(Delhi – Jaipur – Agra- Orchha – Khajuraho – Varanasi – Kolkata – Chennai – Mahabalipura – Pondicherry – Tanjore – Trichy – Madurai – Thekkady – Kovalam – Mumbai – Aurangabad)
28 Days/ 27 Nights
Day 01: Arrive Delhi
Upon arrival you will be welcomed by our representative & transferred to hotel. Delhi - capital of modern India. Many dynasties and rulers have flourished on its regal soil over the last 3000 years. The legacy still survives in many monuments varying from the 13th century mausoleum of the Lodi Kings to the buildings of British India's imperial past like the Parliament House and the Presidential Estate. Overnight at Delhi.
Day 02: Tour Delhi
Morning breakfast at hotel later proceed on a tour of Old Delhi, visit the Red Fort, Raj Ghat - a memorial to Mahatma Gandhi, Ashoka Pillar and the mile-long Chandni Chowk bazaar. Later tour New Delhi, drive along Rajpath the capital’s broadest avenue, for a view of the Parliament House, the President’s House and India Gate. Visit the Humayun’s Tomb, Qutab Minar and Birla Temple. Evening is at leisure. Overnight at Delhi.
Day 03: Delhi -Jaipur (6 hrs)
After breakfast checkout from hotel and drive to Jaipur- The capital city of the state of Rajasthan is popularly known as the ‘Pink City’ of the terra-cotta-colored lime plaster that coats the old part of the city's walls, buildings, and temples. Arrive and check in. Overnight at Jaipur.
Day 04: Tour Jaipur
Morning, proceed for an excursion to Amber Fort - the original Palace was built by Raja Mansingh and later additions were made by Sawai Jai Singh. One of the finest example of Rajput architecture. Enjoy the ascent to the Palace on the back of a brightly caparisoned elephant. Visit the multiple chambers and hallways of the palace which are famous for their design and decorations.
Afternoon, proceed for a city tour to visit the unique Jantar Mantar, which is a magnificent stone observatory built by Raja Jai Singh in 1728 and drive past the Hawa Mahal, an intriguing “Palace of Winds”. This was really a facade built in 1799, to allow royal ladies to view the city from the windows. Later visit the opulent City Palace, the former royal residence built in a blend of Rajasthani and Mughal style which has grand museums displaying an excellent collection of miniature paintings, costumes and armory. Overnight at Jaipur
Day 05: Jaipur - Agra (05 hrs) Via Fathepur sikri
After breakfast we drive to Agra - In the 16th and 17th Centuries, was the capital of Moghul India and its superb monuments date from that era. It has a magnificent fort and the building which so many people come to India solely to see - the Taj Mahal. Enroute visiting Emperor Akbar's 16th century abandoned city of Fatehpur Sikri. This ghost town is remarkably well preserved and presents a perfect synthesis of Muslim, Hindu and Jain architecture. The sculptured columns bear mute testimony to this gallant experiment to unite Hindus and Muslims. Late evening check in & relax. Overnight stay in Agra.
Day 06: Agra - Jhansi (by train) - Orchha (30 mins)
Early today on sun rise visit Taj Mahal (closed on Friday) - the mausoleum of Empress Mumtaz Mahal, the beloved spouse of Shah Jahan, who died in 1630. Generally considered the finest example of Mughul architecture - a style that combines elements of Persian, Turkish, Indian and Islamic elements - the Taj complex comprises a forecourt, lofty entrance and charming formal Mughal garden with canal and a central tank with a series of fountains. The tomb proper has an attached mosque on the west and its symmetrical counterpart on the east. The Taj is remarkable for its perfect proportions and rich pietra dura - the technique of using small, exquisitely cut and fitted, highly-polished coloured stones to create what is effectively a painting in stone. The building, often styled "a dream in marble" is said to have taken at least 22 years to build. Return to hotel for breakfast. Visit Agra fort - The magnificent towers, bastions, ramparts, and gateways of the Agra Fort symbolize the stature and power of Mughal Emperor Akbar. The Agra fort is built alongside the Yamuna River and stretches almost 2.5 km. It consists of a wall built in red sandstone with several buildings inside. Part of the Agra fort is still in use by the Indian Army and are not accessible to the public, but there's still enough left to get an insight on the way the Mughals lived in the 16th century. In the afternoon, proceed to railway station to board train to arrive in Jhansi. Arrive Jhansi and continue drive to Orchha
Day 07: Orchha - Khajuraho (04 hrs)
Morning enjoy a guided programmed of Orchha which was the erstwhile capital city of the Bundela rulers. The town is steeped in history and is famous for its palaces and temples built in the 16th and 17th centuries. Visit Jahangir Mahal, Rajmahal and Phool Bagh. In the afternoon, drive to Khajuraho. On arrival check in hotel. Late evening, enjoy the Sound and Light show - history depicted beautifully on Khajuraho temples.
