INDIA Calling : Everything you wanna know

Discussion in 'Asia' started by bunny_punia, Nov 13, 2007.

  1. Marcbar

    Marcbar Been here awhile

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    Thank you Chanderjeet for your help in this link and also the info you have given me by PM. I for one do appreciate your advice.:clap :clap :clap
  2. Chanderjeet

    Chanderjeet IndiYeah !!

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    Your Welcome. BTW, i was at the same bike shop today and told him that there would be a few people who would be coming to rent bikes next year.
  3. atgreg

    atgreg Africatwinarama

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    Turkey , keep your crap in Oz where we expect it, dont go shitting in others back yards or you might find yourself having a holiday
  4. Shmerel

    Shmerel

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    :devildog

    Happy holidays everyone!
  5. KimR

    KimR Been here awhile

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    Anyone got a good source for road maps of India, particularly northern India, Himachal Pradesh, etc.?
  6. KimR

    KimR Been here awhile

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  7. arn

    arn Been here awhile

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    You could try mapmyindia.com

    Please note that all the small trails will not be marked, just the roads in common usage. Thats the problem with most India maps anyways. Paper map - you could go in for the TTK maps or LP.

    Let me know if you are looking for GPS maps. I believe I might be able to dig a detailed HP map out, but I need time.

    You can also check google maps for unmarked trails (satellite view) in case you suspect that their may be a trail joining two places, but there's no guarantee that it will be motorable unless the surface appears tarred. Even if you do not make a full custom map, you could transfer waypoint info onto your unit so that you do not miss junctions, etc.

    The google earth images are a couple of years old (and more!) in places, but as the terrain is mountainous, it's unlikely there will be any new unseen highways on the satellite view.
  8. Gornzilla

    Gornzilla Registered Slob

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    The Eicher book is good. Covers all of India but when you ride 4 hours in a monsoon when it's in a "waterproof" bag that isn't, it doesn't take the water so well. Neither did my brand new iPod 160.

    I was pretty happy with an Enfield 350. Of course, Chanderjeet had to take it to a shop once I was done killing it. Weird compression problem. Sometimes no compression but mostly it was fine. But the last couple rides it had almost no compression at all. It'd still fire up after 15 minutes of kicking it over and would ride ok.
  9. RonS

    RonS Out there... Supporter

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    I just found this thread. I'm honored to have my Coorg ride report referenced especially considering the higher quality and much more adventuress reports on riding in India that I've seen on ADVrider over the last couple of years.

    As far as the Bullet compression problem, if the bike ran OK once it was started the problem may well have been the clutch adjustment. It's tough to kick through the compression stroke when the clutch is slipping. We ran into this problem with the Bullet we took to Coorg. There is a small access plate down on the side casing that swings out of the way and allows for adjustment.

    As far as exploring India by motorcycle (or by any other means), just do it. It's very inexpensive (especially right at this particular point in time) and there is more to see than one can possibly see in a decade of vacations dedicated to travel in India. If you haven't read the book "1000 Places To See Before You Die" then do it now. The section on India is one of the largest sections in the book.

    My recommendations on travel in India from a westerners perspective (beyond what is already being said) would include:

    Meet all the people you can. Indians are very nice people and they are especially nice to foreigners. When you travel in a group make an effort to engage the local people rather than just the people who are traveling in your group. You will meet some fascinating individuals and the individuals you meet will be as memorable as the places you see.

    Try all the different foods you can. Indian food is some of the best in the world and there are a lot of different types of Indian food. What passes for Indian food in the west is only a very small sample of the variety you will see when you get there. Some of it you may not like but you won’t know unless you try it.

    When you order a beer the bottle will most likely be brought to the table and presented as if it were a vintage bottle of fine wine. The intent here is not to present the beer as if it were something special, the intent is for you to check the temperature to see if it is chilled to your liking. Reach out and touch the bottle. If it seems adequately chilled, nod and have it poured.

    If you want a fork and knife you’ll have to ask for them. They may not be available. Eating with hands is the norm. The right hand that is. Adapt to it. It’s a liberating experience.

    This is a difficult and deep subject and I don’t know any other way to say it than to just say it. You will get hounded by people trying to sell you trinkets when you visit any tourist site be it a major site known the world over or a small temple in a rural village. Get used to it. Don’t provide false hope that you will buy something if you don’t intend to. Saying something like “talk to me later” becomes, in essence, a commitment to buy. This is especially true if you are a foreigner with a conscience who knows that the small income they receive from their trinkets feeds a family at a level well below the poverty level where you come from and you see them sitting there upon your return knowing full well that the hope you provided earlier is perhaps the greatest hope they have had in a week. Be polite but firm in your resolve when you tell them that you do not want to buy the goods they offer. And do not give money to those who beg for it. Few things (in my experience) will incense your Indian friends more than giving money to those who beg for it. I’ve been told that there is some kind of work for everyone to do if they choose to do it and giving money for nothing promotes a lifestyle that helps no one. The volume of poor is going to be much greater than perhaps anything you have seen before but remember, you cannot save everyone. Only the continuing economic expansion currently going on in India and the opportunities that presents will raise the standard of living for the poorer people of India. Of course spend when you feel like spending. Those whose goods you purchase will be grateful. One thing you should absolutely not do. That is to make the false assumption that all Indians are poor. India has a middle class the size of which may well exceed the combined populations of the US, Europe and Australia. Those in the upper middle class often have houses that are as nice or nicer than yours. The average software engineer in India makes more (relatively speaking) than a software engineer in the west often employing drivers, cooks and house cleaners. All things are relative and there may not be the equivalency you expect. Granted, the variety of goods available particularly in terms of motorcycles is not as great but this is more a matter of politics, infrastructure and the economic realities of a population of 1.3 billion than anything else.

