From Delhi to Agra, Ranthambore to Jaipur and the ‘lake city’ of Udaipur, Rajasthan filled us with excitement. At times the cities instilled a wee bit of fear and shock in us, it should be said, but we were experiencing it for the first time, with no make-up on nor any frills. ‘This is India’ is a commonly said phrase which we used ourselves on more than one occasion to make light of a fair few frustrating situations. For its many flaws, no one can deny that Rajasthan is heavily laden with jaw-dropping, shiny and exceptionally well looked after palaces, forts and magical places. It has wonderful qualities; not least the vibrancy of its street life (especially during wedding season), its smiley children and its unfaltering passion for religion – something which is certainly not exclusive to Rajasthan. After a while though we found ourselves longing to get away from the dust…

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When we stepped off the modern airport express metro line which brought us from Indira Gandhi International Airport into New Delhi, we were confident we could find our way to our hotel with ease – things looked simple enough. It seems though that the metro had lured us into a false sense of security, giving us a soft and gentle introduction to the city of Delhi that was quite the polar-opposite of what we were about to be confronted with. Bleary-eyed but alert, nothing could prepare us for the rollercoaster of emotions that engulfed us within seconds of exiting the station. Any chance of finding our feet or getting our bearings vanished in an instant. Utter chaos surrounded us in every direction. The well-known saying that India is an ‘assault on the senses’ is most definitely true and Delhi was no exception. We looked left, then right, before repeating the…

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Our afternoon started with the gentle tinkling of silver spoons on dainty white teacups and saucers in the Tiffin Room of Raffles Hotel in Singapore.  We sat at our table for two in what really were beautiful and very elegant surroundings. We poured ourselves a cup of refreshing Earl Grey tea from shiny silver teapots before three tiers of delicious sandwiches and  miniature cakes were carefully placed in front of us, waiting to be devoured. We discovered a slightly unusual variation to the typical afternoon tea us Brits are accustomed to when we spotted a huge pile of dim sum drizzled in a sweet barbecue sauce in the corner of the room at a buffet cart. These dumplings were seemingly to be eaten alongside our sandwiches and jam-smothered scones. We looked at each other with slightly confused expressions on our faces, but decided we had better try this new and exciting combination of flavours. I am not…

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After looking through the enormous stack of travel brochures and magazines which had been piling up in our living room over the months prior to our wedding, we came up with a master plan for our honeymoon. We would start by exploring bustling Singapore for a few days whilst we were still buzzing from the excitement of the wedding, before gradually floating back down to earth with a gracious thud on a tropical island which captured the typical honeymoon wish list: white sands and glistening blue seas. For this we chose the Indonesian islands of Bali and Lombok. It didn’t take us long to choose our hotel in Singapore – one look at the Marina Bay Sands and we were sold. I doubt its space age demeanour is everyone’s cup of tea but whoever came up with the idea of housing an infinity pool inside what looks like a boat and then balancing it…

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