14 nights / 15 days
Delhi * Mandawa * Bikaner * Jaisalmer * Osian * Jodhpur * Udaipur * Deogarh * Samode * Agra * Delhi
DAY 01: ARRIVE DELHI BY: INTERNATIONAL FLIGHT
DAY 02: DELHI
DAY 03: DELHI – MANDAWA BY: SURFACE
DAY 04: MANDAWA - BIKANER BY: SURFACE
DAY 05: BIKANER – JAISALMER BY: SURFACE
DAY 06: JAISALMER
DAY 07: JAISALMER – ROHET BY: SURFACE
DAY 08: ROHET – UDAIPUR BY: SURFACE
DAY 09: UDAIPUR
DAY 10: UDAIPUR – DEOGARH BY: SURFACE
DAY 11: DEOGARH – JAIPUR BY: SURFACE
DAY 12: JAIPUR
DAY 13: JAIPUR – AGRA BY: SURFACE
DAY 14: AGRA – DELHI BY: SURFACE
DAY 15: DEPART DELHI BY: INTERNATIONAL FLIGHT
DAY 01: ARRIVE DELHI [International Flight]
Today early morning you will arrive at Delhi’s International Airport. Following customs, immigration formalities and baggage collection, a representative will meet you as you EXIT the ARRIVALS TERMINAL building and transfer you to your hotel.
India’s capital and a major gateway to the country, contemporary Delhi is a bustling metropolis, which successfully combines in its folds - the ancient with the modern. Amidst the fast spiraling skyscrapers the remnants of a bygone time in the form of its many monuments stand as silent reminders to the region’s ancient legacy. The first impressions for any visitor traveling in from the airport are of a specious, garden city, tree-lined with a number of beautiful parks.
Overnight in hotel.
DAY 02: IN DELHI
After buffet breakfast at the hotel, you will be taken on a half-day combined sightseeing tour of Old Delhi. The tour will begin with a visit to Raj Ghat, a simple memorial to Mahatma Gandhi; drive past the Red Fort continuing to the Jama Masjid, one of Asia’s largest mosques and which is viewed from the outside.
After visiting Old Delhi, you will be driven to New Delhi, which reflects the legacy the British left behind. The tour to Imperial Delhi will include a visit to the Qutab Minar, which is the tallest stone tower in India. It was started in 1199 AD by Qutab-ud-Din Aibak and completed by the sultan's successor and son-in-law, Iltutmish. The building is 72.5 m high and has 379 steps from the bottom to the top. The Qutab Minar is still the highest stone tower as well as one of the finest Islamic structures ever raised in India. Then visit Humayun’s tomb, built by the widow of the second Mughal Emperor, Humayun, it is an outstanding monument in the Indo-Persian style, a precursor of the Taj Mahal. The tour also includes a drive past the imposing India Gate, the Parliament building and the Rashtrapati Bhawan, the President’s residence.
Overnight in hotel.
DAY 03: DELHI – MANDAWA [Surface – 280 Kms / 06 hrs drive]
Today morning you will be driven from Delhi to Mandawa a remote feudal principality in the centre of Shekhawati region. Upon arrival, proceed to check-in at your hotel.
The Rajput ruler of Mandawa built a fort in 1755 to protect this trading outpost that fell in the ancient caravan routes from China and Middle East. The township that grew around the fort attracted a large community of traders, who settled here. When the caravan traffic ceased in the late 18th century, the traders created business empires in other parts of the country, but returned to Mandawa build palatial mansions in their hometown.
This afternoon, you will explore this storybook town of Mandawa known for its colourful frescoes on a wide variety of subjects ranging from religious to the erotic; from copies of popular English prints to witty social satire rendered in the inimitable style of local artist. Every home here is adorned with gaily-painted murals that illuminate the arid landscape.
Overnight in hotel.
DAY 04: MANDAWA – BIKANER [Surface – 200 Kms / 04 hrs drive]
After buffet breakfast, you will be driven from Mandawa to Bikaner. Upon arrival check-in at hotel.
