Day 1: Delhi
The Claridges Hotel
Upon your arrival at the international airport in Delhi, after clearing customs and immigration, you will be met by our representative and transferred to your hotel.
Delhi, the capital of kingdoms and empires is now a sprawling metropolis with a fascinating blend of the past and the present. It is a perfect introduction to the composite culture of an ancient land.
Day 2: Delhi
The Claridges Hotel
Delhi is the capital of India and a cosmopolitan hub, with a history that dates back centuries. See the old and the new sides of Delhi – two very different experiences which will tell the tale of this city.
In the morning set off for a transformational walk. The Salaam Baalak Trust City Walk aims to make the story of Delhi’s street children heard. It presents a view of the world through their eyes and experiences. Participants of City Walk travel on a journey through the streets of the inner city of Paharganj and the area around New Delhi railway station, led by a guide – a child who once lived and worked on the streets. This is a unique opportunity for exchange between you and local children. They work to practice their guiding and English skills while providing you with an insightful and unusual way of learning about the city. For the guides, it is a walk down memory lane to see the places held dear to them and remember how they faced the odds to survive.
After lunch, join a historian for An Evening by the City of Djinns and Sufis of Delhi. Step into a time machine and get transported to the era when royalty and mysticism was a way of life. Explore Ferozshah Kotla Fort and its unique Sufi traditions, followed by visit to the Sufi Dargah of Khwaja Mehboob-e-Ilahi Nizamuddin Auliya. Meander lanes where the mundane and mystical blend seamlessly, and jostle with crowds who sell kaftans and kebabs, flowers and fragrances, masalas, and meats.
Day 3: Delhi-Raipur-Kanha
Kanha Jungle Lodge
After breakfast, transfer to the airport and connect with your flight to Raipur.
Upon arrival at Raipur Airport, you will be met and transferred to Kanha National Park (4-5 hours drive).
The Chhota Nagpur Plateau in Madhya Pradesh, Kanha National Park provides breathtaking vistas of grassy plains and strands of mixed sal and teak forests. This 366-square- mile preserve was designed to save two endangered species – the tiger and the barasingha deer. You will also have an opportunity to see wild dogs, spotted deer, Indian bison, barking deer, sambhar, leopard, and sloth bear.
Upon arrival at Kanha check into Kanha Jungle Lodge.
Days 4 and 5: Kanha and Wildlife Safaris
Kanha Jungle Lodge
Enjoy morning and afternoon wildlife safaris in the park, via 4×4 Jeep, with an English-speaking naturalist. In the winter months there is a bite in the morning air, which requires warm clothes, woolen caps, and gloves to keep you warm in your open Jeep. Cozy up under blankets to protect you from the wind and keep you comfortable. As the sun comes up, the days are warm and comfortable.
Day 6: Kanha National Park – Pench National Park
Jamtara Wilderness Lodge
Morning drive from Kanha to Pench (4-5 hours drive).
Welcome to the original location of the Jungle Book! Pench National Park is nestled in the lower southern reaches of the Satpura Hills and is named after the Pench River that meanders north to south through the park. Pench Tiger Reserve and is the original setting of Rudyard Kipling’s most famous work: The Jungle Book. The undulating topography supports a mosaic of vegetation ranging from moist, sheltered valleys to open, dry, deciduous forest. Over 1200 species of plants have been recorded in the area including several rare and endangered species, as well as plants of ethno-botanical importance. The area has always been rich in wildlife with a canopy forest mixed with open grassy patches.
Upon arrival, check into Jamtara Wilderness Lodge – a 12-room luxury, tented property – and enjoy the rest of the day in the surrounding wilderness. Surrounded by tall arjuna trees and an ancient banyan rooted on a dry riverbed, each tented room overlooks the forest and provides a perfect background to your jungle experience.
The humble village of Jamtara is the perfect place for unwinding, relaxing, and a little adventure.
Day 7 and 8: Pench and Wildlife Safari
Jamtara Wilderness Lodge
As soon as dawn breaks, leave for a jungle safari, accompanied by a resident naturalist and forest park guide in a 4×4 Jeep.
Another special feature of the Wilderness Lodge is their star beds. Also called Machaans, these beds were once set up for hunts, but are now designed to watch the shooting stars. The beds are set up high on stilts, to encourage stargazing or wildlife viewing. Part of a local project, the proceeds from star beds go to the local village.
Day 9: Pench-Satpura
After the morning drive and breakfast, leave from Pench and travel to Satpura National Park. The core area of the park is the Panchmarhi Biosphere Reserve, which includes the Bori and Panchmarhi Wildlife Sanctuaries. With dramatic sandstone mountains, narrow gorges, ravines, waterfalls, streams, and dense forests, this is a diverse and scenically beautiful area.
Upon arrival, check in at the lodge, and enjoy the rest of day at leisure.
If interested, you may join the Junior Naturalist Program, designed for children (and adults) who are interested in learning about the wilderness. The course operates for two hours a day, with sessions held between safaris and in the evening for 30-40 minutes. It is a fun and interactive course with enthusiastic and knowledgeable naturalists. The course will cover use of equipment; basics of ecology; species identification; use of field guides, notes, and sketches; track identification; and basics of nature photography. Each session will be limited to six people.
Day 10-11: Satpura
Enjoy morning and afternoon visits to the park by 4×4 Jeep with an English-speaking naturalist.
Over the next two days you will have an opportunity to explore the park by foot, boat, and Jeep. Satpura is the only tiger reserve that permits walking safaris in small groups (four + guide) through the heart of the park, providing much deeper insight intro tiger country. Forsyth Lodge and the park management are involved in training local naturalist guides to provide alternative careers to poaching wildlife.
Day 12: Satpura-Bhopal-Mumbai
Enjoy an early-morning jungle safari, then return to the lodge for breakfast.
After lunch drive to Bhopal (approximately 4 hrs). Upon arrival, transfer to the airport and board your flight to Mumbai.
Upon arrival in Mumbai, you will be transferred to the international airport to connect your onward flight.