Must see places in India? - Aussie Stock Forums

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  1. #1

    Default Must see places in India?

    Following on from the discussions at http://www.aussiestockforums.com/for...ead.php?t=3807 for the visit to Australia of Melanie from Germany...

    I have copied my post from another Forum where I do some volunteer work http://forum.equis.com/viewtopic.php?t=4129 which also has a lot of Indian members... Maybe some ASF members have some experiences to share?


    At the end of this year, my girlfriend and I intend visiting India. On this visit we intend seeing the Noth-West of India, the region bounded by Mumbai, Agra and Amritsa. We will 'do' some more on another journey, later. We will be spending about two months (she wants to stay for three months) in the area.

    For our friends in India:
    What is worth seeing?
    What are some of the good things to do?
    We will be doing some of the regular 'tourist' activities, but what else should we do when we are there?
    What is worth seeing, that tourists don't normally get to see?
    Where do you go on holidays in you own country?
    What are the better ways, not only to get around, but to see the country?
    What local activities/festivals are on during the period November to February in the region?
    What information can you give us that is not in the "Lonely Planet Guide"?

    For the rest who may have some Indian adventure stories of their own:
    Recommended activities?
    Not recommended activities?
    What to watch out for?
    Health issues?
    Food issues?
    Money issues?
    Transport issues?
    Language issues?
    Please tell your stories...

    We will be (predominately) backpacking, but exploiting luxury options when we get the chance!

    We have a couple of train journeys planned but that's about all at the moment. We have about six months to plan our travels, so whatever information we get will be appreciated.


  2. #2
    hoarding tinned food kennas's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    By the river
    Blog Entries

    Default Re: Must See Places in India?

    India is hard work. Very in your face and one of the biggest culture shocks on the planet. Except for going to war.

    be prepared to be hasselled and scammed 24/7. There is so much poverty, tourists are seen as a gravy train. Just learn to say no. no. no. no another million times.

    Depends how long you've got, but must sees are:

    The Taj (of course)
    Varanasi (and nearby Sarnath if you have a Buddhist interest)
    Bodhgaya (if you have a Buddhist interest)
    Goa beaches (if your into drugs and the beach)
    Dareeling (if you're into mountains ad tea)
    Rajastan supposed to be incredible but didn't go there. Too hot at the time.
    Mumbai and the Taj Mahal Hotel (if you can afford it)

    Health wise, relax. Just be prepared to have a hot runny **** for the entire time you're there. Don't not eat the local food, it is exquisite.

    Most of all, have patience and be prepared to be scammed, and laugh it off.

  3. #3

    Default Re: Must see places in India?

    kennas gave some great points. I highly recommend:

    1. Varanasi. Can't describe the holy city in mere words. It's a must.
    2. The triangle of Agra, Dehli and Rajistan.
    2a. Agra for Akbah's(sp) tomb, the Taj (especially in the early morning or the evening. The marble changes colour with the different light. It's truly stunning) Try and see the taj from the other side of the river also. I'll look at my notes to remember the others. just get a rickshaw driver, find a good one for your stay there. He will be better than any lonely planet guide. Pay them well.
    2b. Dehli. There is much cheaper accomodation if you stay a bit further away from Connought place (the centre of the newest new dehli. there's actually 8 delhis, each newer than the last) You can take the train to Agra. Quite an experience. If using the train, and you will, I would recommend going to an agent to get the tickets. They are a few rupees more but there is no messing around (and I mean hours and hours sometimes.) There are tourist specific seats and all trains, but they get snapped up fast.
    2c. rajistan. Most sites are in close proximity. I stayed in the swank hotel near the red fort. The fort, the floating palace, the biggest cannon and the old city are all good places. As is the astrological site in the inner town walls.
    I found a driver to take me to rajistan. He was so good in fact he took me to his home and introduced me to his family. His honesty and intergirty was second to none. To take me into his home and see life in the outer suburbs of Dehli was a high of the trip.
    His name is Krishna Tomar
    a-65; Lal Bagh, Loni 201102(U.P)
    Dish - Ghaziabad
    mobile: 9899652828

