Does the concept of summer “vacation” really exist in college? There are usually two ways people spend their summer – interning or feeling guilty about not interning. For those of us who break our back making it to college twice a week, a 9-5 job in a cubicle is hardly our idea of a vacation.

Although I’m not discrediting the value of an internship, those who’ve already done one internship at some stage should consider taking a trip instead this summer because whereas travelling isn’t really something that you can put in your resume (in most cases), you’d be surprised how much it can help you in the long run. Here are a few ways how:

1. Travelling helps you learn a lot of new things about yourself:

Know yourself. Image credits: blog.trip4real.com
Know yourself. Image credits: blog.trip4real.com

Whenever you visit a new place, there’s a certain level of adaptation that’s required even if it’s for a short period of time. If you’re travelling alone you’d be surprised as to how many realisations you can have about yourself, which is always a good thing in college considering most of us spend the majority of our college lives roaming around as headless chickens who look the other way whenever anyone asks us “beta, what plans?

2. You learn a lot about a place:

Explore new places. Image credits: blog.touristly.com
Explore new places. Image credits: blog.touristly.com

Even if you revisit a place you’ve gone a dozen times with your parents in the past, being in college gives you a certain degree of independence. Use it to explore the city more. There’s definitely more to a city than the mainstream tourist locations, the knowledge of which truly makes you a “well-travelled” person.

3. Gives you the mental peace required for the upcoming semester:

Find your peace. Image credits: plaidzebra.com
Find your peace. Image credits: plaidzebra.com

Despite how much you study (or don’t), the summer semester in particular has a tendency to be extensively soporific. A nice holiday in the weeks leading up to it can put you in the right frame of mind to tackle it head on.

4. You get to meet new people:

Meet new people. Image credits: funjet.com
Meet new people. Image credits: funjet.com

Internships may  be a great forum for networking but travelling helps you meet a lot of people who may be like-minded or have a completely different outlook on life, both of which help shape your thought process.

5. You have fun:

Have fun. Image credits: colosoul.com.au
Have fun. Image credits: colosoul.com.au

Whereas following a “YOLO” strategy indefinitely may not be a wise decision, college life is all about experiences (not just the “work” kind), and traveling definitely accounts for that.

So if you’re still confused about whether or not to intern, don’t worry too much about it. Maybe this summer you can try something different!

Feature Image: knowrisk.com.au

Shraman Ghosh

[email protected]


With temperatures soaring up to 47 degrees and most parts of India being engulfed by the devilish summer heat, a getaway to the Himalayas can never be overrated. Regardless of the brutal temperatures in other areas, this region seems insulated from the heat and perfect temperatures reign throughout the summer. Of the many beautiful places to choose from, Darjeeling which has aptly been called the “Queen of the Hills,’ should be on top of your holiday itinerary this summer! While any travel magazine or website may provide a generic insight into this place, here’s a local’s report of her hometown!

1. Nepali Cuisine

Nepali Thali
Nepali Thali ( Image credits: https://kellysiew.files.wordpress.com/2014/02/thakali-thali-set.jpg )

People of Darjeeling pride themselves over the delectable local cuisine, which ranges from a full-fledged Nepali thali to the spiciest street food. An average Nepali thali comprises rice and dal along with an assortment of side dishes including sukuti (dried fish), sidra (another dried fish), gundruk (fermented saag) and the infamous kinema (fermented soya bean, which takes the nose some ‘getting-used-to’).
However, as always, the street food is the real showstopper! Although in the pan-Indian scene, the momo has overshadowed its eminence, Darjeeling’s famous aloo-dum, is a local favourite! Obviously the Indian favourite – momo, has its origins in this quaint little town. But beware! The momo-mayo combination here is not only unheard of but, close to blasphemy.
Then there’s the sel-roti (a type of bread which you have to try to know what it is), phaley (Tibetan bread), thukpa (noodles in soup) and so much more waiting for you in Darjeeling.
I could ramble on all day about the local food, but I have a list to complete!

