Someone rightly said, “the way to a man’s heart is through his stomach”. India offers vast variety of cuisines to satisfy the taste buds of everyone. Costliest is not necessarily the Best and Best may not be the Costliest one…

Presenting herewith some of my own eating experiences in different parts of India.

Sukhdev Da Dhaba (Delhi-Amritsar Highway)

Beginning with one of my most pleasant experience on the Grand Trunk Road (Connecting Delhi with Amritsar and 50 KM from Delhi) at the Sukhdev da Dhaba… Pure Vegetarian, Multi Cuisine (with Indian particularly Punjabi cuisine being the best), Affordable (Rs 500 good two), Hygienic and Excellent Service are some of the mentions.

Sukhdev Da Dhaba

Sukhdev Da Dhaba on NH1 (near Sonepath)

Aloo Da Paratha @ Sukhdev Da Dhaba

Aloo Da Paratha @ Sukhdev Da Dhaba

Rajwada @ Indore

The other wise Jewelry market (Sarafa bazaar) of Indore during day time, converts into a heaven for street food lovers after 7 pm with hundreds of stalls popping up from no where. With more than 200 eateries, the place offers some of the best tongue teasing delicacies. Whether you have a sweet tooth or fond of hot and spicy snacks, this is the place for you.

A Sweet Shop @ Rajwada, Indore

Agrawal Sweets @ Rajwada, Indore offers savory deserts

Gulab Jamuns at a Sweet Shop @ Rajwada, Indore

Hot and Juicy Gulabjamuns @ Agrawal Sweets, Rajwada, Indore

Bhutte Ka Kis @ Rajwada, Indore

Bhutte Ka Kis (Sweet corn crush) @ Rajwada, Indore

Sabudana Khichadi @ Sanwaria @ Rajwada, Indore

Sabudana Khichri @ Sanwaria @ Rajwada, Indore. ‘Sabudana’ a Hindi name for the small granules made from the ‘Sagu’ powdery starch extracted from a kind of tree. Dishes made out of ‘Sagu’ granules are exempt from the banned food list during indian fasting… The Indori Sabudana Khichri is fore sure one of reasons you will fall love in with this city.

The Best from Rajwada Indore…. Joshiji Badewale


Strictly a not to be missed experience in case you are visiting Indore and a die hard Dahi bada foodie…

Pakodewala @ Sitabuldi, Nagpur

Nagpur is popular for its oranges. However the Orange city also offers some great hot spots or hide outs for the die hard food lovers. A very unique for Nagpur, there is a spicy cuisine named ‘Saoji’ is served in some of the restaurants mainly popular among students and non veggies. During my last visit to the city, I revisited one of my favorite snack stall ‘Pakodewala’ on the Sitabuldi main road. From a roadside vendor to now a renowned snack bar in the city, the owner Guptas have come a long way. Savory ‘Imartis’ were being rolled in the hot ghee and soaked in the sugar syrup. Have a look….

Thats how they are swirled and juiced in the sugary syrup

That’s how they are swirled and juiced in the sugary syrup





Some very typical of Konkan and Mumbai cuisine…

When we think of Maharastrian cuisine, the obvious names comes to our mind are Puran Poli, Thalipeeth etc… However, being a spicy food lover, my votes goes to the very humble but satisfying Maharastrian dish (particularly in Mumbai region) is Misal Pav.

Misal Pav in a Pen resturant

Dahi Misal Pav in a Pen resturant

Misal @ Union Special in Old Panvel, Navi Mumbai

Misal @ Union Special in Old Panvel, Navi Mumbai. Typically a Misal is a spicy curry made from sprouted bean (Moong, Matki, Peas etc)

A complete meal to begin your day

My favorite Misal Pav @ Union Special in Panvel is served with hot ‘Pooris’ or ‘Pav’ in early hours of the day…

Hotel ‘Union special’ in old Panvel is serving this very typical Misal Pav since last 60 years. The hotel opens at 6am is closes for the day by 11am after satisfying taste buds of limited loyal customers. The masala used in the dish is a secret recipe being passed on to generations. Try once ! You wont be disappointed !!

Haji Lassi Centre, Itwara, Bhopal

I found this location by chance. While I was in Bhopal last summer, I inquired the locals about the best ‘Lassi’ being offered in the city of lakes. The obvious answer was ‘Haji Lassi Center’ in Itwara area. Although located almost 15 km from the hotel I have put up, me and my colleague decided to give it a try. The place was unique as I have been told that there are no servants in the shop. The entire family takes care of the customers and the service is awesome looking at the crowd.

