Tour Itinerary

Dreams of the Taj Tour – 7 days/6 nights

Delhi – Agra – Jaipur – Delhi

Summer Offer (May – 15 September 2010 )India Taj Framed Golden Triangle

Can words describe 3.2 million sq. kms. of  the Indian subcontinent? Can pictures capture a terrain as diverse as verdant forests, golden deserts and the majestic Himalayan range? Can stories tell you all you want to know about  the complex cultures of the Indian people, their languages and dialects, their rituals and traditions? To feel her magic, be touched by her spirituality, experience her intensity or join in her celebrations, you have to be in India.

Day 1 – Arrive Delhi

• Arrive at Delhi’s international airport • Transfer to your hotel. • Overnight at the hotel

Arrive at Delhi’s International Airport late this evening. Welcome to India !

You are met by our representative in the arrival area of the airport after you clear all immigration and customs formalities.  Special welcome awaits at the airport with nice Garlands of marigold flowers. Depart for your hotel where you will check in for your stay.

Overnight at the hotel Day 2 – in Delhi

• Breakfast at hotel • Full day city tour of Old and New Delhi • Rickshaw ride in Old Delhi and ride on the New Delhi Metro • Overnight at the hotel

Greet the morning on your first day in what is the world largest and most vibrant democracy. As you embark on your journey through this land you will experience the sights and sounds of what is India. Your tour manager is at your service throughout your trip to bring you face-to-face with the many faces of this vast land.

Delhi stands as the capital of Modern India. Here you can see the mingling of the Old and New India, the ancient and the modern. Delhi is made up of seven ancient cities, spanning the period from the 11th to 20th centuries. Delhi has seen the rise and fall of many emperors, which has left behind a plethora of monuments that commemorate the grandeur and glory of bygone ages. Very few cities in the world can express such a profusion of architectural styles.

Old Delhi was an ancient walled city. Mughal Emperor Shah Jehan in 1650 switched the Mughal capital from Agra to Delhi.  Shah Jehan possessing an exquisite talent, especially in architecture, created the seventh city and in the process brought about Delhi’s glorious renaissance.  Start the day with a cycle rickshaw ride through Old Delhi. Here you will see Red Fort the most opulent Fort and Palace of the Mughal Empire. The fort is Shah Jehan’s symbol of power and elegance, built behind red sandstone walls. Its main gate (Lahore Gate) faces Chandni Chowk, the perpetually congested avenue heading west from the Red Fort is filled with twisting lanes, small streets and crowded bazaars. If you peer through a portico you may see a man getting shaved, silver being weighed, or any other conceivable form of intense commerce. Also visit Raj Ghat, the memorial site of the Mahatma Gandhi; Jama Masjid, the largest mosque in India; and Chandni Chowk, the bustling and colourful market of the old city. Chandni Chowk was the commercial centre of Delhi in the old time and you will see it  come alive in the morning as the trading day starts.

To show you the contrast of the old with the new, we will return to New Delhi by the Delhi Metro.

This is a marvel of modern engineering to have been put in to one of the most crowded parts of India. A perfect example of how India changing while still keeping to its past.

New Delhi was designed and built by the British in the 1920’s – it’s a city of wide boulevards impressive Government buildings, green parks and gardens. In 1911 King George V announced the transfer of the capital from Calcutta to Delhi. The King’s architects, Lutyens and Baker, set in motion the design and construction of Delhi’s eight city – New Delhi. Lutyens designed an “Imperial City” having palatial-sized buildings set amid broad tree-lined avenues punctuated by Mughal style gardens, complete with fountains and shallow pools. It took 20 years to complete this immense undertaking only to have the British pack up and relinquish the subcontinent in 1947. You will visit two monuments from Delhi’s past  – Humayun’s Tomb and Qutub Minar. Your drive takes you along the ceremonial avenue, Rajpath, past the imposing India Gate and Parliament House. Also visit a local temple. Overnight at the hotel (Note: Red fort remains closed on Mondays )

Day 3 – Delhi to Agra

• Breakfast at the hotel • Drive to Agra • Visit of Agra Fort & The Taj Mahal • Overnight at the Hotel.

This morning after breakfast drive to Agra. The journey will take about 4 – 5 hours. On arrival in Agra, check-in to your hotels. After lunch begin your tour of Agra.

Visit the impressive Agra Fort, where you are taken through the chambers of this royal residence. As you drive through the city, witness the local life and bazaars (markets) and the hustle bustle of everyday India.

Agra Fort is a UNESCO World Heritage site located in Agra, India. The fort is also known as Lal Qila, Fort Rouge and Red Fort of Agra. It is about 2.5 km northwest of its much more famous sister monument, the Taj Mahal. The fort can be more accurately described as a walled palatial city.

