Join us on a Rajput Extravaganza - the ultimate trip through the Land of the Rajput Kings with the unique opportunity to experience the exciting spectacle of the Jaisalmer Desert Festival. As the drums of Rajasthan beat out aloud, brightly adorned elephants with their mahouts and tassel laden camels and riders, colourful floats, singers, dancers and marching bands will waltz on in the city's annual street parade.
Once you arrive in Delhi, you are received at the airport and transferred to your hotel in the city. For remaining of day, you are free to relax or explore vibrant Delhi. Overnight - Delhi
This morning, our Welcome Meeting takes place. We'll then enjoy a full day sightseeing tour of Delhi, visiting Jama Masjid - India's oldest and largest Mosque, Raj Ghat - the site of Gandhi's cremation, government buildings, the tallest minaret in India- Qutab Minar, Humayun's Tomb and Many more. Tonight, we enjoy a ‘Group Namaste Dinner’ at a restaurant specializing in classic Indian cuisine. Overnight - Delhi (B, D)
Delhi – Shekhawati: Departing Delhi, we move to Shekhawati, a fascinating historical region in northern Rajasthan. In the 18th and 19th centuries these small towns were important trading posts, and still today boast beautiful painted mansions that were built by the wealthy merchants who lived in the town at the time. Upon arrival, check-in at the hotel and then heading out on an afternoon village walk and enjoying free time to explore the local area or simply sitting back and relax is just another part of tour. Overnight - Surajgarh (B, D)
Shekhawati Bikaner: Today we head to Bikaner, a fortified city that bears testimony to a bygone era with imposing forts and palaces, beautiful mansions and temples, camels and mesmerizing dunes. Upon arrival check-in to the hotel and later enjoy an afternoon tour taking in the best of the city. Explore the impressive red sandstone and marble Junagarh Fort, have a glimpse of camel calves at the unique Camel Breeding Farm – the largest of its kind in Asia, and browse the colourful bazaars of Downtown Bikaner. Overnight - Bikaner (B)
Bikaner – Jaisalmer: This morning, we drive through the Rajasthani Thar desert from Bikaner to Jaisalmer, a charming sandstone city scattered with exquisite wood and yellow sandstone buildings and within Jaisalmer Fort are homes, hotels and shops hidden in ancient lane ways which fuel a great excitement among tourists. En route to our destination, we stop in at the Karni Mata Rat Temple and as the name suggests this sacred site is swarming with rats, which are treated royal, following the belief that they are reincarnations of ancestors.
Upon arrival in Jaisalmer check-in to the hotel and then depart on an afternoon tour of the city. Marvel at the spectacular Jaisalmer Fort, a monumental yellow sand stone fortification that takes on a golden lustrous glow in the afternoon sun, giving the city the nickname ‘The Golden City’; visit one of the largest and most elaborate mansions in the city, Patwon ki Haveli, which stands five stories tall and features beautiful carvings; move to Maharaja Palace Museum, set within the Jaisalmer Fort's main square; and discover the seven yellow sandstone Jain temples. Overnight - Jaisalmer (B)
Jaisalmer: Today we have a wonderful opportunity to experience the exciting Golden City's Grand Parade. As the drums of Rajasthan beat out aloud, brightly adorned elephants with their mahouts and tassel laden camels and riders, colourful floats, singers, dancers and marching bands will waltz on by in the city's annual street parade. On a Bright and early Morning, we take a guided tour of the Jaisalmer Fort. Afterward, we'll wait in readiness at the First Gate of Mammoth Stone Fort. Here, with the honey coloured fortress as a backdrop, there will be plenty of photo opportunities as the procession marches by. Then, together we can walk in the festival and street parade as it weaves its way through the city streets of the Rajputs and reaching to gates of the Town Stadium.