Haji Lassi Centre @ Bhopal

Haji Lassi Centre @ Bhopal

Lassi @ Haji Lassi Centre Bhopal

Lassi @ Haji Lassi Centre Bhopal

Lassi @ Haji Lassi Centre Bhopal

Lassi @ Haji Lassi Centre Bhopal

Much more to share in the next post… Bon Appetite !

Story of a dying lotus lake

Located to the western side of the Mumbai Pune Old Highway in Panvel town, lies an ancient lake called ‘Wadale or Ballaleshwar lake’. Originally spread over several hectares, this lake is now reduced to just few acres, thanks to rampant construction and land grabbing. The pond is renowned for the bloom of lotus flowers.


A solitary Lotus

Panvel although blessed with such natural lakes which could otherwise be a major recreational spots for relaxation and enjoying natures beauty, most of these lakes are now surrounded by housing societies and commercial activities.


The Bloom

The lotus in the lake blooms twice in a year around Diwali and June month which is onset of the monsoon. Although being neglected by civic authorities and local residents, the lake is being maintained by a private owner who is struggling hard to save it from ruined. The owner is often seen riding his small boat in the lake to clean the filth and collect some flowers which he sells in the local market.

1DSC_0714 This lake could have been a beautiful recreational spot to the residents however garbage dumping by the citizens and apathy of the civic authorities making it filthier and the birds are also vanishing. I have been there on a summer morning some years back to witness and capture this lake through my lens.



ABC… All about Belgian Chocolates

Spain and Italy have their Olive Oil while France is known for its Wine. Belgium is all about its Chocolates and Beers.  Although not an ardent chocoholic, just spent some good time exploring the Belgian chocolate shops in Brussels and Bruges. With beautiful decorations these shop display these products in the best possible way so as to attract even a non enthusiast buyer not to talk about the photographers. I started with a small but nicely decorated chocoleterie just behind the bourse in Brussels named ‘Le Comptoir De Mathilde’ and here as the photographs which explain everything…


Chocolaterie ‘La Comptoir De Mathilde’… an attractive little store near the grand place in Brussels. Sells traditional chocolates. You can have a instant hot chocolate even. Very humble staff to explain you all about the Belgian chocolates… Impressive and must visit


Lots of varieties and flavours in the loose chocolates to select from. You have a choice of multiple selection as all these varieties have same price.


Pamper yourself…..A chocolate with hammer to break it….


Varieties of offerings… With different nuts and different chocolates…


Ideal differential focusing object… ?


Chocolate coated with puffed rice


Truck laden with the sinful delights

While walking around the Bruges town, I selected a store named ‘La Belgique Gourmande’ to explore the confectioneries and chocolates. The shop is located near the central market and the beautiful arrangement of the ever vibrantly colored sweets naturally attracts the visitors attention. Mainly sells Cuberdons, Macaroons, Pearl Chocolates, Cookies etc. The staff was courteous enough to increase my confectionery knowledge to some extent. Following pictures are from this shop….


A chocolate shop in central Bruges, Belgium


They call these as ‘Macaroons’. Sugary treats and heavenly feelings. Could not taste all the flavours…


The displays of Macaroons in the shops resemble something like high end jewelry shops…


Vibrantly colored Macaroon


Conically shapes, Sweet, slightly hard outside but soft inside these delicacies are called ‘Cuberdons’


This one is the orignal Cuberdon…. Red Raspberry. When inquired about the recipe, I was told that its a secret however it takes around a week to take out a perfect Cuberdon due to slow ageing process.


Pineapple flavor. Inexpensive. Handmade. Available in splash of colors and favors. These sweets sure stand tall in popularity among the tourists…


Chocolate coated orange slices in Bruges shop

A paradise for the sweet lovers. ‘La Cure Gourmande’ are one of the renowned french confectioners with branches at Dubai,  Abu Dhabi, Brussels etc. The shop looks like a fairy tale location. Dont hesitate to taste the sample free cookies offered with a smile.


