Indian Getaway Trip Notes

Indian Getaway

Last Modified: 03 May 2016
Indian Getaway
Trip code: HHRI
Validity: 01 Jan 2016 to 31 Dec 2016
See beautiful henna hands, chow down on some chivda (a crunchy cereal snack), lose yourself in the labyrinth of lanes, but whatever you do don’t disrespect a cow – these are the rules of India. In a country of 1.2 billion, prepare for an overwhelming face slap of culture and diversity that is sure to stir the soul. Cities contrast between the rich and poor, old and new, good and bad. It may seem difficult at first, but the people, food and culture make it an utterly captivating destination. Plunge head first into an experience like no other.
Table of Contents
StyleMealsAlternate finish point
ThemesTransportAlternate finish point description
Is this trip right for you?Money mattersAlternate finish point instructions
Why we love itGroup leaderEmergency contact
MapSafetyVisas
ItineraryJoining pointWhat to take
Itinerary disclaimerJoining point descriptionClimate and seasonal information
Physical ratingJoining point instructionsHealth
Included activitiesAlternate joining pointTravel insurance
Group sizeAlternate joining point descriptionA couple of rules
Your fellow travellersAlternate joining point instructionsResponsible Travel
AccommodationFinish pointThe Intrepid Foundation
Accommodation NotesFinish point descriptionFeedback
Meals introductionFinishing point instructions
Style
Basix
Themes
Explorer
Is this trip right for you?
- The regions visited on this trip can be extreme in temperature. It’s important to prepare for hot temperatures during the day and cooler climates in the evening. Rajasthan in particular can be very hot, especially in the summer. Layers are the best way to tackle any disparities in weather.
- We visit a number of temples on this trip, which requires a certain level of modesty. Please bring clothes that cover the arms and pants/skirts that go past the knees. A light scarf is also a good idea for covering shoulders and arms when it’s hot.
- This trip involves some long train rides, including a couple of overnight trains. The train journey from Delhi to Varanasi is approximately 13 hours, while the trip from Varanasi to Agra takes 11 hours. While this can be tiresome, train travel is a classic Indian experience. Sleeper trains are clean and air-conditioned and a great way to travel long distances while still getting maximum time in each place. Beds are padded berths with sheets, pillow and blanket provided (although some people prefer to bring their own sleeping sheet). Please note that you may be sharing with locals of the same or opposite gender. For your own security, take a lock for your hand luggage. Please note that sleeper train journeys in and out of Varanasi can be subject to long delays because of weather conditions.
- You will also be travelling by local bus on this trip. While conditions are basic, this is a great way to rub shoulders with the locals while enjoying the passing scenery.
Why we love it
- The majesty and story of the Taj Mahal is a big part of India’s allure, and never disappoints
- Explore the arches, gardens and the unforgettable Hall of Mirrors in the impressive Amber Fort with a local guide
- Watching the sunrise on the holy Ganges River in Varanasi can be somewhat of a spiritual experience. This thought-provoking part of the journey invigorates even the weariest of travellers
- The village of Tordi Garh is a place few travellers get to see. Spend a night in a Heritage-listed palace in this peaceful town
- Travelling across India wouldn’t be complete without a journey on a sleeper train. With padded bunks and vendors selling chai and samosas, they’re a quintessential Indian experience and perfect for catching up on sleep while on the move
- End your adventure in big, bold, busy Delhi, full of historic sights and hidden gems
Map

Itinerary
Day 1 Delhi
Namaste! Welcome to India. Your adventure begins with a group meeting at 6 pm. Please look for a note in the hotel lobby or ask reception where it will take place. We'll be collecting insurance details and next of kin information at this meeting, so ensure you bring these details to provide to your leader. If you're going to be late, please inform hotel reception. There’s an optional group dinner after the meeting, which is a great way to get to know your fellow travellers.

