Spirit of India Tour

Tour Duration : 08 Nights / 09 Days
Destinations : Delhi, Jaipur, Fatehpur Sikri, Agra, Khajuraho, Varanasi.

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Tour Description : An ideal tour for a traveler covering the most important tourist spots in North of India. The cultural roots from Varanasi and Khajuraho, ancient India to the medieval cities of Jaipur, Agra and Delhi to the pre and post independent India, all come into light and are received as a story of India- one of the most fascinating cultures in our world. Spirit of India Tour offers the flexibility of extending your journey to Nepal or to Eastern India.

Day 1: Arrive Delhi
Namaste! We are welcomed the traditional Indian way with hands together. After immigration and custom formalities, we are transferred to our hotel. Overnight: Hotel in Delhi (2 nights)

Day 2: DelhiLotus Temple - Delhi
The capital of India is a true reflection of the old and new of India. We start our morning tour with New Delhi and visit Birla House - The Former Residence of Mahatma Gandhi. Mahatma Gandhi spent his later years at Birla House before he was assassinated by Nathu Ram Godse on January 30, 1948. Later we visit the famous India Gate followed by the Houses of Parliament, Connaught Place, Humayun's Tomb and the Qutub Minar - a perfect minaret towering 72.5 meters / 80.5 yards into the sky and there are 379 stairs inside the tower. New Delhi is a blend of Mughal India, Hindu India, British India and certainly of modern independent India. Later we visit Old Delhi, starting with the famous Red Fort. Built by Shah Jehan, this was once the most opulent fort of the Mughal Empire. Next we visit another Mughal majesty, the Jama Masjid, India's largest mosque. We end our tour with a bazaar experience at Chandni Chowk, the street of silver and goldsmiths. (Breakfast)
Please Note: Red fort and Birla House remain closed on Monday and Chandni Chowk remains closed on Sunday

Day 03: Delhi / Jaipur (Drive 260 kms / 165 miles)Hawamahal - Jaipur
In the morning after breakfast we are driving the famous city Jaipur. On arrival we check into our hotel. Jaipur, filled with frenetic crowds, Rajasthan's chaotic, dusky - pink capital is a place of wild contrasts, bombarding the senses at every turn. Jaipur's old city, it's rich color deepening and fading according to the light, is lined with long, twinkling bazaars. Like Wacky Races on acid, vegetable - laden camel carts thread their way through streets jam-packed with cars, cows, rickshaws & bicycles. The city owes its name, foundation and careful planning to the great warrior -astronomer Maharaja Jai Singh II (1693 - 1743).Overnight: Hotel in Jaipur (2 nights) (Breakfast)

Day 04: Jaipur
A royal experience awaits us as we take an elephant ride uphill to the intriguing Amber Palace, a distinguished example of 17th Century Rajput architecture. After the tour and enjoying a panoramic view, we return to Jaipur to visit the old astronomical observatory built by the founder of the city, Jai Singh. Next we visit the majestic Palace, which houses a rare collection of Indian art, and the colourful bazaar. Jaipur is noted for its craftsmen, skilled in brass inlay, lacquer work and stone setting. Most of the buildings in the old city are made of pink sandstone and one of the most beautiful is Hawa Mahal, Palace of Winds, where the ladies of the royal harem used to watch the city from behind the intricately carved facade. After a photo stop at Hawa Mahal, we visit Albert Hall Museum, situated in the Ram Niwas Gardens. Its Indo-Saracenic style of architecture is a combination of European style with traditional Indian elements. The museum has a rich collection of artifact like paintings, carpets, ivory, stone, metal sculptures, colourful crystal works etc. Evening is free to enjoy both shopping and a cultural experience in the bazaars of Jaipur. (Breakfast)

Day 05: Jaipur / Fatehpur Sikri /Agra (Drive 235kms / 145 miles)Taj Mahal - Agra
In the morning after breakfast we drive to Agra. En-route we visit Fatehpur Sikri, the beautiful capital built in 1640 by the Moghul King, Akbar the Great. The city was later abandoned for lack of water. A superb example of Moghul architecture, it stands perfectly preserved in the desert. We also visit the artistically designed mausoleum of Salim Chisty who is reputed to have prayed for a son for Akbar leading to the birth of Salim Jehangir. From here we continue drive to Agra. On arrival we check into our hotel. Later we visit one of the most well known wonders of the world, the Taj Mahal. Built by Shah Jehan as a mausoleum for his favorite wife, Mumtaz Mahal, the Taj is built of white marble, beautifully carved and inlaid with semi-precious stones. Next we visit Agra Fort, where Shah Jehan was imprisoned by his son in the later years of his life to prevent him from spending the family fortunes on the black echo of the Taj Mahal. Overnight: Hotel in Agra (1 night) (Breakfast)

Please Note: Taj Mahal remains closed on every Friday's

Day 06: Agra / Khajuraho (Shatabdi Train)
Today we board the famous Shatabdi Express Train to Jhansi then continue to visit Orchha, an amazing medieval fortress-city located on the shores of the Betwa River. After our visit of Orchha we proceed to Khajuraho, home of splendid temples. On arrival in Khajuraho we check in our hotel. Evening is free to relax. Overnight: Hotel in Khajuraho (1 Night) (Breakfast)

Day 07: Khajuraho / Varanasi (Flight)Varanasi Ghats
Our Khajuraho visit starts with the temples that have been designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The temples were built during the apogee of the Chandella dynasty between 950 and 1050 AD. Today only 20 temples remain and they fall into three distinct groups and belong to two different religions - Hinduism and Jainism. These beautiful temples strike a perfect balance between architecture and sculpture. The Kandariya is decorated with a profusion of sculptures that are among the greatest masterpieces of Indian art.
The most important ones include the Mahadev Temple, Chitragupta or Bharatji Temple with a lovely image of 11 headed Vishnu, Vishvanath and Nandi Temples, Lakshmana Temple, Visha Temple that was dedicated to Shiva, which is the largest and most typical of temples.
Afternoon we take a short flight to the holy city of Varanasi - amongst the oldest living cities in the Sub Continent. We start our Varanasi experience with a visit to the old part and also visit Bharat Mata Temple housing a big relief map of India in marble. Varanasi is famous for its many temples and we cover the Durga temple, the Tulsi Manas Mandir beside the Banaras Hindu University and the Mosque of Moghul Emperor Aurangazeb. The city is famous also for its Banarasi silk sarees and we visit some of the houses where such silk sarees are weaved. Evening we join Aarti ceremony on bank of the river Ganges. Overnight: Hotel in Varanasi (2 Nights) (Breakfast)

Day 08: Varanasi
Early morning a serene experience begins as we take a sunrise cruise on the River Ganges. One of the cardinal principles of Hinduism is the belief in the holiness of the Ganges and every morning scores of pilgrim and priests fill the riverbanks performing the holy dip and other rituals. This is a site that has to be seen and experienced as it is so different from anything else in the world. Later we tour Sarnath, the site of Lord Buddha's first sermon after attaining enlightenment. At Sarnath we meet many Buddhist monks and followers before visiting local Homes to see in-Home silk weaving and soak up some local customs, culture and hospitality. Rest of the day is free for personal activities. (Breakfast)

Day 09: Varanasi / Delhi / Home (Flight)
Today we are transferred to the Varanasi airport for our flight to Delhi. In Delhi we take flight to back home. (B)

(B) = Breakfast
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