Known as 'Kuti' to Nepalese traders, Nyalam used to be an important trade centre. Nowadays, barrack style Chinese communes surround the typical old flat roofed, mud-brick houses. Although vegetation is sparse, one can see an abundance of alpine fauna on the hillside during the summer months.
Known as 'Kuti' to Nepalese traders, Nyalam used to be an important trade centre. Nowadays, barrack style Chinese communes surround the typical old
Better known by its Tibetan name, Khasa, Zhangmu is a small settlement clinging to a hillside 10 km from the Friendship Bridge that crosses the Bhotekoshi river. Since the closure of the China/India border from Gangtok, Zhangmu has become the major trading point between Tibet and Nepal. The climate is quite different from the hinterland. The hills around Zhangmu are heavily wooded with many waterfalls in summer and impressive ice formations in winter. It has a bank, a post office, a government store, and is presently undergoing a construction boom to meet the demands of trade and tourism.
Better known by its Tibetan name, Khasa, Zhangmu is a small settlement clinging to a hillside 10 km from the Friendship Bridge that
Located 12 km away to the southeast of Chamdo town, Karo is at an altitude of 3200 meters above sea level, Karo ruins date back four to five thousand years and belong to the Neolithic Age. These ruins contain simple living structures, stone paved roads, stone walls and cave dwellings. Also many different kinds of chipped stone implements have been discovered. The discovery of the Karo ruins provided new material for the study of migration and exchange between peoples of northwest and southwest of the region in the Neolithic Age.
Located 12 km away to the southeast of Chamdo town, Karo is at an altitude of 3200 meters above sea level, Karo ruins
Situated in the Tsada region of Ngari the Guge Kingdom was originally built in the 10th Century. According to historical records some sixteen hereditary kings have reigned here. The extensive Guge kingdom ruins are found on a hillside around 300 meter high. The ruins cover an area of 180,000 square meters, and include five magnificent temples and palaces, more than 300 chapels, 300 caves, and 3 stupas each of which are around 10 meters in height. The temples contain many lively murals and clay sculptures.
Situated in the Tsada region of Ngari the Guge Kingdom was originally built in the 10th Century. According to historical records some sixteen
The northern grasslands, called "Changthang" in Tibet, have an extremely cold climate. Eight or nine months a year, the whole region is frozen except for the occasional hot springs. The regions terrestrial heat spots are found in Yangpachen, eighty-seven kilometers to the northwest of Lhasa, they cover some forty km. Steam and hot geezers shoot up from the ground to over one hundred meter
The northern grasslands, called "Changthang" in Tibet, have an extremely cold climate. Eight or nine months a year, the whole region is frozen
Mt KailashMt. Kailash (Kang Rimpoche), situated in the Western region of Tibet, has been considered sacred by Buddhists, Hindus, Jains and Bonpos for thousands of years. For Hindus and Buddhists, it is the center of Universe. In past a visit to this holiest place was something of a dream for mankind but due to the road network this dream has turned into reality. Mt. Kailash is also revered as the source of four great rivers of Asia, Indus, Bramhaputra (Tsangpo), Karnali (Ganges) and Sutlej which are all fed by the water of the nearby sacred Lake Mansarovar. Lake ManasarovarLake Manasarovar Sacred Lake Manasarovar (4588m) is located in the Western Tibet between Mt. Kailash (6714 m) and Gurla Mandhata Range (Memo Nani, 7694m). For Hindus, Lake Manasarovar floats beneath the shadow of holy Kailash and was created to show the omnipotence of Brahma's mind (manas). Tibetans know it as Maphan Tso, 'the Unconquerable Lake'. For many, this is holiest lake in Asia.The Hindu poet Kalidash has written in the 3rd Century: "When the earth of Manasarovar touches anyone's body or when anyone bathes therein, he shall go to the paradise of Brahma, and he who drinks its water shall go to the heaven of Shiva and shall be released from the sins of 100 births. Even the beast that bears the name of Manasarovar shall go to the paradise of Brahma. Its water is like pearls". The ideal time to go round Manasarovar is in late autumn and early spring when the streams and rivers flowing into the lake are low. Some Tibetans prefer to circumambulate the lake in winter when everything is frozen. It is then possible to walk very near to the shoreline. During most of the year, a pilgrim should be prepared to wade across small and large
