Contrasts of Rajasthan - 12 Days
Rajasthan is famous for its glorious past, colourful customs and culture, art and architecture, the royal medieval era, forts and palaces and citadels, and above all, its camel safaris. Fairy-tale palaces lie on hilltops, deep in the forests, in the middle of the lakes, each with its history and legends of valour and self-sacrifice, pomp and gaiety, love and romance. Today, some are splendid museums with rich collections, others lavish hotels preserving the ambience and luxury of princely times. The royal hunting reserves are now national parks and sanctuaries.
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• Got a couple of extra days? Then add some to your Rajasthan experience and appreciate a jeep safari in Bishnoi village and stay in a beautiful Palace hotel in Rohetgarh or Luni
Small Group Exploration – normally no more than 2-5 travellers. Being few brings you closer to local life and flexibility to go to places less travelled; to go beyond the ordinary.
|Trip Length:||12 Day(s) 11 Night(s)|
|Tour Departure Dates:||Every day|
Though it is possible to visit Rajasthan throughout the year – the best time is said to be the coolest month starting from September to April.
|Type of Transportation:||AC car|
|Type of Accommodation:||Budget: Guest House in standard room with private bathroom - 1 star hotel or similarComfort: Deluxe/standard room with private bathroom - 3 start hotel or similarFirst: Standard/Deluxe room with private bathroom - 5 star hotel|
Child age: Up to and including 6 years of age.
|Included in Price:||
Accommodation: In hotel of your choice of “Budget”, “Comfort” or “First” (see “Rates” and “Type of Accommodation”).
|Excluded from Price:||
• Meals other than the one mentioned in “Included in the price”.
- Locations Visited:
- Delhi, Jaipur, Mandawa, Bikaner, Camel Breeding Farm, Rat Temple, Desert Camp, Jaisalmer, Jodhpur, Rohetgarh or Fortchanwa, Bishnoi Village, Pushkar, Pushkar Lake, Fatehpur Sikri, Agra, Taj Mahal, Red Fort
- Start City:
- End City:
Day 1: Delhi – Jaipur Driving time: 5-6 hours approx.)
Today, you will start your trip from Visit beyond Service Centre at 10:00 am and drive to Jaipur. Arrive in Jaipur and transferred to hotel. The rest of the day is at your leisure. If time permits you may visit Birla Temple. Over night in Hotel.
Day 2: Jaipur
Today you have a guided tour in Jaipur includes a visit to the Amber Fort, Hawa Mahal, City Palace, Jaigarh Fort, and Jantar-Mantar (a scientific observatory). The picturesque capital of Rajasthan, Jaipur is color-washed pink – the color of hospitality in Rajput tradition. Built in 1772 by Maharaja Sawai Jai Singh II, Jaipur displays a remarkable harmony in architectural splendor. The only planned city of its time, a formidable wall encircles Jaipur. Overnight at hotel.
Day 3: Jaipur – Mandawa (Driving time: 4 hours approx.)
Today, you will drive to the Shekhavati region of Rajasthan. Shekhavati is also known as the open art gallery due to the numerous fresco paintings all over the palaces, houses and havelis (houses of rich noblemen). Please note that the village is very small with dirty roads. Sewage is a major problem that causing the paintings to fade. Over night in Mandawa.
Day 4: Mandawa – Bikaner (Driving time: 4-5 hours approx.)
After breakfast, you will drive from Mandawa to Bikaner. Lying in the north of the Desert State, Bikaner is dotted with many sand dunes. More popularly called the ‘Camel country’, the city is renowned for the best riding camels in the world. The magnificent forts and palaces, created with delicacy in reddish pink sandstone, bear testimony to its rich historical and architectural legacy. Sightseeing in Bikaner includes a camel-breeding farm and an excursion to Deshnoke to see the Karni Mata Temple, where rats scamper freely within the sanctum sanctorum of the temple. They are regarded as sacred and are fed by priests and devotees owing to the belief that they will be reincarnated as holy men. Overnight in Bikaner.
Day 5: Bikaner – Jaisalmer (Driving time: 4-5 hours approx.)
Early in the morning we visit the Junagadh Fort, followed up by a long drive to Jaisalmer. A visit to Jaisalmer is incomplete without a ride on a camel and of course, the view of the city during sunset. You will be driven to the desert and enjoy a camel ride in the sand dunes and watch the sun slowly disappearing in the sand during sunset. We follow this with local dance performances and dinner. Desert camping in the night.
