Travel tips

Visitors are usually asked if they have anything to declare on arrival. You should not bring in more than US$10,000 in cash without declaring it. Likewise, video and camera equipment and other expensive, easily sold items should be declared on arrival. If the customs officers issues you are Tourist Baggage Re-export Form (TBRE) detailing the items declared and their value, these items must be shown when leaving the country. If currency was declared and noted when entering the country , exchange receipts must be shown on departure if you take less than declared amount out. India allows one bottle of spirits, 200 cigarettes and a reasonable amount of gifts to be imported free of duty.

Souvenirs can be exported from India without restriction. Only Rs2.000 worth of gold and up to Rs10,000 worth of manufactured jewellery or precious stones can be exported without the permit. Any object over 100 years old needs an export certificate from the Director of Antiquities, Archaeological survey of India. India is a signatory to CITES and the export of ivory, animals and snake skins and products made from them is forbidden. CITES certificates can be issued by the Deputy Director of Wildlife Preservation in the major cities. They should fill in the Disembarkation card handed over to them by the airline during the course of the flight. There are two channels for Customs clearance:

Green Channel: For passengers not in possession of any dutiable articles or unaccompanied baggage.

Red Channel: For passengers with dutiable articles or unaccompanied baggage or high value articles to be entered on the Tourist Baggage Re-Export Form.

Exports Of Antiquities

Antiquities which include sculpture, paintings or other works of art & crafts, illustrative of science, art, crafts, religion of bygone ages & of historical interest which have bee in existence for not less than one hundred years may not be exported out of India. Manuscripts, or other documents of scientific, historical, literary or aesthetic value in existence for not less than seventy five years; art treasures- not necessarily antiquities but of artistic & aesthetic value, also cannot be exported out of India. For Clarifications on the antiquity, tourists can contact the following authorities.



Punjab, a vibrant state in North West India, is home to the Sikh people who are known for their zest for life, martial ethos, dynamism in agriculture, trade and industry, wholesome cuisine, rhythmic music, and adherence to the principles of Sikhism founded by Guru Nanak.

Punjab has a long history. It is the land of five rivers, on the banks of which sites that date back to the Indus Valley civilization have been found. Punjab has faced the wrath of invaders for centuries, from the invasion of Alexander the Great in 326 B.C. to the Muslim invasions in the medieval period. In the 19th century Punjab was unified under Ranjit Singh and later came under British rule. During India's independence Punjab was divided between India and Pakistan. The Indian state of Punjab is the richest and most industrialized of Indian states. Known for its record agricultural production, Punjab is considered the breadbasket of India.


The Golden Temple, the holiest shrine of the Sikh religion and a place of pilgrimage for Sikhs worldwide is situated in Amritsar. The Sikh Guru, Guru Amar Das began the construction of the Golden Temple and in his lifetime the holy city of Amritsar developed into an important town. The next Guru, Guru Ram Das, began the construction of the holy lake that surrounds the temple. Guru Arjan Dev conceived the sanctum sanctorum or Harmandir Sahib, which stands today as a hallowed symbol of the Sikh faith. The holy book of the Sikhs, the Guru Granth Sahib was given pride of place in the Harmandir Saheb in 1604.

Wagah Border Crossing

Crowds gather every evening to watch the lowering of the flags ceremony at the Wagan Border crossing and to cheer the troops who carry out the daily ceremony. This ritual is accompanied by crisp marching by Indian and Pakistani border guards, accompanied by bugle calls and the closing of the gates.


Known as the Manchester of India, Ludhiana is famous for its spinning mills and exports finished garments worldwide. Ludhiana is also known for its agricultural university an important center of the Green Revolution and its factories where motorcycles and machine tools are manufactured.

Kila Raipur

The village of Kila Raipur, near Ludhiana, is known for its rural Olympics. Various sports and feats of strength are performed at the annual rural games held at this village.


Jalandhar is famous for being a center of sports, particularly hockey, in India and is a leading center for the production of sports goods in the world.


Uttaranchal is a 'paradise' for nature lover's and adventure sports enthusiasts.

Mussorie, the 'Queen of Hills';Nainital, the 'Lake District'; Almora, the 'Switzerland of India';Ranikhet ,Pithoragarh, pauri and Munsyari are just few highlights for the nature lovers. For adventure and excitement, one may choose Mountaineering (Bhagirathi, Chowkhamba, Nanda Devi Kamet, Pindari, Sahastrataal, Milam, Kafni, Khatling, Gaumukh), Trekking, Skiing (Auli, Dayara Bugyal, Munsyari, Mundali), Skating, Water Sports like rafting, boating and angling and Aero Sports like Hand Gliding, Paragliding (Pithoragarh,Jolly Grant, Pauri).


JDevPrayag is set on the confluence of Alaknanda and Bhagirathi rivers and is considered to be one of the 'Panch prayag'. When they flow out of here, they are together called the Ganga. There are suspension bridges on the Bhagirathi and the Alaknanda. It is also the seat of the pandas (priests) of the Badrinath Dham.


