The Big Buddha Statue

24 hours in Phuket

Phuket is an exotic destination for any traveler. Everything from luxury hotels, turquoise colored beaches, bendy palm trees, tasty Thai delicacies; there is truly something for everyone. If you are backpacker hoping across Thailand or on a luxury vacation staying in only the best and luxurious hotels, it is a once in a lifetime experience. Here is a list of everything you must do in 24 hours.

We hired a driver from our hotel’s concierge at The Thavorn Beach Village Resort. We paid $800 Baht ($25 USD) for 6 hours and 6 locations. The concierge did a great job at giving us the best price and even gave us tips on what to see.


1. Monkey Hill

If you are an animal lover like myself, you are bound to enjoy the company of the local Macaques at Monkey Hill.

Also known as Toh Sae Hill, Monkey Hill is located in Phuket town on the east side of the Island and is the highest hill in Phuket. Ask your driver or use google maps to get you to the right place. The hill is open from 7 AM – 10 PM, the best time to visit is during midday or sunset.

Once you get there leave your personal belongings in the car. The path up the hill is filled with many monkeys and their babies. I will be honest it was hard to handle how adorable these little guys were. They are not as cute and fluffy as they look, some of them can be furious.

The best way to interact with the monkeys is by feeding them peanuts. If you are going to do that just remember they will climb up on you. The best thing to do is to remain calm and not panic.

At the top of the hill you are greeted with the spectacular view of the whole city with the ocean in the distance. If you plan on visiting during the sunset, the city will be illuminated in a golden glow.


2. Big Buddha

The Big Buddha is the biggest Buddha statue in all of Phuket and is located in South Phuket. The statue is 40 meters tall and sits on top of the Nakkerd Hills, it is hard to miss and can be seen from a distance.

The statue is made of pure white marble and looks beautiful against the light. There is a strict dress code, no short shorts, no tank tops. They provide women with shawls to cover themselves while visiting, just remember to return it once you are done.

The hill provides a panoramic view of the city, with the beach on one side and the bustling city on the other. You can also catch a beautiful sunset from this hill.


3. Party in Patong Beach

During the day Patong Beach is crowded with tourist enjoying basking in the sun, parasailing, jet skiing or just strolling around the busy city. The best thing about Patong Beach is that it comes alive at night. Patong Beach is located on the west side of the island. There are 100s of bars, night clubs, hipster cafes, and authentic Thai restaurants. It’s no wonder why countless tourist flock to this place to have a once in a lifetime experience.

Source: TripAdvisor

For a first time visit, it can be an overwhelming experience. The neon lights, the crowd, the loud music, and night club workers coming up to you and asking you to come to see ladyboys. The best thing to do is just take it slow, let the experience come to you. I recommend doing this at least once.

Source: Hotels.com

4. Go wild in a Tuk Tuk

One of the things that Thailand is famous for is their unique Tuk Tuks. These incredible and powerful machines are found anywhere in Phuket, particularly around the busy parts of the island, like Patong Beach. We took a Tuk Tuk from Patong Beach to our hotel, enjoyed some cold beers and house music while sitting in the back, all while it was raining. It was an experience that is unforgettable. This is a must do!


5. Karon View Point

There are so many viewpoints in Phuket its hard to go them all, but the best and most popular is Karon View Point. Located in southern Phuket, the viewpoint offers spectacular views of the Kata Noi, Kata Yai, and Karon beaches. It is easy to see why this is the most popular viewpoint and the most crowded. The best time to visit is midday or before sunset. I recommend getting there an hour before sunset and grabbing a good seat to watch the sun go down. It is the perfect way to end the day.

Source: Hotels.com

6. Old Town Phuket

Old town Phuket is the heart of Phuket, it is where the new and old blend together to bring a unique and authentic experience for any traveler. In this historical part of town, you will find ancient temples, beautiful colored buildings that make for the perfect Instagram picture, and it is a shoppers paradise.

Take a stroll through the Walking Street. Sandwiched between two buildings it can be easy to miss, so make sure to look out for a sign. The long street is filled with small vendors and stalls serving food, desserts, and souvenirs.

On the other side of the Walking Street is the real Old Town Phuket, The Phuket Walking Street. Every Sunday the street is closed to cars and bikes and is filled with small vendors serving some of the best Thai delicacies. You can find everything from the infamous Pad Thai to delicious desserts. The street is open from 4 -10 PM. If you are looking for an authentic Thai Taste, Old Town Phuket is a must visit. Don’t forget to try the fresh watermelon juice, perfect for a hot day!


7. Island Hopping

If you only had one day and wanted to experience the best of Thailand. I would recommend taking a trip to the Phi Phi Islands. There are many companies that offer tours to multiple islands throughout the day. Our tour company took us to about 6 islands. Stopping along the way to different islands, sometimes snorkeling in the blue waters or seeing monkey at the monkey island. The tour company also provides you with lunch during the day on one of the big islands.

The best thing to do is take a longtail boat for you and your group so you have flexibility and privacy. Big tour companies stick to a schedule and you often don’t have much time at one island.

Phi Phi Leh and Phi Phi Don are among the two star islands and are always the most crowded. Which is why I recommend hiring a private longtail boat, so you have some privacy and truly get to experience the island the way its meant to be.


All of the experiences that I mentioned above are just my opinion and in no way the best way to experience Phuket. I had reserched in advanced of all the experiences and attractions. There are many other things you could do in Phuket, Party all day or just relax at your 5 star hotel. It is totally up to you!


Go ahead and Save this pin for later!

10 must see places in Oregon

While traveling to Oregon, I realized that it has everything I ever imaged and more. It has everything a curious and adventurous traveler is looking for. Its lush landscape and 300 miles of open coast are what makes tourists so attracted to this beautiful state. One of the greatest things about Oregon is its beauty year around.

To check out my full travel itinerary click here


10. Crater National Park

Crater Lake National Park is located in Southern Oregon and is the most popular place in that area. It is the only national park in all of Oregon. Before the crystal clear blue waters of the lake, it used to be a volcano. About 7,700 years ago, Mount Mazama collapsed on itself creating a beautiful rim crater that it is today. Mount Mazama peaked at 11,000 feet The lake is approximately 2000 feet, making it the deepest lake in the United States. The island in the middle of the lake can be visited by a boat tour. There are countless hikes and trails that offer the best views of the the lake from above.


9. Painted Hills

The Painted Hills are one of the seven wonders of Oregon. These hills are part of the John Day Fossil Beds National Monument, located in Wheeler County, Oregon.  Each color unveils a layer of history dating back to millions of years. The hills are best visited during the sunset hour. The golden glow from the sun lights up the hills in such a way that is pleasing to the eyes. The yellow, red, and pink illuminate and reveal the history of this planet. When I took a glance at them from the viewpoint, it was as if I was looking at a piece of landscape from Mars. These Painted Hills are a must visit for any admirer of this planet.


