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Recommendations Rajasthan with children

Old Nov 14th, 2002, 09:45 PM
  #1  
peggie
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Recommendations Rajasthan with children

We plan to go to Rajasthan area of India in December for 2 weeks. Any suggestions for activities&sights children, ages 9 and 10, enjoy? Are the forts and palaces kid-friendly? Wildlife parks?
 
Old Nov 17th, 2002, 05:53 PM
  #2  
kunal
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I will be traveling to Rajasthan with my 9 month old daughter and as i visit this site, i will look for some fun stuff for kids between 9 and 10 years.

More to come
 
Old Nov 18th, 2002, 04:01 PM
  #3  
Daneille
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Not sure about kid friendly - though I can't see why not provided your children are well behaved and respectful.

Jaisalmer (close to the border with Pakistan) is a fortified city in the Rajasthan desert which would be about one of the most unique, exciting and amazing places I have every seen.

They have camel trips out in to the desert which visit little villages and the sand dunes - and staying out under the stars over night is unforgettable, but I think they also do this in 4 wheel drives which would probably be more suitable for younger children. Of course there are plent of other things to see and do within the walls of the city if this doesn't suit.

The palaces and cities throughout Rajasthan are beautiful. Lucky kids!
 
Old Nov 20th, 2002, 03:12 AM
  #4  
Abs
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Hi Peggie,

I think it`s a great idea to give an exposure to your kids at such a young age.If you could specify your dates,I would like to suggest a nice program.

A mix of Forts ,Palaces and Wildlife parks would be fantastic.

Abs
 
Old Nov 28th, 2002, 07:43 AM
  #5  
Nancy
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Dear Peggie:

I highly recommend Ranthambore National Park, about a 3 hour drive south of Jaipur. It is one of the few remaining places where you can see wild tigers. Even if you don't see tigers, there is so much other wildlife to be seen that it is incredible! (This is the park which President Clinton went to in 1999 or so.)

There is a good hotel in the area run by the Taj group. It is the former hunting lodge of the Maharaja of Jaipur. You can even stay in tents -- with bathroom attached! Your kids would love the whole experience. I will be back on this thread tomorrow with website and other information for the park.

Hope this is helpful.
 
Old Nov 29th, 2002, 06:37 AM
  #6  
Nancy
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Dear American in India:

I highly recommend Ranthambore National Park, about a 3 hour drive south of Jaipur. It is one of the few remaining places where you can see wild tigers. Even if you don't see tigers, there is so much other wildlife to be seen that it is incredible! (This is the park which President Clinton went to in 1999 or so.) I could not find a specific website for the park, but if you type in "Ranthambore" in your browser, sevearl sites on wildlife parks generally in India will show up which should provide more information.

To get there, you could easily hire a car and driver in Jaipur to take you down to the park. You could probably arrange with the same driver for him to come back in a few days and drive you back to Jaipur; or your hotel could arrange for a local driver. You can drive from Agra, but I would NOT recommend it. I found out the hard way that it takes 6 hours on a dirt road. The road from Jaipur is a good paved surface the whole way.

There are basically two viewing times a day, morning and afternoon. You can go both times every day, and you will see different wildlife at different times. As you are going in December, I would bring warm clothes, including a hat, gloves and heavy coat. The morning game-viewing rides start just before daylight (sunrise is the best viewing time) and it is pretty cold riding out to the park. During the afternoon rides the temperature will be much better, in the high 60s low 70s, perfect for viewing. I was there in January 2000 and it was sunny every day, cool in the morning and evenings. Great weather!

Please see the continuation of this message below for information on hotels...
 
Old Nov 29th, 2002, 06:50 AM
  #7  
Nancy
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To continue with hotels....

The best hotel I know of in the area is the Sawai Madhopur Lodge. It is run by the Taj group, which operate many nice hotels in India. It is the former hunting lodge of the Maharaja of Jaipur, built in the late 1920's and very art deco but also with Anglo-Indian charm (chintz, big verandah). There are several types of accommodations. There is a block of single story hotel rooms at the back. I thought this were a bit old and unimaginative. There are at least two rooms in the lodge itself, basically suites with huge bathrooms and the original art deco fittings. They also have balconies. They might be nice for a family. We stayed in the tents (after viewing all available room types) and loved it. They are built on a concrete platform and have their own bathrooms attached, so the only tent part are your walls and roof. They have heaters. They are basic, but very comfortable, and I bet your kids would love them. I believe the tents are only for the winter months. I think they are even cheaper than the regular rooms, but I think they are the best choice. (The suites in the main lodge are a very close second, and you may prefer them.) Check the website for the Taj Group of Hotels at Tajgroup.com.

The lodge is small and everyone is there to see wildlife, so it has a very friendly atmosphere. The hotel will arrange for jeeps and drivers for the rides. There is one sitting for lunch and dinner. Dinner is often outdoors on the patio with charcoal braziers and fires. Very charming. After the morning ride, you go back to the hotel and can have a big breakfast or tea on the verandah overlooking the cricket/lawn bowling pitch. Very pukka!

One word on the food: breakfast and lunch will have western options, but dinner is basically always Indian food. I love Indian food, and hopefully you and your kids do too (or don't go to India), but some people get tired of it. I don't know if the staff would make special arrangements for you or your kids. Indians love children, so they may be willing to make special meals. You might want to check with the hotel.

As for other things to do and see with kids in India, I think Jaipur is a great place. You can ride elephants at the Amber Fort, and the City Palace has an interesting collection of huge sundials and other timepieces (large a building) that I think may interest the kids. Udaipur would be a good choice, as it has a big lake and the town is small and walkable. Varanasi is extremely interesting and again small and walkable; but I don't know if the cremations would put your kids off. I would not stay too long in Delhi, as the smog and pollution is bad and may affect your kids more; plus there is not that much for kids in Delhi. The poverty there may be a bit too much for them, although I think Mumbai is worse.

One word on traveling in December in Delhi and surrounding areas: due to the colder temperatures in winter, there is often a dense fog in the morning. This usually causes delays at the airports, especially in Delhi, Agra and Varanisi. Agra also has a bit of an evening fog problem. I would take trains when ever possible (Delhi to Agra is very easy), or take late afternoon flights when the fog has had a chance to clear. Keep this in mind when seeing the Taj, it may be foggy, but it will add to the charm.

Your message did not say if you have been to India before. If not, you are in for a treat, and also some tribulations, but as long as you keep a good attitude, you will enjoy. The Indians will love your children. You might want to prepare them for the fact that people will stare at them, and may want to touch them and talk to them -– all meant in the sincerest way.

Have a great trip!
 
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