major cities in the European Union and other continents. It is also connected by road, train and bus with most of Europe. Getting around in the city is also no hassle with a well developed public transportation system including metro, buses, tram, taxis and like any other European city through bicycles. Vienna and its people are considered to still have the hangover of the eras gone by as the people here still talk with the utmost courtliness, politeness and civility, they are considered to be very formal at the same time being very modern and forward looking. The city is the capital of music and being here one should not miss a chance to visit the opera to a get a taste of great music. If one happens to visit the city during carnival time make sure to visit the famous Balls that happens at the most exotic locations around the city. Vienna with its class, culture and sophistication is truly the imperial city of Europe.

The Great Pyramids of Egypt



The Great Pyramids of Egypt

There are perhaps only a very few places on the planet which can claim their ancient value and contribution to modern knowledge of early ages, to be even close to the Great Pyramids of Egypt. They are not only the countries face to the whole outer world but also contribute majorly to its economy being the most visited tourist spots, as the Egyptian economy is greatly dependent on tourism.

They are not just magnificent to the eyes but also have evoked innumerable human emotions, thoughts and ideas till date since the day their foundations were laid. Where only a few bigger pyramids are famous around the world, there actually are more than 100 of varied pyramids across Egypt, most of which are located near Cairo. The final exploration has not yet begun and even after so many years new pyramids are frequently being discovered.

To say that the construction of these magnificent pieces of art is brilliant would always be an understatement. Each pyramid though commonly possessing the architectural style was distinct in itself and designed extremely intricately. Most of them were laid with carvings, elaborate passages and secret chambers. The Great Pyramids were built to be aligned with the four centres of the world Egyptians, who were so adept at their work and diligent to their ambition that they completed a work of such enormity in relatively less time given they had absolutely no modern technology to utilize. The gasp of amazement when one stands at the feet of these great structures is one mutual feeling amongst almost all the visitors and one can see the astonishment in fellow travellers’ eyes too.

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Where general tourist visit only a couple of more famous pyramids, other who are really interested in history and architecture may visit many more; but visiting all the pyramids may not be advisable as some of them are no more than very small hills which in no way look man-made.

All the standard tours offered by almost all the tour operators include a few great pyramids, a ride on the Nile, visiting museums and other heritage sites. These include the greatest and the most famous Pyramid Of Giza and the Giza plateau. It is the countries single biggest tourist attraction. Due to insensitive harm caused to the pyramids by people’s actions of scribbling or chipping at them the entry now is strictly regulated with a few of the great pyramids staying close while others open for a particular season. The operators are no more allowed to book tickets for clients and each person has to take his/her ticket individually, thus arriving as an early bird is often recommended as only 150 people are allowed each morning and evening. The climb inside the pyramids is not really user-friendly and may be difficult for aged and people with disabilities.

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After the Giza plateau next in line is the Saqqara (Sakkara), comprising of a tour of the Step Pyramid complex of Djoser. This pyramid out-dates all the other pyramids and is presumed to be the first pyramid to be built in Egypt. Another pyramid field in proximity to Cairo is Dahshur which may not be available in tours of all the operators.

A hurried trip to Giza would almost always leave many other important establishments such as historical mosques, toms and other site of great architecture and history ignored. The restricted area of Saqqara has many more pyramids which might not be as visually appealing as their other siblings but are very important bookmark in the ‘book-of-development-of-pyramid’, some of which are the Unas and Teti pyramids built during the early years of the 6th dynasty.

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The region around Cairo is a true pyramid lover’s paradise with the whole area dotted with pyramids of various sizes. The truly interested people visit even the smaller ones most of which are free for visitors.

The overall climate of Egypt is hot and dry year round and the best time to visit is between October and may when it is not too hot. Light cotton clothes are advised and people instructed to dress in layers to protect them from the harsh sun of Egypt, sunglasses are a must.

Cairo is well connected to many major parts of the world, including London, Dubai, New York, Kuwait etc., by air and flights directly land here.  Internal railways is also an option for many people to travel around within the country, these connect all the major cities to Cairo. Renting a car and taxis are some options to move around in the vicinity.

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Taamiya is one of the most favourite dish of the locals whereas Shwarma is a marinated lamb served with salad. Fuul means ‘beans’ and is served in many ways, usually with onions, tomato and spices. Baba Ganush is made from pureed grilled aubergine and is served with pitta bread at most meals.

Alcohol is available in most tourist locations in Egypt and around Cairo but one should be careful as bringing in more than 2 litres of petrol is prohibited in Egypt and the legal age of drinking is as high as 21 years.

Egypt is not foe those who love only adventure but for those for whom every mention of ancient culture and early history is an adventure in itself.

Charming Countryside: Bibury, England



Charming Countryside: Bibury, England

Situated in Gloucestershire, England is the utterly charming Village of Bibury. This village has perfectly picture postcard qualities as it is tucked in the stunning and scenic countryside. The Cotswold cottages, the lush greenery, the bubbling waters of River Coln, all make Bibury an extremely picturesque place. In addition to this the history of the place can be traced as far back as 11th century and has many fascinating facets, not the least of which is the visually pleasing sites. All these come together to make Bibury a popular tourist attraction for those who want a rustic retreat, to get away from the hustle and bustle of city, or to visit a serene place situated in nature’s lap.

