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Whistle stop tour of India.

Travel Forums Asia Whistle stop tour of India.

1. Posted by Indicat (Budding Member, 2 posts) 14 Oct '10 13:13

Indicat has indicated that this thread is about India

Hi,

First time i have posted on this sight, so full of info!!!

Me, my Fiance, sister and her fella are heading to India in Sept/Oct next year. Hoping to be there for Diwali which falls on my sisters fellas birthday, 26th Oct 2011.
We only have 5 weeks free, and will be returning to following year to visit the best places we go first time round.

We plan on only spending a few days at each of the main places and taking night trains in between. Rough Itinery been

Manchester - Delhi - Amritsar - Delhi - Agra - Jaipur - Jodhpur - Goa - Kerala - Chennai (Madras) - Nicobar Islands for 4 days - Calcutta - Darjeeling - Varanasi - Delhi and Home

Would just like some advice on where the best place would be to spend Diwali? Must see places, anywhere off the tourist trail?

Also if £2000 each for everything, incl flights, food, transport and accomodation is enough. Although from my calculations i think it will be. Would just like to know from anyone thats spent time in India doing a similer route. I know we are squeezing a lot into a short space, but hey, you only live once!

Any adivice would be fantastic, Thanks!

Kylie x

2. Posted by vinu81 (Budding Member, 8 posts) 14 Oct '10 23:46

i think 2000 would be enough inc flight, it depends on how long r u planning to stay back. using night trains would reduce your exp. use your local friends connections to reduce the accommodation charges.

have food from good hotels....do not compromise on food exp.
in kerala i may be able to help u out by giving u couch.

u need to spend a li time in goa n kerala....chennai is ok wid 2 days

3. Posted by ykas25 (Budding Member, 14 posts) 15 Oct '10 03:27

Hi Kylie,

yes you live only once and we Indians feel one life is not enough to visit and cover India. You will have a very tight plan and am not sure if you would be able to enjoy under a stressed schedule.

GBP 2000 each is good enough provided you plan the kind of accomodation and mode of travel you would undertake. Please calculate the travel time keeping in mind the distance. Night trains might reduce the cost but can cause inconvenience by lack of sleep and can ruin your next day. So please select between night trains or low cost airlines. Booking well in advance can get you cheap flight options.

A suggested Itinery could be :

Manchester-Chennai-(Flight to)-Nicobar Islands-(Flight to)Calcutta- (Flight/Train/Taxi) to Darjeeling- (Train to)-Varanasi-(Train to)- Delhi- (Train to)- Amritsar - (Train to) - Agra -Jaipur - Jodhpur - Goa - Kerala (Trivandrum) - Chennai - and Return

This iteneary will cover the places in one circle saving you time and money.

Have Fun planning and a wonderful trip to India.

Cheers!!

Vikas

4. Posted by nkjain (Budding Member, 20 posts) 15 Oct '10 05:38

The rupee INR is appreciating. So GBP 2000 may be insufficient. Food is cheap 3 pounds are
good for good clean meal in Mcdonald. Accomodation for backpackers is around 20 pounds per person. Indian trains
are not half as expensive as BritishRail. So there, you are.plenty of help
is availible.Indians are warm people.

narender jain

5. Posted by Yvekes (Respected Member, 266 posts) 15 Oct '10 06:11

Quoting nkjain

So GBP 2000 may be insufficient. Food is cheap 3 pounds are
good for good clean meal in Mcdonald. Accomodation for backpackers is around 20 pounds per person

£2000 is more than enough to cover your trip.
I.e. £3 for a meal??? My cheapest meal in India was a all-you-can-eat thali for only 18 INR, with an average price of only 50 INR (who's going to a McDondald in India anyway...)!!

And £20/person for backpacker accommodation? No, no prices for budget rooms start at around £2...

6. Posted by amjadkhan (Budding Member, 3 posts) 15 Oct '10 06:53

Hi,
Good to see here, this is really very helpfull to plan & have the idea about the price.

your budget is perfect fine if you can go head with the plan right now. No one knows what would be the price for Next year 2011. Generally 10 -15 % increase in the price.

if you can mix with the overnight train journey,flight ( where ever necessary ) & Road.

delhi - Amritsar ( by Shatabdi train) - Delhi - Agra - Jaipur - Jodhpur ( by Road ) - Goa ( by flight) - Goa - Cochin ( by flight) - Munnar - Periyar - Kumarakom - Kovalam - Chennai ( by flight) - AndamanNikobar - Calcutta - Darjeeling - Varanasi ( by Train).

As above mention by our friend choose Low cost air lines to reduce your cost.
and in this price you will get only budget cateogry of the hotels.

if you need more info please let me know

Cheers!!!

7. Posted by Indicat (Budding Member, 2 posts) 15 Oct '10 10:19

Thanks everyone!

I was going to ask about taking local airlines on huge journeys. I already have a list of Backpacker accomodation in each place, ranging from £5 - £20 per person per night.

Its still in the early stages of planning at the moment, so the route may be shortend. The Darjeeling toy train though is amust, ive wanted to go on it for years.

