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Travelling Check List – HimalayaDiscovery.com
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Health Factors & Practicalities ©

Although you will be travelling at high altitudes, journeys are structured so the ascent is slow. Immersed in pure air and surrounding beauty, a sense of calm naturally arises which far out-weighs any temporary adjustments which normally never occur with our participants.

Likewise, the Himalayan-Ganges journey takes place at the best time of year in both the regions you will be staying in, so only light clothing is needed during the day. It can sometimes be cool in the mornings and the evenings in the higher regions, so you will need to bring some warm clothing. (Please see our check list below.)

Food

We provide three nutritious meals a day which are included in the overall price plus 4 beverages of your choice including any team-made drinks on-route. Being acutely aware of the dietary problems westerners face when visiting India, we make every effort to ensure the utmost hygiene in relation to the food provided.

Visitors from abroad

The main problem for westerners visiting India is that they have little resistance to bacteria because the water they are used to drinking and bathing in contains strong sanitizing chemicals. Therefore, we suggest you take a natural and highly beneficial Ayurvedic remedy upon arrival that we provide (at your cost) that acts as a preventative. We also advise that you bring a natural vitamin C and a good multivitamin to strengthen your immune system. We can also provide these in Ayurvedic form if you let us know beforehand. 

Immunization

This is entirely your own decision. There is no malaria in the Himalayan areas we are travelling in – or contagious diseases associated with South India, so it may be wise to check an expert source of information first. By taking the advice of someone who has little knowledge of these particular regions, or who wishes to sell their medical wares, you may arrive unnecessarily burdened with side effects. For example, in the U.K there’s ‘The London Hospital for Tropical Diseases’ who give expert world-wide advice. Whatever you decide, it’s wise to have vaccinations in advance so you arrive feeling well.

Flights to India

It’s worth shopping around preferably with an Indian travel company, as they usually allow around 45kg in baggage. As you will be extensively travelling, it’s best to get a direct flight to conserve energy and avoid jet-lag.  Many European flights arrive in the early hours of the morning.

Please inform us of your flight details and arrival time at least two weeks before your departure and rest assured, our team will definitely be at the airport to collect you whatever time you land.  Also, we may be able to connect you with other participants travelling from the same airport. 

Insurance 

In India, both medical and dental treatment is very cheap compared to the West. Rest assured that we personally know the best doctors and dentists on route. However, it’s wise to take out your own insurance cover from your country of residence – plus a cover that protects you should you have to cancel after the final payment is made.

Changing Currency

As Indian currency cannot be purchased outside of India, you will need to change your currency at Delhi airport where you will get a better exchange rate than in a hotel. The ‘State Bank of India’ plus ‘Thomas Cook’ has exchange booths as you emerge through customs. They are open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. 

Don’t forget to ask for a printed receipt. You will need to show your passport when changing currency in certain places, so please carry at least four copies of your passport and visa which includes a copy for us. ATM’s are also available on-route.

If you prefer to use traveller’s cheques, they are best used in towns and cities where banks are easily available. Please remember that you need to carry cash for the remotest Himalayas, as trying to find an outlet will take time and disrupt our time-table.

It’s perfectly safe to carry cash in India and/or leave it locked in your case in your room. But always take care of your passport as you need to show it in every place we stay. Losing it means an immediate trip to Delhi and at least a two week’s stay for a replacement – a complete and utter nightmare.

Clothing

Unlike the West, outside of its mains cities, India has a code of dress and especially in the remotest regions. Some places are rapidly becoming westernised, but if you live in India and begin to understand the reasons underlying its culture, you gain a deeper sense of the value of upholding these customs which ultimately make it an interesting and different place to visit. For example, in India, and especially in the remote regions, it’s considered indecent for women to show their legs or wear revealing costumes especially when visiting temples and mystics – and also on the beaches of the Ganges. Therefore, women are asked to bring a lose dress for bathing. 

Yoga Groups

For those bringing Yoga groups, participants are requested to practice fully-clothed (using baggy clothing) due to strict tribal cultural restrictions.

Necessary Items to Bring

It’s essential to organize yourself before leaving home so our journey will not be interrupted by unnecessary shopping. In remote regions, it may be impossible to get so many things taken for granted as being readily available anywhere in the West.

Please try and bring everything on this check list below as even though there’s a chance for last minute shopping in Shimla, if it’s your first time in India, you’re likely to be distracted by the sights, sounds and smells of this intriguing historical city that the British once thought would be a better capital than Delhi.

Important Check List 

·    A valid visa for your entire stay obtainable from your nearest Indian embassy.

·       2 passport size photographs for us and a H.P government pass  

·         Cell head torch, preferably one that has several functions such as a flashing, warning system.

·         Powerful cell hand torch.

·         Solid padlock (a small numeral one won’t work on bolt doors)

·     An adapter for use in India if you are bringing electrical devices.

·    Plug-in mosquito repellent and 2 boxes of mosquito mats for Delhi and Rishikesh.

·         Jungle formula insect repellent for lower areas.

·         Small bottle of ‘Tea Tree’ oil or a favourite antiseptic cream.

·         Packet of wax earplugs for Delhi – if you’re a light sleeper.

·       A pair of sunglasses – or two pairs if you’re prone to losing them.

·     Sun protection cream, plus at least a 30 factor cream for your face

·         A sun hat or cap.

·  Comfortable, practical, hard-wearing walking sandals or shoes/boots.

·     A pair of rubber flip–flaps comes in handy when bathing on slippery tiled bathroom floors.

·         Warm, casual clothing, including a jacket.

·         Light summer clothing for Delhi and for the Ganges region. 

Note If you would like us to arrange metal trunks to ship home items purchased, please let us know in advance so this can be arranged to be sent from Shimla, Rishikesh or Delhi postal services.

Namaste – and we look forward to meeting you soon!

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