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North India Trip

North India Trip


This article has been written keeping in mind that it would be useful sharing my experiences about the trip with others.

Before I proceed with the details, let me give a brief introduction. This trip was originally planned about 8 months back :-). That was when I had come up with the idea. The flight tickets were booked in December. Unfortunately, one by one 4 of the 6 dropped out. At a stage where the trip was almost about to get cancelled two of my classmates joined in. The final four of us are - Aizaz, Harsha, Vinod and Rahul.

Important Points
From my experience, I think the below points would be helpful in planning for a trip.

1) Plan in advance
This holds true for almost anything. Start planning in advance. Anyway, the time when you should plan depends on the trip. For a North India trip, I suggest you plan atelast two months in advance.
The first half month will be spent in deciding about the details of the trip - the places to visit, etc. The next 15 days should be spent in booking travel tickets, booking hotel rooms, etc. I personally felt that booking should be done in the following order

- After planning the days, get the travel tickets booked first. For trains, one months advance booking is highly suggested. For buses, a week advance booking shoud also suffice.
- Next importance should be given to booking Hotel rooms. You can always go to the hotel directly but if you are staying somewhere for a longer duration, advance booking is recommended as you are assured of your stay in a good hotel.

2) Know the timings of sight-seeing
A big mistake which we had done. Know the timings of when the places would be open for sight-seeing. For instance, in Jaipur we reached the sight-seeing places slightly late (after 16.30) and it was closed.

3) Prepare a checklist of items you plan to take. This is the checklist we had prepared (for your reference) :-)

- Tickets, Hotel Reservations, Cab Bookings, etc.
- Jerkin and/or Sweater
- Clothes
- Towel and a small napkin
- Deodrant, Comb, Toothbrush, Tongue Cleaner, Dental Floss, Shaving Kit, Handwash, soap
- Medicines
- Camera and/or HandyCam
- Shoes, slip ons, Hawai Chappal
- Credit Card / Debit Card (I would personally suggest to carry as less as cash as possible (<= 3000) and draw money on demand)
- Chains, locks
- Small carry bag to carry important items like camera, cash, etc.
- Cap
- Miscellaneous
Torchlight, blades, scissors

Approx. Expneses per head

For us, the approximate expenses per head was around Rs.11000 (leaving out shopping). Below is the approx. break up of our expenses

Air ticket (to and fro per head) - Rs.1800
Delhi Car Rental for Local Sight Seeing (Day 1) - Rs.1000
Car Rental for Delhi-Jaipur-Agra round trip (Day 2 and Day 3) - Rs.6000
Hotel Stay in Jaipur (per Double Bedroom) - Rs. 400
Chandigarh to Delhi train ticket - Rs.125
Hotel stay in Chandigarh (per Double Bedroom) - Rs.200
Sight-seeing in Chandigarh - Rs.850
Bus from Chandigarh to Manali - Rs.300
Hotel stay in Manali (per Double Bedroom) - Rs.750
Manali Local Sight-Seeing - Rs.300
Manali Skiing - Rs.200 (dress per head) + Rs.1000 (instructur and skates) + Rs.500 (car charges)
Manali River Rafting - Rs.1400
Bus from Manali to Simla - Rs.350
Hotel stay in Simla (for four-bedded family suite) - Rs.1000
Simla Sight Seeing to Kufri - Rs.350
Train ticket from Simla to Kalka - Rs.35
Train tikcet from Kalka to Delhi - Rs.200
Hotel stay in Delhi (per Double Bedroom) - Rs.265
Average Food Expenses per day - Rs.250 (for veg) / Rs. 300 (for non-veg) :-)
Miscellaneous charges (entry tickets, etc.) - Rs.1500

P.S.: Train tickets refer to sleeper class in all cases except for Simla-Kalka where it is second class.


