VIBRANT AND HISTORICAL INDIA
Delhi to Delhi
Over 15 days explore India and its vibrant colours and historical sites. Explore its cities, markets and palaces. Take part in a Stepwell dinner a Merit Travel Exclusive. You’ll leave with a new sense of understanding this amazing country.
Delhi | Mandawa | Bikaner | Jodhpur | Rawla Narlai | Udaipur | Deogarh | Jaipur | Agra
• 14 Nights Hotel Accommodation
• 14 breakfasts, two dinners, one lunch
• airport transfers
• cooking demonstration
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Day 1 | Sept. 3, 2018 | Arrive Delhi
Arrive at the Delhi International airport. A Cox & Kings representative will meet you as you and you will be transferred to your hotel for check-in. India’s capital and a major gateway to the country, contemporary Delhi is a bustling metropolis, which successfully combines in its folds – the ancient with the modern. Amidst the fast spiraling skyscrapers, the remnants of a bygone time, in the form of its many monuments, stand as silent reminders to the region’s ancient legacy. Delhi is a food-lovers haven and has something to please every palate. There is an unlimited variety available across cuisines, across price-brackets and across experiences – from street food of North India to International cuisine and from road-side dhabas to fine-dining – Delhi has it all.
Overnight in Delhi at Piccadilly (Club room)
Day 2 | Sept. 4 2018 | Delhi - Mandawa (B, L, D)
Check-out and proceed for walk with Salaam Baalak Trust. Conceived by Mr. John Thompson, this trust took shape in 2006. The city walk takes you to Salaam Balak Trust (SBT) is a Non-profit, Non-governmental organization established in 1988 whose aim is to rescue and establish street children and run-aways. The walk provides a window for these ‘guides’ to improve their communication and speaking skills. At the end of the walk there is a short music & dance show conducted by the SBT children. Afterwards, start a guided tour of New Delhi, which reflects the legacy the British left behind. The tour includes a drive past the imposing India Gate (War Memorial Arch), the Parliament buildings and the Rashtrapati Bhawan (the President’s residence). Afterwards, continue your drive to Mandawa (a journey of 245 km/ 7 hrs drive approximately). In the heart of the Shekhawati region of Rajasthan is the beautiful small town of Mandawa, known throughout the state for its forts and havelis. The structures of this place are a reminder of the cultural and social hotspot this place used to be in the bygone era.
Overnight in Mandawa at Hotel Castle Mandawa
(Standard room) one night
Day 3 | Sept. 5, 2018 | Mandawa – Bikaner (B)
Today, you will be driven to Bikaner (a journey of 245 km / approx 5.5 hours). On arrival, proceed for sightseeing tour of Bikaner. More popularly called the camel country, the city is renowned for the best riding camels in the world. Bikaner’s forts, palaces and temples are magnificent creations in red and yellow sandstone and are living manifestations of its rich historical and architectural legacy.
Overnight in Bikaner at Hotel Narendra Bhawan
(Residence room) two nights
Day 4 | Sept. 6, 2018 | Bikaner (B)
Visit one of the most interesting forts in Rajasthan, with its sumptuously decorated interiors. Junagarh Fort built in 1588 by Raja Rai Singh it is unusual in the sense that it was one of the few major forts of Rajasthan that was not built on a hilltop. Instead, it was built on the desert plains; its rugged sandstone bastions and graceful pavilions and balconies are silhouetted against the sky. In the afternoon proceed for a tour of Devi Kund and the Camel Breeding Farm. Located about 8km east of Bikaner, Devi Kund is the royal crematorium with several ornamented 'chhatris' (cenotaphs) built in the memory of the Bika dynasty rulers. You will also visit the National Research Centre on Camel (formerly known as the Camel Breeding farm) located at a distance of about 10 km from Bikaner city. Take a camel ride or watch the calves gambolling or participate in an interactive lecture delivered by a traditional camel breeder or sip a cup of camel milk.
Day 5 | Sept. 7, 2018 | Bikaner - Jodhpur (B)
This morning, you will be driven to Jodhpur (a journey of 225 km/ 07 hrs drive approx). Jodhpur, also called the ‘Blue City’ located on the edge of the Thar Desert was once the capital of the former princely state of Marwar state founded in 1459 by Rao Jodha and is now the second largest city of Rajasthan. Flanked on its western side by the Mehrangarh Fort, and on the eastern side by the stately sandstone Palace of Umaid Bhawan; the monuments temples and gardens of Jodhpur depict a multi-faceted grandeur. The rest of the day is at leisure for your independent activities.
