Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Kodiveri Dam and Waterfalls

I always prefer for leisure travel but we can’t anticipate it to be same when covering a long distance within a timeline. Either Ooty or Kodaikanal, it takes almost a day to reach with the destinations more than 500 kms we can’t spare much time on places en route, so I always look for a chance to stay close to the destination or less than half-a-way away experiencing the places I want.

My last month’s travel to Nilgiris happened to be one and we didn’t drove to Ooty directly but rather decided to stay at Sathyamangalam which got me chance to check couple of places that’s close to the destination. We had our lunch somewhere between Salem and Bhavani while going from Chennai and the weather was too hot and before we head to Kodiveri, halted on way for about an hour to have a cup of tea at my dad’s friend house in Kavindapadi.

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Kodiveri is about 16 km from Gobichettipalayam on the way to Sathyamangalam, which is about 14 km away from Kodiveri... a popular tourist part of this region, in Erode district. An arch on SH 15 (state highway) welcomes us to Kodiveri dam and in about 2km we reached the parking lot and the weather was continued to be hot. Though it was about 5.pm the sun doesn’t show mercy but it wasn’t matter when got close to water…

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I was unsure about the water flow at the dam come falls, as our entire state is facing drought, I was so glad to see enough water at the dam leading great flow in the waterfalls. A minimum amount is collected as fee to enter the dam area but I couldn’t get really close to the water because of the unfinished pathway that make its way through small park area. I was content with the views on the waterfalls from either above or the pathway.

Kodiveri is a kind of check dam built across the Bhavani River and the downstream of the dam forms the waterfalls. The name “Kodiveri” is originated from the Tamil word meaning Tiger, which represents the large number of tigers lived in the forest area around the Dam. Not to forget the Sathyamangalam Tiger Reserve isn’t far away. The falls being not heavy, people are allowed to bath and swim in the pool of water as well as the falls, and reaching is also not difficult.


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Picture shot from few meters above the dam... and you could see the upcoming bridge to connect both banks of river
Entering of Kodiveri dam can be done from both sides of the Bhavani River, but the main entrance lies on the south through which we entered and to reach the other side there’s a separate route from Sathyamangalam. Right now an over bridge is under construction to connect the north and south side of the dam… but people also walk above the check dam on their own risk.  Similar to Hogenakkal, coracle ride is also available at the dam for fun and transport.

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Coming to the important aspect of them dam was it was built 865 years ago! Constructed by the Kongalvan in the year 1125 AD, the dam was consisted of carving a 20-ft wall of rock. The stones were then interlocked with iron bars and lead in place of mortar.  There’s also two channels arise from the dam (Arakkan Kottai and Thadapalli channels) respectively, turning the land of Gobichettipalayam fertile due to the flow of channels.

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The southern  side Arakkan Kottai Channel
Bhavani River seems to have different ups and downs and to meet the need of the farmers surrounding and to manage the water crises the dam was decided to build. Since then, the irrigation level increased in the surrounding area and the dam provides water for over 25000 hectares of land.

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We spent about an hour at the dam site watching the waterfalls and the setting sun truly created an impact across the falls and I was delight to shoot utilizing the shimmering light effect. Glad they have laid some pathway at least to take photos from certain point of views… being Monday, the crowd was less at the dam site and mostly men were showing and swimming at falls and dam.

Kodivere is at a distance of 75-80km from Coimbatore and and it is well connected by road from any nearby towns and cities

Saturday, May 20, 2017

Poor state of city goats

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During my evening walk in neighbourhood last weekend, I come across some goats grazing around the garbage bins, few houses away from the pretty one you saw in my previous post. This is not the first time seeing them feeding on the waste matters thrown out as useless, this is a regular sight at this neighbourhood area, with a road lead to the corporation  school and a temple and another goes around a posh area. But this scene hasn’t changed for long.

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I know these are goats reared by some people of the resident area on the road ahead and the goats were left always on the road and some time they come to our street in search of food and I have seen them standing on their rear legs munching on the leaves and branched hanging outside the compounds. I really feel bad for their state of living and I have no idea about their rearing in a city.  If they can’t feed them properly its better give up and they live well somewhere.

