Visit the Capital City of Delhi, the Pink City of Jaipur in Rajasthan, and see the world famous Taj Mahal in Agra, try to spot a Tiger in Ranthambore National Park and experience the holy city of Varanasi.
India 15 Day North India Explorer Tour, Regular Departures, From £1125pp plus US$300 local payment, based on 2 people sharing a room.
This amazing15 day tour starts and finishes in the vibrant capital city of Delhi, and gives you an in-depth look at North India. We spend 2 nights in Rajasthan, visiting Jaipur the famous pink city. We also spend two nights in the beautiful Ranthambore National Park where we look for tigers. We visit the famous Taj Mahal in Agra, and travel to one of the holiest cities in the world, Varanasi on the Ganges River. During this tour we stay in 4 star hotels and travel on trains or in an A/C minibus, coach or car, with a local English & Indian speaking Pillow tour leader.
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Day One (Saturday) – Delhi (D)
Make your own way to Delhi International airport, where we will meet you in airport arrivals and transfer you to your 4 star central Delhi hotel. The rest of the day is free until you meet your tour leader in reception at 7pm for a pre-departure tour meeting, after the meeting you have free time, or you have the option of going to a local restaurant for dinner with your tour leader and fellow passengers.
Day Two (Sunday) – Delhi (B) (L)
After breakfast at the hotel we spend a full day sight-seeing in Old Delhi and New Delhi. In the morning we visit Jama Masjid (The largest Mosque in India which can hold 25,000 people) and the Red Fort with its 2km of walls. We will visit Raj Ghat, the simple memorial to Mahatma Gandhi. After lunch (included) we visit the lovely Humayun’s Tomb which was built in 1570, and houses the body of the second Mughal emperor, Humayun. We see Qutab Minar, built is 1206 it’s the tallest brick minaret in the world, and we also visit New Delhi and see the stately government building of the British Era, including the Presidential Palace and the famous India Gate.
Day Three (Monday) – Delhi to Jaipur (B)
After breakfast we drive to Jaipur (5 hrs drive) and check into our central Jaipur hotel. After time to freshen up your tour leader will take you on a walking tour of Jaipur and give you free time to explore the bazaars of the Pink city.
Day Four (Tuesday) Jaipur (B)
After breakfast in the hotel we take a morning tour of Amber (Amer) fort. This Fort was completed in the early 18th century and took over 100 years to build. The Fort is located on a hill, and you have the option of travelling by elephant up the hill to the Sun Gate entrance. After lunch we spend the afternoon in Jaipur (The Pink City) and visit the imposing City Palace which is still home to the Maharaja although several of the rooms are now open to the public. Many antiques and artifacts belonging to the ruling family are housed here, including a collection of weaponry. You will also visit the Hawa Mahal “Palace of the Winds”, and the open-air Jantar Mantar Observatory to see the vast astronomical instruments.
Day Five (Wed) – Drive from Jaipur to Ranthambore (B) (L) (D)
After breakfast we drive for 4 hours to Ranthambore National Park and check into our Safari Lodge in time for a late lunch. This evening we will take a game drive around the park to try and spot a tiger!
Day Six (Thursday) – Ranthambore National Park (B) (L) (D)
After breakfast you have the chance to take morning and afternoon game drives, or you can choose to relax at the lodge or just do one game drive.
Day Seven (Friday)– From Rathbone National Park to Agra (B)
After breakfast we have our final safari, but this time its on elephant back. This silent way of travelling through the park will increase your chances of spotting Tigers and the other diverse wildlife. We then take the 4 hour drive to Agra, Enroute we visit the former capital of the Mughal Empire Fatehpur Sikri. Built between 1569 and 1585, this complex of monuments and temples, all in a uniform architectural style, is testament to the Mughal civilization at the end of the 16th century. We then check into our central Agra Hotel and you have a free evening.
