Delhi to Pushkar?

Sep 19th, 2005, 01:11 PM
  #21  
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Thanks for the concern! Our only issue is that we want to arrive in Pushkar either on the first or second day of the festival(Nov. 9th or 10th) and so we thought that might limit us in terms of the route through Agra first (and going counterclockwise). We hear such wonderful things about Udaipur we are not sure we want to miss it. Is there an easier way to Pushkar from Udaipur? I think we all would be remissed if Varanasi was not included.

I must say, I find the promptness of your responses entirely helpful! It is very difficult to eliminate places when they all sound so interesting! I must say, I'm not too keen on the trip from Delhi through Mandawa and Bikaner prior to Pushkar as was suggested on one itinerary when Udaipur and Jodhpur sound more interesting. Any thoughts? This route seemed to be a lot of driving which we were hoping to cut down.

Again, thanks so much!
wunderlust is offline  
Sep 19th, 2005, 01:48 PM
  #22  
 
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Spent 3 weeks in raj travelling last november with my partner. We arrived in Delhi with a rough itinery and ended up hiring the driver whom picked us up at the airport to commute us to the hotel. The car/driver cost us $25 a day and that covered his accom, food and fuel..bargain. I can give you the name of the hotel and the drivers name if you want it, he was great, spoke excellent english and didnt take the micky. If you take this option expect to travel at least 6 hours a day as the roads are slow.
Our schedule was:
Day 1 and 2 Delhi
Day 3 Agra (taj does close for tourists on one day of the weekbut cannot remember which one...sorry)
Day 4 Jaipur (amazing fort)
Day 5 Pushkar
Day 6 Pushkar (loved this place, i wish we had stayed here longer.)
Day 7 Udaipur (when we were there the lake was empty but according to the papers the monsoon rains arrived a month ago)
Day 8 Jodhpur
Day 9 Jodhpur
Day 10 Jaisalmer
Day 11 Jaisalmer..(camel ride in vogue here...would recommend
We then drove back via bikaner which was ghastly and i would fly back next time...mixed views on whether the airport is working in Jaisalmer but there is an airport at Jodphur if you wanted to dispatch the driver on his own...more expensive but the drive back was a pain as the northern route wasnt that interesting (in my opinion)
india is amazing, i wish we had spent longer in each place. Enjoy

laurajane101 is offline  
Sep 19th, 2005, 03:36 PM
  #23  
 
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FYI, Jaisalmer airport is NOT open for commercial flights. Military only.

Personally, you could certainly skip Jodhpur as well. No need for more than one day here if that.

Also, would think twice about an independent or non-travel agency car and driver. Yes, cheaper. But, what if his car breaks down or there is some other problem? Then what?
Kenstee is offline  
Sep 19th, 2005, 03:54 PM
  #24  
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I am definitely most leary of hiring anyone who is independant and non-travel agency! Particularly because of the 4 of us, 2 are female photographers and although we will limit the amount of equipment we plan on bringing, safety is of utmost importance!

However I am very open to recommendations for agencies who can help me further recommend a trip! Although not solicitations from random agents who are just trying lure me for their business...
wunderlust is offline  
Sep 19th, 2005, 03:57 PM
  #25  
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Oops, hit post, seems to be a common problem.

In any case, reconsidering the trip as Jodphur sounded interesting, as well as Jaipur, but how much more time would you recommend total in Udaipur? Are the day trips to visit the crafts/cultural cities nearby interesting and worth a trip? Is there enough to do in Udaipur if we say for longer prior to going to Pushkar (and theoretically skip Jaipur and Jodhpur) And how could I get from there to Pushkar? Also will the lake be full by the beginning of November?