Afternoon, you will proceed for a sightseeing tour of Bikaner. Visit Junagarh Fort, one of the most interesting forts in Rajasthan, with its sumptuously decorated interiors. Built in 1588 by Raja Rai Singh it is unusual in the sense that it was one of the few major forts of Rajasthan that was not built on a hilltop. Instead, it was built on the desert plains; its rugged sandstone bastions and graceful pavilions and balconies are silhouetted against the sky. Also visit the National Camel Breeding Farm and see the incredible sight of a herd of camels returning back after grazing, with the spectacular desert sunset in the background. Set amid rolling sand dunes, this farm is set up to produce superior strains of camels both for domestic haulage as well as, even today, for military use.
Return to the hotel after your visit. Overnight in hotel.
DAY 05: BIKANER – JAISALMER [Surface – 330 Kms / 07 hrs drive]
After buffet breakfast, you will be driven from Bikaner to Jaisalmer.
Jaisalmer, the golden beauty etched in yellow sandstone, standing tall against miles of gleaming sand. Founded in 1156 AD by Maharawal Jaisal, Jaisalmer’s location kept it almost untouched by outside influences and even during the days of the Raj, Jaisalmer was the last to sign the Instrument of Agreement with the British.
Upon arrival proceed for check-in at your hotel following which remainder of the day will be at leisure. Overnight in hotel.
DAY 06: IN JAISALMER
In the morning proceed for a city tour of Jaisalmer. You will walk up to the Fort, which dominates the town. Built in 1156, it is one of the oldest forts in Rajasthan. About a quarter of the old city's population resides within the fort walls, which have 99 bastions around the circumference. Within the Fort are fine group of Jain temples built between the 12th and 15th Century, many containing ancient manuscripts. Walk through Jaisalmer’s narrow streets dotted with ornately decorated Hindu and Jain temples.
Walk around this desert city, its fort emerging from the flat dry sands, bounding in ancient palaces, temples and delicately sculpted Havelis – all witness to the emergence of this Rajput state into a market centre for traders.
Late afternoon, drive to Sam sand dunes for a camel back ride into the desert to watch the sun set on this golden desert city, emitting a lustrous glow off the desert sand. Camel Ride is one of the unique ways to explore small villages in Rajasthan. Atop this ship of the desert embark on an exciting soft adventure.
Return to the hotel after your tour. Overnight in hotel.
DAY 07: JAISALMER – ROHETGARH [Surface – 320 Kms / 07 hrs drive]
After buffet breakfast at the hotel, you will be driven from Jaisalmer to Rohet. Upon arrival, proceed for check-in at your hotel.
ROHETHGARH: The home of the royal Champawat family, Rohet Garh, Pali is one of the ancient palatial Mansion is a Rajput architectural marvel. Located a few kilometers from Jodhpur it is an age old Haveli that recalls the glory and grandeur of yesteryears. Granted to Thakur Dalpat Singh I of Rohet from the Maharaja of Jodhpur in the year 1622, Rohet Garh, Pali is a beautiful heritage hotel today.
Evening is at leisure. Overnight in hotel.
DAY 08: IN ROHETGARH
After an early breakfast, you will be driven to Jodhpur for sightseeing of Mehrangarh Fort and Jaswant Thada.
The old city of Jodhpur is surrounded by a wall 10km long, which was built about a century after the city was founded. From the fort you can clearly see where the old city ends and the new begins. The old city is fascinating jungle of winding streets of great interest to wander around. Eight gates lead out from the walled city. It’s one of the more interesting cities in India and those baggy-tight horse riding trousers, jodhpurs, took their name from this locale. The Mehrangarh Fort is sprawled across a 125-meter high hill and is the most impressive and formidable fort in the fort-studded Rajasthan.
Visit Mehrangarh Fort (citadel of the Sun) that evokes the very spirit of the Rathore’s, the ruling local Rajput clan. Visit its various palaces with their delicate friezes and respective museums, displaying treasures of the royal family. North of Mehrangarh Fort, and connected to it by road, Jaswant Thada is a pillared marble memorial to the popular ruler Jaswant Singh II (1878-95), who purged Jodhpur of dacoits, initiated irrigation systems and boosted the economy. The cenotaphs of members of the royal family who have died since Jaswant are close by his memorial; those who preceded him are remembered by chattris at Mandore.
Return to Rohetgarh after city tour. In the afternoon proceed for a Jeep safari to the neighboring Bishnoi Villages. Overnight in hotel.
