Forts, Palaces & Tigers of Rajasthan

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Forts, Palaces & Tigers of Rajasthan


Total Trip:
20 Days
Country Visited:
India
Places visited:
Delhi, Samode, Khimsar, Bikaner, Jaisalmer, Jodhpur, Udaipur, Bundi, Ranthambore, Agra, Delhi
Departure Date:
Dates are flexible and customizable for private departures

Craving for best heritage and culturally rich holiday package of Rajasthan? Then your search ends here with forts, palaces and tigers of Rajasthan tour which is also known as “Land of Maharajas (Kings)” This tour has everything to offer from a metropolitan Delhi sightseeing tour to luxury palace converted in Samode hotel. Massive Khimsar fort with desert safari to historic rich Bikaner and Rat temple to sand dunes of Jaisalmer. Visit of Massive Mehrangarh Fort in Jodhpur to boat ride on lake Pichola in Udaipur. From here the legacy continues with a visit to gigantic Bundi Fort, built in 16th centaury. After experiencing all the massive forts and beautiful palaces, it’s time to chase the big cats and explore the rich wildlife of Ranthambore National park famous for royal Bengal tigers and other wildlife. As the tour progresses, it will take you through the rural but beautiful and heritage rich places and lastly ending with the impressive and beautiful Taj Mahal. No book can describe the beauty of this monument. Enjoy the breathtaking views of this monument with the first ray of sunlight. Another best part of this tour is no flights or trains involved. The 3 week tour in your private chauffeur driven SUV car and enjoy the holiday at your own pace! So Just pack your bags and get ready to experience the massive forts and beautiful palaces & wildlife of Rajasthan.

Happy Journey, Bon voyage, Feliz Viaje, Glückliche Reise, Felice Viaggio, Jornada Feliz!

DAY 1: ARRIVE IN DELHI (INTERNATIONAL FLIGHT)

You will arrive at the Capital city of India “Delhi”. After clearing immigration and other formalities at the airport you will be met by our representative at arrival hall terminal where you will find many people paging for their guests. Out of them you will find our representative holding a placard with your name written on it. He will assist and escort you to your vehicle and further transfer to the hotel.

DAY 2: EXPLORE OLD AND NEW DELHI

Explore Old Delhi in the first half of the day. The sightseeing tour will begin with visit to Emperors. Later proceed for visit to The Jama Masjid (mosque) and enjoy the rickshaw ride on busy roads of Chandni Chowk.  Also drive past Old Fort

The next half day will be reserved for visit to New Delhi. Start with Qutub Minar, is a UNESCO World Heritage Site in Delhi, The Qutub Minar is constructed with red sandstone and marble, and is the tallest minaret in India, with a height of 72.5 meters. It contains 379 stairs and the base diameter is 14.3 meters and it narrows to 2.7 meters at the last storey. Your next stop will be Humayun’s Tomb. During the drive you will pass Connaught place, India gate, Rastrapati Bhawan (President’s House) and some other important building.

DAY 3: DRIVE TO SAMODE

Today morning you will be driven from Delhi to Samode (approx. 6 hours). Upon arrival check-in at your hotel (Palace). Samode Palace is one of India’s most charming and romantic hotels. It offers a quiet, elegant and luxurious atmosphere. Considered India’s finest hotel for its consummate standards of modern hospitality, accommodation, services, cuisine and amenities, it is the flagship of the Samode Hotels.

DAY 4: A DAY EXCURSION TO EXPLORE THE PINK CITY, JAIPUR

Early in the morning you will be taken to Amber Fort (1 hour from Samode, per way), enroute to which you will enjoy the visit to Hawa Mahal (Palace on wind). At the entrance gate you will be provided with Elephant, climb as he will ascend and take you to the fort. You will return by foot.

Post Amber Fort visit, you will be taken to visit City Palace, which includes the Chandra Mahal and Mubarak Mahal palaces and other buildings. It was the seat of the Maharaja of Jaipur, the head of the Kachwaha Rajput clan. The Chandra Mahal palace now houses a museum but the greatest part of it is still a royal residence.

Post visit you will be taken to local restaurant where you will be served with mouth watering Rajasthani Cuisine.

Return back to Samode after the visit of Jaipur city.

DAY 5: DRIVE TO KHIMSAR

Today you will be driven to Khimsar (5 hours), On arrival at check-in at exclusive Khimsar Fort.

Perched on the edge of the Great Thar Desert in the heart of rural India lies this unique 16th century fort that offers experience after exhilarating experience. Hundreds of years of history unfold as you glance at its battle-scarred walls and stroll down its ramparts. As you sip tea on the terraces you realize the beauty of being surrounded by acres of lush green gardens. A true rarity of any desert in the world!! Peacocks, parrots, pigeons and as many as forty-six varieties of birds greet you to add to the charm and splendour of this ancient fort. Late afternoon proceed for safari to spot the local wildlife and later witness the sunset at sand dunes.

