Travel Green through India: Planning any trip is hard, but it becomes even more difficult when you’re trying to visit a very large country where you don’t know how to identify the most sustainable options. You want to see everything there is to see, while helping to preserve their natural resources. Here are just a few ways that you can make your trip to India as green travel as possible.
Where to Stay While Travel Green through India
If you’re looking into traditional lodgings for your India vacation, you have a few options. First is the Indian luxury hotel chain, ITC Hotels. Their website totes a focus on renewable energy, recycling, and maintaining green hotels with a concept they like to call “Responsible Luxury.”
Additionally, they have an agricultural business that works with farmers to outsource their products, and provides technological resources. Their hotels are located in Mumbai, New Delhi, Bengaluru, and more, so you have plenty of options to choose from as you travel.
If you’re feeling adventurous, there are alternative lodging options available. Home Stays are a great way to go for a number of reasons: They’re generally cheaper than hotels, create an experience that is less tourism and more native exploration, and, because you are functioning within the rules of someone else’s home, are overall much greener than hotels.
Other options include lodging camps, ecolodges, eco resorts, and more. Take into account what kind of experience you want to have, how many people you’re traveling with, and the distance from the place you’re staying to the attractions you want. Sometimes, these attractions are a part of your accommodations. For example, at Kanha National Park in Manji Tola, there is a “safari lodge” where visitors can stay.
What to Do in India
Those who want to visit eco-friendly outdoor attractions are in luck, as India’s beautiful landscape offers a plethora of options.
From wildlife excursions to national parks to tribal tours, there is always a sustainable way to spend your day. Eco tours are a great way to experience the nature of India without harming the environment, and they provide a unique look at the culture of the country. For the thrill-seeker, there are even more exciting ways to see India. Eco adventures will get your heart racing while you take in the sights with activities like kayaking and biking. Of course, there is something for every age and physical ability, so if amusement parks and festivals are more your kind of adventure, you’ll have plenty of options as well. There are so many places to explore and so much culture to absorb, chances are you’ll have a hard time narrowing it down.
The cows are holy in India and are allowed to be anywhere. This one is hanging out with the sunbathers at the beach.
How to Get Around in India
Planning out what you want to see and do ahead of time is important, so that you can cut down on travel that is harmful to the environment. While it is probably necessary to fly into India internationally, with enough time and resources, you will find there are many options to get around within the country in a green fashion.
There are a number of creative ways to get from place to place in a big city, so if you’re up for it, look into trying those out first. Bike tours and travel are fairly popular, although there are a number of safety concerns to take into account, especially in big cities. If you’re not an experienced biker, you may want to consider short trips with a group lead by a professional. Options for bike tours can be expensive, but it’s a unique and very sustainable way to see as much of India as possible.
The jungle was full of greedy monkeys choking down as many bananas as they could fill their mouths with. The sad thing is that during the rain season when tourists stop coming, the monkeys haven’t learned how to get their own food, and many starve.
When considering how to travel long distances or just get from place to place within a city, you’ll want to look into the metro and railroad systems. The larger cities like Mumbai, Bengaluru and Chennai have urban railway systems, and there are trains that run between cities and across the country as well. Taking a train is a great way to see the country while seated comfortably, as well as the cheapest (and greenest) way to travel overnight. There are many ways that you can leave India as beautiful as it was when you arrived. Use these suggestions as a starting point, and be flexible when it comes to planning your vacation. Go out and experience this vast country for yourself.
Author Bio: Sandra Mills is a freelance health, career, and travel writer. She has a passion for writing about sustainable healthy living for a better world. You can follow her on Twitter @sandramills63.
