Day 1: Arrive at Delhi
- most flights arrive either in the evening or at night. Our services begin here. You are greeted at the airport by an Easy Tours Travel Facilitator or your Tour Director, and ushered to a chauffeur driven vehicle. You are then driven to your hotel where you are assisted with your check-in. The next day’s plans are briefly reviewed and you are presented with your welcome package. Among other things, this package includes a beautiful handcrafted journal for your explorations, travel documents such as your air tickets and hotel vouchers, as well as copies of documents (such as our General Travel Guide) that were sent to you earlier.
Day 2: Delhi
. (B,L,D) Start your exploration
of India with a guided city tour of Old Delhi. You will be introduced to the other members of your group and your Tour Director prior to beginning this excursion. Drive, walk and ride through the ancient city’s streets and alleys; explore crowded and colorful bazaars. This excursion includes a visit to an oasis of calm and
serenity, the cremation site of Mahatma Gandhi. Raj Ghat is a simple yet stirring memorial to the father of the nation. Lush lawns extend beyond the enclosure surrounding the black marble platform occupying the spot where the Mahatma was cremated. An eternal flame burns next to the platform. Continue on to the amazing Red Fort. The great city
inside the massive sandstone walls of the Red Fort offers visitors a large number of architectural and historical attractions; it was once known as the 8th wonder of the world. The Red Fort was the seat of the Mughal Empire for more than two hundred and fifty years and is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. It is an amazing example of a blend of Persian, Indian and European architecture. The Red Fort was finished a decade before your next destination, the Jama Masjid (1650 A.D.), the largest mosque in India. Both structures were built by Shah Jahan, the emperor who created the Taj Mahal. To reach the mosque you will experience a fascinating rickshaw ride in the crowded streets and colorful bazaar at Chandni Chowk. The Masjid (Mosque) is a magnificent example of Mughal architecture and is constructed of red sandstone and white marble. It is an active place of worship and its courtyard can hold 25,000 worshippers. The mosque visit will be followed by a fascinating walk through the ancient spice and street food market of Chandni Chowk.
A very special lunch
is included today at the Curzon Room
of the historic Oberoi Maidens Hotel. This boutique fine dining restaurant has understated historic charm and you will have delicious options between a set vegetarian or non-vegetarian meal.
Afternoon - enjoy a city tour
of New Delhi. This excursion begins with the magnificent Bangla Sahib Gurudwara (a gold domed Sikh Temple). This is Sikhism’s shrine, and people of all religions are welcome here. Of particular interest is the daily langar (meal), a massive enterprise where volunteers prepare and serve hundreds thousands of pilgrims free meals. You now continue on a drive through Lutyens’ New Delhi, starting with Connaught Place, Delhi’s historic British era marketplace and the surrounding commercial buildings. This drive will include photo opportunities at some of the following attractions - the exterior of the massive and awe-inspiring Rashtrapati Bhawan (known as Viceroy’s House during the British era), as well as Delhi’s landmark structure India Gate. After exploring Lutyens’ New Delhi you will be driven to visit the magnificent tomb of the Mughal Emperor Humayun.
Delhi has such an abundance
of amazing monuments that this Tomb Complex (1562 A.D.) does not quite get the acclaim that it deserves. It is one of Delhi’s three UNESCO World Heritage Site and its unique architecture and the elaborate gardens that surround it will captivate you. After exploring the tomb you will be driven to visit the awe-inspiring Qutab Minar (1193 A.D.). This 239-foot tall medieval tower is a symbol of victory and a beautiful example of Persian architecture from that period. There is a winding stairway inside the tower that goes up all the way to the balcony at the very top of the tower - unfortunately the staircase is no longer accessible to visitors. The Qutab Minar and its Monuments are also a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Within the Qutab complex
, amidst the ruins of the Quwat-ul-Islam Mosque, stands one of the legendary Ashoka Pillars. This large iron pillar has withstood the ravages of Delhi’s weather (and recent pollution) and has not rusted in more than 1500 years.
you are driven to the home of an affluent Delhi family. This is a well-traveled couple and the lady of the house is an accomplished chef who likes to share her culinary prowess with visitors. During the evening you will get the opportunity to converse about life in India’s capital with the couple, and participate as your meal is being prepared. It will be a delicious multicourse Indian meal, along with an interactive cooking experience preparing three different Indian dishes. You can choose to forego the cooking lesson and just enjoy the end results. Your hosts will be happy to share their recipes with you. At the end of dinner you will be driven back to your hotel.
Day 3: Delhi - Agra. (B,L,D)
You are assisted with your checkout from your hotel in the morning after an early breakfast and driven to Agra on North India’s newest highway. Start your exploration
of Agra with a
visit to the famous tomb of Itmad-Ud-Daulah. This memorial was built by the Mughal Emperor Jehangir’s queen as a memorial to her father. The tombs sheer beauty will surprise you - the only reason it does not get more accolades is because it shares the stage with the incomparable Taj Mahal. Like the Taj it has amazingly intricate ‘Pietra Dura’ inlay and lattice marble screens. The mausoleum rests in a walled garden with a view of the river Yamuna. Constructed in the year 1628, most historians believe that its design provided the inspiration for the Taj Mahal.
