Grand Discovery of India

A sub-continent like no other! Revel in the beauty and diversity of this extraordinary country on a thrilling 29 Day Grand Discovery of India. Discover the grandeur of North India as you journey around the ‘Golden Triangle’ of Delhi, Jaipur and Agra. Continue to spiritual Varanasi, search for tigers in Ranthambore National Park and marvel at the incredible Taj Mahal. Your journey then heads south as you explore the British colonial history of Bangalore and Mysore, the lush highlands of Coorg and Kabini and cruise along the spectacular Kerala Backwaters.

Planning your holiday is easy, and speak to your friendly Consultant.

Day 1: Delhi

We welcome you to North India before arriving at your luxurious hotel for the next two nights.

Day 2: Delhi

Explore Old Delhi and India’s largest mosque, Jama Masjid. Dazzle your senses on a rickshaw ride through Asia’s largest wholesale spice bazaar and Delhi’s oldest streets, finishing with a traditional lunch in Dharampura haveli. Later, visit Humayan’s Tomb and drive past the India Gate and Presidential Avenue. Tonight, enjoy a special welcome dinner.

Day 3: Delhi – Varanasi

Fly to India’s holiest Hindu city, Varanasi for a two night stay.

Enjoy a rickshaw ride down to the banks of the Ganges River. Cruise the holy river at dusk whilst listening to the sounds of traditional Indian music. Release sacred offerings into the river and witness the magical ceremony of the evening Aarti.

Day 4: Varanasi

As the sun begins to rise, drift slowly down the Ganges River and watch the many ghats come to life. Afterwards, take a stroll along the ghats and laneways of the Old City. Later, journey to one of Buddhism’s most important sites in Sarnath.

Day 5: Varanasi – Khajuraho

Freechoice: Undertake a yoga lesson or visit a Shiva Temple to experience Rudrabhishek.

Fly to Khajuraho, famous for its magnificent World Heritage-listed temple architecture. Enjoy a two night stay at your hotel overlooking the iconic temples.

Day 6 – Khajuraho

Visit the exquisitely sculpted sandstone temples depicting the exotic Karma Sutra carvings for which these temples are famous.

Freechoice: Watch a sound and light show at the temples or a traditional folk dance.
Day 7: Khajuraho – Orchha – Jhansi – Agra

Drive to Orchha and enjoy a walking tour of the old town. Continue to Jhansi and board a train to Agra. Arrive in the early evening at your luxurious Special Stay hotel in Agra, only 600 metres from the magnificent Taj Mahal.

Day 8: Agra

Marvel at the Taj Mahal at sunrise with its shimmering marble domes and towers reflected in the landscaped pools. Later, discover the World Heritage-listed Mughal Red Fort of Agra.

Gather for evening drinks to overlook and appreciate the architectural wonder of the Taj Mahal from the close proximity of your hotel.

Freechoice Dining: Choose from Asian cuisine at C’est Chine, or a North Indian BBQ. Alternatively, enjoy the buffet at the Bellevue, located at your hotel.
Day 9: Agra – Ranthambore National Park

Explore the World Heritage-listed Site of Fatehpur Sikri en route to Bharatpur. Board a train to travel to Ranthambore National Park and settle into your luxury tent for a two night Special Stay.

Day 10: Ranthambore National Park

Accompanied by an expert wildlife naturalist, search for the elusive Bengal tiger during private morning and afternoon game drives.

Day 11: Ranthambore National Park – Jaipur

Drive to the Pink City, visiting Abhaneri village and its 1,000-year-old step well en route. Later, stop for lunch at Castle Kanota, the setting for the Viceroy Club in the film The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel. Stay at your regal hotel in Jaipur for three nights.

Day 12: Jaipur

Visit the City Palace, home to the rulers of Jaipur. Marvel at the magnificent Jantar Mantar, an observatory built in the 18th century and the magnificent Hawa Mahal (Palace of Winds) with its honeycombed sandstone windows. Experience the art and history of Henna at your hotel.

Freechoice Dining: Learn about traditional Indian cooking with the Ikaki Niwas family or savour the views from high up in Amer Fort while dining at 1135 Restaurant. Alternatively, dine in house at the Giardino Italian restaurant.
Day 13: Jaipur

Begin the day exploring the striking hilltop Amer Fort before enjoying the afternoon at leisure. Tonight, dine at the restored Samode Haveli.

Day 14: Jaipur – Bangalore

Fly to South India via New Delhi to enjoy your two night stay at Bangalore.

Day 15: Bangalore

Explore Bangalore visiting the Botanical Gardens, Tipu Sultan’s Summer Palace and the Bull Temple, and drive past the Government Secretariat, Legislature Building and Cubbon. Enjoy lunch and wine tasting at Grover Zampa vineyards to learn about the art of winemaking.

Day 16: Bangalore – Bekal

Fly to Mangalore and travel to Bekal, located on the coast of the Arabian Sea. Relax by the sea during your two night stay.

Day 17: Bekal

During your morning’s exploration visit Madhur Temple, Malik Deenar Mosque and Bekal Fort. Enjoy the remainder of the afternoon to enjoy the resort’s facilities at leisure.

Day 18: Bekal – Coorg

Leave for Coorg and a two night Special Stay, staying in a Lily Pool Villa with your own private pool. After lunch, enjoy a guided tour of a working coffee and spice plantation before tonight’s cultural show.

Day 19: Coorg

This morning drive to a Kodava village to interact with the locals and appreciate their age-old culture and traditional houses.

After learning about their culture, enjoy a delicious home cooked Kodava lunch with the villagers.

Day 20: Coorg – Bylekuppe – Kabini

Drive to Kabini, the base for exploring Nagharhole National Park and your two night Special Stay. En route visit Bylekuppe Monastery, the second largest Tibetan settlement outside Tibet.

Gather around the infinity pool with its views of the Kabini River for refreshing drinks and canapés.

Tonight, watch a troupe of Kuruba tribal dancers or a documentary about the local wildlife.

Day 21: Kabini

Rise early for a game drive around the park. Afterwards visit a nearby Kuruba tribe village with a naturalist, who will talk about local agriculture. Later this afternoon keep your eyes out while on a boat safari along the Kabini River.

Day 22: Kabini – Mysore

Travel to Mysore, known for its royal heritage and colonial buildings, before checking into your hotel in Mysore for two nights. Later visit Mysore Palace, Chamundi Hills and St. Philomena’s Church. Then return to Mysore Palace to view the weekly illumination of approximately 97,000 lightbulbs.

Day 23: Mysore

Freechoice: Enjoy a morning walk through Devaraja Market or learn about the hand-painted Indian card game called Ganjifa.

This afternoon drive to Srirangapatna Fortress, the former capital of the Tipu Sultan.

Enjoy dinner with a local family in Mysore related to the former royal family. The host has converted most of the rooms of her home into a colourful local school for children.

Day 24: Mysore – Bangalore – Kochi

Drive to Somnathpur, then continue to Bangalore for your flight to Kochi. Upon arrival check into your beautiful colonial-era hotel for the next three nights.

Day 25: Kochi

Head down to the harbour and watch the local fishermen expertly handling the Chinese fishing nets. Discover the different colonial influences during your tour of Fort Kochi, then visit Mattancherry Palace, Jew Town and the Synagogue. In the evening, witness a traditional Kathakali performance, a highly evolved classical form of dance, drama and music.

Day 26: Kochi

Freechoice: Visit a local market and learn the secrets of South Indian cooking or enjoy a ‘Me Time’ yoga workshop. Alternatively, visit Kumbalanghi Village to experience traditional village life and activities.

Freechoice Dining: Dine at Pepper, an all-day diner, or try Rice Boat, a specialty seafood restaurant. Otherwise, try Dolphins Point barbeque and grill.
Day 27: Kochi – Kumarakom

After a relaxing morning, travel into the Kerala Backwaters to Kumarakom and your hotel for the next two nights.

Luxury Houseboat: Alternatively, take the opportunity to spend your first night in Kumarakom on board a houseboat, a converted traditional rice barge known as Kettuvallam, and cruise through the lakes and Backwaters past small villages to witness the local life. Included at no extra cost but must be pre-booked.

Day 28: Kumarakom

Freechoice: Visit Philip Kutty’s Farm and enjoy a Keralan cooking class and lunch or unwind with a traditional Ayurveda massage before lunch at the resort.

Enjoy the afternoon at leisure.

Day 29: Kumarakom – Kochi

Take away wonderful memories of your Indian adventures as your journey concludes with your transfer to Kochi airport.

2020 Dates & PricesTwin ShareSolo Traveller
October: 04$23,390.00$32,090.00
2021 Dates & Prices
January: 17$23,690.00$32,590.00

Inclusions 
Meals: 28 breakfasts, 20 lunches, 20 dinners
Transport:Airport Transfers & Luxury Coach Travel
Flights:Air Ticket: Delhi - Varanasi - Khajuraho / Jaipur - Delhi - Bangalore - Mangalore / Bangalore - Kochi
Accommodation:22 nights accommodation
Guide:Expert Tour Director
Entrance Fees & Touring:Entrance fees & activities as per itinerary

* Tour departure dates are subject to availability at time of booking.
* Prices and itinerary are correct at time of publication and are subject to change without notice.

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India’s Royal Heritage

Unveil the true soul of North India! Golden, blue and pink cities, lake palaces, great deserts, impressive forts and mighty temples, the stunning tapestry of North India will enthral and delight even the most experienced of travellers. Uncover North India’s Royal Heritage as you explore the ‘Blue City’ of Jodhpur, take in the view from the top of Mehrangarh Fort or have a true Rajasthani desert adventure atop a camel near the ‘Golden City’ of Jaisalmer. While in Udaipur, the city of lakes, stay in the extraordinary Taj Lake Palace Hotel. Venture deep into Rajasthan, possibly the most romantic and mythical state on the sub-continent and stay in characteristic forts and hunting lodges in the smaller towns of Nagaur and Narlai. Be at home in a palace in the ‘Pink City’ of Jaipur and the search for the elusive Bengal tiger in Ranthambore National Park. North India will capture your heart with its colour, splendour and brilliance.

Planning your holiday is easy, and speak to your friendly Consultant.

Day 1: Delhi

We welcome you to North India before arriving at your luxurious hotel for the next two nights.

Day 2: Delhi

Explore Old Delhi and India’s largest mosque, Jama Masjid. Dazzle your senses on a rickshaw ride through Asia’s largest wholesale spice bazaar and Delhi’s oldest streets, finishing with a traditional lunch in Dharampura haveli. Later, visit Humayan’s Tomb and drive past the India Gate and Presidential Avenue. Tonight, enjoy a special welcome dinner.

Day 3: Delhi – Varanasi

Fly to India’s holiest Hindu city, Varanasi for a two night stay.

Enjoy a rickshaw ride down to the banks of the Ganges River. Cruise the holy river at dusk whilst listening to the sounds of traditional Indian music. Release sacred offerings into the river and witness the magical ceremony of the evening Aarti.

Day 4: Varanasi

As the sun begins to rise, drift slowly down the Ganges River and watch the many ghats come to life. Afterwards, take a stroll along the ghats and laneways of the Old City. Later, journey to one of Buddhism’s most important sites in Sarnath.