I certainly wont be there for the Mcdonalds! Want to try the various cuisine styles in each area, one of the things im most looking forward to!

I did think about the value of Rupees going up, access to more money for the trip wont be an issue, just needed an idea of bare minimum.

I gathered that the night trains wouldn't be the best option for sleep, ive read so many travel books where its mentioned. But we really want to see the real side of things, and would feel cheated if we were to take flights everywhere.

Thanks again for all your help, given me something to think about!

Kylie x

8. Posted by G-trotter (Budding Member, 50 posts) 18 Oct '10 03:34

Hello

First of all your budget is far enough if not to high, but if you want you can spend easily more money in India in such a time. This budget let you travel by Taxi some times and even with cheating ;o)

The travel you want to do in this short time is too much! Really, believe me! I recommend you to cut certain destinations for your own sake and happiness on your trip! You will enjoy much more if you select, lets say half of it! I been nearly 3 years in India and came around quite a lot and I meet many travelers on such trips you want to do and most of them regret their decisions! Traveling in India is not to compare with traveling in Europe in the way of that things are working out like planed!!!

You even say you want to see the real side of things, with this schedule IMPOSSIBLE, sorry!

Of your list I would recon this places:

Amritsar - Golden Temple
Jodpur
Agra (in my opinion over rated but I guess is a musst see for you guys)
Varanasi (come here in a good mood and don't trust any Indian wants to make business especially guesthouses!**)
Cochin (one long afternoon could by enough)

  • * sure this is a common problem of travelers and others in India but its one of the worse places

Things I would skip:

Andaman Islands (in this trip is just no space for such a side hopper!)
Jaipur (better stay in Pushkar, Jaipur is mostly annoying)
Goa ( I would skip Goa as it is time consuming and to explore the real treasures of Goa you need for sure more time. Its beautiful but wasted by tourism and corrupt police! Better stay a few more days in beautiful Kerala)
Chennai (as a tourist nothing to miss here, only lose nerves, trust me ... hehe)
Kovalam (don't! If you wanna good beach in Kerala go to Varkala! Trust me I lived in Trivandrum for 1.5 years, they have been my home beaches)

I could write on and on .... don't know if you are interested in, if yes let me know otherwise I save my time....

Personal Highlight in India, Hampi! Its amazing! But may better with a bite more time too. Also wonderful is Mysore and Oouty and the train down to Cimbatore could by a very good alternative to Munnar

Anyway ... think about of "LESS IS MORE" and India will be in 10 years too ;o)

Anyway enjoy planing and traveling in INCREDIBLE India (in wich way ever )

[ Edit: Edited on 18-Oct-2010, at 03:39 by G-trotter ]

9. Posted by Reshmi (Budding Member, 18 posts) 25 Oct '10 05:22

Hi,

Try to spend Durga Puja in Calcutta. Its the biggest festival of the Hindus and the Bengalis. The city goes crazy for a week and its a great experience. The city doesnt sleep and its amazing to watch all the crowd and the idols. There are competitions on the individulaity and uniqueness in the design of the Pandals ( temporary abode of the Goddess ). eg imagine a huge 3-4 storied building made up of only cookies or looking like a mini White House.

If you are in South India try to be in Mysore during Dussera.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mysore_Dasara

Kerela is pretty but some places are over rated and unnecessarily pricey. However you can give it a try.

If you are in and around Bangalore , you can visit the following in the same order :
Shravanabelagola ( http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shravanabelagola )
Mysore
Ooty
Coorg ( its a beautiful small hilly town you would like to hide in especially if you want to run from the buzzing city mob and you are tired of technology.

I have travelled extensively within India and often to weird off the trail places. So I know beauty lies in the eyes of the beholder. I had visited famous tourist places but my prized treasures and experiences are those that I found in quiet solitary places far from the crazy crowd.

Darjeeling is a pretty place but not taken care of much. There are many places in and around Darjeeling that are breathtaking.
If you are there dont forget to take a ride in the toy train and buy the tea.

I could go on. Let me know if you need any help. Feel free to ask any question.

10. Posted by Reshmi (Budding Member, 18 posts) 25 Oct '10 05:29

Quoting Indicat

Thanks everyone!

I was going to ask about taking local airlines on huge journeys. I already have a list of Backpacker accomodation in each place, ranging from £5 - £20 per person per night.

Its still in the early stages of planning at the moment, so the route may be shortend. The Darjeeling toy train though is amust, ive wanted to go on it for years.

I certainly wont be there for the Mcdonalds! Want to try the various cuisine styles in each area, one of the things im most looking forward to!

I did think about the value of Rupees going up, access to more money for the trip wont be an issue, just needed an idea of bare minimum.

I gathered that the night trains wouldn't be the best option for sleep, ive read so many travel books where its mentioned. But we really want to see the real side of things, and would feel cheated if we were to take flights everywhere.

Thanks again for all your help, given me something to think about!

Kylie x

Sorry Kylie,

I didnt see that you already mentioned about the toy train. Tasting cuisine is a great way to feel pulse and know a place. If you want , I will give you a list of the regional specialities and the restaurant to go to for that.