13 NIGHTS AND 14 DAYS RAJASTHAN DESERT TOUR
Package Duration: 13 Nights and 14 Days
Places Covered: Delhi – Mandawa – Bikaner – Khuri – Jaisalmer – Jodhpur – Udaipur – Pushkar – Jaipur – Agra – Delhi
This Rajasthan tour package covers almost all the touristic destinations of Rajasthan. This package includes the visit to Shekhawati, Bikaner, the Thar Desert, Jaipur, Pushkar, Jodhpur, Ranakpur , Udaipur and of course The Taj Mahal –a majestic beauty. In this Rajasthan desert tour will take you on a ride to the real desert areas of Rajasthan. Encounter the rich history and culture of the land of Rajput’s. Some of the highlights are; a gourmet tour in streets of Old Delhi; Camel Safari in the Thar Desert and folk dance show; an elephant ride at Amber Fort; a walk in old lanes of Jodhpur city; performing a ceremony as homage to your forefathers at the holy Pushkar lake and experience of the boat ride in beautiful Lake Pichola at Udaipur.
Day 1 : Arrive in Delhi
Arrive in Delhi today and get transferred in a private vehicle to your hotel where accommodation is held from 1400 hrs. Check-in and spend the rest of the day to explore the bustling national capital. Overnight in the hotel.
Delhi offers a harmonious blend of architecture and history. From remnants of the Mughal empire and British Raj to contemporary India, you can experience it all in the capital. The city is sure to charm you with its eclectic mix of the old and new – from magnificent monuments to bustling Old Delhi markets and stunning high rises.
Day 2 :A day in Delhi
Full day excursion to Old and New Delhi, exploring the medieval and pre-modern faces of the historic capital of India personified by the Jama Masjid and Chandni Chowk (closed on Sundays). Take a food walk in the Chandni Chowk market. In Afternoon visit Humayun’s Tomb and Qutub Minar. Overnight in the hotel.
Jama Masjid is a mosque in Old Delhi, constructed in 1650–56 by the Mughal emperor Shah Jahān, a noted patron of Islamic architecture whose most famous work is the Taj Mahal, in Agra.
This vibrant market came to existence when the fifth Mughal Emperor, Shah Jahan, shifted his capital from Agra to Shahjahanabad, now Old Delhi, in the mid 17th century. While Chandni Chowk or the moonlit square no longer bears the magnificence of the bygone era, its importance in the annals of Delhi will never be lost.
The food walk in Old Delhi is a great experience to and the best way to see and taste Old Delhi. The dishes one can savor in Old Delhi Food Walk are large, thick and juicy jalebis, glistening with ghee; Aloo chaat crisp fried potato cutlets dunked in a melange of chutneys and smattered with onions and spices ; varieties of stuffed paranthas potato, onion, cottage cheese, cauliflower, radish, dry fruits and many more….
Humanyun’s Tomb was built in 1565 A.D. nine years after the death of Humayun, by his senior widow Bega Begam. Inside the walled enclosure the most notable features are the garden squares (chaharbagh) with pathways water channels, centrally located well proportional mausoleum topped by double dome.
Qutab Minar is a soaring, 73 m-high tower of victory, built in 1193 by Qutab-ud-din Aibak immediately after the defeat of Delhi’s last Hindu kingdom. The tower has five distinct storeys, each marked by a projecting balcony.
Day 3 : Drive to Mandawa
After breakfast leave for Mandawa by surface, a drive of about 6 hours. Arrive in Mandawa and check – in at the hotel. In the afternoon visit havelis in the town and the local market. Overnight at the hotel.
Founded in the 18th century, the town of Mandawa was basically inhabited by rich merchant families. Between 1830 and 1930, Marwaris erected buildings in their homeland, Shekhawati and Marwar as evidence of their success. The word haveli is of Persian origin, meaning “an enclosed place”. These buildings were called Havelis. The Marwaris commissioned artists to paint those buildings. The Havelis are noted for their frescos depicting mythological themes. The frescos include Images of Gods, Goddesses, animals, life history of Lord Rama and Krishna, profusely painted on the Havelis in this region. And that is the reason why the shekhawati region is called open art gallery.
Day 4: Drive to Bikaner
After breakfast leave for Bikaner by surface, a drive of about 4 hours. Arrive in Bikaner and check – in at the hotel. In the afternoon visit the Jain Temple and Junagarh Fort… Overnight at the hotel.
The origins of Bikaner can be traced back to 1488 when a Rathore prince, Rao Bikaji, founded the kingdom. Legend has it that Bikaji, one of Rao Jodhaji’s five sons, left his father’s Durbar in annoyance after an insensitive remark from his father, the illustrious founder of Jodhpur. Bikaji travelled far and when he came upon the wilderness called Jangladesh, he decided to set up his own kingdom and transformed it into an impressive city.
Junagarh fort was built by Raja Rai Singh in 1588 AD. Junagarh fort is one of those few forts that are not built on a hilltop. The fort complex consists of palaces, courtyards, pavilions and balconies. The walls palaces etc. are ornamented with carved stones, marbles, paintings and inlaid semi-precious stones. Each palace in the Junagarh fort complex was built by a different ruler over the centuries.
Day 5: Driveto Khuri, enrouteDeshnok
After breakfast leave for Khuri by surface, a drive of about 8 hours. En-route visit at Deshnok Temple. Arrive in Khuri and check – in at the camp. In the evening enjoy a camel ride in the Khuri desert, followed by a folk-dance performance and dinner in the camp. Overnight at the Camp.
Deshnoke is famous for its 600-year-old Karni Mata Temple, where rats are worshiped. The goddess Karni Mata has been worshiped by the royal family as well as the general public of Bikaner and other parts of Rajasthan since long ago.
