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Edutours 2015

“Sometimes you will never know the value of a moment until it becomes a memory” ~Dr. Suess

Every year as always the school embarked on our annual journey of discovery across the country in different destinations as far north as Dalhousie and Nainital and as far south as the Andaman and Nicobar Islands and even across the Palk Strait to Sri Lanka.

Tipu’s Trail in Mysore and Bangalore: Grade 6 

The grade 6 students of embarked on a 5-day journey through Mysore and Bangalore, where they discovered the rich history, architecture, flora, fauna, traditions and small-scale industries of this region. While they marvelled at the intricate carvings of the Mysore Palace and the grandeur of the Brindavan Botanical Gardens, the highlight of their tour certainly was the day spent learning about the sericulture industry that is synonymous with this part of Karnataka. They got an insight into the entire process, starting with a visit to a mulberry farm right up to the final weaving of silk products

Another unique feature of this trip was a visit to the town of Chennapatna that is famous for its wooden toys and lacquer ware. The students experienced first-hand the traditional techniques of manufacturing wooden toys, and a few lucky students even got the chance to try their hand at creating some of their own!

The nature–lovers in the group spent an unforgettable morning watching numerous migratory birds nesting in their natural habitat at the Ranganathittu Bird Sanctuary, from pelicans to painted storks! They were then spell-bound with their close encounter with the Bengal tiger at the Bannerghatta National Park:

As the students returned to school at the end of this trip, they came back with not just a whole lot of valuable experienced-based learning, but also a ton of unforgettable memories.


Jaipur and Ranthambore: Grade 7

Grade 7 had a wonderful exposure to historical and natural environment. It was indeed a splendid experience for everyone. After the concrete jungle which they are surrounded by, the pristine environment of Ranthambhor and the opportunity to view the majestic tiger in his natural habitat was the highlight of this Edu-tour.

The weather was very cold, but the children enjoyed themselves, sipping hot beverages before starting for safari. The food and stay at Pug Mark resort on periphery of Ranthambore was very comfortable and students enjoyed themselves, playing and reveling in the freedom of green lawns. Arguably one of the best wildlife reserves of the country, Ranthambhore is now one of the last remaining patches of untouched forest left for the tiger. The tiger still roams here with all its glory, and our children were lucky to catch a glimpse of this majestic beast in all its glory      

Apart from the Tiger, Ranthambhore is also home to the Leopard, Jungle cat, Jackal, Sambar, Chital, Nilgai, Sloth Bear, Common Langurs, Marsh Crocodile and a lot of migratory waterfowl. Some rare animals like the Caracal are also one of the denizens of this magnificent Tiger Reserve. The imposing Ranthambhore Fort is also a major attraction.

Our next destination was Jaipur a city truly for royals as it had so much historical value and beautiful palaces to explore and understand India’s glorious past. Rajasthan's beautiful Pink City Jaipur, was the stronghold of a clan of rulers whose three hill forts and series of palaces in the city are important attractions. Known as the Pink City because of the colour of the stone used exclusively in the walled city, Jaipur's bazaars sell embroidered leather shoes, blue pottery, tie and dye scarves and other exotic wares. Jantar Mantar gave students the idea of India’s knowledge of astronomy and working of solar clock.

Students later explored the traditional market famous for its fine artifacts and blue pottery, tie and dye scarves and other exotic wares.


Jim Corbett National Park and Nainital: Grade 8

It was an exciting fun filled trip as Grade 8 went on trip of exploration through the beautiful Sal covered forests of Kumaon. It took us a full day’s travelling by airplane and bus to reach Jim Corbett National Park, and we were entranced by the beauty of it.

The students loved the morning chill as we went on the morning safari and the beauty of the dark lush forests made up for the disappointment of not being able to see the tiger. But we did get a chance to see herds of sambhar deer and the most beautiful and colourful birds. The afternoon was spent fruitfully being engaged in community service where the students painted the outside wall of a village school. They interacted with the students a little and also found time to play basketball in their playground.

The evening was full of excitement as we all ventured out into the forest with only the aid of torches on a night walk through the forest. It was a different feeling altogether of experiencing the forest at night, listening to the sounds of the forest, looking at stars on a clear night sky sitting beside a flowing river in complete darkness.

The third day saw the students venturing out on adventure activities like river crossing and valley crossing. The river was fast flowing and icy cold and it was rather a challenging task for students. So while some of them took up the challenge; some simply took the time to relax by the river side, playing by the river and enjoying the fresh air and the bright sunshine. It was overall a relaxing and fun day.
The next day we were off to Nainital, on our way we visited the Jim Corbett Museum and got to know a little bit about the life of the famous hunter who later became an active conservationist.

