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*Sri Lanka*

Africa         Click on thumbnails for additional pictures (People of Africa)


India Photo Archive on Shunya

Photos from hundreds of Indian sites, including portraits, wildlife, archaeology, culture, and nature.


Selected Photo Essays

The Kumbh Mela

A journey to the Kumbh Mela 2013, the largest gathering of humanity on the planet.

Dholavira: A Harappan Metropolis

The road to Dholavira goes through a dazzling white landscape of salty mudflats. It is close to noon in early April and the mercury is already past 100F.
The Birthplace of Ganesh

Dodi Tal, considered the birthplace of Lord Ganesh, is a lake in Garhwal, western Uttaranchal. We hiked 44 km in 3 days, going up and down from about 5,000 ft to 11,000 ft, where we...

The Dilwara Temples

Many Indians claim that the Dilwara Jain temples of Mt. Abu are a more magnificent achievement than the Taj Mahal - both were stunningly ...


About 1,700 years ago, Nagarjunakonda flourished as a city and a great religious and educational center of Brahmanism and Buddhism in ... south India...

Bodh Gaya

Bodh Gaya is the single most sacred site of Buddhism. It was in the forest here that Prince Siddharta sat under a tree and achieved enlightenment....

The Burning Ghats of Varanasi

Varanasi, on the left bank of the Ganga, is one of the seven sacred cities of the Hindus. Among the oldest continuously inhabited cities of the world, ...

Anandpur Sahib

Anandpur Sahib is a holy city in Punjab. Its historical significance to the Sikhs is second only to Amritsar. Hundreds of Sikhs once embraced martyrdom here..

Land of the Asiatic Lion

The only lions in the wild outside Africa are in the Indian state of Gujarat in the Sasan Gir Forest Reserve, created in 1913 and accorded sanctuary status in 1965...

Forbidden City

Surrounded by moat and high walls, the fabled Forbidden City earned its name by being closed to everyone outside the Chinese royal family and their eunuchs and maidservants. The largest surviving palace ...
Melting Girls, Serpent Women

A day trip to the Pushkar camel fair that attracts over 250,000 visitors from India and abroad. Villagers turn up for both business and pleasure...


The seat of the Tibetan government-in-exile is in McLeod Ganj (upper Dharamsala), a picturesque town overlooking the Kangra valley, ... in the Indian Himalayas.

Nalanda University

Nalanda in Bihar, India, is one of the most spectacular archaeological finds on the subcontinent. Nalanda was once a famous Buddhist monastery and university...

The Rann of Kutch

Once an extension of the Arabian Sea, the Rann ("salt marsh") has been closed off by centuries of silting. During Alexander's time it was a navigable lake, ...

Rock Shelters of Bhimbetka

Bhimbetka remained a center of human activity from the lower Paleolithic times—the oldest [rock] paintings are believed to be 12,000 years old ...
Death in the Afternoon

A hot Sunday afternoon in Mexico City. The largest bullring in the world is packed with feisty locals. Restless, they whistle and hoot before the main event when emotions run high ...






A Novel by Usha Alexander

"A suspenseful narrative weaves the stories and secrets of two generations into one seamless drama…. a worthy literary journey." —Kirkus Discoveries






Mosque architecture


Asia          Click on thumbnails for additional pictures (People of Asia - except India)




Sri Lanka - NEW!


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This is two arches joined like a hinge to pivot the main street through a 30 degree turn.


Reclining indoors



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Americas          Click on thumbnails for additional pictures (People of the Americas)

Dominican Republic

Trinidad & Tobago


United States


Spectacular Mayan ruins at Palenque


Typical tree of the Pantanal - the Indians call it Piuva


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Costa Rica

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Europe             Click on thumbnails for additional pictures (People of Europe)





France New!

Rodin's Thinker


Built in the 5th century BCE by Phidias under the reign of Pericles


What buildings perhaps seem like from the second-hand smoke in them cafes


Across the Grand canal


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United Kingdom

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The North Pole

At the North Pole



Selected Travel Essays

The Minangkabau: Mixing Islam and Matriarchy
This matriarchal society of Muslims in Indonesia reminds us that religion and culture are never cut from whole cloth.

As Though We Were Immortal
Some travel impressions prompted by the living and the dead of Varanasi, India.

John Frum
Some time ago, Ruchira brought to my attention an article about a village on the island of Tanna in Vanuatu, where the people believe Prince Philip of England is a god. Though it might sound preposterous ...

Divinity is Here
Have Bedouin, will travel. I am in the village of Rum in south Jordan, all signed-up for two days in the desert. The clincher was the Bedouin honcho's sell job:  "I have open jeep, ...

The Lost City of Ugarit
The road to Lattakia goes over the Anti-Lebanon Range. I had left Aleppo under a blue sky at noon; now a thick fog rolls in, tall conifers appear in the valleys, visibility drops. The pop Arabic music ...

Asian Food for Thought
India and China offer a striking illustration of the vast range and malleability of the human palate, and the power of ideas in shaping it.

Nobody's Land
"Cuiabá is the city of mangoes. We don't buy them, just pluck and eat," says Rizardo, our wildlife guide. Riding in the bed of a pickup truck, we are going down the Transpantaneira, a dirt road that ...






At the Foot of Mount Yasur
I am six hundred miles east of the Great Barrier Reef in the archipelago of Vanuatu-or, as they say in Vanuatu, the "ni-Vanuatu" archipelago -- home to nine active volcanoes ...

The Leatherbacks of Trinidad
A tiny village on the northeastern coast of Trinidad is home to the "so-ugly-they're-cute" leatherback turtles. In Apr 2011, I traveled there to see them.

Notes from Cuzco
It was six a.m. when the AeroPeru jet arrived in Lima. The night had seemed real long partly because an elderly senora let her head collapse on my shoulder every few minutes...

A Hammam in Damascus
I was first led to a small, furnace-hot sauna chamber. Just as I had begun broiling in my own sweat, the door opened and an orderly tossed a half-bucket of water on the heating elements ...

Ghost Town in the Levant
Quneitra was once a bustling town in the Golan Heights and southwestern Syria's administrative capital with a population of 37,000 ...

A Day Trip to My Alma Mater
I got a B.Tech from the Indian Institute of Technology, Kharagpur (IIT, KGP). Sixteen years after graduation, I visited it again from Kolkata during Puja 05 ...

Signore, Speak English?
Many years later, last October, after completing a short assignment in Paris, I went to Italy for a three-week vacation. I took an overnight train to Rome ... the eternal city...








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