DAY 6: DRIVE TO BIKANER

Today continue your drive to Bikaner (4 hours) and reach by afternoon.

This desert town in northern Rajasthan was founded in 1488 by Rao Bikaji, a descendant of Jodhaji, the founder of Jodhpur. Like many others in Rajasthan, the old city is surrounded by a high crenellated wall and was once an important staging post on the great caravan routes. The old city with its exquisite merchant havelis, temples and bazaars retains a medieval air. The city is chiefly interesting for its superb large fort, but it is also known for the fine camels bred here. There is a government camel-breeding farm near the city.

Later visit Bikaner’s Junagarh Fort (built 1593) – with its magnificent stone carving is one of the finest in Rajasthan. See the beautifully designed palaces with interiors decorated with shell-work, mirror and glass inlays, gold leaf, laquer work etc. Highlights include Diwn-I-Khas, Phool Mahal and Chandra Mahal decorated with marble, mirror-work and carvings, Anup Mahal the coronation hall, Gaj Mandir with its mirrored Shish Mahal, and Har Mandir or the royal temple. There is also a museum containing manuscripts, weaponry, jewellery etc.

DAY 7: DRIVE TO JAISALMER

After a leisurely breakfast you will start your day with visit of Karni Mata Temple (Rat Temple) – The temple is dedicated to an early 15th century mystic, considered to be a reincarnation of Goddess Durga. This temple is quite famous for a large number of brown rats running around the temple complex fearlessly. It is believed that the souls of dead Charans (traditional bards, the devotees of Mata) reside in these rats.

It is considered very lucky seeing a white rat or when a rat runs over your foot. During the time of aarti, these rats are offered sweets, grains, etc by the devotees. The thing which strikes everyone with wonder is the presence of thousands and thousands of rats in the temple which freely moved about unscared of anyone Despite the presence of the pilgrims in great numbers. At no time in the past plague broke out here. There was no incidence of plague at all. People deem this as a miracle of Karanimata. In the whole world this is a unique temple where rats freely move out.

After visit continue your drive to Jaisalmer (6 hours) and arrive early evening.

The captivating city of Jaisalmer, founded by Prince Jaisal in 1156 AD, has been dubbed Golden City because of the honey colour imparted to its yellow sandstone walls by the setting sun. With the crenellated walls and narrow streets lined with exquisitely carved buildings, it has an extraordinary medieval feel. It was a major post in the desert trade route between India and Central Asia. Throbbing in the heart of the Thar Desert, Jaisalmer is an intricately moulded wonderland.

DAY 8: EXPLORE JAISALMER CITY

Take a half-day sightseeing tour of this city of gilded magic. See the fort built by Rawal Jaisal atop the 80 m high Trikuta hill, where a fourth of the population still lives. Within the fort are also beautifully carved Jain temples of the 12th to the 15th centuries. See Badal Vilas Palace, the former ruler’s 20th century palace. Also visit some impressive merchant mansions (havelis) including Patwon ki Haveli (1805), a five-storey building with carved pillars and murals, Salim Singh and Nathmalji ki Haveli.

DAY 9: EXPERIENCE THE DESERT OF JAISALMER

Full day visit to Lodurva and Samm sand dunes. Lodurva, the former capital of the Bhatti rulers is just 16 km northwest of Jaisalmer. It is an ancient township that lies in ruins about the temples. The Samm sand dunes permit you to experience the pace and space of desert life.

Enjoy the dinner at sand dunes

DAY 10: DRIVE TO JODHPUR

After a leisurely breakfast, drive to Jodhpur (6 hours). Arrive by late afternoon and check-in for your stay. Jodhpur looks out over the desert to the West and the massive fort, topping a sheer rocky hill, which rises right in the middle of the town, totally dominates the city. The old city of Jodhpur is surrounded by a wall 10km long, which was built about a century after the city was founded. From the fort you can clearly see where the old city ends and the new begins. The old city is fascinating jungle of winding streets of great interest to wander around. Eight gates lead out from the walled city. It’s one of the more interesting cities in India and those baggy-tight horse riding trousers, jodhpurs, took their name from this locale.

DAY 11: EXPLORE THE JODHPUR CITY

The sightseeing tour of Jodhpur city will start with visit of Mehrangarh Fort (citadel of the Sun) that evokes the very spirit of the Rathores, the ruling local Rajput clan. Visit its various palaces with their delicate friezes and respective museums, displaying treasures of the royal family.

North of Meherangarh Fort, and connected to it by road, Jaswant Thada is a pillared marble memorial to the popular ruler Jaswant Singh II (1878-95), who purged Jodhpur of dacoits, initiated irrigation systems and boosted the economy. The cenotaphs of members of the royal family who have died since Jaswant are close by his memorial; those who preceded him are remembered by chhatris at Mandor. This south-facing spot is also the best place from which to photograph the fort, looming above the sheer rocky Meherangarh plateau.

