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Treasures of Central India CG

Visiting: India
Trip Duration 14 Days
 

Reviews for Treasures of Central India

Travellers were asked to provide a review of the trip, including highlights and tips.

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Treasures of Central India reviews verified by Reevoo

18 reviews

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Treasures of Central IndiaScores 7.9 out of 10 based on 18 reviews
(10 out of 10)

Beverley

Gosport
This tour ,although starting with the highlights of the busy metropolis of Mumbai , including Gandhi's house and India gate ,leads away from the well worn tourist trails via train and coach.
Hyderbad is a busy city with colourful market and interesting buildings. Conversely Badami is a rural town with simple houses and market.Goa is an echo of a Portugese heritage and feels European.
This tour does include some long journeys.
On the overnight train we travelled in reserved sleeper bunks ,not as crowded or primitive as imagined, and on the day trains in reserved seats alongside Indian businessmen and families also journeying.
We saw the changing landscape from subsistance farming ,to the richer mechanised farms.From villages,to small towns and industries.
The sites we visited on the itinerary were not crowded with overseas visitors,but dotted with family groups of Indian tourists enjoying their heritage and stopping to take photos of , or with members of our group !
We had space and time to explore caves ,forts and temples ,and at each site learnt more about the history , politics and the changing paths of religion that caused the construction and in some cases abandonment or destruction.Even the incredible temple complex of Hampi is far larger than expected and comes complete with a friendly temple elephant.
The intricately carved caves were all totally amazing. These have to be seen in reality as no amount of video footage or photographs could convey the sheer complexity of the carvings and the otherwordly atmosphere of the sites.The local guides at each site were very good ,explaining the significance of recurring carvings , the particular details relating to the various religions
The forts ruins were large and impressive
The dome of Gol Gumbaz a feat of engineering well worth the climb up the steep stairs.
The hotels were a complete cross section from upmarket with doormen and a free local newspaper delivered to the room,to the more simple, generally catering for the Indian businessman or tourist. In two of the hotels we had to advise our breakfast requirement the evening before as their menu is limited,understandable , due to the lack of foreign tourists.
Our Tour Leader,Jassa,was a fountain of knowledge on any subject and happily clearly explained anything we asked about. He took us to interesting restaurants favoured by locals ,and explained each local delicacy in detail,the ingredients,how it differed in that region and how to cook it! The food is inexpensive .
It is not necessary to change a lot of money at the start as there are no additional costs involved except food and drink and no expensive"tourist traps" on route.
Confirmed traveller: 08 April 2016
Published on: 13 May 2016
(10 out of 10)

Shona

London
One by one we enter through the arch and begin to climb. Seven tiers later, emerging at the top of the minaret, we walk round the dome with Bijapur spread below us. We spot a few of our group seated outside the museum and wave as they take photos. Our guide, clutching his folder of pictures, maps and floor plans, beckons us inside. As our eyes adjust, we see the wide gallery circling round the inner dome and a few of us venture to lean on the balcony and look into the depths of the inner hall.

Our guide meantime has made his way to the opposite side of the dome. He claps his hands and I silently count the echos - seven, eight, nine … Then he sings. The glorious cascade of notes resounds across the space and cries of even the smallest child fall silent. The haunting phrases of his unaccompanied voice will stay with me.

And Gol Gumbaz was but one highlight…
Confirmed traveller: 08 April 2016
Published on: 17 April 2016
(10 out of 10)

