6 weeks to see India and overwhelmed
Replies: 12 - Last Post: Sep 27, 2013 5:39 AM Last Post By: everluxurytrave...
Sep 14, 2013 8:40 PM
6 weeks to see India and overwhelmedwe will be two females traveling in India for 6 weeks Early February until mid March
i have been reading trying to put a plan together but now am overwhelmed..
Can anyone give me an idea where to start
Guesthouses and hostels are fine
We are interested in everything
thanks in advance
Sep 14, 2013 9:51 PM
February to mid-March is a fantastic time in India and just about every option is open to you. But whatever you do, do not try and see the whole country. Six weeks might seem a long time but India is big, the travel is generally slow and each of the quite distinct regions is better savoured rather than glossed over.
You might consider starting in the South: Kerala for beaches, Karnataka for ruins like Hampi or Tamil Nadu for temples. At most pick two of these, don’t even try all three.
Mumbai is maximum city and an essential experience, but after a few days it will do both your head and your purse in.
Most people head north from here to Rajasthan with all its colour and exotic desert forts and cities. I favour the Southeast corner with Udaipur, Chittor, Bundi and Ranthambore Park. A nice alternative is Gujarat. I particularly favour Junagadh, the lion park at Sassan Gir and then maybe Diu for a bit of Portuguese flavoured R&R.
The classic North India route runs Delhi(wow), Agra(Taj), Khujaraho(temples) to Varanasi (pilgrims and double WOW). I would do it in reverse though and fly out of Delhi. Delhi has the best shopping, is sophisticated (stay out of Pahar Gunj) and the spring weather in the first two weeks of March is fantastic.
Be aware that Holi is on 17 and 18 March next year. The place goes sort of mad and gets a little dangerous.
Sep 15, 2013 3:47 AM
I think you need to focus on an area and things which your most interested in doing. Feb march is winter season in India which is more like summers in Europe. You can visit any part of India except the far north which will be a bit too cold for your liking. Its the best time to visit south of India without the excess humidity and heat.
But if you take my advice visit the 7 eastern sisters of India as most of the travellers skip east and you will be able to keep distance from tourist crowds. The seven states in east are Assam, Arunachal Pradesh, Tripura, Meghalaya, Mizoram, Manipur and Nagaland you can also add sikkim to that.
These are the most beautiful states of India if you consider natural beauty, culture, food habits etc and because these are pretty much untouched even by indian commercialisation it would be a unique experience.
One thing you need to consider before plannin east is that most of the travel here would happen via roads and that is something which is of an aquired taste. For example it took me 4 days from varanasi to Arunachal (which is the most beautiful state in India) but 2 days in train till guwahati assam and then another 2 days in a shared cab cause they stop after dark.
Bottomline- what is it that your interested in and then on the basis of that you can draft a better travel Plan. I finished travelling through the entire country as per the old hindu definition and visited every state and union territory and can say that its beautiful everywhere and there is a unique experience around ever corner so no matter where you are or what you do you will have a lot of fun in India.
Hope that helped.
Sep 15, 2013 3:58 AM
3Yarra has summed it up very well. Of course every poster will express a personal view.but if you start in the South and work Northwards, this gives time for Delhi to warm up a bit and avoid the South getting too hot. Early Feb to mid-March sounds perfect.
Just a couple of points
Mumbai is a huge modern city that really has no early history, it only became significant on the opening of the Suez Canal in 1869.
Some people find Varanasi rather heavy.
So if you look at India as 2 lumps
1) Kerala, Mysore, Hampi
2) Rajesthan, Delhi, Agra, Orccha, Khajurhao (maybe Mumbai and Varanasi).
Note the Taj Mahal is closed on Fridays - get there as early as posiible
Sep 15, 2013 4:19 AM
4I agree with G&Y. 6 weeks in south would be just fine for temples,beach,food, even hill stations. Suggestion to go to extreme east of India is misplaced for the first timer IMO since it is not really "real" India and is mostly christian. It is beautiful area but leave it for your 3rd or 4th trip or when you have more time than 6 weeks. Varanasi,Udaipur etc. are magnet and so are many other places and areas but 6 weeks is short time so be wise and choose one area.
Sep 15, 2013 5:23 AM
Sep 15, 2013 7:47 AM
6Like lyttlefish, I'm overwhelmed by the size & variety India offers and unfortunately, only have 3 weeks in January. My brother and I are in our early 20's and want to experience as much of the culture as possible...visit or do home stays in local communities, and aside from important sites, stay off the beaten path as much as possible. We want to experience the variety of lifestyles--including India's poverty. Included would be some of the more impoverished areas. If there are opportunities for adventure, that'd be an added benefit, but the primary interest is the culture. Any guidance to help us narrow our focus would be much appreciated.
Sep 15, 2013 2:14 PM
Much of India’s deep poverty is concentrated in the Indian Heartland on the Ganges plain: Uttar Pradesh, Bihar and Chhattisgarh. Much of the “polluted periphery” as Gandhi would put it, is doing quite well these days. I can’t recommend that you get too far off the beaten track in these areas. Bihar and Chhattisgarh and hard core bandit territory and the communal problems of UP (ie Hindu/Muslim) seem to be flaring up just at the moment.
If you want to pack maximum variety into a little triangle for three weeks then land in Delhi, maybe down to Udaipur and back up to Agra via Chittor, Bundi and Ranthambore. Then down the Jamuna/Ganges to Varanasi via Khajuraho. Then up into the Hills via Lucknow for Corbett Park, Nainital or maybe Almora. Three landscapes and cultural spaces with maximum contrast and doable, if rushed, in three weeks.
Probably more fun though would be to land in Bangalore and pop down to Kerala and then over to Tamil Nadu and then back again. Not so much poverty but again, three landscapes and cultural spaces with maximum contrast!
Sep 16, 2013 9:24 AM
8If it's your first time in India, you will find Kerala an easy and excellent introduction. The state is beautiful; there are beaches, wildlife parks, cultural sights etc. Transport is good.
Kerala has the highest (including the women) literacy and education levels in India. As a result, many know English (which they start learning early in school.) Owing to education and language skills which allow them to interact with foreign tourists, the Keralan people are more open, relaxed and helpful, making it an easier place to travel in before you plunge into the rest of the country.
If you start somewhere else and want something a little easier, you could add Kerala on towards the end.
Sep 21, 2013 5:54 AM
Sep 25, 2013 5:14 AM
10I agree with Yarra that although 6 mnths may seem a lot of time, it is not enough to cover all India :). So being a first timer cover the destinations that are popular and will give you a fair idea of the country. Even I feel that including North east will be too much for the first timer and would involve long hours on road. No doubt the natural beauty is exceptional, but you can leave it for your next visit. Feb/ March is a good time and will be pleasant both in North and South (North will be much colder than South). So you can start in Chennai (tamil Nadu) and move forward covering the temples in Mahabalipuram, Tanjore, Madurai and then on to Kerela and move towards North of India including Delhi, Agra & Rajasthan. You can add in Mumbai if you want to get a feel of the maximum city. Varanasi, orchha and Khajuraho can also be included if you have a bend towards spirituality or you want to see more temples (erotic syles). This will take care of your month trip & if a few days are still left, wrap the tour in Goa for fun on beach :)
Sep 26, 2013 8:21 AM
Sep 27, 2013 5:39 AM
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