Notes: If you can't arrange a flight that will arrive in time, you may wish to arrive a day early so you're able to attend. We'll be happy to book additional accommodation for you (subject to availability).
Optional Activities
  • Delhi - Gandhi's Delhi Urban Adventure - INR2500
  • Delhi - Home-Cooked Experience Urban Adventure - INR4000
    Accommodation
    Hotel (1 nt)
    Day 2 Delhi
    In the morning, set off on the city’s modern metro system to explore the sights and sounds of Old Delhi on a guided walking tour. Inch your way through the streets around Chandni Chowk marketplace in a traditional cycle rickshaw. Perhaps visit the Jama Masjid, Delhi's oldest and India’s largest mosque, and then stop by the Sheeshganj Gurudwara (Sikh Temple). In the evening, board an overnight sleeper train bound for Varanasi (approximately 13 hours).
    Included Activities
    • Delhi - Old Delhi Walking Tour
    • Delhi - Jama Masjid
    • Delhi - Sheeshganj Gurudwara (Sikh Temple)
      Accommodation
      Overnight Sleeper Train (1 nt)
      Day 3 Varanasi
      On arrival into Varanasi this morning, check in to your hotel and freshen up before heading out on a guided walking tour of the Old City. Set along the banks of the holy Ganges River and considered to be India’s spiritual home, millions of pilgrims descend on Varanasi every year. It’s a unique experience to navigate through Varanasi's crowded alleyways.
      Included Activities
      • Varanasi - Old City Walking Tour
        Accommodation
        Hotel (1 nt)
        Day 4 Varanasi
        Early in the morning, take a boat ride down the Ganges to watch the sun rise. Perhaps buy a candle from one of the vendors and light it for someone back home. Witness the rituals of life and death taking place along the riverbank, as people bathe and pray in the water. Be prepared for potentially confronting sights and smells, as this is where families come to cremate deceased loved ones. The rest of the day is free to explore.
        Included Activities
        • Varanasi - Sunrise Boat Ride
          Accommodation
          Hotel (1 nt)
          Day 5 Varanasi
          Today continue to discover Varanasi. Explore the ghats along the river and investigate the many silk markets dotted around the city. Varanasi is home to India’s silk-making industry. If you have time, head to the outskirts of the city and visit Sarnath, which is one of the most sacred places in the Buddhist religion. In the evening, board a 13-hour sleeper train to Agra.
          Optional Activities
          • Varanasi - Sarnath day trip (entry only) - INR250
            Accommodation
            Overnight Sleeper Train (1 nt)
            Day 6 Agra
            On arrival in Agra, head out on a guided tour of the Taj Mahal. This elaborate mausoleum was built in the 1640s as a memorial to the wife of Emperor Shah Jahan. During an auto-rickshaw sightseeing tour of the city, enjoy an optional visit to Agra Fort. This 16th-century fortress was built to enclose the imperial city of the Mughal rulers. In the evening, perhaps try Agra’s delicious signature curry - butter chicken.
            Included Activities
            • Agra - Taj Mahal
              Accommodation
              Hotel Atithi or similar (1 nt)
              Day 7 Tordi Garh
              Today drive through idyllic countryside to Tordi Garh, a village that few travellers venture to. The journey will take around eight hours in total - five hours by public bus and another three by jeep. Once there, meet the locals, visit the old village temple and wander through the markets. Tonight, the group will stay in heritage accommodation, which was once a palace for the town’s nobility.
              Accommodation
              Heritage Property (1 nt)
              Day 8 Jaipur
              In the morning, travel by jeep for around three hours to Rajasthan’s colourful capital of Jaipur. Once settled, take a guided walking tour through the old bazaars of the ‘Pink City’. Use the rest of the day to explore the city on your own, perhaps visiting Jaipur’s ornate Royal City Palace. Your accommodation for tonight will be in a family-run heritage hotel.
              Included Activities
              • Jaipur - Walking Tour
                Accommodation
                Heritage Property (1 nt)
                Day 9 Jaipur
                For many travellers, an optional hot air balloon experience is one of the highlights of Jaipur. Ballooning can be done over the city between September and June. For additional information, please see the ‘Important Notes’ section of the trip notes. In the afternoon today, visit the hilltop Amber Fort, an excellent example of Rajput architecture, and see the red stone palace of the Hawa Mahal (The Palace of the Winds).
                Included Activities
                • Jaipur - Amber Fort
                • Jaipur - Hawa Mahal photo stop
                  Optional Activities
                  • Jaipur - Balloon Safari - USD250
                    Accommodation
                    Heritage Property (1 nt)
                    Day 10 Delhi
                    In the morning, take a local six-hour public bus back to Delhi. Use the rest of your final day to wander around the city, getting to know the parts you haven’t seen yet. Perhaps pay a visit to Humayun's Tomb, the 12th-century Qutub Minar or the historic Red Fort. In the evening, you might like to head out for a final dinner with the travel group.
                    Optional Activities
                    • Delhi - Humayun's Tomb - INR500
                    • Delhi - Qutub Minar - INR500
                      Accommodation
                      Hotel (1 nt)
                      Day 11 Delhi
                      After breakfast, the trip comes to an end. There are no activities planned for today and you’re free to leave the accommodation at any time. If you wish to stay on longer, perhaps try one of our Urban Adventure day tours, such as the Culture Vulture Urban Adventure or the City Food Crawl. Your leader can give you more information.
                      Optional Activities
                      • Culture Vulture Delhi Urban Adventure - INR2500
                      • Delhi - City Food Crawl Urban Adventure - INR3500
                        Itinerary disclaimer
                        ITINERARY CHANGES Occasionally our itineraries are updated during the year to incorporate improvements stemming from past travellers' comments and our own research. The information given in this itinerary may be slightly different to that in the brochure. It's very important that you print and review a final copy of your Trip Notes a couple of days prior to travel, in case there have been changes that affect your plans. If you have any queries, please contact your travel agent or our staff. We are here to help you! Please note that while we operate successful trips in this region throughout the year, some changes may occur in our itineraries due to inclement weather and common seasonal changes to timetables and transport routes. This can happen with little notice so please be prepared for modifications to the route. The order and timing of included activities in each location may also vary from time to time.

