Experience first-hand the beautiful culture, landscape and sights of intoxicating India. The best way to begin to understand the mysteries of this dynamic destination is to explore it’s abundance of monuments, from ancient temple cities to elaborate palaces and mosques. You can rely on expert guides, luxury accommodations and delicious cuisine along the way. You’ll conclude this epic itinerary at the Kahna National Park, a tiger conservation area. A range of activities will provide you the opportunity to observe the impressive creatures that lay claim to this unspoiled bamboo wilderness. No matter which experience is at the top of your list, India’s attraction is undeniable.
Days 1 & 2: The Lodhi, New Delhi, India
After a warm greeting at the airport, relax post-flight in your Lodhi Room with Pool. The next morning enjoy a scrumptious breakfast then take a rickshaw ride in Chandni Chowk, once the grandest markets in India. In Chandni Chowk, visit the Jama Masjid, which is the Friday congregational mosque, known as the largest and glorious mosque in India. The last architectural extravaganza of the Mughal Emperor Shahjahan, the mosque was built 1656 AD. Following lunch, drive past Rashtrapati Bhavan, India Gate and the Old Secretariat to visit the Qutub Minar, which is the world’s tallest brick minaret, and Humayun’s Tomb, the first garden-tomb in the Indian subcontinent, is located in Nizamuddin East. The complex was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1993.
Day 3: Oberoi Amervilas, Agra, India
Begin the day with an exciting 3-hour journey to Agra. The city is famous for handicrafts products such as inlaid marble, carpets, jewelry, saris and embroidery work. You’ll be chauffeured to the red sandstone Agra Fort for a guided tour of notable buildings including the Pearl Mosque, the Diwan-e-Am and Diwan-e-Khas, the mirrored palace, and Musamman Burj. Relax after lunch in your architecturally inspired hotel, just 600 meters from the Taj Mahal. Accommodations are in a Premier Room with Balcony. In late afternoon, enjoy a guided tour of Taj Mahal by sunset.
Days 4 & 5: Rambagh Palace, Jaipur
After breakfast, your adventure begins. A 5-hour car journey includes a quick stop at the ancient abandoned city of Fatehpur Sikri. Upon arrival at Jaipur, check into your amazing hotel, once home to princes and emperors. Accommodation is in a Palace Room. Morning brings a visit to the stunning Amber Fort built all in white marble and red sandstone. Take a brief drive to Dera Amer to enjoy lunch and an elephant ride. In the afternoon, visit City Palace, Observatory Tower and Hawa Mahal. The City Palace, a wonderful combination of Mughal and Rajput forms of architecture, is now a museum housing miniature paintings, manuscripts, Mughal carpets, musical instruments, royal costumes and weapons, giving invaluable insight into Jaipur’s royal past.
Days 6 & 7: Oberoi Udaivilas, Udaipur, India
Enjoy an outstanding lunch at Bijay Niwas Palace on your drive to Udaipur. Delicate, feminine and elegant, Udaipur is known by many names – City of Sunrise, Jewel of Mewar and City of Lakes. Undoubtedly one of India’s most romantic cities, it nestles between the glassy waters of its famous lakes and the ancient Aravalli Hills. Although it is one of Rajasthan’s largest cities, modern Udaipur manages to retain a charming small town vibe.
Upon arrival, you will check in to the Oberoi Udaivilas. Accommodation is in a Premier Room. Adorning the banks of Lake Pichola and standing witness to the historic City Palace, the Oberoi Udaivilas captures all the romance and splendour of a royal era. Rooms with terraces that open on to semi-private swimming pools present exquisite views and are a unique feature of Udaivilas. Magnificently decorated suites with private swimming pools and outdoor dining pavilions are exclusive retreats.
The next morning after breakfast, visit the City Palace, home to the maharajas of Udaipur. A pearl of marble and vibrant mosaics, it is marvelous example of the attention to detail and the exemplary workmanship of the Rajasthani artisans. Visit the crystal gallery that has an extraordinary collection of objects, including a crystal bedroom set. Then admire the Jagdish Temple and Sahelion Ki Bari. Later drive to Eklingji, located 45 minutes to the north. It is a complex of 108 ancient temples, carved of sandstone and marble.
In the evening, enjoy a boating tour of Lake Pichola, which is fringed with temples and ghats (steps). In the center of the lake is Jag Mandir Island, which commands magnificent views of the City Palace. The palace and pavilion are built of yellow sandstone inlaid with marble.
Days 8 – 11: Banjaar Tola Kanha Tented Camp, Kanha, India
After an early breakfast you will be chauffeured to Udaipur Airport for your connecting flight to Mumbai and then on to Raipur. On arrival at Raipur, you will be met by your driver for a 4.5 hour drive to Kanha National Park. Prime tiger wilderness, Kanha National Park was one of the first areas to be protected under Project Tiger, and remains a renowned conservation area. This picturesque reserve boasts the ideal habitat for both tigers and their prey. Lush sal and bamboo forests are interspersed with vast grassy meadows known as maidans, while the Banjaar River, which forms the park’s southwestern border, provides a steady water source for the abundant wildlife.
Upon arrival at Kanha, you will check in at &Beyond’s Banjaar Tola Tented Camp. Overlooking the lush forests and grassy meadows of Kanha National Park, at Banjaar Tola Kanha Tented Camp you are one with the environment. Admire stunning river views from the privacy of your own veranda or share the experiences of the day on dramatic decks facing the Banjaar River. Accommodation is in luxury tents with ensuite facilities. Your stay is on full board basis with schedule game drives.
Explore the sal and bamboo forests of Kanha National Park on early morning and afternoon game drives in an open 4×4 safari vehicle. A trained naturalist will accompany you throughout, pointing out and explaining details about the fascinating animals and plants of the jungle. Your early morning drive enters the park as the dawn is breaking over the jungle.
Explore the meadows, or maidans, where scores of grazing herbivores attract tiger, leopard and wild dog to the edges of the clearings. On an afternoon drive, the wildlife is settling down for the night or having a final drink at the Banjaar River or the many perennial streams that run through the park. Watch out for the elusive leopard and listen to the calling of jackal getting ready for the hunt.
Day 12: Departure
After an early morning game drive, drive to Raipur Airport (approximately 4 hours) for your flight to Delhi. Upon arrival, you will be chauffeured to the international airport for flights to your onward destination.