Part#4–Unleashing Northeast India–Land Of Lama, Rains, Rhinos and Momos by Abhimanyu

Abode of clouds - Meghalaya!

Please excuse me for writing the final part of this journey after a gap of more than a month. Was caught up in adjusting with the “new normal” way of life and remote working.

There were struggles to get the groceries and seamless internet connectivity initially but now it’s all sorted. Meanwhile, I drove down to Raipur from Pune. 1000 kms in 20 hours with a co-driver. It was good fun. 

Reading part#4 directly might not be good idea so please click on the below links to read prequels

After spending 2 days in Assam, relishing local delicacies and meeting Rhinos it was time to hit the road again. Simanta was at hotel lobby with his innova, all neat and clean.

This time for a change, we started late. After lunch around 1:00 pm.

Day#7 –

  • Kaziranga national park to Cherrapunji
  • Travel time – 8.5 hours 
  • Road Condition – Smooth and well consructed
  • Stay – Saimika Resort, Cherrapunji

Lunch served to us @Bonhabi was full of taste and spices. Exactly the way we wanted.

The drive was pretty smooth, and we enjoyed the journey through the small villages, finally reaching the mountains from the plains. We stopped at Jiva Pure Veg to refill our tummies and this place is one of a kind. Very hygienic and full of taste. We ordered momos, noodles and some biryani. Reached at Saimika, resort by 10 pm. It seemed to be a deserted place wherein there was a security guard who led us to our twin-cottages (joined from inside).

Entering the cottages, our excitement reached next level. We had a fireplace inside the cottage. I have stayed in many resorts across India, but this was the first time I had this pretty thing inside the room. We asked the security to lit it up for us. Glasses clanged again with malt on the rocks. It was good fun and very relaxing. Woke up fresh next morning and opened the door of our cottage to be mesmerized by the beauty of this resort which seemed deserted yesterday. Resort is built on a cliff in acres of land, all construction is done using rocks which gives an ancient Roman feel to this place. Looked inspired by Harry Porter movie to a fair extend.

We had some quick sandwiches at the restaurant and left the resort to reach the entry-point of trek to famous “living Root Bridges.”

Day#8

  • living Root Bridges
  • Travel time – Full day trek 
  • Trek level – Moderate to difficult
  • Stay – Saimika Resort, Cherrapunji

At the entry point of the trek, you will meet local boys renting Bamboos and claiming to be guides.

My suggestion – Take Bamboos and not the guide. Because our guide named, Risk DID NOT guide us at all. He just kept walking ahead of us creating un-necessary pressure on us to trek down faster. Guide could be useful for getting some pictures clicked for sure.        

Single root bridge

Started off the hike and reached the,” single decker root bridge” after 1500 steps down hill.

It was tiring but we had some juice left in us so after some rest we moved ahead to the prime attraction of today’s hike – the double decker living root bridge. Another 2000 steps down hill, crossing a river, a few villages, lots of sweating and knee breaking efforts we reached the architectural brilliance, man-made, double decker living root bridge.  

There is a stream flowing underneath it and thousands of fishes are waiting to welcome you from a small pond of fresh, crystal clear water.

Fishes waiting to give you a natural pedicure

We spend time relaxing by the pond side and eating the packed food that we carried from Saimika. Pranthas that were packed had lost the taste completely and I suggest to better order Maggie from small shops around the root bridge.

Some wiki gyan for youA living root bridge is a type of simple suspension bridge formed of living plant roots by tree shaping. They are common in the southern part of the Northeast Indian state of Meghalaya. They are handmade from the aerial roots of rubber fig trees (Ficus elastica[1][2]) by the Khasi and Jaintia[3] peoples of the mountainous terrain along the southern part of the Shillong Plateau. Most of the bridges grow on steep slopes of subtropical moist broadleaf forest between 50m and 1150m above sea level.[4] As long as the tree from which it is formed remains healthy, the roots in the bridge can naturally grow thick and strengthen. New roots can grow throughout the tree’s life and must be pruned or manipulated to strengthen the bridge. Without active care, many bridges have decayed or grown wild, becoming unusable. *

*Source – Wikipedia

We had to trek upstairs again. Although none of us wanted to but we did as we had to.