La Cure Gourmande, Grand Place, Brussels, Belgium


Near to the grand place is this famous candy and biscuits shop named ‘La Cure Gourmande’. The shop naturally attracts the tourists and ardent photographers thanks to the wonderful lighting and products arrangement in the shop… Photo No 1


Olive chocolates…. No these are just Olive shaped and nothing to do with the real olives


Olive chocolates beautifully packed and displayed @ La Cure Gourmande, Grand Place, Brussels, Belgium


This aesthetic packaging is really appealing. I bought few variety of boxes as souvenirs.


Their logo… This cute pigtailed french child… inviting you to buy these biscuits, chocolates, candies, fudges, caramels etc


The very humble candies


Prices are quite high. These tins filled with the cookies will cost you around 20 euros or 25 USD. The elaborate displays will sure compel you to buy.


Lollypops… With very friendly staff you will have a special feeling at this place. I recommend a must visit whenever you get a chance….


Visit for more details about these confectioners…

Please feel free to leave your comments on this blog. I can be reached at

Beers Bruges Belgium

Had a chance to visit beautiful Belgium in February 2015. After lot of research, decided to visit the wonderful city of Bruges famous for its unique architectural houses, chocolates and of course, varieties of beers it brews and offers. You can reach Bruges from Brussels by trains (every 30 minute there is one) and it takes just 14 Euros and an hour for a one way trip. Sharing herewith my experience through these photos…

The town hall of Bruges

The town hall of Bruges located in the center of the city now turned in a museum..

Bruges town hall

Built in 1376 this building is a master piece of Gothic architecture


Town hall Bruges

Bruges town hall

Some early scenes of Indian movie ‘Peekay’ was shot here and the curiosity lead me to this place

Bruges town hall

Beautiful lamp posts near the town hall


Restaurants @ Market in Brugges

Restaurants @ Market in Bruges

The restaurants at

Restaurants @ Market in Brugges - 2

Restaurants @ Market in Brugges – 2

Restaurants @ Market in Brugges - 3

Restaurants @ Market in Brugges – 3

Restaurants @ Market in Brugges - 4

Evening time at Restaurants @ Market in Bruges – 4

Bruges town hall in the evening hours

Bruges town hall in the evening hours

A typical Brugges house

A typical Brugges house. The city architecture is a photographer’s dream destination.



Bruges Steets

A typical medieval city with narrow but beautiful streets. Just have a city map along with and these cobblestone streets can take you around all those interesting places without being lost…


Medieval building structures with no touch of modernisation. Very well preserved all across the city.


Canals in Bruges

These canals are integral part of this beautiful city and an easy way to have a look around the architecture riding in the small powered boats..

Canals @ Bruges

There more than 40 arch bridges all over these canals and some are very narrow where the tourists are asked to bend downwards to save their heads…





Clicked some beautiful formations by these royal swans across one canal passage…1


Clicked some beautiful formations by these royal swans across one canal passage…2


The great wall of beer… On display are more than 600 varieties and brands of beer.. A must visit place while you are in Bruges


Inexpensive and lots of combinations of beer available at 2-be pub which is most popular and populous. The staff is courteous enough to suggest you in case you are a novice in beer tasting….


Beer lovers @ 2-be…. Pic 1


Beer lovers @ 2-be…. Pic 2


Beer lovers @ 2-be…. Pic 3


Belgian beer at display and sale at shop of 2-be


Another photo of Belgian beer at display and sale at shop of 2-be





From cheery to coconut… You will find everything what can be prepared as beer. Unfortunately missed to visit the Brewery.



The beer vending machine at 2-be

Many more things to do in next visit to the heaven on earth…

Beautiful flowers of amazing ‘cannonball tree’

Nature is full of surprises. You just need to look around yourself for the wonders it has created. Last week, when I was shooting the lotus flowers at a pond in Navi Mumbai, one of the curious onlooker took to me this wonderful tree popularly called as ‘Cannonball tree’ or ‘Nag Chafa’ in Marathi. I could not shoot the flowers that day as it was fading but decided to come next day.

