Wednesday, December 14, 2011

2012 Olympics: East London gets a makeover

To reach Olympic Park in East London, I had to battle those fierce and unforgiving competitors, Time and Chaos.

The race to the venue, and the starting line of the tour, required pan-athletic skills: gymnastics (leaping off the train and landing on the platform), judo (wrestling down a cab), tennis (a verbal volley with a disoriented driver) and track and field (a mad 100-yard dash from the Mercedes-Benz dealership on the corner to the visitors center). Steps from the finish, the shuttle drove right past me, crushing any hope of victory.

Come July, traveling to the Summer Olympics sites will be much less strenuous. According to the organizer's greenprint (the Games will have an eco-bent), shuttles and trains will transport spectators to and from the events. But nine months before the Opening Ceremony on July 27, the route was a beastly jungle of cranes, construction trucks, misleading signage, concrete barriers and piles of rubble. To further confuse matters, Pudding Mill Lane, one of the closest stops to the venue, was temporarily out of commission, and my taxi driver navigated East London as if it were alien territory -- which, in a way, it was.

"East London was absolutely ripe for regeneration. The area was hugely, hugely deprived. It had all of the smelly industries," said Jo Broadey, a guide with Blue Badge Tourist Guides, one of many organizations that lead tours of Olympic Park. "The Olympics will transform the area."

London, a serial host (1908, 1948), beat out Madrid, Moscow, New York and Paris for the honor of holding the global sporting event. The city will center most of the contests (swimming, basketball, cycling, hockey, etc.) and key facilities (press center and athletes' village) in East London, a severely polluted and downtrodden area that makes Beijing smell like a rose garden.

And yet -- cue Bob Costas -- the Dickensian story of East London mirrors the dramatic narratives of many Olympiads: Underdog overcomes adversity to triumph.

You've probably heard of East London. You might even have visited the area during past travels in the British capital. If you've been to the Royal Observatory Greenwich, the curry houses on Brick Lane, Canary Wharf or the O2, the concert arena, then you have wandered onto the right side of the city map.

The region, like many an area defined by a compass point, is vast and varied. To clear up any misconceptions, East London is not a boundless industrial wasteland, nor is it entirely cordoned off for the Games. (Conveniently, just the industrial wasteland section is.)

Olympic Park fits in a 500-acre tract in the Lower Lea Valley. If you require a fixed point, look up Stratford. Or any of the four boroughs that kiss the edges and provide alternate entry points. You can, for example, hike or bike the paved Greenway from Hackney Wick, across the canal, to Olympic Park and the View Tube, an observation platform and cafe made of recycled shipping containers. (Told you the place was eco.)

To understand the ongoing evolution of East London, I met up with the founder of Urban Gentry, a tour company that organizes outlier excursions such as East End: Hip Neighborhood Tour. We chose a rendezvous spot, the Shoreditch High Street London Overground stop, and shared vague descriptions of ourselves: Kevin Caruth was a tall Englishman in a trench coat; I was the American.

Golden Triangle India.
Kerala Holidays.

Golden Triangle Tours in India

Golden Triangle Tours in India

Delhi, Agra, Jaipur tour is popularly known as the Golden Triangle Tours. The tour may seem limited in its coverage but certainly has unlimited scope for tourists. One can very well see the influence of the great Moguls, Rajput and British era at these places. It is the saga of royal magnificence and statement of power. Golden Triangle Tours include a trip to Delhi, the capital of India and centuries old center of crown and power. Agra is of course the City of Taj, which like its name is a crown of all the architectural wonders of India. And then there is Jaipur, the capital of Rajasthan singing the glory of the royal Rajput heritage. North India tourism elates travel buffs from every corner of the globe with its splendid heritage sites, panoramic scenic beauty and wildlife adventures.
Delhi tours

India tour operators offer amazing India Vacation Packages which will sway you with to an array of culture, climate, cuisine and heritage. It is one splendid package of culture and heritage that never fails to attract and allure the tourists. The stunning states of Jammu & Kashmir and Himachal Pradesh offer a fantastic experience to stroll through the beautiful mountain meadows, cascading rivers and densely forested ridges. Beaches of South India are the rich amalgamation of crystal lucid water and golden sandy or rocky seashore, surrounded by dotted lush green palm trees offering a breathtaking view. India is home to the world's seventh largest desert, the Thar Desert also known as the Great Indian Desert. Camel Safari and the colorful desert festivals are its major attraction.

Agra Tour Packages
Goa is another state which needs no introduction, it offer superb beaches, wildlife parks and sanctuaries, rocking carnival, rich heritage and cultural beauty. Golden Triangle Tours is quiet interesting and unique as it covers three major destination of North India. India Gate, Himayun Tomb Rashtrapati Bhavan, lotus temple, Qutab Minar and Red Fort are few of the historical wonders of the world. In the next trip to Agra you can see the Great Taj Mahal which is recognized as seventh winder of the world. A monument of immeasurable beauty, the beauty of Taj is beyond the scope of words. Further, on the last trip the travelers will go to Jaipur, full of rich and vibrant colors, glorious forts and palaces, desert lifestyle and majestic warriors. You can also book online the India Vacation Packages and get the best offers as per your desire.

