RIFF & other advice

#1 Aug 10th, 2011, 19:47
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#1
Hi

My partner and I will be travelling to India for the first time in October, starting in Delhi, then to Jodhpur for the Festival (12-16 Oct).

We'd be grateful for tips and advice; in particular:

Temperatures (have heard that it can get very cold at night).
Eating out
Getting around & safety, paticularly after dark
Anyone who's been to the festival or going?

We're then heading to Udaipur, so best way, I believe is by road with a car and driver?

I'm new to this site, so apologies if these threads have been covered before.

Thanks

elly
#2 Aug 13th, 2011, 03:45
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Originally Posted by elly View Post My partner and I will be travelling to India for the first time in October, starting in Delhi, then to Jodhpur for the Festival (12-16 Oct).
What festival is that? Would be interesting to others. (And what btw does RIFF stand for?)

Quote:
Temperatures (have heard that it can get very cold at night).
In October? No. See this whole thread for some idea: http://www.indiamike.com/india/india...e-chart-t4062/.

Quote:
Eating out
Would be hard to miss.

Quote:
Getting around & safety, paticularly after dark
Esp. being the pair of you, shouldn't be any problem.

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We're then heading to Udaipur, so best way, I believe is by road with a car and driver?
So it is said yes, Jodhpur isn't that splendidly connected to there. If you leave early, you could now visit Kumbhalgarh and/or Ranakpur along the way. Search this site for the two, and for that route.

A bus btw Jodhpur-Udaipur should be feasible, but you'd now have no time to stop off at these places en route.

Check also http://www.indiamike.com/india/rajas...thread-t60032/.
#3 Aug 14th, 2011, 04:54
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#3
Thank you Machandinha

I will read up on the links provided.

Festival is the Rajasthan International Folk Festival - http://www.jodhpurfolkfestival.org/

Hope others will find it interesting too, we've never been before, so looking forward to it.

Cheers

elly
#4 Aug 14th, 2011, 23:03
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Originally Posted by elly View Post Festival is the Rajasthan International Folk Festival - http://www.jodhpurfolkfestival.org/
Thanks, that looks very interesting, indeed.

Jodhpur's nice to spend some time in btw (as I guess attending the festival you'll be doing); the fort is absolutely stunning (and would easily merit two visits, I reckon, though I did just a one; and with each visit easily meriting several hours. There's a walkman audio tour on offer if it still is, which is actually said to be pretty good, or otherwise there are guides around; one could do this the one day, then do it again on one's own on another); and then (in the early 1990's) I just enjoyed it as a town to just hang around in & soak up the atmosphere for a few days. A tea here, a juice there, another bit of a stroll, that sort of thing. Nice bazaar, just below the fort, though with some fierce bargaining and touting going on, but in a way manageable; one hears there's some good bicycling to be done around town, which I didn't, then; and I found it somehow less touristy than many another Rajasthan highlight.

One would expect it to have grown larger and busier, and perhaps more touristy; still, people here almost invariably still seem to describe it in pretty much the same terms. Enjoy!
Last edited by machadinha; Aug 15th, 2011 at 00:18..
#5 Aug 14th, 2011, 23:57
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Originally Posted by machadinha View Post A bus btw Jodhpur-Udaipur should be feasible, but you'd now have no time to stop off at these places en route.
A comfortable bus on this route is folklore ... see this: http://www.indiamike.com/india/rajas...aipur-t113874/
An ordinary bus - there should be plenty.
#6 Aug 17th, 2011, 16:55
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Good morning and regards. Your advice about car and driver good, allowing us to stop off and visit, as you say, on the way (plus ad hoc toilet stops too!). Going by bus I believe, would mean leaving at 5 pm so most of the journey would be in the dark, therefore we'd see very little!

I understand that malaria prophylaxis is not needed for that part of Rajasthan? What do you think? Do you think rabies shots are necessary? We don't intend cuddling strange animals but on the other hand I don't want to be alarmist and just want to put the risk into perspective!

Next step, visa and online booking of railway tickets, this is a learnin curve for us!