Overnight in Jodhpur at Hotel Indana Palace
(Executive room) two nights
Day 6 | Sept. 8, 2018 | Jodhpur (B)
The magnificent Mehrangarh Fort, one of Rajasthan's finest forts, looks down protectively over the city, from the hilltop. Still run by the Maharaja of Jodhpur, this 5 km long majestic fort on a 125-metre-high hill is one of the most impressive and formidable structures. Later, enjoy a Village Safari in the countryside of Jodhpur. Showcasing the best of the land, it is a complete cultural experience, which encompasses all that this region has to offer. From the warm and hospitable people, to the various customs and ceremonies and the abundant wildlife. You also have the privilege of being welcomed into people’s homes and interacting with them. Enjoy high-tea after the experience.
Day 7 | Sept. 9, 2018 | Jodphur – Rawla Narlai (B, D)
Drive to Rawla Narlai (a journey of 139 km/ 2 ½ hrs drive ). The Narlai village on an exhilarating back country road of Ranakpur has a marvellous heritage resort. Hidden away in the heart of Aravalli Hills, Rawla Narlai was one of the Jagir Villages of Jodhpur’s Royal family. Still owned by members of the Jodhpur family, the resort is now transformed from a mere hunting lodge into a stunning, stylish boutique. In the evening, the tour joins a countryside jeep safari for 2 ½ hours, through the surrounding village, past temples and agriculture. For dinner, taste the flavour of true Rajasthani Royal hospitality at the 16th Century old Baoli (Stepwell) of Rawla Narlai whilst being entertained by the local jogi singing the devotional folk songs in his rich melodious voice.
Overnight in Narlai at Rawla Narlai (Classic Heritage room) one night
Day 8 | Sept. 10, 2018 | Rawla Narlai – Udaipur (B)
This morning, you will be driven to the ‘City of Lake’ Udaipur (a journey of 121 Km/ 2 ½ hours’ drive approx) en route visit to beautiful Ranakpur Jain Temples (audio guides will be provided as guiding is not allowed inside the temple premises). Udaipur – the ‘City of Lakes’, is the capital of the former kingdom of Mewar, one of the oldest surviving dynasties in the world and was established around 1567 A.D. It is a rich and beguiling tapestry of lakeside palaces, forts, temples, havelis and gardens, reflecting the varied influences of the centuries. Also called ‘Venice of the East’, Udaipur is located in the Aravalli ranges of the royal state of Rajasthan. Surrounded by ancient mountains and set on the edge of three lakes, it is a beautiful old city with narrow lanes meandering through it.
Overnight in Udaipur at Hotel Fateh Niwas (Deluxe room) two nights
Day 9 | Sept. 11, 2018 | Udaipur (B)
In the morning, experience Jal Sanjhi, an art of displaying the lifestyle of lord Krishna floating over the water with the use of paper stencils and beautiful bright colors. Later in the afternoon proceed on a half day tour of city of lakes - Udaipur. Commence your tour with a visit to the City Palace which stands on a hill on the banks of Lake Pichola, surrounded by crenulated walls. Built in 1567, it is composed of 4 major palaces and several minor palaces that form a single façade. In the evening, enjoy a boat cruise on Lake Pichola – the picturesque lake that entranced Maharaja Udai Singh and inspired him to build Udaipur. The lake is surrounded by hills, palaces, temples, bathing ghats and embankments.
Day 10 | Sept. 12, 2018 | Udaipur - Deogarh (B, D)
This morning, drive to the charming hamlet of Deogarh (a journey of 127 Km/ 2 ½ hours’ drive approx). Deogarh Mahal was converted into a hotel by the present owner Rawat Nahar Singh and a part of the Mahal is still occupied by his kin. The family is closely associated with the hotel which has made Deogarh a benchmark of Heritage hospitality in Rajasthan. Every guest is special and is treated with the customary Mewari hospitality. Proceed for a trip on the meter gauge train that still runs through beautiful countryside, especially after the rain as the waterfalls can be experienced. It is the best way to enjoy the rugged and beautiful countryside! In the evening, indulge in a culinary experience of the Royals. Flavour the Mewari cuisine as you enjoy cooking demonstration and dinner typical to the resident feudal family.
