1 Delhi, A Rich Melting Pot.
Welcome to India! On arrival at Indira Gandhi International Airport, you will be greeted with a traditional floral garland and transferred to your hotel. In the evening, join your Travelling Concierge at 18:30 for your Welcome Dinner at a local restaurant. (DW) Stay Two Nights: Le Méridien New Delhi
2 Delhi Sightseeing.
Ride by rickshaw through the lanes of Chandni Chowk bazaar in Old Delhi. See the Red Fort, visit the Gandhi memorial at Raj Ghat and the Jama Masjid, India's largest mosque. See the Qutub Minar and drive along the Rajpath past the India Gate and Parliament House to visit the Tomb of Humayun. (B)
After breakfast, transfer to the airport for your flight to Nepal, a mystical country nestled in the folds of the Himalayas. Relax at your exquisite, centrally located hotel. (B) Stay Three Nights: Soaltee, Kathmandu
4 Durbar Square, Holy Shrines.
In the morning, explore Durbar Square and the ancient Royal Palace complex, laced with a myriad of temples, courtyards, statues and home to the Kumari, the Living Goddess. With a Local Expert, take an intimate look at the Narayanhiti Royal Palace and the rooms where the royal family ate, slept, worked, held ceremonies, and entertained guests, along with the wonderfully eclectic decor. On the outskirts of town see Swayambhunath, then continue to Patan to visit the sky piercing temple of Teleju, Statue of Yogendra Malla and Tibetan Handicraft Centre. In the evening, dine at The Factory where some of the most sought-after chefs in town congregate in the hip Thamel district. (B/D)
5 Magnificent Temples.
View Pashupatinath Temple on the banks of the Bagmati, one of the holiest Hindu shrines. Continue to Bodhnath, a colossal stupa, and Nepal's most important Buddhist site. Round off your sightseeing with a visit to the ancient capital of Bhadgaon, the main square containing innumerable temples and architectural showpieces. This evening, meet a local who has summitted Everest to hear a personal account of the Sherpa people and their role in Everest expeditions. (B)
Enjoy a relaxed start to take advantage of the facilities in your hotel before being transferred to the airport for your flight to India's holy city of Varanasi. In the evening, take in a special, spiritual experience as you witness the holy Hindu Aarti ceremony at the riverside steps of the Ganges. (B) Stay Two Nights: The Gateway Hotel Ganges Varanasi
7 The Holy Ganges.
As the sun rises, enjoy tea or coffee at the hotel before embarking on a boat cruise to witness the scenes of devotion on the Ganges River. Return to the hotel for breakfast, followed by a city tour visiting some famous temples. Your adventure continues at nearby Sarnath, the deer park where the Buddha preached his first sermon. This afternoon there is the included option to visit an Akhara or traditional wrestling ground, to see Kushti, the ancient form of Indian mud wrestling with a history in Varanasi of over 5,000 years. (B/D)
8 The Carvings Of Khajuraho.
There's an early morning yoga session at the Ganges Ghats where the air is filled with spirituality. Later board a short flight to Khajuraho, where you enjoy a tour of one of India's Seven Wonders - the medieval Hindu and Jain temples, celebrated worldwide for their intricate and erotic carvings. (B/D) Stay: Jass Hotel Khajuraho
9 From Orchha To Agra.
En route to Jhansi, visit the citadel at Orchha, containing grand 16th century palaces and temples. After a delicious vegetarian lunch in a magnificent resort, transfer to the train station in Jhansi and board the Shatabdi Express. Enjoy your air-conditioned chair class seats on your journey to Agra. (B/L) Stay Two Nights: Mughal (Mughal Chamber), Agra
10 Agra And The Taj Mahal.
Agra's fine heritage is revealed. Appreciate the flawless marble symmetry of the exquisite Taj Mahal, built by an emperor in memory of his beloved wife. Move on to visit the impressive Agra Fort to explore the palatial Royal Pavilions and gardens. Continue through Sadar Bazaar, one of the most highly reputed shopping destinations for handicrafts and leather products. In the afternoon, accompany one of the locals, walking through their village in the shadow of the Taj Mahal and learn about their way of life as an agriculturalist. (B/D)
11 Jaipur, The Pink City.
Journey to historic Bharatpur and stop for lunch before your journey continues to the Pink City of Jaipur. Visit the famous spice and flower market and see girls nimbly threading garlands of flowers that will be used for offerings. In the evening, enjoy a change of scenery as you travel away from the bustling city, into the wilderness and beauty of the Aravalli Mountains. Here you will be treated to a delicious and authentic Rajasthani meal at Dera Amer restaurant. (B/L/D) Stay Two Nights: Fairmont Jaipur
12 Jaipur Sightseeing.
Ascend by jeep to the Amber Fort, its royal halls decorated with intricate ivory, mirrors, glass and exquisite paintings. Back in Jaipur, see the Hawa Mahal, known as The Palace of Winds, and visit the City Palace Museum and royal observatory. Later, at your Celebration Dinner, enjoy drinks and authentic cuisine at 1135 AD Restaurant. (B/DW)
13 Depart Jaipur Or Delhi.
Your journey draws to a close after breakfast. Transfer to Jaipur Airport. Alternatively, continue to Delhi Airport arriving at 17:00 for flights after 21:00 (B)