It is the most important fort in India. The great Mughals Babur, Humayun, Akbar, Jehangir, Shah Jahan and Aurangzeb lived here, and the country was governed from here. It contained the largest state treasury and mint. It was visited by foreign ambassadors, travellers and the highest dignitaries who participated in the making of history in India.

Then it’s on to the Taj.

At the time of the Mughals, in the 16th & 17th centuries, Agra was the capital of the grand Mughal Empire. During this period the city became a leading centre of art, science, commerce and culture. Akbar the Great made Agra great.  The city’s origins are dim but Akbar’s grandfather Babur is credited with Agra’s founding. The short golden age of Agra came to an end with the seventeenth century reign of Shah Jehan, mastermind of the unforgettable Taj Mahal.

Visit that magnificent monument to love – Taj Mahal, built by an emperor in memory of his beloved queen. Construction of the Taj Mahal began in 1631, and is believed to have taken 18 years to complete, with over 20,000 craftsmen working around the clock. The design and construction is said to be that of the legendary architect, Ustad Ahamad Lahori. Legend  has it that once construction was completed, Shah Jehan had Lahori’s hands cut off, and blinded, so he would never be able to duplicate the structure. What makes the Taj Mahal unique is its perfect proportions, distinct femininity, medium of construction and ornamentation.  Its marble exterior reflects rose and golden tints at sunrise and sunset, while it is dazzling white during the day. It is impossible to visualize the Taj Mahal in any surrounding others than its paradoxical garden. Paradise, in Islam, is visualized as lush garden where running streams flow . When the Mughals brought this concept to India they elevated it to the heights of incomparable history.

Return to the hotel for an overnight stay.

Day 4  – Agra to Jaipur

• Sunrise visit of the Taj Mahal • Breakfast at the hotel • Drive to Jaipur • En-route visit Fatehpur Sikri • Evening Sound and Light show at Amber Fort • Overnight at the hotel Take an Optional sunrise visit to the Taj Mahal at extra cost  (you must leave the hotel at around 0540). Gates to the Taj open at 0600AM return to the hotel around 0715). Witness the Taj glow in the changing light of the rising sun. After breakfast dried to Jaipur (5 – 6 hours) and en-route enjoy an excursion to Fatehpir Sikri. This is an hour’s drive outside Agra. Fatehpur Sikri. – The imperial city of the Mughal dynasty between 1571 and 1584, Fatehpur Sikri was built by Mughal Emperor Akbar. The architectural grandeur of this deserted city cannot be described in words and one can only experience the aura of its magnificent edifices by seeing them. Fatehpur Sikri is the most popular day excursion from Agra, the city of Taj and capital of invincible Mughals for a long time.

Today, as one enters Sikri from the Agra Gate, one of the nine gateways on the way to the palace complex, Diwan-I-Aam, or the hall of public audience appears first. It is a huge rectangular walled-in courtyard where petitions were heard, proclamations made, ambassadors received and entertainment programmes held. Ponder the mysterious desertion of this capital city that was dramatically abandoned a few years after it was built. It was a veritable fairy tale city and its ‘ruins’ are still in a pristine condition. It is not hard to imagine what the court life must have been like in the days of its grandeur.

Drive on to Jaipur where on arrival you will check-in to the hotel and have rest of the day at leisure..

This evening leave the hotel for a Sound & light show at Amber Fort. Return to the hotel for an overnight stay.

Day 5 – in JaipurIndia Jaipur fort Golden Triangle

• Breakfast at the hotel • Excursion to Amber Fort on Elephant’s back • Afternoon city tour of Jaipur • Overnight at the hotel Known as the “Pink City”, Jaipur is the capital of the colourful state of Rajasthan. It has the distinction of being a well planned and laid out city. As you drive through the old part of town, you will witness a life most unlike others. Witness how the city blooms during the day in a kaleidoscope of colour and sound.

