2 Weeks with my parents in India
Replies: 9 - Last Post: Oct 3, 2012 11:20 AM Last Post By: loneeagle
Oct 2, 2012 10:19 AM
2 Weeks with my parents in IndiaI was wondering of anyone could give me some advice, I have recently moved to Mumbai and my parents who are in the late 60s early 70s would like to come and visit India and stay for a couple of weeks. I have absolutely no idea what to do with them as I haven't been in the country long myself. They would like to come over in March.
I think Mumbai for a couple of days would be enough. They are quite well travelled but are more used to cruise ships and the like. Ideally I'd like to take them on a bit of a tour maybe go to Delhi and the Taj Mahal but I know they wouldn't enjoy a full on guided tour. Was looking into the luxury trains but they are way beyond my budget.
So what I'd like is a more relaxed kind of tour that takes in some of the major sights but also includes some down time.
Am I asking too much? Any advice much appreciated.
Oct 2, 2012 12:18 PM
1first of what is your budget?
- I think a tour of the shivaji forts and then a trip down to goa would do splendidly. it wont be too exhausting and you can enjoy the colonial as well as the native marvels.
- there are luxury tour bus rides but then you can hire a car to visit some of the forts... perhaps all of them in the southernly direction... and then take the deccan express train... and head to goa. I would recommend malvani en route...a beautiful place, maybe they still have house boats like those in aleppy.
Oct 2, 2012 12:35 PM
2The budget question above is a good one.
Personally, I'd drop the whole tour idea. You could pick a couple places like Dehli or maybe Varanasi (or anywhere), fly between cities and hire a driver and car for when you're in each place.
Do the planning yourself. Just a little planning on your part could save you a lot of money and give you all a great experience.
Oct 2, 2012 7:48 PM
3Two weeks is a short time to give them a taste of India so check out the fully guided tours, not so much as to actually take one, but will give you some ideas, as well as a documented route to take. You could then even bounce some of the brochures/websites off on your parents to see if they have a preference. Also check out the options/price of a private car and driver (with A/C), it will make life so much easier for them and shield them from some of the more in-your-face aspects of India.
Oct 2, 2012 10:02 PM
4I'm with Laketraveller in considering the car and driver option. Have a look at the link below to get some ideas on cost and options. We used them a number of years ago and were happy with what we got.
You can do it cheaper but you need to be very careful as there are lots of horror stories of drivers who completely wrecked a holiday in India.
The car and driver option takes you out of much of the hassle of travel in India and does allow you to pace yourself with down time etc. However car travel is not for the faint hearted, so at the very least you need a driver who understands western sensibilities to driving and risk and attempts to take some care with risks!!!
You need to appreciate that a driver is just that, they can be very helpful along the way but typically they are not a tour guide. You still need to be able to self organise yourself along the way with the things you want to do. I'm sure you can find a combined driver and guide but it will cost even more.
We also hired another car and driver after we arrived in Delhi for a shorter trip to Shimla and Amritsar. He was excellent and provided more of a guide role as well. Not sure if he is still working but if you are interested send me a PM and I'll get his contact details.
You could ask around where you work for contacts for a car and driver - everyone in India seems to have friends and relatives and other various contacts all over the country!!
Oct 2, 2012 10:42 PM
5"The car and driver option takes you out of much of the hassle of travel in India and does allow you to pace yourself with down time etc."
A suggestion I often make, especially for first time Travellers to India with a Tight SHORT schedule.
Oct 3, 2012 1:07 AM
6You could consider either flying or taking the Rajdhani Train to Delhi and after 3 days take the train to Agra,spend a night there and continue by car for a night at Bharatpur Bird Sanctuary. Drive on to Jaipur and hire a car locally to spend 3/4 days, fly to Udaipur for 3/4 days and fly back to Mumbai.
Oct 3, 2012 6:23 AM
7My partner and I are still travelling India (the lady is 66 and am 70), not quite roughing it but have just graduated to the lowest mid-range hotel bracket.
The single must-see in India is the Taj Mahal, maybe their only point of reference, tis closed on Fridays.
Varanasi may be a bit heavy for them - ask them to buy the latest LP or Rough Guide and get their opinion before you do that. The RG is better on descriptions.
I would suggest that you play it safe - fly to Delhi and do the standard Golden Triangle route of DEL - AGR - JAIPUR. Effectively, you probably only have 10/11 days.
That wont be a rush - I would take oldies to Udaipur instead of Jaipur - again I suggest that they read it up. Take the direct train from Agra. You can book this early in Mumbai.
If they enjoy the trip, then they can "do" Varanasi, Khajurhao and Orccha next time.
On the question of car+driver - it's a waste of money if the driver is going to spend 5 days doing nothing. The better option, if you dont want to book the train, would be to get a cab from DEL to AGR and also AGR to JAIP, you'll be able to negotiate a more reasonable price that way, shop around when you get there, not before.
If you take a cab to JAIP, then visit Fatehpur Sukri en route, saving time as opposed to a daytrip from AGR.
I would also suggest that they buy a couple of cans of Jungle Formula (Tropical) Insect repellant from Boots - malarial mossies should not be a huge problem, but there is no treatment for dengue, which is transmitted by a diurnal variety of mossie. I've just had an email from my best buddy, with whom I joined the RAF in 1958 and he has just spent 5 days in hospital with this and feared a blood transfusion - aint funny if you are 70.
Oct 3, 2012 10:15 AM
Oct 3, 2012 11:20 AM
(3 star Hotel)
From US$33.67 per night
(0 star Hotel)
From US$2.87 per night
(2 star Hotel)
From US$21.12 per night