Blog: Rajiv Verma

Blogger: Rajiv Verma
The things that come in the mind when we talk about Assam are the vast tea-plantations, spread through acres and acres of inclines on the numerous teelas that are so common in this part of the country. The green carpet that flows smoothly from one teela to another with snaking narrow roads passing though them. Primarily grown in the region which known as Upper Assam, the tea has been the identity of the state since a long long time. More so because all the big brands of the tea-industry grow, process and sell (and export) their variants of assam tea from this region. The Southern part of Assam hardly has any big brand to boast of. That however does not mean that there are no te... Read more
clicks 242 View   Vote 0 Like   2:02pm 2 Mar 2016
Blogger: Rajiv Verma
IndiMeets to me has always been all about meeting amazing like-minded people for me. Every meet for me has been a new experience in one way or the other. I have met (and become friends with) fellow bloggers so the one that was this weekend was no different either. What was a little different this time however was the fact that unlike other IndiMeets (of-course except the Fun in Goa with the all new Tiago) which are generally held within closed doors, this was an outdoor meet, one that was in a luxurious resort located away from the cacophony of the city. Venue of the meet, MangoMist Resort Bangalore The only tough part for me about this meet was getting – up early on a Saturday mor... Read more
clicks 156 View   Vote 0 Like   1:08pm 25 Feb 2016
Blogger: Rajiv Verma
Tired and sleepy from the previous day’s action packed schedule (more on that coming-up in the next post read here), I was lazing around on my bed with a book in my hands. Just then, between dozing and flipping the pages of Scion of Ikshvaku, an update on my Facebook timeline caught my attention. Colorful flags and balloons and hordes of people walking lazily. A closer look at one of the photos which had grabbed my attention and I realized that the place was none other than the always crowded. I was pleasantly surprised to see MG Road in this unexpected avatar.Open Streets, an event similar to the Raahgiri Day which is organized in Gurgaon was on. Open Streets – Bangalore ... Read more
clicks 187 View   Vote 0 Like   12:08pm 22 Feb 2016
Blogger: Rajiv Verma
When I applied for my passport almost a decade back, the whole experience had left me exhausted. I had finally managed to secure my passport after submitting a bunch of documents which looked more like a book and less like a set of documents and after making couple of over-night journeys from my home-town Silchar to Guwahati. Back then, the Guwahati RPO was the only passport office catering to the entire north-east. Indian Passport (PC: Y-Axis) Fast forward to 2015. Encouraged by the now much simplified process of passport application, Ruchi decided to apply for her passport. The fact that most of the steps involved applying for passport in India has now gone online only encouraged u... Read more
clicks 142 View   Vote 0 Like   12:46pm 9 Feb 2016
Blogger: Rajiv Verma
After I researched and later-on wrote about long-term bike parking at the Bangalore airport, I realized the problem is not limited to only whether it is possible or not. It goes beyond that. Thankfully in Bangalore we have fixed and pretty much sensible rates for parking at the airport but that is not the case elsewhere. No matter how a person looks at it, whether flying alone, with friends or family, travelling sure provides more than enough fuel to feed everyone’s inner wanderlust. However, behind this highly beneficial experience rests inevitable – and often unnoticed – worries that tend to make or break the whole trip. The Parking Scene in airports It’s fairly easy to overlook t... Read more
clicks 148 View   Vote 0 Like   2:11pm 3 Feb 2016
Blogger: Rajiv Verma
The rain-cooled breeze is kissing my face and turning it colder by the second as I look at the green fields pass-by. Mushroom-shaped trees randomly dotting them. The rhythmic thak-thak-thak of the metal wheels leaving one piece for another below seem like a melody to my ears now. The pattern only broken by the blares of the occasional trains rushing from the opposite side. The monsoon clouds above have only grown thicker and darker with each passing hour. It seems a thunder-shower is inevitable. The small and big towns showing-up on this side of the window and that also have started to acknowledge the approaching night; the lights have come-up. Watching the world pass-by Sitting by ... Read more
clicks 159 View   Vote 0 Like   4:43pm 31 Jan 2016
Blogger: Rajiv Verma
