All Year Round
DAY O1: ARRIVE DELHI
Meeting, assistance on arrival & transfer to hotel. Overnight at
DAY 02: IN DELHI
Morning sightseeing of New Delhi.
Visit the 12th century Qutab Minar, gracefully hand-carved for its
entire height of 234ft, and the iron pillar, which has withstood the
ravages of time and not rusted even after 1500 years. Visit the
mausoleum of emperor Humayun – a forerunner of the Mughal style of
architecture and the imposing modern Lakshminarayan temple. Drive past
the India Gate (war memorial dedicated to the lives of laid down by the
Indian soldiers), the president's residence - formerly the Viceroy's
Palace, Parliament House and the Secretariat buildings, - an interesting
blend of the Victorian and 20th century architecture. Afternoon
sightseeing of Old Delhi takes you to the magnificent Red Fort - a
marvel in red sandstone, built on the banks of River Yamuna by the
Mughal emperor Shah Jahan. Visit Raj Ghat (memorial to Mahatma Gandhi),
Jama Masjid, - The largest mosque in India. Drive past Chandi Chowk,
once an imperial avenue of Mughal Royalty which today is the busiest
commercial area of the city. Walk through Chandni Chowk to savor the
ambience of an oriental bazaar. Overnight at hotel.
DAY 03: FLY DELHI VARANASI
Morning transfer to the airport to
connect with your flight for Varanasi. Depart Delhi at 1040hrs by
9W 723. Arrive Varanasi at 1150hrs. On arrival transfer to
hotel. Evening tour to the downtown area in a cycle rickshaw.
Experience Varanasi intimately when you go on a leisurely rickshaw,
riding through the narrow streets and alleys. Ride down to the Ghats for
a boat ride at dusk & to witness an Arti Ceremony (collective prayer)
and watch the floating Diyas (lamps) on the river Ganges.
Overnight at hotel.
DAY 04: IN VARANASI
Early morning boat cruise on river
Ganges. The western banks of Ganges has a string of Ghats - the chain
of stone steps, all built with pavilions, palaces and terraces, most of
which are mainly used as Dharamsalas where the pilgrims stay during
their visit to the holy city. At dawn, the Ghats are buzz with activity
of the devotees performing their ablutions in the river or offering
prayers to the rising sun and performing other religious rituals. A
boat ride along the Ghats gives you vantage views of this activity. The
sunrise on the Ganges is a soul-lifting experience. Later, visit the
Vishwanath temple, also called the golden temple because of the
gold-plating on its roof. Afternoon at leisure. Overnight at hotel.
DAY 05: LEAVE VARANASI
Morning excursion to Sarnath, 10-Kms away from Varanasi is the fabled
place, which bears testimony to its great past where Lord Buddha
delivered his first sermon to his disciples, expounding the principles
of Buddhism. The remains date back to as far as the 3rd-Century BC when
Emperor Ashoka founded various institutions, stupas, monasteries and
pillar Edicts. Visit the art collection at the Archaeological Museum.
The main attraction is the superb Capital from Ashokan Pillar - the
Ashokan symbol of four back-to-back lions which has been adopted as the
state symbol Independent India. Also visit the Mahabodhi'Buddha temple
and walk around the Deer Park. Later see the Monastery ruins area,
Noon check out of the hotel. Evening
we transfer you to the railway station to board your overnight train for
Agra. Depart: Varanasi at 2240hrs by `Magadh Express’.
Overnight on board the train.
DAY 06: ARRIVE AGRA
At 0705hrs. Meeting, assistance on arrival & transfer to hotel.
Post breakfast visit the world
famous Taj Mahal built by Shah Jahan in 1630 for his queen Mumtaz Mahal
to enshrine her mortal remains. This architectural marvel is a perfectly
proportioned masterpiece fashioned from white marble that stands
testimony to the sill of 20,000 craftsmen brought together from Persia,
Turkey, France and Italy and who took 17 years to complete this 'Love
Poem in Marble'. (Taj Mahal is closed on Fridays).
visit the Agra fort containing the halls of private and public audience
and other palaces. Post visit, we enjoy a `tonga’ (traditional
horse pulled carriage) ride. Late afternoon we have a local Henna
artist in attendance for a demo cum application session exclusively for
Evening: OPTIONAL TOUR OF TAJ MAHAL
Overnight at hotel.
DAY 07: DRIVE AGRA-JAIPUR
Morning depart for Jaipur , en route visit Fatehpur Sikri.
Fatehpur Sikri was built by Emperor Akber in 1569 and abandoned after 15
years due to scarcity of water. Visit the remarkably well-preserved,
graceful buildings within the 'Ghost City' including the Jama Masjid,
tomb of Salim Chisti, Panch Mahal Palace and other palaces that speak of
the grandeur and splendor of the Mughal empire at the height of its
Post excursion, continue your drive to
Jaipur. On arrival check in at hotel. Evening we drive you to
Birla Mandir (modern Hindu temple) to witness an `aarti’ ceremony
(prayer ritual). Overnight at hotel.
DAY 08: IN JAIPUR
Morning Amber Fort with elephant
ride. Amber is a classic, romantic Rajasthani fort Palace. The rugged,
time-ravaged walls of the Fort may not look beautiful from the outside,
but the interior is a virtual paradise. Miniatures painted on the walls
depict hunting and war scenes, apart from festivals. Precious stones and
mirrors are embedded into the plaster. A major attraction at Amber is
the Elephant Ride all the way up to the Fort entrance. This journey on
caparisoned elephants is bound to enrich your memories with the Royal
lifestyle of the Maharajas and leave you with a truly unforgettable
experience. Inside the Fort visit the Jag Mandir or the Hall of Victory.
Inside the Jag Mandir is the famed Sheesh Mahal – a room with all the
four walls and ceiling completely embedded with glittering mirror
pieces, which were specially imported from Belgium during that period.
En route to Amber Fort, you will have a brief photography stop at Hawa
Mahal - the Palace of Winds. Afternoon city tour begins with a
visit to the Maharaja's City Palace, the former Royal residence, part of
it converted into a museum. A small portion is still used by the Royal
family of Jaipur. Built in the style of a fortified campus, the palace
covers almost one-seventh in area of the city. One of the major
attractions in the museum is the portion known as Armoury Museum housing
an impressive array of weaponry-pistols, blunderbusses, flintlocks,
swords, rifles and daggers. The royal families of Jaipur once used most
of these weapons. Later visit the Jantar Mantar, which is the largest
stone and marble crafted observatory in the world. Situated near the
gate of the city palace, the observatory has 17 large instruments, many
of them still in working condition. Evening do not miss out on the
cycle rickshaw ride though the narrow roads at `choti-chauppad’ & to `Johari
Bazaar’ Overnight at the hotel.
DAY 09: DRIVE
Morning as we leave the city, we stop by the famous `lassi ‘ (sweetened
butter milk) shop, to have `lassi’ in disposable clay mugs.
There on leave for Neemerana. On arrival
check in at Neemarana Fort hotel. Neemrana-Fort-Palace the
beautifully restored 16th century Fort - off the highway, is an
astounding piece of work in recent restoration. It is situated on a
majestic plateau of the Aravalli ranges. Overnight at the hotel.
DAY 10: DRIVE NEEMRANA-DELHI
transfer direct to Delhi airport to connect our flight for home.
(No accommodation envisaged in Delhi on this day).