The ultimate 3-week India itinerary: Exploring the best of India

The perfect three week India itinerary

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From north to south, where to stay, what to do, and how to get around - this guide to the ultimate Indian adventure has you covered!


India is, without a doubt, the toughest country we’ve ever travelled through. 

From the second we stepped off the plane and into the chaos of New Delhi’s streets, we knew we were in for a ride. Between the oppressive heat, the choking pollution, the overwhelming amount of people, or the seeming lack of order, travel in India can be hard.

But it can also be seriously rewarding. 

From Mim’s tears when witnessing the Taj Mahal for the first time, or Mark excitedly hanging out the train doors as we passed the epic Dudhsagar Falls in Karnataka, no two experiences are the same in India. 

We drank chai with locals, wandered through narrow bazaars, caught trains through the night from one state to another, hiked through tropical plains, explored breathtaking city palaces, watched the BEST sunsets ever (looking at you, Hampi!), enjoyed endless beaches, and ate too many curries. 

For all its occasional struggles, our travels through India were liberating and exciting, and we want you to experience the same. Our three week India itinerary is a great introduction to a country that is impossibly large and varied, but full of amazing things to see and do. 

Our India itinerary follows our G Adventures Delhi to Kochi by rail tour (which you guys should totally do - it’s awesome and a very stress-free way of seeing the country - read about it here!) almost exactly. It takes you from the famed Golden Triangle featuring the Taj Mahal and Rajasthan’s Palaces to the tropics and waterways of Kerala, as we believe this is the best way to see India’s most incredible sights and culture. 


the best of incredible India | follow our three-week India route guide


Day 1 & 2 | Arriving into, and exploring New Delhi

Most flights arrive into in India via the historic and chaotic capital of India, New Delhi, so we recommend your Indian travel itinerary commence here. Arriving into Delhi can be a huge shock to the system; the city is home to close to 20 million people, so be prepared for sensory overload. 

While most travellers arrive and head to the famed Golden Triangle almost immediately, we do recommend spending a few days exploring some of New Delhi’s most notable attractions, of which there are many:

MARKETS AND BAZAARS

If you really want to get a feel for the chaos and intensity of Delhi, head to the historic Old Delhi, visiting the Chandni Chowk bazaar, and Old Delhi Spice Markets in the early morning.

Watch the sunrise over the city from the rooftops of the spice market, before venturing into the narrow streets and laneways in search of chai and a fresh samosa. 

The hustle and bustle in these areas will provide the heaviest culture shock imaginable, however it’s also a great place to get a feel for India - the busy streets, constant attention and heavy pollution.

RED FORT

Delhi’s largest monument, the Red Fort is a stunning example of Mughal-era architecture and grandeur. Commissioned by Shah Jahan, the Fort includes palaces, public and private halls, private apartments, a mosque and gardens - fit for a king. The ramparts themselves stretch for over 2kms, giving you an indication of the Fort’s size. 

We recommend visiting in the late afternoon, to avoid the heat and to enjoy the orange glow afforded by the late afternoon sun. 

HUMAYUNS TOMB

Perhaps our favourite of all the Delhi attractions, Humayuns Tomb is a colossal and beautiful structure dedicated to Humayun, second emperor of Mughal territories in the sub-continent. A UNESCO World Heritage site, it was constructed in 1565, of red sandstone, inlaid with black and white marble, and its dome rises 38m above the surrounding area. 

It’s set amongst quartered gardens, the perfect place to come late afternoon and escape the incessant chaos of Delhi. 

JAMA MASJID

India’s largest mosque, Jama Masjid stands out like a beacon in Old Delhi. Constructed between 1644 and 1656 from the behest of Shah Jahan (emperor who ordered the construction of the Taj Mahal), its red and white facade and tall minarets are stunning. Foreigners are not allowed inside the complex, but are allowed to roam the outer courtyard. 

Leaving Delhi | Set off from Delhi Railway Station in the early hours of day 3 aboard the Shatabdi Express, arriving into Agra around midday.