Day 5: Varanasi – Khajuraho

Freechoice: Undertake a yoga lesson or visit a Shiva Temple to experience Rudrabhishek.

Fly to Khajuraho, famous for its magnificent World Heritage-listed temple architecture. Enjoy a two night stay at your hotel overlooking the iconic temples.

Day 6: Khajuraho

Visit the exquisitely sculpted sandstone temples depicting the exotic Karma Sutra carvings for which these temples are famous.

Freechoice: Watch a sound and light show at the temples or a traditional folk dance.
Day 7: Khajuraho – Orchha – Jhansi – Agra

Drive to Orchha and enjoy a walking tour of the old town. Continue to Jhansi and board a train to Agra. Arrive in the early evening at your luxurious Special Stay hotel in Agra, only 600 metres from the magnificent Taj Mahal.

Day 8: Agra

Marvel at the Taj Mahal at sunrise with its shimmering marble domes and towers reflected in the landscaped pools. Later, discover the World Heritage-listed Mughal Red Fort of Agra.

Gather for evening drinks to overlook and appreciate the architectural wonder of the Taj Mahal from the close proximity of your hotel.

Freechoice Dining: Choose from Asian cuisine at C’est Chine, or a North Indian BBQ. Alternatively, enjoy the buffet at the Bellevue, located at your hotel.
Day 9: Agra – Ranthambore National Park

Explore the World Heritage-listed Site of Fatehpur Sikri en route to Bharatpur. Board a train to travel to Ranthambore National Park and settle into your luxury tent for a two night Special Stay.

Day 10 – Ranthambore National Park

Accompanied by an expert wildlife naturalist, search for the elusive Bengal tiger during private morning and afternoon game drives.

Day 11: Ranthambore National Park – Jaipur

Drive to the Pink City, visiting Abhaneri village and its 1,000-year-old step well en route. Later, stop for lunch at Castle Kanota, the setting for the Viceroy Club in the film The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel. Stay at your regal hotel in Jaipur for three nights.

Day 12: Jaipur

Visit the City Palace, home to the rulers of Jaipur. Marvel at the magnificent Jantar Mantar, an observatory built in the 18th century and the magnificent Hawa Mahal (Palace of Winds) with its honeycombed sandstone windows. Experience the art and history of Henna at your hotel.

Freechoice Dining: Learn about traditional Indian cooking with the Ikaki Niwas family or savour the views from high up in Amer Fort while dining at 1135 Restaurant. Alternatively, dine in house at the Giardino Italian restaurant.
Day 13: Jaipur

Begin the day exploring the striking hilltop Amer Fort before enjoying the afternoon at leisure. Tonight, dine at the restored Samode Haveli.

Day 14:  Jaipur – Nagaur

Pass small villages and towns on the way to Nagaur and the magnificent hotel Ranvas, located in the original fort.

Step back in time with an exclusive dinner within Bakht Singh courtyard Baradari in Ahhichatragarh Fort. Dine dressed in traditional turbans and saris, just as the former residents once did.

Day 15: Nagaur – Jaisalmer

Continue west into the desert of Rajasthan to the Golden City of Jaisalmer. Take an orientation walk visiting the well-known Patwon-ki Haveli and Salim Sing-ki-Havelis. Stay two nights at your distinctive hotel in Jaisalmer.

Freechoice Dining: Dine on international fare at Nosh or try traditional rajasthani Thali at the specialty restaurant Legends of Marwad.
Day 16: Jaisalmer

Visit the 800-year-old Jaisalmer Fort and Gadsisar Sagar Tank.

Take a camel or camel cart sunset trek across the sand dunes before a torch-lit dinner on the dunes.

Day 17: Jaisalmer – Jodhpur

Continue to the Blue City for the next two nights. Marvel at the close up view of the Mehrangarh Fort from your room at your boutique hotel located inside the old walled city. Enjoy a tuk tuk ride around the surrounding streets locating the local market close by.

Day 18: Jodhpur

Take a jeep adventure to nearby Bishnoi Villages and learn about their rural way of life.

Accompanied by the museum curator, enjoy a glass of Champagne overlooking the city before continuing on an exclusive walking tour of Mehrangarh Fort. Dinner is at the fort providing an outstanding vantage point.

Day 19: Jodhpur – Narlai

See the rural tribal hamlets whilst driving to the small village of Narlai. Settle into your hotel, a former hunting lodge. Later, set out on your first jeep safari looking for leopards and peacocks on their morning prowl.

Day 20: Narlai

Rise early to watch sunrise over the lake on your jeep safari in hope to view a leopard on their morning prowl. Later, undertake a leisurely walk around town.

Enjoy a drink with a member of the local royal family and then take a bullock cart ride to tonight’s dinner venue and enjoy a delicious dinner by a candlelit 1,100-year-old well. Uniquely romantic.

Day 21: Narlai – Ranakpur – Udaipur

Drive to the ‘City of Lakes’ via Ranakpur to visit the intricate Jain Temple. In Udaipur, live like royalty during your two night Special Stay.

Day 22: Udaipur

Freechoice: Take a cultural walk through the markets or explore the City Palace, built entirely in granite and marble.

Cruise the serene waters of Lake Pichola before indulging in your sumptuous private Mewar Terrace farewell dinner. Overlooking the magical City Palace and Lake Pichola, this is a fitting end to your tour.

Day 23: Udaipur – Delhi

Bid farewell to India as you fly to Delhi (please book onward flights after 9.00pm). Alternatively, you can use your included flight to fly from Udaipur to Mumbai for a post-tour extension.

2020 Dates & PricesTwin ShareSolo Traveller
October: 04$20,390.00$28,490.00
2021 Dates & Prices
January: 17$20,590.00$28,690.00
February: 28$20,490.00$28,590.00
October: 03$20,690.00$28,790.00
November: 14$20,690.00$28,790.00
Inclusions 
Meals: 22 breakfasts, 16 lunches, 14 dinners
Transport:Airport Transfers & Luxury Coach Travel
Flights:Air Ticket: Delhi - Varanasi - Khajuraho / Udaipur - Delhi or Mumbai
Rail:Rail Ticket: Jhansi - Agra / Bharatpur - Ranthambore National Park
Accommodation:22 nights accommodation
Guide:Expert Tour Director
Entrance Fees & Touring:Entrance fees & activities as per itinerary

* Tour departure dates are subject to availability at time of booking.
* Prices and itinerary are correct at time of publication and are subject to change without notice.

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Icons & Hidden Treasures of Northern India

From elaborate royal palaces to the most desolate landscapes, enter into a world of extremes in northern India. Discover Delhi’s colonial grandeur and mouthwatering cuisine. Take in the imposing magnificence of Jaipur’s City Palace and hillside Amber Fort. And let the Taj Mahal mesmerise at sunrise and sunset. Then, head into a limitless wilderness where the leopard roams wild and free and rare birdlife provides a delightful diversion. Live like a maharaja in regal palaces, historic havelis and luxury tented camps – after all, this is the Land of Kings.

Planning your holiday is easy, and speak to your friendly Consultant.

Day 1: Arrive Delhi

Namaste and welcome to Delhi, India’s northern gateway. Nowhere are India’s rich cultural contrasts brought more sharply into focus than Delhi with its ruin-studded gardens, a growing contemporary art scene and world-class cuisine. Receive a warm A&K welcome and be transferred privately to your luxury hotel, The Oberoi New Delhi. Settle in and discover the superb service and facilities or step outside on your own to explore all that this dazzling city has to offer.

Hotel: The Oberoi New Delhi, 2 nights

Day 2: Delhi

Take in the sights of Old and New Delhi today. starting with a visit to the thumping heart of Old Delhi where the towering minarets of India’s largest mosque, Jama Masjid, loom high above the crowded streets. Hop onto a cycle rickshaw and weave your way through the colourful bazaars of Chandni Chowk. Take a photo stop at the Red Fort, the residence of the Mughal Emperors and the seat of the Mughal capital till 1857. Gaze at the ancient ramparts, the stage for some of India’s most momentous cultural and historical events. Savour delicious local cuisine at Veda restaurant designed by one of India’s top fashion designers Rohit Bal, before continuing New Delhi, where modern India’s seeds were first sown.

Drive down the tree-lined Rajpath (the royal path) to the 42-metre-high stone arch of India Gate, a majestic monument commemorating the contribution of Indian soldiers who laid down their lives for the British Empire in World War I. At the far end of the boulevard, glimpse the sprawling President’s Residence, Rashtrapati Bhavan. Finish your tour at the Qutub Minar, a UNESCO World Heritage Site and the tallest free-standing tower in the world. Built in the early 13th century in red sandstone and marble, the tower is covered with intricate carvings of words from the Quran.

Day 3: Delhi – Agra

Begin with a visit to the heritage-listed Humayun’s Tomb. Built in 1570 for a Mughal emperor, this beautiful palatial tomb was the first garden-tomb on the Indian subcontinent. Bid farewell to Delhi and journey overland to Agra, home to the mesmerising Taj Mahal. Standing proud in the heart of the city, the Taj Mahal was built by Emperor Shah Jahan for his wife Mumtaz and is now the world’s preeminent expression of passionate but restrained mourning. Drink in the breathtaking sunset over the Taj Mahal before returning to a royal welcome at The Oberoi Amarvilas, where you can continue to bask in uninterrupted views of the landmark from your luxury room.

Hotel: The Oberoi Amarvilas, 2 nights

Day 4: Agra

Rise early and return to the Taj Mahal as the morning light bathes the marble dome and minarets in a soft glow. Return to the hotel for a sumptuous breakfast, then venture to the former imperial city of the Mughal rulers, the heritage-listed Agra Fort. Venture within its red sandstone walls to discover a labyrinth of highly decorated palaces and ornate marble mosques built by the great Mughal emperor Akbar I.

Return to your luxury hotel for some time at leisure before continuing your discovery of the rich Mughal architecture. Explore the city’s laneways, bustling spice market, sacred mosques and temples. Sample treats at a 200-year-old sweet shop, hop on a cycle rickshaw and hear legends that have been passed down through generations.

Marvel at the mausoleum of Itmad ud Daulah, nicknamed “the Baby Taj”. This architectural jewel is the final resting place of Mirza Ghiyas Beg, grandfather of Mumtaz Mahal (to whom the Taj Mahal was dedicated). Admire its exquisitely carved marble surfaces and see why it’s often considered an architectural first draft of the Taj Mahal.

Continue to Mehtab Bagh (Moonlight Garden), an oasis-like garden complex across the Yamuna River from the Taj Mahal and watch the sunset cast a final golden glow over this iconic monument.

Day 5: Agra – Jaipur

Journey overland towards the dusky beauty of India’s Pink City, Jaipur. Pause en route at the deserted city of Fatehpur Sikri, just west of Agra, to admire one of the region’s most scenic landmarks. Founded in the 16th century by a Mughal emperor, the heritage listed red sandstone city is regarded as Emperor Akbar’s crowning architectural legacy. Enjoy lunch before a quick photo stop at the majestic Chand Baori, one of the largest stepwells in the world, before you arrive at your hotel, the exquisite Rajmahal Palace.