We will enter the stadium (scheduled to arrive at 12 noon) and watch the festival events for an hour or so before continue with our city sightseeing tour (time permitting). It is worth finding out where the longest moustache and turban tying competitions are being held. A fascinating and enjoyable part of the festive activities. Later in the afternoon after time to freshen up and have some lunch we enjoy a camel ride across the vast, rolling sand dunes of the desert. Overnight - Jaisalmer (B, D)
Jaisalmer – Jodhpur: Today an interesting drive through increasingly varied scenery takes us to Jodhpur, a town at the edge of the mighty Thar Desert. Dominated by Meherangarh Fort, which sits majestically atop a hill, Jodhpur is known as ‘The Blue City’. This is because of the coloured houses in the old town, painted indigo. We'll enjoy some tour in this colourful Rajasthani city, taking in the mighty fort and bazaars of the old city which are gathered around the city's tall clock tower. Overnight - Jodhpur (B)
Jodhpur – Pushkar: This morning we make our way towards Pushkar, where we will enjoy a pleasant afternoon exploring this tiny tranquil town and important pilgrimage site. Visit the revered Pushkar Lake; explore the Braham Temple and explore the town bazaar; enjoy the rest of the day at your own leisure. Overnight - Pushkar (B, D)
Pushkar – Jaipur: Today drive to Jaipur for a day in free time. This city is the place to shop until you drop, so if you fancy a bit of retail therapy, be sure to do it here. Go for Shopping for Jootis (traditional Rajasthani curled shoes), Jaipur's famous blue potteries, textiles and handicrafts around the City Palace or Hawa Mahal. Be sure to explore the Johari Bazaar in the Old Pink City which is great for shopping. In 1876, Maharaja Ram Singh had the entire old city swathed in pink paint! Not as mad as it seems, as pink is a colour in India associated with hospitality. The new paint job was completed in time for a regal visit by the Prince of Wales (later King Edward VII), a tradition that has been maintained. Overnight - Jaipur (B)
An early start takes us to the Amber Fort, located just outside the city limits. Once considered as the ancient capital of Jaipur State, construction of this fort/palace was started in 1592 by Maharaja Man Singh, the Rajput commander of Akbar's army. The fort is stunningly situated atop a hill. We'll ascend the road leading to the palace in princely style, aboard Indian elephants - subject to regulations/availability as the elephants are limited to the number of trips that can make up the fort each day. We explore the richly decorated palace admiring how kings and queens once lived.
En route to the City Palace, we'll pass through Hawa Mahal – the Palace of the Winds. Although little more than an impressive façade, it is one of the city's landmarks. The 5-storey building which overlooks the main street of the bustling old city is a stunning example of Rajput architecture with its pink, delicately honeycombed sandstone windows.
We visit the City Palace, a blend of Rajasthani and Mughal architecture. A part of the palace has been converted into a museum, which has an impressive collection of arts, carpets, enamelware and weaponry. Just over the road, (look out for the snake charmers that dot our route). From the City Palace, it’s time to move to Jantar Mantar, an astronomical observatory built by Jai Singh in 1728. Of the five observatories he built, this is the largest and best preserved. At first glance, Jantar Mantar resembles a sculpture park, though in fact, each construction has a specific scientific purpose. Some measure the positions of stars, whilst others calculate eclipses, the lunar calendar and simply the time of day. Even today, most of the constructions remain accurate! Overnight - Jaipur (B)
Jaipur - Agra – Delhi: Departing Jaipur, we drive to Agra, once India's Mughal capital. En route, visit the deserted city of Fatehpur Sikri and see the elegant architecture of Jama Masjid, the Tomb of Salim Chishti, the Panch Mahal Palace and many more.
The Taj Mahal, described as the most extravagant monument ever constructed for love, is a fine example of Mughal architecture built by Emperor Shah Jahan in memory of his beloved second wife ‘Mumtaz Mahal’, who died tragically during childbirth. Built entirely of white marble, construction began in 1631, the year in which Mumtaz died, and was not completed until 1653. A staggering total of 20,000 workers contributed their skills, in the construction of this unique mausoleum.
After our visit to the Taj Mahal, we head to Agra Fort for a short tour. Behind its colossal walls are some of the finest Mughal buildings in India. Construction of the fort was commenced during the reign of Emperor Akbar and additions were made subsequently till the rule of his grandson Shah Jahan. During Akbar's time, it was primarily a military fort though later the focus shifted and it partially became a palace. After our tour, there is a visit to a marble craftshop and then it’s time to relax at the hotel. In the evening head back to the Taj Mahal for a wonderful sunset view.
On day 12 in the early hours of the morning there will be an optional visit to the Taj Mahal to marvel at the beauty of the palace at sunrise. Later, we drive to Delhi and upon arrival; we'll enjoy a guided tour of Delhi's impressive ‘Red Fort’. You can opt to join us on this tour or spend the afternoon relaxing at our hotel. Overnight - Agra (1), Delhi (1) (B:2)
Delhi: Saying goodbye to our newly found friends, our tour ends. It’s time to hotel check-out and onward journey to airport. (B)
Name: Joggan Jaisalmer Camp.
Bank Name - Axis Bank
Account No.- 917020070831464
IFSC Code- UTIB0002447
Cancellation policy – 30 days Tax – Exclusive