For 15 Days and 14 Nights explore Rajasthan, the northern state of India, including Jaisalmer. From sightseeing in Delhi, to visiting the Amber Fort of Jaipur, exploring the world famous Taj Mahal of Agra and the Junagarh Fort in Bikaner, this vacation will show you the sites of this culturally rich country.
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Day 1: Arrive in Delhi
Upon arrival at Delhi in the evening, you are met, greeted and escorted to the Hotel. You are welcomed in the hotel in a Traditional Indian style on arrival and check into the hotel for overnight.
Day 2: Delhi
After breakfast at the hotel, we leave for city sightseeing tour of Old Delhi & New Delhi.
Old Delhi came into prominence when Shah Jahan moved his capital from Agra to Delhi. You visit 300 year old Chandni Chowk market, a maze of lanes crowded with shops selling an extraordinary variety of items and food, the noise and crowds are a quintessential part of any Indian market. From here you continue to the Jama Masjid or Friday Mosque. This is India’s largest mosque designed by Shah Jahan, and was his last architectural legacy. Originally it was called Masjid-I-Jahanuma, which means “mosque commanding a view of the world”. In complete contrast to the noise and crowds of Old Delhi, is Raj Ghat, a simple and stunning memorial to Mahatma Gandhi, the main architect of India’s independence. You pass through the Red Fort that dominates this area is the landmark. Built in the mid-17th century by Shah Jahan, it was plundered by the marauding armies of Nadir Shah and later by British soldiers.
Afternoon, we take our tour of New Delhi, visit Qutub Minar, the tapering monument begun in 1199 was built to symbolize the supremacy of Islam. This structure was eventually the prototype of all minars or towers in India. Our next stop is Humayun’s tomb, built by his senior wife and mother of Emperor Akbar. This is the earliest example of Mughal architecture in India. It is believed that it was this mausoleum, which inspired Shah Jahan to build the Taj Mahal. We drive pass the India Gate, Presidential Palace and Parliament House. We return to hotel for overnight stay.
Day 3: Delhi – Churu (205 Kms / 5 Hrs)
After breakfast at the hotel, you will drive to Churu “Sekhawati Region”. Check in at the hotel upon arrival. Churu is a 450-year-old town and is homeland to Marwaris — India’s most successful business community since the time of Mughals. The town boasts of fabulous mansions (havelis) made by Marwari families with impressive fresco paintings and numerous buildings of public use.
In the afternoon, our guided tour takes you under the skin of what is visible and gives you a complete insight into the lives and culture of Marwari community who have practically built the whole region. Understand their fabulous mansions, hear the stories behind painted frescoes and get to know the people behind all this legacy. Overnight stay at the hotel.
Day 4: Mandawa – Bikaner (180 Kms / 4 Hrs)
After breakfast we drive to Bikaner, upon arrival check-in to hotel.
In the afternoon, we visit Junagarh Fort, built by Raja Rai Singh in the 16th century; the palaces were added to it over the next three centuries. The outer wall, built of light red sandstone is surrounded by a moat, and within are beautifully designed palaces with balconies, kiosks, fine jali or lattice work screens with richly decorated interiors. The Badal Mahal in the fort has walls covered with stories from the life Krishna, whilst the walls of the oldest palace, the Lal Niwas, are elaborately decorated in red and gold.
We return to hotel for overnight stay.
Day 5: Bikaner – Jaisalmer (330 Kms / 6 Hrs)
After breakfast at the hotel, we leave for the medieval town of Jaisalmer. Check-in at the hotel upon arrival. Rest of the day is for independent activities. Overnight stay at the hotel.
Day 6: Jaisalmer
After breakfast at the hotel, we leave for the city tour of Jaisalmer. Founded by Prince Jaisal in 1156, it was a major staging post on the trade route across the Thar Desert. The first glimpse of the honey colored walls of the fort, rising out of the hot and barren desert is magical. Untouched by time, Jaisalmer, with its golden crenulated walls, narrow streets lined with exquisite havelis, has a medieval ambience. The fort, often referred to as the “Golden Fort” because of the color of the stone, encloses palaces decorated with delicate jali or lattice worked screens, carved doors and flora carvings, and elaborately carved 12th to 16th century Jain temples.
The havelis in both the fort and the town are exceptional. Similar in style to the homes of Venetian merchants, the havelis were the mansions of wealthy traders. The houses are decorated with beautifully carved facades, screens and windows. Each haveli has an inner courtyard surrounded by richly decorated apartments. See the Nathmalji-ki-Haveli with its beautiful arched roof with carved brackets in the form of peacocks; Patwon-ki-Haveli, the most elaborate and magnificent haveli and best known for its latticed façade and Salim Singh ki Haveli. Outside the walls of the fortified town is the small oasis of Gadi Sagar, which led Prince Jaisal to found his city. It is well worth visiting to see the large number of shrines around it and the migratory birds, which it attracts.