Thanks - elly
#7 Aug 19th, 2011, 12:41
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#7
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Originally Posted by elly View Post Your advice about car and driver good, allowing us to stop off and visit, as you say, on the way (plus ad hoc toilet stops too!). Going by bus I believe, would mean leaving at 5 pm so most of the journey would be in the dark, therefore we'd see very little!
Aha. I only know about these buses from quite some years ago (nor did I ever go directly Jodhpur-Udaipur), but just for the sake of completeness, I know no better than they won't allow for those stop-offs along the way. Would just get too involved, combining the one with the other. I'd expect them to be running pretty much throughout the day, though. (Then maybe the more "deluxe" types say once or twice a day -- or night, then, that's very possible.)

Anyway I've never done that taxi ride + stopovers either, but I imagine it would be worth your while.

Quote:
I understand that malaria prophylaxis is not needed for that part of Rajasthan? What do you think? Do you think rabies shots are necessary? We don't intend cuddling strange animals but on the other hand I don't want to be alarmist and just want to put the risk into perspective!
Hm, well, opinions on it vary, as many as there are members here, and my reasonable advice would be to go ask a travel health clinic where you live.

Rabies shots I've never taken, not on four India trips nor on some others and having lived in the tropics, and I'm not averse to cuddling with street dogs and cats, either. I've always been of the understanding it's mostly a risk when being e.g. a vet, or a spelunker or something. That being said, it's been argued here the actual treatment you need if you haven't had preliminary shots will be hard to get in India.* I don't know, your call. It's never given me any pause. It needs to be understood it's a fatal disease, and swiftly so, if not properly treated.

* Contrary to perhaps if you have had the preliminary shots. In my very own layman's and inexperienced terms, then, the rabies vaccination consists of a series of shots. If you get the vaccination, you'll still need to seek treatment asap if you get bitten, or otherwise suspect an infection. (You should really be acting within days, btw.) From what I've read here, this follow-up course if necessary should be easy to get in India. However, it's been argued here that if you need to start it from scratch after an infection, the right vaccines may not at all be so readily available. Your call, again, I guess. Like I already said, it's never given me any concern, and I've slept on the streets happily guarded by street dogs there. That doesn't mean you should follow my lead. Monkeys btw it would be wise to keep some respectable distance from. The one species varies from the other, and then all may have adapted various ways depending on where they live, but generally don't look them in the eyes, nor flash your teeth at them (as when smiling or yelling); they consider this a challenge to a fight. It shouldn't be too much of a concern btw, but in some places they may get quite close.

Advice on anti-malarials may differ widely depending on where you ask, whether in your country, or where in your country. I'd still and either way go by some professional advice, then weigh the pros and cons with them. So, again, a nearby tropical health clinic, or doctor specializing in the same (any should be willing to refer you).

Quote:
Next step, visa and online booking of railway tickets, this is a learnin curve for us!
Aha. Visa of course in Britain will be handled by the VFS http://in.vfsglobal.co.uk/; note an Indian tourist visa is valid from date of issue, you want to get it neither too early nor too late for your plans; train booking it is said can only be done online from abroad these days with ClearTrip http://www.cleartrip.com/ (try at different hours if the system's clogged up); http://erail.in/ while it doesn't allow for bookings can make for handy swift reference regarding trains (both of course may take some studying).
#8 Aug 20th, 2011, 00:11
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Originally Posted by elly View Post Going by bus I believe, would mean leaving at 5 pm so most of the journey would be in the dark, therefore we'd see very little!
My point was that the deluxe volvo buses dont exist on this route (atleast the rajasthan state transport ones dont). The ordinary buses (state govt ones) should be aplenty and run by the hour or so ... if you can rough it. Car and driver is always a better bet!
#9 Aug 21st, 2011, 21:07
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Many thanks to both for advice. Train tickets through Cleartrip was very easy to book. The visas, wow what a work up! Took us nearly 2 hours doing this online and we still need to get the photographs, I personally did not find it all that easy to do. "Mother's name"? Hmm, she's been dead over 30 years and did they mean her maiden name or married name? Anyway just a minor delay!

Regards- elly
#10 Aug 24th, 2011, 06:37
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#10

RIFF here we come!

