August 2018 | Bike Rides Bangalore

Wednesday, August 22, 2018

Excursions in India that will fuel your wanderlust

Travel excites you, invokes the desire in you and once it is over, it leaves you into a meritorious world.

To make the most out of the travel, the first step is the selection of the place that has the ability to fuel up your desire to explore more. We all love to travel, we travel alone, we travel with family and we wish to enjoy each and every moment we have during the holiday time.

Here I present some of the amazing traveling destinations in the country that has the ability to hold your senses for long. Each moment you feel at these places will leave you to spellbound and you will never wish to leave the place. These are the Indian destinations to invoke the vigor and enthusiasm in your soul. Stay tuned and read on.

1. Chadar Trek 
Chadar Trek is one of the most popular and one of the most adrenaline-filled treks in Ladakh. The most thrilling part of the trek is to cross the frozen Zanskar River. The trek is carried in the months of December and January when the climate is utterly chilled. This is the time when the Zanskar River is completely frozen to facilitate the path to the trekkers. Conquering this trek will you the happiest person on this planet. The views you capture during the trek are awe-inspiring.

A glimpse of the Chadar Trek

2. White Rafting in Rishikesh
For the energetic you, the white water rafting in Rishikesh is a must try. Do not wait for your age to grow and try this grade 5 rafting before it is too late for you to try. This river rafting is not for novices. Experience the roaring of Ganges and conquer the mighty streams that come your way. Mark your name and reach your destination completely drenched in the pure water of the river.

River Rafting at Rishikesh

3. Trip to Andaman 
The Andaman and Nicobar Islands is not only one of the best romantic honeymoon destinations in India but it is popular for its adventurous activities as well. The most popular is the scuba diving in the Indian Ocean that will provide you a rare chance to meet the vibrant coral and a variety of marine species. If you are looking forward to an amazing holiday destination this season, the Andaman is the right choice for you.

Andaman: Isn't that is a beautiful beach? 
4. Camping in the Thar Desert
You do not get a chance to stay amidst the rough and dry sands in the desert, do you? Hence, for this vacation why don’t you book your tickets to Rajasthan and spend some time with your own self amidst the roaring sands of the Thar Desert. This will be a different shot, instead of booking yourself a room in a luxury resort, put your hand over a camp, and observe the amazing aura of a desert.

Camping in Thar desert

5. Trekking in the Himalayas 
Thinking of spending your vacations in the Himalayas? Well, there are several treks that will not only satiate your adrenaline-filled desire but it will also provide the rare opportunity to observe the local culture of the Himalayan villages and to capture the breathtaking and unspoiled nature amidst the mountains. Whether you are an amateur trekker or an expert, Himalayas have trekking zones for both. Choose your destination and head on for an amazing Himalayan trekking.

Dodital Trek
6. Ladakh Bike Trip 
Are you looking forward to your amazing holidays in Ladakh? Ladakh is a small valley in Kashmir and the place is known for its amazing natural beauty. Ladakh is the best place for the romantic couples, the adventure enthusiasts and people who like to explore places on their own. Accompany your friends along and embark on a biking trip to Ladakh. The experience of the trip will be worth the efforts are taken.

Bike trip on this road is definitely every bikers dream
7. Have an encounter with the wild cats
Our country is popular for its wild cats, the Tigers. There are a number of places where you can get a chance to observe these fierce animals but spotting them in their natural habitat is something worthwhile. Reach the Ranthambore National Park and spot a Tiger enjoying his meal with his family. Contemplate how he saves his kids from the other wild animals and rest peacefully in his abode. This Tiger visit in Ranthambore is beautified by the Aravalli Hills and the Vindhya hills as its backdrop.

Ranthambore Tiger
8. Exploring the Goa Beaches
Goa is a small state located at the South-west of India. The state was once ruled by the Portuguese and today it is known for its pristine churches and vibrant beaches. Explore the Goa beaches and we are sure you will find a new reason to live your life. Goa is a place for people who have left their enjoyment behind in the race of completing the routine responsibilities. Goa is a place to be visited at least once in a lifetime.

Goa beaches

Don't forget to leave your thoughts in the comment section below. Do +1 or Like if you loved the post.


Wednesday, August 15, 2018

Holiday Differently with Sterling Holidays, Wayanad - Day 2

This is the second part of my stay in Sterling Wayanad. If you have not read the previous post then I highly suggest you read it first and then come back to this post.

Read my previous post: Holiday Differently with Sterling Holidays, Wayanad - Day 1

Raindrops pattering on my window pane and chirping birds to wake me up this morning. Walking straight to my balcony to captivate the view of the Muthunga forest drenched in the drizzling rain. I wish I sit there infinitely with a hot cup of coffee in the loop of nature.

