Sunday, April 28, 2013


Puri is a town in the state of Orissa. It is situated on the Bay of Bengal, 60 kms south of the state capital Bhubaneswar. The city is most famous for the Jagannath Temple and sandy beaches. 

This ancient city is repository of art and architecture of India with testaments dating back to 3rd century B.C.

The best mode of travel across the city to see the tourist places here are cycle or auto rickshaws. The important sites that I had visited here are:
Other interesting places nearby are:

Saturday, April 27, 2013

Red Vented Bulbul at Ajanta

On our trip to Ajanta we were exploring the ancient caves walking on the corridor of the caves. I spotted two red vented bulbul between the leaves of the trees.  

Their body is dark brown with a scaly pattern while the head is darker or black. The rump is white while the vent is red. The black tail is tipped in white. 

From the view point for thew caves there was this beautiful red flowers.

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Chaturmukha Basadi, Karkala

Chaturmukha Basadi in Karkala is at the top of a small hillock and it can be reached by a flight of stairs has been cut on the slopes of this hillock. The construction of the Basadi was initiated by the King Vira Pandya Deva in 1432. It was completed by Immadi Bhairava in 1586. 

It is a symmetrical Jain temple with four identical doorways in four directions leading to the main shrine inside. The temple is square in shape with pillared porticos on each of its four sides and pillared verandah running around it. 

There are a total of 108 pillars inside and outside the temple. The temple has a flat sloping roof constructed with huge granite slabs. 

There are some wonderful sculptures on the pillars and outer walls of the shrine depicting various facets of human life. 

Main shrine encloses the images of the Yakshi Padmavati and 24th Tirthankar, apart from the standing statues of Suryata, Ara and Malli. 

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Images of India - 7

A glimpse of heritage monument of India in black and white. Other posts will give you more details about this monument.

Sunday, April 21, 2013

Bhubaneshwar, City of Temples

Bhubaneshwar is the capital of Orissa and is a very ancient city. Today its has two distinctive regions the old town and the modern town. The city came into existence in 2nd century when the place was under the control of Mahamegha-bahana Chedi dynasty.

It is often referred to as a "City of Temples" as there are many Hindu temples with kalinga architecture. There are also Jain and Buddhist shrines around the city. The city was the ancient capital of the Kalinga Empire between 7th century and 11th century. The architectural legacy of the period can be seen even today. The temples here are regarded as having been built from the 8th to 12th centuries.

The prominent attractions that we have seen here are:

Other interesting places nearby are:

We reached this place from Bangalore by flight at around 12 p.m. But on that it rained and we could visit only few temples on that day.

Saturday, April 20, 2013

Birds In Neighbourhood - 3

I am the few of the fortunate who occasionally get to see few birds of different variety around my house in Bangalore. I have captured few of them in my camera and here they are. One such beautiful bird is Indian Mynah or  Common Mynah

This is an omnivorous woodland bird with a strong territorial instinct. It has adapted extremely well to urban environments.

It has brown body, black hooded head and the bare yellow patch behind the eye. The bill and legs are bright yellow. There is a white patch on the outer primaries and the wing lining on the underside is white. 

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Lakshman Jhula, Rishikesh

Lakshman Jhula in Rishikesh is the famous hanging bridge across the river Ganga. The bridge is 450 feet long and is situated at a height of 70 feet from the river.

As per mythological tales, once Lakshman, the younger brother of Lord Rama, crossed river Ganga at the same site using a suspension bridge, made of jute.

Hence the bridge came to be known as ‘Lakshman Jhula’. The present bridge is a iron bridge that was built in 1939.

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Images of India - 6

A glimpse of heritage monument of India in black and white. Other posts will give you more details about this monument.

Taj Mahal in Agra 

Sunday, April 14, 2013

Thirumalai Nayak Palace, Madurai

The Nayaks of Madurai ruled this place in the 16th to 17th century and during this time King Thirumalai Nayak erected a magnificent palace, the Thirumalai Nayak Palace. Built in 17th-century the palace was designed by the Italian architect. This Palace is a classic fusion of Dravidian, Islamic styles. 

The building, what we see today was the main Palace where the king lived. The original palace Complex was four times bigger than the present structure. 

The palace is constructed using brick and the surface details and finish is done using mix of shell lime and egg white giving it a smooth and glossy texture. The richly decorated interior is a contrast to the exterior. The pillars supporting the arches are 13 m tall.

This palace consisted mainly of two parts, namely Swargavilasa and Rangavilasa. Today, only  Swargavilasa, a spacious rectangular courtyard and a few adjoining buildings survive. The courtyard measuring 3,900 sq.m with massive circular pillars showcases the grandeur of a vanished era. The pavilions topped with finials that were covered with gold are on either side of the courtyard.

To its west lies the Throne Chamber, a vast room with a raised, octagonal dome. The palace with its exquisite decorations is very grand when compared to any other palaces in the area.

This palace is open for the visitors from 9am to 5pm.

