Wednesday, 19 September 2012



Today in India we are celebrating the birth of Ganpati or Ganesh, the elephant headed child of Shiva and Parvati. Sometimes known also as Lord Vinayaka, Ganpatiji, Vinayakar and Ganeshji, this God is the darling of the masses. Ganesh Chaturthi brings people of all religion, caste and creed together. Ganesh chaturthi is celebrated with great devotion all over India

People bring home murtis of Lord Ganesha and celebrate the festival by worshiping the Lord in a special way for a day and a half, 5 days, 7 days or 11 days depending on the family tradition and commitment of each individual.

On the last day of worship the idol is taken out in a colourful and musical procession to be immersed traditionally at a beach.

This is one of the most popular festivals in the Country. There are several reasons for this. Ganpati is after all a popular God. His blessings are invoked at most religious ceremonies as He is the one who can remove all obstacles to success. He is the giver of fortune and can help to avoid natural calamities.

Ganpati, the god of wisdom and the benevolent deity, Ganpati is the herald of auspicious beginnings and is the beloved deity of all.

Saturday, 15 September 2012

International Sufi Festival, Ajmer

"Travel brings power and love back into your life." 
 Rumi Jalalud-Din -
Interested in Sufism and all things Sufi? Most travelers to India are less aware of the rich Sufi Tradition here, but both Hindu and Muslims revere the Sufi saints equally in India and visitors of all faiths are welcome at the shrine of a Sufi saint.
A festival not to be missed and within easy driving distance from Delhi, is the annual Sufi Festival in the Rajasthan city of Ajmer. You can easily add this festival to a tour of Rajasthan that includes Jaipur, Pushkar and Agra, talk to our helpful staff to arrange a personalised itinerary that includes this unique opportunity.

Beginning on the 4th October, 2012 at 4 pm till the 11th October evening, , Ajmer will be hosting the International Sufi Festival, with the aim of capturing positive messages about peace and love that have been around for centuries and recognized in the east and west. These messages are often conveyed through arts and culture. It is a tribute to Hazrath Khwaja Moinuddin Chisty. The main attractions of this concert are authentic quawwalis, Sufiana Kalaam, Naat Sheriff, Raqs-e-rumi, Naghme-e- khurso.
It will highlight the importance of treating all with fairness and respect and envisages bringing to all, more understanding of each others divergence and promote the concept of Universal Brotherhood.

The festival features a bazaar, food samples, art, craft, film, music and poetry encompassing both the traditional and modern around the Sufi theme. Sufi arts, culture and heritage are at the heart of the festival.
It promises to be an entertaining and enchanting week. It will be including workshops for the community. The festival itself will showcase performers, artists, crafts, fashion, poetry from the local area, India and abroad, encompassing both the traditional and modern around the Sufi theme.
If you want to witness this prestigious event, contact us for a full itinerary.

Image credit, New York Times, Rajasthan Tourism Buzz

Monday, 3 September 2012

Romancing Rajasthan - Jodhpur's Folk Festival

If you are planning to visit India this October, there are more than a few reasons to visit the desert town of Jodhpur, not the least the stunning  Mehrangarh Fort. A city of twisting alleys and delightful spices, of Jodhpur pants and antiques, Jodhpur is a town well worth exploring for more than a few days.

Jodhpur is known as the Blue City, because of the blue-painted houses that surround the majestic 500-year-old Mehrangarh Fort, where most of the festival events take place. The fort, one of the largest in India, towers over the town, and the winding, cobbled streets up to its entrance are a tough climb. But it was the ideal venue for the festival, as it has a long history of parties and celebrations, being also a former royal residence. 

But it's the Jodhpur Rajasthan International Folk Festival that will provide you with unforgettable memories of your vacation in India if you time your visit for the brightest full moon of the year. More than  250 Musicians and performing artists from across Rajasthan and around the world will gather together to celebrate their musical heritage and create new sounds through innovative collaborations, for five days in October and you can be there to experience it all in one of the most romantic locations in the world.

