A Muslim Traveller’s Information To India’s Golden Triangle (Agra, Delhi and Jaipur)


There isn’t any nation on the planet with a extra vibrant tradition than India. It is chaotic, vigorous, overwhelming, vibrant and guarantees you an journey of a lifetime!


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India is LARGE! As a lot as we might like to write down about India in a single article, so this information will concentrate on North India, particularly Delhi, Agra and Jaipur, or often known as the Golden Triangle of India ?

PRE-TRIP PLANNING & INFORMATION

1. TIME TO VISIT – November until April through the cool and dry season, after the monsoon season however earlier than the extraordinary warmth seeps in

2. CHOOSE A ROUTE – There are many routes to select from relying on the time you’ve got. Some could take as much as a month to discover! Listed below are some widespread routes:

  • Golden Triangle (finest for first-timers) – Delhi, Agra, Jaipur
  • Land of Kings – Jaipur, Ranthambore, Udaipur, Jodhpur, Bikaner, Nawalgarh
  • Coronary heart of India – Mumbai, Lucknow, Varanasi, Bodhgaya, Puri

3. TIME FRAME – It is troublesome to slim India all the way down to a single journey. Ideally, even the Golden Triangle takes two weeks, however you must be capable of squeeze the principle sights into one week with cautious planning

4. LANGUAGE – Unknown to many travellers, English is definitely a standard language within the large cities of Northern India. There are such a lot of languages there that English has develop into a standard denominator for them to speak. However it’s nonetheless useful to be taught just a few key phrases in Hindi for the reason that older era won’t be fluent in English.

5. SPACE – Most Indians grew up with out the luxurious of privateness and private area so do not be shocked if they have an inclination to ‘invade’ your private area by standing or talking too near you. It’s the norm there.

SAFETY CONCERNS


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No nation provides a very good dose of tradition shock greater than India. Dump all of your expectations about India and anticipate to be taken unexpectedly by many issues in your first journey there. In case you’re a first-time traveller, it is suggested to journey in a guided tour, or with a bunch of pals. India is a good looking nation, but it surely largely is a standard society within the midst of adapting to trendy tradition. While you hear travellers saying it is chaotic, it isn’t an understatement and it’ll in all probability be probably the most chaotic nation you’ll expertise And within the midst of the chaos, there are a lot of security considerations for first-time travellers and feminine travellers. Listed below are some suggestions that will help you out:

1. Gown conservatively to keep away from consideration, each by way of modesty and vogue statements. It is best to put on lengthy bottoms, and sleeveless tops are wonderful within the large cities however carry one thing to cowl your shoulders since some areas are extra modest and you may wish to cowl as much as keep away from stares. Keep away from carrying jewelry and flashy gadgets too to keep away from being targets of pickpockets.

2. In case you’re travelling solo, keep away from telling individuals. Inform individuals you are travelling with pals and don’t inform them the place your lodging is.

3. As heartbreaking as it’s, don’t give cash to beggars. They are going to beg, juggle, promote toys or flowers, and method you in lots of different methods. Don’t give them cash. Many are a part of a syndicate and can give the cash to a ringleader. In case you should, give them meals.

4. Keep away from travelling in large crowds to keep away from being pickpocketed or groped.

5. Foreigners will get loads of stares. Many locals will unapologetically stare at foreign-looking individuals out of curiosity. Girls, keep away from these curious gazes as it may be seen as flirtatious.

6. For ladies travellers, there are a lot of women-only rooms should you should keep in a finances lodging (although we recommend you keep in a mid-range for higher security and hygiene). That being mentioned, don’t assume it’s okay to belief all ladies.

7. Get a neighborhood sim card, a powerbank, and have your emergency numbers on pace dial.

8. Don’t settle for meals or drinks from strangers.

9. Make hand sanitizer and moist wipes your finest good friend. Deliver loads of these in your journey since you WILL want it.

10. Guaranteeing meals security and hygiene will likely be an enormous a part of your journey too. We’ll clarify additional about this within the meals part ?

ATTRACTIONS

Security considerations apart, India is a must-visit vacation spot for each traveller! Amidst the chaos and colors awaits the journey of a lifetime! India is a spot stuffed with world-class structure and historic websites and there’s an infinite variety of locations so that you can go to should you can. Listed below are just a few of the must-visit sights that you possibly can go to utilizing a Delhi-Agra-Jaipur route.

1. Taj Mahal in Agra


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Taj Mahal, the icon of India, an architectural marvel, and one of many new seven wonders of the world. And for the romantics, an emblem of eternal love by one of many Mughal Empire rulers, Shah Jahan, to his spouse, Mumtaz Mahal, who died in 1631 giving beginning to his fifteenth youngster. It took 22 years and 20 000 individuals to construct the Taj Mahal, that’s the mausoleum for Shah Jahan and his beloved spouse. The grand construction resembles a grand white mosque with its Islamic impressed design and is really an architectural marvel. Your complete constructing construction, tiles, water characteristic, and backyard have impeccable symmetry with one exception, Shah Jahan’s personal cenotaph that is not aligned. This has led many to consider he by no means supposed to be buried there.