                        OPTIONAL ACTIVITIES: A selection of optional activities are listed in the day-to-day itinerary. This isn't an exhaustive list and should be used as a guide only. Prices are approximate and are for entrance only and don’t include transport to and from the sites or local guides unless indicated. All activities are subject to availability and it may not be possible to do all the activities listed in the time available at each destination. Where activities are considered medium or high risk, we work with operators whose safety and credentials we have sighted and assessed. This means that it is possible that you may find the same activity cheaper with another operator on the ground, however we cannot vouch for the safety or quality of that operator. Activities not listed above have not been assessed by us and as such our staff and leaders are unable to assist you with booking these activities. The decision to partake in any activity not listed is at your own discretion and risk.
                        Physical rating

                        Included activities
                        Delhi - Old Delhi Walking Tour
                        Delhi - Jama Masjid
                        Delhi - Sheeshganj Gurudwara (Sikh Temple)
                        Varanasi - Old City Walking Tour
                        Varanasi - Sunrise Boat Ride
                        Agra - Taj Mahal
                        Jaipur - Walking Tour
                        Jaipur - Amber Fort
                        Jaipur - Hawa Mahal photo stop
                        Group size
                        Maximum of 16 travellers per group.
                        Your fellow travellers
                        GROUP TRAVEL
                        As you travel on a group trip you will be exposed to all the pleasures and maybe some of the frustrations of travelling in a group. Your fellow travellers will probably come from all corners of the world and likely a range of age groups too. We ask you to be understanding of the various needs and preferences of your group - patience with your fellow travellers is sometimes required for the benefit of everyone's travel experience. Remember too that you have responsibilities to the group. If you are requested to be at a place at a certain time, ensure that you don't keep the rest of the group waiting. We have found time and time again that the very best trips we operate are those where the dynamics within the group work well - this takes just a little effort on your part. Due to privacy reasons we are unable to provide you with contact details and any personal information about your fellow travellers booked on your trip prior to departure.

                        SINGLE TRAVELLERS:
                        Our group trips are designed for shared accommodation and don't involve a compulsory single supplement. Single travellers share with people of the same gender in accommodation ranging from twin to multishare. Some of our itineraries have accommodation booked on a mixed gender share basis and where applicable this will be specified in our Trip Notes. On a selection of our trips, you have the option to pay a single supplement to ensure that you have your own accommodation (where available). Please note that this only applies to accommodation during the tour - pre-trip and post-trip accommodation will be booked on a single room basis.

                        SINGLE SUPPLEMENT
                        A single supplement is available on this trip, please refer to your booking agent for further information.

                        Please note, if you have purchased a single supplement, it will not be applicable on overnight train sectors, at home stays or when camping.
                        Accommodation
                        Heritage Property (3nt), Hotel (5nt), Overnight sleeper train (2nt)
                        SLEEPER TRAINS IN INDIA:
                        Sleeper trains are clean and air-conditioned (fan-cooled at times), a great way to travel long distances and still get maximum time in each place. Beds are padded berths, sheets, pillow and blanket are provided but some people prefer to bring their own sleeping sheet. There are basic toilet facilities at the end of each carriage, but no showers available on overnight trains. Please note you may be sharing with locals in a same/mixed gender situation. Most trains have a dining carriage or a food/snack cart that is brought through the carriages. There are also plenty of vendors selling tea, coffee, water and snacks during the journey.

                        OCCASIONAL ALTERNATIVE ACCOMMODATION
                        The style of accommodation indicated in the day-to-day itinerary is a guideline. On rare occasions, alternative arrangements may need to be made due to the lack of availability of rooms in our usual accommodation. A similar standard of accommodation will be used in these instances.

                        TWIN SHARE / MULTI SHARE BASIS
                        Accommodation on this trip is on a twin/multishare basis. Please note there may be times where facilities will be shared rather than ensuite and rare occasions when you share a room with passengers travelling on different Intrepid trips than your own.

                        CHECK-IN TIME
                        Throughout the trip we request that our hotels prepare rooms in time for our arrival, especially if we're arriving prior to normal check-in time. However this isn't always possible which means we won't be able to check-in immediately on arrival at some hotels. Instead, we can store our luggage and explore our new destination.

                        PRE/POST TRIP ACCOMMODATION
                        If you've purchased pre-trip or post-trip accommodation (if available), you may be required to change rooms from your trip accommodation for these extra nights.
                        Meals introduction
                        While travelling with us you'll experience the vast array of wonderful food available in the world. Your group leader will be able to suggest restaurants to try during your trip. To give you the maximum flexibility in deciding where, what and with whom to eat, generally not all meals are included in the trip price. This also gives you more budgeting flexibility. As a rule our groups tend to eat together to enable you to taste a larger variety of dishes and enjoy each other's company. There's no obligation to do this though.
                        Meals
                        No meals included
                        Transport
                        Auto rickshaw, Cycle rickshaw, Metro, Overnight sleeper train, Public bus, Train

                        OVERNIGHT TRAINS
                        Sleeper trains in India are typically four to six berth compartments (dependant on seasonality and the journey). Privacy is mainly kept using curtains, and most compartments are air-conditioned
                        Money matters
                        The official currency of India is the Indian Rupee (INR).

                        The most convenient and cheapest way to obtain local currency in is via an Automated Teller Machine (ATM), which are readily available in most towns.

