A Travellerspoint blog

Sex, Drugs and Lunar Cycles

Bangkok, Ko Toa and Ko Phangan

sunny 36 °C
View Thailand & Tom's Planed India Excursion on NrtnMonkey's travel map.

After spending a couple of days in Kolkata's trendy 'Park St' I decided to hit Thailand! First stop was Bangkok and the backpackers shine, Koh San Road. Going from India to Thailand was a massive culture shock, i wasnt used to clean streets, 24hr electricity and so many westerners.

Koh San Road is the place to see and be seen. The road is rammed with big name shops like Boots and Starbucks as well as a mix of stalls selling clothes, cheap jewellery and of course not forgetting the endless bars. I spent a day looking at temples before chilling out in the evening in one of the many bars showing pirate DVD's.

The next night I meet up with mates from India and we hit the Legendary Patpong area of Bangkok which is home to an awesome market and 'The Ping Pong' Show. The 'show' was everything you'd expect and we left some 300 baht poorer and a little mentally scared.

ko_tao_group.jpg

ko_tao_beach.jpg

After seeing all the 'sights' of Bangkok we headed south to the islands. Koh Tao was the first stop, which is an awesome quite island with nice beaches offering kayaking and Scuba diving. At night the beaches transform into bars and a small nightlife erupts. It was here we meet an awesome group of 'gap-years' and after a few drinks we hit 'The Cave bar'. The bar was set out like Fred Flintstones house with a life like replica, 'Albeit', working behind the bar. The night progressed with drinking games and dancing with randoms.

ko_tao_nake.jpg

After another night much the same we headed to Koh Phangan, home of the full moon party. The first night we joined the few thousand people in the 'full moon warm up'. The beach is a few hundred metres long, rammed with bars pumping out the lastest drum and bass, Indie and Techno. Small stalls fight to sell you cheap buckets for 150 baht. The south side of the beach boasts fire throwers and drunken dancers while the north side, up near 'mellow mountain', where the kids go for kicks. Mine came in the shape of a 'Shroom shake' that had me dancing and hallucinating for hours.

ko_p_group.jpg

fire_dancer.jpg

Nights were spent partying to the early hours and during the day we all chilled out by the pool or on the beach, nursed our hang overs and exchanged travel stories. We'd take massages, ride around on scooters and watch pirates movies in the local bars - life was good!

jo_and_kate.jpg

koh_p_girls.jpg

I meet up with Sarah and her trio. The girls were a right laugh and when the full moon came around i found them dancing on the poduims! At full moon (my 5th night on the island) the beach was littered with People and as on nights before we dance to the early hours, most of us (male and female) with our chests painted enjoying a 5000+ party on the beach. AWESOME!!!!

full_moon_sign.jpg

After 12 nights of pool and beach parties im looking forward to chilling out in Nepal, my next stop off.

Pictures available at;
Fun in the Islands
http://www.facebook.com/album.php?aid=2348&l=4da0f&id=505340921

Sex, Drugs and Luna Cycles - Part 1
http://www.facebook.com/album.php?aid=2350&l=e1cc7&id=505340921

Sex, Drugs and Luna Cycles - Part 2
http://www.facebook.com/album.php?aid=2357&l=37b9e&id=505340921

Posted by NrtnMonkey 04.06.2007 08:58 Archived in Thailand Comments (0)

The Andamans

The Andamans Islands, Port Blair and Havelock Island

sunny 39 °C
View The andamans & Tom's Planed India Excursion on NrtnMonkey's travel map.

The boat to Port Blair the capital of The Andaman Islands would take an estimated 66 hours from Chennai. I kept a diary of the epic journey which took 4 days!

Friday 11th - Day 1
Myself and Danni (one of the Aussie's I meet in Mallapuram) arrive at the dock and are told we need a medical. This involved a guy with a stamp who said 'any problem?’ to which I said no and we received a stamp stating 'Health check, Examined & Passed'. After a similar 'examination; of our bags we boarded the MV Ark bar and were welcomed on board by the Captain no less who showed us to first class cabins. Problem was we were tight and paid for economy class; this didn’t seem to please him.

