We invite you to visit India and explore this mystical land that offers a plenty of tourist attractions. From north to south and east to west, it is a constant enchantment, full of contrasts at every step. This is the only country in the world which is blessed with all type of weathers, all type of surroundings. Here you will find mountains summits, sun kissed beaches, gurgling rivers, monuments dating back to ancient past, fascinating backwaters, a variety of flora and fauna and last but not the least-countless fairs and festivals are sure to make your visit.
The Indian peninsula is separated from mainland Asia by the Himalayas. The country is surrounded by the Bay of Bengal in the east, the Arabian Sea in the west, and the Indian Ocean to the south.
IMPORTANT TRAVEL TIPS
Do some background reading before visiting India, so that your visit becomes a great experience, something you had never dream could happen to you.Click here to Read More
Don’t be concerned about living conditions in India. Our 5-star and 4-star hotels are of international standards and the comforts and cuisine they provide compare with any in the world. The deluxe and palace hotels are a world apart and many have been accorded ‘Leading hotels of the world ‘status. The 3-star hotels are there for the medium budget traveller, and 1-star and 2-star hotels, Travellers lodges, Tourist Bungalows, Holiday Homes, Youth hotels, YMCA/YWCA’s are for those with small budgets.
Your travel arrangements should be made well in advance, especially if you are travelling between October-March (High tourist season) and May-June, the Indian holiday season Travel facilities are limited in relations to demand so prior bookings are a must.
If travelling by air, you should include one or more trips by rail or road so that you can experience rural India. When planning your trip, ask your travel agent to include an Indian fairs or festivals in your itinerary. Witnessing the colour and gaiety of these events is a great experience.
At each city you visit, try and attend a folkloric or classical music, dance or drama program. Information on programs can be obtained from any India tourist office.
Indians are hospitable and friendly people, if they stare at you, do not consider it rude, it is only a matter of curiosity. A tourist need never be lost in India, most people are more than willing to go out of their way to guide you to your destination.
As with any foreign destination, the tourist is advised to drink bottled water, bottled drinks, coffee or tea. Most premier hotels have their own filtration system.
Avoid eating spicy food all at one time soon after your arrival in India. Take one Indian dish only with each meal and ask the waiter to cut down on the chillies. Within a few days your system will get used to Indian food. One of the most delicious of world cuisine. It is advisable to stick to only cooked foods and to eat fresh fruits whose skin you can peel off or remove.
Bring your own medicines, since all medications in India are locally manufactured and you may not find the same brand names. There are very good druggists and doctors everywhere, and they can advise on substitutes. If the necessity arises, ask your hotel to recommend a doctor.
Do not forget to remove your footwear when visiting a place of worship or mausoleum. Also some temples do not permit any leather articles at all on their premises. Certain areas of temples are not open to Non-Hindus.
Travel with a camera and a memory cards, India is a land of sunshine and color, begging to be photographed. Most type of memory cards are available in India. Most cities have Beggar Homes to look after indigent persons and to teach them a trade,but professional beggars find begging more lucrative. If you wish to help them, do so through a recognized charitable organisation, not by giving them alms.
PASSPORT & VISA
You require a valid passport from your country and a visa from an Indian mission abroad to enter India.Click here to Read More
E- Tourist Visa Facility is available for nationals of following countries:-
Albania, Andorra, Anguilla, Antigua & Barbuda, Argentina, Armenia, Aruba, Australia, Austria, Bahamas, Barbados, Belgium, Belize, Bolivia, Bosnia & Herzegovina, Botswana, Brazil, Brunei, Bulgaria, Cambodia, Canada, Cape Verde, Cayman, Island, Chile, China, China- SAR Hong Kong, China – SAR Macau, Colombia, Comoros, Cook Islands, Costa Rica, Cote d’Ivoire, Croatia, Cuba, Czech Republic, Denmark, Djibouti, Dominica, Dominican Republic, East Timor, Ecuador, El Salvador, Eritrea, Estonia, Fiji, Finland, France, Gabon, Gambia, Georgia, Germany, Ghana, Greece, Grenada, Guatemala, Guinea, Guyana, Haiti, Honduras, Hungary, Iceland, Indonesia, Ireland, Israel, Jamaica, Japan, Jordan, Kenya, Kiribati, Laos, Latvia, Lesotho, Liberia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Madagascar, Malawi, Malaysia, Malta, Marshall Islands, Mauritius, Mexico, Micronesia, Moldova, Monaco, Mongolia, Montenegro, Montserrat, Mozambique, Myanmar, Namibia, Nauru, Netherlands, New Zealand, Nicaragua, Niue Island, Norway, Oman, Palau, Palestine, Panama, Papua New guinea, Paraguay, Peru, Philippines, Poland, Portugal, Republic of Korea, Republic of Macedonia, Romania, Russia, saint Christopher and Nevis, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent & the Grenadines, Samoa, San Marino, Senegal, Serbia, Seychelles, Singapore, Slovakia, Slovenia, Solomon Islands, South Africa, Spain, Sri Lanka, Suriname, Swaziland, Sweden, Switzerland, Taiwan, Tajikistan, Tanzania, Thailand, Tonga, Trinidad & Tobago, Turks & Caicos Island, Tuvalu, UAE, Ukraine, United Kingdom, Uruguay, USA, Vanuatu, Vatican City-Holy See, Venezuela, Vietnam, Zambia and Zimbabwe.