Best of the beast: Spotted this wild tusker just opposite to our resort
Tusker spotting: With the tribal village walk the last day, I was looking forward to what's next. I freshened up quick and walked with my camera. Soon I came to the reception, I have informed me that there was a tusker just outside the resort. With excitement, I managed to run to spot the tusker. It was the first time I spotted a tusker in the wild.  His name is Mani and is spotted often along this stretch grazing the bamboo grass. It's an experience within itself to surround by the wilderness of Wayanad. We went for the bird watching but it started raining so we had to return back to the resort.

Morning walk for bird watching

Bird spotting is not an easy task

The scenery became more beautiful after the rain

There is also a manmade pond inside the property. Besides this is the butterfly park

A perfect place for the photograph
As it was drizzling, I came back to the resort and hopped onto a buggy to reach the restaurant. The breakfast was Kerala cuisine themed - Appam, Idiyappam, and Puttu to be precise and the usual English breakfast. The breakfast was heavenly and served hot complimenting the monsoon.

Buffet breakfast. Both Indian and English breakfirst served.

Traditional Kerala breakfast

When the food looks gorgeous you can stop taking pics

Soon after the breakfast, a bus was arranged for the sightseeing which included Sultan Bathery Jain temple, Phantom rocks, and Assumption Forane church. While everything seemed to be going perfect little did we know that the trouble was waiting for us? Our bus was stopped over by locals at Sultan Bathery. That's when we realized it was a nation-wide strike by public transport organizations against Motor Vehicles Amendment Bill. All the yellow board vehicles were being obstructed and were not allowed to go any further. After an hour of the confused moments, the organizers were able to sort out the matter.  They allowed us to visit till the Jain Temple and Church but phantom rocks had to be dropped.

Out bus got pulled over as it was a nation-wide strike by public transport organizations
Chandranatha Swamy Jain Temple: The Jain Temple in Sulthan Bathery is one of the most important among the many Jain temples in Kerala. Dating back to the 13th century, the temple is said to have been built in the prevalent architectural style of the then reigning Vijayanagar dynasty. The temple has an interesting history. It first served as a shrine, and then became an important center of commercial activity. Later in the 18th century, it became a dumping ground of ammunitions by Tipu Sultan. In fact, the town of Sulthan Bathery (Sultan’s Battery) is named after this temple. Now it's a home to several bats fluttering their wings.

Chandranatha Swamy Jain Temple

 In the 18th century, it became a dumping ground of ammunitions by Tipu Sultan.

Assumption Forane Church: The church was initially started by the French Missionaries and later on with the migration of people from all parts of Kerala and from other states like Tamilnadu and Karnataka, Sulthan Bathery became more populated. The Church was under several dioceses and presently under Mananthavady diocese. The new church is well planned with worship space for a large number of persons and the interiors are well decorated. The annual festival is in January during which thousands gather here to offer prayers. The church is open for prayers to all irrespective of caste and while we were there we saw people from other states offering prayers.

Assumption Forane Church

That was the biggest ceiling fan I have seen so far in my life

A beautifully decorated prayer hall
After sightseeing, we decided to head back to the resort and it started raining heavily. After waiting for some time we could board the bus. The bus took inner roads avoiding the main roads to bypass unwanted attention during the Bandh. 

Traditional Kerala Style Lunch: It was 2 pm a perfect time to have lunch, and guess what the traditional Kerala Sadhya meal was waiting for us. The dining table had plantain leaves arranged in a fashion and the staff was in the Kerala traditional attire. We were served a countless number of items among which I loved Kerala rice, Banana chips, and Bamboo rice payasam. I was overwhelmed by the lunch and it was a complete meal.

Authentic Kerala dishes for the lunch

Kerala style Banana leaf meal

Even though the sightseeing plan was minimal, we were not worried because there were many activities inside the resort that kept us engaged throughout the day.

In Resort Activities: We gathered for Pottery, Mr. Sijoy taught us basics of clay pottery making and gave chance to each of us try. Since I knew my poor art and craftsmanship, I decided to get my hands on Paintball and Archery. Apart from these, a lot more games like Air Hockey, Carrom, Foosball, Table Tennis, Snookers, and kids play area were present and are enjoyable too.

Learned the basics of Pottery.