2. Music in the city

Saraangi performance (Image Credits: http://im.hunt.in/cg/Darjeeling/City-Guide/music.jpg )

We are a music-loving lot!
Although the Darjeeling carnival happens in winter, music performances on the streets are not uncommon here. And if you’re lucky, you may witness a ‘saarangi’ performance as well. A ‘saarangi’ is a local instrument, somewhat like a violin but with a very distinct sound. For all the rock and jazz lovers, there are many pubs with local bands performing live music lining the streets. A lot of musical talent erupts from here, and you have to be here to soak in the glorious ambiance.

3. For the Adventure-Junkies!

Sandakphu ( Image Credits: http://www.airtraveller.org/media/reviews/photos/original/b2/ba/2b/Sandakphu-2-73-1417767135.jpg )

To kill the mundane, an adventure seeker should definitely visit Darjeeling! The local Himalayan Mountaineering Institute offers courses on rock-climbing and conducts expeditions to Sandakphu, a nearby village which has the shortest aerial distance from Mt. Everest. Apart from that, one can hike to nearby places including – Tiger Hill where you can witness the most beautiful sunrises. Bikes can also be hired to soar along remote roads rich in landscape and one can also paraglide over town. For lesser adventurous individuals, a morning jog around the scenic Mall Road may also prove a memorable experience.

4. Shopping

Shopping (Image Credits: http://www.sinclairshotels.com/assets/images/darjeeling/sightseeing/selfhelp_centre.jpg )

Tourists often pick up mementos to take back home in order to reminisce their eventful vacation and luckily, Darjeeling abounds in such knick-knacks. The curio-shops here are veritable treasure houses where one can scavenge everything from – Tibetan Masks, jewelry, gems, traditional attire to the infamous weapon of the Gorkhas- the khukuri! On the hand, art or any handicraft enthusiast should definitely take home a ‘thanka,’ a valuable scroll painting depicting Buddhist gods.

5. The people


But what is a town without its people? Needless to say, in keeping with the vibrancy of the town, its inhabitants are equally as friendly and welcoming. Striking up a conversation with locals at pubs or at Chowrasta (a meeting place of sorts) couldn’t be easier and proves rather helpful to the enthusiastic traveler.
The people are the real gems here, and it is they who can guide you to the best bakery in town or the cheapest haunt for local ‘daaru’ (it’s called ‘tongba’).

Lastly, in case you couldn’t keep up with the entire local lingo that this article abounds in then, that is just one more reason for you to visit Darjeeling this summer!

Swareena Gurung

[email protected]



With only his bike and a tent, Keshav Kumar will travel approximately 6100 kilometres and visit 13 states and 174 cities in 15 days to answer questions about women’s empowerment. Keshav Kumar is a 3rd year student from Kirori Mal College, Delhi University, studying Geography (H). He is clearly not one of those who are content with reading the topography of the country in textbooks as he has been travelling alone to different parts of the country since two and a half years. He organises trips in his college as well but these are the only trips he takes with a group. He loves to travel alone and when asked why, he gleamingly said, “Because, it gives me peace.” Very recently, he has taken up a venture which is not only a means to escape the mundane routine of college life but serves a greater purpose. He’ll embark on a journey along the golden quadrilateral where he’ll cover approximately 6100 kilometres and visit 13 states and 174 cities in 15 days. His only companions will be the bike and his make-shift abode, the tent. Through this trip, he seeks to find answers to questions which are very often avoided or are left unanswered in our society. These questions are mainly about women’s safety and empowerment. Keshav will be visiting 20 different colleges ranging from the various IITs to IIMs where he’ll hold sessions with the youth and raise questions in front of them about how should a woman tackle her harasser, is blocking the oppressor the only solution to telephonic or digital harassment etc.  He says, “We often believe that the problem we are going through is limited to us and we then hesitate to share it with anyone else. This means no solution can be arrived at. This has to change. So, with these sessions, a common platform can be forged where the youth can realise that we all go through the same hell and solutions can thought of for the betterment of everyone.” He believes in the power of individual stories and is expecting a positive change to come from these sessions. Keshav also gives advice to the people who wish to travel alone but don’t know where to start. He says, “It is all about daring, about taking that first step.” He tells us that his first trip was to Rishikesh which was not at all planned and was an impulsive decision. But he knows if he wouldn’t have taken this decision, he’d never be able to do what he is doing presently.  So, if you really love travelling, go and make way for yourself. Image Credits: Keshav Kumar Nishita Agarwal [email protected]]]>

Having completed an entire month in office, if I were given a choice again, chances are I might never choose to do an internship at all. In hindsight, whilst doing an internship is sometimes enriching and enlightening, not doing an internship also has its merits. Yes, internships are a part of your college experience, but not doing one doesn’t mean you haven’t lived your college life well. Yes, doing an internship is a good way of having a productive summer, but not having one is not the end of the world. So, here we are bursting the bubble, and breaking the myths.


