Where is your favourite place to visit? — R Voice

Where is your favourite place to visit?

Shruti Turner
Shruti Turner Member Posts: 318 ✭✭✭✭
edited May 20 in Everything & Anything

This past year has put a stop to a lot of travel for those who could do it before - even getting a bus into town has been stopped for so many of us. I know I am bored of the distance from my home that I can walk. It was good in the first few weeks to explore the local area and get to know it better, but now I feel I want to see something new!

I'd love to create a thread of photos to see everyone's favourite places - so we can almost travel and see other things.

Here's one of my favourite places that I've visited close to home. It's the local park area at sunset a couple of months ago. I never knew it could look so pretty!

Have you found anywhere near home that you love?


Comments

  • chris leonard
    chris leonard Member, Administrator, Moderator Posts: 138 admin

    It's been heard for the last 14 months not just being able to go and visit somewhere at the drop of a hat. I can heartily recommend that instead you do this - virtual walking tours of popular destinations. Free - and very relaxing.

    My favourite is nearly 4 hours of Cities of Tuscany.

  • Andrea Hayward
    Andrea Hayward Member, Administrator, Moderator Posts: 513 admin
    edited May 21

    @Shruti Turner this is a fantastic idea!

    Not being able to leave the house unless absolutely needed has surely been exhausting over the past year. It's as if my mind has turned the "making plans to go out" switch off and I only look for things to do around the house. All through this time, pictures of what feels like my past life have kept me going. There's one place in particular that I've been thinking about and miss - The Sanjay Gandhi National Park. It's a 1-hour bus drive from my home and it's my favorite place ever to go cycling. My friends and I would head over to the national park bright and early on a chosen Saturday and follow that up with breakfast at a nearby café. We'd always take a different path once inside the park, so we were quite literally surprised every single time - sometimes we'd come across a new water body, sometimes a family of deer, sometimes monkeys munching on stolen food (lol), sometimes a small local settlement, and the list just goes on. I treasure every single memory here 😍

    Sharing a few of my favorite pictures from previous trips:



  • Shruti Turner
    Shruti Turner Member Posts: 318 ✭✭✭✭

    @chris leonard That's such a great idea. I have heard that tours and things have become available online but I haven't done one. Maybe now is the time to escape the grey skies of London :)

  • Shruti Turner
    Shruti Turner Member Posts: 318 ✭✭✭✭

    Wow @Andrea Hayward - that is some amazing natural beauty close to you! I can imagine you're missing the exploration and socialising. It looks so tranquil there. Thanks for sharing your pictures and memories. I can almost feel the water around my feet. It looks like one of those special places that locals know best :)

  • Raj sundaram
    Raj sundaram Member Posts: 322 ✭✭✭✭

    Thanks for starting this fantastic thread @Shruti Turner.

    Thankfully, in Japan - solo-travel in nature is not restricted. I have been lucky to go travelling, hiking, long-distance cycling pretty regularly near and far away from home. All festivals are cancelled, however - I miss that a lot, personally. The travel in general has become crowdless because people no longer go in groups and all events are cancelled. But that means local businesses and people suffer economically.

    Am also lucky that there is plenty of nature, culture (temples/shrines), practice hike mountains, and bicycle paths near me.

    One of my favorite local places is a shrine called Amabiki Kannon. It is around 30 km away - on a hill. I cycle - there is a bicycle path through rice fields running until near the hill. The hill is quite steep - so bicycling with my regular heavy cycle (mamachari) 60 km + up and down the hill affords enough exercise. A proper one-day trip.

    The place is beautiful. Good to hike around a bit, have lunch near the shrine, meet babies and new mothers (it is the shrine for the goddess who helps safe births; recently - fewer people come), meet the male peacock who loves to pose and dance around (and all his female harem who fight with each other to establish the pecking order and sometimes, completely ignore all the strutting from the male 😋], say hi to the foraging ducks and swans, sunbathing turtles and the koi fish lazily swimming around in the shrine ponds, greet the occasional wild boar [inoshishi] and racoon [tanuki] families or a very occasional mamushi snake in the hills. And in summer - the whole hill is covered with hydrangeas of different colors in full bloom covered in fresh summer rain...

    A beautiful peaceful place and checks everything I want to have on a trip [exercise, culture/history, nature]


  • Shruti Turner
    Shruti Turner Member Posts: 318 ✭✭✭✭

    @Raj sundaram - wow! Your photos are stunning, it must be so lovely to have a personal escape that you can get to relatively easily. I visited Japan in October 2019 for a conference and was lucky enough to have some time to travel around. The difference in the nature across the country I found just breathtaking. I'd love to return and add your favourite place to my list to visit!

