Monday, June 29, 2015

My Dream Destinations!!!

I’m not exactly a traveler kind soul. So I never believed on “It’s the journey that matters and not the destination”. Come on…how come I really enjoy a journey if I’m not excited about the destination in the beginning itself?? To love the travel of a Journey…I must have the destination of my choice…That’s how I feel.

Travel has always been a constant chum in my life. Right from the childhood I have been travelling to different places at different times. Why???  The reason being my father as a government employee had frequent tours and occasional transfers.

Things have not changed now as well. We keep shifting place to place (courtesy IT professional job demand a place change as well…Right) and trip to different places for different reasons. Let me confess…these types of journeys never excite me to the fullest because destinations are somewhat a compulsion and not a choice. I get few occasions where I can decide a destination of my fondness.

So my travel bucket List is so crowded with options that it will be difficult to choose some of them. All places in my travel list are close to my heart. And it’s not feasible to write about all of them here…right!!

 So I have decided I will pick those that have a special connection to my soul and heart.
Imagine… I have a buzzer question. “Which place will you chose to explore if given a chance to pick??

Its North East India…My answer within no moments…spontaneous!
North East India??? I know, you must be feasting your forehead with that particular gesture murmuring my answer. Stupid girl!! Didn’t she find the some wonderful places in the world!!

Yes...I must admit, sometime I also feel why my heart always go to these landscapes as first preference which is often referred as “Forbidden lands”?? My mind has several times suggested my heart to have something different giving other beautiful options also. But you know…I’m a soul who follows my heart rather than Mind.
So decided… First choice for dream destinations to explore will be “North East India”

North East India

I don’t exactly know when these landscapes entered into my list and Top the same as my Dream Destinations. Perhaps in the school days I think. Because as a school kid I remember I used find it very difficult to locate the North East states in India’s Political Map as a part of Social study chapters. No wander why I always used to lose some marks on questions anything related to these states…be it Map study or any bit or long question. Most of the time I used to leave them “unanswered”. 

They used to appear as a “Bunch of Grapes” to me. I remember I used to feel “Once I grow up...I will go to these places and find out the answer”. That might have been the point when I felt to visit these lands.

At present I think many are still unaware of the fact about this part of our India. I’m sure some even can’t answer “how many states are there in North-East India” (hey…few years back even I was one of them) …. let alone the facts about them.

Often termed as “Seven Virgin sisters” and “Paradise Unexplored”…The North East India comprises seven contiguous Sister States such as Arunachal Pradesh, Assam, Meghalaya, Manipur, Mizoram, Nagaland and Tripura including the Himalayan State “Sikkim- called as “The only Brother of these seven sisters”. They are often considered as “Forbidden land” because of their narrow connectivity to the main stream India “both physically and culturally”.

For me, the Forbidden fruit has always been irresistibly fascinating. I have a bit Nature Loving kida (worm) in me as well. 

The first thing that fascinates me about these places is 

their biodiversities in terms flora and fauna. Then the dense forest, powerful torrent rivers and rains and thunderstorms sweeping across the hills, valleys and plains during the annual monsoons….OMG!! What could more than enough!!

These isolated lands are also the meeting point of various cultures, ethnic groups, food, faiths and festivals.  A place renowned for its mysterious magnificence and mystifying miscellany, In North East India One will find everything to satiate the appetite of any kind of escapades and natural desire to roam in the land of Paradise unexplored...Trekking, Rambling or trailing or simply walking and adoring the splendor!!

There are many places here who can always hit the list of any traveler’s list. Let Me Pick Out the First Place Out Of My “Own Travel Bucket”

The First Place is CHERRAPUNJI in Meghalaya!!

I know, I know…with the mention of this name you all are taken into your school days. Hmm… nostalgic!! Remember those days how hard it was to memorize the Place of heaviest Rain Fall, Wettest Place etc- Cherrapunji…right!

For me its bit little more nostalgic! I love Rain. As a kid when I learnt that Cherapunji receives maximum rainfall….OMG!! My little innocent mind started dreaming up wandering in this place!!And believe me I was no less than The ALICE in the wonderland!! It’s been a childhood dream place for me.

