Day 01 : Delhi
Arrive Delhi in the evening. Transfer to Hotel by private vehicle. The capital of modern India, 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 city's past.
Day 02 : Delhi
After breakfast, full day city tour of Delhi. Visit Jama Masjid, the largest mosque in India ; the massive 17th century Red Fort ; walk through the colourful bazaars of Chandni Chowk. Rajghat, memorial of Mahatma Gandhi. Drive past India Gate - a war memorial, President's House & the Parliament. Visit the UNESCO Word Heritage Sites : Humayuns Tomb : built in mid 16th century this is an early example of Mughal architecture ; Qutub Minar, at 120 meters, is the tallest brick minaret in the world. The tour ends with a visit to Laxmi Narayan Temple.
Day 03 : Delhi - Varanasi
(Flight : 6E-308 : 0900 - 1020 hrs.)
After breakfast, transfer to the airport to board flight for 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 world's most ancient. Arrive Varanasi and transfer to prebooked hotel.
Afternoon, excursion to Sarnath, the buried Buddhist city where Buddha preached his first sermon. After attaining enlightenment at Bodh Gaya the Buddha went to Sarnath and it was here that he preached his first discourse in the deer park to set in motion the 'Wheel of the Dharma'. It is one of the most holy sites as in this place the stream of the Buddha's teaching first flowed. Sarnath was a renowned school of learning from 16th century BC to 12th century AD. Visit the ruins, the stupa, the Buddhist temple & the museum (closed on Fridays). At the museum is the Ashok Pillar with its four guardian lions, used as independent India's national emblem.
Day 04 : Varanasi - Agra
(Flight : AI-406 : 1220 - 1350 hrs. : Monday, Wednesday, Saturday)
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, sightseeing of Varanasi, 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.
Transfer to the airport to board flight for Agra. Arrive Agra and transfer to prebooked hotel.
Later, sightseeing of Agra. Visit the highlight of the day, The Taj Mahal, which was constructed by Shah Jahan in memory of his wife Mumtaz Mahal. Construction of the Taj began in 1631 and was not completed until 1653.
Visit the impressive Agra 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 structures.
Day 05 : Agra - Fatehpur Sikri - Jaipur
(240 kms, 05 hrs.)
Morning, drive to Jaipur enroute visit the abandoned Mughal city of Fatehpur Sikri : built by Emperor Akbar in 1569, was the old capital of the Mughals, which was abandoned after 15 years due to scarcity of water. See the graceful buildings including the Jama Masjid, Tomb of Salim Chisti, Panch Mahal & other Palaces which are still preserved in its original glory.
Continue drive to Jaipur, the capital city of the state of Rajasthan also know as "Pink City" owes its name, its foundation and planning to the great warrior astronomer Maharaja Jai Singh II. The city of Jaipur has broad avenues. The city sits on a dry lake bed in a wild and somewhat arid landscape, surrounded by barren hills surmounted by fortresses and crenellated walls. Upon arrival, check-in at prebooked Hotel.
Day 06 : Jaipur
After breakfast, excursion to Amber Fort enroute witness the façade of Hawa Mahal or the Palace of Winds which was built in 1799. Amber Fort, the ancient capital of the state until 1727 when Jai Singh decided to move from his hillside fortress at Amber to new site on the plains. The construction of this fort began in 1592 by Raja Man Singh, the Rajput commander of Akbar's army. The fort is a superb example of Rajput architecture, stunningly situated on a hillside and overlooking a lake which reflects its terraces and ramparts. Visit the Jagmandir or the hall of victory glittering with mirrors, Jal Mahal & temple of Kali. Ascend on elephant back, the hill, on which the fort is situated.
Afternoon, city tour of Jaipur. Visit the Jantar Mantar, the observatory built by Jai Singh in 1728; the City Palace which is a blend of Rajasthani and Mughal architecture. It also has a museum with an extensive collection of art, carpets, paintings, enamel ware and weapons dating back to the 15th century.
Day 07 : Jaipur - Delhi
(260 kms., 5 hrs. drive)
Morning free for individual activities.
Afternoon drive to Delhi. Upon arrival, check-in at prebooked hotel.
Day 08 : Delhi - Kathmandu
(Flight : 6E-31 : 1150 - 1345 hrs.)
After breakfast, transfer to the airport to board flight for Kathmandu. Arrive Kathmandu, transfer to prebooked hotel.
Day 09 : Kathmandu
Morning, sightseeing of Kathmandu city. Visit Durbar Square, the heart of Kathmandu, built between 12th to 18th centuries. This site displays brilliant architectural structures and comprises within itself numerous fortresses, temples, religious shrines, figurines, fountains, etc.
Swayambhunath, is an ancient religious architecture atop a hill. The Swayambhunath complex consists of a stupa, a variety of shrines and temples.
In the afternoon, excursion to Patan, located about 5 km south of Kathmandu, on the southern side of the Bagmati River, Patan is one of 3 royal cities in the valley. A destination for connoisseurs of fine arts, Patan is filled with wood and stone carvings, metal statues, ornate architecture, including dozens of Buddhist and Hindu temples, and over 1200 monuments.
Day 10 : Kathmandu
Morning, visit Pashupatinath, the temple serves as the seat of the national deity, Lord Pashupatinath.This temple complex is on UNESCO World Heritage Sites's list Since 1979. This "extensive Hindu temple precinct" is a "sprawling collection of temples, ashrams, images and inscriptions raised over the centuries along the banks of the sacred Bagmati river.
Boudhanath, the ancient Stupa is one of the largest in the world. The influx of large populations of refugees from Tibet has seen the construction of over 50 Tibetan Gompas (Monasteries) around Boudhanath. As of 1979, Boudhanath is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Bhaktapur, is an ancient city & has the best preserved palace courtyards and old city center in Nepal, and is listed as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO for its rich culture, temples, and wood, metal and stone artworks. Bhaktapur is still an untouched as well as preserved ancient city that is itself a world to explore for tourists.
Day 11 : Kathmandu - Delhi
(Flight : 9W-259 : 1645 - 1815 hrs.)
After breakfast, transfer to the airport to board flight for Delhi. Arrive Delhi & board onward/return flight.