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Temples of Khajuraho

Khajuraho- The city of Temples

Khajuraho- The temple town of Khajuraho is famous for the erotic  sculptures and often connected to the Kama sutra. It is only when you visit the beautiful town and it’s temples, you realise that the  temples of Khajuraho are much more than just “erotic sculpture temples”.IMG_3578 (1)

     Khajuraho is a small town with 20,000 people . During peak season it gets almost 600 international tourist a day, in off season this number significantly reduces. That said , it was nice visiting Khajuraho in the off season as roads are empty,  we had the temples almost to ourselves for exploring,  we cycled on the boulevards without any problem and most importantly, hotel prices are really low!

We flew into Khajuraho by the midday flight from Varanasi. A short 40 minute  flight later we arrived at the beautiful ,secluded,  quite town of Khajuraho. The airport is a 10 min drive from the “downtown” of Khajuraho – which is a 2 kms long  circular boulevard with hotels on either sides of the boulevard  and the Western Temples . Khajuraho – the name comes from the numerous Date (kharjur) tress spread around the region during the period it was built in. Now, there is not a single Date tree left in the region.

Cycling in Khajuraho. beautiful buelevard of Khajuraho. Travel to khajuraho. tour to khajuraho
Boulevards of Khajuraho

All hotels in Khajuraho have only two floors- ground and first floor. They also do not have lifts. Please request for a room specifically on the ground floor incase you cannot climb to the first floor. The airport is a 10 minute drive away from the hotels and normally Khajuraho gets 1 flight a day during off peak season and 2 flights a day during peak season.

While driving on the boulevard, you do feel like you are in the 1990 or 1980’s . This is because the hotels (the only construction you will see as you exit the airport) were constructed during those years. However, when you enter the hotels , you feel more like you are in the 2016

IMG_3579 copySince it was a nice and cloudy day, we choose to visit the temples in the afternoon. We visited the Western Temples with our guide and learnt about the history and architecture of the temples. The temples of Khajuraho were built between 950 and 1050 by the Chandela dynasty. There were originally over 85 temples which were constructed.About 25 temples are said to exist now.

Western Temples of Khajuraho
Western Temples of Khajuraho

The western temple compound consist of 6 temples; the temple of Lord Vishnu is considered the main temple. We learnt about different theories of  science and physics used to built the temple. From the angles the windows were placed at and the theory of ecology in the design to the depiction of all elements of a life, the temples were an extraordinary example of great architecture.

Khajuraho Temples
Khajuraho Temples

Later we walked around the compound and visited the other temples before returning to our hotel for some rest. In the evening we visited the temple site again for the Sound and light show. The show was nice with the temples light up in different colours. Shikhar Travels always recommends its client  to do the Sound and Light show after guided sightseeing of the temples so it is easy to keep up with the story .

IMG_3635The following morning , we relaxed at our hotel before departing at 3 pm for Panna National Park. We were excited and hopeful to view a Tiger. The National park is a 45 minute drive from Khajuraho. Our naturalist and driver , both came with a lot of experience and made the journey very exciting. We spotted one tiger, three crocodiles , numerous white spotted deers, peacock , peahens, Gray Langur, Sambar Deer and some beautiful brids.

The best part of our journey in Khajuraho was cycling- we hired cycles from our hotel and went on ride on the boulevard. The roads are always empty during off peak season and it was simply a beautiful experience, specially since we do not get to cycle at all in cities like Delhi. We visited the Eastern Temples during our ride, which were not half as exciting as the Western Temples.  We skipped the Southern Temples entirely! But the experience of cycling on the boulevard was just fantastic.

Cycling in Khajuraho
Cycling in Khajuraho

Shikhar Travels recommend Khajuraho as a two day destination. So you can enjoy the beautiful Ancient Temples and witness the Tigers at Panna National Park.

Wildlife Safari in Central India — An Experience worth your Diary Entry

Just imagine yourself attired in Khaki clothing, wearing pith helmets and belted bush jackets, sitting in an open Gypsy cruising through a rugged lane formed in a dense forest? A forest where you have the opportunity to click a tiger in camouflage waiting to pounce on its unwary target. Or a beautiful lake surrounded by lavish green forests where animals of all kinds, from elephants and rhino, to small birds and swift deer’s, come to quench their thirst. A mere imagination of such a situation has the potential to fill your nerves with immense thrill and adventure. And all this can be turned into a tangible reality with a wildlife safari in Central.