Tour operators also provide various offers and discount on hotel and resort bookings. Go ahead, book your tickets and enjoy a tour to India that has always been one of the most sought after tourist destination for the wide variety of travel options it has.
Taj Mahal in India

Golden Triangle tours packages in Rajasthan

Golden Triangle tours packages in Rajasthan
Golden Triangle Tours

Jaipur tours are a huge option for those vacationers who not only want to trip stunning places but also want to learn the history of the different cities and towns discovers the ways and traditions of the local people, contribute in the cuisines of the regions and squander time celebrating the diverse cultural activities.

Jaipur are all about flashy clothes, plain lifestyle, custom properties, enlightening burlesque, historic ancestry and legends of Maharajas and Maharanis. The previous princely territory has seen magnificence and forth in the yesteryears and even in the present times the ritual of ostentation and majestic excesses persists at its tradition hotels, its night safaris, its majestic charms and appeal. On your Tours to Rajasthan pack your bags for an assignation with the country's renowned past, its tremendous architectural grandeur and its colorful art and lifestyle. Music is also an essential part of life in Rajasthan, and both devotional music and merriment music is acutely loved. The glorious heritage of the people of Rajasthan has been conserved in the ethnicity, the architecture and the ways of life. There is so much to travel around in Rajasthan. Tradition and civilization has been maintained in its purest character in lots of forms thus a trip to this land is a necessity with Golden Triangle tours.

Agra Tour Packages
Jaipur is the eye-catching capital city of Rajasthan. Its royal ancestry has sanctified it with copious stunning properties rehabilitated into generous modes of lodging in the current times. A bustling town in the desert state, Jaipur is overflowing with voyage opportunities, attracting loads of vacationers' every year. There are number of places to see in Jaipur and the sightseeing opportunities are practically limitless. The famous places for tourists in Jaipur are the City Palace, the Hawa Mahal, the Amber Fort, the Jal Mahal, JantaMantar, Moti Doongri, the Jaigarh Fort and the Nahargarh Fort. The cithas been home to the Rajput race and also shows influences of Mughal architecture and culture. Apart from this, one can also visit the various temples that are to be found in the city.

Trip to Rajasthan can be the cheapest and a bit expensive but it is dependent upon travelers' selection for the tour packages. For traveling in Rajasthan, many travel operators have designed lengthy and small Rajasthan tour packages.

Taj Mahal in India
Apart from sightseeing, the next favorite thing to do in Jaipur tours is shopping. The city of Jaipur boasts of bustling bazaars and markets which offer tourists a chance to buy every kind of good you can possibly imagine. From pottery, antiques and jewelry in semi-precious, precious and cheap verities to pottery, textiles, handicrafts, gems and leather goods, you can get just about everything in the markets of Jaipur. Some of the markets that you can pay a visit to are the Nehru Bazaar, Kishanpol Bazaar, Jauhari Bazaar and Mahiharon Ka Rasta.

Kerala Tours with Affordable Tour Packages Kerala

Kerala Holidays

Kerala Tours Packages Kerala Holiday Tour

Kerala Holidays
Are you looking for an unusual holidaying destination then look no further than Kerala a green paradise on earth world-famous as 'God's Own Country', gathers large number of visitors from every nook and corner of the world all the year round. Kerala is gifted with such natural bounties which never fail to grab the attention of any individual. Nature has gifted this state with such amazing attractions which let any one will fall in love with them. With just entering to this state the chance to get spellbind becomes doubles and more than it. It is an ideal holidaying destination for those who wish to spend their vacations in the perfect backdrop of nature. Due to its breathtaking attractions and all time wholesome climatic conditions it has been awarded with many national and international awards. Refreshing hill stations, palm-fringed beaches, pristine lagoons, exclusive backwaters, wildlife parks and ranges of floras and faunas are the few attractions that make Kerala a finest place.

Apart from these attractions there are many other things that give Kerala tourism an international recognition such as its exotic south-Indian food, hospitable and warm people, and excellent hotels especially Ayurvedic resorts. There are at least dozen reasons that why any one should choose Kerala as their honeymooning destination. Apart from commoners it is much appreciated by wildlife lovers and often visited by well-renowned media channels like National Geographic, Discovery and many more. Kerala is filled with bunch of attractions and destinations, all having their distinctive features. To explore all the attractions and destinations within very short period of time is however is not very possible thus here we are presenting the topnotch attractions of Kerala to you which are as listed below.

Hill stations

Being a tropical place Kerala is not only limited with few beaches or tropical green forests but it also gifted with innumerable refreshing hill stations that enhances the significance of the state. Wayanad, Munnar, Idukki, Devikulam are the must seen hill station of Kerala. Among many Munnar is considered one of the finest hill stations of Kerala often referred as 'Kashmir of South'. Picturesque meadows, mesmerizing waterfalls, wildlife parks, vast tea gardens, meandering rivers and ranges of floras and faunas are the few attractions of Munnar. This hill station is well-associated with hotels and resorts but most of the tourists prefer to stay at magnificent colonial bungalows which were built during British rule in India.


The heart-throb of the state, backwaters is an essential part of tour packages Kerala takes tourists in the beautiful world of water and wonders. Backwaters are the perfect combination of brackish lagoons, lakes, inlets and several rivers which team up together and form the breathtaking locale that can be well-explored and experienced through country's houseboats also known as Kettuvallams in traditional language.

Beach tour

Along with hill stations and backwaters, Kerala is gifted with innumerable palm-fringed beaches gives wonderful opportunity to the lover. Apart from there are many other things that can be experienced during Kerala tours such as its amazing and thrilling wildlife safari takes tourists through the ranges of floras and faunas.

Travel & Tourism related topics. She has authored many books on tour guide for Kerala Tourism Packages.