Thursday, July 28, 2016

The rise and fall of Yahoo

Yahoo announced that it will sell its core assets to Verizon for a mere $4.8 billion. This is only slightly more than Verizon paid for AOL — another washed up dot-com-era company — last year.

Yahoo’s market capitalization reached $125 billion in 2000. Over the next 16 years, it steadily tumbled — mostly due to inaction and missed opportunities.

You could fill an entire MBA course with case studies of all the strategic blunders Yahoo has made. I’ll save you some student debt and give you the skinny right here, in just 5 minutes.

Mistake #1: Yahoo confused being in the right place — at the right time — with being smart.

If Yahoo had launched a year or two later, they probably would have been irrelevant. They rose to dominance in large part by benefitting from what Y-Combinator cofounder Paul Graham — who worked there — called a “de facto ponzi scheme”:
“Investors were excited about the Internet. One reason they were excited was Yahoo’s revenue growth. So they invested in new Internet startups. The startups then used the money to buy ads on Yahoo to get traffic. Which caused yet more revenue growth for Yahoo, and further convinced investors the Internet was worth investing in.”

The growing revenues from this runaway feedback loop tricked Yahoo’s management into thinking that they were smart, when really they were just lucky.

As the dominant web portal, money came easy for Yahoo. They never bothered to build a strong engineering culture, like Facebook and Google did. After all, why should Yahoo invest in its underlying technology when they could just hire more sales people to sell banner ads?

Yahoo’s initial success gave them the hubris they needed to start acquiring other companies, thinking that they could run those companies better than the companies could run themselves.

Here are some companies that Yahoo bought:
  • Geocities ($3.6 billion)
  • Tumblr ($1.1 billion)
  • Mark Cuban’s ($5.7 billion)

Radio. On. The internet. That’s right — I’m based off of Mark Cuban. and Tumblr are widely considered two of the worst acquisitions of all time, and were largely written off as losses. In less than 10 years, Geocities went from being the third most visited website on earth to being shut down everywhere but Japan.
What remains of the $3.6 billion dollar Geocities acquisition.

Mistake #2: Yahoo forgot what it was that got them there.

Distracted by all the acquisitions, Yahoo’s leadership forgot about its healthy core products. Here are a few multi-billion dollar industries it ceded to new entrants:
  • Yahoo Mail lost to GMail
  • Yahoo Answers lost to Quora
  • Flickr lost to Instagram

And most humiliating of all, Yahoo Search lost to Google Search — to such an extent that in 2009, Yahoo scrapped their 13 year-old search engine in favor of licensing Bing Search, which Microsoft had just launched.

These were all services where Yahoo had a multi-year incumbent lead, with millions of active users. They had the funds. They had the traffic. They could have experimented and improved upon these services. But they failed to take the initiative. Instead, they got out-designed and out-engineered at every turn.

Mistake #3: Yahoo slaughtered its golden goose while it was still producing eggs.

In 2005, Yahoo cofounder Jerry Yang made one of the smartest investments in history — he purchased 40% of Chinese e-commerce site Alibaba for $1 billion.

Today Alibaba is worth more than $200 billion, and it’s still growing. That means that Yahoo’s stake in Alibaba must be worth $80 billion dollars!
Alibaba founder and CEO Jack Ma, ready to correct me.

Except, wait. In 2012, Yahoo decided to sell off significant portions of its Alibaba stock. They sold even more in 2014.

Yahoo thought they were pretty clever at the time, because they profited a few billion dollars off of these sales.

Today, Yahoo only owns 15% of Alibaba, but that asset alone is worth $30 billion — six times as much as all of Yahoo’s core businesses.

But, oh, that bittersweet $50 billion that they let get away.

Mistake #4: Yahoo fell for CEOs who were professional professionals.

You may think Marissa Mayer was a bad CEO. She did, after all, preside over Yahoo’s disastrous Tumblr acquisition in 2013 and sale of Alibaba stock in 2014. And she did little to slow Yahoo’s descent.