Hotel: Sujan Rajmahal Palace, 3 nights

Day 6: Jaipur

After breakfast, embark on a tour of the Amber Fort for a fascinating insight into the life of the Moghuls. Pay a visit to the Anokhi Museum for a lesson in the traditional Rajasthani craft of hand printing from local artists.

Afterwards, explore City Palace and its museum which houses a superb collection of Rajasthani costumes and armour of the Mughals and Rajputs, including swords, antiques and artefacts.

Then, admire the heavens from within the Jantar Mantar Observatory, an ancient stargazing hub packed with enormous astronomical instruments dating back to the 16th century.

Enjoy a brief photo stop at Jaipur’s most famous building, Hawa Mahal (‘Palace of Winds’), with its distinctive red and pink facade, before setting out on foot to discover the lesser-known wonders of the Pink City. Step inside lively temples to witness traditional customs, take part in a Hindu prayer ceremony, if you wish, and sip tea with locals in a beautifully restored haveli (mansion).

Day 7: Jaipur

Spend your day exploring at your own pace or choose from a range of activities including (additional charge):

Leave the hustle far behind as you soar above Jaipur’s yawning horizons and rolling hills in an enchanting early-morning hot-air balloon flight.

Spend time in the home of a noble Rajput family for an intimate cooking demonstration.

Step inside Clay Botik studio for a hands-on pottery lesson with a local artist.

Enjoy a delicious afternoon High Tea on the terraces and manicured lawns of your luxury property whilst learning about henna painting and turban tying.

Pay a visit to Digantar, a local school supported by A&K Philanthropy.

Day 8: Jaipur – Rural Rajasthan (Nimaj)

Swap the city hustle for the serenity of Rajasthani tented camp Chhatra Sagar operated by descendants of the area’s former rulers. Perched on the edge of a century-old reservoir teeming with birdlife, the five-star retreat comprises luxury en suite tents in an idyllic and peaceful rural setting. This evening get your bearings with a nature walk to spy over 200 bird species before retreating to your private sitting area looking out across the water.

Hotel: Raas Chhatrasagar, 2 nights

Day 9: Rural Rajasthan (Nimaj)

Wake up to views of the water and glorious birdsong. Then, explore your way from a selection of included activities. Tour the local farm and village by open-top jeep, witness the region’s cottage industries in action, and meet local children at the school. For something truly relaxing, drift across the lake on a tranquil boat trip.

Day 10: Rural Rajasthan (Nimaj) – Jodhpur

Bid farewell to your tranquil setting and continue to Jodhpur on the edge of the great Thar Desert. Settle into your hotel, before exploring the treasures of the Blue City. Venture high to the majestic Mehrangarh Fort on a clifftop overlooking the city. Marvel at the intricately carved walls and relive the rich history contained within the fort. Then, marvel at the gleaming white Jaswant Thada in contrast with its red sandstone base. Continue into the heart of the old city and wind through the narrow alleys of the bustling Sardar Market, an explosion of colour and filled with trinkets and handicrafts. Sample one of the city’s famous lassi, a sweet blend of yoghurt and spices, under the Clock Tower before returning to your hotel.

Hotel: Raas Jodhpur, 2 nights

Day 11: Jodhpur

Drive to Salawas for a morning safari, and visit with local potters, weavers and the Bishnoi people. Discover a fascinating culture and ethnic community in the nearby Bishnoi villages. Founded by Guru Jambheshwar in 1451, the Bishnoi sect is founded on 29 (Bishnoi) principles, including unconditional love for nature and wildlife. Spend time learning why they are protective of their land and their unique traditions and customs. En route to Jodhpur stop at a small weaving workshop and watch as family members keep up a hundred-year-old tradition of dhurry weaving.

Afternoon exploring at your own pace or choose an activity (additional cost). Visit to Rao Jodha Desert Rock Park located at the foot of Mehrangarh Fort or take a food walk in Jodhpur experiencing popular street food while walking down the heritage lanes of the old city and Tuk Tuk ride.

Day 12: Jodhpur – Jawai Bandh

Venture into the heart of the wild Aravalli Hills to Jawai Bandh, where leopards roamfree. Amid former kingdoms of Mewar and Marwar, the region is home to the charismatic Rabari herdsmen, a people living in harmony with the indigenous wildlife. Spend some time relaxing in your luxury tented camp before joining one of the local guides on a leisurely stroll looking for nomadic shepherds as they return at the end of the day with their goats. This evening, enjoy the tranquil setting from the stillness of your private veranda.

Hotel: Sujan Jawai, 2 nights

Day 13: Jawai Bandh

If you’re hoping to see a leopard, there’s no better place than Jawai Bandh. Head out on early morning and late afternoon drives in a customised 4×4 accompanied by your expert tracker-guide. Each drive is timed to give you optimal viewing opportunities of the sought-after spotted cat, plus a rich variety of wildlife. Between drives, immerse yourself in the luxury of your stunning tented resort. Indulge in a rejuvenating massage, unwind with meditation or yoga, watch flamingo on the lagoon, or explore the villages of Jawai or the countryside trails surrounding the camp by bicycle or on foot (additional cost).

Day 14: Jawai Bandh – Udaipur

Drive south to India’s most romantic city, stopping en route at the Ranakpur Temples. Admire the intricate architectural style of the largest and most important temples of the Jain religion. Built in the 15th century, the exquisite marble complex comprises more than 1400 carved pillars. Arrive in Udaipur and discover a place where cascading, whitewashed mansions sit alongside deep blue lakes and the undulating Aravalli Hills.

As sunset calls, take a private boat ride on the shimmering waters of Lake Pichola and see the city rising majestically above the lake in the middle of the Rajasthan desert.

Hotel: The Oberoi Udaivilas, 2 nights

Day 15: Udaipur

Set out on a morning discovery of Udaipur’s distinctive architecture, arts and crafts. Your first stop is the enormous City Palace, a flamboyant fusion of Rajasthani and Mughal styles towering over the lake and featured in the James Bond movie Octopussy. Gleaming walls, marble balconies and the spectacular Peacock Courtyard will leave you in awe. Journey on to admire the beautifully carved pillars and painted walls of the three-storey Jagdish Temple. Continue to Saheliyon-ki-Bari (‘The Garden of the Maids of Honour’) to see a lavish tribute to the 48 ladies in waiting who formed part of a royal dowry. Step inside a gallery and be inspired by practising artists as they produce the miniature paintings that Udaipur is famous for. Known as the Mewar school, observe the artist using traditional stone and vegetable colours on various mediums like cotton, silk, bone and paper. Spend your afternoon at leisure.

Day 16: Depart Udaipur

Depart Udaipur with a private transfer to the airport for your onward journey.

2020 Dates & PricesTwin ShareSolo Traveller
Departs Delhi Daily: $14,325.00Price on Application

Inclusions 
Meals: 15 breakfasts, 8 lunches, 4 dinners
Transport:Airport Transfers & Private Air-Conditioned Vehicle
Accommodation:15 nights accommodation
Guide:English Speaking Guides
Entrance Fees & Touring:Entrance fees & activities as per itinerary

* Tour departure dates are subject to availability at time of booking.
* Prices and itinerary are correct at time of publication and are subject to change without notice.

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Jewels of India

The Jewels of India come alive! Stretch your wings as you take in the best North India has to offer. From the history and beauty of Jodhpur to the deep spirituality of Varanasi and Sarnath, North India contains many treasures.

Peel back the layers of India’s mesmerising capital Delhi before flying to India’s holiest Hindu city, Varanasi. Spend two days exploring this fascinating place, including a sunset cruise on the mythical Ganges River where you’ll release sacred offerings into the river as the ritual of Aarti is performed. Journey to Sarnath to walk through Deer Park, where Buddha is reputed to have first taught his Dharma, or teachings. Travel to Khajuraho, which boasts some of the most incredible World Heritage-listed sandstone temples in the world, then stand in awe before the temple of love that is the Taj Mahal. Marvel at the sights of the gorgeous ‘Pink City’ of Jaipur. Enjoy champagne from the impressive Mehrangarh Fort and wander the streets in the ‘Blue City’ of Jodhpur, before relaxing by Lake Pichola in romantic Udaipur.

Planning your holiday is easy, and speak to your friendly Consultant.

Day 1: Arrive Delhi

Be welcomed to North India with a traditional floral garland and red tikka before arriving at your hotel for the next two nights.

Day 2: Delhi

Explore Old Delhi and India’s largest mosque, Jama Masjid. Dazzle your senses on a rickshaw ride through Asia’s largest wholesale spice bazaar and Delhi’s oldest streets, finishing with a traditional lunch in Dharampura haveli. Later, visit the inspiration for the Taj Mahal, Humayan’s Tomb and drive past the India Gate and Presidential Avenue. Tonight, enjoy your special welcome dinner.

Day 3: Delhi – Varanasi

Fly to India’s holiest Hindu city, Varanasi and enjoy the next two nights at your hotel.

Enjoy a rickshaw ride to the banks of the Ganges River. Cruise the holy river at dusk while listening to the sounds of traditional Indian music. Release sacred offerings into the river and witness the magical ceremony of the evening Aarti.

Day 4: Varanasi

As the sun begins to rise, drift slowly down the Ganges River and watch the many ghats come to life. Afterwards, take a stroll along the ghats and laneways of the Old City. Return to your hotel for a morning at leisure. This afternoon, journey to Sarnath and spend time at one of Buddhism’s most important sites, Deer Park.

Day 5: Varanasi – Khajuraho

Freechoice: Take a yoga lesson or visit a Shiva Temple to witness a ritual to appease the God Shiva.

Later, fly to Khajuraho, famous for its magnificent World Heritage-listed temple architecture. Enjoy a two night stay at your hotel overlooking the iconic temples.

Day 6: Khajuraho

Be inspired as you explore exquisitely sculpted sandstone temples built between the 9th and 10th centuries by the Chandela Dynasty, which dominated Central India. Marvel at scenes depicting gods and goddesses, beast and warriors, dancers and musicians and the exotic Kama Sutra carvings for which these Khajuraho temples are most famous.

Freechoice: Enjoy a sound and light show at the temples or a traditional folk dance.
Day 7: Khajuraho – Orchha – Jhansi – Agra

Drive to Orchha and enjoy a walking tour of the old town before continuing to Jhansi and boarding a train to Agra. Arrive at your luxurious Special Stay hotel for two nights in Agra, only 600 metres from the magnificent Taj Mahal.

Day 8: Agra

Marvel at the Taj Mahal at sunrise with its shimmering marble domes and towers reflected in the landscaped pools. Inlaid with black marble and semi-precious stones, this architectural marvel, built by the Mughal Emperor Shah Jahan for his favourite wife Mumtaz, sparkles in different colours throughout the day. Later, discover the World Heritage-listed Mughal Red Fort of Agra, built in the 16th century, and learn about the links between the two attractions.

Gather for evening drinks to overlook and appreciate the architectural wonder of the Taj Mahal from the close proximity of your hotel.

