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Read and rate Travel Journal Entries for Darjeeling, West Bengal, India

Dec 16, 2016 - Onward by train to Darjeeling

12/15 Our train tickets have us boarding at 11 p.m. on the 15th but we do not arrive in JNP train station for the 'toy train' leaving at 8:30 to Darjeeling until 7:30 a.m. on the 16th. ___ Later: We paid 800 r, to stay in D & Js room until 10 p.m. when we went to the train station - 15 min. walk. It was very wise to hold the room since train stations in India are 'an experience' to be missed. Crowded, noisy, really uncomfortable seats, if you can find one, and at one time in the past they even let cows wander in and around - yuk! Luckily we...

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India One More Time

Oct 30, 2016 - Delhi to Agra

Ram ram (hello) everyone! Happy Diwali. One of the major festivals of Hinduism, it spiritually signifies the victory of light over darkness, good over evil, knowledge over ignorance, and hope over despair.Its celebration includes millions of lights shining on housetops, outside doors and windows, around temples and other buildings in India. Also lots of fireworks and firecrackers going off and the biggest day for the sale of marigolds as they are hung in every Hindu house, hovel and or business to celebrate Diwali. Today we left Delhi for a...

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Oct 29, 2016 - A second day in Delhi

An interesting day today in Delhi. First a trip to a market in Old Delhi. Today is the day before Diwali, the biggest festival in India, more or less equivalent to Christmas, so apparently the markets were extra busy. We rode a rickshaw through a sea of humanity, cars, bicycles, motor cycles and more rickshaws. It is extremely hard to explain the atmosphere but hopefully my photos will help tell the story. Needless to say it was a bit overwhelming. After the rickshaw ride experience we went to a mosque right beside the market. Very old...

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Oct 28, 2016 - Travel day

We left Darjeeing for a 4 hour taxi ride to Bodogra to catch a 3 hour flight to Delhi. The taxi ride was longer on the way down than on the way up due to a Hindu festival coming up. Apparently today is a big shopping day before Diwali, which is on Sunday, so the markets on the narrow streets were clogged. After arriving in Delhi we took a 2 hour Coach ride to our hotel as the roads were clogged for the same reason. Arrived at our hotel, which is quite extravagant, and sad really that just outside the gate there is abject poverty.

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Oct 27, 2016 - Darjeeling day 2

Today's agenda included a 3:30 AM wake-up call for a 4:00 AM taxi ride to Tiger Hill to watch the sun come up over the Himilayas and hit Mount Kungchengjunga and hopefully see Mount Everest; a trip to a tea plantation; steam train ride from Darjeeling to Ghum; and a trip to the oldest Buddhist Monestary in Derjeeling. Got up at 3:30 AM for a 4:00 AM taxi ride to The top of tiger hill. We left that early to try to beat the rush of tourists heading that way, an there were thousands. I think every taxi in Darjeeling was going up that road,...

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Oct 26, 2016 - Darjeeling

Darjeeling is located in the lesser Himilayas at an elevation of about 6,700 ft. The name Darjeeeling translates to "land of the Thunderbolt" which I guess means there is lots of thunder and lightening hear, however we have not seen any. DArjeeling was founded by the British in the mid 19th century and was designed for 10,000 people. Currently Darjjeeling has approximately 132,000 and resources are stretched. The people here are extremely friendly and one feels comfortable walking about at night, unlike in Delhi. Today's activities include...

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Oct 25, 2016 - Delhi to Darjeeling

Today we left Delhi for Darjeeling. We left at 8:00 AM for the Indira Ghandi airport for a 10:20 flight. The airport was not that far from the hotel but the traffic was outrageous. You certainly wouldn't want to be leaving late and hoping you could make up time because there is no hope of that. We then flew 2.5 hours to Bagdogra which looked like a city of very poor people. Even saw a few cows this time having their way in the city. We took a taxi to Darjeeling which was 95 KM away on the narrowest most windy road I have ever seen. It made...

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Mar 13, 2014 - Singalila Trek Part 2

Day Four When the sun has still not risen and it's hovering around freezing outside, it's not easy getting out of bed. But when you know Mount Everest could be visible, it's not so hard. I peeped out of the window and saw it was totally clear, even in the pre dawn light. I ran outside and saw a whole panorama of mountains. Which one was Everest? It turns out that Everest is not the one that looks highest because of the angle and distance. That's Makalu. Everest is the one to the left with a long sloping face covered in snow. The sun was...

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Six months in Asia

Mar 11, 2014 - Singalila Trek Part 1

Day One Why is it that so many treks start with an incredibly steep gradient? I know that the only way into the mountains is up, but the initial part of the Singalila trek follows a curving road which climbs very quickly and with the altitude I was struggling. I had hired a porter at the trail head to carry my main rucksack and I was convinced he thought I wouldn't make it as I was stopping every 100 metres to catch my breath. But I soon got into my stride. We stopped for lunch at a darkened inn where I had a delicious warming noodle soup,...

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Six months in Asia

Mar 5, 2014 - Darjeeling - more than just a good cuppa

Darjeeling - a long way to go for a cup of tea you might think, but there's so much more to the place than a good brew. Established by the British as a centre for tea plantation as well as a hill station where people could go to escape the heat on the plains, it's now a busy, chaotic, ramshackle place, built on a series of bluffs with houses stacked vertiginously on the slopes. At the highest point you escape the noise and traffic, but not the cold. There are also stupendous views of the mountains including Kanchenjunga, the world's third...

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Six months in Asia

Nov 14, 2013 - Siliguri to Darjeeling

November 15, 2013 My note book is just about out of pages. Last night I stayed in Siliguri. I had trouble finding a hotel. I saw one on the outskirts of town. It looked very expensive. Yep 3000 Rs. Time to move on. It was almost dark. I continued through Siliguri and the first one I stopped at I went in and told them, “I need a basic room, no AC, no garim pani, no TV just a bed.” I was only about 75km’s from Darjeeling. The kid showed me a room for 400 Rs. Perfect. I through him my passport so he could get started no the paperwork. I...

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Nov 14, 2013 - Darjeeling

November 16, 2013 The hotel I picked is lovely. It’s right in off the town square. Just enough off that it’s quite private AND Suu Kyi is sleeping safely in her sleeping bag. We’ll be unmolested when I work on her tonight. The floor of my room is covered in jute and feels great on the feet. I will have to pick some up when I return. The high traffic areas have fax Middle-Eastern rugs on them. I have a boot area when my stinky shit is, the main bedroom and a tea nook that overlooks the Himalaya. Perfect. I have satellite TV and internet in...

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