Bibury

Bibury can be easily reached from London by means of bus, taxi, or private cars. If one wants to travel through railway then the nearest station to reach Bibury is that of Kemble, from where cabs are easily available to reach this Charming village.

Arlington Row

The most popular site within Bibury is perhaps the Arlington Row, which is said to be one of the most photographed sites in Cotswold owing to is charming and photogenic outlook. The Arlington Row is occupied by a row of cottages which were built as far back as 1380s. At that time it was employed as a monastic wool store. Later on in the 17th century it was turned into weaver’s cottages who worked in the Arlington Mill. Today these honey colored cottages serve as a favorite among travelers, giving all visitors a sense of having stepped into an era gone by. This place has also served as movie sets for such popular ones like Bridget Jones’ Diary.

Arlington Mill

The Arlington Mill in Bibury dates back to the 17th century when it operated as a cloth mill. This building fits right in with rest of the architecture of this village. The mill when it went out of function was converted into a museum, displaying the folk elements of the Cotswold countryside as well as housed an art gallery. Today it has become a private residence. But there are several historic homes still open for tourists where they can experience a truly rustic retreat.

Bibury Court

The Bibury Court is among the largest buildings that are found in this village. It was built in early 17th century around 1633. It has been renovated since then and currently the Court serves as a hotel. The Jacobean architectural influences, together with the stones and oak paneled rooms, the fire places all add a distinct charm to the Bibury Court. A stay in this place is a unique traveling experience in itself.

Holiday Cottages

It is by no means the only place in Bibury that provides accommodations to visitors in addition to providing a truly charming, fairy tale like rural set up. There are many Bed and Breakfasts, as well as Holiday cottages available around Bibury from which the visitors can take their pick. The Square, Lupin Cottage, Sykes Cottages are few of the cottages that date back to 16th or 17th centuries. Their stone facades and authentic rustic features make them a bonus for anyone visiting the countryside in Bibury. Besides this there is also the Bibury Court and Swan Hotel. Many pubs, Inns and Restaurants cater to visitors and serve all kinds of delicious cuisines.

Bibury Trout Farm

Bibury Trout Farm is a very popular tourist attraction in Bibury. It is one of the oldest such farms, as it was founded as far back as 1902. Though the farm is still operative, it also allows visitors. The birds that can be spotted here like ducks, geese, swan to name a few add to its attraction. People can buy fish food and feed them here, you can buy souvenirs from the gift shops here, you can also avail the fishing opportunities that are made available for visitors over here. Bibury also houses a National Trust Wildfowl Reserve. The water meadows and marshes around Bibury’s Rack Isle serve as the habitat of many different species of flora and fauna. Mallards, Coots, Moorhens are some of the several species that can be spotted here. For all the travelers visiting Bibury, these natural aspects of the charming village make the whole experience captivating.

Church

Saint Mary Church in Bibury is another popular tourist attraction. This is a Saxon Church which has many features making it worth visiting. The stained glass window panels made in 1927 for instance are one such feature. The beautifully maintained grounds and the abundant rose bushes, and other blossoms add vivid colors to this structure. Next to the church is a primary school which was built during the 1850s.

Stone Bridge

The village of Bibury is situated alongside the River Coln. This tributary of River Thames flows through the middle of the village, running parallel to the main street. The stone bridges above the river’s course, the lush green pastures and profusion of colors and blossoms around the river’s passage, and the stone cottages with their steep roofs, all come together to paint an extremely pleasing picture of this village. The woodlands in Bibury spread over some one square km of area have hardwoods, softwoods as well as fruit bearing trees planted there. The landscape of Bibury is enhanced through these features, the lush wilderness, sparkling water of the river and the fairy tale like cottages.

Bibury in Winter

To walk around the pathways of this village, the tangerine and yellow tinge of the autumn, the snow covered cottages in winters, the rivers, stone bridges, the historic homes, naturally stunning terrains all make Bibury a perfect place for all those looking for a charming and peaceful traveling destination.

The Mountain State of USA: Colorado



The Mountain State of USA: Colorado

The region inhabited by the Native Americans for more than 13,000 years is today named as the State of Colorado. Colorado is in USA surrounding most of the Southern Rocky Mountains as well as the northeastern portion of the Colorado Plateau and the western edge of the Great Plains. Colorado is part of the Western United States, the Southwestern United States, and the Mountain States. Colorado is the 8th most extensive and the 22nd most populous of the 50  States.

