Thursday, March 8, 2012

With the year of India in Canada officially over - we bring you the new Travel Companion India Blog with new links to travel specialists, tourist spots and the latest news in the world of tourism.

Friday, August 5, 2011

Samosas in Bangalore

Just read this article on about it being the 'hot' season for samosas in Bangalore. Going to visit Bangalore? Give the Samosa a try - one of India's most famous snack foods with an array of fillings to choose from.


Bangalore:  During the holy month of Ramzan, Muslims across the city prefer breaking their fast with spicy samosas, thus shooting the sales to 90,000 pieces per day. And this figure is from Shivaji Nagar area alone. Last year, vendors made a fortune selling samosas in the area and claim that their profits lasted them six months. This year around, the excited men are lining up outside popular mosques in the city.

"Initially, Muslims use to like breaking fast during the month of Ramzan with a dry fruit mix consisting mainly of dates. The samosa trend started about a decade ago and is still going strong today," said Aslam Qureshi, a realtor in the area.

Spicy hotspots
Earlier, the Savera teashop on Broadway Road in Shivaji Nagar and the Mecca tea joint on Richmond Road were the two hot spots where people went to get samosas. Today however, small-time samosa vendors have become the hot favourites.
"People flock here every day for our special samosas. Last year we sold about 30,000 samosas every day of the Ramzan month. This year the sales have shot up dramatically," said Munawar Ahmed, owner of the Savera Hotel and tea shop.

Getting rich fast
In just one month, the turnover of the entire market touches Rs. 1.35 crore with each vendor making several lakhs. "I work as a part time samosa seller in the evening and make around Rs. 30,000 selling samosas for about two hours each day during Ramzan," said Arshad Chowdhury, a construction worker.

Mosque administrators have noticed that these spicy delicacies have bridged the gap between sections of Muslims across the city. "All sections of the Muslim community come together to pray under one roof and then gather outside the 35 mosques in Shivaji Nagar area to munch on samosas with the same spirit of unity," Aslam Qureshi explained.

Tasty bites
  • Each small vendor stocks up over 3,000 samosas for the evening
  • Apart from vegetarian samosas, mutton and beef are hot favourites during Ramzan
  • Samosas are priced at Rs. 5 each
  • Turnover of the market on the first day of Ramzan was about Rs. 4.5 lakh

Top Ten Indian Tourist Destinations

Even though India has hundreds of tourist attractions, the Top Ten destinations for the past decade seems to be the same:

New Delhi

Don't let this list deter you from visiting any of the other States or Union Territories. Check out the link to the Indian Travel Companion:

The second half of the book has details on every State and Union Terrirtory in India, and gives you information on the attractions, shopping and links to government websites.

Visiting India and need some advice or information?

Write to us here on the blog........and we will get back to you as soon as we can. Will put up an email id shortly so that you can email us as well.

Your Travel Companion
The India Blogger

Monday, June 13, 2011


The 12th International Indian Film Awards (IIFA) is like the Oscars of Indian cinema. For the first time, the awards and dance show is being held in North America, and Canada is the privileged host! From June 23rd to June 25th, the two day extravaganza will be held at the Rogers Centre (Awards ceremony) and the Ricoh Coliseum (Music and Fashion) in Toronto, Ontario.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Indian Premier League - The Worlds largest Sporting Event!!

The 2010 Winners - The Chennai Super Kings!

The Indian Premier League (IPL) Season 4 has begun!! Being played just days after the Cricket World Cup tournament (which India won by the way!!), the IPL T20 has grown to become one of the biggest sporting events of the world. Played every year during the Summer season (April/May), the IPL is watched by cricket lovers world over and is the only tournament played in India with cheerleaders and music bands adding to the already electric atmosphere in the sold out stadiums! 

Here is the schedule for the 2011 IPL tournament.

