Experience the richness of Indian culture on this classic tour of India's Golden Triangle. Kick off in Delhi, both old and new, explore the magnificent Taj Mahal in Agra and the stunning Pink City of Jaipur. Combine this with a night at a Maharaja's Palace and you've got the perfect 1 week Indian adventure.
Old & New Delhi
Join our Welcome Meeting this morning before we enjoy a packed day of sightseeing in Old and New Delhi. Visit the UNESCO-listed Humayun’s Tomb and Jama Masjid - India’s oldest and largest mosque. See the eternal flame at Raj Ghat, which was the site of Gandhi’s cremation and is now a place of peaceful contemplation. We also enjoy a thrilling rickshaw ride around the Chandni Chowk bazaar and explore New Delhi. Walk down the Rajpath, formerly known as the ‘King’s Way’ and see the famous India Gate monument. This evening we enjoy a group Namaste dinner.
Overnight: Delhi | Breakfast, Dinner
Delhi - Agra. Travel to Agra today and visit the impressive walled Agra Fort. Our day continues with a tour of the legendary Taj Mahal, India’s most famous site. This iconic white monument was built by the Emperor Shah Jahan in the 17th century in memory of his beloved wife. It is perhaps the most extravagant symbol of love the world has ever seen and has no rival.
Overnight: Agra | Breakfast
The princely state of Karauli
Agra - Karauli. This morning we’ll visit the eerie former Mughal city of Fatehpur Sikri, which has laid abandoned for more than 400 years. Continue to the beautiful Palace Bhanwar Vilas in Karauli, stopping for lunch en route. The palace is our home for the night and also remains the residence of the current Maharaja of the state. Enjoy free time to explore the palace grounds and if we’re lucky, we may be able to join a tour of the site led by the princess herself. The family is lovingly restoring the Karauli City Palace, which we visit later this afternoon. This evening opt to attend the evening Aarti (prayer).
Overnight: Karauli | Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Karauli - Jaipur. We travel to a local school this morning (if open) to meet the pupils and teachers. Our ‘Change for Children’ programme operates here and any donations you can spare help make a real difference to the lives of underprivileged children. You may wish to consider bringing some educational gifts with you on your tour (see trip notes) to give out to the children - they will be greatly appreciated. Later, we continue to the vibrant Pink City of Jaipur where the rest of the day is free to explore. Perhaps catch a Bollywood movie at the Raj Mandir Cinema or explore the buzzing walled city centre - look out for monkeys scampering across the rooftops.
Overnight: Jaipur | Breakfast
Enjoy an unforgettable experience early this morning with an optional balloon ride over Jaipur. Sail with the wind over the surrounding region and pass above hill-top forts and regal palaces. Later, enjoy a jeep ride to Amber Fort for a guided tour and visit a cotton weaving house for an authentic demonstration of fabric dyeing. We also tour the Jaipur City Palace and UNESCO-listed Jantar Mantar space observatory, which is home to the world’s largest stone sun dial.
Overnight: Jaipur | Breakfast
Saturday. Our Indian adventure comes to an end today with an included transfer to the airport.
Discover Amritsar & the Golden Temple
Discover beautiful Amritsar, home to the world famous Golden Temple and the seat of the Sikh religion, on our 3 day/2 night Golden Amritsar bolt-on. Built in 1803 and made of marble, copper and pure leaf gold, the temple is an amazing architectural feat. During your stay, we witness the sunset spectacle at Wagah Border - the only road crossing between India and Pakistan where the fascinating changing of the guards and ceremonial lowering of the flags take place with great pomp to a cheering crowd of thousands.
Prices & Dates
Departure dates noted with a 'G' are guaranteed to operate. All other departure dates are guaranteed with a minimum of 2 persons. Prices shown are per person travelling. 'Twin/Double' prices per person apply when there are 2 people travelling, sharing a room. The 'Single supplement' applies for single travellers who would like their own room and needs to be added to the 'Twin/Double' price.Read More
The hotels listed below are ones which we frequently use on this tour. We reserve the right to substitute these hotels to ones of a similar standard when necessary.