My all time favorite foosball

There were a lot of other activities in the play area
Resort Tour: Next, we proceeded to explore different parts of the resort. Sterling Wayanad comprises of 60+ rooms which fall under Classic, Premiere & Privilege category suiting the guest requirement. I would say it is a blend of luxury, comfort and a great service.  Steps away from the multicuisine restaurant, there is a big swimming pool and an open bar. They also help us relax and rejuvenate with their gym and spa centers.

This is the studio rooms. Neat and tidy rooms

The spa room

Swimming time: Who wouldn't love the swimming pool? The pool view tempted me to dive in. The pool depth is around 4 ft which is ideal for all age groups. The water was clean and chlorine free. I literally enjoyed relaxing in the pool and experimenting my action camera. It was drizzling while we were in the pool which added fun to the swimming. 

The top view of the swimming pool

It was fun to swim when raining

I couldn't resist but jump into the pool
After the swimming, I badly needed a hot tea. The tea point was presented in a street food theme which I totally loved. The crunchy chilly pakoda and hot tea complemented well with the climate with occasional rain showers throughout the day. The tea tasted heaven in this climate. We spent the next two hours just enjoying the rain and chilling in the lovely climate.

The snacks were arranged in local chai wala style.

Rains and these hot bajji's and pakodas are the best combinations

Barbeque dinner: Soon it was 8 pm, the dining table was lit up with beautiful candles and the aroma of barbeque boosted my appetite. One of the chefs was preparing Kotthu Parota in the live counter. Seeing the making of Kotthu Parota was exciting. All the items on the menu were great. No matter how full you are the dinner isn't complete without having deserts. The Pudding and Gulab jamun were simply fantastic.

The table was lit with these little candles. It was a sight to behold

Barbeque dinner

Night Safari: The same night, the safari was planned by the resort. I had been to a couple of safari rides before but those were the day safari rides but I was really excited to sight wildlife at night. It was a no moon day so the night was completely dark and we boarded the jeep. The thrill started as soon as we started. We spotted a big herd of deer. The deer were curiously looking at us while we were trying to click their photos with flash. I soon realized that taking photos in this dark doesn't make sense so I kept my DSLR in the bag and kept my eyes on the window to captivate moments in the forest. We spotted some more group of deer but my eyes were eagerly waiting to spot a leopard. Leopard's are often spotted here so I had some hope on spotting it. We finally spotted an elephant standing just beside the road. Before we could stop and take the U-turn it was gone. I just had a glimpse of it. Spotting wild animals in the forest is purely a matter of luck but the driver's thrilling stories were entertaining throughout the ride. I was at least a little lucky in this matter. It was 12 am by the time we reached back the resort.

Riding in the forest at night was a thrilling experience

We spotted many heads of deer but no luck with any leopard or tiger

Back to Bangalore: After a holiday in Sterling Wayanad, I really have been refreshed to the core. We had to head back to Bangalore. The departure was planned at 8 am and after breakfast, we check out. I had fallen in love with this resort as home in the last two days. As Kanishk (from sterling) said: "People come here as guests and leave as friends". This statement was 100% true. After a group photo and crazy boomerang, we started our journey back to Bangalore. I reached my home at 6 pm.

Conclusion: My time in Kerala have always been memorable. I always look for experiences than just sightseeing. Sterling Wayand helped me to discover the Tribal village, the paddy fields, taste the authentic Kerala food and experience the thrill of night Safari. If you are going to Wayanad with your friends and family then I recommend you to try this resort for a different holiday experience.

For booking, you can visit Sterling Resort official website.

Don't forget to leave your thoughts in the comment section below. Do +1 or Like if you loved my trip

Tuesday, August 14, 2018

Holiday Differently with Sterling Holidays, Wayanad - Day 1

Place: Sterling Holidays, Wayanad, Kerala.

Distance: 262 km from Bangalore
Type: Leisure stay
Ideal for: Friends and Family

When you get embraced from the God's own country you never say no. That's exactly what happened with me as well. I was very excited to experience the magic of lush green paddy fields, tall coconut trees, surrounding hills and a new perception towards travel and experience with Sterling Holidays.

Best of the Beast: A View of Sterling Wayanad
Monday morning: The journey started at 6.20 am from Bangalore. Mysur highway was as busy as it always used to be. Cutting through the highway traffic and enjoying the serene surroundings we reached Hotel MidWay highway restaurant for the breakfast at 8 am.

Breakfast time. SJCam has become my travel partner
Somewhere before entering Bandipur Tiger Reserve
After breakfast, everyone fell asleep only to wake up near Bandipur Tiger Reserve.  While everyone's eye was eagerly looking at the window, I was lost in old memories of my previous ride through this stretch on my bike. It was a thrilling experience to ride on this stretch on the bike. As soon as we entered Kerala state we were greeted by the paddy fields on either side stretching till the horizon. The lush green paddy fields are the reason behind the name of the place Wayanad (Valay- Paddy, Nadu - Land).