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They not only feed on garbage but also wander on streets put risk on riders as well the goats. Goats need space or at least a shed to live together and taken care by the owner, but they well survive in villages than cities. (All were captured in mobile)

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He posed to me but as i move closer he keeps away

Linking this post with SATURDAY CRITTERS

Thursday, May 18, 2017

A pretty house in neighbourhood

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Like I said in my previous post, I went for a long walking at the neighbourhood on Sunday evening and clicked some photos on the way.  And the house in the images wasn’t far from our home and I have passed this house much time but it haven't captured my attention alike now.

A beautiful house in neighborhood

The house looked pretty new, perhaps it was freshly coated, but actually it was the blooming tree in front of the house wants me to capture. I liked the architecture of the house with open balcony and rails around, and a hanging rail making way for vines to climb over. The most attentive was of course the red brick wall and a wooden gate painted in grey.

Linking this post for  Good Fences by Gosia 

Saturday, May 13, 2017

Pulimurugan

Watched this excellent action adventure movie in Malayalam that includes Tigers! The title itself inspired me to watch the movie that was released in mid-2016 and being an ardent of forest, nature and mountains I couldn’t miss the movie that shot at the lap of forest. Mohanlal is portrayed as Puli Murugan (Tiger Murugan) and he acted as a trained hunter killing the man eating tigers that invade his village. But the movie isn’t all about Tigers; he also fought against dangerous humans who forced him to move out of forest.

Murugan lives in a small village, inside the forest called Puliyoor and he lost his mother in childhood after his brother was born and later his father in a tiger attack took him for vengeance, where he traps the tiger with the help of his uncle and kill it. The Murugan grows into Puli Murugan, now a lorry driver, married and has a daughter, but he hunt rogue tigers whenever they invade the village.

Meanwhile he was forced to escape the forest/village for killing a tiger, and getting a job for his brother he smuggles Ganja (marijuana) in his lorry which directed him toward another face of trouble. How the hunter weed out all this using his Vel (a kind of spear, his main weapons) remains the subject.

Mohanlal is an apt fit to the subject and the character, and his physique and face structure led him valiant looking against the predators. But the movie doesn’t exhibit great violence yet knives pierce tigers, its watchable quite as family.  The most impressive thing about the move was its action and stunt sequences.  I think I don’t need to say more about it, because it was such skilful to won the first ever National Award for Stunt Choreography.

Peter Hein has executed the stunt choreography and Mohanlal himself preferred to do all the stunt scenes rather using stunt doubles, which is normally used in films where the heroes stand aside and dupes do the stunts. Mohanlal’s involvement really amazed me and having a considerable size structure he performed so well. The little boy, who done Mohanlal’s childhood role, too capture the attention esp. facing the Tiger without fear.

The tigers involved in the movie were real ones and the scenes fighting with tiger were all shot at Thailand using the tigers from a Buddhist temple there, since filming with wild animals is prohibited in India.  Though the tigers were trained ones, the shooting seemed to conduct according to their moods! So was the team hard worked for the success of the movie. An additional fact about the movie was it was the currently highest-grossing Malayalam film ever done and the film is expected to release in Tamil soon, along with a 3D version.

Pulimurugan has some lovely songs to soothe listening and excellent BGM! Kamalini Mukerjee’s performance as Mohanlal’s wife was fair and Lal bring out the best character and Telugu actor Jagapati Babu, Bala and Vinu Mohan (Puli murugan’s bro) were all done their job neat. And not to forget the cinematography, the capture of natural resource of God owns country was fabulous and the lorry chasing and action scenes were stunning.

Puli murugan – fair and interesting to watch

Thursday, May 11, 2017

Fence and flowers

Fence and flowers

Here’s another beautiful fence and flowers shot from the same evening walk (in wheelchair) at the neighbourhood and this was taken at Besant 4th avenue road unlike its sibling Blue Cross road (both are popular for local photo-shoot) here. After my Nilgiris trip last month, I haven’t stretched my walking beyond our streets but I’m thinking of catch up this weekend… let see what I get to shoot.

In the above picture, you could see the yellow bell flowers bloomed inside the fence that protects the roadside garden along the 4th avenue and the pink flowers above the compound are bougainvillea. The following one has red-orange flowers, which I have no idea was shot few meter away along the fence. 