Jaypee Siddharth Hotel, Delhi
The luxurious Jaypee Siddharth is a stunning property located just five kilometres from the New Delhi Railway Station. Guestrooms are exquisitely decorated with a blend of cream and brown tones and benefit from air conditioning and complimentary WiFi. If you have free time, guests can indulge in one of the rejuvenating treatments available at the spa, take a dip in the outdoor pool or work up an appetite in the gym. A range of cuisines are served in the various restaurants found within the hotel complex.
Hotel Jivitesh, Delhi
The Jivitesh Hotel is centrally located in the heart of Karol Bagh, a popular neighbourhood of Delhi renowned for its excellent shops and vibrant street markets. The Jivitesh offers comfortable and spacious guest rooms, with modern amenities such as free WiFi, and you can be assured of a warm welcome and excellent customer service from the hotel staff. Enjoy authentic Indian vegetarian cuisine at the hotel's restaurant and take a refreshing dip in the outdoor swimming pool after a day of sightseeing in the capital.
Vivanta by Taj Dwarka, Delhi
Vivanta by Taj Dwarka is a modern, luxury hotel located in Dwarka, on the outskirts of New Delhi, just a 15-minute drive from the airport. Spread over 7 acres, this striking hotel has a unique angular design and offers 250 luxurious rooms and suites. All tastes are catered for at the hotel's multi-cuisine restaurant, while the Indus Express restaurant serves mouth-watering Punjabi cuisine. Head to the popular Tipple bar for a delicious array of heady cocktails or relax by the poolside with a refreshing smoothie from the Celsuis Pool Bar. The nearby Sector 21 Metro station provides direct access to the heart of the city and after a day of sightseeing you can cool off with a refreshing dip in the outdoor pool or relax in the sauna and massage parlour.
Seven Hills Tower, Agra
The modern and stylish Seven Hills Tower hotel boasts a range of facilities and services designed to ensure the quality of each traveller's stay. The spacious guestrooms are elegantly decorated with neutral colours and fabrics covered with traditional patterns and all have excellent ensuite facilities. Guests can enjoy a dip in the rooftop pool or laze on the sun loungers before heading to the equally lofty restaurant for some mouth-watering Mughlai cuisine. The al fresco dining area offers beautiul views of the Taj Mahal, perfect for enjoying a sunset drink.
Bhanwar Vilas Palace, Karauli
Built in 1938, this stunning property is the residence of the Maharaja (181st in the Royal Dynasty) and Maharani of Karauli. Both the architecture and furniture have been designed in fitting with colonial styles and the property offers a fantastic insight into the history and elegance of a bygone era. Rooms are split between deluxe rooms and luxury suites, each including a range of modern amenities such as a mini bar, a well-appointed ensuite and a plush king-sized bed. In the evenings, guests can tuck into an array of regional specialties as well as cuisine from around the world in the hotel's restaurant. The hotel is just 7km from the nearest train station.
Mandawa Haveli, Jaipur
Made of pink and red sandstone, the beautiful heritage-style Mandawa Haveli is a fine example of typical Rajasthani architecture. All rooms are well appointed with intricately carved wooden beds and king-size royal portraits, with modern amenities such as free WiFi and ensuite bathrooms. Spend an evening dining on continental, Indian or Rajasthani cuisine on the outdoor terrace or request a private, candlelit dinner on the rooftop under a star-studded sky. Well located in the heart of Jaipur city on Sansar Chandra Road, this hotel is just a few minute’s drive from the Palace of the Winds.
Although this was an ‘express’ tour I felt we covered a lot in the time available and with the distances covered. I was surprised by the travel time for each leg of the trip - the trip notes didn't include estimated durations for all travel days. Other companies do this routinely so this is one improvement that On the Go could make so travellers have full information before they book. I note that road and traffic conditions are not the same as the U.K. and there were sufficient toilet and food stops which shows the guides’ consideration for the group.
The hotel on the last day in Delhi was disappointing. The rooms were great however the location wasn’t and as there was no bar or spa at the hotel (unlike the starting point hotel) spending the last night together was not as much fun as it could have been and relaxing after a busy week would have been better with spa, or a gym! The breakfast was also poor with mostly Indian food and only bread and cereal other than this.