Mt KailashMt. Kailash (Kang Rimpoche), situated in the Western region of Tibet, has been considered sacred by Buddhists, Hindus, Jains and Bonpos for
Geographically Tibet plateau is known as roof of the world or third pole of the earth, with average altitude of 4950m above the sea, the Tibet plateau is bounded by two mighty ranges, where Himalayan range consist of the world highest peak Mt.Everest situates from south to west and Thanggula ranges in the north, alpine terrain conditions severe, dry and continental climate in Tibet, with strong winds, low humidity, a rarified atmosphere and a huge fluctuation in annual and summer daytime temperature. The Tibetan plateau is exposed to an unhampered cool artic air from the north; while the southern tropical and equatorial air masses barely penetrate the Himalayan barrier into Central Asia. The strong heating of the earth surface during the summer months and the freezing in winter produces clear seasonal variations in atmospheric circulation and enhances the role of local centers of atmospheric activity. The atmosphere is severely dry for nine months of the year, and average annual snowfall is only 18 inches, due to the rain shadow effect. Western passes receive small amounts of fresh snow each year but remain traversable all year round. Low temperatures are prevalent throughout the western regions, where bleak desolation is unrelieved by any vegetation beyond the size of low bushes, and where wind sweeps unchecked across vast expanses of arid plain. The Indian monsoon exerts some influence on eastern Tibet. Northern Tibet is subject to high temperatures in the summer and intense cold in the winter. Below are the annual temperature tables of major cities in Tibet for clear understanding of the Tibet climate distinction. Climate table of Tibet major cities in comparison Place Name Average Annual Temperature(C°) Average Monthly Temperature(C°) Altitude North Latitude Lhasa 7.5 -2.2 3658 29°42" Tsedang/Samye 8.3 -0.7 3500 29°15" Gyantse 4.7 -5.1 4040 28°55" Shigatse 6.3 -3.8
Geographically Tibet plateau is known as roof of the world or third pole of the earth, with average altitude of 4950m above the
The Gateway of India in the days when most visitors came to India by ship and when Bombay was India's most important harbor, this was certainly the 'gateway' to India. Today it's only Bombay's principal familiar sight. The gateway was conceived following the visit of King George in 1911 and officially opened in 1924.
The Gateway of India in the days when most visitors came to India by ship and when Bombay was India's most important harbor,
Khajuraho, a quiet village in the central state of Madhya Pradesh, is home to one of India's major attractions - the superb temples of Indo-Aryan architecture. These temples were built during the Chandella period, a dynasty which survived for five centuries before falling to the onslaught of Islam. Khajuraho's temples, almost all, date from one century long burst of creative genius from 950-1050 AD.
Khajuraho, a quiet village in the central state of Madhya Pradesh, is home to one of India's major attractions - the superb temples
The emblem of Delhi, the 72.55 meter high Qutab Minar was erected in the 13th century by Qutab-Ud-Din Aibak. The monument tapers from a 15-meter diameter base to just 2½ metres at the top. Beautiful calligraphy adorns the adjacent edifices. The tower has five distinct stories, each marked by a projecting balcony. The first three stories are made of red sandstone, the fourth and fifth of marble and sandstone
The emblem of Delhi, the 72.55 meter high Qutab Minar was erected in the 13th century by Qutab-Ud-Din Aibak. The monument tapers from
