Day 1: Arrive in Delhi
Welcome to India!
On arrival, you will received and transferred to your hotel. We will stay overnight in Delhi.
Day 2: Delhi
We will embark on a sightseeing tour of Old Delhi. We begin with a visit to the 17th century Jama Mosque, followed by a drive past the Red Fort which was built by Emperor Shah Jahan, creator of the Taj Mahal. From there we go onward to Raj Ghat, the site of the memorial to Mahatma Gandhi.
In the afternoon, we set off on a sightseeing tour of New Delhi. We begin with a drive past Safdarjang’s Tomb (1753 AD) en-route to the striking 73 m-high Qutab Minar (1193 AD). Within the Qutab complex, amidst the ruins of Quwat-ul-Islam mosque, stands the Iron Pillar which has stood the vagaries of weather and has not rusted for over 1500 years. Continue the tour to visit Humayun’s Tomb. After this, we drive through the Embassy Area, diplomatic enclave, and stop for a quick photo shoot at the famous India Gate and Rashtrapati Bhawan (formerly the Viceroy’s House), and then on to Connaught Place, New Delhi’s main shopping area. The afternoon you may spend at your leisure. We stay overnight in Delhi.
Day 3: Delhi / Varanasi
This morning you will transfer to the airport to board your flight to Varanasi. There you will be met at the airport and transferred to your hotel. In the afternoon, we visit the buried city of Sarnath, one of the holiest cities for Buddhists, which is located northeast of Varanasi. Buddha came to Sarnath and preached the way to Nirvana. Later, Ashoka, the great Buddhist emperor, erected magnificent stupas and monasteries, the ruins of which are still visible today. A museum here houses an excellent collection of Buddhist art and sculptures. After this we return to Varanasi to witness the evening Aarti ceremony at the ghats. Overnight in Varanasi.
Day 4: Varanasi
Varanasi, the holiest of cities for the Hindus, is amongst the oldest living cities in the world. Enjoy an early morning boat ride on the river Ganges while looking out for people on the ghats – women bathing discreetly in their sarees, young men displaying prowess in yogic postures and the Brahmin priests offering prayers for one and all. Return to your hotel for breakfast. Later proceed for a city tour of Varanasi including visits to the numerous temples which dot the banks of the river. Walk through the narrow lanes and stop by at the bazaars to see the world famous Banaras silks. The afternoon is at your leisure. Overnight in Varanasi.
Day 5: Varanasi / Khajuraho
After breakfast you will be transferred to the airport in time for your flight to Khajuraho. We recommend the 9W2423 flight which departs at 10:40 a.m. and arrives at Khajuraho at 11:55 a.m. Upon arrival at the airport, you will be met and transferred to your hotel. In the afternoon, proceed for a sightseeing tour of Khajuraho. The tour includes a visit to the famous Chandela Dynasty Temples, which are set in a lovely grass park.
These temples are amazing – rising in many peaks and spirals intricately carved and designed with statues and friezes. The erotic carvings on these temple walls have made this one of the most talked about tourist sites in the country, and, perhaps, unmatched in the world. Overnight in Khajuraho.
Day 6: Khajuraho / Orcha /Jhansi / Agra
After an early breakfast, we begin the drive from Khajuraho to Jhansi (172 km. /5 hr.), en-route visiting Orcha. A beautiful medieval town, Orcha was once the capital of the Bundela Kings. Built along the banks of the river Betwa, through a rugged countryside, it still retains the captivating air of a bygone era. Amongst the various imposing edifices, of particular interest are the Jehangiri Mahal, built by Raja Bir Singh Deo to commemorate the visit of the Moghul Emperor Jehangir. The Raj Mahal and the Laxminarayan temple are both noted for their fine frescoes and mural paintings.
Onward to Jhansi Railway station in time to board your train for Agra. The Shatabdi Express departs Jhansi at 17:55 and arrives in Agra at 20:30. Upon arrival at the Railway Station, you will be transferred to your hotel.
Day 7: Agra / Delhi
After breakfast, we will visit the magnificent Taj Mahal. From here, we drive to Delhi (200 km / 3:30 hr.) On arrival, we will check in at the hotel and later visit the National Museum and the Delhi Haat, famous for its arts and crafts. Overnight at the hotel.
Day 8: Delhi
After breakfast, you will be transferred to the airport and the tour ends.