But Mayer looks like a business genius when you compare her to the managers who preceded her.

Instead of promoting executives from within, Yahoo chose to hire from the “professional CEO” circuit. And they did not choose wisely.

Scott Thompson kicked off his tenure as CEO by laying off 2,000 people. Then he sold a ton of Yahoo’s Alibaba stock (which, as we established, would have been worth tens of billions of dollars today).

He was so worried about appearing qualified to run a tech company that hestraight-up lied about having a degree in computer science.

At first, Yahoo’s board doubted this accusation because it was coming from an activist shareholder.

But then the university Thompson attended publicly confirmed that they didn’t even have a computer science program back when he had attended.

A public relations fiasco ensued, and Yahoo quickly fired Thompson. He had only worked there for 130 days. Despite all this, Yahoo ended up paying him $7.3 million for his time there.

And then, there’s Terry Semel, who is considered one of the worst CEOs of all time.
Not the look you want to see on your CEO’s face.

Semel failed to acquire Google when Yahoo got its second opportunity to do so. Then he proceeded to do nothing to stop Google from devastating Yahoo’s previous dominance of the search industry.

Semel also botched acquisitions of both Facebook and DoubleClick (the technology that became the centerpiece of Google’s advertising empire).

And after all of these missteps, Semel blew his one shot at redemption: he turned down Microsoft’s offer of $40 billion to buy Yahoo outright.

The real kicker is that, over the 7 years that Semel drove the company into the ground, Yahoo compensated him with half a billion dollars.

Mistake #5: Yahoo let their assumptions blind them to new opportunities.

Larry Page and Sergey Brin tried to sell Google to Yahoo in 1998. They only wanted $1 million.

Yahoo rejected them because they wanted their users to spend more time on Yahoo directories, where they would be exposed to banner ads. Better search — like the kind Google was offering — would quickly route users away from Yahoo.

It didn’t occur to Yahoo that doing what was best for users might ultimately be best for the company. Or that Google might use this technology to, you know, compete with Yahoo.
Yahoo cofounder Jerry Yang once met with Google founders Sergey Brin and Larry Page. Yang’s pose is — in retrospect — quite appropriate.

Wednesday, July 13, 2016

A simple guide to the Pokémania Pokemon Go

If you’ve been on the internet — or, um, outside — lately, you may have noticed that a game called Pokémon Go is suddenly taking the world by storm. It may have you wondering, especially if you were born before 1984, just what the hell is going on.

Pokémon is a Nintendo franchise that launched in the 1990s. In its world, "trainers" travel the world to catch varied monsters called Pokémon — rats, dragons, swordlike creatures, and more — and use these critters to fight each other. The trainer’s goal is to "catch ’em all," as the franchise’s slogan suggests, and become a Pokémon master by defeating prestigious trainers known as gym leaders and Elite Four.

So what is Pokémon Go? Unlike previous Pokémon games, it’s not for Nintendo’s handheld consoles; it’s a free download for Android and iOS devices. It also doesn’t play at all like previous Pokémon games: Although the goal is still to catch ’em all, Pokémon Go is an augmented reality game — it mixes real-world elements with the game.

The big thing is Pokémon Go uses your phone’s GPS and clock to decide which Pokémon appear in the game. If you’re at the park, more bug and grass types appear. If you’re by a lake, more water types appear. If it’s night, more nocturnal ghost and fairy types do. So Pokémon won’t just come to you; players have to traverse the real world to catch ’em all.

Pokémon Go also has gyms — where you can fight gym leaders — and PokéStops based on real-world locations, which create hubs where players can meet. (You can buy, with real money, items to lure Pokémon to these stops; that’s how Niantic, the game’s developer, makes money.)

So why is the game taking off now? Well, it just came out, so it’s new and exciting. But it’s also free, making it easy to pick up. And it taps into nostalgia for those who played Pokémon in the ’90s. Specifically, Pokémon Go realizes a vision Pokémon fans have had since the series came out: What if Pokémon were real, and inhabited our world?

