My UNESCO trip from starting from Kolkata
#GoUNESCO Campus Ambassador Program #Task 3 #myunescotrip
My travel itinerary starts from Kolkata. It covers 8 World Heritage Sites within a span of 14 days. I have tried to make it as accurate as possible including train names numbers which are best suited for the trip. The hotels are listed below are cost effective and chosen after taking into consideration the convenience in relation to the railway stations and bus stands. WHS covered:
- Mahabodhi Temples, Bodh Gaya
- Khajuraho Group of Monuments
- Buddhist Temples at Sanchi
- Ajanta caves
- Ellora Caves
- Mumbai Chhatarapati Shivaji Terminus
- Elephanta Caves
- Sunderban National Park
DAY 1: 16/7/2014
19:30: Reach Howrah Station, Kolkata
19:50: Board train 13023- Hwh Gaya Express
DAY 2: 17/7/2014
10:40: Reach Gaya Jn
One can pick up snacks on the way if hungry.
11:15: Reach Hotel Virat Inn. (It is approximately 120m away from the station, hence one could walk or take public transport like Rickshaw or Auto)
12:00: Check in
13:30: Lunch (can be ordered via room service)
Rest in the hotel
16:00: Leave for Bodh Gaya. Buses and three-wheeled taxis are available. Three –wheeled taxis are favoured but the prices vary. Approximately Rs. 80-120.
(Visit the famous Mahabodhi Temple. The temple was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2002. It’s open from 5 a.m. to 9 p.m. daily. Visit other attractions such as the 80 ft high Buddha statue and the other monasteries)
19:00: Snacks at Fujiya Green near Vietnam Temple.
20:00: Return to Hotel.
21:00: Dinner via room service.
- Kolkata to Gaya by train- 654km
- Gaya Jn to Hotel Viraat Inn- 120m
- Hotel to Bodh Gaya- 14km
- Bodh Gaya to hotel: 14km
Total: 682.12 km
- Train tickets: 950
- Hotel Viraat Inn: 1100-1200
- Food approximately: 800
- Traveling to and from Bodh Gaya: 200
Total: approximately Rs. 3000
DAY 3: 18/7/2014
9:00: Wake up and morning tea provided by hotel.
10:00: Order breakfast and get ready.
11:00 Leave for Rajgir in a bus. (There are daily bus tours that depart from the bus stand near the hotel and cover Rajgir, Nalanda and around 10 to 12 other interesting sights on the way).
12::30: Reach Rajgir. Have lunch in any restaurant nearby. Explore the city. It is the site of Gridhakuta (Vulture’s Peak), where the Buddha stayed and gave teachings on the Mahayana (the second turning of the wheel), and Venuvana, the first Buddhist monastery. Rajgir is also an area known for its hot springs, which are open to the public.
16:00: Leave for Nalanda. Use of Taxis or local Rickshaws are preferred. First visit to the Nalanda Museum as it closes by 17:30. Then explore the ruins of Nalanda University.
18:30: Leave for Hotel. Direct bus from Nalanda can be availed or one could return to rajgir and take a bus to Gaya Bus stand.
20:00: Reach Gaya bus stand and take a local rickshaw to the hotel.
21:00: Have Dinner. Rest.
- Hotel to Gaya Bus Stand and vice versa- 4.5*2= 9km
- Bus To Rajgir and back – 63*2= 126km
- Rajgir to Nalanda and back – 15*2=30 km
- Hotel cost- 1100-1200
- Bus to Rajgir and back- 150-250
- Rajgir to Nalanda and back- 80-100
- Food- 500-700
Total: Rs. 2100 approximately.
DAY 4- 19/7/2014
4:00: Wake up and get ready. Make arrangements to leave the hotel.
4:45: Reach the station. Book a taxi from the hotel beforehand.
5:27: Board the train 12321 Hwh Mumbai Mail to Satna.
14:50: Reach Satna (Madhya Pradesh). Have lunch on the way.
15:30: Leave for Khajuraho in a taxi. There are plenty of taxis available.
18:00: Arrive at Khajuraho and check into Hotel Zen. (Jain Temple Road)
20:00: Order dinner and rest.
- From Gaya to Satna- Approx. 535km
- From Satna to Khajuraho and hotel- 115-117km
- Train from Gaya to Satna- 880 (Ac 3-tier)
- Taxi from Satna to Khajuraho- 1200
- Hotel Zen- 400/night
- Food- 500-700
Total: Rs. 3000 approximately.