#HHWT tip: In case you see the Taj throughout dawn, the white marble on the construction displays a number of the sky’s pink hue, creating a stunning sunrise-tinted Taj.

Handle: Dharmapuri, Forest Colony, Tajganj, Agra, Uttar Pradesh 282001, India
Opening hours: half-hour earlier than dawn till half-hour earlier than sundown
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2. Agra Fort in Agra


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Constructed-in 1573 by Akbar, the Agra fort was dwelling of the Mughal Emperors through the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. This UNESCO heritage website doesn’t fail to impress. After the Mughal Empire, the fort was managed by a number of ownerships and a large revolt earlier than the British took over in 1947. It was additionally the house of emperor Shah Jahan (Akbar’s grandson), the Mughal emperor who constructed the Taj Mahal for his beloved spouse. He was imprisoned by his personal son for wanting to construct a black (to symbolize the dangerous in him) marble model of the Taj Mahal for himself. He died within the fort and his physique was taken by boat to be laid subsequent to his spouse within the Taj Mahal. A big a part of the fort remains to be being utilized by the Indian military however the locations opened to the general public are nonetheless definitely worth the go to! The fort boasts a tremendous combination of Islamic and Hindu structure. The Khas Mahal, the place Shah Jahan resided exhibits a mix of Persian and Islamic influences adorned with gold, gems, and white marble carvings.

Handle: Agra Fort, Rakabganj, Agra, Uttar Pradesh 282003, India
Opening hours: 6am – 6pm each day
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3. Amer Fort in Jaipur


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Also called the Amber Palace, this construction is one other Indian architectural marvel. Its grand design is a mix of Hindu and Islamic parts and was constructed by Akbar’s (the third Mughal emperor) normal, Maan Singh, in 1592. The fort or palace accommodates 4 large courtyards, palaces, halls, and gardens. All of the courtyards are definitely worth the exploration. Discover a corridor with many pillars, the ornate king’s personal quarters, and expansive decorative backyard, and the jaw-dropping Sheesh Mahal (Corridor of Mirrors) the place the partitions are coated in intricate mirror work. The fort additionally has a passage that connects to Jaigarh Fort the place you’ll be able to stroll to, or journey a golf cart there. P.S. It’s potential to discover the place on elephant-back, however the observe has been condemned by animal activists.

Handle: Devisinghpura, Amer, Jaipur, Rajasthan 302001, India
Opening hours: 8am – 5.30pm, 6.30pm – 9.15pm each day

4. Hawa Mahal in Jaipur


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Also called the Palace of the Winds, this spectacular construction lies within the coronary heart of Jaipur has 953 intricately designed home windows on its facade. The construction was constructed by Maharaja Pratai Sawap Singh for the women of the royal family to observe the life and processions of the town. Apart from beautiful structure contained in the construction, you’ll be able to take pleasure in a shocking view of Jantar Mantar, the Metropolis Palace and Sireh Deori Bazaar from the highest! The awe-inspiring structure will get its distinctive pink colour from pure sandstones and is taken into account one of many most interesting Rajput architectures in India.

Handle: Hawa Mahal Rd, Badi Choupad, J.D.A. Market, Pink Metropolis, Jaipur, Rajasthan 302002, India
Opening hours: 9am – 5pm each day
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5. Ranthambore Nationwide Park in Jaipur


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India has many nationwide parks devoted to animal conservation and wildlife safety. One of many nationwide parks you’ll be able to go to (with a slight detour) from the Golden Triangle route is Ranthambore Nationwide Park, which can also be a tiger reserve with 70 tigers. The huge reserve covers 392 sq. kilometres and is the largest one in Northern India. Get pleasure from a day exploring the massive variety of wildlife, and an opportunity to fulfill the magnificent Bengal tiger!

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6. Chand Baori Stepwell in Jaipur


Credit score: @anniechamberlain on Instagram Lose your self within the maze-like stepwell of Chand Baori. This stepwell is in-built between the eighth and ninth century and is one the oldest in Rajasthan, and regarded to be one of many largest on the planet. This unimaginable 13-storey deep effectively resembles a grand palace courtyard greater than it resembles a effectively. Its magnificence lies within the excellent symmetry of partitions lined with double flights of 3500 slim steps that descend down right into a puddle of water.

Handle: Close to Harshat Mata Temple, Abhaneri, Dausa, Bandikui, Rajasthan 303313, India
Opening hours: 8.30am – 6pm each day
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[Jaipur is filled with amazing wonders, here are 8 more reasons for you to pack your bags and fly out to Jaipur!]

