Highlights of Delhi, Agra and Rajasthan
A luxury tailor-made journey for Liz Warnes & Susanna Greene from 26 February to 8 March 2019
Itinerary includes all accommodation, drivers, guides, flights and transfers
Your tailor-made journey includes stays and private guided tours in Delhi, Agra, Jaipur, Jodhpur and Udaipur, plus private guided excursions to Fatehpur Sikri, Ranakpur and Amber Palace.
26 February: UK to India
Depart Heathrow 18.50 on BA257, arriving Delhi 08.50 the following morning.
27 February: Delhi
On arrival, you'll be met at the airport and driven to The Imperial where you can settle in and freshen up. Built in 1931, The Imperial is a New Delhi landmark, known for its contemporary colonial style and Art Deco highlights. Located close to Connaught Place, it's perfectly located for sightseeing and shopping, and ideal for guests who appreciate history, luxury, extensive facilities, impeccable service and a charmingly formal air (images below).
In the afternoon, your private guide will meet you at the hotel to discuss what you would like to include in your tour of Old and New Delhi, such as visiting the Red Fort with its massive sandstone ramparts and Jama Masjid, the largest mosque in India. Others options include the 16th century tomb of Humayun, a World Heritage site, the great tower of Qutub Minar and the imposing imperial buildings, elegant bungalows and leafy avenues of Sir Edwin Lutyen's design. And Raj Ghat and Shanti Vana - the cremation sites of Gandhi and Nehru.
28 February: Delhi to Agra
We'll pick you up from the hotel and take you to the railway station to catch the 08.50 Gatimaan Express to Agra, arriving 09.50. On arrival, you will be met at the station and transferred to DoubleTree by Hilton - an excellent and great value option from which to visit the Taj Mahal and the surrounding sights. After lunch, your private guide will collect you and take you to Agra Fort and then on for a tour of the Taj Mahal as the sun starts to set, and then drive you back to the hotel once the sun has gone down.
1 March: Sunrise at the Taj Mahal and transfer to Jaipur
It's an early start today, as you'll be taken to the Mehtab Bagh gardens on the northern side of the River Yamuna, in time to enjoy the sunrise and the magical reflections of the Taj in the river. After breakfast at the hotel, your driver will take you to Jaipur with a stop at Fatehpur Sikri en route. It's regarded as Emperor Akbar's crowning architectural legacy. Indeed, its numerous palaces, halls, and masjids satisfied his creative and aesthetic impulses, typical of Mughals. Continue to Jaipur for a 2 night stay at Royal Heritage Haveli (images below).
The transfer time is approximately 6 hours over a distance of 260 kilometres.
2 March: Amber Fort & Jaipur
Start your day with a private guided excursion to Amber Fort where you can tour the chambers and hallways of the palace, famous for their excellent design and decoration. In the afternoon, continue for a tour of Jaipur, known as 'The Pink City of Rajasthan'. You will visit the unique Jantar Mantar Observatory, built in the 1700's, yet today it still looks futuristic or almost surrealistic. In addition, you will see the City Palace and its Museum, and the intricate pink Palace of the Winds. Overnight at Royal Heritage Haveli
3 March: Jaipur to Jodhpur
After breakfast, you will be driven to Jodhpur (about 6 hours) stopping along the way whenever the mood takes you. You will be staying 2 nights in a Luxury Room at Jodhpur's first boutique hotel - Raas Jodhpur - comprising three new buildings in addition to the original four, a rare and charming complex that reflects, in many ways, the walled city itself. With its sensational vistas, different styles and an all-pervasive warm organic feel, Raas is a microcosm of the city. And, like virtually every home in Jodhpur, there are the most spectacular view of Mehrangarh Fort, regarded by many as Asia's best fortress.
4 March: Jodhpur
Enjoy a half day sightseeing tour of Jodhpur - a gateway to the desert beyond and home of the Rathors of Marwar. Visit the Fort, set on a dramatic escarpment and built on the advice of a hermit. Inside the Fort are a number of palaces added by successive rulers. Also visit Jaswant Thada a beautiful white marble memorial to Maharaja Jaswant Singh II, a peaceful place with stunning views of the city. Overnight at Raas Jodhpur
5 March: Jodhpur to Udaipur via Ranakpur
After breakfast, leave Jodhpur and drive through marvellous scenery of desert, mountains and farmland to Udaipur, visiting the Jain temples at Ranakpur en route. The transfer time is approximately 6 hours over a distance of 259 km. Ranakpur is one of the five most important pilgrimage sites of Jainism. It is home to an exceptionally beautiful temple complex in the Aravali ranges and is a must visit for the tourists coming to this region.
The temple was built during the reign of the liberal and gifted Rajput monarch Rana Kumbha in the 15th century. The basement is a 48,000 square feet area that covers the whole complex. There are four subsidiary shrines, twenty-four pillared halls and 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 interesting sight. In the assembly hall, there are two big bells weighing 108 kilograms whose sound echoes in the entire complex. Continue your drive in the afternoon to Udaipur and check in to your hotel: The Trident Udaipur. where you will be staying for 3 nights. Set in 43 acres on the banks of Lake Pichola, about a mile from the centre of town, The Trident Udaipur is a very comfortable base from which to explore this ancient and romantic region.
6 March: Explore Udaipur - on land and water
Enjoy a private half day sightseeing tour of Udaipur, stopping first at the City Palace. Here you will marvel at rooms with mirrored walls and ivory doors, coloured glass windows and inlaid marble balconies; and the Peacock Courtyard. Also visit the lovely Sahelion-ki-Bari Gardens, the Jagdish Temple and the local folk Museum. In the evening, enjoy a boat ride on the placid waters of Lake Pichola. From the boat you will be able to view the city of Udaipur as it rises majestically above the lake in the middle of the Rajasthan desert. Also visit the Jag Mandir Palace - the other island palace in the middle of the lake. Overnight at The Trident Udaipur
7 March: Udaipur
Day at leisure. Relax by the pool or enjoy being pampered in the spa. Or head back in to Udaipur for shopping and sightseeing.
Overnight at The Trident Udaipur.
8 March: Fly to London
It's an early start today. Your driver will collect you in time to catch your 06.50 flight from Udaipur to Mumbai, where you will then catch your 13.15 BA flight to Heathrow, arriving 17.55.