DAY 5- 20/7/2014
8:00: Wake up and order breakfast. One can also explore the local cuisine.
9:00: Get ready to visit the Khajuraho Group of Monuments. The hotel offers local tuktuk services to reach the Temples.
Khajuraho Group of Monuments were built during the Chandella dynasty, which reached its peak between 950 and 1050. Only about 20 temples remain. The temple of Kandariya is considered to be one of the architectural wonders of India.
It is difficult to estimate how much time one could possibly take to visit the Temples. It depends on how many an individual wishes to cover.
11:30: Leave for Jain Temples.
13:00: Leave for lunch. There are many Restaurants near the Temples.
14:00: Post lunch leave for Pandav Falls. You can hire a local auto which will cover all the destinations.
Panna National Park would have been an excellent choice but it is closed during the time of travel.
15:00: Reach and explore Pandav Falls. It has got a picturesque view.
16:30: Leave for Raneh Falls.
17:30. Reach Raneh Falls. Along with Raneh Falls you can visit the Ken Gharial Sanctuary. Not many people know about it. Take a Boat ride in the Sanctuary.
18:30: Leave for Khajuraho.
19:15: Reach the hotel.
20:30: Have dinner and rest.
- Khajuraho to Pandav Falls- 30.7
- Pandav Falls to Raneh Falls- 27.3km
- Raneh Falls to Khajuraho- 17km
Total: 75 km (Distance from hotel to the temples is negligible)
- Hotel cost- 400
- Auto/local taxi- 800
- Food- 500-700
- Entry-fee for the Khajuraho temples- 10/- for Indians.
Total: Rs.1810 approximately.
DAY 6- 21/7/2014
7:00: Wake up and have breakfast. Get ready.
8:30: Leave for the railway station in a locally hired auto or taxi.
9:10: Board the Kurj Udz Exp (19665) to Jhansi.
13:52: Arrives at Jhansi. Halt for 51 minutes. Have lunch in the station.
14:43: Board 12808 SAMTA EXPRESS to Bhopal.
19:00: Arrive at Bhopal.
19:30: Reach Hotel Surya using any local transport.
20:30: Dinner and rest.
- Hotel to Railway station- 8.2km
- Khajuraho to Bhopal: 367km
- Bhopal station to Hotel Surya: 550m
- Train from Khajuraho to Jhansi and Jhansi to Bhopal- 345.
- Hotel Surya: 1100 (Ac Room)
8:00: Wake up and have breakfast. Get Ready.
9:00: Take a Bus from Bhopal to Sanchi.
10:30: Reach Sanchi and take any local transport to reach Sanchi Stupa.
11:00: Arrive at Buddhist Monuments at Sanchi. Explore the area and rest of the Temple Complex.
14:00: Have lunch.
14:30: Leave for Bhopal in a bus.
16:00: Arrive at Bhopal and go back to the hotel. Rest for some time and freshen up. Have snacks and tea.
17:00: Leave for the famous Jama Masjid via local transport.
17:30: Leave for Van Vihar National Park. It is open till 19:00.
19:00: Leave for hotel.
20:00: Have dinner and rest.
- From Hotel to Sanchi via bus and back- 47.4*2= 94.8km
- Hotel to Jama Masjid: 1.4km
- Jama Masjid to Van Vihar-5.3km
- Van Vihar to Hotel-7km
- Hotel Surya- 1100
- Bus fare- flexible. 150 approx.
- Local transport- 200 approx.
DAY 8: 23/7/2014
6:00: Wake up and get ready to leave.
6:30: Reach the station.
7:00: Board Karnataka Exp 12628 to Jalgaon. Have breakfast on the way.
13:28: Reach Jalgaon.
14:00: Book a taxi from Jalgaon to Ajanta. Have lunch on the way.
15:30: Reach Ajanta. Check in- Hotel Padmapani Park.
16:30: Leave for Ajanta caves. Explore the area and the beautiful Sculptures.
20:00: Arrive at the hotel and have dinner. Rest.
- Bhopal And Jalgaon: 423 km
- Jalgaon And Ajanta: 63 km
- Hotel to Ajanta caves and back- 5.6*2- 11.2km
- Train to Jalgaon- 237
- Taxi to Ajanta- 900
- Hotel Padmapani Park- 900
- Local Transport- 100
Total: Rs. 2600
DAY 9- 24/7/2014
8:00: Wake up and have breakfast. Get ready.
10:00: Leave for Ellora. Book a taxi.
12:30: Reach Ellora and have lunch on the way.
13:30: Explore the Ellora Caves.