DAY 12: DRIVE TO UDAIPUR VIA RANAKPUR JAIN TEMPLE

Start your journey after breakfast to Udaipur (6 hours). The journey will take you to romantic city of Rajasthan “Udaipur” enroute visiting Ranakpur which is widely known for its marble Jain temple, said to be the most spectacular of the Jain temples.

Post visit enjoy the lunch at Ranakpur. After enjoying the lunch continue your travel to Udaipur and on arrival (by evening) check-in at your hotel.

DAY 13: EXPLORE UDAIPUR CITY

The day reserved to explore the beautiful Udaipur city. First you will visit City palace, built by the Maharana Udai Singh as the capital of the Sisodia Rajput clan in 1559, after he moved from Chittor. It is located on the east bank of the Lake Pichola and has several palaces built within its complex. Later you will also visit Sahelion-Ki-Bari and Jagdish Temple.

In the late afternoon enjoy the boat ride on Lake Pichola, is an artificial fresh water lake, created in the year 1362 AD, named after the nearby Picholi village. Jag Mandir and the famous Lake Palace hotel are located in the lake and accessible by boat only.

DAY 14: DRIVE TO BUNDI

After breakfast you will leave for Bundi (6 hours). On arrival proceed for check-in at your hotel. Set in wooded hills in the southeast of Rajasthan. Bundi lies in rugged Hadoti, one of the least explored regions of the state. It is hearting to know that even though Bundi was built over a period of seven centuries, it has grown organically out of itself. The building materials are the same as they were centuries ago- stone, lime etc and the town is peopled by generations of masons and their progency. Bundi is very off the beaten track traveller’s favourite destination in Rajasthan. The quiet, non-touristy town boasts a rich heritage, reflected in the abundant temples, baolis and chhatris, it is also famous for its school of miniature paintings.

Among them is the Garh Palace which is actually a complex of palaces. The most impressive is the Chattar palace built by Rao Chhattar Sal in 1660. He resisted the urge to incorporate Mughal influences, unlike other Rajput rulers, and his palace is pure Rajput architecture. Nearby is the Chitra Mahal, the Palace of paintings. In contrast to the Chattar Palace, the Chitra Mahal was obviously a pleasure palace with a splendid courtyard with fountains and lavishly decorated with murals, some of the finest ever in the history of Rajput art. From the palace and up a steep craggy hill is the Taragarh Fort and just outside the city walls, and definitely worth a visit is the beautiful Raniji Ki Baori, the 17th century stepwell.

DAY 15: DRIVE TO RANTHAMBORE NATIONAL PARK (SAWAI MADHOPUR)

The next destination of this trip is Ranthambore National park (also called as Sawai Madhopur) which is approx. 3 hours. On your arrival, proceed for check-in at your hotel.

If required, an afternoon jungle safari can be arranged on this day. Day will be free.

DAY 16: JUNGLE SAFARIS AT RANTHAMBORE TIGER RESERVE

This day is reserved for 2 jungle safaris, one in the early morning and other in the late afternoon. Ranthambore is considered by many to be one of India’s most beautiful national parks.

Encircled by a series of high escarpments, the forests, lakes and dry scrub that make up the park are dotted with old forts and temples, creating a wonderful atmosphere for both bird and mammal viewing amongst a landscape oozing with ancient Rajput history and Rajasthani culture.

DAY 17: TRAVEL TO AGRA VIA FATEHPUR SIKRI

Today you will be driven to city of Taj “Agra”. The drive will be for approx. 6 hours enroute visiting Fatehpur Sikri constructed by Sikriwal Rajput Rajas, the last Emperor Maharana Sangram Singh at the beginning in 1500 AD. At Seventh attack of Akbar Sikriwal Rajput left Palace after that Sikrigarh was named Fateh(victory)pur Sikri.

DAY 18: EXPLORE AGRA INCLUDING BEAUTIFUL TAJ MAHAL

Early in the morning proceed for sunrise visit to Taj Mahal. The book, stories or any other source cannot define the Taj mahal in words; you will experience the same with the first rays of sun and will fall in love with monument which is the symbol of love.

In the afternoon proceed for sightseeing tour of Agra city. First you will visit Agra Fort, a UNESCO World Heritage site. The fort can be more accurately described as a walled city. After the First Battle of Panipat, in 1526 Mughal captured the fort and a vast treasure – which included a diamond (Koh-I-Noor), was seized. Later you will be taken to Mehtab Bagh from where you will get the best glimpse of Taj mahal to click the best posed Taj Mahal.

DAY 19: TRAVEL BACK TO DELHI AND CONNECT INTERNATIONAL FLIGHT

Post breakfast you will be driven to Delhi (4 hours). On arrival if time permits you can proceed for some last minute shopping. Later you will be transferred to international airport to board your flight back home.

Note: If required, we can arrange a day use room or dinner in Delhi before international flight back home. Also, an extension tour of Varanasi, Goa or Aurangabad can be arranged from Delhi. Please discuss the same with our holiday consultant for more options.