Red Fort, New Delhi - three week India itinerary
The windy streets of Chandni Chowk in Old Delhi - India three week itinerary
the entrance to Hayumans Tomb, New Delhi - India three week Itinerary

Day 3 | Delhi to Agra on the famous Shatabdi express 

After arriving into Agra in the morning, stay out of the intense Agra heat until the afternoon at which point we suggest visit visit the following sights:

TOMB OF ITMAD-UD-DAULA (BABY TAJ)

Otherwise know as ‘baby Taj’ due to its resemblance to the more famous Taj Mahal, the tomb of Itmad-ud-Daula is a far quieter and almost as beautiful tomb in the north of the city. Spend at least an hour walking through the gardens and admiring the intricate craftsmanship and subtle details. 

MEHTAB BAGH

For sunset, head to Mehtab Bagh, Mughal-era gardens with the most incredible view overlooking the Yamuna river and Taj Mahal. Watch as the skies turn pink and the Taj Mahal lights up, a spectacular travel moment if there ever was one.

Admiring the Taj Mahal from Mehtab Bagh gardens, Agra
the Taj Mahal from Mehtab Bagh gardens

Day 4 | SUNRISE AT THE TAJ MAHAL, THEN EXPLORE MORE OF AGRA

SUNRISE AT THE TAJ MAHAL

Nothing will quite prepare you for a sunrise at the majestic Taj Mahal. 

We recommend arriving before the crowds at 5:30am, which will give you the chance to experience the Taj Mahal in all her glory. Slowly walk the grounds, listening to the birdsong while admiring this wonder of the world. 

As the sun slowly rises, the marble facade of the Taj changes colour, adding to the experience. Head to the left-hand side of the Taj, to Kau Ban mosque, for the best view of sunset, which will rise directly behind the Taj from this point. As the Taj Mahal starts to get busier, slowly wander the impressive grounds, making the most of this once in a lifetime experience.

After a quick breakfast in Agra, head to Agra’s other famous attraction, the UNESCO World Heritage listed Agra Fort

AGRA FORT

Formerly the main residency for the emperors of the Mughal empire, construction on the historical fort commenced in 1565, built for Akbar the Great. Comprising of endless red sandstone and white marble buildings, all of which are typically ornate, the fort is one of the most incredible in India. 

We recommend spending around two hours exploring all corners of the Fort, admiring the intricate architecture and stunning red sandstone, as well as an alternative view of the Taj Mahal across the Yamuna River. 

SHEROES HANGOUT

Before heading to the train station for the journey to Jaipur, stop in at Sheroes Hangout, a cafe managed by brave acid attack survivors who not only gain employment, but a strong sense self worth and confidence. It’s a transformative experience, so expect tears, but a lot of laughter, too. 

Leaving Agra | The afternoon train to magical Jaipur will take around 3-4 hours, arriving mid-evening. 

Agra Fort is a must see on any three week india itinerary
The Taj Mahal is a three week india itinerary must see
Admiring the UNESCO World Heritage listed Taj Mahal | The Common Wanderer
 
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INDIA HIGHLIGHTS

The UNESCO World Heritage listed Taj Mahal

 

Day 5, 6, 7 | Explore stunning palaces and colourful streets in Jaipur

Jaipur is, without a doubt, one of the most chaotic and colourful cities we’ve ever stepped foot in, and its flamboyant architecture and enthralling history make it an important stop for any Indian itinerary. The city has a lot to see - it’s home to over 4000 temples and palaces, so we recommend spending around three nights in the city to fully immerse yourself in the jewel of India’s Golden Triangle. Important sights we recommend you visit include:

JAIPUR CITY PALACE

The epicentre of all things vibrant is the Old City centre, location of the impressive City Palace - current home of the former royal family and an instagrammers heaven. The City Palace is made up of a complex of beautiful buildings, courtyards and gardens, as well as some incredibly famous doors. 

Within the City Palace, important sights you must visit include Mubarak Mahal, otherwise known as the Welcome Palace, Pritam Chowk, with four colourfully decorated doors representing the seasons, Diwan-i-khas, which showcases the two largest silver urns in the world, and Rajendra Pol, the huge entranceway with two large elephants carved from a single piece of marble. 

