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ShiviApril 19, 202011min2760

The Day for Heritage Monuments and Sites in the World-World Heritage Day. 2020 Theme – Shared Cultures, Shared Heritage, Shared Responsibility is the theme of 2020. 

 

taj mahal - spirited blogger

 

It is the day when we humans preserve the human-made heritage monuments and more. Worldwide the societies and communities celebrate World Heritage Day on 18th of April to preserve and conserve our heritage monuments, our history, our cultural diversity for the monuments that seem to be vulnerable. Our Human race when celebrates every moment then why not Heritage Day for all the heritage sites in the world that are standing beautiful like a crown and pillar for every destination. 

As our society proceeds at a break-neck pace, we grapple to hold onto our past. Significant cultural monuments and heritage sites around the world lay in the wreck. When I travel, even I see those monuments in ruins (not all, but in India yes there are many like these). My heart sinks when I visit those places, but thanks to ASI and programs like World Heritage Day and UNESCO which call for attention to these monuments and place value on them. As a traveller, I know that when I visit a UNESCO World Heritage Site it carries some weight on my shoulders as well, as a tourist. Not only on me but the local population as well to conserve and preserve them. 

 

Angkar Wat combodia Spirited Blogger

 

It also aims to acknowledge the efforts of all related organizations in this field. These comprise engineers, architects, civil engineers, geographers, artists and archaeologists. My blog is highlighting this importance and will straight away take you to some of the best UNESCO heritage sites that you should tick off your bucket list right away. 

 

Machu Picchu

A trip to Peru is not complete without a trek to Machu Picchu. At almost 8,000 ft, this castle is a sight to behold. Located where the Andes and the Amazon Basin meet, the natural beauty of the edifice is exceptional. 

 

Machu Picchu Spirited Blogger

As you walk amongst the clouds, you’ll find distinct panoramas and diverse flora and fauna. Make sure you have a camera handy to seize a picture of the stunning ancient buildings, mind-blowing views, and local llamas. 

 

Macchu Pichu Peru - Spirited Blogger

Angkor Wat

The most liberal and largest religious temple in the World, Angkor Wat In Siem Reap is a pantheon complex devoted originally to the Hindu deity Vishnu which was then modified into a Buddhist temple by the end of the 12th century. Built in the early 12th century by King Suryavarman II of the Khmer Empire, the temple personifies the classical Khmer style of architecture and also emphasises on the Cambodian flag.

 

Angkar Wat combodia - Spirited Blogger

Read: Also read about World Tourism Day 

Taj Mahal

The Taj Mahal is a mausoleum built between 1632 and 1653 in the city of Agra. It sits on the banks of the Yamuna river and was appointed by the Muslim emperor Shah Jahan of the Mughal dynasty. The majestic set of buildings was built in honour of his favourite wife, who died delivering her fourteenth child. It is expected that its construction needed the effort of 20,000 workers. This is one of my favourites.

 

Taj Mahal India - Spirited Blogger

 

Sigiriya

The Sigiriya Lion Rock is a glittering fortress and temple compound atop a high volcanic plateau. Provincially also called the eighth wonder of the world, this marvellous site features high on the list of places to visit in Dambulla and Sigiriya. The main entry is shaped like a huge stone lion, whose feet survived the ravages of time. 

 

Sigiriya-Frescoes Spirited Blogger

If you are visiting Srilanka, then this Sigiriya’s western wall, which is adorned with beautiful frescoes, is a must-visit. 

 

Lion fortess Srilanka - Spirited Blogger

Cinque Terre

‘Cinque Terre’ in Italian means ‘Five Lands’. It is a sturdy piece of the coast on the Riviera of Italy. Five popular Cinque Terre villages include Monterosso al Mare, Vernazza, Corniglia, Manarola, and Riomaggiore. 

Manarola Cinque Terre - Spirited Blogger

Due to the picturesque beauty, tracks, and immaculate architecture, all these villages have been added to the list of UNESCO World Heritage Sites. You will fall in love again, do pay a visit. 

heritage site italy - Spirited Blogger

Jurassic Coast 

Another in my list for this blog is Jurassic Coast in Great Britain. The UNESCO world heritage site stretches 95 miles from Devon to Dorset. The Jurassic Coast is one of the most popular destinations in Britain. It is on the English Channel coast of Southern England. It is the only place on Earth where 185 million years of the Earth’s history are sequentially exhibited in climactic cliffs, isolated coves, coastal smokestacks and barrier beaches.

 

jurassic coast britain blog Spirited Blogger

 

The ‘tilt’ of the rocks creates a bizarre ‘walk through time’ from 250 million to 65 million years ago, through the Triassic, Jurassic and Cretaceous periods as you walk towards east this site. 

