Tag: Travel

6 Places to Visit in Pune

Pune, referred as the cultural capital of Maharashtra, is situated around 560m above sea level on the western margin of Deccan Plateau. A hilly city, with its highest hill, Vetal Hill at around 800m above sea level. It is located at the confluence of Mula and Mutha rivers. It has many pilgrimage centres, heritage towns and leisure destinations. Pune being culturally active, there are programs of classical Indian or Western Music or dance and shows of Marathi Theatre at Bal Gandharva Auditorium.

Pune railway station
Pune railway station (Image source -Wikipedia)

How to reach Pune?

Pune is well-connected by air, rail and road to major cities of India.

By Rail– Pune being a major junction is linked well with major cities of the country. If you are in Mumbai and you wish to board a train, then you have many options to choose. Deccan Queen, Deccan Express, Indrayani, Pragati and Shatabdi are regular trains that run between Pune and Mumbai every day.

By Bus/Cab– Government and private buses regularly ply between Mumbai and Pune. Buses can be taken from Pune junction bus stand or at Shivajinagar station/bus stand.Taxis/cabs can also be hired. Some other cities near Pune are Ahmednagar (115km), Aurangabad (215km), Nashik (210km), and Kolhapur (233km) which are accessible by road.

By Flight– Pune airport is located in Lohagaon area around 10kms. From the heart of the city. You can take a cab or a bus service to reach the city.

Pune airport (Image source- Wikipedia)

Tourist attractions in Pune

Empress Garden– located near Pune Race Course at Wanawadi, near Camp, Pune. History states that in the British era, it was known as ‘Garden of Dr.Don’ under the possession of Sir Charles Napier. Later, this botanical park was named ‘Empress Garden’ in the honour of Queen Victoria after she won the title of ‘Empress of India’. This garden became famous among British soldiers as they came for recreation purpose. In 1892, Empress Garden was bought by the Bombay Government. It was then handed over to Agri-Horticultural society of Western India.

Empress Garden in Pune
Common Indian myna ((Acridotheres tristis) at Empress Garden in Pune
by Amritadikpati- Wikimedia Commons

In contemporary times, it has become a favourite amongst locals and tourists who throng this garden for peace and serenity.  The garden is open from 9.30am-6.30pm.

Bund Garden in Pune
Bund garden in pune (Image source Babloo180- Wikimedia Commons)

The Bund Garden is among the most admired gardens of Pune. It is a strong symbol of Maharashtrian culture and lifestyle. The park is clean and has many flower beds and bushes. The tall coconut trees adjoining the centre of this place make the garden, attractive and stunning. The plants are exquisite and the bushes are well-trimmed.

Osho Ashram

If you are in Pune, do not miss out on a walk through the Ashram garden. It won’t require much time but worth an experience. The ashram is maintained very well, especially the garden. There is also a statue of Osho and artificial waterfalls to add a mystic touch to the place.

Osho Garden- Pune
(WT-shared) Sanyambahga at wts wikivoyage -Wikimedia)

A very peaceful place… long stretches of green… great to walk around… no one to bother… peace and tranquillity!

Aga Khan Palace-This palace has five halls and large verandahs. The architecture is Islamic with hints of Italian art in its arches. It was built by Sultan Mohammed Shah, Aga Khan II.

Aga Khan Palace, Pune
AgaKhan Palace in Pune. Kasturbha Gandhi, wife of Mahatma Gandhi, died here (Image source http://www.djoh.netv- wikimedia)

It served as a prison to leaders like Mahatma Gandhi during Quit India Movement in 1942 and is therefore also known as Gandhi National Museum. It serves as a memorial of Mahatma Gandhi’s wife.

National War museum The museum built-in 1997 serves as a memorial for Indian soldiers who were martyrs of the nation. It is situated in Pune Cantonment. The museum has on display arms, uniforms and personal mementos.

Shinde Chhatri, Pune
Shinde Chhatri (Marathi : शिंदे छत्री), located in Wanawadi, a well known place in Pune, India, is a memorial dedicated to the 18th century military leader Mahadji Shinde who served as the commander-in-chief of the Maratha army under the Peshwas from 1760 to 1780. It is one of the most significant landmarks in the city and is reminiscent of the Maratha rule. It is a hall that marks the spot of Mahadji Shinde’s cremation on 12 February 1794. The three storied memorial bestows a daunting look of past splendour, representing the rich heritage of that era beautifully. The regal entrance gate made out of iron shines till date. The exterior is captivating and has intricate and detailed carvings
(Image credit- Bikashrd-Wikimedia Commons)

Shinde Chhatri– The Chhatri or hall has carvings and painting along with a gallery in it. There are paintings and photos of Scindia family. It is a memorial for Maratha leader, Mahadji Shinde.

While in Pune, you could also travel to the heights and hues of Western Ghats to Khandala, Mahabaleshwar and Lonavala.

