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.
Upon arrival at Delhi International airport, you will be met by our welcome ambassador and escorted to your hotel where you will be assisted with Check-in formalities.
The Oberoi hotel in New Delhi, situated in the heart of Lutyen's Delhi, is an incomparable hotel for business or pleasure which enjoys views of the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Humayun’s Tomb on one side and a calming view of the forested golf course on the other. It is a storied landmark and a celebrated example of Oberoi’s reputation for taking care of its guests.
After breakfast, drive through Lutyen’s Delhi with photo stops at India Gate and the muted red sandstone Parliament and government buildings.
Continue to Gandhi Smriti, housed in the Old Birla House on 5, Tees January Marg, New Delhi, is the sacred place where Mahatma Gandhi’s epic Life ended on 30 January 1948. Mahatma Gandhi had lived in this house on September 9, 1947, to January 30, 1948. Thus, the hallowed house treasures many memories of the last 144 days of his life. The Old Birla House was acquired by the Government of India in 1971 and was converted into a National Memorial of the Father of the Nation and was opened to the public on August 15, 1973.
The preserves include the room where Gandhi Ji lived and the prayer ground where mass congregation used to be held. This was the place where Gandhi Ji was felled by the assassin’s bullets. The building and the landscape have been preserved as they were in those days.
Next visit the restored Humayun’s Tomb.
Humayun’s Tomb: Sublimely well proportioned, seeming to float above its symmetrical gardens. It's thought to have inspired the Taj Mahal, which it predates by 60 years. Constructed for the Mughal emperor in the mid-16th century by Haji Begum, Humayun's Persian-born wife, the tomb marries Persian and Mughal elements, with restrained decoration enhancing the architecture.
Later drive to Agra via Yamuna Expressway. On arrival in Agra you check-into to your hotel.
Located just 600 metres from the Taj Mahal, the world’s most exquisite testimony to undying love, it is easy to rekindle romance at The Oberoi Amarvilas. Inspired by Mughal palace designs; with fountains, terraced lawns, reflection pools and pavilions, The Oberoi Amarvilas offers unrestricted views of Taj Mahal from all rooms and suites, complemented by our warm, personalised hospitality.
Morning proceed to Taj on decorated horse driven carriages, Taj Mahal (UNESCO world heritage site) is considered one of the most romantic monuments and one of mankind's greatest architectural feats in the world. Built by the Mughal Emperor Shah Jahan after the death of his beloved wife Mumtaz Mahal, this white marble mausoleum is considered a monument to eternal love. is It was erected by 20,000 laborers over a 12-year period. The entire monument is a masterpiece of symmetry (Closed on Friday).
After breakfast you will visit the Agra Fort which dates back to the 11th Century and captured by several rulers before it was rebuilt by the Great Mughal King Akbar in the 16th Century.
Later commence your drive to Jaipur - enthralling, historical Jaipur, Rajasthan’s capital, is the gateway to India’s most flamboyant state. The city’s colorful, chaotic streets ebb and flow with a heady brew of old and new. At the city’s heart, the City Palace continues to house the former royal family, the Jantar Mantar, the royal observatory, maintains a heavenly aspect; and the honeycomb Hawa Mahal gazes on the bazaar below. And just out of sight, in the arid hill country surrounding the city, is the fairy-tale grandeur of Amber Fort.
Arrive Jaipur, check in at your hotel Taj Rambagh Palace - Walk from room to room amongst rich textures, opulent furnishings and exquisite objects d’art. Step out into expansive, ornamental gardens arranged in brilliant symmetry. Retire to rooms that were once the sanctuaries of kings, princes and their guests. Rambagh Palace exudes an unmistakable sense of history. It’s an architectural masterpiece that transcends time.
Morning drive to Amber and its glorious hilltop fortress.
Amber Fort: The Amber Fort was built in 1592 by Raja Man Singh, is one of the finest examples of Rajput architecture. It gives extensive views over a deep narrow valley and the wider plains beyond.The Fort was completed in the early 18th century, it was was once, the capital of the Mina tribes, believed to be the original inhabitants of this region. The fort, sprawled along the Maotha Lake, boasts of a massive complex gateways, courts, stairways and pillared pavilions, and palaces that recall the glory and wealth, of Amber's association with the Mughals.
Optional - Afterward proceed to Dera Amer camp - situated behind the hills of the famous Amer Fort is the ideal location for outdoor recreational and adventure activities in very close proximity to the city of Jaipur. Enjoy a barbeque lunch alfresco!
Later proceed to the Pink city of Jaipur.