DAY 09: ROHETGARH - UDAIPUR [Surface – 225 Kms / 05 hrs drive]
Today you will be driven to Udaipur en-route visiting Ranakpur Jain Temples.
It is an exceptionally beautiful excursion through the rugged, wooded hills of Rajasthan to the Jain Temples of Ranakpur in the Aravalli Valley, to see one of the best complexes of Jain religion which is particularly noted for the grandiose scale of its architecture and the highly decorated ceilings, walls and 1444 different pillars. The priests of the temples did all the temple designing and their generations are still continuing the work.
Later continue your journey to Udaipur and upon arrival, check-in at your hotel.
Set on the shores of Lake Pichola and surrounded by hills, Udaipur grew in complete contrast to the harsh deserts of the rest of Rajasthan. As capital of the old Mewar State it was the only Rajput stronghold to uphold its Hindu allegiance in the face of Muslim invasion. From the late 16th century, peace brought about an era of renaissance in the arts and encouraged the building of beautiful palaces around the lake, culminating in the City Palace, one of the largest palace complexes in the world. The lake itself is a romantic setting surrounding the gleaming white Lake Palace and the Jag Mandir, a refuge of the rebel Mughal prince, Shah Jahan, soon to be the creator of the incomparable Taj Mahal.
Overnight in hotel.
DAY 10: IN UDAIPUR
After buffet breakfast, proceed for a sightseeing tour of Udaipur City, also known as the City of Sunrise. First on your sightseeing tour you will proceed for a tour of the City Palace, which overlooks the Lake Pichola. The City Palace was built in 1725 of granite and marble with filigreed balconies, ornate windows and craftsmanship in glass. The royal palace walls stretch over a mile on the eastern side of the lake. Within the palace is a maze of courtyards, apartments and decorated halls. The rooms are covered with frescoes, displays of royal processions, stone and glass mosaics and ornamental doors and painted windows. The marble throne in the coronation rooms was last used during the time Maharana Sangram Singh II (1710-30) and nearby is the Sun Window installed by Maharaja Bhim Singh (1778-1828). This is the divine symbol of the house of Mewar, which traces its lineage to the Surya Vansha, descendants of the Sun. Each palace within is an outstanding creation of art. Visit the hall of public audiences, the private chambers of the royal ladies at the palace and Saheliyon-ki-Badi.
In the afternoon, experience the hustle bustle of the old market at Udaipur. Walk past the spice shops, jewellery shops, utensil shops, jaggery shops, silver market, local meat and food shop. You shall walk through the areas where The Octopussy – James Bond film was shot. Later you will be taken on a boat-ride on the placid waters of Lake Pichola visiting the bathing ghats where you will have the opportunity to witness evening ritual ceremonies, the City Palace and the Jag Mandir.
Return to your hotel after the sightseeing. Overnight in hotel.
DAY 11: UDAIPUR – DEOGARH [135 kms/ 03 hrs drive]
After buffet breakfast at the hotel, you will be driven from Udaipur to Deogarh. Upon arrival, proceed for check-in at your hotel.
DEOGARH: Deogarh located 135 km north of Udaipur, is a pleasant and atmospheric town with a relatively cool climate. It has an old fort and a magnificent palace with murals illustrating the fine local school of miniature painting.
The pleasant Raghosagar Lake has an island with a romantic ruined temple and tombs, and attracts numerous migratory birds. The Anjaneshwar Mahadev cave temple is believed to be around 2000 years old.
Overnight in hotel.
DAY 12: DEOGARH – JAIPUR [276 kms / 07 hrs drive]
After buffet breakfast at the hotel, you will be driven from Deogarh to Jaipur. Upon arrival, proceed for check-in at your hotel.
Rajasthan’s kingdoms are an enduring legacy to India’s history. A land endowed with invincible forts, magnificent palaces ad waves of sand dunes and serene lakes. No other region in the country assembles the many paradoxes of India, as does the desert land of Rajasthan. By far it is the most colourful region in India.
