North India

Image by Siddhant Singh
Image by Saksham Gangwar

28 Mar 2023 - 09 Apr 2023

USD $ 2497 pp 

Udaipur – Amritsar – Shimla – Lucknow - Vanarasi

DAY 01: Arrive Delhi BY: International Flight
Delhi – Udaipur BY: Domestic Flight

Welcome to India! Arrive Delhi T3 terminal by International Flight. Later connect to your domestic flight for Udaipur.
Set on the shores of Lake Pichola and surrounded by hills, Udaipur grew in complete
contrast to the harsh of the rest of Rajasthan. From the late 16th century, peace
brought about an era of renaissance in the arts and encouraged the building of beautiful
palaces around the lake, culminating in the City Palace, one of the largest palace complexes
in the world. The lake itself is a romantic setting surrounding the gleaming white Lake
Palace and the Jag Mandir, a refuge of the rebel Mughal prince, Shah Jahan, soon to be the
creator of the incomparable Taj Mahal.
The evening is at leisure. Overnight stay in Udaipur

 

DAY 02: In Udaipur

Breakfast at the hotel
Morning : City tour of Udaipur
Afternoon: Boat ride on Lake Pichola


Take a tour of the city visiting the City Palace, which stands on the crest of a ridge
overlooking Lake Pichola. The largest palace in Rajasthan was built at various periods
but still preserves the harmony of design, enhanced by massive octagonal towers
surmounted by cupolas. Now a museum, it is a labyrinth of courtyards richly decorated
with inlaid mirror-work, galleries covered with frescos, temples, and roof gardens, which
afford a wide panorama below. Later visit the mid-17th century built Jagdish Temple in the old
town, famous for the remarkable bronze statue of Garuda, the mythical bird, facing his
revered master Lord Vishnu.
Continue the visit to the Sahelion-ki-Bari (Garden of the Handmaidens), a good example of
the Hindu art of landscape gardening on a princely scale. Ornamental pools with finely
sculptured cenotaphs of soft black stone are surrounded by a profusion of fountains.
Towards the evening, enjoy a boat ride on the placid waters of Lake Pichola. The beautiful
Lake Pichola was enlarged by Maharana Udai Singh after he founded the city. The city
palace extends a considerable distance along the east bank of the lake. From the boat, you

will be able to view the city of Udaipur as it rises majestically above the lake in the middle
of the Rajasthan desert. Overnight stay in Udaipur

DAY 03: Udaipur – Amritsar BY: Flight

Breakfast at the hotel
Transfer to airport for a flight to Amritsar via Delhi
Meeting on arrival & transfer to hotel
Rest of the day free at leisure


After breakfast, transfer to the airport to catch a flight to Amritsar (connecting flight) via Delhi.
(Please note, luggage allowance on this flight is 15 kg checked-in baggage and 7 kg hand
luggage)
On arrival in Amritsar, be met and transfer to the hotel.
Overnight stay in Amritsar

DAY 04: In Amritsar

Breakfast at the hotel
Morning: Visit the Golden temple, Jalianwala Bagh
Afternoon: Excursion to Wagah border
Evening: Visit the Golden temple to see the “Palki ceremony”


Morning, walk through some narrow streets to the temple - on the way keep an eye out
above you as there are some very old buildings with very intricate wood carvings. The
original Sikh temple in Amritsar was built here at the end of the 16th century. The temple
was rebuilt in 1764 by Maharaja Ranjit Singh and 100kg of gold was added in 1830 giving
rise to its name ' The Golden Temple'. Your guide will show you around the main area of the
temple and explain the history and layout including the vast dining halls where all visitors,
regardless of their religion, are invited to eat together.
Perhaps the most incredible part are the kitchens run by volunteers, you will see vast
cauldrons full of dhal, groups of ladies rolling out chapattis, meanwhile the noise in the
the background is the endless washing of plates, sweets are also available and a non-stop
supply of Chai ( Tea ) all free for anyone who wants. You will get an opportunity to
volunteer in the community kitchen.
The next 15-minute walk will take you to Jalianwala Bagh, the site of a massacre in 1919 when
the British opened fire on a peaceful gathering of protestors. Mahatma Gandhi
subsequently called for a nationwide strike and formed the Non-Cooperation Movement,
which became a key event in India’s struggle for independence. The area is now a park with
a memorial to the men, women, and children who died.
Also visit Ram Bagh, a beautiful garden consisting of the amazing summer palace of
Maharaja Ranjit Singh. There is a beautiful museum exhibiting unique oil paintings,
miniatures, coins, weapons, and objects relating to the Sikh period.

