Sunday, May 21, 2017

Jim Corbett National Park - The Best Of Nature and Indian Culture

During my short India trip, I was lucky to visit Jim Corbett National Park the last week. This park is a part of the larger Corbett Tiger Reserve, a Project Tiger Reserve lies in the Nainital district of Uttarakhand. The magical landscape of Corbett is well known and fabled for its tiger richness. Established in the year 1936 as Hailey National Park, Corbett has the glory of being India's oldest and most prestigious National Park. It is also being honored as the place where Project Tiger was first launched in 1973. This unique tiger territory is best known as the father who gave birth of the Project Tiger in India to protect the most endangered species and the Royal of India called Tigers. 

Apart from tiger reserve, there is a lot more to discover nearby. If you have time and desire to experience Indian culture in the middle of nature then Jim Corbett is the best place to visit. Here is a quick snapshot of my amazing trip which will give you an idea of nature, culture and adventure you could expect here. 




Rest of the article will be divided in the following sections along with lots of useful tips:

  1. Key attractions and tips about these attractions
  2. What to Expect in Jim Corbett and Golden Rules
  3. Where to stay to get closer to the local culture

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Let's Talk About Spring

Spring is one of the four conventional temperate seasons, following winter and preceding summer. There are various technical definitions of spring, but local usage of the term varies according to local climate, cultures and customs. When it is spring in the Northern Hemisphere, it will be autumn in the Southern Hemisphere and vice versa. At the spring equinox, days are approximately 12 hours long with day length increasing as the season progresses.

During early spring, the axis of the Earth is increasing its tilt relative to the Sun, and the length of daylight rapidly increases for the relevant hemisphere. The hemisphere begins to warm significantly, causing new plant growth to "spring forth," giving the season its name.

Snow begins to melt, swelling streams with runoff and frosts become less severe. In climates that have no snow, and rare frosts, air and ground temperatures increase more rapidly.

Alright, no more boring facts. Let's start with some of the cool facts about this amazing season:



Spring and "springtime" refer to the season, and also to ideas of rebirth, rejuvenation, renewal, resurrection and regrowth. People start to "Spring Into Happiness". I visited Algonquin National Park and Muskoka during mid-jury and I was very pleased to see the variety and unadulterated beauty of the nature. It felt like life is coming back to earth after a very cold winter season. You can peek into my experience through the following video. I just loved it. Please subscribe to my channel if you like the videos. I will be sharing lot more to keep you entertained and informed.



Many flowering plants bloom at this time of year, in a long succession, sometimes beginning when snow is still on the ground and continuing into early summer. In normally snowless areas, "spring" may begin as early as February (Northern Hemisphere), heralded by the blooming of deciduous magnolias, cherries, and quince, or August (Southern Hemisphere) in the same way. Many temperate areas have a dry spring, and wet autumn (fall), which brings about flowering in this season, more consistent with the need for water, as well as warmth. Subarctic areas may not experience "spring" at all until May.

Friday, March 31, 2017

Best Places to See in Atlantic Canada

ATLANTIC / MARITIME CANADA is a historic region to visit with nature all around. This blog is from our short trip to New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, & Prince Edward Island that covers some of the most beautiful places in Canada. This was an amazing family trip and I highly recommend everyone to visit this part of Canada. You can also be part of our trip by watching the following video.


BIRD'S EYE VIEW OF THE TRIP


NEW BRUNSWICK

Lots of people prefer to drive from Toronto to New Brunswick, however it's a very long and dry journey. As it would have been a problem for parents to sit for long hours, we took a flight from Moncton. We choose Moncton over Halifax as flight tickets were significantly cheaper and we needed to go to Hopewell Rocks anyways which is very close to Moncton. We rented van and went to the Hopewell Rocks directly from the Airport. Here are the key attractions we covered in New Brunswick:

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

The Best Places To See in Banff and Jasper

Overview

There is beauty all around rockies and vista points are every few miles. You can review comprehensive itinerary here, however, if you have limited time, I recommend you to cover places listed in this blog. I have indicated time you approximately need to see these places. As most places have many trails, it's up-to-you how much time you would like to spend. My estimates will help you in planning but nature will ultimately decide it's own course as you go. You could see things beyond imagination. Just relax and enjoy what comes in your way. 




Scenic Highways 


Drives are very scenic on all these highways and wild life will keep appearing on the way. It is common to see people stopover on highway to capture scenic beauty and wild animals. Sometimes this could also cause jams. Drive safe and be ready for WOW moments.

