Desert Festival Revisited

Vibrant Western Sojourn Revisited  |  India  |  Guest Blog Post by Pink Escapes. Desert Festival Revisited  |  India  |  Guest Blog Post by Pink Escapes. On this journey in early 2014, travel beyond the Golden Triangle, into the heart of the ancient lands. Visit the cities of Delhi, Agra and Jaipur and explore colorful cities of Rajasthan, visiting its many iconic sights. See Jaisalmer at the threshold of the great Thar Desert, where color and life blooms in winters; blue city of Jodhpur; fairy tale city of Udaipur; and benefit from a visit to the largest Camel breeding farm in Asia, in Bikaner. Submerge in the essence of India on this pulsating sojourn with the Desert Festival – experience the rich and vivacious Rajasthani folk culture, which is on display here for a few days. Rajasthani men and tall beautiful women dressed in their bright costumes dance and sing lingering ballads of valor, romance and tragedy. Snake charmers, puppeteers, acrobats and folk performers are the high point of the festival. Camels, the lifeline of the desert, play a major role.

Delhi
Start the tour of Delhi with a visit to Birla House, where Mahatma Gandhi, the father of the nation, lived before his assassination. Then view India Gate, the Houses of Parliament and the Presidential Palace. Visit Red Fort, a UNESCO World Heritage Site and later go to see Jama Masjid, India’s largest mosque. End with a Rickshaw ride through Chandni Chowk, the busiest bazaar in Old Delhi. Savor lunch at one of the oldest Delhi restaurant. Continue to Humayun’s Tomb, the first garden-tomb in the Indian subcontinent, finished in 1572. Visit Qutab Minar and the monuments surrounding it. Built in the 12th century the red sandstone tower is 72.5 m high. This evening attend a welcome cocktail dinner party.

Mandawa - Miniature Paintings. Vibrant Western Sojourn Revisited  |  India  |  Guest Blog Post by Pink Escapes. Delhi – Shekhawati
After breakfast, drive from Delhi to Mandawa in the Shekhawati district of Rajasthan. Mandawa was settled in the 18th century and boasts a fort dating from that period. The architecture of the havelis focuses on the interior courtyard, to ensure the safety and security of the womenfolk, and to protect the wealthy merchants living there from the heat of the desert. On arrival, check-in to the hotel and enjoy lunch before spending leisure time. Later, explore the town with the guide and see the beautiful work on the exteriors of the houses, which is why it is often referred to as the ‘Open Air Gallery’. Return to the hotel for dinner.

