The blue tree - trying to raising awareness to preserve dead trees that are invaluable as birding sites

Mt. Annan Botanical Gardens – A photo essay

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If you have ever wandered about in Sydney, the Royal Botanical Gardens in the heart of the city must have been on your tick list. As it should be. While quite popular among locals and tourists alike, what is less known and even lesser frequented are its affiliate cousins far from Sydney. There’s one at the Blue Mountains (the Blue Mountains Botanic Garden Mount Tomah) and then there’s one at the threshold of Sydney at its south-western  frontier – the Australian Botanic Garden at Mount Annan. Claimed to be the largest botanic gardens in the country, Mt. Annan aims to […]

View of Collin's beach from one of its flanking clifftops

Sydney’s hidden gems: Collins flat beach

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If you have ever explored the squillions of squiggly shorelines of Sydney, you will know by now that ‘enough’ is never enough. A few more steps and there comes another hidden beach or a lost lagoon or even a cascade in the city. Sydney is all that, and to a poetic mind, maybe even beyond. And all this is definitely worth exploring – if not for the delectable cafes and kodak moment vantage points, then at least for the millions of years that went into the formation of this spectacular shoreline. About 250 million years ago in the Triassic Period, […]

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A walk in the Park – Hyde Park: A photo essay

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Named after its cousin in London, the Sydney Hyde Park is am emerald wrapped bounty in the heart of the city. Gushing in green all around, the shaded boulevards make for an amazing walk anytime of the day. Having visited the Australian Museum and St. Mary’s cathedral, I wrapped off my day in this oasis of peacefulness that is Hyde Park. Once devoid of trees, today the park is a picturesque postcard wrapped in greenery and peppered with many a fountain and statue (including the famous Archibald Fountain). Take a walk through the Park in this photo essay:  

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The colors of Cronulla

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It was a Saturday evening, and I was eager to catch some sunset colors. While the northern beaches of Sydney get a lot of attention and fanfare, the southern beaches put up no less a fight. As I found out on visiting one of the southernmost beaches in Sydney – Cronulla. The waterside beaches – particularly the North Cronulla and Cronulla beaches are stacked with swanky stores, while the trees and beautifully maintained parks and walkways are quite reminiscent of its northern cousins such as Manly. Rock pools, long stretches of sands, large rolling waves being conquered by countless surfers […]

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The Archibald Fountain @ Hyde Park

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Of all the elements in nature, ask a photographer, which is his favorite, and the answer in all likelihood would be ‘Water’. Fire, can be a crackling muse, but would be ephemeral. It is water that is transcendental. The crash of a blue barrel wave on a yellow sandstone promontory, or the long exposure shot of a rippling waterfall – or as in my case, the many trajectories of a fountain – are sure to keep a photographer engaged for hours. Well, that’s precisely how I ended up spending the larger part of a Sunday evening, in the setting rays […]

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Blushing Bowral : A photo essay

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Last weekend I was at the little town of Bowral in the Southern Highlands to visit the Bradman Museum. However, beyond cricket fanaticism, it was also a case of  being lucky : to be at the right place at the right time. For the trees in the town were all touched by the palette of Autumn, blushing in shades of yellow, orange and red. Except for a few evergreens defying the tide of time beyond the equinox. Yes, Autumn is here, and one can already feel the nip in the air.   The colors were not yet rioting – give […]

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Finding the Oasis

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It is a bright and sparkling, sunny day here. Too bright to venture out, I prefer the shadowy solitude of my indoor sanctum. But sun and Saturday take me back, years ago, when the mind was desperate for just the opposite. Mumbai, May 2011 – the exasperated me had just landed in Mumbai to join work after my MBA. And the combinations couldn’t get any worse – chaos in life, a congested city to work (I always wanted to go back to my beloved Calcutta) and worse still, a job in the financial services sector! After my internship in a […]

Birds at Bali

At the Bali Bird Park

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A few months back, I was enthralled to visit the tiny island of Bali – the most popular isle of Indonesia. While the journey was a revelation – as most journeys should be – the island had a striking appeal that made me realize the reason for its crazed popularity amidst all kinds of travelers – hippies, surfers, beach aficionados, temple trailers et al. Whatever you could ask for – food, culture, history, geography – the island gave you back in the plenty. But that is a separate story that needs to wait. Yet another surprise that awaited me was […]

‘Thar she blows!’: Whale-watching around Sydney

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Come winter, and Australia’s coastline becomes a migratory superhighway for the whales of Antarctica. These blubberous behemoths thrive in the cold waters of the Southern Ocean, but not their calves which do not have substantial fat to insulate them. Therefore, when winter comes, the whales migrate northwards to warmer climes to calve – c’mon, everyone deserves a tropical vacation once in a while! Naturally, cities like Sydney and Brisbane become hotspots for whale watching on the eastern coast, with operators diligently and enthusiastically offering cruises to get closer to these peace loving cetaceans. Having been around in Sydney for three […]

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A Louis Vuitton in Paris

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If you are lucky, Life sometimes takes you back to the most vibrant of your down memory lanes. If you can withstand the overwhelmia and still breathe in peace to savor a fresh set of memories, you can’t get luckier… Why do I write this, you might wonder? After seven years, a close friend has gone back to Paris! Paris – the place where the insanity for Bohemia all began. Sometimes it all feels like fast moving scenes in some old, pastel colored movie set – an imposing cathedral here, an art noveau edifice there; small, artistic shops selling bits and […]