The mangroves of Pichavaram

After a couple of restful days in Tranquebar, we drive on to Pichavaram, for a look at the second largest mangroves system in India after the Sunderbans (in the world, as some sources claim). Despite this, Pichavaram is literally off the beaten track, seeing less than a hundred visitors everyday. The pier is practically empty…

The land of singing waves

There are many ways to enjoy the monsoon season. My favourite is to sit on an armchair on an open verandah with a cup of masala chai, listening to the pitter patter of raindrops falling on the roof. And if you add to it the music of giant sea waves crashing against rocks on the…

In search of Eden

It was during a long weekend in August that my husband and I decided to head out from our home in Delhi in search of the forbidden fruit. The Eden we had in mind was Thanedar in the hills of Himachal Pradesh. We set off well before dawn, driving on the smooth highway to Chandigarh…

Quiet flows the Lidder

It turns out that the best way to enjoy Pahalgam is to stay away from Pahalgam. No, I am not suggesting for a moment that anyone skip this most picturesque area in Kashmir. But the best – perhaps the only – way to enjoy it is to stay outside, as I do. On a recent…

Wayanad: God’s own greens

There is an untouched simplicity about Wayanad that is charming and surprising at the same time. Over the last few decades, Kerala has worked hard to live up to its self-anointed and rather grand moniker of God’s Own Country. But the part of Kerala my husband and I are driving to for our long weekend…

My god, it’s Mylari dosa!

When in Mysore, it is a sin to not eat the masala dosa at Mylari – not any of the various imposters that have sprung up, but the Old Original Hotel Vinayaka Mylari, located in a nondescript lane in the Nazarbad area. The interiors are nothing to speak of, with a few benches, freely shared…

Friday photo: Vada Pav

As my teeth sank into the soft cloud of pav and the crispy vada, it was almost as if I was biting into the original taste of Mumbai. It was a perfect contrast of tastes and textures: the chewy blandness of the pav acting as a foil to the piquant crunchiness of the vada. A…