The beauty of the Andaman and Nicobar islands is second to none when it comes to beach destinations in India. The fact that it also holds a very significant place in Indian history further fuels the curiosity of many Indians and foreigners alike who want to see and experience the chain of islands — which in many ways, is much different from the India as we know — first hand. However, the fact that there’s not as much clarity about visiting the island chain as there is about most other parts of India makes it slightly tougher (and confusing) for many. I have been asked many a times, questions about visiting the Andaman Islands few of which, and their answers, I share below. ... Read more
clicks 163 View   Vote 0 Like   1:26pm 25 Jan 2016
Blogger: Rajiv Verma
We are living in exciting times. The sort of technologies we now take for granted would have been unimaginable a decade or so ago. While it is great that this constant ‘technological advancement’ has definitely made our lives easier, it has over time, also changed the way we purchase things. Nowadays, we tend to buy a lot of stuff we don’t actually need and the Digital single-lens reflex camera (DSLR) is one of them. Friends and colleagues have asked me more than once if they should buy a DSLR camera. Reason: it takes good photos!! I have answered this a significant number of time. I still get asked the same. Hence this post. My Trusted Nikon 1. DSLRs don’t ... Read more
clicks 140 View   Vote 0 Like   2:44pm 19 Jan 2016
Blogger: Rajiv Verma
An imposing structure of Nandi – the bull of Shiva welcoming visitors, a stone-pillar that hangs above the floor of an age-old stone-temple and sculptures of Hindu Gods carved out of single stones are few of the things among many that make the small village of Lepakshi special. The place is of great religious and mythological significance I had learnt and seeing the magnificent structures all around I couldn’t have agreed more. But that was not what had taken me there on a bright Saturday morning. I had been feeling bored since the last couple of weeks and had not headed out anywhere. I just wanted to break the monotony. Also, given the fact that Lepakshi was just a short... Read more
clicks 130 View   Vote 0 Like   12:53pm 14 Jan 2016
Blogger: Rajiv Verma
The year 2015 has been pretty exciting in terms of travel for me. It has been a year of at-least a couple of interesting firsts for me besides visits to places I had never thought I would be visiting any time sooner. I was hoping to squeeze-in one more trip somewhere in the unknown this long weekend before I come-up with this post but sadly, that could not happen, all thanks to the flu that the changing season seems to have brought with it. Having said that, there’s no point brooding over something that did not materialize. Instead, let me share with you some moments from my travels in this year which is only 6 sunsets away from becoming part of history. Beauty of the Borail Hills... Read more
clicks 143 View   Vote 0 Like   3:25pm 27 Dec 2015
Blogger: Rajiv Verma
As obvious (or stupid) as it might sound now, getting information about whether one can park two-wheelers at the Bangalore airport for a longer period was not as easy to get as I expected it to be. This was the second time in the last six months when I found myself in a situation where I would be flying out on a Saturday morning and would be back by the next day evening and I wanted to know if I could leave my bike there for that period. Not finding any credible information the last time I had taken an auto and then the shuttle to reach the airport. I did not want to do it the second time, at-least not before finding out whether it was possible or not. The steed – not on the air... Read more
clicks 137 View   Vote 0 Like   2:17pm 22 Dec 2015
Blogger: Rajiv Verma
Even though I am a slow reader, I still read as many books as I can. The fact that the many books that I read is less actually than half the total number of books I buy, is a different matter altogether. Anyway, talking about this book, On The Trail of Genghis Khan, I happened to buy this at random. I usually keep browsing through online stores for books, specially on travel and if a book interests me, I do some basic research (read Googling) before deciding on whether to buy it or move ahead. In case of this book however, not much research was needed. A guy riding a horse for ten thousand kilometres through Mongolia, Kazakhstan, Russia. What more did I need. On The Trail of G... Read more
clicks 160 View   Vote 0 Like   7:53pm 19 Dec 2015
Blogger: Rajiv Verma
