Wandering minstrels.

The Bhopas are itinerant folk musicians of Rajasthan. I came across this couple in the ancient town of Mandore. These are not staged shots.

Bhopa in Mandore, Rajasthan

Bhopa with his Ravanahatta, Mandore, Rajasthan
5D, 70-200L f/2.8 IS

Bhopi at Mandore

Bhopi and child
5D, 70-200L f/2.8 IS

Bhopa and Bhopi in Mandore, Rajasthan

Bhopa and Bhopi
5D, 70-200L f/2.8 IS

  • Damodar Vinayak Bale - August 5, 2014 - 9:07 am

    INDIA i.e. BHARAT, is full of costumes, colours and musical instruments right from ‘Kashmir to Kanyakumari’ and from ‘Kokrasar to Kachha’. It’s so immense and worth, that there is no need of looking to western ways of living.
    But ‘Alas’ the very cultural language of this great Nation, namely, “SANSKRIT” was suppressed from the PEOPLE, so that they could never unite.
    If “SANSKRIT” language could be ‘revived, promoted and propagated’ by way of “NATIONAL EDUCATIONAL SYSTEM”, PEOPLE would surely be united NATIONALLY.ReplyCancel

Goa’s best known falls.

Doodhsagar translates to “Ocean of Milk.” This spectacular 310 metres waterfall cascades down a cliff just inside Goa‘s eastern border with Karnataka. The flow peaks during the monsoon months of July and August. I made the trek last year in early August and was met with just the right conditions: wet, squally, misty.

Dudhsagar waterfall, Goa

Up close
5D Mark III, TS-E 24L II

Doodhsagar waterfall, Goa

5D Mark III, Zeiss ZE 50 f/2 MP

Doodhsagar waterfall, Goa

Freight train crossing
5D Mark III, 70-200L f/2.8 IS II

Dudhsagar waterfall, Goa

5D Mark III, TS-E 24L II


I took this photo of an old photo from the Central Library Archives in Panjim. It is by the legendary photographic team of Souza & Paul who were active from 1890 to around 1910 and to whom we owe so many photographs of that era.

Doodhsagar archival photo

Doodhsagar circa 1900
© Souza & Paul, Central Library Archives, Panjim


The falls are accessible via the regular train. However, the totality of the experience can be had only over the land trail and during the monsoons that is not an easy undertaking. The journey begins in village of Collem (Kullem) with a motorcycle ride alongside railway tracks. After that comes a trek through dense jungle. En route we ford a couple of swollen streams and then negotiate a steep mountainside. Another hike along the railway tracks brings us to the base of Doodhsagar. I have put together a short slideshow of the excursion below.

  • srikanth - August 12, 2014 - 9:19 am

    Hi Rajan
    Have been a big fan of your music blog for many years now. Lately have got addicted to your Goa views/snaps. Fab stuff! One dumb Q- would you rate the doodhsagar trek as tough or doable by 40-something’s?

  • Priyaranjan Anand Marathe - August 4, 2014 - 7:08 am

    Nice clicks Rajan. I have a question. How did you protect your camera and gear from the mist and rain?ReplyCancel

  • Arun - August 3, 2014 - 8:19 am

    This, I suppose, is the spectacular waterfall that is seen in the movie Chennai Express?ReplyCancel

Ocean treasures.

At the black beach in Jökulsárlón in south Iceland. All the photos were taken handheld and I was especially mindful of the tricky situation given my mishap here some years ago.

Note: Conversion from ProPhoto colourspace to sRGB for web viewing kills the colour.

Blue iceberg at Jökulsárlón, Iceland

Diamond in the rough seas
5D Mark III, Zeiss ZE 50 f/2 MP


The dance of colours with the advancing waves was a delight to watch.

Blue iceberg at Jökulsárlón, Iceland
Blue iceberg at Jökulsárlón, Iceland

Changing colours
5D Mark III, Zeiss ZE 50 f/2 MP

Icebergs at Jökulsárlón, Iceland

Black beach, Jökulsárlón
5D Mark III, Zeiss ZE 15 f/2.8 Distagon

  • Börkur Hrólfsson - July 29, 2014 - 12:49 pm

    Ahh, the ever changing masterpiece of nature ! :-)ReplyCancel

  • Arun - July 28, 2014 - 7:22 am

    The colors are otherworldly!ReplyCancel

    • Rajan Parrikar - July 28, 2014 - 9:47 am

      Unfortunately, the conversion from ProPhoto to sRGB colourspace significantly affects the richness of the blue.ReplyCancel

Amid the astounding ruins of Hampi.

The Vijayanagara ruins in Hampi have been deemed a World Heritage Site. I went there in 2007 before grand plans were unveiled to transform the area into a tourist zoo.

This shrine cut into rock is at the Malayavanta Raghunath temple. Notice the parakeet in the third photo.

Shrine near Malayavanta Raghunath temple, Hampi

Offerings to Hanuman
5D, 24-105L

Chanting Hanuman chalisa at Shiva shrine, Hampi

Immersed in Hanuman Chalisa
5D, 24-105L

Shrine near Malayavanta Raghunath temple, Hampi

Shrine in Rock, Hampi
5D, 24-105L

  • ot - July 22, 2014 - 11:09 am

    The first picture is a beauty Dr. Rajan. You might have more pictures of the spectacular ruins from that trip.ReplyCancel

High above Death Valley.

High in the Funeral Mountains of the Amargosa Range, Chloride Cliff offers sweeping views of the north end of Death Valley from a vantage similar to that of Dante’s View and Aguereberry Point. It is, however, much more difficult to access than the other two points, requiring a high clearance 4WD vehicle to negotiate the rugged – and at times hairy – mountain route. The nearby settlement of Chloride City took root in 1871 following a mining claim.

I set out on a cold and dark December morning with my trusted guide Death Valley Jim. Check out the video clip of our small adventure.

Amargosa range seen from Chloride Cliff, Death Valley

Belt of Venus over Corkscrew Peak (left) and Thimble Peak (right)
5D Mark III, 70-200L f/2.8 IS II

Amargosa range from Chloride Cliff, Death Valley

Morning glow, Grapevine Mountains
5D Mark III, 70-200L f/2.8 IS II

First light on Corkscrew Peak, Chloride Cliff, Death Valley

First light, Corkscrew Peak
5D Mark III, 100-400L IS

Corkscrew Peak from Chloride Cliff, Death Valley

Colours, Corkscrew Peak
5D Mark III, 100-400L IS

Mesquite Sand dunes and Stovepipe Wells from Chloride Cliff

North end of Death Valley (sand dunes and Stovepipe Wells are seen)
5D Mark III, 70-200L f/2.8 IS II


Drive to Chloride Cliff, Death Valley
To see the video in higher resolution, go here.

  • Börkur Hrólfsson - July 20, 2014 - 1:26 pm

    Rough ride, but looks fun ! ;-)ReplyCancel

  • michel chamberland - July 20, 2014 - 1:01 pm

    love that last shot with the dunes and stovepipeReplyCancel

  • Milind Khot - July 20, 2014 - 10:36 am

    Brilliant photos Rajan!. I enjoy your pictures.ReplyCancel