Day Eight (Saturday) – Agra (B)
We have a
very early start and visit the Taj Mahal and watch the sun rise over this beautiful monument. We will allow plenty of time for you to sit and stare at this stunning building, and also visit the Marble Screen, the Pietra Dura and the Tomb Chamber. After our visit to the Taj you we visit the 16th-century Mughal monument known as the Red Fort of Agra, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Finally we visit Itmad-ud-Daulah’s mausoleum, built between 1622 and 1628.
Day Nine (Sunday) – From Agra to Varanasi by overnight Train (B)
After breakfast you have a free day to relax. Many people choose to visit the Taj Mahal again, or maybe view it from the other side of the River Yamuna. This evening we catch an overnight train to the holy city of Varanasi.
Day Ten (Monday) – Varanasi (B)
After we arrive at the train station, we will transfer to our hotel and have breakfast. We then have some free time to freshen up, before we will visit the f
amous bathing Ghats on the Holy River Ganges and take a historical walking tour of this amazing old city. Varanasi has been a centre of learning and civilisation for more than 2000 years and is one of the most sacred pilgrimage places for Hindus of all denominations. You will see many people bathing in the River Ganges, Hindus believe that bathing in the Ganges remits sins. We will also watch from a respectful distance the cremation Ghats. We will then leave Varanasi and travel 8km to Sarnath. A much revered pilgrimage destination in India, Sarnath is one of the four most important Buddhist pilgrimage sites in India, and is the site where Lord Buddha first delivered his sermon after attaining ‘nirvana’ or Enlightenment.
Day Eleven (Tuesday) – Varanasi (B)
We wake up early and travel down back down to the Ghats to enjoy a sunrise boat ride on the holy Ganges where we’ll view the ancient religious tradition of ritual cleansing that takes place on the many riverbank ghats. The rest of the day is free for you to enjoy however you want to.
Day Twelve (Wednesday) – Varanasi (B)
Again we have deliberately left this day free so you can visit Varanasi Old town and just take in the sights. We promise you will never get bored of watching the pilgrims going about their business. Varanasi is amazing, the culture, history and tradition of the old town is like nowhere else we have visited, hence we have allowed plenty of free time so you can just sit and stare and take it all in.
Day Thirteen (Thursday) – Varanasi to Delhi by overnight train (B)
After breakfast you have more free time to enjoy Varanasi and maybe take one last sunrise boat trip. We then travel by overnight train back to Delhi.
Day Fourteen (Friday) – Delhi (B)
Arrive Delhi and check into our central Delhi hotel. The rest of the day is free for you to relax before we meet again in the early evening for our goodbye dinner in a local Indian restaurant.
Day Fifteen (Saturday) – Delhi (B)
After breakfast tour terminates.
All accommodation in 4 star hotels or game lodges, including breakfast each morning.
14 breakfasts, 3 lunches and 4 dinners included.
All transportation in A/C car, minibus or coach, depending on group size. When using overnight trains this cost is also included.
All game drives and one elephant safari while in Ranthambore National Park.
The services of an English and Indian speaking local Pillow Tour leader.
Arrival Airport Transfer is included. (Please inform us at the time of booking if you want a free airport transfer).
Specialist historical guides at local sights.
Horse and Cart or TukTuk ride to Taj Mahal, entrance to Taj Mahal on day 5, Jaipur City Palace and Jantar Mantar entrance fees. One sunrise boat cruise in Varanasi on day 11.
what’s NOT included
Your international flight to Delhi, and your entrance visa to India (6 month tourist visa costs approx £42.20)
Any meals or drinks not listed above.
Your personal travel Insurance (compulsory) which is suitable for a trip of this nature and includes emergency medical repatriation cover.
Your entry fees to additional monuments. For example the approximate costs to enter the Red Fort, Humayun’s Tomb, Qutab Minar, Fatehpur Sikri is US$5 or 250 rupees per person if you choose to enter.
If you choose to visit the Taj Mahal again on day nine to watch the sunrise, this is at your own cost.