                        Look for Bank of India or ICICI ATM's. Our experience has shown they are the most reliable ATM's to use for withdrawals. Your tour leader should be able to direct you to these banks.

                        Foreign currency notes that are old, torn or faded can be very difficult to exchange, so please bring clean bills, and small denominations are most useful.

                        The use of credit cards can be restricted, mainly to major hotels, shops and establishments.

                        Over the years we have found that many of our travellers find the need for tipping to be both tiresome and embarrassing, especially if they don't have the correct small change. To overcome this, we have established a tipping kitty system. At your group meeting, your tour leader may discuss the idea of running a group tipping kitty, whereby everybody contributes an equal amount and then your tour leader pays the tips while keeping a running record of all monies spent (except restaurant tips). The record can be checked at any time and any money remaining at the end of the tour returned to group members.

                        INDIA:
                        Restaurants: Local markets and basic restaurants - round your bill up to the nearest INR20. More up-market restaurants we suggest 10% to 15% of your bill.

                        Local guides: Throughout your trip you may at times have a local guide in addition to your leader. We suggest INR100 per day for local guides.

                        Porters: Throughout your trip you may at times have a porter in addition to your leader. We suggest INR50 per day for porters.

                        Drivers: You may have a range of drivers on your trip. Some may be with you for a short journey while others may be with you for several days. We would suggest a higher tip for those more involved with the group however a base of INR100 per day is generally appropriate.

                        Local transport: For a city tour we suggest INR50 per day.

                        Your Group Leader: You may also consider tipping your leader for outstanding service throughout your trip. The amount is entirely a personal preference, however as a guideline US$2-4 per person, per day can be used. Of course you are free to tip more or less as you see fit, depending on your perception of service quality and the length of your trip. Remember a tip is not compulsory and should only be given when you receive excellent service.

                        All departure taxes should be included in your international flight ticket.

                        Budget for meals not included: 180.00

                        EMERGENCY FUNDS
                        Please also make sure you have access to an additional US$500, to be used when unforeseen incidents or circumstances outside our control (e.g. a natural disaster, civil unrest, strike action or an outbreak of bird flu) necessitate a change to our planned route.
                        Group leader
                        All Intrepid group trips are accompanied by one of our group leaders. The aim of the group leader is to take the hassle out of your travels and to help you have the best trip possible. Intrepid endeavours to provide the services of an experienced leader however, due to the seasonality of travel, rare situations may arise where your leader is new to a particular region or training other group leaders.

                        Your leader will provide information on the places you are travelling through, offer suggestions for things to do and see, recommend great local eating venues and introduce you to our local friends. While not being guides in the traditional sense you can expect them to have a broad general knowledge of the places visited on the trip, including historical, cultural, religious and social aspects. At Intrepid we aim to support local guides who have specialised knowledge of the regions we visit. If you were interested in delving deeper into the local culture at a specific site or location then your leader can recommend a local guide service in most of the main destinations of your trip.
                        Safety
                        Many national governments provide a regularly updated advice service on safety issues involved with international travel. We recommend that you check your government's advice for their latest travel information before departure. Please refer to our website's safety page for links to major travel advisories and updates on safety issues affecting our trip.

                        We strongly recommend the use of a neck wallet or money belt while travelling, for the safe-keeping of your passport, air tickets, cash and other valuable items. Leave your valuable jewellery at home - you won't need it while travelling. Many of our hotels have safety deposit boxes, which is the most secure way of storing your valuables. A lock is recommended for securing your luggage.

                        In addition to any included activities on your trip you'll have some free time to pursue your own interests, relax and take it easy or explore at your leisure. Our local representative may be able to assist you with available options in a given location, please note that any optional activities you undertake are not part of your Intrepid itinerary, and Intrepid makes no representations about the safety of the activity or the standard of the operators running them. Please use your own good judgement when selecting an activity in your free time. Please also note that our local representative has the authority to amend or cancel any part of the trip itinerary if it's deemed necessary due to safety concerns.

                        For more details on the type of conditions and safety standards you can expect on your trip, please refer to Intrepid's operational safety policy on our website. We recommend that you take a moment to read through this information before travelling, and would appreciate any feedback on how well it's being implemented in the field:

                        http://www.intrepidtravel.com/safety

                        SAFETY FOR WOMEN TRAVELLERS:
                        Women should exercise caution when travelling in India. Reported cases of sexual assault against women are increasing; recent sexual attacks against female visitors in tourist areas and cities show that foreign women are also at risk. While the risk of an incident occurring on your trip is very low, below are some things you can do for your safety and peace of mind when travelling:

                        - Respect local dress codes and customs, perhaps dressing more conservatively than you do at home
                        - Avoid isolated areas, including beaches, unlit city streets and village lanes when alone at any time of day
                        - Avoid travelling alone on public transport, or in taxis or auto-rickshaws, especially at night
                        - If you have to use a taxi get them from hotel taxi ranks and use pre-paid taxis at airports. Try to avoid hailing taxis on the street. Some cities (including Delhi and Chennai) have special taxi services for women with women drivers
                        - If you’re being collected at the airport by a driver make sure they have properly identified themselves before you set off.
                        - When leaving your compartment on overnight trains (ie. going to the bathroom), ask a male travel companion to accompany you where possible

                        For further information and advice, visit:
                        www.gov.uk/government/policies/supporting-british-nationals-overseas/supporting-pages/advice-for-women-travellers
                        www.smartraveller.gov.au/tips/women.html

                        FESTIVALS - HOLI & DIWALI:
                        Travelling in India and Nepal during Holi can at times be unsafe - drinking and drug use is more widespread during this holiday. Your leader/guide will advise your group on what places to avoid on the day.
                        It may be necessary to alter your itinerary for the day.

