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North India Highlights Tour

  • 12 Nights / 13 Days
  • Delhi-Jodhpur – Jaisalmer- Jodhpur- Udaipur- Jaipur- Agra- Varanasi-Delhi
Ganga, ghats & ‘aarti’
Forts, palaces & Taj Mahal
Desert camel safari
Temples & traditions
Culture & bazaar
Mosques & tombs

North India Highlights tour is designed for the visitors who aspire to explore prominent and disparate Indian destinations of north India. Ancient traditions, cultural legacy, heritage, historical monuments and modern facilities & ambience coexist at all the places, gleaned in North India Highlights itinerary. Naturally, one happens to experience the pristine culture and heritage in most luxurious way. The covers Delhi (India’s capital, studded with monuments, markets and modern amenities), Jaisalmer (Golden City of Rajasthan that boasts of camel safaris in desert, havelis, fort and temples), Jodhpur (Blue City of Rajasthan that is known for Mehrangarh Fort, Umaid Bhawan Palace and local handicrafts), Udaipur (the City of Lakes with massive and beautiful palaces and fine paintings), Jaipur (the capital city of Rajasthan), Agra (seat of world famous Taj Mahal) and Varanasi (the cultural capital of India with Ganges, ghats and temples).

Day 1 Arrival at New Delhi - sightseeing of Old Delhi

Arrive at Indira Gandhi International Airport, New Delhi from your country. You will be welcomed by our representative at the airport, with a placard of your name. You will be taken to the pre-booked hotel. As most of the flights land at wee hours, you will have enough time to have sound sleep and relaxation. Late in the morning, you will have breakfast and proceed for half-day Old Delhi sightseeing which includes Red Fort, Jama Masjid, Chandni Chowk and Raj Ghat. This part of Delhi was built by Shahjahan and hence is known as Shahjahanabad as well. Enjoy rickshaw ride in the oldest medieval market place Chandni Chowk. The visit of Old Delhi will be your first encounter with "exotic India". India, the kaleidoscopic culture of an ancient land and a window to new world, is a fascinating blend of the past and the present. Overnight will be at Delhi.

Day 2 New Delhi sightseeing

The 2nd day of North India Highlights Tour will showcase before you the majestic co-existence of ancient, medieval and modern monuments and life-styles. This will let you realize the exotic India in the form of lineage of more than 5000 years old culture and civilization. You will also happen to see the stages of civilizational twists and turns, developments, cultural fusion etc. These aspects of social developments can be seen in live form only in India. Enjoy the rickshaw ride at Old Delhi which will enthuse you with an altogether different feeling where most pricey cars will also be found running the medieval transport medium -Rickshaw. Imperial Delhi will include the Qutub Minar, the tallest stone tower in India. The tour also includes a drive past the imposing India Gate, the Parliament building and the Rastrapathi Bhawan, the President's residence. Overnight will be in Delhi.

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Day 3 New Delhi – Jodhpur (by flight)- Jaisalmer (by car- 265 kms/ 5 hrs)

Having breakfast early in the morning, you will be transferred to New Delhi airport to board flight for Jodhpur. On arrival at Jodhpur, you will be received by our representative and directly from airport be transferred to desert city of Jaisalmer. Due to Golden sand of Thar desert, Jaisalmer is called Suvarna Nagari or Golden City of Rajasthan. On arrival at Jaisalmer, check in at the pre-booked hotel. Evening is kept free for leisure. Overnight stay has been scheduled in Jaisalmer hotel.

Day 4 Jaisalmer sightseeing tour

Second day in Jaisalmer will be remembered for offering real exotic experiences of Rajasthan. Having breakfast in Jaisalmer hotel, proceed to visit Sonar Qila or Golden Fort of Jaisalmer. Jaisalmer Fort is unique in the sense that it is densely inhabited. Within the precincts of the fort are several breathtaking monuments, especially Hindu and Jain temples, an ancient library, ancient mansions and palaces converted into hotels etc. After visiting Golden Fort, Jaisalmer tour guide will take you to have a closer look of various stunningly sculptured havelis of Jaisalmer, outside the precincts of the Sonar Qila. Famous and most visited havelis are Nathmalji-ki-Haveli, Patwon-ki-Haveli and Salim Singh-ki-Haveli.