The state was named for the Colorado River, which Spanish explorers named the Río Colorado for the ruddy silt the river carried from the mountains. Colorado is bordered by the northwest state of Wyoming to the north, the Midwest states of Nebraska and Kansas to the northeast and east, on the south by New Mexico and Oklahoma, on the west by Utah, and Arizona to the southwest. The four states of Colorado, New Mexico, Utah, and Arizona meet at one common point known as the Four Corners, which is known as the heart of the American Southwest. Colorado is distinguished for its varied geography, ranging from alpine mountains, arid plains and deserts with huge sand dunes, deep canyons, sandstone and granite rock formations, rivers, lakes, and lush forests.

Well known for

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Mountains: The summit of Mount Elbert at 14,440 feet in elevation in Lake County is the highest point of Colorado and the Rocky Mountains. Colorado is the only U.S. state that lies wholly above 1,000 meters elevation. The point where the Arikaree River flows out of Yuma County, Colorado, and into Cheyenne County, Kansas, is the lowest point in Colorado at 3,317 feet elevation.

Peaks: Towards the west of the Great Plains of Colorado rises the eastern slope of the Rocky Mountains. Remarkable peaks of the Rocky Mountains include Long Peaks, Mount Evans, Pikes Peak, and the Spanish Peaks near Walsenburg, in southern Colorado. This area drains to the east and the southeast, eventually either via the Mississippi River or the Rio Grande into the Gulf of Mexico.

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Film: A number of film productions have shot on location in Colorado, especially well-known Westerns like True Grit, The Searchers and Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid. A number of historic military forts, railways with trains still operating, mining ghost towns have been utilized and transformed for historical accuracy in well known films. There are also a number of scenic highways and mountain passes that helped to feature the open road in films such as Vanishing Point, Bingo and Starman. The Colorado Office of Film and Television has stated that over 400 films have been shot in Colorado.

Cuisine: Colorado is well-known for its Southwest and Rocky Mountain cuisine. Mexican restaurants are high-flying all over the state. Boulder, Colorado was named America’s Foodiest Town 2010 by Bon Appétit. Boulder, and Colorado in common, is home to a number of national food and beverage companies, top-tier restaurants and farmers’ markets.

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Wine & Beer: Colorado wines include award-winning varietals that have fascinated a favorable note from outside the state. With wines made from traditional Vitis vinifera grapes along with wines made from cherries, peaches, plums and honey, Colorado wines have won top national and international awards for their quality.

Top attractions in Colorado

 

Black Canyon of the Gunnison

Black Canyon of Gunnison
The Black Canyon of the Gunnison is the deepest and steepest canyon in the United States. It is yet deeper and steeper than the Grand Canyon! While the view is not relatively as remarkable as the Grand Canyon’s vast vistas, the Black Canyon is equally dazzling simply because it is hard to swallow something that deep and still so narrow!

Durango & Silverton Narrow Gauge Railway

Durango & Silverton Narrow Gauge Railway

What better way to experience the majesty and grandeur of the San Juan Mountains in southwestern Colorado than by narrow gauge railroad! The Durango & Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad line runs amid the old mining towns of Durango and Silverton, Colorado. The tracks run beside the steep sides of a mountain high above the Animas River. Little black engines, the same used when the railroad was in operation carrying ore and supplies, pull closed or open air wooden coaches up the steep grades.

Garden of the Gods

Garden of the Gods

Imagine sandstone rock formations that soar 300 feet into the air and hang unsteadily over the valley floor, all set beside the backdrop of snow-capped Pikes Peak. The elevated vistas and stirring scenery make Garden of the Gods in Colorado Springs, Colorado, a true picturesque marvel.

Great Sand Dunes National Park and Preserve.
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Bizarre to think that the tallest sand dunes in the United States are actually high in the mountains, but it’s true. Great Sand Dunes National Park and Preserve, elevation 8,000 to 13,000 feet, has more than 30 square miles of sand dunes.The Capital City Denver

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The Mile High City got its start as a jumping off point for the Colorado Gold Rush that started in 1850s.Today, the Busy town of around 600,000 inhabitants is a remarkable place to visit. It has everything … museums, zoos, night life, resorts and spas, symphony, theater, ballet, cultural and historical sites and so much more!

While Buena Vista, The Grand Mesa, Cave of Winds, Rocky Mountain National Park, Mesa Verde National Park, Colorado National Monument near Grand Junction are amongst some other tourist attractions. Colorado has it all to fulfill the tourists’ needs. It is one of the most interesting places to visit in the United States.

The City of Peace – Sharm el sheik, Egypt



The City of Peace – Sharm el sheik, Egypt

Sharm el sheikh is gifted with natural beauties of Sinai, including its idyllic beaches, white sandy deserts with surrounded water, rare and beautiful reefs, crystal clear water and surrounding hills, is considered as world’s most famous holiday destination. The city is located on the southern tip of Sinai peninsula (Egypt) on the red sea close to Jordan, Israel and Saudi Arabia. Sharm is best known as one of the most famous and attractive diving spots of the world. Sharm is also called city of peace because it has been a main spot of peace treaties and conferences.

