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India Travel Tips- Preparations and planning for Holidays in India.
Tuesday, April 28th, 2015

India Travel Tips: Things to Know & Plan Beforehand

(Part 1 of 2)


By Lisa Mathew

1) TIME: Travel at a time to a place when the weather suits you. India stretches from 8 to 38 latitude and 68 to 98 longitude that is 30 degrees either way (and as large as potentially 3 time zones although India only maintains one throughout the whole country.) So it has the cold weather of Scandinavia in the Himalayas, the warm humid weather of the Amazon in Kerala and the dry arid intense heat of Egypt in Rajasthan. My favourite time to go is from Nov to Feb when the weather is cool and dry in most places except the North. But if you come from a dry hot country, you might love the lush wet monsoons from June to Aug. Or if you come from a sun starved country, you might like Delhi and Rajasthan at 50 deg from Mar to May. So pick a time when the weather in the area of India you are going to suits you. Check out websites like http://www.india.climatemps.com for specific places you want to look at. Or look at our Best time to visit India post.

India climate and travel tips, best time to visit India

India's diverse climate on a map.

2) PLACE: Read up your government’s list of forbidden places to visit in India like certain tribal areas (for UK see www.fco.gov.uk) as your travel insurance will not cover you if you have trouble there. India is endless and simply can’t be done in depth even in a year. So don’t try to do everything in a few weeks. Pick a single place per week, relax into it and experience it fully. If you have more than a week of holiday, book another place of contrast in the same region. So you might do the classic Golden Triangle, which combines the city feel of Delhi and the spectacular deserts of Rajasthan with the beauty of the unforgettable Taj Mahal. Or the city sights of Bombay, hippie parties in Goa and Ayurvedic rejuvenation in Kerala. Or foodie Calcutta, the salubrious tea estates of Darjeeling and the beautiful islands of Andaman and Nicobar. It usually takes a day of travel from one place to the other so you could do 3 places in 2 weeks if you are an experienced traveller but it will be undeniably hectic. Tell your travel agent what you like and ask for options.


Kerala backwater photo monsoon, travel tips India 2015

Boat rides, backwaters and rains make Kerala super romantic during the monsoon months of June, July and August.

Image courtesy: Stark Trivandrum

3) PRECAUTIONS: Go to the GP 2/3 months in advance, ask what shots you need to take and plan dates for them as some of them have to be taken in sequence. Malaria tablets are needed for some areas. Vaccines that may be required are tetanus, hepatitis A & B, typhoid and rabies. If planning a trip to any islands, try to order the seasickness ear patches from America in advance. They are far more effective than the tablets in the UK that were virtually useless to me. I usually pack medicines for common illnesses like fever – paracetamol, aches and pains – ibuprofen, mosquito repellant, cough – strepsils, cold – Vit C and stomach upset – loperamide.


4) DRESS: Pack clothing that can be layered as the days can be scorching but the nights cool. Tees with cardis and shawls are good as are hair bands to keep the sweat off your neck and the dust out of your hair, sunglasses, flip flops for inside the room as well as the beach, sneakers and a hat. Most Indians are very modest in their clothing in general so when in India, do as the Indians do. Especially as a woman, to minimize harassment, wear short sleeves rather then sleeveless and knee length rather than short shorts and above all loose clothing rather than skintight. In fact, most visitors believe less is more in the heat, but Indians know long thin loose clothing creates an air barrier that keep you cool from the scorching heat. Also, light coloured clothing absorbs less heat than darker ones.


5) FLIGHT: Find a flight that arrives at a time you like. Ideally arrive into India in the early evening. So you have time to pick up your bags and to choose a taxi at leisure, arrive at the hotel in daylight, take a walk around it to familiarise yourself, unpack in peace, have an early dinner and a long sleep to remove every trace of travel fatigue from your system.

More articles with India travel tips are given below. Click on the links to read.

All You Need to Know About Tourist Visa on Arrival in India – TVoA

10 easy tips for a visa to India

5 Indian Etiquette Tips to Remember

Lisa writes about christmas in india, food, traditions and celebrations

About Lisa: Lisa Mathew lives in London but travels around the world for work and pleasure. She can otherwise be found baking, gardening or dreaming but mostly buried in a book @lisalizlis


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Related Posts:

Plan to travel to an Indian holiday destination?

We are here to help. At no extra cost.
  • Tailor made holidays
  • Special interest holidays
  • Hidden luxury getaways
Know more

About me

The wise man travels to discover himself - JR Lowell


My name is Sudha Mathew. I'm an ex-banker who quit the rat race after a decade to follow my passion for travel and to combine it with my experience in understanding client requirements and exceeding their expectations.


While our content is mostly about the holiday experience, the accommodation and services, there's so much more to a journey. I have discovered a whole new me through travel. So I've reserved this corner of the website to share the unexpected aspects of travel. This space is also to hear from you about your journeys and discoveries. Bon Voyage!

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