Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary Thekkady : Some things always bring utter happiness. Seeing an elephant is one of them… Well, not just one, but I happened to see herds of elephants at the Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary in Thekkady. I was thrilled to see them drinking water on the riverside during the boat ride in the river Periyar.
Hello friends, after a long gap, I am writing this blog post to share one of my travel sojourns. I got a break from my work for a few days, so I decided to make the most of it by planning a short trip somewhere. There were many places that were in my mind. This time I planned to travel somewhere in the South. Kerala, the God’s own country, was the first place that came to my mind. I have always seen some amazing pictures and videos of the place on television but never had the opportunity to visit the place, so I decided to make the most of it right now by exploring it.
I planned all my travel and booked the flight tickets. There are many good websites and travel apps on my mobile, which I used this time to avail Kerala flight hotel offers. I booked air tickets from Bhubaneswar to Trivandrum. There were no direct flights as such between the two cities so I had to travel on two routes. My first flight was from the Biju Patnaik Airport, Bhubaneswar to the Thiruvananthpuram Airport.
The flight was scheduled to depart at 9 in the morning. I left for the airport at 6:30 AM because it was about half an hour drive from home. The check in and baggage formalities were easily completed and soon I was ready to board the Air India Airlines flight. No doubt, Air India is a popular name in the aviation sector in the country. The staff was friendly and the entertainment system in flight was also good.
The flight reached Mumbai in 2:30 hours. My next flight was from Mumbai to Trivandrum and there was 2 hour break in between which I utilized to have some coffee and light snacks at the Mumbai airport.
The Mumbai to Trivandrum flight was a 2-hour short flight in which I shortlisted a few places and things to do at the airport. The excitement started to build up in me. The flight landed at Trivandrum at 3 PM and I headed straight to my hotel, Palm leaves Beach Resort, Trivandrum, which I had booked in advance.
Sitting on a sunny morning and also being a travel buff and an adventure enthusiast, I was searching for a place of travel at this point of time. Then going and searching through numerous remote locations and also some of the tourist destinations, I finally decided to travel to Secunderabad located in Hyderabad.
Now I, Adarsh Dash, a travel geek who prefer budget travel, would not travel all the time through flights. Therefore, like other times, my friends and I finally decided to find Bhubaneshwar Hyderabad trains that would help us reach our destination comfortably and easily. There were more than 30 trains in between Bhubaneswar; yes there is where I reside, to Secunderabad.
Finally, going through some options and checking in for berth availability, we finally decided in to travel through Visakha Express. The journey was supposed to be almost 1 and a half days long, with the train covering almost 1135 km.
Hence, all packed and prepared for the journey, we reached the Bhubaneswar railway station and waited patiently for our train to arrive at the platform. Train schedule time was a bit early, but still we could make it to the station on time. As soon as it arrived, we pushed our luggage in and got things arranged. I was surprised to see the train was well maintained as compared to the other trains of the Indian Railways; even the washrooms were clean. We were 4 of us and had our berths next to each other.
The train finally departed at around 8.30 a.m. and I was excited about the journey. We also met some of the people who were from Hyderabad and got to know more about the city. I was recommended by one of them to visit Birla Mandir. Amidst all the fun and talking, I didn’t realise how two days passed by and we reached our destination at around 7.45 a.m.
Although Secunderabad was fun, this train journey also proved to be somewhat of an incredible experience catching up with old friends.
This bird sanctuary isn’t too large with a nicely laid down walk way on one side. There is a huge lake that consists of small islands. Each of these islands has a majority and wide variety of birds from all over the world. Kids will especially love this spot!
Our train was on time and we reached Patna junction at the scheduled time of 8:15. We had a gala time during our journey and we all were feeling as though our old graduation days are back. We disembarked the train and moved out of the station. We were already in the aura of Patna’s accent and culture. We hired an auto rickshaw and negotiated to reach our pre booked hotel – Hotel fortune inn .
Ravi was very good at negotiating,( he hasn’t lost this talent since college days) and he convinced the rickshaw driver to take us three, at very reasonable charges to the hotel. On our way, we were observing the markets and people of Patna. Soon, we were standing in front of the Hotel.
It was a nicely architecture building. We entered and were greeted by the lady behind the front desk. The lobby was decently decorated and cleanliness was at par. The staff was affable and helped us to our room that was on the first floor.