Freechoice Dining: Choose Asian cuisine at C’est Chine, or a North Indian BBQ. Alternatively, enjoy the buffet at Bellevue at your hotel.
Day 9: Agra – Jaipur

Wander around the World Heritage-listed site of the Mughal capital city of Fatehpur Sikri en route to Jaipur, also known as the ‘Pink City’. Stop and visit Abhaneri village and its 1,000-year-old step well. Check into your hotel in Jaipur for the next two nights

Day 10: Jaipur

Explore the City Palace and the World Heritage-listed Jantar Mantar, an 18th century observatory, where the remarkable astronomical devices are still used today. View the magnificent Hawa Mahal (Palace of Winds) with its honeycombed sandstone windows where the ladies of the royal household would watch everyday life pass by. Experience the art and history of Henna followed and dress in traditional saris and turbans before enjoying dinner in the restored Samode Haveli.

Day 11: Jaipur – Pushkar

Begin your day by exploring the striking hilltop Amer Fort. Explore the Maharajah’s apartments, the many palaces with interiors richly decorated with exquisite paintings and intricate carvings. Soak in the views of the massive ramparts surrounding the complex before driving to Pushkar, home of the famous camel fair. Enjoy an overnight stay.

Day 12: Pushkar – Jodhpur

After visiting Pushkar Lake and the Jagatpita Brahma Mandir, one of the very few temples of Hindu Lord Brahma, continue to the ‘Blue City’ of Jodhpur for the next two nights. Marvel at the close up view of the Mehrangarh Fort from your room at your boutique hotel located inside the old walled city. Enjoy a tuk tuk ride around the surrounding streets locating the local market within walking distance of your hotel.

Day 13: Jodhpur

This morning take off on a jeep adventure to the nearby Bishnoi Villages, learning about their rural way of life. This afternoon time is your own to relax at the hotel or continue to explore the old city and markets.

This evening, accompanied by the museum curator, enjoy a glass of Champagne overlooking the city before continuing on an exclusive walking tour of Mehrangarh Fort. Dinner is at the Fort providing an outstanding vantage point over the city.

Day 14: Jodhpur – Udaipur

Journey to Ranakpur, set in a secluded valley and discover the beautiful and spectacular 15th century Jain Temples. Rising majestically from a hill, the temples are exquisitely carved, boasting marble domes and 1,444 intricately carved pillars. Continue to Udaipur, one of Rajasthan’s most beautiful and romantic cities set at the southern end of the Aravalli Hills for your two night stay located on the edge of Lake Pichola overlooking the City Palace.

Day 15: Udaipur

Freechoice: Take a walk through the markets or explore the City Palace, built in granite and marble, and the nearby Jagdish Temple.

Cruise the serene waters of Lake Pichola during the magical hours of dusk.

Reflect on your journey while enjoying pre-dinner drinks. Indulge in your sumptuous private farewell dinner, decorated with flowers and candles overlooking the magical City Palace and Lake Pichola, a fitting end to your tour.

Day 16: Udaipur – Delhi / Mumbai

Bid farewell to India as you fly to Delhi. Please book onward flights to depart Delhi after 9.00pm. Alternatively, you can use your included flight to fly from Udaipur to Mumbai for a post-tour extension.

2020 Dates & PricesTwin ShareSolo Traveller
November: 19$14,390.00$19,790.00
2021 Dates & Prices
February: 11$14,090.00$19,490.00
November: 04$14,390.00$19,990.00
Inclusions 
Meals: 15 breakfasts, 10 lunches, 9 dinners
Transport:Airport Transfers & Luxury Coach Travel
Flights:Air Ticket: Delhi - Varanasi - Khajuraho / Udaipur - Delhi or Mumbai
Rail:Rail Ticket: Jhansi - Agra
Accommodation:15 nights accommodation
Guide:Expert Tour Director
Entrance Fees & Touring:Entrance fees & activities as per itinerary

* Tour departure dates are subject to availability at time of booking.
* Prices and itinerary are correct at time of publication and are subject to change without notice.

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Golden India

The essence of the golden triangle. Celebrate the rich history, culture and landscapes of this diverse and fascinating region with the perfect introduction to the wonders of North India on this Golden India Tour. Explore Jama Masjid, the largest mosque in India before winding your way through Delhi’s oldest streets in a rickshaw and enjoying lunch with a family in a traditional haveli. Journey to Varanasi and float down the Ganges River before marvelling at the workmanship of the Khajuraho Temples. In Agra, experience sunrise over the mighty Taj Mahal whilst in the evening relax with sundowner drinks overlooking this monument to love. Spend two nights at the Oberoi Vanyavilas in Ranthambore National Park, searching for the elusive Bengal tiger before travelling to the ‘Pink City’ of Jaipur where a host of treasures await, including the magnificent World Heritage-listed observatory of Jantar Mantar and the Palace of the Winds.

Planning your holiday is easy, and speak to your friendly Consultant.

Day 1: Arrive Delhi

We welcome you to North India before arriving at your luxurious hotel for the next two nights.

Day 2: Delhi

Explore Old Delhi and India’s largest mosque, Jama Masjid. Dazzle your senses on a rickshaw ride through Asia’s largest wholesale spice bazaar and Delhi’s oldest streets, finishing with a traditional lunch in Dharampura haveli. Later, visit Humayan’s Tomb and drive past the India Gate and Presidential Avenue. Tonight, enjoy a special welcome dinner.

Day 3: Delhi – Varanasi

Fly to India’s holiest Hindu city, Varanasi for a two night stay.

Enjoy a rickshaw ride down to the banks of the Ganges River. Cruise the holy river at dusk whilst listening to the sounds of traditional Indian music. Release sacred offerings into the river and witness the magical ceremony of the evening Aarti.

Day 4: Varanasi

As the sun begins to rise, drift slowly down the Ganges River and watch the many ghats come to life. Afterwards, take a stroll along the ghats and laneways of the Old City. Later, journey to one of Buddhism’s most important sites in Sarnath.

Day 5: Varanasi – Khajuraho

Freechoice: Undertake a yoga lesson or visit a Shiva Temple to experience Rudrabhishek.

Fly to Khajuraho, famous for its magnificent World Heritage-listed temple architecture. Enjoy a two night stay at your hotel overlooking the iconic temples.

Day 6: Khajuraho

Visit the exquisitely sculpted sandstone temples depicting the exotic Karma Sutra carvings for which these temples are famous.

Freechoice: Watch a sound and light show at the temples or a traditional folk dance.
Day 7: Khajuraho – Orchha – Jhansi – Agra

Drive to Orchha and enjoy a walking tour of the old town. Continue to Jhansi and board a train to Agra. Arrive in the early evening at your luxurious Special Stay hotel in Agra, only 600 metres from the magnificent Taj Mahal.

Day 8: Agra

Marvel at the Taj Mahal at sunrise with its shimmering marble domes and towers reflected in the landscaped pools. Later, discover the World Heritage-listed Mughal Red Fort of Agra.

Gather for evening drinks to overlook and appreciate the architectural wonder of the Taj Mahal from the close proximity of your hotel.

Freechoice Dining: Choose from Asian cuisine at C’est Chine, or a North Indian BBQ. Alternatively, enjoy the buffet at the Bellevue, located at your hotel.
Day 9: Agra – Ranthambore National Park

Explore the World Heritage-listed Site of Fatehpur Sikri en route to Bharatpur. Board a train to travel to Ranthambore National Park and settle into your luxury tent for a two night Special Stay.

Day 10: Ranthambore National Park

Accompanied by an expert wildlife naturalist, search for the elusive Bengal tiger during private morning and afternoon game drives.

Day 11: Ranthambore National Park – Jaipur

Drive to the Pink City, visiting Abhaneri village and its 1,000-year-old step well en route. Later, stop for lunch at Castle Kanota, the setting for the Viceroy Club in the film The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel. Stay at your regal hotel in Jaipur for three nights.

Day 12: Jaipur

Visit the City Palace, home to the rulers of Jaipur. Marvel at the magnificent Jantar Mantar, an observatory built in the 18th century and the magnificent Hawa Mahal (Palace of Winds) with its honeycombed sandstone windows. Experience the art and history of Henna at your hotel.

Freechoice Dining: Learn about traditional Indian cooking with the Ikaki Niwas family or savour the views from high up in Amer Fort while dining at 1135 Restaurant. Alternatively, dine in house at the Giardino Italian restaurant.
Day 13: Jaipur

Begin the day exploring the striking hilltop Amer Fort before enjoying the afternoon at leisure. Tonight, dine at the restored Samode Haveli.

Day 14: Jaipur – Delhi

Bid farewell to India today as you fly to Delhi. Please book your onward flight to depart Delhi after 9.00pm.

2020 Dates & PricesTwin ShareSolo Traveller
October: 04$12,990.00$18,090.00
2021 Dates & Prices
January: 17$13,390.00$18,490.00
February: 28$12,990.00$18,090.00
October: 03$13,190.00$18,290.00
November: 14$13,190.00$18,290.00
Inclusions 
Meals: 13 breakfasts, 10 lunches, 8 dinners
Transport:Airport Transfers & Luxury Coach Travel
Flights:Air Ticket: Delhi - Varanasi - Khajuraho / Jaipur - Delhi
Rail:Rail Ticket: Jhansi - Agra / Bharatpur - Ranthambore National Park
Accommodation:13 nights accommodation
Guide:Expert Tour Director and knowledgeable local guides
Entrance Fees & Touring:Entrance fees & activities as per itinerary

* Tour departure dates are subject to availability at time of booking.
* Prices and itinerary are correct at time of publication and are subject to change without notice.

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The Golden Triangle & Beyond

Experience a spellbinding world of colour, rituals and wilderness on this 12 Day The Golden Triangle journey through India’s cultural treasures. Witness the heritage and grandeur of the Mughal Empire in Delhi. Prepare to be humbled by the Taj Mahal, famously described as “a teardrop on the cheek of eternity”. Step inside temples and palaces for a glimpse of contrasting cultures. Seek out the majestic tiger in Ranthambore National Park. And discover the perfect harmony of chaos and serenity in the sacred city of Varanasi.

Planning your holiday is easy, and speak to your friendly Consultant.

Day 1: Arrive Delhi

Namaste and welcome to Delhi, India’s northern gateway. Enjoy a warm A&K welcome and private transfer to one of Delhi’s finest hotels. Nowhere are India’s rich cultural contrasts brought more sharply into focus than Delhi with its ruin-studded gardens, a growing contemporary art scene and world-class cuisine. Spend time relaxing in your luxury accommodation the Imperial Hotel, undoubtedly one of Delhi’s finest hotels. Relax in the gardens and exquisite restaurants or step outside on your own and discover more of this fascinating city.

Hotel: The Imperial, 3 nights

Day 2: Delhi

Head out to see the cultural charms of Old Delhi. Join a local expert and navigate the narrow streets abuzz with daily life to the Turkman Gate and the towering minarets of India’s largest mosque, Jama Masjid. Weave through the colourful streets, alleyways and market stalls of Chandni Chowk to witness a mishmash of cultures. Breathe in the aromas of a 400-year-old perfumery and lose yourself in a treasure chest of gemstones, saris and spices. Marvel at the ancient ‘havelis’ (mansions) and Jain temples. Discover Gurudwara Bangla Sahib, one of the most prominent Sikh temples in India, before sampling the lauded local cuisine at Veda restaurant designed by one of India’s top fashion designers Rohit Bal. Spend your afternoon at leisure.