                        Diwali (a lunar festival generally held from mid October to mid November every year) is celebrated by local people letting off fireworks in the street. It can be very noisy for several days with extra pollution caused by fireworks. As there are no restrictions on buying fireworks in India there are often injuries caused by people exploding them inappropriately.
                        During this festival your leader/guide may be required to alter your itinerary to avoid large crowds gathering and using fireworks.

                        HERITAGE HOTELS:
                        On this trip you will be staying in some heritage hotels and traditional guesthouses - these are one of the charms of this trip, but occasionally their staircases, balconies and passages etc don't always comply with western safety standards. Please don't expect elevators in these properties as they are preserved in their original state.

                        FIRE PRECAUTIONS:
                        Please be aware that local laws governing tourism facilities in this region differ from those in your home country and not all the accommodation which we use has a fire exit, fire extinguishers or smoke alarms.

                        PETTY THEFT AND PERSONAL SAFETY:
                        While travelling there is always the risk of pick-pocketing and petty theft, particularly in the more touristy cities. We recommend that you exercise caution when walking alone at night and encourage you to walk together and only on main, well-lit thoroughfares. Be particularly vigilant on public transport. Simple measures like carrying your day pack on your front, not hanging your bag over the back of your chair or on the floor and wearing a money belt will reduce any chance that your valuables should go missing.

                        SEAT BELTS:
                        Please be aware that local laws governing transportation safety may differ from those in your home country and not all the transport which we use is able to provide seat belts.
                        Joining point
                        Hotel Perfect
                        16A/2 WEA Near Karol Bagh Metro Station
                        Karol Bagh
                        New Delhi
                        110005
                        INDIA
                        Phone: +91 1142502294
                        Joining point description
                        Located in the intriguing Karol Bagh market area, surrounded by a mix of local stalls, shops and restaurants, as well as some western shops. It is only a 25 minutes ride by auto rickshaw (INR70-80 with bargaining) to get to the heart of Delhi, Connaught Place. The hotel features a restaurant and room service, and rooms are equipped with AC, TV & phone. Luggage storage and safe deposit facilities are also available at the hotel.
                        www.hotelperfect.co.in
                        Joining point instructions
                        Delhi's Indira Gandhi's International Airport is approximately 25km from Karol Bagh. One of the biggest airports in the world, it can be quite chaotic and can take some time to process your visa and collect your luggage.

                        The taxi ride from the airport to our starting point hotel takes approx 1 hour and costs between INR 500 - 600 (prepaid traffic police booths).
                        IMPORTANT: Please avoid taxi touts who tell you that they have a metered taxi parked outside the airport. Previous passengers have complained that they have been charged hefty amount for the transfers.

                        The Delhi metro is another option from the airport. Trains depart between approx 5am and 11:30pm, the trip takes approx. 45 mins and costs around INR100. Please refer to the metro map for lines, changes and directions to Karol Bagh where most of our hotels are located. http://delhimetrorail.info/delhi-metro-map

                        Alternatively Intrepid offer a pre-arranged transfer service option. Enquire with your agent and advise your flight arrival details at least 14 days prior to your trip departure. If you have purchased an arrival transfer you will be met in the arrivals hall after clearing customs, your representative with sign board will be standing near the Costa Coffee next to gate no 5.

                        Please do not exit the gates, Costa coffee is just before the exit gate no.5.

                        If you have any problems and cannot locate our representative, or if your flight is delayed please call the following 24 hour numbers:
                        +91 9911 972 636
                        +91 9999 005 019

                        If you do not have a mobile phone, there are public phones next to Costa Coffee. Calls cost 1 rupee per minute

                        Failing the above please take a taxi to the hotel (using the instructions below) and advise your group leader. When you walk out of the exit door, you will easily be able to spot popular metered taxi counters such as Meru Cabs/Mega Cabs or Easy Cabs, show them your drop location and pay them as per the meter once you get to your hotel.