After lunch, drive to Wagah border to attend one of the world’s oldest spectator activity
involving a pompous display of military bravado at the Flag Ceremony. The “Retreat,” a
high-kicking, tow-stepping, quick-marching ceremony wherein the Indian and Pakistani
flags are lowered on either side of the only border that remains open between the two
hostile countries provide a rare look at relations between the two countries.
Late evening, visit Golden Temple to witness “Palki Sahib” – temple closing ceremony.
During this time, the Granth Sahib (the holy book) is carried on a silver palanquin from the
main shrine to the sanctum where it rests for a few hours until the opening ceremony the
following morning. The floors of the temple are then washed with milk and water before
the doors are closed. Overnight stay in Amritsar

DAY 05: Amritsar - Ambala ASR HW JNSHTBDI – 0650/1055 hours


Ambala - Shimla By Surface ( Approx. 5hours)
Today early morning assisted departure transfer to the station to board the train for Ambala.
(ASR HW JNSHTBDI – 0650/1055 hours)
On arrival, continue your drive to Shimla (approx. 04 hours)
Upon arrival at Shimla, check-in at the hotel. Overnight stay in Shimla

 

DAY 06: In Shimla

Breakfast at the hotel
Morning: City tour of Shimla
Afternoon: Free at leisure


In the words of Kipling “My month’s leave at Simla, was pure joy—every golden hour counted. It
began in heat and discomfort, by rail and road. It ended in the cool evening, with a wood fire
in one’s bedroom, and next morn—thirty more of them ahead!—the early cup of tea, the
Mother who brought it in, and the long talks of us all together again. One had the leisure to work,
too, at whatever play-work was in one’s head, and that was usually full”.
Many of the places that Kipling described in his books still exist in today’s Shimla, though in
a different form. Annadale, The Club, the Mashobra road where Tertium Quid met his
doom, the Combermere bridge where phantom rickshaw first accosted Jack Pansay, Jakhoo,
the Sanjauli reservoir, Observatory Hill (at present, Indian Institute of Advanced Studies);
Jutogh and Boileauganj — all remind one of the times of Kipling.

You will also have the opportunity of visiting the famous Christ Church where Lockwood
Kipling was asked to serve. Rudyard Kipling returned to Simla for his annual leave each
year from 1885 to 1888, and the town featured prominently in many of the stories that he
wrote for the Gazette.
Morning your guide will help to rediscover these sites, plus you have the opportunity of
riding the Toy train as well.
The afternoon is at leisure. Overnight stay in Shimla

DAY 07: Shimla - Chandigarh By Surface

Morning: Free at leisure
Afternoon: drive to Chandigarh


Post breakfast, morning is at leisure.
Later, drive to Chandigarh. Upon arrival in Chandigarh, check-in for your stay.
The city has the distinction of having a unique world acclaimed Rock Garden. It Consists of
art object, fashioned from industrial and urban waste. It is situated between the capital
complex and Sukhna Lake in Sector1. It nestles amidst 20acres of woods in the form of an
open-air exhibition hall, theatre trove and a miniature maze all rolled into one vast fantasy
land of art and landscape. It is, without doubt, a tourist spot that is a must on the itinerary
of visitors to Chandigarh.

The rest of the day is at leisure. Overnight stay in Chandigarh
 

DAY 08: Chandigarh - Lucknow BY: Flight


After breakfast, head to the airport to board your flight from Chandigarh to Lucknow
Upon arrival in Lucknow, you will meet and assisted transfer to the hotel. Overnight stay in Lucknow

 

DAY 09: In Lucknow

Breakfast at the hotel
Morning: Embark on a guided city tour of Lucknow
Later meet the Nawab Sahib over a cup of tea
Late afternoon : proceed for a heritage walk