The beautiful lake resort nestles amidst seven hills in a lush valley at an altitude of 1938 metres. In 1841, the British first discovered Nainital as a holiday resort. Today, the town has emerged as one of the most important hill resorts of India. Also known as Dev Bhumi, Uttaranchal is a boon for the pilgrim tourists. The Maha Kumba Mela, the Char Dham Yatra and the kailash Mansarovar yatra give Uttaranchal an international recognisance. The major pilgrim places include Haridwar, Rishikesh, Kedarnath, Badrinath, Gangotri, Yamunotri, Devprayag, Nandadevi and Poornagiri. The State is also a treasure house of exotic flora and fauna and is an ideal location for eco-tourism, as well as wildlife tourism. The world-famous Corbett National Park is the pride of Uttaranchal. Other important sanctuaries are, Rajaji National Park, Govind Wildlife Sanctuary, Asan Barrage, Chilla etc. Last but not the least, the rich cultural traditions and the cool and invigorating climate of Uttaranchal sums up for a perfect holiday destination to relax and unwind

Himachal Pradesh

After independence of India, Himachal was declared as Union territory but later on its status was raised to part 'C' state till 1966 when some hilly areas of Punjab were merged in this due to re-organzation of Punjab state. However, it was declared a fullfledged state on 25.1.71 with 12 districts. It is larger in area than Punjab, Haryana and Kerala. It is located in the north-west of India in the lap of Himalaya. It is surrounded by Jammu-Kashmir in the north, Uttar Pradesh in the south-east, Haryana in the south and Punjab in the south-west. In the east it has borders with Tibet. It has an elevation from 450 to 6800 mts. and can be divided into southern and northern regions. Southern region is warm in summer and the northern is extremly cold with heavy snow.

Himachal Pradesh has been on the path of progress since Independence. The literacy rate of the state is 63% now and is improving every decade. The population has almost stabilized at about 5 million, thanks to high literacy and effective family planning programs. Every village in the state has electricity and drinking water now.

Himachal is literally a power house when it comes to hydro-electricity. The state has many dams that harness the hilly rivers to generate electric power. The electricity is used by farmers in Punjab, Haryana and by the industries in the northern plains.Many young men from Himachal serve the Indian Army and have played significant role in the National defense. Dharamsala has a war memorial dedicated to the memory of those who lost their lives for their country.

Himachal has five mighty snow-fed rivers flowing through it - the Chenab, Ravi, Beas, Sutlej and Yamuna. Climatically, this state is divisible into two regions - the south which is as warm as the plains, and the north where the summers are temperate and winters are extremely cold.

Jammu and Kashmir

Jammu and Kashmir, (often abbreviated as Kashmir), is the northern-most state of Republic of India, lying mostly in the Himalayan mountains. Jammu and Kashmir shares a border with Himachal Pradesh to the south, Pakistan to the west and People's Republic of China to the north and the east. Srinagar is the capital of Jammu and Kashmir.

Literally Kashmir means "land desiccated from water" (Sanskrit: Ka = water, shimeera = desiccate). According to Hindu mythology, Sage Kashyapa drained the erstwhile lake to produce the land. The earliest recorded history of Kashmir as an area begins with Ashoka Maurya who is often credited with founding the city of Srinagar as part of vast expanding empire. Kashmir was once a Buddhist seat of learning, perhaps with the Sarvastivadan school dominating. East and Central Asian Buddhist monks are recorded as visiting the kingdom.

The State is rich in flora and fauna. In Jammu, the flora ranges from the thorn bush type of the arid plain to the temperate and alpine flora of the higher altitudes. Of the broad leaf trees there are maple, horse chest nuts, silver fir etc. At the higher altitudes there are birch, rhododendron, Berbers and a large number of herbal plants.

Jammu and Kashmir is situated between 32.17 degree and 36.58-degree north latitude and 37.26 degree and 80.30-degree east longitude; the total area of the State of Jammu and Kashmir is 22,22,236 square kilometers. The geography of the Kashmir valley, stretches for about 84 miles from the northeast to the southwest and is approximately 20 to 25 miles broad. Its height above the sea level is over 5,000 feet.


Rajasthan is a vibrant, exotic state where tradition and royal glory meet in a riot of colors against the vast backdrop of sand and desert. It has an unusual diversity in its entire forms- people, customs, culture, costumes, music, manners, dialects, cuisine and physiography. The land is endowed with invincible forts, magnificent palace havelis, rich culture and heritage, beauty and natural resources. It is a land rich in music, Dance, Art & Craft and Adventure, a land that never ceases to intrigue & enchant. There is a haunting air of romance, about the state, which is palpable in its every nook and corner.

