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Classic Rajasthan


12 days 11 nights

Code NI-RJ4

Category North India Classic Tours

  • Group Size 2-10 persons
  • Difficulty Level 2
  • Trip Starts From Delhi
  • Trip Ends At Delhi
  • Type Tours
  • Destination Delhi Agra Jaipur Jaisalmer Jodhpur Udaipur
Dates & Prices

Overview

Rajasthan- as the name suggests is the land of rajas or the kings. People still talk about the stories of their wars and heroism, friendship and rivalry and the queens and concubines. The forts and castles still stand with their glory of the bygone era. Rajasthan is a vast open-air museum with many relics that are well preserved for the new generations and its visitors. In this trip, we learn about Rajasthan's glorious history, witness the majestic forts and castles, experience the cultural heritage and rich traditions, embark on a safari to the dunes and also meet the friendly ethnic communities.

This fantastic trip begins in Delhi- the capital city of India then a short flight whisks us to Udaipur- the City of Lakes. From there, the journey continues to Jodhpur- the home to the most massive fort of India and the golden city of Jaisalmer where we will enjoy camel safari in the dunes. Another short flight brings us to Jaipur- the capital of Rajasthan, and the last stop is Agra- the home of Taj Mahal before we travel back to Delhi.

Attractions:

  • Delhi: Rajghat- the memorial of Mahatma Gandhi, Red Fort- the capital of 17th-century emperor Shah Jahan who also built Taj Mahal, Jama Mosque that can hold 20,000 people at a time, Gurudwara Bangla Sahib- the sacred place of worship for Sikh and Akshardham- the latest addition of Delhi.
  • Udaipur: City Palace, Lake Pichola, Jag Mandir.
  • Jain Temples of Ranakpur.
  • Jodhpur: Mehrangarh Fort, Jaswant Thada, Umaid Palace, and the Bishnoi tribal community.
  • Jaisalmer: Camel Safari in the dunes and Jaisalmer Fort.
  • Jaipur: Amer Fort, City Palace, Hawa Mahal, and the markets.
  • Chand Baori Stepwell and the abandoned capital of Fatehpur Sikri.
  • Taj Mahal and Agra Fort.
  • Enjoy Indian cuisines and traditional dances.

Is this trip for you?

This trip is cultural sightseeing and suitable for travelers of all ages. There are some days of a long drive (5-6 hours), but roads are generally in good condition. The trip features boating and camel ride experiences. Although there is no hiking or trekking on this trip, you need to able to walk and climb the stairs when visiting the forts and castles. 

Detailed Itinerary

Day 01~Arrive in Delhi

You are welcomed by our local representative at the arrival gate and get transferred to the hotel in the city for check-in. Take rest to recover jetlag and travel fatigue.

Overnight: Just Residency Greater Kailash
Day 02~Explore Old and New Delhi

After breakfast, with our guide and driver, you will set out to explore the attractions of Delhi. We first visit Old Delhi which is the former center of Mughal power offering ancient monuments, narrow streets and bustling markets. Begin from Raj Ghat which is a shrine built in the memory of Mahatma Gandhi who is considered to be the father of India. 

Continue to the Red Fort which was built in 1648 by the great Mughal Emperor Shah Jahan who is famous for his magnificent edifice of love, the Taj Mahal. Also, see the biggest mosque in India the Jama Masjid, constructed by Shah Jahan in 1658 that can accommodate 20,000 devotees at one time. You will take a cycle-rickshaw ride through the narrow lanes of Chandni Chowk to see the vibrant markets.

In the afternoon, we visit Gurudwara Bangla Sahib, situated in the heart of New Delhi's Connaught Place area. It is one of the essential Sikh temples. Initially, the bungalow of Raja Jai Singh of the 17th century, the Gurudwara and its pool (also called Sarovar) are now a place of great worship for Sikhs. 

The last stop of the day will be at Akshardham Temple Complex which is the latest addition to the architectures of Delhi, opened in 2005. The complex features a pavilion for cleansing ritual, a water show, a thematic garden, three exhibitions and the principal temple which rises 141-foot high, spans 316-foot wide, and extends 356-foot long. Intricately carved with flora, fauna, dancers, musicians, and deities, the temple is an extravaganza work of 7000 artisans and 3000 volunteers!