One of the widely cherished wildlife spots in Central India that registers substantial footfall every year is Bandhavgarh National Park. Situated in the Sahdol district of Madhya Pradesh, Bandhavgarh is known for a dense population of big cats, especially the Royal Bengal Tiger and leopards. Nestled in Vindhyan Mountains, this scenic park is covered with reeds and marshes. In addition to tiger, in Bandhavgarh you’ll also come across several other intriguing wild animals, like Chital, Dhole, Nilgai, Sloth Bear, Hyena, Langur, Rhesus, Monkey, Chinkara, Porcupine, just to name a few.

Another gem in the crown of Indian wildlife is Kanha National Park. Situated along the borders of Balaghat and Mandla districts of Madhya Pradesh, Kanha is hailed as the most natural habitat for wild beings. Lush sal and bamboo forest, picturesque ravines, flanked with green meadows served as an inspiration to Rudyard Kipling’s epic literary work ‘Jungle Book’. The Park is popular for the Royal Bengal Tiger and Swamp Deer. Some strict conservation policies and concerted efforts have made the place rank amongst the most well-maintained parks in Asia.

Both these places treasure incredibly large varieties of the world’s rarest species of flora and fauna, making them the perfect destinations for an outing with family and friends. Exploring these parks wouldn’t take even an effort more than letting us know about your touring plans. So get set for a adventurous wildlife safari with Shikhar Travels. Cheers……….

Check the link to know more: http://www.shikhar.com/category.asp?CatID=18

Discover the Indian Cultural Heritage with Shikhar Travels Museum Tour

Indian civilization stands in the league of the oldest and the most venerated civilizations across the world. Various architectural sites, sumptuous palaces and forts, highly revered religious places, among others stand testimony to India’s opulent and grand culture. Along with these architectural and artistic grandeurs, Indian museums are the ones that spell out the captivating story of evolution of Indian civilization throughout these ages.

Although these museums are scattered in different cities of the country, Delhi museums are arguably the richest of them all. These could be a good option for those who’ve been looking for spending some quality time with their near and dear ones. If you think this could be a hassle in any way, then just leave it on us. We’ll make it an effortless and memorable journey for you. During the course of this touring you’ll visit following museums:

National Museum : Regarded as the country’s most prominent treasure house, it portrays India’s glorious past in its full gleam. It boasts of valuable collectibles from various ages of the Indian civilization. Its gilded collections contain 5000-year old relics of the Indus Valley civilization, exotic paintings and artworks, old manuscripts and mural paintings from Buddhist shrines in Central Asia. Established on August 15, 1949, the museum showcases antiques and historical memorabilia ranging from sculpture, carvings, paintings, jewelry, manuscripts, arts and crafts.

Rail Museum : Spread in the expanse of around 10 acres of land, this museum depicts the splendid 150-year old history of Indian Railways. There are various models of train, engines and coaches that are unique in the world, unmatched in splendor. It is also home to the model of India’s very first train, a steam engine that made its journey from Mumbai to Thane in 1853. Kids would love the ride of the toy train around this museum.

Doll Museum : It ranks amongst one of the most visited museums in India. Its assortment comprises of a whopping 6,000 types of dolls collected from 85 countries across the world. Each doll is resplendently dressed in costumes that represent the country or the region they come from.

To Explore more click below –
http://thedelhitours.com/museum_tour.php?id=8

Experience Galore with North India Cultural Expedition

Are you yearning for an excursion that can offer you the rare blend of lush greenery and cultural heritage sightseeing? If so, then just pack your bags and get geared to explore the culturally and ecologically opulent land of North India. It has all the ingredients to sweep you off your feet, and add great memorable moments to your souvenirs. While the entire region is simply filled with a number of imposing tourist attractions, there are some that shouldn’t be missed when you’re touring this wonderful part of the world. These are:

Ladakh: Popularly dubbed as ‘Little Tibet’ because of its close proximity to the scenic Tibet region, Ladakh ranks in India’s least populated regions. Nestled in the Himalayan ranges, the land has glistening lofty snow-capped peaks and plunging green valleys as its hallmarks. The stark mountain landscape, with its rocky ridges, glassy lakes, is studded with vivid gompas (Buddhist monasteries), palaces, villages, and seasonal plantations.