 

jurassic-coast-21 fossils land Spirited Blogger

 

These heritage sites have achieved global significance because they integrate art, culture, and civilization. They are of excellent value to humanity. On World Heritage Day, it is prudent to plan events that would help people fuse to the past like heritage walks, museum and library tours, and heritage property open days. 

Do send me your pictures or your travel story to get in my list of guest blogs. PS: before booking your trip these international destinations and heritage sites, find out what steps are needed to protect it and respect them during your visit. Don’t let an important site disappear from the world, do your part on this day to raise awareness and preserve it for future generations. 


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ShiviFebruary 21, 20209min2482

Har Har Mahadev

जिनके रोम रोम मैं शिव हैं
वही विष पिया करते हैं
ज़माना उन्हें क्या जलाएगा
जो श्रृंगार ही अंगार से किया करते हैं

 

tungnath temple shivratri

 

This Shivaratri, pay a visit to Tungnath, the world’s highest Shiva temple. Quick information and details about the highest Shiva temple in the world

State‎: ‎Uttarakhand

District‎: ‎Rudraprayag

Country‎: ‎India

Elevation‎: ‎3,680 m (12,073 ft)

 

tungnath chopta highest temple

 

Yes, this is true – Tungnath is one of the highest Shiva temples in the world and is the highest of the five Panch Kedar temples located in the mountain range of Tunganath in Rudraprayag district, in the Indian state of Uttarakhand. The Tunganath (literal meaning: Lord of the peaks) mountains form the Mandakini and Alaknanda river valleys. It is located at an altitude of 3,680 m (12,073 ft), and just below the peak of Chandrashila. The temple is assumed to be 5000 years old and is the third (Tritiya Kedar) in the pecking order of the Panch Kedars. It has a deep legend linked to the Pandavas, heroes of the Mahabharata epic as well. It is built of solid granite slabs, and also resembles the ancient temple of Bageshwar and Jageshwar. 

 

What is unique about this temple 

The distinctive feature of this beautiful attraction is its location amidst magnificent mountain ranges and spiritual importance which has been drawing millions of Hindu pilgrims from around the world in the last five years. It is a phenomenal place to visit wonderfully for the adventure lovers out there for they are going to have a great time trekking to reach the temple. It is an excellent combination of spirituality, majesty, and tranquillity thereby making it a sure-shot and an ideal getaway for all the travellers.

 

shivratri tungnath chopta

 

The architecture of Tunganath Temple 

The affluent temple is made up of stones embellished with decorations that are coated on the outside paintings of the tall towers. There is a wooden stage exactly on top of the highest dome which also has sixteen openings. The roof of the temple is formed of stone slabs and at the entrance lays a stone image of Nandi facing towards the idol of Lord Shiva. There is an image of Lord Ganesha also on the right side of the temple gate.

Inside the main chamber lies the ashtadhatu which is comprised of eight metals, idols of saint Vyas and Kala Bhairav and the followers of Lord Shiva. There are images of the Pandavas and four other Kedar shrines inside the temple as well. At the end of the trek path of Tungnath, the opening door of the temple is marked with the presence of the name ‘Tungnath’ painted atop an archway which has recently been constructed. 

 

shivratri tungnath temple

 

When does the temple open  

It opens when the Char Dhams of Uttrakhand opens up during April or May every year during Vaisakh Panchmi on the date that is decided by the Badro Kedar Temple Committee on Baisakhi. Although before planning to come here, make sure you inquire with your travel agent about the route, etc. Remember the temple is closed during the winter season after Diwali, and the image of the deity is moved to Mukunath which lies 19 km away from Tungnath by the temple priests during this time.

 

tungnath in snow

 

Best time to visit Tungnath 

The ideal time to visit the shrine is during the summer season as the weather settles to be pleasant during this time with the temperature being 16 degrees Celsius to an average. 

How to reach 

Take private as well as state-owned buses which run regularly between the nearby cities to and from Chopta. 

The total distance is 448 km road between Delhi to Chopta and the rest is on foot. The trek from Chopta to Tungnath can be done or completed in 2 to 3 hours.

The nearest railway station is Haridwar lies closest to Tungnath at a distance of 225 km from Chopta. 

From here you can also take or hire a taxi directly to the base trek camp. 

The nearest airport is the Jolly Grant Airport at a distance of 260 km from Tungnath. 

From here one can take a taxi or bus till Chopta. From Chopta you can move for the trek as well on foot. 

