Preview of an upcoming trip to Turkey, Bangladesh, Bhutan, and India ticking off four new countries to bring the country count to 57!
Neel, my enthusiastic Indian friend, told me a month ago that he was planning a trip back to the motherland. This was great news, as I always wanted to visit India. Immediately a question popped into my head: What other countries could I see?
After searching online for tickets, flight routes, and other options I finalized an itinerary to cover four new countries.
First I purchased a multi city ticket with Turkish Airlines (similar pricing to a round trip but you land and depart from different airports, even in different countries).
This ticket allowed me to spend a full day (~13 hours) in Istanbul, Turkey, arriving early morning and departing at night.
Then I would catch a flight to Dhaka, Bangladesh.
My ticket home would depart from New Delhi, India.
Now to fill in the extra time in between the flights. At this point, Bill decided to join in on the adventure.
From Dhaka, we found flights directly to Bhutan with their sole airline Druk Air. This was a bit tricky with the limited flights and timing, but the best we could do was fly out the following day, only allowing for one night in Bangladesh. Fine.
There was a bit more of a selection for flights out of Bhutan into India, but not by much. We eventually decided to land in and start our India tour in Calcutta.
Now the fun part.
How do you see all major sights of India in just over a week?
Well the short answer is: You don’t.
India is huge and the major tour sites are spread all across the country. Though there are plenty of flights, direct routes from tourist sites are few and far between. After countless hours of analyzing flight routes, multi-city possibilities, airline schedules, and other combinations, we came up with a crazy itinerary. By purchasing one multi-city flight with Jet Airways and a one-way with IndiGo we could visit Calcutta, Varanasi, Bombay, Cochin, and New Delhi.
From there we would join Neel to continue to tour of Agra, Jaipur, Udaipur, and New Delhi.
All in all, a pretty action packed trip for just over two weeks in four very distinct countries.
This democratic republic is also an associate member of the EU.
Recently Turkey has been in the news along with other countries in the area for its riots and civil unrest.
Hopefully I won’t witness any of that in my short stay!
In 1947, this country became the eastern wing of Pakistan when it was formed until the Bangladesh Liberation War in 1971 which resulted in their independence. Islam is the main religion of the eighth most populous country in the world.
The capital Dhaka should be an interesting place to visit to introduce us to the country.
I didn’t know much about the Kingdom of Bhutan until I saw it on the map bordering India and China. The landscape pictures of this country nestled in the Himalayas were fantastic and enough to make one want to visit.
The country is at a high elevation, with some Himalayan peaks reaching 7,000 meters.
The country’s national religion is Vajrayana Buddhism. The large majority of the population is Buddhist with Hinduism as its second largest religion.
Interestingly enough, its known to be the “happiest country in Asia” from a survey conducted by Business Week in 2006.
The British East India Company ran the country for over a century, before India became independent 1947. You know… Gandhi.
Hinduism, Buddhism, Jainism, and Sikhism all have originated in India which has helped create the diverse culture it has today.
A well known tourist destination for its exotic and varied terrain make India an interesting but daunting place to visit. Points of interest are spread all across the landmass making it difficult to visit on a single trip.
I’m really excited to visit these new countries and leaving this weekend. Follow along for the adventure!