Later in the day we proceed for excursion of “Kanoi Dunes”, 45 km away is known for its enormous sand dunes that make a surrealistic landscape patterned by the wind. This excursion also includes the unique experience of Camel Ride. We return to the hotel late evening for overnight stay.
Day 7: Jaisalmer – Jodhpur (300 Kms / 7 Hrs)
After breakfast we drive to Jodhpur, upon arrival check-in to hotel.
In the afternoon we take a guided city tour of Jodhpur. The tour starts with the visit of Mehrangarh Fort, an impregnable fortress towering above a 10km wall with soaring archways leading into the center. The fort has a series of spectacular palaces, each decorated with exquisite engravings, lattice and mirror work. The museum displays an unusual collection of miniature paintings, glided palanquins and solid silver “howdah” presented by a Mughal emperor to the Maharaja.
Next stop is Jaswant Thada — a cluster of royal cenotaphs in the white marble built in 1899 AD in memory of Maharaja Jaswant Singh II. We finish our city tour with the stop at the Clock Tower and the nearby Sardar Market — a historical local trading market for Spices. We return to hotel for overnight stay.
Day 8: Jodhpur – Udaipur via Ranakpur (170 Kms / 4 Hrs)
After breakfast we drive to Udaipur en route we visit Jain temples of Ranakpur. They were built in the 15th century and are situated in the lovely Aravali valley. The town is named after Rana Khumba the legendary warrior king of Udaipur. Its surroundings are peaceful and picturesque. The Ranakpur Jain temples have grand structure and beautiful sculptures. There are 1444 pillars in the main temple and no two of them are similar. After the visit continue our drive to Udaipur, check-in at hotel upon arrival.
Day 9: Udaipur
After breakfast at the hotel, we leave for sightseeing of the city. Udaipur with its lakes and palaces, cradled in the hills of the Aravalli range is a very romantic city. The name itself “The City of sunrise” evokes a sense of romance. We first visit the City Palace — the focal point of the city and has several areas of interest like the Suraj Gokhada, Badi Mahal, Sheesh Mahal, Mor Chowk (the peacock courtyard), and the Zenana Mahal.
Next we visit the Jagdish Temple, located close to the Palace with its imposing sculpted figures and heavily ornamented interiors. After the temple we stop by to visit Sahelion ki bari Gardens or the ‘Garden of maids’; built under the express guidance of Maharana Sangram Singh II, it is believed that the garden was constructed for 48 maids who accompanied the Maharana’s wife as dowry.
In the afternoon, we visit the Crystal Gallery at Fateh Prakash Palace, probably the single largest collection of crystal in the world. It was in 1877 that Maharana Sajjan Singh ordered the crystal collection from Birmingham based F & C Osler Company, including objects d’art, furniture, washing bowls. The gallery also houses the only Crystal bed in the world.
Later we take a boat ride at Lake Pichola, 4 Km long and 3 Km broad is surrounded by hills, palaces, temples, bathing ghats and embankments. Visit the island palace, Jag Mandir that is beautifully set in the lake. Overnight stay is at the hotel.
Day 10: Udaipur – Jojawar (165 Kms / 4 Hrs)
After breakfast we drive to Jojawar, upon arrival check in to hotel.
In the afternoon enjoy a village safari. It is said that the real India can be experienced in its rural areas. The countryside around Jojawar boasts of very interesting landscapes, with the picturesque Aravalli Hills in the east, and broken rocky hills interspersed with farms and scrub forests all around. The Pre-Cambrian Aravalli Hills are one of the oldest mountain ranges of the world, and a geologist’s paradise. The camel herding Rabaris are an ethnic group only to be found around Jojawar.
You will be taken to homesteads of Rabaris (local tribe), into farms, through pretty little hamlets where time seems to have stopped, and we take a break under the shade of a drooping acacias next to a very beautiful small shrine dedicated to a folk deity.
Day 11: Jojawar
After breakfast we drive to a nearby railway station to catch a narrow gauge train which goes through Aravali Hills. The engine laboriously and slowly pulls the train through the most beautiful forests and hills that you get to see in the state, this one hour ride is really unique as you even get to interact with the locals who’ll readily share their seats with you and try their best to make conversation with you while trying to suppress the surprise and excitement of sitting next to a foreigner from faraway lands! The drive to and back from the stations in your resplendent vintage Chevy, taking a break for tea and cucumber sandwiches at a tiny Forest Rest House.
Drive back to the hotel and enjoy rest of the afternoon at leisure. Overnight stay is at the hotel.
Day 12: Jojawar – Jaipur (290 Kms / 6 Hrs)
After breakfast at the hotel check out and drive to Jaipur.
You are free to relax at the hotel / enjoy the hotel facilities in the afternoon.
Late evening enjoy an engaging cooking class with dinner in a lovely setting and experience the hospitality of a local family in their home. Listen to the stories of the Pink City from your charming hosts. The delicious home cooked food gives you the opportunity to sample the traditional cuisine of Rajasthan, not the restaurant version of so-called traditional food.
The cooking lessons are very elementary and will give an idea to how to cook a basic yet delicious Indian meal. This experience will give you an insight into the psyche of Indian cooking and once basic knowledge and experience is gained, it will be possible to cook many other types of dishes using different combinations of Spices. Return to the hotel for overnight stay.
Day 13: Jaipur
After breakfast we leave for excursion to Amber Fort (pronounced Amer). Amber is a classic, romantic Rajasthani Fort Palace. The rugged, time-ravaged walls of the Fort may not look beautiful from the outside, but the interior is a virtual paradise. Miniatures painted on the walls depict hunting and war scenes, apart from festivals. Precious stones and mirrors are embedded into the plaster. Inside the Fort visit the Jag Mandir or the Hall of Victory. En route to Amber Fort from your hotel, you will have a brief photography stop at Hawa Mahal — the Palace of Winds.
In the afternoon, we tour the city of Jaipur. We first visit the Maharaja’s City Palace, the former Royal residence part of it converted into a museum. A small portion is still used by the Royal family of Jaipur. Built in the style of a fortified campus, the palace covers almost one-seventh in area of the city. The main entrance leads to the courtyard at the centre, which is the Mubarak Mahal. One of the major attractions in the museum is the portion known as Armoury Museum housing an impressive array of weaponry-pistols, blunderbusses, flintlocks, swords, rifles and daggers. The royal families of Jaipur once used most of these weapons. On the first floor is the Textile and Costume Museum, which is the fine example of fabrics and costumes from all over India.
Later visit the Jantar Mantar, which is the largest stone and marble crafted observatory in the world built by Jai Singh from 1728 to 1734. Situated near the gate of the city palace, the observatory has 17 large instruments, many of them still in working condition. We finish our city tour with a walk through the busy lanes of the city. We return to hotel for overnight stay.
Day 14: Jaipur – Agra via Fatehpur Sikri (240 Kms / 5 Hrs)
After breakfast at the hotel, we drive to Agra en route visit Fatehpur Sikri, located 40 Kms from Agra; the deserted city of Fatehpur Sikri was built by Emperor Akbar in 1569, in honour of the great Saint Sheikh Salim Chisti who blessed Akbar and prophesized the birth of three sons to the heirless Emperor. The emperor used Fatehpur Sikri as his capital and the city was fully occupied for 14 years but slowly became deserted and ruined after Akbar left the city. Scarcity of water was the prime factor for the abandonment of this beautiful city. Visit the remarkably well-preserved, graceful buildings within the ‘Ghost City’ including the Jama Masjid, tomb of Salim Chisti, Panch Mahal Palace and other palaces that speak of the grandeur and splendour of the Mughal empire at the height of its power. We continue drive to Agra. Check-in at the hotel upon arrival.
In the evening, enjoy the Mohabbat–the-Taj show, a play depicting the true and immortal love of Shah Jahan and Mumtaj Mahal and lavish lifestyle of the Mughal era. Overnight is at the hotel.
Day 15: Agra – Delhi (205 Kms / 4 Hrs) – Journey Home
At sunrise, we visit the world famous Taj Mahal (Closed on Friday), built by Shah Jahan in 1632 for his queen Mumtaz Mahal to enshrine her mortal remains. This architectural marvel is a perfectly proportioned masterpiece fashioned from white marble that stands testimony to the skill of 20,000 craftsmen brought together from Persia, Turkey, France and Italy and who took 22 year to complete this ‘Love Poem in Marble’.
We return to our hotel for breakfast. Check out from the hotel and visit Agra Fort. This fort was built by Emperor Akbar between 1565 & 1573, reveals the Mughal talent for combining defensive architecture with beauty and design. This fort palace was begun by Akbar as a purely defensive citadel and was subsequently completed by two successive generations that added the delicate mosaic and magnificent marble palaces. The fort is the history of Mughal life in Agra and offers a magical view of the Taj Mahal.
Later we drive to Delhi. Upon arrival our representative will escort you to International terminal to help you catch your flight back home.
- Assistance on arrival/departure at the airport by our office representative
- 14 night’s accommodation on Sharing Twin room on Bed & Breakfast basis at all places
- All transfers, sightseeing excursion as per programme using private transportation
- Entrance fee at all monuments of visit. (Single Entry Only).
- Rickshaw Ride in Delhi
- Camel ride at Khuri dunes at Jaisalmer
- Shared boat ride at Lake Pichola, Udaipur
- Village Safari in Jojawar by 4 X 4 Jeep
- Train Ride in Jojawar with Tea /Coffee /Cookies
- Cooking class with Indian Local family at their home in Jaipur
- Elephant Ride at Amber Fort in Jaipur
- Tickets for Mohabbat – The Taj Show, Agra. (Platinum Class – row 01 to 06 from stage)
- Private English speaking local guide visit as per programme
- Government Service Tax (GST)
Rates do not include:
- Any airfare, airport taxes
- Expenses of personal nature like telephone bills, laundry, drinks, tips, etc