Day 3: Delhi

Delve deeper into dynamic Delhi today. Start your tour at the Qutub Minar, the soaring victory tower. Built in the early 13th century in red sandstone and marble with intricate carvings of words from the Quran, this is rightly a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Continue to the jaw-dropping Humayun’s Tomb, also a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Built in 1570 for a Mughal emperor, this beautiful palatial tomb was the first garden-tomb on the Indian subcontinent. Move forward in time to New Delhi, where modern India’s seeds were first sown. Drive down the tree-lined Rajpath (the royal path) to the 42-metre-high stone arch of India Gate, a majestic monument commemorating the contribution of Indian soldiers who laid down their lives for the British Empire in World War I. At the far end of the boulevard, glimpse the sprawling President’s Residence, Rashtrapati Bhavan.

Design your own afternoon with an optional half day activity (additional charge). Take a spiritual journey through several of Delhi’s temples including ISKCON (International Society for Krishna Consciousness more colloquially known as the Hare Krishnas) a well-known Vaishnav temple of Lord Krishna temple and the Bahia Temple or Lotus Temple, one of the most modern Bahai house of worship in the world. Immerse yourself in the National Museum, National Gallery of Modern Art and Kiran Nadar Museum of Art.

Day 4: Delhi – Agra

Bid farewell to Delhi and travel by road to Agra, home to the Taj Mahal. Standing proud in the heart of the city, the Taj Mahal was built by Emperor Shah Jahan for his wife Mumtaz and is now the world’s pre-eminent expression of passionate but restrained mourning. Check in to your hotel before setting out to explore the city’s hidden laneways, bustling spice market, sacred mosques and temples. Sample treats at a 200-year-old sweet shop, hop on a cycle rickshaw and hear legends that have been passed down through generations.

Journey to the mausoleum of Itmad ud Daulah, nicknamed “the Baby Taj”. This jewel of a landmark is the final resting place of Mirza Ghiyas Beg, grandfather of Mumtaz Mahal (to whom the Taj Mahal was dedicated). Admire its exquisitely carved marble surfaces and see why it’s often considered as an architectural first-draft of the Taj. Continue to Mehtab Bagh (Moonlight Garden), an oasis-like garden complex across the Yamuna River from the Taj Mahal. From this beautiful spot amidst the fountains and flowerbeds, drink in the sunset over the Taj Mahal – it will take your breath away. Return to a royal welcome at The Oberoi Amarvilas, where you can continue to bask in uninterrupted views of the landmark from your luxury room, as well as from the private dining terrace.

Hotel: The Oberoi Amarvilas, 2 nights

Day 5: Agra

Rise early and return to the Taj Mahal as the morning light bathes the marble dome and minarets in a soft glow. Return to the hotel for a sumptuous breakfast. Then, venture to the former imperial city of the Mughal rulers, the Agra Fort, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Venture within its red sandstone walls to discover a labyrinth of highly decorated palaces and ornate marble mosques built by the great Mughal emperor Akbar I. Return to your hotel to relax, before a final visit to the Taj Mahal as the sun is setting.

Day 6: Agra – Ranthambore National Park

Leave the city behind and venture to Ranthambore National Park, one of the most renowned national parks in Northern India. As you travel overland, stop at the deserted city of Fatehpur Sikri to witness one of the region’s most scenic landmarks. Founded in the 16th century by a Mughal emperor, the fortified red sandstone city is regarded as Emperor Akbar’s crowning architectural legacy and is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. After lunch in Bharatpur, continue by air-conditioned train to Sawai Madhopur, an experience not to be missed, and on arrival transfer to your luxury tented accommodation at The Oberoi Vanyavilas. Surrounded by natural beauty on the edge of the Ranthambore National Park, this is the perfect base from which to explore the territory of the majestic Bengal tiger.

Hotel: The Oberoi Vanyavilas, 2 nights

Day 7: Ranthambore National Park

Spend the day exploring the Ranthambore National Park, and hopefully spying the famous Bengal tiger. Head out on early morning and afternoon private game drives in an exclusive jeep. Each drive is timed to give you the optimal viewing opportunity of big cats on the prowl amid Ranthambore’s lakes, forests and ruined forts. There’s a wealth of wildlife to spot: keep your camera handy for leopard, deer, wild boar, striped hyena, a variety of monkeys and sloth bears, not to mention an orchestra of birdlife. Between drives, immerse yourself in the luxury of your stunning tented accommodation. Take a refreshing dip in the pool and indulge in a rejuvenating spa treatment. As dusk falls climb up the observation tower for remarkable panoramic views of the surrounding jungle.

Day 8: Ranthambore National Park – Jaipur

Rise early and take a trip to the magnificent Ranthambore Fort, which offers dramatic views of the lakes and surrounding forest at sunrise. Then, bid farewell to the jungle as you head overland towards the dusky beauty of India’s Pink City, Jaipur. Famous for its decadent royal palaces and spectacular forts, its architectural riches are in stark contrast with remote Ranthambore.

Drop your luggage at your palace hotel and get your bearings with an afternoon walking tour. Meander through the old city to discover the lesser-known wonders of the Pink City. Step inside lively temples to witness traditional customs. Take part in a Hindu prayer ceremony, if you wish, and sip tea with locals in a beautifully restored haveli (mansion). Then, gaze at the heavens in the Jantar Mantar Observatory, an ancient stargazing hub packed with enormous astronomical instruments dating back to the 16th century. Before heading back to the hotel, there’s time for a quick photostop at Jaipur’s most famous building, Hawa Mahal (Palace of Winds), with its distinctive red and pink facade.

Hotel: Rambagh Palace, 2 nights

Day 9: Jaipur

Leave the hustle and bustle far behind as you soar above Jaipur’s yawning horizons and rolling hills on an enchanting early morning hot-air balloon flight (additional charge). After a relaxing breakfast, embark on a tour of the Amber Fort. Stroll along the ramparts and terraces, admire the Rajput architecture and gain a fascinating insight into the life of the Moghuls. Follow with a visit to the Anokhi Museum for Hand Printing promises to delight as you learn about this classic Rajasthani craft in a restored haveli. Later, discover the Pink City your way with a choice of activities (additional charge). Gain private behind-the-scenes access to the City Palace of Jaipur to witness how the modern royals live. Enjoy a delicious afternoon High Tea on the terraces and manicured lawns of your luxury property whilst learning about henna painting and turban tying.

Day 10: Jaipur – Varanasi

Enjoy a relaxing morning in Jaipur before your flight to Varanasi, one of the world’s oldest cities, the heart of spiritual India steeped in legend and traditions. On arrival, be met by your local A&K representative and transfer privately to your luxury accommodation, on the banks of the holy River Ganges. This evening, head to the city’s ghats (stone steps) that lead down to the river and witness locals performing the Hindu ritual of the Aarti. Watch as people gather to pray, give thanks and send burning candles down the river.

Hotel: Brijrama Palace, 2 nights

Day 11: Varanasi

Rise early for a sunrise Ganges boat trip. Drift slowly down the river, accompanied by local musicians playing the sitar and tabla and soak in a sense of serene spirituality as the sacred river comes to life. See pilgrims immersing themselves at the bathing ghats and offering their morning prayers to the rising sun. Then, set out to explore the city, which is home to more than a thousand temples and shrines. Wander through the old town with its narrow lanes, bustling markets and vibrant temples. Step inside a traditional Akhara, a gymnasium where men of all ages practice a traditional form of wrestling known as kushti or pehlwani. After time to relax, journey to the Sarnath. Understand why this is one of Buddhism’s most important sites and see where Lord Buddha is said to have preached his first sermon. Then, discover Buddhist art treasures in the Archaeological Museum before watching the talented handloom weavers creating exquisite silk Banarasi saris at a local weavers’ colony enroute to Varanasi.

Day 12: Depart Varanasi

With your Indian adventure at its end, transfer to the airport for your onward flight.

2020 Dates & PricesTwin ShareSolo Traveller
Departs Delhi daily: From $7,940.00Price on Application
Inclusions 
Meals: 11 breakfasts, 2 lunches, 2 dinners
Transport:Airport transfers & private air-conditioned vehicle
Flights: Flight Ticket: Jaipur - Sawai Madhopur
Rail:Train Train: Bharatpur - Sawai Madhopur
Accommodation:11 nights accommodation
Guide:Local English Speaking Guide
Entrance Fees & Touring:Entrance fees & activities as per itinerary

* Tour departure dates are subject to availability at time of booking.
* Prices and itinerary are correct at time of publication and are subject to change without notice.

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Colourful India

Delight your every sense during this encounter with the soaring monuments and scenic landscapes of northern India – from bustling Delhi to the jungles of Ranthambore, hilltop fortresses to royal treasures.

Planning your holiday is easy, and speak to your friendly Consultant.

Day 1: Arrive Delhi

India’s vibrant capital extends a lively welcome, launching an unforgettable journey through northern India’s most exquisite sights. On arrival in Delhi, you’ll be transferred to your hotel where you’ll meet your Travel Director and fellow travellers for a Welcome Reception with drinks and local appetisers this evening.

Hotel: Sheraton New Delhi, 3 nights
Day 2: Delhi

Savour the scents of spice as you embark on an exhilarating rickshaw ride, navigating the busy streets of Old Delhi. See the Red Fort, a sandstone fortress which once housed the emperors of the Mughal dynasty for centuries, before riding through the colourful Chandni Chowk market. Watch it come to life as the day’s trading begins amidst the sounds of enthusiastic salesmen and endless traffic. We’ll visit Jama Masjid, one of the largest mosques in India and admire its ornate façades before enjoying the rest of the afternoon at leisure.

Day 3: Delhi

We ‘Dive Into Culture’ this morning, embarking on a guided walking tour to discover the work done by the Salaam Baalak Trust. Your visit will ‘Make A Difference’ to this non-profit organisation which aims to provide a caring environment for street children. Later, we’ll walk through the bazaar of Paharganj, rubbing shoulders with the locals who flock to the market to shop every day. Lunch is at a local restaurant, before we head to the district of New Delhi, designed and built by the British in the 1920s. Here we’ll visit the UNESCO-listed Humayun’s Tomb and Qutub Minar before driving past Parliament House and India Gate, commemorating the Indian soldiers who died during WWI.

Day 4: Delhi – Agra

Delve into the imperial history of the Mughal Empire as you explore the iconic, yet unexpected highlights of Agra. Visit the UNESCO-listed Agra Fort and stroll through the chambers of a royal residence that lay at the centre of the dynasty until the 17th century. As you drive through the city’s crowded streets, connect with its vibrant spirit and raw energy.

Hotel: Double Tree by Hilton
Day 5: Agra – Ranthambore

Gaze at the sun-kissed white marble of the Taj Mahal, arriving just before sunrise to see its elegant walls glow with rose and golden hues. Learn how this well-preserved landmark stands today as a monument of love, then return to your hotel for breakfast. Later today, travel to Ranthambore and upon arrival check into your hotel for dinner and your overnight stay.

