Exciting Days, Comfortable Nights
FROM: USD $1,345

Taj and Raj - 11 Days

Discover the lofty peaks and breathtaking views of Shimla, India's largest hill station and the former summer capital of British India. Ride the narrow gauge railway aboard the Himalayan Queen Toy Train and explore Delhi, the Pink City of Jaipur and the legendary Taj Mahal in Agra.

Inclusions
Itinerary
Prices & Dates
Hotels
Reviews

Trip Highlights

Himalayan Queen Toy Train - Journey to Shimla aboard this famous narrow gauge railway
Delhi - Take in the sights of Old and New Delhi on a guided tour of India’s capital city including Humayun's Tomb, Jama Masjid and Gandhi's crematorium Raj Ghat
Fatehpur Sikri - Uncover an abandoned Mughal city
Karauli - A former princely state. Stay in the Maharaja's Palace and see the fine restoration work taking place at Karauli City Palace
Shimla - Take in the Jakhoo temple, Viceregal Lodge, the State Museum, Christ Church and Mall Road
Agra and the Taj Mahal - Admire India’s most famous monument and visit nearby Agra Fort
Jaipur - Discover the City Palace & Jantar Mantar, Amber Fort and a visit to cotton trader/tailor

Included

10 breakfasts, 1 lunch, 2 dinners
2 train journeys, Air-conditioned Chair Class, Delhi to Kalka and Shimla to Delhi
Touring of Delhi, Shimla, Agra, Jaipur and Karauli
Services of English-speaking Indian specialist guides at some sites
All relevant transfers and transportation in private vehicles
Narrow gauge Toy Train journey on the Kalka to Shimla Railway Line
10 nights - 3-4 star and heritage hotels
Travel by jeep to the Amber Fort in Jaipur
Escorted by an English-speaking Indian tour guide (for groups of 6 or more)
Entrance fees to museums in Shimla
Airport arrival and departure transfers on day 1 and day 11

Not Included

International flights and visas
Entrance Fees: USD$70-80, paid in local currency
Tip for your tour guide. We recommend you allow $3 - 7 USD per day per traveller. Tipping your tour guide is an entirely personal gesture
Tipping Kitty: USD$35-45, paid in local currency

Itinerary

Day 1

Delhi

Wednesday. Upon arrival into Delhi, you'll be met at the airport and transferred to your hotel. The remainder of the day is free to relax or explore this bustling capital city. Our Welcome Meeting will take place this evening at approximately 8pm.
Overnight: Delhi

Day 2

Toy Train to Shimla

Delhi - Kalka – Shimla. Bright and early this morning we board the Shatabdi Express bound for Kalka. Upon arrival travellers will transfer to the narrow gauge Himalayan Queen Toy Train to continue their journey on to Shimla.

The Guinness Records Book of 'Rail Facts and Feats' named the Kalka to Shimla railway as 'The greatest narrow gauge engineering feat in India’. The scenic 96 kilometre journey winds around 919 curves, passes through 20 railway stations and clatters across five level crossings, each to the cacophonous symphony of greetings, tooting horns and the hubbub of Indian life. There are also 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.

Upon arrival in Shimla, we meet our representative on the station platform and transfer to our hotel for check-in and an evening at leisure.
Overnight: Shimla  |  Breakfast

Day 3

Shimla Sightseeing

The most famous of the British hill stations and the former summer capital of the Raj, Shimla is set in the foothills of the Himalayas along a crescent-shaped ridge at an altitude of over 2100 metres. The famous main street, The Mall, is lined with stately English homes and retains a quintessentially British 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.
Overnight: Shimla  |  Breakfast

Day 4

Free time in Shimla

Shimla - Kalka - Delhi. Today offers free time for you to independently explore Shimla. You can opt for a stroll around the town, 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 snow-capped peaks set as a glorious backdrop to the sleepy township of Shimla below. Hotel check-out is at noon, opt for some lunch and pack an evening picnic meal before boarding the Kalka Shatabdi Express and arriving into Delhi late this evening.
Overnight: Delhi  |  Breakfast

Day 5

Delhi sightseeing

Today we enjoy a full day sightseeing tour of Old and New Delhi, taking in Humayun's Tomb, Jama Masjid - India’s oldest and largest mosque and Raj Ghat - the site of Gandhi’s cremation in Old Delhi, and the Rajpath and India Gate in New Delhi. Tonight, we enjoy a group Namaste Dinner at a our hotel.
Overnight: Delhi  |  Breakfast, Dinner

