Tailor-made Tour 15 days from £3594 per person
Places Visited: Delhi, Chambal, Gwalior, Orchha, Panna, Varanasi, Lucknow
No other river compares to the holy Ganges in the populations dependent upon it for both physical and spiritual nourishment. This unique tour from us, built around the Ganges and its tributaries, immerses you deep into the cultural heartland of India.
The wide waters of the Chambal make a peaceful start to the tour before we admire the commanding fort at Gwalior; we discover the weed-choked and mysterious ruins of rarely visited Orchha and revel in the exotic and erotic carvings at celebrated Khajuraho; a couple of relaxing days at a riverside resort close to Panna Wildlife Sanctuary before we experience Varanasi, where endless streams of devotees submerge themselves in sacred ritual on the banks of the river, and Sarnath, evocative site of Buddha's first sermon.
The tour finishes with ample time in Lucknow, an architectural and culinary delight. There is the option of seeing the highest mountain peaks in the world, with an easy extension to Nepal.
Departing in the morning, take a direct non-stop flight to Delhi. Upon arrival transfer to the luxurious Leela Kempinski Hotel in Gurgaon, close to the airport.
Morning drive to the relaxed village of Chambal for a two-night stay at the rustic Chambal Safari Lodge. Enjoy a sightseeing tour of the nearby Bateshwar temples.
In the morning take a relaxing boat ride on the Chambal River with the opportunity of sighting gharial (a species of crocodile), the rare Gangetic river dolphin and a wealth of bird life including Indian skimmers.
A short morning's drive through rural Indian countryside brings us to Gwalior for a two-night stay at the elegant Usha Kiran Palace, Gwalior. The afternoon is free to relax and take in the peaceful surroundings. In the evening enjoy a son et lumiere show.
The morning's sightseeing tour takes us to the imposing fort and the Scindia Museum. The afternoon is free to explore the area or relax at the hotel.
Drive to Orchha this morning, stopping on the way to see the Fort at Datia. Stay two nights at the Bundelkhand Riverside Hotel which overlooks the Betwa River.
The day is set aside to explore this beautiful settlement. Temples, in various states of repair, are strewn across the landscape and invite the traveller to explore at will.
Orchha, Panna (Khajuraho)
Our journey this morning is to Panna with a stop on the way at Khajuraho where we visit the Chandela temples, famous for their erotic reliefs. From here it is a short drive to Panna. Stay for the next two nights at the Sarai at Toria, Panna which is full of rustic charm and ideally located overlooking the Ken River.
There is the option of simply relaxing at the hotel, taking a boat ride on the river or enjoying a jeep safari in the Panna National Park.
A short flight from Khajuraho lands us in the spiritually rich city of Varanasi. On arrival we head straight to the Ganges River where a boat awaits to transfer us to the tastefully restored Suryauday Haveli where we stay for two nights. Varanasi, or Benares, as it is also known, is one of the oldest continually inhabited cities in the world and is a feast for the senses. In the evening we head out onto the ghat and witness the atmospheric ceremonial aarti on the banks of the river.
An early morning boat ride on the holy Ganges River is arranged this morning to watch devotees at prayer as the sun slowly rises. After relaxing back at the hotel we visit Sarnath, the site of Lord Buddha’s first public discourse and a relaxing place to spend some time.
After a free morning of relaxation or exploration on Varanasi's ghats a classic Indian train ride awaits and takes us to the historic and culturally rich city of Lucknow where the first class Taj Vivanta, Lucknow is our base for the next three nights.
In the morning visit the Residency Complex, site of the infamous siege of 1857 which was one of the first revolts against the British authorities. We also visit the Dilkusha Gardens and La Martinière university. Continue our sightseeing tour of the city with visits to the Islamic Imambara shrine and Romi Darwaja city gate. Round off the day exploring Lucknow's colourful bazaars.
The day is at leisure.
After a relaxing morning take an afternoon flight to Delhi. Spend your last evening in India at the luxurious Leela Kempinski before transferring to the nearby international airport for a late evening departure.
Fly back to London, just past midnight.
Tailor-made Tour 15 days from £3594 per person
✓ International flights from London
✓ 15 nights accommodation
✓ All internal transportation and transfers
✓ English-speaking guides
✓ Breakfast daily
✓ Entrance fees to sites and monuments listed in tour itinerary
Places and Experiences in this tour
Delhi, India’s capital, is home to an estimated 20 million people. A compelling hotch-potch of ancient and modern, it holds the vestiges of at least seven great urban centres: Afg...
The Chambal, on India’s northern Plains, ranks among the country’s cleanest rivers – a fact attributable to its age-old reputation as a haven for dacoits (bandits), which until qu...
Ancient inscriptions on shrines carved from the long, narrow, sheer-sided escarpment soaring above the city of Gwalior, 312km (194 miles) southwest of Delhi, show that the hill ha...
Orchha often turns out to be the unexpected highlight of tours across India’s northern plains. Now little more than a sleepy village, the site on the banks of the rocky Betwa Rive...
Varanasi, or ‘Benares’, is the holiest of Hinduism’s seven sacred cities. It stands on the banks of the Ganges, at a bend in the river where traces of human settlement have been u...
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