    Mumbai: Can be very difficult to find cheap or sometimes any accomodation. Try to find the dates of major holidays for the Arabs and any religion. Again, try to find a black taxi driver who you feel comfortable with, tip them well and you will have a guide for as long as you need them. By tipping them well I mean buying them a meal if you stop to eat and add a few extra rupees to the bill for them. You will be rewarded tenfold. Lots of Bollywood films are always being filmed near marine pde. Take in sachin Tendulkar's bar for a drink if you have even the slightest interest in cricket. You will be asked about cricket everywhere you go. At least know the current captains name. tendulkar is a god there even if he is not in the team.

    In all, just be patient, take the time to ask questions. Play cricket with the kids, learn to say NO! and don't give in to touts. If you do they will come from the woodwork and lierally swarm you. So as a rule I didn't give to beggars unless the time was right and I gave enough for them to make it worthwhile.

    Don't flaunt your wealth as you will get a lot of undo attention. Keep records of how you got your money. For example, when you buy a rail ticket at the train station, you will have to prove where the money came from. This can cause no end of arguments as I saw from other travellers.

    Every day I was in India I wanted to leave, but every day something special happened that made me want to stay...Truly bizarre, distgusting and beautiful place all rolled into one. Nowhere on earth like it..

    Sorry for the ramble, but you just brought back so many good memories. Oh and watch out for monkeys. They are truly the sporn of the devil...

    Oh and in mumbai, a great travel agent is Atlantis travel consultants
    lower ground floor, Ramnimi Building, Mandlik Rd, Colaba, Mumbai 400 039.
    PH: 22884081
    email: atlantis_travels@hotmail.com
    ask for Mariyam..

    I aso highly recommend drinking yogurt. It will stave off Dehli belly. I ate street food and restaurant food with no issues. That's part of the reason to travel to foriegn lands, to eat their food. Don't avoid it.. Same rule of thumb, check what the locals eat. Does it look freshly cooked? If hot food, is it hot? I avoided salads there. Washed in local water usually. Drink bottled water, it costs 2 tenths of nothing for a bottle and make sure the bottle is sealed. Sometimes they aren't.

    Also, if a driver or someone says "as you wish" or similar when you pay them, it's their way of calling you a tight a**e. I learnt the hard way...


  4. #4
    gday, wheres the cheese. dreilly's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2006

    Default Re: Must see places in India?

    Quote Originally Posted by Stan 101
    Don't flaunt your wealth as you will get a lot of undo attention. Keep records of how you got your money. For example, when you buy a rail ticket at the train station, you will have to prove where the money came from. This can cause no end of arguments as I saw from other travellers.
    How would you achieve this? im assuming that your talking about ATM reciepts? or travellers cheque reciept? Surely you dont mean i would have to provide a Pay slip!.

  5. #5

    Default Re: Must see places in India?

    yep, with atm receipts or traveller's cheque receipts. They need to know where you got the Rupees... I saw several people at train stations wait in line for a couple of hours, get their ticket, pay the money then have the ticket ripped up as they could not account for the currency they had. If something goes wrong when buying a train ticket, from my personal observations, you go back and sort it out athen join the end of the cue again. That's why I ended up just paying a little more for an agent to buy my ticket... Sit back in their office with a cool Kingfisher and some dahl and wait for them to do the hard work...


  6. #6
    3 veiws of a secret
    Join Date
    Feb 2006

    Default Re: Must see places in India?

    I made some dough on Biota and that funded a trip to India.
    Me my wife,8 year old daughter and twins 12 (boy/girl).