Overnight: Just Residency Greater Kailash
Meals : Breakfast
Day 03~By train to Agra-the land of Taj Mahal

We take an early morning train from Delhi to Agra-the land of Taj Mahal! Enjoy the scenery while the morning mist lifts! It's 2 hours 6 minutes comfortable train journey ( Bhopal Shatabdi, air-conditioned chair car, depart Delhi at 6 a.m. and arrive in Agra at 8:06 a.m.)

Upon arrival in Agra Cantt. Station, you are greeted by your local guide and driver transfer to the hotel. It's less likely to get a room for immediate check-in. So, we store the luggage and perhaps after some drinks, proceed for sightseeing.

First, visit Taj Mahal-the synonym of India! An incredible tomb, built in the mid 17th century by the Mughal Emperor Shah Jahan as an embodiment of his love for his wife Mumtaz Mahal, that took 22 years using the labor of 20,000 men to complete! The white marble was transported by a fleet of 1000 elephants from 200 miles away. The Taj Mahal is truly one of the wonders of the world.

Next, visit the Agra Fort which is another example of impressive Mughal architecture that became the base of the Mughal Empire under successive generations. The Agra Fort is a large fortified city extended in 94-acres (380,000 square meters) of land, with its chord lying parallel to the Yamuna River and its walls seventy feet high. It's ironic that towards the end of his life, Shah Jahan, who built Taj Mahal, was imprisoned in the fort by his son and left to die while looking at the Taj Mahal for the remainder of his days.

Balance of the day is at leisure.

Optional: Visit Taj Mahal by moonlight.
Taj Mahal is open for moonlight visit with prior permission. It’s open from 2 days before and until two days after of the full moon night but closed on Friday

Overnight: Hotel Grand Imperial
Meals : Breakfast
Day 04~Fatehpur Sikri, Chand Baori Step Well and Jaipur

We have a long day today; so, we have an early start.

About 25 miles from Agra, we stop to visit Fatehpur Sikri-the abandoned capital-built by the Great Mughal Emperor Akbar during 1570 and 1585. It's a citadel-one of the most excellent examples of the culmination of Hindu and Muslim architecture. Shortly after its completion, as the small, spring-fed lake that supplied the city with water dried, and probably its border with the Rajputana areas in the North-West, which were increasingly in chaos, the emperor abandoned Fatehpur Sikri, moving his capital to Lahore, currently in Pakistan.

About 60 miles before Jaipur city, we take a detour of Chand Baori, an ancient step-well, built in between 800 and 900 A.D. The land of Rajasthan is extremely dry, and drinking water was always scarce. So, the king Chanda ordered the construction of the step well that could conserve water enough for his people. The step-well consists of 3,500 small steps over 13 stories and extends 100 ft deep into the ground. It's one of the fascinating architecture of India and worth visiting.

We will arrive in Jaipur late afternoon. Check into your rooms and balance of the day is at leisure.

Overnight: Alsisar Haveli
Meals : Breakfast
Day 05~Jaipur sightseeing

Begin the morning with an excursion to the Amber Fort. From the base of the fort, we will switch to a locally available 4WD jeep to ferry us to the top of the fort. Optional: you may take an elephant ride (subject to availability and costs about $15) to the top with pride as the Maharajas did back in their time. Amber Fort -the residence of Rajput Maharajas and their families is known for its artistic Hindu style elements with its towering ramparts and series of gates and stone-paved paths. This massive structure that dominates Jaipur's skyline is built of red sandstone and marble. 

Next, we will visit Hawa Mahal, the most well-known landmark of Jaipur which is not a palace but a sandstone screen from where the ladies of the court could watch the proceedings on the road below without being seen. Our next stop is at the City Palace- situated in the heart of the city. It's a blend of Rajasthani and Mughal architecture. The place is now a museum except for one section where the royal family still resides.

Nearby is the Jantar Mantar, only one of the five observatories constructed by Jai Singh that shows his passion for astronomy. The Central Museum situated in the Ram Niwas Gardens has an extensive collection of costumes, woodwork, brassware, jewelry, and pottery.

This afternoon you are free to stroll and shop around the beautiful bazaars of Jaipur.

Overnight: Alsisar Haveli
Meals : Breakfast
Day 06~By flight to Jaisalmer

We have free time until the afternoon. You can explore the markets of Jaipur on your own.

