Delhi | Agra | Jhansi | Orcha | Khajuraho | Varanasi | Bhubaneshwar | Konark Puri | Kolkata | Bagdogra | Darjeeling | Gangtok | Bagdogra | Kolkata
17 Nights / 18 Days
Day 01 : Arrive Delhi
On arrival meet and assist at the airport and transfer to prebooked hotel.
Delhi : India's capital & a major gateway to the country, contemporary Delhi is a bustling metropolis which successfully combines in its fold the ancient & the modern. Its strategic location was one of the prime reasons why successive dynasties chose it as their seat of power. New Delhi also reflects the legacy the British left behind . The division between New & Old Delhi is the distinction between the capitals of the British & the Moghuls respectively. So, wherever the visitor goes, he will invariably confront the citys' past.
Day 02 : Delhi
After breakfast, half day city tour of Old Delhi. Visit Jama Masjid, the largest mosque in India. Built by Shah Jahan, the construction was started in 1844 and was not completed until 1658; Red Fort, which was also built by Shah Jehan. This massive fort was built from 1638 to 1648; Chandni Chowk and Rajghat - the cremation site of Mahatma Gandhi.
Afternoon, city tour of New Delhi. Visit Humayuns Tomb : built in mid 16th century this is an early example of Mughal architecture; Qutab Minar, drive past India Gate, President House, Connaught Place. The city tour ends with a visit to Laxmi Narayan Temple (Birla Mandir).
Day 03 : Delhi-Agra
After breakfast, leave for Agra. Arrive Agra and check in at prebooked hotel. Afternoon, city tour of Agra. Visit Red fort, which was built by Emperor Akbar in 1565, and additions were made up until the time of his grandson, Shah Jahan. It contains the hall of public and private audiences amongst many other beautiful structues; Itmad-ud-daulah, which was contructed by Nur Jahan between 1622 and 1628 and is very similar to the tomb she constructed for her husband, Jehangir, near Lahore in Pakistan; the highlight of the day - The Taj Mahal, which was constructed by Shah Jahan in memory of his wife Mumtaz Mahal. Contruction of the Taj began in 1631 and was not completed until 1653. Afternoon, free for individual activities.
Day 04 : Agra-Jhansi (By Train), Jhansi-Orcha-Khajuraho
After breakfast, transfer to the railway station to board train for Jhansi at 0800 hrs. Arrive Jhansi at 1030 hrs and board our car/coach which awaits you to drive you to Khajuraho. Enroute visit Orcha : Once the capital of Bundelas, Orchha is a village, set amongst a complex of well preserved palaces and temples. Though Orcha was founded in 1531, it's golden age was during the first half of 17th century. When Jahangir visiting the city in 1606, a special palace, the Jehangir Mahal was built for him. Visit the Jehangir Mahal, Raj Mahal & Ram Raja temple which also dates back to the 17th century.Arrive Khajuraho and check in at hotel.
Day 05 : Khajuraho-Varanasi (Flight)
After breakfast visit Khajuraho : Built by the warrior Chandela dynasty that rose to power in Central India between 10th & 11th centuries, the 25 odd surving temples display different facets of life, including the sensual. These erotic carvings on some panels have given rise to much speculation since Khajuraho's re-discovery by a British officer in 1838. To preserve it for posterity, Khajuraho has been declared a World Heritage Site.
Visit the world famous Khajuraho temples built by the Chandela Kings between 950 AD & 1050 AD. The most important are the Chaunset Yogini temple dedicated to Goddess Kali, the Mahadev temple, Chitragupta or Bharatji temple with lovely image of 11 headed Vishnu, Vishwanath & Nandi temples, Lakshmana temple, Visha temple dedicated to Shiva, which is the largest & most typical of temples.
Afternoon, transfer to airport to board flight for Varanasi. Arrive Varanasi and transfer to prebooked hotel.
Day 06 : Varanasi
Early morning, leave for boat ride on the Ganges to see the bathing Ghats (river bank) & cremation site. Sunrise on the riverfront, as seen from a boat, can be a spiritually uplifting sight. The life on the Ghats bound in an endless string of rituals, ever-changing aspects of the river & the wide landscape across have fascinated visitors from all over the world.
Return to hotel for breakfast. After breakfast, city tour of Varanasi. Formerly known as Kashi – the city that illuminates. The religious capital of Hinduism , Varanasi is the oldest living city of India & one of the worlds' most ancient. The present name is derived from the fact that the city is at the confluence of the rivers Varuna & Asi. Visit the Bharat Mata temple with a big relief map of India in Marble, Durga temple, Tulsi Manas Mandir, Benaras Hindu University which has an art gallery & the mosque of Moghul Emperor Aurangzeb.
Afternoon, excursion to Sarnath – the buried Buddhist city where Buddha preached his first sermon after attaining Enlightenment at Bodhgaya.
