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Thinking Off the beaten in India

Ladakh-Zanskar

Nicknamed Little Tibet, Ladakh is a haven of peace located in the far north of India. This Himalayan region is less known as compared to its Nepalese or Tibetan neighbours, and yet it has so much more to offer! Reach Ladakh by air or by road to discover the Tibetan Buddhist culture in a beautifully enchanting setting. Perched at an altitude of 3500 m, isolated for most of the year, Ladakh welcomes you into a unique mineral environment. This area is protected by the Himalayan barrier during the monsoon and thus provides a pleasant and dry climate during the summer. From May to October, trekking possibilities are endless. With its many valleys there are hiking trails suited to one and all.
As a family, you can go for 4-5 days to the Indus valley, crossing small traditional villages dotted with Buddhist monasteries. Your children can even indulge in the joys of rafting! For good walkers, one to three weeks can be spent surveying other hiking trails. The region of Changtang, also called Rupshu, promises a trek away from every place you’ve known so far, on the high Tibetan plateau that is home to nomads. Crossing the Zanskar is a route certainly out of the ordinary, taking you through one of the most remotest valleys in the region.
For the more adventurous, it is even possible to try the adventure of ascending the frozen river Zanskar in winter, renamed Chadar due to its frozen blanket-like appearance. Trekking in Ladakh is made special by the meetings with the Ladakhis that begin right from your arrival in Leh. You are transported back to the days of the caravans travelling on the Silk Road, with your guide, your cook, mules and cattle accompanying you. You will be welcomed by our team members on site, who will give you the best advice on how to acclimatise before leaving for your trek.

The Northeastern States

Often forgotten in the immensity of the Indian subcontinent, the North-eastern states are home to some real wonders. Located on extreme east bordering China, Burma,Bangladesh and Bhutan, this area is home to seven different states, which give you the feeling of being in a new country. With its own distinct culture, its curious peoples, and its contrasting wildernesses, the Northeast is the best kept secret of India.
The Himalayas in Arunachal Pradesh offer a unique home to one of the most beautiful monasteries in the world, right at the Chinese border. Discover the state of Assam and opt for a safari in Kaziranga National Park for a chance to observe the one-horned rhinoceroses.

Gujarat

Why not set out on a journey to Gujarat? South of Rajasthan is a state little known to travellers from western countries. With a dry and arid climate, this region was the birthplace of Gandhi. Its economic strength is significantly higher than the rest of the country due to its geographical position and easy access to the sea. Discover the treasures of Gujarat, its extremely rich handicrafts, its famous fabrics and beautiful embroidery. On the wild side, Gir National Park is home to the Asiatic lion! The unspoiled nature of Kutch will surprise you, what with its salt desert where wild donkeys can be seen galloping.

Sikkim

Wedged between Nepal and Bhutan, the former Himalayan kingdom of Sikkim is a unique state with a strong identity. It is dominated by the highest Indian summit, Kangchenjunga (8586 m). In spring and autumn, Sikkim welcomes you on a journey into the heart of its beautiful and wild valleys covered with rhododendrons. Buddhist monasteries mark the landscape where Tibetan prayer flags flutter in the wind.
Visit Gangtok and admire breathtaking views of the Himalayas. Take a walk on one of the hiking trails in Lachung area where you will also discover the hospitality of the Sikkimese. Leave the area at the end of your stay to visit Darjeeling in the neighboring state of West Bengal. You can visit a tea factory and stay with the locals for the best experience.

Karnataka

The vast state of Karnataka lies on the west coast of the peninsula, between Goa and Kerala. This area has a surprising blend of culture and nature. This is also the home of the traditional Carnatic music. With a rich historical legacy, it was home to one of the greatest empires of India, that of the Chalukyas. Within its territory are many national parks and natural reserves.
From the cosmopolitan capital of Bangalore to the casual beaches of Gokarna through the ruins of Hampi - a UNESCO World Heritage Site - Karnataka is quite a surprise! Do not forget to visit Mysore, the ancient capital of the state, for its splendid palaces. This wonderful region will undoubtedly charm all lovers of India.

The National Parks of Madhya Pradesh

This large rural area in central India hides many surprises. Madhya Pradesh, consisting of large forested plateau, remains largely unknown to travellers. Yet it deserves some attention for its national parks and a lot more. Bandhavgarh has the highest density of tigers in the country. Thanks to the different waterholes scattered throughout the park, you can observe many other animals such as bears or deer.
Kanha is another reserve that houses the most tigers in the country. It has the largest fleet, with 16 animals in all. If staying here for at least two days, you are likely to observe these magnificent animals while on safari.
Pench is a park that lies on the border with Maharashtra, populated by huge forests of sal trees. Its reputation also lies in its diversity of herbivores, its population of wolves, and tigers of course. Finally the Panna reserve, close to Khajuraho, is a treasure both for its fauna and flora and its landscapes, crossed by the Ken River. You will find huge boulders scattered all around the reserve, transporting you to another world.

The Andamans

In the Bay of Bengal, only 190 km to the west of Burma, is the Indian archipelago of Andaman and Nicobar. The Nicobar Islands are not open to tourists, but there are many others in Andaman to explore. The Andamans attract travellers to come to the beautiful coral reefs and white sand beaches. The turquoise blue waters are surrounded by lush tropical jungles and mangroves. This is the perfect place to get introduced to scuba diving and to discover extraordinary aquatic life. For best climatic conditions, escape to the Andamans between December and April. This period also corresponds to the nesting of turtles, another added attraction.

The Andamans

Set out to conquer these Himalayan regions that will seduce you with their breathtaking scenery. These "abodes of the gods" are among the most sacred sites for Hindus in India. The state of Uttarakhand, which borders Nepal to the east and Tibet to the north, is where the Ganges rises at the foot of enchanting peaks. Attend the prayer ceremonies held on the Ghats of the Ganges in Haridwar. Stroll along the streets of Rishikesh, the world capital of yoga, and enjoy the spiritual and relaxed atmosphere of the place.
Himachal Pradesh represents another region of the Himalayan foothills. The lush valleys of Kullu and Kangra are waiting for you near the towns of Manali and Dharamshala. The city of Dharamshala is home to the Tibetan government in exile and the residence of the 14th Dalai Lama. Enjoy the snow-capped peaks all around you, some exceeding altitudes of 6000 m. Go up to the Rohtang Pass and see beyond the valleys of Spiti and Lahaul, the frontiers of the high altitude Himalayan regions. In spring and fall, these regions offer a climate conducive to outdoor activities such as rafting, para-gliding and trekking!

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