Bunk class is painted a prison green with prison style bunks and not much A/C. Danni joked that we were on an old prison ship that brought the first settles to Oz and I would have believed her.

Saturday 12th - Day 2
The novelty of being on a ship has worn off! The smell of vomit and s**t, which the toilets are swimming with is has got to much. What’s more Danni (being a girl) has refused to eat in the Canteen because of hygiene reasons so we lived off 'salt flavored' biscuits and water.

vomit.jpg

We keep ourselves entertained by playing travel monopoly, teaching the other passengers the card game’s**t-head' although this ended up with them just calling me a 's**t-head'. I exchanged ipods and exchanged back when I discovered that 'backstreet boys' is the most played. Sometimes we'd watch a Bollywood film in the ships cinema (a room with a TV).

Today we discover that we're the only foreigners on board and the only ones stupid enough to take the government boat and not the tourist ship that left the day before. B*****KS!

Sunday 13th - Day 3
I join the Indians in the toilet being sick and spend the best part of a day chucking up 'salt' flavored biscuits.

Monday 14th - Day 4
We are both REALLY ILL and at the sight of land shout wildly and make sure were the first off!!!

jail.jpg

Port Blair itself is like most Indian towns. During the British control of India Port Blair was home to Hundreds of Indian Revolutionist who saw out their days in the 'Ceilliar Jail'. The Jail was a Tower in the centre and branches off with rows of jail cells. Today it’s filled with proud Indians admiring the courage of the Revolutionaries.

We took a boat over to Havelock Island the set for Johnny Depp’s latest film. On route we ran into Anthony, another Aussie who was a keen surfer. We stared at the Sunrise Camp which is formed of 10 or so huts and a bar, just a couple of meters from the sea.

sunrise2.jpg

sunrise1.jpg

We hired scooters and went over to Beach no 7 (everything here is named by number instead of name). Beach 7 had a few good waves and backed on to it was the rainforest. At the end of each day we'd come and try to catch some surf and chill out. Not far from there Elephant beach which took a 45 minute walk though the jungle to get to. We also hired a boat for the day and went snorkeling

beach7.jpg

Being the off season there was a lack of social life until me and Anthony headed further up the Island to 'Coconut Grove' after a tip out from a mysteries Russian girl. There we chilled out with a large group who had come straight from Goa and had the music from the 'Si-bar' where I had spent many drunken nights at the start of my travels.

surf1.jpg

I leave Port Blair to head north to Kolkata to meet up with a few mates before heading to Thailand for a couple of weeks.

ANDAMANS PHOTO;
http://www.facebook.com/album.php?aid=2165&l=dec33&id=505340921

Posted by NrtnMonkey 23.05.2007 23:05 Archived in India Tagged backpacking Comments (1)

Travel Photos

First 4 weeks on the road

sunny 31 °C

Ive posted my first 4 weeks on the road for all to see. Following weeks i'll attach to my blog.

Enjoy!

WEEK 1
http://www.facebook.com/album.php?aid=1649&l=5f0c6&id=505340921

WEEK 2
http://www.facebook.com/album.php?aid=1825&l=448ce&id=505340921

WEEK 3
http://www.facebook.com/album.php?aid=1946&l=091c4&id=505340921

WEEK 4
http://www.facebook.com/album.php?aid=2132&l=f6360&id=505340921

Posted by NrtnMonkey 00:28 Archived in India Tagged photography Comments (0)

Little Europe

Chennai, Pondicherry and Mamallapuram

sunny 43 °C
View The andamans & Little Europe & Tom's Planed India Excursion on NrtnMonkey's travel map.

I spent a few nights in Chennai, India's forth largest city. I normally dislike Indian cities, to many touts and tut-tut driver endlessly beeping at you, but I found a way around this. My Mp3 player. I rocked around Chennai with my own personal soundtrack and found it really refreshing.

The town itself is much like any other Indian city, busy, polluted and noisy. The day I choose to walk around the temperature was the highest in India, 43 degrees! Everywhere you look there’s subliminal messages painted to the back of vehicles like, 'Beware of Aids', 'One family, one child' and my favorite, 'Speed thrills but speed kills'.