Early in the afternoon, post lunch, you shall be taken to Sam/Khuri sand dunes on camel. This camel ride will be an enchanting experience. Witness the mesmerizing sunset in the desert. Here, you shall be staying in tented accommodation in desert area where you will be enjoying folk music and folk dance while gulping in the tasty cuisines. Overnight stay has been scheduled in tented accommodation in desert area.

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Day 5 Jaisalmer – Jodhpur (by car-285 kms/ 5 hrs)

Having taken scrumptious breakfast in Jaisalmer, depart for Jodhpur at the earliest to reach Jodhpur by noon to have enough time to relax in Jodhpur hotel and visit royal monuments of the Blue City of Rajasthan. On arrival at Jodhpur, you will be transferred to the hotel to have lunch and relax a bit. Hereinafter, visit famous monuments of Jodhpur like rugged Mehrangarh Fort (one of best preserved forts of Rajasthan), Umaid Bhawan Palace & Museum (part of it a luxury heritage hotel, royal residence and museum), Jaswant Thada (known as Taj Mahal of Rajasthan- a royal cenotaph memorial) and Clock Tower. Also explore the famous Sardar Market. After exploring local market, return to Jodhpur hotel for overnight stay.

Day 6 Jodhpur-Ranakpur-Udaipur (265 kms/ 5 hrs)

Have relaxed breakfast in Jodhpur hotel and move for Udaipur. To keep you rejuvenated, the 10th day of Royal Rajasthan tour is reserved for leisurely travel into oasis like destination of Ranakpur. Ranakpur is famous for sublime and serene Jain Temple, a masterpiece of engravings and architectural intricacy. After Ranakpur sightseeing and lunch in a nice restaurant, depart for Udaipur, 95 kms from Ranakpur. Continue your drive to Udaipur. Upon arrival in Udaipur, check in at the designated hotel. Evening here has been kept free to relax leisurely. Overnight stay has been planned in Udaipur hotel.

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Day 7 Udaipur sightseeing

Having delicious breakfast in Udaipur hotel, meet Udaipur tour guide in the lobby of the hotel. Embark on Udaipur tour. Udaipur is called the "City of Lakes" and "Venice of East". Udaipur is known for its distinctive architecture, mammoth monuments, various lakes and chivalry. Visit the City Palace Complex, the Jagdish Temple, the Jag Mandir, Saheliyon-k-Bari and other picturesque spots of tourist interests.

Later in the afternoon, enjoy a boat ride in Lake Pichola to watch Lake Palace (Jag Mandir Palace) and old Udaipur. Late in the evening, return to hotel for overnight stay.

Day 8 Udaipur – Jaipur (by car - 405 kms/07 kms)

Have breakfast leisurely in Udaipur hotel and depart for Jaipur, the Pink City of Rajasthan. On arrival at Jaipur, you will directly be transferred to Jaipur hotel. Assisted by local representative in check in process, have some rest, freshen up and then move in the afternoon on your own, naturally with friendly, experienced and helpful chauffeure to have a first impression of Jaipur. Listen to the hustle and bustle, watch the beautiful garments of the locals and see the exceptional road is crossed by rickshaws, elephants and all sorts of unfamiliar vehicle. Enjoy a sweet chai (tea) in a cafe and join the friendly inhabitants of the city, or stroll through the streets and take a first look at the beautiful architecture. Later return to Jaipur hotel to have overnight stay.

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Day 9 Jaipur sightseeing tour

TWake up early in the morning, have breakfast at Jaipur hotel and proceed on for Jaipur city tour. Take an excursion to Amber Fort. Enjoy a ride on caparisoned elephant from foothill to the gate of Amber Fort at the hilltop. After visiting Amber Fort, drive for the Jaipur city tour which includes prominent monuments like Jantar Mantar, Hawa Mahal and City Palace. After visiting these monuments, explore local market of Jaipur. Late afternoon, you will be taken to Birla Temple to attend evening ‘aarti’. After watching royal monuments, bustling market and auspicious ‘aarti’, return to Jaipur hotel for overnight stay.