Agra: Agra is renowned world over for the Taj Mahal – the epitome of love. Thousands of tourists from all across the world flock in Agra every year to have a feel of classic Indian architecture and arts. It’s not just the Taj Mahal, but the city has several other historical places, such as Red Fort, Fatehpur Sikri, among other architectural landmarks that would spellbind you.

Delhi: The capital city of India, Delhi, can be labeled as cultural melting pot where diverse Indian cultures dwell together. It presents a perfect combination of modern and traditional lifestyles. You’ll find a slew of wonderful spots here, ranging from cultural sites like India Gate, Jama Masjid, and Red Fort, to towering malls and other contemporary architectural wonders.

To explore more click below –
http://shikhar.com/category.asp?CatID=13

A Rendezvous with Real Indian Village at Shikhar’s “A Village Retreat”

Our professional front has increasingly been encroaching upon our personal sphere, causing unnecessary stress and other psychological nuisances. In this situation, at times, we wonder if we can spend some quality time with our near and dear ones at some soothing place filled with equanimity and fresh air. When it comes to clean and refreshing environment along with serenity, there’s hardly anything that matches life in an Indian village. In a bid to offer tourists the same, Shikhar Travel proudly brings ‘A Village Retreat’(AVR) in Haryana’s Wazirpur Village for you.

Situated near Gurgaon, this is an ideal location for a village camping trip that offers a wholesome rural experience to backpackers. The Village Resort has been designed specifically to render adventurous experience to tourists. This is pretty much reflected in its accommodation settings as well as the activities that are undertaken at the AVR

Furthermore, its proximity to Gurgaon makes it a perfect destination for corporate conferences, off-sites, and other such activities. Besides, people who seek a break from their tedious professional life will find AVR a place of choice.

Additionally, the resort is perfect for educational tours, as students wouldn’t only have fun and frolic there, but would also have a close look at various aspects of Indian village life. Different adventure activities available in there would further add to the learning experience of students. It is also a magnificent getaway for tourists looking for a peaceful place near Delhi Airport, which is just a 30 minutes’ drive from AVR.

All in all, a marvellous destination for all those who have been wishing to explore and experience Indian village life. We have poured in all the efforts to make your experience as close to the real-world Indian village as possible. So, all you have to do is to hit the place and relish the experience of its own kind.

For details, please visit www.avillageretreat.com

Shikhar Travels Winter Bonanza – Time for a Memorable Sojourn in India

Planning for an ecstatic touring with friends this fall? How about a trip to Taj, and that too without burning a hole in your wallet? Yes…Shikhar Travels is all set to spice up your winter vacations with a bouquet of exciting offers and touring packages and the foremost of them all is a free trip to the majestic Taj Mahal for Facebook fans.

Shikhar Travels has decided to recognize and reward its Facebook fans with some fascinating tour packages and premium offers. There are hefty discounts, cool promotional offers, early bird discounts, for all those who actively engage with us on our Facebook fan page. Just participate in several exciting games and quiz contests on our Facebook page, and you could stand a chance to win huge discounts of up to 25 percent on domestic tours listed on our website http://www.thedelhitours.com. An enticing offer for all those who have been seeking to explore Indian cities in their full swing, isn’t it?

Not only this, you can also jazz up your New Year’s Eve at our A Village Retreat Resort at Wazirpur Village, Gurgoan . Our Facebook friends can avail heavy discounts of up to 25 percent on group bookings At A Village Retreat Resort around New Years.

If you’re a true vacationist and wishing to discover India in its complete form, then don’t stop, and become our “Fan of the Week” to enjoy even bigger benefits and exclusive discount offers.