  1. Internships are overhyped


    Contrary to popular belief, not getting an internship is NOT the end of your career. If you haven’t applied for an internship at some big ass corporate house, you will not end up living in your parent’s house forever. There are a bunch of other ways to kickstart your career. I am, in no manner implying that internships are completely futile. But they are not the only avenue for you to build your resumes or pick up skills and learnings. Don’t just do what everyone else is doing. If you utilise your summer well, you can work on defining your personal brand effectively too!


  2. Internships won’t solve the perpetual existential crisis


    There are other, far simpler ways to discover your potential and work on your skills. You could translate a new interest into a hobby, or take up some projects to hone your existing skills. You can enrol in an online course, or take up some research work based on your educational background.So stop panicking, or wallowing in jealousy. Just breathe.


  3. Internships might be a costly affair

    Keeping aside the fact that most of the internships available are unpaid, most paid internships too are a farce and often a trap. In case of unpaid internships, you need to finance your commute, eating expenses, inter alia. In case of paid internships, while the stipend will only barely cover your travel and lunch expenses, it might not necessarily bring life back to your wallet. And then there are internships for which students have to pay to intern with a company. Now that is another issue altogether.Hence, it becomes extremely difficult for an outstation student, particularly, to do an internship. If however, you do decide to take one up, be mindful of the return on your investment.


  4. It gets tiring


    With 12 hour days everyday, I am not just I’ll-take-a-nap-and-be-okay-in-the-morning tired, I am more like I-need-to-sleep-for-an-entire-month tired. How I wish to sneak away each weekend to recharge my batteries. Overtime, what I have realised is that I would have liked travelling uninterrupted for an entire month more than spending most of my days in office. Taking care of those pangs of wanderlust is a whole lot easier during the break than during college days. Plus, when you travel you’ll always have a cooler story to tell later on!


College offers an interesting proposition of permutations and combinations of fun and learning, and sometimes you really ought to choose well. My internship has taught me a lot of things, of which the most important lesson is: If I hadn’t taken this internship; I would have been just fine.


Image Credits: giphy.com

Surbhi Arora

[email protected]


In between the season finale of Game of Thrones and the return of Suits, a major chunk of our summer break has gone by. While we all started the break binge watching our favourite shows, some of us went ahead and started drafting a plan for our career. Some started to complete their bucket list of summer plans they made during exams. And then there are some who are still hiding behind their laptops, parked in front of their TV, doing absolutely nothing. If you belong to this category of people, jolt your bones awake! 

Here are 5 reasons to get off your beloved couch this summer!

No one likes a couch potato, not even themselves

Waking up around noon and taking a nap right afterwards seemed fun in school. In college, it’s not quite so. Summer break is a perfect opportunity for you to introspect and hone your talents or discover new possibilities altogether. It’s the time to be proactive and enthusiastic about the future without the hustle and bustle of college life. If you want to have a stalker-worthy Instagram feed, do something other than napping and watching TV.  A little of this introspection and hard work, will go a long long way.

Get a Summer Job/Internship

In between the internet bills, college tuition, lunch money and other innumerable expenses of a college student, there is hardly any money left to do anything else. Taking up a summer job or an internship could possibly bring your wallet back to life. To top it all, these internships will also add some colour to your resumes.

Hit the gym!

Use the calm time of the break to lose that “examination weight” already. Hit the gym or do some yoga, do something! Go for a walk,get together with a bicyclist group,enrol in a swimming class or join a sports team.

Here are some tips to get you started!