Fence and flowers

Linking this post for  Good Fences by Gosia and Floral Friday Foto 

Saturday, May 06, 2017

Looking for shadow

Normally the national highways don’t have much shadow but the road from Ullundurpet to Salem is worst among them, and we fed up looking for a shadow to take a coffee break while going to Nilgiris last month. The entire stretch look deserted and being an extremely hot day we were almost baked! lol

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Though after a while on road, we found a small temple adjoining a banyan tree provided some shadow off the road. Like a thirsty throat got some water, the shadow showed us some relief as we took a turn toward the same. The scene was really giving me a nostalgic feel with cows and bull tied around the tree, the munching of grasses and the smell of cow dung brought back to childhood days. The smell of cows munching grasses could be perceived amazingly through my conscious, as I have been through this lot in my growing day by visiting grandparent’s house with a cowshed beside.

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Like human, the cattle’s too in need of shadow and the two oxen tied to the banyan tree doesn’t turned until we moved out of the place. So was they busy munching grasses except the one (check last  pic) giving me a side and rear view. lol

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The temple seems to be under construct, has a little lily pond adjacent to the temple (with lily buds sticking out of water) and the cows were taken there to drink water. There was a farmer driving the cows around the temple and perhaps it was his land behind the temple and the bulls were belonged to him.  After 15-20 minutes we hit the road again before halt for lunch, again looking for a shadow. 

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Oxen beauty 
Linking this post with SATURDAY CRITTERS

Wednesday, May 03, 2017

Invisible beauty

A Beach house balcony
An invisible beauty
stands on the balcony
against the sea breeze
brushing off her face...
to never let comb hair
coming out of fresh showing.

Looking over the sea
from the beach house
she waits for her boyfriend
who went on voyage
to return to take her along
for a romantic sail across the sea.

Meanwhile at eventide
leaning over the pillar
she strokes her hair, gently
in fond memories of him
where they went hand-in-hand
before he went on-board.  

P.s. Inspired by the picture I shot at Covelong (Kovalam, Chennai recently, on a beach house balcony.

Linking this post for  Good Fences by Gosia 

Sunday, April 30, 2017

Sunday Photos: Shimmering

My parent follows the custom of visiting a nearby temple before starting a long journey. Here, every street end or corner has a temple for Lord Ganesh the most and they chose to break coconut and pray at the shrine before we move. At our street there’s a small temple called Sri Valampuri Cithi Vinayagar temple and it has been their starting point for last few years following our shifting to the native area.

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It was about 6.30 am when we started our trip to Nilgiris at the beginning of this month and as usual the car stopped in front of the temple and my dad and uncle get down to offer their prayer and right behind us the sun was raising up and the light just falls on the temple and across the sanctum, which inspired me to take the cam and shot at the glowing sight. I zoomed on the sanctum and quite impressed with the sunlight expose over the black sculpture of Lord Ganesh with the gold coated arch behind the idol makes it shimmering.

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I have captured this temple few times before with the mobile during the evening walk, but this was a great chance to shoot with the morning sunlight. I am not a morning person and I wake up usually only by 8 am and only during the travel I wake up early or sleepless thinking about the travel, facing the morning sunlight is a delight I cherish until I get to face the same. 

Friday, April 28, 2017

Yellow Daisy-like Flowers

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The Euryops daisy is a large perennial bush that bloom all season long or until cold temperatures appear with yellow daisy-like flowers. Euryops is a member of sunflower family, native mostly to rocky sites in southern African, but the photos were captured at Coonoor while detour around the hill station in the Nilgiri.

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Euryops pectinatus is a vigorous evergreen shrub that grows up to 5 feet tall and wide, with silvery green, hairy leaves and yellow, daisy-like composite flowers; they bloom from early summer to autumn. The bush grows best in full sun and well drained deep soils, but need moist. The images were shot during evening sunlight. 

Linking this post for Floral Friday Foto 

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Bid adieu


A farewell of love
or dispatch on a mission
kiss clings to bosom



ps. the haiku  was inspired by the photo i came across in Instagram

Sunday, April 23, 2017

Sunday Photos: Palavakkam Beach

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I was at the Palavakkam beach in the neighbourhood today evening with my cousin and got to click some photos with mobile. The day was very hot and being Sunday and summer holidays to kids the beach was unusually crowded and I could see people come as groups of families with boys playing beach crickets around.  

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I was also greeted by nice blue sky and simple sunset

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Thursday, April 20, 2017

Fence across Golf Course

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The photos were actually focused on the scene behind the fence, the Ooty golf course and fog making way through mountains and trees, but the fence was taller than our car to prevent interruption. The images were captured on the Old Pykara Rd that lead one side of the golf course and I have been on this road earlier and I like the serenity and with tall trees of eucalyptus and pine it always remains cool.