DateLocal/ISTNo.Match DetailsVenue
8-Apr-1120:001stChennai Super Kings vs Kolkata Knight Riders, 1st IPLChennai
9-Apr-1116:002ndDeccan Chargers vs Rajasthan Royals, 2nd IPLHyderabad
9-Apr-1120:003rdKochi Tuskers Kerala vs Royal Challengers Bangalore, 3rd IPLKochi
10-Apr-1116:004thDelhi Daredevils vs Mumbai Indians, 4th IPLDelhi
10-Apr-1120:005thPune Warriors vs Kings XI Punjab, 5th IPLNavi Mumbai
11-Apr-1120:006thKolkata Knight Riders vs Deccan Chargers, 6th IPLKolkata
12-Apr-1116:007thRajasthan Royals vs Delhi Daredevils, 7th IPLJaipur
12-Apr-1120:008thRoyal Challengers Bangalore vs Mumbai Indians, 8th IPLBangalore
13-Apr-1116:009thKings XI Punjab vs Chennai Super Kings, 9th IPLMohali
13-Apr-1120:0010thPune Warriors vs Kochi Tuskers Kerala, 10th IPLNavi Mumbai
14-Apr-1120:0011thDeccan Chargers vs Royal Challengers Bangalore, 11th IPLHyderabad
15-Apr-1116:0012thRajasthan Royals vs Kolkata Knight Riders, 12th IPLJaipur
15-Apr-1120:0013thMumbai Indians vs Kochi Tuskers Kerala, 13th IPLHyderabad
16-Apr-1116:0014thChennai Super Kings vs Royal Challengers Bangalore, 14th IPLChennai
16-Apr-1120:0015thDeccan Chargers vs Kings XI Punjab, 15th IPLHyderabad
17-Apr-1116:0016thPune Warriors vs Delhi Daredevils, 16th IPLNavi Mumbai
17-Apr-1120:0017thKolkata Knight Riders vs Rajasthan Royals, 17th IPLKolkata
18-Apr-1120:0018thKochi Tuskers Kerala vs Chennai Super Kings, 18th IPLKochi
19-Apr-1116:0019thDelhi Daredevils vs Deccan Chargers, 19th IPLDelhi
19-Apr-1120:0020thRoyal Challengers Bangalore vs Rajasthan Royals, 20th IPLBangalore
20-Apr-1116:0021stMumbai Indians vs Pune Warriors, 21st IPLMumbai
20-Apr-1120:0022ndKolkata Knight Riders vs Kochi Tuskers Kerala, 22nd IPLKolkata
21-Apr-1120:0023rdKings XI Punjab vs Rajasthan Royals, 23rd IPLMohali
22-Apr-1116:0024thKolkata Knight Riders vs Royal Challengers Bangalore, 24th IPLKolkata
22-Apr-1120:0025thMumbai Indians vs Chennai Super Kings, 25th IPLMumbai
23-Apr-1120:0026thDelhi Daredevils vs Kings XI Punjab, 26th IPLDelhi
24-Apr-1116:0027thDeccan Chargers vs Mumbai Indians, 27th IPLHyderabad
24-Apr-1120:0028thRajasthan Royals vs Kochi Tuskers Kerala, 28th IPLJaipur
25-Apr-1120:0029thChennai Super Kings vs Pune Warriors, 29th IPLChennai
26-Apr-1120:0030thDelhi Daredevils vs Royal Challengers Bangalore, 30th IPLDelhi
27-Apr-1116:0031stPune Warriors vs Chennai Super Kings, 31st IPLNavi Mumbai
27-Apr-1120:0032ndKochi Tuskers Kerala vs Deccan Chargers, 32nd IPLKochi
28-Apr-1120:0033rdDelhi Daredevils vs Kolkata Knight Riders, 33rd IPLDelhi
29-Apr-1116:0034thRajasthan Royals vs Mumbai Indians, 34th IPLJaipur
29-Apr-1120:0035thRoyal Challengers Bangalore vs Pune Warriors, 35th IPLBangalore
30-Apr-1116:0036thKochi Tuskers Kerala vs Delhi Daredevils, 36th IPLKochi