Hotel: The Tigress Ranthambore, 2 nights
Day 6: Ranthambore National Park

You’ll have a full day to connect with your beautiful natural surrounds as you explore all that Ranthambore has to offer. Start the day with an early morning visit to Ranthambore National Park, which was once the hunting ground of the Maharaja of Jaipur. Keep your camera at the ready to hopefully snap a few photographs of the resident tigers. Afterwards return to your hotel for breakfast followed by some time to relax. After lunch venture out into the park for another visit and watch for glimpses of the various species of bird and wildlife which find sanctuary here and the ruins of a bygone era which are scattered through the park. Dinner is served this evening at your hotel.

Day 7: Ranthambore – Jaipur

This morning travel to Jaipur, the Pink City and gateway to the colourful state of Rajasthan. After lunch, visit the ornate City Palace and later ‘Dive Into Culture’ with a lesson in the art of turban tying and a favourite pastime in Jaipur, kite flying – giving you insights into the ancient customs and pastimes of the city.

Hotel: Hilton, 2 nights

Day 8: Jaipur

One of today’s highlights is a visit to the UNESCO-listed Amber Fort, but first stop to admire the ornate red and pink façades of the Palace of Winds, whose latticed windows once revealed the outside world to the sheltered ladies of the royal household. Continue to the UNESCO-listed Jantar Mantar Observatory, featuring the world’s largest sundial before meeting a ‘Local Specialist’ to learn about the tradition of hand block printing. See how the Jaipur’s exquisitely patterned cottons have been made for centuries, then witness the delicate art of crafting Jaipur’s elegant blue and green pottery. You’ll have an opportunity to ‘Connect With Locals’ this evening, joining a local family for an exclusive ‘Be My Guest’ dinner in their home to savour some of the local delicacies.

Day 9: Jaipur – Narlai

We journey to Narlai and check into Rawla Narlai, a beautifully maintained heritage resort, which was once one of the Jagir villages of Jodhpur’s royal family. Experience royal Rajasthan within its lavishly decorated walls.

Hotel: Rawla Narlai, 2 nights

Day 10: Narlai

Join a Jeep safari into the nearby countryside and keep a keen eye open for deer and leopard in their natural habitat. Later, take a walk around Narlai village and gain insights into the traditional way of life of the villagers. During term-time, you’ll also visit the village school. Later, meet one of the heads of a noble family who’ll share interesting stories about the hotel and the local residents. This evening, your dinner is served in extraordinary surrounds. Descend into the 16th century baori (step-well) for a memorable meal featuring delicious Rajasthani flavours.

Day 11: Narlai – Jodhpur

Leave Narlai behind and travel to another of Rajasthan’s colourful cities – Jodhpur. Your introduction to the Blue City begins with a visit to Mehrangarh Fort, whose glowing red sandstone façades stand imposingly several hundred feet above the city skyline atop a sheer cliff. From one exquisite monument to the next, you’ll visit Jaswant Thada, walking up its red steps to the shimmering white marble façades that house a memorial built to honour the memory of Maharaja Jaswant Singh II by his son in 1899. The mausoleum is still used by the Marwar Royal Family as its cremation grounds. After a busy day of sightseeing, get a taste of local culture during a visit to a market by tuk-tuk and plunge into its crowded alleys with shopfronts selling vegetables, spices, sweets, silver and handicraftserience.

Hotel: Indana Palace Jodhpur, 2 nights

Day 12: Jodhpur

Leave the busy city streets behind and embark on a 4×4 drive through the Rajasthan countryside. Experience a different side of India as you visit a rural Bishnoi community village, a place that appears to be caught in a delightful time warp, where life still goes on like the days of the past. The villagers are all vegetarians and staunch worshippers of nature in all its forms, especially the sanctity of plant and animal life. You’ll gain insights into the day-to-day experiences of the locals who live here and after the visit you’ll have the rest of the afternoon and evening at leisure or consider joining an Optional Experience for dinner.

Day 13: Jodhpur- Delhi

We leave Jodhpur behind, flying back to Delhi this morning. Our memorable encounter with northern India at its end, we’ll toast to shared memories over a delicious local Farewell Dinner.

Hotel: Sheraton New Delhi

Day 14: Depart Delhi

Say a fond farewell to your travel companions and take a transfer to New Delhi International Airport for your onward flight.

2020 Dates & PricesTwin ShareSolo Traveller
January: 19$6,925.00$9,325.00
February: 02, 16$6,925.00$9,325.00
March: 03$7,150.00$9,550.00
March: 15, 29$6,925.00$9,325.00
April: 05, 19$6,295.00$8,695.00
May: 03, 17$6,295.00$8,695.00
October: 11, 18, 25$6,925.00$9,325.00
November: 07$7,150.00$9,720.00
November: 22$6,925.00$9,325.00
December: 06$6,925.00$9,325.00
December: 20$7,475.00$10,045.00
Inclusions 
Meals: 13 breakfasts, 6 lunches, 8 dinners
Transport:Airport transfers & Luxury air-conditioned coach
Flights: Flight Ticket: Jodhpur – Delhi
Accommodation:13 nights accommodation
Guide:An expert Travel Director and separate Driver
Entrance Fees & Touring: Entrance fees & activities as per itinerary

* Tour departure dates are subject to availability at time of booking.
* Prices and itinerary are correct at time of publication and are subject to change without notice.

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Classic North India

Traversing a wide swath of North India, this lively 15 day tour covers many of the North’s highlights, making it an ideal introduction to the country. We have designed this tour as a showcase of the most interesting sights and engaging experiences that North India has to offer. It includes many of the region’s famous draw-cards – the Taj Mahal, Khajuraho, Varanasi and Udaipur – but also incorporates several rural stops such as Orchha and Jojawar, where you can enjoy some gentle activities like local train rides and village walks. Time in the countryside balances up the pace and the urban versus rural ledger (the fact remains that the majority of Indians live in rural India, despite its numerous big cities, so a well-balanced tour should include time in both). The tour’s conclusion in Mumbai – a city striving for ‘world-city’ status even as it struggles to provide basic necessities to its residents – leaves you with an insight into the possible future of urban India.

Planning your holiday is easy, and speak to your friendly Consultant.

Day 1: Arrive Delhi

Delhi, with its Old and New parts — each with its specific charm and glory — makes a very interesting city for its sustenance of medieval and modern cultures. Old Delhi, built by Mughal Emperor Shah Jahan in the 17th century, still retains its medieval character to a great extent and reminds one of the crowded old towns of the Middle East; while New Delhi – with the exception of the area around the parliament and presidential house, (ie the part designed by Edwin Lutyens) is like any other modern city with tall buildings and large shopping complexes.

Day 2: Delhi

This morning visit the medieval Jama Mosque followed by a walking tour of Old Delhi,  exploring centuries old arts and crafts with artisans belonging to the sixth or seventh generation of the families who first started them.  Visit a marvellous old-fashioned shop where you can test Indian perfume (attar) from cut-glass bottles; stroll through the main bridal street of Old Delhi, Kinari Bazaar, with its dazzling display of embroidered silk wedding sarees, beautiful bangles and colourful turbans for the bridegroom. The Khari Baoli is all about spices – here, rice and dal, dry fruits, nuts and saffron dealers have traded for more than 150 years. The smell of the spices will remain with you even after you have left the market. During this walk, if you are lucky you will also be introduced to the art of pigeon flying by a kabootar baz (pigeon fancier).

Later in the afternoon explore New Delhi – including Humayun’s Tomb and Qutab Minar and drive past Lutyens’ Delhi.

Humayun’s Tomb, another magnificent Mughal building is set in a square enclosed garden. This finely proportioned structure in red sandstone and marble served later as a model for the Taj Mahal.

Dominating the ruins of the earliest existing settlement of Delhi is another famous landmark – the Qutab Minar. This imposing victory tower has five storeys, each marked by intricately carved projections or balconies. Elaborately carved pillars embellish the courtyard of a nearby mosque. At the centre of the courtyard is the amazing Iron Pillar (4th-5th century), which has not rusted through the centuries.

The interesting buildings of Lutyens’ Delhi are the India Gate, the Rashtrapati Bhawan (President’s House) and Parliament House.

Day 3: Varanasi

Transfer to the airport for your flight to Varanasi.  You will be met on arrival and transferred to your hotel.

The Ganges is India’s most sacred river. Hindus believe that its waters have flown eternally, for its source is said to be the summit of Mount Meru, the mythical mountain at the centre of the universe and the abode of the gods. The river is worshipped as the goddess Ganga and the city of Varanasi on its banks is thus one of the most important pilgrimage sites in India.  Also known as Kashi, “City of Light”, Varanasi’s ninety or so riverside ghats – lined with temples and shrines – define this ancient city’s life and identity.

Day 4: Varanasi

Early this morning you will be taken to the ghats to enjoy a boat ride on the river while watching a spectacular sunrise – a most memorable experience. The riverfront, as seen from a boat at sunrise, is a spiritually uplifting sight. Hinduism, deep and mystical, is everywhere – in a decorated doorway, in a glimpse of a glittering temple, in the sound of a sacred bell and in the chants of the priests.

After the boat ride take a brief walking tour of the old town – the lanes and by-lanes are fascinating and the essence of the city. Shops sell rich brocade silks, brassware and also all the articles essential for worship at numerous little shrines. Return to the hotel for breakfast and the rest of the morning is at leisure.

In the afternoon you will be driven a short distance outside Varanasi to visit Sarnath, an important centre for Buddhist pilgrims. Having achieved enlightenment at Bodhgaya, the Buddha came to Sarnath and gave his first sermon. Later, Ashoka, the great Buddhist Emperor, erected magnificent ‘stupas’ and monasteries here in the 3rd century BC.  Sarnath was at its peak when the Chinese traveller Fa Xien visited early in the 5th century AD. In 640 AD, when another Chinese traveller Huien Tsang visited, Sarnath had more than 1500 priests. It was later reduced to insignificance and left in ruins. It was not until 1836, when British archaeologists started excavations, that Sarnath regained some of its past glory.

Day 5: Khajuraho

Transfer to the airport for your flight to Khajuraho.  You will be met on arrival and transferred to your hotel.

This afternoon tour Khajuraho’s magnificent temples. The extraordinary sculptures in these temples show many aspects of Indian life a thousand years ago — gods and goddesses, warriors and musicians, real and mythological animals. However the overwhelming motif of the temples is sexuality, and it’s this fact that makes them so unique.

Day 6: Agra

After an early breakfast begin the 4 hour drive to Orchha, a small town dominated by a series of magnificent 16th and 17th century palaces and temples and one of India’s most marvellous Mughal sites. The deserted royal citadel of Raja Rudra Pratap was the capital of the Bundela kings until 1738.  Take a short tour of the palace complex, temples and the fourteen graceful chhatris (cenotaphs) commemorating the Orchha rulers.

Afterwards, you will be transferred to the railway station at Jhansi (about a half hour drive) to board the train to Agra. You will be met on arrival and transferred to your hotel.