Next day, I visited the tree to witness a sweet and strong scent oozing out of those lovely flowers. Sharing here with the pictorial journey of this wonderful tree…

The Tree

These trees are rare to find but the usual locations are near Shiva temples in India. Flowers bloom on the small extrusions coming out on the main trunk


This cannonball shaped fruit of the tree is the real weapon. When ripe, this fruit falls on the earth with a loud bang thereby dispersing the seeds for its propagation… The falling fruit could also pose threat to the people standing below…


Flowers mostly grow above a few feet height on the main truck though a extruded twig


Some times the flowers grown in bunches. Have a very strong sweetish scent and very bright colored petals for attracting the bees and other insects for cross pollination


Speechless to describe the mother natures creation…


My curiosity drove me to find more and more about this tree. Thanks to google, it has medicinal properties as well


The curved stamen gives it a look of snake hence the marathi name ‘Nag Chafa’ meaning flower resembling a snake.


Don’t neglect the wonders of nature if ever you get an opportunity to be close with it… This shot taken from my 40mm prime lens


While you enjoy beauty of these flowers, be aware of the falling fruits which could lead to serious injuries as they weigh several kilos in weight and have hard cover outside..


These fragrant flowers open up early in the morning generally after 7am but do not last long and the petals keep on falling through out day.


Scientific name ‘Couroupita Guianensis’. Belongs to the Brazi Nuts family. More info at

Indian Naval Day Celebrations @ Gateway of India, Mumbai

Navy of the India plays a great role in securing the marine borders of the country.  To commemorate attack of Indian Navy on the Karachi harbor during 1972 Indo-Pak war, Indian Navy celebrates 4th December as Navy Day.  In order to celebrate this occasion, the Western Naval Command of the Indian navy (headquarter is Mumbai) bring their ships and sailors for making the celebration excellent. Been there to witness the celebrations and was awestruck. Tunes of the Indian Navy band, Rhythmic dance by the Sea Cadet Corps, Rescue demonstration by the choppers and finally the beautiful parade by Navy soldiers made the evening an unforgettable experience. Sharing herewith some shots of the proceedings….


Indian Tricolor and Flags of Indian Navy during Beating Retreat Parade off Gateway of India on 4th December 2013


A member of Sea Cadet Corp performing on the tunes of Navy Band during Beating Retreat Parade off Gateway of India on 4th December 2013


A member of Indian Navy Band performing during Beating Retreat Parade off Gateway of India on 4th December 2013


A Navy Sailor descending from the Chetak Helicopter for a mock rescue demonstration off Gateway of India on 4th December 2013


Indian Navy chopper ‘Chetak’ doing some maneuvers before a rescue demonstration off Gateway of India on Indian Navy Day


Another angle – Indian Navy chopper ‘Chetak’ doing some maneuvers before a rescue demonstration off Gateway of India on Indian Navy Day


Indian Navy work horse ‘Westland Seaking’ chopper doing maneuver during a rescue demonstration off Gateway of India on Indian Navy Day


Seaking readies and steadies it for the rescue demonstration off Gateway of India on Indian Navy Day


The daredevils at work… Commandos of Indian Navy demonstrating the rescue operation off Seaking chopper on Indian Navy Day on December 4th, 2013


Pic 2 : The daredevils at work… Commandos of Indian Navy demonstrating the rescue operation off Seaking chopper on Indian Navy Day on December 4th, 2013


Pic 3 : The daredevils at work… Commandos of Indian Navy demonstrating the rescue operation off Seaking chopper on Indian Navy Day on December 4th, 2013


Westland Seaking…. Pride of Indian Navy


Indian Navy Band during Beating Retreat Ceremony


Indian Tricolor furling through Chetak….


Salutes to the Indian Navy


They Came, They Won and there they disappear in the blue skies…


Pic 1 : Indian Sailors performing during the Beating retreat ceremony


Pic 2 : Indian Sailors performing during the Beating retreat ceremony


Pic 3 : Indian Sailors performing during the Beating retreat ceremony


Pic 4 : Indian Sailors performing during the Beating retreat ceremony

 | JAI HO |

Magical Monuments of MP – Mandu, the city of joy

I have been waiting for this opportunity ever since I have started visiting MP, thanks to my corporate necessities. Finally, this month, I was lucky enough to take out some time to visit “Mandu”, one of the most acclaimed monuments of Madhya Pradesh. Situated in Vindhya range of Dhar district, this fantastic city of stones is just 150 km away from Indore.  Sharing herewith all the photographs and information which I could gather about though ASI infostones and discussions with my local colleagues. 

The entire region is fortified with a 45 km long fort wall and there are number of Gateways to enter into the region. The region boasts more than 40 structures but due to paucity of time, I decided to cover only the famous ones. You will get a feeling of being transported back into the history once you are there.