Day 6

The Taj Mahal

Delhi - Agra. Departing Delhi, we make our way to Agra, the erstwhile capital of the Mughal empire. Our first stop here is the impressive Agra Fort, which boasts some of India's finest Mughal buildings behind its fortified walls. Later we travel on to the legendary Taj Mahal. Built by the order of Emperor Shah Jahan in the 17th century in affectionate memory of his beloved wife Mumtaz, the Taj Mahal is perhaps one of the most extravagant monuments to love ever built.
Overnight: Agra  |  Breakfast

Day 7

The princely state of Karauli

Agra - Karauli. This morning we explore the Mughal city of Fatehpur Sikri, which has been deserted for over four centuries after it was allegedly abandoned due to a lack of water. Thanks to the very durable red sandstone from which it was built, Fatehpur Sikri still remains well-preserved and is a fascinating place to explore.

The highlight of the day is Karauli, which was a princely state of India from 1348 until 1949. We spend the night here, at the beautiful Palace Bhanwar Vilas, where the current Maharaja and Maharani of Karauli reside. During our stay we can explore the palace and grounds at leisure and we may even be treated to a guided tour by the princess. The family is also lovingly restoring the Karauli City Palace, which we visit later this afternoon. Tonight, opt to attend the evening Aaarti (prayer) taking place nearby.
Overnight: Karauli  |  Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 8

Jaipur

Karauli - Jaipur. This morning we stop briefly to meet the children and teachers at a local school (if open) where we operate our ‘Change for Children’ programme. If you have bought any educational items with you to hand out to children this would be the time to do so. Then we drive on to Jaipur, the vibrant capital of Rajasthan. The rest of the day is free to spend at leisure.
Overnight: Jaipur  |  Breakfast

Day 9

Jaipur sightseeing

Very early this morning there is the opportunity to sail over the lofy hilltop forts and regal palaces of Jaipur in a hot air balloon, on our Balloon Over Jaipur Bolt-on. We then travel beyond Jaipur to the stunning 16th century Amber Fort where we enjoy a tour of the fort's well-preserved interior and grounds. Later we visit a cotton weaving house to see a demonstration of fabric dyeing and block printing before touring the City Palace and Jantar Mantar - an old yet cleverly designed space observatory.
Overnight: Jaipur  |  Breakfast

Day 10

Return to Delhi

Jaipur - Delhi. This morning we drive back to Delhi. The afternoon is free for you to explore the capital. Perhaps opt for a meal in the heart of the city this evening or simply relax with group members at the hotel.
Overnight: Delhi  |  Breakfast

Day 11

Delhi

Saturday. Our touring arrangements come to an end after breakfast. Following hotel check-out an included transfer will take you to the airport for your onward travel.
Breakfast

Balloon Over Jaipur!

Bolt-on an exhilarating hot air balloon ride over the majestic Pink City of Jaipur. Sail within a breath of lofty hilltop forts and fine regal palaces. Look down upon sleepy villages waking in the early morning sun. Drift past expansive waterside manors and intricately carved temples on a magical hot air balloon adventure! The balloon flight will take place in the early morning of day 8.

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.

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New Years Tour
New Year Departure
Easter departure, book early!
Easter Departure
This is a special Diwali departure, which includes our own Diwali celebrations! Please see our Trip Notes for details of the event.
Diwali Departure
Guaranteed Departure
4+ places
Limited places
Sold out
Contact Us
2017
Price /
Person
Single
Supp.
25 Oct - 04 Nov 10% offG
USD $1,495
USD $1,346

USD $1,150
USD $1,495
USD $1,150
08 Nov - 18 Nov 10% offG
USD $1,495
USD $1,346

USD $1,150
USD $1,495
USD $1,150
USD $1,495
USD $1,150
13 Dec - 23 Dec 10% offG
USD $1,495
USD $1,346