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Shram el sheikh gives the red sea an international reputation as one of the world’s most extraordinary diving destinations. It is also offers luxurious hotels and restaurants surrounded by blue water and white sand, diving centers, yatch charter, desert safari, casinos, discos and beaches. By coming at this place your eyes can be tantalized by the white sandy beaches and endless desert landscape, which contrast with the crystal clear blue water of the Sinai peninsula. visitors can Imagine the thrill of Las Vegas and the tranquility of Hawaii, mixed with endless amounts of exhilarating activities all in one city. Sharm El Sheikh’s Red Sea, deemed as the world’s best diving location, offers breathtaking underwater scenery, featuring massive coral reefs, great visibility, and immense varieties of rare and diverse species. Its striking wall and shipwreck destinations as well as its unspoiled underwater life make it a favorite diving location for scuba divers worldwide.

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Naama bay,located north of sharm  is one of the major tourist attractions in the area. The bay offers stunning views, a myriad of tropical fish, plenty of water sports and a host of wildlife.  Most hotels at Naama Bay have their own, private beaches with comfortable amenities such as chairs, shades and even bars.

1353603647_largeSharm El Sheikh Crystal Lagoons

this is a long sandy bay, shore line on this bay is now complete and the seafront boasts a beautiful walkway, lined with bougainvillaea and oleander, following the full sweep of the bay. then there is ras sea cliff, famous for its coral reef has a very high cliff where many hotels are situated. It links naam bay and the bay of sharm el maya. Sharm el maya, this picturesque bay is a natural harbor and home to many small boats. Sharm el sheik is also a favorite spot for scuba divers from around the world. Being situated near the red sea it provides some of the most stunning underwater scenery and warm water making this an ideal place to dive. Beach seekers can experience many activities such as divind, snorkeling, windsurfing, kitesurfing,  boating and canoeing. This beautiful sandy beach has a profusion of palm trees providing natural shades for the sun loungers.  this area is developing into a resort town of its own. Most hotels at Na’ama Bay have their own, private beaches with comfortable amenities such as chairs, shades and even bars.

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Ras Mohammed national park,  locates 12 km from the city at the sourthen extreme of the Sinai peninsula encompasses of two islands, tiranand sanafir, overlooking the gulf of suez on the west and the gulf of aqaba to the east, provides an opportunity to witness the world’s rarest species, under water scenery. The inland area includes a diversity of desert habitats such as mountains and wadis, gravel and coastal mud pains and sand dunes. Then the shark reef and Yolanda reef are popular areas of coral reef in the park for divers.

The other coral reef sites are south bereika marsa ghozlani, old quay and shark observatory. . Other leisure activities available include, among others, archery, tennis, beach volleyball, biking, and much more.Explore the underwater marine creature, amazing coral reefs and learn about the colourful coral reefs ecosystem. You will be able to click some amazing photographs of the coral reefs and marine species of Red Sea.if you are not rally a water person than you can enjoy the splendid mountains, valleys, deserts and national parks surrounded by beautiful sea beaches.

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The city also provides white sandy beaches, tranquil setting, vibrant nightlife, and outgoing local population combine to make this an ideal holiday resort.During the day, ride the waves on a Banana Boat or mount a camel and follow the many desert trails. You can water ski your way around the Red Sea or parasail while gazing at Sharm’s top view, where the desert merges with the crystal blue waters. You can get the opportunity of sand skiing in the desert.

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this is the monastery Saint Catherine’s, one of the two oldest surviving Christian monasteries, built in the 6th century, located at the foot of mount sinai, famous for the reason that moses is said to received ten commandments. mount saini is a group of holy mountains and peaks Here you will see the imposing citadel, the historic manuscripts and ancient Greek and Russian icons, and the basilica which houses the relics of St. Catherine. You can also visit the Colored Canyon which displays various colour rocks and terrain.

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In trip you can also enjoy the camel ride accompanied by Bedouin guides and will pass through the vast desert of the Sinai peninsula while the EL AAT mountain will be perfect background, you can feel the peace and vast isolation far from the maddening crowd. Tourist can see the vast wilderness of desert and can experience the Bedouin life and their culture and history

than the other attraction centers are The valley of kings is known to contain 63 tombs and chambers, decorated with the scenes from the Egyptian mythology. it is the principal  burial place of the major royal figures and all the tombs seems to have been opened and robbed in antiquity but still they gave the idea of powerful pharaohs. the tomb of Tutankhamun, now the wold heritage site is one of the most famous archaeological site of the world. then the Luxor, known as world’s greatest open air museum and the karnak temple, is the largest temple ever built by man. than the Abu Galum with an opportunity to swim, see high mountains, wadis and snorkeling the blue hole- one of the most spectacular diving and snorkeling sites in the red sea. then the New aqua water park largest water park in the city, Coptic church, the heavenly cathedral.

sharm-el-sheikh-egyptSharm El Sheikh Crystal Lagoons

The luxury of five-star hotels, water sports, shopping and entertainment can be enjoyed in the simplicity of sun, sea and sand. It is a developed tourist resort communities on the Sinai Peninsula and one of the most accessible areas. It is almost impossible for a visitor to ever suffer from boredom. Diving and snorkeling, windsurfing and other water sports, horses and camel riding, desert safaris are main attractions. 