Well… High above the vaporous valleys and ruffling Rivers, majestic water falls, the double Decker Root bridges and ensconced in curling clouds and hovering on an escarpment, Cherrapunji – The Place of my babyhood Dream is situated in the lap of the “Abode of clouds – Meghalaya”. Perhaps it’s the only place that has one season throughout year. Only Rain, Rain and Rain!!

The Next place is SHILLONG!!

Shillong is not only the capital of Meghalaya the “Abode of Clouds” but also a beautiful hill station and also famous as the "Scotland of the East". It has plethora of waterfalls, Mountain peaks and museums to visit simply leaving the soul free and awestruck with enchanting weather. Most of the Shillong population belongs to the Khasi tribe. Interesting aspects of Khasis are that they are a matrilineal society - the mother's surname is passed on to the children and the youngest daughter inherits the ancestral property.
Don Basco Museum, Shillong

Hmm…Interesting!! Isn’t it??

The Next place is DIMAPUR in Nagaland!!

Right from their unusual head dresses to their strange sense of wardrobe, from their
exceptional handloom to their amusing taste in food Nagaland has always stood apart from all other states in India. A colorful land of flawless culture and extraordinary ethnicity, this slighter known state is definitely a tantalizing destination to discover.

On entering Nagaland one will really fall in love with people living there. The captivating tribal village life in Nagaland, Colorful and unusual, it's not something that travelers can see in other place.


Though Kohima is the capital of Nagaland but it is Dimapur that is considered to be the entry point of the state as it is the only place with Airport. Dimapur officially welcomes you to Nagaland. It has several ancestral tribal Heritage villages.  Intaky wild Life Sanctuaries, Zoological parks, Ancient Shiv Temples…. Are some of the souls stirring places to visit!! However for me the most attractive is the “Kachauri Ruins” – The ancient Ruins.

Kachauri Ruins” – The ancient Ruins, Dimapur Nagaland

The Next Place is UNAOKOTI in Tripura:

 Blessed with natural affluence of nameless forests, breathtaking valleys, dazzling waterfalls and magnificent mountains, who will not find Tripura as a wonderful land to chill out??

However in Tripura one will be mesmerized with the Beauty of Unaokoti hills, literally meaning “one less a crore in Bengali”. It hosts an ancient Shaivite place of worship with huge rock-cut images and stone idols of Lord Shiva and Ganesha. The rock-carved figures and stone images of God, Lord Shiva and gigantic Ganesha figures along with Maa Durga standing on a lion and images of Nandi Bull are the best to see and enough to go crazy about the beauty.

UNAOKOTI Rock Statues!!

The Next Place is IMPHAL in Manipur:

ManiPur… itself means ‘A jeweled land’ was described as the ‘Jewel of India’ by Late Jawaharlal Nehru.   Amidst breathtaking blue green  hills and amazingly soul-captivating natural panorama it is popularly referred “Switzerland of the East”(hey…we have our own Switzerland)  with its falling torrents, tripling rivers, range of flora, exotic blossoms and lakes. 

Imphal, the capital of Manipur, is a picturesque city located at the center of the beautiful Manipur valley and is surrounded by plains and hills. Intense afforest and rambling grasslands make the place a heaven on earth. I would just love to be lost in its grandeur.

The Next Place Is AIZAWL in Mizoram:

 Mizo means “highlander. So Mizoram is also called as “land of the Mizo people” that is “Land Of highlanders”. Mizoram is a land of rolling hills, valleys, rivers and lakes. It has the most kaleidoscopic and diverse hilly terrain. Blue Mountain is the highest peak in MizoramMizoram is also called as land of blue hills and land of Hill people!!

Aizawl is the largest city in Mizoram and its capital. With a Picturesque setting in the frame of crinkle of hills at an altitude of 1132 m above sea level overlooking valley and hill ranges beyond… it offers an enthralling view of the world from an altitude. Rightly called the ‘Home of Highlanders’…

The Next Place Is ZIRO in Arunachal Pradesh!!

Arunachal Pradesh, which translates to "land of the dawn-lit mountains", is also known as the Orchid State of India or the Paradise of the Botanists.

 Ziro Valley has been declared as a World Heritage Site for its stunning natural beauty. Apatani Plateau, as Ziro is popularly known, is situated at an altitude of 1500 meters above sea level. The region is rich in rice fields and it is surrounded by mountains that boast of pine trees in great numbers. The wide range of flora and fauna seen here is soul captivating. Talley Valley Wildlife Sanctuary, Meghna Cave Temple, Midey are some of the places that will leave a lifelong mark if once it is visited!!!

