5 luxury hotels in Goa where you can experience ‘jannat’

Goa has some high-class hotels which can bring out that best sigh from your lips. Of course, their tariffs can make you pee in your pant. But the trick is to either look for discounts under Goa packages or to plan your trip during the rainy months (June-September) when the tourist count is low and the hotel rates plunge.

Anyway, you decide how you will manage your finance. We will, meanwhile, take you along on a very brief virtual stroll at 5 of Goa’s most luxurious hotels:

Taj Vivanta Holiday Village: This hotel’s biggest USP is that it enjoys a good location in north Goa. Baga Beach and Anjuna Beach are less than 30 minutes away. The hotel has a pool and a bar and is considered ideal for family holidays. Price pinch will be around $175-250 (depending on the season).


The Leela Kempinski: Nestled around a private beach, this resort in south Goa offers you a golf course, swimming pool, casino, spa and some exciting water sports. With fascinating views and services, the Leela Kempinski is just ‘wow. But you must be ready to shell out anything between $200 and $330.

The Leela Kempinski

Taj Exotica: It is quite similar to The Leela Kempinski in terms of facilities, services and tariffs. It is situated in South Goa as well, perched around the Varca Beach, a favorite corner of the quintessential recluse. Pool, spa, nightlife and golf course are what you get to feast on. Tariffs will hover between $220 and $330.


Park Hyatt Resort and Spa: If you wish to prioritize the ‘spa’ factor, then this resort is the one to head to. Situated over South Goa’s Arossim Beach, Park Hyatt is another luxurious property with a great spa, pool, beach sports and other expected facilities. The rates will be somewhere in the region of $200-250. But you can extract some discounts with cheap Goa packages.

Park Hyatt Resort and Spa

The Intercontinental, Lalit: At Patnem Beach, it is cut off from North Goa completely and may not have the best location. But for someone looking for isolation, a quiet holiday, the delights of spa, pool, casino and golf, and to admire a Portuguese architecture, this one is perfect. It is also tariff-friendly at $180.

The Intercontinental-Lalit

How to reach Goa from Delhi: Daily flights are available, but you can also catch a train if you don’t mind the hassles of IRCTC.

Five best delicacies to try in Malaysia

I admit that I am not much of a foodie, as opposed to my friend Sneha whose chief motto in life is to attack food. Do when we planned an all-girlie trip to Malaysia (you see, Sneha got hold of a truly pocket-friendly Malaysia holiday package), it was she who was leafing through all the possible food guides she could lay her hand on to.

Kuala Lumpur dishes

But truth be told, it was me who ranted about the Malaysian delicacies before our common friends when we returned back to India. So, without troubling you further with my silly talks, let us plunge straight into my list of five best dishes to try in Malaysia:

Nasi Lemak: It took me some time to get the name right on my tongue. But it hardly took me more than a minute to get it right on my taste buds. This dish, which is more of a concoction of cooked rice and coconut milk, is the most delicious thing you can eat for a heavy lunch. Mind it, its calorie count is really high, but if you are lusting for food, this dish should be right on your platter.

Nasi Lemak

Char Kuey Teow: It is usually found on roadside stalls and is a form of rice noodle. Since I am madly and incorrigibly in love with Chinese cuisine, this dish was born to be devoured by me. Burp, excuse me!

Roti Canai: Roti Canai is actually the Malaysian cousin of our Indian ‘roti’. Though it has its characteristic flavor and is a tad different from what we are served at home, its roots are largely Indian. It is delicious, nevertheless and a staple diet for many locals.


Curry Mee: Sneha is not a big fan of curries and so she skipped this one. Fool she is. But it was good for me since I ordered a second helping after slurping up the first bowl. Submerged in curry soup, this dish is made of noodles and eggs.

Bak Kut The: Basically, it is pork ribs but these guys spice it up and add some aromatic herbs to make it look (and smell) totally irresistible. This is good for a heavy dinner.

Bak Kut The

Thankfully, most of these dishes are available even at the popular tourist places to visit near Malaysia. From amazing street food to chic fine dining, Kuala Lumpur is heaven for foodies. So, you can have them again and again, as did Sneha (and me).

