Friday, 12 October 2018

SOLEMEN - Making a Difference in People’s Lives

Bali based NGO Yayasan Solemen Indonesia gives hope, creates smiles and makes a difference in many people’s lives every day. Since its inception in 2010, Yayasan Solemen has morphed into a dynamic organisation with a serious mission that reaches far beyond the original goal. A great outreach programme was created to benefit the poor, the disadvantaged, the disabled, the homeless and the marginalised in Bali. Their goal is to alleviate the misery of extreme poverty by bringing hope and solutions, while at the same time focusing on individual cases that remain hidden from public view and hence are separated from easy access to medical treatment.
 
Solemen reaches people who fall through the cracks and are not helped by the existing network of charitable organisations and government programmes. Many of them are difficult to find, mostly because Balinese culture dictates that misery, disease, disability and poverty should be hidden from the outside world.
 
Handling children and adults with pernicious diseases, acute and untreated medical problems, Solemen also handles those who need crucial medical intervention, ongoing therapy or medications. Helping all ages, conditions and religions all-around Bali, their Outreach Team travels huge distances often in arduous circumstances to help others. They are fully transparent, audited and have no religious bias.
 
Solemen’s great Outreach Team is making a vast difference in the lives of those in need. A roving, fast-acting team of volunteer doctors and nurses, backed by salaried local team members, has been canvassing the remote areas of this island to find the hidden misery of untreated disease, disability, extreme poverty and destitution. Their caseload has mushroomed, and they are currently approaching the needy with more people added every month. This situation creates a critically-strained team’s resources. The team operates on a shoestring budget, but, amazingly, they continue unabated and work wonders by focusing their efforts on providing effective and targeted help where it will have the most impact.
 
As the most visible and trusted charity on the island, Solemen is not the recipient of government funds or assistance from large institutional donors. Instead, their work is funded by donations from empathic individuals and through a partnership with businesses or corporate supporters. Solemen’s CSR charity programmes with hotels are now helping to support their Outreach programmes. That corporate support can have a far-reaching impact is amply illustrated by their long-term partnerships with hotels, such as Hard Rock Hotel Kuta and Bali Dynasty Resort.
 
CSR programmes, especially those focusing on charitable and philanthropic engagement with the community in which they operate, are gaining popularity and are becoming an important part of a hotel’s “doing well by doing good” business strategy. Hotel guests contribute through a voluntary opt-out $1 per stay donation. Such amount will create social and health benefits for the community. Other sponsors support it on a monthly basis to make sure that the needy children receive monthly sponsorships (medical, nutritional or educational needs). This programme also covers medical assessments for children suffering from a wide range of medical conditions, provides wheelchairs for disabled children and adults, prostheses for amputees, and basic household necessities for the desperately poor.
 
Corporate involvement in Solemen’s partnership programmes is a win-win situation for both parties. Such corporate sponsorship makes it possible for Solemen to do what they do best, which is to create ‘hope and change lives’ for those in desperate need.
 
Solemen have recently formed a new partnership with Scholars of Sustenance, a non-profit food rescue organisation, to collect and redistribute nutritious food for the Solehouse and their Solebuddies in local hospitals. The first generous collection included food from Hard Rock Hotel Kuta. As the programme expands, they expect more hotels will join this noble cause in order to feed more undernourished people. Solemen already has several initiatives in place to provide monthly food parcels to impoverished families and nutritious milk supplements to malnourished children and adults. The Scholars of Sustenance is a most welcome addition to their efforts.
 
All of these efforts need sustainable funding to be able to continue the momentum. As the workload becomes heavier, daily costs rise in tandem. Besides donations from caring supporters and corporate sponsors, they try to fill the shortfalls with other fundraising initiatives, such as the Solemen’s expanding merchandise collection, which includes the popular SoleTeddies, hand-made mahogany fans, Moringa super supplements, caps, t-shirts, singlets and attractive souvenir gift books.
 
The sad truth is that there are more people in need than the fund to care for them all. As they mostly operate close to breakeven, Solemen is still in need of more funding and contributions. No matter how much money they raise, they continually encounter more disadvantaged people who are in desperate need of intervention and care. As such, the circle never closes. However, this quest shall go on! Together, we can change more lives!

Yayasan Solemen Indonesia
Paradise Property Building 3rd floor
Jalan Bypass Ngurah Rai, Siligita, South Kuta
www.solemen.org

This article is also published at NOW! BALI Magazine

Puspadi Bali - Helping More People with Disabilities to Reach Their Dreams

A rise in chronic illnesses and an ageing population stimulate an increasing number of people with disabilities. This triggered Nengah Latra, who founded PUSPADI Bali, to assist those unfortunate people with physical disabilities in Bali. The foundation runs Bali's wheelchair programme and manufactures artificial legs in their workshop at the Annika Linden Centre.
 
With a growing demand for quality mobility aids in Bali, PUSPADI Bali is the only NGO on the island which has been providing appropriately fitted prosthetics, orthotics and wheelchairs to people with disabilities in these areas. They also follow up the actions by giving rehabilitation and skills training programmes. Once a person with physical disabilities is found, their rehabilitation unit will immediately swing into action by getting the medical treatment needed for this person and help them mobile with either a leg or a wheelchair. 
 