The following day was spent entirely exploring the beautiful town of Nainital, we got to view the beauty of the Western Himalayan range from the Snow Point where we went up by ropeway. We spent the afternoon boating on the serene and beautiful lake and shopping for candles and knickknacks on Mall Road.

The last day came upon us and the five days seemed to have gone by in a flash as we travelled all the way by bus to Delhi and took our flight back to Mumbai with beautiful and fond memories.


Jodhpur and Jaisalmer
: Ggrade 9 

Students of grade 9 went for an Edu-tour to Jodhpur and Jaisalmer. They had an insight into the world of the royals when they visited historic forts and palaces – Umaid Bhavan, Jaisalmer Fort and Patwon ki Haveli.

At the hotel, they were welcomed with a traditional tikka and garland and they relished the Rajasthani ‘dal batti’. The hotel was comfortable. An exciting experience was staying in a tent for one night as most of them had never stayed in tents.

The desert safari was the highlight of the trip with camel rides and other activities to entertain one and all.

It was heart-warming to see our young students befriend and interact freely with the local community.

This proved to be a stimulating experience- the community members were dancers who performed regularly for a living, so our students took the opportunity to learn the dance steps and join in the fun and frolic.

A visit to the Suzlon Wind mill was an eye opener for all our students to understand the workings of a business. A trip to the Border Security Force (BSF) base enlightened our students on security in our country. They were thrilled to see the ammunition.

Evidently the students came back satiated with the entire experience, be it the accommodation, the food, the sites or the people. As is usual, our students indulged in shopping for trinkets and memorabilia that they could take home to family and friends. Students made new and lasting friendships as this was a wonderful opportunity to bond with their peers.


Amritsar and Dalhousie: Grade 10 

The last educational tour for batch of 2015! From 16th to 21st, we, the students of grade 10, visited the city of Amritsar and the breath-taking hill station of Dalhousie.

From the golden temple to the Wagah border, we visited every nook and corner of the Punjabi city. We drank the heavenly sweet lassie coating our mouths with the white moustaches and tasted the butter-filled Punjabi parathas.

On the third day, we left for a six hour journey to Dalhousie. Although, quite tiresome, our moods soon lifted as we saw the majestic peaks of the Himalayas. In the evening we enjoyed steaming hot plates of Maggi, with frozen hands, after finishing our adventure activities.

The next day we were whisked off into small vans and taken up to a snow covered peak. There, before we knew it, we were buried with snow. Snow balls were being thrown everywhere!

Our last day, was a tear-filled one. Due to weather conditions, everyone was overjoyed to learn that our flight had been delayed by two and half hours. As we waited, we reminisced about our two days in the bitter cold, huddling for warmth in the cold biting air of Dalhousie and as we basked in the holy water of the golden temple.


Sri Lanka: Grade 11

Set in the Indian Ocean in South Asia, the tropical island nation is a place where the original soul of Buddhism still flourishes and where nature's beauty remains abundant and unspoilt.

In the wee hours, on the 16th January we landed at the commercial capital, Colombo. En-route to the hotel of stay we had a city tour along the palm fringed coastline and the city which displays a rich colonial heritage .

In the evening we visited the Orphanage where we interacted and played with the kids.

On the next day enroute to Kandy, an UNESCO heritage site, we visited the Pinnaewala Elephant Orphanage which has the largest herd of captive elephants in the world.

Kandy had beautifully carved houses, palaces and temples which are preserved more than 500 years. We visited the Temple of Tooth, one of the most sacred Buddhist pilgrimage sites which house the sacred tooth of Lord Buddha.

With a multitude of roads winding through expanding mountains, lush green forests, paddy fields, verdant tea gardens, with mild temperatures Nuwara Eliya provided an ideal setting to an unforgettable experience. On our journey we visited the tea plantation estate and the factory.

White water rafting was the highlight of the trip, it was enjoyed thoroughly. It is really an unique destination which offers diversity of attraction from beaches, mountains, wildlife to ancient cities, artistic monuments, unparalleled biodiversity and topographical variation.


Andaman Islands:
Grade 12

In January 2015, an enthusiastic lot of Grade 12 students (IBDP and A levels) took off on the last trip of their school lives. They left behind a huge part of themselves… their phones!! But, they packed into their backpacks their spirit for adventure!

Five days and four nights of non-stop, action-packed events!! From scuba diving, snorkelling, volleyball and swimming at the beach to camp fire cooking and engaging sight-seeing visits… our students have done it all. We all exited Mumbai airport on the 20th of January with only one thought on all our minds… We must certainly go back to the Andamans again.

We all look forward to Edu-tours in the next academic year………………till then the memories will keep us going….!!!