Author: Bec

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On death in the spiritual capital of India: Varanasi

A trip to India isn’t complete without visiting its spiritual capital, Varanasi. It is the oldest living city in the world and is crafted around the Ganges – where 5 rivers meet and considered to be one of the holiest places in the world. It goes by a number of names, the other it is most recognised as is Benares.…

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On tea and trains in Darjeeling

We got to Darjeeling from Kathmandu by almost all modes of transport. We took a plane to Bhadrapur, then a taxi to the border town. After getting departure stamps from an immigration shack, we crossed the 1km international Nepal/India border bridge on foot (!) and hunted down another unremarkable immigration shack for international arrival stamps. We then took a shared…

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SPECIAL FEATURE // On Bhutan, land of the thunder dragon

I can say this with certainty: Bhutan is the most fascinating place I’ve ever encountered. I first heard about Bhutan in my Year 11 Economics class. It was mentioned fleetingly in documentary we were watching in class, but had always stuck in my mind. Bhutan is the world leader in measuring their economy’s success through Gross National Happiness. It makes…

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On Nepali misadventures: rain, rhinos and rowing // photo diary

Our time in Nepal was one of Plan Bs. Remember when I said that monsoon season that is ‘just a bit of water‘? Well I shot myself in the foot a little bit there. We were in Nepal for plus or minus 10 days. Five of those rained non-stop. I’m not exaggerating in the tiniest bit. Non-stop. And preceding our…

On Agra // Golden Triangle photo series part 3 - Taj Mahal

On Agra // Golden Triangle photo series part 3 ft. Taj Mahal

The final stop on the Golden Triangle tour was Agra, most famous for the gorgeous Taj Mahal. En route we stopped off at the palace of Fatehpur Sikri. Or should I say 3 palaces? The king who constructed it wasn’t entirely clear on his religious beliefs, so to cover his bases married a Muslim, a Hindu, and a Christian, each…

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On Jaipur // Golden Triangle photo series part 2

After Delhi we headed to our second city stop on the Golden Triangle tour – Jaipur, the Pink City. Some centuries ago a King wanted to welcome the British to the area and decided to paint the whole town the colour of hospitality, and there has since been a law to keep all buildings in the centre that exact colour.…

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On Delhi // Golden Triangle photo series part 1

    India’s Golden Triangle – Delhi, Agra and Jaipur – is a trifector of astonishing craftsmanship, architectural feats around every corner, and a hell of a lot of traffic. Being short on time, we decided to take a tour of the three cities, culminating in a whirlwind adventure. Ordinarily I am not a fan of tours, but we had…

On Leh, the adventure capital of the Indian Himalayas

On Leh, the adventure capital of the Indian Himalayas

At a staggering 3,500m, the ‘Land of High Passes’ literally takes your breath away. After an unquestionably stunning flight from Delhi to Leh, located in India’s north west, nestled in Jammu & Kashmir, the first thing you’ll notice is how thin the air is. It certainly takes some acclimatisation. Its high season is July and August, as snow covers the…

On a spectacular flight into the Himalayas: photos

On a spectacular flight into the Himalayas: photos

I used every fibre of my being to get a window seat on the commercial flight from New Delhi to Leh, Ladakh, situated in the north west of India in the Himalayas. It was even better than I could’ve hoped for. The range first cropped up as snow covered peaks above the clouds, which cleared to give a breathtaking panroama…

On beginners' Vipassana Meditation in the Himalayas - Bhante Rahula

On beginners’ vipassana meditation in the Himalayas

I have never meditated before, but for some reason – I don’t even remember how or why – I thought doing a meditation retreat was what I should do when in India. I had planned to visit a beautiful area called Ladakh in the north west in the Indian Himalayas and thought there’s probably not a better place to start…