Day 10 Jaipur-Abhaneri-Fatehpur Sikri- Agra (240 kms/ 05 hrs)

After a relaxed breakfast in Jaipur hotel, drive to Agra- a historical Indian city, located in Uttar Pradesh. About 75 kms from Jaipur, is located a historical village of Abhaneri. This village tour will present before you ancient lineage of India in terms of cultural values, architectural gems and traditional rural lifestyle in villages of India. A detour is well merited for its amazing step-well or 'baoris' and Harshat Mata Temple.

After visiting Abhaneri village, move for Agra. Again, en route, visit the deserted city of Fatehpur Sikri. 35 kms from Agra is located deserted medieval town of Fatehpur Sikri. Have a stop-over there and visit monuments-rich Fatehpur Sikri. The famous monuments of Fatehpur Sikri include Buland Darwaja, Jodhabai Palace, Salim Chishti Shrine and Jama Masjid. Buland Darwaja that is counted as one of the tallest gateways in the world is almost entirely made out of the red-sandstone with a generous dose of marble decoration on it.

After visiting Fatehpur Sikri, continue your drive to Agra which is almost 35 kms from Fatehpur Sikri. On arrival at Agra, representative of Optima India Tourism will meet you at Agra hotel and ensure your check in at Agra hotel.

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Day 11 Agra sightseeing tour – Varanasi (by overnight train)

In the very early morning, approximately around dawn hours, you will be taken by Agra tour guide to Taj Mahal. The time of sunrise has been purposefully chosen so that you could see the Taj Mahal when it looks most stunning and beautiful. From Agra hotel to Taj Mahal, you will be taken on a horse carriage. Taj Mahal’s construction started in the year 1631 and took approximately 22 years to build it. An epitome of love, it made use of the services of 22,000 laborers and 1,000 elephants. It was built entirely out of white Makrana marble. Built by Shah Jahan and dedicated to Mumtaz Mahal (wife of Shah Jahan) is an Islamic tomb and located on the bank of River Yamuna.

Visit the world famous Taj Mahal, then come back to hotel for breakfast. Relax, refresh and move on to visit Old Fort and Tomb of Itmad-ud-Daula, Akbar's Tomb in Sikandara. Agra Fort is built alongside the Yamuna River and stretches almost 2.5 km. It consists of a wall built in red sandstone and several buildings inside. The wall has 2 gates, the Delhi Gate and the Amar Singh Gate. Tomb of Itmad-ud-Daula houses the magnificent mausoleum of Ghias Beg, father of the Mughal Empress Noor Jehan. The main tomb is made of pure white marble, with each façade composed of three arches with beautiful trellis screens, so delicately carved that they appear to be made of ivory. Akbar's Tomb in Sikandara is in a pyramid shape and consists of five storeys. The building is unique in its departure from Islamic architectural tradition, for it has no domed roof. The walled garden enclosure is laid out in the Char Bagh style with the mausoleum at the center.

After sightseeing of famous monuments of Agra, explore local market. Have dinner in a nice restaurant of Agra and proceed to Agra railway station to board train for overnight journey to Varanasi.

Day 12 Varanasi- Sarnath tour & Ganga Aarti

Arrive the holy city of Varanasi during morning hours after overnight journey by an éxpress’train. Varanasi is the most sacred place of India. In the morning you will reach the city and be transferred to your hotel. Here, relax a little and have scrumptious breakfast before departing for vising Sarnath. Sarnath, about 12 kms from city centre, is a historical site. It is the place where Lord Buddha delivered his first sermon and thus initiated ‘dharmachakrapravartan’. Two grand stupas of Mauryan era (300 BC), remnants of pillaged monastery, Asokan pillar and well- maintained museum are worth watching and appreciating the zenith of civilizational progress. Other than that, visit Tibetan Buddhist monastery.

Later on, return to Varanasi hotel. Have lunch and take rest for an hour or so. Then move along with Varanasi tour guide to see grand and mesmerizing Ganga Aarti. Overnight stay has been scheduled in Varanasi.

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Day 13 Boat cruise & city & temples tour – Delhi (by flight) - Departure

It’s an absolute must to have a boat ride in Varanasi on the Ganges at sunrise. Today, quite early in the morning you are on the way to the ghat on the banks of the Ganges. Sail along the ghats and get another feel of authentic India. Women washing laundry by the river, meditating pilgrims and the smoke from the pyres. An unforgettable experience. Experience firsthand the Indian traditions! Afterwards, you will return to hotel to freshen up and have breakfast. Early noon, with guide, you will be taken for city & temples tour which included Vishwanath Temple, Sankat Mochan Temple, Tulsi Manas Temple and Bharat Mata Temple. Thus after exploration of the old city of Varanasi, enjoy a delicious homemade Lassi or scrumptious dinner and proceed to Varanasi airport to board flight for New Delhi. On arrival at New Delhi, board flight for your onward destination.

