12 Hole Golf Course

 

 

Surrounding Chalets Naldehra

While staying at The Chalets Naldehra, there are many picturesque destinations for sightseeing or day excursions – or for a taste of soft or hard adventure. With Naldehra as the base, all areas around can be covered. Many places are accessible by vehicle, while for some, hikes or walks are suggested. The popular places around are Shimla, Mashobra, Tattapani, Kufri, Chail, Fagu and Narkanda.

1. The Carignano Trek (Beginners’ family trek):

A circular trek takes you around the hillock of Carignano. This is our most popular trek, starting from Mashobra, just 11 km from The Chalets Naldehra and ending at the Fruit Research Centre.

2. The Mashobra Valley Trek:

This is one of the more popular treks. Starting from the town of Mashobra, it descends down to Sipur through thick deodar forest, and at Sipur you can see a 400-year-old temple. You can return back or carry on to Mulkoti for a longer trek, which is more challenging and takes about three hours. A total distance of eight kilometers will be covered.

3. The Century Old Trek:

An 11 kilometers trek for duration of three hours from Mashobra to Dak Bunglow. The trek finishes at an altitude of 2350m. This is a strenuous trek.

4. The Neckline Trek:

This is a three hours moderate trek through eight kilometers from Mashobra and ending at Kotidhar. The last lap is strenuous.

Durga Puja Experiences in Kolkata

Durga_Puja_Pandal_-_Ballygunge_Sarbojanin_Durgotsab_-_Deshapriya_Park_-_Kolkata_2014-10-02_9092The festival of Durga Puja has a cult of its own in Kolkata. It draws all kinds of crowd from far and wide. The City of Joy turns into a joy-filled heaven when the season for ‘pujo’ sets in. The beauty of the festival lies not only in the arrival of the Goddess along with her divine retinue and her ceremonial worships, but also the paraphernalia that has got attached to the festival over the decades. And, hands down, Kolkata is one of the best places to experience puja in its all festive spins. So with this in mind, we picked the top Durga Puja experiences or things to do in Kolkata during Durga Puja that every Bong knows and a non-Bengali in the city can look forward to. After all, why should Bengalis have all the fun?

Experience the Mahalaya

Mahalaya indicates the onset of auspicious Devi Paksha, which sets the stage for the oncoming 5-day of festivities. Get up before day break to witness the priests and devotees invoking the Goddess with Vedic incantations and rites at different pooja pandals. Lazy bones or those who are unable to make it to the wonderful scene can tune into the radio or FM to be a part of it.

Watch the Ashtami Pushpanjali

 

maxresdefault-1The most auspicious day for Durga Puja is the day of Ashtami. Almost every Bengali looks forward to make a flower offering to the Goddess on the morning of the eighth day of puja. For non-Bengalis, this is a not-to-be-missed experience.

Kumari Puja or worshipping the virgin is an important ritual during the festival. A girl aged between 5 to 8 years is chosen for a very elaborate worship on the Ashtami day before the idol of Durga. It was the great saint Sri Ramakrishna Paramhansa who performed the first Kumari Puja by worshipping his divine spouse Sharda Devi at the Dakshineshwar Kali Temple. This soon spread among many devotees of the saint and that’s how it all started. The Belur Math in Kolkata performs unparalleled Kumari Puja in the entire city.

Witness two different pujas

 

Durga Puja is celebrated in two different ways in Kolkata. First is meant for the society that features lofty pandals and bedecked community halls, glittering lights and a diverse crowd. Second, the barir (home) puja is way homey that aims to bring together people and re-connect to their root. Such pujas are a sure-shot way to experience the real Bengali culture. Such pujas happen in old residential societies of North Kolkata or the upscale dwellings of South Kolkata. Some of the families have been celebrating the puja since long back, and they have interesting stories to tell about how the trend of special family puja started.

Be a part of carnival

Beauty contests for young ladies, dance competitions, fancy dress competitions for kids, drum-beating challenges for men and women are events that take place in nearly every puja organised by different housing societies. All are welcome to show their skill and prowess and take home a gift. People attend the fest dressed in the best of traditional finery; watching their spirited interactions is also an interesting sight.

Sandhya Aarti

 

As the sun sets, a mystical air and festive fervour fills up the ether because it is time for the sandhya aarti and the devotees are all geared up to pay homage to the World Mother with all pomp and gaiety. At every pandal, the appointed priest waves numerous lit-up butter lamps before the Goddess, while the gathered devotees perform dhunuchi naach at the irresistible beats of dhaak. The zest and worship goes on till the following dawn.

