A quick guide to Borobudur

Although Indonesia is best known for the gorgeous island of Bali, the highlight of my trip to this country was the UNESCO site of Borobudur. It is the world’s largest Buddhist temple, in the world’s largest Muslim country. What more can I say? The best time to see Borobudur was early in the morning, I…

2014 on Itchy Feet

2014 was an eventful year on Itchy Feet, with three new countries and one old favourite. The year started on a lukewarm note, with almost no travel for the first three months. There was the excitement of the book launch and a couple of work trips to Mumbai (including a workshop on freelance writing at…

Friday photo: Monklings

From a morning at Thiksey monastery – monklings bustling about, mock fights, introspection, laughter and prayers… ~ Also see: Friday photo series ~ Read other posts from Ladakh here

Friday photo: Boudhanath

One of the (few) nice things about living in Gurgaon is being able to take off for long weekends. The husband had five days off for Dusshera – which came conveniently around Gandhi Jayanti and some other festival – and so we headed off to Nepal. More on the Nepal trip soon. For now, an…

Friday photo: Thiksey

Just back from a quick trip to Ladakh for review a fabulous new luxury camp – watch out for it in print soon. So, this Friday, a photo from my one of my favourite Ladakh monasteries – Thiskey. Just before the commencement of the morning puja… Also see: Friday photo series And more stories from…

On the monastery trail in Ladakh-3

Continued from here: After the majestic setting of Lamayuru and Basgo, Spituk seemed to come easy. Very close to Leh, this gompa is home to the patron saint of all those intrepid travelers who fly into Leh, over the magnificent Himalayas, landing on the gut-wrenchingly narrow strip that serves as the runway. And so Spituk…

On the monastery trail in Ladakh-2

Continued from here: There was no meal waiting for us when we reached Likir. Instead, we found a deserted courtyard, the monks having taken shelter inside their rooms, I assumed, against the sudden downpour. From a distance, we could barely make out the shape of the large Buddha statue, imposing yet benign, smiling down upon…

On the monastery trail in Ladakh-1

It was bitterly cold the first few days I was in Ladakh, rare for May and with unseasonal spells of rain for company. The high mountain passes remained resolutely closed and there were stories filtering down of people stuck up there for days on end, thanks to the heavy snowfall. And so we stayed well…