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Rajasthan and around - must see priority?

Rajasthan and around - must see priority?

Old Aug 10th, 2006, 10:27 AM
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Rajasthan and around - must see priority?

If you had to prioritize the cities in the order that is a must see, what would you do? I am limited on time and will need to eliminate some cities. I am willing to fly or take overnight trains to lessen travel time - so really its a matter of what is the best to see.

Delhi
Agra
Veranassi
Jaipur
Jaisalmer
Udaipur

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Old Aug 10th, 2006, 10:36 AM
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Are you a shopper? If so, that might affect your priorities. How much time do you have? We had 12 days and did Delhi, Agra, Jaipur and Ranthambore (National Park). I would not have cut any of those out but we regret not having enough time for Varanasi. Depending on where you are coming from you might need a day to recover from jet lag by the way.
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Old Aug 10th, 2006, 10:44 AM
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i would move jaipur up one notch....
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Old Aug 10th, 2006, 11:11 AM
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No, not too much of a shopper. If we missed seeing Udaipur, would that be bad?
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Old Aug 10th, 2006, 11:39 AM
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Based on the comments I've seen on this board -- no. Udaipur seems to be a nice place to relax for a couple of days and is a very walkable city but doesn't seem to have a lot in the way of attractions.
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Old Aug 10th, 2006, 11:46 AM
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i will suggest you don't miss jaisalmer and Varanasi.

Delhi
Varansi
Varanasi - Agra train
Agra- jaipur
Jaipur
Jaipur Jaiaslamer train
jaisalmer
Jaisalmer - jodhpur
jodhpur - udaipur
udaipur
udaipur - delhi flight
Best to see Jaisalmer , Varansi Agra jaipur.

thanks

Pat
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Old Aug 10th, 2006, 02:35 PM
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You have the order pretty much right, except

Delhi
Agra
Veranassi
Ranthambore
Jaipur

How many days do you have Jenni?
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Old Aug 10th, 2006, 03:48 PM
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Hello all. namaste!

It is really hard to prioritze all the cities u mention on your list for your India trip, as each place holds different fascination. It really depends on what r ur interests and how much time u have and how much u want to travel as well. But surely in your trip i wld suggest to custom make the exact trip of your liking and combine private car/driver, with a occasional domestic flight, and maybe even a occasional train journey for good measure too.

I have been to all places shortlisted, actualy numerous of times and each is worthy of a visit in its own right..All should be consdidered, again, depending on what u like, what u desire to see, and how far u want to travel.

As i have written extensively on Varanasi on another thread or two or three, i certainly think every trip to India should include a visit to Varanasi if possible. It is definatley one of the most fascintating places in India, if not on earth, and such a unbeleivable experince.

Delhi, Agra, Jaipur, the golden triangle, of course!. This is a good intro to North India and the various cultures and history. These are the three places most visitors to India see, and All are unique and worthy of a visit and will give u a feel for a different side of India, its history, culture, etc..

Jaisalmer..I love it out therE! something unique, and one of my fave places too.and u can go on a mini camel safari and take a camel out in the thar Desart..quite a experince...And Udaipur, I also like that city very much, for differnt reasons. It is beautiful and romantic and a nice place to visit and gorgeous hotels too..

So all are wonderful. Depends on time constraints and how u plot and plan your trip. happy travels and feel free to drop me a line, happy to help [email protected]

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Old Aug 10th, 2006, 08:49 PM
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Unless we know how many days you have on the ground and what time of year you are going it is really hard to give any advice. If you have 5 days you cannot do your intial itineary. If you have 40 days, you can do much more. If you are going in April, you might want to take it much slower than if you were going in January. We need more info.

Also, what are your interests? A "must see" to you may be different from a "must see" to someone else. Have you done some initial reading, how did you pick the places on your origina post?
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Old Aug 10th, 2006, 10:19 PM
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Udaipur is a beautiful city. The palace in itself, is probabaly the best in North West India. The boat ride on lake Pichola is great, both in the morning or at the time of sunset, is great. Classicists have gone ga-ga over the Historico-romanticism of Udaipur. You can also see some fairly authentic indan classical dance performances at haveli Bagore.
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Old Aug 10th, 2006, 10:46 PM
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Unfortunately, I have 8 full days. I plan to offset the travel time with doing flights as much as possible. I will be in India the end of Sept. I love interesting culture, unique architecture, adventure. I really wanted a travel priority list so then I could try to fit those maybe 4 cities in an itinerary. Thanks so far to everyone who has responded. This has been really great information.
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Old Aug 10th, 2006, 11:39 PM
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You cannot do 4 cities in 8 days and enjoy them IMO. I would not recommend that you try to "do" 4 cities in Europe in 8 days where distances are less and train and air service is much better. That is just not enough time to see sights and get a feel for the place and culture. Pick 2 or at the very most 3.