7. Purple Fort in Delhi


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In case you suppose this fort considerably resembles the Agra Fort (listed above), you are not flawed. Shah Jahan, the fifth Mughal Emperor and brains behind the Taj Mahal beloved the Agra Fort a lot that he constructed a similar-looking construction in Delhi (or Shahjahanabad at the moment) in 1648. The fort performs a major a part of India’s historical past with a whole lot of treachery, battles and bloodshed. From the autumn of the Mughal Empire to a number of invasions by different emperors, till the day the British took over and exiled the final Mughal emperor to Burma (present-day Myanmar), killed his sons, and destroyed a lot of the fort. When India gained independence in 1947, the Purple Fort was used as the principle place for the general public celebration, and it nonetheless hosts celebrations there yearly on August fifteenth. Simply FYI, there are additionally rumours that the emperor had the our bodies of decapitated prisoners constructed into the constructing basis for luck. Guess we’ll by no means know ?‍♀️

Handle: Netaji Subhash Marg, Lal Qila, Chandni Chowk, New Delhi, Delhi 110006, India
Opening hours: 7am – 5.30pm each day

8. Jama Mosque in Delhi


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Fifth Mughal Emperor, Shah Jahan, contributed loads to India’s iconic structure and the Masjid Jama (or Jama Mosque) is considered one of them. After he shifted his capital from Agra to Delhi (or Shahjahanabad at the moment), he commissioned the development of this mosque which was accomplished in 1656. It was his final extravagant structure earlier than he fell unwell. The mosque sits proper throughout the Purple Fort and in addition has its related Islamic, Hinduism and Persian affect in its structure. Be in awe on the mosque that boasts three nice gates, 4 excessive towers and two excessive minarets constructed of purple sandstone and white marble.

Handle: Jama Masjid Rd, Jama Masjid, Chandni Chowk, New Delhi, Delhi 110006, India
Opening hours: 7am – 12pm, 1.30pm – 6.30pm. Vacationers not allowed throughout prayer hours. Web site

Bonus: The Ganges River in Varanasi


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If in case you have time to spare, the Ganges river in Varanasi is one location India you would not wish to miss! Thought of one of many holiest locations for Hinduism in India, the Ganges river is as stunning as it’s messy and chaotic. The 250km river flows from the Himalayan ranges by India and Bangladesh and has been a supply of bodily life and part of their religious life. Many locals consider that the water within the Ganges river purifies an individual of his or her sins. Surrounding the rivers are 88 ghats (or riverfront steps) which are principally used for spiritual ceremonies, baths, and even cremation. You possibly can take a ship journey at daybreak to take pleasure in a good looking sundown and observe because the each day lives of the native slows down on the river because the day involves an finish.

FOOD IN INDIA

MUSLIM-FRIENDLY FOOD – Since India is a Hindu majority nation (virtually 80% of the inhabitants), and Islam is the second-largest faith practised there (about 14% of the inhabitants), discovering Muslim-friendly meals is not precisely a problem. There are many Muslim-owned and halal eating places round – you may even see the halal emblem stickers at many outlets! The place your drawback lies is to seek out meat since many Hindu practitioners are strict about meat consumption. Beef is a delicacy there! However simply because the meals is vegetarian, does not imply you may miss out on a lot – the flavours from curries and spices will make you neglect any meat cravings. However should you actually, really want meat, discover a close by mosque and there are often some eating places promoting halal meat within the space. Simply FYI, their quick meals equivalent to McDonald’s, KFC and Subway are all licensed halal. We all know generally determined occasions name for determined measures.

FOOD SAFETY – Sadly, getting MILD meals poisoning is regular throughout a visit to India. Unfortunate travellers are likely to contract salmonella, E.coli and some different parasites and micro organism there. Listed below are some tricks to keep away from and digestive mishaps:

  • 1. Faucet waters are an enormous no-no, and that features ice! Keep on with bottled waters all through your complete journey. Brush your tooth with bottled water too.
  • 2. Eat solely cooked meals. This implies no fruits, no fruit juices and no salads! Cooking kills amoeba and micro organism.
  • 3. Make hand sanitizer and moist wipes your finest good friend. Use them as usually as you’ll be able to – earlier than you eat, after you eat, after utilizing the bathroom, after touching something that is not your self.
  • 4. Keep away from avenue meals should you can, until you’ve got a trusted information who is aware of which stalls are appropriate for foreigners.
  • 5. Decide a restaurant by its cleanliness and excessive turnover charges. Or ask your resort if they’ve any really useful eating places for foreigners.
  • 6. Eat together with your arms. On high of experiencing India’s meals like a neighborhood, consuming together with your arms could be extra hygienic for one easy motive – you already know the place your arms have been, you do not know the place the cutlery has.
  • 7. Have probiotics and charcoal drugs with you. Probiotics to maintain your intestine as environment friendly as potential, and charcoal drugs to assist in case you get delicate diarrhoea.
WHAT TO EAT

Now that we have coated meals hygiene in India 101, we will transfer on to the perfect Northern India meals to eat! There are too many scrumptious and drool-worthy meals for us to record down. Not like Southern India, Northern India locals eat extra bread than rice, so this implies extra tandoori roti naans, and parathas. And their curries are often thicker, and reasonably spicy with the usage of dried fruits, nuts, milk, ghee and yoghurt. You have to attempt their staple curries, dhals, and masalas in addition to just a few others listed right here.

