INDIA TRAVEL - A COMPREHENSIVE GUIDE TO TRAVELING IN DELHI



Delhi, the capital of India is a large city, having grown exponentially over the last few years. It is spread non uniformally in different directions and is densely populated. Traveling in and around the city is quiet confusing unless you are aware of different modes of transport, available to move from one point to other. I have tried to squeeze in as much information as possible here to make it easy for a newcomer to travel in and around the city. Let's start with the Airports.

 Delhi has two airports. One is domestic and the other is international. Palam airport is the domestic airport and Indira Gandhi International Airport(IGIA) is for the international flights. Flights from almost all the major international destinations land at and take off from IGIA.


IGI Airport
IGI AIRPORT

CONNECTING WITH THE CITY - When you come out of the airport, you have the choice of different modes to move into the city.

Taxi and Autorickshaw - Pre paid taxi and auto stands are available, where you can hire taxi or auto to any location in the city, by paying a pre fixed fare at the counter and getting a receipt in lieu and get into taxi or autorickshaw. You need to handover the fare receipt to the driver once you reach your destination.
Metro Rail - Delhi metro runs trains from IGIA to New Delhi Railway station (called Airport Metro), passing through a location near domestic airport. An interchange station is coming up shortly en route at Dhaula Kuan, where one can change to other metro line for moving to a different location in the city.
 Bus - Delhi Transport Corporation runs AC buses from both IGIA and domestic airport for different locations in the city.


Railway Stations - Delhi has five major railway stations for interstate travel. They are Delhi Junction(popularly called Old Delhi Railway Station), New Delhi Railway Station, Hazrat Nizamuddin, Sarai Rohilla and Anand Vihar Terminal.
Delhi Junction - This station majorly handles trains going towards North and East India. It is the oldest railway station of Delhi. It was built about a century back. It's building highlights the Indian architecture. Pre paid taxi and auto stands are available outside the station, where you can hire them by paying a pre determined fare to any location within the city. It is also connected to Delhi metro rail's yellow line. Delhi transport corporation operates buses to different locations from here.

Delhi Junction Station
OLD DELHI RAILWAY STATION

 New Delhi Railway Station - Located in central Delhi, this station majorly handles railway traffic to parts of West, South and East India. It is very near to heart of Delhi, Connaught Place. It is directly connected to Delhi airport by Delhi Metro's Airport line and another metro service on yellow line passes through this station. Pre paid taxi and auto stands are available here also. Delhi Transport Corporation also has a bus terminus here. It has two exits. One is called Paharganj side and the other is Ajmeri Gate side.Bus terminal is on the Paharganj side.


Hazrat Nizamuddin - This station is located in south central Delhi and mainly caters to traffic bound for parts of South and West India. This is a smaller station compared to other two stations described earlier. It again has pre paid taxi and auto stands and a Delhi Transport Corporation bus terminal. It also has two entry and exit points, namely Sarai Kale khan and Ashram sides. Bus terminus is on the Ashram side. It doesn't have a direct metro link, but a metro station is coming up on the Sarai Kale Khan side very shortly. The nearest metro station as of now is Jungpura on the violet line, which is about 2 kms away.


Sarai Rohilla - Situated in north central Delhi, this is mainly a terminal and it handles rail traffic to parts of Central and West India. It is not very well connected by local transport or metro and you have to rely on taxis or auto rickshaws to ferry you to and from this station. The nearest metro station is at Jhandewalan on the blue line, which is again about 2.5 kms from here.

Anand Vihar Terminal - As the name itself suggests, this is again a terminal which handles traffic majorly to North and East India. This is located in East Delhi and is well connected with local transport. There is a metro station on the blue line of Delhi Metro and there is a Delhi Transport Corporation bus terminal also located in the vicinity. Again, pre paid taxi and auto stands are there.

 Delhi Metro Rail Corporation(DMRC) - Delhi Metro is the lifeline of the city. Presently, it operates seven lines on different routes and is in the process of starting another line this year. Let's have a look at the different lines and there area of operation.

