New Holiday Trends #HolidayDifferently with Sterling Holidays

The approach towards travel and holiday is no longer the same what it used to be a few years ago. As per Expedia research report, India is the 5th most vacations deprived country but the good news is that there is an impressive growth in the number of travelers in India over the years. Today, holiday is no longer only about visiting the popular destinations, but it is more about finding ‘one-of-a kind’ experience, exploring the unexplored and discovering the culture, food and nature of the destination.

How to #holidaydifferently with Sterling Holidays was well explained by their Chief Marketing Officer Mr. Peshwa Acharya at the Indiblogger event held at ITC Grand Central on 7th Dec, 2017. Sterling Holidays have rightly identified the latest trends of holiday which involves the weekend travelling, short getaways, small reunions, Social Media Groups travelers and the family holidays which is more about individual discoveries.

#HolidayDifferently with Sterling Holidays – What’s New?

In this interactive session of Sterling Holidays,  who are re-branding themselves to match this new travel trends have expanded their number of resorts from 13 to 33 and they are targeting offbeat as well as the popular tourist destinations. They are focused on providing an unique experience to its customer, to make their holiday different and memorable. Like in Darjeeling, how amazing it would be if your stay is combined with a trip to the tea estates which is then paired with tea tasting experience in the tea lounge of the resort and enriching the experience with some local dishes or in Ooty, your stay experience is enhanced with the demonstration of traditional dress making or cooking local dishes inside a Toda Hut.

Sterling Holidays introduced us to ‘Raja Rex’, the cutest discovery mascot. This name is a well thought name which is derived from “Rajasaurus Narmadensis” a Dinosorous of Indian Origin. Interesting, isn’t it? Because we all love surprises ofcourse, the pleasant ones 😉 therefore the Sterling Holidays have planned 100 days of surprises to make your stay even more memorable. So let it be a surprise only 🙂 Have you ever heard of Holiday Insurance? Sterling is the first one to offer door to door holiday insurance and the insurance will cover the holiday as well as your travel.

Sterling Holiday Logo
Sterling Holiday Logo
Indiblogger meet for Sterling Holidays at ITC Grand Central
Indiblogger meet for Sterling Holidays at ITC Grand Central

I am a part of Indiblogger since last 1.5 years, but never got a chance to attend the Indiblogger meet. The moment I received the email and the date/time matched my schedule, I decided to be a part of the Holiday Differently by Sterling Holidays event. I was really nice meeting passionate and like-minded fellow bloggers. I am glad I was a part of this event. Thanks to Indiblogger and Sterling Holidays for the invitation as I got to know about the all new Sterling holiday and the concept behind #holidaydifferently. Looking forward to experience stay at the new Sterling Resorts.

 

 

 

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Kerala 5 Days Trip- Travel Blog Part 1 -What to do in Munnar, Kerala

SavoryTales Kerala Travel Blog

I am really excited about this Kerala 5 Days Trip post because this is the first Travel post on the blog. I have posted two photo blog posts earlier Tarkarli – Devbag and Rajasthan Photo Blog.

We ( Me and my husband) visited Kerala in the month of October this year during our Diwali holidays. Kerala was on our bucket list since long and finally made the plan to visit the “God’s Own Country”. Kerala has everything that one can ask for from a holiday destination. It has from beautiful hills, spice plantations, tea plantations, serene beaches to calm backwaters. We covered Munnar, Alleppey, and Kochi in this trip. So I am dividing this post into two parts. Part one will be about reaching Munnar and all about our Munnar experience and part two will be about Alleppey and Kochi.

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P.S: This is not a sponsored post.

Here is a video of our Kerala 5 Days Trip:

 

Planning The Trip

Planning a trip is tiring and at the same time exciting task. We mostly prefer planning trips on our own and not going for a package tour. For doing research like places to visit, things to do, what and where to eat, websites like the Trip advisor and Travel blogs come to my rescue. We booked Zoom Car for our commute within Kerala and hotel booking was done through websites like MakeMyTrip, Oyo and Booking.com.

Munnar, Kerala

After reaching Kochi in the evening we collected our Zoom Car and left early morning for Munnar.

Day 1:

The whole road journey to Munnar is full of breathtaking views and scenic spots. Don’t forget to take a halt and click selfies at CheyapparaWaterfall and Valara Falls which will be approx 50 Kms before Munnar.  It took us aprox 4.5 hours to reach Munnar from Kochi.

 

Cheeyappara Waterfall, Munnar
Cheeyappara Waterfall, Munnar
Munnar, Kerala Blogpost
Munnar, Kerala Blogpost

After reaching we checked into our hotel. We booked one night at Moselberg Riverside Cottages. The property is around 18 kms from the Munnar market. The property is beautiful with a river flowing at the backside of the cottage but I won’t recommend staying here because of many reasons. Firstly, we requested but didn’t get the desired room and the owner is very rigid and non-coopertive.  Secondly, if you plan to stay near the city center then this is definitely not the place for you because it is an isolated area. Thirdly, for the tariff paid I think one can get better properties in Munnar.

Moselberg Riverside Cottages, Munnar, Kerala
Moselberg Riverside Cottages, Munnar, Kerala

We started the sightseeing by visiting the Tea Gardens and these gardens are so beautiful and mesmerizing that its difficult to stop taking pictures because every other point looks better than the previous one. We went to the Tea Museum where the entry fee is approx Rs.125. They show a documentary on Munnar and the history of the Tea estate. After this, in the demo area, they explain how the tea is processed in the factory to get the different varieties like Green , Black and CTC Tea. You can shop varieties of Tea sold here.