Some places have no or very limited air service, for example there is no service to Agra at present and if there is service to Jaislamer it is not daily and even then service is only on Air India which I personally would avoid. For flights to/from other places, many flights will require you to change in Delhi (i.e. Varanasi to virtually any city on your list) and so will take up a good bit of a day; not to mention the very good likelihood of flight delays, esp as it is the end of the monsoon season as well. Temps in September will be warm still in most place, so IMO you also need to take it a bit slower.

Any of the 6 cities on your original list would give you what you like to see and do. India is full of interesting culture, architecture and adventure. If this were my trip, I would definitely go to Varanasi and Jaipur for 2-3 nights each as they will give you the biggest culture/sight bang with your limited time and Jaipur has the best air connections. You could then go down by car to Agra for one night for the Taj, Fatephur Sikri and the Fort , and then by car or train to Delhi for a flight out. I would probably include Delhi for 2 nights over any of the other cities because (i) it has a lot of architecture, tourist sights, history, museums, shopping and good restaurants and (2) you will be landing there for your international flight anyway so it would save a lot of time and energy given your short travel time to spend time there rather than trying to expend effort trying to get to a place like Jaislamer. Save more remote areas for when you have more time, and maybe go in the winter and then include some time in beach areas in the south.
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Old Aug 11th, 2006, 07:37 AM
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Namaste.

With 8 days, careful planning *and if u want to try to see as much as possible,u can do a trip of Delhi, Jaipur, Agra, and include Varanasi too. It will give u two nights in each location and that is the minimum i wld recco, and for plenty of travelers it is fine.

Udaipur and Jaisalmer are both fascinating and i love them both, but i wld leave them for another trip when u have more time to explore Rajasthan.. Perhaps a more intensive all~Rajasthan trip.

However, if u do Delhi, Jaipur, Agra and Varanasi on this trip, it will give u a good intro to North India, passing through various regions and experincing the culture, colors and flavors of the region.

And yes, by all means include VAranasi. I wld do the golden triangle of delhi agra and Jaipur and end in Varanasi! it will be a big finish!

A route like this can surely be done if u do not mind traveling at a faster tempo, and plan out wisely and accordingly, combining the route with private car/driver, and a few domestic flights.

Of course, some folks like to travel at a more leisurely pace and spend more time in each destination for a more complete and comprehensive feel, but leading tour programs in India for over a decade that move at a fairly quick pace throghout, i have seen many folks content with two nights in each locale and prefer to see more. Many choices of ways to do a short India trip.

happy travels/take care and feel free to drop me a line [email protected]
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Old Aug 11th, 2006, 07:39 AM
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With only 8 days, I can see why you are looking for priorities. Cicerone makes some very good points about travel times and flight availability. The least stressful itinerary for that amount of time would be Delhi - Agra - Jaipur - Delhi. However that was not what you asked for. If somehow you are able to work in Varanasi, you should cut back on Delhi.

We were fortunate to arrive in Delhi at dawn so we headed straight to Agra and spent the remainder of the day recovering from jet lag. Most flights arrive Delhi late at night though.

Lets look at two possible scenerios, one that includes Varanasi and one that doesn't. I'll assume your flight arrives late at night. If it doesn't, just adjust the itinerary accordingly.

INCLUDING VARANASI:
Day 1 Delhi, late afternoon drive or train to Agra
Day 2 Agra
Day 3 Drive to Jaipur via Fatephur Sikri
Day 4 Jaipur
Day 5 Jaipur - Delhi
Day 6 Delhi - Varanasi by air
Day 7 Varanasi
Day 8 Varanasi - Delhi by air

WITHOUT VARANASI:
Day 1 Delhi
Day 2 Delhi, late afternoon drive or train to Agra
Day 3 Agra
Day 4 Drive to Jaipur via Fatephur Sikri
Day 5 Jaipur
Day 6 Jaipur
Day 7 Drive, fly or train to Delhi
Day 8 Delhi

I would hire a driver for between Delhi - Agra and Agra - Jaipur. There is lots to see along the way that you won't see by train. You do not want to be driving at night though.

Hope this helps.
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Old Aug 11th, 2006, 07:56 AM
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I neglected to mention in the "Including Varanasi" itinerary that you would fly from Jaipur to Delhi. I do not believe the connections are good enough for you to fly from Jaipur to Delhi and Delhi to Varanasi on the same day.
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Old Aug 11th, 2006, 09:06 AM
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Thanks everyone. These were excellent tips and really helped me to narrow down my focus. I hope I will make it back to India someday, I am going there for work and am taking an extra week vacation. If I dont make it back, then I would like to get a good taste of it.
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Old Aug 11th, 2006, 05:41 PM
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You will get a perfectly good taste of India by doing the triangle; Delhi, Agra, jaipur, Delhi.

That's what I did my first trip (14 days)and I was very satisfied. Of course it left me wanting to see more, which I did, seeing Varanasi-Udaipur-Ranthambore and Delhi the next time.

I still have a long list of must sees, but a two week trip with 4 locations seems to work well for me.

You have to factor in the connection difficulties, delays, illness and just plain slowness of travel in India. If you try to go too fast, you'll just end up unhappy.
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