USD $1,150
USD $1,995
USD $1,150
2018
Price /
Person
Single
Supp.
USD $1,495
USD $1,150
USD $1,495
USD $1,150
USD $1,495
USD $1,150
USD $1,495
USD $1,150
USD $1,495
USD $1,150
USD $1,995
USD $1,150
USD $1,345
USD $1,150
USD $1,345
USD $1,150
USD $1,345
USD $1,150
USD $1,345
USD $1,150
USD $1,345
USD $1,150
USD $1,345
USD $1,150
USD $1,345
USD $1,150
USD $1,345
USD $1,150
USD $1,345
USD $1,150
USD $1,495
USD $1,150
USD $1,495
USD $1,150
USD $1,995
USD $1,150
USD $1,495
USD $1,150
USD $1,495
USD $1,150
USD $1,495
USD $1,150
USD $1,995
USD $1,150

Extra Prices

Price /
Person
Single
Supp.
Private Tour Supplement
USD $540
-  
Pre-Tour Accommodation - Delhi
USD $90
USD $70
Post-Tour Accommodation - Delhi
USD $90
USD $70

Hotels

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.

Hotel Willow Banks, Shimla

Our Category: Standard   |   Regional Category: 3 Star Hotel

The Willow Banks is a colonial-style hotel established in 1871 with each room boasting its own private balcony. As well as the gym and pool, the hotel has a steam room and sauna, jacuzzi and Ayurvedic massage available so guests can relax and rejuvenate amongst the stunning mountain scenery in comfort. The inviting rooms are fully appointed with elegant furniture and rich upholstery with WiFi access and cable TV. The hotel is located on The Mall, within walking distance of great retail outlets and restaurants.

East Bourne Hotel, Shimla

Our Category: Standard   |   Regional Category: 3 Star Hotel

The East Bourne is a smart and modern hotel, with spacious rooms. The hotel is set within oak and deodar trees. The hotel was the home of Col. Auchenlock who later became the commander in chief of the imperial British Army

The Piccadily, Delhi

Our Category: Superior   |   Regional Category: 5 Star Hotel

The grand lobby of the Piccadily is a perfect introduction to this elegant luxury property. Rooms are bright, airy and furnished in a sophisticated and contemporary fashion. Staff are helpful, attentive and go above and beyond to make sure your stay is a memorable and happy one. Dining at popular Zune and contemporary Twenty-9 is highly recommended. Located in the west of town, close to the airport. Access to the rest of the city is very simple with the Janakpuri West Metro station just next door.

Seven Hills Tower, Agra

Our Category: Superior   |   Regional Category: 4 Star Hotel

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. 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 spacious guestrooms are elegantly decorated with neutral colours and fabrics covered with traditional patterns and all have excellent ensuite facilities. Why not head to the rooftop pool and al fresco dining area for beautiul views of the Taj - perfect for a sunset drink.

Bhanwar Vilas Palace, Karauli

Our Category: Standard   |   Regional Category: Standard Heritage

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. 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 specialities 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

Our Category: Standard   |   Regional Category: Standard Heritage

The beautiful heritage style Mandawa Haveli is a fine example of typical Rajasthan architecture - set in terraced gardens with pretty courtyards. All rooms are well appointed with intricately carved wooden beds and king-size royal portraits. An evening spent enjoying a lavish Rajasthani dinner in front of a traditional folk dance is highly recommended. Well located in the heart of Jaipur city on Sansar Chandra Road, just a few minute’s drive from the Palace of the Winds.

Reviews

Scoring an average traveller rating of 4.41 out of 5 based on 17 recent reviews

1  |  2  |  3  |  4

I am pleased to give feedback as I feel we were very well looked after with consideration for everyone's needs and requirements being met. Nothing was ever too much trouble and Sat was always well organised and planned in what we did on the tour. He went above and beyond in managing everything to make our tour enjoyable, always making sure we had lunches planned and rest stops on our journeys. It was a wonderful holiday and Sat really helped make this experience special and memorable.

Thank you

• Submitted 16 Oct 2017
Tour
Guide
Country

First time with On the Go. Caroline in the booking office was extremely efficient and helpful. We were very well looked after during our tour and with transfers. The tour was interesting although a couple of the local guides spoke very softly. Our guides in Shimla and the main guide of the rest of the tour were excellent. Hotels were very good.