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Paragliding from around the world

Paragliding is a simple form of human flight and also an adventure sport that people all over the world compete or participate in for high-flying fun. Much like an eagle, paragliders can soar in flights which last several hours and cover many hundreds of miles. The longest paragliding duration is 11 hours and covered more than 310 miles! Since paragliders are light, some adventurers choose to hike way up in the mountains; meaning paragliders have flown off of nearly every major peak in the United States and Europe, including Mt. Everest. By taking advantage of thermal lifts, paraglider pilots can stay aloft for 3 or more hours, climb to elevations of 15,000 feet, and go cross-country.

Woot! As Leonardo da Vinci said, “For once you have tasted flight you will walk the earth with your eyes turned skywards, for there you have been and there you will long to return.”

[bctt tweet=”Paragliding from around the world”]

Paragliders are easy to transport, easy to launch, and easy to land. And it offers humans a dream come true, the ability to fly and soar like an eagle. The glider is made of rip-stop nylon wing. The pilot sits in a harness which can be a comfortable as a lounge chair and actually uses the glider to fly like a bird like this photo of paragliding at Muriwai Beach, New Zealand. Photo #1 by Travis Wiens

Takeoff Sequence. Photo #31 by Mikel Ortega
iPhone capture – Paragliding on the beach. Photo #32 by Maurice
Takeoff Peak District National Park. Photo #33 by Dom Crossley
At Torrey Pines, San Diego. Photo #35 by Akshay
Indonesian world record paragliding attempt at Timbis in Bali. Photo #37 by Mj 1903
Paraglider jumping off a ramp at Tegelberg (1720 m), Schwangau, Germany. Photo #36 by Greg O’Beirne
Paraglider on air, above Neustift, Stubai Tal, Tirol, Austria. Photo #40 by Glg
Don Cesar, St Pete Beach sunset. Photo #41 by Andre Bulber

Source: Paragliding: When Humans Soar like Eagles (42 PICS)


Bora Bora Island – a Dreamy Affair

Located in the Leeward group of Society Islands of French Polynesia, Bora Bora Islands is in close proximity to another famous destination Tahiti Islands. Known for the aqua centric luxury destination that are developed as a part of eco tourism to allure newlyweds from around the globe. The iconic over water bungalows webbed on the vast stretches of lagoon gives a feeling of fantasy come true.  With many choices of activities such as water sports, treks, helicopter ride or just read your favorite author to choose from Bora Bora has something for everyone.

Your dream journey to Bora Bora starts right from the moment you enter the air space of this beautiful archipelago on board your flight. The picturesque views of Mount Otemanu on the little islet of Bora along with the blue lagoon and the white sand beach are breathtaking. If a traveler wishes to visit Bora Bora by the sea, they can arrive in style by the luxury cruise that will pamper you to your soul with their compassionate and courteous services on the cruise.

The locals have built a web of these beautiful small over water bungalows that provide all types of luxuries and amenities possibly available any tourist destination. The best part of some of this accommodations is they have glass bottoms where you can witness the crystal clear water and the rich marine life that Bora Bora is famous for.

The island is full of surprises when it comes to natural beauty and reserved habitats. Since this place of the earth is known to be explored the last on earth, the stunning landscapes are mostly untouched. Twin mountains of Mount Otemanu and Pahia are formed out of volcanic caldera and are best for treks and mountain safari on jeeps

A perfect lagoon destination, Bora Bora offers some of the most exotic and resplendent experiences of water sport. Snorkeling, Scuba diving and swimming in and around lagoons of Bora Bora are the must do activities. Many local operators can help you with the unique experiences of diving with manta rays and sharks that are easily found in this part of the world.

There are some other experiences like Aqua Safari, Aqua Biking and Keishi Lagoon tour that travelers can opt for to make most of your stay at Bora Bora.

It is one of the rare destination that is sure to make a huge dent on your pocket. No matter how hard you try to save you will be quick to realize that Bora Bora is either expensive or indescribably expensive. But this pricey destination makes sure to repay you with all of its heart. The perfect combination of ambiance and service will be hard to match in any other destination of the world and will stay in your conscience for a lifetime.

The best time to visit Bora Bora is during the dry season that runs from May to October.  The rains in these islands are unpredictable and can go on for long hours. During the dry season which is also the peak season, the water stays mildly warm which is perfect for swimming. Since this is a French Polynesian country, the main language here is French, and the other language that has great influence of Bora Bora is Tahitian although most locals have a good understanding of English.


*/For further details do check out source: Bora Bora Island – a Dreamy Affair – bookaHotel.in/*

TOP 10 Best Hot Air Balloon Rides

Humans have always been fascinated by the mystery of flying. The first attempts to copy birds by building wings that could be flapped by attaching them to the arms failed through the years. The ultimate success came from a completely different approach only after these methods were abandoned.

