Omkareswar, Narmada River Boating

March 10, 2019 Leave a comment

Omkareswar

Narmada River Boating

Also see: Familiarization (FAM) Tour of Madhya Pradesh (MP)

Omkareshwar is a river island located in the middle of the Narmada River roughly at the mid point of its source in Amarkantak and its sea mouth in Baruch. The island measures 4 km in length and 2 km in breadth and houses two lofty hills.

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Boating in Narmada River, with Omkereshwar Island in the Background, Omkereshwar, Madhya Pradesh

When viewed from the top it appears to form the sacred Hindu symbol of Om and hence the name Omkareshwar. A sacred Hindu pilgrimage it houses one of the 12 Jyotirlingas and plays an important role in Narmada Parikrama, a pilgrimage consisting of a arduous trek along the bank of the Narmada River.

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Patachitra of Odisha and Jagannath Culture by Anita Bose, Book Review

Patachitra of Odisha and Jagannath Culture by Anita Bose

Book Review

In every corner of India there exists numerous indigenous art forms hidden under sands of time. Search for them as desperately as a mother would be looking for her lost child. Don’t stop until you find them and showcase them for the world to see.

Swami Vivekananda to Sister Nivedita

Patachitra

Patachitra of Odisha and Jagannath Culture by Anita Bose

The heritage village of Raghurajpur, located near the pilgrimage of Puri, is one such numerous art centres of the country. Raghurajpur is famous for the ancient art of Patachitra.

The book Patachitra of Odisha and Jagannath Culture by Anita Bose explores the story behind the patachitras of Raghurajpur. The book is the culmination of Anita’s two decades of nurturing her creative pursuits.

Anita’s book not only deals with the details of patachitra but also provides the details of its connection with the Jagannath Culture.

The book starts with the origin of the name of heritage village of Raghurajpur and then moves on to the representation of Jagannath Culture through different forms of patachitras.

The book elaborates the chitrakar (artist) community of Raghurajpur providing the details of the artist hierarchy, which is solely based on the skill of the artist. The author goes into further details providing a correlation between the surname and the type of art work done by them. The details of the patachitra painting, which replaces the deities of the Puri Jaganath Temple for the 15 day sabbatical break every year, have been expressed in every possible details.

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Jantar Mantar, New Delhi, an ancient observatory

February 22, 2019 2 comments

Jantar Mantar, New Delhi

An ancient observatory

Jantar Mantars are ancient observatories constructed between 1724 and 1730 Maharajah Sawaii Jai Singh II of Jaipur. A total of five Jantar Mantars were constructed across north India and were located in Jaipur, Delhi, Ujjani, Varanasi and Mathura.

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The Mishra Yantra at Jantar Mantar, Delhi

Jantar Mantar literally means a combination of instruments and formulas (jantar = instrument, mantar = formula). Each of the observatories consists of a series of masonry architecture of unique form, each with a specialized function for astronomical measurement.

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Chao Phraya Express Boat

February 17, 2019 Leave a comment

Chao Phraya Express Boat

A river boat service in Bangkok, Thailand

Also see: FAM tour of Thailand

My Heritage Walk of Rattanakosin Island, Bangkok started with a ride in the Khlong Saen Saep Express Boat and ended with a ride in the Chao Phraya Express Boat.

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Boats in Chao Phraya River, with Wat Arun in the background, Bangkok

No trip in Bangkok is complete with a boat ride in the Chao Phraya River. There are plenty of options starting from luxurious sun set cruise, which comes with a gala dinner to tourist boats with English speaking guides. Read more…

The Grand Palace, Bangkok, the Royal Residence of the King of Thailand

February 6, 2019 4 comments

The Grand Palace, Bangkok

The Royal Residence of the King of Thailand

Also see: FAM tour of Thailand

The Grand Palace (Phra Boromma Maha Ratcha Wang) is a complex of palaces, temples, pavilions and stupas in the heart of Bangkok, the capital of Thailand . It is located on the banks of Chao Phraya River and is on the Ratanakosin Island. (Also see: Heritage Walk of Rattanakosin Island)

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The Grand Palace, Rattanakosin Island, Bangkok, Thailand

The construction of The Grand Palace began in 1782 under Rama I, the founder of Chakri Dynasty. After overthrowing King Taksin, who ruled from Thonburi, on the other side of the Chao Phraya River, Rama I dug canals (Also see: Fortification of Bangkok) to set up the artificial island of Rattanakosin, his new capital.

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Chhau Dance Mask, Charida, Purulia District

January 30, 2019 Leave a comment

Chhau Dance Mask

Charida, Purulia District

See also: Wiki Explores Purulia

Chhau Dance (also spelt as Chou or Chau) is a semi classical dance from Eastern India combining martial, tribal and folk tradition. The dance ranges from celebrating martial arts, acrobatics and athletics performed in festive themes of a folk dance, to a structured dance with religious themes found in Shaivism, Shaktism and Vaishnavism.

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Chhau Dance Msk, Charida, Purulia District

Chhau dance enacts episodes from epics including the Mahabharata and Ramayana, local folklore and abstract themes. Chhau dance is intimately connected to regional festivals, notably the spring festival, which happens in the mid of April.

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Dhanyakuria, Palaces and a Cinderella styled Castle

January 24, 2019 8 comments

Dhanyakuria

Palaces and a Cinderella styled Castle

If you are travelling on the Barasat – Basirat road about 7 km after the Berachampa crossing (known for Chandraketugarh) you will come across a magnificent gate way, which seems to come straight out of the pages of the fairy tales of Cinderella.

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Gayen Garden House (Gayen Bagan Bari), Dhanyakuria

Sadly the gates generally remains closed but a peep inside revels a Cinderella styled castle, complete with tower, turrets, battlements and oriel windows. The castle is surrounded by a huge open space, which was once a manicured lawn intercepted by tree line pathways. The compound was once complete with decorative fountains and huge ponds.

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