8. Blue Lagoon

The Tamolitch, more commonly know as “Blue Lagoon” or “Blue Pool” is located in Chinook just off the OR-216 highway. It is off the OR-12 exit, passing the sign for Tamolitch Trail Head. You can park your car there and it is a short hike along side the McKenzie River. The hike is filled with giant lush trees, green moss, and crystal clear waters or the McKenzie River. Just keep going until you stumble upon a huge blue pool that is crystal clear. Before, there was a way to go down to the pool, but because of the recent rock slide the path is blocked.

 Mckenzie River Trail
Mckenzie River Trail


7. Airplane Home

This is no ordinary plane, I did not crash land here. It was built and assembled piece by piece. Believe it or not this is someones home, yes a HOME! The Airplane home is located in the farming community of Hillsboro, Oregon among the tall trees. Ever since I saw this place on the internet, I was very intrigued by it and had to visit. The owner of this extraordinary home is Bruce and is very welcoming. If the owner is home, you can take a tour, but if not then he asks you to be civilized around the plane and treat it with respect. To find the directions you can find them here.


6. Samuel H. Boardman State Park

The Oregon Coast is one of the most scenic on the west coast. Samuel H. Boardman State Park located in Southern, Oregon Park has some of the intersting rock formations in the country. The most famous being “Arch Rock” is just off the coast and can be viewed from the park. The park is located just off the 101-Highway, so don’t miss it.

 Photo by   David Kovalenko
Photo by David Kovalenko


5. Latourell Falls

Latourell Falls is located close to the Columbia River Gorge. This is one of the closest falls to Portland, just 20 minutes away. There is a hiking loop trail that leads you to the top of the falls that is just 2.4 miles. There is also a trail that leads you to the base of the falls, if you are in hurry I recommend taking this trail.

The fall is 225 feet high and is always fully roaring. If you are feeling a little adventurous like me, I recommend taking a walk to the back of the waterfall. Just make sure you have shoes with good grip as the ground is always muddy.


4. Silver Falls State Park

Silver Falls State Park is one of the most beautiful parks in all of Oregon. It is located near the town of Silverton, and is a perfect place to go for a day hike. It is just 10 minutes from the parking lot of South Falls, which is the most famous falls in the park and definitely the most picturesque. The hiking trail continues in a loop that leads you behind the waterfall. If you find yourself in Oregon and have a few hours to spare, this is the perfect place to go.


3. Mt. Hood

 Photo provided by Unsplash, photographer Atanas Malamov
Photo provided by Unsplash, photographer Atanas Malamov

Mt. Hood is one of the seven wonders of Oregon. It is located in the town of Sandy, and the volcanic peak can leave anyone speechless. According to statistics, Mt. Hood is the second most climbed mountain in the world. Mt. Hood is also home to countless alpine lakes, a world class ski resort and beautiful glaciers. This is a must visit for any traveler in their lifetime.


2. Cannon Beach

Cannon Beach is the icon of the Oregon Coast, specifically Haystack Rock.It is located in northern Oregon, and named after a cannon being rolled up on the beach. Depending on the sea level, you can walk to Haystack Rock and is sometimes covered in water. During our visit, the elements were not in our favor. It was raining with high speed winds, so I had to settle for an average shot on my phone. But don’t let this stop you from exploring such a beautiful place, no matter the conditions. Here is a picture of Cannon Beach under better weather conditions.

  Photo by    Caleb Jones   , provided by Unslpash
Photo by Caleb Jones , provided by Unslpash


  1. Multnomah Falls

Multnomah Falls is the most visited place in all of the Pacific Northwest.It is located just off the 84-Highway and 30 minutes from downtown Portland. This place is perfect for a quick getaway from the city. The Falls plunge a whopping 620 feet from the top to the bottom of the second waterfall. In order to get to the bridge on the second level, it is a short 5 minute walk from the viewpoint. This is the most busiest places in Oregon. I recommend going there super early in the morning to get some quite time before the horde of tourist start to flow in. If there was only once place to see in Oregon, I would highly recommend this place.


I hope you have an adventure of a lifetime in Oregon, and the elements are always in your favor.

Go ahead and save this pin for later use!

The most Luxurious resort in Kauai, Hawaii

When it comes to luxury the Koloa Landing Resort is the standard. The Koloa Landing Resort is located on the southern tip of Kauai, Hawaii. More specifically the resort is in the town of Koloa, at the edge of Poipu beach. The resort spans a massive 25 acres and is filled with lush green landscapes, infinity pools, and small wooden bridges. They even have a soccer field and a volleyball court for the athletic types.


At First Glance

When you arrive, you are welcomed with an open-air lobby and greeted with fresh lei necklaces right at the check in desk. After you check in, enjoy a glass or two of the fresh fruit flavored water or iced tea.


Car Rental

Chances are if you are flying to Kauai, you are not going to have a car. But don’t worry Koloa Landing Resort has an on site Enterprise location in the lobby. If you are looking to explore around Kauai I highly recommend you get a rental right after you check in, as they tend to go quickly. 


Ultimate Relaxation in Paradise

The Koloa Landing Resort has one of the best Spas on the island. Enjoy a glass of champagne while you relax in the only Japanese Ofura soaking tub in Kauai. If you are looking to get more pampered, dive right in to their world-class massages. Their masseuses are highly trained and knowledgeable in relaxation. The warm coconut oil and the Zen ambiance will make you feel like you are in paradise and make you forget about all your troubles. After your spa retreat, enjoy a swim in one of their many pools and indulge in sunbathing under the warm Kauai sun.

 Photo by Koloa Landing Resort Photo by Koloa Landing Resort

 Photo by Koloa Landing Resort Photo by Koloa Landing Resort


Fine Dining

If you are looking to indulge yourself in luscious fresh seafood and tasteful cocktails, the Holoholo grill is the perfect place. It is located at the edge of the resort, towards the ocean wall.  Sam Choy, master chef and restaurateur, designed the dishes here. Whether you are enjoying the Banana Macadamia nut pancakes at breakfast with the cool breeze of the ocean or one of Sam Choy’s signature poke dishes while watching the sunset coloring the skies pink and orange, The Holoholo grill will leave an everlasting impression on your taste buds. Also, their Piña Coloda is the best I have ever had.


Shopping

The shops at Kukui`ula village are just a short walk or a bike ride away from the resort. The village is filled with small boutiques, art galleries, and a fresh food market. It is also home to more than a dozen restaurants – everything from casual to fine dining. Enjoy a delicious Mango Guava Passion fruit flavor shaved ice from Uncles Shaved Ice (the best in Kauai) as you wander around the shops. Make sure to stay for the live performance every Wednesday and Friday during the evening hours. Go check out some art galleries featuring local photographers and ask them about any spots they recommend that are a must see.


