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SIC Fascinating India

New Delhi, Agra, Jaipur, Pushkar, Udaipur, Varanasi and Khajuraho

SIC Fascinating India

$5000 per person
14 Days / 13 Nights
12+ Age

This program covers the highlights of the magical Rajasthan. Discover the various colors and vibrancy along with warm hospitality and fascinating culture. The program begins from your arrival into Delhi, the political capital of the country. Next visit Agra, the Mughal city famous for Taj Mahal and other monumental marvels. Continue to Jaipur, a royal city with diverse colors and history brimming monuments and citadels. Drive further to Pushkar, the holy city. Continue to Udaipur, most romantic city of Rajasthan. Discover the forts & palaces of the marwar region as you travel further to Jodhpur and Jaisalmer. Next visit the royal city of Bikaner and continue to Mandawa, famous its hand painted havelis and frescoes. The tour culminates in Delhi.

ACCOMMODATION
DESTINATION
DURATION
BASIS
Vivanta by Taj Dwarka Hotel New Delhi 1 night B&B
Hotel Trident Agra Agra 2 nights B&B
Trident Hotel Jaipur Jaipur 2 nights B&B
The Westin Pushkar Resort and Spa Pushkar 1 night B&B
Trident Hotel Udaipur Udaipur 2 nights B&B
Ramada Plaza JHV Varanasi Varanasi 2 nights B&B
Ramada Khajuraho Khajuraho 2 nights B&B
Four Points by Sheraton Delhi New Delhi 1 night B&B

Plan

B&B:Bed and Breakfast

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  • Departure/Return Location
    DELHI
  • Included
    Accommodation
    Guide
    Meals
    Transport
  • Not Included
    Flights