A mobility aid gives more than a movement for this unfortunate people, so they can work, study and fully participate in their communities. PUSPADI Bali also helps a child to get into school, and for adult, they will connect them with a recruitment agency for persons with disabilities. Since established in 1999, PUSPADI Bali has helped 5,206 people with disabilities access a mobility aid, rehabilitation and skills training, so these people can become the best version of themselves. From 2013 until now, PUSPADI Bali has managed to conduct 13,830 home visits and distribute 1,831 wheelchairs. A further 1,796 quality prosthetics, orthotics and braces are made and given to those who need.
 
In their workshop at the Annika Linden Centre, PUSPADI team is continually adapting and exploring new technologies. Over the past year, it has been making modular component prosthetic legs, a partnership with the U.S based non-profit organisation, A Leg To Stand On (ALTSO).
 
Not only limited in giving support in their Denpasar’s home base, PUSPADI Outreach Programme team will not hesitate to travel hundreds of kilometres away just to reach out those who are physically unable to move from their rooms by bringing mobility aids directly to them. Earlier this year, the team took a mobile workshop to Lombok to assess the needs of people with disabilities, making prosthetics and orthotics on site, as well as distributing wheelchairs. They teamed up with local organisations to identify who needs support.

Lives Transformed Through the Support of PUSPADI Bali
 
Ni Nengah Widiasih
Recently won a gold medal for Indonesia at the 2018 World Para Powerlifting European Open Championships in Berck sur-Mer in France, this Balinese Powerlifter grew up in an extreme poverty in Karangasem and experienced polio which affected her walking ability. PUSPADI Bali team found her when she was 12 and provided braces immediately, as well as facilitating her access to go to school.
 
As a teenager, Widiasih discovered her passion for weightlifting and pursued it ever since by winning multiple medals along the way, including bronze at the 2016 Rio Paralympics. She now has her sights set on qualifying to compete in the 2020 Tokyo Paralympics. Throughout her journey, the PUSPADI Bali team has continually provided Widiasih with mobility aids and rehabilitation, so she can keep on reaching new heights. Widiasih is a shining example of how the provision of quality mobility aids and support can pave a person’s path to success.
 
Ni Kadek Namiani Tiara Putri 
The 18-year old, Ni Kadek Namiani Tiara Putri, was born with a disability and is standing on the brink of change. Defying the odds by recently graduating from the Bali Mandara School, she is now keen to take on the opportunities before her. Growing up in poverty in Badung region, Namiani’s options were limited. To the outside world, she was a young girl without a lower right leg living on an island where stigmas about disability and karma run deep. Not to mention discrimination is also entrenched. Namiani showed immense academic potential from a young age. After finishing high school, she plans to do an English major at the Sampoerna University in Jakarta and plans to return to Bali to build a school for children with disabilities.
Namiani’s destiny in life changed from the time she received her first prosthetic leg from PUSPADI Bali. This opportunity brought a renewed hope for her future. The prosthetic legs and rehabilitation that the team have provided her since she was a young child enabled her to go to school and realise her full potential.

By visiting http://www.puspadibali.org/donate, we can support the work of PUSPADI Bali so people with disabilities in remote areas of Bali can reach their full potential.

PUSPADI Bali
Annika Linden Centre
Jalan Bakung #19, Tohpati, Kesiman, Kertalangu, East Denpasar
+ 62 361 464537
www.puspadibali.org

This article is also published at NOW! BALI Magazine

Eco Bali - Solution to Bali’s Waste Crisis

Bali has now become the world's second-biggest contributor to plastic waste in the oceans. This island is facing the alarming issue of waste disposal with shorelines laden with refuse, which is washed up every day when the tides come in. Communities are struggling to deal with the volume of waste, and even high-end hotels now pay staff to dig holes in the beaches where they tip in the mounds of plastic. The tourist island’s main rubbish dump now covers 30 hectares, reaches 20 metres high in places and every day 600 trucks bring another 1544 tonnes to add to the pile. Staggering 175,000 tons of waste is produced each day, amounting to 64 million tons per year, according to data from the ministry. 

Eco Bali was established in 2006 in response to the urgency of waste management problems in Bali. It is a registered operation and they comply with the current national legislation on waste management under the Ministry of Environment. Their vision is to enable everyone towards a zero-waste lifestyle. The mission is to promote the responsible waste management, create green knowledge and eco products towards achieving zero waste. All this is managed by a highly efficient team including professionals experienced in waste management, educational programmes, product design and marketing. Eco Bali operates their own sorting and material recovery facility (MRF) ensuring that your waste is properly managed and does not impose a threat to Bali’s beautiful environment. The goal is mainly to maximize recycling, reduce the quantity of waste to landfill and promote composting. 