What about Adventure?

The concierge service at Koloa Landing Resort does a marvelous job at giving you information about the local hikes, adventures, and tours.  Grab your rental and head up to the Waimea Canyon about 45 minutes away. When you find yourself at the Waimea Canyon look out point in Koke’e State Park make sure to get a glimpse of the Waipoo falls in the distance. Don’t stop there keep driving up the mountain to one of the best look out points you will ever see, Pu’u O Kila lookout point. The lookout gives you a marvelous view of the Kalalau valley, looks like something out of Jurassic Park. There is also short hike you can do, make sure to bring good hiking shoes because it is one of the wettest spots on the planet and rain is very common.

Need more Adventure?

So you saw all the lookout points, did some hiking, now what? If you still have a few hours to spare before the day ends, head over to the other side of the Island in the town of Lihue to see the famous Wailua Falls. If it feels like you have seen the Wailua Falls before, it is probably true. They are very famous and have been featured in countless TV shows and films.

 Wailua Falls Wailua Falls

Sunsets

If you feel like you have experienced the best of Kauai, now there is only one thing left to see, a beautiful sunset. Head back to Koloa Landing Resort, grab a Piña Coloda or a Mai Tai from the Holoholo grill and head over to the Ocean wall with your friends or that special someone to watch one of the most beautiful sunsets you will ever see. Sunsets anywhere are stunning but in Kauai, there is just something about them that makes them life changing. Take a walk on the volcanic rocks grab a spot and watch the skies transform colors to beautiful pinks and oranges.  


Follow my blog with Bloglovin

Hello, World!

Go ahead and save this Pin for later!

The Ultimate Dubai Travel List

Dubai is one of the most prestigious cities in the United Arab Emirates(UAE). With its sleek designed buildings and deeply rooted heritage, it is a travelers dream. 

Dubai exceeded my expectations, and it will exceed yours. From the moment you land in Dubai, you will see how this desert oasis came to be one of the most richest cities in the world. They had left no expense behind, no stone unturned, to make Dubai into the marvel that it is today.


Enjoy a Dhow Cruise in the Dubai Marina

If you are looking to relax after your long flight, the Dhow Cruise is the perfect relaxation you need. Make sure to enjoy a BBQ buffet dinner on the calm waters of the Dubai Marina. Also, grab a table at the the top with an open view or enjoy the air conditioning in the bottom suite.

The Dhow Cruise Dinner has become one of the most popular tourist attractions in the city.

There is more to the two hour cruise than just eating. The cruise showcases the traditional Tanura dance. It is truly something remarkable. Also, don’t forget to look out the window once in a while to get a glimpse the infamous Dubai skyline, and see if you can spot the Burj Kahlifa. 

 


Burj Khalifa – The tallest man made structure.

Dubai’s most prestigious land mark is the Burj Khalifa, standing tall at a staggering 2,722 feet to the top. After completing construction in 2010, tourist numbers have been growing ever since. The wrap around observation deck at the 124th floor offers a 360 view of Dubai with the ocean on one side and the city on the other. 

The nighttime visits are the most popular due to the 360 views of the Dubai skyline. The best way to get your tickets is booking them in advanced and then all you have to do is pick up your tickets at the counter. Just follow the sign for “At the top-Burj Khalifa” in the Dubai Mall. The only way to get to the Burj Khalifa is through the Dubai Mall. 

The evening lines open at 7 pm, so try to get there as early as you can. We got there at around 7:30 pm and took us about an hour to get to the top. The elevators are super fast and take you up to the 124 floor in matter of seconds.  The view up top is breathtaking. 

After you have enjoyed the view, go down to the fountain show. They do a show every thirty  minutes, so there is no need to rush yourself to get down. The fountain show is one the largest in the world, just like everything else in Dubai. Being able to get the best seat is difficult, therefore, I suggest watching it up front or far away as possible. 


The Dubai Mall

The Dubai Mall is the city’s biggest mall, it is home to the the Burj Khalifa and Dubai Aquarium. The mall has over 1,400 stores ranging  from clothing, home decor, to restaurants; you can find almost anything. Make sure you know where your family or friends are, the mall is pretty big to lose yourself – I know I did!

When it comes to the food, the Dubai Mall offers the widest array of selection. My advice is stay away from the local food chains that can be found anywhere in the world, you know which one’s I am talking about. If you are in Dubai, you might as well try their local food, like Kabob’s or Falafel’s. In the mood for some sweets, Dubai is home to the best sugar tasties in the world.

The first thing we did was head to the Dubai Aquarium, located inside the mall. Although, I am personally against seeing marine life in captivity, my family and friends wanted to experience it; so I had no choice but to tag along. The lines tend be long for this attraction, so make sure to arrive there early. Book your tickets online to avoid waiting in long lines. The tickets are around AED 120 for the basic experience. If you don’t want to pay for the ticket, you can easily watch the fishes from the outside.

The also offer different tours: The most popular being the cage snorkeling and shark diving activities – Yes shark diving!


Jumeirah Beach

Jumeirah Beach is the best beach in all of Dubai, and millions of tourist flock to this beach every year. The beach is kept neat year around and is full stocked with modern facilities. The beach is filled with long loungers and water sport activities like jet skiing, paragliding and surfing, you are guaranteed to have a good time.

The water has such clarity, it is such a serene and clean view because of the government’s rules of now allowing trash to go in the ocean-not a single piece. 

The Jumeirah Beach is also home to the only seven star hotel in the world Burj Al-Arab. The hotel offers it’s own private access to beach. It also has world class cafe’s that are open to the public, so what you can’t afford a night in the Burj Al Arab, at least you can enjoy a nice cup of tea.


Miracle Garden

Dubai’s Miracle Garden is worlds largest natural garden. The garden contains over 109 million flowers planted and it also has one of the largest butterfly gardens in the world.

Getting around in taxis in Dubai can be affordable, but the Miracle Garden is not in the city and it could get a little pricey. The public transportation in Dubai is excellent, you can take a bus to the garden for less than half the price of the taxi fare. 

The Garden is open from October through April and remains closed from May through September due to the hot temperatures. The tickets are fairly affordable with 40 AED for adults and 30 for children.

One of my favorite parts of the garden was the Emirates Airbus A380. An actual plane covered in flowers from front to back.


 Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque

Although not in Dubai, Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque is a must visit for everyone. It is located in Abu Dhabi, the capital city of UAE, and a hour drive from Dubai.

Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque was built by the first president of the United Arab Emirates Sheikh Zayed. It accommodates over 40,000 guests in the prayer halls. The mosque is recognized purely by its white colored marble and gold intricate art work. With over a 1000 pillars each hand painted with unique floral work and 82 domes with various sizes, the biggest one being in the center of the mosque.

Visiting hours are from Saturday-Thursday 9am to 10pm and 4:30 pm to 10 pm on friday.

What to wear?

Mosques all over the world hold a religious and sacred position for Muslims. Visitors must adhere to the rules of the mosque and wear proper clothing attire. Women are required to be covered from head to toe, the head must be covered with a scarf, no transparent clothing, no tight clothing. They do however provide women with an Abaya free of charge. Men are required to wear short sleeve shirts and pants at the minimum. 

The are several chandeliers hung up in the main prayer hall. Some being the largest in the world and the largest in any mosque in the world. The largest one weighs 12 tons and holds about 40 kilogram of 24 karat gold.

They recently built a new coffee house on the northern side of the mosque. It also includes a gallery for artwork and souvenirs. The mosque is completely free to enter unlike other tourist attractions. 


Ride the Palm Jumeirah Monorail

The Palm Jumeirah is Dubai’s first artificial island. The monorail runs straight down the middle for 3 miles starting at the Gateway station and finishing at The Atlantis Resort.

The tickets can be purchase at the gateway station, a one way ticket costs 20 AED and a return is 30 AED. We bought a one way ticket and our tour bus picked us up at the Atlantis Resort.

 The monorail is the best way to experience the beauty of the island. Once you are on it, you can really admire how big the island is and see rows of real estate. It gets you to wondering how they achieved something so spectacular. 


Desert Safari

Outside of the glamour lights, wide highways, and staggering sky scrappers there is also another side of Dubai; The Desert. So many people come to Dubai and get lost in the lights but they forget about the Arabian Desert.  If you are looking for some blood pumping & adrenaline filled adventures, the Desert Safari is perfect for you. Even if you are not in to the rush, I still recommend you take part.

Leave everything up to the driver

We had booked the evening desert safari from 4 – 10 pm. The driver will pick you up from your hotel and drive you out to the desert. It took us around forty-five minutes to get to the desert. On the way, we made a stop, so they can take out some air from the tires, there is also a shop nearby where people buy traditional clothing and head gear. We tried buying some lemonade, but they were charging us 20 AED for a tiny bottle. We didn’t obviously buy it, but just be careful of getting scammed. 

Dune Bashing

Rolling around in the sand with a big SUV was by far the most intense part of the whole adventure. At the beginning, its just a flat desert, but the real fun begins when you start to make your way deeper in to the desert. Your butt is going to be lifting off the seat, quite high and often. I was sitting in the front and had the best experience by far, going down a hill you feel like the car is going to flip over. Don’t worry the drivers are well experienced and know what they are doing, our driver had been doing this for eight years. It’s not something you can learn overnight, it requires proper training. But how awesome would it be, right?

Shortly the driver will stop in some random part of the desert with other cars. You can get out and walk around on the sand and take some pictures and truly enjoy the Arabian Desert.

Dinner and a Show

Once you are done jumping around in your seat, your driver will take you to your Desert Camp, somewhere in the different part of the desert. Once you get there, make sure to get the best seat with a view of the center stage. The Bedouin style camp offers comfy couch cushions with dinner tables. Before the show starts grab, your dinner plate with Pasta, salad, pita bread, hummus, rice, BBQ and much more. It is all you can eat, so don’t be shy of going for a second round. There is a also a bar on the other end that offers alcoholic beverages, beer and free soft drinks. The camp also offers sisha for a small price.

Enjoy a traditional belly dancing show and watch a man play with fire. After the show is over, make your way towards the cars parked outside to find your driver and he will drop you off to your hotel safe and sound.


Go ahead an save this pin for later!

I hope this list has helped you plan your trip to Dubai and I hope you have an amazing time. Let me know if you have any questions or concerns in the comment box below, or even if you want to just say Hi!. 

Happy Travels!! 🙂

A perfect Canadian road trip: From the Vancouver Sea through the Canadian Rockies.

The country of Canada is so beautiful, and so are its people. There is a saying in the world, “People in Canada are so nice” well I agree with that sentence 100 percent. My friends and I do an annual road trip in the states, but this time we decided to do something out of the country. Canada was always on the list. So, why not?


Here is our 1 week itinerary!

Check out the google maps directions below.


Day 1: Arriving in Vancouver

The first thing you want to do is get yourself a car. My American Express Premier Rewards Gold Card made it easy to book a rental from the airport.

Lynn Canyon Suspension Bridge

After getting a quick bite to eat, we wasted no time and headed straight to the Lynn Canyon Suspension Bridge located in Northern Vancouver, about an hour from the airport.

In order to get to the park you have to go through a neighborhood, if you feel like you are lost, don’t worry we had had the same feeling, just keep driving and you will see the forest. After parking the car, it is a 10-minute walk to the bridge. The Bridge spans over a roaring river and a waterfall, you might catch people jumping over the waterfall into the river down below. On the other side of the bridge, there is a hike along a small river. If you want the bridge to yourself, I recommend getting there early in the morning, perhaps 7 or 8 am.

Stanley Park

Before heading back to our hostel, we made a quick stop at Stanley Park. Stanley Park has an 8 km sea wall that wraps around downtown Vancouver. It is definitely a beautiful place to visit.

There are many activities like running, biking, or walking along the sea wall. Make sure to catch a glimpse of wild life along the beach side and at the right time of the year, you might see some Orcas passing through the bay. When we started walking through the park, we found an open field where we played with the Frisbee. Later on, we sat on the sea wall by the beach and watched the planes landing in the water.

Finally around 4 pm, we decided to check into our hostel Samesun Vancouver. Samesun Vancouver is a budget friendly place with exceptional accommodations and services. It is in the heart of downtown Vancouver and surrounded by bars and restaurants. Also, most importantly hold on to that free drink voucher you get while checking in.

We got settled in to our room and headed straight to the bar downstairs to use the free drink voucher. We took a stroll around the district to check out the local bar scene. Doolin’s is an Irish pub right around the corner that offers great drinks and bites for happy hour. The Granville Street is filled with local eateries that offer something for all palates.


Day 2: From the ground to the skies

I Woke up at 8 am on my bunk bed, showered, cleaned up and headed straight for the complimentary breakfast downstairs.

We started our day heading north on Route 99, Sea to sky highway is one of the most scenic highways. There is plenty to do on the 120 km trip to Whistler. Pull over when you see Alice lake about 75 km into the drive or just pull over whenever you see a body of water, you are guaranteed to be amazed.

Brandywine Falls

Make sure to stop at the Brandywine Falls Provincial park, and take a short stroll through the woods, cross a railroad and shortly after that you are greeted by the Brandywine Falls.