  • Andrea Hayward
    Andrea Hayward Member, Administrator, Moderator Posts: 513 admin

    @Raj sundaram I agree with @Shruti Turner - your pictures are stunning! 😍

    I also want to add that your descriptions were beautiful and read like something out of a Beatrix Potter book (but the anime version, lol). I felt as though I was transported to another place, even though I'm comfortably plonked on my living room couch. 😅

  • Shruti Turner
    Shruti Turner Member Posts: 318 ✭✭✭✭

    @Andrea Hayward - I love love your post! It shows that the thread has achieved its intended aim. I too feel like I have travelled from my sofa without having to go anywhere. I'm really looking forward to this thread developing. I'd love to "visit" every country on this thread 🤩

  • Raj sundaram
    Raj sundaram Member Posts: 322 ✭✭✭✭

    Once things get better - highly recommend travel around Japan - amazing landscapes across the country, very reliable travel infra and pretty safe even if you are travelling solo.

    Totally, @Andrea Hayward and @Shruti Turner - awesome thread. 😍

    And honestly - sharing/seeing photos of travel or anything else feels better on this platform than it did on mainstream social media (when I used to be active on mainstream social media that is).😅

    Wonder why. 🤨😉

  • Andrea Hayward
    Andrea Hayward Member, Administrator, Moderator Posts: 513 admin

    @Jayashree Rajagopalan this thread could really use some clicks from your travel adventures! 😃

  • Shruti Turner
    Shruti Turner Member Posts: 318 ✭✭✭✭

    @Raj sundaram - yes, I definitely want to go back to Japan and travel some more. When I was there I got caught by the super-typhoon which messed up some plans, but I was very impressed how things got back up and running so quickly! I feel like I could travel around japan forever and never have enough time.

  • Jayashree Rajagopalan
    Jayashree Rajagopalan Member, Administrator, Moderator Posts: 175 admin
    edited May 26

    aaaarrrr @Shruti Turner JUST when I've been yearning to travel again! @Andrea Hayward it's tough for me to share one place. Travelling is like soul food for me and I'm eagerly waiting to pick up my backpack and set off! Sharing a few frozen moments from these timeless experiences. Shameless plug, for more travel photos, feel free to check out my instagram travel page 😁(currently inactive because no trip have been made in a while):

    Above - Gurudongmar - one of the highest lakes in the world and in Sikkim, India. Altitude - 5,430 m (17,800 ft)

    Above - Yumthang Valley of Flowers - Sikkim, India

    Above - Ranthambore Wildlife Sanctuary, Rajasthan, India

    Above - Jaisalmer desert, Rajasthan, India

    Above - Gadisar Lake, Rajasthan, India

    Above - A small village in Kashmir, India

    Above - Pura Ulun Danu Beratan temple, Bali, Indonesia

  • Shruti Turner
    Shruti Turner Member Posts: 318 ✭✭✭✭

    @Jayashree Rajagopalan - your photos are STUNNING!! You have an eye for beautiful shots 😍 I am not surprised you couldn't choose only one photo.

    I too am yearning to travel again, it's great to mean another travelling soul. I very much appreciate the travel photo plug and have given you a follow!

  • Jayashree Rajagopalan
    Jayashree Rajagopalan Member, Administrator, Moderator Posts: 175 admin
  • Kakoli Majumder
    Kakoli Majumder Member, Administrator, Moderator Posts: 163 admin

    Thanks for starting this thread @Shruti Turner! Was waiting for the weekend to come back and take a leisurely look at all the lovely pictures @Raj sundaram @Jayashree Rajagopalan @Andrea Hayward. I too love to travel, and luckily, have been able to travel extensively across Thailand over the past year. Missing it now that I'm in India and stuck at home. @chris leonard will definitely check out the virtual walking tours you recommended. This thread prompted me to go back and look at some of my old albums from the past couple years! What better way to spend a rainy Saturday afternoon! Sharing a couple here:



  • Raj sundaram
    Raj sundaram Member Posts: 322 ✭✭✭✭
    edited May 30

    @Shruti Turner - Yes, that is quite true about Japan (not always, though).

    Traditionally, a lot of infra takes into account disasters and how to get back up after disasters - typhoons, earthquakes, volcanoes, flooding, tsunamis, etc are a regular here. Preparedness for these kinds of disasters is instilled into the mindset in an embracing way, which includes developing a tolerance for loss, fear, sadness and uncertainty - making room for what needs to happen next. That is something I personally love about Japan and Japanese culture (the older version). That mixed with an appreciation for what is right in front of us in this moment - because things can be quite short-lived, the (un?)expected disaster may strike, and the good things will be quickly gone. This is why a lot of Japanese tradition (originally) revolves around observing fleeting beauty - a lot of nature - flowers (sakura), the moon, autumn leaves as well as social rituals like tea ceremonies, etc.

    [Kind of matches with my own life philosophy - which revolves around "shit happens", "prepare for the worst" and "make the best/responsible use of the moment because who knows what will happen next..."🤣]

    However, as I said - not always. Things get screwed up here as well. For instance, how the pandemic is dragging on despite all the advantages to combat a pandemic - an island country with a smallish but very compliant near-homogeneous population with first world technologies and infra, with very strict immigration/travel-restriction policies. Thank god for the culture of extreme cleanliness amongst the wide population and a very robust healthcare system that has been around since ww(II) that things are not as bad as it is elsewhere.

