Hi i am going to Delhi in jan and have about 6 weeks before i fly from calcutta to continue my travels in china.
I really would like to visit mumbai and goa but not sure if realistically will have time to do this, has anyone done this all in one i would appreciate tips-mainly thinking of travelling on train! thanks
six week is a long time to do a lot of stuff , if you could only see the whole of india in those six weeks : ) .. . anyways delhi has its charm and so does bombay [ am not a big fan off , hate the place actually ] but goa thats where i live yeah love this place , its a must if you can squeeze in some time .. . google it up and get some re-views the place is really popular with folks from your part of the world
a train journey is a must , get a good booking in a first class compartment and its fun to travel by train provided you have company
Delhi to Goa is long train journey i think its around 30+ Hrs so selecting a good booking is must. Goa to mumbai is overnight and then u can catch a flight to Kolkata from mumbai only. In mumbai I also dont see much off stuff apart from gateway of India and Elephanta .
However I would like to suggest you to take cheap airlines which will cost less. Like from Delhi to Goa is around 100$ ( one side ) and just 2 Hrs 30 min.
Have a nice trip
I would highly recommend doing three weeks around rajasthan, avoiding Jaipur as there is nothing all that worth going to there if you can get to the rest of rejasthan. Camel safari in jaisalmer (single night as its painful but worth it) is great. fort in Jodhpur amazing. Pushkar excellent. udaipur just as excellent. Ranthambore can be missed.
From there it is a little closer to get down to goa by train through mumbai. The cheap flight suggestion for that leg isnt a bad one at all, especially if travelling on the pound, making it ultra affordable in india. In goa, dont miss palolem. try to jump down a bit further and check out om beach in gokarna and then inland to hampi as well. both well worth it. This can all be done easily in 6 weeks.
On the trains, no real need to go above 2nd class sleeper as a/c is not much better. On any sleeper buses, MAKE SURE you try get as far forward as possible. The suspension down the back makes it for an extra bumpy, pinballesque kinda ride.
Goa is ok but you should stay out of the most "touristplaces" like Chapora, Anjuna and Palolem i think.. Arambol in the north is the best place in Goa in my opinion.
Go south from Goa tho the state off Karnataka. There is a small town the called Gokarn or Gokarna.. There is 4 beaches there with no roadacces. Ohm beach is a really lovely one.
Have a happy journey in India..
Since ur coming to india in Jan, it would be cool, hence I will advise you to not to miss Rajasthan(which has famous cities like Jaipur, Udaipur, Ajmer, Pushkar, Jodhpur, Bikaner, Jaisalmer which have lovely palaces and forts) . Also the places in North india which are not to be missed are Agra(Taj Mahal), Varanasi, Delhi and if u like the hills then head straight to Himachal pradesh which has beautiful hill stations like shimla, Manali, solang valley, Dharamshala, Mc Leodganj.
Once north india is finished u can move to Mumbai(which has elephanta caves) and visit Goa which is an overnight journey from mumbai. Goa is famous for the beaches and typical Goan cuisine, though it tends to be quite crowded.
Then moving on to South india, which is famous for the beautiful temples,places not to be missed are Madurai, Mysore, Chennai, Tanjore, Hampi. What i recommend the most is to visit the State of KERALA, which is called the God's own country. This state has a number of backwater cruises to suit every budget. In Kerala, the traingle of Munnar(hill station), Thekkady(wild life reserve) and Alleppy(Centre of backwater activites) are not to be missed.
From Chennai or Bangalore u can fly to Calcutta to continue ur ownward journey.
Regarding internal transportation, where long distances are to be covered, it would be preferable to take the ariel route. Various low cost airlines have come up during the past few years. Some of these are:
U can prefer train/bus for shorter distances. Train tickets can also be booked upto 60 days in advance at www.irctc.co.in
Do let me know if u need more info