Cultural India Tours
(14 Nights & 15 Days)
DELHI / AGRA / JAIPUR / BAGAR / BIKANER / JAISALMER / JODHPUR RANAKPUR / UDAIPUR /DELHI
Day 01: Arrive Delhi
Arrive Delhi by XXX at XXX hrs. You will be met on arrival in Delhi and transferred to your hotel. Overnight stay in Delhi for 02 nights.
It is believed that Delhi has been rebuilt seven times with the ruins of one city becoming the foundations for the next. The Mughals ruled here from 12th century. The British captured it in 1803 reducing the Mughal rulers to puppet kings, and in 1911 founded New Delhi, which became the capital of independent India in 1947. The sun warmed stones of ancient forts, tombs, mosques and palaces lie scattered across its sprawling expanse, a reminder of an almost continuous settlement along the Yamuna River.
Day 02: Delhi
Morning sight seeing tour of Old and New Delhi.
Visit the old city of Shahjananbad where you will the see imposing Red Fort one of the most magnificent palaces in the world.
Later visit Jama Masjid the largest mosque in India and a stunning example of Mughal architecture and the Samadhi of Mahatma Gandhi (memorial of Mahatma Gandhi) at Raj Ghat. Situated on the bank of the legendary Yamuna River.
. In 1911, the British asked Lutyens to design a new city, the result was New Delhi, The architectural designs, and sophistication of the buildings and the wide tree lines avenues are reminiscent of many European cities.
Visit Connaught Place the hub of the city mainly devoted to shops, banks and restaurants. Then on to Rajpath flanked by Ornamental ponds and lawns, with India Gate at one end and the Presidents house at the other Rajpath most clearly reflects Lutyens European influence. Drive past the impressive president’s house and the Parliament House and visit Humayuns Tomb, Delhis first Moghul tomb its sombre, Persian-style elegance marks this as one of Delhis finest historic sites.
Finally visit Qutub Minar. Built In 1199 either as a victory tower or as a minaret to the adjacent mosque, at a height of 72.5 meters. It is still the highest, and one of the finest stone towers in India.
Day 03: Delhi – Agra
Early morning drive from Delhi to Agra approximately 203 – 4.5 hrs. Afternoontour of Agra Fort and Taj Mahal. Overnight in Agra for 01 night.
It was during the Mughal era that Agra first gained prominence, during the 16th and 17th centuries when it served as their capital. The Moghul passion for building endowed Agra with some of the loveliest buildings in the world.
The massive Agra Fort was started by Akbar in 1565, and was added to over the years. Initially it was a military structure, with 2.5 Km long, 20 metre high double walls protecting its inhabitants. By Shah Jahan’s reign it had partilly become a palace. This rusty red sandstone fort stands like a crescent on the bank of Yamuna River. It is one of the finest forts in India and is a silent witness to the rise and fall of the imperial Mughal Empire. Visit its numerous palaces, pavilions and buildings that echo the story of Mughal Empire.
Emperor Shah Jahan built the Taj Mahal between 1630-1653 as a memorial in white marble to his queen Mumtaz Mahal. Taj Mahal is one of the Seven Wonders of the World and the greatest love stories ever written with white marble and precious stones. Perhaps the most perfect architectural monument in the world.
Day 04: Agra – Jaipur
This morning drive from Agra to Jaipur approximately 221 Kms – 5.5 hours en-route visiting the deserted township of Fatehpur Sikri. Afternoon is at leisure. Overnight stay in Jaipur for 02 nights
In 1596 Akbar built Fatehpur Sikri, 37 kms away from Agra, in honour of Saint Salim Chisti who had prophesied the birth of his son Jehangir. He moved his capital there but abandoned it 14 years later, due to the water supply going bad. Lying on a rocky ridge two miles long and one mile wide it is an epic poem in red sandstone with impressive public halls, private residences, fortifications, massive gateway, pavilions and palaces.