The Taj Mahal, arguably the most attractive mausoleum in the globe is a symbol of immortal love. Built by the 5th Mughal emperor Shahjahan in memory of his beloved wife Mumtaz Mahal, this monument in white marble is also said to be a noble tribute to the grace of Indian womanhood. The beauty and grandeur that the Taj possesses could hardly be surpassed by any other monument in the world. The Taj is also said to be one of the largest and most expensive mausoleum built by any man on earth. Reaching the TajAir : Agra is easily accessible by air from all major destinations of India. Rail : Express train services connect Agra to many destinations of India. India's premier luxury train The Palace on Wheels also covers Agra. Road : Deluxe bus services are available to Agra from many destinations of northern India. Agra is situated at a distance of 203 kms from national capital Delhi. HistoryIt is widely believed that the name 'Taj Mahal' is an abbreviated version of Mumtaz Mahal's name. Just before her death in the year 1630, Mumtaz Mahal had wished before Shahjahan that he build such a tomb in her memory that the world had never seen before. . The construction of Taj Mahal began in 1631 A.D and completed in1648 AD. It is estimated that twenty thousand workmen toiled day and night for full 17 years to complete this magnificent monument. According to the inscriptions found in the Taj, Amanat Khan Shirazi was the calligrapher while Ustad Ahmad Lahauri was the designer of this great monument. ArhitectureThe Taj Mahal is a massive complex consisting of a main gateway, an elaborately laid beautiful garden, a mosque and a prayer house, outer enclosures and the enclosing walls. The main monument covers an area of
The Taj Mahal, arguably the most attractive mausoleum in the globe is a symbol of immortal love. Built by the 5th Mughal emperor
The Victoria Memorial, with its formal gardens and water courses was conceived by Lord Curzon to commemorate the British Empire at its peak.The Memorial consists of numerous hybrid features: it has Italian-style statues over its entrances, Mughal domes in its corners and tall elegant open colonnades along its sides. The building was designed by Sir William Emerson and its construction was completed in 1921. The main attraction at the memorial is the huge sombre statue of the Queen, which is flanked by two ornamental tanks. Made of Makrana marble from Jodhpur, the Memorial is capped by a dome bearing a revolving bronze figurine symbolizing victory.
The Victoria Memorial, with its formal gardens and water courses was conceived by Lord Curzon to commemorate the British Empire at its peak.The
The Hawa Mahal built in 1799, the Hawa Mahal, or Palace of the Winds, is one of the major landmarks of Jaipur. . It was in the beginning built to enable ladies of the royal household, to fob watch the everyday life and processions of the city. This five storey building, which looks out over the main street of the old city, is a stunning example of Rajput artistry, with its pink semi octagonal and delicately honeycombed sandstone windows The palace was built by Maharaja Sawai Pratap Singh, and is part of the City Palace complex.
The Hawa Mahal built in 1799, the Hawa Mahal, or Palace of the Winds, is one of the major landmarks of Jaipur. .
The largest of Old Delhi's monuments is Lal Quila or Red Fort. The Lal Quila rises above a wide dry moat in the northeast corner of the original city of Shahjahanabad. Mughal Emperor Shahjahan started construction of the massive fort in 1638 and work was completed in 1648.The Fort houses the Diwan-i-Am or the Hall of Public Audiences where the Emperor would sit and hear complaints of the common folks. His alcove in the wall was marble-paneled and was set with precious stones. The Diwan-i-Khas is the hall of private audiences. This hall is made of marble and its centre-piece used to be the Peacock Throne. The largest of Old Delhi's monuments is Lal Quila or Red Fort whose thick red sandstone walls, bulging with turrets and bastions, have withstood the vagaries of time and nature. The Lal Quila rises above a wide dry moat in the northeast corner of the original city of Shahjahanabad. Its walls extend from two kilometers and vary in height from 18 metres on the river side to 33 metres on the city side. Mughal Emperor Shahjahan started construction of the massive fort in 1638 and work was completed in 1648. The fort contains all the expected trappings of the centre of Mughal government: halls of public and private audience, domed and arched marble palaces, plush private apartments, a mosque and elaborately designed gardens. Even today, the fort remains an impressive testimony to Mughal grandeur, despite being attacked by the Persian Emperor Nadir Shah in 1739 and by the British soldiers during the war of independence in 1857. Entrance to the fort is through the imposing Lahore Gate, which takes its name from the fact that it faces Lahore, now in Pakistan. This gate has a special significance for India since the first war of
The largest of Old Delhi's monuments is Lal Quila or Red Fort. The Lal Quila rises above a wide dry moat in the