Eco Bali also provides a range of useful services. Waste Management is one of the primary ones, where they help you to take care of your household, villa, office, business, restaurant, hotel, community or school waste responsibly. Separation at source is key for recycling. They provide a two-bin system. Green Bin for paper; Red Bin for glass, metal, plastic and other non-organic waste. This programme also ensures effective staff training and the disposal of the remaining residue is in legal facilities. Eco Bali strongly believes that education is the key, and management sustainable living can be accomplished by creating knowledge and awareness about waste as well as its response. 

To support everyone towards a zero-waste lifestyle, they offer different eco-educational approaches for schools, businesses and communities. The other program they offer is consulting, where they identify eco and cost-effective solutions for your company or organisation, and helping businesses to become more environmentally friendly and sustainable. In case you represent a business or organisation which is committed to working towards zero waste, you can take benefits of these partnership programmes with Eco Bali. They have a large number of tailored programmes in the field of waste management. 

In terms of products, Eco Store allows you to shop for various environment friendly products that support your zero-waste lifestyle. They offer stylish Upcycled Drinking glasses from bottles collected. This original Glass Plates, Bowls and Vases will look good in your home, restaurant or café. For fashion, they have the airy bag of Net Bag Set for your wet swimwear and Ini Bags for shopping goods.
 
They also provide an easy composting system with complete installation suitable for households and business, including all materials required to begin composting. Eco Bali will take care of the complete installation and train all of the staff or householders. The unique layering process of their composting system is easy, with no smell and great results. Using this composting system provides you with beautiful compost for your garden or flower pots all year round. 

All the services and products offered by Eco Bali are priced extremely reasonable to encourage people towards an eco-friendly living. Eco Bali reaffirms the idea that the majority of our waste is all recyclable. Now it’s all a matter of further harnessing that world-sustaining habit of recycling into our daily life.
 
Jalan Raya Padonan, North Kuta
+62 822 3779 9819
www.eco-bali.com

This article is also published at NOW! BALI Magazine

Wednesday, 3 October 2018

Solution to Bali’s Waste Crisis

Bali has now become the world's second-biggest contributor to plastic waste in the oceans. This island is facing the alarming issue of waste disposal with shorelines laden with refuse, which is washed up every day when the tides come in. Communities are struggling to deal with the volume of waste, and even high-end hotels now pay staff to dig holes in the beaches where they tip in the mounds of plastic. The tourist island’s main rubbish dump now covers 30 hectares, reaches 20 metres high in places and every day 600 trucks bring another 1544 tonnes to add to the pile. Staggering 175,000 tons of waste is produced each day, amounting to 64 million tons per year, according to data from the ministry.
 
Eco Bali was established in 2006 in response to the urgency of waste management problems in Bali. It is a registered operation and they comply with the current national legislation on waste management under the Ministry of Environment. Their vision is to enable everyone towards a zero-waste lifestyle. The mission is to promote the responsible waste management, create green knowledge and eco products towards achieving zero waste. All this is managed by a highly efficient team including professionals experienced in waste management, educational programmes, product design and marketing. Eco Bali operates their own sorting and material recovery facility (MRF) ensuring that your waste is properly managed and does not impose a threat to Bali’s beautiful environment. The goal is mainly to maximize recycling, reduce the quantity of waste to landfill and promote composting.
 
Eco Bali also provides a range of useful services. Waste Management is one of the primary ones, where they help you to take care of your household, villa, office, business, restaurant, hotel, community or school waste responsibly. Separation at source is key for recycling. They provide a two-bin system. Green Bin for paper; Red Bin for glass, metal, plastic and other non-organic waste. This programme also ensures effective staff training and the disposal of the remaining residue is in legal facilities. Eco Bali strongly believes that education is the key, and management sustainable living can be accomplished by creating knowledge and awareness about waste as well as its response. 
 
To support everyone towards a zero-waste lifestyle, they offer different eco-educational approaches for schools, businesses and communities. The other program they offer is consulting, where they identify eco and cost-effective solutions for your company or organisation, and helping businesses to become more environmentally friendly and sustainable. In case you represent a business or organisation which is committed to working towards zero waste, you can take benefits of these partnership programmes with Eco Bali. They have a large number of tailored programmes in the field of waste management.
 
In terms of products, Eco Store allows you to shop for various environment friendly products that support your zero-waste lifestyle. They offer stylish Upcycled Drinking glasses from bottles collected. This original Glass Plates, Bowls and Vases will look good in your home, restaurant or café. For fashion, they have the airy bag of Net Bag Set for your wet swimwear and Ini Bags for shopping goods.
 
They also provide an easy composting system with complete installation suitable for households and business, including all materials required to begin composting. Eco Bali will take care of the complete installation and train all of the staff or householders. The unique layering process of their composting system is easy, with no smell and great results. Using this composting system provides you with beautiful compost for your garden or flower pots all year round. 
 
All the services and products offered by Eco Bali are priced extremely reasonable to encourage people towards an eco-friendly living. Eco Bali reaffirms the idea that the majority of our waste is all recyclable. Now it’s all a matter of further harnessing that world-sustaining habit of recycling into our daily life.