Jaipur is the state capital of Rajasthan and owes its name, planning and foundation to the Maharaja Jai Singh II. In 1727, Jai Singh decided to move from his hillside fortress at Amber to the plains, and thus Jaipur was conceived. It is also know as the “Pink City”, derived from the pink painted sandstone from which the buildings in the old walled city are constructed.
Day 05: Jaipur
Morning visit the Amber Fort. Afternoon sightseeing tour of Jaipur City.
Seven miles outside the city in the rugged hills that surround Jaipur is the magnificent Amber Fort. A painted elephant will take you up to the fort through its huge gateways and pillared pavilions. This Rajput Fortress/Palace was constructed from 1592 by Raja Man Singh II, and is a superb example of Rajput architecture.
A city tour takes you through the bazaars to the City Palace complex which includes the Hawa Mahal, Palace of the Winds, built in 1799. The five-story building looks out over the main street and were originally for the ladies of the royal household to watch life and processions of the city. Jai Singh built the Jantar Mantar Observatory, still equipped with the ancient instruments including a very accurate 90-foot sundial, in 1728.
Day 06: Jaipur – Bagar
Morning drive from Jaipur to Bagar situated in the Shekhawati region approximately 165 Kms – 04 Hrs.Visit the ‘havelis’ in this friendly town and nearby villages (no local guides are available in Bagar). Overnight stay in Bagar for 01 night
Shekhawati region is referred as the Open Art Gallery of Rajasthan because of its painted frescoes and ‘ havelis’ (old mansions), most of which date back to the 18th century. The region came into prominence in the 14th century when a number of Muslim clans moved into the area and the towns of this region developed into important trading posts on the caravan routes emanating from the ports of Gujarat.
Day 07: Bagar – Bikaner
Morning , drive from Bagar to Bikaner approximately 185 Kms – 4.5 Hrs. Afternoon sight seeing of Bikaner City. Overnight stay on Bikaner for 01 night.
Bikaner was a bustling trade centre in the yesteryears and figured on the caravan routes from Africa and West Asia. Due many clans (gurjar, Chauhan, Bhatti) it was once known as wild country. Rao Bikaji (one of the 14 sons of Jodhaji – founder of Jodhpur) established a dynasty here in 1488 that ruled for almost four and a half centuries.
The walled city of Bikaner stands on the northern tip of the desert triangle. It is situated on an elevated ground, surrounded by a 7 km long embattled high wall marked by 5 gates. Monuments here are chisseled out of red and yellow sandstone display finest creation of Rajput civilisation. It boasts of a spectacular Fort and an old city dotted with havelis, best riding camels and colourful bazaars.
Junagarh fort (bulit 1593) with 37 palaces, temple and pavilions, today houses a museum of valuable miniature paintings and other rare & centuries old items. Lalgarh Palace (parts now serve as hotel) was built by Ganga Singh (lived here from 1902) in memory of his father. Its a fine blend of oriental façade and occidental interior and houses Shri Sadul Museum and Anup Sanskrit Library. Ganga Golden Jubilee Museum has display of costumes, weapons, ornaments, ancient statues and paintings. Camel Breeding Farm (est 1975 kms) opens 3-5 pm and is asia’s largest
Day 08: Bikaner – Jaisalmer
Morning drive form Bikaner – Jiasalmer approximately 333 Kms – 5.5 Hrs. After sight seeing tour of Jaisalmer City. Overnight in Jaisalmer for 02 nights.
On the edge of Thar desert, in Western Rajasthan, Jaisalmer is one of India’s most exotic and unusual towns, and probably the most perfect Rajput walled city of all.
The name Jaisalmer evokes a vivid picture of sheer magic and brilliance of the desert. The exotic, remote, and beautiful, Jaisalmer is a bit of a paradox. So far west that it is in the heart of the desert, one would expect barren near-desolation. Yet this frontier town is today one of Rajasthan’s best-loved tourist destinations. Local colour and warmth prevail over the inhospitable and forbidding terrain, imbuing the medieval town with a special magic.
