Winter trip to Sri Lanka

With our biannual Family Christmas scheduled for this year, we decided to celebrate Christmas and bring in the New Year in Sri Lanka. We planned to stay on the plains and see the north central area around Sigiriya, Dambulla & Pollanaruwa and then the coastal areas around Galle.

Day 1 – 24th December 

Flew into Colombo from Chennai and got in at 11 am. Bandaranaike International Airport is small and pleasant. Immigration was quick as we had our ETAs already. Luggage came out by the time we reached the belt. We were met by our driver from the travel agency I had booked through.

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Hawaii, been on my bucket list for very long, so finally managed to plan a trip after retiring. After a lot of research, I decided on visiting Oahu, Big Island and Maui – being the most practical in the ten days I had. This is mostly a Photo feature with short explanations. Hope you find it useful.

Day 1

Arrived at Honolulu International Airport after a 20 hour flight from London. Quite taxing to say the least. Luckily we were not coming directly from India!

The approach and landing into Honolulu is quite spectacular!

Approach to Honolulu

We arrived just after 2 in the afternoon and took a taxi to our Condo booked through Airbnb. There are other options like a Shuttle bus and also the town bus service (which is quite cheap). However, after such a long journey, we needed to get to our lodging as fast as possible. The taxi cost 38$ to get to the Condo located about 2km from Waikiki beach.

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Road trip Goa to Pondicherry

Sumi and I drove from Hyderabad to Colva in Goa to celebrate Christmas. After Christmas we drove via Coorg and Bangalore to Pondicherry and then back to Hyderabad.

This is a Photo diary of our trip concentrating on the major portion from Goa on the West Coast, across the Indian Peninsular to Pondicherry on the East coast.

Road to Belgaum
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Mini Tour of Kerala

Five Day Tour of Kerala 

We recently did a short tour of Kerala with Toni & Jerry (Parents of our daughter-in-law) . Organized the trip through a travel agency – Travel Planners. This was a five day trip as part of Toni & Jerry’s introduction to India. Kerala lives up to its name – ‘God’s own Country’. Lovely countryside, clean and scenic.

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Belgium Highlights

Belgium 29th April to 3rd May

We decided to make a short stopover in Belgium on our way back from Amsterdam.arrived in Brussels on 29th evening by Intercity from Amsterdam as there was no reservations available on Thalys. (If you want a quick trip, book your reservations early. I was caught napping on this front!)

Stayed in an Airbnb apartment close to Brussels center.

We had three days in Belgium, so decided to spend a day each in Brussels, Ghent and Brugge.

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Holland, a country known for Tulips, Windmills, Cheese and Canals!
We decided to make use of a valid Schengen Visa to see the Tulips in bloom in Holland!

Took the Eurostar from London’s St. Pancras International to Brussels and then a connection by Thallys to Amsterdam as I got a cheap return tickets to Brussels.
The decision to avoid air travel was great as we got to the station in 30 Minutes and check in and security took 15 Minutes. Would really recommend this mode to get to Europe from London.

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Kenya Safari

Kenya…..a country you must visit if you love wildlife!
I planned this Safari as a surprise for my wife’s 60th birthday. In retrospect it was a great decision.
I booked a personal five day tour just for the two of us, visiting a reserve at the base of Mt. Kenya, followed by a night at Lake Nakuru reserve and then two nights at Maasai Mara.

Each location had its own charm and share of wildlife sightings. We were fortunate to spot all that was promised and more….

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