Route advice for 4 weeks in January?
Replies: 13 - Last Post: Dec 13, 2012 7:59 AM Last Post By: Ow3n
Dec 12, 2012 4:48 AM
Route advice for 4 weeks in January?Im off on the 7th January backpacking for the first time. Ive got 4 or 5 weeks and I want to go to India but im feeling a bit overwhelmed tying to plan my route.
I will be traveling by myself so I want a social route where ill meet lots of other backpackers. Money isnt too much of an issue, Ive been saving for a while and I might never get the time to go travelling again.
From talking to a few people it seems most of the recommendations are in the north. Some people say its a bit crowded with backpackers but im not sure if this is a bad thing for me initially. Maybe ill be able to get off the beaten track a bit after a while if i want to.
I was going to base my route on the golden triangle, but if i fly into Delhi I thought I might as well fly back from somewhere else so I can end up in a different place and having seen more.
So this is the route Im thinking:
Darjeeling (or somewhere in the Himalayas)
Any thoughts? Am i trying to do too much? If I fly into Delhi and then work my way east towards varanasi, can I then get to Darjeeling or somewhere else in the Himalayas? If I can, where should I fly back from in this region?
Also what do I have to book in advance? Is it just my flights?
Thanks a lot, not sure what Id do without this forum!
Dec 12, 2012 5:30 AM
1Welcome, First, you list Rajasthan and then a few cities. Rajasthan is a state not a city. Does that mean you plan on visiting cities throughout Rajasthan or just Jaipur?
If it were me (and it isn't; it's your trip) I'd spend my month visiting three cities in Rajasthan (including Udaipur), on a safari in Ranthambore, Delhi, Agra (just a day or two) and Varanasi. I'd skip heading north due to time constraints.
Booking in advance limits your flexibility once you're in India. You don't need to book anything in advance if you aren't fussy about the exact dates you go rom one place to the next or which class of service you travel in.
Dec 12, 2012 5:38 AM
2Ill iron out the details (or come up with some options so I can decide when im out) later, I really want to book my flights soon before they get too expensive and so I can get my visa sorted.
So it seems I should fly out to Delhi (I dont think you can fly direct to Rajasthan) and back from Varanasi. Are these the 2 major international airports for the route im taking or are their other options to consider?
Dec 12, 2012 5:41 AM
Dec 12, 2012 5:46 AM
4First, again, Rajasthan is a state. I don't know whether or not you can fly directly to a city somewhere in Rajasthan since I don't know where you're coming from and there are dozens of airports throughout Rajasthan.
You do not need to have flights booked to get a visa.
Sorry, I don't know about the festivals.
Dec 12, 2012 6:55 AM
5Its winter in the Himalayas...Very little prospect of any trekking, guest houses are, if open, draughty and unheated and Darjeeling will also be very cold. So if you go be prepared...Its a grotty place anyway imo ...only the views make it worthwhile...which wiill/should be very clear in January.
Dec 12, 2012 7:03 AM
Dec 12, 2012 8:52 AM
7Well, between Agra and Varanasi you could stop at Orccha which has been " discovered" but still, imo , a lovely place and then just wander across Uttar Pradesh, the most , I think , densely populated part of India and stay in undocumented towns and get a real experience of India and see how far removed the economic progress is from millions of Indians...theres a loooooong way to go...or you can just follow the LP guide...
Dec 12, 2012 10:32 AM
Well, it seems You do have time sufficient enough to xperience ur stated choice of places... since u are limiting urself to the North of India. U cn start with Delhi.. (use the Delhi metro,it coverz majority of the tourist places, cheap ,fast and reliable ), then if i have to suggest, head to Rishikesh.. An overnight journey up north from Delhi. Great place to kickstart with the Beautiful valley, and Yoga complimenting it. If ur not that Spiritually inclined type, therez always room for some adventure.. rafting, para jumping camping next to the Ganges is a big highlight. A Heaven for Backpackerz.. Then you cn proceed to Amritsar, where You Find the Majestic Golden Temple.. And u cn check out the Highly energizing Parade of both the Indian and Pakistani Army in Wagah Border.near amritsar.. Then Via Delhi, U can head to Rajasthan.. i would suggest you to take a direct bus , train from delhi to Jodhpur, the blue city rather than Jaipur(too much tourists, Peak time). in jodhpur, check out the Mehrangarh Fort, and the jain Temples nearby.. Take ur time.. then Head to Jaiselmer(my favourite in Rajasthan), desert, camels, age old fortz. Hire a Bike and just follow as the road leads u to.. Itz an Experience..for a backpacker for sure. If thatz not what u like, Book a Whole camel safari that can Xtend up to days.. Complete with a cook. Then you can head to Udaipur if u want via Jodhpur.(though the bus service was preety bad as of Jan 2012, roads wr nt good). . From here you can continue to Jaipur to end the Majority of rajasthan trip, though much is left.. from Jaipur, u can head to Agra. Make a side trip to Fatehpur Sikri, an hour or so from Agra by bus... Now since you mentiöned About Varanasi, there are plenty of great places in between these two juntions. you can stop by Orrcha, A quient place compared to The rush of Agra,yet to get that must visit tag in Guidebooks. Other places like Khajuraho, Bodh Gaya also lies in between.. then Varanasi.. About Darjeeling, you can head to it via Kolkatta, a major city in east india,, by train to siliguri, abundant taxis ply to Darjeeling from Siliguri. u can also go by the toy train to Darjeeling(a World heritage tag, 100 yrz old). I would recommend you to Go to SIKkim, a small state next to Darjeeling, itz Well worth a visit.. Then since you even have an option to fly back from other airportz, U can depart from Kolkatta itself, served by major airlines like emirates,Qatar, air india.. Or atleast a connecting flight back to your nation.
Hope this Helpz though i would recommend you to research more on it...!!
Bon Voyage ;) ;)
Dec 12, 2012 10:40 AM
Dec 12, 2012 11:30 PM
Dec 13, 2012 3:38 AM
Dec 13, 2012 3:51 AM
12You're trying to do to much if you try to see everywhere you've mentioned. If you make a few substitutions then you're fine.
It's impossible to answer a "is it worth it" type question. It's all a matter of opinion. I might enthusiastically say yes, see it and someone else could come along and say don't waste your time.
Read about the city / area in a good guide book and then decide for yourself.
Dec 13, 2012 7:59 AM
13I don't think your trying to do too much. If you want to see the places it's easily doable. You could fly in to Delhi, train out to jaisalmer, then make your way through rajasthan towards Agra and Varanasi spending a night in each place(two full days if you can get all night trains/buses) then head back to Delhi and fly out :)
But you really need to ask yourself why your going to India and then plan a rough itenerary. If your not coming for the culture and only want to see the sites you really need no more than a day in each place. But if you want to immerse yourself in the locations and culture you will need more time. Ive come for the locations and architecture and am finding that 2 days is about my limit for each place before I get super bored of it.
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