\.
wunderlust is offline  
Sep 19th, 2005, 04:16 PM
  #26  
 
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I think you will really enjoy the Pushkar camel fair. Like Kashgar it is a unique experience and it is great that you have been able to tailor an itinerary around it. For the rest of your trip some comments. First a radical one. Any chance you are willing to drop Kathmandu this time? Nepal is great but the realy beauty lies outside Kathmandu IMO. Also, it will reduce your travel time as Delhi-Ktm is an international flight and often over booked so you have to reach hugely in advance, etc. Then u could focus on Rajastha, Delhi and Varanasi this trip and do Nepal, maybe with some other part of North India on a later trip. Jaipur makes sense with this itinerary. On the Jaipur-Agra drive FS is en route. IMO 2 nights in Udaipur if this gives you 2 full days is ample. Re the lake being full, were you planning to stay at Lake Palace? Again, IMO, there are far better options. In Pushkar stay at the tents - tho you need to book them soon. For a travel agent you could look at www.presidenttravels.com, email - [email protected]. IT is best to deal with an India based agent - esp as you are a small group so need a tailor made itinerary. What kind of budget/night for hotels are you thinking of?
hobbes is offline  
Sep 19th, 2005, 04:38 PM
  #27  
 
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Wunderlust, if you haven't already contact Vikas at Ashoka Holidays. His email is [email protected]. Class act in my experience. Highly reputable, attentive and ethical operator. Their website is www.ashokaholidays.com. They have offices in New Delhi and Jaipur and have expertise with Rajasthan travel. And no I'm not "pushing" them! In fact, talk to at least two agents to see what they have in mind and the costs. But, make sure you are doing an apples-to-apples comparison. Read all the specifics and see what is included and what isn't.

I'd second the vote for eliminating Nepal this time around. Check-in for international flights can be quite chaotic and you need to be there 3 hours before departure or so. Security and screening is MUCH more rigid and time-consuming than in any other country I've ever been to. Why waste your time doing this when you have some a limited amount of time? I'd concentrate on India and go s-l-o-w enough to enjoy it. As a photographer you know how important it is to have plenty of time to revisit places if necessary to get a shot with the best light.
Kenstee is offline  
Sep 19th, 2005, 04:52 PM
  #28  
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Thanks for the recommendation, I will definitely contact them for assistance. I very much want to book through an Indian travel agency and do not intend to try to book this tour through the US. As we already have our tickets from the US to Delhi, we were hoping to do the rest of the tour for about $1500 for all internal transit, hotel accommodations, etc. We're not looking go first class but rather safe and comfortable (western toilets requested)

As far as Udaipur is concerned, we haven't thought of staying in the palace, although Jag Niwas Guest House seems quite appealing (I'm sure there are many other places to stay and am open to suggestions). I'm reconsidering staying at Udaipur a bit longer in order to make the trip less hectic, visit the 'arts and crafts' outside the city (if anyone has done this please let me know), so how would you recommend doing the Jaipur lag? Jaipur sounds interesting and would love to see Jantar Mantar and Amber Fort if we are there(Hawa Mahal, a sure thing if we end up in Jaipur).

Nepal is a sure thing, as the couple we are traveling with want to go but do not want to spend too much time there. As my partner and I are staying on for 5 more days that could theoretically give us a full week in Nepal. (3 weeks overall for total trip).

Thank you, Kenstee, I did in fact shoot an email to Ashkora Holidays today! I sent an email both to their general site as well as directly to Vikas. I really do appreciate the personal recommendations most! Thanks again!
wunderlust is offline  
Sep 19th, 2005, 09:31 PM
  #29  
 