The Next place is beautiful dark green tea gardens in Assam"

Assam, the mystic land of supercilious blue hills and luxuriant, undulating river valleys is the gateway to the northeast frontiers of India. Assam is a gorgeous and diverse state with an incredible range of cultures and landscapes of tropical rain forests, grasslands and numerous wetlands.

As a Tea lover, I would love to explore its beautiful Tea Gardens. However with mention of Assam, many places and things come piping into mind…right!!  The Kaziranga National Park, Kamakhya Temple, Cruise on River Brahmaputra, Assam Silk, one-horned Indian  rhinoceros…
OMG!! How enlivening it would be to explore this wonderful land!!

The Next Place Is the Rumtek Monastery in Sikkim

Sikkim is a Himalayan state (called as the only brother of seven sisters) situated at the foot of Mount Kanchendzonga and prides itself as an unexplored exquisiteness. The pompous mountains dominate the skyline of Sikkim seems as if  inviting the wanderer’s soul  in its snow clad peaks, green emerald slopes, rushing streams, tall Rhododendrons and sparkling orchids.

 Hilltop monasteries emerge from the rugged terrains while multi-colored prayer flags wave in the mountain breeze.

Rumtek is a famous monastery (Also the largest monastery in Sikkim), all over the world, especially among the Tibetan Buddhists, is situated near Gangtok, the capital of Sikkim. Originally called the Dharma Chakra Centre, it includes a beautiful shrine temple and a monastery for the monks.

If at Sikkim, then I would surely love to have a sight of Nathu La passé a major passageway on the Old Silk Route between India and Tibet before it was closed in 1962.  

Ohh!! That’s enough..Right!! Actually North East States of India are so bountiful in offering of Natural beauty that one life time perhaps not enough to explore it!!I've just explored the Natural beauties. Actually there are many more in Food,Festival and People!! That's why they say...One should Visit North India once in life time!! 

Wait, Wait…I’m not concluding here. There are three more remain to explore from the first List of my Dream destination list!! They are really interesting!! I’m just giving snap shots….!!

The Wudang Mountains of Hubei, China:

Did you remember Mr.Han taking Xian Dre (The Karate Kid) to climb up to a hill top during his training of the martial art? Yes that place is the Wudang Mountains near Hubei, China. I was fascinated with the scene shots as I quickly included the same in my Top list of dream destinations!!

For centuries, the mountains of Wudang have been known as an important centre of Taoism. The monasteries of Wudang Mountain ranges such as the Wudang Garden were made a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1994

. Let me tell you…one will become breathless while exploring the magical beauty of this place!!

Ta Prohm in Cambodia. – The Ancient Ruins

Ta Prohm Cambodia

Ta Prohm's state of ruin is a state of beauty, which is explored with delight and left with regret. UNESCO inscribed Ta Prohm on the World Heritage List in 1992 terming it as a geographical region, an archaeological site and a cultural concept. Today, it is one of the most visited complexes in Cambodia’s Angkor region.

Frankly saying…I had the first glace of this near to miraculous ancient ruins in the movie Tom Raider” with the images of Lara Croft with this Location. They were so fascinating to me that I couldn’t resist of dreaming wandering in this place. It has reat history to unwind in itself having some Indian connection to it.

The site is stupendously stunning and Spectacular!!It will be a life time mark on soul if I get to visit this place!!  

The City of LONDON in England!!
London is the biggest city in middle Europe, and the world's largest financial center. However I love London because of its ancient History, Its Royal Administrative background and the monumental Beauties!!

 Hey…everybody has that one name to visit as the most loving or dreaming to be there, the international city, Right!!  For me it is The Vibrant City of London. Again it has a babyhood connection to it. The seed was sowed when I read about “Buckingham Palace (the London residence and principal workplace of the monarchy of the United Kingdom)” in primary standards.

Now that seed has grown into a big tree and has bear the fruit. I was left into wild enthrallment and fascinations as I glued through the camera captures of this vivacious city by my Hubby in his recent visit to it.

OMG!!Its a dream to Visit all my Dream destinations!! But Hey...They say You have to have a Dream to become Reality....Right!!! 

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