HAWA MAHAL

Located right next door is perhaps Japiur’s most famous building, Hawa Mahal. Known as the ‘Palace of Winds’, this honeycomb-styled, with 953 windows and intricate latticework, allowed royal ladies at the time to watch any processions or activities on the below streets without being seen by the public, which was forbidden due to the strict practice of pardah (female seclusion among Muslim and Hindu communities). 

While the interior is lovely, it’s the exterior, or back of the palace which is the most ornate and stunning. For the best view, visit Wind View cafe terrace opposite.

AMBER FORT

Outside the Jaipur in the city of Amer, lies Jaipur’s most popular attraction, Amber Fort. 

Constructed in the 16th century, Amber Fort is a UNESCO World Heritage listed fort complex comprising stunning architecture (like most of Rajasthan) and pure opulence. The fort is made up of four main sections, Diwan e Aam, Diwan-e-Khas, Sheesh Mahal, and Sukh Niwas, each with their own beautiful courtyard. To best understand the complex and it’s important history, we recommend taking a tour guide. 

On another note, we implore you not to ride the elephants that carry tourists from the base of the Fort to the main courtyard. Elephants here have a history of abuse and poor treatment, and having witnessed them working firsthand, we can tell you: they’re not given water, they work in the blazing heat, and on more than one occasion we saw them reach into their mouths with their trunk to spray their backs - with their own saliva - to cool down. Add to that the recent findings that all 102 elephants working here suffer from a range of disease and injury, including blindness, Tuberculosis, foot injuries, and psychological distress, and you have to wonder why any sane person would willingly contribute to their suffering.

SUNSET FROM NAHAGARH FORT

Located high above the city of Jaipur is Nahagarh Fort. Built in 1734, Nahargarh fort formed the defence of the Rajasthani capital, along with Amer Fort and Jaigharh Fort. The fort provides sweeping views of the city, and in our opinion, is hands down the best place to view sunset from.

Sit atop the defensive walls and watch the orange glow over the the city as the sun sets in the distance. 

ROOFTOP SUNSET DINNER @ DAGLA THE ROOFTOP

You can’t visit the north and not try some of its world-famous cuisine, so we recommend visiting Dagla the Rooftop for your curry fix. Located in the heart of the old town, Dagla the Rooftop not only serves delicious food, but has one of the best views in the city. So grab a beer and watch the sunset, before indulging in some delicious local cuisine. 

Leaving Jaipur | We recommend jumping aboard the 6am train from Jaipur to Udaipur, which will take around 6-7 hours. 

watching the sunrise from Nahargarh Fort, Jaipur
Admiring the beauty of Amber Fort, Jaipur
standing in front of Hawa Mahal, the palace of the winds, Jaipur


Days 8, 9, 10 | Marvel at India’s ‘Venice' in Udaipur

Udaipur is, without a doubt, our favourite stop on our three week India itinerary. 

Surrounded by a series of soaring, craggy hills and set on the idyllic Lake Pichola, Udaipur is a wonderful mix of ornate palaces, intricate temples, stately havelis (local palaces), narrow whitewashed streets, and picturesque lakeside bathing ghats. It also feels a lot like Europe, which is perhaps why it’s been it’s dubbed the ‘Venice of the East’. 

Beyond the tangible beauty of the city is a lively arts scene, authentic cultural shows, colourful bazaars and a more relaxed vibe. Endlessly romantic, Udaipur seems completely foreign to the rest of India, so we recommend spending three days here to adequately ‘feel’ the city and it’s quirks. 

Unmissable things to see in Udaipur include:

UDAIPUR CITY PALACE

Udaipur City Palace lays claim to being Rajasthan’s largest palace, and after spending over two hours walking through the complex, our weary legs agree. 

Made up of several stunning palaces within the complex, construction began on the palace in 1599 and over time has been extended by various Maharanas (Kings of Udaipur). The palace complex is incredibly colourful and ornate, and well worth exploring with a local guide. 

