Swar Shah

travellersoul

Swar Shah

Learning to be better travellers every single time.
Suffer from FOMO - too little time, too much to see.
Proactive in traveling, procrastinator in documenting.

Blogs not updated yet:
Singapore, Bintan Islands, India (Punjab, Jmmu, Kerala, Himchal, MP), 3 months in Europe, Oman, UK, Krabi.



Asia » India » Himachal Pradesh » Kaza October 15th 2014

I grew up in the era when once a year we got to watch “The Great Himalayan Rally” on Doordarshan. As a kid, I was extremely fascinated but never imagined myself being part of something like that! Two decades later, a friend came up with an idea to participate in a car rally in Himalaya, which was dismissed at an early stage by various stake holders. Two years later, in 2011, having watched Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara, Himalayan Rally was again part of our frequent discussions. However, for some reason or other nothing was materialized for another two years. However, during this time period, we did some homework and learnt more about this rally, which burst a number of misconceptions. Rally and race are quite different. Specifically, the one we were looking at: Raid de Himalaya ... read more
4am start
RDH 2014
Kaza

Europe » Hungary » Central Hungary » Budapest February 27th 2013

This blog is part of our 4 months long European adventure back in 2013. Due to sheer laziness, the blog has been published now. There would be other blogs from the same expedition, but not in any particular order. Preface In February 2013, apart from our local weekend trips in Germany, Shreya & I started looking at key European destinations and decided to kick off our expedition from an Eastern European country - Hungary. The weather in this area was much better than the Western Europe during the end of February. In order to reach Budapest from Vallendar, going via Munich would have worked the best for us as we already had a German Rail Pass. There is an overnight train from Munich to Budapest which requires prior reservation. You have an option of travelling by ... read more
Veg. food @ Budapest
Parliament
The Parliament

Asia » Sri Lanka May 7th 2011

(This post is an overview of my Sri Lanka trip. There will be location specific posts of our whole expedition - hopefully soon!.) Last year was very hectic for both of us and excluding a couple of short trips we pretty much didn't travel at all! Fortunately this May, both of us could take some time off together. We initially considered a number of places but zeroed down to Sri Lanka due to plethora of activities - archaeological sights, beach, scuba, hiking, rafting, wild-life safaris, shopping - all in one single vacation! We are absolutely glad that we did so :-). Initially, we considered using public transport to get around the island and make it a semi-backpacking trip. However, when we tried to fit everything we wanted to do in SL in 11 days, we realized ... read more
Royal Palace of Polonnaruwa
Jumbo
Buddh Purnima

Asia » India » Rajasthan » Jaisalmer November 4th 2010

We left Kiradu around 6pm and reached Jaisalmer around 8pm. We already had our reservation at Hotel Raj Mandir, which is located ON the walls of the fort. Jaisalmer is the only live-in fort in India. The life inside the fort is amazing – narrow streets, colorful shops, numerous eating joints, and a few touristy places. We selected a hotel inside the fort to have some ‘heritage’ feel. Our small hotel has only 6 rooms and a roof-top dining area, but the views from the room and the roof-top are breath-taking! (The above sunrise panorama was taken from the room.) Date: 4-Nov-2010 Next morning, we woke up around 8, got ready, had our breakfast at the hotel, and left for sight-seeing around 10am. The owner of the hotel had made arrangements for the guide. I would ... read more
The Golden City
Jaisalmer Fort
Jaisalmer Fort

Asia » India » Rajasthan » Barmer November 3rd 2010

Some time back I had read about ancient temples at Kiradu in Rajasthan. Ever since, it was in my list of the "must visit places". During our Jaisalmer-Jodhpur trip, we ensured not to miss Kiradu! We drove down to Barmer via Palanpur, Deesa, Sanchor,... and asked for directions to the 'Kiradu temples' near Barmer. It is a pity that being such an amazing archeological wonder of the country, it is not much heard of. However, it is very much accessible by car. When we reached there, the main gate was closed and looked like it had been closed for a very long time! As per the written timings, it should have been open; however, there was no trace of the ticket window either! We found a small gate, just besides the main gate (not so visible), ... read more
Kiradu-2
Pillars
Kiradu-3

Asia » India » Rajasthan » Kumbalgarh January 29th 2010

Shreya & I visited Rajasthan for our 2nd anniversary extended weekend. We drove to Ranakpur via Udaipur first. It took us 5.5 hours to reach Ranakpur Jain Temple. The roads are in great condition except last 30kms of single lane road. There was some really bad landslide last week in this area, and one side of the road was blocked causing us to take detours. Ranakpur is located in Pali district near Sadri village. Its very famous Jain Temple was constructed in 14th century by one of the minister of erstwhile ruler of Mewar Rana Kumbha. The temple is truly a flawless piece of architecture. It is a four-faced temple with 1444 marble pillars and 3 floors. If you are planning to visit the Jain Temple, please keep in mind that before 12pm, it is closed ... read more
Ranakpur Jain Temple
Kumbhalgarh Fort at Night
Shreya & I

North America » United States » California » Oroville September 6th 2008

Along with my 5 friends, I visited Lake Oroville in Northern California for a fun day-trip on 6th September. It is little less than 4 hours drive from San Jose. This little known place (to us) is a hidden gem! We rented a speed boat and knee-board.. so much fun to play around in the water! One can even rent house boats here. This place was not over crowded, which gave us lot of space for some speed-boating. ... read more
Maniac Boat Driver
Navigator
The Crew

North America » United States » Florida » Miami July 7th 2008

We had planned the fourth day as a free day to visit some place we had missed out on. After having so much fun at Florida Keys, we had zeroed down to two options for the fourth day: Kennedy Space Center or Miami Seaquarium. We decided to visit Miami Seaquarium & other places in Miami due to weather forecasts and distance we'd have to travel to visit KSC. We totally want to visit KSC in future! I have been to San Diego Sea World and I was expecting same kind of fun here. It was a great day.. sunny and no sign of rain. The visit was quite informative and fun-filled as well. However, there is no doubt, San Diego Sea World has more to offer! Although, it comes with a cost. Sea World is always ... read more
Shreya & I
Bayshore
Flipper Show


Apologies for taking soooooo long to publish this blog! I have another 6 pending blogs and I promise to finish them without any delay! On our third day of florida trip, we wanted to spend the whole day at Everglades National Park. Everglades, famous for crocodiles and alligators and other reptiles, is the largest subtropical wilderness in United States. Although, we knew it was the wrong season (wet season) to visit the park, we were determined to encounter some alligators! We started early from our hotel, however, on the way, experienced one of the heaviest rain of our lives. We were on the freeway when it started raining and visibility was down to zero. We had to take an exit and lookout for a shelter. We parked our car and went to Dunkin’ Donuts. Generally people ... read more
Airboat Ride
Turtle
Crocodile

North America » United States » Florida » Miami Beach July 5th 2008

On July 5th morning, we left Key West and started driving east bound on the Overseas Highway. We made a few stops at various vista points along the way. The 3 hours drive on the Overseas Highway (also known as Florida Highway 1) is truly picturesque. Our first major stop was Bahia Honda State Park. This state park consists of a couple of beaches and a short walk to the broken old bridge overlook. Bahia Honda was awarded the best beach in the continental United States twice. Undoubtedly, the beach is award worthy. You can see the new overseas highway on one side and the old broken railroad bridge on the other side! The panorama on the top is a picture taken at Bahia Honda. We walked to the broken old bridge overlook and back, spent ... read more
South Beach
Lincoln Road Pedestrian Mall
Bahia Honda State Park




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