                        Check in time at hotel is 12 midday.
                        Alternate joining point
                        For trips departing on the following dates, use this joining point.
                        17 May 2016 (HHRI160517), 07 Jun 2016 (HHRI160607), 21 Jun 2016 (HHRI160621), 05 Jul 2016 (HHRI160705), 12 Jul 2016 (HHRI160712), 26 Jul 2016 (HHRI160726), 02 Aug 2016 (HHRI160802), 06 Sep 2016 (HHRI160906), 13 Sep 2016 (HHRI160913), 20 Sep 2016 (HHRI160920), 11 Oct 2016 (HHRI161011), 18 Oct 2016 (HHRI161018), 25 Oct 2016 (HHRI161025), 01 Nov 2016 (HHRI161101), 15 Nov 2016 (HHRI161115), 22 Nov 2016 (HHRI161122), 06 Dec 2016 (HHRI161206), 20 Dec 2016 (HHRI161220), 27 Dec 2016 (HHRI161227)
                        Hotel Perfect
                        16A/2 WEA Near Karol Bagh Metro Station
                        Karol Bagh
                        New Delhi
                        110005
                        INDIA
                        Phone: +91 1142502294
                        Alternate joining point description
                        Alternate joining point instructions
                        Finish point
                        Hotel Perfect
                        16A/2 WEA Near Karol Bagh Metro Station
                        Karol Bagh
                        New Delhi
                        110005
                        INDIA
                        Phone: +91 1142502294
                        Finish point description
                        Located in the intriguing Karol Bagh market area, surrounded by a mix of local stalls, shops and restaurants, as well as some western shops. It is only a 25 minutes ride by auto rickshaw (INR70-80 with bargaining) to get to the heart of Delhi, Connaught Place. The hotel features a restaurant and room service, and rooms are equipped with AC, TV & phone. Luggage storage and safe deposit facilities are also available at the hotel.
                        www.hotelperfect.co.in
                        Finishing point instructions
                        A pre-booked departure transfer to the airport is available if arranged at the time of booking. Please advise your flight arrival details at least 15 days prior to your trip start date. If you plan to stay longer, this departure transfer can only be offered in conjunction with post-tour accommodation booked through Intrepid.

                        Delhi's Indira Gandhi's International Airport is approximately 25km from Karol Bagh. One of the biggest airports in the world, it can be quite chaotic.

                        A taxi to the airport takes about 1 hour and should cost between 450 -500INR. Hotel reception or your leader can help you arrange a taxi.

                        Before check in you must have your check in luggage x-rayed and sealed. Also ensure at check in that your hand luggage is tagged. (This is a mandatory in order to clear security.)

                        Check-out time from the hotel is 12 noon. If you are departing later, you can arrange luggage storage at the hotel.
                        Alternate finish point
                        For trips departing on the following dates, use this finish point.
                        17 May 2016 (HHRI160517), 07 Jun 2016 (HHRI160607), 21 Jun 2016 (HHRI160621), 05 Jul 2016 (HHRI160705), 12 Jul 2016 (HHRI160712), 26 Jul 2016 (HHRI160726), 02 Aug 2016 (HHRI160802), 06 Sep 2016 (HHRI160906), 13 Sep 2016 (HHRI160913), 20 Sep 2016 (HHRI160920), 11 Oct 2016 (HHRI161011), 18 Oct 2016 (HHRI161018), 25 Oct 2016 (HHRI161025), 01 Nov 2016 (HHRI161101), 15 Nov 2016 (HHRI161115), 22 Nov 2016 (HHRI161122), 06 Dec 2016 (HHRI161206), 20 Dec 2016 (HHRI161220), 27 Dec 2016 (HHRI161227)
                        Hotel Perfect
                        16A/2 WEA Near Karol Bagh Metro Station
                        Karol Bagh
                        New Delhi
                        110005
                        INDIA
                        Phone: +91 1142502294
                        Alternate finish point description
                        Alternate finish point instructions
                        Emergency contact
                        For general enquiries or questions about your booking, please contact your agent or adventure specialist, or visit us at www.intrepidtravel.com/contact-us

                        For transfers and accommodation issues, Intrepid's India office can be reached on their 24 hour numbers:
                        +91 9599 914 852 or +91 9999 005 019

                        In case of a genuine crisis or emergency, you can reach our local operator on: +91 9599 914 852

                        For general contact details please use the following page: http://www.intrepidtravel.com/ourtrips/contact/

                        While we always endeavour to provide the best possible holiday experience, due to the nature of travel and the areas we visit sometimes things can and do go wrong. Should any issue occur while you are on your trip, it is imperative that you discuss this with your group leader or our local representative straight away so that they can do their best to rectify the problem and save any potential negative impact on the rest of your trip.

                        We recognise that there may be times when your group leader/local partner may not be able to resolve a situation to your satisfaction - if this is the case, please ask the leader to speak to their direct manager.

                        You may also choose to provide details in your online feedback, which we ask you to complete within 30 days of the end of your trip. But we do ask you to be aware that it is very difficult for us to provide any practical help after the trip is complete.

                        Intrepid Emergency number: +91 9599 914 852 ; +91 9999 005 019
                        Visas
                        Visas are the responsibility of the individual traveller. Entry requirements can change at any time, so it's important that you check for the latest information. Please visit the relevant consular website of the country or countries you’re visiting for detailed and up-to-date visa information specific to your nationality. Your consultant will also be happy to point you in the right direction with acquiring visas. Visas can take several weeks to process, so familiarise yourself with any requirements as soon as you have booked your trip to allow for processing time.

                        INDIA:

                        An E-Tourist Visa (eVT) Facility is available for holders of a passport for a number of countries. This facility allows travellers to pre-register and pay for their visa prior to travel to India. The Visa is collected upon arrival at one of 16 designated airports in India. Please note strict guidelines on the below website.