Our guide was fantastic. He looked after everyone with great care and consideration, including finding pharmacy’s and phone shops for travellers, offering more frequent stops for those who weren’t well and re-planning portions of the trip where journeys took longer than expected or It was a foggy day. He shared some personal stories to help explain aspects of the Indian culture and provided excellent information on all aspects of history, culture, etc. There were times when Yusuf sat away from the group for meals, which we felt uncomfortable with as we wanted him to be part of the group - by the end of the week he was doing this and I think this made him feel more comfortable sharing stories with us, which was nice for everyone. My one criticism of Yusuf would be that he would often move the group on in quite a quiet manner so we didn’t always know we were supposed to follow - I think this may be down to the quiet nature of the Indian people, whereas lots of loud Brits and Aussies probably need a loud voice to get them to listen!! He was excellent at advising us on how to stay safe and not get taken advantage of by locals and stepped in several times to assist when money was stolen and people approached us. He made the trip very successful.
Having water available on the bus was another added bonus as we didn’t need to find shops to buy it at - another small detail that helped make a difference to the overall quality of the tour.”
Excellent tour excellent guide, very professional , kind and helpful”
I expected the Taj Express to be fast paced and deliver all the highlights in a short space of time and I was not disappointed! Our tour guide, Satendra, assisted with arranging any additional sightseeing I had planned. He is an exceptional tour guide - I had spinal surgery prior to the tour and he went out of his way to assist me in any way possible. ”
Excellent tour guide. India is daunting but with Yussef in control we had the best experience possible.”
He was amazing, very knowledgeable and a credit to your company.”
Yusuf was a very good tour leader who was always helpful and consisderate of individuals on the tour. He was very knowledgeable about his country and explained the history thoroughly. He would rearrange the order of the tour at various times to make the tour flow more easily for the benefit of the participants. He would provide a buffer zone from some of the local vendors for us at times which was very helpful and useful to us.
I can say with certainty that he was one of the best tour leaders we have ever encountered. With our visit to India we have been to 80 countries so we have encountered many tour leaders throughout the years. Even though we were very tired by the end of the tour, it was a wonderful experience to see a small part of India. The heat at this time of the year coupled with our age lead to our being very exhausted at teh completion of the tour. Thanks to Yusuf for our pleasurable trip and great experience of India.”
What a great holiday! This was our third group tour with On The Go and could not recommend them enough. India was fantastic with so many amazing sights to see. After the Taj Mahal being the most enjoyable highlight of the trip, the walk in the streets of Karauli was the second highlight. Getting away from all the big tourist attractions and just being able to walk through the streets was a great experience. Yusuf our guide is truly exceptional at his job.”
Tour was well-organized. Our guide Yusuf was knowledgeable, professional. He handled the group well and was in charge at all times. Hence, we all felt safe and secure. My overall enjoyment of the tour was somewhat dampened by the heat, but that can't go against On the Go and/or Yusuf.
If there is anything -- two comments about the itinerary and one about the accommodation
Taj Mahal: if there is a time when the Taj Mahal has less people, then that would be the time to go. Our itinerary calls for visiting the Taj in the afternoon: I don't know if there are more people in the afternoon or less, the whole place was just crowded. The site itself was not well-organized (Indian government fault, not the tour's). People were shouting in the mausoleum and that just detracts from the whole experience.
Personally, I could have done without the day in Karauli and the village walk. The village walk felt a tad like poverty tourism to me. While some people may like that aspect of it, I didn't like it that much. Would have liked the option of upgraded accommodations, especially in Agra. ”
Everything about this tour was brilliant, our tour guide Yusuf was so knowledgeable about all the history behind the great places we visited plus he was very approachable and easy to talk to. I could not fault all of the accommodation and the service received whilst there. Well done to On The Go Tours for employing such experienced people ”
Totally loved the tour, our guide was so knowledgeable, informative and caring. He very subtly kept watch over us all, took time to check on everyone and really became part of the group.
I learnt so much about the history of India and Pakistan, the religions were brought to life equally and without bias and his personal stories were a joy.
I cannot recommend highly enough this tour and our guide and I look forward to my next trip to India (and beyond!) with you.”
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Excellent tour excellent guide, very professional , kind and helpful”