One of the 'highlights' as my guidebook described it was the bus terminal, the largest in Asia. It looks more like an airport than a bus station filled with thousands of people trying to find the right platform. I found mine pretty easily thanks to a barber shop cortet of men shouting out the name of my next destination, 'Pondi, Pondi, Pondi, Poooondiiii', for Pondicherry.

I instantly liked Pondi. It was a little piece of Mediterranean Europe in South India. All the roads signs where in French, English and the local dialogue, Tamil. The buildings were well maintained and a promenade lined the beach. There is a happy vibe along the seafront, with children and families playing on a huge statue of Gandhi and in the evening the police shut of the roads as everyone takes to the streets to either party on the beach or relax and drink chai in the park at Government Square

street.jpg

Pondicherry was also the place to experience Ashram life. An Ashram is essentially a small community headed by a Guru who is joined by disciples hoping to receive 'darshan' (a glimpse of God). I spent a few hours reading the moth-eaten books in the Ashram Library and skip the simple Ashram style food in exchange for Pizza Hut.

I headed north to spend 4 nights in Mamallapuram which is an awesome little place full of chilled out travelers, restaurants and friendly locals all incased by the surrounding temples. The first day I meet two Aussie girls and after dinner we heard rumors of a beach party. A little gathering of us sat on the beach with a few guitars, singing songs and drinking heavily. That’s was pretty much how a spent my nights in Mamallapuram.

beach_party.jpg

The attraction in such a small town is its amazing rock carvings and temples. Myself and the Aussie spent a good few hours in the mid day sun checking them out before heading back to the pool and onto a bar.

carving.jpg

rock.jpg

On my last night in Mallallapuram the group introduced me to a 'Bang lassie', which is a sweet lassie with an 'added kick' (I'm not saying what, my mum is reading this). The evening turned strange after a few power cuts and a band started to play. A few locals even came out to dance and we all merrily (and drunkenly) clapped along, until a body was brought out onto the street and burned. The music continued and so did the locals dancing but is was strange to us westerns. We spent the rest of the night starring at the bottom of our Bang lassie’s.

I’ve had a change of heart and my next destination is the Andaman Islands, for some beaches, tropical rain forest and some surf.

Posted by NrtnMonkey 14.05.2007 08:41 Archived in India Tagged backpacking Comments (0)

White water rafting down the River Kwai

Adams Peak, Kitugala

sunny 34 °C
View Little Europe & Sri lanka & Tom's Planed India Excursion on NrtnMonkey's travel map.

Day 5 in Sri Lanka and as it was a festival day, to celebrate the birth and the enlightenment of the Buddha. We made our way north to make the pilgrimage to Adams peak in the centre of the island.

adams1.jpg
Adams Peak

adams3.jpg
Sun rise, Adams Peak

Myself and Paul blazed it up in 2 hours and I felt a little sold short until we climbed back down. The views in the day time were awesome, giant Buddha's, temples and waterfalls scattered the landscape.

adams2.jpg
Adams peak

buddha.jpg
Giant Buddha, Adams Peak

After 9hours traveling, climbing a mountain and sleeping only 2hours in the last 36 the idea of rest would be appealing but due to our time restrictions we decided to try white water rafting in Kitugala. To be honest either of us had the energy for it but I was enticed by the thought of rafting the 'River Kwai', as it was here that the film 1957 classic, 'Bridge on the River Kwai' was filmed.

rafting1.jpg
Rafting, Kitugala

The rafting itself was ace. We were dressed like crash test dummies and thrown in a boat down class 3 rapids. I had to be rescued as I almost fell out! Our guide was a bit of a legend and back flipped off the raft, I won’t talk about our own attempts.

bridgeover..er_kwai1.jpg
Me on the condemned bridge over the river, Kitugala

I left Paul in Kitugala to head back to India. My journey back to Colombo airport was something out of an episode of Mission Impossible. After 9 hours on the road the airport shuttle bus court fire and we had to be dropped off 1km from the airport. I made a mad dash with all the other passengers though a huge storm which started around the same time as the fire.