“LIKE” the Shikhar’s fanpage today to make the most of this opportunity…
http://www.facebook.com/ShikharTravelsIndia

7 Best shopping spots in Delhi

Being a confluence of diverse Indian cultures and towering shopping malls, Delhi is a true paradise for shopaholics. From the captivating Indian handicrafts, flashy garment, and spicy Indian delicacies, to some of the highly sought-after gizmos, here you can have almost everything to satiate your itchy shopping urge. While the capital city is flooded with a slew of shopping spots, we have picked some of the best of them all. These must-visit shopping zones in Delhi include: 

Chandni Chowk – Situated just opposite to the Red Fort, was famous for fountains and swamped with shopping stores during the Mughal era. Over time, the fountains have disappeared but the shops are still there. Unlike any other market, Chandni Chowk doesn’t boast big showrooms, but the place is studded with innumerable small shops. It’s main attractions are Sadar Bazaar and Khari Baoli, which till date are counting among the largest wholesale markets in North India, along with Dariba Kalan, which is famous all across India for its perfumes and silver jewellery.

Connaught Place – Located at the heart of the capital, this is perhaps the most happening spot in Delhi. Popularly called CP, it is home to the underground Palika Baazar, where you can find all sorts of snazzy gadgets, cool apparels, and other accessories. CP is constructed in a circular shape with a lush green park situated at its centre. So, when you feel tired of carrying those bulky shopping bags, you can have a relaxing time there.

Dilli Haat – This is where you will discover the diverse Indian handicrafts, and variety of food items. Craftsmen from all over India come and exhibit their products here. The food stall’s at Delli Haat represent the different states of India and offer their traditional foods. It also holds festivals and fairs from time to time. All in all, a cool place to hang out with your friends.

Cottage Industry Handicraft Emporium – If you’ve been looking out to explore real Indian stuff, then Cottage Industry Handicraft Emporium is the spot for you. Situated at the junction of Tolstoy Road and Janpat this departmental store offers you Indian cottage industry goods and handicrafts.

Karol Bagh – If you have fad for jewellery and apparels, then a walk through Karol Bagh could be an unforgettable experience for you. The beauty of this crowded Delhi market is that the visitors have the choice to walk through big air-conditioned stores, or through the narrow alleys comprising of small.

South Extension – Designed specifically for the young audience, this happening place renders international shopping experience to visitors. Divided into two sections, namely South Extension I and South Extension II, the market is flanked with glittering showrooms and restaurants.

Nehru Place – Nehru Place in Delhi represents the face of Indian IT industry, where you can get all sorts of IT-related tools and software’s. You’ll perhaps be amazed to see a number of street hawkers selling hardware as well as software applications there. A must-visit for those looking for buying some IT stuffs at reasonable prices.

To know more: http://www.thedelhitours.com/

Best Picks for Wildlife Safari in India

The exclusive topography of India has made the country home to a wide variety of flora and fauna. These huge varieties include some of the rarest species and a majority of them are being preserved in various national parks as well as wildlife sanctuaries. Indian national parks and sanctuaries are famous world over for tigers, elephants, colorful birds, rhinoceros, lions, to mention a few. It’s always a visual treat to have an adventurous wildlife safari in India, and Shikhar Travels is all-equipped to make your expedition a memorable experience. Here’s the list of top wildlife spots that shouldn’t be missed out when you are in India for a jungle safari:

  • Bharatpur Bird Sanctuary – Also known as Keoladeo Ghana National Park, this fascinating sanctuary ranks among one of the finest bird sanctuaries across the globe. It comprises as many as 365 varieties of birds from 57 distinct families. Of all the bird species, endangered Siberian Cranes are perhaps the most awaited.  http://shikhar.com/package.asp?PackID=108
  • Corbett National Park – Initially established as Hailey National Park back in August 1936, it was rechristened as Ramganga National Park in 1952. However, it was eventually renamed as Jim Corbett National Park in the year 1957, in the commemoration of late Jim Corbett, a renowned traveler and wildlife photographer who had helped in setting up the park.  It is famous worldwide for its big cats, especially Tiger. In spite of immense efforts from environmentalists and the Indian government, Tiger population has been dwindling in India. However, Corbett National Park is among few places in the world where Tigers can still be seen.