Know about Thailand package with airfare and journey through South-East Asia

South-East Asia, in recent years, has emerged as the most appealing destination for Indians. This corner not only offers a slew of amazing countries but also puts lesser strain on your pockets. A journey through the countries of Thailand, Vietnam and Cambodia can be a fulfilling and happy experience. Thailand, for instance, is a country whose culture hasn’t got ravaged by modernity. The alluring bazaars, the omnipresent hospitality and that tendency to show respect to religion is still very much a part of the 21st century Thailand.

Snorkeling & Sea Canoeing in Krabi

Plus, Thailand offers you cities like Bangkok, Pattaya, Phuket, Chiang Mai and Krabi. Each of them has a story to tell; each story being different and almost as fascinating as the other. If Bangkok is the woman’s favorite shopping den, Pattaya is the beach bum’s getaway. At the beaches of Pattaya, you can roll over sand, go deep into the water with scuba diving or toss yourself up in the sky with parasailing. Chiang Mai brings you a bucket of history and religion while Krabi is an adventurer’s ultimate treasure. Phuket is a mix of everything and is another great place to spend a few days.


How to reach Thailand: The distance between India and Thailand is a shade under 3,000 km. It takes around 3 hours 45 minutes to reach the capital Bangkok from our capital New Delhi. A Thailand package with airfare included is now easy to grab at portal sites.

Once you are through Thailand, you can move on to Vietnam, another fabled land of history, culture and nature. This country which has seen the ugly years of war is now a top draw amongst the history-obsessed tourists. Attractions like Hanoi City, Halong Bay, Hoa Lu, Perfume River, Danang Beach, Mekong Delta and Dalat hill station offer a mixture of everything.


Cambodia is not far away and you can round up your trip with a brief visit to this historic country as well. Full of temples and shrines, Cambodia’s focal points of attractions include gems like Angkor Wat, Bayon, Angkor Thom, Preah Vihear Temple, Silver Pagoda and Wat Phnom. Kep National Park, Botum Sakor National Park, Independence Monument, Neak Pean and Cambodian Cultural Village and the rest make sure that there is no shortage of tourist points.

3 popular Ladakh monasteries you must visit

Ladakh is not the most habitable region in the country. Its terrain is hilly and the climate is bone-chilling. Yet when you buy a Ladakh trip package and head over to this land, you will discover that the locals out there are surprisingly happy and lead a simple yet contented life.

One of the best testimonies to their harmony and peace comes through to the surface in the form of Buddhist monasteries. These monasteries are spread throughout Ladakh and present a picture of serenity, spiritualism and solace. A trekking tour in Ladakh can be highly adventurous and will inevitably throw you before a number of such monasteries, both reputed and the obscured ones.

Here is a look at some of the best:


Hemis Monastery: Hemis Monastery is amongst the most popular Buddhist monasteries in the town. It is a must-visit tourist attraction and draws both pilgrim travelers and general backpackers. This monastery is over 400 years old and witnesses some annual rituals and festivals which keep alive some of the deep-rooted traditions. One such festival is the Hemis Festival which is observed every year in the month of June/July. This is also a time when the weather is at its friendliest and so it is the best time to travel to Ladakh.

Thiksey Monastery: Another popular pilgrim attraction, the Thiksey Monastery always houses dozens of monks who practice and preach the Buddhist principles. Thikse is also home to one of the most beautiful statues of Lord Buddha. This monastery is just 20 kilometer away from the capital Leh and is one of the most visited spots in the state.

Alchi Gompa: You will love to book a Ladakh trip package yet again if you pay a visit to Alchi Gompa and discover the serenity it brings on you. This monastery is also famous for several paintings of Lord Buddha which are spread throughout and vary in sizes. When you visit this place, do keep some time at hand so that you can admire each of the paintings and images at leisure.

A trekking tour in Ladakh will also be your ticket to natural paradise, what with ravishing snow-crafted beauty and chirping mountain birds all around you.