Tour Plan

1
DAY 1 : NEW DELHI
Welcome to Delhi, India! a monumental city with a vibrant mix of old and new teeming bazaars, stately British boulevards, powerful Mughal palaces and forts, and intricate, ethereal towers, temples and tombs. On arrival at Delhi International Airport you will be met and assisted by our company executive and transferred to your hotel. Overnight in Delhi
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DAY 2 : AGRA
Post breakfast, tour of Old and New Delhi visiting Raj Ghat, Mahatma Gandhi’s serene and evocative cremation site, India Gate (the War Memorial) and the Presidents House (from the outside), the Baha’i Lotus Temple (closed on Mondays) - this distinctive lotus shaped marvel in marble is a symbol of peace, the Qutub Minar a stunning 240-foot minaret, the tallest in the world surrounded by an elaborate complex built in the Indo-Islamic architectural tradition. Drive to Agra. On arrival check-in. Agra is one of India’s prime tourist destinations for specifically this reason, though its attractions also extend to an array of other impressive historical sights. The Taj, however, is in a league of its own and is a must-see for any visitor to the city. Commissioned by the Mughal emperor Shah Jahan in the 15th century as a memorial to his beloved wife Mumtaz Mahal, it is an architectural masterpiece of exquisite craftsmanship and perfect proportions. Enjoy your evening at your own leisure (no services offered). You may visit the city’s hidden alleyways and lively spice markets, hop on a cycle rickshaw and admire colorful Hindu temples and traditional mosques. Or visit a local restaurant to enjoy amazing Indian food. Overnight in Agra
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DAY 3 : AGRA
This morning visit the Taj Mahal at sunrise (closed on Fridays). Often considered the pinnacle of Mughal art in India, the Taj Mahal was built by Emperor Shah Jahan for his beloved wife Mumtaz Mahal. When declaring it a world heritage site, UNESCO described it as “the jewel of Muslim art in India”. There are few words that can describe the magnificence of this monument. Marvel as light and colors transform this stunning monument in the beautiful dawn glow. Return back to the hotel. Later take a marble craftsmanship demonstration. Overnight in Agra Optional Tour Half day tour of Agra:  Starting with the visit of Itmad-Ud-Daulah monument, known as the "Baby Taj", the first Mughal structure totally built from marble. We will also visit the Sikandra, the sandstone and marble tomb of Akbar which blends Islamic, Hindu, Buddhist, Jain and Christian motifs and styles. Later we will discover the Agra Fort, another UNESO heritage site built and added to between the 16th and 17th centuries by successive rulers of the Mughal Dynasty. The fort was built primarily as a military structure, but Shah Jahan upgraded it to a palace and later it became his gilded prison for 8 years after his son Aurangzeb seized power. The elegant building inside reflects an interesting synthesis of Hindu and Central Asian architectural styles.
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DAY 4 : JAIPUR
Drive to Jaipur en-route visiting Fatehpur Sikri an eerily abandoned capital from the Mughal Empire between 1570 and 1586. Akbar built this city to celebrate the birth of his son and future heir to the throne, Emperor Jahangir. While Akbar is believed to have been illiterate, he took great interest in the arts and architecture; Fatehpur Sikri is one of his masterworks. Sadly, it served as capital for little more than a decade, eventually abandoned for lack of accessible water. On arrival check in to the hotel. Jaipur, Rajasthan’s capital is also known as the Pink City. The origin of this nickname becomes immediately apparent as you enter the old city walls and greet the pink-colored buildings that rise at every turn Rest of time at leisure. Overnight in Jaipur Optional Tour Authentic Rajasthani dinner with Local family:  After a traditional welcome by your host, learn about their culture, cuisine, rituals and festivals. Listen to the stories of the Pink City from your charming hosts, admire the traditional décor of Hindu gods and Savor the great flavors of Rajasthani cuisine. Sit down with the family to feast on naans, lentils, curry, and dal- bati etc, as well as many other dishes typical of Rajasthan, including a dessert or sweet dish.
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DAY 5 : JAIPUR
Start with an exhilarating excursion to Amber Fort perched on top of a hill. A royal ride on elephant (subject to availability) up the hill like the Maharajas of past times and visit the Jagmandir (the hall of victory). Perched on a hillside on the outskirts of town, the palace was constructed in the 1590s by Maharaja Man Singh, the commander of Akbar’s army, and was largely motivated by the highly defensible location. This is a beautiful and very well preserved structure, built on four levels and surrounded by ruins, which served as the backdrop for the Mira Nair movie “Kama Sutra: A Tale of Love.” Enjoy your afternoon at leisure. Overnight in Jaipur Optional Tour Half Day Jaipur city tour: Start exploring the city by a stop at the Hawa Mahal (Palace of Winds). This magnificent structure was built to allow the royal ladies of the palace to discretely watch the grand processions along the main street. The City Palace was built between 1729 and 1732 by the ruler of Amber Sawai Jai Singh II. City palace has a large part of total area of Jaipur which is surrounded by battle door. The palace complex was built like there is another city in a city. A complex of courtyards, gardens, buildings, temples, fountains, pounds, courts, horse stable, workshops and playgrounds. Continue to the impressive Jantar Mantar, an astronomical observatory built in the early 1700s by Maharaja Jai Sing II, the astronomer to which this city owes its name. The term "Jantar Mantar" literally means "instruments for measuring the harmony of the heavens". It houses various architectural and astrological instruments that have caught the interests of astronomers, historians and architects around the world. It is considered to be one of the largest observatories ever built. While you are in the city, you can also visit the nearby popular street markets of Jaipur like Renowned Johori bazaar with hundreds of jewelry vendors, plus handcrafted clothing, furniture, art & more.
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DAY 6 : PUSHKAR
Drive to Pushkar a sacred city for Hindus. Surrounded by hills on three sides and sand dunes on the fourth, Pushkar forms a fascinating location and a befitting backdrop for the annual religious and cattle fair (held in November). A quiet, secluded desert town for 51 weeks a year, for just a few days it becomes an incredible and authentic extravaganza during the annual Pushkar Fair. Drawing people from all around the globe, it is also quite possibly the largest camel and cattle-trading fair in the world Afternoon, arrive in Pushkar; check in to the hotel. Enjoy a walking tour of the holy city of the God, Brahma; visit the holy Pushkar Lake and the famous 8th century Brahma Temple dedicated to Lord Brahma the creator of the universe and the only Bull temple in the world. Experience a special Pooja ceremony at a Ghat with a Hindu priest on the banks of Pushkar Lake. Overnight in Pushkar (Special Deluxe Tents during the Pushkar Camel Fair).
