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Welcome to the start of your voyage of discovery through 'Incredible India'! You will be met at Mumbai International Airport by our friendly local team and transferred to your hotel. (Guaranteed check in upon arrival in the early morning hours)
Enjoy the day at your leisure to explore or relax as you like.
Mumbai or Bombay, as it was formerly known - remains India’s city of dreams. Today we embark on a glittering city tour, with a morning visit to the cave temples of Elephanta Island sculpted during the 5th to the 8th centuries. In the afternoon visit the Prince of Wales museum, Marine Drive and the Mani Bhawan Jain temple.
This morning you take to skies and fly to Aurangabad. Arriving here, meet your local guide whom after hotel check in will take you on a city tour. The major highlight of the day is certainly going to be a visit to Daulatabad Fort. The fort has a rare kind of construction, which is a combination of the ground fort and hill fort and is widely considered one of the world’s best preserved forts from medieval times.
Enjoy a full day with your expert guide exploring Ajanta Caves. Older than the Ellora caves (200 BC to 650 AD) the UNESCO World Heritage Listed Buddhist caves of Ajanta are also cut from the volcanic lava, we will visit some of the 30 caves, boasting remarkably preserved frescoes created and painted using minerals, ochres and lime.
Today, after breakfast head out on a full days journey to explore the UNESCO World Heritage Listed Ellora caves comprising of 34 cave temples dedicated to three different religions - Hinduism, Buddhism and Jainism. We also make a stop to see Bibi-ka-Maqbara - a 17th century mausoleum similar in style to that of the Taj Mahal!
Today we fly south to Kochi via Mumbai! Arriving here our local team will transfer you to your hotel. This evening you will watch famous Keralan dancers perform. We will be sure to arrive early so you don’t miss the artists applying their awesome make-up.
This morning or afternoon enjoy a city tour. The city of Kochi perfectly reflects the eclecticism of Kerala. One will see winding streets with mosques, a 16th century Jewish synagogue and Jewish community with ancient roots and 500 year old Portuguese cottages! Remainder of the day at your leisure.
After breakfast we drive east to to Munnar - a quaint hill station nestled on the verdant slopes of tea plantations, that exudes a rare old world charm and reminds one of the days of the Raj in its elegant splendour.
Morning with our local guide you will visit a Tea Garden & Tea factory thus seeing how the process works from growing, to picking, to processing. Afternoon at your leisure to explore, wander and enjoy the gorgeous natural surroundings.
This morning we drive south to Periyar, South India’s most popular wildlife sanctuary and home to bison, antelopes, sambar, wild boar, birds and even the odd tiger! Kumli, close to the sanctuary and where you’ll stay, is a pretty little town dotted with small spice and handicraft shops. There is plenty to do in and around Periyar, so we leave the choice to you today.
This morning enjoy an included boat ride on Lake Periyar to spot herds of wild elephants.
Today we drive to Kumarakom. Perched sleepily on the eastern banks of the mighty Lake Vembanad in the heartland of Kerala’s famed backwaters, Kumarakom has changed little since the Middle Ages but for it’s string of exotic resorts, making it the perfect point to explore the backwaters.
Although right in the thick of a tangle of lush tropical waterways, Kumarakom is technically an island on Lake Vembanad. This is an ideal place to chill-out for today. There is a wonderful bird sanctuary, winter home to many migratory birds which is worth a visit if you fancied heading out today.
This morning we drive to Allepppey and board a simply furnished private rice boat for a journey through the backwaters. Crewed by a poler to push the rice boat through the water, a distance of some 20 kms will be covered, during which time the boat will glide past colourful local villages. As for dining, the on board cook will prepare meals using fresh local produce.
Disembarking at Alleppey, you’ll be driven the short distance back to Kochi airport for your flight North to Delhi. Arriving here our local team will assist with transfer to your hotel.
Today is free to explore the city.
This evening you will be taken to Delhi's Safdarjung station to board the Maharaja Express Panorama. After check in at around 20:30 you will be escorted to your respective cabins. Sit back and relax as the train pulls out, bound for Jaipur.
