South India specialist and keen photographer, Lucinda Paxton, shares three of her favourite photographs of people from her travels around India.
Articles in the 'Indian Subcontinent' Category
We are always interested to hear about your travels, whether it’s a return trip to a country you love, great moments captured on camera, or the smaller things that help make an enjoyable trip. The next six pages showcase some of the fantastic travel tales and photographs you’ve shared with us this Spring. From family adventures in the Masai Mara, to exploring Vietnam, to a private tea ceremony in Kyoto; we hope you will enjoy reading them as much as we did.
Despite its compact size, Sri Lanka is an incredibly diverse island covered in tropical forests and lush tea plantations, home to some top-notch cuisine and blessed with a fascinating history and culture. But one of the most exciting things about the island is its surprising biodiversity. The profusion of different habitats and altitudes here means that wildlife enthusiasts can spot a great variety of flora and fauna without having to travel long distances.
Wedged between the arid plateau of Tibet and the hot fertile plains and jungles of India, Nepal offers a plethora of opportunities to travellers despite its small size. The Himalaya Range forms the backbone of Nepal and provides arguably the best mountain scenery in the world. However, there’s far more to Nepal than mountains and the country’s national parks and unique architecture provide a wonderful contrast to the wild landscapes.
Think Indian food. Think chicken korma, pilau rice and a naan. Nice. Now let’s think again because the Indian takeaway so loved by us Brits and our European friends is nothing, and I mean nothing, compared to the complexities, subtleties and mouthwatering variety of South Indian cuisine. I use ‘South Indian’ in its hugely generalised form as you could easily write a book on the unique regional cuisines of Andhra, Chettinad, Malabari, Hyderabadi and Karnatakan. Just the names make my mouth water. South India really is the place to go for a slice of Indian Subcontinent foodie heaven.
One of the most rewarding aspects of travelling is meeting local people and really getting to know their culture and lifestyle. At Audley, we aim to help you do just that, and have a number of properties around the world where it’s possible to get involved, work alongside the locals and really get a feel for a place. Here are some of our favourites.
With a history dating back to 1000 BC today’s Delhi is an amalgamation of modern India and the city’s fascinating past. Most visitors only have time to scratch the surface of this bustling city from the Red Fort and the Jama Masjid Mosque of the Mughal Dynasty in Old Delhi, to the wide tree-lined streets and colonial architecture of New Delhi designed by Sir Edwin Lutyens, the eminent 20th century British architect.
We support a number of charities across the world and it is always thrilling to hear back from them with news of successes or future projects.
The Himalaya region spans six countries and is the world’s highest mountain range. With so much history, culture and dramatic landscapes to see, we have picked out the highlights of Nepal, Bhutan, Tibet and northern India. To some, a visit to this area of the world means days of tough trekking, but this doesn’t always have to be the case. Take a scenic flight to Everest, embark on a more sedate walking trip through the Tibetan countryside or stay at a tea estate. What’s more, many of these countries can be combined into a single trip, making for the ultimate Himalayan journey.
After time spent immersing yourself in the temples, cities and nature of the country, many people opt to spend some time relaxing on or near a beach. Here, our specialists pick out some less-known beaches from around the world, places that remain unspoilt and away from the tourists crowds.
We take an indepth look at not only one of the most iconic buildings in India, but in the world.
India boasts some major attractions, all of which we recommend visiting, but sometimes the most memorable experiences can be found by stepping away from the tourist trail and exploring the back streets, particularly if you have one of our excellent guides with you. Here, our India specialists suggest some great examples of places where you can combine visits to the major attractions with some time gaining a better insight into local daily life.
Harsha Ogale’s latest research trip took him back to the national parks of central India. He had been longing to visit Tadoba Tiger Reserve, mainly for the tiger viewing opportunities it offers, but also because it’s in Maharashtra, a state in the very centre of India, and where he was born and brought up.
If you’ve explored a destination on land, why not spend a few days exploring the underwater part of it. It’s a whole new world. If you’re not already qualified, you can choose to do an introductory course, a full PADI training course or, for the more qualified, a day or more diving and discovering some of the underwater world’s most spectacular species. A number of our destination specialists are keen divers, some are qualified instructors, and here they pick out their own favourite dives sites.
Sri Lanka, otherwise known as the “Pearl in the Indian Ocean”, may be small but the attractions of this tropical island are vast. With a history dating back as far as the 4th century BC, the country is home to numerous religions and within its varied landscapes can be found a rich array of animal and bird life as well as friendly people and excellent food. When planning a trip to Sri Lanka, the country can easily be divided into four distinct regions and the time spent in each depends on your thirst for culture, scenery, wildlife or time relaxing on the beach.
“Put the kettle on and we’ll all have a nice cup of tea”. A common suggestion in households across Britain. It’s easy to take the soothing effects of a decent cup of tea for granted, but tea has a far more complex and fascinating history than this simple act would suggest.
We asked our specialists which destinations offer particularly good value for the coming year. We see plenty of offers in the newspapers and on the web for low-priced tours, but these invariably cut a lot of corners, so we also stressed that the trips needed to be the ‘complete experience’ and not less than two weeks. Here are some of their suggestions.