So there are many popular tourist attractions and hot spots around the city of Sharm el Sheikh, which never fail to draw in the crowds. Beaches, beautiful coral reefs and an abundance of colorful marine attractions, luxurious hotels surrounded with deserts, mountains and water and many other heavenly activities and places make this city the attraction of the world. before you die must visit this beautiful city.

The Mediterranean Island of Elba, Italy



The Mediterranean Island of Elba, Italy

Situated in the Tyrrhenian Sea, Elba is a part of the Tuscany Archipelago, and the third largest Italian Island. A very popular tourist attraction, Elba is easily reachable through the ferry rides that are available from the mainland.

Elba, Ferry Ride

Elba is a delight for beach lovers, with pristine and varied beaches that it offers. Besides that the island also has its own historical significance, owing most prominently to Napoleon’s exile on Elba in early 19th century.

Elba. Italy.

The brilliant beaches, the peace that permeates the island, facilities for water sports and other adventure activities, the picturesque locales, historic homes, and ancient archaeological findings all come together to ensure that Elba has something to offer to all kinds of travelers.

Elba, Castello del Volterraio

Historically the island of Elba gains significance due to Napoleon’s stay. But that is not the only age to which Elba’s history can be traced back. Elba’s past trajectory starts somewhere in pre-historical times, with the Ilvati tribe who gave the island the name Ilva. Some fortifications and structures from the ancient times have been preserved till date, constituting popular tourist sites. Elba has been known since old times for its iron mills, which today serve as tourist sites with all the hiking trails available around its surroundings. Besides this, the place also features prominently in the Greek mythology as a stopover of the Argonauts who were traveling in search of the Golden Fleece. There are many beaches and other locations which are steeped in these myths and local legends.

Elba Beach, Capo Bianco

The beaches in Elba are spectacular to say the least, and cater to people in search of all kinds of beach activities and experiences. To simply sunbathe and laze around on the beaches, to play games such as volley ball on the sandy beaches, to go for a swim in the turquoise waters, to simply observe the vast and endless blues of the sea and sky, to build sand castles, walk around and meditate on peaceful beaches, to indulge in more adrenaline inducing water sports, the different beaches in Elba have all these and much more to offer.

Elba beaches

Beaches in Elba are both sandy for instance Biodola as well as stony as the likes of those found in the eastern coast. The hundreds of beaches all over the island of Elba are known for their pristine beaches, colorfully vivid sands, their exceptional surroundings. Cottoncello for instance is known for its dazzling golden sands. Around the mining regions, the beaches have reddish sands. Capo Bianco boasts of white sands and amazing beaches. Tombe has beaches interspersed with black pebbles. Innamorata or Sweetheart beach is tied with local legends. The lush greenery, profusion of blossoms, quaint Italian villages tucked near these beaches, campsites made available for visitors, the pristine waters, rich marine life, beaches associated with legends, all make the beach side sojourn in Elba that much more memorable.

Marine life seen while Snorkeling

Hiking, trekking, mountain biking and many more adventure water sports are made available in Elba’s terrain and on the beaches. But the activity for which Elba is particularly apt is snorkeling and diving. There are many suitable sites around Elba that offer incredible snorkeling experiences. Capo Sant’ Andrea is one of the most popular place though. The sea beds in Elba are blessed with incredibly varied, rich and spectacular marine life and corals.

Elba, Sea Beds

From Mediterranean marine organisms, to the red gorgonians, black corals, blue fish, eels these are few of the things one is bound to encounter while snorkeling in Elba. To see rarer species, snorkeling around rocks of Ogliera are more apt. in the year 1972, a merchant ship sunk around Pomonte, today it is popular among tourists to go snorkeling and experience observing the shipwreck. The yellow and red sea daisies covering the sea beds near Capo Calamita are bound to leave all with an incredible sight. Snorkeling opportunities available in Elba make up for a memorable traveling experience.

Elba, Ruins

For the more culturally inclined travelers there is the Archaeological Civic Museum, which offers a glance into Elba’s fascinating and old history. Owing to Napoleon’s stay there are many places today that have gained historical significance and serve as popular site among travelers. Located in the Portoferraio region of Elba, there are the two historic homes, which served as Napoleon’s public and private residence back in 1814.

Villa San Martino

Both San Martino and the Palazzina dei Mulini today count among Elba’s many attractions. Castello del Volterraio is part of fortifications dating back to the Medici’s. There are several ruins of ancient Roman villas and structures which date back to first century BC. These sites such as the Punta delle Grotte, and Villa Romana di Capo Castello among others make up for fascinating sites to explore.

