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In India one never knows why or how things happen, they just do! To the intellect it may seem like a mad puzzle which doesn’t fit at all, but it is well worth the wait (experience) before you judge -there IS a certain method to this madness! And each individual must experience India at least once in the life time to realize this truth!! On the surface, the Indian sub-continent is brimming with diverse activities, a lot of apparent contradictions and divisions, yet underneath lays the calmness's in the deepest depths of the ocean and the strength to wade through the fiercest of storms. This calmness and the resultant strength is the result of the thousands of sages, yogis, and saints that have inhabited this spiritual Motherland of humanity. Here is some good to know stuff when you travel to India.



  • Traffic : India is second most populous country in this world. With 1.2 billion human beings walking this land, finding a street empty is next to impossible. With all kinds of vehicles and non-vehicles competing for space and right of the way, one may feel little disoriented initially and some may even feel like they are a part of a video game! Don’t hold your breath for too long though, Indians are adept at driving through this chaos without hitting and colliding with others, errr..well most of the time!.

  • Festivals: No matter what time of the year you are travelling to India, you are bound to be in the middle of some or the other religious or cultural festivities. So research before your travel, and learn about the various festivals that may be coinciding with your travel calendar. Experience the festivities with the help of your guide/ tour operator by being a part of the local or an organised celebration.

  • Cricket :Cricket is the (unofficial) national sport and a national past time for Indians. From kids playing on the streets and rooftops to professionals on the sports channels, Cricket is everywhere. Don’t be shy to stop and try your hand at it.

  • Getting Stared at: This one takes a little getting used to. Most Indians (including women)have a habit of staring unconsciously at anything or anyone who looks or dresses up differently. This is especially true if you are a woman and when you are in the country side. It’s a little annoying, but if you can ignore you will save yourself the trouble of losing your nerves constantly. Dressing up conservatively may also help bring fewer stares.

  • Shopping: Shopping in India is a delight! You can pick nice souvenirs at flea markets and buy lots of colorful clothes, shoes, handmade stuff at very reasonable prices. Just don’t forget to bargain if you are buying from an open market. The prices are usually inflated and a little to a lot of bargaining may be done depending on the market you are in.

  • Hospitality: Indians are known for their hospitality.“Athithidevobhava” is a code of conduct for Hindus, found in one of the ancient Hindu scripture. It simply means to treat the guests as ‘God’.

  • Spirituality: The Yoga in vogue in these modern times as a fitness routine that involves bending, stretching and twisting the body in various forms, is in reality only the physical-aspect of the spiritual tradition of yoga( which literally means to Join or a Union with God or Self) (the highest form of consciousness) involves much more than the physical discipline. It’s an overall discipline and turning of the mental, vital, and physical being inwards to a higher consciousness.

  • No amount of online research and reading will prepare you for the experience that is India. To get the best out of your holiday in India, keep an open mind and not be in a hurry to judge. With so much crowd, the colors, the aromas ,and myriad of contradictory appearances, the eyes may take a while to adjust and you may feel overwhelmed at times, but just let everything soak in and at the end you of your trip, you are sure to take back with you an experience that will nurture your spirits in ways that you have never imagined! So get ready to set yourself for a lifetime experience! Go India.

Gopalpur on sea

Gopalpur-on-sea, the beautiful beach resort in Ganjam District of Odisha (Orissa), was once the busy sea port of the state at two hrspicturesque drive from Bhubaneswar – the capital city of Odisha. Very close to Berhampur – a place known for silk Sarees and horn toys, Gopalpur-on-Sea has become a beach resorts in India known for the roar of the high-rise waves and breeze bustling through palm trees. Palm trees, high-rise waves, serene environment and its pleasant weather draw the attention of people from busy cities to spend weekend or enjoy picnic here. Tourists who want to explore the real sea wonder often prefer to explore Gopalpur on Sea. During you tour to Gopalpur, you will visit some of the prime attractions in & around Gopalpur on Sea in Ganjam District of Odisha.

hans coco plam

Set in idyllic surroundings, in what is one of India's best kept secrets – the sea shore of Orissa – The Hans Coco Palms at Puri is a haven of peace, serenity and cultural delights. The experience is a must for those seeking a getaway spot abundant in nature without sacrificing modern comfort. The property, formerly the retreat of Orissan royalty, is located conveniently away from the hustle and bustle of this ancient pilgrimage town on a stretch of pristine coastline – the perfect natural setting for rejuvenating and relaxing the body and mind. The splendid garden creates the perfect setting for relaxing walks in the shade of the coconut groves. Ayurvedic treatments and yoga sessions on the lawns by the pool, to add that healing touch to your stay, are also provided on request. The elegant archways from the lobby lead on to a terrace that overlooks the sculpted turquoise pool and the Bay of Bengal.