DMRC Train
DELHI METRO

Red Line - This is the oldest line of DMRC. It connects Rithala in the North West corner of the city with Dilshad Garded in the East, bordering Uttar Pradesh. It covers areas of east, north and north west Delhi. There is one interchange station on this line which is Kashmere Gate, from where you can change to Violet and Yellow line.

Blue Line - This is one of the busiest lines of DMRC. It connects Dwarka in the Soth West corner to Vaishali and Noida in Ghaziabad, satellite towns in Uttar Pradesh, bordering east Delhi. It passes through major commercial hubs like Connaught place, Karol Bagh etc. It has four interchange stations. At Dwarka sector-21 station, you can change to Airport metro for airport. At Kirti Nagar station it connects with Green line. At Rajiv chowk, it connects with Yellow line and at Mandi House station, it connects with Violet line. At Yamuna Bank station, it bifurcates into two different lines, one going to Vaishali and the other to Noida.

Yellow Line - Another busy line, it connects Samaipur Badli in North Delhi with Gurugram, a satellite town on the southern end in Haryana. This line connects almost all the alighting points of Delhi. It passes through New Delhi and Old Delhi railway stations as well as Kashmere Gate Inter State bus terminus. It also connects to major points like Connaught Place, Delhi University. It has three interchange stations. Central Secretariat for Violet line, Rajiv Chowk for Blue line and Kahmere gate for Red and Violet lines.

Violet Line - This line connects Kashmere Gate in north Delhi with Faridabad, another satellite town on the southern end in Haryana. It passes through commercial hubs like Nehru Place and some landmarks like Kalkaji Temple and Jawahar Lal Nehru Stadium. It has four interchange station. Kalkaji Mandir for Magenta Line. Central Secretariat for Yellow Line, Mandi House for Blue Line and Kahmere Gate for Red and Yellow Lines.

Green Line - This line connects Kirti Nagar in west central Delhi with Mundka in western corner of the city, bordering Bahadurgarh in Haryana. It has one interchange station at Kirti Nagar, where you can change for Blue line.

Airport Line - This line connects New Delhi Railway Staion with IGI Airport. It is a luxury line and has higher fares compared to other lines. It has one interchange station at New Delhi Railway Station, where you can change for Yellow Line. Another interchange station is coming up at Dhaula Kuan.

Magenta Line - This line connects Janakpuri in West Delhi with Botanical Garden in Noida. Currently this line is operating only partially between Kalkaji Mandir and Botanical Garden. Rest of the line is expected to be open shortly. So far it has two interchange stations namely Kalkaji Mandir for Violet Line and Botanical Garden for Blue Line.

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Buses - Delhi has three major Inter State bus terminals.

Kahmere Gate - This is the oldest, biggest and the swankiest bus terminal in North Delhi. It caters to bus services operating majorly towards North Indian cities. It is well connected with metro with three metro lines passing through or terminating here. They are Red Line, Yellow Line and Violet line. It also has pre paid taxi and auto rickshaw booths.

Sarai Kale Khan - It handles inter state bus traffic going towards North and Central Indian cities. Located in South Central Delhi, it is adjacent to Hazrat Nizamuddin Railway Staion. A metro station is also coming up shortly at this place.

Anand Vihar - A very busy bus terminus, it handles interstate buses moving towards North India, majorly Uttar Pradesh. It is well connected to metro with station on Blue Line being in it's vicinity only. Anand Vihar Railway Station is also at a walking distance.

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 I hope this information will be very helpful for anyone, new to the city. Please leave your comments on the information provided in this post.

INDIA TRAVEL - MALVAN, A PLACE WITH ONE OF THE MOST BEAUTIFUL BEACHES OF INDIA

MALVAN - There are a number of factors which play a part when deciding on what would be our next travel destination. I believe that of all the factors, what plays a very important part is our own preferences. Usually in India, people like to go to well known places, about which they have heard a lot and have sufficient word of mouth information too. Particularly if it is a family vacation.



However, if we do a little research, we will find that there are so many places which are still largely unexplored but equally or even more amazing than the regular places we visit. I, for one, love to explore such places.Would you like to travel to such offbeat destinations?

