India: My Itinerary, Rajasthan, and Travel Tips

Some parts of the article as seen on my write-up for Masala Thai Magazine

When I had the chance to travel to India, I took it in a heartbeat. It is very rare to find a reliable travel buddy to go with, especially to a country like India. It is my origins and motherland after all, and it’s a true shame that I never got the chance to be a traveler there up until this year. The weirdest part was that I had to get a tourist visa, to visit the country of my origins. I can’t quite wrap my head around that, but I finally have my OCI (Original Citizen of India) card, I won’t be having to travel to India as a tourist anymore. YAY 🙂

My India Itinerary

I spent a total of 9 nights and 9 days in the motherland, and after several variations of itineraries and routings, I finally settled on this:

Note: To be honest I didn’t thoroughly enjoy Mumbai, nor did Goa live up to my expectations, I won’t be blogging about them, only because I don’t have any good advice to give, as I wasn’t able to immerse myself into truly experiencing the hearts of those cities as much as I did with Udaipur and Jodhpur.

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An Introduction to Rajasthan

They say that Rajasthan has more history compressed into the region than the rest of India put together. It comes as no surprise that this desert state of India exudes luxury and royalty, transporting visitors back in time to when maharajas ruled in lavish forts and havelis; dubbing Rajasthan as “The Land of the Kings”.

India is dotted with stunning ruins, but nowhere in this country will you find a fortress quite as majestic as the ones prevalent in Rajasthan that rise up domineeringly from the desert landscape, displaying the bygone fairy-tale era.

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However, Rajasthan is more than just a land of the royals boasting timeless architecture. It’s a land of sand dunes and jungle, camel trains and wild tigers, glittery jewelry, culinary thalis, vivid colors, and the vibrant culture; an all-inclusive paradise and experience for culture trippers, artists, and photographers. As you enter Rajasthan, you’ll notice more colors, higher turbans, impressive jewelry, and heavily sequined saris, painted elephants, and cows with better accessories than people.

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The Four Colors of Rajasthan

Pink, white, blue, and golden mark the four iconic cities of Rajasthan, receiving their names from the predominant architectural color that eclipses each of the major cities in the state. I focus some articles specifically on the White City of Udaipur and the Blue City of Jodhpur, because I had a chance to experience them first hand. The Pink City of Jaipur and the Golden City of Jaisalmer, will just have to wait for my next visit!

Travel Tips for Rajasthan

  1. Take your time when travelling Rajasthan. Spend at least two nights in each location, however I would recommend a minimum of 3 nights in Udaipur.
  2. Getting from one city to the next is most convenient by a hired car and driver. It cost me 3,300 Rupees to go from Udaipur to Jodhpur, including my detour to Ranakpur Jane Temple and the Kumbhalgarh Fort, which I’ll do a blog post on as well.
  3. Have water with you at all times. Although you will not sweat at all due to the lack of humidity, your body will need the rehydration, especially with all that dry heat.
  4. The best time to visit Rajasthan is during the months of February and March, right before the torturous summers that drive the desert state temperature up to 48 degrees Celsius during the day.
  5. This might be the most important tip summed up into two words, be patient! This applies to travelling throughout India. You’ll hear an obscene amount of honking, experience road blockage by cows, smell about everything imaginable on the streets, and have people trying to rip you off just about any chance they get. Remain level headed, and remember, you’re travelling in the world’s most populated country. Don’t expect any less than for India to deliver exactly that, no matter where you go.

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2 thoughts on “India: My Itinerary, Rajasthan, and Travel Tips

  1. I find it more useful if travel bloggers mention negative experiences as well. Why omit this information? If I wanted biased, one-sided views I could just look at what the department of tourism writes or watch countries’ image movies during CNN commercial breaks.

    1. There wasn’t anything negative that happened, but if you want to know the genuine reasons then here they are:
      1) I’m just spoilt by the Thai beaches, and Goa obviously cannot offer me what I already get of such high quality in my own homeland. This doesn’t apply for everyone though, because not everyone comes from a tropical paradise, and to those individuals, I believe Goa is still a cheap and great travel option; especially if they’re looking to party.
      2) I’m not a party-person in general, which Goa is mostly about, and thats why it attracts a lot of tourists. It was a poor decision on my part to go there, knowing it’s a party place to begin with, and that it would be something I wouldn’t have indulged in while there.
      3) Actually, I loved their Saturday Night market; the feel was hippy, it was diverse, there was amazing food stalls and live music, the area was clean, and if you go early enough, you even beat the rush. However, by about 9pm, you can barely walk in the market. Again, back to the issue with the crowds taking away from what could have been a great experience.
      4) Back to the beaches… there was no sense of personal space and privacy there, only because everyone is constantly trying to sell you something. You can’t take a walk at the beach and not be called by over 15 – 30 vendors to come sit at their restaurant. This was annoying yes, but I guess this also happens in the touristic spots of Thailand, and most touristic locations around the world in many third world countries.

      Like I said, there was nothing negative to say, but I didn’t have any good advice to give, so I decided that I will not write about it. I can’t recommend any good, clean beaches. I just didn’t have a good time and couldn’t immerse myself into the experience as much as I did with the other locations of India, like Udaipur or Jodhpur… which were absolutely lovely.

      As for Mumbai, I only saw the city for 3 hours before I had to leave, so not nearly enough to scratch the surface, to be pretend like I know anything in depth about it to write an article.

      It would be an injustice to divert readers away from a location I didn’t enjoy for reasons that might not resonate with others.

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