Within the extensive palace, there are a number of must-see sights:

Mor Chowk | The most spectacular of the City Palace courtyards, the ornate and colourful More Chowk is decorated with five peacocks and glass inlays.  An incredible 5,000 pieces of mosaic tiles have been used in creating the works of art.

Zenana Mahal | The insta-famous blue interior of the City Palace can be found here inside the queen’s chambers. Restored and decorated to their former glory, the rooms feature colourful frescoes, ornate balconies and intricate alcoves.

Badi Mahal | The highest point of the Udaipur City Palace complex, the Garden Palace was used for royal banquets on special occasions such as Diwali and Holi. Built in 1699, it’s main feature is the 104 intricately carved pillars by local artisans.

Moti Mahal | The ‘Palace of the Pearls’, Moti Mahal is surrounded by mirrored walls and stained glass windows, creating amazing reflections and the ultimate instagram playground. 

LAKE PICHOLA SUNSET LAKE CRUISE

Sunsets in Udaipur need to be seen to be believed, and experiencing one from Lake Pichola is one things not to miss. 

The serene setting of Udaipur is the perfect backdrop for sunset. The marble facades of the old town, City Palace, Jag Mandir, and Jag Niwas (Taj Lake hotel) light up as the sun sets behind the Aravalli Mountains in the distance, shifting through colours of the rainbow as day turns to night. On the lake it’s incredibly serene; local fisherman pull their nets from below, ladies wash their clothes on the banks, while kids play and swim around the local ghats. 

The sunset tour takes around an hour, and departs from Lal Ghat. A sunset tour costs INR 400 per person. 

DHAROHAR FOLK DANCE SHOW

We’re generally not keen on cultural dance shows as they tend to feel a little too much like an inauthentic tourist trap for our liking. However we were actually pretty happy we visited the Dharohar folk dance show in Udaipur. 

Set within a courtyard under a beautiful tree in Bagore-Ki-Haveli, an old private palace, the show is a mix of traditional Rajasthani music, dance, puppetry, colourful costumes, mixed with just a little humour. It appeals not only to an international audience, but locals too (the crowd was majority Indian!).

The shows commence daily at 7pm, and tickets cost INR 150 per person (additional INR 150 if you want to take photos)

Leaving Udaipur | After your time in Udaipur, jump aboard the late afternoon train headed for Bundi, Rajasthan’s best kept secret.

The blue interior of Udaipur City Palace, Udaipur
Dharohar Cultural show in Udaipur
Sunset over Lake Pichola, Udaipur
 
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INDIA HIGHLIGHTS

The incredible pink city of Jaipur, Rajasthan

 

Day 11 - Visit the lesser known Rajasthani town of Bundi

Bundi is one of those ‘blink and you’ll miss it’ towns, and one certainly off the well-worn tourist trails of northern India. Our short visit to Bundi was such a pleasant surprise we couldn’t help but feature it on our three week India itinerary. 

Located in the centre of Rajasthan, Bundi is full of everything the more popular cities in the region have — a city fort and palace, ancient stepwells, colourful bazaars, rich history and culture, lakes and epic landscapes — yet it feels as though it's stuck in a timewarp. Tourists aren’t seen as dollar signs, interactions feel genuine, and locals go about their daily lives without interruption from travellers. It was so refreshing (despite the 45 degree heat) to experience what felt like the ‘real’ India’. 

Similar to Chefchoauen in Morocco, the old-town streets of Bundi are painted blue to keep the houses cool and mosquitos away, creating the most stunning backdrop for any keen photographer (ie. US!). 

Things we recommend you must see in Bundi include:

GARH PALACE (BUNDI CITY PALACE)

Relatively few visitors come to the wonderful maze of floors, courtyards, narrow corridors and frescoed chambers of the ruined Bundi Palace, and it’s a shame because it really is one of the most unique we visited in Rajasthan. 

We strongly recommend taking a guide so you can get full value out of your visit. Don't miss the upper levels with beautiful frescoes, gardens and the most amazing view over Bundi. 


