* If you have a strong religious bend of mind, if you are a devotee then Dev bhoomi Haridwar is where you will be happy. If you are not, this place will seem boring.
* Temples are in abundance here. Visiting all is humanly impossible !
* Here even roadside eating joints prepare foods with pure ghee. Clarified butter is not always easy to digest.
* You can book seats in luxury bus for sight seeing from Haridwar to Rishikesh, Laxman Jhoola , Dehradun, Missouri, etc. Fare is quite cheap.
* Ram Jhoola, Laxman Jhoola are now concrete structures which has robbed them off the charm. Two wheelers ply on them, making it difficult to stand on the bridge and appreciate the scenery.
* There is no natural beauty left in Haridwar or journey from Haridwar to Rishikesh. Just hotels, temples, restaurants.
* Make sure you are visiting the place in winter, because summer is just unbearable.
* Har-ki-paudi ghat is not visually pleasing, but Ganga Aarti is. 
* Without inclination of hurting any religious sentiments or believer’s feelings, I will just add that as per media report,  it has been scientifically revealed : the holy water of Ganges flowing by Har Ki Paudi ghat contains various germs and Super Bug , so one should be cautious while taking a holy deep.
* Haridwar is a strictly vegetarian city. Rice served here is of very good quality.

* You should not wear dresses here that are revealing in nature, keeping in mind the conservative sentiment that prevails here. 




* From Kolkata by train, you get off at Ramnagar. From their Tajpur is reached by Car. Make sure you call up your hotel and book a car. Otherwise all you have is local public transport not promising a very pleasant ride.
* There is an old forest through which you can walk straight ahead until you reach the sea beach. Make sure not to change directions or you may get lost in the forest. There are foxes in the forest and soft sand covered holes with water underneath.
* The entire area plan is quite simple. Four factors lie side by side. Hotels, road, forest, sea beach. 
* Cooking in hotel can be too spicy for your health. 
* The forest is a great spot for picnic but don’t be there after sunset.


* Present Puri proper is a box jam packed with shops, people, more shops and a sea beach.

* Strong lights of shops covering quite a large portion of beach area makes an awful lot of light pollution for you to appreciate the sea at night.

* The beach is dirty with waves bringing in at times, empty beer bottles, leftover food or chocolate wrappers etc.

* While sitting on beach, hawkers bother you every now and then with their wares.

* Camel riding, horse riding, shops on the beach have completely ruined the aesthetics of Puri beach.

* Food quality in Puri is poor. Rice is of cheap quality. In the many of most standard restaurants, there is an option called Fine Rice which costs more than normal rice. Well that Fine rice is also just passable. All snacks near beach area is over priced.

* Orissa / Odisha is not good for tourists, most being dishonest.

* The famous Jagannath Temple also has it’s own features which seemed unfair to commoners. Chart with rate for pujas are given, for Jagannath, Balaram and so on. You have to choose a package as per the chart. The minimum being 500 in the year 2009 ( if my memory serves me right ). For bhog you have to pay extra. Leather products are not allowed inside temple, so its better to carry things in fabric bags while visiting temple. And only HINDUS are allowed inside temple as per notification.


* You have to take a car or auto from Berhampur station to reach Gopalpur On Sea. Don’t be fooled by touts at station area. Leave the area with luggage, walk a few yards to get your own auto.

* Beach is very dirty at places, locals relieve themselves at secluded spots.

* The landmark site , ruin of East India Company trading area beside beach, during British colonisation in India, has become a open for all latrine.

* Make sure the Light House is open for tourists. It may remain closed for security reasons.

* Hotels right on beach, offer you sea view but in-room facilities are not much.

*  Go for separate ordering of dishes for lunch or dinner in your hotel rather than going for Day Meal Packages. 

* From G.O.S , you can go for sightseeing by car, but packages are overpriced. Do some hard bargaining. 

* Insist on being served with total bill for all foods taken throughout the day in hotel, at the end of every day. This way, you can be clear of expenses incurred daily and one thing off your head.

* There are shops beside the road parallel to the beach, selling local crafts, but too pricey.

* Cooking standard is not at all up to the mark.

* Here electric supply is terrible.

* Hotels have a tendency not to switch on generator during power cut, if number of boarders are few. Demand refund if this is the case with you.

* My experience in Orissa belt is that most are dishonest and try to take advantage of tourist’s ignorance.

Diamond Harbour

* Plan a trip during winter season, the colder the better.

* Stay should be preferably in West Bengal Tourism or West Bengal Fishery Department Guest House , because they offer the best view of the river.

* This Harbour spot is a place for tourists as well as young couples looking for a few hours of intimacy and fun. Hotels and Guest Houses offer room to them charging by the hour. So if you are visiting with your family, don’t be offended if you are stupidly mistaken to have come for some cheap fun.

* Go on a trip to nearby Portuguese Castle or whatever remains of it.

* Couples booking a hotel room for few hours for fun and frolic is far more lucrative business than tourists booking it for days. Do the math. In former case entries are not made in register. So even in West Bengal Tourism Lodge Sagarika, manager and waiters are eager to know When You Are Leaving ( if you have booked via the official route ) .This can be very irritating.

* Food served in both Government Lodges mentioned above are good. 

* 3 days stay in Diamond Harbour is more than enough. Government Lodge bookings can be done from Kolkata.

* Private hotels are located a bit far from the river, so you may get good service but not the river view.

About this blog

This is the post excerpt.

This travel blog has been created exclusively for Budget Travellers who prefer to travel with their family or friends and dislike going on Agent conducted Package Tours. This blog will only inform travellers about problems they may face in various places. There are hundreds of websites painting a rosy picture about places with beautiful photos but seldom anyone mentions the problems of a place which tourists need to know. – blogger S.Gupta , WhatsApp/Call : 9674290833