                        https://indianvisaonline.gov.in/visa/tvoa.html

                        An E-Tourist Visa (eVT) visa on arrival is available for select nationalities including but not limited to the following

                        Australian, Canadian, New Zealand, German, UK and USA passports.

                        Passport holders from these countries can apply for an E-Tourist Visa (eVT) to have their visa issued upon arrival at 16 major airports in India.

                        Please follow the instructions at - https://indianvisaonline.gov.in/visa/tvoa.html and complete the application for your E-Tourist Visa.

                        - Please be aware of strict conditions regarding application and travel (check under ELIGIBILITY section).

                        - E-visas are only available for entry of up to 30 days. If you plan to be in India longer you will need to apply for a tourist visa at an Indian visa application centre in your home country.

                        - Please note that travellers entering India overland from Nepal are required to apply for a visa in advance their home country. Visas will not be issued on the Nepal/Indian border.

                        - The E-Tourist Visa DOES NOT apply to travellers entering India overland. Please check your trip notes if you are crossing a border between India and Nepal.

                        - Indian visas are difficult and time consuming to obtain in Nepal.

                        Tourist visas are available in Single and Multiple Entry. Be sure to check the date you require a visa from and the length of time you will need to cover, especially if you change countries during your trip.

                        For your visa application you need to include the following information under the local contact section towards the end of the application. :

                        PEAK India
                        25/3 East Patel Nagar
                        New Delhi 110008
                        Phone: +91 11 4500 6400

                        Please note that this information can change at any time. Please always refer to https://indianvisaonline.gov.in/visa/tvoa.html . This is the official visa online site. There have been reports of other non-official websites that travellers should be aware of.
                        What to take
                        What you need to bring will vary according to the trip style you have chosen, the countries you are visiting and when you are travelling. Generally speaking you should pack as lightly as possible. On the vast majority of our trips you are expected to carry your own luggage, although you won't be required to walk long distances with it (max 30 minutes).

                        Most travellers carry their luggage in a backpack, although an overnight bag with a shoulder strap would suffice if you travel lightly. Smaller bags or backpacks with wheels are convenient although we recommend your bag has carry straps. You'll also need a day pack/bag to carry water and a camera etc for day trips.

                        Below we have listed the essentials for this trip:

                        http://www.intrepidtravel.com/pdf/trips/packinglist.pdf

                        WARM CLOTHING:
                        Temperatures can be low in the winter months, especially at altitude, so bring a set of warmer clothes including thermal underclothes and a fleece jacket.

                        WATER BOTTLE:
                        Consider bringing your own water bottle to refill along the way. The sale of bottled water contributes to an enormous environmental problem around the world. In addition to the water in bottles, the production of a 1 litre plastic bottle takes 2 litres of water and 200ml of oil. A large proportion ends up in limited landfill or discarded in waterways and natural environments. Although it can be difficult to avoid bottled water when travelling, please consider water purification techniques such as iodine or micropur and use the water dispensers which are provided at some of our accommodation. When unable to avoid bottled water it is better to buy the largest available and distribute into your smaller bottle for the day.

                        SLEEPING BAG:
                        While a sleeping bag is not compulsory for this tour, many travellers have found one useful for camping, overnight trains and poorly heated hotels, particularly during the winter months of Dec/Jan when temperatures are low.

                        PASSPORT COPY:
                        Please bring a photocopy of your passport main page and airline ticket if you will require airline reconfirmation at the end of your trip.

                        IMAGES FROM HOME:
                        During our trip there will be many opportunities for you to meet and talk with locals. One way to start any conversation is with pictures. We recommend that you bring some photos / postcards of your family, home, city or country where you live, animals peculiar to your country etc.

                        TRAVELLING ON LOCAL TRANSPORT
                        It's important that your bags can be locked, as on local transport it may be necessary that your luggage gets stowed separately (and unattended). The smaller your bag the better for you and other passengers, for when it comes to travelling on local buses and trains it's often only the smaller bags that will fit into the storage areas inside the bus or your cabin. To ensure maximum comfort, try to pack small and light.

                        LUGGAGE STORAGE
                        Where Intrepid covers the cost of luggage storage during included day trips, we allow for one bag/backpack only, so it's advisable that you travel lightly and keep luggage to a limit of one item (plus your day pack). Extra luggage storage will be at your own expense.

                        WARM CLOTHING:
                        It comes as a surprise to many travellers that India can be cold (ie. below zero!) during winter (particularly Dec/Jan), even in some cities and even when not at high altitudes. Make sure you are prepared for the weather during these months by bringing adequately warm clothes with you, including thermal underclothes and an appropriate jacket. Many hotels in India do not have central heating, so a warmer set of clothes to sleep in has also been recommended by our past travellers.
                        Climate and seasonal information
                        HOT WEATHER:
                        Heat and humidity during summer (Apr-Jun) in India can be particularly oppressive with temperatures reaching 45 degrees C/113 degrees F.
                        Health
                        All Intrepid travellers need to be in good physical health in order to participate fully on this trip. When selecting your trip please make sure you have read through the itinerary carefully and assess your ability to cope with our style of travel. Please note that if, in the opinion of our group leader or local guide, any traveller is unable to complete the itinerary without undue risk to themselves and/or the rest of the group, Intrepid reserves the right to exclude them from all or part of a trip without refund.

