By Divya Kamboj
There are some places in the world where you know adventure won’t be hard to find. New Zealand, the self-proclaimed adrenaline capital of the world, is one of them. In fact, any place with mountains is a good bet.
But there are other destinations that are better known for more low-key affairs. You can find adventure options in the unlikeliest of places, which make them great places to visit.
Similarly in India, from Himalayas in the North to the Indian Ocean in the South, an ample number of places, which are still left unexplored and unheard of. The country is known for its scenic beauty and the perfect blend of exotic flora and fauna. There are several attractive places in India that offer speculative picturesque views that leave you with unforgettable experiences. Let’s have a glimpse of some of the best-unexplored destinations around the world.
The region of Tuscany in Italy is well known for its rolling hills, quaint villages, olive groves, vineyards and incredible food. It’s a great place to relax but it’s also a great place to explore by bike, and cycling tours are plentiful in this region. The place is known for its landscapes, traditions, history, artistic legacy and its influence on high culture. It is regarded as the birthplace of the Italian Renaissance and contains well-known museums such as the Uffizi and the Pitti Palace.
Visitors to Tuscany come for many reasons. Many come in search of fine art, others to explore the extraordinary countryside and some to enjoy the simple yet wonderful cuisine and wine. Walkers enjoy the mountain paths, cyclists the rolling hills, summer vacationers the sea coast and islands. Students come to learn the beautiful Italian language and culture.
There is a lot to see and do in Tuscany, the difficulty is really where to start. Certainly one must start with Florence, and then continue on to Siena and Pisa.
Florence is one of the world’s most important water-color centers. It is often nicknamed as the “art palace of Italy”. The city is also believed to have the largest concentration of Renaissance art and architecture in the world. Its Baptistery is magnificent, but crowded with tourists, as is their large piazza. Florence has several interesting museums with many famous paintings and sculptures.
Siena is a classic medieval hill town in Tuscany famous for its large fan-shaped piazza, Piazza del Campo, and summer horse-race, known as Il Palio.
Pisa, in northern Tuscany, is famous for its leaning tower but Pisa has much more to offer the traveler, including its medieval center, beautiful Duomo and Baptistery, parks, statues, the homes of Lord Byron and Shelley, and a walk along the river.
Lucca is a walled city with one of the best-preserved walls in Italy. It has several well-preserved towers from where you can get fabulous views of the city by climbing to the top. Lucca is a good city for food shopping and restaurants.
World’s largest river island, Majuli is located in the beautiful state of Assam. Nestled in the banks of mighty Brahmaputra River, Majuli is known for its pristine landscape. Its wide blue sky, Holy River floating across the banks, and beautiful landscape is the best example of God’s creation. Once you visit this place you will feel like getting touched with heaven and you consider visiting again and again.
This charming place is a cultural paradise. It is considered as one of the most beautiful places on earth where ancient Assamese culture is still a living custom. This picturesque place has become an attractive tourist spot in Assam and UNESCO has declared the place as a world heritage site.
Apart from the natural beauty, Majuli is also known for cultural celebration which is the great way to enjoy during your tour. Assam is known for its rich culture which attracts millions of people during the tour. The striking feature of Majuli is the population free environment, which will give a memorable experience. This place is blended with beautiful art and craftsmanship.
A walk through the villages of Majuli is highly recommended to savour the warmth of the people and their simple way of life. Most of them practice agriculture, fishing and weaving. Boat making, dairy farming, pottery and handloom are other important activities. The weaving is particularly exquisite, making use of a whole range of colours in cotton and silk, found only in Assam. Majuli also has exciting bio diversity. If the visit is timed right, one can spot many rare and endangered avifauna species here, such as the greater adjutant stork, pelican and the whistling teal.
The hospitality of this place is just remarkable and you would love to visit this place again and again. Reaching Majuli is very easy because it has got a good connectivity with other places in India.
Puerto Rico officially the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico is an unincorporated territory of the United States, located in the northeastern Caribbean. Puerto Rico is only 100 miles long by 35 miles wide, making it the smallest island of the Greater Antilles. Puerto Rico consists of an archipelago that includes the main island of Puerto Rico and several islands: Vieques, Culebra, Mona and numerous islets.
For those in need of some sun, head to Puerto Rico for something different. It is a multifaceted vacation destination that promises action-packed adventure in surprisingly unique surroundings. The colorful and buoyant spirit of Puerto Rico transports tourists to a cheerful state of mind, upon arrival. The island’s capital city, San Juan, has a brightly colored historic quarter – appropriately referred to as Old San Juan – that oozes charm and vibrant colonial-style architecture.