30-Apr-1120:0037thKolkata Knight Riders vs Kings XI Punjab, 37th IPLKolkata
1-May-1116:0038thRajasthan Royals vs Pune Warriors, 38th IPLJaipur
1-May-1120:0039thChennai Super Kings vs Deccan Chargers, 39th IPLChennai
2-May-1116:0040thMumbai Indians vs Kings XI Punjab, 40th IPLMumbai
2-May-1120:0041stDelhi Daredevils vs Kochi Tuskers Kerala, 41st IPLDelhi
3-May-1120:0042ndDeccan Chargers vs Kolkata Knight Riders, 42nd IPLHyderabad
4-May-1116:0043rdChennai Super Kings vs Rajasthan Royals, 43rd IPLChennai
4-May-1120:0044thPune Warriors vs Mumbai Indians, 44th IPLNavi Mumbai
5-May-1116:0045thKochi Tuskers Kerala vs Kolkata Knight Riders, 45th IPLKochi
5-May-1120:0046thDeccan Chargers vs Delhi Daredevils, 46th IPLHyderabad
6-May-1120:0047thRoyal Challengers Bangalore vs Kings XI Punjab, 47th IPLBangalore
7-May-1116:0048thKolkata Knight Riders vs Chennai Super Kings, 48th IPLKolkata
7-May-1120:0049thMumbai Indians vs Delhi Daredevils, 49th IPLMumbai
8-May-1116:0050thRoyal Challengers Bangalore vs Kochi Tuskers Kerala, 50th IPLBangalore
8-May-1120:0051stKings XI Punjab vs Pune Warriors, 51st IPLMohali
9-May-1120:0052ndRajasthan Royals vs Chennai Super Kings, 52nd IPLJaipur
10-May-1116:0053rdDeccan Chargers vs Pune Warriors, 53rd IPLHyderabad
10-May-1120:0054thKings XI Punjab vs Mumbai Indians, 54th IPLMohali
11-May-1120:0055thRajasthan Royals vs Royal Challengers Bangalore, 55th IPLJaipur
12-May-1120:0056thChennai Super Kings vs Delhi Daredevils, 56th IPLChennai
13-May-1120:0057thKochi Tuskers Kerala vs Kings XI Punjab, 57th IPLIndore
14-May-1116:0058thRoyal Challengers Bangalore vs Kolkata Knight Riders, 58th IPLBangalore
14-May-1120:0059thMumbai Indians vs Deccan Chargers, 59th IPLMumbai
15-May-1120:0060thKings XI Punjab vs Delhi Daredevils, 60th IPLDharmasala
15-May-1120:0061stKochi Tuskers Kerala vs Rajasthan Royals, 61st IPLIndore
16-May-1120:0062ndPune Warriors vs Deccan Chargers, 62nd IPLNavi Mumbai
17-May-1120:0063rdKings XI Punjab vs Royal Challengers Bangalore, 63rd IPLDharmasala
18-May-1120:0064thChennai Super Kings vs Kochi Tuskers Kerala, 64th IPLChennai
19-May-1120:0065thPune Warriors vs Kolkata Knight Riders, 65th IPLNavi Mumbai
20-May-1120:0066thMumbai Indians vs Rajasthan Royals, 66th IPLMumbai
21-May-1116:0067thKings XI Punjab vs Deccan Chargers, 67th IPLDharmasala
21-May-1120:0068thDelhi Daredevils vs Pune Warriors, 68th IPLDelhi
22-May-1116:0069thRoyal Challengers Bangalore vs Chennai Super Kings, 69th IPLBangalore
22-May-1120:0070thKolkata Knight Riders vs Mumbai Indians, 70th IPLKolkata
24-May-1120:0071stTBC vs TBC, Qualifier 1 IPLMumbai
25-May-1120:0072ndTBC vs TBC, Eliminator IPLMumbai
27-May-1120:0073rdTBC vs TBC, Qualifier 2 IPLChennai
28-May-1120:00FinalTBC vs TBC, Final IPLChennai