Day 6: Jaisalmer
Drive from the campsite to the city and check in to your hotel. Rising from the heart of the Thar Desert is the city of Jaisalmer. A commanding fort etched in yellow sandstone dominates the amber-hued city. The life within the citadel conjures up images of medieval life with its narrow lanes strewn with magnificent palaces, Havelis, temples, skilled artisans and ubiquitous camels. Over night at hotel.
Day 7: Jaisalmer – Jodhpur (Driving time: 4 hours approx.)
Today after breakfast, you will have a half days drive to Jodhpur Arrive in Jodhpur and the rest of the day is at your leisure. Jodhpur is set at the edge of the Thar Desert. Once the capital of the Marwar state, it was founded in 1459 AD by Rao Jodha, chief of the Rathore clan of Rajputs who claimed to be descendants of Rama, the epic hero of the Ramayana. The massive 15th century Mehrangarh Fort looms on the tops of a rocky hill, soaring 125 Mts. above the plains. A high wall – 10-Km long with 8 gates and innumerable bastions encompasses the city. A major trade centre of the 16th century AD, the fortress – city of Jodhpur is now the second largest city of Rajasthan. Overnight at hotel.
Day 8: Jodhpur
Day 9: Jodhpur – Rohetgarh/Luni (Driving time: 1 hour approx)
Today after breakfast, you will drive to Rohetgarh and check in at the beautiful Rohetgarh Palace /Fort Chanwa, Luni. After lunch we go on a half-day jeep safari to the Bishnoi villages. Bishnois are said to be the first ecologists. A survivor of a great famine came up with the principles of the ecology centuries ago by in 1485. His name was Jambeshwar or Jambhoji. He observed that the famine was the result of the deforestation in the region and formulated a list of 29 rules to prevent famine. Bishnois are vegetarians and have great respect for all living things. The Bishnoi people expect that the tourists respect nature and their way of life. You can recognize a Bishnoi village because of their green farming land and orchards (don't forget you are in the Thar Desert!). Over night at hotel.
Day 10: Rohetgarh – Pushkar (Driving time: 4 hours approx.)
On the edge of the desert lies the tiny tranquil town of Pushkar along the bank of the picturesque Pushkar Lake – an important spot for the Hindus. Surrounded by hills on three sides, Pushkar abounds in temples. The most famous of these is the Brahma temple – the only temple dedicated to Lord Brahma in the country. Every year thousands of devotees throng the Lake around full moon day of ‘Kartik – Purnima’ (an auspicious date between October and November) to take a holy dip in the lake. The Pushkar fair, a huge colourful cattle fair, is also held during this time.
Day 11: Pushkar – Agra (Driving time: 5 - 6 hours)
Today after breakfast you will drive from Pushkar to Agra, enroute visit Fatehpur Sikri. Once the capital of the mighty Mughals, this is now a bustling small market catering to the tourists. Later drive to Agra and check in to your hotel. Over night in Agra.
Day 12: Agra - Delhi
In the early morning, you will visit the Taj Mahal for a sunrise view. Historic Agrabana, legendary city of the ancients, is today remembered as the capital of the Mughals and famed all over the world as the City of Taj Mahal, one of the Seven Wonders of the World. Not far away is Fatehpur Sikri, a ghost city today. After breakfast we visit the Agra fort, Itmad-ud-daulah’s tomb & Sikandra in Agra. After lunch, proceed for the drive to Delhi. Transfer to your hotel or proceed to next destination.
Notice: The Taj Mahal is closed every Friday, the Muslim day of rest. If your trip begins on Thursday then it will be in reverse order. Thus, you will see the Taj sun set view on the first day of your trip.
Please note: The massive monument Taj Mahal stands like a beautiful lady on the bank of river Yamuna in Agra. The beauty of Taj needs regular attention from the care takers, to keep it looking young, fresh and charming as always. This includes some beauty treatments and mud packs like some do face packs in beauty saloons. Taj is currently going under beautification, which may last until 2018 or beyond. So when you visit Agra chances are that some part of Taj is covered with a mud pack etc., this to cleanse the outer marble and keep it glowing as always.
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