Guide me through India!
May 10, 2019 5:16 PM   Subscribe

This is a dream trip for me!!!

I'm going to study ashtanga in Goa from Mid September - Mid October. Due to practice schedule of Sun-Friday I'll be tied to that region for the month, save for potential overnight trips and day trips. Do you have recommendations for day trips, overnight trips and things to do in Goa?

I also plan to travel for a month, either two weeks before & two weeks after or 4 weeks after. I love fabric & textiles, food & spices, general exploration/adventure & probably want a day or 2 of panchakarma (or more if I can afford it). I need to travel cheap and will be a woman traveling solo. Do you have recommendations for travel destinations or experiences? Do you have any helpful tips?
posted by vividvoltage to Travel & Transportation around India (5 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
Um, where specifically in Goa? What town would you be closest to?
posted by aramaic at 5:39 PM on May 10, 2019

Response by poster: Yes! That would be helpful info - Morjim, Goa is where I will be.
posted by vividvoltage at 8:14 PM on May 10, 2019

Head into the hills; there are some nice waterfalls (Charavane, Hivrem, etc.) and they're not too terribly far.
posted by aramaic at 9:44 PM on May 10, 2019

Well, India is a big place, so... it's sorta like asking where to visit in America (except much more so... Grand Canyon or New York?).

Goa is a great place, but you have to get out and explore it. It's really easy to just plant in a place in never get out. I rented a scooter and explored around that way. I learned that (scooter) hitchhiking is very much a thing in Goa and I ended up giving a fellow a ride to the next town over because why not?

Another memorable experience was taking a train from Udaipur to Mumbai. I'm not sure the origin and destination matter, but be sure to book the second-class tickets (whatever they are actually called). You will get to meet local people and it's totally worth it.

I never went there, but all my Indian acquaintances told me I had to go to Kerala. Since I didn't go I have no information other than that they were pretty adamant about it.

Anyway, India is surely a land of contrasts and Goa is very very different from, say, Delhi, Mumbai, Rajasthan (my own points of reference).
posted by sjswitzer at 5:27 PM on May 11, 2019

It's probably better to think of India like the EU -- freedom of movement between states/countries, but every state/country has a different language, culture, cuisine. The differences are vast, for such densely populated place.

Get yourself a bunch of plain cotton salwar kameez either before the trip or as soon as you arrive. They are much more comfortable than jeans in the Indian climate, and you can use the odni (scarf) to cover your head in temples and mosques. Wear flip-flop type sandals rather than shoes.

The classic tourist trip is the Golden Triangle: Delhi, Agra, Jaipur. I went to Rajasthan about 10 years ago with family; we spent a couple days in a camel camp in the Thar Desert (incredible) and the rest of the time in the cities of Udaipur and Jaipur, both of which are beautiful. There is lots to see around Delhi and Agra as well (Taj Mahal, Red Fort, Fatepur Sikri, Jama Masjid, Qutub Minar), especially if you have an interest in Mughal-era India or the Independence movement. I haven't been to Amritsar, but my aunt and uncle recently did and their photos are amazing.

September and October are festival time in much of India: Ganesh Chaturthi is Sept 2 this year, Dussera (the last day of Navratri) is Oct 18/19, and Diwali is October 27. Festivals are crowded but so much fun!
posted by basalganglia at 9:35 AM on May 12, 2019

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