Memories of India

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Jan 19th, 2018, 05:53 AM
  #21
 
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Hmm, I posted a brief comment, but it doesn't seem to be here... (and jft, I posted earlier on my desktop computer. I don't use my phone).

sartoric, another lovely photo! I love how the birds are soaring upward - feels like the gods are there, too!

It's still a year away, but your photos are getting me so excited about our intended trip to S. India!! So enjoying seeing these photos.
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Jan 19th, 2018, 09:06 AM
  #22
 
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Thanks for posting your itinerary, jft. It does look rather "busy" for me but OTOH you won't be bored. you ar seeing what you want to see and that's the main thing.

progol - I was locked out completely for most of today so you are not alone in your problems with having posting here.
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Jan 19th, 2018, 12:36 PM
  #23
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jft, our driver quickly sussed out our main interests and planned stops accordingly. Hopefully yours will do the same. We had a guided walk through Chidambara Villa and then lunch there, it’s a beautiful building and the food was great. I’m tempted to post a photo of it for you, but it’s a real challenge choosing only one of the days photos, we took about 50 each day !
I’m so excited for you, your trip will be amazing. Please tell us all about it.

annhig, thanks for your compliment.. and not to burst your bubble, you’ll find when you get to Southern India that this Dravidian style temple architecture is very common, none the less stunning.

Calinurse, a question for you...if you were to be in India for Diwali, would you choose Amritsar or Jaipur for the festival ?

progol, I had posting problems too yesterday, looks like that glitch has been routed though. I can’t wait to read all about your time in southern India, you will love it.
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Jan 20th, 2018, 01:00 AM
  #24
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Daily life goes on around one of the largest temple chariots in India.
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Jan 20th, 2018, 04:23 AM
  #25
 
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Oh, that's wonderful! You've got most of the transportation options in your photo! I've never seen a temple chariot before, though - what is that for? It's so beautifully carved, too.
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Jan 20th, 2018, 04:31 AM
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My question too - what exactly is a temple chariot used for?
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Jan 20th, 2018, 01:53 PM
  #27
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They’re ceremonial, used to move the temples deity around during festivals. Here’s a link.
https://www.hinduismtoday.com/module...hp?itemid=5687
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Jan 20th, 2018, 02:02 PM
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To answer your question, Sartoric, i would chose Amritsar over Jaipur for any reason! They both celebrate Diwali but for different reasons --Hindu vs Sikh. I LOVE Amritsar, but won't go into detail here unless you specifically request it. (Are you considering a trip to Himachal Pradesh? Amritsar is the natural road gateway for the start of that area filled with marvelous "hidden gem" places!)

Jft, as Sartoric said, just mention to your driver what interests you. Most drivers--the true heroes of India trips, imho-(which you'll understand after seeing the roads)-- will in any case point out things you'd have missed, or for which you might understand the significance. If there's something you notice and want to stop, let the driver know. Again, check pre-trip information online booklet which you'll have received from your travel planner--iirc, there 's a section also on driver's role. (If you've not received that, ask your travel planner to email the attachment.)

Sartoric, I love your photos!! Not just the sites, but those surrounding, evocative details-- dusty roads, the beautiful light, even the pile of trash ! There's a fantastic lone-running thread on Indiamike called " You may be missing India , when you..." Highly recommended!
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Jan 20th, 2018, 07:32 PM
  #29
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I LOVE Amritsar, but won't go into detail here unless you specifically request it. (Are you considering a trip to Himachal Pradesh? Amritsar is the natural road gateway for the start of that area filled with marvelous "hidden gem" places!)

Yes, CaliNurse please tell me why you love Amritsar. I think Himachal Pradesh will be too cold for us in November, another time perhaps.
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Jan 21st, 2018, 03:57 AM
  #30
 
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Originally Posted by sartoric View Post
They’re ceremonial, used to move the temples deity around during festivals. Here’s a link.
https://www.hinduismtoday.com/module...hp?itemid=5687
Such a fascinating history! I love that the chariot festival, which had nearly died out, was brought back to life after the recreation of a new chariot. Very excited to go!
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Jan 21st, 2018, 04:38 AM
  #31
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Yes Paule, so much to learn, check out India mike as suggested by CaliNurse if you haven’t already.
Brihadiswara temple in Tanjore is from the Chola dynasty 1010 AD, added to over the centuries and a living temple to this day.


Tanjore is also famous for painting, here the ceiling of the palace museum.

Last edited by sartoric; Jan 21st, 2018 at 04:42 AM. Reason: Where’s the top of my temple gone ?
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Jan 21st, 2018, 11:19 PM
  #32
 
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Fantastic photos Sartoric. The colors of India enhanced in your pictures.

I've been to Rajasthan and to Jaipur in particular many times and on one occasion it was Diwali. Simply awesome. The atmosphere was electric.There was excitement everywhere. The festivities go on over 3-4 days.The marketplace,the fort and in general the whole city is lit.Here is a link to 'Diwali in Jaipur'.