                        You should consult your doctor for up-to-date medical travel information or for any necessary vaccinations and anti-malarial requirements before departure. We recommend that you carry a first aid kit as well as any personal medical requirements (including a spare pair of glasses) as they may not easily be obtained at the locations on this trip. For legal reasons our leaders and guides are prohibited from administering any type of drugs including headache tablets and antibiotics. Please ensure that you are adequately prepared.
                        Travel insurance
                        Travel insurance is compulsory for all our trips. We require that, at a minimum, you are covered for medical expenses including emergency repatriation. We strongly recommend that the policy also covers personal liability, cancellation, curtailment and loss of luggage and personal effects.

                        When travelling on a trip, you won't be permitted to join the group until evidence of travel insurance and the insurance company's 24 hour emergency contact number has been seen by your leader.

                        If you have credit card insurance your group leader will require details of the participating insurer/underwriter, the level of coverage, policy number and emergency contact number rather than the bank's name and credit card details. Please contact your bank for these details prior to arriving in-country.

                        http://www.intrepidtravel.com/insurance.php
                        A couple of rules
                        Illegal drugs will not be tolerated on our trips. Possessing or using drugs not only contravenes the laws of the land, but also puts the rest of the group at risk. Smoking marijuana and opium is a part of local culture in some parts of the world but is not acceptable for Intrepid travellers. Intrepid's philosophy of travel is one of respect towards everyone we encounter and in particular, the local people who make our destinations such special places. The exploitation of prostitutes is completely contrary to this philosophy. Our group leader has the right to expel any member of the group if drugs are found in their possession or if they use prostitutes.

                        Everyone has the right to feel safe and secure on their trip. We don’t tolerate any form of sexual harassment at Intrepid, either between passengers or involving our leaders or local operators. Sexual relationships (consensual or otherwise) between a leader and a passenger are unacceptable. If you ever feel another person is behaving inappropriately please inform us immediately by contacting the emergency contact number detailed in these trip notes.
                        Responsible Travel
                        We believe strongly in low impact or rather positive impact tourism. Broadly speaking this means that we try to minimise the negative aspects of tourism on the local cultures and environments that we visit and highlight the positive aspects. Please visit our website for further details and suggestions on how you can be a responsible traveller.

                        http://www.intrepidtravel.com/ourtrips/rt/responsibletraveller

                        LOCAL DRESS:
                        Dress standards are conservative throughout Asia, especially outside major cities. To respect this and for your own comfort, we strongly recommend modest clothing. This means clothing that covers your shoulders and knees by wearing sleeves and long trousers. Loose, lightweight, long clothing is both respectful and cool in areas of predominantly hot climate. In many rural areas women will need to wear modest clothing even to swim. Singlets, tank tops and topless sun bathing are all unacceptable. When visiting religious sites men often need to wear long trousers and women a long skirt or sarong.

                        The Intrepid Foundation
                        Since Intrepid Travel commenced operating in 1989 we've been committed to giving something back to the communities we visit. One way has been through our support for local humanitarian, development and conservation projects. Many of our travellers want to contribute something too. Whilst it is often tempting to give hand-outs to those less fortunate, this has the potential to promote a culture of begging and dependency. Handouts are not a sustainable way for individuals or communities to live. That’s why we established The Intrepid Foundation – to make it easier for travellers wishing to give back to communities in an effective and meaningful way.

                        The Intrepid Foundation is a not-for-profit fund offering a selection of excellent grassroots organisations which you can contribute to. All donations to The Intrepid Foundation will be matched by Intrepid Travel dollar for dollar (up to AU$1,000 per donor and a total of AU$400,000 for all donors in each financial year, excluding emergency appeals). And every cent gets there as Intrepid Travel pays for all the administration costs. Donating is simple and secure. Please ask your leader for information on the projects we support through The Intrepid Foundation or go to our website:

                        http://www.theintrepidfoundation.org/

                        Organisations and projects currently supported by The Intrepid Foundation in India include:

                        * Pollinate Energy is a social business with a simple mission – to improve the lives of India’s urban poor by giving them access to affordable, clean energy products. Pollinate identifies and trains local people, their Pollinators, who have provided solar lights and cook stoves to over 8,000 families and counting.
                        pollinateenergy.org

                        * Asha Ka Jharna (AKJ) provides services to disabled children and adults. They run three special schools, currently assisting around 160 children, and an old-age home for the short-stay of elderly people. AJK also provides vocational training, participates in diagnostic camps and distributes aids and appliances to physically disabled persons.
                        ashakajharna.org/

                        For more information, or to make a donation please visit: www.theintrepidfoundation.org/projects/?projectcountry=india

                        Feedback
                        After your travels, we want to hear from you! We realise that our partner company may ask you to complete paper or online feedback following your trip, however we would also like to know what you thought and encourage you to submit your feedback to us too. We rely on your feedback. We read it carefully. Feedback helps us understand what we are doing well and what we could be doing better. It allows us to make improvements for future travellers.

                        http://www.intrepidtravel.com/feedback

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