http://shikhar.com/package.asp?PackID=109

  • Gir Lion Sanctuary – This popular sanctuary houses the Asiatic lion, which once inhabited a broad stretch of land from Greece through India, encompassing Asia Minor and Persia. Along with the Asiatic lion, the sanctuary also has a considerable variety of smaller animals, preys, etc.

http://shikhar.com/package.asp?PackID=113

  • Periyar National Park – Nestled in the picturesque land of Kerala, Periyar National Park stands in one of the India’s most visited national parks. It is established around an artificial lake dotted with snags of deadwood that offers perches to several waterbirds. It is regarded as the finest habitat for Asiatic Elephants.

http://shikhar.com/package.asp?PackID=122

  • Ranthambore National Park – Located in the Sawai Madhopur district of Rajasthan, Ranthambore National Park is popular for tigers. The park is touted as an engrossing place where you can see the majestic predators in the wild. Tigers can be seen in the daytime too. The fascinating atmosphere and the amicable wild cats of the preserve have together made Ranthambore National Park as one of the most-filmed wildlife reserves across the world.

http://shikhar.com/package.asp?PackID=110

So if you wish to come vis-a-vis with the Indian tiger, or see those wonderful Siberian Cranes, then just pack your bag and get geared for a thrilling jungle safari with Shikhar Travels.

Top 7 Indian Gateways by Shikhar

1. Taj Mahal, Agra: “The epitome of love”, “a monument of immeasurable beauty” stands majestically on the banks of River Yamuna. One of the Seven Wonders of the World in the old and the new list, Taj Mahal is known for its epic beauty that combines sublime human emotions with beauty of the precious stones. Mughal Emperor Shah Jahan got this monument constructed in the memory of his beloved wife Mumtaz Mahal, with whom he fell in love at the first sight.

http://thedelhitours.com/taj_tour.php?id=14

2. The Golden Temple, Amritsar: Harmandir Sahib or the Golden Temple of Amritsar is representative of all that is glorious in Sikhism. Amritsar is the most holy city for the Sikh community where life is influenced by the Golden Temple, their most important shrine. Economically it’s the showpiece of the prosperity and wealth of Punjab.

http://www.gurudwaraindia.com/gurudwara.htm

3. Pink City, Jaipur: Known to be as Pink City and Capital of Rajasthan. Built by the warrior-astronomer Raja Sawai Jai Singh II in 1727.Jaipur is a charming place, which dazzles the eye of tourist with several architectural landmarks, stylish monuments, palaces, museums, wide avenues and colorful bazaars. Hill top forts such as Amber Fort, Jaigarh and Nahargarh surround Jaipur.

http://thedelhitours.com/pink_city_jaipur.php?id=16

4. Varanasi: Also known as Kashi and Banaras, is the cultural capital of India. The city of important Hindu religious place and is closely associated with the river Ganges. In Varanasi, you can enjoy morning boat cruise on serene Ganges and can also dot on some of the most fascinating temples at Khajuraho that depict human love.

http://thedelhitours.com/varanasi_tour.php?id=21

5. Ladakh: Ladakh is a land like no other in terms of its splendid beauty. Bounded by two of the world’s mightiest mountain ranges, the great Himalaya and the Karakoram. Ladakh which means the “land of passes” offers exciting opportunities for Monastery tours, great Himalayan Treks, Mountain expeditions, Mountain Biking, river Rafting, Tribal tours, Jeep Safaris, festival tours and Camel Safaris.

http://www.ladakhtoursandtravel.com/

6. Delhi: Handful of option to explore Delhi, the list starts from Chandni Chowk, Jama Masjid, Red Fort to Rashtrapati Bhawan, India Gate and Qutub Minor. Delhi is not just a city; it’s a book to be read which summarizes the past, present and future of India.

http://thedelhitours.com/old_delhi_tour.php?id=1

7. Wildlife of India: It is a mix of diverse origins. Want to come face to face with the famed Indian tiger!! Or see the rare Siberian crane at close range? There are many wildlife destinations in India.

http://shikhar.com/category.asp?CatID=18