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Old 07-28-2008, 06:23 PM
 
70 posts, read 227,168 times
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Hi. I'll be in Hyderabad, India late November 2008 for work (for 1 week). But I plan on traveling post-work (for 2 weeks) and I need to finalize my plans. Does anyone have advice?

Since I'm starting out in Hyderabad, I was thinking I should condense my travels to Southern India. Yet, it still feels like I'm spreading myself too thin. I really don't want to spend a chunk of money and take a zillion planes to get from city to city.

From my research online, the cities I'm thinking of visiting are:

- Hyderabad to Mumbai
- While in Mumbai do a side trip to the Ajanta Caves
- From Mumbai to Karnataka, specifcally Goa area
- In Karnataka take a trip to the Jog Waterfalls
- From there to Bangalore
- Bangalore to Kerala
- Kerala back to Mumbai or Hyderabad to fly back to NYC (home)

How long will it take to get from place to place? It looks close enough on a map, but when I try to look at the train schedules, it looks like hours of traveling.

I really appreciate your insight! Thank you and happy travels!!!
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Old 07-29-2008, 05:04 AM
 
Location: Western Mass.
605 posts, read 2,219,125 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ArtinUS View Post
Hi. I'll be in Hyderabad, India late November 2008 for work (for 1 week). But I plan on traveling post-work (for 2 weeks) and I need to finalize my plans. Does anyone have advice?

Since I'm starting out in Hyderabad, I was thinking I should condense my travels to Southern India. Yet, it still feels like I'm spreading myself too thin. I really don't want to spend a chunk of money and take a zillion planes to get from city to city.

From my research online, the cities I'm thinking of visiting are:

- Hyderabad to Mumbai
- While in Mumbai do a side trip to the Ajanta Caves
- From Mumbai to Karnataka, specifcally Goa area
- In Karnataka take a trip to the Jog Waterfalls
- From there to Bangalore
- Bangalore to Kerala
- Kerala back to Mumbai or Hyderabad to fly back to NYC (home)

How long will it take to get from place to place? It looks close enough on a map, but when I try to look at the train schedules, it looks like hours of traveling.

I really appreciate your insight! Thank you and happy travels!!!
Wouldn't muck about with planes - trains are the way to go when traveling in India. You can travel 1st class (where available) or 2nd class (actually good too, as there can be several classes of travel) and get sleeping berths etc. You'll be able to eat well onboard and enjoy the countryside and meet people.

When I visited Hyderabad I went on to take the train down to Bangalore, doing a side trip to Mysore. After that took the train down to Kodaikanal - an old British hill station and a welcome change from the dust and heat of the plains (the hotel sent a car and driver for the last couple of hours of the journey as the train doesn't go all the way).

Later we visited Madurai, Tiruchirapalli and Pondicherry before flying out of Chennai. All of this took 3 weeks and could obviously be pared down as an itinerary if needed.

It's quite different from your proposed itinerary - we traveled in July and were avoiding the rains - but I included it as an example of what could be accomplished by using the train. There are services everywhere so I'm sure you could customize pretty much any trip you wanted very easily.

Last edited by tonrob; 07-29-2008 at 05:23 AM..
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Old 07-29-2008, 12:16 PM
 
70 posts, read 227,168 times
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Thanks, Tonrob. Based on your reply and some online searching, I'm thinking of condesing my trip a bit more to the following and will skip Bangalore altogether.

HYDERABAD to MYSORE
- Bylakuppe Buddhist Golden Temple
- Devaraja Fruit & Vegetable Market
- Nagarhole NP (safari)

MYSORE to SAGAR / JOG Falls
- Hike

SAGAR to GOA
- Beach

GOA to MUMBAI

MUMBAI to AJANTA CAVES (Aurangabad)

Back to MUMBAI to fly out
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Old 07-29-2008, 02:44 PM
 
Location: mountain view, CA
5 posts, read 12,939 times
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If you are going to sagar/jog falls, you must go ahead to Gokarna which is a small temple town by a beach but a haven for anybody who likes to relax without the extensive partying.Once you get to Gokarna town you can hike to many other beaches or drive. Om beach is quite a sight. Also i dont think u shpuld give kerala a miss because it truly is beautiful. Try the resorts arount Kovalam and Varkala. the backwaters are breathtaking. I am not very big on sightseeing when i am on holiday so Ajanta might not be on my list. If itrs decadent living try Kerala
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Old 07-30-2008, 10:10 AM
 
Location: the D
347 posts, read 1,199,089 times
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Yes, definitely go visit the Kerala backwaters.
You may want to skip the Ajanta caves at Aurangabad.
I suggest apart from the South India tour, also fly to New Delhi and visit the Taj Mahal, Red Fort, etc. and go to Rajasthan for a desert experience.
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Old 07-31-2008, 09:54 AM
 
Location: Cary, NC
355 posts, read 1,381,032 times
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You might want to experience the Konkan railway. You could take a train ride from Mumbai to Mangalore in Karnataka. One ride every visitor to India should experience.
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Old 07-31-2008, 02:40 PM
 
Location: Colorado
269 posts, read 1,143,359 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DDevil View Post
Yes, definitely go visit the Kerala backwaters.
You may want to skip the Ajanta caves at Aurangabad.
I suggest apart from the South India tour, also fly to New Delhi and visit the Taj Mahal, Red Fort, etc.
I second that. If you don't think you'll be going back there for visit anytime soon, do keep the Taj Mahal on your itinerary.
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Old 08-01-2008, 02:25 PM
 
70 posts, read 227,168 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DDevil View Post
Yes, definitely go visit the Kerala backwaters.
You may want to skip the Ajanta caves at Aurangabad.
I suggest apart from the South India tour, also fly to New Delhi and visit the Taj Mahal, Red Fort, etc. and go to Rajasthan for a desert experience.
Hi DDevil:

I've spoken to another person who agrees that Taj Mahal is worth going to and so is the desert area. But that means skipping out the Kerala backwaters. I think I need to focus on North or South, given time and money restraints, huh?

My new Itinerary is looking like:

- Hyderabad to New Delhi
- New Delhi to Agra
- Agra to Jaipur
- Jaipur to Rajastahn
- Rajastahn to Mumbai

Does that seem exciting and resonable? It skips out all of the beaches and south but I think that would be okay if I want to experience a lot of culture.

Would I fly from Hyderabd to New Delhi and then train it the rest of the way?

You guys are really great with your advice and helpful. Thank you!

Last edited by ArtinUS; 08-01-2008 at 02:42 PM..
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Old 08-01-2008, 03:32 PM
 
Location: Cary, NC
355 posts, read 1,381,032 times
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Sounds good, although i wish you could experience the Kerala backwaters and the Konkan railway. Maybe next time.
Enjoy!
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Old 08-01-2008, 09:07 PM
 
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If you are on a tight time line, skip the trains as much as possible for transportation purposes.

Agra is a crap hole, the taj is the only clean place in the whole city, I guess its worth it to say been there, done that.
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