This abode of kings is one of the most exotic locales for tourist world over. The state has not only survived in all its ethnicity but owes its charisma and color to its enduring traditional way of life. It is one of the 26 states that, along with seven union territories, form the republic of India. So rich is the history of the land that every roadside village has its own tales of valour and sacrifice, the winds sing them and the sands shift to spread them. Rajasthan is Spicy, but then, what is life after all without little bit of spice, Rajasthan provides abundant scope to explore it.

The panoramic outlook of the state is simply mesmerizing, with lofty hills of Aravali's - one of the oldest mountain ranges of the world and the golden sand dunes of the Great Indian Desert - the only desert of the sub-continent. No other region in the country is a conglomeration of so many paradoxes. It is a land of superlatives, everything over here is breathtakingly beautiful, impressive and fascinating! The state is well connected with other parts of the country and can be easily approached from Delhi and Bombay. Fast trains, direct bus and air connections make travel easy and comfortable. A visit to this wonderland will leave a lasting spell on your mind. In fact, one visit is not enough to capture the real essence of this magical land. You will, we assure you, keep coming back for more.

Jammu and Kashmir is situated between 32.17 degree and 36.58-degree north latitude and 37.26 degree and 80.30-degree east longitude; the total area of the State of Jammu and Kashmir is 22,22,236 square kilometers. The geography of the Kashmir valley, stretches for about 84 miles from the northeast to the southwest and is approximately 20 to 25 miles broad. Its height above the sea level is over 5,000 feet.

Rajasthan is a destination that defies definition.


Set in a valley of the Aravalli Hills, the city of the kingdom of the Ranas of Mewar, presents a tranquil portrait of white marble palaces, placid blue lakes, and green hills, and defiantly colorful in an avid landscape. It is a walled city, with five impressive gates. Lake Pichola, is a not to be missed site, fringed with hills, gardens, havelis, ghats and temples. The lake Palace, is a magical monument set amidst the lake, and recalls, the grandeur and romance of Rajputana.


A medieval town on the western fringe of India, with its beautiful buildings, and narrow street and golden sandstone walls. The approach is across the scorching desert. The Golden Fort dominates the town. This town is famous for its camel safaris.


Bharatpur in Rajasthan is set in the Jat land replete with old forts and palaces. The Bharatpur Palace has large number of ancient exhibits dating to 15th century. Deeg with it's pleasure palace is often visited. Proximity to Agra adds to its attraction. But it is best known for its bird sanctuary. The Koladeo National Park with it's rich variety is perhaps the best in Asia. Every year the rare Siberian Cranes migrate here to spend winters in the warm climate of Bharatpur. The nearest airport is Agra. Regular trains connect Bharatpur with other cities on Delhi_ Mumbai trunk route and it has a very good network of buses.


The 'pink' city, first used in 1853, when this welcoming color was painted, to honour Prince Albert, is the capital of Rajasthan, and is around 275 years old. Tourist attractions are varied. The Hawa Mahal or Palace of Winds, built in pink sandstone, is the most famous building, and built for ladies of the harem. The City Palace, occupies the centre of Jaipur, and should not be skipped. The Jantar Mantar is a grand observatory, built by Jai Singh, after whom Jaipur is named.


The burial place or Dargah of Moinuddin Chisti, a Muslim saint, his tomb became a world famous place of pilgrimage, and at Id and Muharram, pilgrims converge from all over. Mosques, pavilions and other tombs were subsequently erected.


Pushkar Lake is a sacred place for Hindus, since at the end is the only Brahma (one of the famous trinity, apart from Vishnu & Shiva) temple in the country, and marks the place where Brahma was incarnated. At the Kartik Poornima (full moon in November), is a spectacular fair, of cattle and camels, and a must on a tourist's calendar.


This was once the Capital of Marwar, and stretches around the Meherangarh Fort, and is on the edge of the Thar Desert. This was an ancient trading centre, on the Delhi-Gujarat route, and generated wealth for the military might. The Umaid Bhawan Palace, and Museum, and nearby Chhatris, besides the fort, are worth visiting.


The city was founded by Rao Bikaji and was an important center in the ancient caravan trade route. The most famous of all structures is the massive fort with its 986 mtr. Long wall, 37 bastions, 2 entrances and exquisite quality of stone carving seen on the palaces and havelis inside the fort. Lalgarh palace made of red sandstone is 3 kms from the town; the 16th century Bhandsagar temple complex is only 5 kms away. The government managed camel breeding farm , perhaps the only of its kind in Asia, is only 10kms away. The Karni Mata Temple is famous for its profusion of rats as they are considered sacred and worshipped, is 33kms Bikaner. The temple has huge silver gates and exquisite marble carvings.


The town is full of Rajput legends and history. It was built in the 8th century by Bappa Rawal. The attraction here is the Chittorgarh fort that has been besieged thrice in the past each time resulting in "Jauhar" , mass suicide by women and children. The best way to visit Chhitorgarh would be to make Udaipur once base and take a day's excursion to the for


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