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Glorious India Vacations (23 Nights / 24 Days)

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Delhi - Varanasi - Khajuraho - Jhansi - Agra - Jaipur - Udaipur - Mumbai - Bangalore - Mysore - Hasan - Belure and Halibed Temples - Bangalore - Cochin - Kumarakom - Cochin - Chennai - Mahabalipuram
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Day 01 / Arrival Delhi
Arrive Delhi, meet assist at the airport & transfer to hotel. Night stay in Delhi.

Day 02 / Delhi
After breakfast proceed for sightseeing tour arround 11:00 a.m of Old & New Delhi :
OLD DELHI - A sight-seeing tour of Old Delhi would entail visiting the Raj Ghat - the memorial site where Mahatma Gandhi was cremated; Jama Masjid - the largest mosque in India.
NEW DELHI - An extensive sight-seeing tour of New Delhi would include a visit to the Humayun's Tomb, the Qutub Minar, a drive along the ceremonial avenue - Rajpath, past the imposing India Gate, Parliament House, the President's Residence and would end with a drive through the Diplomatic Enclave. Night stay in Delhi.

Day 03 / Delhi - Varanasi ( By flight )
After breakfast transfer to airport to board the flight to Varanasi. On arrival in Varanasi meet assist and transfer to hotel. Varanasi, said to be the India's most sacred city situated on the western bank of the holy river Ganga. It is also the oldest living city in the world. As a place for devotion and worship, with hundreds of temples dotting the city, sunrise on the river front as seen from a boat can be a spiritually uplifting sight. It has a fascination uniquely its own, a quality of sublime beauty, a timeless eternal appeal. Varanasi is the city which cannot be described, only experienced. Later sight seeing of Varanasi (the oldest and holiest city of India) covering Temples, Aurangazeb's Mosque and one of the biggest university of India. Evening view “Aarti” ceremony on the Ghats. Night stay in Varanasi.

Day 04/ Varanasi
Morning boat cruise at the river Ganges to observe the way of life of pilgrims by the Ghats. Later excursion to Sarnath, 10kms. East of Varanasi, is one of the Buddhism's major centers of India. After attaining enlightenment, the Buddha came to Sarnath where he gave his first sermon. Visit the deer park and the museum and later back to Varanasi. Night stay in Varanasi.

Day 05 / Varanasi - Khajuraho ( By flight )
After breakfast transfer to airport on time to board the flight to Khajuraho. On arrival in Khajuraho meet assist and transfer to hotel. Later explore the Western and Eastern temples of khajuraho while your guide explains the intricate meaning and legends behind each describable sculpture. Night stay in Khajuraho.

Day 06 / Khajuraho - Jhansi (By road) enroute visitng Orchha Jhansi - Agra (By fast air-conditioned train)
After breakfast drive to Jhansi to board the fast air-conditioned train to Agra. Enroute visiting Orchha - a historical site with magnificient temples and monuments. Some of the palaces were decorated with painted murals which represent the finest flowering of the Bundela school of painting. In the afternoon transfer to raiwlay station to board the air-conditioned train to Agra. On arrival in Agra meet assist at railway station and transfer to hotel. Night stay in agra.

Day 07 / Agra
At Sunrise visit the magnificent Taj Mahal - one of the seven wonders of the world surely the most extravagant _expression of love ever created. 20,000 men laboured for over 17 years to build this memorial to Shah Jahan's beloved wife. Later also visit the Agra fort - the rusty and majestic red-sandstone fort of Agra stands on the banks of the river Yamuna and the construction was started by Emperor Akbar in 1566. At the Diwan-I-Am (hall of public audience), a colonnaded hall of red-sandstone with a throne alcoveof inlaid marble at the back, the Emperor heard public petitions. At the Diwan-I-Khas (hall of private audience) where marble pavilions with floral inlays lend an ethereal ambience, the Emperor sat on his gem-studded Peacock Throne and met foreign ambassadors and rulers of friendly kingdoms. Night stay in agra.