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Besides the stunning landscapes that are constituted of lush green mountains, chestnut trees, the dazzling sea, pristine beaches, and historic homes, Elba is equally a must visit for the food lovers. The delicious Italian cuisine with local additions of Elba makes this island a food lover’s paradise too. Popular for its native and dating back to several centuries is the Aleatico red wine. Besides this the sea food here is delectable, locally produced and available ingredients like chestnuts, flavored honey (rosemary honey, chestnut honey to name a few), octopus, mushrooms all add to the flavors and taste of Elba.

Elba

The amazing archaeological and historical sites, the brilliant beaches, the stunning landscapes, the culinary delights among other offerings make the Mediterranean Island of Elba a place worth visiting.

Safari at Serengeti – The Perfection of Nature



Safari at Serengeti – The Perfection of Nature

If you find Edward O Wilson’s words that, “Each species is a masterpiece, a creation assembled with extreme care and genius.”, are a perfect reflection of your own thoughts; if you can easily spend the whole day watching Discovery and Animal Planet just wondering about what these places might really look like, then please stop and think again before reading any further; because what you might read here and the decisions which the impact may lead you to make, might change the way you look at the world entirely. Such is the experience of visiting the vast ancient lands of Africa which have borne testimony to ages of evolution and which are the common origins of all humans together.

Such is the extent of this nature’s wonder that it is shared between two countries, with its major portion lying with Tanzania and then extending into Kenya too.  The park extends over a tremendous area of more than 14750 square kilometres. Located in the northern part of Tanzania the park extending continuously in Kenya is known as The Maasai Marra there. The region gets its very name from its feature of infinite vastness, as the present name is derived from a Maasai word meaning “infinite lands”.

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The lands were first made famous by a book called ‘Serengeti shall not die’ accompanied by a movie of the same name. It is also the oldest national park in the country and one of the richest, in terms of bio-diversity, in the world. It is one of UN’s World Heritage Sites too.

Serengeti for many, alters the feeling of time and space for many people by the eternal and infinite reflections it radiates at people. Being one of the most complex eco-systems in the world it has been kept widely unspoiled by any human activities and habitation in the park region is strictly prohibited except for researchers, administrative and hospitality staff.

The geography can be divided broadly in three regions the main limitless grasslands, which provode habitat for hoofed animals like zebra and wildebeests, called the Serengeti plains; Wetern Corridor- the swamps of the parks which are quenched by many big small streams of which the Grumeti River is the biggest. These are safe havens for predators and species like pythons etc.; and the woodlands and hills which lie between Seronera in the south, to the Mara river and are in greater proximity to Kenya, these are home to bigger species like elephants and giraffes and are called Northern Serengeti.

Serengeti

The main attraction obviously is the wild life of which Serengeti has more than anybody could long to see in one trip. African lion, African leopard, African elephants, black rhinoceros, wild buffalos, wildebeests are some of the most popular sightings for the visitors. Africa is the king in terms of lion population and its crown jewel is Serengeti with more than 3000 lions in the ecosystem. The bird species are equally rich with more than 515 species with the likes of ostrich, secretary bird, Kori bustard, crowned crane, marabou stork, martial eagle, lovebirds, and many species of vultures; these can best observed and watched in early morning hours. Cheetahs, African wild-dog, baboons, impala, gazelle, you name it and they have it.

The climate of Serengeti too, doesn’t go opposite to the visitors, with year round temperatures flickering between 24-27 degree Celsius, though nights can be distinctly chilly at higher altitudes. Rains are sporadic during November and December and are more frequent and heavy during the months of March- May. Any safari is best timed during April- May and the tourist season runs year long as different people come for different species which have different seasonal patterns.

Probably Serengeti’s biggest attraction is the wildebeest migration, known worldwide as one of the biggest migrations for any species on the planet. Visitors come in the particular season just to take in the breath-taking view of millions of wildebeests and other hoofed animals go around clockwise in the park in search of food and water. The sheer scale of this annual occurrence is mind-numbing and though provoking at the same time.

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Some other must have experiences at Serengeti include –

Lake Lagarja, South Serengeti – During the months of December to May large herds can be found between  Olduvai, Gol, Naabi and Lagarja, this spot can be an ideal place to put down your base as it is centre point and one can move out to all the locations from here as they are located at almost similar distances. It also provides one freedom to travel across the plains in true explorer spirits meeting numerous wildlife species on your way, diving deep into the depths of nature.

Moru Kopjes and Seronera, Central Serengeti- The place provides for a change of terrain and thus a distinct kind of wildlife. Seronera is not very far and hilly forests and waterholes can be enjoyed on a typical day.

Northern Serengeti is always rich in water and thus many species migrate to the part with many other permanently habiting there. Elephants are a common sight. Bologonja Springs are most popular destination due to their immense beauty made better with a combination of the scenic views and the varied wildlife.

The nearest airport is the Kilimanjaro Airport; however international flights on a smaller aircraft to Seronera or Kirawira can be availed at around $150 for a one-way ticket. Seregeti can also be reached via road and is about 330 kilometres from the Lake Manyara National Park, though it is a less availed option for most of the international tourists. Cars can be refuelled at Seronera and couple of other spots.