Built in the early 16th century and the capital of mighty Mughals, Agra is famous for its beautiful medieval monuments. It was pampered by the Mughals for more than two centuries — evidence of which is spread all over the city in the form of various structures constructed during their reigns. However, with the fall of the Mughals, Agra became a victim of rebels’ assertion of power and the city suffered a series of plunders by the unruly rebellious forces.

Day 7: Jaipur

This morning you will be taken to visit the Taj Mahal at sunrise. The Taj Mahal has been described as a ‘tear on the face of eternity’ and as an enduring monument of love. Its unique beauty is blended with grandeur and its massive over-all design is matched with immaculately intricate execution. Built by Mughal Emperor Shan Jahan in memory of his beloved queen Mumtaz Mahal, the complex took twenty-two years to complete and is today counted among the Seven Wonders of the World. It is particularly stunning at the time of sunrise. Return to the hotel for breakfast.

After breakfast, check-out of the hotel and visit the famous Agra Fort. Many of the events that led to the construction of the Taj took place here.  Begun by Emperor Akbar in 1565, additions continued to be made until the time of his grandson Shah Jahan. The magnificent palaces, towers, bastions, ramparts and gateways symbolise the power of the mighty Mughals. Built mostly of red sandstone it is strikingly similar to the Red Fort in Delhi.

Following this visit, depart for Jaipur with a stop en route at Fatehpur Sikri.

Fatehpur Sikri was built by the great Mughal Emperor Akbar in the 16th century to serve as the capital of his vast empire. Although Akbar had many wives, he did not have an heir, which led him to many holy men and finally to the renowned Sufi Saint Sheikh Salim Chisti, who lived in an isolated cave near Sikri. The saint blessed Akbar and soon a son was born to him. The grateful emperor named his son Salim after the saint, erected the grand Jami Mosque near the saint’s dwelling and vowed to build a great city on that site. Thus emerged the city of Fatehpur Sikri – a citadel of grand courts, palaces, mosques and gardens that rivalled the splendours of Delhi and Agra. However, destiny had other things in store for the city. Shortage of water and un-rest in the north-west forced Akbar to abandon the city only thirteen years later. Today, even after the passage of 400 years, the magnificence of this royal city has not faded and it remains immaculately preserved. After a short tour continue on to Jaipur.

The capital of Rajasthan, Jaipur is known as the ‘pink city’ because of the pink paint applied to the buildings in its old walled town. Steeped in history and culture, the past comes alive here in magnificent forts and palaces, once the homes of maharajas. Jaipur has been widely regarded as the first modern planned city in the world. Even though it was founded and built in the 18th century, it amazes many modern town planners and architects for the  brilliance of its planning and the beauty of its architecture.

Day 8: Jaipur

Begin the day with a visit to the milk market where large quantities of milk are procured from individual sellers and then resold to wholesale buyers. Observe the interesting ways by which the buyers judge the purity of milk and negotiate the prices.

Afterwards visit Amber Fort; the ancient capital of the erstwhile Jaipur state, this is one of the more fascinating Indian forts.  Its construction began in 16th century and it was subsequently added on to by successive rulers. Inside the fort, the places worth visiting are the Palace of Mirrors, inlaid with thousands of tiny glistening mirrors, the hall of Public Audience and the beautiful manicured gardens.

Continue on to visit the City Palace, Jantar Mantar (medieval observatory) and drive past Hawa Mahal (Palace of Winds).

The City Palace is situated in the heart of the city. The whole complex is wonderfully laid out with large courtyards, balconies, cupolas, arched entrances and gardens, which are a combination of Rajput and Mughal architecture. The museum here displays the rich heritage of the Jaipur royal family in miniature paintings, textiles, garments, books and manuscripts, carpets, palanquins and weapons dating back to the 15th century.

Maharaja Sawai Jai Singh II had a passion for astronomy, which led him to build five astronomical observatories in India at Jaipur, Ujjain, Varanasi, Mathura and Delhi. The observatory at Jaipur, built in 1728, is the largest and best preserved of them. It has a curious collection of sculptures which enable the calculation of many astronomical and astrological events such as eclipses, etc.

Built in 1799 the Hawa Mahal or Palace of Winds is one of the landmarks of Jaipur, although it is little more than a façade. A five-storey structure in pink, it was built to enable the women of the harem to see the activities of the outside world without themselves being seen.

End the day with a short walking tour of Old Jaipur. The bazaars between the Badi (Large) and Chhoti (Small) Chaupar (Square) offer some of most lively scenes that the city has to offer. You will be taken through the labyrinth of colourful alleys where artisans make puppets, bangles, and other local handicrafts. You will also visit the jewellery market or Johari Bazaar, explore architecturally interesting havelis (mansions), and stop by bangle shops in Maniharon ka Rasta and at the flower sellers market near Choti Chaupar.

Day 9: Jojawa

Depart early this morning for the 6-hour drive to Rawla Jojawar.  Situated at the foothills of the Aravalli Range, Rawla Jojawar, which was originally a fort, has been converted to a heritage hotel with sprawling lawns and courtyards.

In the late afternoon take a Jeep Safari; undertaken in a classic vintage vehicle, it covers varying landscapes, with the picturesque Aravalli Hills in the east, and broken rocky hills interspersed with farms and scrub forests all around. It also takes you to the homesteads of the Rabaris, an ethnic camel herding group, and into farms and through villages where time seems to have stood still.

Day 10: Udaipur

Take a Train Safari this morning. A popular excursion, this daily train service takes you from the station at the start of the hill section to the highest station in the Aravallis – the Kambli Ghat station. The one hour ride, through beautiful forests and hills, enables you to interact with the locals, who’ll readily share their seats and make conversation with you. On the drive back from the station take a break for tea and cucumber sandwiches at a tiny Forest Rest House.

Afterwards depart Jojawar for the approximately 4-hour drive to Udaipur. Though the entire state of Rajasthan is replete with fantastic hilltop fortresses, exotic fairy tale palaces and gripping legends of medieval chivalry and heroism, no city is quite as romantic as Udaipur. ‘The City of Lakes’, as it is called, has three huge lakes within its limits and a large number of palaces and other monuments worth visiting. It is surrounded by the ancient Aravalli Mountains where wildlife still abounds.

Day 11: Udaipur

This morning you will be taken for a guided city tour of Udaipur city – including the City Palace, Jagdish Temple and Sahelion-ki-bari.

The huge City Palace, towering over the lake, is the largest palace complex in Rajasthan. It is a blend of stern Rajput military architecture on the exterior and lavish Mughal-inspired decorative art on the interior. Begun by Maharana Udai Singh, the city’s founder, it is made up of at least four separate interconnecting palaces built over a period of nearly three centuries by successive maharanas. The main part of the palace is now preserved as a museum which houses interesting artefacts from the days of the royalty.

Situated close to the City Palace is Jagdish temple; built in Indo-Aryan style, it enshrines a black stone image of Lord Vishnu as Jagannath, the creator of the universe.

Sahelion-Ki-Bari are beautiful gardens laid out in the mid-18th century for a retinue of forty-eight young ladies-in-waiting who were sent to Udaipur as part of a princess’s dowry. The gardens have beautiful lawns, lotus pools, marble pavilions and marble elephant-shaped fountains.

Day 12: Udaipur

Today is a more relaxed day with a number of activities to choose from: a cooking class; a walk in the countryside; or a miniature painting class.

The cooking class takes place in the informal setting of a family home. Firstly you’ll accompany your hosts to the local market place where fresh vegetables and supplies will be purchased, before returning to the family home to prepare lunch. Follow the instructions of your host carefully, as it is your own lunch you are preparing!

The Morwaniya to Badi Trek: A short drive out of the city brings you to the village of Morwaniya, from where the walk begins. Firstly, head towards the village of Varda, where you will meet with a few villagers, visit their homes and observe their lifestyle. Continue on via another village called Bhramano ka Varda, hiking for approximately an hour and a half through a blend of rugged terrain and hills and agricultural fields to arrive at your destination, Badi Lake. Located in the village of Badi, it was constructed by Maharana Raj Singh I (1652-1680) to counteract the devastating effects of a famine. The lake covers an area of 155 sq kms and has a large embankment, which is graced by three lovely chhatris (pavilions). During the drought of 1973, this lake supplied water to the people of Udaipur. From Badi return to Udaipur in time for lunch.

Take a miniature painting class at Painting House Art School, beautifully located just 5 kilometres from Udaipur in the village of Sisarma, on the banks of Lake Pichola. Classes are given by professional miniature painters and take place in the open air. The school teaches all types of paintings (portraits, love scenes, marriage processions, village scenes, tiger hunting scenes, court scenes, flowers and birds) on different types of surfaces such as silk, marble, hand-made paper and cotton, using natural stone colours and real gold and silver. Learn the basics of miniature painting before attempting one yourself – remember the artists here have trained and honed their skills over many years, so don’t expect to match them with your effort!

The afternoon is free to relax at the hotel, shop or explore the old part of Udaipur.

Day 13: Mumbai

Transfer to the airport for a flight to Mumbai. You will be met on arrival and transferred to your hotel.

Mumbai (previously known as Bombay) is the commercial hub of India and a vibrant, colourful and bustling metropolis. It is also an important centre of theatre, art, music, and dance. Although steeped in tradition and with a rich historical past, Mumbai is a city where traditional and modern business practices flourish simultaneously.

Day 14: Mumbai

Begin your tour of Mumbai this morning with a visit to the famous dhobi ghat (washermen colony). Continue on to explore some of the landmarks of the Raj era – visiting the elegant buildings of the Bombay High Court and Victoria Terminus. Afterwards visit the Prince of Wales Museum; a Mumbai landmark, this is one of the best museums in India. You can also visit the house where Gandhi spent much of his time when in Mumbai, which is now a museum, or wander some of the city’s amazing markets, such as Crawford Market and Zaveri (Jewellery) or Chor (Thieves) Bazaars.

It’s nice to end the day with a stroll along the spectacular Marine Drive, perhaps winding up at Chowpatty Beach at sunset, an ideal place to sample some of Mumbai’s famous snacks such as Bhel Puri. [Image: lotuspatch].

Day 15: Depart Mumbai

This morning you will be collected from you hotel and transferred to the airport for your flight home.

2020 Dates & PricesTwin ShareSolo Traveller
Departs New Delhi daily: $5,000.00$6,155.00

Inclusions 
Meals: 14 breakfasts
Transport:Airport transfers & private air-conditioned vehicle, Elephant ride, jeep rides, boat rides
Flights: Flight Ticket: Delhi - Varanasi - Khajuraho / Udaipur - Mumbai
Rail: Taj Express Ticket: Jhansi - Agra
Accommodation:14 nights accommodation
Guide:Local English Speaking Guide
Entrance Fees & Touring: Entrance fees & activities as per itinerary

* Tour departure dates are subject to availability at time of booking.
* Prices and itinerary are correct at time of publication and are subject to change without notice.

