Gangotri Yamunotri |Helicopter Service

 

The road journey which covers Yamunotri and Gangotri from Rishikesh takes Five days of not only difficult driving in the Himalayas but also danger of falling rocks and road blocks due to heavy traffic on the roads during the Yatra period from May till mid June . Helicopters carry 4-5 person at a time depending upon the maximum carry load of 300 kg.

Yamunotri Temple and Yamuna coming down from Kalind Glacier

Yamunotri Temple and Yamuna coming down from Kalind Glacier

Opening of helicopter service  has reduced the journey time to  few hours and Do Dham Yatra is completed in two days . Helicopters carry 4-5 person at a time depending upon the maximum carry load of 300 kg. with a night stop at beautiful place , Kharsali a village which is having the oldest Lord Shani temple next to the helipad  or Harsil  which happens to be the Maha Prayag of Eight  rivers in to Bhagirathi ( Jalandhari, Vishnu GangaLakshmi Ganga, Pawan Ganga, Telangna, Bhim Ganga, Kheer Ganga , Kakora and Hatya Harini) ,  an age old  temple dedicated to Lord Vishnu and a temple dedicated to Ma Durga at a place where Maharishi Markandey wrote the Durga Saptshati are worth a visit.

The flight operations are from Dehradun a 45 minute flight for  Kharsali ( the starting point for 6 km trek for Yamunotri ) , the Yatris can do the trek , perform pooja at Yamunotri and return in 4-5 hrs at the helipad one can visit the oldest temple of lord Shani Dev at Kharsali village ,  one can stay a night at Kharsali or fly same day for Harsil a 20 minutes flight . Jeep/ Car will take you to a 26 km drive to the Gangotri temple , on way are Bhairo temple and the deepest gorge in Asia , after performing the pooja return to Harsil for a night stay and Dinner

Mayank peak Harsil

Mayank peak Harsil

Next morning after breakfast transfer to the helipad for return flight for Dehradun  a 45 minutes flight . All above arrangements are also available ex Delhi .

For more information please contact 09810506646 

Delhi Office contact 011-45725562, 63, 64

Callers outside India +44 7700093414

Email at promark@promarktravels.com

website : yatrachardham.com , promarktravels.com

Opium Ceremony | West Rajasthan

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Opium Ceremony or Amal – Ka – Dastur or Riyan is a ritual practiced in the Thar Desert areas of Western Rajasthan possessing, serving and consuming opium is illegal, serving the drug to guests has been ages old ritual for the people of this part specially among the Rajputs and Bishnoi communities to build strong relations among the two person and community, Ladies are not part of these ceremonies.

Amal Ka Dastur , Opium Granule and Poppy Bulb

Amal Ka Dastur , Opium Granule and Poppy Bulb

 

Amal Ka Dastur , Apparatus used for preparation

Amal Ka Dastur , Apparatus used for preparation

Right from preparing, serving and then consuming it is a proper religious ceremony . Opium granules are dissolved in water , ground and mixed with jaggery, sugar, saffron and milk and then strained in a wooden pot filtered by using cloth cap upside down and extract is collected again in a wooden pot .

Amal Ka Dastur , Opium, Jagary, saffron and milk are grounded

Amal Ka Dastur , Opium, Jagary, saffron and milk are grounded

 

Amal Ka Dastur the mixture is filtered and extract is collected

Amal Ka Dastur the mixture is filtered and extract is collected

 

First of all it is offered to the lord Shiva and then to the gathering .