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After the Tea Museum we proceeded for Top Station. Top Station is approx 40 Kms from Munnar and is the highest point in Munnar. The view  of the mountains and clouds is simply stunning from Top station.  Top Station is in Tamil Nadu and not Kerala.  As we started going up in the high range hills, the difference in temperature is evident with the cool breeze and fog. Since, we decided to visit Top station on day one so we skipped the other points that were on the way to Top Station. The road to Top Station is in a very bad condition.

Top Station, Munnar, Kerala
Top Station, Munnar, Kerala

 

Day 2:

We started our day early and after breakfast went for a short cycling trip. The cycles were provided by the hotel only. After that we checked out and checked in to another hotel Munnar Queen. We were pleased and impressed with this property in every aspect. After check-in we left to cover the other points. We left for Pothamedu View point which is a small view point but beautiful. The road to this view point is also in a bad condition. I really don’t know why the tourism department don’t pay attention to this.

Pothamedu View Point, Munnar, Kerala
Pothamedu View Point, Munnar, Kerala

Then we headed towards Mattupatty Dam which is a very huge and scenic lake with boating facility. Next stop was echo point, where there were lots of shops and you can find some food vendors selling tea, maggi, corn, etc. Nothing special here so we headed for Kundala Lake. The lake is very serene and alluring.

Mattupatty, Munnar, Kerala
Mattupatty Dam, Munnar, Kerala
Echo Point, Munnar, Kerala
Echo Point, Munnar, Kerala

From here we returned back to Munnar city center and visited Hydel Park. The park is big and maintained but nothing extraordinary about this park. If you have kids, they will enjoy playing the park and you can rest for a while or skip it.

Munnar, Kerala Blogpost
Hydel Park, Munnar, Kerala
Munnar, Kerala Blogpost
Hydel Park, Munnar, Kerala

We tried to visit Attukal Waterfall but again the roads were in such a pathetic condition that we decided to take a U-turn and came back to the hotel.

Attukal Waterfall, Munnar, Kerala
Attukal Waterfall, Munnar, Kerala

We didn’t go to Ernakulam National Park because after reading not so good reviews about the places we didn’t find it worth spending three to four hours. We also didn’t go to Periyar after getting not so good feedback about the Periyar National Park. So, we headed to Alleppey on Day 3 for the backwater experience The backwater experience and all about Allepey and Kochi will be covered in the next blog post. Munnar, surely made a special place in our heart.

Share your Experience:

Are you planning a Trip too? Or how was your experience of Munnar Kerala, tell me about it. If you have any questions or feedback please share it with me in the comment box. I will be happy to answer them:)

 

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Selfie Lovers here is something for you – Vivo V5 !

Which phone to buy among the mid-range Android market is a big question these days because the real competition persists there. While selecting a phone for my cousin, I was really confused as which is the main feature that I should be looking for -camera, battery life, sound, etc. Totally confused, I asked my cousin what is the main purpose of buying a new phone and he said “selfie”. Trust me, I gave a disgusting look to him, but I saw an ad on TV about selfie phone, then realized maybe this is the latest thing happening. The ad, which I saw was of Vivo V5  featuring Ranveer Singh. After that, I did some online research about this phone and was impressed by the features of this phone.

The V5 has impressive and stylish looks. The fingerprint reader on the front of the screen is really cool and the one on the V5 is fast and accurate. The 4GB RAM ensures that the phone is can comfortably perform multitasking where one uses the phone for browsing, social feeds, cab booking, emails, etc. The primary camera is of 13MP with LED flash which is fewer megapixels than the front camera is a lot more stable and takes good photos in well lit and pulls off the low light also decently. The battery life is also good as it lasts through the day. The device has a hybrid dual-SIM card slot which can be used for memory expansion up to 128GB.

 

V5 has the first ever 20 Megapixel front camera phone  with the flash which is called “moonlight flash” which is used for a good moonlight selfie. The Moonlight flash is basically a fill light which lets you adjust its intensity for better results. The front camera is the highlight and the USP of this phone. The 5.5 inch HD IPS display with good color saturation allows it to take bright, impressive and perfect selfies. The camera app is user-friendly with voice command for selfie camera.

 

So, all the selfie lovers out there here is a phone which can effortlessly help you get perfect selfies.

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Schezwan Chicken Wrap

Wraps and rolls are my personal favorite. It is something which is convenient to have and a complete meal in itself and one can have it on the go. The another thing which I like most about wraps is that there is no fixed rules or recipe to make a wrap. It is totally upon your liking, taste, and availability of the ingredients. Prepare a fulfilling stuffing and wrap it up ! I keep experimenting with the stuffing part and want to share one such successful attempt. I have shared the recipe of another version of chicken wrap earlier on the blog. I had some schezwan sauce available with me, so thought of using it this time in my wrap and since I added beetroot, it turned out to be really colorful and delicious. Do give it a try.

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Chicken Seekh Kebab on Tawa/Pan

I am a big fan of Chicken kebabs, be it Chicken tikkas, Seekh kebabs or Galouti kebabs. I have made various versions of chicken tikkas at home but never tried seekh kebabs as they require grill/tandoor to make. When I came across the recipe of seekh kebab on tawa without an oven, which was very easy to make and the kebabs made very succulent and tasty, I immediately decided to give it a try. You can also try this recipe which requires and let me know how it turned out to be. It takes lesser time to make as no marinate is required, you just have to combine the chicken with ginger-garlic paste, onions and spices.

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