It’s also exciting because it’s the first big augmented reality game. Although others (like Ingress and Life Is Crime) tried before, none reached the heights of Pokémon Go. But with Pokémon Go’s success, it’s something you can expect more of in the future.

Thursday, September 10, 2015

New Human Ancestor Discovered in South Africa

Within a deep and narrow cave in South Africa, paleoanthropologist Lee Berger and his team found fossil remains belonging to the newest member of our human family. The Homo naledi discovery adds another exciting chapter to the human evolution story by introducing an ancestor that was primitive but shared physical characteristics with modern humans.


Because the cave system where the bones were located was extremely difficult to access, it could be speculated that these hominins practiced a behavior previously believed to be modern: that of deliberately disposing of their dead underground.

Click here to read more about the Homo naledi discovery:

A NOVA/National Geographic special, “Dawn of Humanity,” premieres Sept. 16, 2015, at 9 p.m. ET/8 p.m. CT on PBS in the U.S:

Learn more about National Geographic Explorer-in-Residence Lee Berger:

The finds are described in two papers published in the journal eLife:

VIDEOGRAPHERS: Bryan Root and Hans Weise
EDITOR: Jennifer Murphy
ART: Stefan Fichtel

Sunday, September 06, 2015

Yoga time for Chihuahua!!!

Sometimes our darling pets join us in our daily activities so effortlessly as if they’ve been preparing for this moment their whole lives. Such is the case with the hilarious video you are about to see.

 It’s widely known that yoga is great for the mind, body and soul. But few people know that dogs are equally interested in holistic living as us humans. Any dog owner who has ever tried to work out while their beloved pup is in the vicinity will probably agree with me.

 While practicing Yoga in the presence of your pet dog, it would inquisitively circle around, sniffing and licking and trying to figure out why you are laying on the floor like that; others think its playtime, and try to initiate a game. But never before this video have I seen a dog so that reacts like this…This is uproarious! Yogis and non-yogis alike will get a good laugh out of the video below…enjoy!

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Amazing Scientific Reasons Behind Hindu Traditions

Joining Both Palms Together To Greet


In Hindu culture, people greet each other by joining their palms – termed as “Namaskar.” The general reason behind this tradition is that greeting by joining both the palms means respect. However, scientifically speaking, joining both hands ensures joining the tips of all the fingers together; which are denoted to the pressure points of eyes, ears, and mind. Pressing them together is said to activate the pressure points which helps us remember that person for a long time. And, no germs since we don’t make any physical contact!

Why Do Indian Women Wear Toe Ring

toe ring

Wearing toe rings is not just the significance of married women but there is science behind it. Normally toe rings are worn on the second toe. A particular nerve from the second toe connects the uterus and passes to heart. Wearing toe ring on this finger strengthens the uterus. It will keep it healthy by regulating the blood flow to it and menstrual cycle will be regularized. As Silver is a good conductor, it also absorbs polar energies from the earth and passes it to the body.

Throwing Coins Into A River

Talakaveri coins

The general reasoning given for this act is that it brings Good Luck. However, scientifically speaking, in the ancient times, most of the currency used was made of copper unlike the stainless steel coins of today. Copper is a vital metal very useful to the human body. Throwing coins in the river was one way our fore-fathers ensured we intake sufficient copper as part of the water as rivers were the only source of drinking water. Making it a custom ensured that all of us follow the practice.

Applying Tilak/KumKum On The Forehead


On the forehead, between the two eyebrows, is a spot that is considered as a major nerve point in human body since ancient times. The Tilak is believed to prevent the loss of “energy”, the red ‘kumkum’ between the eyebrows is said to retain energy in the human body and control the various levels of concentration. While applying kumkum the points on the mid-brow region and Adnya-chakra are automatically pressed. This also facilitates the blood supply to the face muscles.