Amal Ka Dastur , first offering to Lord Shiva

Amal Ka Dastur , first offering to Lord Shiva

The opium ceremony, where it is taken in small doses, is an important part of any social occasion, be it a birth, a wedding or a funeral in the Thar region of West Rajasthan The ritual is followed by all the castes but it is most prevalent and important ritual among the Bishnoi and the Rajput community, each ceremony has a different name for the occasion 

Amal Ka Dastur , Few drops are taken on palm and licked

Amal Ka Dastur , Few drops are taken on palm and licked

Riyan Ceremony is a big gathering for a marriage , a birth of a child or just a community social gathering . People present their are offered the dose one by one by the elder of a family who first washes the palm and wipe it with one end  of his Turban ( Pagadi) and few drops are put on the palm which is immediately consumed by the guest . Attendance in such gathering means support to the host family and not accepting the opium is treated as an insult .

 Amal – Ki – Manuwhar  ( Amal means Opium , Manuwhar means To offer) in this ceremony the family offers the small doses of the extract to the people to show their gratitude by their presence .

For more information contact +91 9810506646

Callers from Outside India +44 7700093414

Office contact (+05.30 GMT) 011 45725562 , 45725563 , 45725564

Email : promark@promarktravels.com

Website : promarktravels.com

Kanoi Village, Maganiyars and Sand Dunes , Jaisalmer

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Kanoi is a desert village towards West about 35 km  from Jaisalmer on Sam road with beautiful virgin Sand Dunes , about 400 small brick and mud houses with a population of about 3000 people of mixed castes living here since many generations  in harmony .

Kanoi Village house

The different communities live in the  Kanoi village are  Rajputs , Suthars ( carpenters ) take care of the daily simple need  machines  and tools in the village , the Kumhars ( potters ) take care of the  supply of pots used in daily  house hold  jobs and making pots for carrying  water , few Brahaman ( Priest ) community is also there .

Kanoi village , Nomads huts

There are the Manganiyars who also call them self the Mirasi a Muslim community, patronized by the Royal families and the wealthy merchants families in North India for many generations.

Kalbelia girls and Manganiyars or Mirasis at Kanoi , Jaisalmer

They are the people who have protected the cultural heritage of singing of Rajasthani Folk Music and also preserving their age old musical instruments like Sarangi , Kartal , Bhopang , Morchang , Algoja , Dholak , Dhol , Kamaicha . Kanoi village is a nursery for the Manganiyars or Mirasis , they train the young boys in singing and playing the age old musical instruments , narrating the myths and fables, history and legends, of Kings and Conquerors, Sages , Sufis and Saints from the region. Ladies are restricted they do only the household jobs they even feel shy in the presence of outsiders. It is only the Kalbelia ( Snake Charmers ) girls who accompany the musical groups for performances with Merasis or Maganiyars

Kanoi village has produced the world fame Rajasthani Folk Singers and Musicians  Mr. Chandan Khan and Sadak Khan earned world fame at Bharat Mahotsav in 1980 at Moscow and then many European Countries , tradition is carried forward by Mr. Jalal Khan and Mr. Khudu Khan and many more youngsters  . Their music is complex and secular, its roots spread wide, though chiefly in Hindustani classical music . They have traveled , entertained and received  appreciations   from  all over the world for their Music . 

The profession of people in Kanoi village beside the agriculture  is Animal Husbandry , Sheep, Goat , Camel and Cows which are the integral part of their life . The agriculture is depend on the rains , the villagers have dug the drains which collects the water when it rains and pour it in a series  underground water tank , this water is used for drinking and daily use

 

Rain water collected and diverted to Kanoi village through the drains

People are poor , living  extreme hard life but always welcoming the visitors with smile .

Foreigners enjoying Sand Dunes of Kanoi Village , Jaisalmer

The only palace to stay in Kanoi is Desert Spring Camp , it has 11 Royal Tents and 15 Comfort Tents , every evening there is a Rajasthani folk dances , puppet show and Maganiyar’s folk songs .