1. Bow Valley Parkway a.k.a Hwy 1A
2. Icefileds Parkway a.k.a. Hwy 93
3. Parkway 93A (7 km From Jasper): An alternate route between Jasper town site and Athabasca Falls, following the old highway. Several scenic picnic areas with names like Otto’s Cache and Meeting of the Waters are found along the way. The Mt. Edith Cave ll road be gins at km 2.5 . Wabasso Campground is located at km 4.5. Access the Moab Lake fire road at km 10.

Recommended Itinerary for Banff and Jasper

Overview:

Starting on the fringe of the Great Plains and climbing through the incomparable mountain scenery of Banff and Jasper National Parks, this magnificent drive is one of the crown jewels of western Canada which combines exhilarating vistas of forest, crag, and glacier.

The route begins near Calgary, heads west 84 miles (135 kilometers) to the border of Banff, then goes 36 miles (58 kilometers) to the northwest through the heart of Banff to Lake Louise. For 144 miles (232 kilometers), the route follows the Icefields Parkway, one of the world's most stunning roadways, farther north to Jasper. Along the way, look for elk, bears, and other wild creatures; stop to take guided hikes, tour historic buildings, and attend a campfire chat.

One could spend entire life enjoying beauty in these rocky mountains. This blog is based on my own trip with family. i am sharing this to give you a flavour or what you could do during a week long trip. If you have even less time in Banff and Jasper then you can focus on the best spotsWith unpredictable mother nature, you will be bound to adjust as you go but if you are aware of your route than you can quickly adjust and get the most out of your trip. I hope you will find this blog useful. 

Be prepared to experience what I experienced when it was least expected. 


Here are answers to some of the common questions people ask me about planning their trip before reviewing detailed itinerary:

  • How long was this trip? 
1 week. I wished I had more time but I could spend months here. 1 week is reasonable amount of time for this trip.

  • I booked my flight but I can't find hotels esp in Jasper? Do I need to cancel my trip? 

Hopefully not. If you try to look for multiple days hotel in one search then chances are less likely that you will not see any hotel in search results. Jasper is too busy in summers. If you search for hotel 1 day at a time, you will have better luck finding hotels right in Banff and Jasper. You may have to switch hotels but that's probably not that bad as you will be able to get different views from your rooms. Also, many people do multiple bookings and do cancellations 2-3 weeks before their trip, hence, don't loose your heart and keep trying. It's more fun staying in Banff and Jasper itself.


  • How is weather in summers? Do I need jackets? 


Weather is very unpredictable, hence, be prepared for lots of rain which makes morning and evening bit cold (10-15 C). Also, if you plan to go to glaciers then you can expect freezing temperatures. You may need rain, spring and light winter jackets. You could manage with just one decent spring jacket and umbrella though. Plan more carefully if you have young kids though. Afternoons are pretty nice most of the days in summer.


  • Do I need to pack some food?


There are not many options for food when you are not in  the major attractions. Keeping some snacks esp if you have kids is highly suggested as you may not find any food joint for few hours. Trail mix from costco was very handy.

  • Any other thing to consider?
Expect lots of mosquitos so keep mosquito repellent handy. Also,  you could see bears and other wildlife multiple times. If you are with many people and cars around then probably there is less risk but if you are planing to explore in less visited areas then using bear spray may be a good idea. Please do some due diligence to get yourself prepared to deal with wild life. Respect wild life and don't underestimate their power. Visit here for more details. 

  • Do you have more questions?
Please post your comments in this blog or on my view on youtube. I will try my best to help you. I will keep refining this blog to make it even more useful, hence, your feedback is welcomed.

Day 1: Calgary to Banff 


Hwy 1 (alternatively take Hwy 1 a.k.a. Vow Valley Parkway) —> Lanke Minnewanka Scenic Drive
  • Cascade Ponds: Cascade Pond is a day use area that has fire pits, picnic tables and toilets. There is usually wood for a fire, but this is not always the case. You can walk around the pond and have a little picnic with your friends and family. There are 2 shelters in the event of rain, but they are first come, first serve.

Sunday, April 17, 2016

Enjoying Heaven On Earth On Bike

28 May 2017

We did lots of biking today with two different groups at Eldorado Park and Kelso Conservation Area in Milton.  Kelso is really amazing place for easy trails around the beach and difficult trails up the hill. Going up the hill was a great experience and view from the top was just perfect. We crossed Gateway To Heaven which gave us few min to catch our breath before biking even higher. We didn't take the easy route of steep road. We biked through the trails for real exploration.


I highly recommend you to go this conservation area with your friends and family where some can enjoy breeze around the beach and others can go up the hill. Beach is not good for swimming though. Boating is another great attraction here. I will be visiting here again with GoPro to give you a view of how amazing ride it was up the hill. Also, I am eagerly waiting to take pictures from here during fall season. Let me know if you would like to join for some adventure.