All in all I loved Sri Lanka. It has such a chilled out vibe and although people are just getting back to normal after the 2004 Tsunami all the locals friendly and backdrop is awesome.

Posted by NrtnMonkey 05.05.2007 10:18 Archived in Sri Lanka Tagged backpacking Comments (1)

Surfing Sri Lanka

Columbo, Weligama

sunny 39 °C
View Sri lanka & Tom's Planed India Excursion on NrtnMonkey's travel map.

We arrived in Sri Lanka with no delay and no trouble after seeing the live images of an attack on the airport. In fact there was no sign; Colombo International has to be the best airport I’ve been too!

beach1.jpg
Weligama beach, Weligama

weligama_beach_break.jpg
Weligama beach break, Weligama

We headed to the southern tip of Sri Lanka, a place called Weligama. It’s a sleepy little town and small town Sri Lanka is really 'small town'. What it lacked in nightlife it make up for with surf. 4ft, clean, long breaks and awesome tropical scenery.

beach2.jpg
Weligama beach, Weligama

surf_school.jpg
Surf School, Weligama

It was sweet. 40c, amazing accommodation, cheap food, cheap beers and a chilled vibe. Due to the heat I'd decided to shave my head. It looks quite good and I get less touts due to the fact I look like an American GI! Myself and Paul spent 3 days doing pretty much nothing expect surfing and chilling out.

surf.jpg
Me surfing, Weligama

The beach itself in Weligama bay is something out of national geographic. 3 mile long beach, white sand, not a sole in sight and the occasional cow! My pictures don’t do it justice.

cow_beach.jpg
Cow on the beach, Weligama

On the last day there was a lighting storm, we surfed below and the storm raged above. We head next to Buddhist site, Adams Peak.

Posted by NrtnMonkey 03.05.2007 09:37 Archived in Sri Lanka Tagged backpacking Comments (2)

This is Varkala

Varkala, Thirnvananthapuram

sunny 36 °C
View Sri lanka & Goa to Kochi & Tom's Planed India Excursion on NrtnMonkey's travel map.

The beach resort of Varkala is on the southern coast of Kerala. It was here that we hoped to catch up on rest, laze around and enjoy the beaches social life.

vbeach.jpg
Beach, Varkala

Varkala is formed of two beaches, one lush golden sandy beach and the other, 'black beach', covered in black sand. Bars and restaurants littered the cliff top and it was the first beach resort i'd seen since Goa. We spent our days swimming, asleep on the beach or drinking in bars.

vblackbeach.jpg
black beach, Varkala

The social spot in Varkala is 'The funky art cafe', which gained popularity though its huge drink list. One drunken night we hooked up with a group of welsh girls also trying every drink on the menu. We ended up dancing the night away in one of the clubs/bars. The girls had brought their ipod and where blasting out Pendualem (drum and base). I remember a German bloke doing the 'Roboto' and some of the girls riding a wooden horse. All in all the makings of a good night.

girlhorse.jpg
Welsh girls, Varkala

roboto.jpg
German national dance? Varkala

The plan was to head to Thiruvananthapuram (thats a real place!) to catch our flight on the friday to Sri lanka. After checking into the hotel though we saw a news report saying there had been an attack on Columbo international airport. The rebels (the Tamil Tigers) in the north of the island had lauched an attack on the airport, forcing it to be closed!

Posted by NrtnMonkey 28.04.2007 08:57 Archived in India Tagged backpacking Comments (1)

From the Mountains at Munnar to the Backwaters of Kollam

Munnar, Kumily and Kollam

sunny 36 °C
View Kochi - Kollam & Goa to Kochi & Tom's Planed India Excursion on NrtnMonkey's travel map.

We left the heat of Kochi for the cool of Munnar in Western Ghats, about 160km inland.