Mandu, famous for its story over romance, poetry and beauty, the region of Malwa was ruled by the then poet prince Baz Bahadur who fell in love a shepherdess Roopmati who was also fond of music. The couple used to have music Mehefils at their palaces and the structures suggest their musical taste.

Rani Roopmati Pavillion

We started our day long tour with visiting the “Roopmati Pavillion” which is about 6 km from the main town. Located on a small hill, this place offers picturesque scene of the adjoining plains and a distantly flowing river Narmada. As understood, Rani Roopmati used to view river Narmada from this location before having food everyday. Bollywood inspired to make Bharat Bhushan starer “Rani Rupmati’ in 1957  with “Aa laut ke aaja mere meet”  song. To know more about the movie and legendary Malwa queen please visit


Roopmati Pavillion as seen from the Baz Bahadur Palace


Stone stairs embeded into the wall for climing Roopmati Pavillion


Pavillions of the Roopmati Palace


Baz Bahadur Palace

Built by the poet prince Baz Bahadur in the early 16th century, the palace’s unique features are its spacious courtyards surrounded by halls and high terraces which offers a superb view of the surrounding including pavillion of his lady love Roopmati. The perfectly designed parapets of the structure will make the modern civil engineers feel short.









Tomb of Hoshang Shah

The tomb of Hoshang Shah located just behind the Jami Masjid is based on a square area with four artistic side domes and the main marble dome mounted  in the center. The entire structure stands on a square marble platform. Also known as India’s first marble edifice, this tomb has served as an inspiration in building the legendary Taj Mahal as Shahjehan sent four of his architects to study and draw the master plan for building Taj Mahal.

Hoshang Shah's Tomb

Hoshang Shah’s Tomb

Hoshang Shah's Tomb

Hoshang Shah’s Tomb



Jami Masjid

Built by Hushang Shah in 14th century, this is considered to be the largest mosque in India. Built above a plinth level of more than 15 feet, the mosque




Jahaj Mahal

This more than 100 mtr long ship resembling palace is perhaps the biggest attraction of the place. Built amid 2 lake reservoirs (Munj lake and Kapur lake), this 2 storied structure gives an impression of a royal ship with a deck. As the water levels were receded during my visit, I could not get the images I thought about it.



Picturesque Jahaj Mahal @ Mandu


Stairs to the Upper deck of Jahaj Mahal @ Mandu


Kapur Talao @ Jahaj Mahal @ Mandu


Artistic water harvesting channels @ Jahaj Mahal @ Mandu

Hindola Mahal

As the name suggests, this palace resembles a swing. In T shape, the palace has upper floor with several balconies (Jharoka’s) from where the women can watch the proceedings in the main hall.






Neelkanth Mahal

A shrine of Lord Shiva is located in a steep ravine. Surrounded by lush green trees, this place attracts lot of devotees. Some inscriptions in Urdu were visible on the walls of the shrine which are supposed to be of Akbar’s era. Just below the worship place, there is a pond from where the water goes into the ravine below through some beautiful circular canals (pic below).



A lady curiously onlooks the water passing through the circular water channels @ Nilkanth shrine


Circular Water channels @ Nilkanth


Shivling and the bulls @ Nilkanth

Other attractions

Mandu’s tamarind or Mandu ki Imli is a unique sort of fruit found only in this region of India. There are few local dishes made of this tamarind. The giant trees have a huge trunk and were first cultivated several hundred years ago by the local rulers. Interesting…



Flamingos of Sewri, Mumbai


Despite high decible hustle bustle and deadly pollution levels in Mumbai, they arrive in thousands to spend few months in this over crowded metropolis. Yes, I am talking about the pink feathered birds ‘Flamingo’. Besides Naigaon and one more location in Mumbai, Sewri seems be their favorite habitat as they come here in maximum numbers. NGO’s like BNHS also organise trips to this location on Sundays. 

After acquiring a 55-300 mm Nikkor lens for my Nikon D5100, me and my Son Sahil (budding photographer and a nature enthusiast) decided to make it a day amidst the Sewri Flamingos. Courtesy my googling, we made it sure that we reach these mudflats by 9 am in morning when the high tide just started to recede. That was the most suitable time to have a closer look at these pink wonders.