Day 08 / Agra - Jaipur ( By road Approx 5 Hrs) enroute visiting Fatehpur Sikri
Early morning a second visit to Taj Mahal at sunrise , Later drive to Jaipur-the fabled “pink city” of the desert named after Jai Singh, the former Maharaja of Jaipur. This is the only city in the world symbolizing the nine divisions of the universe through the nine rectangular sectors subdividing it. The palaces and forts of the yesteryears, which were witnesses to the royal processions and splendours are now living monuments enroute visiting Fatehpur Sikri-a perfectly preserved red sandstone “ghost town" which was the estranged capital of mughal emperor Akbar, built in 1569 and deserted when its water supply failed. Arrive Jaipur in late evening & transfer to hotel. Night stay in Jaipur.

Day 09 / Jaipur
After a relaxed breakfast proceed for a morning excursion to Amber Fort. Elephant ride ascent to the fort.
AMBER FORT PALACE - Amber is the classic romantic Rajasthani fort palace. Its construction was started by Man Singh I in 1592, and completed by his descendent Jai Singh I. Its forbidding exterior belies an inner paradise where a beautiful fusion of Mughal and Hindu styles finds it's ultimate expression. Continue sight-seeing.
CITY PALACE - A delightful blend of Mughal and traditional Rajasthani architecture, the City Palace sprawls over one-seventh of the area in the walled city. It houses the Chandra Mahal, Shri Govind Dev Temple and the City Palace Museum.
JANTAR MANTAR - This is the largest and the best preserved of the five observatories built by Jai Singh II in different parts of the country. This observatory consisting of outsized astronomical instruments is still in use.
HAWA MAHAL - The ornamental facade of this "Palace of Winds" is a prominent landmark in Jaipur. Their five-storey structures of sandstone plastered pink encrusted with fine trelliswork and elaborate balconies. The palace has 953 niches and windows. Built in 1799 by Pratap Singh, the Mahal was a royal grandstand for the palace women. Evening transfer to railway station to board the air conditioned train to Delhi, Dinner in the train. Arrive Delhi & transfer to hotel. Night stay in Jaipur.

Day 10 / Jaipur - Udaipur ( By flight )
Morning transfer to airport to board the flight to Udaipur- known as the most romantic city of India. It is interspersed with shimmering lakes, marble palaces and fountains. The City Palace is the largest of its kind. It is remarkable for its octagonal towers, brilliant multicolor mosaics of peacocks inlaid in tiles, inlaid mirror work and exquisite paintings. On arrival in Udaipur meet assist at airport and tyransfer to hotel. Later proceed for city sightseeing of Udaipur cpvering Sahelion ki Bari is fascinating garden-adorned by Lotus pool, a marble throne and finely sculptured cenotaphs, City Palace, Jagdish Temple. Evening enjoy boat ride on Lake Pichola. Night stay in Udaipur.

Day 11 / Udaipur - Mumbai ( Previuos name was Bombay) ( By flight )
After breakfast transfer to airport to board the flight to Mumbai. On arrival in Mumbai meet assist and transfer to hotel. Later in the afternoon city tour will include Hanging Gardens, Tower of Silence, Kamla Nehru Park, Gateway of India, National Museum and Crawford Market. Night stay in Mumbai.

Day 12 / Mumbai ( Elephanta caves excursion )
After breakfast, you will take a boat excursion to Elephanta Caves- the 7th century cave temples carved out of a hill rising from the Arabian Sea. Rest of teh day at leisure. Night stay in Mumbai.

Day 13 / Mumbai - Bangalore ( By flight )
After breakfast transfer to Mumbai airport to board the flight to Bangalore. On arrival in Bangalore meet assist and transfer to hotel. Later proceed to visit the city of Gardens: You will see Vidhan Sudha – It houses the State's Legislature and Secretariat, Nandi Temple - One of Oldest temple, popularly known as the Bull temple, etc. Night stay in Banglore.

Day 14 / Bangalore - Mysore
After breakfast go to the exclusive locales of Mysore enroute visiting Sirangapatnam - capital of warrior – King Hyder Ali & his son Tipu Sultan, has magnificent monuments that are well worth a visit. Set & refresh in hotel then go to visit Mysore Palace : Once the residence of the Woodeyars, Built in 1912 in the Indo – Saracenic style, this palace exudes a grandeur that is unmatched. The Golden royal Elephant, the Durbar hall. Night stay in Mysore.