Hi... There are three of us coming to the festival from SoCa. We are leaving on the 1st of Oct. and will be coming from Jaisalmer. We too will be traveling to Udaipur after the festival then on to Pushkar and Haridwar for Diwali.
Did you know that the Marwar festival will happen in Jodhpur under the biggest full moon of the year on 10/10 and 10/11 right before the RIFF so try to get to Jodhpur before for camel races and firewalking.
Here is a question for the vets, of these destinations Udiapur , Pushkar or Haridwar which would you recommend spending the most time in ? I have to adjust the plan and can't decide I have not been to India in decades.
#11 Aug 24th, 2011, 20:26
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Originally Posted by Dakini Dancer View Post Here is a question for the vets, of these destinations Udiapur , Pushkar or Haridwar which would you recommend spending the most time in ? I have to adjust the plan and can't decide I have not been to India in decades.
Of the three, I've not been to Haridwar. Pushkar (where I was in the early 1990's, I don't imagine nor hear this will have improved) is fun and small and cosy, but also and other than that it's a bit (understatement) of a hippie/backpacker/tourist trap. No doubt nice if that's your thing, but otherwise, I suppose my vote would have to be firmly for Udaipur!

(Haridwar then I hear is an experience alright if you are in that area, but also may not have that much to keep you busy for longer if you're not firmly into Hinduism. Correct me if I'm wrong folks, but if I'm not mistaken I believe not even much of the temples and architecture here is in fact very old.)
#12 Aug 24th, 2011, 22:58
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Thanks for the reply... Being a rainbow dyed in the hemp hippy myself a visit to Pushkar will be fun for a couple days and I will shift things to stay longer in Udaipur at your suggestion. Tell me is there anything in Agra more than the Taj worth a visit, although I was in India decades ago (from the overland trail from Amsterdam) I have never seen the Taj Mahal. At this point of my trip I will only have 1 week left and had planned to spend most of it back in Haridwar where made my first dip Ganges so long ago. I am kind of a puja queen.
#13 Aug 25th, 2011, 22:58
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Originally Posted by Dakini Dancer View Post Thanks for the reply... Being a rainbow dyed in the hemp hippy myself a visit to Pushkar will be fun for a couple days and I will shift things to stay longer in Udaipur at your suggestion. Tell me is there anything in Agra more than the Taj worth a visit, although I was in India decades ago (from the overland trail from Amsterdam) I have never seen the Taj Mahal. At this point of my trip I will only have 1 week left and had planned to spend most of it back in Haridwar where made my first dip Ganges so long ago. I am kind of a puja queen.
Aha, well; splendid example of how we'll all differ in our outlooks & wishes

I guess in your case then, Pushkar and Haridwar might rather be really something for you, no.

Udaipur I must say (this was later mid-1990's) I also found pretty touristy even back then, and so it didn't really "do" all that much for me. May also be a matter just of do you arrive the one day or the other, right; so what do you run into, and stuff. But, what can one say, it's pretty and romantic alright, with its whimsical palaces and lakes (if filled) and so on. One hears there's some nice bicycling to be done around the countryside here, or some good side trips if staying for a little longer.

Agra I've never been either, but apart from the Taj Mahal, other highlights here are said to be the deserted city of Fatehpur Sikri, and the Agra Fort; perhaps a few more sights, still. (Check also just simply e.g. Wikipedia on its further sights: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Agra.)

My understanding is since most seem to find the city otherwise terribly congested and hasslesome with touts and stuff, few seem to choose to stay for longer here; apparently a one night and then the better part of two days should suffice to see those main sights. Note the Taj is closed on Fridays, btw.
#14 Aug 26th, 2011, 02:51
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Thanks again... We will stay the night before for a Taj sunrise then start our 2 road trip to Haridwar shortly there after. We will spend the night at Unchagoan Fort which is only 4 hours from Haridwar by car...better than coming back to Delhi for a night I think.
I spend every Spring in a small village Bali and have for the last 20 years and now produce tribal music events so just give me drums and nomads and I am very happy. Ever heard anything about Unchagoan ?
#15 Aug 26th, 2011, 03:11
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Originally Posted by Dakini Dancer View Post Ever heard anything about Unchagoan ?
Nope, can't say I have. A quick web search (could Unchagaon be the more common spelling?) now tells me just a little more.

So, give us your best descriptions of it -- I'm sure others will love to hear it, as might I, for any future trips (You might want to start a new thread on it, since it doesn't really fall under this thread's purpose. Suggest doing it in the Uttar Pradesh (sub-) forum, if indeed that's where it's at.)

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