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Besides flamingos, the mudflats are also hunting grounds for some birds and more particularly Egrets. Sharing some of the interesting, funny shots of them. In the immediate next pic, an Egret was trying to encroach the territory of the Flamingos who were not so keen to allow him… 

A Perfect Landing

A Perfect Landing

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Some abandoned barges and small ships  anchored there may be for dry docking or breaking and they offer a good platform to shoot the Flamingos. Sharing below a Pegion sitting on the sides of of one such ship. Just click on the pic to see the feather arrangements in a high resolution image.

A Perfect Take off

A Perfect Take off

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Uran, a small town on the southern coast of Mumbai is famous for the JNPT port and a giant ONGC refinery. However, this small town also attracts   bird lovers as many species of local and as well as migratory birds visit here thanks to the numerous water bodies and comparatively quite environment. We (me and Sahil) spent an entire evening at the place and caught some beautiful creatures and scenes on our cams.





On a religious trail…

Divine monuments always inspired me. Ancient temples particularly built with the black stones with spectacular arches and interiors are really a treat for any any enthusiast photographer. Sharing herewith some of the photos and brief information on these holy structures (where I have visited and shot these photos in last seven years). Temples, where faith still unites the mankind…

The Golden Temple, Amritsar, Punjab

Golden Temple at Dawn Hours

Golden Temple at Dawn Hours

Golden temple or The Harminder Sahib…. An epitome of belief and sikh pilgrimage across the globe also invites people irrespective of caste or religions. For me, it was like a life time wish coming true when I entered the temple premises in December 2012 and witnessing the main temple bathing in the golden rays of dawn hours amid chants of the sacred Gurbani being broadcast live…

The Golden Temple, Amritsar, Punjab

The Golden Temple, Amritsar, Punjab

Built in the 16th century by 5th guru ‘Guru Arjan Dev’ it is learnt that most of the golden artwork was completed in 19th century. The shrine is built on a level lower to the ground and has four entrances. Everyday the temple also serves ‘Langar’  which is nothing but sacred food prepared by the volunteer devotees.

Golden Temple Amritsar

Golden Temple Amritsar

The main temple is constructed with white marble and overlaid with golden leaves stands in the centre of the ‘Sarovar’ or a giant pool of holy water which is refreshing, transparent and reflective. As understood, this water is fetched from the river Ganges. The water is believed to have healing properties.

Ganapati Pule, Maharastra

Maha Ganapati of Ganapati Pule

Lord Ganesha temple at Ganapati Pule (on Mumbai Goa NH9) is one of the oldest temple in the region. Built on the beautiful beach this temple is believed to be famous for fulfulling wishes. You can see people conveying their wishes to Lord Ganesha through a huge Bronze Mouse in front of the temple. Pictursque, Serene, Simple and Clean atomosphere abodes this holy place…

Chamundeshwari Temple, Mysore


Located on Chamundi Hills near Mysore city of Karnataka, this temple offers a picturesque view. Built around 11th century, the temple has excellent carvings. The temple is dedicated to goddess ‘Chamundeshwari’ also know as ‘Mahishasur Mardini’ as is believed to be an incarnation of goddess Durga. It is also believed that the goddess Chamundeshwari resided at this hill after killing the demon ‘Mahishasur’. You may also like to visit a huge rather collosal statue of  ‘Nandi’ or bull while descending from the hill.

Shri Swami Narayan Temple, Tithal, Valsad, Gujarat

Swami Narayan Temple at Tithal

Temple of Lord Swami Narayan at Tithal in Valsad district. One good about all Lord Swami Narayan temples is that they do not prohibit photography and most of their temples are a treat for any photography enthusiast. This temple, built from red granite is simple but architectually a marvel. Must visit when u r on Mumbai Ahmedabad circuit.

Akshar Dham Temple, Bhuj, Kutch, Gujarat

Lord Swami Narayan Temple of Bhuj

Lord Swami Narayan temple in Bhuj. Made from white Marble the temple has large number of pillar on which epics of Ramanyana and Mahabharata have been carved.