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India’s Golden Triangle with Varanasi

Embark on a spiritual interlude with India. Candle-lit rituals on the River Ganges, palaces, forts and tombs, a riot of colour and vibrancy around every corner – your exploration of India’s Golden Triangle and centuries-old heritage takes you through the sandstone and marble halls of the Amber Fort, the pyramidal Palace of Winds and the exquisite Taj Mahal.

Planning your holiday is easy, and speak to your friendly Consultant.

Day 1: Arrive Delhi

Embrace the vibrant energy of Delhi, the capital of India. On arrival, you’ll be transferred to your hotel where this evening you’ll join your Travel Director and fellow travellers for a Welcome Reception with drinks and appetisers.

Hotel: Sheraton New Delhi, 2 nights

Day 2: Delhi

We ‘Dive Into Culture’ this morning, embarking on an exhilarating rickshaw ride around Old Delhi. We’ll view the UNESCO-listed Red Fort – its towering red sandstone palace walls considered to be the most opulent of the Mughal Empire, followed by a visit to Jama Masjid, the largest mosque in India. Our next stop at Chandni Chowk to see first-hand how its merchants spend their day trading enthusiastically. We continue along the ceremonial avenue Rajpath and past Parliament House and India Gate, commemorating the Indian soldiers who died during WWI. After lunch in a local restaurant, we’ll head to the district of New Delhi, where we’ll visit the UNESCO-listed Humayun’s Tomb to admire its magnificent Persian-style façades of white marble and red sandstone. Then it’s on to another UNESCO-listed site, Qutub Minar, the world’s tallest brick minaret. Our evening is at leisure.

Day 3: Delhi – Varanasi

Embark on a pilgrimage to the sacred city of Varanasi, located on the banks of the holy river Ganges. Immerse yourself in its spiritual surrounds, exploring the city’s role as the centre of Hindu religion, before escaping to the countryside and ‘Make A Difference’ with a visit to Rameshwar village. ‘Dive Into Culture’ and witness first-hand how all local activities are aimed at sustainable livelihood and community empowerment whilst ensuring the economic growth of the under-privileged. Observe local women making papad and pickles, doing embroidery or making saris which they sell to the local markets. Visit the village school and the Shanti Dham Ashram, a catholic prayer centre for the Christian society living in Varanasi. Feed your soul as you cruise down the River Ganges to witness the ritual of Aarti, watching as the delicate diya laden with a candle and tiny blooms floats in a magical train down the river. Return to our hotel for dinner.

Hotel: Radisson, 2 nights

Day 4: Varanasi Sightseeing

Admire the pink light of sunrise appear over the River Ganges, watching the sights and sounds of Varanasi stir slowly along the banks of the river. Observe the locals taking their morning bath in the holy water while worshipping the rising sun. Then, return to your hotel for breakfast followed by a visit to Sarnath, one of the four holy Buddhist sites sanctioned by the Buddha himself for pilgrimage. Explore the spectacular collection of Buddhist artefacts dating back to the 3 BC and see the Lion Capital of Ashoka with its inverted lotus carving, adopted as the national emblem of India. Return to your hotel for an afternoon and evening at leisure.

Day 5: Varanasi – Agra

Take a short flight to Agra to delve into the imperial history of the Mughal Empire and India’s Golden Age. Visit the UNESCO-listed Agra Fort this afternoon, gaining insight into the heritage, rituals and traditions of the dynasty that ruled here until the 17th century. As you drive through the city’s crowded streets, connect with its vibrant spirit and witness local life first-hand. Enjoy dinner at your hotel and consider joining an Optional Experience.

Hotel: Double Tree by Hilton

Day 6: Agra – Jaipur

Rise with the birds, embarking on a spiritual encounter with the magnificent UNESCO-listed Taj Mahal, one of the Seven Wonders of the World. Watch as the white alabaster marble of this monument of love glows pink and gold at the first hints of sunrise, admiring the flawless architecture that took 18 years and over 20,000 craftsmen to complete. Return to your hotel for breakfast, then depart for Jaipur, the Pink City and gateway to the colourful state of Rajasthan. This evening, we ‘Connect With Locals’, joining a local family for a ‘Be My Guest’ dinner in their home.

Hotel: Hilton, 2 nights

Day 7: Jaipur

Our first stop this morning sees us explore Jaipur’s UNESCO-listed Amber Fort, one of the country’s most exquisite examples of Rajput architecture. Marvel at its royal halls decorated with intricate ivory, mirror and glass work, before returning to your hotel. En route, we’ll enjoy a quick photo stop outside the Palace of Winds, whose latticed windows once revealed the outside world to the sheltered ladies of the royal household. This afternoon, we embark on a city tour including a visit to the ornate City Palace to see the seamless blend of traditional Rajasthani and Mughal Art. Across the road from the palace is the UNESCO-listed Jantar Mantar, featuring the largest sundial in the world. Later this evening, we’ll join our fellow guests and Travel Director for a Farewell Dinner at a local restaurant.

Day 8: Depart Jaipur

Our spiritual encounter with India’s Golden Triangle at its end, we take a transfer to Jaipur airport for our onward flight or travel to Delhi by coach, departing at 10:00 and arriving to Delhi at approximately 16:30. The coach will drop off at Delhi International Airport and the Trafalgar post-night airport hotel; the Pride Plaza.

2020 Dates & PricesTwin ShareSolo Traveller
January: 04$3,795.00$4,995.00
January: 25$3,995.00$5,195.00
February: 08, 22$3,995.00$5,195.00
March: 07, 21$3,995.00$5,195.00
April: 11, 25$3,825.00$4,655.00
May: 09, 30$3,825.00$4,655.00
August: 22$3,825.00$4,655.00
September: 19$3,825.00$4,655.00
October: 03, 17, 31$4,350.00$5,640.00
November: 14, 28$4,350.00$5,640.00
December: 22$4,395.00$5,685.00
December: 29$4,425.00$5,715.00
Inclusions 
Meals: 7 breakfasts, 2 lunches, 5 dinners
Transport:Airport Transfers & Luxury air-conditioned coach
Flights:Air Ticket: Delhi - Varanasi - Agra
Accommodation: 7 nights accommodation
Guide:An expert Travel Director and separate Driver
Entrance Fees & Touring:Entrance fees & activities as per itinerary

* Tour departure dates are subject to availability at time of booking.
* Prices and itinerary are correct at time of publication and are subject to change without notice.

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Icons of India: The Taj, Tigers & Beyond

Discover the Icons of India, a diverse country filled with a long history, a variety of languages, amazing monuments, and a rich cultural heritage. On this India tour, you’ll visit some of India’s most famous sights and get to know the culture through special experiences. Of course, you’ll visit the Taj Mahal, built by Moghul Emperor Shah Jahan as a memorial to his beloved wife. Built from 1631-1648 AD, he employed thousands of artisans and craftsmen as well as a labor force of 20,000. You’ll get the chance to see this amazing structure at sunrise, plus Agra Fort, the 16th-century red sandstone fortress where Moghul rulers lived. In 1876, Jaipur was painted pink to welcome the Prince of Wales, and it has been known as the “Pink City” ever since. Here, visit the Amber Fort, built in 1592 with white marble and red sandstone.

Planning your holiday is easy, and speak to your friendly Consultant.

Day 1: Arrive In Delhi, India

Welcome to India’s capital city! Hotel rooms are available for midafternoon check-in.

Hotel: Le Meridien New Delhi, 2 nights

Day 2: Delhi

Today’s sightseeing starts with an orientation drive to see the Red Fort, Jama Masjid, India Gate, and the Presidential Palace. Afterward, take a Rickshaw Ride through Chandni Chowk, a captivating local bazaar. Here, ancient alleyways are lined with quaint shops selling all sorts of goods and souvenirs-from silver and saris to spices and electronics. After lunch in a local restaurant, visit Qutub Minar, the world’s tallest brick minaret, dating back to the 11th century. Tonight, your Tour Director hosts a lavish welcome dinner that includes a Cooking Demonstration and talk on Indian cuisine with a local chef.

Day 3: Delhi – Agra

This morning, visit Humayun’s Tomb and Gurudwara Bangla Sahib, Delhi’s largest and most prominent Sikh gurudwara (house of worship). After lunch, drive to Agra and settle in for the evening.

Hotel: Trident Hotel, 2 nights

Day 4: Agra

Start your day with a sunrise visit to the incomparable TAJ Mahal, an extravagant marble monument to love. Moghul Emperor Shah Jahan built it as a memorial to his beloved wife, who died during childbirth. Later, travel to Agra Fort, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, built by the Moghul Emperor Akbar. This impressive fortress of red sandstone conceals the imperial city of the Moghul rulers and its many palaces.

Day 5: Agra – Fatehpur Sikri – Ranthambore National Park

Today, stop at Fatehpur Sikri (the City of Victory), a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Built by Emperor Akbar in the 16th century it was the capital of the Mughal Empire for only some 10 years before it was completely abandoned due to the lack of adequate water. After lunch in Bharatpur, board a Train bound for Ranthambore National Park, one of the best places in India to spot the elusive Bengal tiger!

Hotel: Sawai Villas, 2 nights

Day 6: Ranthambore

Today, explore the park on Morning & Afternoon Game Drives in an open-air safari vehicle. In addition to Bengal tigers, the park is home to leopard, sambar deer, sloth bears, marsh crocodiles, striped hyena, and more. Between game drives, enjoy free time to relax.

Day 7: Ranthambore – Jaipur

Rise early this morning for one last Game Drive in this magical land. Then, travel to Jaipur. In 1876, the city was painted pink to welcome the Prince of Wales, and it has been known as the “Pink City” ever since. Tonight, enjoy a Home-Hosted Dinner with an Indian noble family, followed by a Sari- and Turban-Tying demonstration.

Hotel: Trident Hotel, 2 nights

Day 8: Jaipur

Today, visit the amazing Amber Fort, built entirely of white marble and red sandstone. Tour the interior with its intricate mosaics, carvings, paintings, and mirror works. This afternoon, visit the City Palace and the adjoining Museum, which houses a collection of rare manuscripts. Also, stop at Jantar Mantar and the famous Hawa Mahal (Palace of the Winds). Tonight, your Tour Director hosts a festive farewell dinner to celebrate your journey through India.

Day 9: Jaipur – Delhi

Fly back to Delhi this morning and prepare for your journey home.

Hotel: Novotel New Delhi Aerocity

Day 10: Delhi

Your tour ends with breakfast this morning.

2020 Dates & PricesTwin ShareSolo Traveller
January: 13$3,352.00Price on Application
February: 03, 17, 24$3,352.00Price on Application
March: 09, 16$3,352.00Price on Application
October: 12, 19, 26$3,352.00Price on Application
November: 02, 09, 30$3,352.00Price on Application
Inclusions 
Meals: 9 breakfasts, 4 lunches, 5 dinners
Transport:Deluxe air-conditioned motorcoach
Rail:Rail Ticket: Bharatpur - Ranthambore
Accommodation: 9 nights accommodation
Guide:Professional Tour Director
Entrance Fees & Touring:Entrance fees & activities as per itinerary

* Tour departure dates are subject to availability at time of booking.
* Prices and itinerary are correct at time of publication and are subject to change without notice.

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