Darjeeling Holidays

Sample Itinerary - REF INDIA 2981

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The grand entrance into Delhi's famous Red Fort

Day 1: Delhi

Namaste! Welcome to New Delhi, the capital city of India and the start of your eye-opening adventure! Our friendly team will be waiting in the arrivals hall to transfer you to your hotel where you can relax for the rest of the day.

India Gate

Day 2: Delhi

Today enjoy sightseeing of Delhi both new and old with visits to the battlemented Red Fort - built by Shah Jahan in the 16th century, Jama Masjid - India’s oldest and largest mosque, Raj Ghat - a marble memorial marking the spot where the great leader- Mahatma Gandhi was cremated after his assassination. We also visit Humayun’s Tomb and India's largest mosque, Qutab Minar. We conclude our day with an evening visit to the Akshardam Temple, the architecture is amazing.

The lofty Red Fort in Delhi

Day 3: Delhi - Varanasi

Morning we set off for the airport to catch the 6E 308 flight to Varanasi leaving at 08:50 AM. Arriving here, you will see our friendly driver waiting to take you to your hotel. This afternoon is spent exploring this holy city with our expert guide which includes a visit to The Banaras Hindu University and the New Vishwanath temple. In the evening, we will take you to the riverside to see the ritual worship that takes place.

Varanasi Ghats

Day 4: Varanasi

Early this morning we enjoy a boat ride on the River Ganges to view the sunrise and the ancient religious tradition of ritual cleansing that takes place on the ghats (riverside steps). Later we explore Sarnath, which is located at 10 Kms from Varanasi where Lord Buddha gave his first sermon to the five holy men; preaching the middleway to final 'NIRVANA’.

Bathers in the morning

Day 5: Varanasi - Khajuraho

Close behind the Taj Mahal and up there with Varanasi and Jaipur, are the amazing temples of Khajuraho. Immortalised in stone is a wealth of sensuous and erotic sculptures. This morning we fly here from Varanasi, and on arrival head off to explore the Eastern & Western group of temples.

The magnificent erotic temples of Khajuraho

Day 6: Khajuraho - Orchha

This morning you can revisit Khajuraho in your own time if you fancies an early rise. Later, we drive to Orchha. On the banks of the River Betwa, Orchha is famed for its temples and palaces built by the 16th century Bundela rulers. Sightseeing here includes, Sheesh Mahal, Raja Mahal, Chhatri Temple and the Ram Raja Temple.

Jehnagir Mahal

Day 7: Orchha - Agra

This morning we set off by road to Jhansi train station to catch the 3 hours express train to Agra. Arriving in the late afternoon, our driver takes you to your hotel. Later, enjoy a visit to the colossal 15th century Agra Fort.

Taj Mahal & camels

Day 8: Agra - Ranthambhore NP

This morning an early rise for sunrise and guided exploration of the magnificent Taj Mahal. Driving to Bharatpur we visit the ghostly former Mughal city of Fatehpur Sikri, abandoned due to lack of water shortly after completion. From Bharatpur we catch the 2.5 hr express train to Sawai Modhpur it is on arrival here that our driver takes you to your accommodations ion Ranthambore National Park.

Tiger pug marks in the sand in Ranthambore National Park

Day 9: Ranthambhore NP

Enjoy morning and afternoon game drives in the national park. Ranthambore National Park is one of the prime examples of Project Tiger’s conservation efforts in Rajasthan. The forests around the Ranthambore Fort were once the private hunting grounds of the Maharajas of Jaipur, the remnants of which you see with old buildings left to ruin within the park.

Antelope

Day 10: Ranthambhore NP - Jaipur

Today we drive through rural India taking in the scenery along the way to Jaipur which is also known as the 'Pink City' Arriving here, check in and relax at your hotel.

Jantar Mantar Observatory in Jaipur

Day 11: Jaipur

An exotic elephant ride transports us to the lofty 16th century Amber Fort on our morning guided tour. Later, we explore the City Palace containing an interesting museum of regal attire. Just over the road is Jantar Mantar, an observatory of astronomy built by Jai Singh in 1728. At first glance, Jantar Mantar resembles a sculpture park, though in fact, each construction has a specific scientific purpose. Some measure the positions of stars, whilst others calculate eclipses, the lunar calendar and simply the time of day. Even today, most of the constructions remain accurate!

The steps up to the magnificent Amber Fort

Day 12: Jaipur - Jodhpur

An interesting drive through increasingly varied scenery takes us to Jodhpur, a town at the edge of the mighty Thar Desert. Dominated by Meherangarh Fort which sits majestically atop a hill, Jodhpur is known as the Blue City. This is because of the coloured houses in the old town, painted indigo. We’ll enjoy some touring in this colourful Rajasthani city, taking in the mighty fort and bazaars of the old city which are gathered around the city’s tall clock tower.

A local girl in the Blue City of Jodhpur

Day 13: Jodhpur - Jaisalmer

This morning we’ll enjoy some touring in this colourful Rajasthani city, taking in the mighty fort and bazaars of the old city which are gathered around the city’s tall clock tower. This afternoon we enjoy driving through the Rajasthani Thar desert we arrive at the medieval caravan outpost of Jaisalmer, one of the jewels in India’s crown.

