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Exploring India

Old Jun 29th, 2017, 07:16 PM
  #1  
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Exploring India

I will be traveling to India starting next January. I am planning an extended solo trip, as I will be finished with my job in Korea and want to travel for maybe a few months in India. I am looking into volunteering and doing workstay programs. The cities on the top of my list are Jaipur and Mumbai, with New Delhi, Jaisalmer, and Amritsar also on my wishlist. I've looked into opportunities in Jaipur, New Delhi, and Jaisalmer already, and each would require up to a month of staying at the hostel. My questions are:
1. Is there a recommended route to take? I.e. which city would be best to fly into, and what would be the recommended order to travel between the cities?
2. Would I feasibly be able to visit all of these (5) cities on the list, or is it better to cut down the list? On the other hand, are there cities that should be added?
3. What's the best (and cheapest) way to travel between these places?
4. How safe are these places for a solo, early twenties woman to travel to?
5. Are there any places where I can swing dance? I don't want to lose the hang of it haha and I have heard that some cities in India have swing dancing but I'm not sure where.
My interests include hiking, swing dancing, reading, and learning about new cultures. I love volunteering and exploring new places, especially places with history behind it. I like both the city and country. I also have a huge phobia of snakes. I am planning on staying in India for three months (possibly up to four) before traveling to either Nepal or Thailand (yes, I know they're very different countries)
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Old Jun 29th, 2017, 07:36 PM
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Apparently Mumbai has a lot of mixed reviews...would my time be better spent in the northern area, exploring New Delhi, Jaipur, Jaisalmer, etc?
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Old Jun 29th, 2017, 08:56 PM
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a. January will be bitterly cold & perhaps foggy in North India. Best spent in places on your list in Rajasthan & Delhi.
b. You will need to research further on volunteering & work-stay programmes as this is a domain Greek to me. Some knowledgeable viewers may render help.
c. India is very safe for a Solo lady Traveller, provided you take some commonsense precautions, chief among those being hiring cabs from recognised agencies/operators or from Police Booths located at all major Bus stands/Rail Stations/Airports in India.
d. You won't find snakes in winter as these hibernate & will get active from April onwards in north India.
e. I know of no other pleasanter destinations for Hiking than our Kumaon Hills. In the months of March / April the jungle trails are full of rhododendron in bloom and nature at it's best, with snow-clad mountains forming a great backdrop, every bird adds its note to the orchestra!
f. Another excellent destination I can think of is Village Andretta, some 10 miles south-east of Palampur.
Happy Travels!
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Old Jun 30th, 2017, 01:29 AM
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@vp_singh I am already looking into volunteering so I don't think I need help about that haha. When you say bitterly cold, what temperature do you mean? I have been in South Korea, so I am used to snow and cold winters...do you mean that cold? Should I spend time in the Southern part of India instead?
Kumaon Hills sound wonderful! Is it near one of the cities I will be visiting, or out of the way? Same question for the Village Andretta~
Thank you so much for the help!
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Old Jun 30th, 2017, 08:13 AM
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Look carefully at any volunteer opportunities you are offered, as there are many, many scams. Also, you are the person who was concerned about safety in KL, but you are going yo India solo. Be aware that going to India is much more stressful and safety is much more a concern there than in KL.
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Old Jun 30th, 2017, 08:59 AM
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Actually for us from Chicago January is rather chilly for India but fine for us. Day time temps as I remember them in Delhi then were maybe 60's F though chillier at night. When you are used to summer temps as high as nearly 120F half that feels very cold. .
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Old Jun 30th, 2017, 01:06 PM
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https://weatherspark.com/m/109174/1/...ew-Delhi-India
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Old Jun 30th, 2017, 06:21 PM
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Travel in India is stressful and sensory overload. You may find three months is too long. I have done six and ten weeks solo and was very ready to leave both times.

The best way to travel is by train, see: https://www.seat61.com/India.htm

India is NOT particularly safe for solo women travelers, or even for a woman with a male companion. I (female) have traveled there solo twice, but am not sure I would do it again. Please read these:

http://www.fodors.com/community/asia...dharamsala.cfm

http://www.fodors.com/community/asia...ndia-again.cfm

Your enthusiasm for volunteering may well be misplaced. I have seen several articles like this:

https://www.nytimes.com/2016/03/22/m...emma.html?_r=0
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Old Jul 1st, 2017, 04:44 PM
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Thursdaysd has a good point esp. if you have never been to India. That's pretty long and you may want to split it up,with another destination. It's nothing like Korea. See India first then perhaps find another place to unwind.
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Old Jul 4th, 2017, 01:45 AM
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Okay, so if I split it up into separate trips, which cities would you recommend seeing in one trip? And in which order should I travel between them? The cities I would love to see are New Delhi, Jaipur, Jaisalmer, and Amritsar. Would that be a good order if I did them in one trip? Or if I should "break it up" how would you recommend doing it?
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Old Jul 4th, 2017, 02:27 AM
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Delhi is the logical starting point. Amritsar is the furthest north so I would go there next. Then go to Jaiselmer and Jaipur. From there you can unwind by going south to either Goa or Kerala for some beach time or perhaps both if you have the energy.
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Old Jul 8th, 2017, 05:50 PM
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India is not safe for a solo woman traveler, snakes are the least of your problems.
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Old Jul 10th, 2017, 06:46 PM
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I would be very hesitant traveling to India as a single woman. As mentioned above, there have been many reported incidents of rape against women. As an elderly woman traveling with my husband, there were many times that I felt uncomfortable traveling the streets and we rarely stayed out after dark as few women were out.
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