Jaipur's past is never too far from hand. The city of victory, Jaipur presides over the fascinating desert state and its people: surrounded by rugged hills, each crowned by a formidable fort; and beautiful palaces, mansions and gardens dotted throughout its precincts. The palaces and forts of yesteryear that were witness to royal processions and splendour are now living monuments, accepted quite naturally into the lifestyles of the people of the "pink city". Except for the busy traffic of bicycles, cars and buses, little seems to have changed. There is a timeless quality to Jaipur's bazaars and its people. With its historical past, Jaipur revives legends of the ancient Rajputs. The dresses of the women and the turbans of the men add colour to this fascinating city.
Overnight stay at hotel.
DAY 13: IN JAIPUR
After buffet breakfast at the hotel, you will be driven to Jaipur to see the fabulous Amber Fort. Maharaja Mansingh, Mughal Emperor Akbar’s most successful General, started the construction of Amber Fort in the 17th century. Before the City Palace was constructed in Jaipur, Amber was the seat of power. The fort is surrounded by fortified battlements and overlooks the Moat Lake. Ruins and remains are spread over the Aravalli hills and sprawling crenulated walls lattice the surrounding area.
An elephant (Subject to availability/alternatively by jeep) will spare you the trouble of reaching up to the fortress. Once you reach on top, stroll through the sprawling complex of courtyards and halls. Many of the rooms have delightful wall paintings, with precious stones and mirrors inlaid in the walls. Most fascinating, perhaps, is the Sheesh Mahal (hall of mirrors) where a single lamplight is reflected in the many mirrors, lighting up the room.
In the afternoon, you will visit the city of Jaipur. Among the highlights to be seen while touring Jaipur include the `Palace of Winds’, otherwise known as Hawa Mahal. It is really an elaborate facade behind which the ladies of the court used to watch the daily goings on in the street below. It is extremely intricate in its pink sandstone carving. The cool wind blows through its facade of windows and latticed screens through which the queens of the court once viewed the streets of the city. The palace museum houses collections of rare manuscripts, armory, costumes, carpets and miniature paintings. Walk to the adjacent Jantar Mantar or Astronomical Observatory made by the Maharaja of Jaipur, built in 1726 and is one of the five such astronomical wonders built by Sawai Jai Singh and makes accurate predictions even to this day. You will also have the opportunity to wander about the local markets.
Overnight stay at hotel.
DAY 14: JAIPUR - AGRA [270 kms / 06 hrs drive]
After breakfast you will drive to Agra, enroute visit Fatehpur Sikri, a spacious red sandstone city built in the 16th century by the Mughal Emperor Akbar, one of India’s greatest rulers. The Emperor ruled Agra from this city and a fort with Dargah (Muslim religious center) still stands here. Remarkably broad-minded for his time, this Muslim king married many a Rajput princess in order to win over his Hindu subjects. The architecture of Fatehpur Sikri is a combination of Hindu and Muslim styles, expressing Akbar’s vision of synthesizing the cultures.
On arrival, proceed to check in at your hotel.
Overnight stay at hotel.
DAY 15: AGRA – DELHI [204 kms / 05 hrs drive]
After buffet breakfast visit Taj Mahal (closed on Fridays) and Agra Fort.
The Taj Mahal is everything that has been said about it and more. Taking 22 years and 20,000 men to build, the white marble was quarried 200 miles away and was transported to the site by a fleet of 1000 elephants. Built by the Mughal Emperor Shah Jahan as an expression of his love for his wife Mumtaz Mahal, in mid 17th century, the Taj Mahal is truly one of the wonders of the world. Though the Taj appears to be amazingly perfect from almost any angle, it is the close-up marble inlay work, which is really astounding. You will have ample time to view and be mesmerized by this outstanding piece of architecture.
Continue to visit Agra Fort, an outstanding example of Mughal architecture. Agra Fort - the seat and the stronghold of the Mughal Empire under successive generations. This was the seat of Mughal rule and administration and the present structure owes its origins to Akbar who erected the walls and gates and the first buildings on the eastern banks of Yamuna River. Shah Jehan added the impressive quarters and the mosque while Aurangzeb added the outer ramparts. Visit its Hall of Public Audience and Royal Pavilions.
In the afternoon you will be driven straight to Delhi’s International Airport to board a flight for onward journey.
DAY 16: DEPART DELHI
Board the International flight for onward journey
*END OF THE TOUR*