travelgrove the Travel Enthusiast

  • The Tragedy of Nepal

    United Nations Development Programme /flickr

    Kathmandu under construction. ©United Nations Development Programme /flickr

    Update on the Nepal catastrophe: second earthquake hitting the region on May 12 2015

    Nepal has still been in the process of recovering after the devastating earthquake of 7.8 magnitude when it was hit by a second one just today! The epicenter of this second earthquake was near Mount Everest in a depth of 10.1 miles and its shock waves were felt even in the Indian capital, Delhi. It was of magnitude 7.1, later upgraded to 7.4. Although, data about the damage is yet unavailable, it is imaginable how much it affected the country still suffering the consequences of the first quake of April 25.

    The first catastrophe killed over 8,000 people and destroyed entire villages and towns leaving hundreds of thousands homeless. Now the world fears not only for the lives of the Nepalese but also the many doctors, rescue teams and other volunteers who were still in the Nepal helping. According to the few reports that already arrived, the people of Kathmandu were panicked when today’s earthquake reached the city, immediately trying to call their loved ones and rush home. The quake lasted for over one minute and probably caused further damage but hopefully not more deaths. The climbing expeditions of camp Everest were called off today for the following months.

    Unfortunately scientists are predicting more trouble ahead.

    According to the publication Science

    “Most of the region’s substantial earthquakes have occurred south of the line, where the plates are locked together and strain builds up. North of this “lock line,” however, the Indian plate dives downward and the character of the rock slab changes. Under higher temperatures and rising pressures, the brittle rocks become more plastic, and they creep past the Tibetan crust without rupturing. Or so researchers had thought.”

    Gavin Hayes of the US Geological Survey states:

    “We therefore have the potential for bigger earthquakes than we might have otherwise expected.”

    He estimates, that we can’t exclude even magnitude 9 earthquakes, not only in the region, but throughout India.

    You can also help the recovering country in many ways. One of the most noble causes is helping the children who lost their families and homes. You can donate to the Nepal Earthquake Children’s Relief Fund of the Save the Children charity. Even the smallest amount counts!

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  • Kathmandu, A Place with Many Gods

    Stupa Temple in Kathmandu, Nepal ©Brandon/flickr

    Stupa Temple in Kathmandu, Nepal ©Brandon/flickr

    The capital of Nepal is filled with a wonderful world temples

    Kathmandu is surrounded by a mysterious air when the morning fog comes from the cold and frozen valleys of the Himalayas. The temples and statues of deities are covered with snow and the strong wind blows the gongs while you can smell the cold smoke of a burning rotten wood. The Newar locals believe the fact that this atmosphere brings spiritual purification, all the bad thoughts and sins being taken far away by the smoke.  This is Kathmandu, traditional yet extremely beautiful in its own way.

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  • Summer travel planning: 5 volunteering destinations

    Kathmandu, Nepal, photo by lavenderstreak on FlickrSummer is the best time for a holiday in many parts of the world, but it can also be a peak season when prices can be really high. There’s a lazy,laid back atmosphere floating around in summer that makes you want to take off to some remote part of the world and forget about work or school for a while. And while summer holidays have always been popular, a rising trend among vacationers is to go on volunteering holidays.

    People volunteer for a variety of reasons, some because they genuinely want to help, and others as a way of expanding their horizons and traveling far away on a tight budget. Whatever your motivations, here are some ideas for your summer travel planning: 5 volunteering destinations where you can share your skills, do some good and meet fellow travelers and locals.

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  • The best hiking trails in Asia

    Tiger Leaping Gorge, photo by Hector Garcia on Flickr

    From the tallest mountains in the world to the most idyllic tropical islands, Asia has it all. The sheer geographical diversity of the continent is incredible, and naturally the scenery can be more beautiful than you thought you could imagine.

    So it figures that Asia would be chock full of opportunities for hiking, climbing and trekking, and it’s a wonder that any of the routes are ever free of eager travelers.

    Hiking is not all about physical effort and pushing your boundaries, but also about discovering natural wonders small or large, animals, plants and minerals, and getting a bit closer to nature than you were at the start. These trails can do just that and so much more – here are some of the best hiking trails in Asia.

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  • The most beautiful hiking trails in the world

    Salkantay Trail, photo by Helder Ribeiro on Flickr

    Here’s the reason why there are so many incredible hiking trails in the world: our planet is pretty big (for us, at least), and not all people who claim to like hiking actually go hiking (otherwise there might be actual traffic jams on hiking trails).

    That leaves us with expanses of magnificently rugged and challenging terrain through which daring travelers have forged paths in their search of beautiful vistas and healthy outdoor exercise. Some trails are difficult and technical, while others are easy enough that you have ample time to admire the surrounding scenery. So here are some of the most beautiful hiking trails in the world.

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  • Top 5 destinations for volunteering


    The main reason why you should consider volunteering abroad is to make a difference in the world – there’s no replicating the satisfaction you get from knowing that you helped out, even if only a little bit. But then again, there are some more worldly reasons too for choosing volunteering: you get to travel, and you get to travel with your expenses partly covered by someone else.

    If you are on a tight budge, volunteering is a great way to see the world without breaking the bank. There are lots of volunteering opportunities abroad that will cover accommodation and meals, and sometimes even travel costs. So if you feel like you can change the world and you want to have fun while doing it, here are top 5 destinations for volunteering.

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  • The best rafting destinations in the world

    Some people don’t take the heat of the summer very well, and are not exactly fond of sunny beaches and dolce far niente when there are much more exciting thing to do. Things like rafting, or example, ad adrenaline laden sport that will not only make your blood race, but will also cool you off.

    If the best for of summer relaxation for you is a good rafting trip on some of the most dangerous and wild rivers on the planet, here are some destinations that you might find interesting – the best rafting destinations in the world.

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  • The most extreme adventure travel destinations

    Road of Death, photo by Jimmy Harris

    If you’re one of those travelers who can’t enjoy a trip unless there’s a decent dose of adrenaline involved, then you’re probably looking for something a little more dangerous than you’re run of the mill holiday destination.

    Hotels, nice spas or regular sightseeing are great, but when you want to feel the blood rush in your veins, you are probably in need of a few of the most extreme adventure travel destinations. So gather up your adventure gear and read on to find about some destinations that you  might like.

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  • Tourist attractions on the Silk Road

    Marco Polo was certainly not the only person who traveled on the famed Silk Road, but he was certainly one of the most famous, and in a way, he’s also probably one of the first European tourists to Asia. The Silk Road was used in the past as a trade route on which Chinese silk and other precious merchandise was exchanged between Asian and Mediterranean countries.

    Nowadays, the network of routes that make up the Silk Road are still used for trade, both on land and on sea But if you want to recreate the steps of the Medieval tradesmen who were just discovering Asia at the time, you can do so by visiting these tourist attractions on the Silk Road.

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  • Travel destinations for spiritual holidays

    Rara Lake, by Ardahal.nitw

    More often than not, traveling is a great way to relieve stress, and to relax your mind and sometimes your body. What most people look in a successful holiday is fun and excitement, but sometimes you just feel like slowing down, taking a deep breath and enjoying life’s small pleasures.

    Beaches or other popular destinations are great if you’re in the mood for partying, but if you just want a holiday for the spirit, a quiet place and some spectacular sights are best you can do. Here are some great travel destinations for spiritual holidays.

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