Day trip to Fort Tikona

This weekend we ventured outside of the hustle and bustle of Mumbai to the tranquil peace of Fort Tikona.  Setting off early to avoid walking in the midday sun we drove south of Mumbai in the direction of Pune.  Fort Tikona is located near Kamshet around 60 km from Pune

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Tikona (Marathi: तिकोना) also known as Vitandgad) is the dominant hill fort in Maval in western India.  The village nearest to the fort is called Tikona-Peth.

Once you get beyond the suburbs of Mumbai the drive to Tikona becomes very rural and beautiful.  We even found ourself stuck in a goat traffic jam.

You can drive to the bottom of the fort trail and park.  There are no amenities, but enough foliage to protect your dignity if you do need a pre trek toilet stop!  There is one obvious route to the top of the fort which gently winds round the peak until you reach a stone staircase to the top.  The trek is fairly easy but you will need sensible shoes with grip as the stoney trail can be slippy.  We also took lots of water and a few snacks.

Along the route there are 3 of four vantage points including a statue of a monkey and a small shrine/temple.  The final climb is a very steep stone staircase we recommend using the cable rope which has been fitted to the wall by a previous explorer.  Once at the top there is a shaded area where you can rest and admire the view, but watch out for Monkeys they like to steel your food.

Dia de los Muertos – Day of the Dead Mumbai

About KrantiScreen Shot 2015-11-02 at 09.05.10

Kranti is a non-governmental organization (NGO) that empowers girls from Mumbai’s red-light areas to become agents of social change. Kranti believes that, when girls have access to the same education, training, and opportunities as people from privileged backgrounds, they can become exceptional leaders.

This weekend Kranti held there first day of the dead event.  A Mexican tradition similar to Halloween.  Day of the Dead (SpanishDía de Muertos) is a Mexican holiday celebrated throughout Mexico, in particular the Central and South regions, and acknowledged around the world in other cultures. The holiday focuses on gatherings of family and friends to pray for and remember friends and family members who have died, and help support their spiritual journey.

The Kranti girls cooked a range of traditional mexican foods and had made festive decorations to develop their home including very cute matchboxes, and Handmade sugar Calaveras!

Handmade sugar Calaveras! Screen Shot 2015-11-02 at 09.02.39  Screen Shot 2015-11-02 at 09.04.50

Earlier in the day the Kranti support workers had organised a lesson for the girls to explain the cultural foundations of the Día de Muertos and help them to understand the festival and the ways it is celebrated in Mexico.

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The AWC Mela – supporting Charities in the Mumbai Community

This weekend I attended the AWC shopping Mela.  An  an initiative  by the American Women’s Club Mumbai to provide a platform to for Mumbai Businesses and NGO’s.  Coinciding with Halloween the event had a spooky edge.

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The event held at the Trident Hotel brought together the community to give back to the charities present whilst also selecting nice gifts to spoil their own families with over the festive season.  Themed gifts ranged from Halloween, to Diwali and Christmas.

Participating charities included:

Mumbai Businesses included:

  • Baaya
  • koelboli
  • Pinky Saraf PVS
  • Reality Tours and Travel
  • Seven Seas Traders
  • Kyonio
  • Tresmode

A little bit about AWC:

The AWC was established in 1928 to provide a home away from home for expatriates in Mumbai. The group is a completely voluntary not for profit with a constitution, board members and committee members.

The club hope that through their charitable endeavors, they are able to  affect a positive change in the Mumbai community.  The AWC support a range of charities which enhance the lives of the not so privileged girls and women  in areas of education, career interest development, health and nutrition including medical.