Jalan Raya Padonan, North Kuta
+62 822 3779 9819
www.eco-bali.com

This article is also published at NOW! BALI Magazine

Monday, 1 October 2018

Start Making a Difference Without Plastic Bags - Bye Bye Plastic Bags



It is not a rocket science to see that this island is drowning in plastic, and there is no escaping from such reality. Who is going to do something about it? Sometimes we forget that it only takes one person to start the change. Instead of pointing fingers, asking people to change the world, why not look at ourselves and start from there. 

Bye Bye Plastic Bags (BBPB) is one of the examples. This is a social initiative driven by youth to get the people of Bali to say no to plastic bags. This organisation was started by two young sisters when they were 10 and 12 years old after being inspired by a lesson in a class about changemakers. They decided not to wait until they were older to start making a difference on this island. 

Five years forward to today, BBPB has now become a youth-driven NGO with the aim of making Bali plastic bag free. Starting from an idea on the couch, it is now a movement of 30 students in Bali, 20 cities across the world, and millions of viewers watching whether or not Bali is really going plastic bag free this year. For the last few years, the campaign has been working towards the big year of 2018. The team of youth have been able to meet with many key people, including Mangku Pastika as the current Governor of Bali and some national ministers. They have held meetings with nearly every governmental department and all of Bali’s nine head of regions to prove that their idea is legally possible to be done, economically more beneficial and practical for everyone living on this island. 

The team of youth at BBPB are kept busy on a daily basis. Most of their activities take place on the weekends, such as beach clean-ups, plastic bag exchange and alternative bag making workshops. However, they believe that real change happens in the classroom. Thus, they approached around 18,000 students and created two educational booklets in the local language for elementary school students, which are being distributed on a mass scale.

Communication with the local communities is the key element. In order to change public mindset, BBPB works closely with local villages in some projects. These include to build River Boom school programmes and establish a social enterprise ‘Mountain Mama’s’ to empower women to produce alternative bags from donated materials to their weekly distribution of bags to local shops in the area. This action ensures that they are involving the local communities and convince local shopkeepers to stop giving plastic bags for free or to simply start using alternatives.

As a grassroot organisation that is youth-led, they have always understood the importance of working together with all levels of society. This includes the government. To keep reminding the government that change still needs to happen and that they are not going anywhere until it does, BBPB setups weekly meetings with the regional departments to the national scope. It is not an easy task and requires a long process. They are definitely aware of the emergency and need to change. However, it is not a matter of how, but more a question of who. Be it local, regional or national government, the question remains the same, “Are they ready to make the change, or they prefer to leave it up to the grassroots organisations to do the job?” 40 other countries around the world have implemented a final stage of ‘saying no to plastic bags’, and the people and businesses of Bali are ready to do so. 

Today, BBPB can be found across 20 cities around the world, driven by young kids in middle school, high school and universities. They have literally embodied the message that kids can also do big things, and BBPB is the living example.

Their newest action comes in the form of a ‘Komitmen’. Through this, they invite individuals, organisations, companies and government offices in Bali to eliminate the use of the most pervasive plastics in our environment and to promote waste separation at the source in order to promote better recycling and waste management. If you are interested to join this cause, simply write an email to komitmen@oneislandonevoice.org. BBPB is planning to have a thousand Bali-based businesses on board with the ‘Komitmen’ by the end of September, and they will use it as a pressure for the government to take the action. The government will finally realise that industries are moving away from plastic, with or without them.

www.byebyeplasticbags.org

This article is also published at NOW! Bali Magazine

A Little Help for Children’s Future - Bali Children Foundation


The education system in Bali is not at the best place right now. Despite the tourism is growing doesn’t change the fact that there still are a huge number of school-age children not attending school. Mostly, it is because of their poor economic background. There is a huge gap between the children getting the education in the urban areas as compared to the rural areas. Many schools in the villages are under-resourced with a very poor physical condition. Children are used to studying under a leaking roof using broken furniture. At the same time, teachers often struggle under rudimentary conditions with educational materials and teaching aids. Apart from that, children sometimes have no option other than working on the land to support their family. This inconvenient truth triggers a very high drop-out rate in rural primary schools. 

Bali Children Foundation is one of many charitable organizations catering to the needs of children on this island. Through their various initiatives, they create an educational pathway for underprivileged children by providing a journey, from junior schools until graduate, leading to their growth and long-term sustainability. Margaret Barry is the person behind of this good deed. She had no experience in education or international development when started the foundation 15 years ago. However, for her dedication and services to education, she was awarded an Order of Australia Medal (OAM) in Melbourne on last January. 

Focusing on the north and west remote areas of Bali, Bali Children Foundation has supported over 1100 children through a scholarship programme. This scholarship contributes to school fees, uniforms, shoes, books, bags, stationery and all the basic needs to support a child through their education. The foundation has chalked out some other detailed and inclusive programmes to help the Balinese community with their much-needed education. In 2008, their work expanded to community education and the establishment of the village projects. Whilst assisting children’s education via sustainable, they also managed to run Children’s Homes (formerly called Orphanages). Here, they discovered that with functional English, even non-academic children had better employment opportunities. With that fact, they started the first English in the village project. 