Whistler

Whistler is one of the best ski towns in the world and it was also home to the 2012 Winter Olympics. It is hard not to like this place let alone all of Canada.

Bungee Jumping

We had planned all of the adventurous activities for one day. We started our action-packed day by Bungee Jumping or as my dear friend Nigam Patel would say “Jumping off a perfectly normal bridge”. Whistler Bungee is located just 15-minute south of Whistler village; it is the most exhilarating thing to do in Whistler.

As you arrive, you will cross the bridge to check in. However, there is an age limit for this activity. If you are over the age of 19, you can partake in this activity, but if you are under the age of 19, you need a parental consent form.

Luckily, I was not the first one to go, but my heart was pumping faster each time one of my friends took a leap. and when it was my turn, it was game over. Adrenaline hit me as soon as I realized it was my turn to go down. Heart pumping, hands sweating, stepping on the ledge of a 160 ft. high bridge with the glacier fed Cheakamus River flowing below you.

When its time to jump don’t forget to smile for the one site photographer, the photos can be purchased. Depending on the time of the year the height of the Cheakamus River is higher, so when you jump off you might dip your head or half your body in the river, probably the best way to take a shower if you ask me. Whistler Bungee has been open since 2002 and they haven’t had a single accident, their people have been in the bungee jumping industry for over 20 years, so trust that you are in good hands.

After having our bodies tossed from a bridge and having our stomachs turned upside down, it was time to fill them up. We headed back to Whistler Village to grab some lunch. We opened up yelp and found the best pizza place in Whistler Village, Pizzeria Antico.

They have a variety of choices, ranging from pizza, pasta, calzones and salads. I ordered the Napoletana, one of their best pizzas. Pizzeria Antico also offers a great list of beer and wine, some coming from local breweries and vineyards. If you love Pizza, this place is a must visit. It was the best pizza I have ever had.

Zipline

It was time to resume our action-packed day. We had booked a zipline adventure with Super Fly Ziplines, Whistlers only backcountry zipline experience. We had booked the 3-hour twilight ziplining tour for $129/person and $99/child. After parking and checking in, we were given our gear. Then we took a short dune buggy ride up the mountain. Our awesome guides gave us a quick lesson on the gear and safety.

We got to the first platform and there it was, Canada’s longest and highest zip line. They start you off with a line ranging 1 km than can reach speeds up to 100 km/hr – I know, right? There are 2 ziplines side by side, one for you and your friend.

I highly recommend this experience, it was so relaxing, gliding across the mountains over a beautiful forest with breath taking views. There are short walks from one platform to the next. At the last platform, the lines are closer to each other, so you can hold hands with your friend while you go down. It takes you right back to the base, where you parked your car.

After returning the gear, we hopped in the car and continued our journey to the town of Lillooet. The sun was beginning to set behind us as we drove through farm country with mountains in the background. We decided to eat dinner at a Thai restaurant in the middle of nowhere, let’s just say that the view was good, but the food wasn’t.


Day 3: Lillooet to Clearwater

We spent the night at the Canadas Best Value Inn Mile-0-Motel in the town of Lillooet.Since that Thai food wasn’t satisfying last night, we were pretty hungry in the morning. We grabbed breakfast at the local A&W joint and headed towards Clearwater

Clearwater is about 295 km, making it a 3.5-hour journey from Lillooet. Today’s agenda was whitewater rafting with Interior Whitewater Expeditions(IWE). We picked the “Ready-Set-Go” package for the seven of us, a 4-hour tour with $92 per person.

What to wear?

You are going to get wet, so just be ready for it. A bathing suit or board shorts is the best choice. You will be given a wet suit and a helmet when you get there. Leave all your belongings in the bus.

Once you arrive at the river, you and your group will have to carry your raft to the river – its actually heavier than it looks! Even if you are not an extreme adrenaline junkie – they offer different levels for rafting, everything from rookie to expert.

Off we go, once you are settled in the raft your instructor will give you a short lesson and tips on how to paddle, when to paddle and when to sit down. You will have to practice jumping in the water and pulling people out of the river – the water was cold!

It is a 4-hour tour, so there will be times where you will get rest. About half way, we pulled over to side of the river and had some fresh fruit, snacks and water provided by IWE.

Depending on the time of the year and the flow of the river, there are different class rapids ranging from 1-5, the higher the number the more FUN!! Our awesome instructor was from Argentina, and he has been doing rafting tours for about 15 years. He was very passionate about his job, so we trusted him and were in good hands.

My advice is once you are in the raft, just enjoy the ride, have fun, and be present in the moment. As IWE likes to say “Its Mother Nature’s Roller Coaster”.

As the tour came to an end, we carried the raft back to the bus, put it on tow rack and headed back to our cars. I cannot emphasize enough how well organized this adventure was, IWE does an amazing job at keeping their customers satisfied, I already want to go back and do it again.

Before getting back on the highway, about 5 minutes away from IWE, there is a Dutch Lake. We decided to stop there and take a quick dip; the water was so perfect in the summer time – still brings memories! Some of us decided to jump in the water and swam to the dock in the middle of the lake and just spend some time there.

It was time to call it a day and head to our hotel in Blue River, Glacier Mountain Lodge.


Day 4: Blue River to Jasper

We grabbed our complimentary breakfast at Glacier Mountain Lodge and headed out for Jasper. Jasper is 211 km from Blue River, giving us plenty of time mingle, chat, and laugh. If there is one thing we did on this trip over and over again was laugh just absurd amounts of it.

Today’s plan was to mountain bike down the mountains around jasper, but there was so much smoke and haze in the air due to the fire at the time we decided it probably wasn’t the best idea. We instead decided to just explore and do some sightseeing around Jasper National Park.

But before leaving, we grabbed some lunch at the Jasper Curry Place. During lunch they offer an all-you-can-eat buffet with about 15 different types of tasteful dishes and the best part is their unlimited Garlic Naan.

Maligne Lake

About an hour southwest from the town of Jasper is Maligne Lake. We wasted no time and headed straight for the lake. Got there and spend some time on the dock, taking in the views and the fresh air.

Shortly after we started walking alongside the lake through water and dirt until we felt liked stopping. Finally came to a stop, and what do I see? My friend hanging in his hammock and sipping on a cold one, I just had to go and experience it myself – it was awesome!

We made our way back to downtown Jasper. We were hungry and thirsty; Jasper Brewing Company was the perfect the perfect solution. They have a great selection of food, beer and cocktails. I tried their Jasper the Bear Ale, mainly because of the name but It was actually pretty good. If you are not sure what to order, get a flight of beers to start with. Order the fried chicken sandwich and you are in good hands – don’t forget to add the bacon!