Delhi

Delhi is enriched with long historical past, glorious culture, an enviable treasure of monuments and modern infrastructure. Delhi, currently the capital of Indian Republic, has passed through several upheavals during its thousands of years of existence and has witnessed many ups and downs of history with many dynasties flourishing and diminishing with the passage of time.

Delhi has been built nine times over the years and accordingly named in the scriptures. Indraprastha, known as first Delhi, was founded by Pandavas of Mahabharata in around 1500 BC. Qila Rai Pithora, termed as second Delhi, was built by Raja Anang Pal and later re-christened by Prithviraj Chauhan as Lal Kot. Siri, the third Delhi, was founded by Ala-ud-din Khilji. Siri Fort, a major tourist attraction, is a famous monument of that time. Tughlaqabad, called as fourth Delhi, had been founded by Ghiyas-ud-din Tughlaq. Tughlaqabad Fort is a testimony to that. Jahan Panah, the fifth Delhi and a walled city, was constructed by Muhammad bin Tughlaq to address the constant threat of Mongols. The sixth Delhi, Ferozabad, was founded by Feroz Shah Tughlaq and its testimonial evidence can be seen in the form of 13-metre high tapering quadrangular pillar adjacent to Ashokan pillar. Din Panah, the seventh Delhi, was rebuilt afresh by Humayun and later razed and constructed by Sher Shah Suri. Earlier this Old Fort or Purana Qila was seat of legendary ruler Prithviraj Chauhan. The walled city of Shahjahanabad, known as eighth Delhi, had been founded by Mughal emperor Shah Jahan who built Taj Mahal as well in Agra. Modern and present day Delhi, the ninth Delhi and known as Lutyens' Delhi or New Delhi has been laid down by the British.

Jaisalmer

Jaisalmer, known as ‘ Golden City of Rajasthan’, is the westernmost city of India, adjoining the border of Pakistan. The city of Jaisalmer, earlier ruled by brave Bhatti Rajputs, had been a prominent trade centre being located on ancient Silk Route. Jaisalmer has facts to declare, tales to impress, uniqueness to wonder and spirit to live. With historical legacy, rich cultural heritage, ethnicity, palaces, fortresses, temples, golden sand dunes and intricately sculptured havelis, Jaisalmer offers facts about the courageous rulers and citizens of the bygone era, tales of unequalled valor, unique in its beauty and undaunted spirit to keep us alive and kicking. For a tourist, there are eight places/ monuments in Jaisalmer to be seen. Built in 1156 AD, the prime attraction of Jaisalmer is obviously Jaisalmer Fort, known as Golden Fort or Sonar Qila. Cenotaphs at Bada Bagh, located in isolation, offer a stunning view during sunrise and sunset. Massive five-storied Patwon-Ki-Haveli, constructed of yellow sandstone, has five intricately decorated huge suites, large corridors and decorated walls representing the then prevailing art form. Out of the five havelis, one is converted into a museum. The third haveli houses the works of local craftsmen of the bygone era. Watch sunset from Sam Sand Dunes, after reaching there by having a ride on a camel. Thar Heritage Museum, established by Laxmi Narayan Khatri to preserve historical and cultural art & architecture of Thar region, showcases Sea fossils aging over million years, unique ornaments of camels and horses, documents and coins of Jaisalmer, ancient manuscripts and weapons . Artistically carved entrance made of yellow sandstone and temples, holy shrines and chhattris around Gadsisar Lake, reconstructed by Maharawal Garsi in 1367 AD, offer a breathtaking view. Desert National Park is a unique concept and effort to showcase flora and fauna of Thar Desert. The collection in Silk Route Art Gallery of Jaisalmer includes clothes, patchworks, bags, shawls, belts, antiques and accessories. All the items available here is handmade.