Bikaner - Camel Breeding Farm. Vibrant Western Sojourn Revisited  |  India  |  Guest Blog Post by Pink Escapes. Shekhawati – Bikaner
After breakfast, drive to Bikaner. Bikaner city has a 16th century fort that includes old palaces, temples and a mosque. Founded by Rao Bika, the fort features 37 pavilions, several balconies and windows of varying designs. The old walled city itself includes dark red sandstone havelis and exquisitely painted Jain temples. Check in at the hotel on arrival. Lalgarh palace, built of red stone by Maharaja Ganga Singh (1881-1942) is a memorial to his father Maharaja Lal Singh. It is an imposing building, with overhanging balconies and delicate latticework. Then view the Junagadh fort, constructed between 1588 and 1593 by Raja Rai Singh, who was a general in Akbar’s army. End with a visit to the largest Camel breeding farm in Asia!!
Jaisalmer - Camel Cart. Vibrant Western Sojourn Revisited  |  India  |  Guest Blog Post by Pink Escapes. Bikaner – Jaisalmer
Early morning take a rickshaw tour of Bikaner and visit some rare sites. Return to hotel for breakfast and then drive to Jaisalmer. Time permitting, en-route visit Deshnok – popularly called the Rat Temple, dedicated to Mother Goddess. Check in at the hotel on arrival. In the afternoon, attend the Desert Festival, which is a three-day extravaganza of color, music and festivity. Enjoy watching Gair and Fire dancers swaying to traditional tunes; witness various competitions that are held from time to time. Return to the hotel and savor dinner.
Jaisalmer - Local People. Vibrant Western Sojourn Revisited  |  India  |  Guest Blog Post by Pink Escapes. Jaisalmer
In the morning, tour the city of Jaisalmer, visiting the fort built by Maharawal (Maharaja) Jaisal in 1156 AD, one of the oldest and living forts in Rajasthan. Go to Gadisar Tank, a scenic rainwater lake and also view the 11th century Jain temples. Savor lunch at a local restaurant. Enjoy the afternoon at the Desert Festival, exploring the activities of the day or choose to spend leisure time at the hotel. This evening go for a sunset viewing of the Royal Cenotaphs before enjoying local cuisine for dinner at the hotel.
Jaisalmer - Camel Safari. Vibrant Western Sojourn Revisited  |  India  |  Guest Blog Post by Pink Escapes. Jaisalmer
In the morning, visit the Patwon ki Haveli, Salim Singh ki Haveli and Nathmalji ki Haveli. Later, attend the Desert Festival to explore more of its many wonders before enjoying lunch at a city restaurant. This evening, visit the sand dunes and enjoy the pleasure of a camel ride and even watch the folk dancers and musicians perform. Spend a night in a tent at the dunes – A real Desert Experience!!
Jodhpur - Puppets. Vibrant Western Sojourn Revisited  |  India  |  Guest Blog Post by Pink Escapes. Jaisalmer – Jodhpur
After breakfast, drive to Jodhpur. Founded in 1459 by Rao Jodha of the Rathore clan, Jodhpur prospered from trade in opium, sandalwood, dates and copper. Check-in at the hotel on arrival before proceeding for sightseeing. Visit Mehrangarh fort, built in 1459 by Rao Jodha. The fort consists of several palaces designed around courtyards, which are decorated with terracotta lattice work. The fort houses a museum, with a splendid collection of elephant howdahs, miniature paintings and the inevitable Rajput armory. After lunch at the fort, visit Jaswant Thada, a memorial to Maharaja Jaswant Singh II, a peaceful array of domes, about 1 Km from the fort. Continue to the museum at the Umaid Bhawan Palace before arriving in the colorful markets of Jodhpur – famous for their textiles, handicrafts and spices. Return for dinner at the hotel.

Udaipur - Lake Pichola. Vibrant Western Sojourn Revisited  |  India  |  Guest Blog Post by Pink Escapes. Jodhpur – Ranakpur – Udaipur
After breakfast, drive to Udaipur via Ranakpur. Ranakpur, known for its marvelously carved Jain temples, is amongst the five holiest places of pilgrimage for the Jain community. These temples, constructed in 15th century, have over 1444 marble pillars, carved in exquisite detail, no two alike. Enjoy lunch at a scenic resort before continuing to Udaipur. On arrival, enjoy a boat ride on Lake Pichola. Check-in at the hotel and enjoy leisure time before a delightful culinary experience this evening.
Udaipur - White City. Vibrant Western Sojourn Revisited  |  India  |  Guest Blog Post by Pink Escapes. Udaipur
Visit the City Palace, known for the Mor Chowk and its stunning peacock mosaic and the Bhim Vilas Palace with its lovely wall paintings. View the Lake Palace in the water of Lake Pichola from a distance. Visit the Jagdish Temple, Fateh Sagar Lake and Saheliyon Ki Bari, the Garden of Maids. Enjoy lunch at a city restaurant. End the tour at Crystal Galley at Fateh Prakash Palace followed by tea. Return to the hotel and enjoy leisure time before dinner.
Jaipur - Hawa Mahal by the night. Vibrant Western Sojourn Revisited  |  India  |  Guest Blog Post by Pink Escapes. Udaipur – Jaipur
Start early, after breakfast and drive to Jaipur and on arrival, check-in at the hotel, enjoy lunch en-route. Early evening, go shopping in the bazaars, Jaipur is known for its Textiles, Jewelry and Blue Pottery. Continue for dinner with a local Rajput family that organizes elephant, horse and camel safaris in the jungle, using their beautiful home and camp as base. Enjoy dinner around the bonfire, savoring the most authentic Rajasthani delicacies in a personalized environment while the elaborate bar serves the most exotic cocktails in a rustic yet luxurious atmosphere.
Jaipur - View from Amber Fort. Vibrant Western Sojourn Revisited  |  India  |  Guest Blog Post by Pink Escapes. Jaipur
Enjoy an elephant ride to Amber Fort, located in a valley formed by the Aravali Range known as Kalikho hills. The palace and fort are located on top of the hill with the city on its slopes. This palace fortress, which was never invaded, features gardens, courtyards, and palatial spaces, many of which illustrate the influence of Mughal architecture. Also stop at Artchill, a gallery that displays Indian Art! Enjoy lunch at a Haveli (old mansion) that serves home-like food. Continue to visit the majestic City Palace, which houses rare collections from the past. See Jantar Mantar, an astronomical observatory built in the early 18th century that includes a set of fixed instruments designed for the observation of astronomical positions with the naked eye. Glimpse the Hawa Mahal or the Palace of the winds, one of the most photographed facades in Jaipur and the country before returning to the hotel for leisure time and dinner.