Afternoon flight to Jaisalmer. If time permits, this afternoon, visit the Gadsisar Lake-a water conservation tank built in 1400AD that supplied water to the city! The lakeshore is abundant with varieties of temples and shrines surrounding the lake. You are also able to see a variety of migratory birds.

Next, the Vyas Chhatri-that has a collection of cenotaphs, but it's more than a burial ground. The cenotaphs here are magnificent and fabulous structures and makes among the most visited tourist attractions in Jaisalmer. The yellow sandstone cenotaphs stand on raised platforms, with intricately designed chhatris on top of finely chiseled pillars. They are a striking example of Rajasthani architecture. Built on a hill, you could see the Golden Fort of Jaisalmer in the distance and fascinating sunset views.

Overnight: Mandir Palace
Meals : Breakfast
Day 07~Exploration of the fort and havelis and desert safari

If you are keen on photography, leave before dawn to a hill across the fort from where you can have a perfect shot of the fort that glows like gold during the sunrise time and proves true to its name-Jaisalmer which means-the Golden City. The city stands on the ridge of yellowish sandstone in the middle of the Thar Desert.

After breakfast, this morning, discover the grandeur of this ancient city as you tour Jaisalmer Fort and the group of seven Jain temples that sit inside the fort complex. The temples are richly decorated with carvings in the 12th-century Dilwara style. Visit the palace museum where you will get an insight into Rajasthani culture and royalty, then stroll through the bazaars. Visit the 300-year-old Salim Singh ki Haveli, which is known for its peacock-shaped roof, and Patwon-ki-Haveli- one of Jaisalmer’s most famous attractions. This 900-year-old fort had its entire population contained within the fort until the end of the 16th century, and the city outgrew the walls only from the 17th century! One-fourth of the city's population still resides inside

Late afternoon, we will go for an excursion to the Sam Sand dunes (26 miles) - one of the most authentic desert dune sites in India. Sam has a vast magnificent sweep of stretching dunes with scarce vegetation. The band of dunes is about 1.25 miles long and is one of the most picturesque in the region. Some of the dunes are 100 to 200 ft tall. You can enjoy the seclusion with afternoon sun setting on the horizon. Experience the camel ride to the sunset point. Enjoy dinner and local folklore songs and dances and return to your hotel in the city at night.

Overnight: Mandir Palace
Meals : Breakfast
Day 08~Khichan Bird Sanctuary, Osian Village and Jodhpur

An early morning breakfast and leave for Jodhpur. We drive through the land uninhabited as far as we could see but we may occasionally come across several herds of sheep grazing on this arid land on their own with no herdsmen in sight ! We may encounter unexpected wildlife amidst the groves. Along the way, you may be stopped by herds of camels. 

We travel via Khichan village-famous for it's bird sanctuary. This is winter home of large number of  demoiselle cranes that migrate from Europe. Our next stop will be at Osian-an ancient small temple town in the Thar Desert, is located 40 miles north west of Jodhpur. The town is packed  the large group of the exquisite Hindu and Jain temples of 8th and 12th century temples.

In Jodhpur, check into your accommodation and balance of the day is at leisure.

Overnight: Bal Samand Lake Palace
Meals : Breakfast
Day 09~Jodhpur sightseeing and excursion

After breakfast, visit the Mehrangarh Fort, which is one of the most massive forts in India and real pride of India. The fort houses several palaces inside, with large patios. The main palaces are Moti Mahal, Phool Mahal, Sheesh Mahal, Takht Vilas, and Jhanki Mahal.

Our next destination is Jaswant Thada-a royal cenotaph built in the memory of Maharaja Jaswant Singh II. A white marble memorial, the cenotaph is adorned with exquisite carvings.

The tour continues to Umaid Palace; it is one of the famous places to be seen in the whole of Rajasthan and is a testimony of what architectural beauty should be like.

In the afternoon, we will take a jeep safari to meet the Bishnoi community and get a close look into the unique tribal life of the area. The Bishnoi tribes are known for their respect for the environment and devotion towards conservation of local flora and fauna and particularly the endangered blackbucks. The trip offers an opportunity to see the skills of tribal people in making traditional crafts such as rug-weaving, pottery, etc. You will have a chance to taste traditional food and opium tea and enjoy Kalbeliya, a folklore dance performed by the gypsy tribes.