The drive in was excellent. It was the first time I'd used public buses and I decided I like it. The buses themselves have monster trucks style wheels and no windows, so the cool air filters through the smell of sweat from the seemingly endless number of people that manage to fit on.

tea_tree.jpg
Tea plantation, Munnar

The area surrounding Munnar is covered with tea plantations as far as you can see. Me and Paul headed up a dirty track road to Top Station and view was immense. From there you can see into the next state, Tamil Nadu and across the Western Ghats mountain range all covered with Tea trees.

me_at_top.jpg
Me at the top, Top Station

festival.jpg
Temple Festival, Kumily

After catching another monster truck south to Kumily to see the famous wildlife park we randomly ran into the local temple festival. The streets were filled with decorate people, some holding pot plants on their heads, some with 3ft spikes though their cheeks while holding a large wooden pyramid above their heads. The whole festival was mad, everyone acting as if they were on LSD. I loved it, such a happy atmosphere, all the locals joining in with the songs and encouraging the tourists to get involved.

A badly shot video of the festival, Kumily

The next day we got up and headed for the wildlife park. When we got there it was busy with Indian tourists and we were told to walk 3km to the boat jetty for the safari, or at least that what we thought. It was half way down and after many cars of Indian tourists had passed shouting and cheering before we noticed why, a sign in front of us saying 'Tiger Land - No horn', we bricked it and flagged down the next car. After our near suicide we didn’t see much more than a warthog!

tiger_land.jpg
Wildlife park, Kumily

Kollam, on the coast 100 clicks south of Kumily is popular for its backwaters, a strange set of islands linked by natural canals. Our guide for the day was Sámi, a 27 year old part time teacher who showed us the locals way of life. The locals live much like they have for hundreds of years using every part of the natural resources to build ships, make oil from coconuts and rope from their shells.

sami.jpg
Sami and our 'pusher', Kollam

Sámi was a bit of a legend and often burst out into random song joined by our boat driver, i say driver i mean 'pusher' like the ones you see in Venice. As myself and Paul took as many pictures as we could Sámi wrote a lesson plan under the cover of an umbrella and began to tell us a story of a battle fought between the local communist factions. During one raid the opposition had stapled a guy to a tree with an arrow and cut off his hand! It was easy to see why people fought over this land, it was something out of a story book.

coconuts.jpg
Coconuts drying, Kollam

backwaters.jpg
Backwaters, Kollam

The next installment will come from Varkala were we're hoping to chill out, get involved with the beach life and get a room with a TV for the Champions League matches!

Posted by NrtnMonkey 22.04.2007 22:49 Archived in India Tagged backpacking Comments (0)

Getting by in Communist Kerala

Kochi and Fort Cochin

sunny 37 °C
View Kochi - Kollam & Tom's Planed India Excursion on NrtnMonkey's travel map.

Having got a 14 hour train we arrived in Kochi in the heart of Kerala.

We stayed in Fort Cochin, a tourist area perfect for exploring the local area and also surrounded by iconic giant Chinese fishing nets. The local sites included Santa Cruz Basilica, St Francis Church and a centre for the traditional local dance, Kathakali.

1.jpg
Chinese fishing nets, Fort Cochin

We signed up to the evening showing and from what we'd heard it was not to be missed. The show was formed of two drummers, two actors and one narrator / singer. The actors were decorated in extravagant make-up and commutated using intricate and complex hand signals. The main form of expressions came from the actor’s enthusiastic facial movements and drummers beat.

2.jpg
Dancer putting on make up, Fort Cochin

After an hour of the show my arse was numb and due to the complexity of the performance I wasn't really following the story. That’s not to say that it wasn't interesting. That night’s story was an ancient story of love. The king falls in love with a beautiful girl but she is unsure whether to marry him. The king upset orders her to be his wife at which point the girl has had enough, goes crazy and the King chops off her breasts - Classic!

danceking.jpg
The King, Kerala traditional dance

The next day me and Paul decided to explore Fort Cochin and after an hour in the midday sun we were lost. I was getting more bewildered by the growing number of Communist 'hammer & sickle' symbols and after reading the guide book discovered that Kerala was the first freely elected Communist State. With this knowledge in mind I set out to ask one of my fellow comrades for directions. I found a group of them hanging about a jetty (probably plotting their next move) and when they saw me they all froze. 'I’m looking for Jew town' i said hopefully, two men came over and direct me back to the main road while the other two wave franticly at a boat approaching the jetty. '3km down this road' one points and the other asks in a lower tone 'how much hash you want?' After walking away I wasn’t sure whether we had disturbed a drug deal or used the code word 'Jew town' to start one, either way we found our way.

communist.jpg
Communist 'Hammar and Sickle', Fort Cochin

Later we found the world heritage site, Mattancherry Palace, a present to the local king from the Portuguese which has amazing 400 year old graphics. With Kochi exhausted we head next to the cool of the mountains in Mummur.

