LGBT Asian Travel, Purple DragonIndia, Body and Soul

Purple Dragon's Gay India Tours: Your Journeys of Lifetime

For most people, a visit to India is a life-changing experience. India is vivid, challenging and full of both remarkable beauty and remarkable cultural contradictions. A visit here is a journey of a different kind, and many visitors find themselves confronting their values and their notions of history and spirituality. Next to China, India is the world's richest, most ancient civilization, the place where the Buddha delivered his first sermons, the birthplace of Hinduism, and of many of the ideas that have shaped both history and thinking for much of the world. Kublai Khan, Rudyard Kipling, Shirley Temple and Bollywood have hinted about what is in store for those who have never visited here. If you are one of them, this may be the journey of a lifetime.

Planning Your Holiday

Purple Dragon's gay India tours are all-inclusive travel programs  designed to help first-time visitors get acquainted with dazzling India. We are a gay owned and managed company and our customers are primarily gay. However, you do not have to be gay to enjoy one of our India programs. Our mainstream customers choose us because they know they will get something better from a gay company.

Creating the perfect adventure could not be easier! Our programs are all modular. Choose a destination and arrive any day. Add any extra sightseeing you like and your trip is tailor-made to suit your own schedule, tastes and budget. Your private tour includes personal guides, so you'll never be herded around on a bus with 40 strangers. Although we have already chosen the optimum amount of time to visit each place you can extend your stay in any of our destinations.

Before your trip we will give you  "Before You Go" information that includes tips about packing, weather, money, shopping, food, travel practicalities and local culture that will help you enjoy a worry-free holiday.

Poor Country = Cheap Tours, Right?

For most people India is not a budget travel destination. If you are looking for a "cheap" tour you are probably in the wrong place since we have never been associated with cheapness.  For good advice about how to compare the value of one travel program with another, please read our Cheap India Tour page.

Convenient Modular Programs

Purple Dragon's India packages offer great value and save you time and effort by arranging your choice of hotel, round trip airport transportation, and sightseeing with a personal English-speaking guide. You can add optional sightseeing if you wish.

The Golden Triangle dot Delhi, Agra and Jaipur form the corners of the world's most spectacular triangle. This is a program for guests who have only a short time to get a first taste of India. You can extend your stay by adding one or more of the options below.

Delhi New and Old dot If you are planning to visit Delhi as a short stop in a long Asia itinerary or need to go there for business, our basic New Delhi package could be your cup of cha.

Mumbai Martini dot We have whipped up a spicy cocktail for our guests who have time for only a brief stop in Mumbai (Bombay) and want to see the highlights before business obligations or travel to an onward destination.

Optional Add-On Destinations

Have more time and want an in-depth adventure in India. You can extend our Golden Triangle program by adding one or more of the options below. Sorry, but we do not offer these separately, nor do we offer guide-only services in India.

Surajgarh dot Journey to the edge of India's largest desert to spend the night in a palace fortress that has been transformed into a luxury hotel, complete with a pool, roof-top restaurant and village musicians. Ride a camel-drawn cart through a Rajasthani village to see lavishly-decorated but now-abandoned mansions.

Ranthambore dot A few days in one of India's most beautiful national nature preserves will give you a chance to see all kinds of wildlife close-up. Ranthambore National Park is famous for its tiger population. You will also have a chance to see elephants, rhinos countless birds, and exotic plant life.

Udaipur dot India's "City of Lakes" has been compared to Venice. Massive marble palaces of the Maharajas of old are there for you to explore, along with grand and unusual Jain temples.

Path to the Ganges dot Journey beyond Delhi, Agra and Jaipur to visit Khajuraho, the "Angkor Wat of India" and the holiest of Hindu cities, Varanasi (Benares). In addition to Delhi, Agra and Jaipur, you will see some of the world's most erotic temple carvings and--it you are up to it--take a dip in the Ganges.

Bhutan dot The "Land of the Thunder Dragon," after being closed to the world for centuries, remains as one of Asia's last unspoiled destinations. We have four different Bhutan itineraries, depending on how much time you have to spare. You can fly to Paro, the location of the kingdom's only airport, from Bangkok, Gaya, Delhi, Kathmandu and Kolkata.

Custom Itineraries

We are not limited to the most popular itineraries that appear in the collection on our website. We also offer custom tours to many other places you may want to include in your travels, including many fascinating cities in Rajasthan, Kerala, Kashmir and the foothills of the Himalayas. There are a number of suggested itineraries on our Custom India page. We are slowly developing this material, so some pages are incomplete.

Gay Life in India

India is probably not the best place to go for someone who wants to experience a lot of gay nightlife or entertainment. If you are content with amazing sights and sounds, incomparable history, terrific food and unparalleled shopping, India is a great choice for our guests who can't stand another summer Mediterranean holiday.

Although the percentage of gay/lesbian/bi people in India is probably about the same as anywhere else in the world, India's homosexuals are largely invisible. However, this has already begun to change and will continue to change at lightening speed as India becomes more modern and Westernized.

Pride events were held throughout India in June 2008, laws against homosexuality were struck down in New Delhi and a strong campaign is  under weigh to similar arcane colonial laws throughout the rest of the country.

Several bars in New Delhi have a 'gay night' once a week, and there are three weekly gay "parties" in Mumbai. We have even heard that there is a new gay bar in Udaipur.

Weather

For first time visitors the best season to visit Delhi is between October to March. Summers in Delhi are very hot and often rainy, so prices are significantly lower May through September.

Passports & Visas

A visa is required for citizens of most countries and you must make these arrangements in advance of your departure. We will give you plenty of help to prepare for your adventure, including detailed "Before You Go" information.

What We Do

Purple Dragon is Asia's oldest, largest and most respected tour operator specializing in programs for discerning gay and lesbian travelers. All of our tours are private and include private transportation and one of our legendary private guides. We do not offer group tours.  The big advantage to a private tour is, of course, that you do not have to put up with other people or compromise your own schedule and activities to suit others in a group. You can spend a bit more time at places that really matter to you, and avoid places that do not, and go at your own pace. We use gay-owned or LGBT-friendly hotels wherever possible and show our guests the local gay nightlife where it exists. You do not have to be gay to enjoy one of our all-inclusive tour packages. A growing number of mainstream guests travel with Purple dragon because they know they will get something better from a gay company.