Shoppers can go for the outlet stores in the quarter that feature designers such as Custo Barcelona, Polo Ralph Lauren or Coach, offering steeply discounted accessories.
At “cocktail hour stop” by Barra china, a famous local bar and restaurant that touts their designation as the birthplace of the original Piña Colada in 1963 – It’s arguably the best Piña Colada you’ll ever have.
Tourists generally relax at the warm and inviting El Convento, a 17th century convent-turned-luxury hotel with striking views of the city and stylish luxury accommodations.
Nature lovers can explore Puerto Rico’s many parks and reserves that are found all over the island. Observe the twenty-six varieties of animal species found exclusively in Puerto Rico at El Yunque nature reserve, or see an underground river in Rio Camuy Cave Park, where the river flows through caves filled with ancient petroglyphs that are carved into the walls.
Puerto Rico houses the world’s largest single-dish radio telescope, spanning almost 20 acres. It’s the only radio telescope that can accurately predict when and where an asteroid might collide with Earth, and was responsible for the first asteroid images in history.
Puerto Rico offers countless cultural experiences and many historical locations. Whether you enjoy nature or history, nightlife or adventure, culture or sports, pack your bags and discover this unique island full of interesting contrasts and surprises!
SANDAKPHU, WEST BENGAL
Sandakfu or Sandakphu is the trekker’s paradise. It is the highest peak in the state of West Bengal, India. The Sandakphu is the culminating point of many trekking routes in the Darjeeling-Sikkim region. It is the highest point on the Singalila ridge that forms the border between Eastern Nepal and India. It contains more than 600 varieties of orchids. The temperature swings from -20OC (including wind chill factor) in winter to +15C in summer. Sandakphu gets snowfall in late December to early February. Ideal place for adventurous travelers and the untouched beauty of the location makes it one of the most magnificent places on earth.
Sandakphu is a wonderland for the trekkers. It’s located in Darjeeling district and on the north west of Darjeeling hill town. The route passes through the Singalila National Park. So, why do you think the trekkers from all over the world are so fanatic about the Sandakphu and Singalila trek?
The answer is simple. Where else in the world will you be able to walk through the forests of flowering rhododendrons of numerous types, giant magnolias, spruce and orchids? Where else can you see four of the five highest peaks of the world including Mt. Everest, Makalu, Kanchenjunga, and Lhotse, along with many other peaks of Nepal, Sikkim, Tibet and Bhutan in one single stretch of snow? And all that complemented with the Singalila National Park that has some of the most fascinating small animals like Red Pandas and Pangolins.
– The trek actually starts from a place called Manebhanjan, a small village.
– Chitre is a small village about 3kms from Manebhanjan located at an altitude of 8,340 ft.
– Lamaydhura, a hamlet or a small village inhabited only by five Tibetan families. This part of the trek is more comfortable than the earlier stretch up to Chitre.
– Meghma or Megma (further 3kms, 9kms from Manebhanjan)
This is another small village located at the border of India and Nepal, and about 3kms from Lamaydhura.
– Tonglu is a small hamlet located at an altitude of 10,130ft. This is where most trekkers take the first night halt.
– Tumling (4kms from Meghma, 2kms from Tonglu)
2kms trek from Tonglu will take you to another small Village called Tumling located at an altitude of 9,600 ft.
– Jhaubari (6kms from Tumling, 8kms from Tonglu)
A small village further along the way to Sandakphu. This place may not be important from trekking perspective.
– Gairibas (1km from Jhaubari, 9kms from Tonglu)
From Jhaubari one has to take a right turn towards Gairibas. It is further 1km ahead and located at an altitude of 8,600 ft.
– Kalipokhri (6kms from Gairibas)
From Gairibas, you will need to trek uphill for about three hours to reach a place called Kalipokhri at an altitude of 10,400 ft.
– Bikheybhanjang (2kms from Kalipokhri)
From Kalipokhri, the trekking route initially descends up to Bikheybhanjang which is located 2kms away. This is another small hamlet.
– Sandakphu (further 4kms, 6kms from Kalipokhri)
And now the final destination and the climax. You could actually see the Sandakphu Peak from Kalipokhri itself. But like all great things in life, this won’t come easy. From Bikhheybhanjang the climb up to Sandakphu is the steepest. The 4kms route can easily take about 2.5 hours.
Views presented in the article are those of the author and not of ED.