Day 08: Khajuraho tour & later fly to Varanasi
Today, you will make a guided visit to the temples of the Western cluster - Laxman Temple, Kandaria Mahadev Temple and Jain Temples in the Eastern cluster. Khajuraho has the largest group of medieval Hindu and Jain temples, famous for their erotic sculpture. The Khajuraho group of monuments has been listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and is considered to be one of the "seven wonders" of India In the afternoon, our representative will transfer you to airport to connect flight for Varanasi at 1345 hrs. On arrival you will meet & transfer to hotel for check in. In the evening visit river Ganges with the guide by cycle rickshaws to witness the evening 'Aarti' - worship of holy Ganges with lit oil lamps accompanied by holy chants and music. Overnight stay at Varanasi.
Day 09: Varanasi
After breakfast proceed on city tour of Varanasi. It is a mystical and spiritual experience as you watch people offering water to the Sun God and devotees taking holy dip in the Ganges followed by city tour is arranged covering the Vishwanath temple, the Bharat Mata temple & Banaras Hindu University. Evening is free for leisure. Overnight stay in Varanasi.
Day 10 Varanasi - Kolkata (by air)
After breakfast checkout from hotel and drive to Varanasi airport and fly to Kolkata - Kolkata is an important commercial and cultural point in East India. Kolkata is also called as the City of Joy and also the Cultural Capital of India. The Bengalis of Kolkata are known to be educated, cultured and soft spoken. On arrival check in to your hotel & rest of the day at leisure. Overnight stay at Kolkata
Day 11 Kolkata
After breakfast proceed for city tour & visit - Belur Math, Belur Mutt is the headquarters of the Ramakrishna Math and Mission, founded by Swami Vivekananda, a chief disciple of Ramakrishna Paramahamsa. Vivekananda Setu, Vivekananda Setu is a bridge over the Hooghly River in West Bengal, India. It links the city of Howrah, at Bally, to its twin city of Kolkata, at Dakshineswar. Later visit Dakshineswar Temple Dakshineswar, a temple of the Hindu goddess Kali. Evening free for leisure. Overnight stay at Kolkata.
Day 12: Fly from Kolkata to Chennai
After breakfast checkout from hotel and fly to Chennai, arrive Chennai and later continue with Chennai city tour – visit ‘St. Mary’s Church’, built in 1678 – 80, was the first English Church in Chennai. The Saint Thomas Cathedral, built in 1504, then re-built in neo - gothic style in 1893, this Roman Catholic Church is said to house the remains of St. Thomas the Apostle. Also visit the Kapaleeshwarar Temple, an ancient Shiva Temple, constructed in pure Dravidian style. The Sri Parathasarathy Temple, dedicated to Lord Krishna, built in 8th century during the reign of the Pallavas. Other attractions include the National Art Gallery and Museum, which house some beautiful temple friezes, the bronze gallery, and archeological section. Drive past the High Court Building, Fort St. George and the famous film studios. Overnight at Chennai.
Day 13: Chennai - Kanchipuram - Mahabalipuram (175 kms)
Today drive you to Mahabalipuram. Enroute tour Kanchipuram - is the golden city of a thousand temples and one of the seven sacred cities of India. Its many gopurams can be seen while approaching the city from a long way off. Today, it is known not only for its temples but also for its handwoven silk fabrics. Visit Ekambareshwar Temple, Kailashnath Temple, Kamakshi Temple, the Vaikunthaperumal Temple, all built in the 7th and 8th centuries continue your drive to mahabalipuram and check in. Overnight at Mahabalipuram.
Day 14: Tour Mahabalipuram
After breakfast visit Mahablipuram - an ancient coastal port, world famous for its shore temple and was the second capital and sea port of the Pallava Kings of Kanchipuram. The whole of Mahabalipuram is a fabulous open-air museum of sculpture in living rock, Monolithic shrines, scooped out caverns magnificently sculpted within and the world’s biggest, bas relief in rock are truly wondrous examples of the sculptor’s art. Vying with this splendour is a beach. The famous temples of the Rathas, the Penance of Bhagirath, the Shore Temple and the eight Mandapams. (Shallow, rock cut halls). Evening is at leisure. Overnight at Mahabalipuram.
Day 15: Mahabalipuram - Pondicherry (02 hrs)
Today we drive to Pondicherry - formerly a French colony settled early in the 18th century, it became part of the Indian Union in the early 50’s when the French voluntarily relinquished control. On arrival check in. Later visit the Botanical Gardens, Eglise De Sacre Coeur De Jesus, The Promenade, Government Park, Manakula Vinayagar Temple, Roman Rolland Library, Sri Aurobindo Ashram, French Institute and other museums and art galleries. Evening is at leisure. Overnight at Pondicherry.
Day 16: Pondicherry - Tanjore (200 kms)
After breakfast drive to Tanjore - the capital of the powerful Chola dynasty. Today, it is the little town set amidst the lush green rice fields of the Cauvery delta. Magnificent temples, still bear witness to the splendour of Chola architecture. Enroute visit Nataraj Temple at Chidambaram and also visit the temples at Kumbakonam. Upon arrival check in. Evening is free for leisure. Overnight at Tanjore.
