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Welcome to India and the start of your holiday! We will be there to meet you at the airport and transfer you through to your hotel. The remainder of today at leisure. Today is the festival of Dussehra so head out and celebrate with the locals!
Today we explore both Old and New Delhi - the order of New Delhi is a huge contrast to the unorganised chaos of the Old City. But both are just as appealing. Highlights we be the impressive Red Fort, Jama Masjid - India’s oldest and largest mosque, Raj Ghat - the site of Gandhi’s cremation and more.
Morning transfer to the airport for your flight to Varanasi (9W 723 1050/1205 hrs) On arrival in Varanasi we are transferred to our hotel. This evening, we are treated to an Aarti Ceremony - a Hindu religious ritual - on the banks of the River Ganges!
We start early this morning with a boat ride at dawn on the holy Ganges River at dawn. Later we embark on a city day tour of India’s spiritual city, with its an incredible array of temples and ancient buildings. There are 2,000 temples and shrines in Varanasi, but the holiest, Vishvanatha, is closed to non-Hindus.
Morning flight to Khajuraho. On arrival transfer to hotel. This evening visit to see light and sound show in the temple complex.
Morning guided tour of the Temples which the Chandela dynasty over a 100 year burst of creative genius from 950-1050 AD. Immortalised in stone, the carved temples are famed above all for their delicate sensuality and forthright eroticism, how and why they were built still remains a mystery. After we drive to Orchha.
Enjoy a guided tour and free time to explore the amazing ancient sites in Orchha before transferring to the station for the Shatabdi Express 1755/2025 hrs To Agra. On arrival we transfer you to your hotel.
At sunrise we visit the inimitable Taj Mahal for! Described as the most extravagant monument ever built for love, this fine example of Mughal architecture was built by Emperor Shah Jahan. After we head out to visit Agra fort, built under the Mughal Emperor Akbar in 1565. It contains numerous palaces and a white marble mosque. Tonight you travel by sleeper train to Udaipur.
Arrive Udaipur and transfer to hotel. Enjoy our sightseeing tour of the city this morning, includes the City Palace, Jagdish Temple and Sahelion-ki-bari. For lunch, you could consider visiting the beautiful Lake Palace Hotel, the former summer palace of the local maharajah - highly recommended! In the evening, it's a shared boat ride on Lake Pichola.
Free day to explore. This evening we drive half hour to the Monsoon Palace to witness sunset and experience the magic atmosphere at twilight.
Morning drive and visit Ranakpur which is widely known for its marble Jain temple, and for the much older Sun Temple. Built in 1439, the main Jain temple at Ranakpur is dedicated to Adinath. Known as the Chaumukha Temple, or Four-Faced Temple, this huge and superbly crafted building possesses 29 halls supported by an astonishing 1444 pillars, no two alike. After we continue by road to Rohet.
Rohetgarh is an evergreen oasis and has linked its blue-green lakeside environs to a perennial stream, which irrigates the desert lands of Jodhpur. A small but quaint village, and you can also visit nearby Bishnoi settlements with their flamboyantly dressed and bejeweled women. It's a free day to explore this area at your leisure.
Continuing on into the Rajasthani countryside, we drive to Jodhpur. Dominated by Meherangarh Fort which sits majestically atop a hill, Jodhpur is also known as the Blue City, because of the coloured houses in the old town, painted indigo. It's straight to our hotel when we arrive into Jodhpur and then we head out on a guided tour of the city.
For a special treat we drive to the desert camp of Manvar – literally in the middle of nowhere. Mop the sweat off your brow and hope for an imminent oasis as we trek by camel over dusty desert dunes. Safely back at camp under stars of the expansive night sky, we light a bonfire over dinner to the sounds of local musicians.
Today we continue on our in-depth exploration of Rajasthan, driving through the spectacular Thar desert where we arrive at the medieval caravan outpost of Jaisalmer, one of the jewels in India’s crown. Exquisite wood and sandstone buildings dot the town and within Jaisalmer Fort are homes, hotels and shops hidden in ancient lane ways. The remainder of the day is free.
During our stay in this stunning Rajasthani fortress town we’ll enjoy some touring during the day. And for something special in the evening, it's off to the desert dunes for an bit of exploration atop a camel!
This morning we drive to Bikaner which was once an important staging post on the great caravan routes, much of the atmospheric old town which we will explore is still encircled by massive fortified walls, housing old havelis and many artisan shops. Before going to the hotel we visit the famous Rat temple. After check in enjoy free time to relax.
On our city tour this morning we also visit the spectacular Junagarh Fort & museum, built between 1587 & 1593 during the rule of Rai Singh. After we drive to Mandawa which lies in the heart of Shekhawati it is known not only for its havelis but also for its Fort Palace.
Morning tour of the Fort and Havelis before driving to Jaipur 'The Pink City' Arrival check in then relax for the remainder of the day.
It's an early start to visit the magnificent fort-palace of Amber - a wonderful example of Rajput architecture just north of Jaipur. Youwill ascend to the top of the fort in style atop an elephant, though this can be subject to change due to government regulations. Afternoon at leisure.
Enjoy a tour of the city Palace and Jantar Mantar after some free time. Today is Diwali so enjoy festivities our guide will make sure you see the festival at it best.
End of touring arrangements. We transfer you to the airport in Delhi (4 hours drive) for your onwards international flight home.
A flamboyant showcase of Rajasthani architecture and a firm favourite on tourist itineraries as the third corner of India’s ‘Golden ...