Sunday, September 8, 2013

Europe! #HappyTravellers

A lot of you would already know how often I keep travelling to places - I don't miss a chance to pack my bags and get, set - go! It goes without saying that travel contests always excite me.. So, as soon as I heard about the Indiblogger "Happy Travellers" contest (sponsored by Yatra Holidays), I knew I had to enter this one.

Travelling opens your eyes to so many new things, ideas and people.. I've always loved exploring new places and have visited a lot of places across India (except for the East of India, yet to go there).

I've never had an opportunity to travel out of the country. Not even to see my own brother after my visa was rejected for the second time!! I want to see many places across the world. Places like Bali interest me for their rich culture while the whole of Europe excites me for it was home to so many artists- writers, painters, musicians etc.

It's really very hard to pick on one place but if I absolutely had to.. it'd be Europe!! I'd like to travel across that whole continent! :)

I have so many travel stories to tell. I was going to do a post on it but this contest came up and I thought I should enter this first :) Well, so what I have experienced is that, travelling is not just about seeing places. It's the whole package. Firstly, the journey does matter to an extent i.e. the people you meet during your journey, the food etc. and this is different for each person. As for seeing places, apart from just seeing the place, it is the stories about the place, about the people who lived there once is what interests me more.

So, what would I do if I go to Europe?

Setting foot itself would be a magical experience. 

Italy is the first country I'd go to..

I am very fond of European architecture (Medieval & Victorian in particular) and simply love looking at the buildings in South & Central Bombay.. so I'd like to explore the European cities on foot as much as possible, looking around and taking in as much as I can. I've heard of places in Italy where they rent cycles too so I will avoid carrying a lot of luggage with me. Of course, if I have family & friends with me, cycling wouldn't be possible.

Florence, Pisa, Verona, Venice, Rome and Milan are some places on my list..

Tuscany is known for its scenic beauty, countryside landscapes.

Most of Florence (in Tuscany, Italy), I've heard, is like an art exhibition. It'd be a thrill walking around the squares (or the piazzas) looking at works of art on display.

Piazza della Signoria, Florence, Italy.

Imagine living in a city where all of it is like a museum .. so beautiful!!

I'd visit the cathedrals & churches there .. just for their elegant structures!!

Next up would be to go and see some of Michaelangelo's masterpieces.. :)

David (Michaelangelo)

The Piazza della Signoria was where the original sculpture of David by Michaelangelo used to be.. but in 1873 they shifted it to the Accademia Gallery. Now, there's a replica of the original sculpture at the Piazza della Signoria. Michaelangelo's house, Casa Buonarotti, has a few of his sculptures too including "Madonna of the Stairs".

Madonna of the Stairs (Michaelangelo)

I'd take a walk on the Ponte Vecchio bridge just to look around at some jewellery, maybe even buy some..

Ponte Vecchio Bridge, Florence, Italy.

And for the food, I've heard that the San Lorenzo market is one place to go to, to explore the variety of food. I am a vegetarian though so might have limited options here! :) Can always explore the famous wines & cheeses of Tuscany here.

Next I'd go to Pisa to see the leaning tower! Have heard of it so much..

The Leaning Tower of Pisa, Italy.

Next city I'd go to is Verona.. Though it's not a very renowned city, with three of Shakespeare's plays set there, this city arouses some curiosity.

I'd like to see Romeo and Juliet's house :)

Juliet's balcony, Verona, Italy.

I'd also like to see the Basilica of San Zeno which is the most famous structure of Roman architecture and also the marriage place of Romeo & Juliet :)

Basilica of San Zeno, Verona, Italy

The next place is Venice.. and the first thing I want to do here is explore this 'city on water' on a gondola ride.. Would love to take a tour of the canals, the bridges. Have also heard that one can cover most of Venice on foot in a couple of days time. So that's something I'm keen on doing.

I want to walk around Saint Mark's square (Piazza San Marco) and visit the museums.

Would like to see the famous Rialto bridge.

Rialto Bridge, Venice, Italy

Looks so magical. I think Venice in the night would look more beautiful.

There is an Accademia Gallery (museum) in Venice too, which is host to many works of art.. worth paying a visit to.

