Lifestyle Awards 2013
Wellness & Relationship
Be Economylogical, its No Big Deal!
Travel ECOnomically – It’s No Big Deal
Auroville - The Universal Township
A Cultural cocktail - The Eco-nomical Style!
In Kullu Valley
Travel ECOnomically in Goa
The Green Fairytale Vacation
lacie or are the evil forces at work again…
I hardly realised when the hushed night, enlivened by the background sound of crickets, gave way to light and high decibel birdsong.
I step out of my dormitory and quietly watch the golden rays kiss one leaf after another, as if waking them gently, to start a new day.
A little more awake now, I can hear the whistling thrush in the distance and percussionist woodpeckers and trilling songbirds.
Ah! A familiar symphony…with the welcome interruption of whooping Malabar pied hornbills…occasionally punctuated with nervous barbets and excited sunbirds. This was one assignment when I’d have plenty of company!
It wasn’t just the Brahmini kite I was in awe of but the little creatures in nature’s underbelly like the Funnel spiders, tarantula, scorpions and stick insects amongst many many more…
"Oh my God! was that the rare Malabar squirrel," I exclaim and my camera assistant replies, "That red mongoose has been running up and down all morning."
Clearly, the Malabar squirrel is not so rare in this part of India. In Ganeshgudi, North Karnataka, in The Western Ghats to be precise.
The Old Magazine house, a Jungle lodge located here is where I started this holiday feature (and very gladly so).
The Western Ghats are one of the world’s 10 biodiversity hotspots and an obvious choice for nature lovers, wild lifers and eco travellers like yours truly…
But is the right destination enough for an eco vacation? Certainly not – if you leave traces of the picnics you’ve had…and don’t care that the local wildlife don’t find the jokes that make you laugh out loud, funny.
All three mornings of my stay were spent bird watching…but the rest of each day had a fair share of excitement…a coracle ride down the Kali…or a hike through the thick of Sheesham…with the occasional whiff of fragrant south Indian spices wafting through the jungle air.
One particular hike ended with a spectacular view of watching the molten sun going down a confluence of four rivers.
For a complete change of mood head to Mundgod…One of the largest Tibetan settlements in India. Vivid scenes of Tibetan life so far from the Himalayan kingdom, greet the traveller.
Larger than life monasteries rising out of nowhere, fine tankhas, resonant cymbals and streets filled with maroon and orange clad monks always willing to guide you to cheap and delicious Tibetan restaurants.
Even after three days I still had money for some cheap Tibetan souvenirs to take back home!
Gushing streams, rustling bamboo, meandering rivers, rolling hills, spirited squirrels and chatty birds make little known Ganeshguddi an ideal place for travellers with a eco-conscience and a keenness to explore the idea of holidaying without splurging.
Topping it up with a trip to Mundgod adds new colour to what’s mostly a green vacation.
Perhaps it’s time for new terminology – Be Economylogical…Its No Big Deal!
Courtesy: The Statesman
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