The last weekend, Saturday to be specific, had been a wonderful one for the foodie in me. Not that the previous one with all the Goan food and brew was any bad but when it comes to food from my home-state, actually the entire north-east India, nothing else can beat that. It so happened that I came to know about the North-east Food Festival taking place not far from my home. This got the foodie in me excited and I instantly decided to pay it a visit. The food-fest was supposed to begin at 3 in the afternoon and continue up-to 10 PM so I decided to go aramse (at leisure) which in the hindsight, turned out not to be a great idea. People crowding the Manipur stall – North-east F... Read more
clicks 151 View   Vote 0 Like   8:30am 16 Dec 2015
Blogger: Rajiv Verma
After sleeping pretty late last night, I woke-up at 5.45 in the morning!! No I didn’t on my own but because the reception guys gave me a wake-up call!! I am still looking for the person who requested that wake-up call. I really want to kill him once I find him!! I never slept after that and after freshening-up, checked-out and headed for the lavish breakfast at about 8 AM. As we were in team D-9, one of the last teams, we still had some time to have our breakfast. A lot of photos and selfies later, we were finally in our car and at the entrance of the resort, ready to be flagged-off. Needless to say, I was excited. Flag-off from the resort – Alila Diva Goa Now before I sha... Read more
clicks 161 View   Vote 0 Like   9:25pm 12 Dec 2015
Blogger: Rajiv Verma
It had hardly been a week since I had come back from my first solo trip to Goa. I was sitting at my desk scrolling through some of the photos from the trip when I got a call from Naveen asking me if I was free the coming weekend. Now I had a tentative plan to attend the Bangalore Literature Festival that was happening on the same weekend but then, I took no time to respond in affirmative. Anything being organized by team Indi is always fun so how can this be any different! By evening, the tickets were with me. Me and 59 other top bloggers from across the country had being invited by TATA motors to experience their upcoming hatchback and get a feel of it first-hand! The all new TATA T... Read more
clicks 136 View   Vote 0 Like   11:07am 12 Dec 2015
Blogger: Rajiv Verma
It’s December again. A perfect time to plan the last holiday of the year. I have already been asked by more than a handful of friends and acquaintances to suggest them places to visit in December. Too bad I don’t have any more leaves left for this year which means I can’t take any long breaks myself, at-least not until we step into the next year. So I try to find solace in helping others with their plans. Depending on whom I was suggesting, my suggestions ranged from warm beaches to extremely cold places. Of these suggestions, let me share few places which I feel should be visited this month. Sunset at Diu – Source Diu: Diu with its the pristine beaches,... Read more
clicks 171 View   Vote 0 Like   2:06pm 3 Dec 2015
Blogger: Rajiv Verma
Even though I had spent the first twenty-two years of my life not far from the laps of the Borail Hills which overlook the Barak Valley, I had never had a chance to visit them up close. The reasons were many. From trivial ones like really bad roads to the serious ones like having to cross militant-infested areas. Over the years however things have gotten better. The militancy in the region is now non-existent and the road that connects the region to the rest of the country is it a much better shape than it used to be few years back. The fact that this road is part of the East-West corridor, the largest ongoing highway project in India, has definitely helped in this aspect. The east-west ... Read more
clicks 147 View   Vote 0 Like   9:29am 1 Dec 2015
Blogger: Rajiv Verma
During my last trip to Goa I had decided to stay in a backpacker’s hostel instead of a hotel and I have come back with some wonderful experiences, few of which I will be sharing here. But before that, let me confess why I opted for a hostel over a hotel. The main reason was because I was travelling alone this time and was on a budget, I needed a cheap but descent place to stay. My experience with budget hotels had never been great so a hostel seemed to be the only option for me. This however was not the only reason. I also wanted to meet other like-minded people from various places who unlike most of the Indian travellers, travel for experiencing cultures and places. The Red Do... Read more
clicks 136 View   Vote 0 Like   6:51pm 28 Nov 2015
Blogger: Rajiv Verma
After completing the series about our Hampta Pass Trek I realized that the posts related to the trek are not in sequence. In between, I have related about my other travel as experience as well, like the post I wrote about my first trip to the Himalayas or, the one I wrote when I decided to go on my first solo trip. This made it pretty irritating for someone who wanted to read the posts related to the Hampta pass trek in a sequential way. So, I decided to put all the links here ordered by day in this post which will make it easier to find the related post. Camp at Chikka – Hampta Pass Trekking Hampta Pass – A Trek to the Himalayas Hampta Pass Trek-Day 1, Jobra to Chikka Hamp... Read more