Hawa Mahal (photo stop): Visit the palace of wind (Hawa Mahal) with 953 windows and niches which were made so that ladies of royal family could see the procession and events in the city without being visible to the people.
City Palace: City Palace occupies the center of Jaipur. It now houses the Royal residence and museums with collections of textiles and costumes, armoury, manuscripts, paintings etc.
Jantar Mantar (Royal Observatory): It was built (1728-34) by king astrologer Jai Singh II. The instruments are built of stone with marble facing on the important plains for measuring the harmony of the heavens. Each instrument serves a particular function and each gives an accurate reading.
Early morning transfer to the airport to connect flight for Udaipur.
Beside shimmering Lake Pichola, with the ocher and purple ridges of the wooded Aravalli Hills stretching away in every direction, Udaipur has a romance of setting unmatched in Rajasthan and arguably in all India.
Upon arrival meet with our representative and transfer to the lake retreat built up on Raj Niwas Island – The Lake Palace, Udaipur; stay at James bond Octopussy's island hideaway, Taj Lake Palace. The hotel is lavishly decorated with ornate, carved windows and domed turrets.
Rest of the day at leisure.
1) visit a philanthropic organization, working to help improve the living conditions of women.
2) Cooking Demo with Local Family in Udaipur.
This morning proceed for city sightseeing visiting; the vast and exquisite City Palace, a well-fortified, majestic white monument.
City Palace, Udaipur: Situated above Lake Pichola, Udaipur City Palace has housed many royals over four centuries who have each added their own unique preferences to the establishment. The palace is a one of a kind in Rajasthan. Udaipur City Palace was constructed entirely out of marble and granite which makes it highly luxurious. The inside is even more so with its inlays of coloured glass, engravings, towers, and balconies.
Saheliyon Ki Bari is one the most beautiful gardens and a major tourist destination in Udaipur. The garden is famous for its lush green lawns, marble art and fountains. English translation of Saheliyon Ki Bari means "Garden of maids". This renowned garden is located on the banks of Fateh Sagar Lake, presenting a green retreat in the dry lands of Rajasthan. Garden of maids was built in the 18th century by Maharana Sangram Singh for the royal ladies.
Enjoy a boat cruise (shared) on Lake Pichola to visit Jag Mandir Palace, which covers almost four acres and is noted for its marble pavilion and an imposing dome. You’ll see people doing their laundry on the shores of the lake against the backdrop of the massive City Palace and the old city.
This morning drive towards Jodhpur.
Jodhpur history revolves around the Rathore Clan. Rao Jodha, the chief of the Rathore clan, is credited with the origin of Jodhpur in India. He founded Jodhpur in 1459. The city is named after him only. It was previously known as Marwar. Jodhpur was the largest state in Rajputana in terms of land area at the time of the British Raj, and it continued to prosper, as did the Marwaris, who were the merchants of that time. When India achieved independence in 1947, the state joined the union of India, and became part of the larger state of Rajasthan, with Jodhpur being its second-largest city.
En-route stop at world famous Ranakpur Temples, an architectural marvel built in white marble.
Continue drive towards Jodhpur, upon arrival check in at your luxury retreat the Umaid Bhawan Palace - Designed by renowned Edwardian architect Henry Lanchester, the palace is a blend of eastern and western architectural influences. Its majestic 105 - foot high cupola is influenced by the Renaissance, while the towers draw inspiration from Rajput tradition.
This morning, enjoy an orientation tour of Jodhpur city.
Mehrangarh Fort: Mehrangarh fort is about 5 Kms from Jodhpur Town. Guarding the city below, crowning a perpendicular cliff, the fort was founded by Rao Jodha in 1459 AD when he shifted his capital from Mandore. Standing sentinel to the city below, it over looks the rugged and rocky terrain and houses a palace intricately adorned with long carved panels and latticed windows exquisitely wrought from red sandstone.
The apartments within, have their own magic -the Moti Mahal (Pearl Palace), Phool Mahal (Flower Palace), Sheesh Mahal (Mirror Palace), Sileh Khana and Daulat Khana with a rich varied collection of palanquins, howdas, royal cradles, miniature paintings of various schools, folk music, instruments, costumes, furniture and an impressive armoury.
Jaswant Thada: Built in the memory of Maharaja Jaswant Singh II, in 1899, the imposing white marble memorial marks the site of a royal crematorium. The cenotaph houses portraits of successive rulers. These four cenotaphs commemorate notable acts of bravery and generosity of the four successive rulers.
Later transfer to the airport to connect flight for Mumbai.
