Category Archives: Stay

Stay @Bundi Haveli –Traditional yet contemporary

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Our first experience of staying in a haveli was in Udaipur and it taught us certain things. 1. Most of them would be housed in the narrow by lanes of the city 2. They may look simple from outside but the real essence is once you step in and go wow 3. Most of the popular tourists sites are close by (at times walking distance) 4. They have wonderful views of some of the monuments 5. You feel you are “at home”

So Bundi Haveli was no different. Just what we wanted — heritage property, traditional, comfortable, peaceful, clean, warm and good food. After a long day full of climbs, walks we felt tiredness leaving us as soon as we entered our room and made ourselves comfortable.

My favorite spot was the jharokha or window sit out. Watching sunrise along with the view of the Garh / Bundi Palace.

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I simply love these jharokha (window) sit outs. Don’t you? ❤

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Sip coffee/tea and enjoy the sunrise from the jharokha sit out

The rooms are clean, spacious and snug. They are have a beautiful traditional look and feel with all basic modern amenities. The haveli houses 2 suites, 8 deluxe rooms and 2 standard rooms. Each one with a different look but same essence.

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Suite 1

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Deluxe Rooms 8 nos

 

One can have a leisurely walk down the aisles or even some rooms, if unoccupied, to admire the display of traditional Rajasthani art and culture through decors tastefully selected.

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They have an in-house restaurant, again tastefully decorated, where you can have scrumptious food preparations. The menu is a good mix of Indian (including Rajasthani) and continental cuisines. For breakfast we were lucky to have some delicious aloo parathas on request. The chef and his team do a wonderful job in preparing tasty food, presenting it well and serving on time. I am a little choosy about how my coffee is made ….. but I was happy to get one as desired 🙂 The restaurant has a green space seating as well.

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There is shop inside the haveli that sells jewelry, clothes and souvenirs that showcase Indian tradition. One must remember that Bundi is famous for miniature ‘Rajasthani’ murals. You can pick up some amazing miniature paintings by artist Yug (seen the photo below) right inside Bundi Haveli. He also has some beautiful work replicating the ones you will be admiring in Chitrashala. The miniature paintings of Bundi is a must buy for self and as gifts to carry back for friends and family.

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The Nawal Sagar is right across the road, so you can go to one of the eateries out there and relax amidst the old city life or just take a stroll around the lake. Most of the places like Garh (Bundi) Palace, Chitrashala, Taragarh Fort too are close by. The by lanes that lead you to them are strewn with some interesting cafes. One can either opt to walk or take a tuk tuk (three wheeler auto) to these places from Bundi Haveli.  Their rooftop terrace offers a 360 degree view of the town.

The staff here are polite, prompt and ever smiling. One of them, Vikram Rawat, had attended and served us well. They even helped us arrange a car to drive us down to Jhalawar post our Bundi stay. So in case there is any help you need you know you can approach the staff!

You can read about my Bundi trip here . Get to know a little about the city and what all you can do there.

 


Even though the accommodation was sponsored by the owner Surenderji, this in no way effect my views / opinions shared above. (Bundi Haveli website)

 

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HAPPY  TRAVELLING!
Monika Ohson / TravelerInMe

 

Alleppey Backwaters: The Kettuvallam Sojourn

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Experiencing the Kerala Backwaters was always on my bucket list and finally I have ticked it off 🙂 Alappuzha or Alleppey, also known as the Venice of the East, is the main hub for houseboats.

We reached the boarding point on time and were quickly escorted to our houseboat. The sight at the dock is pretty interesting with many houseboats nestled close, side by side as well as one behind the other. Since our houseboat was harbored behind another one, we had to go through it to reach ours. We were asked to remove our footwear while crossing the other houseboat and same rule was extended on our houseboat as well which after sometime was relaxed 😀 Once on board we got busy exploring our Kettuvallam (local name for it) and our journey had begun.