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The itinerary that you have given above is Ok keeping in view your keenness to be in Pushkar on the first or second day. I would like to add, as hereunder:
a. Udaipur is a must see as we have one of the best city palaces in north of India & do not miss the Meera Kala Academy for a classical dance & song programme.
b. The Mehrangarh Fort at Jodhpur is a photographer’s delight (I am a keen photographer myself apart from a golfer & a shooter!!). If photography is not of paramount importance than stay at Ravla Jojawar & have a glimpse of some tribal life as well.
c. On way to Fatehpur Sikri drop in at Keoladeo sanctuary as in November the migratory birds start coming in.
d. How do you propose to do Agra – Jhansi – Khajuraho (over 400km by road?) & the road beyond Jhansi was not very good when I last traveled in that sector.
e. The sound & light programme held on the Gwalior Fort, every evening, is a powerful comment on the socio-political scene in medieval India. Don’t miss it.
f. Visit the western group of Khajuraho temples.
g. The road to Varanasi is very bad & over 11hours of bone breaking journey. Don’t miss the view of the ghats from a boat early in the morning. Do not forego Varanasi, it is the oldest living town!
h. I have bad reports from Nepal with the Maoists breathing down the throat of govt. troops.
I am glad we are discussing something substantive on this august forum, eventually!
HAPPY HUNTING & BE SAFE!!
vp_singh is offline  
Sep 20th, 2005, 09:12 AM
  #30  
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Ok, I am definitely getting nervous about coordinating this trip with regard to driving time,etc. I'm beginning to consider flying between some of the places in order to avoid problems via traffic as well as reducing overall travel times between destinations. As such, I'm trying to pare down the trip a bit so we aren't so rushed.

Based on lots of advice, what if I flew from Delhi to Udaipur. Drove from Udaipur to Pushkar (seeing Ranakpur along the way). Drive to Jaipur. Flew from Jaipur to Agra (skipping Gatehpur Sikri which sounds lovely but could possibly still drive) And just flew from Agra to Varanasi (skipping Jhansi and Khajuraho), then flight to Kathmandu

Is our cost going to go up exponentially? Of course I know it will increase compared to driving but I'm beginning to think this might be a preferred method of travel vs. all the driving. I am well aware of the benefits of driving through the country in order to see more of it but just want to consider all my options.

Also, I know I asked this before but has anyone done day trips outside of Udaipur? Would 3 days be too much? We still prefer to get to Pushkar on the 10th but could go earlier I suppose.

Thanks to everyone!! You are all really getting me to think about how best to plan this trip which is what this site is all about!

Cheers!
wunderlust is offline  
Sep 20th, 2005, 09:21 AM
  #31  
 
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have you checked the pushkar date...for instance for next year it is nov 2-5, 2006...are you too late??
rhkkmk is offline  
Sep 20th, 2005, 09:43 AM
  #32  
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In all my research I have seen 2 dates. First one is a start date of 11/8-11/12 for the camel trading and 11/12-11/15 for the 'cultural fair'. So I feel comfortable that these are the correct times to be there.

Since the fair follows the lunar calendar it is no wonder that the dates would differ from year to year.

Someone feel free to correct me if I'm wrong!
wunderlust is offline  
Sep 20th, 2005, 11:07 AM
  #33  
 
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Sorry to say Agra is not a major airport. I don't think you can fly Jaipur to Agra and Agra to Varanasi directly. Hope I'm wrong but I believe you will need to stop and change planes in Delhi on both of these legs. This will seriously impact your latest scenario.
Kenstee is offline  
Sep 20th, 2005, 11:13 AM
  #34  
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This was definitely a concern..thanks! I don't think I might doing the extra drive from Jaipur to Agra but if there was such a thing as a connection to Varanasi from Agra that might help...

wunderlust is offline  
Sep 20th, 2005, 04:53 PM
  #35  
 
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Kenstee is right. Jaipur Agra driving is the most efficient and then Fatehpur Sikir is en route. Agra Varanasi you can take a train. Your travel agent should be able to point you in the right direction for all this. Did you write to the one I suggested?
hobbes is offline  
Sep 21st, 2005, 03:57 AM
  #36  
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Yes! Thank you! I have been in touch with them since yesterday. . . I have to review the newly revise itinerary they sent me based on the latest questions that I had.

Thank you!
wunderlust is offline  

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