Travel is non-fattening and flying helps the economy

If you are fortunate enough to vacation in luxury hotels and resorts, then I might strongly dislike you, stalk your Facebook feed and wallow in jealousy almost all the time. If you ever get an opportunity to discover a new place, seize it! Start with discovering your own city, or travel a brand new place. Travelling is multidimensional, exploration is educational. It moulds your life in a way that you envision things with a clearer mind, and it helps you understand your own self better. Plus, you’ll always have a cool story to share about your adventures and escapades later on. If you wish to discover Delhi, don’t worry, we’ve got you covered!

Turn a new interest into a hobby

If there’s a certain thing you like to do, follow it up religiously. If you love to read as well, you could start a blog and connect with other bookworms. If you wish to volunteer with your local organizations, you can do it now without the daily interruption of college. If you love to draw, you could build up an entire portfolio of sketches ready before college! Here are some projects to help you get started.

Here’s to a more productive summer, whatever is left of that anyway. Cheers!

Image Credits: giphy.com

Surbhi Arora

[email protected]

Screaming through the desert, dirty, matted hair tangling in the dry air, the warm Winter sun on my wind-beaten skin, eyes opened wide for maximum intake of the parched, desolate, and dusty expanse. 10,000 metres above sea level, basking in the snowfall and staring at the boundless and immense silver mountains. Infinite metres above sea level, paragliding, infinite metres below sea level, scuba diving. These are places I recoil into time and again. These are my happy places. These longings are deduced as early signs of manifestation of wanderlust.

Wanderlust is a rather enigmatic and obscure emotion. It is a pang on the edge of your heart, a twitch of your nerves, and often homesickness. It transpires when you feel too rooted in a place. It’s when you long to see places you have only heard about, it’s when you want to step onto soils no one has stepped on before, and it emerges as a longing to seek the true meaning of life. It materializes when you fly the coop and meet new, interesting people. It is a wish to expose oneself to foreign languages and cultures. It is also a yearning to change and broaden your horizon. Because travelling does all of that. It transforms you, widens your perspectives, and exposes you to cultures and traditions you have only read about. It gives you wings, but also helps you trace back your roots. You don’t have to be necessarily irked about your present to inject yourself with wanderlust. Often, a photograph of a treehouse makes me go bonkers. Travelling is only a panacea that fills a void, a vacuum in your life. Sometimes, a void you never knew even existed.

You do not even realize your life was missing a fragment till you are on top of that mountain, screaming your lungs out of exhilaration, or it could be the limitless expanse of gardens and trees and all you want to do is dance out of ecstasy. It’s in that moment that you know you feel complete. Wholesome. Or it could be nothing extravagant at all. It could be simply a train journey to some place with your cherished ones. It could be something completely silly. It is simply something you have never done before. But it is a feeling that makes your heart race, accelerates your breathing, makes you feel like you have wings and makes everything in your life supersonic. Travelling is multidimensional. It moulds your life in a way that you envision things with a clearer mind. It brings out a different, more loveable, carefree person from within you. It helps you understand global events on a macro scale. Or perhaps not. Maybe it just helps you understand your own self better. It lets you evolve into a person you always dreamed you’d be.

Wanderlust is only a step to the series of revelations. About yourself, about humanity Instead of listening to their hearts, so many people are chasing pointless goals and worthless people just so they feel complete. Just so they feel validated. Just so they feel they belong somewhere. So many people are rushing themselves into a future they haven’t really earned yet. Just because you wish to escape your present, it doesn’t mean that you have to fast forward life. You don’t have to take a dive into a future you’re not ready for. Slow down, take a break. Treat yourself to a vacation.

Believe me when I say, travelling takes you to places you never knew existed. It helps you tap into your inner strength. It might not solve your problems and the future may still seem bleak, but when you travel to a new place or explore the place where you live, the present automatically becomes better. And future, less bleak, hopeful. Trust me when I say, to travel is a step in the right direction. That’s what wanderlust does. Helps you forge the path to travel. Makes you travel more and make you want to listen to your heart more. It may make you slow down and reduce the speed at which you’re running into a direction you don’t know yet. Or it might finally instil in you the confidence to take that plunge into the future.