Saturday, April 13, 2013

Birds in Neighbourhood - 2

I am the few of the fortunate who occasionally get to see few birds of different variety around my house in Bangalore. I have captured few of them in my camera and here they are.

One such beautiful bird is Red-whiskered Bulbul

This bird is about 20 centimeters in length with brown upper-parts and whitish underparts. It has a tall pointed black crest, red face patch. The tail is long and brown with white terminal feather tips, but the vent area is red.

They are found mainly in tropical Asia. It feeds on fruits, nectar and insects.

Thursday, April 11, 2013

Sai Baba Samadhi Mandir, Shirdi

We boarded the train from Pune at around 5 p.m for Shirdi. We got down in Kopargaon at 10:30 p.m. which is around 12 kms from Shirdi. From this place we took a shared auto to Shirdi. 

There are many attractions in Shirdi and most prominent is Sai Baba's Samadhi Mandir. It is in this temple where Sacred Body of Baba is resting in Samadhi. The Samadhi of Baba is built with white marble stones. The idol of Baba is a marvelous statue made using Italian marble. 

The temple opens on 5 a.m with morning prayers and close down at 10 p.m with night prayers. We got up early morning and were in the queue by 3 a.m outside the temple to get entry inside the temple. We were inside the temple by 6:30 a.m. After prayers we were out of the temple by an another hour and it was definitely worth it.

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Images of India - 5

A glimpse of heritage monument of India in black and white. Other posts will give you more details about this monument.

Kumbalgarh Fort in Rajasthan 

Sunday, April 7, 2013

High Court, Mumbai

Bombay High Court is located in Fort area of Mumbai and it is one of the most distinguished and oldest courts in the country. This high court was first setup in the year 1862. 

The present building of Bombay High Court was designed by a British engineer, Col. J.A. Fuller. This structure, 562 feet long and 187 feet wide, was completed in November 1878.

The architecture of this beautiful monument in Gothic Style dating back to the early English style and is built with black stone with octagonal towers. 

Along the west of the central tower, there are two octagonal towers and statues of 'Justice' and 'Mercy' on the top of this building which serve as a source of inspiration for law abiding citizens.

The building of the court has beautiful craftsmanship all around it. Apart from the octagonal towers, it has magnificent  balcony and windows that have beautiful arches.

Saturday, April 6, 2013

Birds in Neighbourhood - 1

I am the few of the fortunate who occasionally get to see few birds of different variety around my house in Bangalore. I have captured few of them in my camera and here they are.

One such beautiful bird is Oriental White-eye bird. This is a small bird with yellowish olive upper parts, a white eye ring, yellow throat and vent. The belly is whitish grey but may have yellow in some subspecies.

They forage in small groups, feeding on nectar and small insects. They are easily identified by the distinctive white eye-ring and overall yellowish upper-parts. 

Thursday, April 4, 2013

Someshwar Temple, Barkur

The ancient city of Barkur was the capital of the Tulu kingdom in the olden days. The city has ten extensions called Keris. Each of these Keri had a tank and number of temples built between 9th and 16th century.

One such temple is Someshwar Temple at Manigara Keri. The temple has typical sloping terracotta-tiled roofs.

Under the tiled roof there are carvings of the God/Goddess in each of the directions and in the corner there are animals like elephants.

Outside the main complex of the temple is a small pillared mantapa with beautiful small carvings on the pillars.

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Images of India - 4

A glimpse of India in black and white. Here we see one of the towering apartment complex in Mumbai.

Monday, April 1, 2013

Chilka Lake

Chilka Lake is a brackish water lagoon with water spread ranging from 1100 sq km in the rainy season to 906 sq km in the dry season along the coastal Orissa. It is spread across Puri, Khurda and Ganjam districts in Orissa state on the east coast of India. This lake which is at the mouth of the Daya River, flowing into the Bay of Bengal, is the largest lake in Asia and second largest in the World.

There are several entry points to the lake. During our trip of Orissa we started an early morning from Puri after vising Puri Jaganath Temple. We reached the lake through Satapada which is around 60 kms from Puri. 

The ecosystem of this lake has large fishery resources supporting livelihood of lot of families on the coast. In the winter season large number of migratory birds flock to this region from as far as Caspian Sea, Lake Baikal, Aral Sea and other remote parts of Russia, Kirghiz steppes of Mongolia, Central and southeast Asia, Ladakh and Himalayas. Unfortunately when we were there it was almost end  of season but we tried to make most of what we could get to see.

The kids were excited in the 3 hour trip through the lake and other prominent attracktions here are:
  • Red crab
  • Fresh water pearl
  • Temple by the side of lake
  • New Sea Mouth
  • Irrawaddy Dolphins 

This lake is the home to the only known population of Irrawaddy dolphins in India. This is a endangered species and this lake is one of only two lagoons in the world that are home to this species.

Birds at Chilka: Black Headed Ibis, Eastern Egret, Cormorant, Indian River Tern, Great Eastern Egret Fishing,  Colony of Indian River Tern (1 ),