Frequently Asked Questions About India
India is a land filled with contrasts and contradictions, from some of the wettest regions in the world in the eastern foothills of the Himalayas to the high-altitude deserts of Ladhakh in the north. The vibrant history and chaotic cities of the Indian subcontinent contrast with its incomparable wilderness areas.
IS INDIA A GOOD FAMILY DESTINATION?
India is a country full of adventure, where children are warmly welcomed, making it a unique and memorable adventure destination for families. Special children’s programmes are available at andBeyond lodges, keeping our younger guests busy with bug collecting, bark rubbing, kite flying and learning how to track animals. From the majestic Himalayas in the north to the pristine beaches of Goa and Kerala in the south, and plenty of lively Indian cities in between, India is a remarkable place for families to share the journey of a lifetime.
IS IT SAFE TO TRAVEL IN INDIA?
It is best to avoid drinking tap water while in India. When buying bottled water check that the cap has not been tampered with.
IS THERE ANYTHING I NEED TO KNOW ABOUT SIGHTSEEING IN INDIA?
When visiting temples or other religious places you may be required to cover your head and take off your shoes. You may not be allowed to enter some temples if you are wearing or carrying any leather articles. Certain temples only admit Hindus. If you are in doubt, ask about the place you intend visiting. Most museums in India are closed on Mondays and site museums near archaeological monuments do not open on Fridays. Smoking is not permitted in public places, including all trains and railway stations.
SHOULD I TAKE OUT TRAVEL INSURANCE BEFORE TRAVELLING TO INDIA?
It is essential that adequate travel insurance be taken out prior to departure. This should cover any medical situation such as hospitalisation, as well as cancellation, curtailment of arrangements and baggage. When you travel with &Beyond, you are automatically covered by our emergency evacuation insurance. This guarantees emergency evacuation to the nearest hospital should you suffer either severe illness or injury. This does not cover the cost of treatment once in hospital and in no way replaces your normal travel insurance. There are certain medical exclusions. Please advise us of any existing conditions in advance in order to arrange cover, subject to our insurer’s approval. Please contact us for further details.
WHAT IS THE CLIMATE LIKE IN INDIA?
India has a hot, tropical climate, although conditions vary from region to region. Winter is from November to March, when the mornings and evenings are cool and fresh, while the days are warm and sunny. The hot summers last from April to June, when hot temperatures combine with dry conditions and occasional dust storms. Monsoon season usually lasts from June to September. While the rest of India braves torrential rains, this is the perfect time to explore the Himalayas.
WHAT KIND OF ACCOMMODATION IS AVAILABLE IN INDIA?
Tourists can choose from a wide choice of accommodation, from western style luxury hotels to budget accommodation and government bungalows. Wildlife sanctuaries and national parks generally do not allow guests to stay overnight. Private lodges are found on the outskirts of the parks or near their entrance. Hotel rates can vary widely according to the season.
WHAT KIND OF FOOD CAN I EXPECT TO EAT IN INDIA?
Indian cuisine is varied, with styles varying from region to region. India has more vegetarians than the rest of the world combined, however, goat, lamb and chicken appear in many dishes. Should you tire of local cuisine, restaurants in India also offer food from other part of the world. You should be able to find French, English, Italian, Thai, Mexican, Chinese and Japanese food in hotels and restaurants in the larger cities.
WHAT SHOULD I PACK?
We recommend that you pack light cotton clothing in khaki, beige and white. Long sleeved tops are recommended for game drives. Remember to pack some warm woollen clothing if you are travelling in winter, as temperatures do drop dramatically after dark.
WHERE CAN I CHANGE CURRENCY?
Money exchange counters are available at most international airports in India, as well as most hotels. Many of the wildlife resorts across India do not have the facilities to exchange money and it is a good idea to carry enough Indian money with you for your expenses.
ARE THERE ANY SPECIAL HEALTH REQUIREMENTS WHEN TRAVELLING IN INDIA?
Consult your doctor about recommended vaccinations when planning your trip to India. Some parts of India are malaria areas, so you may need to take the appropriate prophylactics.
CAN A SPECIFIC DIET BE CATERED FOR ON A TRIP TO INDIA?
Yes, we can cater for any kind of diet. Please advise us of any dietary requirements when making your reservation and we will communicate your requirements to the lodges.
CAN I USE MY CREDIT CARD IN INDIA?
Neither American Express nor Diner’s Club are widely accepted in India. Outside the main centres it is recommended that you have enough Indian money on you for any purchases and for tipping.
DO I NEED A VISA TO TRAVEL TO INDIA?
Yes, you will need a visa for travel in India. You cannot apply for it on arrival and it is recommended that you contact your local Indian embassy or consulate when planning your trip.
Bandhavgarh National Park is renowned for being one of India’s highest concentrations of tigers.
Kanha National Park boasts the ideal habitat for both tigers and their prey species.
Panna National Park is one of the most pristine, quiet and beautiful wilderness areas in India.
A spectacular natural reserve set among typical Central Indian teak jungle, Pench offers a quiet and secluded game viewing experience.