Crossing the Streets
It can be quite a challenge to cross the streets in Bangalore, except in main areas where the traffic lights and pedestrian crossings are. The cars will not stop at you if they see you attempt to cross the street. One must take small steps and walk straight and let the motorcycles and auto rickshaws worry about you. One must pray hard! Haha!
- Budget Travel
- Business Travel
Men in the Parks
Since the city is busy and crowded, we sat down in one of the parks to relax and escape the traffic and beggars. There seemed to be a lot of men hanging around (pretty normal all over the city) and we didn't think too much about it. Except that one of these men kept walking around me and my female travel companion, staring. Granted two blond women is fairly unusual in India, but he overstepped his bounds. He exposed himself to us!
- Women's Travel
Please beware of Three Wheelers!! Part II
... If you insist to go on meter for your ride, those clever autodrivers will bring you for a joyride around town before you reach your destination... the fare, of course, again will be easily 50% more than normal ... well... What you should do is to negotiate a flat rate for the ride.. Assuming that you know roughly (find out from locals) how much it'll cost to go from point A to point B... just top up 10 - 20 rupees, your autodriver will be more than happy . And do not be alarmed that he suddenly know how to use the shortest route, you will experience new scenes cutting through alleys and byways plus you save plenty of time too!! Do this.. save yourself from being cuckooded!!
Please beware of Three Wheelers!! Part I
also lovingly called Autos by Bangaloreans. If you don't look anything like the locals, chances are you will be taken for a ride by the autodrivers. On my first day there, wanting to go to a shopping mall from MG Road which is 5 mins away... our autodriver, instead of bringing us to our destination, instructed us that we MUST visit a souvenir center for his sake .. becoz every tourist he brings to the center will entitle him to a small gift - for his children. Feeling sympathetical, we agreed to "browse" 5 mins at the center. But still, after that he insisted that there is another MUST visit souvenir center. Again we did our mandatory '5min browse through'. We wasted 20 mins becoz our dear autodriver has his own agenda to fulfil, at our expense!! ... Also the autodrivers will rack up high rupees when you look foreign... you have to get used to paying 50% more than locals .. you have no choice... buses are unrealiable and taxis are scarce...
Bangalore is a cool rainy area. Mosquitoes are really big but it is NOT a malaria-zone.
If you're allergic to mosquitoes, use anti-repellent or body cream.
I was overwhelmed by the number of mosquitoes when first I arrived at the airport. Just be prepared, but nothing to worry.
- Jungle and Rain Forest
- School Holidays
- Road Trip
Traffic jams galore!
My last trip to Bangalore prior to my most recent one was two years ago. Back then, I was smitten by the city's charm, thanks to its pleasant climate, beautiful green surroundings, and the ease with which one could have intelligent discussions with almost anybody on the streets.
Those wonderful traits are still there when I returned to the city recently in July 2004. But what struck me most, this time, was the city's horrible traffic jams, which made it painfully impossible to transit quickly around the city. I wouldn't have minded if I were there for leisure, but if you're on a business trip with a tight schedule, every second counts (i.e., I love to spend more time exploring the city!).
I wish the government (or civil society) could do something about the traffic jams in Bangalore. I'm glad that they have started to get moving on the new airport project (but I wouldn't be surprised if the project gets stalled along the way). Now, it's time to focus on the traffic, please.
I still love Bangalore despite the traffic jams, but I could not say the same for other visitors.
Mind your own business
Dont try to do something silly with the locals.
Beware of Auto drivers.They can cheat you in any manner.First ask the hotel reception or any passerby the approx fare for the place of u r trave.Then tell the auto driver to turn the meter on.Dont board the auto without first clearing the rates.
Beware of pick pocketers.They can vanish in seconds.
Dont offer anything to beggars and street children
Beware the customs guys !
When I arrived in Bangalore last June, I had 5 huge white cross on my big suitcase...they scanned my suitcase 3 different times and marked on a paper the electronics (CD player, camera, computer) that was inside, I found this very suspicious.
Last time I was in India, I had a full suitcase stolen at customs, so this time I was watching them carefully.
After they took inventory of the electronics in my suitcase, they sent me to an office where a guy in uniform asked me how much money I would give him (to keep my stuff).
I told him, very angry, that I have been often (well...!) to Bangalore and that he would not get a single rupee...
He looked quite surprised but let me go !
Don't let them steal you !!!!
careful in crowded places
Be careful with the money that u carry..n if ur plannin on buyin something in small shops make sure u enquire prices at more than one place before u buy anything...coz u may get cheated easily if u dont speak the local language....also be careful with pick-pocketers while travelling or shopping....and drive safely around the city if ur driving on ur own.....its mostly crowded.
- Study Abroad
- Theme Park Trips
Water and Ice...
Everyone will tell you...if you are not from India avoid non-bottled water. Ask for bottled water in restaurant (safe) and resist water fountain. What I forgot was to also think "NO ICE" if ordering a drink in a bar.
Next think I knew, I got stomach cramps for the next 4 weeks (and I'm not kidding !)
Those ice cube were cursed !!
Don't go swimming in the...
Don't go swimming in the river. The water is very wild and the river is full of sharp rocks. Local kids do swim here, but they stay at the sides of the river. Remember an americain saying: 'Don't try this at home folks'. So don't try this here...
Unfortunately, the water in...
Unfortunately, the water in kerala is not safe to drink. Stick to bottled water - even for cleaning your teeth! Some unscrupulous people will try to sell you bottled water which has been refilled. Check the seal carefully.
A passport and visa are...
A passport and visa are required for entry into and exit from India for tourism or business. All visitors, including those on official U.S. Government business, must obtain visas at an Indian embassy or consulate abroad prior to entering the country. There are no provisions for visas upon arrival. Those arriving in India without visas bearing the correct validity dates and number of entries are subject to immediate deportation. The U.S Embassy and consulates in India are unable to assist when U.S. citizens arrive without visas.
When a U.S. citizen is issued a replacement passport in India after a passport has been lost or stolen, he/she must take the replacement passport to the Foreigners Regional Registration Office (FRRO) to receive an exit visa. This exit visa allows the traveler a specified period of time (usually a few days) in which to leave the country legally. Depending on the circumstances and the duration of the stay requested, various fees may be charged. There is a 500 rupee departure tax for all travelers.
For further entry/exit information, contact the Embassy of India at 2536 Massachusetts Avenue N.W., Washington, D.C. 20008, telephone (202) 939-9849 or 939-9806 or the Indian consulates in Chicago, New York, San Francisco, and Houston. The Internet address of the Embassy of India is http://www.indianembassy.org. Outside the United States, inquiries should be made at the nearest Embassy or Consulate of India
Pickpocketing is one of the...
Pickpocketing is one of the real dangers out there.Be extra careful when you go out alone or when you are getting transport.Also,hawker food, or rather, roadside food has never done any good to ones health.So, please eat at a restaurant or at least somewhere where there is sanitation.Because if you fall sick, then u won't be able to tour with ease,right?!
Swarm of Bees
At Nandi hills a swarm of bees flew over the group. See the spots in the clouds are the bees and everyone is covering their heads. No one was stung.
- Family Travel