For the complete list of nationalities covered under the E-Tourist visa scheme, Please visit https://indianvisaoline.gov.in/visa/tvoa.html
Travellers who do not require a visa :
Citizens of Bhutan and Nepal, who do not require a visa.
Nationals of Maldives do not require a visa for visits of up to 90 days.
Persons of Indian Origin and Non-Resident Indians who possess either an OCI or a PIO card, which are the equivalent of a long India visa.
India issues the following types of visas (Source / link to):-
Tourist Visa :
Up to 6 months. Apply with documents supporting your financial standing.
Business Visa :
One or More years. Apply with letter from the sponsoring organisation.
Student Visa :
For the duration of the academic course of study or for a period of five years whichever is less. Apply with: proof of admission to recognised Universities / Institutions in India.
Transit Visa :
Maximum period of 15 days. Apply with: Evidence of onward travel to a destination outside India.
Conference Visa :
For the duration of the conference or seminar. Apply with letter of invitation from the organiser of the conference.
When you apply for a visa at an Indian Embassy or High Commission you must include the following :
Your passport valid for at least 6 months.
Visa fee in cash or by postal order (cheques are normally not acceptable).
Two passport size photographs.
Supporting documents, where necessary.
Duly completed application form.
Note: Allow one month’s processing time for postal applications.
Some parts of India are “Restricted areas” and require special permits.
AIRPORT & CUSTOMS
International airports operate the conventional green and red channels, with officials liable to carry out sudden spot check on passengers passing through the green channel.Click here to Read More
If carrying items of high value such as cameras, laptops and the like for your personal use during your trip, you may be asked to fill in a Tourist Baggage Re-export Form ( TBRE) when you enter the country, which allows you to bring items into India free of duty, provided you take them back with you when you are leaving.
Personal allowance are one litre of spirits, 200 cigarettes or 50 cigars or 250 Gms of tobacco per passenger over the age of 18 years.
In domestic flights in India, Penknives and other sharp objects, liquids, matchboxes and lighters, batteries and some electronic items are not allowed in your cabin baggage, so pack them into your check- in luggage, or they will probably be either confiscated or taken away from you only to be returned at the other end of the flight.
As with airports all over the world in this era, security are stringent, and you and your luggage may be searched more than once before you get on the plane. It may be necessary to identify your baggage on the tarmac before it is loaded on to the aircraft.
The normal free allowance while flying the government owned Indian Airlines is 25 kg in Economy, Business class 35 kg and 10 kg for Infant.
For the private airline operators it is 15 kg in Economy and 30 kg for Business class, where available. You can carry only a single piece of hand baggage (within certain size specifications) on domestic flights.
AIRPORT DEPARTURE TAX
Airport departure tax is usually included in your international tickets and does not have to be at the airport.
Monday – Friday, 10:00 – 14:00hrs, Saturday, 10:00 – 12:00hrs.Click here to Read More
Some commercial offices operate on a five- day week, with Saturdays and Sundays off. Others work a half-day on Saturdays. Office hours tend to be 09:30 – 18:00hrs.
Shops do not have any standard timings. In major metros, you may find malls and department stores open until 20:00 hrs, seven days a week. Shops in business areas tend to close a little after office closing time. In tourist areas, you will probably find small stores open late into the evening. In many small towns, shops would tend to close around 20:00hrs.
Restaurants and bars have different legally-enforced closing hours in different states. In most parts of the country, this would be around midnight or even earlier. The only food establishments legally open 24 hours a day are coffee shops in five – star hotels.
Note – Some government and commercial offices are open on alternate Saturdays .
India is a tropical country. Nevertheless, there are huge variations according to the region and the season. Click here to Read More
The coolest months are from mid-November to mid-March, which also happens to be the tourist season. In the south, and on the coasts, day time temperatures even in the cool months can be in the mid-20 degree centigrade, though the nights are cool. In central India, and in the hills in the southern part of the country, night temperatures can drop to under 10 degree centigrade in winter. In the north, winter temperatures can approach 0 degree centigrade even in the plains, and of course it drops below freezing in the Himalayan region. Summers are very hot, with some parts of south and central India, and the plains in the north, getting temperatures over 40 degree centigrade. The monsoons, the rainy season, stretch from June until September, with different levels of intensity in different parts of the country. The west Coast and the north-east get the heaviest rain (Two towns in Meghalaya vie for the title of the place with the most rainfall in the world).
In the south, in the hills, you may need light jacket in the evenings and early morning, or on overcast days. In the north, you may need to dress warmer, with light woollens even during the day. Consider dressing in layers and carrying a small day-pack to stow away some clothes as the day gets hotter.
Light cotton tropical clothing, sun hats or caps, and sunglasses are recommended. For those travelling in the hills or mountains areas light woollens may be needed for the nights.
Light, quick-drying clothing, and either a raincoat or an umbrella or both (especially in places where there is a heavy monsoon).
The Rupee, which is divided into 100 paisa.
Rupee symbol: ₹Click here to Read More
Currency code: INR
Coin denominations: 1, 2, 5 and 10 rupees.
Note denominations: 5, 10, 20, 50, 100, 200, 500 and 2000 rupees.
There are no restrictions on the importation of foreign currency by tourists, provided a Declaration Form is completed on arrival. The import and export of the Rupee is, however, prohibited and may not be spent in Duty Free Shops or on board aircrafts. Receipts for all currency must be kept, as it may be reconverted on departure.
It is advisable to carry money in the form of traveller’s cheques, preferably in US Dollars, as it is widely recognised and accepted.
Changing money through unauthorised persons is illegal as well as risky in respect of receiving counterfeit money.
Credit cards :
Most hotels, restaurant and some shops accept major credit cards such as American Express, Diners Club, Visa and MasterCard. They will usually display signage to that effect.
UTC + 5 hours and 30 minutes.
Yellow Fever – Vaccination Certificate is required if arriving from an infected area.Click here to Read More
Cholera/Typhoid – Inoculation recommended.
Malaria – No certificate required, but advisable to have a course of pills.
Medical treatment in India is inexpensive by European or North American standards, though India has a pool of some of the best doctors in the world. Most hotels have a doctor on call.
Sunshine stronger than you are used to, heat, especially if you are travelling in India‘s summer months, digestive upsets, insect bites for which you have developed no immunities, all these can spoil your trip. So please take a few basic precautions.
Carry a kit containing sunscreens and other lotions for protection from the sun, insect repellents and sting relief creams, water sterilising tablets and medicines for possible stomach upsets or indigestion.
To protect yourself from mosquitoes when outdoors in the evenings, use an insect repellent on exposed skin, and wear socks, trousers and long-sleeved shirts.
Eating and drinking
Tap water is not purified for drinking. Unless you have access to a water filter, or are sure water has been boiled, it is safer to stick to bottled water. Avoid ice in your drinks outside your hotel.
Avoid ice cream or food sold by roadside vendors, uncooked or undercooked foods, fruit or vegetables that cannot be peeled.
The majority of India works on 220 volts AC 50 HZ. However, it is possible that certain areas have DC supplies andClick here to Read More
it may be a good idea to check before using electrical appliances. Socket sizes vary, so it is well to take along a set of plug adaptors.
You will probably need to get an adapter for your devices. It’s pretty easy to get “all-in-one” adapters that you can use to plug your device’s power chord into before plugging into the power supply.
English is widely spoken, especially in areas that are used to tourists, though accents and grammar may vary considerably.Click here to Read More
Hindi is the most widely spoken language in the country, but it also has regional variations and accents. There are totally 15 major languages 544 dialects spoken in India in addition to English.
Note that we always ensure that our clients are paired with guides who can speak their language.
India has both GSM and CDMA cellular phone systems. Receptions is usually clear in urban areas, but can get patchy or non-existent in remoter parts of the country. If you plan to use International roaming , check with your phone service provider on whether they have tie-ups with any Indian providers that will give you favourable roaming rates. If you use a GSM phone, you may want to consider buying an Indian phone card to use for your trip. We can help you choose a good plan for your stay.
Landline telephone calls to most countries are now direct. Fax and Telex facilities are now ubiquitously available. Internet facilities are also easily available in most cities and tourist centres, in cybercafé and business centres, but free wireless connectivity is rare.
wireless or conventional broadband – in five star hotels tends to be many times more expansive than cybercafés in the same areas though some hotels are now Wi-Fi.
The Indian postal service is huge, you are likely to find post offices in the most remote towns. You can usually buy stamps and leave letters for posting at most hotels.
In India, a huge number of things are still hand-made, using skills and secrets passed down for generations.Click here to Read More
Dazzling silks and other hand-made fabrics, clothing, hand knotted carpets, religious imagery and decorative articles in bronze, wood, stone and more, jewellery, leather, musical instruments, perfumes. The list goes on and on, and each regions has its unique specialities. And prices, you will find, are very reasonable. (Do note that we did be happy to provide you with expert shopping assistance.) You can bargain hunt at colourful, crowded bazaars, (be prepared to haggle) on roadsides in the hinterland, in air-conditioned hotel arcades and bustling modern malls. Many reliable establishments that cater to tourists offer to deliver purchases to you in your homeland. Remember, though, that these deliveries can take a long time to reach you.