Dig into the festive fare

Deluxe Room Puja OFFER The Astor, Kolkata Kolkata is a foodie’s hogging ground on any given day, which turns even more vibrant during the pujo. Many households even lock up their kitchens during the five-day-long festivities, and get their daily fill from local restaurants, kiosks in pandals and other street food vendors. Taste a bit of everything―all things are good.

Be there at Maddox Square

The young crowd of Kolkata hits the Maddox Square in Ballygunge to experience merrymaking at its best when the puja vibes are in the air. Hundreds of youngsters from across the city assemble at this venue to witness band performances, TV shows broadcasting live and other events. Something or the other keeps happening here all the time. And if you are a local, you are sure to bump into a friend or an acquaintance.

Be a part of Sindoor-Khela

 

DSC_0831On the last day of Durga Puja, the married women indulge in a hearty sindoor-khela (playing with the vermillion) by smearing red vermillion on the pretty face of Holy Mother first, and then, besmearing each others’ faces with the sacred powder as a mark of goodwill, auspiciousness and luck. Ladies, please take note.

Behold the immersion rites

The Goddess is bid adieu with as much fervour as her homecoming. Watching uncountable idols of the Goddess being immersed in the Hooghly River, which passes through West Kolkata, is a sight worth remembering and capturing in your camera. Make sure you do not skip this event!

Tirthan Valley, Tirthan Angler Retreat – BARNAGI

Tirthan Valley – Kullu – Himachal Pradesh

Location: The entry point to the Great Himalayan National Park, Tirthan Valley is located 50 km S of Kullu

When to go: March-June and September- November. The winter months are cold, making sleeping in tents nearly impossible

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Wildlife / Tourist Offices: Director, GHNP, Shamshi, Kullu
Himalayan Ecotourism, Gushaini, Tehsil Banjar Kullu, Himachal Pradesh
Tel: 01902-265320
Cell: 09816091093

Permits: From Tirthan Wildlife Range Office at Sai Ropa (Cell: 09882607000), which is about 5 km from Gushaini, or from the Jiwa Nal Wildlife Range Office at Larji (Cell: 09816534991)

Getting there
Air:
Nearest airport: Bhuntar (54 km/ 2 hrs).
Rail: Nearest railhead: Chandigarh (279 km/ 7 hrs).


Road: Tirthan Valley is accessed by the Chandigarh-Manali NH21. Drive upto Chandigarh via Ambala. From there, follow NH21 to Aut via Mandi. From Aut, it’s a 35-km drive to Gushaini via Larji and Banjar.

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Tirthan Valley is easily one of the most breathtaking places in all of Himachal Pradesh. Surrounded by the Great Himalayan National Park (GHNP), this beautiful untouched valley is located right next to the Tirthan river. Spring is easily the best time to go, with blooming flowers all around. For an escape from the city, but also an escape from the more-crowded Himachali getaways, it doesn’t get much better than Tirthan. You will hardly meet anyone during your two to three days here, not counting the charming, hospitable locals of course. People usually stay one night in the valley before going off on a trek in the GHNP, since Tirthan falls in the so-called buffer zone of the Park. But if you’ve only got one (preferably long) weekend, you can also do one-day treks or enjoy the many adventure activities.

Things to see and do

Angling

img_0853There is plenty good reason for Tirthan Valley to lay claim to the anglers’ paradise sobriquet. Be it passion or passing fancy, come, and find out for yourself. We will be happy to assist with the required license (Rs100/day). Experts available on chargeable basis.

The Great Himalayan National Park
A place for trekkers, hikers and nature lovers alike, the Great Himalayan National Park provides one of the finest trekking opportunities in the country. Note that it takes a minimum of two days’ trekking from Tirthan Valley to even enter the park; an overnight two-day trek is therefore the minimum. But for those craving more action, your stay can be extended up to seven days.

12400831373_6e49a886c4_kExcursions within the GHNP include the Rolla Trek (two days), Shilt Hut Trek (three-four days), Maranhi Trek (three-five days) and Raktisar Trek (five-seven days). It is best to go with professional Guides, as tourists aren’t allowed to venture alone in GHNP.

One of the incredible things about the park is the fact that not a single person is said to reside within it; even the villagers who live at the border are not allowed inside, presumably to retain the delicate ecological conditions of the park. Only some trails have been carved out and maintained by park management. Rest assured, though, that even a planned itinerary for GHNP will guarantee beautiful vistas and excellent trekking terrains.

Note that permits are needed to enter the park. You need to carry your own tents, sleeping bags, stove and utensils. Guides and porters are essential. Biodiversity Tourism and Community Advancement, GHNP, Sai Ropa can arrange guides and equipment.

Day Hikes


Tirthan Valley is also a great starting point for one-day treks in its verdant surrounds, through small, quaint villages and towards beautiful vistas.