THE STEPWELLS OF BUNDI

Bundi is home to more than 50 stepwells (locally known as Baori), gifted to the local community by the King and Queen in the interests of public welfare. Although most have been neglected over time, the stepwells of Bundi are definitely an interesting sight to see (and photograph).

Two stepwells are worthy of your time; Dhabhai Kund, which features 700 steps that form an intricate geometric pattern, and Raniji Ki Baori, 250 years old and the most popular (and beautiful) stepwell in Bundi, located right in the centre of town.

THIKARDA VILLAGE TOUR

Beyond the narrow streets of Bundi, an untouched version of India exists - of local villages, authentic culture and friendly people. 

Located an hour from Bundi, the hindu-majority farming community of Thikarda of around 2000 people is the perfect place to experience this side of India. Our tour took us through the village, learning about important cultural practices, and local building techniques, as well as the importance of pottery, for which the village is famed for.

INDIA’S BEST CHAI

It’s safe to say we had one of our best ever chai experiences in the town of Bundi. Located in the old town, Sunita’s chai was made on the spot, using mortar and pestle to create the most authentic, delicious chai… ever! 

Lookout for Sawariya Restaurant, or visit Krishna’s tea stall, for your local chai fix. 

Leaving Bundi | From Bundi, we recommend jumping aboard the overnight Radjhani Express from Kota (on the New Delhi to Mumbai route), arriving into Mumbai in the morning. 

Admiring the frescoes of Garh fort, Bundi
Views from Garh fort, Bundi
A woman pours fresh chai tea in Bundi, Rajasthan - three week india itinerary


Days 12, 13 - Embrace the hustle and bustle of Mumbai

If Bundi is a ‘blink and you’ll miss it’ kind of place, then Mumbai is a ‘blink and it’ll smack you in the face’ kind of city.

The most populous city in India, Mumbai is hectic, intense, humid, frustrating and rewarding all at the same time. From famous historical sights to imperious colonial architecture, bustling malls to chaotic bazaars, Mumbai is an exciting place to spend a few days. 

GATEWAY OF INDIA AND COLABA

This archway, built to commemorate the visit of King George V and Queen Mary in 1911 is Mumbai’s primary tourist attraction, and well worth a visit as the sun sets into the Arabian Sea, if you want to join the literal thousands of visitors to admire the scene. 

Close by is the trendy, bustling backpacker/tourist district of Colaba, packed with bars, restaurants, shops and a heap of things to see and do. Spend a few hours roaming the streets here.


VISIT THE HISTORIC COLONIAL SITES

Mumbai is jam-packed with some of the world’s grandest colonial-era architecture. The most impressive sights include the UNESCO World Heritage listed Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus, India’s most famous railways station which combines Victoria gothic and Indian architecture, the stunning Municipal Corporation of Greater Mumbai building opposite the station, and Rajabai Clock tower, an beautiful 1878-built clock tower modelled after London’s famed Big Ben. 

It easy to walk between these sites, and enjoy the bustling bazaars or watch cricket matches on Maidan oval. 


ELCO MARKET

THE place in Mumbai for street food (which hopefully won’t give you Delhi belly), Elco market, in the suburb of Bandra, offers a variety of delicious Indian street food. We recommend getting stuck into dosa, coconut and chutney, pav bhaji (thick veggie curry served with bread), and fresh pani puri.

ELEPHANTA CAVES

Another important UNESCO World Heritage site within Mumbai are the impressive rock-cut cave temples of Elephanta. Located on the island of Elephanta, in the harbour of Mumbai, the island consists of hindu caves and a Buddhist stupa mounds that date back to the 2nd century BCE. 

To visit, jump aboard a one hour ferry from the Gateway of India in Colaba.

Sunrise at the Gateway to India, Mumbai

Days 14, 15, 16 - Beachside dreams and partying in Goa

After the chaos and claustrophobia of the north, the famous beachside of Goa was a welcome stop on our three week India itinerary. 

