Me and my 2 friends r planning a 3-week trip 2 India (last week of Sept & first 2 weeks of Oct) .
We'll fly 2 Delhi & were planning the following route:
Delhi-Varanasi-Sarnath-Bodh Gaya-Kolkata (wedding) & Agra-Jaipur-Jaisalmer-Jodhpur-Delhi-Mumbai.
We've calculated the days & this seems do-able taking the connections into consideration - we'll b mostly travelling by train, but also fly on the longest routes.
1) do you have any tips for HOTELS on our way? We were thinking of nothing really 5-star-fancy, a not-too-expensive clean room & with own bathroom in some nice hotel is more than enough!
2) we would like to do a camel safari in Jaisalmer. Has any of you done that maybe? We don't have any more than 2 days for that, not even sure if we'll go for the WHOLE 2 days [does anyone have a clue about the conditions on such a safari - sanitary/toilet etc?]? Any advice? How to organize such a safari - book from back home (?where), or do it from Jaisalmer (? how)?
I woudl be really grateful for you answers/tips!
Thx a lot in advance!
WOw a long trip is being planned. Good. Let me just give you a few words of advice first. I really dont know whether you will be able to do so many places in so short a time. If you have got it all planned then its ok otherwise you might want to reconsider. See if you want to see a place and appreciate its beauty then you have to give it at least 2 days(except like Agra which can be done in a day.) Also even if you do the trip what i would suggest is to do it like this. Complete north first. So do delhi, jaipur, jaisalmer, jodhpur, agra, varanasi then come down to sarnath-bodh gaya then to calcutta and from here go directly to mumbai. also tryand include Goa if possible because it has become one of the best beach destinations in the world and i think you would enjoy it. So when is the wedding slated and when will you arrive in delhi because you will have to work around the wedding. Also if you want i can take you and your friends around calcutta when you come here. Otherwise we can meet up for coffee also.
Do let me know how you plan and i will advise more later.
Also i think that you should straight go to jaisalmer and get the safari done from ther directly. But sorry i havent beeen on one so i cant tell for sure.
As for hotels see you will find lots of good hotels in almost all the places that you will be touching and depending on your budget you can go in for either star category or just budget hotels which are clean. I can give you some names of hotels once you finalise the venues. The rates vary from month to month usually starting from as low as 200 Indian Rupees per day to 3000 INR per day.
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let me give u the timing then:
Sept 23 we will arrive in Delhi & on Sept 29 we need 2 b in Kolkata already 4 the wedding... tough call (its NOT really handy 2 take such a detour, but the wedding is THE most important item on the agenda so it gets priority )
and then we still have 2 weeks (wedding finishes on Oct 1st & we r flying back from Mumbai on the 14th... - so i guess most of the things need 2 b squeezed into these days
I know it isnt much time... but I am rather the kind of a person that would prefer 2 c more rather than CHILL for a long time in 1 place (next time i come 2 india for longer )!
hey marta, it does look like u squeezing too many eggs into one basket but i guess if you manage to do so with nothing breaking u'd enjoy it more.
Would suggest the following, do let me know if it helps
23rd/24th Delhi (tho' 3 days would be more apt)
25th Agra (day trip from Delhi)
26th/27th/28th Varnasi/Sarnath(13 kms from varnasi)
28th evng i suggest you chk for some flights to calcutta
29/30 in calcutta
(delhi-varnasi/sarnath-calcutta), would be heading in same direction
1st Oct to Jaipur , either chk for direct flight or via Delhi
next 10 days you can do (jaipur-jaisalmer-jodhpur & udaipur)
Move down to mumbai for a couple of days before heading home.
Let me know if this helps... trying to save time by clubbing cities that come in your path towards Calcutta, also the western trip.
Am sure you will manage and have a great time.
regrding hotels...every1 seems to be writing in here about www.asiarooms.com
some with bad experiences others with good ones, you could chk
in mumbai would suggest http://www.seagreenhotel.com/
chk the website, well located and moderately priced.
I've taken a camel safari while in Jaisalmer. I also didn't have much time, so mine was only two days and one night. Its completely possible to take a short trip in less than 24 hours. Its really easy to book a safari while you're there because tens of different companies will try to compete to get you to go with them. You can either book a safari through the hotel that you are staying at or shop around town for a better price. There are no toilets because you're just out in the middle of the desert with some camels, blankets, food, and water, but that's what makes the safari fun. Hope you enjoy it.
looks like you hav the route pretty well planned thanks to our friends here.... just a few words of advice to help you along the way.
Use prepaid transportation as far as possible. It's available outside most railway stations and airports.
travel by train... it's known to put India in perspective for great many Indians as well. you can book tickets online through www.irctc.co.in. Nothing like an early morning tea halt at a non descript station to bring you in touch with India.
You will never enjoy the trip if you compare everything to back home... this place is different; each city is different the people and the culture changes every 200Km or so.... experience the difference.
Have a blast and post a trip log for us.
first of all: hope you and your family are all fine after yesterday!!! (same goeas for all of you Mumbai-guys out there!)
it wa so sad to see it all on CNN yesterday..
Thanks a lot for your tips!
insider information is always most valuable!
we are deifinitely going to take (many) trains then.
I think that mixing up with the locals its all the fun, isnt it? like going to bazaars, villages etc and seeing how ppl live. You are totally right, travelling is all about taking all the experiences in and not comparing to HOME.
my camera will b up and runnning to register EVERYTHING . im very excited - ESPECIALLY that i expect it to be SO different from home - thats whats most interesting to take part in, rather than go to some courort in Europe and seat on the beach for 2 weeks [which can also b nice btw, but i prefer to go to india ]
thx a lot!