Knees, thighs and back hurted bad but we kept walking and motivating each other. 

I will write another post on does and don’t while you take this tiring trek of Living Root Bridges. Finally reached the car parking after 7~8 hours to meet ever smiling Simanta.

Had maggie and tea and ditched all plans to see some waterfalls to reach Saimika resort so that we can enjoy this beautiful stay a little more. 

Evening was set with a lovely bon fire outside our cottages where we enjoyed endless chats under the sky full of stars, zillions of them twinkling all night long.

Next morning was a lazy one, got up late and enjoyed our pre-ordered breakfast at the gothic Sai-mika. After quick check-out Simanta took us for some sightseeing around Cherrapunji and Dawki river. The water has no colour and odour is true in the transparent river which flows from India to Bangladesh and merges in Bay of Bengal via Sundarbans. Boating is a must here and if you are enthusiastic like us the do take a dip in the freeazing crystal clear water. Left Cherrapunji by 4 pm for our next destination which was just a night halt for us.

Day#9

  • Cherrapunji to Umsning, Meghalaya
  • Travel time – 4 hours
  • Road condition – Very good and scenic
  • Stay – The Sanctuary Song Resort, Umsning, Meghalaya

All is well when it ends well. Reaching this serene resort, we thought to ourselves, what a showstopper trip end planned by the curator. Nested in nature’s lap within a forest, small stream flowing besides the resort and NO MOBILE NETWORK available. What else does a metro lad need!!

Final Night Celebration

Some local strawberry wine was bought from the reception, bon fire was lit and the night went on and on till 1 am. Crashed in our cosy beds and woke up with chirps of birds, Trisha was the 1st one to wake up and got outside to greet the birds singing in a foggy cold morning.

Day#10 was finally here when we had to board our flight back to Mumbai from Guwahati airport, which is around 3.5 hours smooth drive from the heavenly stay on earth called The Sanctuary Song Resort. I leave you with some pictures here as we end this epic journey of a lifetime with a promise to come back again soon.

Reach out to us for any queries about this trip and for planning and booking yours.

#travel-click-eat-repeat

Send your love to us in comments section and by sharing this blog as much as possible.

Meet the star – Simanta – The ever smiling Mawa Man

See you soon again!

Cheers!

Abhimanyu @yatripandit

Guest Post || Wah Taj by Sonam

It was the month of Feb and the Climate in Delhi seemed to be pleasant.  Me and my husband were in Delhi to attend a wedding.

Having a day to spare, we boarded the morning Shatabdi express train@ 6am from Delhi’s Nizamuddin Station to the city of Taj, Agra.

The Journey was very comfortable. If you love Road Travel then you must try the Yamuna express was which connects Delhi to Agra and is a road to cruise on. It will take you to Agra in approx. 3 hours. We reached Agra at 7:50am. We had hired Life India Taxi which turned out to be excellent. Our driver Mr. Shyam Sundar was right on time, to pick us up from the railway station without any hassle. Nowadays the Air Quality in Agra has improved evidently the city is declared “an industry free zone.”

TAJ Mahal – A walk to remember

Taj 2

When we reached the ancient monument, my first thought was “I couldn’t believe I’m actually standing right in front of the Taj Mahal.” Majestic, magnificent and mesmerizing Taj was standing tall in pure white marble. It is one of the 7 Wonders of the world & the most iconic monument of love, in true sense. This masterpiece was built by Mughal emperor Shan Jahan in memory of his favorite wife, Mumtaz Mahal. The tomb is the center piece of a 42-acre complex, which includes a mosque and a guest house, and is set in formal gardens bounded on three sides by a wall.

It’s advised to be there between 9am-11am. There is less crowd and one gets to spend ample time. Ensure to hire a certified guide for TAJ MAHAL as they will get you the detailed history & also take you to lot of Important Points. They will charge you around Rs. 600 but it’s worth hiring a guide. 

Avoid Hiring a Local Photographer as the quality of the photos is not at all good. You can also book your guide online. Avoid visiting on Friday as the monument is closed on Fridays. We also purchased a beautiful replica from ITDC Store just outside the TAj Mahal Ticketing Gate.

