Advice for first trip to India (2wks)

#1 Dec 7th, 2009, 00:44
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  • bjorki is offline
#1
Hi.

Me and my husband have decided last minute to spend 2 weeks in India over Christmas and New Year and have booked a flight to and from Mumbai. Right now we are researching online and the Lonely Planet but feel a bit overwhelmed by our time limits and how to best fit in a little of everything without it being too much.

We would really appreciate your feedback and suggestions for a possible itinerary. We do not want to run around but rather to take our time and travel slowly in order to really get the feel of life there as best as we can. Still, we would like to make the most of our time there and to see some variety.

I know that since Mumbai will be our hub for this trip we want to spend some time there (New Years Eve maybe?). Otherwise we are looking at possible itineraries in south India. We might want to allow a couple days for a beach resort (Goa?) but mostly just to get the feel of life in that part of the subcontinent.

Do you have suggestions for a 2 week itinerary: Mumbai - Goa - Karnataka - Kerala?

We are both in our thirties and have travelled quite extensively but are not really the backpacker types, rather a midrange budget type. How do you recommend that we travel within India, by train? fly? Do you think we should be getting worried being this late at booking accommodation and transport?

Thank you so much in advance, I look forward to hearing from you.
#2 Dec 7th, 2009, 01:09
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  • OceanTragic is offline
#2
How about checking out the caves at Ellora and Ajanta then heading to a beach before back to Mumbai.

As this is a last minute trip, have you already got your visa, or don't you need one?
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#3 Dec 7th, 2009, 04:03
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#3
Hi - thanks for the reply. We have a visa, it only took 2 days to get )

The caves really sound good but they are in the "wrong" direction of what we were thinking. Do you know how it is to get there from Mumbai? It seems very far and the Lonely Planet only describes the way from Aurangabad.

What do you think of this plan:

21.12: Arrival in Mumbai (very early)
22.12: Mumbai
23.12: Mumbai
24.12: Train to Goa (Are we missing anything in particular in Maharashtra?)
25.12: Goa
26.12: Goa
27.12: Goa
28.12: Train further south (is Hampi a good stop?)
29.12: Kerala
30.12: Kerala
31.12: Kerala - New Years on a houseboat?
1.1: Bangalore
2.1: Flight from Bangalore to Mumbai
3.1: Fly home

What do you think? Any suggestions?
#4 Dec 7th, 2009, 04:31
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#4
Yes looks alright ,not enough time but there never is As you are in the area ,well not to faraway , i would try to keep Hampi on the list . The only booking ahead i would try to do is your first hotel in Mumbai with airport pickup and if possible your train down to Goa ,but with a few days in Mumbai it should be possible to book that when you are there .For your flight from Bangalore to mumbai it would be nice to have booked as well. That will give you a start and finish so for the middle bit you can just wing it . Good fun ,enjoy
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#5 Dec 7th, 2009, 19:07
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#5
Komiš sęl,

Viš erum ķslenskt par sem er einnig aš fara til Indlands ķ fyrsta skipti nįnast į sama tķma og žiš.

Lendum ķ Mumbai aš morgni 21.des,fljśgum til Goa 26.des žašan meš lest til kerala 2. jan,og endum sķšan ķ Bangalore žašan sem viš fljśgum til baka til Mumbai.

Gęti veriš gaman aš rekast į ykkur,

kv.Kjartan
#6 Dec 7th, 2009, 20:30
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#6
Thanks a lot for your advice, we might just do as you suggest and keep the middle part of our trip unbooked. However I assume it is quite important to book ahead the accommodation for Christmas and New Years? Any suggestions?? We are obviously not looking for any typical western Christmas celebration but would like to stay in a memorable place at the time, maybe something lively but not necessarily.

KBald - how nice to meet a fellow Icelander here, administrators: are we allowed to communicate in our own language...?!!! There does not seem to be an option to send a private message... Anyway - we would love to hear from you!!! Can you tell us a bit more about your itinerary? Have you booked everything? Would you recommend flying from Mumbai to Goa rather than taking the train?

So many questions and so little time left to plan!!
#7 Dec 7th, 2009, 22:01
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#7
I apologise to those who didn“t understand my earlier comment....
this page is of course about sharing information,so a private message would have been a better idea..

The reason why we decided to go from Mumbai to Goa by flight is that we were to late to get a train ticket(and had some problem with booking train tickets,that has been solved now).

We“re flying with Indigo,a domestic budget airline.

http://book.goindigo.in/

The flight was a bit expensive,because of the popularity of the route..16000 rps(45000iskr) for 2 persons.

Compared to the ticket we got from Bangalore to Mumbai with the same airline 4,664 rps for 2 persons. A little more expensive than the train tickets.
#8 Dec 8th, 2009, 00:17
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#8
We are flying into and out of Mumbai with similar timings to you. I agree with booking your first night and pick-up in Mumbai. You might need to check some of the great train threads here for advice on checking train availability to Goa on Xmas eve. Thats a very popular journey and we have been unlucky with dates we have wanted to depart b4 now. Doesn't matter much in a long trip but 2 weeks is precious. You might find it better (tho expensive) to fly to goa then get your train journey hit to Hampi. Don't miss that. If you don't book hotels in advance you will be able to go more with the flow and see if you prefer to stay in Goa/Karnataka and leave Kerala for next time. Or you could do a 2 hour flight from Mumbai to Kerala and come the other way back - spending Xmas in the backwaters and new Year in Goa. Spoilt for choice! I know the feeling well.
#9 Dec 15th, 2009, 07:48
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#9
Thank you so much for all the precious advice. I think we are getting closer to finalizing our itinerary for the trip:

20.12.2009 Mumbai
21.12.2009 Mumbai to Goa (flight)
22.12.2009 Goa - do you recommend spending the day in Old Goa? We would like to stay near a beach though
23.12.2009 Goa to Hampi (train)
24.12.2009 Hampi
25.12.2009 Hampi to Mysore
26.12.2009 Mysore (Maharaja“s Palace & rail museum)
27.12.2009 Mysore
28.12.2009 Mysore to Kochi (train)
29.12.2009 Kerala - Munnar / Houseboat / Varkala
30.12.2009 Kerala
31.12.2009 Kochi to Mumbai (flight) -is New Year“s a good idea in Mumbai? The flight is so much cheaper if we leave this day rather than a day or two later as we initially planned.
01.01.2010 Mumbai
02.01.2010 Mumbai
03.01.2010 Flight home from Mumbai

I know this is a very packed itinerary, we are usually slow travellers but this time we would like to make the most of our short time in India. Is this possible??? Are we maybe planning to stay too long in Mysore? If so, where would you recommend staying longer? Please add your thoughts and comments.

Btw. do you think we will be able to have clothes made at a tailor in Mumbai on 31.12- 2.1?

Thanx!
Last edited by bjorki; Dec 17th, 2009 at 00:59..

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