The high red sandstone ramparts of this great monument stretch for almost 2.5 kilometres, dominating a bend in the river Yamuna, northwest of the Taj Mahal. The curved bastions of the huge walls are interrupted by impressive gates of which only the Amar Singh gate is now open to the public. The foundation of this majestic citadel was laid by the Emperor Akbarand it developed as a stronghold of the Mughal Empire under successive generations. The original and grandest entrance was through the Delhi Gate, which leads to the inner portal called the Hathi Pol or Elephant Gate. The curved bastions of the huge walls are interrupted by impressive gates of which only the Amar Singh gate is now open to the public. The original and grandest entrance was through the Delhi Gate, which leads to the inner portal called the Hathi Pol or Elephant Gate. The graceful Diwan-i-Am or the Hall of Public Audiences, made of red sandstone, was constructed by Shahjahan in 1628. Three rows of white polished stucco pillars topped by peacock arches support the flat roof. Today, this Hall is bereft of brocade decorations, silk carpets and satin canopies which would have enhanced the elegance of the settings when the Emperor sat down with his subjects to hear their complaints. The Agra Fort houses the Royal Pavilions, which were designed to catch the cool breeze wafting across the river. Other attractions comprise the Macchi Bhawan or the Fish Palace, the Hammam-i-Shahi or the Royal Bath, the Nagina Masjid or the Gem Mosque, and the Zenana Meena Bazaar, where the ladies of the court would browse through goods like silk, jewellery and brocade. Past the Chitor gate, installed in 1568, is the Diwan-i-Khas, or the Hall of Private Audience. Here, the emperor would receive kings, dignitaries and
The high red sandstone ramparts of this great monument stretch for almost 2.5 kilometres, dominating a bend in the river Yamuna, northwest of
Mormugao Harbour: It is 34 Kms. from Panaji and 4 Kms. from Vasco-da-Gama. It is one of the fine natural anchorages on the West coast of India and the hub of intense maritime activity. Panaji: The capital of Goa and headquarters of North Goa District, a small a charming city on the left bank of silvery Mandovi River, with beautiful red-roofed houses, built in Latin style, also boasts of many modern houses, well laid garden, statues and avenue's lined with Gulmohar, Acassia and other trees. It was a small fishing village with lots of coconut trees, creeks and fields. For centuries it remained so and was a neglected ward of Taleigao village with the only massive structure, the Adil Shah Fort by the Mandovi river. in 1632 the then Viceroy, Count de Linhares, Dom Miguel de Noronha built the 3.2km causeway linking Panjim with Ribandar village. It exists even today and is known as the "Pointe de Linhares" and at the time it was constructed, was the longest bridge in existence. Around this time, against the backdrop of the decline of Old Goa, the idea of Panjim becoming the Capital of Goa slowly gained momentum. On December 1 1759, the then Viceroy, Dom Manuel de Saldanha de Albuquerque, Count of Ega, shifted his residence from Panelim (near Old Goa) to Panjim. He moved to the newly re-modeled Adil Shah Fort, since known as "Idalcao's Palace" . The "Father of Panjim" is a title that is said to belong to the Viceroy, Dom Manuel de Castro de Portugal ( 1826-1835 ). HOW TO GET THERERail: Mapusa is the pass through point for all buses travelling to and from Goa to Mumbai, Pune and a number of other destinations. So the bus stand near the main square at the entrance to the
Mormugao Harbour: It is 34 Kms. from Panaji and 4 Kms. from Vasco-da-Gama. It is one of the fine natural anchorages on the
Sightseeing around Paro Kyichu LhakhangThis temple is said to have been built in 1659 by King Songtsen Gampo of Tibet. It holds down the left foot of an ogress that is so large that it covers Bhutan and most of eastern Tibet. Rinpung Dzong :Meaning the fortress on a heap of Jewels was built during the time of Shabdrung in 1646. The approach to the dzong is through a traditional covered bridge. A walk to the dzong offers a good view of the architectural wonder of the dzong as well as life around it. The dzong now houses the Paro monastic school and the office of the civil administration. It is also the venue of the great Paro Tshechu (festival) held once a year in spring.Taksang Monastery or Tiger's Nes Drugyel Literally means the Tiger's den. This temple clings precariously to a granite cliff 800m above the Paro valley. Legend has it that the great Guru