The motivation you needed to recover your life, or the strength you required to give each of your problems a black eye. I want people to live for such coincidences and serendipities. I want them to let their guard down, to go out on a limb and take chances. I want them to honour their preferences, respect their wishes, and follow their heart. Why is it that people like to be told what they already know as if being told makes it anymore real? There are great things to do, people to meet, happy dances to perform, continents to cross in mind and in matter. And I want people to stop postponing it.

Stop living a life you don’t like and start making one you will always treasure. Touch base. Or fly away. Just karate chop the shit out of anyone slowing down your trail of awesome. Let wanderlust guide you to the streets that will inspire you, and make you feel brand new.

Discover, explore, seek.


Surbhi Arora

[email protected]


Image credit: www.huffingtonpost.com

“It’s a smile, it’s a kiss, it’s a sip of wine … it’s summertime!”  – Kenny Chesney.

Summer is mangoes and grandmothers, summer is long afternoons and lemonade…summer is the ideal getaway.

So, where are you headed to?  To grandma’s courtyard of childhood memories or the mountains which beckon with their chill laden breeze? The seaside if you crave tans and burns or just your bed with a great book to read? And then there are those with day long internships, not to forget the right-after-exams summer schools in tow. What then is the ideal summer? What’s your sweet escape?

Here, after long consultations with friends, foes and other animals, is the perfect summer recipe. Your kind of summer, with your kind of spice!

For the conventional:

As put by a former Outlook Traveller editor, hill stations are a swirl of social, commercial and political energy -and garbage and cement. Hence, off the beaten track we go. On the hit list is Paro, a tranquil retreat in that country of happy people- Bhutan. (Travel tip- traveling to Bhutan doesn’t require passports and visas if the North Bengal road route is taken). But, for us lone backpackers and shoe-string budget students, if Paro be struck off the list, take to the scenic lake town of Mirik and not Darjeeling, to Landour and Dhanaulti for sun and sport and not Mussoorie, to Munshiyari and not Shimla. Make it a memorable summer, like Rusty, with deodar and pine.

For the experimental:

Absolutely recommended is a cruise down the Sunderbans, it’s different, it’s great!

Why wait?

For the busy, for us:

In the middle of those summer classes and CAT preparations, find an extended weekend and pack that lousy backpack. Board a dusty bus and clear your muddled head. For this breakaway trip, we recommend students’ hostels, an example being Zostel- the student friendly travel and accommodation start-up. With great destinations and greater experiences, this is your economy package. Not your Rusty summer but a Kipling, perhaps.

And if you were that workaholic intern, make getaways within the city itself. It’s a beautiful mosaic, of the old and the new. Walk by the Lodi tombs, walk to St. James Church. In spite of the heat, this city has great haunts.

For the lazy, for all:

Stay home, have lemonade, sweat the summer away.

Go to the beach- bathe, relax, burn, bathe.

Go to the mountains, forget your phone behind.

Vacationing is not about trains and planes; vacationing is taking time off.


I almost wish we were butterflies and liv’d but three summer days – three such days with you I could fill with more delight than fifty common years could ever contain.” – Keats


And that is why the summer matters.


Alankrita Anand

[email protected]

Image credits:  imgkid.com

Little Black Book Delhi brings DU Beat’s readers something awesome to explore for the fortnight! This week help you plan your holidays!

With the month packed with Christmas and the New Year approaching we are all shopping and preparing for our trips. This time we give you places to pick up some new shawls and stoles and great place to pick up cakes! For those who are not travelling could spend time learning a new skill and or take a quick break from the city.


A great new collection of leather boots and jackets are available at Sarojini market and Paharganj {Light on wallet too!}. Gift shopping can never get better at Shahpur Jat.  LBBD’s also picked out a special selection of stores for shawls and stoles; don’t forget to check them out!

Shawls and stoles | http://littleblackbookdelhi.com/26904/shops-shawls-stoles-delhi/

Shopping in Shahpur Jat | http://littleblackbookdelhi.com/18530/little-black-book-for-shahpur-jat/

Paharganj Guide | http://littleblackbookdelhi.com/8364/simply-digging-pahadganj/

Dance classes around town

Whether its energetic jazz or the good old classical Indian dances forms, Delhi has everything in its stores. A new skill never hurt anyone!