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DAY 7 : UDAIPUR
After breakfast drive to Udaipur. Udaipur is the majestic city of lakes and palaces. Founded by Maharana Udai Singh in 1559 and fondly referred to as Rajasthan’s most romantic city, its rich history is matched by its picturesque setting among the Aravalli Mountains and three manmade lakes. On arrival in Udaipur; check in to the hotel. Overnight in Pushkar Optional Tour Sunset cruise on Lake Pichola:  Sailing past picturesque Ghats and palaces, stopping at the island of Jag Mandir, a 17th century water palace that witnessed two important historical events. It was the refuge for Prince Khurram, later known as Shah Jahan, when he was exiled by his father and later during the uprising of 1857, the island offered safety to several British families who fled from nearby Née much.
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DAY 8 : UDAIPUR
Begin our day at the City Palace, overlooking the blue waters of Lake Pichola. Maharana Udai Singh initiated construction in 1559 A.D. and it was subsequently expanded, with impressive uniformity, by several succeeding Maharanas. The palace consists of a number of beautiful courtyards and gardens. The main hall has been converted into a museum, housing opulent artifacts and original works of art. Inside the complex we will find the exquisite crystal gallery, exhibiting 19th century pieces including crystal chandeliers, tables, sofas and beds. We will continue walking towards the Jagdish Temple to study its many remarkable friezes. Lavishly built in 1651 by Maharana Jagat Singh, it is easy to understand why Jagdish is the most venerated Hindu temple in Udaipur. Afterwards we will explore the Old City, wandering through its bustling streets lined with art shops, spice vendors, tailors and more. Overnight in Udaipur
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DAY 9 : VARANASI
Get transferred to the airport to connect flight to Varanasi. Upon arrival check in to the hotel. In the evening watch Aarti ceremony on the Ghat of Ganges and witness the intriguing ‘Aarti’ Ceremony (collective prayer). Observe the mystical scene displayed before you of the many Ghats lit with oil-lamp lights, Brahmans chanting hymns and numerous floating oil lamps. Overnight in Varanasi
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DAY 10 : VARANASI
Drive to the Ghats to take a boat ride on the Ganges. Witness the fascinating early morning rituals performed by Hindu devotees along the river bank which includes the cremation Ghats. People bathe early in the morning to offer prayers to the rising sun. The two cremation Ghats are Manikarnika & Harishchandra where funeral pyres burn day and night. Every pious Hindu believes that to die in Kashi and to be cremated on the banks of the Ganges is to attain release from the cycle of birth and death. Return to the hotel for breakfast and then visit Bharat Mata Temple with its large marble relief map of India, Durga Temple and the modern marble Tulsi Manas Temple whose walls are engraved with scenes and verses from the Ramcharitmanas, the Hindi version of the Ramayana. You will also see the New Viswanath Temple, one of the tallest in India (non-Hindus are not allowed inside the temple). Go around Benares Hindu University and its museum and see the mosque of the Mughal Emperor Aurangzeb. Overnight in Varanasi Optional : Half day Sarnath Tour : Visit Sarnath, a major Buddhist centre in the world After achieving enlightenment at Bodhgaya, Buddha, the 'Awakened One', delivered his first sermon here. It was in the 6th century then, when he also set in motion the wheel of law, the Dharmachakra by initiating his first five disciples into Buddhist monkshood. Dhamekh Stupa at Sarnath is an imposing cylindrical structure (43.5m high) of the Gupta age, partly built of stone and partly of brick. Its stone basement has eight projecting faces with large niches for statuary and is further adorned with delicately carved floral and geometrical patterns. You may visit the “archaeological museum at Sarnath.  Closed on Fridays.
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DAY 11 : KHAJURAHO
Enjoy a morning at your leisure. In the afternoon board flight to Khajuraho. Upon arrival to Khajuraho get transferred to your hotel and explore Khajuraho at your own or join our optional tour. Overnight in Khajuraho Optional : Light and Sound Show: Enjoy the history of this medieval-age important city through dialogues, light and sound. The show is entertaining and informative about the construction, history and importance of the temples.
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DAY 12 : KHAJURAHO
This morning visits the Eastern & Western group of temples, a UNESCO World Heritage site, with a scholar temple were built by Chandela rulers out of sandstone in the 10th century and decorated with superb carvings and sculptures - some of the erotic scenes from the Kama Sutra. They represent some of the finest examples of temple architecture in Northern India. The remote location of Khajuraho meant that the temples were unharmed by Muslim invaders and as a result, the intricately fine carvings are in very good condition and are said to represent life in heaven. The temples were built between 950 and 1050 AD by the Chandela dynasty, which dominated Central India at that time. They represent the brilliant burst of artistic flowering that took place under the generous patronage of the powerful Chandela rulers who made Khajuraho their peacetime capital. Overnight in Khajuraho Optional: Jungle Safari in Panna National Park : Panna National Park and the surrounding territorial forest area of North and South Panna forest division is the only large chunk of wildlife habitat remaining in North Madhya Pradesh in the otherwise fragmented forest landscape of the region. The forests of Panna National Park along with Ken Gharial Wildlife Sanctuary and adjoining territorial divisions form a significant part of the catchment area of the 406 km (252 mi) Ken River which runs northeast for about 72 km (45 mi) through the park. Among the animals found here are the tiger, leopard, chital, chinkara, nilgai, sambhar and sloth bear. The park is home to more than 200 species of birds including the bar-headed goose, honey buzzard, king vulture and blossom-headed parakeet. Safari is closed on Wednesday afternoon so it can be done on next day morning if today is Wednesday. Only available between 16 Oct & 30 Jun
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DAY 13 : NEW DELHI
After breakfast get transferred to the airport to board a flight for Delhi. Upon arrival get transferred to your hotel and spend the rest of the day at your leisure. Overnight in Delhi
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DAY 14 : END OF ITINERARY
After breakfast get transferred to the airport to board a flight for Delhi. Upon arrival get transferred to your hotel and spend the rest of the day at your leisure. Overnight in Delhi
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