Post breakfast on board, your trip into Jaipur starts an exclusive experience - an Exhibition Elephant Polo Match at Jai Singh Palace. The match is followed by Champagne lunch at the hotel. Following lunch continue on to the Amber Fort and enjoy a royal elephant ride to the palace complex.. Further, you may pick from any of the following: • Have a revitalizing spa at a five star hotel in Jaipur. • Enjoy Golfing at the Rambagh Golf Club - a 18 hole, 6303 yard, Par 70 • Visit the City Palace, the former royal residence; and Jantar Mantar, a stone observatory
Even before the sun dawns, you reach Sawai Madhopur, home to the Ranthambore National Park. A thrilling safari gives you the chance to spot the elusive Tiger. After experiencing the exhilarating expedition, have a lavish breakfast at Vivanta by Taj - Sawai Madhopur Lodge. During the latter half of the day, the train takes you across the fabled magnificent fortified Mughal city Fatehpur Sikri - a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Admire the changing landscape while enjoying a hearty lunch on board. Brace yourself with the Mughal history by visiting this complex of monuments and temples, including one of the largest mosques in India - the Jama Masjid.
Early morning, your train reaches Agra - the city that homes the most extravagant monument ever built for love - Taj Mahal. The visit to this amazingly beautiful monument is followed by Champagne breakfast at Hotel Taj Khema, which overlooks Taj Mahal. Return to the train and continue your journey towards Gwalior - the tourist capital of Madhya Pradesh. We have lunch at the 120-year-old palace - Usha Kiran, now turned into a heritage hotel. After, visit the Gwalior fort - steeped in the splendor of its past. Return to the main city to visit the Jai Vilas Palace Museum, which exhibits a collection of antiques belonging to the Scindia reign. Enjoy High tea at the palace compound.
As the train reaches Jhansi railway station, you will embark on an excursion to Orcha, some 15 km away from the station. Visit the Jehangir Mahal, a tiered palace crowned by graceful chhatris. Stroll through Chaturbhuj Palace and the Cenotaphs of Orcha rulers along the shores of Betwa River. Return to the train and head to the World Heritage site of Khajuraho. The temples of Khajuraho are India's unique gift to the world, representing a paean of life, to love and to joy; perfect in execution and sublime in expression. Life, in every form and mood, has been captured here in stone testifying to the craftsman's artistry and the extraordinary breadth of vision of the Chandela Rajputs
As the dawn breaks and the train arrives to Varanasi - the city of Hindu God Shiva, located on the banks of the sacred Ganges. Its Prominence in Hindu mythology is immense. In Mark Twain's words, "Benaras is older than history, older than tradition, older even than legend and looks twice as old as all of them put together." Post breakfast; embark on a tour to Sarnath ruins followed by a visit to the Sarnath Museum. Lunch is served on board Maharajas' Express. After lunch, visit the Silk Weaving Centre. Varanasi abounds in the art of silk weaving, an exotic work of art which manifests itself in precious Banarasi Silk Sarees and Silk brocades.
Your train reaches the city of Nawabs Lucknow early morning. Proceed on a sightseeing excursion of the city and pay a visit to Bara Imambara and The Residency. The Bara Imambara or Great Imambara was built in 1784 by Asaf-ud-Daula as a famine relief project. The central hall of the Imambara, 50 m long and 15 m high, is one of the largest galleries in the world. The Residency was built in 1800 for the British Resident, and this group of buildings became the stage for the most dramatic events of the 1857 Uprising - the Siege of Lucknow. Return on board for lunch and rest and get ready for an entertaining and fun-filled evening at the Residence of Local Nawab of Jehagirabad.
Say goodbye to the crew on board and our local team collect you and take you to your hotel to relax for the rest of the day.
Today you step out of the hustle and bustle, take to the skies and fly to Goa. Arriving here our local driver will transfer you to your hotel.
For today and tomorrow sit back and relax here in this laid back coastal area of India, walk along palm fringed beaches looking for shells and watching the fishermen at work, or simply kick back and enjoy some fresh fruit cocktails served on a silver platter.
Farewell Incredible India! We will take you to the airport for the flight to Mumbai. Our service will end upon your arrival to Mumbai.
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