clicks 191 View   Vote 0 Like   6:10am 25 Nov 2015
Blogger: Rajiv Verma
I just got back from my first solo trip about which I had talked here sometime back. Unlike my other travel trips and escapades the plan this time was just to read, relax and maybe write a bit. And that is exactly what I did. This time, I was happy to be busy savoring some lip-smacking sea food, witnessing colorful sunsets at beaches where there was hardly anyone else other than me, and just lazing around on the couch for as long as I wanted to. Vagator beach from Chapora fort – Goa There was one more thing, actually two, that tried experiencing for the first time apart from being travelling alone. I stayed in backpacker’s hostels this time around (I will write about that soon... Read more
clicks 157 View   Vote 0 Like   3:30pm 17 Nov 2015
Blogger: Rajiv Verma
Many times over the years I have heard about this small hill town called Jatinga nestled somewhere on a ridge of the Borail hills in the Dima Hasao district where, on dark moonless nights, birds come to kill themselves! To be honest, whenever I heard anything about the bird suicide in Jatinga thing, I always took it with a pinch of salt until one day, I decided to google it up. To my surprise I found that all of it was actually true and even more surprising was the fact that quite a few renowned ornithologists too have tried to actually find out the reason behind the birds committing suicide there. Bird watching tower – Jatinga I felt like an idiot for having never believed any... Read more
clicks 248 View   Vote 0 Like   3:10pm 31 Jul 2015
Blogger: Rajiv Verma
Ever since I came back from my maiden ride to Ladakh on motorcycle a little more than three years back, I have been asked many times by friends, friends of friends and many others about a lot of different aspects about visiting Ladakh. What to see..where to go… how to go etc but if there has been one question I have been asked the maximum number of times, it was (and still is); ‘Can I ride to ladakh on my bike? or Do I need a bullet to go to ladakh?‘ or some other version of the same question. This is the time when the roads across high mountain passes of mighty Himalayas open up and the holy grail of biking, Ladakh, becomes accessible by road. CBR 250 on Rohtang la T... Read more
clicks 164 View   Vote 0 Like   12:59pm 30 Jul 2015
Blogger: Rajiv Verma
Sitting by the first window of the ‘canter‘, my eyes were continuously scanning the jungle through the windshield in front of me and the window on my left, looking for any signs of the elusive big cat which had been supposedly sighted in the area the same morning. Except for random glances out of the side-window towards the sparsely vegetated hillocks far away, which hardly made me feel I was in a ‘tiger reserve’, my eyes have been fixed right ahead for quite sometime now with no luck. Wild boars grazing Apart from crossing a few playful squeakers and their busy parents we were yet to came across any wildlife when suddenly, the sleepy driver hit the brake ha... Read more
clicks 161 View   Vote 0 Like   1:56pm 22 Jul 2015
Blogger: Rajiv Verma
The last weekend had to be one of the most exciting weekends I have had in the recent past. I was invited by Honda Cars India to the Budh International Circuit, India’s only and one of the fastest F1 race tracks in the world, for the pre-launch upcoming hatchback the New Jazz. The event, Hangout with Honda as Honda called it, was a grand one. The all new Honda Jazz One of the best things about being part of the event was of-course meeting a lot of like-minded bloggers from all across the country but, the most exciting thing for me was getting to drive (if not race ) on an F1 track!!… continue reading... Read more
clicks 312 View   Vote 0 Like   9:41am 8 Jul 2015
Blogger: Rajiv Verma
The first showers of monsoons had just fallen and I was already itching to be in the lush green hills. This itch ultimately took me to the Gopalaswamy hills on a weekend, a place which I had heard is beautifully green and well-vegetated but with real bad roads leading to the top of it. The bad-road part was not a dampener for me, in fact it actually made the biker inside me happy, hills and some off-roading is always great fun as long as you don’t have to off-road for hours and hours. GS Betta – Right ahead Plus it will also be a test for the KTM which had not been on bad roads yet. … continue reading... Read more
clicks 234 View   Vote 0 Like   3:04pm 2 Jul 2015
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