The hilltop golden hued yellow sandstone 250 ft tall Jaisalmer Fort (Sonar Qila) is a 12th century citadel. The fort is a city in itself with narrow cobbled winding lanes packed with magnificent houses, shops & 12th century Jain Temples dedicated to the Jain Tirthankaras – Rikhabdevji and Sambhavnathji. Gyan Bhandar or Library, established as a part of Jain temples, has some of the oldest manuscripts of India. The view of the surrounding areas from atop the fort is beautiful.
The bazaars can turn up interesting artifacts, as Jaisalmer is the central market place for the surrounding villages.. Everything here is burnished with Midas touch and is absolutely gorgeous.
The exquisite carved havelis – dating back to 1800s & the mansions of the rich merchants – with facades intricately carved latticework, have been declared national treasures.
Gadsi Sar Sagar tank is a scenic rain water lake with numerous beautiful shrines around. The lake is an idyllic spot for outings.
Day 09: Jaisalmer
Morning at leisure. Afternoon sight seeing of Dunes of Sam.
Sam (pronounced as ‘sum’ – 40 km) is the closest point to witness the total sandy desert. It has a truly magnificent stretch of sweeping dunes, with little or no vegetation. The best way to see this is by camel. Everything on a 3 km camel ride from main road to the Sam sand dunes, to see the sunset over the dunes, is an adventure by itself. The vast expense of the Thar Desert with its endless vista of golden sands, is a sight to behold
Day 10: Jaisalmer – Jodhopur
In the morning drive from Jaisalmer to Jodhpur approximately 295 Kms – 5.5 Hrs. Afternoon sight seeing tour of Jodhpur city. Overnight in Jodhpur for 01 night.
Jodhpur lies in the heart of Rajasthan, standing on the edge of the Thar Desert. It is the second largest city in Rajasthan (Jaipur is the first) and was founded in 1459 by Rao Jodha. Afternoon city tour visiting the massive 15th Mehrangarh Fort, which has a stonewall protecting the well–fortified city. Within the Fort/Palace are rooms with a rich collection of palanquins, elephant howdahs, musical instruments, costumes, furniture and an armory. The display of Canon is one of the best in India. Also visit Jaswant Thada, a white marble memorial built in 1899. Umaid Bhawan Palace, this huge palace was built by Maharaja Umaid Singh. Part of the palace has been converted into a hotel. Manmandir temple supported by 100 pillars and has carvings depicting Yoga postures.
Finally visit the old city where the clock tower is a prominent landmark, but main attraction is the Sadar Market which has kept alive the old haat bazaar (flea market) culture.
Day 11: Jodhpur – Ranakpur – Udaipur
In the morning drive from Jodhpur to Udaipur approximately 305 kms – 6 Hrs, en-route visiting the temples of Ranakpur. Overnight in Udaipur for 02 nights
Ranakpur Jain temple complex was built in 15th century and has 29 halls supported by 1444 beautifully sculptured pillars none of which are alike. It is one of the five main holy places of the Jain sect. Though over 500 years old, the temples here are superbly preserved in a near perfect condition.
Udaipur, the ‘City of Dreams’, is interspersed with shimmering lakes, marble palaces and fountains and is often referred to as the most romantic city in India. It was built in traditional Rajput style in 1559 A.D. by Maharana Udai Singh and was originally the capital of the State of Mewar. It’s beautiful lake setting, graceful architecture, bustling bazaars and historical past make Udaipur rather special.
Day 12: Udaipur
Morning tour of Udaipur city. Afternoon is free
Sites of note include the bazaars, the grand City Palace (largest in Rajasthan) which overlooks Pichola Lake, the fountain gardens of Sahelion-ki-Bari (Garden of the Maids of Honour) and the Jagdish Temple noted for its elephant-motif carvings.
Day 13: Udaipur – Delhi-
After Breakfast you will be transfer to Delhi.`