Next you will visit the first red sandstone fort of North India, the Agra Fort. It was built in 1565 by India’s greatest Mughal ruler, Emperor Akbar. Its royal audience halls, immense stone courtyards, marble mosque and the private royal chambers give us a glimpse of the grandeur of the Mughal Empire.
There is a break
for a late lunch at a local restaurant.
After lunch you will be driven to your hotel, where you are assisted with check in. You can relax and enjoy your hotel’s facilities for a little while.
Later visit one of the Seven Wonders of the World
, the incomparable Taj Mahal. The world’s greatest monument dedicated to love is obviously a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The Taj Mahal was completed by Emperor Shah Jahan in 1653 AD as a memorial to his beloved queen, Mumtaz Mahal. This spectacular white marble mausoleum was created by about 22,000 skilled craftsmen and it took twenty two years to complete. When you experience the Taj Mahal with an Easy Tours Guide and have them provide unique insights into its innumerable facets, some of their passion for this masterpiece may rub off on you! Explore the amazing Taj and its surroundings until it is time to admire the sun’s rays setting on the facade of the world’s finest monument.
Dinner is at your hotel this evening.
Agra’s artists are famous
for their inlaid marble creations.
Day 4: Agra - Jaipur. (B,L,D)
You can either sleep in or choose to enjoy an optional sunrise visit to the Taj Mahal (entry fee surcharge applies). If you select this option, you will return to your hotel to freshen up after the excursion. A packed lunch is provided from your hotel is provided for your upcoming journey.
You are assisted
with your checkout from your hotel and then you are driven to Fatehpur Sikri
. Enjoy a guided exploration of this beautiful uninhabited city. It was built by Emperor Akbar between 1570 and 1585 A.D. and is constructed primarily out of red sandstone. The Emperor moved his capital from Agra to this city and then, a few years later, abandoned it, returning back to Agra. Visit the tallest gateway in the world, the towering Bulund Darwaza (The Gate of Victory). In the northern part of the courtyard is the superb white marble tomb of Shaik Salim Chishti, built in 1570.
Continue on with
your journey to Jaipur. You are assisted with your check in at your hotel upon your arrival at Jaipur.
Dinner is at your hotel this evening.
Jaipur is famous
for its carpets, jewelry and handicrafts.
Day 5: Jaipur. (B,L,D)
Start your day with an excursion to the Amber Fort and Palace, located a short distance from the walled city. Just like the Emperors of a few centuries ago, enjoy the ascent up to the
ramparts of the fort on top of a colorfully caparisoned elephant (Jeeps are available instead of the elephants, if you so desire). The massive Fort complex was originally built by Raja Mansingh and is one of India’s finest examples of Rajput architecture. Explore the chambers and hallways, which are famous for their exquisite designs and handcrafted embellishments. Return to the valley beneath the Fort on your elephant or jeep and proceed back to the Pink City.
There is a break for lunch
at one of Jaipur’s premier restaurants.
Enjoy a city tour of the walled city of Jaipur, including the magnificent City Palace. Visit Jantar Mantar (UNESCO World Heritage Site), the magnificent stone observatory built by Raja Jai Singh in 1728. After the observatory comes a photo opportunity of the Hawa Mahal (Palace of the Wind). This intriguing facade was built in 1799 so that the ladies of the court could use its unique windows and observe the bustling bazaar without being visible to the people on the streets. Continue the tour with an exploration of the City Palace, the former royal residence (a part of it is still occupied by the Royal family and is not accessible to the public), built in a blend of Rajasthani and Mughal architectural styles. This immense complex also houses a number of museums that offer a large and impressive collection of costumes, armory and miniature paintings. During this afternoon you can take a stroll with your guide through the “pink” bazaar in the heart of the old town, and watch the locals as they bargain for their everyday necessities. You will also enjoy a brief stop for a tour of a collection of Rajput turbans. A turban tying demonstration is included, as are turban and Sari tying lessons.
You are escorted to a local restaurant where you will enjoy a cultural show with ethnic performances while you have dinner.
Day 6: Jaipur - Delhi - International Flight. (B,L)
You are at leisure this morning to enjoy the facilities of your hotel. You are assisted with your check out from your hotel by noon and driven to Delhi airport. A packed lunch is provided from your hotel for this journey. Most international flights depart from Delhi very late at night or in the very early hours of the morning. Upon your arrival at Delhi airport you will be met by a representative of Eaton Smart Hotel. The representative will assist you with your check in to the hotel located inside the international terminal. Please note that you will only be able to take your carry-on baggage into your room - your checked baggage will have to stay in the hotel’s storage facilities. Your room has been reserved for a stay up to 6 hours; extensions can be arranged (corresponding surcharge will apply) with prior request based on your flight departure timing. At the appropriate time for your international flight check-in an Eaton Smart representative will assist with your check out and escort you to your check-in counter for your international flight.
Our services end at Delhi airport.