 

maha shivratri

The information provided is best as my knowledge experience thus anything someone wishes to add is free to leave a comment below. For more blogs click here and to get in touch for feature writing or guest blogs contact here..

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ShiviSeptember 28, 201910min5332

Navratri Festival with Gujarat Tourism

Among the most distinguished of festivals rejoiced in Gujarat is Navratri. This nine-day long festival is celebrated to glorify and worship Goddess Durga or Shakti. It is recognised by various pandals or enormous tents that form the energetic and mesmerizing dance of Garba or dandiya with traditional Gujarati music. It lasts with special fasting food and various other manners in which people commence and complete it. Come and celebrate the Navratri festival with Gujarat Tourism.

Classification of Gujarat festivals is inadequate without the mention of Navratri. Observed for nine long days with huge grandeur and show, Navratri is devoted to all the nine forms of Goddess Durga. All the communities come unitedly to dance in unison during Garba, an apparently simple dance, where the crowd moves collectively in a synchronised circular movement.

 

navratri goddess

History and Ceremonies of Navratri Festival

The inscription has it, that there was a very stalwart demon king, known as the Mahishasura. By worshipping Lord Shiva, he obtained mighty powers and began to perform wickedness on the people who took the name of the Lord other than him. He was so exultant of his powers that he began to treat himself as a God. To protect the world from the immoral practices of the demon, the holy trinity of God (Brahma, Vishnu and Shiva) came together and by coupling their powers, created Goddess Durga. When Mahishasura saw the Goddess, he got attracted to her beauty.

 

History navratri

 

The demon king was so hypnotised by the beauty of the Goddess that he sent her a proposal for the marriage. The Goddess accepted to marry him but on one condition that the Mahishasura have to beat her in a battle. The king was so proud of his powers that he quickly accepted the challenge. The battle between the Goddess and Mahishasura lasted for nine nights and at the end of the ninth night, the demon king was abolished by the Goddess. From then on, the nine days came to be known as the Navratri.

When

Navratri is celebrated for nine nights, commencing on the first day of the bright fortnight of the Hindu month Ashwin, approximately corresponding to dates in the Gregorian calendar in September/October. This also usually accords with the end of the rainy season. Dasara/Vijayadashami is the tenth day of Ashwin.

Where

Garba happens at night in communities and regions all around Gujarat, so just step out and follow the booming Garba music. Vadodara is deemed the cultural capital of Gujarat, and the most inquired after location for celebrating Navratri. Try to visit at least one village Garba too, for a spectrum of experience. After the puja starts the music; it is evident to those who are familiar with the style and alluring to many. People enjoy dancing and begin to play dandiya in a circle, swirling away till late into the night. It is not surprising to find dancers with swords or lit flames and other exhibitions.

Religious travel during this festival focuses mainly on the Shakti Peethas: Ambaji, Pavagadh and Bahuchraji near Mehsana. There are also major ceremonies in temples such as Ashapura Mata-no-Madh in Kutch, Khodiyar Mandir near Bhavnagar, and Chamunda Mata Mandir at Chotila on the Ahmedabad-Rajkot National Highway.

See below for the day-wise schedule:

Navratri Day  Day  Form of Goddess Tithi Pujan Colour
Day 1 Pratipada Shailaputri Maa Ghatasthapana Shailputri Pujan Red
Day 2 Dwitiya Bharmacharini Chandra Darshan Brahmacharini Pujan  Blue
Day 3 Tritiya Chandraghanta Sindoor Tritiya, Sowbhagya Teej Chandraghanta Pujan Yellow
Day 4 Chaturthi Kushmanda Varad Vinayaka Chauth  Bhouma Chaturthi  Green
Day 5 Panchami Skandamata Lalita Panchami Upang Lalita Vrat, Lalitha Gauri Vrat, Skandamata Pujan  Gray
Day 6 Shashthi Katyayani Maha Shashti Saraswati Awahan, Katyayani Pujan Orange
Day 7 Saptami Kaalratri Maha Saptami Saraswati Puja, Kalaratri Pujan, Utsava Puja White
Day 8 Ashtami Maha Gauri Durga Ashtami, Maha Ashtami Saraswati Mata Pujan, Mahagauri Pujan, Sandhi Puja  Pink
Day 9 Navami Siddhidatri Khande Navami, Durga Visarjan, Maha Navami Ayudha Puja, Kanya puja Sky Blue

 

 

Other than this, in various Indian states, the Navratri festival is been celebrated. For example – West Bengal, Jammu, Rajasthan. Travellers from all across the world come here and plan their holidays in this season. If you wish to know more about this festival keep reading or comment for specific information.