Why Do Temples Have Bells


People who are visiting the temple should and will Ring the bell before entering the inner sanctum (Garbhagudi or Garbha Gruha or womb-chamber) where the main idol is placed. According to Agama Sastra, the bell is used to give sound for keeping evil forces away and the ring of the bell is pleasant to God. However, the scientific reason behind bells is that their ring clears our mind and helps us stay sharp and keep our full concentration on devotional purpose. These bells are made in such a way that when they produce a sound it creates a unity in the Left and Right parts of our brains. The moment we ring the bell, it produces a sharp and enduring sound which lasts for minimum of 7 seconds in echo mode. The duration of echo is good enough to activate all the seven healing centres in our body. This results in emptying our brain from all negative thoughts.

Why We Start With Spice & End With Sweet:

indian thali desinema

Our ancestors have stressed on the fact that our meals should be started off with something spicy and sweet dishes should be taken towards the end. The significance of this eating practice is that while spicy things activate the digestive juices and acids and ensure that the digestion process goes on smoothly and efficiently, sweets or carbohydrates pulls down the digestive process. Hence, sweets were always recommended to be taken as a last item.

Why Do We Applying Mehendi/Henna On The Hand And Feet


Besides lending color to the hands, mehndi is a very powerful medicinal herb. Weddings are stressful, and often, the stress causes headaches and fevers. As the wedding day approaches, the excitement mixed with nervous anticipation can take its toll on the bride and groom. Application of mehndi can prevent too much stress because it cools the body and keeps the nerves from becoming tense. This is the reason why mehndi is applied on the hands and feet, which house nerve endings in the body.

Sitting On The Floor & Eating

sit on floor and eat

This tradition is not just about sitting on floor and eating, it is regarding sitting in the “Sukhasan” position and then eating. Sukhasan is the position we normally use for Yoga asanas. When you sit on the floor, you usually sit cross legged – In sukhasana or a half padmasana  (half lotus), which are poses that instantly bring a sense of calm and help in digestion, it is believed to automatically trigger the signals to your brain to prepare the stomach for digestion.

Why You Should Not To Sleep With Your Head Towards North

sleep south

Myth is that it invites ghost or death but science says that it is because human body has its own magnetic field (Also known as hearts magnetic field, because the flow of blood) and Earth is a giant magnet. When we sleep with head towards north, our body’s magnetic field become completely asymmetrical to the Earth’s Magnetic field. That cause problems related to blood pressure and our heart needs to work harder in order to overcome this asymmetry of Magnetic fields. Apart from this another reason is that Our body have significant amount of iron in our blood. When we sleep in this position, iron from the whole body starts to congregate in brain. This can cause headache, Alzheimer’s Disease, Cognitive Decline, Parkinson disease and brain degeneration.

Why We Pierce Ear

ear ring

Piercing the ears has a great importance in Indian ethos. Indian physicians and philosophers believe that piercing the ears helps in the development of intellect, power of thinking and decision making faculties. Talkativeness fritters away life energy. Ear piercing helps in speech-restraint. It helps to reduce impertinent behavior and the ear-channels become free from disorders. This idea appeals to the Western world as well, and so they are getting their ears pierced to wear fancy earrings as a mark of fashion.

Surya Namaskar


Hindus have a tradition of paying regards to Sun God early in the morning by their water offering ritual. It was mainly because looking at Sun rays through water or directly at that time of the day is good for eyes and also by waking up to follow this routine, we become prone to a morning lifestyle and mornings are proven to be the most effective part of the day.

Choti On The Male Head

Student of university of Madras

Sushrut rishi, the foremost surgeon of Ayurveda, describes the master sensitive spot on the head as Adhipati Marma, where there is a nexus of all nerves. The shikha protects this spot. Below, in the brain, occurs the Brahmarandhra, where the sushumnã (nerve) arrives from the lower part of the body. In Yog, Brahmarandhra is the highest, seventh chakra, with the thousand-petalled lotus. It is the centre of wisdom. The knotted shikhã helps boost this centre and conserve its subtle energy known as ojas.