• Submitted 08 Apr 2017
Tour
Guide
Country

I opted to tour with On The Go again after a previous successful trip to Vietnam and Cambodia in 2014 and I was not disappointed. The tour had two separate sections, it began with a trip to Shimla on trains with a smaller group of 4 - Anu was a wonderful tour guide. We then travelled back to Delhi to meet the rest of our group for the remainder of our trip and our new guide, Vansh. 38 people were booked on this trip so they split into two groups - much nicer group size and a lot more manageable for all. Vansh was very organised, informative and a truly friendly, humorous and approachable guide. My only slight niggle about the tour I personally would've preferred some more free time to explore independently but all-in-all I thoroughly enjoyed the tour and would certainly book through OTG again in the future.

• Submitted 27 Feb 2017
Tour
Guide
Country

Yusuf was a very knowledgable and experienced guide. He was friendly and approachable with a "can do" attitude.

• Submitted 10 Jan 2017
Tour
Guide
Country

I have to say that both guides exceeded all my expectations. Friendly, professional, knowledgeable. I give them both five stars. It was the little touches like helping me to carry a bag when I was taking off a jacket.

• Submitted 30 Oct 2016
Tour
Guide
Country

We had a brilliant time, we were looked after so well. Both our guides Sammy and Yusef took sure care to make sure we were in the right place at the right time. They gave us lots of information which greatly enhanced the enjoyment of the trip. It was full on and we saw lots of beautiful things. The accommodation was very special and in tradition style, food was high quality. We had never been on a tour before and we a little apprehensive as to what to expect . We were quickly required that we had made a good choice with On The Go. It was lovely to be with a mixed group of people and make friends. We certainly got a very good picture and understanding of the country and it was lovely to visit a school too.

• Submitted 26 Oct 2016
Tour
Guide
Country

The tour around India was truly an assault on the senses as exotic India unfurled before us. I really appreciated having such an efficient tour guide as Vansh to accompany us as I was travelling with my two sons for the first time to India. He sorted out minor problems with authority and always kept us informed as to the agenda for the day. He fully deserves to win the tour guide of the year competition and gets our votes!

• Submitted 14 Aug 2016
Tour
Guide
Country

The guides were excellent and informative

The range of places on the tour was excellent

• Submitted 18 May 2016
Tour
Guide
Country

Yusef was absolutely amazing, his local knowledge made India feel like home. Nothing was too hard for him and he managed to keep up with everyone's requests without even breaking a sweat. He was able to suggest things that made the tour feel more like an unique experience and always made us feel safe particularly in less tourist areas. Would recommend him to anyone, absolute treasure he is!

• Submitted 31 Mar 2016
Tour
Guide
Country

The Taj and Raj tour was fantastic! I would recommend it to anyone. I went during January and the weather was superb - not too hot and not too cold. The short stay in Shimla was a real treat. The town is quite different from the other cities we visited, and it was a good place to acclimatize to India. The rest of the tour is much more hectic, so the chilled atmosphere was a good start. Delhi, Agra and Jaipur were a whirl of colours, sounds, wonderful tastes and new experiences. I particularly enjoyed visiting the rural school - what an eye opener. The second last day (travelling from rural India back to Delhi) was very long and the least memorable.

The tour itself was slick and well organised, from On The Go people meeting us at the door of the train, to birthday cakes for the two people who celebrated their birthdays during the tour. Yusuf, our guide, deserves special mention - he went out of his way to make the tour a success and gave us all a new respect for India.

• Submitted 04 Feb 2016
Tour
Guide
Country
1  |  2  |  3  |  4

In Brief

Range
Trip Type
Starts
Delhi
Ends
Delhi
Departs
Wednesdays
Hotel Rating
3 - 4 star & heritage hotels
Local Payment
None
Tour Guide
Yes - escorted by a tour guide
Meals
Breakfast: 10, Lunch: 1, Dinner: 2
Visiting
Delhi, Shimla, Agra, Karauli, Jaipur
Countries
Updated
5th September 2017

Tour Bolt-ons

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Extra Tour Info

India's Golden Triangle
Our guide to travelling India's Golden Triangle

I am pleased to give feedback as I feel we were very well looked after with consideration for everyone's needs and requirements being met. Nothing was ever too much trouble and Sat was always well organised and planned in what we did on the tour. He went above and beyond in managing everything to make our tour enjoyable, always making sure we had lunches planned and rest stops on our journeys. It was a wonderful holiday and Sat really helped make this experience special and memorable.

Thank you

Sheila Coles