Day 17: Tanjore – Trichy (01 hr)
Today proceed on a guided tour of Tanjore, visiting Brihadeeswara Temple, the palace, Sangeetha Mahal, Saraswati Mahal, Library, Raja Museum, Temple Museum and Schwarz Church. Later drive to Trichy - situated on the banks of the river Cauvery is the fourth largest city in Tamil Nadu. It was a citadel of the early Cholas which later fell to the Pallavas. Here you will visit the Rock Fort, Sri Jambukeshwara Temple, Tiruvannaikaval, Srirangam & other museums and art galleries. Check in late evening. Overnight at Trichy.
Day 18: Trichy - Madurai (03 hrs)
After breakfast drive to Madurai - one of the oldest cities in South India, has been the centre of learning and pilgrimage for centuries. Upon arrival check in. Later tour of Madurai - the primary interest is the Meenakshi Temple, where Dravidian temple architecture may be considered to be at its best. Its hall of a thousand pillars is fabulous and is filled with worshippers at all hours of the day. The tour also includes a visit to the Thirumalai Nayak Palace & Thiruparangundram temple. In the evening witness temple ceremony at Shree Meenakshi temple. Overnight at Madurai.
Day 19: Madurai - Thekkady (03 hrs)
After breakfast checkout from hotel and Later drive to the spice capital Thekkady, located on the Tamil Nadu - Kerala border. This unique wildlife sanctuary is about 300 square miles and centered on an artificial lake fed by the Periyar River. Upon arrival check in. Overnight at Thekkady.
Day 20: Tour Thekkady
This morning game viewing is on board boats, which carry you along convoluted waterways and afford sightings of elephant, bison, deer and occasionally tiger. This tropical habitat makes it one of the premiere reserves of southern India with all manner of flora and fauna in abundance. Return for breakfast, later visit spice plantation where you can learn about pepper, cardamom, cinnamon and vanilla among many other spices and plants. Overnight at Thekkady.
Day 21: Thekkady - Kovalam beach (06 hrs)
After breakfast checkout from hotel and drive to Kovalam - Kovalam is a beach town by the Arabian Sea in Thiruvananthapuram city, Kerala, India, Kovalam has three beaches separated by rocky outcroppings in its 17 km coastline, the three together form the famous crescent of the Kovalam beach. Aarive and Checkin, overnight stay at Kovalam.
Day 22: Kovalam Beach
After breakfast day is free for leisure. Overnight stay at Kovalam.
Day 23: Kovalam Beach - Trivandrum (30 minutes) & later fly to Mumbai
After breakfast checkout from hotel and drive to Trivandrum later fly to Mumbai - A fascinating mix of commercial hustle and bustle, grand Victorian styled architecture and modern day high rise building, the customs and colors of truly multi-cultural society. Check-in at hotel evening free for leisure. Overnight stay in Mumbai.
Day 24: Mumbai
After Breakfast visit Elephanta caves -- 9 nautical miles across the sea from the Gateway of India lay Elephanta, also known as 'Gharapuri'. Visit this Green Island for the wonders of the 7th century, the painstakingly hewn rock-cut cave temple, dedicated to Shiva. The Maheshamurti panel in which Shiva is shown as a creator, protector and destroyer, is a sight that should be enjoyed at least once in a lifetime. Afternoon City Tour of Mumbai. Visiting Gateway of India, prince wales museum, drive past Marine Drive, Mumbai's most popular seaside promenade, and see the Kamla Nehru Park and Hanging Gardens on the slopes of the Malabar hills, offering a nice view of the marine lines and the Chowpatty beach. Visit the Jain temple, Mani Bhawan where Mahatma Gandhi used to stay, and the Dhobi Ghat. Also, drive past the Flora Fountain, colorful Crawford Market and Victoria Terminus station. Overnight at Mumbai.
Day 25: Mumbai - Aurangabad
After breakfast checkout from hotel and transfer to domestic airport and fly to Aurangabad- city is located in the northern part of the state of Maharashtra, in the western region of India. Placed by the Kham River, Aurangabad serves as district headquarters. It ensures that its visitors never fall short of comfort of facilities in any department. Arrive & check-in, overnight at Aurangabad.
Day 26: Ajanta caves tour
After breakfast proceed to Ajanta caves - one of India’s most impressive archaeological sites. Here Buddhist art attained its peak. The frescoes and wall paintings reveal a fascinating lifestyle. Thirty caves are carved out of a rocky gorge dating back to the 3rd century. The ornate facades and interior chambers are illuminated at all times of the day. Back to hotel. Overnight at hotel.
Day 27: Ellora Caves and Daulatabad fort
After breakfast Visit Ellora group of rock cut caves, the most magnificent is the Kailashanatha Temple (Cave 16), a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The temple has actually been sculpted out of a single mountain, and it depicts Mount Kailasa, the sacred abode of Lord Shiva. Later visit Daulatabad Fort- Daulatabad Fort magnificent 12th century fortress stands on a hill, Built by Raja Bhillamraj once known as 'Devgiri', Initially a Yadav stronghold, it passed through the hands of several dynasties in the Deccan. The ‘Daulatabad’ (city of fortune) name was given by Muhamad Tughlaq, Sultan of Delhi. Evening back to hotel overnight stay Aurangabad.
Day 28: Departure
After breakfast checkout from hotel and transfer to Aurangabad airport for onward destination.