Why Do We Fast


The underlying principle behind fasting is to be found in Ayurveda. This ancient Indian medical system sees the basic cause of many diseases as the accumulation of toxic materials in the digestive system. Regular cleansing of toxic materials keeps one healthy. By fasting, the digestive organs get rest and all body mechanisms are cleansed and corrected. A complete fast is good for heath, and the occasional intake of warm lemon juice during the period of fasting prevents the flatulence. Since the human body, as explained by Ayurveda, is composed of 80% liquid and 20% solid, like the earth, the gravitational force of the moon affects the fluid contents of the body. It causes emotional imbalances in the body, making some people tense, irritable and violent. Fasting acts as antidote, for it lowers the acid content in the body which helps people to retain their sanity. Research suggests there are major health benefits to caloric restriction like reduced risks of cancer, cardiovascular diseases, diabetes, immune disorders etc.

The Scientific Explanation Of Touching Feet (Charan Sparsh)


Usually, the person of whose feet you are touching is either old or pious. When they accept your respect which came from your reduced ego (and is called your shraddha) their hearts emit positive thoughts and energy (which is called their karuna) which reaches you through their hands and toes. In essence, the completed circuit enables flow of energy and increases cosmic energy, switching on a quick connect between two minds and hearts. To an extent, the same is achieved through handshakes and hugs. The nerves that start from our brain spread across all your body. These nerves or wires end in the fingertips of your hand and feet. When you join the fingertips of your hand to those of their opposite feet, a circuit is immediately formed and the energies of two bodies are connected. Your fingers and palms become the ‘receptor’ of energy and the feet of other person become the ‘giver’ of energy.

Why Married Women Apply Sindoor Or Vermillion


It is interesting to note that that the application of sindoor by married women carries a physiological significance. This is so because Sindoor is prepared by mixing turmeric-lime and the metal mercury. Due to its intrinsic properties, mercury, besides controlling blood pressure also activates sexual drive. This also explains why Sindoor is prohibited for the widows. For best results, Sindoor should be applied right upto the pituitary gland where all our feelings are centered. Mercury is also known for removing stress and strain.

Why Do We Worship Peepal Tree


‘Peepal’ tree is almost useless for an ordinary person, except for its shadow. ‘Peepal’ does not a have a delicious fruit, its wood is not strong enough for any purpose then why should a common villager or person worship it or even care for it? Our ancestors knew that ‘Peepal’ is one of the very few trees (or probably the only tree) which produces oxygen even at night. So in order to save this tree because of its unique property they related it to God/religion.

Why Do We Worship Tulsi Plant


Hindu religion has bestowed ‘Tulsi’, with the status of mother. Also known as ‘Sacred or Holy Basil’, Tulsi, has been recognized as a religious and spiritual devout in many parts of the world. The vedic sages knew the benefits of Tulsi and that is why they personified it as a Goddess and gave a clear message to the entire community that it needs to be taken care of by the people, literate or illiterate. We try to protect it because it is like Sanjeevani for the mankind. Tulsi has great medicinal properties. It is a remarkable antibiotic. Taking Tulsi everyday in tea or otherwise increases immunity and help the drinker prevent diseases, stabilize his or her health condition, balance his or her body system and most important of all, prolong his or her life. Keeping Tulsi plant at home prevents insects and mosquitoes from entering the house. It is said that snakes do not dare to go near a Tulsi plant. Maybe that is why ancient people would grow lots of Tulsi near their houses.