People outside the Meheranga Fort in Jodhpur

Day 14: Jaisalmer

Exquisite wood and sandstone buildings dot the town and within Jaisalmer Fort are homes, hotels and shops hidden in ancient lane ways. During our stay here today in this stunning Rajasthani fortress town we’ll enjoy some touring plus a desert camel safari on the rolling sand dunes.

Camels in the desert

Day 15: Jaisalmer - Rohet

Today we travel to the lesser known town of Rohet Garh a visit here affords you a wonderful insight into rural Indian life away from the tourist hoards is a wonderful

Temple carving detail

Day 16: Rohet - Udaipur

Today we drive to Udaipur. Along the way we will explore Ranakpur, a small town tucked away in a remote valley and famed for its beautiful 14th century Jain temples. We’ll enjoy some exploration here before driving the last leg to Udaipur.

Maharaja City Palace

Day 17: Udaipur

This morning will consist of an orientation and sightseeing tour of Udaipur - including the City Palace, Jagdish Temple, Sahelion ki bari Garden, Bharti lok kala Mandal - before having a few hours in the afternoon to explore for yourselves. This evening you will take ride in an private boat on Lake Pichola itself.

Jagdish Temple

Day 18: Udaipur - Kalimpong

Today is a day of travel starting with driving to Udaipur airport for your flight to Bagdogra (Via Delhi) Arriving into Bagdogra at 16:15, meet our local driver who will take you up to Kalimpong.

Day 19: Kalimpong - Darjeeling

Kalimpong, a remote hill station, once part of Sikkim and one-time meeting point on the trade route to Tibet, Bhutan and Nepal, sits amid beautiful mountain scenery where orchids and other flowers grow in profusion. Enjoy a sightseeing tour that covers Pedong Monastery, Zang Dog Palri Fo Brang, Moanstery, Thongsa Gompa, Tharpa Choling Monatsery, Nurseries & Market. Upon conclusion we hot the road and make our way to Darjeeling.

The toy train

Day 20: Darjeeling

We enjoy a drive to Tiger Hill to catch sunrise over the snowy peaks of Kanchenjunga - the world’s third highest mountain. Continuing, enjoy a visit to the Ghoom Gompa (monastery) followed by city sightseeing and a visit to a tea estate. If wanting to purchase Darjeeling’s most famous export, consider First Flush Super Fine Tippy Golden Flower Orange Pekoe 1. It’s Darjeeling’s best.

Darjeeling tea plantation

Day 21: Darjeeling - Gangtok

Today we drive to Gangtok, where the remains of the day are at leisure. Capital of Sikkim, a tiny Himalayan state known for its orchids and flowers and for the heavy influence of Tibetan culture, Gangtok although rapidly developing is still full of charm, thanks to its Buddhist past. Beyond the busy market areas, lie monastic complexes and striking countryside.

Day 22: Gangtok

Today we visit beautiful Rumtek Monastery, Sikkim’s largest and most active monastery, which is located in a lower valley. We then tour Gangtok taking in the Royal Monastery – Tsuklakhang, the Institute of Tibetology and the Orchid Sanctuary. Built in 1958, the Research Institute of Tibetology is world famous for its research activities on the language and culture of Tibet; possessing a faculty of eminent scholars, a library with a large collection of documents and rare books on Buddhism and an attached museum with a rare collection of antiques, coins and Tibetan paintings.

Day 23: Gangtok - Delhi

This morning we return from the mountains to Bagdogra and from here catch the 15:05 flight back to Delhi. Arriving in Delhi at 17:05 we transfer you to your hotel.

Raj Ghat

Day 24: Delhi - Shimla

Bright and early this morning we board the Shatabdi Express bound for Kalka. Here, travellers will transfer (independently) to the narrow gauge Himalayan Queen Toy Train travelling to Shimla. There are 102 tunnels to navigate and some 863 multi-arched galleries bridges (similar to ancient Roman aqueducts) to cross where spectacular landscapes of rolling hills, lush valleys and panoramic vistas can be seen. To the commotion of the steam train's arrival to Shimla, we meet our representative on the station platform and transfer to our hotel for an evening at leisure.

Anarkanda

Day 25: Shimla

Former ‘summer capital’ of British India, Shimla sprawls along a crescent-shaped ridge at an altitude of over 2100m. The famous main street, ‘The Mall’, lined with stately English homes and the fortress-like former Viceregal Lodge, reinforces Shimla’s quintessential English look. Today we enjoy a guided sightseeing tour of the lofty settlement, venturing into the narrow streets, which fall steeply away from the ridge giving way to colourful bazaars and fine views of the surrounding valley and snow-capped peaks.

Shimla main street

Day 26: Shimla - Delhi

Today offers free time for you to independently explore Shimla. You can opt to stroll, drop by the colourful Lakkar Bazaar or hike to the summit of Jakhoo Hill, Shimla’s highest point. Here visitors are rewarded with panoramic views of the eternal snows set as a glorious backdrop to the sleepy township of Shimla beneath. Hotel check out is at 12 noon, opt for some lunch and pack an evening picnic meal before boarding the Kalka Shatabdi Express at sunset and arriving into Delhi late this evening.

Durga idol

Day 27: Delhi

Sadly your journey has come to an end, we will transfer you to the airport in time for your flight home.

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The Amber Fort in Jaipur

Jaipur

A flamboyant showcase of Rajasthani architecture and a firm favourite on tourist itineraries as the third corner of India’s ‘Golden ...

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last updated - 28 Nov 2014 2:43 AM