Unofficial travel photography tips.

We have lots of photography material to read on how to get best frame – technical as well as composition related. But all these hardly matter when we reach a travel destination.

Ps: Im writing this for not so professional travel photographers, who spends day & night on research and after lotsa sweat get that one great. It’s for wanna-be-pro-photographer.

Mostly, when we are traveling, we are with friends or family or if alone than also on a short trip and have time constraints. This lack of time makes us cover all the tourist attractions in that certain time frame. Though we do research about the place, read about the tourist spot, and also check the weather conditions,

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when we reach we get a different story! (Also adding my own personal experience)

  1. If it is an Indian temple, we have to take off the footwear few meters away and that stone floor on a hot day just makes it difficult to go an extra meter to get that wide-angle shot. Or the marble floor is too cold on a winter morning. (Like Tajmahal, Agra)
  2.  Most of time, we don’t get a single photograph from the particular famous attraction because we didn’t check the signage ‘Photography not allowed’. And you have to deposit the camera / iPhone at the entrance. (Most of Indian temples like Dilwara Jain temple, Mount Abu)
  3. If it’s related to water or a beach vacation, we don’t have rain jacket for camera or forget to carry underwater camera. (River rafting at Rishikesh)
  4. Just when you are about to shoot a masterpiece, the monk who was busy in meditation politely asks you not to click. (Bodhgaya)
  5. You are in flip-flops and sand at beach is just too hot to walk. (Puri Sea beach)
  6. You are in a group or some facebook-photographers are standing next to you and as soon as you get the interesting angle or a subject, they too come and click the ditto and post it on facebook ASAP (no need to give example here :D)
  7. Time taken to change a lens and subject moves from its place in that time-frame – one of the common things. (Pinnewala elephant orphanage, SriLanka).
  8. Guy is ready to give a priceless smile but there is a price for it and you are out of local currency or not having small bills. (Musician at Statue of Liberty, New York).
  9. You captured the moment and some goon comes to you and asks you to delete all the photographs. No reason! (Gandhi Ashram, Ahmadabad)
  10.  Weather is unpredictable. So if you are planning for shoot with sunlight then keep in mind the other option to shoot too. Sometimes overcast sky does wonders too. (Napa Valley, California)

Handy tips:

– Wear a comfortable dress, especially if you are a girl and traveling in India.

– Carry 2-3 different types of footwear for travel.

– Apart from sunscreen, carry a scarf, hat or best would be an umbrella.

– Leave the extra lens at hotel room; you might need it for other tourist attractions – next day.

– Keep a water bottle, some snacks in backpack always for the instant energy boost.

Happy traveling and come back with lot’s great memories.

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Just Diu it!

Why Diu?

I hadn’t thought about visiting Diu 5-6 yrs back and all I knew, it’s a union territory. When I heard about this from NID friends from NID and also got to know it ‘s a peaceful beach place unlike Goa, so I planned I will visit it someday.

How to reach.

Recently when I visited Ahmedabad I thought to take bus from there to Diu but got to know there are no volvo bus service so search for train started. Diu doesn’t have a railway station though it has a airport and flights from Mumbai to Diu goes there. So we took the Somnath express to Veraval. Timing of this train was good and we reached very early morning and made a quick visit to Somnath, which is also known as “the Shrine Eternal”, because it has been destroyed 6 times and rebuilt 6 times. We took a cab to Diu. Veraval to Diu is approximately 90km and take around 2hours 30min.

We stayed in a small resort Hoka because there were very few beach resorts and resort Sugati and Radhika were already full. Hoka was a nice resort with good food service and it was very near to famous Nagoa beach.

Earlier plan was to hire a bike and explore the city but seeing the heat in city we kept the same cab as anyway we had to leave next day.

What to see.

We started with Sea Shell museum, which has varieties of shell from all over the world. For sure, it has great collection but very untidily and unorganized!  Next was Gangeshwar temple, which was built by Pandavs and sea water keep it clean and cool.

Our next stop was INS Khukhri which was built in memory sailors who chose to go down the sea with the warship when it was hit by a Pakistani Submarine during the INDO-PAK war.

One of the natural prehistoric tourist point was Naida caves, it’s located outside the city and it was worth a visit and gave you a roaming inside a maze feel. Upcoming movie- Agneepath climax (Sanjay dutt dying) also shot here apart that, Karan Johar entire movie set was made in Mandava, Diu.

Nest in List were- Diu museum and St paul church followed by Diu fort. At Diu fort you can see lots of cannons and also a light house and at distance you can see Panikotha.

With that we almost ticked marked all places and moved to Nagoa beach for some hot corn and tea break. Next morning was also spent in relaxation at beach.

Later in day we went to Sugati resort for lunch. Hotel was nicely done but quite disappointed with red cushioned plastic chair and b&w check table cloths and sad interior at there one and only restaurant.

We had an evening train to catch from Veraval so we headed back and reached Ahmedabad at dusk and from there next was to catch the flight to Delhi.