The weirdest thing happened, we walked out of the brewery at about 10 pm and it was still day light out, I was so surprised!

During July the average day is 16 hours long, making it the perfect time to visit. We headed to our reservation for the night at Tara Vista Inn.


Day 5: Ice fields Parkway

There are ten provinces in Canada, I think Alberta is the most beautiful among all of them, but that’s just me. We hoped on the Ice Fields Parkway highway and headed south.

Athabasca Falls

Our first stop was at the Athabasca Falls, a short 30-minute drive from Jasper. When you get there, it’s a 5-minute walk from the parking lot to the view point. We got lucky because during July the falls are roaring at full capacity due to all the snow melting.

Spent some time admiring natures perfect creation and headed down the stairs behind us to the river. The bank of the river was filled with rocks, visitors had built their own “Rock Balancing” statues so we decided to add to the collection. If you go there I highly recommend trying to build one (send me a pic!)

Another 20 minutes on the highway and you will see the Sunwapta Falls. We didn’t get a chance to stop, but now that I think about it we should have.

Columbia Ice fields

We headed straight towards the Columbia Ice fields, the largest ice field in the Canadian Rockies. Athabasca Glacier is one of the “toes” of the ice fields.

From far the glacier seem tiny, but up close it is a whole different thing. According to research, these ice fields started forming about 240,000 and ice has been piling up ever since. They cover an area 125 square miles and 1200 feet deep, just to put things in perspective that is higher than the Empire State Building. The glacier shown above covers an area of 6 square km and can be up to 900 feet thick in some places.

Where to Park?

Park at the Columbia Ice fields Discovery Centre. Enjoy gourmet dining at the Altitude Restaurant with breathtaking views, take a stroll through the Chalet shop they offer various teas, coffees, and snacks, grab a souvenir to add to that collection at home.

There are 2 ways to experience the Ice fields, either you walk to the toe of the ice fields or you can take a tour. We walked to the toe, when I got there I couldn’t believe what I was seeing. I mean how can a river of ice be so mesmerizing. The glacier use to stretch all the way to the discovery centre, but human foot print has receded it back almost a 1.5 km in 125 years.

If you have a higher budget, I recommend doing the Columbia Ice field glacier adventure. Buy your tickets at the discovery centre for $90/adult and $45/child. A bus will pick you up and drive to the glacier. From there you will get in a different bus specifically designed for glacier travel. The tour takes you up much higher into the Athabasca Glacier, and you get a chance to step off the bus and walk on the glaciers. You can see how big the glacier is in comparison to the red bus.

Entering Banff

We hoped back on to the Icefields Parkway Highway and headed towards Banff. At the edge of Banff and just off the highway lies something truly spectacular, Peyto Lake. Take the Bow summit exit, and you are almost there.

There are two ways to get to the main view point, there is a drop off zone for passengers at the top or if you are feeling a little adventurous like us, park your car at the main parking lot and do a short 10-minute hike up to the view point. Either way you are guaranteed to be blown away by what you are about to experience.

This is one of the most scenic places in all of Canada and the most visited, it is very busy during the summer.

Make sure to grab some awesome pictures, to show your family and friends back home. A guaranteed question they will ask you, “Is that the real color?” or “That’s photoshopped, there is no way the water is THAT blue”.

When I got to the top, I was speechless. I couldn’t comprehend in my mind; how beautiful this place was. We spent some time sitting on the rocks, taking some pictures, and enjoyed the serenity of the lake. It is places like this that make me really appreciative how beautiful our world truly is and we should cherish it.

10 minutes down the road, is another blue body of water; Mistaya Lake. There is no viewpoint like Peyto Lake, but it is definitely worth checking it out. There are also campsites available along side the lake. We parked our car in the parking lot and walked to the edge of the lake, depending on the time of the year the lake can be closer or farther from you.

Driving on the Icefields Parkway Highway is the best it gets, huge mountains, lush greenery and epic bodies of water are guaranteed to melt your heart. After Mistaya Lake we headed towards our hotel in Golden. On the way we pulled over at a rest stop and started playing hacky sack, one of the best memories of my life. Just my friends, I, and the Canadian Rockies surrounding us; at that moment life was at its best, at that moment.


Day 6: Glacier National Park, and more lakes…

We had a lot to cover today, so we had to get up early this time. There is only 2 days left (don’t want go home). We checked out of our room at the Ponderosa Motor Inn in Golden and headed to Glacier National Park. It is only a 30 minute drive on the Trans-Canada Hwy/BC-1.

Glacier National Park is a year-around paradise. From the snow covered rockies in the winter to the glacial fed rivers in the summer, you are never to be disappointed. 2017 was Canada’s 150th birthday, so all the parks had free entry. Check out this link to find prices for all the parks in Canada.

We parked and headed for the trails, there is one main trail that takes you in to the park from the parking lot. Just keep following the trail and you will enter the forest, shortly after you will arrive at the river, look for a wooden bridge and two red chairs. The river was flowing at full speed and the air was very fresh. We spent some time relaxing at the bridge and shortly after headed back to the car.

Canoeing on the Blue waters of Lake Louise!

Lake Louise is in the heart of Banff National Park and it is the most visited location. You will find tourist’s there every day of the year. My best advice is getting there super early, I am talking about like 6 or 7 am. If you want the lake to yourself and enjoy the sunrise, before the storm of tourist start to get there. We got there around 10 am and the lake was crawling with tourist, everyone trying to get that perfect picture for their Instagram. Just a piece of advice you are never going to get that perfect picture. Everyone is trying to get the same picture from the same spot, walk along the side of the lake and grab a few shots from there, you will be much satisfied.

This is one of those things you must do, we didn’t plan on Canoeing but when we got there and saw the view and the color of the water everyone wanted to get in on the action.

During Summer it is very busy, so the lines can be very long and the wait can be more than an hour sometime. Get there when they open at 11 am or during evening hours around 5 or 6 pm to skip the line.

The prices are $105 per hour or $95 for half hour, you might as well get the whole hour. Each canoe can fit 3 people, one in the front, middle and back.

We wasted no time, got in our canoe and headed straight for the other end of the lake. After barely making it half way, we realized this lake is huge. Instead of going to the other side, we decided to just park our canoe’s in the middle of the lake and just enjoy the view. I can still see the exact color of the water when I close my eyes. – Let me know how your experience is in the comments.

Moraine Lake

Our next stop was Moraine Lake, trust me when I say; this place is Nature’s Mona Lisa. The natural beauty here is breathtaking and so surreal. Moraine Lake is a 20-minute drive from Lake Louise. There is one main parking lot right by the lake and there are 2 ways up to the main viewpoint.