After breakfast depart the hotel for a half day excursion to inspiring Amber Fort.  Amber Fort is a marvellous example of Rajput architecture with its terraces and ramparts reflected in the Maota Lake below. Go up the fort in a jeep. The interiors of the fort has various royal halls decorated with intricate ivory, mirror and glass work complemented by exquisite wall paintings. As you move between the rooms of this magnificent structure feel the history and visualise the pomp and grandeur of a kingdom never conquered. In the afternoon continue on your visits of Jaipur city. This afternoon venture into the city, this time on a city tour. You will visit the City Palace Museum where you can see an imposing blend of traditional Rajasthani and Mughal Art. The museum is resplendent with its collection of robes of royal princes, carpets, an armoury of old weapons, miniature paintings portraying court scenes, battle scenes and processions, Also visit the awe inspiring Jantar Mantar (an accurate observatory built in 1726 AD). Also included is a photo visit at the Hawa Mahal (Palace of Winds) – a five storied wonder with a spectacular pyramidal facade and overhanging windows with latticed screens, domes and spires. Located in the heart of the walled city, The City Palace Complex gives you an idea about the farsightedness of the founder of Jaipur Sawai Jai Singh. He left behind a legacy of some of the most imposing and magnificent architecture, art and craft structure in the city. Sawai Jai Singh built its many buildings but some of some of the structures were also built by later rulers and some of them are even dated in the in the twentieth century too. The palace is a blend of Mughal and Rajasthani architecture and the royal family still lives in a part of the palace.

On entering the complex and before the palace proper lies the Mubarak Mahal, the palace of welcome or reception. Sawai Madho Singh built the palace in the nineteenth century. It was used as a reception centre for the visiting personage. The building now forms the Maharaja Sawai Man Singh II Museum and on display here are a wide array of royal costumes, some very exquisite and precious Pashmina (Kashmiri) Shawls, Benaras silk saris, Sanganeri prints and folk embroidery. An unusual display is that of voluminous clothes worn by Maharaja Sawai Madho Singh I (ruled 1750-68).

Across the road from the palaces is the famous “Jantar Mantar”, one of the five observatories in India . Built by Sawai Jai Singh, this is one of the largest and the best preserved. A passionate hobby of the king in the field of Astronomy, numerology, insighted him to execute this observatory and with the help of skilled labourers, they managed to create a collection of complex astronomical instruments chiselled out of stone and most of which continues to provide accurate information to this day. The most striking instrument is the Brihat Samrat yantra Sundial, an imposing yellow edifice to the far right of the observatory complex which has a 27m high gnomon arm set at an angle of 27degree.The shadow this casts moves up to 4m in an hour, and aids in the calculation of local and meridian pass time and various attributes of the heavenly bodies, including declination the angular distance of a heavenly body from the celestial equator and altitude. This highlight of the observatory has made it a centre of attraction for the tourist visiting Jaipur. Optional for this evening –

In the early evening enjoy a walk through the hustle and bustle of the old pink city market. Experience the vibrancy of this city upfront.

You also have the option to watch an Indian movie at the famous Raj Mandir movie theatre. The Raj Mandir is an icon among movie theatres and is a sightseeing spot in its self.

The Raj Mandir Cinema opened on 1st June 1976 with the film “Charas”. It was designed by architect W.M. Namjoshi in a spectacular Art Moderne style.  The exterior of the building consists of various asymetrical shapes, zig-zags, curves and even stars set into the facade, all lit at night by concealed lighting. The theatre’s name is located on top of the building in large red neon letters and it also boasts the legend ‘The Showplace of the Nation – Experience the Excellence’. In the large foyer there are chandeliers set into domes in the ceiling. A large ramp (rather than stairs) take patrons up into the balcony area. Seating in the auditorium is provided in stalls and balcony areas. The decoration in the auditorium is awesome, with indirect lighting that changes colours, hidden behind and underneath a frond fern leaf-like plaster trough which has openings all over the ceiling and walls. The cinema is equipped to screen 70mm films.

The Raj Mandir Cinema is the best known cinema building in India and is also on the tourist trail for visitors to Jaipur (similar to the Grauman’s Chinese Theatre in Hollywood, California). It certainly lives up to its reputation as one of the most remarkable cinemas in India.

Overnight at the hotel.

Day 6 – Jaipur to Delhi

• Breakfast at the hotel • Drive back to Delhi • Evening is free for last minutes shopping • Overnight at the hotel

After breakfast drive back to Delhi. This journey will take 5 hours approx. On arrival check into the Hotel with rest evening is free or  free for last minutes shopping etc.

Overnight at the hotel.

Day 7 – Depart  Delhi

• In time transfer to the airport • Fly back home this morning by Int. Flight

After an early morning tea / coffee in time transfer to the airport to board flight for onwards destination.

