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Suggestions for first trip to India. Please help!

Suggestions for first trip to India. Please help!

Dec 29th, 2011, 12:11 PM
Original Poster
Join Date: Dec 2011
Posts: 1
Suggestions for first trip to India. Please help!

My wife and I are planning our first trip to India in 2012 (her first time out of the US- I have been to Europe).

So far, we have this rough itinerary:

August 25(ish): Fly to London to travel around England for the week
August 31: Fly to New Dehli and stay for 2 weeks

We are somewhat flexible with our dates but I wanted to do late August because of the nicer weather in England as well as being able to use a free day off of work on labor day later on in September.

While in India, we plan on doing the typical Golden Triangle route and possibly visiting some friends for a few days in Chennai (I think that is pretty far from where we will be so might not be possible).

For the record, we are both mid-twenty's white Americans. We are both very adventurous but haven't had the time/money to travel extensively. We want to visit India because of the unique culture and great sights. We both love to meet new people from different cultures.

These are some questions that we really need help on:

1. Is there any preference to the kind of luggage to bring?
I have a 50 liter backpack from REI that I was thinking about using and we havent bought anything yet for my wife. Im not sure if we should do a duffle, backpack, rolling bag, etc? I was hoping to leave our luggage at the hotels and just use a small daypack when we venture out. Thoughts?

2. What is the typical weather pattern for late August/early September? Will we need any rain gear or cool clothing?

3. What other areas would you suggest we HAVE to see while we are there?

4. Packing suggestions on things that we should definitely bring with us?

It is a bit tricky on figuring out what to pack since England and India have such different climates.

Thanks so much in advance for your time!! Any suggestions for new travellers to India will be very much appreciated!!
BornToTrek is offline  
Dec 29th, 2011, 05:16 PM
Join Date: Feb 2008
Posts: 2,924
August/early Sept. in Delhi will be very hot and humid. Bring insect repellant and stay in hotels with air-conditioning. Pace and plan your itinerary. You won't be able to be outside walking in the afternoon because of the heat. Clothing will have to be light weight cotton.
Jaya is offline  
Jan 1st, 2012, 06:40 PM
Join Date: May 2004
Posts: 4,394
Look through this forum, and the Indiamike website.The latter has loads of feedback from people your age, and of all levels of $$.

Wonderful trip, to two wonderful destinations! Do you have a day in London at the other end of the trip? Twice I've used that as my "decompress after India" point , before onward return to USA, and it is perfect.

As Jaya said, initial thought re India is HOT!!!! Don't even THINK about staying somewhere without ac, or riding in a car or train without ac However, if it were me-- WOULD def'lly plan to see your friends in Chennai. Yes, it is super humid HOT there too, but seeing an area with folks who know it will be worth the extra effort, There are easy and inexpensive flights from New Del to Chennai airport. ( ab out $160 rt on Kingfisher, $230 rt on Jet--note that Kingfisher has had economic probs!) Two weeks is enough to do the Golden triangle Route, AND Chennai and your friends can take you a bit down he coast there). Just make sure to allow yourself enough time for the connecting flight back to New Delhi for your homeward bound trip. OR see your friends first...might be the bet intro fo all to Inda!!!

Pack light, and as Jaya says, lightweight cotton clothes. Bring one light sweater each--you can alwaus buy another needed item in UK or INdia. HYou can easily and cheaply get your clothes laundered at hotels in India.

There should be no prob leaving luggage in room while out for the day ; many places have safes available if you feel safer with that.
CaliNurse is offline  
Jan 1st, 2012, 06:56 PM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 28,943
would you consider reversing the two countries? india will be even more difficult than normal bacause of the heat/humidity, so a pleasant week in england before returning home might make you think more kindly towards the whole vacation.

i am a supporter of having a car and driver for golden triangle visits. this will help to make the trip more bearable---the a/c is mandatory both in the car and in the hotels....

using a travel agent in delhi to assist also helps with the tour planning...

india is not like europe--its tough!!
rhkkmk is offline  
Jan 1st, 2012, 07:04 PM
Join Date: Feb 2008
Posts: 2,924
When you go to India after being in London, you will see a distinct similarity in architecture among many buildings from when the British ruled India (a sensitive subject FYI).
It's nice you can also go to south India as it is very different from north India - language, customs, food.

When you book your hotels, it's important to get feedback not just on the hotel but the LOCATION. Some inexpensive places are not in areas that you can walk around in after dark.

Speaking of dark, keep a small flash light with you because Indian sidewalks and stairwells can be poorly lit at night and you can trip on uneven surfaces. I use one I got at Home Depot - about 4 inches long with a very bright beam of light.
Jaya is offline  
Jan 10th, 2012, 07:09 PM
Join Date: Dec 2011
Posts: 5
This is a pretty good sample itinerary for a first time visitor to India and a 2 week trip.
What makes a trip like this possible (doing both north and south) is flying between major cities rather than taking trains or cars.
kmd88 is offline  
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