Take a short walk up to the viewpoint or if you are feeling adventurous like us, walk across wooden logs on the water and climb the rocks up to the viewpoint.

I suggest you take the adventurous route, plus you might get to see one of your friends slip and fall in the water – Miraj Patel.

Moraine Lake is surrounded by the Valley of the Ten Peaks, the lake is glacier fed which gives it the vibrant turquoise blue color.

You can also rent a canoe or do some short hikes around the lake. The Lake is just half the size of Lake Louise but twice as more scenic.

The best time of the year to visit and see the true color of the lake is between late June to August. By summer the glaciers have melted, and the lake is full to the top. During the months of winter, the lake is fully frozen and can be just as beautiful. But some of the roads might be closed, check the local government website before you decide to make your way out there.

Banff

It was around 4 pm, we got to our room at the Banff Park Lodge, the Lodge Suite was perfect with 2 queen beds, a pull out double bed, and 2 bathrooms. The Lodge is surrounded by shops and restaurants within walking distance.

There was still some day light left, so we decided to go walk around and explore the small resort town of Banff. This place is surrounded by tall and beautiful mountains. Banff Ave. is filled with local shops that sell authentic souvenirs, gifts, and various art and photo galleries.

After walking around for a while, we started to get hungry so we decided to get some pizza. I don’t know what it is with Canada and Pizza, but they seem to know what they are doing. I know I said I had the best pizza in my life earlier in whistler, but this place is a close second. Bear Street Tavern offers great pizza and beer with such friendly staff.

Get a pie for yourself or split it with a friend, either way it will leave a lasting taste.

We slowly made our way back to the room to relax for a bit before we head out to celebrate our last night of the road trip.

Its about 9 pm and everybody had cleaned up and dressed for a fun night out. We started by a celebratory drink at the hotel bar and headed towards the town.

Our first stop was at the Elk & Oarsman kitchen & Bar; this place is like a cabin in the woods. Built with big timber logs and an open patio on the second floor, this place has a very home like feeling. They offer a wide selection of beers and spirits, it was also rated the Top 12 pubs in all of Canada.

As the night started to progress and our minds started to wander, me made our way to the Dancing Sasquatch. If you are looking to get you groove on and show off your dance moves this place is perfect. They do have an entry fee of around $10 depending on the day of the week.

The drinks started to pile up, going from bar to bar so some of us called it a night and some still wanted to party.

Its about 2 am, and the bars are closing. So we did what everyone does when they are drunk, grab some Pizza- I know right, again! But its just so good we couldn’t get enough of it. It was time to call it a night.


Day 7: Final day of the trip- 😦

Today was our official last day of the trip. I was feeling like vacation is over and now it’s time to go back to school. But I told my self that, I should be grateful for what I was able to experience and the memories that would last a life time.

We checked out of our room, grabbed some breakfast at the local Tim Hortons. It is a must visit if you are in any part of Canada, their breakfast and donuts are exceptionally yummy. We grabbed some beer from a local shop and drove to the Cave and Basin National Historic Site.

Start by walking around the discovery center, learn about the history of the Canada Parks and how they came to be, and then make your way to Canada’s most protected asset. An underground cave filled with a natural pool of water, be warned this place has a distinct smell from all the sulfur and minerals in the cave; just don’t breath through your mouth.

Don’t forget to check out the local musical performance.

Shortly after we made our way to a nearby lake. Just to relax and enjoy some cold beers while enjoying the views again (something you can never get enough of). About 30 minutes later, we were serenaded with a beautiful trumpet solo. To this day, I am not sure if it was a government employee or just random person, either way it was perfect.

Goodbyes are never easy!

Eventually all good things must come to an end. If you are anything like me, you are going to miss this beautiful country very much and you will remember it for years to come.

This place is still etched in my brain as if it was today.

We made our to way Calgary, an hour from Banff. We explored downtown for a few hours, and shortly after headed to the airport. Don’t forget to return your rental car.

I hope this itinerary helps you plan your perfect Canadian road trip. I want to hear all about your experience. If you have any questions, please comment below or email me.

Happy Travels!! 🙂


Go ahead an save this pin for later!

Best things to do in Rajasthan, India

When it comes to India you will experience nothing short from exotic. The food leaves a lasting memory, the people leave a smile on your face, the culture is everlasting. These are my favorite places to visit in Rajasthan, India.


Jaisalmer Fort

Waking up at your hotel, going to the roof and watching the sunrise as the sun shines over the fort in the distance, while sipping on a warm cup of coffee is a perfect way to start your exploring day in Jaisalmer.

The City of Jaisalmer, also know as the Golden City. Jaisalmer is located in the western most part of Rajasthan. The city was named after the King Jaisal Singh Maharajah who founded the city in 1156 AD.

The city’s most iconic attraction, Jaisalmer fort is located on a hill and can be seen from anywhere. The fort and the city below are both built with yellow sandstone, During sunset the whole city glows a golden yellow color, giving it the name “Golden City”.

The Fort was built in 1156 AD by Rawal Jaisal. At the time the whole city lived inside the fort, today a quarter of the city’s population still lives inside the fort. The fort is surrounded by 15ft walls forming all the way around the fort, the fort is 1,500 ft long and 750 ft wide.

There are several main attractions inside the fort. The Raj Mahal palace built with the typical Rajput architecture, overlooks the whole city and the whole Thar desert.

Jain heritage is deeply filled in Jaisalmer’s roots. There are several Jain temples inside the fort, seven to be exact. The most famous being the Lodhruva Jain Temple, known for its extremely detailed architecture and work of art.

All the temples and carvings are also built with the unique yellow stand stone found all over the city. The picture above is the ceiling for one of the many Jain temples. Handwork carved centuries ago is preserved and maintained to this day.


Gadsisar Lake

Gadsisar Lake is located in Jaisalmer, it was built in 1367. Take a short rickshaw ride to center of the cityet off on the street and it’s a 5 minute walk to the lake.Once upon a time the lake was the only source of water in Jaisalmer. The lake is surrounded by small temples on its banks.

Enjoy a boat ride on the serene waters of the lake. One can find themselves at peace just sitting by the lake. One of my favorite things to do was watching the sunset, it is so surreal.

Walk across the water on some rocks to get to one the domes in the lake. They are scattered all over the lake. The picture on the left is of one of them. Just make sure not to slip on the rocks.

Shop at the local stalls for some souvenirs. Everything from authentic pagdis(traditional head gear) to intricately carved statues of all sizes. Bargaining is a tool that can come handy, as locals tend to charge more if you look like a tourist.

 Pixabay Images
Pixabay Images


Bada Bagh

Bada Bagh is a memorial garden located 6 km north of Jaisalmer. Kings and Queens are commemorated at this peaceful place. Every King to this day that has ruled Jaisalmer, has his own chattri(centopah) along with his wives. Some had one wife, some had eleven, no that is not a typo, eleven wives.