Settled by the Portuguese over 450 years ago, Goa became a hippie enclave in the 60’s, with miles of beautiful beaches, all night trance parties, access to drugs, and cheap accommodation leading to its rise as a ‘must visit’ destination in India. The Goa of today is a little different - development has taken hold and over two million tourists visit each year, however it’s still possible to find the relaxed vibes you seek.

Most people, like us, come to chill and the south of Goa is the perfect place for this. The beachside town of Palolem is the place to be, with little to do apart from lazing on the beach, eating moonlight dinners and experiencing zen in a yoga session. 

Alternatively, if you’re after the party scene that made Goa famous, the busy northern beaches such as Anjuna are your place. 

Although Goa wasn’t our favourite stop in India - it felt a little too polluted and over commercialised for our liking, it is still a great place to relax before venturing onwards to the steamy southern states.

Leaving Goa | Jump aboard a train at Vasco de Gama train station and head towards Hospet station a few hours away (the gateway to Hampi)

Walking along the beaches of Goa, India three week itinerary
Golden palm trees of Goa, India
A fishing boat on the beaches of Goa, India

Days 17, 18 - Marvel at the UNESCO world heritage site of Hampi

The boulder-strewn lands of Hampi, a UNESCO World Heritage site in the Indian state of Karnataka, is one of the most surreal and wonderful places in India. It’s also home to the best sunsets we’ve witnessed, anywhere in the world. 

From 1336 to 1565, the site of Hampi was the capital of Southern India's Vijayanagara Empire, and housed the largest city on the planet, bigger than Rome, Istanbul and London - around 1,600 monuments, mostly shrines, temples, pillared halls, royal enclosures and carvings exist on the Hampi site. 

While those days are long gone, the site is home to countless archaeological wonders and allows you to explore almost at free will. The area itself feels a little like Angkor Wat in Cambodia, or Bagan in Myanmar; and with so much ground to cover and so many things to see, we recommend staying for a few days to explore all corners.

Here is our list of ‘must-sees’ places in Hampi:

THE ANCIENT RUINS OF HAMPI

With over 1,600 monuments within the site of Hampi, there’s a lot to see - however we recommend visiting the Zenana Enclosure which houses the stunning Lotus Mahal pavilion, the immense Elephant Stable, the Royal Enclosure which features Mahanavami Dibba platform and ancient step well, Kadalekalu Ganesha, with it’s enormous sculpture of Lord Ganesha, and Vijay Vittala Temple, famous for it’s stone chariot and musical pillars. 

VIRUPAKSHA TEMPLE

This intricately sculptured UNESCO World Heritage listed temple is an icon of Hampi and draws worshippers of Lord Shiva from all over. Inside is a heady mix of worshippers, music, chanting and cows.

WATCH SUNSET FROM MATANGA HILL

Sunsets in Hampi have to be seen to be believed, and the best position to watch nature’s light show is from Matanga Hill, right in the centre of Hampi. The setting sun adds a subtle orange glow to the surrounding boulder-strewn landscape, before turning shades of pink and purple before slowly fading away in the distance. Joined by other travellers, it’s one of those perfect travel ‘moments’ which stay with you forever.

CORACLE BOAT RIDE DOWN THE TUNGABHADRA RIVER

Out of monsoon season, it’s possible to take a traditional coracle - a traditional round boat - down the Tungabhadra river. It’s a peaceful, relaxed journey through boulder-lined waterway and a good escape from the heat and crowds. 


Leaving Hampi | The nearby town of Hospet is the entry and exit point to Hampi, and it’s here we recommend you jump aboard a night train to Kochi, via Bangalore. 

Locals play cricket in the Hampi bazaar, Hampi
The boulders of Hampi at sunset
Sunset over Hampi, Karnataka, india
 
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INDIA HIGHLIGHTS

The UNESCO World Heritage site of Hampi, Karnataka

 

Days 19, 20, 21 - Get tropical in Kochi and explore Kerala’s backwaters

It’s hard to believe Kochi is in the same country as Delhi, Jaipur and Udaipur, such is the difference between the cities. Kochi is know as ‘gods own country’ - it's green and tropical, with humidity somewhere in the 80’s, broken up by a series of stunning waterways known as ‘backwaters’ that open slowly into the Arabian Sea. 

