Here are some general tips for visitors to Uttarakhand. The tips below would help you extract the best out of your trip to Uttaranchal.
The state of Uttaranchal has a never ending sky with high and lofty mountains beckon you to come to their territory just once. But to actually enjoy yourself there you need to be prepared and to help you with this preparation, we are jotting some travel tips to make things easier.
- Try to know about a place beforehand so that you appear confident. This confidence will help you to bargain and nobody would try to cheat you.
- The people of Uttarakhand are extremely warm and friendly. They are always eager to help anybody who is in trouble. Ask anyone if you have lost directions or landmarks.
- Avoid provocative or revealing clothing, especially at religious places. It might attract the wrong type of men to you and offend cultural sensibilities.
- Carry a map, a compass, cash (in lower denominations of Rs 10, 20, 50 & 100), your travel papers like a copy of your passport, visa, health checks etc on person.
- While paying somebody do not take out the entire wad of cash you have. There are chances of getting it pick pocketed.
- Do not accept anything from a stranger, even if he / she say it is ready made or packeted. The food can be laced with drugs and the people might rob you.
- Do not eat raw cut foods like salads in hotels since it could be contaminated. The contamination can lead to dysentery or worse, even food poisoning. Eat only full fruits bought from a vendor, if you wish.
- If your passport / visa are stolen / lost then immediately inform the local consulate since your documents may be forged or misused.
- Most towns have means of competent local transportation such as taxis, auto rickshaws, cycle rickshaws, and buses. Private cabs can also be hired at pre-discussed rates / destinations.
- When shopping, first take a look around the market asking the prices. After the first tour you will have an idea of the average value of an article. Go the shop with the lowest price and bargain. Bargaining is the norm in India and one needs to polite and patient but assertive.
- If you want to click photos of localites then first take their permission, especially women.
- Public display of affection is frowned upon and it is appreciable if one maintains distance from the opposite sex at places like a temple or Gurudwara.
- The norm for tipping is usually 10% of the bill but in Dhabas (roadside motels) you need not pay tips. The tipping can also depend upon whether you liked the place or not.
- Most people in Uttarakhand speak Hindi, tourist guides and city people can speak English but Garhwali and Pahari is prevalent in small towns and remote areas.