Tailor-made Tour 10 days from £6195 per person

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  Places Visited: Mumbai, Vadodara, Udaipur, Jodhpur, Ranthambore, Agra, Jaipur, Delhi

The Indian Sojourn route takes you on a journey through the unique landscapes of Maharashtra to colourful Rajasthan and on to Delhi in regal style, travelling on one of the world’s most opulent rail journeys.

The tour begins with a night’s stay at a 5-star hotel in Mumbai and ends with a night in Delhi, thereafter, you’ll sleep and eat on a specially constructed luxury train, with your cabin and gourmet meals served by liveried staff in a restaurant car, as the rugged scenery slips past your window. En route to Delhi you’ll visit the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Champaner, the forts and palace of Rajasthan, as well as a stop to visit the iconic Taj Mahal, and a chance to sight tigers in the wild.

The intention of this tour is to re-create the romantic feel of a royal ‘Shikhar’ expedition, as undertaken by the rulers of the region’s princely states in British times. Today’s rolling stock incorporates more mod cons and comforts, including air-conditioning, a gym, and a spa. Each of the 11 accommodation coaches is styled to reflect a particular era of the Deccan milieu, the cabins are luxurious and spacious, and each coach has its own valet, ensuring your every need is taken care of.

The two restaurant cars serve gourmet meals prepared on board by celebrated chefs using the impressive onboard larders and fresh ingredients sourced daily en route, and meals are served by exquisitely dressed restaurant stewards, dressed in traditional attire. The bar is the ideal spot to sample the impressive selection of wine on board, and the lounge is well-equipped with books and games to enjoy.

Holiday Types

Cultural Holidays Wildlife Holidays River Cruising Holidays Luxury Train Holidays Family Holidays Honeymoons Beach Holidays Adventure Holidays

 

Suggested itinerary

Day 1
Mumbai

On arrival in Mumbai, you’ll be met and transferred to your hotel, the Taj Mahal Palace and Tower, in the south of the city. Spend the rest of the day recovering from your journey, perhaps venturing out in the evening for a stroll around the nearby Gateway of India.

Mumbai has been India’s busiest port and industrial centre since the opening of the Suez Canal in 1969. As famous today for its traffic jams as its record-breaking movie industry, the Maharashtrian capital tends not to feature high up most visitors’ ‘must see’ list, but as a point of arrival has a lot to recommend it.

Before the last British troops garrisoned in the country slow-marched past it to board their ships back to Blighty in 1947, the Gateway of India – a huge triumphal arch in the colonial Indo-Saracenic style – was the first landmark most new arrivals from Britain set eyes on. The second was the famous Taj Mahal Hotel beside it. Both still stand tall on the waterfront, as emblematic of the city today as they were in Victorian times.

Still, more impressive monuments of the empire dominate the Kala Godha and Fort districts beyond the Gateway, among them Victoria Terminus, the world’s grandest railway station, and the white-domed Prince of Wales Museum (both nowadays renamed after the 17th century Maharashtrian warlord, Shivaji). Nearby, the vast High Court and University buildings line the palm-fringed Maidans, where cricketers in their whites play through the afternoons as commuters stream home through Churchgate Station.

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Day 2
Mumbai

Spend the morning shopping in the emporia close to your hotel, or relaxing by the pool ahead of your transfer after lunch to Victoria Terminus (now officially known as ‘CST’), where you’ll go through embarkation formalities before beginning your overnight journey to Vadodara.

Dating from 1887, Victoria Terminus was the largest and most grandiloquent building ever erected by the British in India. It was a flagrant copy of St Pancras, but in the flamboyant, hybrid ‘Indo-Sarcenic’ style beloved of the Raj’s architects. Around one million travellers pour through its giant concourses daily, bound for towns and cities across India. Unlike most of them, you’ll be pampered by porters and the smiling staff of the Deccan Odyssey train from the time of your arrival.

Once checked in, guests are treated to a ‘Welcome Aboard’ drink in the restaurant car and shown to their luxury cabins. By sunset time, the train will be clear of Mumbai’s ragged and making its way through the craggy peaks of the Western Ghat range en route to Vadodara.

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Day 3
Vadodara

Today you arrive at the Royal city of the Gaekwads, Vadodara. Visit the famous Champaner – Pavagadh Archaeological Park, a World Heritage site, the magnificent Jama Masjid and the Maharaja Fateh Singh Museum. Witness a scintillating folk dance performance, as you savour a wide array of delicacies from the Royal kitchens at the Lakshmi Villas Palace.

About an hour’s drive from Vadodara, the UNESCO World Heritage Site Champaner - Pavagadh Archaeological Park, comprises an early Islamic, pre-Mughal city whose architecture showcases the transition between the Hindu and Muslim traditions. This largely unexcavated city which has been built in the 16th century was the short-lived capital of Gujarat. The Great Mosque, Jami Masjid, boasts of a wonderful carved entrance porch that leads into a lovely courtyard, and became a model for later mosque architecture in India.