Passing through Bandipur forest

Paddy fields on either side are the indication that you are in Kerala

Sterling Holidays: After 7 hours of the long journey, we reached Sterling Wayanad. We were welcomed in traditional style with staff wearing typical Malayali style attire with a bright smile on their face. The welcome drink (lemon tea) was effective enough to nullify the tiredness. The reception area was decorated with the rustic chairs and vibrant paints with antique pieces showcasing Theyyam style of dance culture.

Getting welcomed in Traditional style. Featuring: Currylines

The reception area of the resort

The cozy sofa gives you the comfort and homely feeling

The wall is decorated colorfully with Theyamm antic artifacts

The middle photo is the Theyyam traditional costume and the surroundings are the artifacts used by them

The Rooms: Soon after the formalities, we checked in to the rooms. The rooms were beautiful, spacious and clean. Apart from the basic facilities like a cozy bed and TV, the room had a balcony, a walk-in wardrobe, safe locker, and a very clean washroom. My room had a balcony where one can sit and grab a cup of coffee while enjoying the beautiful view of the resort and the greenery surrounding it. 

The beautiful room and the welcome surprise
After getting freshened we proceeded for the lunch. The restaurant is on the other side, we could either choose to walk or take a buggy ride. We decided to walk and explore the resort thoroughly. Nested in Muthunga Wildlife sanctuary the resort looked majestic and ample greenery around.

The resort has been nested in the green forest

The balance between the structures and the greenery is worth appreciating 

Lunch Time: The spacious multicuisine restaurant looked elegant with the entire place lit up serving a wide range of dishes including exotic Kerala cuisine. After a sumptuous lunch, we proceeded for the ziplining activity.

The restaurant looks elegant and classy with the beautiful interiors and soothing atmosphere

Always camera eats first. Featuring: Phenomenal taste
The spices of Wayanad

The lunch of the day.
Ziplining: The first activity of the day was Zipline. The resort has Zipline setup inside the property itself. It was my first time to do zip line so I was really excited. After wearing safety gears I was ready to jump. Flying through the property I covered around 200 meters in a matter of seconds. I was tempted to do it again but time was the constraint. 

Ziplining for the first time
Tribal visit: We proceeded for the next activity - Tribal village visit. Little did I know was Sultan Bathery is a homeland of various tribal communities. The tribal village was just 2 km away from the resort. After a kilometer of the drive, we walked to reach Paniya tribe.  It was a colony of 4-6 houses with the basic facility like drinking water, electricity, rainwater harvesting provided by the government. We met a Tribal lady who was in her 80's but looked half her age. She walks 5 km a day and cooks her own meal which gave me a new perception towards fitness. While 10+ cameras were pointing at her to capture the portrait, she gave a bold expression like a model. For a moment I felt I captured the Nat Geo cover shot.

Walking through the Tribal Village

The Tribal lady giving pose like a model. She's 85 but looks half her age who walks 5 km a day and cooks her own meal.

National Geography cover shot

Paddy fields: We crossed a couple of more tribal settlement and landed into the paddy field. Waynad is known for its green paddy fields and beautiful landscape. It was a bliss to walk through the paddy field. It became dark by the time we reached back to the bus. After reaching the resort we went for the High Tea.

Lush green paddy fields. Featuring: Chilly studio and Vandytheblogger

When you say "GoPro take a pic" and GoPro throws you back with amazing clicks
High Tea: It is the British tradition of drinking tea while sitting in high-backed chairs at a table full of plated items. The theme for the day was coffee so we had all the items in coffee flavor. Every item was delicious. The tea was one of the best tea I had in recent times. We proceeded to our respective rooms after this.

Coffee was the theme for the day

All the items were coffee flavored

That's a photographer's plate

Dinner: We had some exotic Kerala dishes for the dinner including the Kerala rice and Bamboo Biriyani. I was overwhelmed by the dinner.

Exotic kerala dishes on my dinner plate

The irresistible deserts
It was 10.30 pm by the time we finished our dinner. I so much tired that I went to my room and just crashed on the bed only to wake up to the beautiful morning on the next day.

The resort looks even more beautiful at night

Read my Day-2 post where we did lots of fun activities in the resort, visited the Jain temple and church and had a barbeque dinner.

For booking you can visit Sterling resort's official website.

Don't forget to leave your thoughts in the comment section below. Do +1 or Like if you loved my trip