Overnight: Balsamand Lake Palace
Meals : Breakfast
Day 10~Ranakpur and Udaipur

(172 miles, 6 hours)

Today, we have a long day drive. About 63 miles before Udaipur, we will stop at Ranakpur village to visit its famous Jain temple (Open from 12 noon to 5 p.m. for tourists). This beautiful temple is built from light-colored marble and covers an area of 40,000 square foot. Supported by 1444, exquisitely carved pillars and with its distinctive domes, shikhara, turrets, and arches rising majestically from the slope of a hill fascinate anyone traveling via Ranakpur.

Upon arrival, check into your hotel and the balance of the day is at leisure.

Overnight: Jagat Nivas Palace
Meals : Breakfast
Day 11~Explore Udaipur

After breakfast, we set off for the exploration of the city.

Udaipur city was built as the capital of Mewar Kingdom of Rajasthan in the mid-sixteenth century. Udaipur, surrounded by the Aravali Range that separates it from the Thar Desert, is a popular destination in Rajasthan and is known for its history, culture, scenic locations, and the palaces. The city has a sophisticated lake system, and so it's also called the "City of Lakes," and for its natural beauty, it's called the "Kashmir of Rajasthan."

We first visit the City Palace- the largest palace of Rajasthan. The palace features surmounting balconies, towers, and arches and rises over the Lake Pichola. The present king of Udaipur still occupies a part of the complex while the rest is converted into hotels and historical museum open for all tourists. The museum displays the belongings of kings such as their wardrobe and weapons showcasing the royal lifestyle of Udaipur rulers. The Peacock courtyard, the ivory doors of the chambers, mirrored walls and marbled balconies fascinate the visitors to the palace.

Our next stop will be at Jagdish Temple of the 17th century. Owned and managed by the royal family of Udaipur, this temple is 79 feet tall and surrounded by four other smaller temples. Supported by 50 pillars, the temple is undoubtedly a brilliant piece of Indian architecture.

Later in the afternoon enjoy a boat ride on the beautiful Lake Pichola that sprawls along the shores of the City Palace. Built in the mid-14th century to serve the drinking water and irrigation needs of Pichola village, the lake is now a popular destination for recreation. As the boat slowly cruises into the center of the lake, enjoy incredible views back towards Lake Pichola, and you will get a real sense of just how majestic this complex is.

Visit Jag Mandir on the southern end of the lake, also known as the “Lake Garden Palace.” You will have some time to explore its beautiful architecture. The views back across Lake Pichola towards the City Palace in Udaipur are also spectacular from here. In the evening, you will enjoy the views of silhouetted boats and palaces in the shores in the setting sun on the tranquil waters of the lake.

Overnight: Jagat Nivas Palace
Meals : Breakfast
Day 12~Flight to Delhi

After breakfast, you have free time until it is airport time for your flight to Delhi. If you want, you can take late evening or mid-night flight back home.

Meals : Breakfast

Trip Map

Trip Info

Trip Includes

  • Accommodation for (11) nights on a double-share basis in the mentioned hotels or similar.
  • Meal as per mentioned in the itinerary.   
  •  Services of English speaking local guide for the sightseeing as per the itinerary.
  •  One-time entrance fee to the monuments as listed in the itinerary.
  •  Transport will be using air-conditioned Tourist vehicle.
  •  Camel safari at Sam Dunes.
  •  The Bishnoi village trip.
  •  Rickshaw ride at Old Delhi.
  •  Boat ride on Lake Pichola, Udaipur. 

Cost Does Not Include

  • International/Domestic airfare, visa fees, airport tax or any insurance cover.
  • Personal expenses such as drinks, laundry, telephone calls, tips, camera fees, etc.
  • Car at disposal or any sightseeing on leisure days unless specified above.
  • Early check-in or a late checkout room (s) at any hotel (s) unless specified above.
  • Liability for change in itinerary due to reasons beyond our control like change in flight and train schedule; political disturbances, natural phenomenon, etc.
  • Tipping to the bell desk staff for their help with luggage
  • Camera/video camera fee at monuments.
  • Any other item not specifically mentioned above as included.

