This journey starts from Delhi and traversing deserts will take you to the Taj Mahal and forts unravelling before you a heritage that transcends time. As you will glimpse the Mughal grandness it is the magnitude of the Rajputana architecture that imparts a new dimension to your visit.
Welcome to Mumbai! Described by Rudyard Kipling as ‘the Mother of Cities’, Mumbai, formerly known as Bombay, is India’s bustling financial and entertainment city, a place that attracts thousands of people every day seeking their fame and fortune.
On arrival, you will be met by our local representative and transferred to your luxury accommodation. With its unrivalled location on Nariman Point, The Oberoi Mumbai offers views of the Arabian Sea and the tip of the “Queens Necklace”; a golden crescent of lights that adorns the shoreline of Marine Drive after dark.
Tonight there is no dinner included so you may choose to dine in one of the hotel's restaurants.
We rise early this morning for your dawn tour of this fascinating city. Nicknamed the City of Dreams, Mumbai swells with millions of people every year who arrive in search of a better future. The resulting industrious bedlam is best seen in the early morning as the thousands of small businesses that keep Mumbai running begin work. See fishermen bring in their catch, watch the flower and fruit markets come to life and witness hundreds of newspaper vendors frantically at work before the sun comes up. The flurry of activity is over and swept away before many have had breakfast.
After breakfast, we will tour Fort Mumbai, the historic downtown area that is rich with imposing colonial architecture. The tour will concentrate on the Kala Ghoda area in which you will find fine examples of Victorian Gothic architecture, The Prince of Wales Museum, the oldest Sephardic synagogue, as well as a number of cafes, restaurants and fine shops and boutiques. We will stop at the extraordinary Victoria Terminus, a World Heritage Monument built in 1878.
Later we will make our way to The Gateway of India, which was built to commemorate the 1911 royal visit of King George V. We will embark on our private boat for a one-hour journey across Mumbai harbor to the cave temples on Elephanta Island, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Excavated during the 9th century, the caves are dedicated to the trinity of Indian deities – Brahma, Vishnu and Shiva. The labyrinth of cave temples at the heart of the island is considered to contain some of India’s most impressive temple carvings.
We will drive to Churchgate Station to see the “Dabbawalas”. Every morning, 5,000 men collect 200,000 “Dabbas” (home cooked lunch boxes) from office workers’ homes in the suburbs and deliver them to their offices in time for lunch. This system, which has been praised by many, including Prince Charles, Richard Branson and the Harvard Business School, is a perfect example of the organized chaos for which India is known.
We will also visit Dhobi Ghat, the world’s largest laundry; an open-air laundromat, unique to Mumbai. The washers, locally known as “Dhobis” collect, wash, press and deliver laundry from Mumbai's hotels and hospitals.
Later in the afternoon, we fly from Mumbai to Udaipur, a picturesque city of lakes and innumerable palaces, which is considered to be one of India’s most beautiful cities.
We will meet a noble’s family this evening to learn and try our hand at the authentic cuisine of Rajasthan. We go out to shop at their favourite vendors and help prepare a meal that we will share with the family over discussions of culture and lifestyle in India.
Udaipur, also known as the Venice of the East, is ruled by a much-respected Maharaja who’s magnificent City Palace forms the heart of the city.
We will visit the magnificent City Palace, built in 1725, an enormous edifice that stands on a hill on the banks of Lake Pichola.
We will walk through the bustling colourful lanes of the Rajasthani Bazaar with its rich folk art and craft. The bazaar is filled with a myriad number of small shops at which you will find a wide variety of delights, including pottery, jewelry, antiques, paintings and assorted handicrafts.
Enjoy a sunset boat cruise on Lake Pichola. The picturesque boat ride on Lake Pichola does not only provide the best scenic view of the lake and the mountains in the city, but also affords a viewing of some of the most important historical monuments, fine havelis, temples and palaces, including the City Palace dotted along the lakeside.
Your chauffeur will drive you to Jodhpur today early in the morning. About 5 hours and approximately 188 kms away, Jodhpur has some absolutely stunning sights. The mystical city of Jodhpur boasts forts and palaces, which rise against the backdrop of the Thar Desert and the walled old city. Jodhpur is also known as the “Blue City” due to the vivid blue-painted houses, which surround the Mehrangarh Fort.
En route make a stop at the famous Jain Temples of Ranakpur. The temples date back to the 15th century and are acclaimed worldwide for their intricate and superb architectural style.
Today we will experience a safari into the Bishnoi villages en route to Jodhpur. We will have a rare privilege of being welcomed into the local people's homes with a famous opium ceremony that is an integral welcome ritual at the house of a Bishnoi. We will learn about the handicraft art forms of this region such as the making of the dhurry and the ancient method of pot making that has survived till today.
This morning, we will tour Jodhpur City and visit the spectacular Mehrangarh Fort. It stands on an astonishingly high cliff above the skyline and dominates the city below.
