Gujarat is the 7th largest state in India and rich in cultural and historical heritage. Although it is a popular destination for business travelers (the state has the fastest growing economy in the country), it remains a hidden gem to many leisure tourists. Historically, Gujarat was known as the home of Mahatma Gandhi and the base of the Indian freedom struggle. It is currently the most industrialized state in India and offers wildlife, beaches, and numerous religious and historical sites. I have had the pleasure to visit Gujarat many times and it is a colorful region that reveals an authentic illustration of India's festive heritage. Here are a few fast facts:
These days, if you ask someone why they selected a tour package, destination, or travel operator, one word trumps all others: Value. However, value can mean different things to different travelers. For some, it implies a good deal or considerable savings. For others, the value is in the experience of visiting a new or exotic destination, or fulfilling a lifelong dream. Many travelers excitedly reserve a group tour based on the value of all of the above. The affordable price and enticing inclusions - international airfare, deluxe hotel accommodations, and comprehensive touring - are certainly tempting.
As India continues to be ranked one of the most favorable travel destinations worldwide, hotel chains are busy developing newer and more creative accommodations. Looking ahead, 2011 is going to be one of the most exciting years for unique properties, catering to both budget and luxury travelers. Here are a few of my most anticipated additions to the Indian market:
I often receive follow-up questions to the Social Etiquette portion of our India Destination Guide. India's society has manners that define its beautifully diverse (and often complex) culture. There is a unique blend of traditionalism and modernity and many travelers are in awe of the social structure. Here are a few of the most common questions I received in the last few months: