Day 01: Arrival / Delhi
Late night arrival. Meeting and
assistance upon arrival as our representatives welcome you and
escort you to your car.
Whilst the room keys and check-in
is organized, our representative would introduce the tour to you and
hand over the documents to you.
Welcome to India, or as
we say atithi devo bhava (the guest is an incarnation of
God). Thank you for giving us the opportunity to serve you!
at The Oberoi
Day 02: Delhi
a leisurely breakfast, we proceed on a guided tour of New Delhi,
Visiting such sights as Bahai Temple, Humayuns Tomb (1586),
the Qutab Minar 72 meters high and one of the most perfect towers in
the Persian world. The Iron Pillar which has survived the vagaries
of weather for over 1500 years. Continue with a drive through
Embassy area, the Government buildings (1921-1930) and Connaught
Place, the heart and main shopping district of the capital.
we cross over to the Old Delhi. The capital of Muslim India between
the 17th and 19th centuries, Old Delhi seems somewhat anachronistic
as compared to New Delhi. It draws one through congested roads and
lanes, interesting mosques, monuments and forts relating to its
chequered history. Our tour includes visit to the Jamma Mosque
(1650) and drive through the fabled area of Chandni Chowk (aptly
translates to Moonlight Square) where the throngs of shoppers and
vendors meet in the oldest area of Delhi, on to the Red Fort
(1639-1648 built by Shah Jehan the builder of the Taj Mahal in Agra)
to view the inlaid and carved Royal Chambers, on to Raj Ghat and
nearby ghats where the founder of the nation, Mahatma Gandhi and
thereafter Indira Gandhi and Rajiv Gandhi were cremated.
at The Oberoi
Day 03: Delhi /
Ahmedabad (IC 817 0600 / 0725 Hours) Ahmedabad
Morning transfer to the airport to connect your
flight to Ahmedabad
Meeting & assistance upon arrival and
drive to Dungarpur
Upon arrival check into the Udai Bilas Palace
The history of Udai Bilas Palace, Dungarpur, Rajasthan
dates from the mid-19th century, when Maharawal Udai Singhji-II, a
great patron of art and architecture built a wing of bluish grey
local stone " Pareva" overlooking the lake and the "
Ek Thambia Mahal," featuring intricate sculptured pillars and
panels, ornate balconies, balustrades, bracketed windows, arches and
frieze of marble carvings, a veritable marvel of Rajput
architecture. The Udai Bilas Palace was enlarged in 1940 by
Maharawal Laxman Singhji, who built three new wings around the "
Ek Thambia Mahal" (Literally one- pillared Palace) and thus
created the famous " courtyard of the palace. The result is an
architectural expression exquisitely detailed. Still the royal
residence, the Palace offers accommodation in the houseguest
tradition with seventeen spacious and lavishly appointed bedrooms.
No two rooms are alike; each room enchants with its own personality,
spaciousness and modern comforts and offers a unique experience. The
Furnishings are mostly from the 20th century art-deco style, marble
bathrooms with English fixtures and running hot and cold water.
Meals are served either in the banquet hall, which displays crystal
chandeliers, or in the more intimate family dining room. Continental
or Chinese dishes are also served.
Udaibilas Palace - Heritage Hotel
The district is the stronghold of Bheels, a
tribe whose history of occupancy in the Aravalli Range is said to
date back to 4000 B.C. They are one of the oldest and most primitive
tribes of the world. This morning we will visit some of these
unspoiled Bheel hamlets in and around the town. We will witness and
photograph age-old tribal lifestyles and customs handed down over
the centuries. You would have an opportunity to meet villagers who
have never seen white people!! Say hello to people, allow them to
get used to you and then, you may go ahead with your pictures. You
would soon end up as the pied piper followed by scores of noisy and
We return to our hotel by mid morning to
enjoy the destination at leisure. Udai Bilas Palace is a
round-the-year paradise for bird watchers.
months from mid October to February are the best to see winter
migratory birds when birds can be observed in attractive plumage.
One can see from the Palace itself at remarkably close range egrets,
night and pond herons, white necked and painted storks, coots and
winter or resident ducks among others, depending on the season of
your visit. Birds are also plentiful in the surrounding woodlands
where one can hope to see the Grey Hornbill, Gray Partridge, Green
Pigeon, Peafowl, Peacocks, Paradise flycatcher and the Golden backed
woodpecker, to name a few representative species. You may proceed on
a leisurely walk around the lake or heir boat for a special boat
trip on the lake as well as a gentle trek through the forests so
that the nature lover in you is able to enjoy the beauty of the
place and are able to get a close look at the bird life.
afternoon we visit the ancient fortified ruins of the Old Fort.
Besides fine panoramic view of the ancient town of Dungarpur the
fort has well preserved examples of natural colour paintings and
incredible art and architecture.
Udaibilas Palace - Heritage Hotel
05: Dungarpur / Udaipur (220 Kms)
Following a leisurely
breakfast we will drive to Udaipur
Welcome to Udaipur, the
famed City of sunrise Founded in 1567 by Maharana Udai
Singh, from the lineage of the legendary Sisodias of Mewar - the
decedents of the sun God. A city where the sun truly never set,
where tradition and a strict code of heroism were happily united
with a love of fine living. A city that has come to be an oasis of
romance in the warrior state of Rajasthan
assistance upon arrival and transfer to your luxury hotel Udai
Vilas, located on the famous Pichola Lake, has been designed as a
traditional Rajasthani Palace. This unique luxury resort is set in
thirty acres of beautifully landscaped gardens, decorative fountains
and pavilions, giving it a genuine Rajasthani ambiance. This Hotel
is an ideal base to explore the fabled city of Udaipur, renowned for
its palaces, lakes and colorful bazaars.
Evening we enjoy
a boat cruise on the serene and beautiful Lake Pichola. The island
palace on the Lake called Jagmandir Palace is quite fascinating. The
Palace provided inspirations and ideas to the builder of the Taj
Mahal. The banks of the lake provide interesting glimpses of the
daily bathing and the laundry that takes place here. Looking across
the lake, with the city and its great palace rising up behind the
island palace, is a scene of rare beauty.
Day 06: Udaipur
we proceed on a tour of this "Lake City". Udaipur is a
cool oasis in the dry heart of Rajasthan. It is probably the most
romantic city in a state where every city has some romantic or
exotic tale to tell. The huge city palace towering over the Lake
Pichola is the largest palace complex in Rajasthan. Though it is a
conglomeration of buildings built by successive rulers, it manages
to retain a surprising uniformity of design and affords very fine
view of the lake and the city from the upper terraces. The Jagadish
temple next to the city palace enshrines a black stone image of Lord
Vishnu and his vehicle- a mighty bird called garuda - in a brass
image. The temple is a very fine example of Indo-Aryan Art.
afternoon we explore the bustling bylanes of Udaipur which have
artisans practicing their traditional crafts handed down to them by
their elders. Khari printers do decorative floral patterns in gold
and silver on plain or printed fabric. Block printers print various
designs and patterns in different colours with the help of wooden
blocks. Youll also find artisans carving furniture, making
puppets and traditional wooden toys. Along with engraving and
embossing on brass, silver, jewellery, copper and even pottery,
Meenakari is a specialty of this region. Udaipur also specializes in
stone carving, especially in marble and sandstone, with artisans
working hard at chiseling their finest filigree work. Colour as
usual plays an important role in the life of Udaipur as in
Rajasthan. It is wonderfully evident in ghagharas (long flowing
skirts), cholis (blouses), and odhnis (long scarves) of the women as
well as the turbans of the men.
Overnight at Udai
Day 07: Udaipur / Ranakpur /
Kumbalgarh (98 Kms)
Following breakfast we ride out to
Kumbalgarh. Enroute we visit Ranakpur.
The Ranakpur Jain
Temple was built during the reign of the liberal and gifted monarch
Rana Kumbha in the 15th century. The basement is of 48, 000 sq. feet
area that covers the whole complex. There are four subsidiary
shrines, twenty-four pillared halls and eligibly domes supported by
over four hundred columns. The total number of columns is 1,444 all
of which are intricately carved with no two being alike. The
artistically carved nymphs playing the flute in various dance
postures at a height of 45 feet are an engrossing sight. In the
assembly hall, there are two big bells weighing 108 kg whose sound
echoes in the entire complex. The main temple is of Chaumukh or
four-faces temple dedicated to Adinath.
After the tour of
Ranakpur Jain Temples we continue our ride to Kumbalgarh. We would
have photo stop several times as we walk through the countryside as
well as interact with primitive tribals.
Upon arrival we
check into the fine Aodhi Lodge - a property of the Royal family of
Afternoon, we explore the beautifully preserved
and one of the most majestic forts of India. 13 mountain peaks
surround the impregnable fortress of Kumbalgarh (54 Kms) at a height
of 3281 ft. Seven towering gateways pierce the massive walls of this
prominent fortress of Mewar. The young Udai Singh founder of Udaipur
took shelter here from his treacherous uncles. These impregnable
walls dotted with cannonballs defeated Emperor Akbar.
at Aodhi Lodge
Day 08: Kumbalgarh /
Ghanerao (40 Kms)
a leisurely breakfast drive to Ghanerao
Upon arrival at
Ghanerao we check into the Royal Ghanerao Castle, a property of the
Royal Family of Mewar. We stay at the Ghanerao Royal Castle to step
back into the past and re-live it. Here truly time stands still to
let you bask in the sunshine of the bygone era. Besides all modern
comforts the royal family here have endeavoured to recreate the
lifestyle of the thakurs (feudal lords) in all past glory. Situated
in the picturesque `Godwar` region of Rajasthan, Ghanerao was
founded in 1606 A D Today, standing sentinel over the villages, The
Ghanerao Royal Castle is a truly magnificent edifice of red
sandstone havelis (mansions), marble citadels and some miniature
paintings on walls, the village is strewn with old temples, step
walls and marble archways. The old fort to the south of the castle
pock, marked with cannonballs and destroyed time and again, but
stubbornly refusing to be vanquished.
walks through the primitive town to witness traditional styles of
living and occupation.
Overnight at Ghanerao Castle
09: Ghanerao / Narlai (35 Kms)
After breakfast we will
drive to Narlai. We would have opportunities to stop a few times for
interactions with the extremely friendly tribals as well as witness
their homes and lifestyles unchanged for centuries.
arrival check in to the Hotel Rawla Narlai Situated in the Narlai
village, Rawla Narlai, is a 17th century fortress renovated over the
years to have 15 exquisite double rooms. Rawla Narlai is full of
surprises; it is situated in the heart of a typical Rajasthani
village bustling with activity and bursting with colours. But,
inside the Rawla (fortress) there is only serenity and stupendous
view of a gigantic350 ft single rock of granite dotted with caves
and temples and crowned by a statue of a white elephant - proud
guardian to the open desert on one side and the crumbling Aravali
hills on the other. Maharaja and Rani Swaroop Singh, and their sons
oversaw the careful restoration of this hunting lodge, with
aesthetics, comfort, and atmosphere that will embrace your senses.
Comfortable rooms and modern bathrooms blend with the ancient way of
Narlai, while offering a warm and homely atmosphere. The charming
rooms are all stylised from references from the past adding more to
your experience at Rawla Narlai. The chef prepares you a delicious
meal, garnished with care made from Secret Recipes handed down for
generations to the Royal family. In the evening bathe in the
moonlight under the starry sky, listening to hypnotic and chanting
rhythms by local musicians who will rekindle the sprit in you. The
peace and calm of the gentle rustling leaves, the sun bathed
courtyards and the star lit nights ads an air of romanticism
to this wonderful fortress.
The village of Narlai is one
of the most exquisite well-preserved tribal settlements of India.
You would find your walk through the maze of lanes and bye lanes and
incredible experience. You need to come back to your fortress by
late afternoon, to enjoy the magical sunset as well as the ethnic
decor and charm of your amazing hotel.
Afternoon, we would
have an escorted stroll through the small town, bustling with
activity and bursting with colour- perhaps pausing to see the rich
handicrafts or even to design your own silver Tabiz, a ancient lucky
charm, both for women and men- worn around the neck, at the
Overnight at Rawla Narlai
10: Narlai / Sodawas (55 Kms)
Wake up to the sounds of this
17-century village, and take in the spiritual energy from descending
from the Shiva Temple, deep in a primal cave, on the hill
overlooking your room. You may hear whispers of the early morning
chanting coming from the many temples and mosques. At breakfast you
are encouraged to feed the harmless monkeys, if they come down from
the hills, as a token of prayer to Lord Hanuman. After breakfast we
have an escorted stroll through the small bazaar, bustling with
activity and bursting with colour.
After breakfast we will
drive to Sodawas.
Sodawas was given in Jagir (Fief) to Late
Thakur Bishan Singhji by His Late Highness Maharaja Shri Umaid
Singhji of Jodhpur in the Year 1943 along with two other villages,
before which it was a 'Khalsa' Village, meaning for Three Decades it
was under the direct rule of Marwar State (Jodhpur).
arrival you enter through a grand gateway into the Sodawas Kot,
which is still owned by the family of Thakur Bishan Singhji. The Kot
has ten bedrooms and every modern amenity. The family drawing and
dining rooms have been opened to receive guests in true Rajput
Hospitality. Traditional Rajasthani Cuisine, for which the House is
well known for, is served with a mild and delicate blend of spices
adapted to your taste. The family will join you and will give you an
opportunity to discuss their traditions, culture and the rich
heritage of Marwar erstwhile State of Jodhpur. Folk Music and dance
are performed in the evening especially for us. The beautifully
designed stables will interest Horse lovers. Once the much loved
stallion and mare of the Late Thakur Sahib were stabled here.
the Kot walls the guest encounters breath taking green fields of
mustard and wheat; and in the village, one can see artisans working
on the local crafts of the region.
This afternoon we walk
through the main boulevard, which is wide enough to take a bullock
cart. We visit the local school here to witness the kids sitting in
rows on cotton mats. We also visit the colourful bazaar as well as
the village temple to witness the day to day. Life here is very
simple and uncomplicated and traditional virtues still intact.
People here may be very poor, but they are extremely friendly and
hospitable, willing to share out their meagre possessions with you.
Overnight at Sodawas Kot
Sodawas / Rohet (55 Kms)
a leisurely breakfast we will drive to Rohet.
check in to the hotel Rohetgarh
At Rohet, one is
transported in to a world of the past, a world of honour and of
chivalry, of glory and of pride; a world of vibrant colours and
spectacular magnificence. Past centuries come to life at the
historic boundary walls of Rohet- the 16th century fortified
deserted home of a Rajput clan. Within the precincts of these time
weathered walls is our hotel, the impressive Rohetgarh Fort- a
bastion of proud Rajput traditions bathed in the ambience of
unmistakable Rajasthani culture where one can, even today experience
the famed warm and courteous Rajput hospitality. Frescoes on the
tall gateway, brightly painted in the traditional style, using
traditional motifs and colour schemes herald your entry to this
charmed world the bygone era. The gateway leads to a compound where
a profusion of flowers frame the archways in welcome. The portico is
a warm and informal place decorated with the artifacts and trophies
of many years. Exquisitely carved furniture, delicate hand block
prints, original paintings and photographs decorate your rooms,
which though redolent with the romance of a bygone era, provide all
the modern amenities. Antique hunting riffles, shields &
spearheads, daggers and original paintings form the backdrop of the
dinning room. The swimming pool here is in beautiful settings and is
an oasis in a dessert.
The food at Rohetgarh is special;
each recipe is both traditional and typical, handed down the
generations and jealously guarded to retain its pristine flavours.
You savour only the very best of Rajasthani cuisines, food
favoured by the Royalty. The 16th century descendants of the Rathore
ruling family still live here and host the guests. The members of
the Royal family interact with the guests and interesting stories
and anecdotes are narrated.
This afternoon, we would
explore Rohet, which is a fascinating small feudal town, which seems
to be straight out of the Arabian Nights. There is no proper road
here - only one main dusts trail. On either side are typical
thatched houses and shops of all kinds - colourful bangles, silver
jewellery, potters, fruit vendors on carts, dress shops, tailors
Late afternoon we enjoy jeep safaris to visit the
heart of Rajasthan villages where traditions centuries old still
permeate life styles. One can witness the opium ceremony
- a ritual by which guests are welcomed. Gaily attired men and women
carry on their chores and one can catch a glimpse of their norms and
customs. The smoothened mud floors of the village huts remind one of
the simple and traditional living here.
descends upon our hotel, the darkness of the night is lit up by the
flickering flames of fire around which the rhythmic movements of the
folk dancers assumes shape in brilliant colours; truly an
Rohetgarh - Heritage Property
12: Rohet / Jodhpur (40 Kms)
After breakfast we drive to the
Upon arrival check in to Umaid Bhawan Palace, which
built in 20th century conceived by Maharaja Umaid Singh as a
centerpiece of his massive famine-relief scheme, giving employment
to hundreds of people for nearly 16 years. This opulent edifice in
sandstone is still the residence of the former rulers with a part of
it running as hotel and remaining part as a museum. The palace
captures the imagination of a visitor by its sculpted lawns with
sandstone pavements and bouquets of bougainvillea bushes. The name
of the palace has been derived from the sandstones being used in its
construction. These rocks do not wear out how harsh the weather
might be. It took 25 years and 3000 men to give shape to this
stupendous expression. The Palace was designed as a smooth
combination of European classical elements interlaced with oriental
ones. Massive sandstone boulders were cut from a quarry at Surasagar
near Jodhpur and transported by a special narrow-gauge train to the
construction sites. Master masons chiseled these rough stones into
blocks of five and seven tons. The blocks were then fitted into an
interlocking fashion with no mortar or cement being used in the
construction. Furnished with fashionable Art Deco interiors by the
Polish artist and decorator, S. Norblin, the palace consumed one
million square feet of the finest marble. The world of Umaid Bhawan
Palace contained everything that the royalty required a
private cinema hall, a luxurious swimming pool inlaid with tiles
depicting the zodiac, gigantic royal suites, a soaring rotunda,
fancy ball rooms, a majestic durbar hall, billiards room, ballrooms,
banquet halls, libraries, staff quarters, servant quarters. In 1977,
Umaid Bhawan opened as one of India's grandest luxury hotels.
we proceed on a guided tour of Jodhpur. Our tour includes the
massive fort. In olden days this must have been impregnable since
its rocky base is scraped straight down making it nearly impossible
to ascend. Once inside, royal palaces abound with fascinating
history and priceless jewels, on to the armoury and Jaswant Tara -
the Royal Crematorium.
This evening, we would ride horse
carriages to the Clock Tower Bazaar. This is one of Indias
largest and most colourful wholesale markets especially with respect
to clothes, fabrics, spices, vegetables etc. It is a fantastic
experience to walk through the place observing and photographing
this incredible spectacle of vibrant lifestyles and incredible
Overnight at Umaid Bhawan Palace
13: Jodhpur / Jaipur (Intercity Express - 0540 / 1040 Hrs)
transfer to the airport to connect your train to Jaipur
and assistance upon arrival, and, transfer to Rajvilas Hotel, one of
the countrys premier hotel. Set in 30 acres of orchards,
gardens, decorated pools and fountains. The hotel is build with
exacting detail, recreating a traditional Rajasthani fort setting. A
key feature of the landscape is a large lotus filled water body in
which floats a 250-year-old temple on a small island. A haveli or
traditional Rajasthani mansion has been restored to its former
beauty and contains the hotel's world class spa. The spa is
professionally run with the assistance of a specialised spa
consultant from the United Kingdom. It incorporates traditional
Indian Ayurvedic methods of relaxation, massage and herbal treatment
into its programmes.
After rest & relaxation, we
explore the unending shopping options of Jaipur. An essential
starting point for Rajasthan craft work is block making and block
printing and we will be exploring the process from start to finish
in some of the popular stores here. The opportunity also exists here
to tailor make outfits to your design and size.
explore one of the chief attractions of Jaipur - its jewelry, which
offers a variety that ranges from chunky tribal jewelry to enameled
gold to modern diamond jewelry. Kundan (art of stone setting) and
enamel jewelry has been a specialty of Rajasthan, particularly that
of Jaipur. The stones are embossed into decorative shapes &
patterns and embellished with delicate enamel ornamentation in the
champeve (raised field) technique. Jaipur is well known for its gold
and silver enameling. Colorful bangles made of lac and set with
semiprecious stones make an inexpensive buy. The craftsmen take
great pains to embed the hundreds of stones into the lac. The
skilled gem-cutters of Jaipur carve enchanting little animals and
birds from rock, crystal, jade, smoky topaz and amethyst. Intaglio
beads & buttons and crystal scent bottles are also available.
Overnight at Rajvilas
Following a leisurely breakfast, we proceed on a
guided tour of the Amber Fort. Set on the dry wrinkled Aravali
Hills, the Fort is a superb example of Rajput (Medieval Hindu) style
of architecture. A slow elephant taxi takes us to the top of the
Fort, which houses several graceful buildings.
ride up to this hilltop palace on a caparisoned, painted elephant,
passing through the ancient main gate where Maharajas of Jaipur have
entered for four hundred years. Our guide will elaborate on the
history of this architectural masterpiece with its mirror-studded
alcoves, dazzling mosaics and water-cooled swings that delight todays
visitors as they did their former royal residents.
shall visit the Hawa Mahal or Palace of the Winds, a five-storied
structure of pink sandstone with semi-octagonal and delicately
honeycombed windows overlooking the main street of the old city. It
was built in 1799 so that veiled royal women could peer down unseen
by the world through its 593 stone screens.
preceded a tour Of City Palace & Observatory. The City Palace in
the heart of the old city is a blend of Rajasthani and Mughal
architecture. The centre of the palace is a seven-storied building
called Chandra Palace, with fine vies over the gardens and the city.
The palace lies in the heart of the city and occupies the whole
central grid. The fortified wall has seven gates and was built for
protection from invading armies and animals that lived in jungles,
which surrounded the wall that time. Next, we visit the Solar
Observatory - an astronomical treasure house, with solar device that
give accurate predictions till date.
Day 15: Jaipur / Fatehpur
Sikri / Agra (245 Kms)
Following a leisurely breakfast we
drive to Agra, stopping at deserted Capital City of Fatehpur Sikri.
This abandoned capital of the Mughals is a perfectly preserved city
at the height of the empires splendour. The city divided into
religious and secular parts has interesting well-sculpted buildings.
From here we continue our ride to Agra.
Upon arrival check
into hotel Howard Park Plaza
Upon arrival you are
individually checked in at your rooms at the luxurious Amarvilas
hotel, which is one of the best boutique hotels in the world. The
hotel of whimsical charm has several attractions. However, being in
the city of the Taj Mahal, the most relevant charm of the hotels is
the unhindered view of the Taj Mahal from your bedroom. It is the
most beautiful and an amazingly uplifting sight. Only 600 meters
from the Taj Mahal stands this luxury resort. Discerning travelers
can now appreciate the fabulous Taj Mahal while enjoying world-class
luxury. The elaborate Mughal gardens, terraced lawns, fountains,
reflection pools and pavilions complement the classical architecture
of the hotel
Overnight at Amarvilas
16: Agra / Delhi (205 Kms) / Departure
is the city of the Taj Mahal, perhaps the most photographed monument
in the world. However, there is a degree of enigma about the Taj.
Once you hear about a building so much and once you see so many
pictures of a building your expectations are real high; and this is
the enigma about the Taj Mahal. No matter how many pictures you have
seen or no matter how high your expectations are the Taj never lets
you down - the unparalleled glory and beauty of the building
surpasses beyond all human imaginations. At sunrise we visit one of
the greatest sights of ones lifetime - the Taj Mahal at
sunrise. Before departure for the monument we shall be served
tea/coffee and cookies so that our eyes open real wide to behold
this breathtaking sight. A dawn visit to the fabled Taj Mahal to
witness the magical effects caused by the reflections of the
changing colours of the rising Sun on this brilliant white marble
building. Later we return back to our hotel for breakfast.
a leisurely breakfast, we ride to the massive Agra Fort. The elegant
buildings inside reflect an interesting synthesis of Hindu and
Central Asian architectural styles. Built by Emperor Akbar, the maze
of the courtyards, mosques & private chambers of the fort echo
the story of the Mughal Empire. The Moti Masjid & other
magnificent buildings reflect the skill of the ancient Indian
Later we will drive to Delhi along one of the
Indias finest freeways
Home Visit & A Farewell
Dinner with an Indian Family: Upon arrival, we would visit an Indian
family for an Indian home experience. The evening is designed to
give you a feel and insight into Indian family life as
well as experience typical Indian hospitality and home made Indian
Following the dinner transfer to the International
airport to board your flight back home.