Obtaining internet access in the remote area was very challenging, but due to the rising need of computers as the main teaching aid nowadays, Bali Children Foundation introduced the Computers in the Village and Computers in the Orphanage programmes. The computer lessons are a direct teaching initiative with two classes per week offered to junior and senior high students. In total, 256 classes per month are provided for the children. Over 3700 students are currently enrolled in these programmes, which provide the skillsets needed for Bali’s growing economy.

The main focus of Bali Children Foundation is to ensure that children graduate and get decent jobs. For that reason, they also support extends into life after school. The graduates are mentored through the Work Ready programme to prepare them for the situation in the workplace. Once employed, those graduates will be guided through the first year of the job to make sure they are coping what they have learned. Through this experience, students can enrich the lives of their family and ensure the welfare of their community. 

We can mark our share of contribution in quite a few ways. By being a dedicated sponsor, we can help a child to stay at school, finish high school, get employment or go on to the university. We can also choose to make a generous donation to support their programmes and projects. If teaching is what you are good at, they need qualified teachers for English, Computer, Art and Music programmes.

Every small contribution counts to ensure that Bali Children Foundation continues to provide educational opportunities to the disadvantaged children of Bali. This is the least we can do to break the cycle of poverty and improve prospects for future generations. Let us join our hands together and pledge to take care of the future of Bali.

Jalan Raya Kesambi #369, Kerobokan
+62 851 00648400
www.balichildrenfoundation.org

This article is also published at NOW! Bali Magazine.

Monday, 2 April 2018

Let’s Go to India: All You Need to Know About India


Some people love to travel and if you are one of them, you should not forget to include India in your travel destinations. You can either find fascinating travel locations that you can visit by yourself or join the tours given by the different travel agencies, such as Travel Treasures Tour. If you want to make the most out of your travel in India, there are some things that you need to do and consider. Once you’re through, you can enjoy a holiday in India.


The very first to do is to conduct background reading about India. This will help in familiarizing yourself with the foreign country. The living conditions in India are also quite good. You can find five and four-star hotels offering international standards. Palace hotels have garnered a world status that can’t be compared to other hotels around the globe. For the budget traveller, you can check-in in three-star hotels. You can also find tourist bungalows, traveller’s lodges, youth hotels, holiday homes, and YWCA/YMCA’s.

For a worry-free traveller, you need to make arrangements in advance. October until March are considered the peak tourist season, while from May until June is the season of the Indian holiday. If you plan to travel during these months, it is highly advisable that you book in advance because at this time there are limited travel amenities.

If you want, you can also learn the local language, but English is used in all the tourist centres. The Indian locals are gracious and friendly. Now, if you find staring a bit rude, just relax if the locals stare at you because it is natural for them. However, you should not let your guard down because you will never know what can happen. Try to be friendly with the locals but you should always be careful. You will understand more about the locals with the help of your tour guide.

Indian food is very much different from your usual food. Make sure that you eat only one serving of Indian dish for each meal. Eat peeled fresh fruits and mostly cooked foods first. This way, your body system can easily adjust to the Indian food. It is also advisable that you drink only bottled drinks, water, tea and coffee. The hotels have filtration systems, so you will not encounter many problems.

If you are taking medications, buy it before you leave for India. You see, you may not be able to find the same brand of medications there. However, the local doctors may suggest alternative medications just in case you really need immediate medical attention.

When you are visiting a temple or mausoleum, make sure that you remove your shoes, sandals or slippers. There are also Indian temples that will not allow non-Hindus to enter. Your tourist guide will be the one to explain these matters!

Travelling to India is more comfortable and easier if you have someone who looks after you. Book your travel with the right travel agency and get the suitable tour package that can meet all your travelling needs.  Make sure that you do this in advance.