Friday, April 1, 2011

How do you make one billion people disappear?

Any tourist who happened to be in India last Wednesday,  must have been wondering if evacuation orders had been given to over a billion people and where on earth did they all go?  Indian streets, stores and restaurants were virtual ghost towns. The reason? The entire country was gripped in Cricket fever as India played against Pakistan in the semi-finals of the Cricket World Cup. 

Televisions, on-line streaming videos and radio's relayed the war like match to billions in India and abroad, who watched with families and friends, biting their nails in anticipation of every ball hit and whether it would be a catch or not. Even those not interested in Cricket would have been caught up in the tension, anticipation and cheer of every stroke, run or near miss...just from the energy of those around them. Needless to say, India went on to win the match (followed by the spontaneous cheers of the same billion people and lakhs of rupees worth of crackers burst to celebrate the historic win) and will now play the finals this Saturday against Srilanka in Mumbai. 
So come Saturday -  India turns Ghost Country once again!

Friday, March 25, 2011

Launch of the India Travel companion 2011

Irwin from Indigo, on stage for the un-veiling of the book with Ronjon Lahiri, Director of India Tourism Govt of India - Toronto, and Preeti Saran, the Consul General of India in Toronto.

People checking out the book.

Interviewed by a local television channel.
Posted by Picasa

Thursday, March 24, 2011

The Rally of the Himalayas....'Raid de Himalayas'

Did you know that the 'Raid de Himalayas' in India, is the world's highest rally? The grueling circuit through the mountains puts to test the spirit and mettle of motor rallying enthusiasts.

The Raid-de-Himalaya is India's toughest and most demanding motor sport rally. It is open to both car and bike enthusiasts and for professional as well as amateurs. The participants drive through some of the world's highest motorable roads and passes in the Himalayas like Jalori Pass, Rohtang Pass, Kunzum La, Baralacha La, Tanglang La & Khardung La and  also through the inhospitable terrains in the Lahual and Spiti valleys in the Ladakh region. Most of the drive is through boulders, snow capped peaks, gushing streams and at times, temperature below -20 degree Celsius. On an average, a participant covers a distance of 300 km every day in this approximately 1800 km and week-long motoring event.

Every year, more and more people participate in the Raid-de-Himalaya, many of them from abroad. In the past couple of years as many as 175+ teams participated in car and bike categories. The 'Raid-de-Himalaya' is the only Indian motor sport event listed on the 'off-road rallies' calendar of FIM (Federation Internationale Motorcyclisme), Geneva, Switzerland. Only 12 international motoring events world-wide are listed in this calendar.
The Raid-de-Himalaya is held in October every year. For more details please take a look at this website:

The Indian 'Curry'

Common to all parts of India is the famous Indian 'curry'. The word 'curry' basically has come to mean, 'gravy', so ordering a chicken 'curry' in one place will not be the same as the 'curry' of another. The main ingredients of a curry can vary enormously. Curries are made with a different blend of ingredients, combinations of spices, herbs, onions, tomatoes, ginger, garlic, coconut milk etc. They are eaten with either rice or Indian bread called 'rotis' or 'naans'.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Welcome to the Travel Companion India Blog!

January 24th of 2011 was the launch of the India Travel Companion in Toronto, Canada. Made for the 'Year of India in Canada - 2011', the book has quickly become the 'must have' travel companion for anyone travelling to India.

Why is this book so special? Different from the usual run of the mill guide books, the travel companion has features on everything from culture, cuisine, religions and the geography of India, to in-depth tourist attractions in every State and Union territory.

From relaxing on a beach, going on a trek, riding an elephant or camel, playing golf, having an ayurvedic massage, visiting monuments, forts and palaces, fishing, bird watching....we could go on and on..but we won't. These are just samples of what you could be doing in India right now!!

From mountains, to deserts, to beaches and back waters, from rain forests and hill stations to rivers and plantations, India really has the best of all worlds, so come and explore this wonderful journey to the exotic land of India..................

To see the book online, please follow the link given on the right side of the blog page. For a hard copy of the book, please email us at