Padmasambhava flew to this spot on back of a tigress and meditated in a cave during the 8th century. The temple was built around the cave and is a hallowed shrine for Bhutanese pilgrims. A terrible fire in April 1998 destroyed Taktsang's medieval wall paintings and all inner temples. A new construction has already begun by the royal Government. Ta DzongLooking down upon the Rinpung dzong was built in 1651 as a watch tower. The Ta Dzong is round more like parts of a European castle. Since 1967 the dzong was re-established as the national museum and holds a fascinating collection of arts, relics and religious Thanka paintings. Drukgyal DzongWhich means victorious fortress was built in 1646 by Shabdrung Ngawang Namgyel to commemorate his victory over the Tibetan invaders, led by Mongolian warlord, Gushri Khan in 1644. Strategically built over the only passage into
Sightseeing around Paro Kyichu LhakhangThis temple is said to have been built in 1659 by King Songtsen Gampo of Tibet. It holds down
The modern capital of Bhutan lies at an elevation of 2300m in a valley traversed by the Wang chu (river). Trashi Chho Dzong the main Secretariat building which houses the throne room of His Majesty and a summer residence of the central monk body. Although not what one expects from a capital city, Thimpu is a fitting and lively place. Home to civil servants, expatriates and the monk body, Thimpu maintains a strong national character in its architectural style. It is also an ideal spot for day walks. Phajoding monastery is a 4hrs hike from the motithang area; Tango & Cheri monasteries are also another 3/4hrs hike from the capital or all the way to the top of telegraph hill where thousands of prayer flags obscure the view over Thimpu. Sightseeing around Thimpu The Memorial Chorten This stupa was built in 1974 in the memory of the late third King Jigme Dorji Wangchuk. The paintings and images inside the monument provide a rare sight into Buddhist philosophy. Changlimithang Weekly Market Every Saturday & Sunday most of the Thimpu's population and many valley dwellers congregate on the banks of the river where the weekend market is held. This is the only time in the week when fresh vegetables are available and Saturday mornings are a hive of activity. Trashi Chho DzongTashichho Dzong was initially built in the 17th century, was rebuilt in early 1960s by the third King. Tashichho Dzong houses the main Secretariat building and the central monk body. It is open to visitors during Thimphu festival and when the monk body moves to their winter home in Punakha.School of Arts and Crafts Royal Academy of Performing Arts Where young children learn the ancient art of paintings. One can actually see students at work. Education is free for the students
The modern capital of Bhutan lies at an elevation of 2300m in a valley traversed by the Wang chu (river). Trashi Chho Dzong
Punakha Dzong built between two rivers in the 17th century by Shabdrung Ngawang Namgyel served as capital of Bhutan until 1955 and is still the winter residence of the central monk body. In spite of four catastrophic fires and an earthquake that destroyed many historic documents, Punakha Dzong houses sacred artifacts and embalmed body of Shabdrung Ngawang Namgyel. Punakha's climate and warmer temperatures make its valley one of the most fertile in Bhutan. Chime Lhakhang located on a hillock among the rice fields is picturesque and is a pilgrimage site for childless couples. The temple is associated with the famous saint Drukpa Kuenlay "The Divine Madman" who has built a chorten on the site during the 14th century.
Punakha Dzong built between two rivers in the 17th century by Shabdrung Ngawang Namgyel served as capital of Bhutan until 1955 and is
To the south of Punakha lies Wangdiphodrang Dzong at an elevation of 1300m. It is the last town on the highway before entering central Bhutan. This Dzong built during the 17th century played a critical role in unifying the western, central and southern Bhutanese districts. Further up is Gangtey Gompa, an old monastery dating from the 16th century. It is infact the only monastery which follows the Nyingmapa sect of school. This valley of Phobjikha is also a home of the rare Black Necked Crane, an endangered species which migrate from the Tibetan plateau in winter. There are about 450 - 500 cranes residing in Bhutan out of which 250 - 300 live in this beautiful valley.
To the south of Punakha lies Wangdiphodrang Dzong at an elevation of 1300m. It is the last town on the highway before entering