 

PS: Whenever you travel, wherever you go, I request you all, to travel safe and try not to hurt the local communities and environment. Get hooked for more travel blogs…


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ShiviDecember 18, 201813min48627

Lahual & Spiti Valley Homestay Travel Blog

Wander with me in the most stunning and breathtaking landscapes of India which is incomparable with anything in the world. Well, I have not travelled the world but I would definitely say that Spiti Valley is one of the gorgeous valleys of the Himalayas. As I discovered the dazzling sceneries, deep-blue lakes, barren terrain, sun-kissed white peaks, and wildlife with some of the remotest villages of India. I have been touched by the magic of Spiti, and I know you will be too. For knowing more about Spiti and the places to see read my blog here…

And for the exploration in its true sense and warming and cosy homestay and accommodation in Spiti valley, keep reading below.

Lahual & Spiti Valley Homestay Travel Blog

If you want to travel around Spiti in the real sense, then staying with a local family in their house, eating and cooking with them whilst enjoying the local food like what they eat and how they cook is one of the best ways to go about it. Homestays in Spiti are a very common concept today and a different way of lodging. It gives you acumen into how punitive life is at such altitudes where people have to scuffle every day in extreme climatic conditions and terrain. Thus, staying in a homestay will offer you a sense of serenity and delight like no other. In fact, you can move out with a local to their fields, and help them cook food, sitting next to the ‘tandoor’ – which is a local heater. Enjoying the grazing lands of their cattle is a sight not to miss when in Spiti.

Lahual & Spiti Valley Homestay Travel Blog

Here are the best Homestays to stay when you are in Spiti Valley and do consider them as my personal review and recommendation as well:

Solo Yolo – Kaza

Incredible Spiti, amazing Kaza – though Kaza has numerous homestays and hostels to stay and relive the homely feeling amidst clouds and mountains, my favourite is Solo Yolo. Many foreigners and Indian travellers love to stay here. It is situated in Kaza near to a cricket playground which makes it an ideal place for stargazing in the night and view of the mountains and snow from the windows. The rooms are cosy and comfortable. The dining place is yet another spot not to miss. What about the caretakers – man, they are superbly friendly and happy going. They would help you with everything you need for your stay and roaming around in Kaza.

Solo Yolo - Kaza - Spirited Blogger Travel Blog

 

SoloYolo Kaza Homestay - Spiti Valley - SpiritedBlogger
SoloYolo Kaza Homestay – Spiti Valley – SpiritedBlogger

Sunny Mountain View – Chitkul

India’s last village on the border of Indo-china – it is in the Kinnaur district of Himachal Pradesh. While my trip to Spiti valley I happen to stay one night in Chitkul. The view of Bapsa River, Mathi temple to get a glimpse of the ancestors, and the population of around 700 people who live here since ages – are worthy to pay a visit. You may find cheap hotels and affordable homestays and zostels in Chitkul. Where I stayed was the Sunny Mountain View which is owned by Mr Chetram Ji – an old man but young at heart. The rooms are clean with subtle wooden work. You get the balcony and the view from every window of the room – just be there once and rekindle your love for mountains and India’s last village where our road ends.

 

Sunny Mountain View – Chitkul - Spirited Blogger

 

Sunny Mountain View – Chitkul - Spirited Blogger

 

Sunny Mountain View – Chitkul - Spirited Blogger

Kesang Homestay – Tabo

Tabo is a small town in the Lahaul and Spiti district that lies on the banks of the Spiti River. This place has a charm of Tibetan and Buddhism culture and you may see it influential enough in the entire terrain and breeze. Tabo is an absolute gem and the homestay where I stayed is Kesang Homestay – it is just on the road of Gompa Bus stand and what a beautiful and peaceful place to live in. The rooms are pretty spacious, clean and comfortable. The super friendly owner with her gracious smile will make you feel rejuvenated. I happen to get the opportunity to taste local Tibetan food too. She helped me to get plenty of local knowledge and places to see in Tabo. With this friendliness and warmth, it is a great place to stay.

Kesang Homestay – Tabo

 

Kesang Homestay – Tabo

Other than this in Chandrataal was the Camping Tents

This lake is at the surface level of 4250m; it is in the middle of the Himalayas and falls under Spiti Valley. This moon lake is wedged deep within the mighty Himalayan ranges which gives you spectacular views and positive aura to be there. For staying options – you only have tents there as the human population is not allowed to make hotels and also it remain closed for three months from October to January end, until the snow descends. I too stayed in a tent there – a very clean and undisturbed tent with attached bathroom. It has extra blankets for the dipping temperature which goes to even -8 to -10 degree Celsius in October and a bed in good condition. You are served with fantastic ginger lemon honey tea clubbed with breakfast and dinner with local flavour. Anything at that altitude where survival is tough is just a divine feeling.