For More information and Packages Contact + 91 9810506646

Callers from Outside India  + 44 7700093414

Office contact (05.30 GMT) 011 45725562 , 45725563 , 45725564

Email : promark@promarktravels.com

Website : promarktravels.com

Blog : promark@promarktravels.com/blog

Abhaneri Step-Well: Architectural Wonder of 8th century

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Abhaneri – A Small Village near Jaipur, Rajasthan

Abhaneri is a small village in Rajasthan near Jaipur, while driving on National Highway 11A towards Agra, after crossing Dausa at Sikandara take a left turn on a State Highway 25 to Bandikui, then turn right at Gular Chauraha  for Abhaneri, total distance from Jaipur is 96 Kms, upon entering into the Abhaneri, first visible structure is a ruins of a Hindu temple of Goddess Harshat Mata built in 7-8th century AD, considered to be Goddess of Joy and Happiness, it is built on a double platform, on the walls are the statues & sculptures of Gods and Goddesses which depict images from daily life, built by King Chand, ruins of the temple still boasts the architectural and sculptural richness of medieval India, this city was known as “Abha Nagari“.
The Harshad Mata Temple built around 7-8 century AD
The Harshat Mata Temple built around 7-8 century AD
The walls of the temple carved with images and sculptures of Gods and Goddesses depicting images from daily life
The walls of the temple carved with images and sculptures of Gods and Goddesses depicting images from daily life

Chand Baori, A Step-Well

Just next to the temple is a enclosed rectangular courtyard type of structure, upon entering one reaches a Jharokha and coming down stairs on left one can see, the Baori (Step-Well)  on right, something which is unique to India, it is a water reservoir which not only has water also respite from heat in dry summers it is about 64 ft deep narrowing towards the bottom criss-crossing steps provided with double flight of steps on three sides reach the the water surface, it is one of the deepest and the largest step-well in India, the geometrical pattern of stairs gives the different magical images of the stairs, the light and shadow makes one spell bound, the stairs are on the three sides while on the one  side are the three storied pavilion with beautiful carved jharokhas, the galleries supported on Pillars and two projecting balconies enshrining beautiful sculptures. This surrounding area is semi desert, shrubs and small trees mainly the Kikar and Ber (Ber Berry), Amla (Goose berry) are found, there are only two seasonal rivers Banganga and Morle, agriculture is totally dependent on rains and ground water. Chand Raja was from the Gujara Pratihara clan claiming to be the descendant of Lord Ram’s younger brother Laxman, they were at their peak during 6-10th century AD, almost North of India, founder of this dynasty was Raja Hari Chandra and once dominated the Rajasthan, their capital city was Mandore near Jodhpur, during this period open pavilion temples were built the best examples are the temples are at Khajuraho in Madhya Paradesh and Osian in Rajasthan.
The beautiful arched hallway in front of the step-well adds to the beauty of Abhaneri Step-Well
The beautiful arched hallway in front of the step-well adds to the beauty of Abhaneri Step-Well
The front view of the Abhaneri Step-Well, A Marvelous piece of Architecture
[quote]The front view of the Abhaneri Step-Well, A Marvelous piece of Architecture[/quote] Full view of the stairs of the Abhaneri Step-Well, which gives a sense of magical touch
Full view of the stairs of the Abhaneri Step-Well, which gives a sense of magical touch
A closer look on the double flight stairs of the Abhaneri Step-Well
A closer look on the double flight stairs of the Abhaneri Step-Well
The magical look of the stairs in the Step-Well, Only good architecture can explain that!
The magical look of the stairs in the Step-Well

 

Anil Kumar Rajput – Managing Director at Promark Travel, is in the travel trade since 1980, Hes has worked in India and abroad. A boxer, a Rifle Shooter and a Para Jumper in his college days, as a Boy Scout and NCC cadet, attended camps at many places which developed his interest in traveling and to explore new places, trekking and photography, loves driving to adventurous places , owns a business (promarktravels.com) which caters all the travel needs of it’s clients. Connect with him on Facebook (htttp://www.facebook.com/anil.k.rajput) and Twitter (@PromarkTravels)
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Jaisalmer , City and Fort , Rajasthan

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Jaisalmer Fort

Jaisalmer Fort

 

 

Jaisalmer a World Heritage City founded atop the Trikuta Hill in 1156 AD by Maha Rawal Jaisal Singh a Bhati Rajput , Sixth in his ruling generation, the earlier city was Loduvra , still has a Jain temple remembering its past .

