January: Travel Tips
Traveling is one of our main passions in life here at deVivre Concierge! So each month we will share the love by letting you in on some of our favorite places in the world and the most fun things to do in those places. This month...
The Golden Triangle, India
One of the most memorable and vibrant places I have ever been while experiencing the biggest culture shock has to be India. It is also the place that constantly calls me back. My one piece of advice is to treat yourself to a private tour guide while you're there. This can be accomplished very easily once you arrive. You will see so much more than the major tourist sights and learn way more about the culture if you travel in this way. Just don't forget to tip your driver well.
-Speaking of major tourist sights The Taj Mahal in Agra is truly one of the modern wonders of the world. Completed in 1648, It was built by Mughal Emperor Shah Jahan in memory of his wife Mumtaz Mahal. Take as much time as you can to explore the grounds and take a tour of the tomb itself, where you can see how the stone literally glows when light falls on it. For something a bit more off-the-radar head out of the site and behind the Taj Mahal to catch the sunset.
-A lesser know tomb which is not on all the tour bus itineraries and so not as touristy as some sites is The Tomb of Akbar the Great, which is located just outside of Agra. This tomb is surrounded by gardens which house a fantastic selection of wildlife, like deer, peacocks, black bucks and of course the ever present monkeys. If you have taken my advice and got a local guide then this will be an easy place to find.
-One experience which is not to be missed is seeing a movie at Raj Mandir Cinema in the Bollywood capital of India, Jaipur. Don't expect it to be like seeing a movie in the west. Everyone will be talking on their phones, chatting loudly, cheering the hero/heroines and booing any baddies. We saw the epic Rang de Basanti and amazingly when my cousin visited many years later they were showing the same film!
-Another wonderful place to visit in Jaipur is Jantar Mantar. This monument is a collection of gigantic architectural astronomical instruments, which was built by the Rajput king Sawai Jai Singh and completed in 1734. The idea was that the instruments allow the observation of astronomical positions with the naked eye. You can walk all around and over the instruments and see the largest stone sundial in the world.
Contact deVivre to help you plan your next adventure!