Mayfair Lagoon, Bhubaneswar

Being one of the best 5-star deluxe hotel in Bhubaneswar, MAYFAIR Lagoon invites you amidst the lavish scenery, courteous hospitality and elegant interiors that are sure to keep one spell bound and mesmerised for the time to come. Each and every corner of the prestigious property in the heart of the capital city of Odisha (Orissa) speaks all about utter elegance, royalty, luxury and serenity. It provides you the feeling of royal lifestyle during your entire stay. Luxuriously detailed interiors that you will see in each and every corner are flawlessly harmonized by a choice of global and Indian cuisine. It offers an array of activities to relax and revitalize yourself for the next pleasurable trip. A crown with glittering gems on the head of hotels and resorts in Bhubaneswar, the luxury star deluxe resort creates a lagoon of ultimate pleasure in the tranquil city Bhubaneswar – called as Temple City of India. In addition, the fine blend of contemporary architecture and Kalinga Art makes MAYFAIR Lagoon an ideal destination to accommodate during your Bhubaneswar tour.

The chariot, puri

Secluded in the lap of a natural lagoon at the Bay of Bengal, The Chariot is an oasis of tranquility where luxury reaches its new heights. Commanding peerless views of the perennial blue of the Bay of Bengal and sky, the Chariot is a sanctuary of refined sense and sensibility where you will experience the lasting sensation of wellbeing. Appealing to families, city escapees and business groups as much as to the spiritual seekers, this true luxury hotel in the temple town of Puri excites envy for its stunning location, spreading over an area of 3.5 acres, coupled with the super modern facilities of a world-class resort with the unparalleled warm hospitality where guests are introduced to the sensitive, intimate and sophisticated. Beyond the extraordinary suites and rooms and jaw-dropping interiors of a 4000 sq. ft. lobby featuring stunning miniature paintings Pattachitra, authentic to Odisha, our resort provides you a palate pleasing experience, featuring gastronomic delights Gujarati, Marwari and Jain cuisines at The Laguna to more creative international dishes in the Upper Deck. The Chariot has emerged as a preferred destination for kindling and keeping the flame alive. Here you will find a spectacular setting for your romance which will get enlightened by music and dance performed by the folk dancers of Odisha.

Trident bhubaneswar

Bhubaneswar, the capital of Odisha, is also its largest city and one of India's first planned cities. Travel in time as you explore the ancient temples that dot Bhubaneswar, also known as the 'Temple City of India'. Whether it is the sandy beaches or the ancient temples of Odisha, Trident, Bhubaneswar, is an ideal base to explore both.

Located only 6 kilo meters from the city centre, the hotel is set amidst landscaped gardens and fruit orchards. It is an oasis in the heart of the city. Savour the serene views of the gardens and orchards, framed beautifully by the picture windows in your room. With just 57 rooms and 5 suites spread across 14 acres of manicured lawns, you can be sure of finding your own tranquil corner with in the premises. The elegantly appointed rooms, inspired by the traditional architecture of the city, add an old world charm which is perfectly complemented by our warm and caring service.

An essential part of your Odisha experience has to be its varied, yet simple cuisine. Let our chefs prepare authentic dishes with fresh seafood brought in daily from the coast, accompanied with fresh produce from the kitchen gardens. No need to worry about the calories building up, as our state of the art fitness centre or a few laps in our swimming pool will help take the guilt away!

 





Golden triangle with a difference
Delhi | Agra | Bharatpur | Ranthambore |
Pushkar | Jaipur | Delhi

Includes the highlights of Taj Mahal & the pink city with a detour to Asia's largest bird sanctuary & one of India's best tiger...


