I am travelling through India for a month with 2 mates and am looking for any advice on places to go, routes to take and/or places to skip.
We fly to Goa on the 1st October and fly out of Delhi on the 1st November so we have pretty much exactly a month to do as much as possible but without moving on every day.
We are planning to use trains to make every journey if this is possible, from what I've heard this is the best/cheapest/most scenic/comfortable way to get around the country ... and something not to be missed.
The idea is to provisionally travel from Goa to Hampi ... then to Mumbai, then move into Rajasthan and go to a few places that friends have recommended: Udaipur, Jodhpur, Jaisalmer, Pushkar. Finally out of the Rajasthan region and into Delhi. Would any experienced travellers recommend these places (if so why?)? is there anywhere else that would be good to go as well?
I'd appreciate any tips on best places to do everything from chilling all day on a beach to trekking into the forest, boat trips, city adventures and enchanting ruins.
I'm also an avid hockey player/fan, if anyone has any advice on where to watch a live hockey match in a stadium ... that'd be quality.
Thanks in advance for any help!
You may consider visiting Agra as well. The place is famous for beautiful Mughal Architectures and the fort is also worth to visit and it is not so far from Delhi. Moreover, if you like river, then you can go to Hrishikesh, it is a clam place and enjoy the beauty of fresh Ganges there.
[ Edit: Sorry, no promos please. ]
I am an Indian and India is one of the great destination for tourists....Initially travelling by train may suit you but after a couple of journeys you will like it........You should experience the rich Indian culture as well as take a glimpse of national heritage......Himalayan terrain offer a great destination for tourists so u can plan a visit to the mountains of Shimla or Manali and experience the snowfall if u r lucky..........I would not advice you to visit Kashmir due to unexpected terrorist attack........Your tour itinerary should also include a trip to Kerala (beautiful destination in southern India), feel the richness of south Indian tradition and backwaters......Matheran in Maharashtra is a great trekking spot .......U can take a ferry from Mumbai to Alibaug( a perfect beach destination).......Commuting through train across is not so easy so u can take cheap domestic flights .........
[ Edit: Sorry, no promos please. ]
India is such a large country; and the regions are quite different. Since you're in Goa, why not visit some of the massive Hindu temple complexes in South India before moving north. They are simply spectacular. Trains are a cheap option; but they are slow. Since there are three of you, consider hiring a car and driver. You'll find the going rate to be relatively inexpensive. I used a driver last fall from Madhya Pradesh to Delhi; and another driver in Assam. Check the Web; or ask friends who have used drivers in India. On earlier trips, I used a driver to tour South India extensively. I got that driver through a hotel in Kochin. If you need to cover great distances, flying is not expensive. I recommend Jet Airways and Indigo; and I have used both. Liquor is cheap in Goa. Hope this helps. I am now in Bali, preparing to travel to Flores and Timor-Leste.
Well, as you are stating from Goa, you should think of covering south India too, may be just kerala. Backwaters of Kerala are something which cannot be missed on first tour of India. I agree with you, hampi is quite intresting. you can further explore this sector by moving to badami, chikmagalur, mysore. from Mysore, you can get a a train to Kochi (ernakulam station). In Kerala, you can visit Munnar, alleppey, Kochi and Madurai(if time permits). From Kochi you can get a train to Rajasthan cities but it will take a couple of days. So it would be better if you can consider a lowfrill airlines for this journey. As your friend already recommended you the main attractions, you can visit them. I doubt about Pushkar. Its not very interesting unless you are visiting it during Pushkar fair. I don't think you can visit more than these in a month time, considering you are thinking of taking trains for most of the journeys. So this can be your routing:
goa-Badami-hampi-chikamgalur-mysore--train to Kochi- Munnar-Alleppey-Kochi and fly to Udaipur-Jodhpur-Jaipur-Agra-Delhi
If you want to got to Pushkar you can add it between Jodhpur-Jaipur.
Regarding Hockey, I am not sure about their schedule but you can vsit Dhyancand stadium in Delhi which is a dedicated hockey stadium and I m sure you might see some matches or practice session there.
A few years ago we started in Varanasi and the north and worked our way through Agra, Amritsar, Lahore and then back to Agra and through Rajasthan to Mumbai and then down to Goa at the end. Goa's worthwhile for some relaxation on the beach. Mumbai was brilliant with lots to see in the Fort area. Udaipur was the setting for James Bond's Octopussy (the film is played in hotels there ad nauseam). There's a wonderful fort at Jodhpur and other marble palaces, the red city of Jaipur was brilliant (we didn't get to Jaisalmer or Pushkar) and the Taj Mahal in Agra is beyond all expectation (but not cheap for a non-Indian). If you want to go that far north, the Golden Palace in Amritsar is serene and the evening border ceremony at Wagah between India and Pakistan is hysterical. Our transport was sleeper trains overnight and overnight coaches - fairly easy to arrange. Enjoy your planning!
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If you are visiting North Karnataka - Hampi, then you should also consider visiting Badami. I would also suggest that you should take a look at the Karnataka Tourism Department package tour - North Karnataka Heritage Tour- a five-day tour to the Heritage Sites of North Karnataka. It is worth it. You may consider visiting South Kerala especially Alleppy/Munnar/thekkady. As far as Goa is concerned, if you can drive a two wheeler, in Goa you can hire a scooter (two wheeler) and cover all the areas. Goa is beautiful. Also keep in mind that from middle of June till August end, it rains heavily in South india - kerala, karnataka, and Goa.