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Now a little about the houseboat, locally called kettuvalam, meaning ‘boat with knots’. They are still built on the basis of ancient principles and techniques. The materials used are Anjili or Jackwood (endemic to the Western Ghats), coir ropes to tie and tighten, thatched roof , wooden hulls, bamboo poles, coconut fibre and very importantly, no nails! At one time it was an important mode of transportation in coastal Kerala because it eased the accessibility of even the most remote areas. In general, a houseboat is about 65 – 100 feet in length and has a width of around 13 – 18 feet in the middle.

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For me whats important is the fact that I am travelling, experiencing a new place and getting to fulfill my passion for photography. So most of the trip I was glued on the upper deck soaking in the water jam 😀 (so many houseboats plying together), the beautiful nature around (landscape, birds), laid back life along the backwater, waving back to the passers by and breathing in the fresh air. On and off we came across snack sellers on their small boat. Sharing below some typical backwater views:

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An interesting to-do is watching the simple village life as you pass them. Small boats parked outside houses, net enclosures, fishing nets, village folks ferrying on water on boats, people fishing and carrying out their day to day activities etc Some village scenes, as seen from the boat, are shared below:

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The boat gets harbored at a regular spot for lunch and then finally for the day, at a village. During winters it tends to get dark early so you should request the steersman to call it a day when there’s still light so that you can spend some time exploring the village and in some cases visit the Alleppey beach (like in the Alleppey-Alleppey route)!

You will get to witness some beautiful sunset as well as sunrise on this ride. We were unlucky with the sunrise as the skies were cloudy and the sun just a haze but managed to capture some pink hued sunset 🙂

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You can opt for the route as per your itinerary and budget. The route comprises of narrow & wide canals and also intersection of multiple canals. We had opted for Alleppey-to-Alleppey overnight stay, though, my individual preference and suggestion is to opt for Alleppey to Kumarakom or vice versa!

Basis trip type there are houseboats with decks only (used for day trips) and with rooms (overnight stay). The latter is further segregated basis construction type, number of rooms, AC facility (centralized, only rooms – full day, only room – at night only) and category with star rating (deluxe, premium, luxury).

In the overnight stay, the package includes lunch, evening tea with snacks, dinner and breakfast (both vegetarian and non vegetarian options are available). The food is freshly cooked in traditional Kuttanadu or Kerala style. The cuisine is a delight for seafood lovers and many houseboats let you catch some fresh fish for cooking 🙂 For those who are not experimental with cuisine, do not like coconut based cooking or would like their own menu, please do inform the houseboat provider much before time so that the staff / cook are prepared accordingly.

At the cost of being repetitive, please insist on a detailed itinerary/route and ask for other viable options; check the menu and suggest changes if you want; check their look & feel through their website, reviews, photos and also be prepared to shell out more in some instances.

Now lets go on a small virtual experience of the backwaters!

 

For my other posts of Kerala, click here, https://travelerinmeblog.wordpress.com/category/kerala/

 

….and, if you like what you just read, do ‘like it’ & ‘share it’. Non WordPress users please ‘rate’ it to express your appreciation 🙂 Also do not forget to ‘follow the blog’ to remain updated about newer posts ❤ 


HAPPY  TRAVELLING!
Monika Ohson / TravelerInMe

 

Photo Essay: Pataudi ‘Peacock’ Palace

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This one is from my travel memories’ archive! We had spent a wonderful monsoon weekend at the Pataudi Palace (the original home to the Nawabs of Pataudi) and the memories of the place are still so vivid 🙂   Beautiful and well maintained, the quietude of the place is a balm for the tired souls. A must weekend from Delhi to rejuvenate!

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The palace stay gives you the feel of the life of the Nawabs. The entire place is tastefully done. I was pretty happy with the service and the food was absolutely delectable. The rains had made the place greener and cleaner and yes full of peacocks 🙂  This photo essay is dedicated to our Indian National Bird the ‘Peacock’ …….who were inevitably in every camera frame.

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….and, if you like what you just read, do ‘like it’ & ‘share it’. Non WordPress users please ‘rate’ it to express your appreciation 🙂 Also do not forget to ‘follow the blog’ to remain updated about newer posts ❤ 


HAPPY  TRAVELLING!
Monika Ohson / TravelerInMe