1. THALI MEAL


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One of the vital cheap and scrumptious meals you may attempt in India! The thali meal refers to a wide range of meals neatly served in bowls inside a metal plate or tray, often served with bread or rice. The principle thought is to serve all of the 6 flavours of candy, salt, bitter, bitter, astringent and spicy in a single meal. There are vegetarian and meat-based thali meals and the meals served within the plate varies.

2. PARATHA


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Parathas (Malaysians and Singaporeans might also acknowledge it as Roti Canai) are flatbreads originating in India and is the staple meals in a few of its locations. The flatbread could be eaten plain with curries, or with completely different stuffings starting from candy to savoury!

3. LASSI


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Generally all you want is an effective cup of lassi to assist beat the warmth! This drink is a mix of yoghurt, fruits, spices, and water. You may get a wide range of lassi flavours all through your journey to India.

#HHWT tip: It is higher to order this drink at a good restaurant to keep away from digestive points.

4. BIRYANI


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Journey throughout India and you will find that every place has its personal distinct model of biryani! Bursting with fragrant flavours and as tasty as ever, you should not miss out on a very good plate of biryani throughout your journey there. The flavour varies relying on the substances used. Some could also have a tinge of sweetness from the dried fruits used.

5. GULAB JAMUN


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One in all India’s common sweets, Gulab Jamun are deep-fried doughnut-like desserts made out of dried milk and dipped in rose-cardamon flavoured sugar syrup. You will discover these sweets throughout India from eating places, houses, to have fun events equivalent to weddings and birthday events. In case you love Indian sweets, listed below are extra candy Indian delicacies so that you can discover out!

6. ROGAN JOSH


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A hearty meaty dish is native to Northern India’s northernmost area, Kashmir. This slow-cooked meat is often ready with lamb and spices equivalent to cardamom, cinnamon, bay leaves, and generally even yoghurt!

TRANSPORTATION

Do not even take into consideration renting a automobile in your first journey there – it is a demise want! Ideally, having a non-public driver to constitution you across the metropolis, or from metropolis to metropolis, is the perfect for the reason that site visitors there’s loopy and also you’d wish to be as snug as potential whereas ready in site visitors. However there are additionally different modes of transportation you need to use.

1. LOCAL TRANSPORTATION


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For close by journeys, you’ll be able to at all times hop onto a cycle rickshaw or an autorickshaw. You will see loads of these on the streets. Simply be sure you have a tough thought of what the fare needs to be since it is a widespread observe for drivers to overcharge vacationers. You too can hop into taxis however good luck convincing the drivers to make use of the meters. In the event that they refuse to make use of the meter, agree on an quantity, for the variety of individuals you’ve got (generally they might try to improve the value by saying the quoted costs are for every individual moderately than the group).

2. ENJOY THE LANDSCAPE FROM A TRAIN


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Travelling through practice in India from metropolis to metropolis is a must-do for each traveller! The huge nation has practice tracks spanning throughout your entire nation from north, south, east and west. The practice sort varies relying on how a lot you are prepared to pay. It may well vary from squeezing in with the locals to probably the most luxurious first-class cabins you’ve got ever seen in your life. There are a lot of choices so that you can select from such because the well-known Palace on Wheels and the Indian Maharaja Deccan Odyssey.

3. TAKE A SCENIC DRIVE There are additionally loads of group bus excursions or personal excursions that take you across the Golden Triangle. It is an ideal various for many who desire travelling in a automobile moderately than taking the practice

4. FLY AROUND INDIA In case you’re actually strapped for time, you possibly can additionally fly from metropolis to metropolis. Most main cities in India have airports which are fairly central making it straightforward to journey. For worldwide flights, the most typical route is to fly into Delhi, and take a bus or practice to Agra adopted by Jaipur, and fly out through Jaipur airport. However relying in your schedule, you possibly can fly into any of the three airports.

And that is it! India is a tremendous nation stuffed with vibrant tradition and folks. There’s a lot extra to India that travellers must expertise for themselves to completely perceive the jaw-dropping chaos and journey that’s India. It is time you and that journey buddy of yours get packing to your journey to North India!





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