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Rajputana: live life king size

Delhi | Agra | Jaipur | Samode | Nimaj | Jodhpur | Rohetgarh | Devigarh | Dungarpur | Udaipur | Delhi




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Backwaters & Houseboat

Delhi or Mumbai | Cochin | Kumarakom | Houseboat | Periyar | Delhi/Mumbai




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BEST OF LADAKH

Delhi | Leh | Pangong Lake | Hunder (NubraValley) | Leh | Delhi





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Hindustan Tibet Road

Delhi | Nalagarh | Kotgarh | Sarahan | Sangla | Tabo | Kaza | Keylong | Sarchu | Leh | Delhi




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Mystical South

Chennai | Kanchipuram | Mamallapooram | Pondicherry | Chidambaram | Tanjore | Trichy | Madurai | Trivandrum




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Coast to Coast

Chennai | Mahabalipuram | Kanchipuram | Madurai | Periyar | Kumarakam | Alleppy | Kovalam




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Kipling Country – Kanha & Bandhavgarh

Mumbai | Nagpur | Kanha National Park | Bandhavgarh National Park | Khajuraho





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PALACE ON WHEELS TRAIN TOUR

Delhi | Jaipur | Sawai Madhopur | Chittorgarh | Udaipur | Jaisalmer | Jodhpur – Bharatpur | Agra | Delhi



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The White Magic Triangle

Delhi | Bagdogra | Darjeeling | Kalimpong | Gangtok | Bagdogra





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Coconut Lagoon, Kumarakam

Located on the shores of Vembanad Lake, this unusual resort is a haven of relaxation and tranquility. Only accessible by boat, the "gate" to the property is via a little canal. The grounds, a former coconut plantation, are crisscrossed with canals and footbridges and dotted with white bungalows and two-storey mansions. The style is simple yet comfortable. All the rooms on this property are traditional old buildings which have been relocated here. The Pool Villas are wonderful, with both sunset and sunrise views over a lake behind the house with a little sit out balcony. They are like little homes with living room, a pool and gorgeous bedrooms. The base category rooms are also lovely, very original and uplifting. Staffs here are friendly and engaging with typical CGH Earth warmth. The main pool is stunning, overlooking the lake with little coves off it. This resort is fun and atmospheric, very relaxing and gives a flavor of the Backwaters culture and architecture.

Discovery Houseboat

This houseboat is a traditional Keralan experience with a rather large twist; beginning with the hull of an authentic kettuvallom houseboat, they have created a modern boat which is much more comfortable and more environmentally friendly than the traditional types. An electric motor makes it considerably quieter and less polluting then a normal houseboat. The boat has one master bedroom and a sitting room which can be converted into a twin room if required. Glide through the backwaters enjoying the views from the shaded upper deck whilst your personal chef creates your next delicious meal.

Houseboat, Kerala

These beautifully converted Kettuvallams (rice barges) are the perfect way to explore the Backwaters. Shaded by a woven bamboo canopy and fanned by cool breezes, guests can just sit back and relax. Your crew will look after you attentively and conjure up delicious food in these lovely surroundings. It is amazing what they can do in such a small kitchen! The onboard bedroom is spacious and the bathroom although simple, has a shower and everything else you may need.

Located on the shores of Vembanad Lake

Located on the shores of Vembanad Lake, this unusual resort is a haven of relaxation and tranquillity. Only accessible by boat, the "gate" to the property is via a little canal. The grounds, a former coconut plantation, are crisscrossed with canals and footbridges and dotted with white bungalows and two-storey mansions. The style is simple yet comfortable. All the rooms on this property are traditional old buildings which have been relocated here. The Pool Villas are wonderful, with both sunset and sunrise views over a lake behind the house with a little sit out balcony. They are like little homes with living room, a pool and gorgeous bedrooms. The base category rooms are also lovely, very original and uplifting. Staff here are friendly and engaging with typical CGH Earth warmth. The main pool is stunning, overlooking the lake with little coves off it. This resort is fun and atmospheric, very relaxing and gives a flavour of the Backwaters culture and architecture.