Jodhpur

Jodhpur, situated on the edge of Thar Desert & known as ‘ Blue City of Rajasthan’, is the second largest city of Rajasthan. The quintessence of Jodhpur has been its valour and equestrian skill. Jodhpur is also known as the " Sun City " for the bright, sunny weather it enjoys all the year round. Founded by Rao Jodha in 1549 AD, Jodhpur was an old capital of Royal Marwar. The impressions of rich past, valour and flourishing trade can be seen in the existing monuments and bustling market. Mehrangarh Fort tops the repertoire of magnificent tourist attractions of Jodhpur. One of the largest forts of India, the impregnable Mehrangarh Fort is well preserved till date and houses excellent museum along with the only professional museum shop of India. Tourists interested in adventure may opt for six circuits of ropeways (zip-linings) at the back side of Mehrangarh Fort. Known as ‘Taj Mahal of Rajasthan’, Jaswant Thada is an ornately carved cenotaph. Built of white marble, Jaswant Thada is a must-see monument of Jodhpur. Umaid Bhawan Palace is another tourist attraction of Jodhpur.

Ranakpur

Constructed in an area of 60X62 metres, Ranakpur Temple in Pali district of Rajasthan is one of the five most auspicious places of Jain community. Ranakpur is known as 'the tranquil pilgrimage town'. Ranakpur is a village is on Jodhpur- Udaipur route, about 95 kms from Udaipur and 165 kms from Jodhpur. As ancient Sanskrit text Soma-Saubhagya Kavya suggests, construction of Ranakpur Temple, built on ‘chaumukha’ style, had commenced in 1437 and continued till 1458. Intricately sculptured and equipped with 29 halls and 1444 pillars, Ranakpur Temple was built under the supervision of architect Deepaka during the regime of Rana Kumbha of Mewar. Nearby Ranakpur Jain Temple is a ‘Sun Temple’. Sun temple is gracefully sculptured and endowed with elegantly carved polygonal walls and images of warriors, horses and celestial. The Sun God has been shown riding its vehicle, the chariot. For the tourism buffs a ride to the outskirts like Sadari, Desuri, Ghanerao, Narlai etc will be found to be exciting

Udaipur

Previous capital of erstwhile princely state of Mewar, Udaipur showcases pristine Rajput architecture, traditional Rajasthani culture, colourful market, ancient and highly auspicious temples and several beautiful lakes. Owing to its beautiful locale, Udaipur is known as ‘City of Lakes’ and ‘Venice of East’. Udaipur is also called as the most romantic city of India. The foundation stone of Udaipur was laid by Maharana Udai Singh on 16th March 1559. The old city had initially had 11 gates, out of which only 5 gates in the city walls remained. Main gate and hence the main entrance to Udaipur city id Suraj Pole. Udaipur is famous for Lehariya, the delicate striped sarees and turbans in various shades, colours and designs. Udaipur offers a lot to the tourists. The Lake Palace of Udaipur in Lake Pichola, now converted into a heritage palace hotel being run by India’s premier industrial group TATA under the brand Taj Hotels, is a treat to eyes.

Though major tourist attractions are shown by Indian tour operators and local tour guides of Udaipur, but there are many interesting places and monuments in Udaipur to be explored. Bagore Ki Haveli is one of them. The large mansion of erstwhile Prime Minister of Mewar kingdom Amir Chand Badwa, Bagore ki Haveli, having more than 100 rooms and built in 18th century, has been converted into a museum showcasing various aspects of Mewar royalty’s lifestyle. Ambrai Ghat at Lake Pichola is the best place to capture photographs of Lake Pichola and Lake Palace at the time of sunset. For seekers of old world charm, Monsoon Palace, previously a favorite retreat of Mewar royalty, is a popular sunset spot owing to unparalleled view over Udaipur. During 10 days of December, Shilpgram Arts and Crafts Fair is organized every year. Shilpgram, meaning ‘Village of Craftsmen’, had been established to showcase rural life and traditions from Rajasthan, Gujarat, Maharashtra and Goa. This attempt by the government though has not elicited the expected results but its objectives to protect Indian craftsmanship and provide the craftsmen a better and organized marketplace have been achieved to some extent.

