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New Delhi - Gandhi, Old Fort's, Temples, and Carpark Beedi's

sunny 34 °C
View Travels on KyleMac's travel map.

Day 2 in New Delhi began at 9:00am with a visit to Gandhi Smriti. Now a memorial, it is where Mahatma Gandhi spent the last 144 days of his life before being assassinated on January 30, 1948. While we were there a procession of women adorned in colourful saris surrounded a burning flame and prayed before leaving single file. It would have been made more memorable had we not watched the procession while a group of 6 boys took turns sneaking close to us for an unwanted photo opportunity. Oh well that’s the price you pay for being world famous millionaires….oh wait a second.

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After leaving Gandhi Smriti we stopped for a quick paratha (delicious flat bread with vegetables), before heading to Purana Qila. It is an old fort built in 1538. After Humayun became emperor he used the tower in the fort as a library, where in 1556 he slipped down the stairs and died of his injuries!

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^^ Purana Qila

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^^ Mosque entrance

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^^ Beautiful detail

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By this time it was stinking hot so we asked Galoo (our driver) to take us to the nearest air conditioned building. We ended up in a large shopping centre – Galoos first time as well. We just got milkshakes and banoffee pie – the pie was a big let-down as it was just whipped cream with sliced banana on top haha Indian version I guess (my Scottish aunt Yvonne’s banoffee could be the world’s best).

By the time we were all done it was around 4:00pm so we asked Galoo to take us back to the tourist office to collect our train tickets and hotel vouchers. When we arrived the tour agent was not happy that we were back so early and demanded we go back out and sightsee some more! Not wanting to upset the giant, bearded, Sikh warrior-like man we quickly headed back out to visit the Presidential Palace & Parliament House, as well as some Temple that I don’t know the name of. Probably the first time we have been forced to sightsee haha.

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^^ Parliament

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^^ Temple

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^^ Chai and Samosa for afternoon snack

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^^ Having a Beedi in the carpark with Galoo - feeling fairly gangsta at this point

We have pretty much seen everything Delhi has to offer in 2 days so tomorrow we are heading off early in the morning to Jaipur.

Cheers, Kyle

Posted by KyleMac 08:06 Archived in India Tagged temple india parliament_house delhi gandhi driver humayun new_delhi galoo gandhi_smriti mahatma paratha purana_qila old_fort banoffee_pie presidential_palace bidi Comments (2)

Luang Prabang - Where the world slows down

rain 25 °C

Well we have made it to Luang Prabang in Laos. We weren’t planning on flying but our poor organization resulted in us only having one day left on our Vietnamese visa’s, two days travel from the border. It was our first domestic flight in Asia and we were pleased on not dying so that is good.

Luang Prabang is situated on the peninsula where the Nam Khan River meets the Mekong River. It is famous for its Buddhist temples and monasteries where hundreds of monks call home.

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It rained only one day during our whole month in Vietnam and since arriving in Laos it has rained pretty much non-stop. Laos is very different from Vietnam, we haven’t heard a single horn beep since arriving or been harassed by a tuk tuk driver, and the street dogs are much more friendly :).
Laos is also heaps more laid-back than its neighbours, sometimes this can be frustrating but you just have to remember that a huge majority of Laotian people are Buddhists and live by the motto ‘No worries’, so with patience things eventually get done.

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We’ve spent 5 days in Luang Prabang, not really doing anything in particular. We have just been exploring the surrounding area on foot and getting into the slower paced rhythm of Laos, the constant rain has also hampered any real attempts at venturing further from town, as most tours are ‘view’ based. We visited the night market nearly every night which was nice.

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^^ Night market

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^^ Kirby getting a fruit drink from our friend Jasmine

We also spent some time visiting Wat Xieng Thong temple, built in 1560 on the orders of the King, it is decorated with thousands of beautiful mosaics.

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^^ Tree of life mosaic

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At night we have been venturing to the bars to take advantage of the happy hour, although most places in Luang Prabang have a happy hour from 2pm – 9pm. The local liquor of choice is called ‘Lao Lao’ and it is a super sugary alcohol, very strong but sickly sweet. There isn’t much to the night life, the city has a curfew and you should be at your registered place of stay by 11pm.

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^^ Writing some blogs

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After spending so much time relaxing in the sleepy town we decided on doing a 3 day Mahout course at the local elephant sanctuary. All the elephants are rescued logging elephants (mostly illegal logging) that used to spend their lives hauling massive, heavy trees through places inaccessible by vehicles. Fingers crossed it decides to stop raining.

Cheers, Kyle

Posted by KyleMac 00:54 Archived in Laos Tagged temple elephant laos luang_prabang mosaics monastary wat_xieng_thong lao_lao asia_domestic_flight Comments (0)

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