    Arrived Delhi>then Agra>Jaipur>Jodpur>(train) to Jaisalmer>Udaipur via Jodpur(bus)>taxi from Udaipur> Mumbai for the train stn for the Jan Shatabhi Express to Margao(GOA)>bus>Palolem>walked >Putanem>Old Goa(bus)>Panajim>(bus) Arambol>Tivim>Mumbai.
    Ok did day trips to Amber ,Fatehpur Sikri....the list goes on.

    Now if any of these places criss-cross your path will advise you where and what to consider. Email me off list.

    I must admit reading the other posts all are pretty spot on.I have travelled pretty extensively.But places like India is in your face. It's Asia!!

    INDIA just "IS".

    If you have a train leaving Agra @ 5.15am ...lookout it might leave 9 hours latter delayed due to FOG !!!!
    The next wise thing, I sussed out was the hawkers/merchants / & others all need to know your country of origin tell them Botswana, or Macau.....that way they find it real hard to set the mark up for the item they wish to sell.If you speak another lingo swap rapidly from one to the other it confuses them .The trader would say to me 300 rupees for something,and I would say I want to pay you 900 rupees ,it was my quircky way of saying "do you think I'm crazy".If they asked me how many items i want to buy I would say 67!!! because i knew they did not have 67 kodak films etc etc etc I would spend lots of time talking ,& taking the pee out of them in a humourous way.But every person to themselves.I enjoyed my entertainment,but it drove my wife nuts.
    It's always best to regard every Indian as a rip of merchant,and blatant truths are lies. If you piss in the toilet don't be suprised if the urine trickles out into the outside gutter of the street you just walked on. It's civilised chaos.

    India just "IS" !!

    I was asked what I thought about Delhi.....I stood and looked the guy in the eye ,and I said " what Delhi needs is an A bomb " I stopped and changed my mind and said " No it's a waste of an A bomb" .The infrastructure is chaotic....but afterall it adds to all the spice!
    Embrace it before it's to late.

    India just "IS"

  7. #7

    Default Re: Must see places in India?

  8. #8
    Jnr VP of Photocopying Dan_'s Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2005

    Default Re: Must see places in India?

    I have just returned from India and spent a lot of time in the south (Chennai and the state of Tamil Nadu) If you are heading there I can offer some suggestions,

    I can honestly say it is the most amazing place on earth with the most fascinating people.

    Always make sure you drink bottled water (and no ice in drinks) and if you use common sense you can eat some local food (Fruit, Dairy or vegetables are not recommended if raw). Lastly take some malaria tablets to take daily. Just helps in case you get sick.

    I'm yet to take a train but can agree with not flaunting wealth. Keep it all basic and don't give money to beggars, instead if you want to give some money find some kids playing together and give them some instead. Try and be discrete and quick or you can get swamped.

    Go shopping in their crowded markets and shops (especially on a Sunday) Iíve never felt unsafe but you will get a lot of attention depending how far out of the city you are. It's an amazing experience and don't forget bargain, bargain, bargain (whilst being fair)

    If you want a cheap phone over there get a hutch pre-paid mobile (take your own handset) for 999Rs (around $30) you get a simcard valid for 6 months, 800Rs worth of calls (which is a lot calls, even international are very cheap there) and free sms to other mobiles in India. Can be handy for use in India as often international numbers can cause confusion or reluctance for locals to call due to cost.


    As a guide here is some tamil to help you out.

    Welcome - Vaanga
    Good Morning - Kaalai Vanakkam
    Thankyou - Nantry
    How are you - Nalla Irukkingla (always start a sentence with this, gives a positive tone)

    Where are you going? - Neenga Yenga Poareenga
    Water - Thannee
    Give me water - Thannee Cudunga
    Yes - Aamma
    No - Illai

    Have a great safe trip; I'm hoping to head back very soon.
    "Did you see the bubble?"

  9. #9

    Default Re: Must see places in India?

    No one has mentioned Kerala, the Venice of the east?

    Worth a look I reckon

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