Chhattisgarh Part 2 – The Moments

As I sit down to write this, I am taken back to the green expanses of the state of Chhattisgarh. Having been born and brought up, at least for the first 8 years of my life, in the greenest state in India: Kerala, the beauty of nature isn’t new to me. I remember holding my mum’s hand, schoolbag bouncing up and down on my back as I skipped along, two feet tall, the unpaved road with paddy fields on either side to catch my ride to school. It is to those days that I journeyed to within, when I gazed out the window, drinking in the green as green can get landscapes of this beautiful state that I am still hungover from. In the best way possible, mind.


It's like this everywhere! Truly beautiful, especially during the monsoon.

It’s like this everywhere! Truly beautiful, especially during the monsoon.


Ask anyone who has spent some time with me and they’ll tell you I am someone who likes to sit back and observe. While this puts me at the risk of not taking part in every conversation, or capturing every moment in photos for posterity, they’re etched in my heart forever more. This is not to say I do not have a visual treat for you, as seen through my eyes and the lens of my phone.

I tend to click pictures of those moments that make my eyes go wide. Then, if time permits, I sit back and absorb these moments, breathing them in. When I look back at my trip to Chhattisgarh, my mind is immersed in the indisputable beauty of it all, a week of fresh air, long drives and great company. And now, I want to take you through the moments that made me go wow. #wowcg, that is.


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A charming stream in the middle of the Barnawapara Wildlife Sanctuary.


So picturesque, it made me wish I had the luxury to just sit there and gaze until I got my fill.

So picturesque, it made me wish I had the luxury to just sit there and gaze until I got my fill.


Beautiful roads, with green on either side, Chhattisgarh is the perfect place for a road trip.

Beautiful roads, with green on either side, Chhattisgarh is the perfect place for a road trip.


The amazingly ornate Lakhsman Temple, made of brick.

The amazingly ornate Lakhsman Temple, made of brick.


The Twin Ganeshas at Barsur - the only known Ganesha idols to be found in the warrior avatar.

The Twin Ganeshas at Barsur – the only known Ganesha idols to be found in the warrior avatar.


Tivardev Vihar, a Buddhist monastery in Sirpur

Tivardev Vihar, a Buddhist monastery in Sirpur


It seemed like every glance, every turn in the road brought about yet another surprise, a frame-worthy one at that! One such surprise was the cottage on stilts we stayed at in Barnawapara, at the Hareli Eco Resort, a resort run completely by solar power, without sacrificing creature comforts. 24/7 hot water and AC, what more could you want? Oh, actually, there was more…it has its own lake that all the bedrooms have a direct view onto, manicured lawns, great food, and really friendly staff.


Hareli Eco Resort, Mohda, Barnawapara; with its own beautiful lake.

Hareli Eco Resort, Mohda, Barnawapara; with its own beautiful lake.


Bonfire and tribal dances at night make your stay truly special.

Bonfire and tribal dances at night make your stay truly special.


While on safari in the Barnawapara Wildlife Sanctuary - the view from the watchtower.

While on safari in the Barnawapara Wildlife Sanctuary – the view from the watchtower.


The Mahanadi at sunset, the Shiva bhakts carrying water from the sacred river for the evening puja in the Gandeshwar Temple

The Mahanadi at sunset, the Shiva bhakts carrying water from the sacred river for the evening puja in the Gandeshwar Temple.


Outside the Turturia Temple, a little wild and full of history.

Outside the Turturia Temple, a little wild and full of history.


Sighting the Chitrakote Falls.

Sighting the Chitrakote Falls.


As you walk down the winding path from Dandami Luxury Resort, Chitrakote, suddenly you are greeted by this broad gush of falling water.

As you walk down the winding path from Dandami Luxury Resort, Chitrakote, suddenly you are greeted by this broad gush of falling water.


The Surang Tila - the temple with the highest plinth.

The Surang Tila – the temple with the highest plinth.


The Kanker Palace - imagine spending your vacation among royalty, yes, this palace is a Heritage Homestay.  PC: Tinkesh A

The Kanker Palace – imagine spending your vacation among royalty, yes, this palace is a Heritage Homestay.
PC: Tinkesh A


From the courtyard of the Kanker Palace

From the courtyard of the Kanker Palace


One of the highlights of my trip, the Teerathgarh Falls

One of the highlights of my trip, the Teerathgarh Falls


One of my favourite shots of the entire trip! A part of the Teerathgarh Falls.

One of my favourite shots of the entire trip! A part of the Teerathgarh Falls.


Clearly, I just couldn't get enough of this waterfall.

Clearly, I just couldn’t get enough of this waterfall.


There are still more things I saw and experienced in Chhattisgarh – now you realise why I must break it up into parts. I do not want to miss anything, and I do not want you to miss anything about the place either. I think the next time you plan your vacation, it’s time to explore Chhattisgarh – the tribal planet, the monsoon destination, the genuinely friendly state that’s waiting to woo you with its wonders. Bypass the crowds and head here, with open roads, scenic views and memories you’ll want to relive over and over again. Contact Chhattisgarh Tourism to start planning your trip – they have an app to whet your wanderlust too. So, what are you waiting for, get ready to #GoChattisgarh!



Tinkesh A is a Mumbai based photographer who specializes in food photography. He has also established a niche in travel and fashion photography. Check him out on Instagram, on Twitter, and go see his amazing work at his website: www.shutterbug.co.in

 

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