By Mili Doshi
The fact that the Deccan Plateau is known as a veritable “El Dorado” of vineyards, wineries and wine resorts is rather unsurprising. However, one only has to look beyond the much exalted terrains of Nashik, Pune and Sangli to unearth the seemingly unsung vineyards of Karnataka, which over the years, have begun to cause quite a stir in the Indian winemaking industry. What we have today is a tapestry of superlative wines birthed on the undulating, soil-rich landscapes of Nandi Valley, Krishna Valley and Kaveri Valley. Once the ground of monumental South Indian empires and legends, the state of Karnataka has transformed into what now stands as one of the country’s pioneering wine-growing regions, foreshadowing flourishing times ahead which could put Indian wines on the international radar. Without further ado, we take you through the many vineyards of the state.
Photo Courtesy of Alba De Santiago
The worst hostel in the world is located in Edinburgh. In a shabby building on Prince’s Street, up a interminable flight of stairs is a dirty, drafty, smoky, flea infested place to rest your head for 11GBP per night. My friend Matt and I were traveling around the UK together and arrived at dawn from an overnight bus from London. The friendly tourist agent at the coach station directed us to a nearby hostel and we happily scampered off without asking questions. All hostels are the same, we figured, and by that point in the trip we were well-seasoned backpackers. Or so we thought. We stayed in room H and all the beds in this room had names that began with the letter H. I wish I was making this up, but the name of my bed was “Hell.” That should have been a sign. The bedding clearly had not been changed, the showers were drafty and had only lukewarm water. I got sick from spending too much time in the ashy, smoky, lounge area trying to use the coin operated computers to book a flight to Dublin. There were no lockers, no locks on the door. Twice we caught people fiddling with our bags. Nothing was stolen, but I got to be paranoid enough to sleep with my purse under my pillow. Edinburgh itself is a gorgeous city; we were simply dazzled by the castle, the streets of the old town and the natural surroundings. I would love to return to Scotland, but just not as a poor-as-dirt backpacker. Continue reading