Ooty golf course...

The road is entirely scenic and I find many yellow flowers in this area which has some education institutions and the popular Ooty Gymkhana Golf Club also reside on this road. I heard bison’s (Indian guar) are often spotted here, though I find some people taking walk on the road without any fear as it was evening by then. At the end of the road we explored a beautiful temple little further from the main road, which I will post on later. 

Linking this post for  Good Fences by Gosia 

Monday, April 17, 2017

A brief on my travel to Nilgiris

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Kodiveri dam-falls, created by carving 20 foot wall of rock in 1125 AD
One week has passed since I came back from my travel to Nilgiris aka Ooty and its surroundings and it was about 2am when we reached home on Sunday (April 9). Begin on 3rd April morning; we reached Kodiveri waterfalls by evening traveling about 450 km from Chennai via Salem ‘n’ Bhavani. It was very hot day and as we move close to Salem it turned terrific hot. Even the AC car couldn’t keep heat away completely and only thinking that we delayed the drive back home by wandering on hills until 2pm and leisurely dropped via Mettur ‘n’ Krishnagiri. I know the state has been going through historic drought but I still had hope there should be some water flow at Kodiveri falls come dam. And yes, there’s water more than what I expected and that surprise continued to flow throughout my travel.

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The interior of our room
Though there were few disappointments when we tried to venture certain areas that I want to explore but the journey doesn’t went that way rather unexpected routes and doors opened for me. We had a comfort stay at the Nilgiris and just outside the Ooty town, called as Funcity, the area has handful of homestays and resorts but still quite calm always. Half a km inside from the Ooty-Coonoor main road, the couple of rooms we booked for 4 days (for 6 people) had beautiful views from the balcony overlooking the Elk Hill and fields of carrot and greenhouses. The interior of the rooms are very neat and spacious enough for 3 per room and well lit by led lamps. The travel wasn’t hurriedly and we moved around leisurely checking couple of places in Ooty and Coonoor apart a long drive to Upper Bhavani.

A view from my balcony overlooking Elk Hill, Ooty
The view  from our balcony overlooking  Elk Hill
It was a long-time dream for me to check Upper Bhavani Dam. I have been to the backwater area of the Upper Bhavani (in 2011) traveling through the Avalanche forest and it was a great experience and sheer pleasure to venture the wilderness. Then, we had permission to drive up to Upper Bhavani dam but we turned back halfway as my parents hesitated to go deep into the wild forest. But that time visiting the dam doesn’t need permission to go via Kundha, which we tried this time and went up to forest check post and turned back as we denied entering the dam area due to the restriction  since some antisocial intruded the forest. When we tried to check the Pilloor Dam, while driving up to Ooty on the unusual road, we faced the same and the 3 check post we crossed had the photos on antisocial to mark the seriousness as well as warning.

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Tea plantations  and  pristine mountains  behind

By this travel I have covered the western side of the Nilgiris to the most but I still want to go there again sometime because the wealth of nature is abundant there and words could not describe the pristine I admire there. So far I haven’t written about the western catchment of Nilgiris and I believe people who are truly interested will seek information on available, alike me. And it is a great natural source of Tamil Nadu which needs to be preserved seriously and the forest officials are doing their best. Our stay at Sathiyamangalam, before heading to Ooty, was very convenient and guest house was spacious and disable friendly where I could come around the beautiful house in my wheelchair. Located on the bank of Bhavani River and canopy of trees create cool ambiance with birds frequent around.

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@ Sathiyamangalam guest house
Look forward for more on my travel... decided to make many posts out of it

Sunday, April 02, 2017

Off to Blue Mountain

Off to Blue Mountain 

The couple of beautiful views were shot from Doddabetta Peak - the 2nd tallest peak of south india, in Ooty, during my previous visit to Nilgiris aka Blue Mountain, which gonna be my terrain for next one week. 

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Thursday, March 30, 2017

Wild Fence and Flowers


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During an evening walk in my wheelchair at the neighbourhood and across the Blue Cross road in Adyar (adjoining Besant nagar) I capture this piece of fence that I find it to be wild. The entire road has been fenced one side that belongs to former Besant school (now The school KFI) and was covered by canopy of trees. Sadly many trees fallen on this road in recent cyclone Vardha, but still the road continues to hold charm by greenery and shadows. I also found some little flowers bloomed pretty in pink covers some area of the fences… and I do think this is some kind of wild flowers thrive on its own. 