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Day 4
Udaipur

Today you’ll arrive into the Lake City of Udaipur. Take a tour of the City Palace and Crystal Gallery followed by a rejuvenating boat ride on the tranquil waters of Lake Pichola. Late in the afternoon, take an optional walking tour through the charming streets of the Old City.

The Mughal emperor, Shah Jahan, once spent a dreamy sojourn in one of the summer palaces in Udaipur, and it is said he was so taken with the beauty of the architecture that he used it as a blueprint for the Taj Mahal. Spread around the shores of shimmering Lake Pichola; the city remains an undeniably romantic spectacle, its ghats (sacred steps), whitewashed havelis and temple towers overlooked by the pale-ochre walls and domes of the exquisite City Palace.

Aside from the views over the water, the highlight for most is the palace interiors, where treasures from the royal collection are displayed amid a backdrop of ornate Rajput murals, mirrorwork and mosaics.

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Day 5
Jodhpur

After another comfortable night onboard, you’ll today find yourself in the Blue City of Jodhpur. Spend the day exploring the city and visit the imposing Mehrangarh Fort, The day will end with a barbecue in the enchanting courtyard of Mehrangarh Fort.

Mehrangarh Fort rises from the top of a sheer-sided escarpment overlooking one of the greatest spectacles in Asia: the blue-painted patchwork of rooftops and courtyards comprising Jodhpur’s old city. Enjoy a guided tour of the fort’s royal apartments and museum before a magical evening in the enchanting courtyard. 

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Day 6
Jaipur

Arrive at the historic capital of Rajasthan, Jaipur, often called the Pink City. Explore the forts and palaces with a walk through the colourful bazaars of this beautiful city.

Jaipur is a swirl of life and colour, and its numerous monuments and markets provide the focus for the day. You’ll visit the famous City Palace complex, which includes the much photographed ‘Hawa Mahal’, or ‘Palace of Winds’, a five-storey façade of elaborately screened windows from where the women of the royal household used to watch processions in the streets below.

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Day 7
Agra

Today the Deccan Odyssey arrives at the Mughal citadel of Agra. Visit the iconic Taj Mahal, the Itmad-ud-Daulah and the impressive Agra Fort.

Arriving at Agra Station, you disembark for a tour of the city in the company of a local specialist guide. The tour will start with the Taj Mahal, the Jewel of India and one of the world's great architectural wonders.  Among the first to be awarded UNESCO World Heritage status, the mausoleum was built in memory of Mumtaz Mahal, the beloved wife of Emperor Shah Jahan, in 1632. Crafted entirely of white marble and decorated in elaborate geometric forms, screens cut out of solid marble and delicate pietre dure inlay work showcasing elaborate plants, flowers and fruit, so admired by the Empress, the Taj Mahal is so perfect in its geometry and artistically accomplished that it took 22 years and over 20,000 craftsmen to complete.

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Day 8
Ranthambore National Park

Arrive into Sawai Madhopur this morning and transfer to Ranthambore National Park where you’ll spend the day. Enjoy a village walk before a wildlife safari later in the afternoon.

Ranthambore National Park was created in the 1970s to spearhead 'The Save the Tiger Project' and remains a shining example of conservation. As a result of this and several subsequent National Parks, India's Tiger population in the wild has grown from under 1000 in 1970 to over 4,500 today.   

The park lies on the margins of the Aravalli range of hills amid a tract of dry deciduous forests and grassland and offers the perfect terrain for these magnificent animals. Close to the park entrance sits a long flight of stone steps that winds up to the ramparts of a medieval fort, affording fine views over the reserve and its much-photographed lake. On your search for the Tiger, you will also get to see several other animals, including Sambar deer, Chital, Hyena and wild Boar and the elusive Nilgai, a blue-hued cow.  Around eighty Tigers currently survive in reserve, and your chances of spotting one here are better than average.

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Day 9
Delhi

This morning the train arrives into Delhi and it is time to disembark. You’ll be met off the train by a TransIndus representative who will transfer you to a hotel in Delhi for the night.

Disembark at Delhi Safdarjung Railway Station, where a Transindus representative will receive you and transfer you to your hotel. The rest of your day will be at leisure, to relax, visit museums, or secure a last-minute bargain.

Accommodation Options

Day 10
Delhi, UK

Transfer to the airport for your flight home.

Accommodation Options

Tailor-made Tour 10 days from £6195 per person


What's included

✓  07 nights’ luxury accommodation aboard the Deccan Odyssey

✓  02 nights’ luxury accommodation in Mumbai and Delhi

✓  All internal transportation and transfers

✓  Expert English-speaking guides throughout

✓  Entrance fees to sites and monuments featured

✓  Meal Plan: Full board a la carte service on board the train. Bed & Breakfast in city hotels.

✓   International Flights: We will be happy to organise international flights departing Heathrow, in economy or business class at a supplementary cost. Flight duration 8 hours.

Places and Experiences in this tour

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