Day 15 / Mysore
After breakfast, visit the places you must have been longing to visit: Sir Jayachamarajendra Art Gallery – Housed in the Jag Mohan Palace, this gallery has a collection of exquisite paintings dating back to 1875. St. Phenomena's Church – Built in the Gothic style, one of the largest churches of the country. Chamundi Hills – Right on the top of the hill, Brindavan Gardens – Witness the exuberant beauty of Brindavan Gardens. Night stay in Mysore.

Day 16 / Mysore - Hasan - Belure and Halibed Temples ( By road ) Approx. 3hrs. drive
After breakfast drive to Hasan. Lord Fergusson, an authority on Indian architecture, observes 'There are many buildings in India which are unsurpassed for delicacy of detail by any in the world, but the temple of Belure surpasses even these for freedom of handling and richness of fancy'. The virtuosity of Indian sculptors reached its peak at the temples of Belure and Halebid. This morning we will explore these majestic monuments. Night stay at Hassan.

Day 17 / Hassan - Bangalore ( By road ) Approx. 3hrs. drive
After breakfast drive to Bangalore. Enroute visiting Sravanbelgola. On arrival in Bangalore transfer to hotel. Rest of the day at leisure. Night stay in Bangalore.

Day 18 / Bangalore - Cochin ( By flight )
Morning transfer to airport to board the flight to Cochin, the picturesque seaport on the palm-fringed coast of Arabian Sea, laced with inland waterways and tropical lagoons. On arrival in Cochin meet assist at airport and transfer to hotel. Rest of the day at leisure. Visit local markets etc. Night stay in Cochin.

Day 19 / Cochin
After breakfast proceed for sightseeing tour of cochin including .
1. The Hill Palace Museum, a fully-fledged archeological museum and Kerala's first ever Heritage Museum are the main attractions (closed on Mondays).
2. Chinese Fishing Nets, this unique style of huge cantilevered fishing nets were erected between 1350 and 1450 AD by traders
from the Court of Kubla Khan, a Chinese King.
3. Santa Cruz Basilica, this historic church was built by the Portuguese and elevated to a Cathedral by Pope Paul IV in 1558. Pope John Paul II proclaimed the Church a Basilica in 1984.
4. The Jewish Synagogue, constructed in 1568, this is the oldest Synagogue in the Commonwealth (closed on Saturdays & Jewish Holidays). The area around the Synagogue, called Jew Town, is the centre for Spice & Handicraft shops.
5. Mattanchery Palace (Dutch Palace), built by the Portuguese in 1557 and presented to the Regent of Kochi (closed on Fridays). Return to hotel rest of the day free/ shopping at Ernakulam. Night stay in Cochin.

Day 20 / Cochin - Kumarakom Backwaters ( By road )
After breakfast drive to Kumarakom is an island nestled between Vembanad Lake and backwaters in the lush green Kerala. The day is spent on a boat cruising the backwaters visiting palm fringed villages, rural areas and a sanctuary, which is home to thousand of migrating birds. Night stay in Houseboat at Kumarakom.

Day 21 / Kumarakom - Cochin ( By road ) / Cochin - Chennai ( By flight )
After breakfast drive to Cochin to board the flight to Chennai. On arrival in Chennai meet assist at airport and transfer to hotel. Rest of the day at leisure. Night stay in Chennai.

Day 22 / Chennai
After breakfast proceed for city sightseeing of Chennai covering St.Thomas Church, Kapaleshwar Temple, Fort St. George and drive pass the Marina Beach. Night stay in Chennai.

Day 23 / Chennai (Madras) - Mahabalipuram
After breakfast drive to Mahabalipuram is famous for its rock cut shore temples and monolithic figures in Dravidian architecture. After touring the Five Rathas, Mahisaura and Krishna Mandapams we will proceed to Kanchipuram, the city of woven silk and temples. Night stay in Mahabalipuram.

DAY 24 / Mahabalipuram - Chennai - Departure
Transfer to Chennai airport to board the flight back to your home.
for onward journey.

 
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