14:00: Leave for Aurangabad via the taxi.
14:45: Reach Aurangabad and have lunch in a restaurant.
Checking into a Hotel would not be reasonable as the Train departing for Mumbai is at 21:00.
Exploring the city and tourist attractions like Bibi Ka Maqbara, Panchakki, etc would be advisable as the taxi will be there. Luggage can be kept in that.
17:30: Have tea and snacks.
20:00: Have dinner.
21:00: Reach the Railway station.
21:35: Board Nandigram Express 11402.
- Hotel Padmapani Park to Ellora- 103km
- Ellora to Aurangabad- 28.2km
- Distance travelled in Aurangabad cannot be calculated since it is flexible.
- Taxi fare- 12/km
DAY 10- 25/7/2014
5:40: Reach Mumbai Chhatarapati Shivaji Terminus.
Chhatarapati Shivaji Terminus formerly known as Victoria Terminus was inscribed as a WHS in 2004.
6:30: Check in- Plaza Guest House near Mumbai Central via auto.
7:00: Have breakfast and rest. Freshen up.
10:00: Take an auto and reach Gateway of India.
10:30: Take a ferry to Elephanta Islands.
11:00: Explore The Elephanta Caves. There are 5 in total.
13:00: The Maharastra Tourism Department Hotel is a good choice if you want to have lunch.
It is a beautiful Island and hence you can spend a lot of time just relaxing. The MTDH provides good services if you want to rest in the day time.
16:30: Depart for Gateway of India in the ferry.
17:00. Reach Gateway of India. There is a Starbucks café very near to the GOI so you could visit there.
18:00: Reach the Guest house via auto.
20:00: Have dinner in the hotel or in any restaurant nearby.
- From Aurangabad to Mumbai: 380km
- Mumbai CST to Plaza Guest House: 3.7km
- Plaza Guest House to Gateway of India: 7km
- From Gateway of India-Elephanta caves and back via Ferry- 11*2= 22km
- GOI to Guest house- 7km
- Train Tickets: 544 (Ac 3tier)
- Auto to Plaza Guest House: 50
- Plaza Guest House- 1300/night
- Plaza Guest House to Gateway of India: 70
- Gateway of India to Elephanta Caves via ferry- 150(return inclusive)
- Gateway of India to Guest house-70
DAY 11- 26/7/2014
9:00: Wake up and have breakfast.
Mumbai is a big city with a lot of attractions. It is difficult to plan an itinerary to spend a day in Mumbai.
Attractions which could be considered are:
- Siddhivinayak Temple
- Haji Ali Dargah
- Marine Drive
- Juhu Beach
- Essel World
- Worli Fort
- Nariman Point
- Film City
- Malabar hill
20:00: Leave for the Mumbai CST.
21:25: Board 12322 Kolkata Mail to Kolkata.
Distance Travelled: N/A
- Plaza Guest House- 1300/night
- Traveling-500 approximately (if auto is used)
- Train tickets: 1688
Total: Tentatively- Rs.4688
DAY 12: 27/7/2014
Spent in the train from Mumbai to Kolkata.
DAY 13: 28/7/2014
11:45: Reach Kolkata – Howrah Jn.
12:30: Have lunch.
Luggage can be dropped off at Kolkata. A detour to the Sunderbans can be planned as it is not very easily accessible otherwise. From Kolkata one can hire taxi services to Sunderban or travel till Namkhana (105-kms) or Sonakhali (100-kms) and then take Riverine waterways to reach the main National Park.
13:30: Depart for Sunderbans in a pre-booked Taxi.
17:00: Reach Sunderbans and check in- Sunderban Tiger Camp.
17:30: Have tea and snacks and enjoy the natural beauty.
20:00: Have dinner and relax in the resort.
- Train from Mumbai to Kolkata- 2176km.
- Kolkata to Sunderbans- 98.2km
- Food- 600
- Kolkata to Sunderban Taxi- 800- 1000
- Sunderban Tiger Camp – 1500
DAY 14- 29/7/2014
8:00: Wake up and have breakfast.
10:00: Check out.
10:30: Depart for Sunderbans National Park. There are safaris available which helps in viewing the Widlife better. One could also visit the Bird Sanctuary or the Bhagbatpur Crocodile Project.
13:00: Have lunch.
16:00: Depart for Kolkata.
19:00: Reach Kolkata.
- Sunderbans to Kolkata – 98.2km
- Food- 600
- Sunderban to Kolkata Taxi- 800- 1000
Total: Rs. 1500
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