Upon arrival, you will be met by our representative and transferred to regal retreat The Taj Mahal Palace and assist with check in.
The Taj Mahal Palace opened in Mumbai, then Bombay, in 1903, giving birth to the country’s first harbour landmark. The recently trademarked flagship hotel overlooks the majestic Gateway of India. This legendary luxury hotel has played host to kings, dignitaries and eminent personalities from across the globe, and is acknowledged as a world leader in hospitality.
Mumbai (previously known as Bombay) is the biggest metropolis of India. A city that is full of life and is also known for its well-known tourist places, commercial hubs and government bodies. It is also known as the financial capital of India.
Rest of time at leisure.
After breakfast, go on a tour of the city to explore its architectural heritage, starting with a visit to the Jain Temple at Malabar Hill. Continue to Mani Bhawan, the home of Mahatma Gandhi during his stay in Mumbai, now a small museum exhibiting his life works. You will drive up to Dhobhighat, the Mega Laundry site, where the entire city’s laundry comes for a wash. Arrive in time at Churchgate to see the Dabbawalas sorting lunch boxes for distribution. The tour will culminate at Prince of Wales museum, one of the finest in Asia. After lunch, the remainder of the day will be at your leisure.
We recommend the following activities:
•Walk through the Crawford Market
•Explore the Jewish Heritage of Mumbai
•Take a ferry to Visit the Elephanta Caves
•Heritage & Foodie Walk through Colonial Bombay
•Visit Worli Fort and its fishing villages.
•Explore the Religious sites of Mumbai.
Early morning fly to Hyderabad, the city of Nizams.
Upon arrival check in at one of the most regal retreats of India – Taj Falaknuma Palace.
Perched 2,000 feet above the city of Hyderabad is Taj Falaknuma Palace, a jewel amongst the clouds. Built in 1894, it is the former palace of the Nizam, rumoured to be the richest man in the world at one time. Overlooking the twinkling City of Pearls, this enchanting palace exudes romance and grandeur that take one back to when the Nizam ruled Hyderabad.
Later this Morning pay a visit to famous Salarjung Museum - An art museum situated in the beautiful city of Hyderabad, Salar Jung Museum contains a collection of paintings, textiles, metallic artifacts, clocks and carvings from various countries like China, North America, Egypt, Nepal, Europe, Burma and India. It got acknowledged as an institution of National importance by the Indian Parliament. (Closed on Friday, opening timings: 1000 – 1700 Hrs)
Post lunch proceed for a guided orientation tour of the city visiting; Char Minar, Qutub Shahi tombs and Chowmahalla palace, the ruling seat of the Nizam of Hyderabad state
Late Afternoon get ready for a Jewelry Tour of Hyderabad.
Exquisite pearls, magnificent uncut diamonds, emeralds, shiny lac bangles...this city has it all! Visit the narrow lanes of the Choodi Bazaar and meet the craftsmen who have spent their lifetime mastering these crafts. Hear the several stories about the Nizam's famed jewelry collection. Try on some exquisite, antique pieces and feel like royalty. If the sparkle of diamonds and the glint of gold is your thing, then this tour is a must for you.
Return to your hotel
The city Hyderabad is a foodie delight, its delectable cuisine is an important part of its culture and hospitality. Hence this morning take a food walk of the Old City, followed by 'The Biryani Tour'.
Food for the kings- Biryani has been an integral part of Indian cuisine from the palaces of the sultans to the small back alleys in the most remote villages. This tour explores the many regional and subtle foreign influences that make this dish so special. We will weave our way through Hyderabad's many biryani hubs and see the huge handis of fragrant rice and secret combinations of meat and spices that beguile the senses. End the day with a traditional meal of Biryani served in antique, royal crockery or in a simple Hyderabadi home.
In the afternoon take a Palace Tour accompanied by a curator and culminate the tour with a High Tea at the majestic Taj Falaknuma Palace.
DAYS 12 - 14 : MARARIKULAM
Morning fly to Kochi, the gateway to South India.
Upon arrival, drive to Mararikulam and check in at The Carnoustie Ayurveda and Wellness retreat – Set on the shores of the mesmerizing Arabian sea, just 20 20 kilometers away from the world famous backwaters of Alappuzha, the luxurious Carnoustie Ayurveda and wellness resort, set admist verdant tropical greens, provides you the best of ‘Gods own country’ and its meticulously designed to be a perfect restful and regenerating escape.
Days at leisure to relax and unwind.
DAY 15 : END OF ITINERARY
Drive to Kochi airport and transfer in time to international departure terminal to board flight for onward journey.