  • Raj sundaram
    Raj sundaram Member Posts: 322 ✭✭✭✭

    @Jayashree Rajagopalan : OMG!!!! 😍🤩🤗 WOW!! Love the pictures. Love, love - absolutely love them! Double thanks to @Shruti Turner for starting this thread and to @Andrea Hayward for pulling you in to post your pics.

    @Kakoli Majumder - Amazing. 😘 Where in Thailand was this?

  • Jayashree Rajagopalan
    Jayashree Rajagopalan Member, Administrator, Moderator Posts: 175 admin

    @Shruti Turner @Raj sundaram thank you for saying things about the photos. I share credit with the husband - we both share frame ideas and clicks when we travel. @Andrea Hayward thanks for nudging me to share - and I missed SGNP after seeing that one. We set our turtle free in the river that runs through the park and I've had so many memories of trails there. @Shruti Turner - I love sunsets and that's a nice one you shared. @Raj sundaram lovely clicks. I sometimes get a bit scared to see a peacock's display. @Kakoli Majumder - always been envious of your travels and these are gorgeous.

  • Kakoli Majumder
    Kakoli Majumder Member, Administrator, Moderator Posts: 163 admin

    @Raj sundaram The first was Koh Lipe and the second Koh Kood - both slightly lesser known islands in Thailand., but amazingly beautiful. We did a lot of snorkeling as well and saw some gorgeous corals and other marine life. :)

  • Raj sundaram
    Raj sundaram Member Posts: 322 ✭✭✭✭
    edited May 31

    @Jayashree Rajagopalan - this one is very friendly and kind of gentle. Offers a show to anyone who cares to see. We all got pretty close to him. By we - it was a crowd of 20-25 humans + a barking dog + a very active child screaming and running around.

    Didnt bat an eye.

    Been there alone with the peacock as well - he is a bit of an attention seeker.

    So, if he hears the camera clicks or sees any sign of interest, up goes the plume, does his little dance - shows the front AND the rear, gets tired after a while of strutting around, the plume goes down. Cycle repeats once he regains strength...and once he decides he is ready for a bit more attention...😂

    Think you two will get along just fine - he might not elicit fear.

  • Jayashree Rajagopalan
    Jayashree Rajagopalan Member, Administrator, Moderator Posts: 175 admin

    You sell it really well - I wouldn't mind a supervised visit now. I'm almost eager too!

  • Shruti Turner
    Shruti Turner Member Posts: 318 ✭✭✭✭
    edited June 2

    @Raj sundaram Thank you for sharing your experiences of Japan, clearly from my one fleeting trip there is always so much more to learn. I guess not every country can be so good in all ways. I find it interesting what you say about "old" culture...I felt the existence of different worlds definitely when I was there. The old living side by side with the new (more talking about society/buildings/technology/temples etc. rather than people haha

  • Shruti Turner
    Shruti Turner Member Posts: 318 ✭✭✭✭

    I got offline for a few days and I come back to more posts and experiences than I can keep track of!

    @Kakoli Majumder - your photos are beautiful. I am so happy for you that you have managed to travel over the past few years, and hopefully you (and everyone else who wants to) will be able to get back to it soon! I love how you have found the beauty without all the people...some peace in such a busy country.

    @Jayashree Rajagopalan I do have to share my photo credits with my husband also! I feel that's part of travel for me, I love to share my experiences with him. I know many people say travelling alone is so freeing, but I can't imagine it. I have never done it, but I like to share my experiences with those close to me (notably my husband, but also friends!)

  • Raj sundaram
    Raj sundaram Member Posts: 322 ✭✭✭✭

    Big difference between visiting and living in Japan - I guess, that is true for any country. But - the expectation vs. reality gap (howmuchever openness you have when you come in) can be pretty wide. I was smitten at first with my brief visit too, which kind of raises expectations, I guess. But then - things tumbled once I started living and then, slowly started settling down with a lot of effort. Very different from elsewhere in the west....you kind of know what to expect - the good, bad and the ugly. Here, a lot of things can be surprising...

    the old and new existing together (buildings reflect people's minds ;) ) - can add to the above said gap. But...it is interesting if you are a guest. haha.

    Poor parallel - but its like dysfunctional families that look functional on the outside - great comedy shows for TV - living in one - totally different story. xD

    But great place to be a tourist - the Omotenashi (hospitality) culture is first class. Do visit again if you have a chance. :)

  • Shruti Turner
    Shruti Turner Member Posts: 318 ✭✭✭✭

    @Raj sundaram Yes - I totally agree about the living/visiting difference. I don't believe you can truly know a place until you've lived there for a while. I am so keen to visit so many places, including Japan again. I just feel there is so much of the world I haven't explored and want to!!

  • Raj sundaram
    Raj sundaram Member Posts: 322 ✭✭✭✭

    Of course, I sell it well...I am an academic. 😜

    You see what I did there, @Jayashree Rajagopalan ...🤣😏

    The peafowl is looking forward to your visit. 😊