Why Do We Worship Idol


Hinduism propagates idol worship more than any other religion. Researchers say that this was initiated for the purpose of increasing concentration during prayers. According to psychiatrists, a man will shape his thoughts as per what he sees. If you have 3 different objects in front of you, your thinking will change according to the object you are viewing. Similarly, in ancient India, idol worship was established so that when people view idols it is easy for them to concentrate to gain spiritual energy and meditate without mental diversion

Why Do Indian Women Wear Bangles


Normally the wrist portion is in constant activation on any human. Also the pulse beat in this portion is mostly checked for all sorts of ailments. The Bangles used by women are normally in the wrist part of ones hand and its constant friction increases the blood circulation level. Further more the electricity passing out through outer skin is again reverted to one’s own body because of the ring shaped bangles, which has no ends to pass the energy outside but to send it back to the body.

Why Should We Visit Temple?


Temples are located strategically at a place where the positive energy is abundantly available from the magnetic and electric wave distributions of north/south pole thrust. The main idol is placed in the core center of the temple, known as “*Garbhagriha*” or *Moolasthanam*. In fact, the temple structure is built after the idol has been placed. This *Moolasthanam* is where earth’s magnetic waves are found to be maximum. We know that there are some copper plates, inscribed with Vedic scripts, buried beneath the Main Idol. What are they really? No, they are not God’s / priests’ flash cards when they forget the *shlokas*. The copper plate absorbs earth’s magnetic waves and radiates it to the surroundings. Thus a person regularly visiting a temple and walking clockwise around the Main Idol receives the beamed magnetic waves and his body absorbs it. This is a very slow process and a regular visit will let him absorb more of this positive energy. Scientifically, it is the positive energy that we all require to have a healthy life.

Monday, October 06, 2014

15 Underrated Destinations In India Every Traveler Must Visit

India has no dearth of beautiful travel destinations. Some are more popular and more commercialized than others. That in no way implies that the lesser-known places have anything less to offer; just that they haven't been explored as much. This is why you need to know places that aren't as saturated by tourists. You need a list of the most underrated travel options in India. You would be surprised by how much this country has to offer.

1. Tarkarli, Maharashtra


Frankly, almost any beach on the Konkan coast could have qualified for this spot. Tarkarli, in Sindhudurg district in Maharashtra, with its pristine waters, long and narrow beaches with Shuru trees in the background, managed to earn some extra points. It's one of the most peaceful and non-commercialized beaches in India.

Tarkarli, in Sindhudurg district in Maharashtra

2. Lambasingi, Andhra Pradesh


The very fact that Lambasingi, in Vishakhapatnam district in Andhra Pradesh, is one of those rare places in South India that boasts of snowfall makes this village an amazing place. Throughout the year, the temperature there ranges from 0°C to 10°C, earning it the nickname, 'Kashmir of South India'. Better go there before the others do.

Lambasingi, Andhra Pradesh

3. Osian, Rajasthan


Osian village in Jodhpur district in Rajasthan is a delight for those who love historical architecture and the fact that you get to see all of it in an oasis in the Thar Desert makes it a double whammy. The 8th to 11th century temples there make this village a must-visit destination.

Osian village in Jodhpur district in Rajasthan

4. Keibul Lamjao on Loktak Lake, Manipur

Keibul Lamjao, in Bishnupur district in Manipur is the world's only floating park and it's also home to the endangered Sangai deer. The floating garden on Loktak Lake is a result of decomposing plant material, locally called phumdis. You have to see it to believe it.

Keibul Lamjao on Loktak Lake, Manipur

5. Gavi, Kerala

We usually associate trekking with mountains and hills. But this is one wildlife trek you wouldn't want to miss. Located in Pathanamthitta district in Kerala, on the highway connecting Kollam and Madurai, Gavi is part of the Periyar Tiger Reserve. It is said that the only two gopher trees in India can be found in Gavi.

wildlife trek Gavi, Kerala

6. Kasar Devi/Crank's Ridge, Uttarakhand

If you're interested in the hippie-way of life but are tired of the huge number of tourists in Himachal Pradesh, you need to make it a point to visit Kasar Devi village near Almora in Uttarakhand. Crank's Ridge, or Hippie Hill as the locals call it, on the way to Kasar Devi temple is also a historical place for hippies. Legends like Allen Ginsberg, Bob Dylan and Cat Stevens are some of the few people who visited this place during the peak of the Hippie movement in the sixties.