The biggest chattri belongs to the first king of Jaisalmer, Jai Singh II. After that there was one build for every king of Jaisalmer, the latest one is from the 20th century build for King Jawahar Singh. Distant relatives also get a chattri as they are considered part of the royal family.

The picture above shows the centopah with the king’s tombstone in the middle. I am so grateful for sights like these and how they are well preserved for generations and for generations to come. Walking around different centopahs is literally like taking a stroll through the history of Jaisalmer. I couldn’t recommend this place enough.


Desert Safari

Ok, i am just going to say it, this was my favorite part of traveling Rajasthan. You have to do it, just do it. If you do end up doing the safari please leave a comment below and tell me how it was.

There are many cities that offer Safari’s, Jaisalmer by far gives you the best bang for your buck.

The company will pick you up from your hotel on a jeep. The Sam Sand Dunes are about 10km, enjoy a drive on the back of the open jeep.

The jeep will drive around the sand dunes up, down, sideways for a while. After the jeep ride, enjoy a camel ride while watching the sun dip into the dunes, if you feel adventurous go ahead and do the camel race for about 200 rupees, a small price to put on fun.

After the camel ride, the jeep will pick you up and take you back to their camp. When you walk in to the camp the first thing you want to do is grab a couch, this will give the best seats in the house for the traditional music & dance performance. Treat yourself with some snacks and drinks, everything is already included in the safari package so you don’t have to worry about pulling out your wallet.


Exploring the Blue City of Jodhpur

 Pixabay Images
Pixabay Images

The city of Jodhpur is the largest in Rajasthan with a population of 1.5 million . The city was founded in 1459 by Rao Jodha. Before visiting I had seen thousands of picture on Instagram of Jodhpur, something that i am trying not to do much. I takes away from the experience. Anyways…

So why is it named the Blue City of Jodhpur?

There are many reasons for the color blue. The Thar desert brings in record breaking heat every year, locals paint their homes blue to keep them cool during the summer months, the city is filled with a high population of Brahmins(priests) and blue is also the color of Lord Shiva, it’s not uncommon to see a Brahmin covered in blue walking around the city.

If you want to know everything there is to know about Jodhpur and its history, i suggest starting by visiting the Mehrangarh Fort in the center of the city. Mehrangarh Fort stands tall on a hill over looking the entire city. It is one of the oldest forts in all of India. When I walked up to the fort I kept asking myself, how did they build this place with no machinery, no modern tools and no electricity; It leaves you in awe.

There is a admission fee of 400 rupees, also if you plan on taking a camera just know there is a fee of 100 rupees.

Take an elevator ride 120 feet up to the top of the fort. Fun fact the elevator was built completely by hand and no machinery was used. At the top you get a marvelous view of the city, you can see the whole city covered in blue houses.

For being the one of the largest forts in India, it contains some of the most preserved artifacts in its museum. Everything from weapons, paintings, and original garments worn by kings and queens.

The picture above is of a Dolly, this is how the King and Queen would travel, If they needed to go anywhere in the city or 100 miles away. They would be carried on shoulders of 6 men, 3 in the front and 3 in the back. Must be nice to be carried wherever you want to go.

Wait there is more….

Before leaving don’t forget to go check out the historic museum in the fort. The museum is towards the end of the tour, it offers a variety of souvenirs. Everything from clothing, fabrics, to jewelry, hand made marble coasters and much more.  


Food, food and more food…

I know what you are thinking, if I am going to be exploring all day, where am I going to eat? When it comes to Indian food, Rajasthan is on the top of the list.

Rajasthani Thali

If you have never had a “Thali” before, specifically “Rajasthani Thali”. Get ready for a culinary ride of a lifetime. A Thali is a steel plate, with small steel bowls about 5 to 6. Something for every palate, sweet, spicy, sour, creamy.

Gypsy Pure Veg Family Restaurant in Jodhpur serves a traditional Rajasthani Thali, everything from Dal Batti to various vegetable items to rotis(indian flatbread) and its is all you can eat, they will keep serving you until you tell them to stop. The food is so good you are not going to want to stop eating. Don’t forget to order a lassi to wash down with your food , a popular traditional yogurt-based drink.


Ghanta Nagar & Toorj Ka Jalhra

Okay so you checked out the forts , the lakes, you even got a taste of Rajasthan delacies. Take a short drive through Ghanta Nagar, most famous for the historic bell tower and shops.

Ghanta Nagar in Jodhpur is filled with people and local street vendors, if you are walking through expect to get stopped by a local trying to sell you something. I got stopped by a guy who was selling flutes and ended up buying one.

A hidden gem you must visit…

Walking through the streets of Ghanta Nagar, in a residential area lies a hidden gem. Just ask any local to point you towards the Toorj Ka Jalhra, a local step well used to store water in ancient times and now a popular tourist attractions and swimming hole for local kids.

I had seen this place on Instagram and just like any other tourist, when I got there I started snapping away on my camera to try and get the perfect picture. Something I hate doing, usually I like to take in the moment and appreciate the place but this place was so photogenic. Be sure to walk down the steps to the water (don’t slip on the algae) or you can just sit back and relax on the steps.


Udaipur, City of Lakes

Udaipur, otherwise know as “City of Lakes” is located in the southern part of Rajasthan. The city was founded in 1559 by Maharana Udai Singh II.

The City Palace over looks the city on one side and Lake Pichola on the other. The palace being the newest among all of Rajasthan, is well taken care of and very tidy. My favorite part was seeing the hotel in the middle of the lake from the palace balcony.

Lake Pichola, was artificially created in 1362 AD. Like many lakes around Rajasthan Lake Pichola was used as a storage unit to supply drinking water for the locals. In the middle of the lake, is a hotel, Yes a hotel. The Taj Lake hotel is a luxurious icon of Udaipur, it was originally built for the king as a vacation home right across from his palace, a bit odd if you ask me. But i guess since you can’t leave the city if you are the King of it.

Get your shopping fix on…

After checking out the palace, get your shopping done at Jagdish Temple Street . It is walking distance from the City Palace. There are various shops on both sides of the street that sell authentic fabrics, pashmina, shawls, traditional clothing & fabrics, leather goods like bags, belts, shoes. While you are at it try a refreshing lime soda from one of the street vendors, just make sure to tell them to use mineral water.


 

So that was it, my trip to Rajasthan, India was one for the books and hopefully I can make it back there soon. I hope you enjoy every moment, sunset, sunrise, dish, camel ride and appreciate what this beautiful desert oasis has to offer.

Do you recommend any other places to visit in Rajasthan? Are you going to Rajasthan? Let me know in the comments below.