- Early morning viewing of the Taj Mahal
- Stay at Ramathra Fort, set in a wildlife reserve
- Local markets of Jaipur, the “City of Pink”
- Hot air balloon ride over the Amber Fort
- Reflect on Udaipur, the “City of Lakes”
DAY 1: ARRIVE DELHI
You will be met at the airport and transferred to your hotel. Reckoned amongst Asia’s finest hotels, The Imperial is a legend that offers a unique experience embracing facets of India’s history. Conceptualized in 1934 by Bloomfield and inaugurated by Lord Willingdon in 1936, it was in Lutyen’s scheme of things to build the most luxurious hotel in New Delhi. As New Delhi’s landmark hotel, The Imperial is an ode to India’s independence from the British Raj and was built as a jewel in the crown of the outgoing rulers.
This evening you’re free to explore Delhi on your own. Get lost in warrens of crowded streets, wander through the spice markets, eat kebabs by the beautiful Jama Masjid, laze among Mogul ruins, or listen to Sufi musicians by a shrine at dusk.
DAY 2: DELHI
Today you will enjoy a full day of sightseeing in Delhi. Your guide will meet you at the hotel reception after breakfast. You begin your city tour with your visit to the colossal Red fort followed by Old Delhi’s Chandni Chowk. Drive through New Delhi roads and sights to get a feel for the grand new city that Lutyens built in the early 1900s. You will also visit Emperor Humayun’s Tomb & the magnificent Qutab Minar.
DAY 3: DELHI – AGRA BY ROAD
After an early breakfast, proceed to Agra by car (4-5 hours). On arrival, check in to your hotel.
Like Delhi, Agra stands on the Right Bank of the river Yamuna. The romance of the world’s most famous building still astonishes in its power. In addition to the Taj Mahal, Agra houses the great monuments of the Red Fort and the Itmad-ud-Daulah.
After lunch you will have a guided half-day city tour of Agra Fort, with its exquisite inner buildings. Then, head to the tomb of Itmaud-ud-Daula. Itimad-ud-Daula was the title given to Mirza Ghiyath Beg, father of Mughal Empress Nur Jahan. Nur Jahan completed the construction of the building of the magnificent tomb of her father in 1628 AD, nearly 7 years after his death.
Settle in for the evening at Oberoi AmarVilas, the only hotel with direct, uninterrupted views of the Taj Mahal, situated just 600 meters from one of the greatest wonders of the world.
DAY 4: AGRA – RAMATHRA FORT
After an early morning view of the Taj Mahal. When the Taj Mahal was constructed, the Mughal Empire was already past its prime. The Taj, despite its unquestionable beauty, was an extravagance, which the Empire could not afford. The Taj Mahal is the eternal monument of love built by the fifth Mughal Emperor, Shah Jahan in the everlasting memory of his beloved wife, Mumtaz Mahal. It is believed that it took 22 years to build and 10,000 people worked on it. Return to your hotel for breakfast.
This afternoon, arrive by vehicle to Ramathra Fort (4-5 hours). You have the evening to explore the serene surroundings. The Ramathra Fort lies between two of India’s famous wildlife reserves, the Keoladeo Ghana Bird Sanctuary in Bharatpur and the Ranthambhore Tiger Reserve in Sawai Madhopur.
DAY 5: RAMATHRA FORT
After breakfast, proceed with a local guide for a 3-4 hours complete walking tour of Ramathra Village, a small hamlet of farmers and cattle herders. You see all kinds of work associated with tending crops and animals.
Return to the Fort and enjoy a picnic lunch. The rest of the day is at leisure.
DAY 6: RAMATHRA FORT – JAIPUR
After breakfast, proceed by vehicle (3-4 hours) to Jaipur, the “City of Pink.” Jaipur is the first planned city of India, located in the desert lands of Rajasthan. On arrival, check into your hotel.
After lunch, wander down Johari Bazaar opposite Hawa Mahal and visit the market for handicrafts. Here, you’ll find brightly colored textiles, ornate leather shoes and sandals, tons of chai and street-side goods, and a chance to witness daily lives of local people passing by.
Rambagh Palace is a living legend in Jaipur, built on a modest scale by the queen for her favourite handmaiden Kesar Badaran. Today it belongs to the Taj group, as a palace hotel with 79 rooms and stunningly restored suites that were once the chambers of the king himself.
DAY 7: JAIPUR
Early this morning, you have the option of taking a hot air balloon ride over the Amber Fort. Return back to hotel after balloon safari for breakfast.
A guide will report at the hotel to take you on a full day guided city tour of Jaipur. Visits will include the Amber Fort, the Jantar Mantar Observatory, and the Hawa Mahal Museum.
DAY 8: JAIPUR – CHHATRA SAGAR
CHHATRA SAGAR DELUXE CAMP
After early breakfast, check – out and begin your drive (4-5 hours) to Chhatra Sagar in the countryside. After lunch take a short rest and then, proceed for a late afternoon bird watching walk along the banks of the lake and in the adjoining forest.
Situated on the Jaipur-Jodhpur highway, Chhatra Sagar was built as a hunting lodge of the Nimadi Estate. Today, it has been restored as a luxury camp. Chhatra Sagar retains the Rajput tradition of luxury camps that provided their wandering inhabitants the comforts they were used to in their homes away from home.
DAY 9: JAIPUR – CHHATRA SAGAR
CHHATRA SAGAR DELUXE CAMP
After breakfast, accompanied by one of your hosts, wander on an enchanting tour of the village and farm, with its fields of wheat, mustard, cotton and chilies and vast grazing pastures. Meet the villagers, and visit some of the local silversmiths.
Later on, make a visit to a dam, overlooking a lake teeming with birds (seasonal) and surrounded by grasslands replete with wildlife.
DAY 10: CHHATRA SAGAR – UDAIPUR
After a relaxed breakfast, drive to Udaipur (5-6 hours). On your way, stop at Ranakpur and visit the ancient Jain temples built from marble. Built in the 15th century, Ranakpur temples are known for being the largest and most important temples of the Jain religion.
On arrival to Udaipur, famously referred to as the “City of Lakes”, visit the local markets for shopping (time permitting).
In lovely grounds running down to the northwestern shore of Lake Pichola, Oberoi Udaivilas’ butter-sculpture domes are breathtaking. It’s a beautifully designed, luxurious but personal hotel.
DAY 11: UDAIPUR
A full day guided sightseeing tour of will be organized, taking you to visit some of the prominent landmarks, overlooking the Aravalis, and breathing in the air surrounding Lake Pichola. The route will take you to the City Palace, the Monsoon Palace, and the Jagdish Temple