This itinerary is a private tour idea

This itinerary is an individual tour idea only. The price is indicative based on suggested hotels. You may request for the change in the plan and the hotels of your preference, and we will be happy to provide you the final quote via email.

Trip Difficulty Level

This trip is a motor vehicle-based tour, suitable for travelers of all ages with normal health conditions. Some monuments, forts or castles visit might require climbing stairs. Please, do not expect elevators or escalators. Subject to availability, you may have an opportunity to experience elephant, camel, or canoe rides.

This trip does not involve any strenuous hiking or climbing. However, we have some long day drives. But we will have ample opportunities to stop on the way to stretch our legs. Although no major preparation is necessary for this trip, it’s recommendable that you start a soft training program such as walking, jogging, cycling, or aerobics about a month ahead of the trip to keep yourself physically fit.

Life on the Trip

A sightseeing day, depending on the season starts between 8.30 am to 9 am. Your Guide meets you at the hotel lobby and takes you for the sightseeing. You will have the lunch break around noon to 1 pm. The afternoon tour lasts for two or three hours, and then you will return to your hotel. Your guide and driver will be happy to drop you somewhere else if you want some time on your own. When you are traveling from one city to the other, usually you will spend 4-5 hours on the road with occasional stops for photography, drinks, and snacks.

We will try our best to adhere to the itinerary, but it is a general guideline or an indication of the scope of activities. Depending on the local conditions and other variables; the sightseeing order may change. During the tour, you will have time enough for photography and to interact with the locals. The guide and driver will be flexible and will do their best to help you enjoy the trip the way you like.

Accommodation

Rajasthan has many choices of accommodations for every budget, but our selection of accommodations are first class at deluxe properties with all modern amenities that include a private bathroom with a hot and cold shower, central air-conditioning, phone, mini refrigerator, restaurants, and more. Our preferred hotels in Rajasthan are usually ancient castles or Haveli's (large stately homes/mansions).

Tour Guide

All our trips are led by local guides who are university graduates and are trained and certified by the Indian tourism authorities. They are knowledgeable, friendly, and flexible. They will show you the wonders of the areas that you would never discover on your own and also share their knowledge of Indian history, culture, and religion. Your guide carries the necessary vouchers for the hotels and will buy admission tickets where appropriate. The tour guide and the driver are not the same people.

Transportation

Depending on the group size, Far & High will use air-conditioned SUV's, Mini Van's, or coaches for all transfers and tours. Our drivers are friendly locals with years of experience in driving vehicle in the tourism and hospitality industry. Your driver may have limited English speaking skills.

International and Internal Airfares

You may purchase your international airfare to India and return on your own. If you do need any help with this, you may certainly feel free to contact us, and we will take care of the internal airfares for you.

Booking

When you have decided that you would like to travel with us, it advisable to initiate reservation as early as possible so that we can book you in the preferred hotels and the flights. We request an initial deposit of US$ 300 along with the completed application and a passport scan.

If any ground suppliers or hotels need a deposit to secure the reservation, we will request a second part payment will be due to cover those deposits. The balance of your payment is due 90 days before your departure. Credit card payment other than the initial deposit attracts an additional fee of 3.5%.

We will email you a detailed trip dossier with your confirmed list of hotels, services, and travel notes within 2-3 weeks upon booking.

Cancellation

  • Ninety days before departure: Administrative fee US$ 150 per person.
  • 60-89 day's before departure: US$ 250 or 25% of the land cost whichever is higher.
  • Forty-five days to 59 days before departure: US$ 450 or 50% of the land cost whichever is higher.
  • Thirty days to 44 days before departure: US$ 600 or 75% of the land cost whichever is higher.
  • Less than 30 days: 100%.

Travel Protection Plan

While we plan and do our best to make your trip smooth and seamless, there may be chances of unforeseen events and conditions such as illness, accident, inclement weather, flight cancellation, missed-connection, or loss of baggage. That may cause interruption or delay or may result in a total abandonment of your trip putting your hard earned travel investment in jeopardy. It’s also possible that you may need medical assistance, emergency evacuation, or medical transportation when you get ill or if you are involved in an accident while you are traveling in remote areas. Far & High’s Tour cost does not cover any of these expenses or losses. So, we strongly recommend that you protect your travel investment and cover the extra costs that may incur due to unexpected incidents.

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