Marari Beach Resort

Tucked away between two fishing villages on a beautiful golden beach, this 27-acre resort combines a warm, rustic feel with modern comforts. Scattered throughout the coconut grove are 62 deceptively modest thatch-roof villas which are spacious and comfortable with open-air bathrooms. The garden pool villas are excellent for those seeking privacy and tranquility. At the center of the resort, there is a large swimming pool and restaurant and by the beach, there is a smaller, specialty seafood restaurant. Close to the Backwaters and an hour's drive from Cochin, this well-run and friendly resort, with its vast palm-fringed beach and excellent ayurvedic center, packs a lot of Kerala into one bundle.

MS Oberoi Vrinda, Kerala

The Oberoi Vrinda is an exclusive cruiser that offers a luxurious journey through the picturesque and lush backwaters of Kerala. Each of the 8 luxury cabins has its own bathroom with shower, king-size bed and window overlooking the waterways with serene views of rice boats, village life and tropical greenery. Experience a way of life unique to this region with the vessel's expert sightseeing guides. As the cruise meanders through canals and lakes, unwind and rejuvenate in the peace and tranquility of this photographer's haven. Prepare your palette for a range of exotic international and south Indian delicacies while the chef creates a completely personalized menu. All this coupled with exceptional service from the crew makes this intimate boat trip an unforgettable experience.

Raheem residency, Alleppey

This is a beautiful heritage home, built in 1868, situated in an undeveloped area of Kerala. The 6 rooms are spacious, furnished with traditional Keralan furniture, and all have an ensuite bathroom. There is a charming private swimming pool, with plenty of areas to sit outside, relax and unwind. To further help in the whole relaxation process, yoga and ayurveda is on offer in the form of classes or treatments. The restaurant, the boutique hotel's own window on the world offers front and rear views over the ocean and the lively parade ground.

Taj fisherman cove, mahabalipuram

This comfortable hotel is set on a beautiful stretch of beach an hour south of the city of Chennai and a twenty minute drive from the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Mahabalipuram. The shaded swimming pool, set in lush tropical gardens with casuarinas and palm trees, lies at the center of the resort. Our favourite bedrooms are in the spacious cottages by the beach which offer privacy and fine views. Excellent service is complemented by the fine sea-food and relaxed atmosphere of this resort. Kanchipuram, famous for its temples and silk weaving is within two hours drive for a day visit.

The Leela, Kovalam

Set off on a rocky promontory overlooking two golden stretches of sand, the Leela has an enviable position. Its style combines Keralan and Balinese influences. The guest rooms face either the beach or the garden apart from those in The Club section which are all sea facing. Guests staying in The Club have an exclusive restaurant, pool, lounge and library. All residents may choose from a further five restaurants and bars. There is an excellent infinity pool and ayurvedic spa, Divya. Other activities include yoga, cycling, jogging, gym and beach volleyball.

Vivanta by Taj Bekal, Kerala

Inspired by the design of Kettivallam houseboats, and with Chitra Pothi art on the walls, Vivanta by Taj Bekal perfectly compliments its charming rural surroundings. The famous backwaters run through the grounds and the hotel's beautifully landscaped gardens meet the Kappil beach shoreline. Many activities are available for your enjoyment such as boating, kayaking, rowing, fishing and trekking. This delightful hotel is situated in over 26 acres of greenery and contains over 71 rooms and 3 restaurants.

VIVANTA BY TAJ, malabar

Situated on Willingdon Island with stunning views of Cochin harbour, Vivanta by Taj - Malabar is well balanced between heritage and modern day, which is effectively displayed in the opulent design throughout the hotel. The rooms deliver the ultimate urban relaxation for their guests and have either a sea or sunset view. The hotel's lively restaurants offer a superb range and selection of local and world cuisine with traditional and contemporary favourites. Guests can also relax in the Jiva Spa and indulge in the top Indian rejuvenation therapies, unwind in by the pool or revitalize in the fitness center. Our rooms have it all worked out. We know what you must have and then add to the delight! Clever surprises and the best of technology. Each room features ergonomically designed mobile work desks with special task lighting and stylish designer work chairs . So also hi-tech electronics for internet access, 32" LCD televisions, distinctive custom lighting and outstanding storage facilities. De-stress options such as surround sound home theatre systems, a special Rest Easy menu and dual massage showerheads add luxury to your stay. The styling and the décor suits both business and leisure travellers. Very modern. Very in.