September 1, 2011

Shanti Stupa

Our first tourist attraction in Ladakh was Shanti Stupa.  Built in 1991 by Japanese Buddhist Bhikshu Gyomyo Nakamura it is religiously significant because it holds the relics of the Buddha at its base–enshrined by the 14th Dalai Lama himself. The hundreds of Buddha statues that line the stupa compete with the amazing views of the Leh, a win-win scenario.  Shanti Stupa is the perfect [...]

September 1, 2011

Giddiness in Saboo

We were warned extensively about altitude sickness and Cory’s story of the time he got it in Peru did not appeal to anyone.  So we were extra careful to rest the first morning and see how our bodies responded to the 11,000+ foot jump in elevation.  By the afternoon however we needed to see more of the mountains peaking through the trees [...]

August 29, 2011

Ladakh Sarai

Stanzin had sent us a few itineraries, but due to a hectic schedule traveling the rest of the country we never had time to ponder what to expect in Leh.  The one thing we knew to expect was very high altitude and a day of relaxation on the first day. Leaving the airport we were taken straight [...]

August 29, 2011

Compass Travel

At the airport, we met Stanzin Norboo.  Kunal knew Stanzin from his schooldays and reconnected with him when beginning to plan our trip to Leh.  Stanzin, a native Ladakhi, started a travel company last year and hooked us up with a killer itinerary for the next six days.  He was also arranging my trek to Stok Kangri. One example of Stanzin’s [...]

August 29, 2011

Arrival in Leh

Fun facts about Kushok Bakula Rimpochee Airport (IXL): IXL is one of the highest airports in the world at 3,256 m (10,682 ft) above mean sea level. Due to the presence of mountain winds in the afternoon, all flights in Leh take off and land in the morning, around 7:00 am.  Our driver, Jack, spotted a plane in the afternoon and [...]

August 22, 2011

Fatehpur Sikri

Fatehpur Sikri was the first planned city of the Mughals.  It was designed in Mughal architecture and served as the Mughal Empire’s capital from 1571 until 1585. Most importantly, however, the city provides an extremely valuable lesson of relevance to our fundraising efforts for WaterAid.  After taking 15 years to build, the Mughal palace was abandoned after [...]

August 22, 2011

Agra Fort

The sister site to the Taj Mahal is the Agra Fort.  Just down the Yamuna River from the Taj Mahal, the fort offers great views of the Taj and a glimpse at royal life during the Mughal Empire. Akbar, grandson of Babur (founder of the Mughal Dynasty), made Agra his capital and began rennovating the [...]

August 22, 2011

Taj Mahal

We arrived in Agra late on the night of July 4th, and set our alarms for 5:00 am to see the sunrise at the Taj Mahal on the following morning.   When we got to the entrance, we were some of the first people inside the grounds. We had a guide but he didn’t tell us much more [...]

August 22, 2011

Fourth of July

We celebrated the 4th with American flare on NH 11, being driven from Jaipur to Agra. We purchased some fireworks in Jaipur during the day, but didn’t have a clue where we would be able to set them off.  Along the road we came across an Indian wedding party that was also lighting off fireworks [...]

August 22, 2011

Chokhi Dhani

One of the sites in Jaipur that came highly recommended was Chokhi Dhani.  Located 12 miles outside of the city, Chokhi Dhani (“Fine Hamlet” in Rajasthani dialect) is an ethnic resort.  One can watch live folk dances; listen to folk music; enjoy elephant, camel, and bullock cart rides; and eat traditional food. The resort gives you a glimpse of culture from [...]

The MangoHwy

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If you have any questions or comments about these adventures or fundraising, please drop me a line on the contact page. Thanks!