Life in the backwaters of Kerala is all about water: for transportation, bathing, cooking, gathering food, and recreation. Come with me as I meet some local people and speculate on the nature of their relationship with the water.
Imagine gliding silently through glassy water that is reflecting the oranges and pinks of the midnight sun. In the distance icebergs tower over the sea, occasionally calving with a thundering crack. Then a whale spouts in front of it, and you can’t believe you are actually here, kayaking in Greenland.
I climbed the sand dunes to see the sun setting in a spectacular scene, casting long shadows from even the tiniest dune and sending golden light through the spray from the waves. The road shimmered black below me and not one sound pierced the air. But little did I know, I was about to become stuck in this gorgeous place…
I have never, ever felt such eager anticipation and jubilation as I did that night, sitting on a rock overlooking the Ilulissat Icefjord. I had never dreamed that coming to Greenland would provide experiences like this. That I would be so, so happy to be in such a cold place, that I would love the icebergs so much, or that I would get to see multiple whales swimming together next to those icebergs. That the sky would be so incredible, the warm pink and orange reflecting off the sea dotted with icebergs.
Do you want to see UNESCO-listed 5000 year old tombs? Especially ones that are lined up on a ridge overlooking a wadi and village, with a spectacular mountain backdrop? Then you need to visit the Bat and Al Ayn Tombs in Oman! Read here to find out just how easily accessible these tombs are.
Ask anyone and they’ll tell you a trip to Kerala isn’t complete without a night on a houseboat. But that’s expensive, not so safe for a solo female, and what you see from a big boat is pretty limited! So read on to find out how to see the villages of the Kerala Backwaters on a budget!
One last bit of adrenaline kicked in and propelled me to the stunning view at the top of the pass. Laid out before me was a vast grassland, a shallow valley slowly descending to silvery blue Song-Kol lake in the distance, reflecting the snowy mountains that shimmered in the bright sunlight. Behind me, I could see where we’d come from, the yurt camp that was just above ours now just a tiny white speck far, far below. This four day trek to Song-Kol lake was spectacular.
Ramadan is the Islamic holy month, and fasting during Ramadan is one of the five pillars of Islam. This means that from the pre-dawn prayer (Fajr) to the sunset one (Maghrib) Muslims may not eat, drink, smoke, or have sex. If you’ve ever wondered what Ramadan is all about, how it works, what happens, and what it’s like to be in a predominantly Muslim country as a non-Muslim during Ramadan, read this!
We all make cultural faux pas when we arrive in a new place, until we learn what the norms are and even well beyond that sometimes. I’m more than nine months in and still adjusting to what’s expected of women in Oman, still learning what’s appropriate for me and what’s not. Read on for some of my stories of culture shock in Oman!
I found an opening, took a deep breath, and ran, squeezing myself through the crowd on the steps. I managed to get out of the way just as a man in a pale blue dishdasha came along, shouting and yanking his goat behind him. The Nizwa Goat Souq is quite a spectacle, and if you have a chance to be in Nizwa on a Friday morning I highly recommend that you go take a look.