kolkata victoria memorial

48 Hours in Kolkata: Day One

Kolkata was my first port of call in West Bengal, a start to an eleven-day trip covering Kolkata, Darjeeling and Gangtok. I arrived from Kuala Lumpur close to midnight and woke up the next morning to catch the tail end of the Durga Puja festival. In between the festivities, my host Amrita and I planned our activities for the next two days, after which I would head off to Darjeeling. Kolkata is a densely populated city of 14 million, thus there are numerous places to visit and things to do. I’m a heritage buff, so the first thing I always look

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new-jolfa-esfahan-jolfa-vank-cathedral-exterior

Churches and Coffee in New Jolfa, Armenian Quarter in Esfahan

New Jolfa is the Armenian quarter of Esfahan established in 1606 by Shah Abbas I during the Safavid era. The Armenians were fleeing the Ottoman Empire’s persecution and because Iran and Armenia had a long history of close relations, Shah Abbas relocated 500,000 Armenians to Persia. New Jolfa quarter became their new home and over time, the Armenians became active in the cultural and economic development of Persia. Shah Abbas treated the Armenian population well, as such, the Armenians were able to assimilate with the Persians while keeping their Christian faith and Armenian traditions. In the 20th century particularly during

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old goa panaji fountainhas indo portuguese homes

Churches of Old Goa and Panjim

One of the reasons why I wanted to come to Goa was its connection with my hometown, Melaka in Malaysia. The connections or similarities are: Portuguese rule, Portuguese community and St. Francis Xavier. Melaka or Malacca was ruled by the Portuguese from 1511 to 1641. During the 130-year colonial rule, the Portuguese inter-married with the local Malay population, and their descendants are now referred to as Portuguese-Eurasian or “Kristang” in Malaysia. Majority of them are Catholics, and they still maintain Portuguese surnames such as Fernandes, Sequiera, De Souza, Pinto and so on. Although the Portuguese-Eurasians are now living all over

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Explore Ho Chi Minh City On Foot

I wrote about what you can do on your first day of arrival in Ho Chi Minh City (HCMC) and here some suggestions you can do to on the second day. And a great way to do this is to explore Ho Chi Minh City on foot… Tai Binh Market This is not a market which sells souvenirs and handicrafts to tourists but a market where locals go to buy fresh produce. Tai Binh Market is located at the end of the backpackers’ area in District 1 and is best to go there before 10am. The market also sells street

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