Posted by NrtnMonkey 20.04.2007 00:59 Archived in India Tagged backpacking Comments (1)

Big Chill Festival 2007

Asvem Beach, Mandrem, Arambol and Northern Goa

sunny 36 °C
View Tom's Planed India Excursion on NrtnMonkey's travel map.

bigchilldance.jpg
Dance Stage, Big chill 07

Just coming to the end of an awesome 4 days in Northern Goa. After an early start from Panjim me and Paul travel north to Arambol which acts as a base for the 'Big Chill' Festival.

Arambol is beautiful, everything you'd expect from a Goan beach resort. From my room at the Blue Finn on the north end of the bay i have a unbelieveable view of the beach. A thick forest of palm trees lines the shore, restaurants and shacks litter the beach and the water itself is perfectly warm.

bluefinn.jpg
The Blue Finn

The best decision i've ever made was in Arambol. To hire scooters! After a shakie start were cruising the bumby back streets of Goa. I suddenly identify with all those spotty 16yr olds outside 'Maccie D's'. We spend hours racing around, stopping at deserted beaches and soaking up the atmosphere. For the price of a cheap pint in the UK (Rs 150) its well worth investing!

bigchillcolour.jpg
Main stage, Big Chill 07

The Big Chill lasted 2 days, over three stages. The first thing that struck me was the amount of effort that went into the aesthetics. The main stage area was overflowing with every colour you could think off and elaborate 5ft wicker men climbing the palm trees. Some of the musical highlights included Hexstatic, Tom Middleton and Coldcut.

bigchilleve.jpg
Hexstatic, Big Chill 07

bigchillfire.jpg
Fire dancers, Big Chill 07

On our final day in Goa me, Paul and Nic (a guy we met at the Big Chill) formed a motorcycle gang and ride the 10 miles to Permen. On the way back Nic took a speed bump too quickly and wiped out. He joined the many other tourists we'd seen over the last few days with bandages from scooter injuries.

All in all i've loved the little part of Goa ive seen, the festival was much needed and much enjoyed. I've vowed to return! Tonight we head to Kochi, in the heart of Kerala

Posted by NrtnMonkey 16.04.2007 22:47 Archived in India Tagged backpacking Comments (0)

Getting to Goa

Mumbai to Panaji

sunny 36 °C
View Tom's Planed India Excursion on NrtnMonkey's travel map.

The bus for Goa left a 8pm from Mumbai and found myself chatting to three very entertaining english folk, George, her husband and stewie, kept me company throughout.

4 hours in and disaster, the bus breaks down and we're told that we need a volvo mechanic to fix it. We hold out 4 hours for the replacement by discussing random stuff and playing cards. Once the new bus has arrived i slept like a log until the outskirts of Goa where our new bus suffered a flat tire. We reach northern Goa around 4pm (20 hrs in total!!)and i take the first stop as the smell of sweat is getting to much. My clever move proved false as i realised after some lengthy discussion with the locals, involving mostly nods and hand signals, that i am in fact 10 miles north of Panaji the captial.

DSC00239.jpg

After some confusion i meet up with the family Paul (a friend from uni) had set us up with. The family were more than welcoming, as i entered their living room the father stood up and offered me his chair and the mother fussed other me like i was her own while the children looted my bag. To my surprise one of the daugthers, Janet, spoke perfect english and after showing me up stairs offered to walk me into town. I chatted to Janet as if we had none each other for years and i think she enjoyed the english practice. She left me in the centre of town at the stunning Church of Our Lady of the Immaculate Concecption (thats Mary to you and me).