Chandra Taal – The Moon Lake in Spiti Valley

Keep reading, Keep travelling.. the world awaits you!

Be Happy "</p


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ShiviAugust 3, 201810min3073

Mumbai is one of the most loved and extensively featured cosmopolitan cities in the world. From Bombay to Mumbai a lot of things have changed in this city, but what this short blog will talk about the Gothic architecture and the heritage sites that lies just in the heart of South Bombay and leave a mark to every Mumbaikar and traveller coming to this city.

Street Walk Photography blog, Spirited Blogger

Mumbai has a quite mixed and complexly layered history that dates back to the East India Company’s era. This unique history was our whole idea to explore behind having this one-day event called as – street walk photography – Mumbai walk. This event was organised by a group Backpacking Budget Travelling in India.

Where we explored many old architectural buildings on south Bombay that best reflects its diverse architectural buildings and combination of many worlds and eras. One can see High Victorian to the Indo-Islamic tinge of the era in the design and architecture of these buildings.

Street Walk Photography Blog, Spirited Blogger

We all started from one meeting place from south Bombay near CSTM railway station, waited for the gang to gather and then the heritage walk began. We roam the streets and explored many iconic buildings, that has aesthetic appeal and best represents the unique offerings of Mumbai.  The art deco and modern buildings give the city its cool and fresh look. , but it’s the diverse Victorian-era structures – the neo-Gothic, Indo-Saracenic and Venetian Gothic medley – that have come to describe Mumbai and make her the showy beauty that she is. All the shapes and the designs, the spires, the tombs, the gables and the arches – everything makes for a pleasant walk through the city’s past. Let’s talk about what all we explored – though there were many but have a look at the major ones. Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus (Victoria Terminus), Taj Mahal Palace hotel, the Gateway of India – these live up to their reputation, and the great joys are the church, Kayani’s, Bademiya, Jimmy’s etc. etc.

Street Walk Photography Blog, Spirited Blogger

Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus

It is the Mumbai’s most iconic landmark, the Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus, still functional and central to life in the city today. It is almost 130 years old building and is not just the most famous railway station in India, but also a UNESCO World Heritage site. This huge structure is an outstanding example of Victorian Gothic Revival and Indian architectural styles.  While an architectural prodigy to gaze in esteem for the tourists, this glorious building is just part of the daily commute for thousands of busy Mumbaikars.

Street Walk Photography Blog, Spirited Blogger

Mumbai High Court

The High Court of Mumbai building was built in the 1870s in early English-Gothic style. It was designed by Colonel J.A. Fuller, R.E. where blue-basalt was used as facing over the walls that were made of rubble and chunam. This colonial British-style marvel features many architectural details that amaze visitors.

Street Walk Photography Blog, Spirited Blogger

 

 

The Taj Mahal Palace

No wonder it is one of the famous and the first clear marker of the Bombay harbour until the Gateway of India was later built next to it around 20 years later. This quintessential Arabian Sea-facing hotel was built in 1903 under Jamsetji Tata and designed by architect Sitaram Khanderao Vaidya. It takes stimulus from around the world, displaying the most remarkable Victorian Gothic, Romanesque and Edwardian elements. A century later, the deluxe and archaeologically significant hotel remains unmatched among others in India.

Street Walk Photography Blog, Spirited Blogger

 

Gateway Of India

The Gateway Of India – Mumbai’s most significant monument was built to venerate the visit of King George V and Queen Mary to the city. Representing its association with the British Raj era in Mumbai, it is also the predicament from where the last of British troops deceased the country after its independence. This Indo-Saracenic architectural display was designed by Scottish architect George Wittet, taking from Indo-Islamic, Indian and Roman inspirations. Built from yellow basalt and armour-plated concrete, the building was completed only in 1924 while its foundation stone was laid in 1911.

 

Street Walk Photography Blog, Spirited Blogger

Few more clicks from our amazing photographers @Anurag Kakkar @Naveena Mohan @Niraj

She is #Chiya the youngest amongst us. PC – @Anurag Kakkar

Street Walk Photography Blog, Spirited Blogger

Gothic Styled Architecture – Brilliantly Restored

Street Walk Photography Blog, Spirited Blogger

The stars of our event

Street Walk Photography Blog, Spirited Blogger

Keep reading, Keep travelling.. the world awaits you!

Be Happy 🙂

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There is a piece in me that like to tenderly imagine my maverick and seditious soul. But, precisely, I love to have a picky and cosy relationship with my soul that can rub up against a little bit, putting me alive.


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