HIGHLIGHTS OF INDIA
This is the beginning of the exciting Indian sojourn. It is here in this Golden Triangle that the seekers of India begin their voyage of discovery. Within this is cradled the essence of India - Delhi, a rich tapestry of contrasts that is the theme of this complex land, Agra, the zenith of art and an enshrined romance (Taj Mahal) , and Jaipur, the pink city of India and the capital of Rajasthan state.
Arrive Delhi by International flight.
Meeting on arrival at Delhi International airport by our representative & transfer to hotel. Delhi, The capital of India, is fascinating city with complexities, beauty and dynamism, where the past co-exists with the present. Many dynasties ruled from here and the city is rich in the architecture of its monuments. Delhi is not only the present metropolis of India but also a necropolis. Located on the banks of the river Yamuna, Delhi has witnessed the rise and fall of many cities over the last five millennia.
Overnight in Delhi
After leisure breakfast at the hotel, proceed to discover the city tour of Old Delhi Visiting India’s largest mosque, built by Shah Jahan. Ride a cycle rickshaw from the Jama Masjid through the lanes and by-lanes of Chandi Chawk, the heart of Old Delhi. Experience the life in this part of Old Delhi, which is always on the move. Visit the spice market, food street etc. The ride will culminate at the historic Red Fort - Shah Jahan’s elegant citadel in red sandstone, built in the 17th century AD. Visit the Red Fort from outside as you will visit Agra Fort in Agra, which is bigger than Red Fort and is also built by the same Mughal Emperor. Also visit, the Raj Ghat, the memorial to the Father of the Nation, Mahatma Gandhi.
Later in the afternoon, proceed to explore the city of New Delhi visiting the Tomb of Humayun built in 16th century AD, a magnificent structure in red sand stone and white marble, a fine example of a garden tomb and a precursor of the Taj Mahal. Drive to the Qutab Minar, a Tower of Victory started by Qutabuddin Aibak of the Slave Dynasty which ruled over Delhi in the 12th century and completed by his successors. Within the courtyard of the adjoining Quwwat-ul-Islam mosque stands the famous Iron Pillar, dating back to the 4th century AD which bears Sanskrit inscription. The pillar has puzzled scientists, as its iron has not rusted through the past centuries.
Drive along the Rajpath towards the residence of the President of the Republic of India, Rashtrapathi Bhawan which is flanked by the houses of the Parliament and the Government Secretariat buildings. Also drive by India Gate before transferring back to hotel.
Overnight in Delhi
After breakfast at the hotel, transfer to Agra by AC Indian Medium car (230 kms/ 3-4 hrs drive). Arrive Agra & transfer to hotel.
Agra is famous as the home to one of the Seven Wonders of the World, the Taj Mahal. The architectural splendor of the mausoleums, the fort and the palaces in Agra are a vivid reminder of the opulence of the legendary Mughal Empire. Agra was their capital for nearly a hundred years from 1564.
Overnight in Agra
Early morning visit to Taj Mahal, later return to hotel for breakfast and proceed to visit Agra fort. Taj Mahal, the inimitable poem in white marble was built over a period of 22 years, by the Mughal Emperor Shah Jahan in 1630, for his Queen, Mumtaz Mahal to enshrine her mortal remains. It is one of the seven modern wonders of the World.
The Agra Fort was built by three Mughal Emperors, Akbar the Great, his son Jahangir and grandson Shah Jahan in succession. Started in 1565 AD, the fort is a masterpiece of design and construction. Within the fort are a number of exquisite buildings including Jahangir’s Palace, Khaas Mahal, Sheesh Mahal, Diwan-i-Am, Diwan-i-Khas and Musamman Burj, the Octagonal tower, where Emperor Shah Jahan, the builder of the Taj Mahal was imprisoned by his son Aurangazeb for seven years and died a prisoner.
Transfer to Jaipur en-route visiting Fatehpur Sikri and Abhaneri by AC Indian Medium car (370 Kms / 8 hrs drive including visit).
Fatehpur Sikri - the exquisite city built by Akbar the Great in 1569, in red sandstone, with its forts, palaces and mosques, and abandoned 14 years after its creation due to political reasons. Diwan-i-am - vast courtyard in which the emperor gave daily public audience, Diwan-i-khas - a large quadrangle where all the major functions of the palace took place, Pachisi court, the emperor’s private living quarters, Jodha Bai’s palace, Mariam’s palace, Birbal’s palace, Hawa Mahal and Panch Mahal are some of the important buildings of this residential complex.
Abhaneri, is a village in the Dausa district of Rajasthan. The place is widely popular as it is home to a colossal step well, Chand Baori, which is considered among the most beautiful step wells of India. The village of Abhaneri is believed to have been established by Samrath Mihir Bhoj who was a Gurjar Pratihar king. The village of Abhaneri is also known for various Rajasthani folk dances which include Ghoomar, Kalbelia and Bhawai. Ghoomar is a dance of the Bhil tribe while Kalbelia is a dance performed by the women of Kalbelia tribe, who make their living by catching snakes and selling their venom.
Arrive Jaipur and check-in at hotel. Jaipur - the capital of Rajasthan is color washed pink - the color associated with auspiciousness and Rajput hospitality. This Pink City of fairy tale palaces, rugged fortresses perched on barren hills, and a city of broad avenues is picturesque. The first planned city of its time, Jaipur is encircled by a formidable.
Overnight in Jaipur
After leisure breakfast at the hotel, proceed for an excursion to Amber Fort & Palace. Drive past the palace of winds, popularly known’s as Hawa Mahal, which is just a facade built for the ladies of the Royal household in the 19th century. Later visit the capital of the erstwhile state of Jaipur until 1728. This fort is perched on a hill. it has hall of Public and Private audience, a Sheesh Mahal (Palace of mirrors) various marble palaces which are marvelous examples of the medieval Rajput architecture. Visit the Temple of Amba (Mother of Goddess), patron deity of the Royal family is at the entrance to the palace. Enjoy a short elephant ride up to the fort on which the fort is situated.
Afternoon: City tour of Jaipur visiting the former royal residence built in a blend of Rajasthani and Mughal styles. It now houses a museum with a super collection of Rajasthani costumes, an armoury of Mughal and Rajputs with weapons of arms, art gallery with an excellent collection of miniature paintings, carpets & royal paraphernalia. Visit the Jantar Mantar - an astrological and astronomical Observatory built by Maharaja Jai Singh in 18th century, which is remarkable for its accuracy of the instruments even in the present times.
Overnight in Jaipur
Breakfast at the hotel
Later, transfer to Delhi by AC Indian Medium Car (260 kms / 5-6 hrs). Upon arrival, transfer to Delhi Airport in time to board flight for onward destination.
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