- Uniquely Red
- The Red Journal
India is the most colorful and diverse country in the world. It’s filled with iconic sights, ancient religions, important history, exotic wildlife and cultures defined by a pure sense of hospitality to visitors. We can design a truly amazing trip here no matter what your interests are.
Take a look at the sample itineraries below that you can use as a starting point to design your perfect trip in Indonesia. We offer 2 types of tours: Group Tours and Private Tours.
Group tours (labeled in red) take place on specific dates beginning in the arrival city and have limited capacity of typically only 8 to 12 people. Some may be led by an experienced western guide, others will use local guides. Some group tours can be done as a private tour. Just ask.
Private tours (labeled in grey) are sample itineraries to spark ideas for your trip. The include a carefully curated schedule of activities. We customize them for when you’re able to travel and for how many people are in your group. Most tours and activities are privately-guided and all internal transportation is included. Prices will change depending on the season, hotel selections, group size, and other factors. We can always adjust these itineraries to add or remove days, destinations, activities, and combine them with other itineraries.
The best weather in India is generally between October and March. In northern India, avoid the months of April and May as it can get oppressively hot—120 degrees F (50 degrees C) is not uncommon. In June, the monsoon season arrives and lasts through September, cooling things off a bit, but with daily rain showers. In the south, the monsoon is a bit more complex, with a temporary dry period for most of the month of September, before getting wet again in October and November. The far north regions of Kashmir and Ladakh are best visited from late May through early September due to their cooler temperatures and higher elevations.
We’ve inspected and stayed in hundreds of hotels throughout the country. We will not only recommend which hotel may best for you, but which room category. Here’s a few that we highly recommend based on the quality of the rooms and facilities, cleanliness, standard of service, and locations. These aren’t always the cheapest hotels, but they are among the best hotels in their category. We tend to have a preference for high-quality boutique hotels that have a great location, excellent food, and a local ambience, or perhaps a colonial or Raj-style atmosphere that conjure images of former eras.
The Chambal Safari Lodge is an oasis of peace, tranquility and gracious hospitality. This family-owned and run lodge on 35 acres near Bateshwar and just an hour from Agra, is one of the best places to spend 3 days in India watching wildlife, exploring ancient forts, local villages, and attending the Bateshwar Cattle Fair and Festival. It has been meticulously restored by it’s owners Ram Pratap Singh, and his environmental scientist wife, Anu, who represent the epitomy of environmental conservation and sustainability.
Almost everyone needs a visa to visit India and you can apply for a e-Tourist visa online 30 days before arrival, not earlier. It allows for a stay of up to 30 days and allows for double entries if you’re visiting a neighboring country like Nepal or Bhutan. You can find out what’s needed and start the process by following the link to the only official web site below.
India is still closed for the purpose of tourism. There are not currently any plans for reopening to international tourists.
Apply for an Indian e-Tourist Visa
If booking a private tour with us, costs can range from $250/day/person for staying in nice 3-star quality hotels to over $500/day/person in high-end luxury hotels. Staying in small luxury boutique hotels can cost an average of $300 to $400/day/person. These cost estimates include not just accommodation, but also internal flights, airport transfers, tours and activities, entrance fees, private guides, and private vehicles with driver.
There are so many that it’s hard to quantify, but here’s a few major benefits:
No. It’s best to avoid tap water everywhere and ask about the source of water in restaurants as some filter their water, but ice is usually safe. It’s best to use bottled or purified water in hotels to drink…and brush your teeth.
Yes, 3G and 4G connectivity is very good in India. Some providers, like T-Mobile allow for free unlimited data internationally, though it is usually at a 2g speed. However, that’s often good enough for texts and emails, using Google maps, and some browsing. If you’re staying long enough and always want good data access while you’re out and about, buy a local SIM card with a data plan for your phone. They’re quite inexpensive.
Almost all hotels have US-style outlets that are fine for plugging in electronics. However, the voltage is 240 volts, so be sure your devices can handle that. Most can!
The Indian currency is the “rupee”, Rp. Notes come in 10,000 to 500,000 denominations. The exchange rate in March 2021 is roughly 23,000 dong per US dollar.
ATMs are the best way to get local currency and are plentiful, but look for ones that accept international debit cards. Be sure to withdraw local currency in larger cities and mid-sized towns as smaller villages are not as likely to have ATMs.
You can also exchange US dollars cash at banks, currency exchange vendors, and hotels. Be sure to have notes that are in pristine condition. Worn and torn notes may not be accepted.
Upscale hotels, shops, restaurants, and markets will accept credit cards. However, small shops and restaurants will not. Shopkeepers are often reluctant to make change for larger notes of 500 Rp and above. Be sure to keep on hand plenty of 100 Rp and lower notes for shopping in local markets.
Tipping is expected by private guides and drivers, however, the amount depends on the quality of service. Generally for private guides, we recommend about $5 to $10 per person per full day in your group and about $3 to $4 for drivers. For example: if you’re a couple and you’re in Saigon for two days and have a full schedule of tours and airport transfers and you’re very happy with everything, tip the guide about $40 and the driver about $15.
Elsewhere such as restaurants, taxi drivers, and hotel staff, tipping is not expected but can be an appreciated surprise. Try to give the money directly to the person you want to tip so that you can be sure they get it. Upscale restaurants will add a service charge to bills on top of taxes.
Please provide as much information as you can so we can generate some ideas before contacting you. For example:
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