The Montgolfier brothers came up with a new idea in 1783. After a successful experiment of filling a silk bag with hot air which lifted meters off the ground,  Joseph and Jacques built a larger, spherical bag. They filled it with hot air from a fire and sent some farm animals in the air in a basket hung beneath it. Shortly after, this the brothers launched a 70-foot high balloon that lifted to 3000 feet and remained aloft for 25 minutes, with two men aboard. This was the first human, carrying flight technology. After this accomplishment was widely publicised, the human-carrying balloon evolved quickly.

Hot air balloons, today are able to reach thousands of meters height, with 21000 meters (69 000 feet) being the world record. Balloon flights and festivals are popular in various destinations around the world. We have selected 10 amazing locations around the world that are worth seeing from a birds-eye view.

Hot air balloon rides
Photograph found on www.ytravelblog.com

The best way to experience the ancient city of Bagan and its thousands of years temples is to get aboard on a hot air balloon and see it from the air. That´s the only way to really understand the size of one of the world´s greatest archaeological sites. Balloons Over Bagan is a privately owned Burmese, but British run company offering tours from mid-October to March off rainy season only.

Photograph found on dancingbranflakes.blogspot.com

Drift above the fascinating and breathtaking Napa Valley vineyards and watch the sunrise from the basket early in the morning. There are many companies offering flights in the region. Established in 1980 Napa Valley Balloons is Napa Valley’s oldest balloon company.

Photograph found on travelphotography.theplanetd.com
Photograph found on travelphotography.theplanetd.com

The Cerdanya Valley is located in the Spanish Pyrenees, in Catalonia. From the air, you can discover one of the most impressive valleys in Europe and its surrounding mountains the Sierra del Cadí, the Sierra del Moixeró and the Tossa de Alp. Since it is very close to the French border there is also a chance to see the area if you choose a balloon flight from Southern France. Experience the dramatic scenery with Ballooning Barcelona an established name in the industry.

Photograph found on fascinating-places.blogspot.com

Cappadocia is one of the most popular spots in the world to try a hot air balloon. The reason behind it is the utterly unique and surreal landscape that you have never witnessed before in your lifetime. Gently drifting over that fairy chimneys, through the valleys over vineyards and orchards, the different colours of the landscape will leave you breathless. Once you are back on the ground discover one of the underground cities in the region in Turkey.

Photograph found on www.atablefortwo.com.au

Watch the sunlight up the rugged MacDonnell Ranges on the Australian Outback. What would be a better way to have an amazing view other than a scenic hot air balloon flight. There is a good chance that you will see the big red kangaroos in their natural habitat. With nearly 30 years experience, Outback Ballooning is Australia’s only balloon company specialising in remote Outback operations.

Photograph found on bestplacesofinterest.com

Jaipur in Rajasthan, India is a real adventure destination – why not combine it with a once in a lifetime hot air balloon flight. Jaipur is often called the ´Pink City´has magnificent forts and palaces. On your ride, you will explore the Amber Fort, Jal Mahal and the aerial view of Jaipur. The company called Sky Waltz offers an unforgettable experience through the sky.

Photograph found on www.99traveltips.com

Hot air balloon flights in Kenya’s Masai Mara National Reserve is a truly enchanting experience. It is the northernmost part of the spectacular Serengeti-Mara ecosystem, home to the “Great Migration” and outstanding wildlife, including lions, cheetahs, elephants, rhinos, hippos, and crocodiles.

Photograph found on thejigsawpuzzles.com

Château-d’Oex is a hot air balloon paradise. Every year in the last week of January this part of the Swiss Alps provides the setting for the leading alpine ballooning event, the International Hot Air Balloon Week. The sky blooms with colour as hot-air balloons float over the snow peaks.Hot air ballooning is available all year round.

France, Dordogne (24), Perigord Noir, vallee de la Dordogne, Castelnaud-la-Chapelle, le chateau medieval de Castelnaud qui abrite le Musee de la Guerre au Moyen-Age, vol de montgolfieres (vue aerienne)

Combining a gastronomic experience with a hot air balloon trip is an ultimate choice. Burgundy is a wonderful area renowned for its fine wines and châteaux. It gives every tourist, a taste, of the soul of France. Fly over the celebrated vineyards of the wine area, the spectacular medieval hilltop towns and villages of the Parc du Morvan Nature Reserve. Get in touch with the friendly and professional team of France Montgolfière Balloons, they offer trips throughout France.

Photograph found on acouplecooks.com

Angkor Wat is the world´s largest religious complex and archeological site located in Cambodia. After you have seen it from the ground and wandered for hours between the walls of this magical complex why not see it from above. Be prepared for the crowds, though. Angkor Ballooning is the only balloon company offering daily trips depending on the weather conditions.

*/ Source: TOP 10 Best Hot Air Balloon Rides /*

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