Post breakfast at the hotel, embark upon an exciting city tour of Lucknow visiting the world’s
most unique architecture, Asifi Imambara. This monument was built as a relief measure for
a devastating famine, in order to provide employment to the subjects of the state by Nawab
Asif-ud-Daula. Also, see the ' Rumi Darwaza or the Turkish Gate and the Asfi Mosque.
Visit Husainabad Complex - The Clock Tower is the highest Clock Tower in Asia and in
some ways superior to its counterpart, ' Big Ben; Today the clock stands motionless but has
witnessed all times, the good, the bad, and the ugly. Now enter the Babylon of East, The
Husainabad Imambara - known for its beauty and pieces of décor. This was built in 1840
by Mohammad Ali Shah and is still considered to be a sacred address by the natives. Also,
see the Satkhanda that stands as Lucknow’s incomplete leaning tower of Pisa. Later Visit
the Jama Masjid.
Drive past Sadat Ali & Begum Tombs and the ‘Chatar Manzil’ (Outside view only). Later
Visit the graveyard to pay our homage to named and unnamed soldiers who gave up their
lives in the defense of The Residency.
Lunch will be arranged at a local restaurant.
After the city tour of Lucknow, interact with Nawab Sahib on diverse topics of history, craft
and cuisine over a cup of tea that he is always delighted to serve you when at his home in
his decked up small family museum that houses inherited antiques.
Later proceed for Heritage Walk (Remains suspended on Thursday), discovering the lanes
and the by-lanes of Chowk. On this walking tour, we explore the unexplored and explain the
inexplicable. Understand how vast a history, this city of superlatives holds. History in
Lucknow stretches beyond the concrete walls of its monuments, spreads into the lanes of
Lucknow and has many more nuances that can only be understood and appreciated in the
lanes and by-lanes of Chowk. Overnight stay in Lucknow

DAY 10 LUCKNOW - VANARASI

  • Breakfast at the hotel

  • Drive on to Varanasi through the beautiful countryside of India

  • Check-in at the hotel

  • Evening : Witness the ‘Aarti’ Ceremony

Post breakfast, complete your check-out formalities and board the bus for a drive of about 6 hours (310 kms) to Varanasi. 

 

With spiritualism that will haunt you long after you have departed, Varanasi located on the bank of River Ganga is one of the oldest continuously inhabited cities in the world and an important pilgrimage centre for Hindus. It is also home to the exquisitely woven Banarasi sarees.

 

On arrival, check-in at the hotel.

 

This evening, witness the enthralling evening aarti offered to River Ganga to seek her blessings while cruising down the river on a boat. The boat will halt at the perfect point from where you can enjoy unobstructed view of the ceremony that marks the final ritual of the day.

 

Overnight stay in Varanasi

DAY 11 :  VARANASI

 

  • Early morning: Boat ride on river Ganga at dawn

  • Return to hotel for breakfast

  • Later excursion to Sarnath

  • Also visit a village to witness silk weaving on return

 

Witness the tranquility of early dawn on the ghats of Varanasi as you take a boat ride down the River Ganga. Watch the sun rise over the sleeping city and the people slowly arriving at the ghats to perform rituals, take a bath, worship the Sun, or simply set up shop for the day.

 

Get down from the boat on the ghat and set off on a walking tour to discover the narrow lanes of the city before returning to your hotel for a late breakfast.

 

Later in the morning, proceed for an excursion to Sarnath.

 

Sarnath, located about 10 km from Varanasi, is the place where Buddha delivered his first sermon on Dharmachakrapravartana to his disciples at the deer park. It one of the four important Buddhist pilgrimage centres and houses the ruins of 3rd century BCE stupas and monasteries built by Emperor Ashok.

 

Lunch will be served in a restaurant in Sarnath

 

On return village a visit to witness the process of silk weaving. Meet the artists and understand this highly skilled weaving process. You may also purchase a few silk items which will in turn directly benefit the local community.

 

Return to your hotel by late afternoon.

 

Rest of the day free at leisure.

 

Overnight stay in Varanasi

 

 

 

DAY 12:  VARANASI- DELHI  By: Domestic flight

 

  • Breakfast at the hotel

  • Transfer to airport for a flight to Delhi

  • Meeting on arrival & transfer to hotel

 

After a leisurely morning at the hotel, you will be transferred to Varanasi airport to board flight to Delhi (Please note, luggage allowance on this flight is 15 kg checked in baggage and 7 kg hand luggage).

 

On arrival, transfer to an aero city hotel where rooms will be reserved for freshen up followed by dinner.

 

At mid-night transfer to international airport for your connecting flight to onward destination.

 

Overnight stay in Delhi

 

 

DAY 13 :  DEPART DELHI  By: International Flight

 

HOTEL: Envisaged