Kerela houseboat adventure

by Nicole Farrell

Kerela is a state in the South of India. It's famous for it's beaches, tea plantations, Ayurvedic treatments, resorts, backwaters and greenery. I spent a fabulous week exploring the area. One of the highlights was an overnight houseboat on the Kerela backwaters.

 

 The houseboat experience was fun. We had a crew of 3 looking after us with the food a highlight of the experience. Fresh fish with amazing flavour! 

1.1 million people in Kerela rely on the fishery industry for their income. This is only 3% of the state's income! 

 

During the afternoon, a small boat came alongside our houseboat and to my delight, the man was selling ice cream. It would be rude not to buy one considering the effort he had gone to! 

  

The houseboat stops sailing around 5 pm in time to watch the sunset and dock for the night. If you have a chance to experience the backwaters of Kerela I highly recommend it. I would recommend upgrading to a premium houseboat. 

 

Block printing in Bagru, India

by Nicole Farrell

On my recent trip to India I visited the village of Bagru to see the process of block printing. Sadly this tradition is being replaced by screen printing in many areas of India. 

   block printing

Typically block printing is done by men who have passed the techniques down through generations. The stamping is done by sight and with amazing precision. Each colour is stamped individually to create the finished pattern.

 Vegetable and mineral dyes were traditionally used to colour fabrics. However, this is changing over time.

  

 This is the indigo vat. The fabric is immersed for about 30 seconds before being removed to dry in the sun. 

  

 After the fabric has dried in the sun for up to 3 days, it is boiled in a bath of alum to ensure it is colourfast. Families tend to specialise in one aspect of the process; bleaching, printing, drying etc

  

Paisley is a traditional design of India and a personal favourite of mine.

  

Our textiles, temples and tastes of India tour includes a half day dyeing and block printing workshop. It is an optional activity on our other India tours. If you are visiting Jaipur and have an interest in textiles, I highly recommend taking the time experience this technique. Visit our Tour page to find out more.

Jaipur - the pink city of Rajasthan

by Nicole Farrell

India had been TOP of my bucket list for 15 years and for a variety of reasons, I had not managed to get there. Can you imagine my excitement when I was greeted at the airport by my taxi driver  'you are most welcome to India'. I thought I was on the set of The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel and instantly fell in love with the country. 

   

India is a country of colour, contrasts and craziness. They say you have not travelled until you've been to India! I took LOTS of photos while in India.

Jaipur, the pink city of Rajasthan is on the itineraries of both our Royal Rajasthan Tour and Textiles, temples and tastes of India. India’s vibrant colours combined with friendly, happy people make it a photographer's dream. I have scouted the pink city for it's best streets, markets and landmarks. Prepare to be amazed!

    

We've done all of the organising so you can make the most of your precious time in India. We've chosen a fabulous heritage style hotel in Jaipur. This allows us to immerse ourselves in the culture and wonderful sights Jaipur has to offer. 

On one day of our tour, you'll explore the pink city in a tuk tuk. We have a team of trusted drivers and more than thirty different activities and locations to choose from; street markets, elephant sanctuaries, temples, villages and more. You'll be able to explore like a local, stopping for photos whenever and wherever you wish. 

    

Our tour has a focus on stress free, fun and safe travel. Our knowledgeable local guide is Imran, who has worked in the tourist industry for the past ten years. We have been helping him improve his photography skills too!

   

Is India on your bucket list? Why not join us? Spaces are limited so secure your spot today. Visit our tour page here for further information. If you have any questions, please get in touch.