Kasar Devi/Crank's Ridge, Uttarakhand

7. Lonar Crater, Maharashtra

Located in Buldana district in Maharashtra, the Lonar Crater Lake was formed around 570,000 years ago due to a meteor impact. Owing to its high concentration of carbonate salts it's categorized as a saline soda lake. So, it's a soda lake formed by a crater. Enough said.
Lonar Crater, Maharashtra

8. Krem Mawmluh & Krem Ri Blai, Meghalaya

Cave exploration hasn't taken off in a big way in India, which is really surprising considering there are so many options to do so in this country. Krem Mawmluh and Krem Ri Blai, in Mehgalaya, are natural horizontal and vertical caves respectively. Make it a point to visit them at least once in your life.
Krem Mawmluh & Krem Ri Blai, Meghalaya

9. Killar-Kishtwar Highway, Himachal Pradesh and Jammu & Kashmir

You cannot be a true traveler until you go on an exciting road trip. Speaking of which, the one trail you need  to experience is the treacherous but life-changing ride from Himachal Pradesh to Jammu & Kashmir through the Killar-Kishtwar Highway. Not for the faint hearted, this scenic mountain pass is even more fun if you're traveling with fellow bikers. Just keep yourself updated on news about landslides and roadblocks.

Killar-Kishtwar Highway, Himachal Pradesh and Jammu & Kashmir

10. Ziro, Arunachal Pradesh

Ziro is a town in the Lower Subansiri district in Arunachal Pradesh and it has been hosting the Ziro Festival of Music for the past three years. But here's the thing - the quaint little town is so attractive, that even without a crowd pulling event, it would find a spot on this list.

Ziro, Arunachal Pradesh

11. Haflong, Assam

North-East India is dotted with hill stations but surprisingly, Haflong is the only one in Assam. The center of the Dima Hasao district, Haflong is known for its cool climate, local liquor and an overwhelming love of pork. The Haflong Lake is one of the most beautiful lakes in the entire North-east. Not visiting this hill town would be a huge mistake.

Haflong, Assam

12. Wayanad, Kerala

This piece of trivia goes out especially to those trying to escape the city life for a while - Wayanad district is only 3.79% urbanized. Yep, lots of greenery here. Ancient history geeks can also trip out on the Edakkal caves where they can see actual pictorial writings from the Neolithic period.

Edakkal caves - Wayanad, Kerala

13. Auli, Uttarakhand

We Indians usually tend to associate snow with places like Himachal Pradesh, Jammu & Kashmir or Sikkim but did you know Uttarakhand actually has one of the most exciting ski destinations? The picturesque town of Auli hosts the National Championships of Snow Skiing and right next to the Clifftop Hotel, the town also has the world's highest artificial lake.

ski destination - Auli, Uttarakhand

14. Nuranang Falls, Arunachal Pradesh

Located about 2 km away from the town of Jang on the road connecting Tawang and Bomdila in Arunachal Pradesh, Nuranang Falls is one the most attractive ones in Northeast India. After a song from the 1997 Bollywood film Koyla was filmed here, the place attracted more tourists.

Nuranang Falls, Arunachal Pradesh

15. Unakoti, Tripura

The stone carvings in Unakoti in Tripura are one of the most detailed ones in India and yet, this place is rarely visited. As per Hindu mythology, when Lord Shiva was going to Kashi along with one crore gods and goddesses, he made a night halt at this location. He asked all of them to wake up before sun rise. It is said that in the morning, except Shiva himself, no one else woke up on time. So Shiva set out for Kashi on his own cursing the others to become stone images. Perfect for both spirituality and history enthusiasts, this is truly one of the most underrated places in the country.

stone carvings in Unakoti in Tripura

A true traveler always experiments. Bring out the wanderer in you and choose any of the above spots for your next trip. You would be amazed by how much you might discover.