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Arrive Delhi, included transfer to hotel. Free afternoon and evening.
This morning, our welcome meeting takes place. We’ll then enjoy a full day sightseeing tour of Delhi. Tonight, we enjoy a Namaste Dinner at an Indian restaurant.
Today, we drive to Jaipur. Affectionately known as the Pink City as Maharaja Ram Singh had all of the Old City painted a welcoming pink in 1876 to herald a visit by the Prince of Wales (later King Edward VII), it is also the bustling capital of the state of Rajasthan. We enjoy a tour of the City Palace and Jantar Mantar - an old yet cleverly designed space observatory. Later visit a block printing and cotton trading workshop and learn about the interesting local craft.
We travel beyond Jaipur to the stunning 16th century Amber Fort. We enjoy a stately elephant ride (subject to elephant availability and government regulations as most of the Elephants will be occupied for Elephant festival) to the fort proper and tour the fort’s well-preserved interior and grounds. This afternoon its festival time! Every year the Jaipur Festival sees the open air Rambagh Polo Ground burst to life in a kaleidoscope of colour, showcasing the local culture of Rajasthan, as lively folk dancers in vibrant clothing and skilled musicians set the scene for the celebrations. Join in the festivities and mingle with the locals. The day’s activities come to a close at approx 6:30pm.
Today the central ritual of Holi incorporates the applying and throwing of coloured water and powders on friends and family which gives the holiday its modern name ‘the Festival of Colour’. Pull up a chair and watch the Holi celebrations taking place out on the lawn. For those wanting to get involved we'll be providing white kurta pyjamas for you to wear and organic colours for you to throw. In this game of cat and mouse, stealth and the art of surprise will serve you well. After a bombardment of powder bombs and shower of water in every imaginable colour we'll etch an escape plan to Keoladeo Ghana National Park for a late afternoon bicycle rickshaw ride and birdwatching.
En route to Agra, we visit Fatehpur Sikri, former imperial capital of the great Mughal emperor Akbar. Built between 1569 and 1585, it has been deserted for more than four centuries, by all accounts abandoned in 1600 due to a meagre supply of water. In Agra, we visit the impressive Agra Fort before touring the legendary Taj Mahal and witnessing a glorious golden sunset. Built by Emperor Shah Jahan in loving memory of his beloved wife Mumtaz, who tragically died in childbirth in 1631, the Taj Mahal in Agra is described as the most extravagant monument ever built for love and remains one of India’s most enduring symbols.
Today, we drive from Agra to Delhi airport for your flight departing at 23:55.
A flamboyant showcase of Rajasthani architecture and a firm favourite on tourist itineraries as the third corner of India’s ‘Golden ...