    I’ve seen several people ask about the women of India. The probability of receiving an answer to these kinds of questions on a public forum is a round number (as in zero). In spite of India being the land of the Kamasutra, India is very conservative and religious. These things are not spoken of publicly. The wrong approach, to the wrong person, in the wrong place, at the wrong time may result in an ass kicking you’ll not soon forget. Show a little discretion and only ask these kinds of questions of friends (if you are lucky enough to make some) in private. Even then they will probably make every effort to steer you clear of trouble. Having said that, I can attest to the fact that the women of India are beautiful. You’ll be blown away by how hot the models on the fashion billboards in the larger cities are. I was standing on the street in Bangalore one day having a smoke and happened to note that easily a third of the women walking by in this business section of the city could have modeled for major fashion magazines.

    If you pick up a stomach bug get something for it. The appropriate drugs can be easily found in most cities and even in larger villages. As with anywhere in the world you travel, the bugs are different and you are not acclimated to them. Consume accordingly and carry toilet paper with you wherever you’re going. Just saying, K?

    Listen to the Indians who are posting in this thread. They know their way around and their advice can save you a lot of time, money and heartache. If they offer help, accept it. You’ll be glad you did. If you do accept help, show your appreciation in some appropriate way even if though it may not be expected.

    Venture forth with an open mind and cast off any preconceived notions you may have. Some of those notions may well founded but if you take the time to look, listen and understand I think you’ll find that there is much more to the story than you would have ever believed possible.

    Lastly, don’t worry if things don’t go the way you planned. They won’t. Make the best of it and have fun. After all, that’s why you traveled half way around the world.
  10. KimR

    KimR Been here awhile

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    Compession Problem: I believe that the Bullet--or at least some Bullets--also have a compression release. This is cable-operated and a sticky cable could cause this problem.

    Indian Women: I agree--don't hit on them. But don't let that keep you from saying "Hi". I was very reluctant to interact with the women in the small villages for fear of being misunderstood. But I found that if you're just saying "Good morning" or whatever, you can have a pretty interesting conversation. Even in the rural villages, a lot of people speak English. One of the best experiences I had was when I stopped to take a picture of a woman bathing her child. They lived in a little sticks-and-tarp shelter. She had a precast concrete pad outside and a bucket and pitcher. She was dressed in a spectacularly colorful sari. As I began to set up the shot, she looked up and said to me in perfect British-accented English, "Why, hello! Where are you going? Where are you from?" We had a nice little conversation about her children and the villlage. I was so startled I never did get the photo.

    Go. Go now.
  11. mutineer

    mutineer pierpont lives

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    thanks for doing this Bunny

    I am looking at a trip through India and this is enormously helpful

    CJ is being a great help

    looking forward to meeting him
  12. SgtMike

    SgtMike facebook.com/mikeraces

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    This thread is helping me a great deal as well, THANK YOU !!!!!!!!

    I am very excited about visiting and getting to know a new land. I hope to not only be a tourist, but leave a positive footprint for being there.
  13. cheekymonkey

    cheekymonkey born again jackass

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    You guys (Bunny, Chanderjeet, Arn, RonS) did a great job. Just finished reading this thread and enjoyed most of it. A lot of effort on your part to help other folks with their travel plans. Nice one guys.:clap

    You're also doing a great job of rising above some of the inappropriate and unproked comments being posted. I was wondering what all the fuss was about but when dude learned that India was in Asia (:huh WTF!?) it kinda put in perspective the challenges that he must be facing.:D

    Sorry for the hijack.

    Once again ... well done gents.:1drink
  14. Chanderjeet

    Chanderjeet IndiYeah !!

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    We're trying our best to keep the information up to date here. Glad you liked the read.
  15. Shmerel

    Shmerel

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    can someone here please tell me if, and where, and at what cost, and what conditions, i can hire 2 enfields in Goa for a couple of days.

    my 18 yr old son and i might be there in november. he has no riding license but can ride. i have a license (i think).
  16. arn

    arn Been here awhile

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    There are lots of places where you can hire an Enfield, or any other bike in Goa. Just ask at your hotel, and I'm sure you will not be disappointed

    Realistically, your son will probably not get caught. Even at worst, the jail there is very scenic - cliff on one side and the sea on the other + balmy November weather. There are several very fancy villas close by. I mean, people pay to stay at holiday locations like that (minus the guards and few other things, but hey, it's free, and one can use the stay to learn new skills).

    BTW, what's the fine in Oz for this sort of thing?
  17. SteveRed

    SteveRed Adventure Moto

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    Well if you get caught riding without a licence it is jsut a date with the magistrate and a court fine. You'd be back home in India before you ever got your day in court :lol3 Just crash! :D
  18. Chanderjeet

    Chanderjeet IndiYeah !!

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    Enfields are pricey compared to other bikes, they go for 300-500 Rupees a day depending on conditions. There arent many conditions attached, they may ask you for a copy of your passport.
  19. Shmerel

    Shmerel

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    cheap! :clap
    no license in oz is bad news. don't ask.
    i assume in india riders are rarely stopped by police?
  20. Gornzilla

    Gornzilla Registered Slob

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    I was stopped. They just wanted a small bribe. I think 100 rupees ($2US at the time).