Jaipur

Jaipur, present day capital city of India’s largest state Rajasthan, is representative of typical Rajasthani culture, art, architecture and lifestyles. Known as ‘Pink City’ or ‘Gulabi Nagar’ of Rajasthan, Jaipur attracts tourists towards its gargantuan forts, marvelously built palaces, lively market of handicraft products and intricately carved out temples. The sprinkling beauty, the edifices, big havelis and stupendous sky-touching forts of Jaipur attract the tourists immensely. Jaipur is the only city in the world which has been built as per India’s Vaastu Shastra and segmented as per astrology. Jaipur has been laid according to the conventional nine-grid pattern that astrologers believe to be lucky and which has been recommended in the ancient Indian treatise on architecture. Its nine rectangular sectors represent nine levels of universe. A boundary wall with eight gates surrounds the city.

Fatehpur Sikri

Fatehpur Sikri, a historical place with nicely preserved monuments of Mughal era, is a must see place while visiting Agra. Located some 37 kms from Agra, Fatehpur Sikri of Buland Darwaja fame was founded by Akbar in 1569 to express his gratitude for Sufi mystic Salim Chishti, who was born in Sikri village. Many historians believe that Fatehpur Sikri was established as a joint capital with Agra but due to paucity of potable and drinking water, the plan to shift a section of imperial officials there had been reversed. Even today, its red stone architecture, richly ornamented with carvings & firework, is in a perfect state of preservation. Buland Darwaja is 15-storied, stands 140 feet on the pedestal and is 54 feet above the ground. A steep flight of 42 steps leads one to the massive gateway and makes it as one of the tallest gateways in the world is made of red-sandstone with marble decoration on it. With Quranic inscription on the front and cenotaph on the heights of the gateway, Buland Darwaja is a splendid blend of Hindu and Persian architecture. The calligraphy work done on the inner façade of Buland Darwaja has very less parallels in India.

Agra

Agra finds its mention in epic of Mahabharata as ‘Agravana’. Agra is traditionally and culturally part of Brijbhumi, associated with legendary Lord Krishna. Strategically located on the banks of river Yamuna, the city of Agra has seen many upheavals due to intermittent attacks of the invaders to take control of it. Agra remained under control of the Rajputs, the Muslims, the Marathas and the British. Though the influences of these regimes are quite visible in art, architecture and culture of the city but the Mughal impact is more pronounced, especially in old Agra. Now-a-days, Agra has been synonymous with Taj Mahal from tourism perspective. Taj Mahal can easily be termed as a feather in the cap of India, particularly Agra, which also possesses the most precious jewel in the country’s crown the “Taj Mahal”. Sikander Lodhi, Babur, Humayun, Akbar, Jahangir and Shahjahan ruled with Agra as capital of their kingdoms. Babur was the first Mughal king who built first Islamic monument in Agra i.e. Gul-e-Afgaan or the Aram Bag -a planned garden. During the rule of Akbar, famous monuments of Agra, Fatehpur Sikri and Agra Fort, were constructed. Sikandara and It-mad-ud-Daula are the famous buildings of Jahangiri period. World renowned Taj Mahal, built by Shah Jahan in fond memory of Mumtaj Mahal, is now one of the ‘Seven Wonders of the World’. Agra is also known for its fabulous handicrafts, made of marble and soft-stone inlay work. Agra's major handicraft products besides inlay work are: leather-ware, brassware, carpets, jewellery and embroidery work.

Varanasi

Situated on the banks of holy river Ganga (the Ganges) , the spiritual capital of India- Varanasi is known by several names like Banaras (as local people call it), Kashi (desrived from 'Kashika' meaning the shining one referring to the light of Lord Shiva), Avimukta (meaning never forsaken by Lord Shiva), Rudaravasa (meaning abode of Lord Shiva) and Anandavana (meaning forest of bliss). Varanasi is one of the holiest of the pilgrimages of the Hindus. Being on the banks of the Ganges, the most sacred and venerated river in India, Varanasi becomes all the more pious spiritual centre among religious Hindus. Its name Varanasi is derived from its being on the confluence of two rivers- Varuna and Asi. Though Varanasi is the world's oldest living city but its oldest monument is not older than 300 years because of inimically destructive invasions of Muslims. Varanasi is a prominent business and trade centre as well since the ancient times.