1) Car Booking

We got the car booked from "Sonu Taxi Service". They do not have a website and their office is located in Guragaon. We actually came to know of them through Harsha's relatives. His charges were comparatively less when compared to others. The details are as below.
Owner - Ramesh
Ph# - 011 6571074 / 9810824896
Charges - 6.5 Km/hr for AC Indica, For local sight seeing it is slightly more

Another reasonable car rental service which I came across while searching was "Top Travel". Their details are
L-3, Samrat Bhawan , Ranjeet Nagar
Commercial Complex , New Delhi - 110008. (India)
Ph No: 91-011-25708822, 25708228, 25707228.
Fax No: 91-011-25701125 , 25704228
E-Mail :

On an average you would be covering about 850 Km while roaming Delhi, Jaipur and Agra.

2) Hotel Booking
Two websites where you can find budget hotels are

For budget hotels in Manali you can visit

Place of stay in Delhi (Smyle Inn) -
Place of stay in Jaipur (Hotel Pearl Palace) -

3) Train Booking - To find out about train and reservation information - To book train tickets

Trip Details

Day 1 (Fri)
Left Hyderabad at 8.05.
Reached Delhi at 10.15.
Had already booked a car for local sight seeing and in it proceeded to IIT Delhi.
After having lunch at IIT Delhi, we left for local sight-seeing at 12.00.
After local sight seeing (India Gate, Lotus Temple, Raj Ghat, Qutub Minar, Red Fort), proceeded back to IIT Delhi at 20.00.
Thanks to Gullu, we were able to stay at night in IIT Delhi.

Day 2 (Sat)
Morning 7.00, left IIT Delhi to Jaipur.
Reached Jaipur at around 12.00.
Covered Amer Fort (about 1.5 hrs)
Proceeded to Hotel Pearl Palace.
After getting ready, left at 16.00 for City Palace and Jantar Mantar
As City Palace and Jantar Mantar were closed, went to Birla Mandir and another temple.
Night 20.00 we were back in hotel

Day 3 (Sun)
Morning 9.00 we left the hotel
Covered City Palace and Jantar Mantar and left to Agra at 11.00 [These could have been covered yesterday]
Reached Agra in evening at 16.00
After visiting Agra Fort and Taj Mahal (Fatehpur is also a good place to visit ... that is what I have heard), left to Delhi at 18.15.
Reached Delhi at 22.40 and took the train to Chandigarh

Day 4 (Mon)
Morn. reached Chandigarh at 6.00.
Proceeded to Panchayat Bhavan (our place of stay in Chandigarh).
After getting ready, left for sight-seeing at 10.00.
Some of the places covered were Rose Garden (not that great). Lake (very good but try to visit this place in the evening), Rock Garden (gr8 place but you should have loads of energy to cover this place) and Pinjore Gardens (Good place but did not have time to spend here).
Night 20.00 proceeded back to Chandigarh Bus station and took a bus to Manali.

Day 5 (Tue)
Morning 7.00 reached Manali
Left for local sight seeing at 15.00.
Covered Hidamba temple, Tibetan Monastry, etc.
Were back in Hotel by 19.00

Day 6 (Wed)
Morning 11.00 left for skiing
By 17.00, we were back in hotel.

Day 7 (Thu)
Morning 10.00 left for river rafting and shopping (this falls towards Kullu)
By 18.00 we were back in hotel.

Day 8 (Fri)
Morning 8.00 left Manali for Simla [This journey should have been done the previous night ... we would have got to spend an extra day in Simla]
At 18.00 reached Simla.

Day 9 (Sat)
Morning 9.00 left for Kufri (sight-seeing spot in Simla)
At 14.00, took the Simla-Kalka train (This train journey is good .. but you may not enjoy it if you have already roamed a lot in Manali)
Night 20.00 reached Kalka and took a train to Delhi.

Day 10 (Sun)
Morn. 7.00 reached Delhi
Proceeded to Hotel Smyle Inn
Evening 18.00 caught a flight to Hyd
At 20.00 we were back in Hyd


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