Nothing draws people together like food, whether it’s the preparation or sitting down to taste local delicacies, barriers are broken down and conversation flows. We asked our specialists to choose some of their favourite culinary experiences from around the world.
‘Gross national happiness’ is a truly unique and very Bhutanese idea drawn from the Buddhist belief that the ultimate purpose of life is inner happiness. Here, Camilla Brent-Smith explores the origins of this rather unique idea and explains how this focus on people permeates throughout Bhutanese society.
The sheer diversity of people in India is what makes it such a fascinating place. It would be impossible to feature all of the many faces that constitute India, but here we give a snapshot of some of the more colourful, remote or just simply striking people from this vast country.
Rajasthan is India’s most visited state and for good reasons: not only is it home to some of the most iconic monuments but the state is full of colour and life. Whether you want to explore the bustling streets of its famous cities or escape the crowds for a more relaxed pace of life in the countryside, Rajasthan has it all.
Audley’s specialists pick out some of their favourite music, dance and drama performances from around the world.
Warmed by the waters of the Malabar Coast and sheltered from the bustling interior by the mountainous range of the Western Ghats, Kerala is a fertile rural paradise that bills itself as ‘God’s own country’. It’s a land ruled by nature, with an easy-going ambience and sense of ease: ideal for a complete restorative getaway but with plenty to do and see. Here our Kerala specialists share some of the reasons why a visit to this state should be top of everyone’s wish list.
The hidden kingdom of Bhutan preserves Asia’s cultural past in secretive isolation, but most tours concentrate on the west. Emma Shaw explores the scarcely-visited east of the country, a wild and rugged land where few travellers tread.
The forts of North India and Rajasthan have always played a crucial role in this region’s history. Fort cities such as Jodhpur and Jaisalmer are well known and are impressive icons of a bygone age, but here five members of our India team provide a different insight into the forts of North India, concentrating on smaller ones with a more personal history, where you can stay and experience them restored to their former glory.
India is changing fast. In the south of the country a range of hotels are pioneering standards for social, cultural and environmental responsibility. Here our specialists choose some of their favourites.
Being immortalised by Kipling hasn’t been enough for the tiger: the king of the jungle no longer lives in a monarchy. Tiger numbers have been dropping fast in India but Harsha Ogale finds that the national parks are now throwing a lifeline to this highly endangered predator.
Responsible travel is not only about minimising the environmental impact of travel, but also about improving the social and economic infrastructures of host destinations. Ultimately, we strive to ensure that a visit from Audley clients leaves a destination better rather than worse off. The nature of our ground operations lends itself to the ethos of responsible travel – we use, wherever possible, locally owned accommodation options, locally managed grounds agents and local guides and drivers. One of the vital parts of our country specialists’ research trips is to unearth new initiatives. Here are a few of our favourites.
Stephen Fisher finds a part of India far removed from usual expectations of the country.
Beatrice Bowen explains why trekking in Nepal is not the preserve of backpackers and mountaineers.
In 1968, attracted by the teachings of the Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, The Beatles left England behind and retreated to the solitude of an ashram at Rishikesh.
Enticed by the anniversary, our specialists uncover their connections to a bygone era.
Our specialists familiarise you with some feline inhabitants of the Subcontinent.
Beatrice Bowen and Emma Shaw guide you through the best of Bhutan.
Harsha Ogale and Rupert Cue reveal the best ways to immerse yourself in the wilder side of India.
Graeme Evemy discusses the aspects of Pakistan that keep tugging him back.
Rogier Westerhuis discusses his aerial impression of the damage caused by the Boxing Day tsunami to the beaches of tropical Sri Lanka, and how the country is recovering.
Beatrice Bowen visits Nepal for a sophisticated stay in the Himalayan Kingdom.
Sarah Wells explains her special connection with India.
Five places in India that you may never have thought of visiting before.
Travelling like a king along the rails of northern India.
Experiencing the best that the Indian Subcontinent has to offer in the ‘low-season’
A guide to some of the quality items you can buy in India and Sri Lanka.
Elephants are part of life in the Indian Subcontinent.
Sri Lanka may not be the first place that springs to mind when you think of tea but if we use the island’s older name, Ceylon, instead it becomes a much more familiar name to the connoisseur of a good cuppa.
The Tastes of the Indian Subcontinent merit the trip alone.
Staying in a Palace adds an additional dimension to a tour of Rajasthan.
Our India specialists choose some of the highlights to be seen in the southern states of Kerala and Tamil Nadu.
The most exciting and colourful times to visit the Indian Subcontinent.
The best of India’s little hotels.
Charlie Read reports back from his favourite island, Sri Lanka.
A grand tour of this captivating Indian state.
The Subcontinent once again welcomes tourism after disputes over Kashmir. Our specialists recommend some itineraries.
Susie Brand takes a journey through the south of India.
Craig Burkinshaw, Managing Director, shares with us the highlights of his recent trip to Sri Lanka.
Rail travel is a memorable way to discover Asia. Our specialists compare two contrasting styles: the fun nostalgia of India’s toy trains, and the absolute luxury of the Eastern and Oriental Express train from Singapore to Bangkok