Ghats of Varanasi along the western bank of the Ganges are special as these epitomize various aspects of Hindu way of life. Watch out people having early morning bath followed by ablutions, puja by Brahmin priests, people practicing meditation & yoga, cremation process on Manikarnika ghat and Harishchandra ghat, people consulting the astrologers under their palm leaf parasols, buy offerings for rituals, trades selling silk apparels and brassware etc.

Sarnath

Located 10 kms from Varanasi, Sarnath is one of the four pilgrimages of the Buddhists. It was Sarnath where Lord Buddha delivered his first sermon and declared the birth of a different 'dharma' (religion)- Buddhism. From Sarnath, the 'dharmachakra pravartan' commenced. In around 234 BC, Emperor Ashoka, a great follower of Buddhism, built a grand stupa- Dharmarajika Stupa, here. Later on Sarnath developed as a prominent Buddhist centre with a grand monastery. Between the 3rd century BC and the 11th century AD, several Buddhist structures were built here in Sarnath. The Muslim invaders in medieval period ransacked and destroyed it. But an inquisitive traveler may still experience the rich past in the remnants of monastery, Dhamekh stupa, Dharmarajika stupa and Emperor Ashoka's pillar. Also, visit Sarnath museum. Sarnath museum also has the figures and the sculptures from the Mauryan, Kushana and Gupta periods discovered during the excavations at Sarnath.

  • Accommodation in the mentioned hotels on double sharing.

  • Daily breakfast basis on all places.

  • Total Meals: 13 (Breakfast-12; Lunch-00; Dinner-01).

  • Total night stays: 12 (Delhi-02; Jaisalmer- 02; Jodhpur- 01; Udaipur-02; Jaipur- 02; Agra-01; Varanasi-01; Onboard train- 01)

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  • Well-appointed upgraded air-conditioned rooms at all places.

  • Along with breakfast at all places, 01 dinner in Jaisalmer desert camp.

  • Monument entrance charges.

  • Rickshaw ride in Chandni Chowk, Delhi.

  • Elephant ride at Amber Fort in Jaipur.

  • Camel ride in Thar desert of Rajasthan.

  • Tonga ride from hotel to Taj Mahal.

  • Evening boat cruise in Lake Pichola of Udaipur.

  • Morning boat cruise in the Ganges along the ghats of Varanasi.

  • English speaking & destination-specific guides at all destinations for mentioned sightseeing tour.

  • Meet & assist at the airport on arrival & departure.

  • Sightseeing tours as mentioned in the itinerary.

  • Air-conditioned private car for the whole sightseeing tour.

  • Driver for the whole tour.

  • All prevailing taxes like luxury tax, service tax etc.

  • All transfers, city tours, excursions & drives by air-conditioned transport.

  • Interstate road tax, toll tax, parking charges, driver’s wages, fuel charges etc.

Optima Special:
  • Visit and exploration of narrow alleys, humming with social activities, while riding on man-pulled tri-cycle rickshaw
  • Morning boat ride in the Ganges along the ghats of Varanasi.
  • Ride a caparisoned elephant like a king at Amber Fort in Jaipur.
  • Evening boat cruise in famous Lake Pichola to watch Lake Palace and traditional Udaipur city while having boat ride in Lake Pichola.
  • Tonga (horse carriage) ride in Agra- from hotel to Taj Mahal gate.
Don’t miss on North India Highlights Tour:
  • Stay in heritage hotels of Rajasthan to experience modern yet royal hospitality.
  • Cultural events, puppet shows and traditional dances at Ravindra Manch.
  • Evening Aarti at Govind Dev Ji temple in Jaipur, Rajasthan.
  • Magnanimous Ganga Aarti (Ganges Worship Ceremony) in the evening on Dashashwamedh Ghat of Varanasi.
  • If you are handicrafts-freak, do squeeze out time visit Shilpgram in Udaipur.
  • Vintage Car ride in Udaipur famous for its classic car collection.
  • Have late-night dinner in an open-restaurant on the banks of Lake Pichola in romantic mood.
Shopping:

Delhi: Handlooms, handicrafts, stalls that sell products from all over India (Dilli Haat).
Varanasi: Rudraksha, Banarasi sarees, carpets and clay artefacts.
Agra:Marble souvenirs.
Jaipur: Environment-friendly printed clothes, jewellery and ethnic goods.
Jodhpur:Handicraft goods in Sadar market.
Udaipur:Pieces of Mewar school of paintings.