A yellow stone which is available in abundant around  is used in the architecture of this city . It has given the identity of being named as Sonar Qila   or The Golden City of India .

World famous Balcony in stone at Patwa Haveli, Jaisalmer Fort

This city had a strategic location on route for trading caravans en route Persia , Middle East , Egypt ,Africa , Sindh ,  North and Central of India carrying Silk and Spices .

The Bhati Rajputs are Chandravanshi claims to be decedents of Lord Krishna , In 1293 AD the Turk emperor Ala Ud Din Khilji invaded India and captured the Fort , the Bhati Royal families migrated for safety to various places like Jaisal , Larkana , Talwandi . It was after 1627 AD when Mughal Emperor Shajahan took over , the Rawal Sahal Singh  acknowledge  his patronage and then in 1818 AD the King Mulraj accepted the political alliance with the British . After the 1947 AD the creation of independent India and Pakistan the trade route was shifted to Mumbai port and city lost its importance as a trade route.

Main entrace Toran gate Jain temple , Fort Jaisalmer

In Jaisalmer water is scarce as it is part of Thar Desert  it is almost entirely a sandy waste . There are no perennial streams, and only one small river Kakni  which flows for about 48 km and then vanishes into Rann Kutch . Amar Sagar was the water reservoir used as a main source of water which got dried up due to increase in demand for agriculture .

House , living Museum , Fort Jaisalmer

In 1367 AD Rawal Gadsi Singh excavated a lake now known as Gadsisar Lake  a water conservation tank to fulfill the water requirements of this dry city, till 1970 AD before the Rajasthan Canal came in , it was the main source of water for Jaisalmer 

Gadsisar Lake , Jaisalmer , Rajasthan

This city remained strategically important due to skirmishes between India and Pakistan , roads , rail head and the Rajasthan Canal served to revive the surrounding desert areas.

Kanoi Village , Desert Spring Camp at Sand Dunes

Tourism is a major industry in Jaisalmer , famous for its Sand Dunes , Desert wild life , Camping , Camel and Jeep  Safaris  around Jaisalmer attracts tourists from all over the world.

Sunset at Kanoi , Sand Dunes, Desert Spring camp

Tourists from all over the world come and stay at Desert Spring Camp to have an  experience of Sunset and Sunrise in the Thar Desert .

For More information and Packages contact +91 9810506646

Callers from Outside India + 44 7700093414

Office contact (05.30 GMT)  011 45725562 , 45725563 , 45725564

Email : promark@promarktravels.com

Website : kanoi.promarktravels.com , promarktravels.com 

Blog : promark@promarktravels.com/blog

 

 

Chardham | Journey Sept. Oct. by road

Yatra Chardham is a one of the wish of a Sanatan Hindu to undertake at least once in life time, one is to prepare well in advance to undertake this journey which is in high Himalayas covered with snow and thin air, less in oxygen. Travelling at this height certain precautions and preparations are required  to make the body capable to face the harsh weather, biting cold, thin air less in oxygen and  able to climb the steep trek in the month of September and October when there is less crowed of pilgrims.

Yamunotri Temple

Yamunotri Temple

The trek to  Yamunotri Dahm is the small but tough trek of 6 km from Janki Chatti there are two three dharamsala in case you want to stay a night but most of the pilgrims return same day .

Shri Badri Vishal Dham , Sri Badrinath Dham

All four Dhams are situated at a height , Yamunotri 3235 meters , Gangotri 3042 meters, Sri Kedarnath 3581 meters and Sri Badrinath 3133 meters  all these places are covered under the snow in the winters, rain and strong  winds are  very cold, there are few shelters which  become over crowded or unable to accommodate the pilgrims . Treks are well maintained but when it rains the mud from the slops make it slippery .

