KUTCH, FOR A CREATIVE SOUL

As humans, we traditionally savoured the simplicity of living that came from working manually, eating locally and loving fully. Fast forward to the present day Kutchi village, and it feels as though not much has changed. The local artist communities in the small hamlets of Kutch still reside in painted bhungas (circular mud homes with sloping thatched roofs); wear vibrantly-coloured, mirror-filled, patchwork garb; and nurture centuries-old art and crafts. A wander through these villages is like stepping back in time when the world wasn’t constantly connected, machines couldn’t talk and relationships weren’t complicated. Thankfully, the ethos of Kutch isn’t lost to modernisation and contemporary mannerisms!

Stretching along the Tropic of Cancer, from Rajasthan to the edge of Pakistan and the Arabian Sea, Kutch is a fusion of several semi-nomadic communities that migrated from as far as Sindh, Baluchistan and Afghanistan, nearly five centuries ago. They may have left their homes but they brought with them their signature art forms as well as compelling stories, experiences, history, culture and traditions that laid the foundation of the region’s rich heritage and social fabric. Even today, each of the communities express themselves through their art and textiles, only hoping to keep their craft alive for years to come.

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WILD AND WONDERFUL POKHARA

Often perceived as the indigent cousin of India, Nepal is far from being one. In fact, it has a wealth of charming villages, incredible mountain scenery, centuries-old pagodas, monastries and temples, interesting museums, backpacker-friendly streets and gorgeous national parks waiting to be explored. And which is probably why it is difficult to pack everything in one trip!

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During our recent jaunt to Nepal, my husband and I decide to explore Pokhara at a relaxed pace, thus delving deeper in the traditional mountain life of the lakeside town. Read more