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Glimpses of Central India

Project Description

10 NIGHTS/11 DAYS

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The sense of a great past envelopes you in the former Central Provinces of India. This vast area is filled with monuments telling stories of empires and kingdoms and of warriors and architects. Explore the varied and cultural history, famous temples, great forts and small villages of Central India.

Pre-departure planning is important. Here are certain things you should watch for and plan for.

Visas

Check with the appropriate consulate or embassy in your country to find out if you will need a visa to visit the country of your destination, especially for an extended period of time. Some countries have extremely detailed and complicated entry/departure laws, and treat visits of a week or two very differently from longer stays.

Money

If you’re traveling to one area, check the cost of living there. If it’s high you’ll probably want to budget more carefully and save some money before leaving. The lower the cost of living the less you’ll have to save, but be sure to have a back up reserve in emergency cases.

General Tips

Talk to other people who have done a similar trip.

If you don’t know anyone personally, try any of the dozens of online travel web sites full of first-person travel stories covering every possible type of trip.

Plan big and loose. Read everything you can about the area.

There may be sights and attractions you didn’t know about. A rough outline of your trip might have three or four target points and a variety of ways to get between them.

You don’t want to find out that the weather isn’t what you thought, or the guide book was incorrect, after committing to 6 weeks in a specific spot.

Some trips will allow you more leeway than others. Travel plans in Asia can often be made day-by-day while summer travel in Europe should be organized at least a few weeks ahead, unless you’re prepared to hunt around for hotel rooms and train seats.

Set up a pre-trip time-line so you don’t end up with a full todo list your last week of work or school.

Things to consider are doctor’s visits for a check up, inoculations, and prescription refills; purchasing plane tickets; renewing passports and obtaining visas and other documents.

Check your insurance coverage abroad and purchasing additional travel insurance if needed. Don’t forget visiting friends and family members!e

The longer the trip, the lighter you should pack. This might seem strange, but it’s true you can afford to lug a heavy bag around for a week or two, but do you want to have anything extra for a year?

Stick to the absolute basics and know what you can and cannot buy at your destination(s). There’s no point in bringing 6 months of toothpaste to Europe or buying a sarong at home to take to the tropics. If you are visiting several climates, try to arrange it so you visit the warmer places first and coldest last. That way you can purchase sweaters and long pants and not have to carry them any more than needed. Alternately, visit cold climates first and then ship unneeded layers home — or sell them off.

A good rule of thumb is to bring one outfit for the hottest day you’re likely to encounter, one for an average day, and one for the coldest.

Make sure everything goes with everything else (if that’s important to you), and remember that layers are always best.

Be prepared for uncomfortable trips. You will often find yourself in a busy, cramped, economy class environment and it could be for many hours – especially long plane trips.

If you want to arrive at your destination refreshed and able to enjoy the sights, then try a good quality travel pillow to support your head, some ear plugs to block out the screaming babies, and an eye cover to block out the sun or cabin lights.

Just avoid those cheap U-shaped pillows from airport shops – your head drops forward and you wake up with a stiff neck.

Make contact with the locals before you go.

Maybe you have a friend-of-a-friend or a foreign exchange student from high school you remember, or just found a friend through a travel web site; almost everyone is happy to welcome a foreign visitor to their home town. This might be as elaborate as a home-stay for a few weeks, or just coffee in their home town or dinner at a locals restaurant.

 

A perfect city for exploring on foot with a shop around every corner. Much of the inner city can be walked without trouble, however, in parts walking include crowds, uneven streets, heavy traffic, and skinny sidewalks. If that’s a problem, there are plenty of taxi’s to ride in and scooters to rent.

How to Travel

  • Subway – The metro is the fastest transportation. Running 5am to 10pm every day.
  • Bus & Train – Operated by an independent organization, busses and trains include wifi access for the public. You can take any bus or train marked with the (B Public) sign for free.
  • Taxi – Available in all parts of the city. From a restaurant or hotel you can have them call the city taxi service.
  • Car – Rental cars are easy to get and hotels have good parking prices. Once in the main city, you can often walk so we suggest returning the when you arrive.
  • Bike – The best way to get around, other than walking, is by bike. If you don’t mind hills, you can bike anywhere. If that’s not for you, stick to the inner city with your bike.

Mini Trips

Just a few miles away you can explore the history and legacy, drink wine and relax. You can wander the hills or be lulled by the fountains. If you have time, the attractions can fill 3 days. We’ve highlighted the best ones here.

Tours

Because of the number of sights to see, some first-time visitors should start with an organized tour. Some things can be covered in depth, other are just useful for getting your bearings.

The leading tour operators use local historians to lead their tours. Guides offer walking tours, including visits to monuments, museums, and historic locations, as well as eating tours. Tour prices can be high, but most participants consider them a trip highlight. In addition, there are many family related tours, sights and more appealing activites to children.

