Essential India

Ancient temples swallowed by the jungle, rice paddies, local markets, stunning beaches, fiery cuisine, smoking incense at the feet of a golden Buddha, and the friendliest locals around.

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Essential India

Postby ecwchan » Wed Jan 02, 2013 2:06 am

Hi,

I'm looking to book a gap adventure for the first time on the essential india trip. Though had a couple of questions:
1. What type of luggage should I use? Backpack or Suitcase. As I am going to be travelling for work for an extended period and will have suitcases with me and don't want to bring a backpack as well.

2. Travelling on the sleeper train will a sleeping bag be needed or what did you bring for that segment of the trip to make the sleep more comfortable?

3. What kind of hotels do you stay at? Are they approximately 3-4 stars locally or would it be significantly less?

Thanks,
Edwin
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Re: Essential India

Postby ballu » Wed Jan 02, 2013 4:29 pm

I haven't taken a sleeper train in India, but from sleeper train experiences in Egypt and Thailand, bedding should be included on the train. And I recommend ear plugs, your own toilet paper and an eye mask (sometimes the lights come on at a certain time in the morning).
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Re: Essential India

Postby jafanut » Thu Jan 03, 2013 7:36 am

Hi Edwin,

I dd the India Encompassed tour last March. Your tour was the first half of that tour.

1) A suitcase is fine, I used a wheeled backpack. I only really used the backpack part when lugging it around trainstations and up and down stairs to get to the right platforms. This does not happen all that often and you can always pay a porter at the railway station or tip one at the hotel if you dont want to carry your own bag . In saying that I would only take one and see if you can leave the rest of your luggage at the starting/finishing hotel.

2) the sleeper trains, really i do not think you can bring anything much to make them more comfortable, but they are an experience hehe. A sleeping bag is not needed but I did use my sleep sheet as I felt much more comfortable with that and then put the sheets or blankets they gave on top if needed. I also used the sleep sheet (or sak as some call them) at a few hotels. As ballu suggested your own toilet paper, hand sanitizer, ear plugs and mask may make it a little more comfy for you.

3) As I have no idea where you are from I cannot really give you a star quality comparison on the accommodations. It is kinda hard to put into words, but you will stay in some truly amazing places. Maybe not what you are expecting but a certain charm of their own. I truly loved some of the older buildings. And in saying that they also change their accommodations if they are not meeting the mark for g adventure customers, hence why they no longer give out a list of the names. Sometimes the places will also really seem below average. Oh and dont expect a soft mattress lol they like em firm in India!!! In saying that the accommodation was airconditioned when needed and had ensuite amenities :lol:

I hope this helps, if not just ask

Cheers
Kylie
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Re: Essential India

Postby DanielBMe » Thu Jan 03, 2013 1:11 pm

Wheeled luggage is what I used and it was perfect. As well I always take a silk sleeping bag liner with me when I travel. Nice and light! I used it for the o/n train as was very happy I had it.
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Re: Essential India

Postby ecwchan » Fri Jan 04, 2013 12:19 pm

Thanks for all the helpful replies.

Edwin
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