Why India?
India is a mix of incredible combination of modernity and tradition. This country is also among the leading tourist destinations all over the world with millions of people visit every year. What attracts them to come to India? You see, there are many beautiful and attractive places that you can visit in the different regions. They are also beaches, mountains, wildlife, hill stations, sports and adventure, heritage sites, deserts, pilgrim sites, palaces and monuments.
Each tourist spots can give you a different experience. Make sure you do your homework; surf the net and visit India’s official site. Check out the comments from the previous visitors. Planning for a trip to India is quite easy. You can easily contact a travel agency, such as Travel Treasures Tour, and ask them to guide you. In choosing the right travel agency, make sure you choose a reputable one and the one who has been in service for quite some time. Ask for the travel packages that suit your needs. Decide your budget as it is another thing to consider when travelling to a foreign country. In case you prefer to go on with no string attached from any travel agency, you must gather all important information about India. Get a map and get used to it! You will be alright.
New Delhi – India’s Magnificent Capital
If you travel to north India, you will find New Delhi. This India’s capital can be found near the Yamuna River. It was only in 1931 when the city was inaugurated as India’s new capital. You can find printing plants, textile mills and other manufacturing establishments within the city. New Delhi India travel is a very exciting trip that you should look forward to.
The city streets are symmetrically laid out. Lutyens was the architect who drew the city plan. He was also the same person who designed Rashtrapati Bhawan which happens to be the residence of the country’s president. The buildings in the city reflect an Indian style but the architecture is primarily European. A boulevard is found east of the presidential palace that is bordered by canals and trees which lead to a memorial war arch. These particular sights are already eye-catching but wait until you see the rest of the city.
Heritage monuments, palaces, temples and wildlife reserves are found almost in every region of India. You can find these sights in New Delhi as well. Ask your tour guide to take you to the lovely spots of the city. Daily tours are conducted, and you only need to ask the tour itinerary for the day. You can join the city tour or explore it alone. Some individuals prefer to walk around the city to witness the breath-catching sights within the area. Aside from that, this will also give them a chance to meet the locals. Local people are most gracious and friendly, so you will surely have a great time wandering all over the city.
Travelling to New Delhi can be an exciting experience, especially if you know the best tourist spots to visit. To make the most out of your India travel, visit only the places that interest you. If you are interested in animals, visit the wildlife reserves. If you like scenic spots, ask your tour guide to a scenic spot in the city. For those who love unique architectures, visit the palaces, temples or monuments.
Visit Majestic Mumbai
In the states, New York is known as the ‘city that never sleeps’. Its counterpart in India is Mumbai. Despite the small troubles that occur in the streets of India, tourists still love to go to this magnificent and alluring country. Maybe because of its glorious past or perhaps of its scenic tourist spots.
Mumbai is a very important commercial centre in India. So far, it is the largest metropolitan area and is densely populated. The so-called Star Machine of the country is found in Mumbai, Bollywood. This Star Machine is able to come up with motion pictures more than what Hollywood can produce. The entertainment industry in India is booming and its popularity around the world is ever increasing. Indian cinema has definitely contributed to the country's cultural and economic context.
The metropolitan area is located in the coastal area. Almost half of India's sea cargo and traffic is catered in this sea harbour. Many years ago, Mumbai was a 7-island archipelago. Way back in the nineteenth century, the archipelago was amalgamated.  Geographical features in Mumbai are diverse and so if you visit this city at any time of the year, you will experience tropical weather.
Mumbai’s culture is a reflection of many cultural influences. The city celebrates both the eastern and western festivals. These festivals are much awaited by the tourists. This represents unity despite the differences within the city. India is a country with different religions and beliefs but still, the entire country remains peaceful and very accommodating to tourists.
The city was only called Mumbai in 1995 but before that, local residents called it Bombay. The city is a hub for the manufacturing industry, transportation and commercial. The name Mumbai was derived from a Hindu Goddess known as Mumba or Parvati.
While you are in Mumbai, you should also see India's Gateway. This is a structure that sea travellers first see when they arrive at the harbour. There are also monuments in the city like the Gothic Style Presidency Secretariat, University Hall and Tower, Clock Tower of Rajabai, and High Court. If you are looking for a castle in this city, you should go to the Horniman Circle. Heritage sites are also located in Mumbai, which includes Elephanta Caves and Chhatrapati Shivaji.
Aside from those mentioned awhile earlier, there are still so many things to see in Mumbai. Your tourist guide can show you around the city of Mumbai. If you want, before you travel to India, you should already conduct a research about Mumbai and choose the specific locations that you want to visit.
Travel Recommendations for Northern India in Winter
The geographical position and unusual topography of India are responsible for the country’s diverse climate. If you have plans of visiting northern India, you can expect the climate to be hotter during the summer and cooler in winter. Before going there, you have to consider these travel recommendations for northern India in winter.
The northern plains of India during the winter season which happens to be from October to March brings very cold temperatures. In fact, the temperature in the Thar Desert can reach freezing point. The central city of the north is New Delhi and the temperature there is from 8 degrees to 21 degrees Celsius.
You can find a rich history of culture in north India. Aside from New Delhi, you can also visit other destinations, such as Uttranchal, Uttar Pradesh, Jamma, Himachal Pradesh, Punjab, and Kashmir. There are many activities that you can do in north India, such as river rafting, camel safari, mountain biking, skiing and trekking. You can also find exquisite architectures, incredible wildlife, sand dunes and historical charm in this Indian region.
If you plan to tour Delhi, you can explore the city’s religious face. There are many temples that you can visit Akshardham, Birla, Bangla Sahib, and ISKCON temples. Aside from the temples, there are also forts in Delhi like Qutub Minar, Jantar Mantar, and Red Fort. Taj Mahal is found in north India, specifically in Uttar Pradesh. If you have plans of travelling to Uttaranchal, don’t do this during the winter season as it is very cold. You can do it between April and June or from September to November.
Individuals who love mall shopping can go to Shimla. You can find malls offering great sights there. The Golden Temple can be found in Punjab. Other places that you should visit are Srinagar, Jammu, Dal Lake, Gulmarg, Pahalgam, Sonamarg, Solan, Dalhousie, Dharamsala, Kullu, Manali, Kangra, and Chamba. You can have the best holiday experience in north India.
As mentioned earlier, winter in north India is quite cold. If you go there during winter, you have to bring the appropriate clothes. If you don’t have them, you can start purchasing winter clothes. This way, you can avoid stressing out your body and ending up sick. Make sure that you take your vitamins and some medications with you, just in case you catch fever, cough or colds. The medicines sold in India are not the same as those sold in your home country. So better be prepared especially if you're travelling there during the winter. You can enjoy the sights and tourist spots in north India if you have a healthy body. Still, if you can't withstand the cold, you should go to North India during the summer season. The temperature during that time is not as cold as the winter season.
Now that you know the places that you can visit in north India, you can contact a travel agency and book your travel in advance. The winter season in India is also the peak season for the influx of tourists and so it would be best to plan ahead, otherwise, you will not get the best services because the accommodations are limited. Planning can really take so much of your time but with the help of a travel agency, your troubles are lessened. If you take into consideration these travel recommendations for northern India in winter, you will have the greatest time of your life despite the cold climate.
India Wildlife Tour and Hiking Adventure
Why is it that many tourists love to visit India over and over again? The country is rich in heritage and culture; not only that, there are many picturesque and adventure spots all over the country. If you plan for an India wildlife tour and hiking adventure, this is the ultimate experience that you shouldn’t miss.
There are only very few countries that offer tourists with a broad range of tours, and India is one of them. All throughout an India tour, you can surely experience an outstanding and awe-inspiring expedition. If you like a hiking adventure, you can visit the Himalayan range in India. By going on a hiking adventure to the Himalayas, you can take part in other adventure sports such as river rafting, mountaineering, trekking, and climbing. Aside from that, by hiking in the Himalayas, you can also go on a wildlife tour because you can find wildlife sanctuaries and blossoming forests there as well. Hikers like you can enjoy nature's pleasure including majestic landscapes and waterfalls.
An ideal hiking adventure provides you with all factors of attraction and ecstasy. When you're on nature's trail, you can feel an unknown force that seems to draw you closer to things around you. You don’t have to be an expert in hiking in order to enjoy this adventure. You simply have to make sure that your individual stamina can withstand the weather conditions while hiking. If you plan to go on hiking, make sure that a guide is with you especially if this is your first time in the Himalayas.
Aside from hiking, you can also visit India's wildlife reserves. You can find about eighty national parks and more than 500 animal sanctuaries all over India. You can visit the most popular animal reserves in Madhya Pradesh (Bandhavgarh sanctuary and Kanha), Rajasthan (Ranthambore and Sariska), and Uttar Pradesh (Dudhwa and Corbett Park). To enjoy these wildlife destinations, it would be best to join safari tours and trekking adventures.
If you like bird watching, you can visit Keoladeo Ghana and you can see tigers in Rajasthan's Ranthambore Park. By joining wildlife tours, you can explore nature more closely and you will see how animals live peacefully and in unity.
India is a religious country. Respect and unity are strongly reflected in their culture. The country is home to many different religions but despite these differences, you can enjoy the peace and serenity in almost all the tourist spots of India. Because of this, you can make the most of your vacation holiday. Every day, tours are conducted in the various regions of the country. Get in touch with your travel agency and ask for the schedule of hiking adventures and wildlife tours. Having a tourist guide with you wherever you go will make you feel safer and protected. But for those who want to explore India alone, you can create your very own adventure. Your unforgettable adventure will depend largely on your choice of tours.
The good thing is that while you're hiking the Himalayas, you can already witness the wildlife reserves of the country. You can do two things at a time. That will save you time and energy. On your next day in India, you can try another adventure tour. Travelling to a foreign country gives you limited time to explore the places that you've never been to, so better make sure that you join as many tours as possible.