Indian law prohibits the export of antiques over 100 years old. Keep sales receipts and certificates to show proof of purchase and legitimacy when you are leaving the country.
Indian food is as varied as the country itself, with every region having its own specialities. Click here to Read More
It therefore, does not always have to be “Hot” nor can any one dish be labelled a “curry”. (That said, many Indian cuisines can be pungent to those unaccustomed to it. Even if you have eaten at Indian restaurants outside India, remember that many such establishments tone down the spice quotient for local tastes).
Most dishes with a gravity are normally called curries but are prepared with a different masala (a combination of spices and seasonings) containing among other things coriander, cumin, garlic, onions, ginger, turmeric, chillies, cardamom, nutmeg, black pepper, cloves cinnamon, baby leaves, saffron, mace and nutmeg, all the aromas and flavours that brought traders to India for centuries.
A traditional meal in large parts of India is usually served in large metal plate called a ‘Thali’ (when you see the word in a menu, usually prefixed with a region name, it means you are getting a full traditional meal from that region) with a number of small bowls used to hold the gravy dishes, The meal is normally accompanied with unleavened bread, usually wheat-based, in the North, or rice in the South.
The more upmarket hotels also provide a fair selection of international cuisine as well, and in the major cities, you are also likely to find Italian, Chinese, Indonesian, Malaysian, and Mexican.
North Indian food has been strongly influenced by Mughal cuisine and is broadly non-vegetarian characterised by the use of yoghurt, fried onions, nuts and saffron. Outstanding dishes worth trying would be biryani, gushtaba, tandoori dishes and kababs. Beef is rarely eaten in the North, since many Hindus consider the cow sacred. Pork, forbidden by Islam, is a rarity in areas with a substantial Muslim population.
Southern India is renowned for its spicy curries, rasam (Millagu tannir or literally pepper water, before it was anglicised to mulligataway), masala dosai or crisp potato pancakes and a variety of rice-based dishes. The hot food has to be tempered with pappadums, yoghurt and buttermilk. Coconut tends to be extensively used. Places well known for their non-vegetarian cuisine are the Chettinad area in Tamil Nadu, and large parts of Kerala. And of course the coastal areas get you some very good fish.
Western India is a very diverse area in terms of cuisine. Gujarat with its strong Jain traditions is almost entirely vegetarian with a sweetish touch to all its dishes. Goa is famed for its Portuguese-influenced meat and seafood dishes. Maharashtra’s coastal regions also have their traditional seafood cuisine.
East India is comprised of the states of West Bengal, Sikkim, Assam. The geographical location of this region means its food bears the strong influence of Chinese and Mongolian cuisine.
Style of Food :-
Although East India has three schools of cuisine – Bengali and Assam, the North-eastern states and then Orissa – simple is the key word for food for this region.
Preparation is not elaborate and neither are most of the ingredients. Steaming and frying are popular methods of cooking. In coastal regions fish is the food of choice while further inland pork wins the position on the plate. People of no other region in India can rival the Eastern Indians Love for sweets and desserts. Some of India’s most popular and world- renowned sweets come from here.
Staple Ingredients :-
This region is known for its abundance of rice due to the ideal onion seeds, mustard seeds, fennel seeds and fenugreek seeds.
Yogurt, coconut, Maize and gram flour are also common ingredients. Milk and dairy products play a huge role in the preparation of sweets in Easter India. Mustard oil is very popular and used for both deep frying and cooking. Other vegetable oils are also utilized and ghee is used for cooking special occasion foods.
Popular Dishes :-
East Indian cuisine’s distinct character sets it apart from other areas of the country. The dishes features less spice than their neighbouring region’s recipes, allowing the main ingredients to really shine through. The coastal section allows for a variety of fresh seafood, the warm climate and lush forest for ample produce. The European explorers and Muslim settlers left their mark, resulting in a unique style of cooking that is purely East Indian.
Some popular dishes are momos (steamed, meat or vegetable –filled wontons and thukpa (clear soup) Tomato Achaar (tomato pickle), Mach cher Jhol (Fish curry) and Jhall –Muri (a spicy snack made with puffed rice and mustard oil) are also commonly seen on menus.
Sweets are King :-
Sweets are a big deal in East India and the region is renowned for its sugary treats – as well as the inhabitants ‘sweet tooths’ Favourites include Sandesh (made of paneer and sugar) and Rasgolla (dumplings in syrup), as well as creamy rice pudding (Kheer). They are lighter and less dense than other Indian deserts.