People planing for pilgrimage  Yatra Chardham in September and October  must prepare them self to under take a 12 days journey on bumpy mountain roads, drastic change in temperature and height,  acclimatization to this weather and atmosphere is required before leaving for this journey .

Must wear Warm woolen clothes , woolen socks , woolen cap, goggles , water proof  jacket and trouser, keep yourself as light as possible while walking up in the Himalayas .

Hot water bottle is required at Sri Kedarnath and Sri Badrinath  to keep the body warm at night where fire or heaters are not allowed in the rooms.  pilgrims are advised to carry some biscuits, dry fruits etc. those carrying  battery  operated instruments i.e. camera , mobile phone etc. must carry additional batteries, have a BSNL SIM card in your phone as it works in these places.

When walking try to make slow walk taking short breaks and keep drinking liquids and have deep breaths .

One is to take care of Mules and Palki carried by porters at Yamunotri and Sri Kedarnath .

Try to save yourself from getting wet in rain water .

Carry your personal medicines in a small bag, if advised by your doctor you may purchase small Oxygen cylinder at Hardwar or Rishikesh.

Must carry your photo ID proof . From the year 2014 the Yatra Registration is made compulsory .

Select your accommodations in good hotels with attached private facilities with availability of hot water for bath,  The Puja and Priority Darshan charges are displayed at all places and Administration issues official receipt for the money paid.

If you take above mentioned precautions, you will enjoy more and not only have darshan of  Lords but also the beautiful landscapes of Himalayas  will keep you refreshed through out your journey.

For more information and packages contact +91-9810506646

Office Contact   011-45725562 , 45725563 and 45725564

Callers from Outside India contact +44 7700093414

Website : yatrachardham.com , promarktravels.com

Email : promark@promarktravels.com

 

Chardham Helicopter Charter 2015

The Charter Helicopter Service for Yatra Chardham from Dehradun starts again after the monsoon rains stopped in Himalayas it will operate for the months September and October till Depawali when the kapats ( doors) for all four dhams are closed for winters .

Take Off from Shastradhara Helipad

Senior citizens and people who are unable to take the long and tiring journey prefers the charter service

 

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There is a regular Shuttle service between Guptkashi and Sri Kedarnath but other places only chartered flights are allowed. There is difference between Chartered and Shuttle Service.

View of Sri Badrinath from a Helicopter

Normally following services are offered as chartered Service

a. Dehradun – Yamunatri – Dehradun  same day return

b. Dehradun – Gangotri – Dehradun  same day return

c. Dehradun – Yamunotri – Gangotri – Dehradun same day return

d. Dehradun – Sri Kedarnath – Dehradun same day return

e. Dehradun – Sri Badrinath – Dehradun same day return  

f. Dehradun – Sri Badrinath – Sri Kedarnath – Dehradun same day return

g. Dehradun – Yamunotri – Gangotri – Sri Kedarnath – Sri Badrinath – Dehradun

Two days trip

f. Guptkashi – Sri Kedarnath – Guptkashi Shuttle Service 

The Helipad at Yamunotri is at Kharsali about 7 km before the main temple , Palki, Horses and Pitthoos are available from here

The Helipad at Gangotri is at Harsil about 23 km from the main temple , Jeeps, Cars are available from here

The Helipad at Sri Kedarnath is less than a 1 km from the main temple, it is a easy walk or Pitthoos are available

The Helipad at Sri Badrinath is about 1.5 km from the temple Car, Jeeps are available.

To book your charter / Shuttle service, visit our website  yatrachardham.com 

Callers in India Contact us for packages on  +91 9810506646

Callers from Outside India +44  7700093414

Office hours call + 011 45725562, 45725563, 45725564

Email : promark@promarktravels.com

Website : yatrachardham.com , promarktravels.com

Blog : promarktravels.com/blog