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How to Plan an India and Nepal Trip 2023

How to Plan an India and Nepal Trip 2023

By Chris QuanUpdated Jan. 5, 2023

India and Nepal are neighboring countries. They are two countries you shouldn't miss if you want to explore the diverse landscapes and cultures of South Asia — the world-famous Taj Mahal, ancient palaces and temples, panoramic Himalayan views, and intriguing Buddhist and Hindu values.

In this guide, we are going to look at how to plan a tour of India and Nepal.

Which Country to Enter

Most people choose India as the entry and exit point because of its more convenient international flight connections.

Europe (Paris, Munich, London, etc.), North America (New York, San Francisco, Vancouver, etc.), and Australia (Sydney) all have direct flights to India.

So, it would be more efficient to make India your entry and exit point. You would have more choice of ticket prices, travel dates and times, and more flight options.

How to Travel from India to Nepal

Katmandu Katmandu

Travelling from India to Nepal is very convenient. The most popular and efficient way is to take a flight. There are daily flights to Katmandu (Nepal) from Delhi (India), taking about 1½–2 hours.

You can also travel by land from India to Nepal, but you may spend more than one day on the road. You can take a direct bus from Delhi to Katmandu. The journey takes 25 hours or more.

Because there are no trains in Nepal, if you want to use a train to travel, you could take a train as far as a border city, and from there take a bus to your destination in Nepal.

Incredible India and Mysterious Nepal Combination

How Many Days are Needed for a Trip to India and Nepal

A trip to India and Nepal with the main highlights would take at least 10 days: 7–9 days in India for 3–4 major cities and 3–4 days in Nepal for 2 major destinations.

7 days in India will allow you to explore the three most popular cities — Delhi, Agra, and Jaipur.

If you want something a bit special in addition like a tiger safari or a boat ride on the Ganges River, you may need 8–9 days.

If you want to explore more of India's west or south, you may need about 10 days to 2 weeks. See more on How Long to Spend in India (for First Timers): Itineraries from 5 Days to 1 Month

For a tour of Nepal, Katmandu (the capital city), Chitwan (best for seeing wild animals), Pokhara (best for adventure), and Nagarkot (best for seeing the Himalayas) are the four most popular destinations, which usually take about 8–9 days altogether.

But if you have a limited travel time, you are recommended to choose Katmandu and nearby Nagarkot, taking about 2–3 days. Check out our 11-Day India and Nepal Tour or 10-Day India and Nepal Mini Group Tour for Xmas 2023.

A Sample India and Nepal Itinerary of around 2 Weeks

This itinerary covers the top highlights of India and Nepal. If you're looking for a more in-depth India and Nepal tour, you can check this out. Compared to the basic 11-day tour, this 2-week itinerary will offer more outdoor experiences in Nepal.

Days 1–6: India

India tour map

In the 6-day India leg, you will journey through the classic route for first-timers.

Delhi, Jaipur, and Agra bring together some of India's most iconic architecture, religious atmosphere, and local life.

Itinerary suggested:

  • Delhi (2 days)
  • Agra (2 days)
  • Jaipur (2 days)

In Delhi, you could get a glimpse of India's religion and history by visiting some of its famous temples, pagodas, and ancient tombs. You'll also take a peek into the daily lives of people via a rickshaw tour of its oldest market — Chandni Chowk.

The famous Taj Mahal is the main highlight in Agra. In the pink city, Jaipur, you can explore its splendid palaces and fort.

Recommended Itinerary

Days 7–15: Nepal

Nepal tour map

In Nepal, you can visit four popular places in 8 days. They will show you the most distinctive sides of Nepal — its mysterious and ancient temple complexes, breathtaking views of the snowy mountains, and various outdoor activities.

Suggested itinerary:

  • Katmandu (2–3 days): seeing various temples
  • Pokhara (2 days): enjoying valley views — lakes, falls, caves
  • Chitwan (2 days): exploring the national park and a jungle safari
  • Nagakot (1–2 days): viewing an awesome Himalayan vista

“There are as many gods as men, as many temples as houses.” — You'll see what that local saying means in the capital Katmandu. You can also explore its interesting religious cultural practice — Kumari (“living goddess”).

In Pokhara, enjoy a leisurely boat ride with magnificent mountain views all around, and explore caves, waterfalls, and museums. Pokhara also offers all kinds of outdoor sports, like paragliding, trekking, and biking.

In Chitwan National Park, you can go on a jeep safari to meet various wild animals and take a canoe ride to see the crocodiles.

Nagakot is considered the best viewing platform for the Himalayas. The sunrise wonders of the Himalayas alone will make your visit worthwhile.

The Best Nepal Tour for the First-Timers

If you have other ideas like hiking, you can contact us. We will create a trip based on your interests, length of travel, group size, budget, and other requirements.

How Much Does It Cost for a Trip to India and Nepal

India and Nepal are affordable destinations. Whether you are looking for an economical or a quality, no-expense-spared tour, these countries can satisfy your needs. Here are some for-reference prices based on a private tour:

  • For a medium budget, touring India typically costs around 150–200 USD per day per person (including air fares within India and Nepal, 4-star hotels, attractions, guide, and transfers).
  • For a higher budget of US$200–250 per day per person, more comfort can be enjoyed (this includes flights within India and Nepal, 5-star hotels, attractions, guide, and transfers).

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Entry and Visa Requirements for India and Nepal

Taj Mahal Taj Mahal

India and Nepal have both reopened their borders for international travelers. If you are fully vaccinated, you can travel immediately on arrival without quarantine.

Regarding visa requirements, most travelers need to apply for a tourist e-visa to enter India except residents from certain countries like Nepal, Bhutan, and the Maldives.

You will also need to apply for a visa to enter Nepal. Nepal makes getting a tourist visa quite simple by offering a visa on arrival option.

You can check out more on our 10+ Asia Countries Open for Tourism without Quarantine.

Discover the Splendid Civilization of South Asia

Best Times to Visit India and Nepal

Nepal Hiking in Nepal

Generally, October to April is the best time for a trip to India and Nepal, as it's the dry season.

December to February is the best time for weather. The cool, bright and dry weather make it best for sightseeing and photos.

October and November are the most popular months for trekking to Everest Base Camp in Nepal. India also ends its rainy season at this time.

Christmas / New Year holiday time is one of the most popular periods for an India and Nepal trip. You can expect an exotic Christmas and could welcome in your new year by witnessing the first ray of sunlight shining on Mt. Everest.

If you are planning a trip during the Christmas / New Year period, book as early as possible. Early booking allows you to have a relatively large selection of hotels and more reasonable prices. With Asia Highlights, you enjoy no-risk booking, 100% refund policy! (up to 14 days before departure)

Just contact us if you want an individualized India-Nepal trip. We will design a trip based on your needs, budget, group size, and other preferences.

Tour India and Nepal with Us

Here are more of our sample itineraries covering India and Nepal. All our tours can be adjusted based on your requirements. Just contact us.

Why Travel with Asia Highlights During the Pandemic

  • Tailor-made experience: All of your ideas/needs will be carefully considered to create your ideal trip.
  • Worry-free planning: Your 1:1 travel consultant in Asia will take all the uncertainty out of your planning, helping you navigate any travel restrictions. 
  • No-risk booking: 100% refund policy! (up to 14 days before departure)

Get Inspired with Our Sample Itineraries

At Asia Highlights, we create your kind of journey — your dates, your destinations, at your pace. You can have any trip tailor made for your travel.

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