Details | http://littleblackbookdelhi.com/17919/delhi-dance-classes-and-centres/

Classical Schools | http://littleblackbookdelhi.com/19364/classical-dances-little-black-book/

Learn a new language

Spice up everyday conversation from ‘Hello! How are you?’ to ‘Hola! Que tal?’ There is the whole range of European language centers in the city along with places that teach regional and language from the sub-continent.

Foreign Languages | http://littleblackbookdelhi.com/14059/foreign-language-courses-delhi-lbbd/

Language from the Sub-Continent | http://littleblackbookdelhi.com/25040/zabaan-language-courses/

Quick Getaways

If you haven’t planned a trip, the city has some quick getaway destinations. One can enjoy the spa at the gorgeous Neemrana Fort or spend some quiet time reading at Chambal Safari Lodge. If you are visting Goa, do try some of our favorites at the beach town.

Details | http://littleblackbookdelhi.com/25858/5-roadtrips-delhi/

Goa Plans | http://littleblackbookdelhi.com/27093/guide-things-to-do-goa/


The festive season is the perfect reason to explore new bakeries and cakes to cut. If you look at the right places, the city has prepared some new flavors beyond the everyday chocolate and pineapple. Here are our favorite bakers in town.

Bakeries | http://littleblackbookdelhi.com/23716/bakeries-delhi/

Join us on www.littleblackbookdelhi.com for more of the best of the city! Write to us at [email protected] for any suggestions, recommendations or inputs.

Little Black Book Delhi brings DU Beat’s readers something awesome to explore for the fortnight! This week we help you make your exam time a little more fun!

Exams are on our heads. Running around picking up last minutes notes, getting answers photocopied and calling friends to fill in the gaps for classes one did not attend is now a daily routine. And as tensions gets closer and we devour our books one after the other, it is important to take a break and have some food, watch some movies and plan some holidays. This time LBBD brings to you late night food, fashions blogs, free movies to look at and new trips to plan.

Remember all work and no play makes jack a dull boy!

1. Late Night Munchies

Image Credit: Midnight Munchies

Exam times are synonymous with late nights and after a marathon with Marx or Calculus there is no better respite than food. The Bun Butter Chai at Patel Chest will always be a late night haven for people in north while south campus students find solace in filling Parathas at Moolchand {Shah Rukh is a fan too!} and cutting chai at Safdarjung Hospital which is available 24/7. If you are too lazy to step out of your homes, there is Midnight Munchies to get you fresh salads, cup cakes and even paan right to your doorsteps till 4 am! For Gurgoan residents there is Batman Delivers will get you food, cigarettes and contraceptives! If you are looking to cook something on your own, here are a few recipes in 140 characters.

Batman Delivers | https://www.facebook.com/Batmandelivers

Midnight Munchies | https://www.facebook.com/midnightmunching

Recipes | http://littleblackbookdelhi.com/17661/easy-summer-recipes-kishi-arora/

2. Free Movies


Movies are always a good option to clear one’s head after a long study day. If you are not looking to spend on it, the city has places that bring to you great alternative cinema. In south Delhi there is Habitat Centre, International Centre and Alliance Francaise, which screen documentaries and feature films. CP houses Instituto Cervantes, which screens Spanish feature films, while American Centre shows Hollywood blockbusters regularly.

3. Online Fashion Surfing


More than studying for the exams, we tend to scroll down web pages looking at fashion pages. So while one is at it, there are a few one can surely check out. Jamie and Kevin bring to you the absolute crème de la crème of fashion photography. The couple bring to you travel escapades, regal fashion and lifestyle photography.  Fashionista on the other hand provides quick and crisp fashion blogging. Mixing poetry, travel and lots of fashion in one blog is Arathi, the brainchild of Miffalicious.

Jamie & Kevin | http://annstreetstudio.com

Fashionista | http://fashionista.com/

Miffalicious | http://www.miffalicious.com

4. After Exam Plans

There is nothing better than wondering about how life would have been if there were no exams, especially when they are on our heads. There is the quick getaway to Rajasthan for the serenity of the dessert or the adventurous trip to Rishikesh. Nature lover can choose between wildlife in Kabini and marine life in Havelock Islands {or both!}. There is of course the party place Goa which will never run out of tourists or alcohol. Don’t let Holiday plans this time be confined to dreams or promises made around cup of coffees.