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The trip cannot be really termed as a budget experience with charges of about $50 for a single day in the park, $30 for cars and tents each, for a single day.

While one is free to enjoy and bask in this amazing creation of nature, immersing themselves in the raw life of these lands; one is prohibited from disturbing animals in any fashion, carrying fire-arms, littering and driving above speed limits in the park.

The food available in the safari packages is of sound quality and appealing to the taste buds there are not many specialties form the land itself but almost all the popular western dishes are available along with regular beverages.

The lodging is mostly mobile for people on safaris with simple but hygienic and systematic arrangements. People sleep in mobile camps which have basic necessities like camp toilets and solar powered electricity. Other facilities like showers are dependent on the operator.

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There are safari lodges which blend right into the landscapes with the planned architecture. These have all the luxuries of god hotels like swimming pools and fully furnished bathrooms. Then there are luxury camps too, resorts which make the trip an absolutely once in a life time experience for anybody. These equipped with state-of-the-art facilities like en-suite bathrooms, spacious and fully furnished rooms which have more than just a touch of class. These as one would guess are up high on the price ladder but many people find it too irresistible to stay with all the luxury in midst of the wild, experiencing best of both the worlds.

The cheapest options are the campsites in Serengeti which provide for a regular and authentic camping experience.

Serengeti is not just about the animals and the wildlife around but also about the thoughts it inspire in one when one gets to know the true nature of the land and the infinite bounds of nature.

Montreal- The City of Saints



Montreal- The City of Saints

Montreal, also known as ‘Ville de Montreal’, is the metropolis city in the province of Quebec, in Canada. Montreal is the largest city in the province region and second largest in the whole Canada. It was originally known “Ville-Marie” which means ‘city of Mary’. The city is very lively and active and is a very reputed one in North America. It has rich history and is wonderfully cultured and well-reputed city. After Paris, this is the largest city which speaks French as a mother-tongue.

How to reach here?

The best way to reach this fully cultured city is by air. The planes from almost everywhere in the world can land at the Pierre Elliott Trudeau Airport. From this airport, you can easily take a taxi to the city centre which will take you not more than hour. To enter the city by car, you will have to take the Highway 401 route from Toronto. You can also enter by the Highway 417 from Ottawa. There are other national highways and routes that can be taken. Tourists can take trains to reach this place also. The trains will halt at the Montreal Central Station which is not at all away from the city. You can also come by bus which will reach the Station Centrale d’autobus. And once you reach the city, you can take the tour of the city by all the means including the inter-city trains and buses and the usual taxis, cars, metro or even bike.

Gothic Church:

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The most significant sight in the entire Montreal-Vieux region is the Basilique Notre-Dame which is a Catholic Church. This church is a thriving sight and stunning Gothic architecture of the exteriors will blow your mind. The interior reflects the medieval style which is evident in the walnut-wooden carvings, stars on a blue ceiling made of 24 carat gold, the exquisite glass windows, etc. The fine art paintings, hanged in the nave, are all the work of masters of art and the Chapelle du Sacre-Coeur is also very impressive and is located behind the altar. It was designed in between 1824 and 1829, by James O’Donnell who was an Irish architect. The church is the most spectacular church in the city and is treated as gem of the city. Apart from this, Vieux Port of the Old Montreal is very famous. The Vieux Port or the Old Port is the waterfront space covered in green and occupying a large space. This place houses many beautiful attractions of the city like the Cirque du Soleil, the Labyrinth, the Montreal Science Centre, the Clock Tower, the outdoor stage which is a very large audio-visual site used by the Canada Day Fireworks.

Museums:

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The Old Montreal houses a lot of museums of art and history. The Marguerite-Bourgeoys Museum and Notre-Dame-de-Bon-Secours Chapel is the most famous attraction out of all. This monument is the oldest church built in 1655 by stones. There are many artifacts in this chapel that reflects the history of the church. Another museum is the one which is built on the ruins of the times of the Montreal’s first settlement and is named as Pointe a Calliere. The remains and archeological ruins are used to narrate the historical story of the place from the first settlers till today. Centre d’Histoire de Montreal is the museum built in a place where there used to be a fire station during the 1900s. This building will explain each and every significant even of history from 1535 which is when it was founded.

Montreal Science Centre:

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The ultra-modern architecture of Montreal is evident from this particular monument known by the name Montreal Science Centre. This place is a science museum which is situated on the King Edward Pier, on the Old Port. It was founded in 2000 and was named as iSci Centre initially. But in 2002, the name of this building was changed to the present name. There a lot of interactive exhibitions based on science and latest scientific technologies available in the centre. There is an IMAX theatre as well. The whole building and its parts are managed by the Montreal Corporation, Government of Canada.