10 Places You Must Visit In Jaipur During Diwali Festival - Beautiful Jaipur

Fireworks in major cities in India, especially Delhi is banned by the order of the Supreme Court due to pollution.But in cities like Jaipur the festivities go on unabated.Its a very big festivals for the Marwar region.The mercantile class celebrate the festival with gusto.Men women and children dressed in their finest attire. Lakshmi puja or a ceremony to invoke the goddess of wealth is performed in all shops and establishments during this time.There is festivities all around.
The calendar of event for Diwali 2018.

5th Nov'18 - Dhan teras. "Dhan" means wealth and "teras" refers to the 13th day of a lunar fortnight on the Hindu calendar.
The day people buy gold and welcome goddess lakshmi. The door are open throughout the night as people
gamble on the poker table.
6th Nov'18 Naraka Chaturdasi . Goddess Kali and Lord Krishna are believed to have
destroyed the demon Narakasura on this day.
7th Nov '18 is the new moon day known as Amavasya.This darkest day of the month is the most significant day of the Diwali
Lakshmi is worshiped on this day.
8th Nov'18 Balipadyami. Govardhan Puja is celebrated as the day when Krishna defeated Indra, the god of rain & thunder.
In south India its the celebration of the return of King Mahabali to earth.
9th Nov Bhai Duj. A day when brothere and sister get together to bond. More a family get together.

Block the dates & find yourself a penthouse suite in any of the hotels and get a ringside view of the night sky lit up by the fireworks,with the backdrop of the illuminated Amber Fort.Trident is a superb option to stay in .It offers fantastic views of the Mansagar Lake and Jal Mahal.

My vote is for Jaipur.
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Jan 22nd, 2018, 01:28 AM
  #33
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On the road somewhere between Madurai and Kerala is Usilampatti a large market town. It happened to be market day.

Thanks inquest, what a glowing recommendation for Diwali in Jaipur ! We stayed at the Trident Jaipur on our first India trip in 2013, memorable for me as I was confronted by machine gun armed guards on exiting the lift, they weren’t after me....

We’ll enjoy Diwali somewhere in India, still considering the itinerary, but Jaipur is a definite due to unbelievably cheap flights.
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Jan 22nd, 2018, 06:58 PM
  #34
 
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Love the lady's expression. Just about sums up why I love India.

If interested in visiting Amritsar, whether or not for Diwali or other festival, it should be part of a larger trip o the area (e.g. as said above ,heading into Himachal Pradesh), not just as a lone destination.
Our guide Gurinder Singh (who i indirectly learned of via a Fodors post years ago) was fantastic and i just learned, through researching his name, that he opened his place as a homestay. I'll post the tripadvisor reviews here because it looks like your kind of place, Sartoric ! If i were returning, i'd stay in a heartbeat because he is such a good and interesting guy!

https://www.tripadvisor.com/Hotel_Re...ct_Punjab.html

OK, back to memories of the South!
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Jan 22nd, 2018, 08:44 PM
  #35
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Thanks for that info CaliNurse. We hope for more homestays this trip and Gurinders place sounds great. Amritsar will definitely be a part of a larger trip, rambling around Rajasthan and perhaps Haridwar, but Himachal Pradesh will have to wait for another time when it’s warmer.

Meanwhile, on the road between Periyar and Pala we came across the weekly cattle market, look at those horns !

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Jan 23rd, 2018, 12:15 AM
  #36
 
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Yes, love those painted horns!! "Holy Cow!" Surprise--that patch of dirt looks completely clean!!
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Jan 23rd, 2018, 04:15 AM
  #37
 
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Oh, wonderful photo, once again, sartoric! I love the "horny" cows

After reading this thread, I realized that there is a good chance I'll be able to be in India for Pongal next January. I wonder where the best place to celebrate it would be - a large city with lots of crowds and activity or a smaller town with perhaps less activity but a more intimate experience? Or am I just wishing for the impossible? Anyone have any thoughts?

Loving your photos and your "memories of India". I'm so excited about returning next year!
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Jan 23rd, 2018, 11:51 PM
  #38
 
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Oh such a great pictures I want to get more
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Jan 24th, 2018, 04:36 AM
  #39
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Thanks progol, I think you’d enjoy Pongal wherever you are. We happened to arrive in Chennai in the early hours of Sunday morning so first saw decorated cows when driving out later at 9 am. Mahabalipuram was mobbed on the Sunday of the long weekend, and likewise on Monday Pondicherry was jam packed. The celebration seemed to go on for many more days.

Thanks wendelhill.

In Kerala at a homestay near Pali, misty morning.

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Jan 24th, 2018, 01:17 PM
  #40
 
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more lovely photos.

Can I ask how hot the south of India is in say, Jan or Feb? That's when I'd be thinking about going, if I go, next year.
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