I'm currently 21 and a engineering student in California. This summer I'm going with a professor to IISc in Bangalore. I'll be there for six weeks running circuit simulations, but I hope to also spend at least a week at the end traveling around India. I haven't traveled outside of the USA too much (outside of a couple family cruises), so I am looking for some travel advice and help on planning an itinerary. I will be traveling alone.
I figured I could get plenty of shopping done in Bangalore, and perhaps sample some of the local brews. I'll also try to travel around Bangalore on the weekends (Nandi Hill, Mysore, etc...). But, I want to have an action-packed iternary at the end. Here are my thoughts so far:
Since Bangalore sounds pretty urban, with shopping etc... I was thinking of not going to Mumbai, because it is somewhat similar?
Kerala sounded interesting, with the backwaters and wildlife areas. Perhaps going from Bangalore to Fort Cochin and then to the backwaters? Or start from Trivandrum and travel up the coast? Perhaps finish off by visiting Ooty for a couple days on the way back to Bangalore?
If you have any advice, alternate itineraries, suggestions for other places to visit, or any other travel advice please let me know. Would this be too much to do in a week? My budget is probably around $50 / day, though I could spend more if I had to.
I'll probably use a small, lightweight duffel bag + a smallish daypack while traveling. Does this seem fine?
Also, I might have to bring my laptop for the work I'll be doing, but I wouldn't want to carry it around during the last week. Are there safe places to store luggage for a week or two in Bangalore?
So far, I've purchased the Lonely Planet: South India guide and a couple books on Hindi (though I know that Hindi isn't too common around where I'll be).
You will love Bangalore.
It is a great place. Only problem right now is the traffic. However, will you be staying at IISc? Then you will ot have any problem. Else you can look for some accommodation easily.
Travelling in and around Bangalore - \
Within Bangalore- half a sightseeing is enough.
Then you ma explore - Mysore, Rangathittu Bird sanctuary, Bandipur forests, ooty. Actually there was a three day conducted tour Karnataka Tourism. to cover the above. I need to check this out now.
The Kerala is amazing. You will love the greenery. You may face some problem with language, b ut, you will enjoy the trip.
USD50 per day may be sufficient. But you can always take loans or pay by credit card, if required :-)
No one can suggest the packed itenary with out finding your interests.
You may need to travel by busses and trains ! If you are running short of time, flights are available at USD 30 t0 usd 60 to many destinations. General flight time for nearby places is around 1 hr, where as by road/rail it may take around 8-12 hours.
You will find Indians very friendly and many would help you with these. Nothing to worry about.
Leaving Laptop, you may leave it in Bangalore with a friend ( or with me :-) and pickit up if you are touching Bangalore again on your way back.
Or probably you may request IISc to provide a computer !! or take a computer on rental ???
All the best
The Human Search Engine
All U Wanted
ps: feel free to contact me at 9845213042 for help in Bangalore
Thanks for the reply! I know I'll be staying with my professor in a three-bedroom apartment he is renting. I'm not yet sure the specifics (how close it will be to IISc, etc...). But, I won't have to worry about accommodations there.
Regarding my budget: I'll be making about 8 USD / hour during the six weeks I'm doing research in Bangalore, so I'm not too concerned with money during the last week of travel, but I still need to save up for a car back home too. I wouldn't mind going up to $100 / day and traveling around by plane, if it is worth it. I wanted to try out the trains at least once, though.
Would it be too much to travel by train during the first half week through Mysore, the wildlife sanctuaries, and Ooty and spending the second half week in Kerala, then flying back in Bangalore? How early in advance should I book plane tickets (budget ones around India)?
Since you are from Bangalore, and I'll be spending the bulk of my time there, are there any good guides/resources for within Bangalore (places to eat, see, temples, etc...) and around Bangalore (that I could travel to for a couple days on weekend)?
[ Edit: Edited on Mar 24, 2007, at 12:28 AM by bwb ]
If you can squeeze in the weekends during the stay at IISc, you can cover more places.
Local sightseeing can be done on one sunday.
Nandihills- you need to go with some more fellow passenger to enjoy the place.
For example Mysore is 120 Km from Bangalore and there are busses every 30 min. Leave early morning and cover some places in and around Mysore - museaum, KRS dam, Rangana thittu bird sandtuaty, Bandipur forest . If you want to see a budhist settlement, you may visit Kushalnagar.
I am not sure about the tourist guides.
If you are trying to cover only South India you can cover in a week. If you want to visit north india, you need lot more time and money. probably, you may plan that in your next visit.
Alternatively as you said firlst half to mysore etc and second half in Kerala is fine
For cheapflights, check
We can also plan when you are here. There may be more people at IISC wiling to travel. Then if you hire a Taxi, it may be cheaper too :-)
Lets meet in Bangalore, if required , so that I can suggest in detail.
Bangalore is one of the most boring places in India I travelled to. It is not quite like the rest in India. Maybe you think that is ok. But it really feels like a western place, especially around the MG road area. You will think that you are somewhere in a western city. The area around Bangalore is okay though. You can take daytrips from here. For example to Mysore and the Nandi hills.
[ Edit: Edited on Mar 24, 2007, at 4:51 AM by wouterrr ]
Not every one likes Bangalore and it is not expected too. It depends on lot of things. Do you like traditional rural India? Then you may not like the cosmopolitan Bangalore. If you like to Princely states with lot of Palaces, then you will not like Bangalore. You may visit Rajastan.
Yes. Bangalore is becoming a modern city, with so much revenue from IT , Bio tech , manufacturing etc. The spending power of Bangalorean has gone up tremendously and you find people buying expensive stuff.
Here we are discussing about BWB's visit to Bangalore and explore the places around. I have already indicated only a half-a-day trip in Bangalore.
The weather in Bangalore is better than many places in India and that is where people like Bangalore the most.
Anyways, BWB is planning to travel out of Bangalore. So no problems.
Bangalore may only be good for some relaxed time in lounge cafe's and western restaurants....
I would suggest doing a Keral backwater trip. Fort Kochi has nothing much to offer except the traditional fishing nets and the dutch palace and Parsi synagouge. Keral has backwater cruises to suit all budget. U can either start from Allepy or Kollam. I had just been for a weeks cruise.. If ur really interested in cruising in a relaxing environment please let me know, i will provide further details.
I think Coorg is a Place you can Try out! Its very beautiful. Coorg or Kodagu(originally called Kodaimalenadu) means 'dense forest on steep hill'. Dubbed as the Scotland of India!
Madikeri / Coorg. is 252 kms from Bangalore.
The best things to do in Coorg would, undoubtedly be outdoor sports. Fondly called The Scotland of India, its a lush, green blanket covering ranges of hills, and valleys, great for mountain biking and trekking. Of course, if you could also come here for some time to cool off, or as a break from the usual tourist hot spots.
The place is not too expensive! you could easily manage within $50.
Food: Coorgi cuisine is famous and unique, especially for non-vegetarians as it is based on game meats, pork and other delicious ingredients. Popular dishes are pandhi (pork), koli (chicken) and yarchi (lamb) spiced with pepper, kokum, bamboo shoot, red chilly, bembla curry, kadumbuttu, noolputu, voti and excellent coffee.
Post 10 was removed by a moderator