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There is saying…’Kutch nahi dekha to kuch nahi dekha’ and this temple really makes this saying meaningful. Temple has got ample parking space, Very neat and tidy environment, No nonsense behaaviour of the priests. Feels like visiting again and again…

Narayan Sarovar Temple, Kutch

Narayan Sarovar Temple, Kutch

Narayan Sarovar Temple, Kutch

Narayan Sarovar is located on the western boundary of Kutch district of Gujarat and is extremely close to the Pakistan border. Awesone architecture and ancient. Dedicated to Lord Vishnu (also called as ‘Narayan’) this temple can be reached from Bhuj which is almost 150 km from here. Narayan Sarovar Lake is one of the 5 holy lakes of Hinduism (others being Mansarovar in Tibet, Pampa in Karnataka, Bhuvaneshwar in Orissa and Pushkar in Rajasthan). The lake is associated with a time of drought in the Puranic area, when Narayan (a form of Lord Vishnu) appeared in response to the prayers and touched the land with his toe, creating the lake.

Chhatri’s of Indore

Holkars Chhatri @ Indore in MP

Holkars Chhatri @ Indore in MP

In the heartand of Indore, the beautiful city of Madhya Pradesh, stands some superbly carved temples also known as ‘Chhatri’s’ built by the Holkar dynasty. These represent the glorious reigns of the erstwhile architectural marvels. Pyramidal in shape, these structures have survived the wrath of time and are still a great tourist attractions.

Shri Mahalaxmi Temple, Kolhapur, Maharastra

Goddess Mahalaxmi Temple @ Kolhapur

Goddess Mahalaxmi Temple @ Kolhapur

Although photography is prohibited in the Mahalaxmi temple of the Kolhapur, beauty of the architecturally built temple compells any enthusiastic photographer to shoot and preserve the memories. Sanctum sanctorum of the entire temple is mounted on a square platform of black stone and from inside the entire temple looks like a monolithis structure. I wish they allowed me to shoot the interiors too….

Lord Hanuman Temple, JSW Ispat plant, Dolvi, Raigad, Maharastra

Lord Hanuman Temple @ Ispat Dolvi Plant

Lord Hanuman Temple @ Ispat Dolvi Plant

JSW Ispat’s (earlier known as ‘Ispat Industries Ltd’) 3 mtpa steel plant is located at Dolvi on Mumbai – Goa highway. I am one of the proud ex-employee of this one of the largest integrated steel plant in India. In 2008, this beautiful temple was inaugurated with much fan fare and became a favorite stop over for many people due to its unique gothic look alike acrchitecture.  Surrounded by four water bodies and amazing painting on the ceiling, this temple is a must see whenever you are cruising on the Mumbai Goa highway…

View from Lord Hanuman Temple @ Ispat Dolvi Plant

Another view from Lord Hanuman Temple @ Ispat Dolvi Plant

Birla Mandir, Hyderabad, AP

Lord Venkateshwara @ Birla Mandir in Hyderabad

Lord Venkateshwara @ Birla Mandir in Hyderabad

Ganapati Bappa Morya

Pune Ganesh Festival

Pune, the harbinger of the Lord Ganesha festival started by Lokmanya Tilak, is still continuing the legacy laid by the great freedom fighter. I have been visiting Pune during Ganesh Chaturthi time every year since last 15 years without fail. Sharing herewith some of the photographs taken during these visits. Pune has its unique system of honouring or raking its Ganesha’s.  Given below is the list of ranks and some photographs of these mandals :

1)  Kasba Peth Ganapati

2) Tambadi Jogeshwari Ganapati

3) Guruji Talim Ganapati

4) Tulsibag Ganapati and

5) Kesariwada Ganapati

Ganapati of Shrimant Dagadu Seth Halawai


Makeshift Pandal (say temple rather) of Lord Ganesha of Seth Dagadu Seth Halawai… The permanant temple is located near Shaniwar vada and the idol is shifted to a makeshift pandal every year during Ganesh chaturthi. This is amongst most popular and visited by millions during this 10 day festival.


Founded in the year 1893. The main idol is around 8 feet in height and adorned with gold ornaments of several kilograms. Truck loads of coconuts in the form of garlands are offered to the diety to get please him and getting the wishes fulfilled.

Makeshift Ganesh Pandal of Shrimant Dagadu Seth Halwai at Pune in year 2011

Makeshift Ganesh Pandal of Shrimant Dagadu Seth Halwai at Pune in year 2011

Lighting and decoration of the make shift temple is an attraction every year. The make shift temple incorporates new themes of historical importance, monuments, personalities etc every year. I have been witnessing themes of different categories ranging from Hawa Mahal of Jaipur to Meenakshi Temple…

Lord Ganesha of Shrimant Dagadu Seth Halawai of Pune

Lord Ganesha of Shrimant Dagadu Seth Halawai of Pune

Most of my visits, I had been lucky enough to get some very candid close ups of the lord. The above photo was taken in last year (2012).