Colin

Edinburgh
This is an excellent trip covering a large area from Mumbai across the Deccan plateau to Hyderabad and then back west and south to Goa. It was led by Sorab Jassawalla (AKA Jassa) who was one of the best leaders I've come across. He communicated well, was very friendly and looked after us with calmness and competence. Local guides were also very good.
The trip started in Mumbai which was wonderful - a complete buzz with loads of interesting things to see (the Gateway of India, the Slumdog Millionaire area) and good shopping. The caves at Ajanta and Ellora were fascinating with beautiful 5th C paintings and carvings of various eras. The amazing dome of Gol Gumbaz is the second biggest in the world and has a whispering gallery which puts St. Paul's completely in the shade.
The world heritage site of Hampi was an absolute highlight with stunning temples and beautiful carvings.
The morning visit to the caves above Badami was memorable with monkeys descending from the cliffs, a stunning view over the village and beaurtifully carved caves.
There were lots of other great sites. Highly recommended.
Confirmed traveller: 09 April 2016
Published on: 16 April 2016
(8 out of 10)

Confirmed traveller

Very interesting, very busy tour, ideal for those who enjoy being away from the tourist hotspots.
I loved the hotel in Goa, but the hotel in Hampi was grotty to the point of being suicidally depressing. I was relieved that we only stayed there for one night. The other hotels ranged from good to just about acceptable.
Everything was rushed as is usual for this type of holiday. I thought the itinerary had been well thought out though.
The tour leader was a likeable man with good people skills. But I wish that he had made more of an effort to talk to us about various aspects of Indian life, in the way that tour leaders usually do to while away time on the bus.
Some of the local guides were difficult to understand and boring. I did like the young man who showed us around Hampi. He impressed me with his broad knowledge and his ability to do monkey calls!
Confirmed traveller: 12 March 2016
Published on: 14 April 2016
(8 out of 10)

Confirmed traveller

No Major highlight for me. There were a few too many temples for my taste but it was good to get to places little visited by western tourists
Confirmed traveller: 04 January 2016
Published on: 04 April 2016
(8 out of 10)

Michael

High Wycombe
Overall a very good tour and visiting some great places including some that seemed off the tourist track. The tour leader was a great guy and we liked him a lot, he did however lack clarity in explaining what was happening at each stage and organisation wasn't his greatest skill. The hotels where we stayed more than one night were very good but the one night stays weren't so good, although we appreciate there might not be anything better in those localities.
The local guides in Mumbai and Panaji were very good but the rest were quite poor in their language skills and subject matter was too complicated.
Confirmed traveller: 14 March 2016
Published on: 17 March 2016
(9 out of 10)

Peter

Thornbury
Highlights of trip would be Vegitarian food experinces in Mumbai, the caves at Ellora,
Dallatabud Fort & Padudakull. Tip for the trip enjoy cheap food served on trains
Confirmed traveller: 01 January 2016
Published on: 15 February 2016
(7 out of 10)

Lyn

York
Sites of Ellora, Ajanta, Hampi - People and Food

a lot of travelling over roads that do not allow a stop or a walk through a village or a photo stop.
Confirmed traveller: 01 January 2016
Published on: 05 January 2016
(4 out of 10)

Wendy

Preston
Our tour leader (Sam) came across as very inexperienced, badly trained and unprepared for this trip. Despite having run at least one previous tour he seemed clueless. Every day we struggled to get consistent appropriate information about the most basic of information such as what time to have luggage ready for loading.

I would recommend finding out who the tour leader will be before booking. Other older reviews speak so highly of the leader I think we really lost out.
Confirmed traveller: 21 November 2015
Published on: 15 December 2015

Thank you for your review.

We know that all great Explore leaders need to learn and start somewhere, and each one will have had to undertake a trip for the first time. Sam passed his training with flying colours and completed a shadow tour prior to your departure (where he undertook a trip in conjunction with an experienced Explore leader). As such we had every confidence in his ability to lead your tour successfully. Unfortunately your feedback has highlighted issues, and we have taken the step of withdrawing him from any future departures.

(9 out of 10)

Michael

Malmesbury
Ajanta, Ellora and Hampi have got to be the highlights but the village of Badami at dusk and dawn were a wonderful surprise. Be prepared to be photographed, absolutely anywhere and everywhere!
Confirmed traveller: 20 November 2015
Published on: 10 December 2015