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Linking this post for  Good Fences by Gosia and Floral Friday Foto 

Sunday, March 26, 2017

Exploring Kodai-Kumbakkarai Route, the very first road to Kodaikanal

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The Kodai-Kumbakkarai road was completely off at some places (click all photos for enlarge)
I love traveling and traveling on road-less travelled is my favourite. Wherever I go I look for places beyond the regular and I find it more exciting than what has been explored by many. Though many perhaps like taking such travels but don’t give much thought as it keeps them away from the comfort. But I am someone always like adventure and try to venture places that not many chose to travel or ready to lookout for. During my stay at Thandikudi, near Kodaikanal, I explored a route that was less travelled or abandoned since alternate and more comfort roads was developed. Though it was the first road to Kodaikanal many unknown about it.

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More than a century old road looks good  at few places toward Adukkam
The road that slides before Perumal Malai on the main road to the Kodaikanal, leads to the mango city Periyakulam via Adukkam village and Kumbakkarai waterfalls at the foothills. From the time I know about this road, a short route to Kodaikanal when going by Periyakulam or Theni, I want to explore it and travel as much possible.  I learned the road up to Adukkam village (half on the mountain) was travelable though the road wasn’t good and worst beyond that, we tied our best and it was possible only because of our Scorpio (SUV). For the most part of the road was unpaved or washed away as it wasn’t relayed after it was originally laid by the British. And the road is narrow which means facing a vehicle would make either take reverse or adjust space for the opposite to pass.

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The view of narrow winding road from the Adukkam village towards Kumbakkarai falls, which we didn't take.
The road wasn’t narrow but also potholed for large that any car would get bottom hurt unless it was an SUV or height ground clearance vehicle. The people from one of the vehicles (Hyundai Santro) that was coming up from Periyakulam warned us not to go further or beyond Adukkam as the road was in bad shape but still we managed up to Adukkam and turned back thinking it was our limit. Though few jeep drivers encouraged that we can go all the way to Kumbakkarai, as the villagers have cleared the road lately, we didn’t mind to go beyond and since it was late afternoon we don’t want to take risk and turned away with the view of winding lane down the hills.

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The pristine mountains and valleys... you could see a lone house (in white color) at a distance 
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Awesome view of mountains and  ridges across the valley
This road beholds views that are pristine and most part of the valley and mountains seem untouched by many. Being an initial and pretty old road to Kodaikanal, which seems to be laid in late 1800s or early 1900s, continue to hold the charm as most part of the route was undamaged by the tourism cottages or buildings. But I got to see few beautiful farm houses and bungalows and a stretch of coffee and orange plantations en route to the Adukkam, from there till the foothill is quite wild forest. Adukkam isn’t a big village and it comes to view few kms before on road resembling a small nest on the laps of mountains.

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Here's a view on the Adukkam village nestled in the valley and below is a close up on  the same
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The village is surrounded by hill banana plantation
I heard bullock carts were the first vehicles to take this road and we could see the roadside stone barriers and milestones still exists along with good patch of tar road at some places truly exhibits the quality of roads laid then. The day was sunny when we venture this route in early summer, though the weather doesn’t bother much as we continue to stay on mountains I couldn’t take more photos due to sun glares and reflection of windows many went dark images. Interestingly we met an old woman, when we stopped to take photos on the red coffee beans, scold us not to take photos on her coffee plants. She told her plants weren’t flourishing well already and you taking photos may get evil eye! lol 
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The red coffee beans, what the old woman said no to capture!

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Reforestation

A forest  is recreated near Trichy on the Chennai - Trichy National Highway. The 35 acres of the forest landscape (near MR Pallayam) is supposed to transform into Elephant Rescue centre, the project, first of its kind was initiated by the former government to provide medical care to sick elephants belonging to temples and the individuals. But it was not fully implemented by the following regime.

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The objective of creating the centre in the state is to provide complete medical treatment to sick elephants. The funds allotted in the first instalment from the government have been utilized… and the project is waiting for further funds from govt. One traveling between Perambalur and Trichy could come to see the plantation of trees and a damaged structure of an elephant’s statue marking the project.

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Today is International Day of Forests, a day that was designated to raise awareness of the importance of all types of forests, and trees outside forests, for the benefit of current and future generations. Countries are encouraged to undertake efforts to organize local, national, and international activities involving forests and trees, such as tree planting campaigns, on International Day of Forests.