New, Green, and Freaked Out!

#1 Feb 10th, 2009, 22:14
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#1
Hey All,

I'm a newbie here at India Mike. I've been watching the posts for some time and have decided to take the plunge and introduce myself...

I've been wanting to visit (or study in - i'm a serious yoga student and a yoga teacher) India for over ten years and the wait has been horrific. Now ~all of a sudden~ I may have an opportunity to visit in the near future and I'm so confused about when to go, where to go first (my job limits my ability to travel for longer than 2 weeks at a time), etc. etc.

Heads up - you'll probably be hearing from me...with all sorts of silly questions.

Thanks for this great community!
Consciousness is the traveler...
#2 Feb 10th, 2009, 22:34
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  • AprilFlower is offline
#2
Welcome to IM Humblejiva!
When you visit is very much dependent on where you want to visit. This time of year is a wonderful time to visit the vast majority of the country. It is quite pleasant. Not hot. A bit cold in some of the northern areas. A great change from the weather of Toronto especially since most of us are enjoing warm sunny days . Look forward to hearing all your questions and I hope you will get to visit soon. It is a life changing experience.
#3 Feb 11th, 2009, 00:24
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#3
Thanks for your response AprilFlower. I guess some context would help:

For our first trip, my b/f and I would like to focus North, and I actually found itineraries that I would very much like that move east from Delhi towards Kathmandu, Nepal. Because it is our first trip, we thought perhaps it would be smart to go with a tour, since we have limited time and are unaccustomed to making travel arrangements from within India.

The dilemma is that since I've only found out now the possibility of being able to do this, the earliest we can go would be April - early May. There is a slight possibility we could go at the end of March...In any case, I've only heard thus far that I'd be absolutely insane to do a group tour at that time of the year in that area due to the heat. I've been told if we travel by ourselves in hotels with swimming pools, etc. and restricted our site-seeing to very early morning, we'd be fine. I'm confused. We are not unaccustomed to heat (40+C) but am not sure if group travel would be as horrific as I've heard at that time.

Wondering if I should just keep waiting a little longer and push the trip out to September/October.

My boyfriend would also like to see more of the Himalayan regions (refocus this trip, or make it our next), but I am completely green and have no clue when best to go - more research needed as of yet.

Any of your thoughts on trip timing would be gratefully received.
#4 Feb 11th, 2009, 00:26
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  • brownboy66 is offline
#4
Hi Humblejiva, and welcome to IM. Don't worry - being old and slighty brown (ok....maybe its just dust), your still freaked daily even when you live here....but its great

happy travels.
"the last meal is history - its the next one that's important" - Garfield (the cat)
#5 Feb 11th, 2009, 00:37
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#5
Quote:
Originally Posted by humblejiva View Post I've only heard thus far that I'd be absolutely insane to do a group tour at that time of the year in that area due to the heat.
Quote:
I've been told if we travel by ourselves in hotels with swimming pools, etc. and restricted our site-seeing to very early morning, we'd be fine.
There is definitely an advantage in being able to tailor each day's activities to how you personally are dealing with the heat, but I would hope that a responsible tour company would be taking the heat into account anyway.

Can't help you with whether or not tour companies actually do have very early starts and so on, nor can I make recommendations for companies who do that, because I've never done an organised tour, but I'm sure other members could give you more information.

Oh, and don't worry about being freaked out, it's the default state for people about to visit India!
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#6 Feb 11th, 2009, 01:02
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  • Indizen is offline
#6
Hello, humblejiva
#7 Feb 11th, 2009, 01:15
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  • Cardinal Divide is offline
#7
If you only have two weeks during the hot season you might want to consider a self guided trip to Himachal Pradesh as the weather in the hills is very nice at that time. You could start in McLeod Ganj/Dharamsala which is quite touristy but I love the place anyway and for this reason it is a great place to start for an India newbie. You will find plenty of hotels and services geared towards foreign tourists which can get tired after a time but is very comforting during your first few days. Plenty of yoga there too.
I can suggest Kangra Fort, Masrur, Rewalsar (Tso Pema) and many more places of interest in the area.
With the money you save on a tour and hotels with a swimming pool you will be able to travel by taxi from place to place if the bus doesn't appeal or is too time consuming.
If you don’t have an India guide book already you can download the Himachal chapter from the Lonely Planet website for a few dollars and do a little of your own research. Post on the Himachal Pradesh branch if this idea appeals to you and you should be inundated with suggestions that will fill your two weeks and make for a memorable trip.
Many hotels in Delhi offer airport pick up. I always suggest the Tibetan communtiy of Majnu ka Tilla as it is my favorite place to stay in Delhi and it is a laid back place for a newbie to start. You can book bus tickets to McLeod Ganj from any of the travel agents in the community. A nice gentle start to travels in India.
Where ever you go or whatever you do have a wonderful trip.
#8 Feb 11th, 2009, 01:24
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  • Sakumbari is offline
#8
Namastè! So because you are a yoga teacher maybe you should try to go to Rishikesh first and visit the jungla were there are sadhus, the Ganga river and many other places (lakshman jhula), then try to go in the north, Leh, Manali and Gangnani (nice warm spring) which are nice places and there is not so much heat at that time with beautiful nature and the Himalayans? Take your time, you need time to move and to adapt yourself to the place.. Anyway in that period it is still possible to travel in the north and even in Rajastan, there is heat but maybe still bearable if you think that usually in the summer it is 48 degrees..

all the best!
Om Namah Shivaia
:::don't eat animals:::
#9 Feb 11th, 2009, 02:13
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#9
Namaskaromi Everyone,

Thanks for your thoughtful replies! You've given me good food for thought on how to potentially restructure the trip to still make it happen! I think I'm mainly freaked out because it took this long to be able to make my first trip, that I don't know when I'll be able to get back... so I gotta see everything I can when I can (the prospect of missing something until another trip is terrifying, but impossible to get around, I know...)!!!

Let me try to pin down some more of the basics and run potential itineraries by the forum...
#10 Feb 11th, 2009, 02:14
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#10
Btw Sakumbari, love your signature...
#11 Feb 11th, 2009, 02:29
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#11
Quote:
Originally Posted by humblejiva View Post I don't know when I'll be able to get back... so I gotta see everything I can when I can (the prospect of missing something until another trip is terrifying, but impossible to get around, I know...)!!!
Hard as it is, do try and let go of the idea of seeing everything you possibly can. Otherwise, you stand a real chance of packing so much in that you'll miss EVERYTHING!

Remember, India will still be there even if you cannot visit for another ten years, it's not going anywhere!

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