Lord Ganesha @ Mandai in Pune

Lord Ganesha @ Mandai in Pune

Sharada – Ganapati idol of Mandai :  This is the permanand idol of this mandal where in goddess Sharda (wife of lord Ganesha) is sitting besides the lord. Perhaps the only kind of idol in the entire country. A symbolic idol is immersed on the 10th day of the festival. Started a century ago by the vegetable vendors of the adjacent Phule market, this mandal has got its own followers.


Ranked fourth in the honours, Tulsibag ganapati (as the name suggests) is located in the narrow by lane of Tulsi bag (a market mainly known for sell of utensils and other domestic useful items). Huge idol with lots of silver ornaments.

Lord Ganesha @ Babu Genu Mandal in Pune

Lord Ganesha @ Babu Genu Mandal in Pune

Ganesha @ Babu Genu Mandal – Located extactly between the Dagadu Seth and Mandai Gapanapti, this mandal draws many devotees due to its pandal decoration. 

A superb lighting decoration depicting lord Balaji at one of the Ganesha Pandal in Pune

A superb lighting decoration depicting lord Balaji at one of the Ganesha Pandal in Pune

The entire Pune city goes frenzied during this 10 day long festival. Flocks of people are seen walking on the street for witnessing the best of the decorations and Ganesha idols. The photo was taken by me at a lesser known mandal while wandering along with the crowd…

Pen – A town in Maharashtra where trunk of the Elephant god takes the twist

Pen is a small town in the Raigad district of Maharashtra renowned for the beautiful lord Ganesha idols it makes. This small town is divided into several small by lanes (called ‘Ali’) where the craftsmen are busy throughout the year in crafting the idols of god.










There may be some errors in the information gathered / provided and I earnestly request all of you to give honest feedback on this post.

Rose Garden @ Chandigarh

Been there. Seen that. Was in Punjab this December for some official work. While returning to Chandigarh airport, sighted this Rose Garden signage in this beautiful capital of Punjab. In spite being late for the flight, I took out few odd minutes to watch, admire and shoot some of the most beautiful roses I have ever seen. Pending my full day visit to this beautiful garden hosting more than 800 varieties of roses and spread over 40 acres land, I cant resist sharing some lovely photographs I took at this place. My apologies for not being able to name the varieties of roses although the names were prominently displayed at every garden…


A rose must remain with the sun and the rain or its lovely promise won’t come true – Ray Evans


But he who dares not grasp the thorn should never crave the rose ― Anne Bronte


There may be many flowers in a man’s life, but there is only one rose – Unknown Author


What’s in a name? That which we call a rose by any other name would smell as sweet – William Shakespeare (Romeo and Juliet)


You cannot pluck roses without fear of thorns, nor enjoy a fair wife without danger of horns – Benjamin Franklin


Rose is a Rose is a Rose is a Rose – Gertrude Stein


A single rose can be my garden; a single friend, my world – Leo Buscaglia


There is nothing more difficult for a truly creative painter than to paint a rose, because before he can do so he has first to forget all the roses that were ever painted – Henri Matisse


The rose speaks of love silently, in a language known only to the heart – Unknown


Love is much like a wild rose, beautiful and calm, but willing to draw blood in its defense – Mark Overby



A red rose is not selfish because it wants to be a red rose. It would be horribly selfish if it wanted all the other flowers in the garden to be both red and roses – Oscar Wilde



You can complain because roses have thorns, or you can rejoice because thorns have roses – Tom Wilson



The Rose Garden @ Chandigarh is best maintained, free to all, peaceful and has a serene atmosphere making it a must see destination for all nature lovers visiting Chandigarh

Why is rose the national flower of US ?

In 1986, the US Congress passed an act declaring the Rose to be the “floral symbol” of the US. The following is a quote from President Regan at the signing of this act : Americans have always loved the flowers with which God decorates our land. More often than any other flower, we hold the rose dear as the symbol of life and love and devotion, of beauty and eternity. For the love of man and woman, for the love of mankind and God, for the love of country, Americans who would speak the language of the heart do so with a rose…..