Tour ends

Hotels envisagd or similar subject to availability: 

 Option 1Option  2Option  3Option  4
DelhiThe OberoiLe MeridienMaidensThe Park
JaipurOberoi RajvilasSheraton RajputanaTrident JaipurFour Points by Sheraton
AgraOberoi AmarvilasITC MughalTrident AgraClarks Shiraz
Delhi The OberoiLe MeridienMaidensThe Park
 

TOUR COST – On Application for  Current Price

Cost per person on twin share basis as per itinerary

Based on the above our net per person cost is as under:

 Includes Acceptance Payment/Deposit of £200

Domestic airfares (if any), included in above cost, are subject to change without notice

IMPORTANT: • All elements included in this quotation are subject to availability until the booking is made. The hotels services as quoted may change while our giving you the final confirmation based on current availability. • Kindly note, our above tour prices are based on the currently prevailing rate of exchange, fuel prices, entrances to monuments, government tax structure.  Since these elements are controlled by the government and are always subject to change without prior notice – therefore, in case of any excessive hike in all or any of these elements our tour price might get affected and change accordingly. Terms & Conditions

• All prices are in GBP • All prices are subject to revision due to an extreme fluctuations in exchange rates or international fuel prices.

Your Tour will include (see also below): • Total of five (06) hotels nights in India. • Breakfast from Day 2 to 7 • Deluxe air-conditioned car for the entire trip. • All sites and visits as per the program • Services of a professional English-speaking local guides in each city. • All currently applicable entrances at the monuments. Camera fees will be extra. • The above prices include all current taxes and entrance fees. Any hikes in these taxes or entrance fees will be extra • Vehicles on this tour are – • 1 – 3 persons travelling together – Air-conditioned Toyota Innova • 4 – 6 persons travelling together – Air-conditioned Tempo Traveller Micro Van • 7 – 9 persons travelling together – Air-conditioned 15 seater Mini bus Not included in the above costs are (see also below) : • Does not include any beverages including mineral water, soft drinks, alcoholic drinks etc unless otherwise specified. It is more cost effective for us to bill you for all beverages based on actual consumption. • Any airfare or airport taxes • Any camera fees at monuments and sites. This can be added in if desired. • Any items of a personal nature such as beverages, tips (except for group meals and baggage handling), laundry, telephone calls etc • The prices do not include: undue escalation in fuel prices, new taxes levies on hotels and transportation services or any hikes in entrance fees. Any large tax hikes and new levies shall be payable extra and shall be billed accordingly with prior notice. Payment. 1.On acceptance – £200 per person, Acceptance Payment/Deposit (non refundable)  to “S W & M Miller”  by International Bank Transfer to UK Bank Account

Your Contract for all tour arrangements is directly with Creative Travel Delhi, India to whom payment for the tour is made.

2. You pay 12 weeks prior to arrival in India, or on Acceptance if earlier – 50% of the total in US $, by Credit Card or International Bank Transfer, direct to Creative Travel, India.

3. 21 days BEFORE  arrival in India – 50% payable, in US $, by International Bank Transfer

Cancellation Charges Before 60 Days:  Full Refund. 60 – 46 Days:  25% of the Tour Cost. 45 – 31 Days:  50% of the Tour Cost. 30 – 16 Days:  75% of the Tour Cost. 15 days to Day of Departure: 100 % of the Tour Cost or No Refund. Acceptance Payment non refundable

Important note: In case the programme includes 5 Star Deluxe hotels like Oberoi Resorts and Taj Hotels or similar standard, full cancellation fee will be applicable if the cancellation received less than 35 days of the arrival date.

Included in the Cost • Accommodation on a twin sharing basis in the hotels mentioned above or equivalent – subject to availability. • 06 NIGHTS – Accommodation on twin sharing room with breakfast at all the places as per the above mentioned Hotels or similar. • Any single room subject to supplement shown. • Room and breakfast basis – or meals as indicated in the itinerary (B), (L) and (D) or in Terms and Conditions above • Full board at Wildlife Park if applicable. • All transfers, sightseeing and excursions by air-conditioned vehicle where appropriate. • Services of an English speaking local guide (or a naturalist in National Parks) • Entrance fees at monuments and parks where applicable • Basic porterage at airports, rail stations and hotels (not tips). • All currently applicable taxes. • Where US$ are quoted the UK pounds price shown is for comparison only and is subject to change.

Excluded from the Cost • Expenses of a personal nature:  table drinks, laundry, telephone calls, Internet charges, mineral water, tips, shopping etc. • Any other meals or services not mentioned in the itinerary or ‘includes’ list. • Any international airfares to India and Asia • Domestic economy airfares, indicated in the itinerary, are subject to change. • Any airport taxes where applicable in each country • Any subsequent increase in airfares, fuel costs, monuments/sightseeing fees. • Any other taxes subsequently introduced by Government, State or Tourist Ministry. • Travel Insurance • Visa Fees, if applicable, in any country • Any Christmas, New Year and Gala Dinners General note: All elements included in this quotation are subject to availability until the booking is made.  The hotels/ services as quoted may change when giving you the final confirmation, based on current availability.

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