We will also enjoy a stroll through the noisy and colourful Old City Bazaar, with its almost 7,000 matchbox sized shops.
Post breakfast your head out towards the capital of Rajasthan, which means ‘the land of kings’, and its capital, Jaipur, is defined by royalty.
The 18th-century Maharaja Jai Singh designed the city to meet his every whim, with royal palaces, gardens and pavilions taking up almost a quarter of its footprint. Jaipur has retained its flair for royal celebration: the entire city was painted pink in 1876 to welcome the Prince of Wales (it was refreshed to celebrate the visit of Queen Elizabeth II and, later, Diana, Princess of Wales.)
In the evening you explore the undisputed highlight of Jaipur - the narrow lanes of its colourful old city bazaars! Your guide will help you under the skin of its culture and vivacity.
We begin our day with a must-do visit to Amber Fort, the ancient capital that preceded Jaipur. Originally built on a smaller area and expanded in size and scope by succeeding dynasties and their rulers, Amber is a fortress town of visual awesomeness. We ride up to its imposing hilltop location on elephants and explore the maze of passages, corridors, pavilions, ornamental gardens and ramparts.
On the way you may like to stop at Anokhi Museum, where you will see a collection of old costumes with hand blocked prints that are typical to Rajasthan. Also visit the renowned bazaars of Jaipur, where one can find all forms of craftsmanship.
Further, you will explore the City Palace. Jaipur is the capital of Rajasthan and its centrepiece is the City Palace, home even today of the royal family, and known for its clutch of excellent private museums that display royal memorabilia, particularly armaments, art, books, costumes and textiles.
Continue your onward journey to Agra, a distance of 275 kms will be covered in about 6 hours including stops.
Our journey continues to Agra, perhaps the most famous city in the entire subcontinent, where a succession of charismatic Mughal rulers contributed to a rich architectural legacy, creating an ambience of grandeur and romance.... Agra, the home of the magical Taj Mahal!
Enjoy a guided tour of Agra Fort that is strategically situated along a bend on the Yamuna River. Built by three generations of Mughal emperors, it is a superb synthesis of stern military fortifications with delicate interior details.
At sunrise experience the sublimity of the marvellous Taj Mahal– a varying kaleidoscope of solitude, colours and mood. As you enter through an elaborate arched gateway you will see the monument for the first time, the wonderfully symmetrical landscaped gardens leading your eye to the intricately carved marble domes and towers. An extravagant memorial to Emperor Shah Jahan’s beloved third wife, it took thousands of artisans over 20 years to construct and its timeless beauty is a testament to their skill and vision.
Post breakfast your head out towards the capital of India, Delhi. Established in 1,000 BC, Delhi has a rich history that's tangible through its line-up of sites. Sari-clad women, vibrant flower markets, imposing architecture and treasured temples: all the nuances of India are on show in Delhi.
You will explore the legacy of the Mughal Empire at the Red Fort and the Jama Masjid Mosque of Old Delhi before getting a feel for colonial India with the vast boulevards of New Delhi.
Your day will begin with a guided tour of the living legacy of Delhi, learning about the Indo-Islamic culture and lifestyle of the Purani Dilli (Old Quarters). Enjoy a stroll through the narrow and lanes of the Chandni Chowk market, also known as Silver Street bazaar. You will get to experience an exhilarating rickshaw ride through the old by-lanes of this fascinating city.
Enjoy a guided tour of Jama Mosque – with its tapering minarets and beautiful marble domes; this is the second largest mosque in Asia and can accommodate 20,000 people.
Your next stop is at the exquisite Sikh Temple, called the Gurudwara Bangla Sahib and witness the phenomenon where more than 10,000 people are fed each day – one of the greatest services to humanity!
Further, you will visit Gandhi Smriti, the house where Mahatma Gandhi spent the last months of his life, before being assassinated in 1948.
Your tour for the day will end at Humayun’s Tomb. Considered the architectural forerunner of Agra's Taj Mahal, it is set in peaceful surrounds. It features an artful combination of red sandstone and white marble, establishing the exquisite symmetry and scale perfected by later Mughal empire builders.
Enjoy a relaxed breakfast at the hotel. Later you will be transferred to Delhi international airport to board your flight back home.
Duration: 11 days
Book by: 10/09/2018
Travel dates: 15/04/2018 - 30/09/2018
From $4,920 Per Person.
Terms & Conditions Prices based on per person double/twin share. Prices correct as at 22 April 2018 but may fluctuate if surcharges, fees, taxes or currency change. Offer is subject to availability. Please check all prices, availability and other information with your travel consultant before booking. Bookings must be made direct with Concierge Traveller. Package cancellation fees apply. All savings and bonus nights (if applicable) are included in the advertised price. Offers may be withdrawn without notice and are not combinable with any other offers unless stated. Local city taxes may apply.
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