Other Attractions:

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One of the very famous attractions of Montreal is the Rialto Theatre which is known for the perfectly proportionate building and is designed to be the most elegant and iconic mark on the land of Montreal. This place is used as a centre for open and exclusive performances of arts, plays and presentations in multiple languages and multicultural themes and for demonstration of the past events on this presently grounded theatre. Many events, plays, movies and bands have used this centre as a means to reach the audience. All those visiting Montreal must also see the Downtown Skyscrapers which includes a lot of malls and underground arcades which are located under the connected blocks occupying more than 30 km of roads. There are a lot of parks pout of which the most famous and mostly visited one is Parc Jean-Drapeau which was originally the site where World’s Fair was conducted in 1967. There is a outdoor venue for concerts in this place amidst all the green spaces. An artificial beach can be found nearby and also the Montreal Casino is situated nearby this park.

All in all, the place is one of the best cities of Canada and is a must visit for all those who are traveling to Canada for a vacation.

Kaziranga – Home of the One Horned Rhinoceros



Kaziranga – Home of the One Horned Rhinoceros

If ever there will be a movie on wildlife conservation in India, the word Kaziranga would most definitely ring in its title. The amazing success the National Park has achieved in conservation and wildlife protection is an example for all such schemes around the globe.

The park was recognized as early as the 1940s but was formally established in 1974 and was later on, declared UNESCO World Heritage Site too. It spreads over a vast expanse of 430 square kilometres and has an equally large extended territory. The park is shared as a pride between the twin districts of Golaghat and Nangaon with 175 Sq. Km under the Nangaon district, 135 Sq. Km falling under Bagori Forest Range office and 40 Sq. Km within Ghorakati Forest Range office. The park provides one of the most significant sources of income to the people living on the rings of the park area and the ones employed there. There are dozens of privately owned hotels, restaurants and shops selling souvenirs.

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Like any other conservation zone of such scale and diversity Kaziranga too has multitude of distinct species of both flora and fauna. There are more than 40 species of fishes; 9 different types of amphibians are found along with about 30 distinct species of reptiles. Also present are more than 490 species of well-known and relatively rare birds which live in absolute natural balance with the 35 species of animals.

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It provides a habitat to 1048 elephants, 2048 rhinos, 1431 buffalos and 486 swap deer. Also present are a vast motely of around 546 species of flora. Kaziranga has the highest density of tigers of all the natural tiger habitats in the world and was declared a Tiger Reserve in 2006 with a tiger population of more than 85 tigers. It has a tiger every 5 square kilometres. However it is not as popular as the Corbett National Park or Ranthambore for tiger-sighting as visitors seldom spot tigers due to tall grass.

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The biggest star and poster boy of Kaziranga is the One Horned Rhinoceros, a species which once stared extinction right in the face. The efforts of the administration and Indian government have brought them back to a healthy number. These magnificent and exotic creatures raced the whole of northern India centuries ago but now have been cornered into vanishing existence only in a few pockets in North- East due to poaching and habitat destruction. Kaziranga hosts the biggest population of One Horned Rhinos in the entire world. Another wonderful creature which has been forced out of the limelight due to bigger attractions is the Asian wild water buffalo, a population which has not been hybridised with domestic buffaloes. Greater Adjutant storks also have the park as one of their last safe havens.

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The climate can be said to be tropical, which turns considerably hot and humid during the summer followed by monsoons and which has moderately cold winter. The Brahmaputra which provides nurturance to the ecosystem also floods it during the monsoons. The monsoons are the heaviest from June-August and make Kaziranga inaccessible for the outer world. The best time to pay one’s animal friends a visit would be September-October or after that the any period after January and before April.

Kaziranga is connected via air to the outside world by means of an airport located at Jorhat, which in turn is a hundred odd kilometres from the main park. It is connected with all the major Indian cities by regular flights. The nearest railway station is at Furkating which too is quite far sitting 80 kms away, connected with Delhi and Kolkata. The nearest major railway station is Guwahati and it has several trains to Furkating.

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For the more adventurous there the other way of reaching Kaziranga is via the road with the wind in one’s face, by the way of the guided bike tours conducted all across Assam and neighbouring states. These begin from places like Guwahati and Kohima and cover states like Meghalaya, Assam, Nagaland and Arunachal Pradesh providing the real freedom which all the explorers and adventurers cherish. The park is also connected via bus with all the major places around.

The entry fees is an minimal amount of 500 rupees. Two most popular options are the jeep and Elephant safaris. The former is quicker whereas the latter gives an entirely different feel to ride an elephant through tall grass and wild nature. People with more time often go foe the elephant rides with professional guides called mahouts. The rent for jeeps varies depending on the distance and the destination but fluctuates between 1000-2000 rupees. The elephant rides cost around 1000 rupees and are started in two shifts in the morning. These are recommended as they provide for an unmatchable view of the rhinos up close. In the winters the second trip is advised due to dense fog and low visibility.

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The establishments run by government are quite cheap and of satisfactory quality. Other private resorts offer a wide array of other facilities both on the higher and the economical ends. Camping is available near Laudubi.

The food though a little expensive is hygienic and edible. The restaurants are not many in numbers but all the accommodation facilities have their own eating facilities.

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Kaziranga is one of the most popular destinations in North-East India and one gets to know why, after only a single trip.