Guide To The Golden Triangle, India
One of the most memorable trips I’ve done in India was the Golden Triangle, a triangular route between Delhi, Agra and Jaipur – some of the most interesting cities in Northern India. It was a unforgettable experience, and while it’s definitely possible to do the trip on your own, I enjoyed the tour and managed to see so much more in a short period of time than I normally would. Tours to the Golden Triangle in India, so if you don’t have a lot of time on your hands I recommend taking a tour instead. From colourful cities, royal palaces and vibrant markets and bazaars, the Golden Triangle in India really gives travelers a good dosage of culture, tradition, history and beauty…
Delhi, City Of Seven Capitals
Said to be one of the oldest cities in the world, Delhi is a melting pot of the past and present, chaos and order, wealth and poverty – exploring the city is an overwhelming but incredible experience.
There have been at least seven major capital cities around the present-day Delhi (the first dating back at least 3,000 years!), giving the city its nickname as the “city of seven capitals”. The most popular attraction in Delhi is the Red Fort, a beautiful sandstone fort with several unique buildings, all with their own stories to tell.
Delhi has many beautiful buildings, monuments and museums to visit, but one of my favorites was the Gurudwara Sis Ganj, an important Sikh place of worship.
It’s an oasis of peace and calm away from the chaotic streets of Old Delhi, and the complex is very beautiful – finally, another must-see is Jama Masjid, India’s largest mosque, and known as one of the 7 wonders of India. Wandering the streets of Delhi and exploring the differences of the New vs Old part of the city is a great way to soak up the culture and way of life of the people living there – if your Newmarket Holidays tour allows you some spare time in the evening, I highly recommend a shopping spree at one of the shopping malls in Delhi!
Agra, City of The Taj Mahal
Agra’s main attraction may very well be the most famous and recognizable attraction in the whole of India: Taj Mahal.
The Taj Mahal is unique and beautiful in every way, from its romantic and touching story to the changing colors that are said to signify the changing moods of a woman; like a jewel, the Taj Mahal changes from pinkish in the morning, milky white in the evening and golden by moonlight.
Built by the Muslim Mughal Emperor Shah Jahan in 1631 and 1654 as a mausoleum for his favorite wife, it’s an amazing piece of Mughal architecture.
Another beautiful place to visit in Agra is Agra Fort, a red sandstone fort where Emperor Shah Jahan, who built the Taj Mahal, was imprisoned by his son Aurangzeb, from which he had a view of the building erected for his deceased wife. Shah Jahan is said to have died in the Musamman Burj, a tower with a beautiful marble balcony.
There is a secret room called the “mirror chamber” which most people aren’t really supposed to see, but if you get the chance I highly recommend you bribe the guard 😉 to let you in so you can see the incredibly beautiful bathroom, decorated by thousands of tiny mosaic mirrors, that sparkle from the light of the candles the guard holds when circling the room.
Finish the afternoon at one of the many rooftop restaurants with views overlooking the city and the milky white Taj Mahal.
Jaipur, The Pink City
Walking through Jaipur’s markets and bazaars is a chaotic but fantastic experience, with stalls selling everything from spices and teas to colorful saris, bags and jewelry, and the odd ox cart passing by next to you.
Jaipur is nicknamed the pink city because of its colorful pink buildings, which were originally painted this color to imitate the red sandstone architecture of Mughal cities. The present earthy red color originates from repainting of the buildings undertaken for a visit by the Prince of Wales in 1876.
Pink is traditionally a color associated with hospitality, so it was the perfect color to welcome the Prince of Wales (later King Edward VII) to the city. The tradition has been maintained and today all residents in the old city are compelled by law to preserve the pink color.
In Jaipur, make sure to visit Janta Mantar, a UNESCO world heritage site and an observatory built in the 18th century with devices to measure time, predicting eclipses, tracking stars etc. You’ll also find a collection of 12 zodiac sign instruments. Depending upon the current zodiac sign the relevant instrument can be used. Another really fascinating place to visit is the Hawa Mahal, a part of the City Palace where the royal ladies could observe the everyday life of the streets on the outside from its 950 windows without being seen – the cooling breeze that passes through the windows gave the building its nickname “Palace of Winds”.
There are many in India who need help – dogs often seem to be forgotten when it comes to this. Fortunately, there are rescue center who dedicate all their time to help street dogs. This one has just been picked up and taken to the Animal Rescue Center in Goa.