Agra - Pink hues at Taj. Vibrant Western Sojourn Revisited  |  India  |  Guest Blog Post by Pink Escapes. Jaipur – Fatehpur Sikri – Agra
After an early breakfast, drive to Agra, visiting Fatehpur Sikri en route. Built in the second half of the 16th century by the Emperor Akbar, Fatehpur Sikri was the capital of the Mughal Empire for over a decade. The complex of buildings, all in a uniform architectural style, includes one of the largest mosques in India and the artistically designed mausoleum of the revered Sufi saint, Salim Chisti. Enjoy lunch at a wayside garden restaurant before continuing to Agra. Check in at the hotel on arrival. After a short rest, visit the Taj Mahal, known for its beauty, grace and exquisite workmanship. Mughal Emperor Shahjahan built this magnificent monument as a memorial to his beloved queen Mumtaz Mahal. Later proceed to the demonstration of the marble inlay work and learn about the complex art of inlaying precious and semiprecious stones on the marble from the Makrana Mines. Enjoy the ‘Saga of the Taj’, a musical performance, before returning to the hotel for dinner.

 

Agra – Delhi
After breakfast, drive to ‘Mehtab Bagh’ for a distant viewing of the Taj Mahal in the rising light of the Sun. Visit Agra Fort, where Shahjahan was imprisoned by his son in the later years of his life. After lunch at a city restaurant, drive to Delhi. On arrival in Delhi spend an hour in an upscale mall before enjoying a farewell cocktail dinner at an authentic Indian restaurant. Proceed to the airport to catch the flight back home reminiscing the memorable journey through incredible India. Guest Blog Post by Pink Escapes.

 

(*) To book your own travel experience, do not hesitate to contact me either by email carlos@carlosmelia.com or phone # 917.754.5515. Check our schedule bespoke groups, escapes and retreats at Coups de Coeur. I am an experienced Travel Agent with over 25 years of experience, member of LGTNetwork, IGLTA, First in Service Travel, TZELL Travel Network.

 

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Carlos Melia Recommends APRIL 2013

Carlos Melia Recommends Newsletter APRIL 2013 is OUT  |  Enewsletter  |   Check the latest edition of Carlos Melia Recommends online. This featuring Thailand, St Barth, Peru, Argentina, New York and many more destinations worldwide in full style and luxury. Till next month full of adventures can coup de coeur. Check the latest issue here CM @ Carlos Melia Recommends

 

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GPS Carlos Melia two AMAZING weeks in Thailand

GPS Carlos Melia two AMAZING weeks in Thailand  |  And we are back in New York, after spending two AMAZING weeks in Thailand, planning and producing Rubin Singer‘s Fashion Shows in Bangkok and Koh Samui. Always a treat to spend time in Thailand, a country I carry close to my heart and always draws a BIG smile in my face. So many old and new friends there, could not be happier. On this trip, my fifth time in Thailand, we visited and spent time in Bangkok, Golden Triangle and Koh Samui. OMG so many photos and videos to share, that will take me forever, therefore I decided to do this summary of our time there. You can read more on the individual posts I have been doing pre/post and will do after our stay at the category Thailand. (photo above at the Four Seasons Koh Samui, where we were hosted for a full relaxing day having spa treatments and lunch at the beach)  Continue reading GPS Carlos Melia two AMAZING weeks in Thailand