Getaways in December | http://littleblackbookdelhi.com/10650/nye-getaways/

Join us on www.littleblackbookdelhi.com for more of the best of the city! Write to us at [email protected] for any suggestions, recommendations or inputs.

View from the CN Tower.

After 18 hours of air travel and a completely messed up body clock, a breath of fresh air is like heaven and when it’s in a country like Canada you can’t help but feel elated. The car ride from the airport to home was my first introduction to Canada. I landed at 7 30 pm at Pearson International Airport, Toronto in broad daylight. The sun doesn’t set before 9 30 pm which leaves you with a false feeling of 6 pm!

Notre-Dame Basilica
CN Tower

Even though Toronto isn’t a city with a checklist full attractions but it still has plenty to offer. The Lake Ontario spreads endlessly over acres, mesmerizing and beautiful. The sunlight reflects off the water and changes the water’s colour to various shades of blue. One of the more popular tourist attractions is The CN Tower; the second tallest building in the world offers a spectacular view of downtown Toronto and the Toronto Island.  The CN Tower opened the EdgeWalk in 2011, an amusement in which thrill-seekers can walk on and around the roof of the main pod of the tower at 356 m (1,168.0 ft). It is the world’s highest full-circle, hands-free walk. However, people are harnessed and it is safe. Nonetheless beware! Your heart will be in your mouth.

Montreal is a French speaking city, second only to Paris, situated in the province of Quebec. One step into the city and you get transported to Europe. It is a miniature Europe in America. The same narrow cobbled streets, road side cafes, street artists and exorbitantly expensive food! Archaic buildings, churches and souvenir shops are the three most common sights one gets to see. The highlight of the city is Notre-Dame Basilica. The church’s gothic revival architecture is among the most dramatic in the world; its interior is grand and colourful, its ceiling is a collage of deep blues and decorated with golden stars, and the rest of the sanctuary is a polychrome of blues, azures, reds, purples, silver, and gold. It is filled with hundreds of intricate wooden carvings and several religious statues. It’s beautiful and a must visit. However if you don’t know how to speak French, you’re in for a tough time because even cult brands like McDonald has its menu written in French!

‘The’ place to go to when visiting Canada is definitely The Niagara Falls. They are 165 feet high and 2,600 feet wide. The combination of the height plus width is what makes them so spectacular. It is a sight to die for and a living proof of how nature can be stupendous. The Maid of the Mist is the boat tour of Niagra falls. The boat starts off at a calm part of the Niagra river, near the Rainbow falls, and takes its passengers past the American and Bridal Veil Falls, then into the dense mist of spray inside the curve of the Horseshoe falls. The impact with which the water falls is so great that the spray generated is blinding. The view from the boat is unparalleled and absolutely nothing can match up to it. Standing so close to the falls, listening to the roar of the falling water with the spray drenching you, the experience is out of the world.

Niagra Falls

The town is also known for its night life and has tons of casinos. The place is surely a gambler’s delight!

In terms of food, the variety this country offers is not even funny. Food maniacs will find all cuisines ranging from fast food, Greek, Mexican, Afghani, steaks, Mediterranean, Chinese, Korean, Japanese and of course Indian. Toronto has a whole street called Jerard Street dedicated to Indian food which has everything from south Indian food to biryanis. The street even has a ‘pan ki dukaan’! The shop has that exact same Indian feel, tiny shop, sweaty man making pan asking you if u want gutka in it! The street is like a little India in Canada.

There is no concept of home cooking there. Everything is available packed, tinned or frozen. However, food is not cheap but quantities sold are massive.

Canada is pretty as a picture and inhabits people who are way too polite. Be it a waiter or a cop they would begin by asking how you are even if the cop wants to fine you! Unlike Indians, Canadians are over enthusiastic helpers. Pedestrian is the king and no matter where you cross the road from the traffic will stop for you. Every coffee shop, mall and restaurant has unlimited free Wi-Fi.  The air is supremely fresh and the country clean. Spending a month in Canada spoils you. The pollution, traffic and the filth of India hits you in the face. But as the saying goes, there’s no place like home!