Overall it was a cool experience because I also got cough and cold from this trip 😀

Summer Escape.

When the summer heat makes us restless, all we look forward is soaking ourselves in water. Best way to do so is indulging in some water sports. So what if you, like me, don’t know swimming 🙂
White water river rafting used to be a mode of transportation but now it’s a popular recreational activity which gives you thrills when doing so. Raft and rapids and you are rowing your paddle. Life seems so much calm and adventurous at same time.
relax-at-rishikesh 
River Rafting in India.
In India, we have many nice places to do the White water rafting, from Zanskar river flowing at high attitude in Leh to Rafting on River Brahmputra in Arunachal Pradesh, which is in the top ten best destinations to do river rafting or go to Uttarakhand, where have relaxing time in sandy river camp and do the rafting on holy Ganges i.e. near Rishikesh. Here you can have grade 4 rapids.

kayaking

How to reach.

If you live in New Delhi or near by, it’s just 5-6 hrs car journey and if taking train from New Delhi, reach to Haridwar, from there its hardly 25 KMs. In Rishikesh, you can stay in cool & comfortable beach resort, like I stayed in the Ganga Beach resort or opt for a nice cozy tent to spend the night.

rafting-in-rapid

Other than rafting, what else?
Apart from rafting, you could learn yoga, have nice massage or spa (Ananda is a famous destination spa but expensive) and do rock climbing, trekking and spend evening by visiting Ram & Laxman Jhoola. Ganges aarti happens at 6-7pm everyday and you would feel so content & relaxed. Don’t forget to have nice meal at Chotiwala restaurant near Ram Jhoola.

cliff-jumping-scene1

I am quite regular to Rishikesh and it was my 2nd time to do the River rafting. I am planning to do rafting on Brahmaputra River some time. But before that I should wash my water phobia in MCD water 😀

Diwali Dash.

The most important and the most delightful festival of India is Deepavali or Diwali. I am not writing the story behind it, that is available here.
This festival is celebrated for 5 days, where 3rd day is the main festival but the preparation and celebration of it started much earlier.
And if you live in a joint family or the kids are at home, it’s more of a fun activity to put lights and making sweets.

This year Diwali is on 28th oct. and we all have been busy getting geared up for Diwali. In New Delhi, many Diwali fairs are already on, including my all time favorite fair- Diwali mela at Blind School, near Oberoi Hotel, New Delhi. Many schools and residential societies too have variations of the fair. The stress is really on having a fun and good time spending money rather than earning money by putting food / handicraft/ dress/ Candle or chocolates stalls.

It is interesting to check the list of stuff people are buying this Diwali to decorate one’s home.

I have a cool list starting from:
Decorative Diyas: Just go for earthen or bamboo diyas- its green, its cool.
Rangoli- Buy ground white powder and colors or also go for flowers. I also have sticking sticker one.
Vase – Buy some glass vase, you can use it to put candle/ diya.
Platter- From a range of wooden to glass to steel and variable sizes, you can pick what you like and for what you need. Like for putting dry fruits, sweets & Namkeen.
Planter- How could you miss those cute little plants with interesting planter made of terracotta.
Ganesh Laxmi- depends on your budget from terracotta to silver.
And lights- those small LED lights to hang on outer walls & balconies.

And yes celebrate a cracker-less Diwali to keep the place pollution (noise and smoke) free.

Wish you a very happy & prosperous Diwali. 🙂

Home solutions.

If the role of color in any industry is very important than so is reading a consumer mind and coming up with a color forecast that will be liked my many (if not all) is very difficult.
Recent issues of design & interior magazines shows how new technologies and inventory features and interesting lighting and new materials possibilities making a Home much more trendy than ever.

Here are some home trends hints.

White and vibrant– From pure white to ivory and adding colors in accent, like, saffron is something that will make the interior to stands out. Apart from this Black and white theme is something that’s always green.

living & more

living & bath

Metals & wood – Hardness of metals and soft, warm feel of wood is something that can gel well with artifacts and furniture. Even the metallic finishes and rough old wood types are happening.

Dining and decor

Natural & organic– It’s more than just green décor. Adding a jute matt either as a castor or spreading a chatai or furnishing with natural colors prints are something talking loud. Anyway eco design is something that’s creating vibes from sometime and now when India also taking stands in green building than why not atleast green décor that we can think of when designing & decorating.

bedroom & more
kitchen and more

Leather & luxury– Leather is hot with soft touch and just a right level of use. The yellow, black or browns will look good. And yes, luxury is in! No more minimalism.

kids room

Wallpapers & graphics– other than in kid’s room its something that can be added anywhere to make that place stands out. Its simple, it’s easy and can be change as desired.

Light & bright– How could light be missing in any décor. Put it purposefully or just for adding a style element, with neat & clean designs and use energy efficient CFL or LEds.

Images Source– Internet (Design Sponge specially)