Applying for an India Travel Visa
You can’t travel abroad without a visa. But what is a visa anyway? Visa is a stamp, an official stamp, from the high commission or embassy in your travelling document or passport. It authorizes you and other travellers to go to India (or any other country) for a specific period and purpose. Take note of the word 'official'. You see, there are a lot of scammers out there who are able to go out of the country and enter into another without having an official visa.
Getting an India travel visa? That's quite easy. All you have to do is satisfy all the rules and visa regulations. After doing so, you can be issued an India travel visa. Some individuals fail to get visas but not because they are unqualified. The main reason why most people are denied is that they fail to understand the visa officer. Consider the following suggestions when applying for an India travel visa or any other visa.
For the passport, first-time travellers have 'virgin passports'. To the visa officer, this may mean that this is your first time to travel overseas or your previous visa applications to other countries were denied. Your passport may also have more than one visa. This can mean that other countries have confidence in you, that is why they gave you a visa.
If this is your first time to apply for a visa, you have to determine first if India has a high rejection rate for visas. India is not that strict in the visa applications so even if you are a first-time India visa applicant, you have a high chance to get an approved visa.
You can acquire India visa easily through the help of travel agencies, such as Travel Treasures. They will gladly assist you while you apply for a visa.
Getting an India travel visa is not that hard, especially if you know your way around the embassy. Learn more about visa application online because you can find a lot of helpful information on the net. Prepare yourself. You can’t afford to be denied a visa application because you cannot reach India without it and not only that, your passport will be affected as well and all your other visa applications in the future.
 