Taj

Overall it was a memorable trip which I will cherish forever. While return we booked the newly launched Gatiman Express train which took us to Delhi in 1.5 hrs.

1About the author – Sonam is a marketing professional in Pune with brilliant communication skill. In her free time she loves to try different cuisines and read. She is a regular visitor to yatripandit.com.

This is her 1st attempt in writing a travel blog. Encouragement via comments is welcomed with wide open arms.

 

Disclaimer:  *Contents in this story is Authors personal views and presentation.

* All pictures are clicked by Sonam

If you also want to get featured as a guest author on yatripandit.com, share your story with us on info@yatripandit.com

Please click on the ads which appear on the website and help us earn some money to travel. This blog is still very young and growing. If you like the story, do not shy away from reciprocating your love in form of likes comments and sharing on social media

Cheers !!

Abhimanyu@yatripandit

Guest Post || On a tour to Germany: Düsseldorf – by Melisa

Hearing about Germany, two things normally come across the mind of an average person – beer and sausages. Although Germany is more than that. Of course, its beer and sausages are famous all over the world and every aware person would want to try them at least once in a lifetime. Apart from that, it is a land of poets and philosophers and a country with beautiful architecture.

Düsseldorf. It is the seventh city of Germany by its size. It is chic, fashionable and business. There is plenty of things business elite and people of fashion would find inviting and engaging for themselves. Along with its deep gratitude for art, high cuisine and exceptional stores. The city buzzes with cultural events as long as its citizens live according to the standards of high life. There is a boulevard of shopping, which is called Königsallee. You can find the stores of such worldwide famous fashion brands as Prada and Louis Vuitton. For those ones of you, who are into retro style jewelry, you will be happy to find out about the stores on here to make some based on the pieces of artists from 19th and 20th century. Some are so unique being manufactured in here and Munich only so the guests of the city might find something really distinguished from every other.  Dusseldorf1

If to speak about its architecture, it does have its moments. The old city should be mentioned here. You will find a huge variety of restaurants and pubs, markets and museums, decorated in classic for Germany style buildings. There is also the biggest in Germany Japanese community with places to eat traditional food accordingly. Düsseldorf`s biggest church is called St. Lambertus Basilica. You will easily recognize it by its twisted spire. It is its famous feature. Also, there is tower on its central square Burgplatz. This tower is everything what has left after the fire in 1872. Originally, there was a palace built in baroque style. Among the places of interest, are also the Neander church and St. Andrew`s church. This is one more church, which is worth seeing once you visit Düsseldorf.Dusseldorf travel guide

Going back to the theme of beer, “Atlbier” (alt is German for old) is traditional for Düsseldorf. It is dark and hoppy. Back in the 20th century, there were nearly 100 breweries making Altbier while today – less than ten unfortunately. Altbier is considered to be an ale and even though it is hoppy, the taste of fruit is felt less than in other light ales.

The night-life of the city is really something. As has already been mentioned, the largest amount of beer houses are located in the area of the old city but its beer is not the only “treat” you may get visiting Düsseldorf. I am talking about herb-infused liquor, which is called Killepitsch. There are more than 90 kinds of fruit, herbs and spices. Quite often, it is compared to Jagermeister but it is stronger.

The trip is nothing without a souvenir for your family and friends apart from taken pictures and re-corded videos. If to talk about something traditional, a typical for Düsseldorf souvenir, draw your attention kindly to store of spices. It is a business run by a family. You will find hundreds of jars in there full of spices. Those jars are ceramic and decorated by hand. Its mustard is well known.

for author bioAbout the author: Melisa Marzett is the author who has an outstanding blog available for your viewing HERE, where you may find interesting posts on traveling and look through the tips for those ones of you, who are eager to travel and has traveling in plans some time soon. The information is given clearly and wisely so there is no way you could get lost but will be well-versed in the area of traveling.

Disclaimer:  *Contents in this story is Authors personal views and presentation.

If you also want to get featured as a guest author on yatripandit.com, share your story with us on info@yatripandit.com

Please click on the ads which appear on the website and help us earn some money to travel. This blog is still very young and growing. If you like the story, do not shy away from reciprocating your love in form of likes comments and sharing on social media

 

Cheers !!