Walking tours, like the 3 hour ghost tour, is an exclusive in the early evening. A bus excursion ruins special tours like you’ve never seen. Also worth consideration, a group of art historians and architects do a theatrical retelling from dramatic scripts. Go on a tour, expect guides to break out into a rendition of “Singing in the Rain”, it’s a lot of fun.

 

  • Fort at Gwalior
  • Temples of Khajuraho
  • Orchha-The Lost city
  • Bhopal
  • Ahilya Fort
  • Temples of Omkeshwar

Quick Tips

  • Banks – Open Monday to Friday 9am to 2pm. Some banks are closed for lunch.
  • Emergencies – For police, dial a local phone number; for ambulance call a hospital.
  • Internet Access – Wifi is standard in most hotels and free in many coffee shops.
  • Mail – Buy stamps at the Post Office. Convenient post offices are located all cities. Most are open Monday to Friday 9am to 3pm.
  • Safety – Pickpocketing can be a common problem. It is suggested for men to keep wallets in their front pocket. Purse snatching also occurs at times.

Visitor Information

This site contains information with a very personal and friendly structure. It also has great links to other related sites online.

Information, internet access, maps, and train passes are available at local Tourist Information terminals. These are located at various sites around the city. Expect a wait if you arrive late in the afternoon or during lunch time. Local travel agencies are also helpful for quick information and finding hotels. There is no service charge for these services. Hours are Monday to Friday 9am to 5pm, and Saturday 10am to 2pm.

Transportation

Getting in from the airport and other arrival locations. Travel planning is about more than just knowing where you’re going. Prepares to navigate, take control and be ready for anything. This section helps you steer clear of disaster and stay open enjoy the unexpected.

  • Plane – Flights arrive at the main airport near city center. If flying from European cities, you might land at a connecting airport. There is a tourist information office at the Terminal E, international arrivals, open 8am to 6pm.
  • Train – A train station is on the lower level of the airport. To get into the city, follow the marked signs.
  • Taxi – From the airport there is a flat-rate for the 1-hour trip, depending on traffic. Hotels charge up to $80 for shuttle service.
  • Train & Bus – Trains and buses arrive a city center. This is the transportation hub for the city and is surrounded hotels.

A perfect place for exploring on foot, with local shops around every corner. You will eventually walk somewhere, it’s just going to happen. If you don’t like crowds, uneven cobblestones, heavy traffic or narrow sidewalks, take a taxi or rent a scooter.

 

Day 1: Delhi / Arrival

Arrive in Delhi where you are met and transferred to your hotel and assisted with check in. There will be an orientation tour of New Delhi including visiting QutabMinar, the Tomb of the Mughal Emperor Humayan and driving past the imposing India Gate.

Day 2: Delhi / Gwalior

Eraly morning take a Shatabdi Express train to Gwalior. The princely past lives on in this city with many treasures in its palaces, temples and monuments. Spend the afternoon on a half day guided sightseeing tour. Stay for a night at Gwalior.

Day 3 : Gwalior / Khajuraho

This morning drive to Khajuraho, the capital of the Chandela dynasty (a 6 hour journey). The unique temple architecture here speaks about the artistic patronage of the Chandela Rajput kings of Central India during the 10th-11th centuries. Spend the rest of the day at leisure. Stay for two nights.

Day 4 :Khajuraho

This morning, visit the magnificent richly carved temples of Khajuraho, beautiful examples of Indo Aryan architecture, featuring exquisitely carved exotic sculptures. Spend the afternoon at your leisure.

Day 5 : Orcha

After breakfast drive to Orchha (a 3.3 hours journey), founded in the 16th century by the Bundela Rajput chieftain RudraPratap. During the afternoon, visit the old palaces and temples. This evening take a stroll down to the square and see the night market of Orchha. Spend the night at Orcha.

Day 6 : Orcha / Jhansi / Bhopal

Take the Shatabdi Express train to Bhopal. Bhopal was once ruled by noblewomen, who contributed to the city’s architecture, more notably seen in its mosques. Stay for two nights at Bhopal

Day 7 : Bhopal

Enjoy a full day sightseeing in Bhopal.

Day 8 :Bhopal / Maheswar

This morning drive to the temple town of Maheshwar (a six hour journey). The temples and ghats in the city give Maheshwar town different hues of a bygone era. Present from the time of the Malabharata and Ramayana (great Indian epics), this historical town has a rich history still resonating from the temples. Stay for two nights at Maheshwar .

Day 9 :Maheshwar/ Mandu / Maheshwar

Today take a morning tour of Maheshwar visiting the palace and the fort. You will also visit the Ghats along the river bank and the Maheshwar temples, remarkable for their carved overhanging balconies and intricately worked doorways. During the afternoon you will enjoy an excursion to the impressive 10th century fort of Mandu, home to one of the best collections of Afghan architecture in India.

Day 10 :Maheshwar / Indore / Mumbai

Drive to Indore to take the flight to Mumbai. Overnight in Mumbai.

Day 11 :Mumbai / Departure

Morning after breakfast proceed for a Full Day Guided Tour of Mumbai. Evening transferred to Mumbai International Airport..

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