Tuesday, 20 February 2018

Bali as Your Wedding Destination

Wedding in Bali is an excellent way to enjoy the serene environment, bask in the sunshine, enjoy the beach and make the most of a great holiday on a paradise island. But planning for this once in a lifetime occasion is extremely daunting, particularly when you have no idea regarding the best offerings that Bali can present.  The key to planning is to work with the wedding planners that you can trust. That’s where The Seven Agency can work wonders for you with seamless planning process suited to your requirements and budget. Pre-designed wedding packages that are all inclusive leaves all your worries away as the wedding planner takes care of all the major and minor requirements for your big day before and after your wedding ceremony.

As a wedding destination, Bali helps you relax and takes your stress away. With absolute romantic wedding venues and a group of well-trained and professional staff, The Seven Agency helps you organize the dream come true during your wedding in Bali. The uniqueness of your wedding is based on the number of venue options, starting from lakes, lush green paddy fields, beaches, jungles, cliff edge, waterfalls and secluded locations all around the island. A large number of optional accommodation are available for you to choose, starting from exquisite villas to resorts, all will provide you and your guests the best place to stay on the island. Not just limited to the ceremony, Bali also doubles up as an excellent honeymoon destination. This is a great advantage for those who want to have both the events one after the other.

Bali offers the best of tropical settings, thereby allowing you to capture the best moments of your wedding and honeymoon in the backdrop that you want. Whether it is a beautiful sunset or sunrise, the night sky with the twinkling of stars, the island offers the best photographic moments to add to your occasion. With friendly marriage laws for foreigners in Bali, the entire process is quick and easy with legal documentation. Another reason is the cost-effectiveness that Bali offers for a wedding as compared to similar tourist destinations worldwide. This is especially true considering the value of money options with venues, décor, honeymoon packages, and food options. It is established that the cost on the island is almost 3 to 5 times cheaper than any other renowned destination.

However, if you do not plan everything well, then there is a chance that you can get stuck in a massive traffic of Bali. The reason being the emergence of Bali as a favourite tourism destination and the presence of a large number of budget travellers on the island thereby increase in a crowd during the peak seasons. Another cause of concern is that the budget accommodations get filled up quickly as tourist flocks to this paradise to enjoy the warmth and splendour that nature has to offer. Unless careful planning is done using a renowned wedding planner, things can get a little out of hand during the peak seasons.

 

Saturday, 27 January 2018

A Peaceful Family Treat at Royal Tulip Saranam Resort & Spa

Bali’s popular northern region is a home to some of the best luxury hotels on the island. This is particularly noteworthy for those with a penchant for only the best in accommodation, service quality and facilities during their stay. Unlike the typical southern attractions where beach resorts are a big hit and crowds are more, the northern portion provides accommodation which is not necessarily five-star resorts or international hotel chains but still lives up to the standard for a luxury living. The luxury accommodation here allows you to enjoy and experience the area, allowing peace of mind and pleasure from the hustle and bustle of crowded places. With lush green surroundings and harmonious setup, the luxurious Royal Tulip Saranam Resort and Spa offers a total serene and calm experience.

Located on the way to Bedugul, this 5-star hotel offers a village-like atmosphere combined with luxury accommodation. This essentially means that you can explore and enjoy the beauty associated with Bedugul while living in this 5-star sanctuary, surrounded by vast open spaces and rice fields. Royal Tulip Saranam Resort and Spa offers peace and tranquillity to its guests along with luxury living with the highest international standards of service and quality. Each of the rooms here is outfitted with plush furnishings and bedding for a sumptuous stay.

Unwind with wonderful views from the countryside while enjoying the privacy of large living rooms and bathrooms in your accommodation. Another notable feature is that all the rooms in this hotel are fully equipped with a wide range of amenities. The decoration of the room is extremely soothing thereby helping you relax during your stay here. It is also possible to choose villas with the kind of view that suits you. There are villas with the view of mountains, the large pool, or the lush rice paddies. Even the standard and deluxe rooms come with balconies with beautiful views that will make you feel rejuvenated.

This accommodation also has a big outdoor pool dedicated to families with kids, a perfect playground to relax while soaking under a cool weather. Along with the natural beauty, guests can pamper with the host of facilities inside the hotel and enjoy some delicious cuisine in the restaurants. Families can also take part in the family activities at this hotel, which includes both art and cooking classes. Along with that, there are some traditional Balinese activities like rice harvesting and offerings at water temple. Fitness conscious guests can work out at the fully equipped modern gym and outdoor running track in the valley of the hotel.

Royal Tulip Saranam Resort and Spa is also located within a close distance to a number of attractions, such as the Botanical Garden, Jatiluwih Rice Fields, Hot Springs and Ulun Danu Temple. For shopping fans, guests can visit the Bedugul Market, while Bali Treetop Adventure Park is in the neighbourhood to entertain the adventure enthusiasts. Nicely located in Bali’s Lake District, the Royal Tulip Saranam is a perfect vacation destination for families who are in desperate need a peace of mind in a peaceful environment.