The Dingcha and Tinder Hike starts from Gushaini, and goes up till the local village of Tinder. The trek to Dingcha is slightly steep and can take about two hours to complete. But it is worth it, as Dingcha offers a fantastic panoramic view of the Tirthan Valley. On the way back, you can cross the village of Ropa, and stop by for lunch in Tinder.

The Nohanda-West Hike, also called the Himalayan Villages Hike, starts from the village of Pekhari, and the trail goes through several other villages, including Lakcha and Nahin, with spectacular views of the GHNP.

The hike to the Park gate goes along the Tirthan River, crossing a few traditional villages and deep forests, and can last up to five hours, so it is best to head out early and plan out your breaks. At the park gate, there is a campsite where you can have lunch.

p1000769Serolsar Lake is feasible via Jalori Pass. Hence, for this one-day trek, you will first need to take a jeep to Jalori Pass, and then walk for two-three hours till you reach the mountain lake. Upon your arrival, the trip will seem immediately worth it when you gaze out at the crystal-clear waters. The sight is nothing short of heaven.

Where to stay and eat
You can set up your tents at the camping sites close to the streams. Outside the GHNP are the Ropa Forest Complex with five rooms and Forest Rest Houses in Shangher and Shakti village, with two rooms each. Or stay at the Sai Ropa Forest Rest House. All these can be booked at the Park Office (Tel: 01902-265320).

Tirthan Angler’s Retreat: BARNAGI

fbf4edb6-f237-4d18-a9a3-972013e5d4e3Newly-sawn wood and freshly-hewn stone enclose six cosy rooms dressed in cheery furnishing to match the efflorescent hues outside. Each room comes with an attached bathroom and an open-to-sky sit-out at the end of a tiny garden. Views for free.

Stone paths across an undulating green expanse connect living quarters with stream-side dining spaces–both covered and al fresco. Bonfire pits and an outdoor bar promise to keep you warm inside out (Liquor License awaited; guests are welcome to bring their own).

hm2Visitors may opt to pitch their own tents at a pre-determined spot.Shared bathrooms available.

Nature Trails

Well-marked trails in and around the retreat lend themselves to many a leisurely stroll. As well as a chance to make the acquaintance of resident bird-life.

Others River-crossing, Rappelling and Rock climbing can be arranged on prior intimation.

By Road

Delhi – Ambala (188 KM) – Chandigarh – Roopnagar (282 KM) – Kiratpur – Bilaspur (371 KM) – Mandi (440 KM) – Pandoh – Aut (481 KM) – Larji – (485) Gushaini (513) – Barnagi (519)

Delhi – Ambala (188 KM) – Kalka – Shimla (370 KM) – Narkanda (430 KM) – Ani – Khanag – Jalori Pass (520 KM) – Shoja (524 KM) – Banjar (538 KM) – Gushaini (548) – Barnagi (554)

By Air

Fly to Bhuntar Airport in Kullu, and transfer by road as directed from Aut Tunnel.

By Rail

Take a train till Chandigarh, and transfer by road as above.

Indian tourism likely to get a boost in 2014

 

Indian tourism likely to get a boost in 2014

Thanks to new visa laws by the government, wherein more people across the world will get to witness the beauty of varied weather in India and the rich cultural experience our country offers, thus giving a boost to tourism in India in 2014.

According to a report released by World Travel & Tourism Council, the tourism sector in India is expected to witness above-average growth this year. WTTC`s annual economic impact report 2014, shows that travel and tourism`s economic contribution is expected to grow by 7.3% this year, therefore giving a boost to the Indian economy by over 2.5%, as compared to last year.

It is estimated that improved visa facilitation could bring in up to 6 million more international visitors to India which could in turn create 1.8 million more travel jobs in the country over three years. During 2013, travel and tourism industry contributed Rs 63,160 crore to the economy and generated 35 million jobs.

Weather in India affecting tourism India is a vast country with different parts experience different types of climate. Also, India is one of the few countries where the weather changes after every two to three months. The spatial and temporal changes in the climate and weather in India act as a great magnet to attract tourists and enable them to enjoy the gift of nature.

There is everything for a tourist in India, starting from the Himalayas in the North and paradise unexplored in the Northeast to rich history in Central India and beautiful beaches in South India.

The varied Indian climate is a potent factor which works to attract tourists from across the globe and promote Indian tourism. Let’s just hope, the recently in news El-Nino and its possibilities of affecting the monsoon in India this year does not hamper the plans of those wanting to visit India when it is lush green during the rains.

Sanjay Thakur
Director Business Development
Jasper Hotel Representation
E:- sanjay@jasperhotels.in | www.jasperhotels.in
Chennai | Chandigarh | Jalandhar | Mumbai