Elephant Polo is my new thing

Elephant Polo is my new thing  |  Golden Triangle, Thailand  |  You might say, Carlos is Argentinean, therefore Polo carries on his veins… but how about going a bit further, bigger and taller… how about Elephant Polo. It sounds quite eccentric right. Thanks to the Four Seasons Tented Camps Golden Triangle in the northern region of Thailand, I can say this this my new thing. Those of you following my blog regularly, know my weakness and devotion for Elephants, so I was quite intrigued and happy when this activity was proposed to me on my last visit to the camp.
A whole different set of rules. To sets of 7 minutes each, to preserve both the elephants – priority – and the players. I would have never guessed that elephants could run so fast. Elephant Polo can be quite exhausting, specially under the blazing sun of the Golden Triangle. I was lucky enough to play with the top and experienced players of the Four Seasons Team.

One of the many activities you can do at the Four Seasons Tented Camp, along with Training to become a Mahout or Sunrise Walk with these gentle giants. Please have a look at my LIVE interview with John Roberts – Director at Golden Triangle Asian Elephants Foundation. Please like their facebook pages, help me spread the word about them worldwide and show your support to their amazing work taking the elephants out of the streets of Thailand. CM @ Carlos Melia Recommends
 (*) One of the many Haute Experiences to be offered by Carlos Melia worldwide. Check them out at www.hauteexperiences.com
(**) To book your own travel experience, do not hesitate to contact me either by email carlos@carlosmelia.com or phone # 917.754.5515. I am an experienced Travel Agent with over 25 years of experience, member of MLGTPP, IGLTA, First in Service Travel, TZELL Travel Network.

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Living with the elephants in Thailand


Living with the elephants in Thailand
 |  Golden Triangle, Thailand  |  A year passed by, and I had the need to see my girl back again. Yes you are reading right… I LOVE my girl. TongKam is the elephant I try to visit at least once a year, in the north of Thailand, at the Golden Triangle. Only one hour flight from Bangkok, you will arrive to Chiang Rai. From there the Four Seasons Tented Camps will transfer you in full style and comfort, to the Golden Triangle by a private transfer, and from there a brief long tail sail to the camp.

This is my third time at the camp, therefore I will not be repetitive or bore your with more details of the property. All you need to know, you can find it on my previous chronicles of Thailand and the Golden Triangle. This time I just want to share some photos, videos and moments of our bonding time with the elephants.

On upcoming post, I will also show you some new activities I did while at the camp, such us Elephant Polo and Sunrise Walk with the elephants in the border between Thailand, Laos and Myanmar.
Please have a look at my LIVE interview with John Roberts – Director at Golden Triangle Asian Elephants Foundation. Please like their facebook pages, help me spread the word about them worldwide and show your support to their amazing work taking the elephants out of the streets of Thailand. CM @ Carlos Melia Recommends


(*) To book your own travel experience with the Elephants or your stay at the Four Seasons Tented Camps, do not hesitate to contact me either by email carlos@carlosmelia.com or phone # 917.754.5515. I am an experienced Travel Agent with over 25 years of experience, member of MLGTPP, IGLTA, First in Service Travel, TZELL Travel Network.
(**) Follow me around the world by subscribing to my Facebook Profile, liking my Facebook Page, following me on Twitter. and/or pining me on Pinterest. Also check out my new page Carlos Melia Recommends.
(***) One of the many Haute Experiences to be offered by Carlos Melia worldwide. Check them out at www.hauteexperiences.com