DSC00246.jpg

My first impressions is that Goan's lead a pretty sweet life, Panaji itself has a general chilled out vibe. A mixture of Portuguese and British influence can been seen, heared and tasted in the architecture, language and restaurants

Posted by NrtnMonkey 12.04.2007 22:14 Archived in India Tagged backpacking Comments (2)

24 hours in Mumbai

Morton on Swale to Mumbai

sunny 36 °C
View Tom's Planed India Excursion on NrtnMonkey's travel map.

After frustrating myself at Manchester Airports automatic information desk which had limitless options of shops and food outlets all closed i boarded NWA 34 to Mumbai.

Map to India

The 14 hr plane journey was broken up by a stop in Amsterdam and a selection of flims, leo's latest 'Blood Diamond' being one of the better ones. The taxi to the hotel was awesome, a break neck speed chase though the city where the laws of the road have been replaced by the law of the horn. Whoever beeps the most wins! My driver was a born natural and by the end had developed a mild horn tourettes, wildly beeping even when there were no cars. As we neared the centre of the city I noticed people on the streets. Thousands and thousands of men, women and mostly children roaming and sleeping the streets. I'd heard of this and seen it first hand in Egypt but the shear number was upsetting.

The iconic Gateway to India
DSC00227.jpg

Ive spent the morning walking to all the tourist spots, Gateway of India and other sites up and down Mahatma Gandhi Road, sheltering from the heat in the Modern Art Gallery. This is when it happened, what i've named the funeral scam. A man approached offering me a unique experience, a 30 minute festival that occured only once a year. My problem was he had something i had wanted all day, the location of a toilet. I played along and im soon begging for its whereabouts, the nearest being 500mts! The site of a Indian public toilet is enough to make the strongest men vomit, but right then to me it was a holy shrine. After my unplesent experience we got chatting and soon we entered a temple wear bodies were burned. I was told a story about the method of burning and handling of the remains, this appeared believable enough but then came the sting. After showing me where the babies were buried i was asked to make a donation, i offered 20 rupees, the man asked for at least $1000, i almost laughed. After much arguing i left making no donation.

On the whole my experience of Mumbai has been a good one although poverty and scams are rife. Tonight i head to Goa by bus

Posted by NrtnMonkey 11.04.2007 11:12 Archived in India Tagged backpacking Comments (1)

Saying good bye

sunny 10 °C
View UK to India & Tom's Planed India Excursion on NrtnMonkey's travel map.

After months of counting the days it finally time to go. I’m upset to say goodbye to all my mates and colleges (the out of date condoms and financial support went down well this weekend thank you!!). I spent most of the weekend drinking and see old Uni folk in Exeter, Cardiff and Trowbridge.

This picture pretty much sums up the weekend
DSC00134.jpg

Rest assured I’m paying for it. Now drinking tea in Manchester Airport at stupid o’clock and attempting to digest as much lonely planet as I can. The combination of hangover head and last minute swotting is reminding me of my student days. I will attempt to update regularly on all my cappers.

Keep in touch

Tom

Posted by NrtnMonkey 09.04.2007 19:44 Archived in United Kingdom Tagged preparation Comments (0)

Countdown has began

39 days left!

semi-overcast 10 °C
View Thailand & The andamans & Little Europe & Sri lanka & Kochi - Kollam & Goa to Kochi & Mumbai to Goa & UK to India & Tom's Planed India Excursion on NrtnMonkey's travel map.

Hey All,

Sorted out a ruff plan for my travels in India and plotted a map too!

Departing on 10th April and returning 26th June.

Posted by NrtnMonkey 02.03.2007 06:51 Archived in United Kingdom Tagged backpacking Comments (0)

Welcome to my travel blog!

Tom's India Excursion

rain 8 °C

Hey all,

Hoping to document my travels around India for all those interested, maps, videos, photos and all that. Gonna try and update weekly so be sure to check back. Pretty new to all this blog business but have a look around and keep in touch.

Tom

Posted by NrtnMonkey 01.03.2007 17:00 Archived in United Kingdom Tagged preparation Comments (0)

(Entries 1 - 15 of 15) Page [1]