One of such places, I have found absolutely enchanting is Malvan in Maharashtra, India. It is a town in Sindhudurg district of the state of Maharashtra. Situated on coast of western India, it has some really beautiful beaches and a rich cultural life. Malvan is located about 505 kms(314 mi) from Mumbai and 140 kms(87 mi) from Ratnagiri. It boasts of historically important Sindhudurg fort which, when translated literally means Ocean Fort.



Sindhudurg Fort at Malvan
SINDHUDURG FORT
Another side of Sindhudurg Fort
ANOTHER VIEW OF SINDHUDURG FORT

  Sindhudurg is a sea fort, surrounded by water from all sides and can be reached only by boat.Built by Maratha warrior Shivaji in 1664 on Kurte island, it was completed in 2.5 years. It contains three sweet water wells.

Malvan is a small town with a population of just about 20000. People are mainly occupied in fishing, but it produces Alphanso mangoes also. But the main attraction here is the number of beautiful beaches, unspoiled by tourist invasion

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Beach at Malvan
TARKARLI BEACH

ATTRACTIONS IN MAVLAN - Apart from Sindhdurg fort, there are a number of tourist attractions here.

Tarkarli Beach - This is situated 8 kms from Malvan town. It boasts of serene surroundings. It has sand particles which are devoid of any red tinge and sky reflecting waters. If you go further north for about 6-7 kms, you will see Tarkarli creek and a lovely estuary. A great way of spending time here is a boat ride to creek.

Rock Garden - Located on the rocky shore of Malvan, it is situated near Arase Mahal.
Jai Ganesh Mandir
Tendavali Beach - It is located 19 kms north of Malvan.
Achra Beach - It is located 22 kms north of Malvan.
Devbaug Beach - It is located 12 kms south of Malvan.
Chivla Beach
Rameshwar Temple - It is 23 kms north of Malvan
Vetal Mandir - It is 4 kms north of Malvan.
Sai Bollywood City - It is located in Dikwal village in Malvan and is approved by Maharashtra Tourism Development Corporation.

THINGS TO DO IN MALVAN - 
Apart from visiting Sindhudurg fort and relaxing on clean beaches, there are many more things you can do here.

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Marine Wildlife Sanctuary - As Malvan is surrounded by sea, this is a marine wildlife sanctuary. Due to it's rocky terrain, it is ideal for marine life. It was established in 1987. Here main attractions are black headed gulls, turns, plovers, water fowl, ducks and egrets.

Scuba diving and snorkeling - There are very few places in India, which provide scuba diving facilities. As sea water is relatively clean here, it becomes a perfect spot for scuba diving and snorkeling. You will also find live corals and colorful marine life near the outer walls of Sindhudurg fort.


Scuba Diving at Malvan Beach
CLEAN WATER AT MALVAN BEACH


Water Sports - You can indulge in water sports in Malvan. There are many options available here. You can visit Tsunami Island(nothing to do with Tsunami waves though). It is a small island near Devbaug beach. You can enjoy boat ride here in the back waters of Tarkarli river. You can also do Jet sking, banana boat ride, bumper boat ride and kayaking etc. here.

HOW TO REACH MALVAN - 
By Air - The nearest airport is at Dabolim in Goa which is 145 kms ( 92 mi) away. From here Malvan is well connected by road.

By Rail - Nearest railway station is Kudal which is 28 kms (18 mi) from here. Daily trains are available from Mumbai to Kudal. From there it is again well connected by road and you can get buses or cabs.

By Road - M.S.R.T.C. runs daily buses from Pune to Malvan (400 kms/250 mi). Also, Kolhapur is the central bus junction, which is 100 kms (65 mi) from Malvan.


CLIMATE - Climate here usually remains same throughout the year. It is warm and moderately humid, with temperatures ranging from 16 to 33 degree Celsius.

FOOD - People here have a staple diet of rice and fish curry. It has a famous sweet Malvani Khaja. Apart from this, other sea food is also available here.

WHEN TO VISIT - The best time to visit Malvan is October to May.