Rome and Milan are the next cities on my list.

Rome for its fabulous architecture..

I'd like to visit the Roman Colosseum.. Also, having heard of so many Roman Gods, the Pantheon is also one place I'd go to.

Roman Colosseum

Inside the Pantheon, Rome

Would also go to see the world's oldest shopping mall.. Trajan's market! :)

                                                                        Trajan's Market, Rome

Not much of a fashion person, Milan (Italy's fashion capital) is the last city I'd head to in Italy.

Would stop at Duomo, the world's largest gothic cathedral. And then go to Castello Sforzesco, a castle in Milan! :)

Duomo, Milan

Castello Sforzesco, Milan

Castello Sforzesco, Milan (at Night)

Everything looks so beautiful in the night!!

Have heard there are plenty of parks in Milan too. Would be nice going there for a stroll or just relaxing with family & friends during a lazy day- picnic basket and everything! :)

So that's about Italy.. The other countries in Europe that have caught my interest some time or the other are France and Greece.

Paris in France for its Eiffel Tower, the Louvre Museum and the apparent romance that flows through the city..

Eiffel Tower, Paris at dusk (I like this picture of the Eiffel Tower)

Eiffel Tower, Paris at night

The Mona Lisa (Leonardo Da Vinci), Louvre Museum, Paris.

Greece caught my attention when I was watching the movie "Mamma Mia!" starring Meryl Streep. Also,  Greek mythology is very intriguing.. they have Gods & Goddesses for everything!! :)

The Island of Skopelos, Greece (where the movie Mamma Mia was shot).

Santorini Island, Greece

Santorini, Greece (at night)

Would also like to go to the United Kingdom, Netherlands, Germany.. almost every country in Europe!

Travelling is exciting.. and every person's journey is so unique as we all see things differently.

Had written a short poem on this. 

Posted it for the Twitter #HappyTravellers contest (which I won, btw! :) ) but had to cut short the words owing to the 140 character limit on Twitter. Posting it here again just so that there is a full version of it online..

I've always wanted to go to Bali.. also Greece, France and Italy. 
See new people & places.. look around & meet new faces.

So it's Bali and Greece for its culture, France and Italy for the art. 
And so many more places in the world, I don't know where to start!

I love how each place carries a story, of the people who lived there once.. 
How some places are so beautiful, an example of nature's brilliance!

I want to see Juliet's balcony, and also Romeo's abode.. 
Where there used to be true love once, I wish to walk down that road!

I want to take a boat around Venice, and take the gondola tour.. 
I want to then go to Pisa and take pictures with the leaning tower!

For what good is this life if we cannot see, the beauty there is in the world?
It exists in people & places of God, waiting to be unfurled..

If I win this contest, I get to go to Singapore or Thailand. And if that happens, Indiblogger & Yatra might just make one of my dreams come true.. of travelling out of the country!! :) So really keeping my fingers crossed..

P.S: If y'all want to participate, here's the link :
You might want to hurry though, it closes tomorrow (9th September 2013)!!

P.P.S: Images have been Googled for, obviously :)


Anonymous said...

Do u need a travelling partner...
But sorry wont be able to make it for the obvious reasons. .
By the way, I liked the poem.

Anubha said...

Alishaaaaaa... why Anonymous re? And yes, I'll miss my travelling partner :(

Anita Sabat said...

Congrats Anubha! For winning the Twitter Contest as well as a Goa Trip in the main Blogging Contest :)
Loved your poem & your Post.
Enjoy :)

Anita Sabat said...

I did post a Congrats message. Dunno if it got lost!
Posting again :) Congrats! Enjoy trip to Goa :)

Anubha said...

You know, had it not been for your comment, I wouldn't even have known I won it!!! They didn't send any email/tweet strangely. Anyway, thank you so much :) Also thanks to them for giving me a prize for the second time & also for finally revealing the winners. It had been long. I'll surely enjoy my trip, just have to look for a partner now ;) Sorry about your comments. I have activated moderation for the comments i.e. I have to approve them so it takes a while for them to show up here.

Thanks again & welcome to my space! :)