Kochi has a varied and intriguing history - it’s attracted Chinese, Portuguese, Dutch and middle eastern traders for over 600 years, giving it a super cosmopolitan feel similar to Hoi An in Vietnam, or Zanzibar in east Africa. As a result, there are a heap of things to do in the Fort Kochi area:

CHINESE FISHING NETS

Brought to Kochi in the 14th century by Chinese explorer Zheng He, this ancient fishing method was used to catch vast amounts of fish. Now, the fish have disappeared but the method remains on show for tourists. For a small fee, local fisherman will show you how to use them. 

The area is also filled with fishmongers selling the day’s best catch - if you’re up for a fresh seafood feast!


PARADESI JEWISH SYNAGOGUE

Surprisingly, Kochi was home to a large community of exiled Jews in the late 1500’s, and a Synagogue was built in order for them to practice Judaism. Built in 1568, Paradesi is a unique Synagogue that features hand-painted tiles imported from China, a Belgian Chandelier and a gold pulpit - testament to Kochi’s multicultural past.

It’s definitely worthy of a visit, as are the surrounding streets and bazaars. 


RELAX IN FORT KOCHI

Fort Kochi is similar to Galle Fort in Sri Lanka - it’s filled with colonial architecture, beautiful heritage hotels, hipster cafes, a cool street art scene, and many hidden laneways. It’s the perfect place to get lost, chill out and enjoy a more relaxed way of life. 


MATTANCHERRY PALACE

Mattancherry palace differs greatly from those in the north of India, by has it’s own charm. Built in 1555 as a token of appreciation from to Portuguese to the Raja of Kochi, the Dutch carried out renovations and extensions in 1663. As a result, it’s a mist-mash of architectural styles but still maintains a number of important murals and paintings. 

KERALA BACKWATERS

If you’ve got time, Kochi is the gateway to the tranquil backwaters of Kerala. 

The famous backwaters of Kerala are comprised of lakes, canals and lagoons, and cruising through the area on a houseboat is one of the best experiences in India. 

The famous chinese fishing nets of Kochi, Kerala
A colourful bus in Kochi, Kerala

Our India trip planning essentials

TRAVELLING INDIA WITH G ADVENTURES

We travelled through India with the absolute legends at G Adventures (check out the Delhi to Kochi rail trip we did here). As first time travellers to India, we loved having a local guide who knew the ins and outs of each destination, and who made sure our beds/seats/benches were all organised for every train we took.

It also gave us a taste of India’s highlights, from Delhi and Rajasthan down to Kochi in the south, with the perfect mix of tourist spots and off-beat locations. It’s a yes from us!

WHERE TO STAY IN INDIA

Accommodation in India can be a real treat. This is basically the home of luxurious hotel stays, after all!

Our adventures took us through a mix of former palaces, boutique hotels, beach resorts and of course, your standard hotel rooms too.

If you decide to travel solo through India, find your perfect India accommodation on Booking.com here.


TRAVEL INSURANCE FOR INDIA

You know the drill: if you can’t afford travel insurance, you can’t afford to travel. And if there was ever a place where things had the potential to go a little pear-shaped, it’s right here in India.

We travel with World Nomads and find they’re the best when it comes to providing a good range of cover and service, at affordable rates. Grab a travel insurance quote here.

India train travel tips

We’ve written a whole blog post about our top Indian train travel tips, which you can read here!

ESSENTIAL PACKING FOR INDIAN TRAIN TRAVEL

Riding the rails in India comes with a unique set of needs when it comes to packing. To help you have a comfortable, happy journey, we recommend throwing the following into your daypack:

A family smile out the window of a train in India

Have you been to India yourself?
Share any tips or destinations you think we’ve missed on this three week India itinerary with other readers in the comments below!


 

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We were hosted by G Adventures on their 21 day Delhi to Kochi by Rail tour. A big thank you to the team for making our stay memorable.

As always, all views are our own.


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That, and you're officially a legend.