Day 07 : Varanasi-Bhubaneshwar (Overnight Train)
Transfer to the railway station to board train for Bhubhaneshwar at 1010 hrs
Day 08 : Arrive Bhubaneshwar
Arrive Bhubhaneshwar at 0645 hrs and transfer to hotel. In the afternoon, half day sightseeing of Bhubhaneshwar, Known as Kalinga in ancient times is the capital of Orissa. At one time, some 7000 sandstone temples are supposed to have stood on the site of sacred Bundusagar lake alone. Today almost 500 remain. Most of them were built between 7th and 15th centuries and most of them were destroyed during the Mughal conquest of 16th century. Visit the Brahmeshwar temple, built in 11th century; Rajarani temple; Mukteshwar temple : one of the most refined temples in Orissa. Small and compact it is famous for both its ornate entrance and rich interior carvings; Parumeshwar temple : built in 12th century and the Lingaraj Temple : built in 11th century, this temple is dedicated to Lord Shiva as Lord Lingaraj (Lord of Universa), is one of the most notable temples.
Day 09 : Bhubaneshwar-Konark-Puri
After breakfast, visit leave for Puri. Enroute visit the Sun Temple at Konark. Built by King Narasimhadev in mid 13th century to celebrate his victory over the Muslims. It is a masterpiece of design and construction; built in the shape of huge chariot, pulled along by seven racing horses on 24 intricately carved stone wheels. Continue drive to Puri. Arrive Puri and check in at prebooked hotel.
Day 10 : Puri
After breakfast, visit Puri - one of the four Dhams (holiest Hindu pilgrimage places in India). Visit the Jaganatth Temple, which was built during the 12th century by the Kalinga ruler Chodaganga Deva, is the tallest and most magnificent monuments in Orissa. It's pinnacle rises to a formidable height of 65 m (212 ft). It is divided into four parts : the main central hall, the hall of audience, the dancing hall and the hall of offerings, and has four gates. Each of these has an animal theme : horse (south gate), elephant (north gate), tiger (west gate) and the lion (east gate). It is by the Lions gate that the pilgrims make their entrance and in front of this main gate stands a 16 sided monolithic pillar called Aruna Stambha.
Afernoon, relax at Puri, a beautiful beach resort along with the Bay of Bengal.
Day 11 : Puri-Kolkata (Calcutta) - By Overnight Train
Transfer to the railway station to board train for Calcutta. Overnight in the train.
Day 12 : Kolkata
Arrive Calcutta. On arrival transfer to prebooked hotel. In the afternoon, half day city tour of Calcutta, the "City of Joy".Visit the High Court Building, built in 1872 and the oldest Catholic Church in Calcutta, St. Marys. The Howrah Bridge, built in 1943 – the bridge is crossed by approximately two million people everyday; the Botanical Gardens, the oldest and largest of their kinds in India;Victoria Memorial : The majestic Victorial memorial, symbol of Calcutta was built between 1906 and 1921 at a cost of Rs. 7.5 million and is a reminder of the might of British India. It has been compared to Taj Mahal, with its four rudimentary minarets, gleaming white dome and exterior of solid Marcrana marble. It was conceived by Lord Curzon as both tribute to Queen Victoria and a triumphant depiction of her reign in India. Afteroon, free.
Day 13 : Kolkata-Bagdogra (Flight), Bagdogra-Darjeeling
After breakfast, transfer to airport to board flight for Bagdogra. Arrive Bagdogra and transfer to Darjeeling. Arrive Darjeeling and check in at prebooked hotel.
Day 14 : Darjeeling
Early morning, visit to Tiger Hill to see the spectacular sunrise on Mt. Kanchenjunga. After breakfast, visit Darjeeling, previously Dorje Ling or "Place of Thuderbolt" was a mystic thunderbolt of Lamaist religion, representing the sceptre of Indra (Lord of Gods), said to have fallen here, on a site presently known as observatory hill. The town grew up around the ex-Buddhist monastery of Dorje Ling, which has been built on this hill. Visit the Himalayan Mountaineering Institue which exists to train mountaineers, has a marvellous museum full of photos, exhibits and equipment relating the past mountaineering expeditions. Adjoining the institute is the Zoological Park where one can see the Siberian tiger, Himalayan Black deer and the rare Snow leopard and the Red Pandas and Ghoom Monastery, is the oldest and the most famous monastery in Darjeeling. Established in 1850 by famous Mongolian astrologer monk, it belongs to the Yellow sect and houses a massive image of Maitreya (the "Buddha to come").
Day 15 : Darjeeling-Gangtok
After breakfast, drive to Gangtok.rive to Gangtok, the colorful capital of Sikkim in the Himalayas (6-7 hrs)
Day 16 : Gangtok
After breakfast, city tour of Gangtok. Visit Tsuklakhang : the royal gompa of the Chogyals (ex rulers of Sikkim) it was once the site of coronotion of the rulers of Sikkim; Namgyal Institute of Tibetology, established by the last Chogyal in 1958 and built in traditional style, this institute promotes research of the language and traditions of Tibet; Rumtek Monastery which is largest of its kind outside Tiber and is the seat of the "Kagyu" oder of Buddhism and is almost the replica of the original Kagyu in Tibet.
Day 17 : Gangtok-Bagdogra-Kolkata
After breakfast, transfer to Bagdogra airport to board flight Kolkata. Arrive Kolkata and transfer to prebooked hotel.
Day 18 : Depart Kolkata
Transfer to airport to board flight back home/onward destination.