The room was spacious, and pleasant. It was furnished with all the basic amenities of A/C, telephone, color television, iron. Internet could be accessed at request. So this was our home away from home, and was quite comfortable. The services and facilities provided were value to money.
It was time for dinner, and we all were extremely hungry. Sumesh said that everyone should hurry up as rats were running in his tummy, and made a face at which we couldn’t stop laughing. So we quickly refreshed and went to the hotel’s restaurant. An aroma of spices welcomed us as we entered the restaurant, which accentuated our hunger. The food was lavish and spicy. We filled ourselves, and then made our way back to the room.
We were a bit tired, but couldn’t resist a session of gossips and chats. We talked all about our college days, teachers and our trips. I think, it is since our college trip that I got the passion for travelling. This all was so nostalgic and we went on chatting until our eyes were heavy with sleep. So we postponed further discussions to the next day, and hit the bed. Moments later, we could hear Ravi’s snoring…AAh!!
My profession of civil engineer has given me boundless opportunities to travel to various regions of the country. This has enormously enhanced my hobby of exploring new places and cities; and enjoy various attractive sites and the history lingering to them. I have been to many places, enjoyed various delicious and mouthwatering cuisines of the cities, enthralled the adventurous experiences and captured many scenic moments by my DSL camera. And when I go through the pictures clicked by me at those beautiful locations, my heart fills with contentment and I instantly relive those moments. Travelling has made me grow up, enhanced my knowledge and gave me opportunity to praise the diversity and rich culture of our country.
This time, when I got a notice to visit the city of Patna, I informed my friends, and they insisted to join me on the trip. I was also thrilled to join my friends on a business cum vacation. It’s been years since I spent some quality time with them. So, here we were all set to visit the capital of Bihar– Patna.
Patna is considered to be amongst the oldest continuously inhabited places in the entire world. Patna is a sacred city for Sikhs and Hindu, Jain and Buddhist pilgrims are also in the vicinity. Patna, which is flourished on the southern banks of the holy Ganges, is bordered on three sides by rivers. The city also holds pride of having the largest river line in the world.
We planned to leave for the place a few days ahead of my business task so that we can enjoy and explore the city to the fullest. We reserved our accommodations in the Patna express. Our Train travel from Bhubaneswar to Patna by Patna express was to commence at a very odd time of 2:20am in midnight, and we were scheduled to reach Patna at around 8:15pm. We all reached the deserted station around 15 minutes before the train arrival, and enjoyed a cup of tea in that silent night. Train arrived on time, and we occupied our accommodations. Everyone was fast asleep in the train, and we also, without making much hustle bustle, retired to sleep looking forward to a comfortable journey and a fabulous vacation.
It would require traveling 39 kilometers more to reach Sun Temple Ranchi. It is located on the Tata Road close to Bundu. Made in a form of a chariot, you simply cannot miss the temple. The innovative design and the temple serenity are two basic reasons why people come from far flung areas to visit the temple. It was established by Sanskriti Vihar at the behest of Shri Sita Ram Maroo and with the funds of Ranchi Express Group, of whose Mr.Maroo is the Managing Director. The cars went all the way up to the impressive temple.
The temple indeed is very unique. Built like a chariot, it has seven horses bound to it, which looks life-like and the wheels on the two sides have been decorated too. There is a pond within the temple premise, which people consider vary sacred. Also, a ‘dharamsala’ is under construction, which would provide greater facilities to the people visiting the temple in the coming years. I worshipped and took a moment to admire the beauty of the temple, its unique structure and the general cleanliness of the place too. Seldom, we come across temples that are kept neat and tidy. This one had been taken care of beautifully. There cannot be enough said about the importance of the deity here. The Sun God is among the chief of the nine grahas and is known by several names- like Surya, Adithya and others. The God’s devotees are among the Smarta and the Saura sect for whom the Sun God is their ultimate one.
The Sun Temple Ranchi is a classic example of the ‘vahan’ or the chariot of Lord Himself. There is a great amount of peace within the temple and it is truly mesmerizing to observe the temple and the architecture of the newly built temple. The sun was setting and the view was one to die for. I had to return back to the hotel. For the next day, I had plans to go to Dassam Falls Ranchi. So far I have had the loveliest experiences in my life visiting the attractions of Ranchi.