A city risen from the ashes

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Resurrection and resplendence in Dresden…

Crossing the bridge across the Elbe River, you will be stunned by this Jewel of Baroque. Tall elegant spires and lavish domes dominating a gorgeous skyline of extravagant architecture all along the tranquil leafy banks of the river, and the unassuming arches of the Augustus Bridge, as if frozen in time while leapfrogging across! If the picture postcard perfection of this first view hasn’t quite moved you, try this. This ornamental town, called the Florence on the Elbe, was almost razed to the ground during WW II. But it survived. And rose to its former glory. Resurrected. Reborn. Rebuilt. And how!

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Paradise is aqua-green

Why Croatia’s Plitvice Lakes has to be on your travel list….

If you’re thinking of skipping Zagreb from your Croatian itinerary, you’re making a mistake. Not a big mistake. A colossal mistake. Not only is the country’s capital a surprise package in itself, it’s the gateway to Plitvice National Parks, one of the world’s most gorgeous natural wonders.

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When dreams come true, tears flow

Venice made me cry: with joy…

Everyone has a dream destination, and mine has always been Venice. For as long as I can remember, the floating ethereal city has been the fairytale I wanted to live out. Naturally, my excitement was already sky-high when we boarded the train from Milan to Venice.

The sight of the water taxis outside Venice station fired my spirits higher and throughout the ferry ride, I kept standing at the helm, looking out at sea, eager for my first view. Despite all the fascinating pictures my mind recalled, I was totally unprepared! The city’s hazy silhouette from a distance kept sharpening as we got nearer…like a perfect painting hung up on a far wall in a museum. With every second, I noticed more colours under the intricate play of light and shade. Finally, we were here!

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5 tips to avoid meal disasters abroad

Tackling comic and not-so-comic menu language barriers…

In most countries, where English is not the primary language, deciding on a meal venue can become a chore, or even an embarrassing experience. In good humour, my uncle recently narrated a tale of how he once sheepishly pecked at his eggplant dish in Israel, having mistaken it for an egg dish. I could relate to it very well…we have had our share of several such incidents too.

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How I curated comfort for museums

It’s not for everyone, but once you start…

Last month, I read a question by someone on a travel forum…“Is it worthwhile to visit the Louvre Museum in Paris?” Her question didn’t surprise me that much, though Louvre is amongst the most-visited spots in the world. Anyway, I was curious to know the replies, so I scrolled over the comments till I reached the most interesting one. “Don’t waste your money on the expensive ticket. Shop for LV at Galleries Lafayette instead.” This fashionista was advising a splurge on a logo-splattered Louis Vuitton piece of leather arm-candy rather than investing a few hours and a few euros on real art. Talk of divergent perspectives…specially when it comes to value for money!

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Stop! That clock is singing!

Two time-keepers that make the world stand still…

It was Prague. Capital of the Czech Republic. Mother of cities. A symphony of elegance. Our mission to explore the enchanting historic centre, had landed us into the Old Town Square, where hundreds were milling. It was a surprise till then, but our arrival had been precisely timed for a certain spectacle. But what? Seconds before our guide pointed it out, we had spotted it. It was impossible to miss…everyone on the street who was pointing anywhere, was pointing at it. A great medieval astronomical clock (The Orloj) on the south wall of Old Town Hall Tower.

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Senses awaken at the city of sunrise

Give in to Udaipur’s charms…

We were booked in Trident Hotel and our choice couldn’t have been more perfect. Trident shares expansive gardens with Oberoi Udai Vilas, one of the most uber-lux hotels in the world. Location, location, location…the words raced through my head, as we walked to the hotel’s boat jetty. There, we were rewarded by a stunning sight of the colossal city palace shimmering on the Lake Pichola. Even better things awaited…an exclusive one-hour boat ride to remember.

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