WHERE TO STAY - There are lot of guest houses and hotels of all budget available in Malvan. Just checkout FABHOTELS for best hotel deals.

So if you love clean beaches, water sports and adventure, pack your bags and head straight to Malvan.









INDIA TRAVEL - HUES OF HIMACHAL PRADESH - MASHOBRA, SHIMLA



Hello everyone! It has been my endeavor to bring the most exotic but less explored places of my country, India to you. Travel to and in a vast country like India can take a lifetime but still you could yearn for more.

There are many famous tourist spots in the state of Himachal Pradesh and the most well known is it's capital Shimla. However, there is a little known place, just about 15 kms from Shimla, which is full of amazing natural splendor. It goes by the name of MASHOBRA.

Situated at a height of around 2200 meters (app. 7000 ft.), it is hardly 40 minutes drive from Shimla. This place is connected to Shimla by Hindustan Tibet road, which has it's own historical value. This road was built in the year 1850 by Lord Dalhousie. This small town has picturesque surroundings and you can find plenty of spots to stop and admire. You get a magnificent view of mighty Himalayas. It is a very quiet hill station, away from the hustle bustle of the Shimla city.

                           
My Hotel at Mashobra
VIEW OF MASHOBRA FROM MY HOTEL ROOM
Beautiful Mashobra
SERENITY OF MASHOBRA



   If you are looking for a peaceful vacation in the lap of nature, then this is the place. Even if you are looking for some adventure, Mashobra offers you camping sites also.
Mashobra boasts of natural vegetation like Pine, Oak, Cedar or Himalayan Deodar. It has fairly good wildlife consisting of Monkeys, Langurs, Jackals, Barking Deer and if you are lucky, you can spot a leopard too. For bird watchers, you can see species like Himalayan Eagels, Pheasants, Chikor, Partridges etc.


WHO SHOULD VISIT MASHOBRA - This place is most suited for people looking for a peaceful vacation and Nature Lovers. Mashobra is very good for family vacation also and if you are looking for camping sites, you will find that too.




Resort at Mashobra
VIEW FROM RESORT AT MASHOBRA

WEATHER IN MASHOBRA - Weather is generally good here. During summers(April to June), days are pleasant but you need light woolens during night. July to September are monsoon months so avoid visiting during this period. October onwards, winter starts and it becomes very cold and chilly. During December to February, hills are covered in white snow.You will need lot of woolens if you plan to visit during this period.

M
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HOW TO REACH - 

By Air - The nearest domestic airport is Shimla which is about 30 kms (19 mi) from Mashobra and it takes about 90 minutes to cover the distance.Other nearest airport is Chandigarh, which is about 135 kms (85 mi) from Mashobra and it takes about 4 hrs to cover the distance. You can hire a cab from these airports.

By Rail - The nearest railway station is Kalka, which is well connected to all the major Indian cities by rail. It is about 100 kms ( 63 mi) from Mashobra. You can hire a cab from there. If you are a little adventurous type, then you can travel by Kalka-Shimla toy train on narrow gauge, which will take 4-4.5 hrs to reach Shimla and from there you can hire a cab.

Koti Resort
KOTI RESORT MASHOBRA

By Road - Mashobra is about 355 kms (205 mi) from Delhi. Roads are good. You can either go by Volvo buses upto Shimla and from there hire a cab from Delhi.

Mashobra in Himalayas
Beauty of Mashobra
WHAT TO DO IN MASHOBRA - The most interesting part of vacation in Mashobra is that you can have best of both the worlds. It is at a motorable distance from all the major tourist attraction in and around Shimla. You can go to Kufri, The Mall , Jakhu Hills, Christchurch etc. during the day if you want to enjoy the places and crowd and return in the evening to the peaceful surroundings of Mashobra. You can go trekking also.


WHERE TO STAY - There are quite a few good hotels in Mashobra in different price range and you can choose as per your budget. There is a resort also, which has many cottages for families.


So don't wait. If you are looking for that serene atmosphere and a full dose of nature, head straight to Mashobra.

I will be back soon with my next post. Till then HAPPY TRAVELING!! CHEERSSSSSS.....