Cuisines:

New Delhi:Street foods/snacks like ‘tikki’, ‘chaat’, ‘Dahi Bhalla’, ‘pao bhaji’, ‘fruit chaat’, ‘rabdi faluda’.
Agra:Biryani at Heeng ki Mandi.
Varanasi:Hot and garlicky fish steak (Lahsun wali machali)..
Jodhpur:Lal-Maans- a non-veg. cuisine.
Udaipur:Ker Sangri, Papad ki Sabzi and Dil Jaani sweet.

Is This Trip For Me:
Travel Style Service Level TPhysical Demands Trip Type Trip Rating
Classic Standard FIT/Small Group 4.7/5
DestinationsStandardSuperiorDeluxeLuxury
DelhiJiviteshHiltonShangri LaHotel Imperial
JaisalmerNachna HaveliFort RajwadaTaj RawalkotSuryagarh Palace
JaisalmerTented AccommodationTented AccommodationTented AccommodationTented Accommodation
JodhpurRatan PalaceDevi BhawanTaj Hari MahalUmmed Bhawan Palace
UdaipurHotel Jagat Niwas Hotel Karohi HaveliLaxmi Vilas Palace- The LalitOberoi Udai Vilas
Jaipur ParadiseShahpura HouseITC RajputanaOberoi Raj Vilas
AgraHadoti PalaceHadoti PalaceHadoti PalaceHadoti Palace
VaranasiMaridien GrandRavitasTaj GangesNadesar Palace
  • Prices mentioned are per person on double/ twin sharing basis.

  • Any airfares, international or domestic, are not included.

  • Additional conditions may apply, please enquire for further details.

  • Prices shown are fully inclusive of taxes.

  • Additional levies, government charges & other applicable fees, including additional taxes and surcharges on flight routing, may apply and are beyond our control.

  • Seasonal surcharges and blackout dates may apply depending on date of travel.

  • Payments made by credit card will incur a surcharge.

  • Prices shown are for payments made by cash in store or through normal bank transfer into our accounts.

  • These prices are a guide to the best price and are subject to change without notice.

  • Prices are subject to change without notice, due to matters outside our control, such as adverse currency fluctuations, fuel surcharges, taxes and airfare increases, please enquire for further details.

  • Please provide your passport details to Optima Travels Private Limited at least one month before travelling. Please note that if you do not provide your passport details, you may be denied entry to any Indian National Parks that are visited along this itinerary, or you may be charged a fee by the local government as passport details are now a requirement for entry into all national parks in India.

  • Throughout the trip we request that our hotels prepare rooms in time for our arrival, especially if we're arriving prior to normal check-in time. However this isn't always possible which means we won't be able to check-in immediately on arrival at some hotels. Instead, we can store our luggage and explore our new destination.

  • In India normally the check in time in hotels is 02:00 PM and check out time in hotels is 10:00 AM.

  • Normally the package cost includes breakfast at all locations but in case of the destinations where availability of restaurants outside hotel not possible, we provide meals there and mention that in inclusions.

  • The normal check in - check out time of the hotels are 1200 hours and if your arrival time does not suit this we can arrange activities for you on the first day or pre-book the hotel from the previous night on additional charge and as per your request. Normally it takes 1 hour to come out of the airport from the time of arrival.

Followings are not included in the package

  • Meals other than breakfast and as specified above.

  • Video camera/ still camera fee applicable at various monuments. The same will be paid by you direct on spot on actual basis.

  • Items of personal nature like telephone calls, laundry, tips, hard/soft drink etc.

  • Any expenses arising out of unforeseen circumstances like flight delay/cancellation/hike in fare, strike or any other natural calamities.

  • Indian visa fees.

  • Any compulsory meal supplements during festive season is not included.

  • Early check in & late check out at the hotels.

  • Any other Items is not included in " Inclusions" heading.

*Important Notice: The following information has been obtained from the relevant suppliers and should be considered an indicative guide only as to the prices that may be available for these products. Optima India Tourism cannot guarantee that any particular product will still be available at the following prices, or for your exact dates of travel. At time of making your booking, prices may differ to that price displayed on this website. Please contact an Optima India Tourism travel consultant to obtain the latest up to date information regarding applicable prices, fees and charges, availability and other terms and conditions which may apply.

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