Golden Triangle Asian Elephants Foundation


Interview Golden Triangle Asian Elephants Foundation  |  Golden Triangle, Thailand  |  Dear followers, yes I am alive and back. Been away for a few well deserved days, at the Golden Triangle in the north of Thailand – Lanna District – at the fabulous Four Seasons Tented Camps. You know me, when I camp I do it in style. The Golden Triangle is located in the border between Laos, Myanmar and Thailand, and for the last few years, thanks to Four Seasons and two other main foundations, has served as the refugee and paradise, for elephants rescued from the streets of Bangkok. Both Mahouts and elephants were given a second chance, and this is one of the main areas in Thailand, to come and experience living up close with the elephants. See my brief interview with John Roberts – Director of Elephants for Golden Triangle Asian Elephants Foundation. Also visit and give your support to Think Elephants International. Congratulations and my full support in all the great work they are doing. CM @ Carlos Melia Recommends

 

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Heading back to Thailand in seven days

Heading back to Thailand in seven days  |  So the BIRTHDAY countdown is OVER and 39th is my new mood. NOW the countdown to our THAILAND experience is on… ( this will be my 5th time in Thailand, land that I LOVE and ENJOY beyond expectations ) only 7 days away from departure. Purpose of the trip: Rubin Singer‘s Fashion Show in Bangkok and VIP Fashion Weekend and Photo-Shoot in Koh Samui for L’Officiel Thailand. Of course I will be staying, experiencing and reviewing fabulous hotels, as ALWAYS: Hansar Bangkok, W Bangkok, The Okura Prestige Bangkok, Six Senses Samui -A SALA Property, W RETREAT KOH SAMUI, The Siam and my own personal treat and favorite TOP 05 hotel experience in the entire world, Four Seasons Tented Camp Golden Triangle. So stay tuned for this and much more CM @ Carlos Melia Recommends

 

(*) To book your own travel experience, do not hesitate to contact me either by email carlos@carlosmelia.com or phone # 917.754.5515. I am an experienced Travel Agent with over 25 years of experience, member of IGLTA, First in Service Travel, TZELL Travel Network.

 

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Carlos Melia Niche Marketing & PR

Carlos Melia Niche Marketing & PR   |  Thailand on Passport Magazine  |  As part of my seven month project for the Tourism Authority of Thailand, I put together a Press Trip with LGBT Travel Writers from all over the United States. Here is one of the articles that came out on Passport Magazine result of this amazing trip. Thank you Stuart Hagas for your excellent article, glad to have you joined us. CM @ Carlos Melia Recommends

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Thailand A Spectacular land of Smiles by Xtra.ca

Thailand A Spectacular land of Smiles by Xtra.ca   |  Xtra  |  Great article by Xtra.ca on Thailand, after our 10 days Press Trip to Bangkok, Chiang Mai and Golden Triangle. Thank you Xtra.ca and editor Matt Mills for a brilliant piece and for mentioning CarlosMeliaBlog.com. Click on the image above to read the full article. CM

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The Focus Group Radio features Thailand with Carlos Melia


Follow this link if you cannot play the SoundCloud Widget. http://soundcloud.com/carlosmelia/focus-group-radio-features-thailand

The Focus Group Radio features Thailand with Carlos Melia  |  The Focus Group Radio |  Tim Bennett and John Nash, Co- hosts of  THE FOCUS GROUP at Sirius XM OutQ 108 interview Khun Srisuda Wanapinyosak – Director, Tourism Authority of Thailand New York Office and Carlos Meliawww.carlosmeliablog.com, during the course of the 29th IGLTA Annual Convention in Florianopolis, Santa Catarina, Brazil. The Focus Group, an entertaining look at the out side of business, every Saturday morning LIVE at 11am EST, with a replay on Sunday’s at 10am. ( www.focusgroupradio.com ). Check the whole show featuring various destinations like Argentina, Manchester, among others. Carlos Melia Luxury Travel Curator – www.carlosmelia.com

 (*) To book your own travel experience, do not hesitate to contact me either by email carlos@carlosmelia.com or phone # 917.754.5515. Also check our scheduled Small Travel Groups at Coups de Coeur. I am an experienced Travel Agent with over 25 years of experience, member of LGTNetwork, First in Service Travel, TZELL Travel Network. www.carlosmelia.com

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