Overnight in Deogarh
Day 11 | Sept. 13, 2018 | Deogarh – Jaipur (B)
In the morning, you will be driven to the pink city of Jaipur (a journey of 274 Km/ 4 ½ hours’ drive approx). Jaipur, one of the most enticing places in India, is nestled between mighty forts and the rugged Aravalli Hills. It is known as ‘the pink city’ as its prominent buildings are washed in this colour. Founded by Maharaja Sawai Jai Singh in 1727, Jaipur is steeped in Rajput history and is characterised by sites such as the City Palace with its astronomical Observatory, Hawa Mahal and the beautiful Amber Fort. Jaipur is a bustling capital city and a business centre with all the trappings of a modern metropolis yet flavoured strongly with an age-old charm that never fails to surprise a traveller.
Overnight in Jaipur at Hotel Royal Orchid Central OR Regenta Central (Deluxe room) two nights
Day 12 | Sept. 14, 2018 | Jaipur (B)
Full-day sightseeing of Amber Fort and Jaipur city. An exciting day awaits you as begin your sightseeing tour with a photo visit at the Hawa Mahal (Palace of Winds) - a five-storied wonder with a spectacular pyramidal facade and overhanging windows with latticed screens, domes and spires. Continue your tour as you drive to the ancient capital of Amer to see the fabulous Amber Fort, situated on a ridge just outside Jaipur city, surrounded by fortified battlements. Visit the Anokhi Museum of Hand Printing; situated in the shadows of historic 16th century Amber Fort in a painstaking restored old haveli. It is probably the only museum of its kind in the world where one can observe the entire process of hand-block printing from carving of wooden blocks to transformation of raw fabric into a piece of art. This afternoon, enjoy a tour of the Pink City, an “abode of rajahs”. The highlights of the tour include a visit to the City Palace Museum and the Jantar Mantar Observatory, a stone astrological and astronomical Observatory. Later, enjoy a rickshaw ride through the narrow bylanes of the colorful bazaars.
Day 13 | Sept. 15, 2018 | Jaipur - Agra (B, L)
Drive to the Mughal city of Agra (237 Km / 07 hours drive approx) en-route visiting Akbar’s abandoned capital, Fatehpur Sikri. It is made of red sandstone an combines influences from both Hindu and Mughal architecture. Known to the world as the city of the ‘Taj Mahal’, Agra is still associated with the Mughals, who besides being great rulers were also great builders. From the Taj Mahal to the massive Agra Fort; Agra is amongst the most remarkable city of the world and a must visit. In the afternoon, visit Agra Fort, an outstanding example of Mughal architecture and the seat and stronghold of the Mughal Empire under successive generations. In the evening, attend the Mohabbat the Taj show, where you will be surrounded by the colorful music, song, dance and costumes that India is so famous for. This series of plays walks you through the stories of love surrounding the creation of the Taj Mahal.
Overnight in Agra at Hotel Jaypee Palace (Standard room)
Day 14 | Sept. 16, 2018 | Agra - Delhi (B)
Enjoy a sunrise visit to the legendary Taj Mahal. Referred to as one of the wonders of the world, the Taj Mahal in Agra is the epitome of tourism in India and is celebrated for its architectural magnificence and aesthetic beauty.
Later, visit Itmud-ud-daulah’s Tomb, the marble mausoleum built by Nur Jahan, the wife of Emperor Jahangir, in memory of her father, Ghiyas Beg. Sometimes called the ‘Baby Taj’, it is beautifully conceived in white marble, mosaic and lattice. The day continues with a drive to Delhi (202 Km/ 4 ½ Hours approx).
Overnight in Delhi at Piccadilly (Club room) one night
Day 15 | Sept. 16, 2018 | Delhi (B)
This morning is at leisure. Check-out from your hotel at lunchtime and be met at your hotel by Cox & Kings representative who will assist with transfer to international airport for your onward flight.
Trip operated by Cox and Kings.
Trip requires a minimum of 8 guests to operate. Rates are CAD per person based on double occupancy. Other conditions may apply.
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