Jodhpur RIFF features a series of spectacular concerts and events based in and around the spectacular Mehrangarh Fort and includes performances by master musicians from local Rajasthan communities, sensational headline acts showcased each night on the Main Stage, and cutting-edge global dance grooves that will keep the party going late into the night at Club Mehran. Interactive daytime sessions for visitors, school children and families are staged against the breathtaking backdrop of the Fort.
The Jodhpur RIFF is a joint initiative of the Mehrangarh Museum Trust and the Jaipur Virasat Foundation
WHEN: 26th - 30th October 2012 

Monday, 27 August 2012

Delhi in a Day

Planning to travel in India? This movie is something you should look for as preparation for your trip. Recently released in India, Delhi in a Day tells the story of Jasper (Lee Williams) visiting the Bhatia family who live in a farmhouse in Delhi with their entourage of servants. He only has one day to see Delhi but when he returns from a morning drive, he finds all his life’s savings stolen.
Brought to the attention of his host, their needle of suspicion falls on their servants who are grilled till the blame is put on one who has until morning to return the money. As Jasper observes the dynamics of the family and their relationship with those who serve them, a day is enough for him to see the essence of not just Delhi, but India.

Delhi In A Day is a curious mix of a Whodunit and a character study of people who make the country what it is — the business-savvy upper class that's quick to let the poor take the blame, the low income working class who may crib about their masters but are loyal and hardworking, the rich kids who are increasingly getting alienated from the family unit, the older generation that finds it hard to connect to the idea of socialising, the spirited migrant workers who live an adventure everyday fighting the language barrier, etc.
It's a fascinating expose of the economic divide, one that resists the temptation to go all out dark and keeps the proceedings mostly light-hearted, despite the stakes. 

 source reviews: The Hindu

Sunday, 19 August 2012

Arrival Indian Style

Indians who have to be the worst air travelers In The World. Their reputation precedes, if you are flying in from SE Asis you will find that the Asians find Indians very difficult to deal with and have their own way of dealing with them.
First they won’t let you wait in the departure lounge, preferring instead for us to clog up the hallway with the usual five grannies in a wheel chair, the screaming brats and the utter confusion that always accompanies Indians on the move. Invariably Indians travel en masse with a minimum of three generations. We carry too much luggage and tend to treat the airline staff like servants and the plane like an Indian railway carriage.
 We rush and push and queue jump to get on the plane as if we hadn’t already been assigned seats and as if we didn’t know that there was absolutely no advantage to that. Once on board there is the inevitable seat issue and we will merrily rearrange the whole seating plan of the plane until told otherwise by the airline staff.

Departure is delayed so that the stash of overweight cabin luggage they had confiscated is loaded into the hold. One woman blames the cabin crew for her crying baby, everything baby needed was in the confiscated bag she announces to one and all. Seems we are all going to pay the price of her unhappy baby as she is content to let it scream like a beggar brat at a car window just to make her point. 
During the flight the passengers press the button with outrageous abandon demanding first class service for their economy seats.
The best part of the whole flight is when the plane touches down and its not the view from the window that makes you know you are in India but the sound of five hundred seat belts clicking open simultaneously 
and the sight of some cheeky buggars leaping up to start unloading the overhead lockers before the plane has even braked accompanied by an orchestra of cell phone start ups. Everyone is lined up ready to get off the plane before the sky bridge is even attached. The air stewards are nowhere to be seen during this process, having been exhausted by the previous demands of all and sundry they are hiding out the back somewhere and leave it to the first class staff to offer us a polished smile of thanks as we depart stumbling, tripping and pushing each other out of our way.

Thursday, 16 August 2012

Delhi to Agra Expressway Open!

Here at Real-India by Kalka Travels, we love our drivers. We take a lot of care in choosing our drivers and look after them, a happy employee is the face of every company. Anything that can make their life easier on the road is a cause for celebration!
The recently opened Yamuna Expressway from Delhi to Agra opened a week ago and will cut travel time between the cities by a record two and a half hours! Which gives you more time to explore the city of the Taj Mahal! A win win situation for sightseeing in India!

Monday, 13 August 2012

Coffee Love in India

The first thing a LOT of visitors to India as is "Where can I get a decent coffee?" Coffee and and cafe culture is booming in India but when you are on vacation in India, its sometimes difficult to know where to go to get your fix, right?
Cafe Coffee Day in India has made it lots easier for you with their store locator at the push of a button.
All you need to do is SMS "CCD near <AREA> to 90889088 and they will get back to you faster than an espresso machine! CCD as it is called by locals just about has the country covered with outlets everywhere,
we love it!