Khuri is a small and beautiful village with very less population and yet a majestic beauty of its own. Khuri is famous for its desert beauty, here you can experience the traditional lifestyle and Rajasthani folklores at its best. The sand dunes here are enough to keep you awestruck. In the land of Rajput, the scattered mud houses and the simplistic living of the locals will give you the best glimpse of native Rajasthan.
Enjoy ride on camel back as the ‘ship of the desert’ is the way to travel here. Experience the local way of living roaming around the thatched straw roofs, camels, narrow streets and the local bazaar thriving at the brink of the sea of sand.
Day 6: Drive to Jaisalmer
After breakfast leave for Jaisalmer by surface, a drive of about 40mins. Arrive in Jaisalmer and proceed to visit the town; first we visit the majestic Jaisalmer Fort; this fort is a living fortress where people dwell and in yester years the entire town lived inside the fort. After visit check – in at the hotel. Enjoy the sunset at beautiful Gadisagar Lake. Overnight at the hotel.
Jaisalmer Fort is a World Heritage Site declared UNESCO under the group Hill Forts of Rajasthan situated in the city of Jaisalmer in Rajasthan, India. Fort was built by the Rajput ruler Rawal Jaisal in 1156 AD, from whom it derives its name. Jaisalmer fort stands amidst the sandy expanse of the great Thar Desert, on Trikuta Hill, and has been the scene of many battles. Its massive yellow sandstone walls are a tawny lion color during the day, fading to honey-gold as the sun sets, thereby camouflaging the fort in the yellow desert. For this reason, it is also known as the Sonar Quila or Golden Fort.
Gadi Sagar charm lies in the fact that it was the only source of water for the Jaisalmer city in the olden days. A manmade reservoir, the Gadi Sagar Lake in Jaisalmer, Rajasthan was constructed by Raja Rawal Jaisal, the first ruler of Jaisalmer. In the later years Maharaja Garisisar Singh rebuilt and revamped the lake. Gadi Sagar tours transports you into a different world altogether. You feel captured in a pleasant time warp.
Day 7 : Drive to Jodhpur
After breakfast visit leave for Jodhpur by surface, a journey of about 6hrs. In the afternoon visit the Mehrangarh Fort, take a walk from the fort till clock tower wherein you will pass by the very famous blue houses. Take a photo stop at Jaswant Thada. If time permits visit the Umaid Palace Museum. Overnight in the hotel.
Mehrangarh Fort stands a hundred feet in splendor on a perpendicular cliff, four hundred feet above the skyline of Jodhpur. Burnished red sandstone, imposing, invincible and yet with a strange haunting beauty that beckons. Much has been written about the Citadel of the Sun, for truly, it is one of the most impressive in all Rajasthan. So colossal are its proportions that Rudyard Kipling called it “the work of giants”. Today, it is acknowledged as one of the best-preserved fort in India.
Umaid Bhawan Palace Museum is fully dedicated to the history of Umaid Bhawan Palace. It showcases pictures of the palace, taken at different points of time and retells the story of how Maharaja Umaid Singh was keen on Western architecture and appointed a well-known Edwardian architect to create this palace in the Art-Deco style. A very unique antique clock collection and a huge banner presented by Queen Victoria hold special interests for the tourists. There are many more interesting artefacts belonging to the royals, ranging from cutleries, trophies and weapons. And of course, don’t forget to check out Maharaja’s vintage car collection.
Day 8: Drive to Udaipur, enroute Ranakpur
After breakfast visit leave for Udaipur by surface, en-route stopping at Ranakpur Temple. A journey of about 7hrs. Arrive in Udaipur, check – in at your hotel. Evening is at leisure. Overnight at the hotel.
Ranakpur is home to one of the biggest and most important Jain temple complexes of India, covering an area of nearly 48,000 square feet area, and has 29 halls, 80 domes and supported by 1444 marble pillars, each of them intricately and artistically carved, yet no two of them are alike. The Ranakpur Jain Temple was built by a wealthy Jain businessman named Dharma Shah under the patronage of the liberal and gifted Rajput monarch Rana Kumbha in the 15th century.
Day 9 : A day in Udaipur
After a leisurely breakfast proceed to visit this charming Udaipur city. We start the tour from visiting the Sahelion ki bari, Jagdish temple and from the temple you can take a short walk till the city palace. In the evening enjoy a boat ride on Lake Pichola. Overnight at the hotel.
Built by Maharana Bhopal Singh Saheliyon ki Bari means Garden of the Maids. This garden area lies in northern part of the city and has fountains and kiosks, a lotus pool and marble elephants. Each water channel has its distinct sound, and the mingling of these sounds complement the ambience of the place. Sahelion Ki Bari’ was laid for a group of forty-eight young women attendants who accompanied a princess to Udaipur as part of her dowry.
Located 150meters north of the city palace built in Indo-Aryan architectural style, the Jagdish temple is dedicated to Lord Vishnu. The temple walls and the shikara or tower are decorated with carvings of Vishnu, scenes from Lord Krishna’s life and figurines of nymphs or apsaras.
The grand City Palace, towering over the Pichola Lake, is one of the largest palace complex in Rajasthan. The splendid palace, originally built by Maharana Uday Singh II, rises 30 meters above Lake Pichola and extends up to 244 meters. The City Palace has number of small and big palaces, museums and the gardens. The unique aspect of this conglomeration is that the architectural design (a rich blend of Rajasthani, Mughal, Medieval, European and Chinese Architecture) is distinctly homogeneous and eye catching. The palace complex has been built entirely in granite and marble.
An artificial freshwater lake, created in the year 1362 AD, named after the nearby Picholi village. The Pichola lake’s surroundings and the several islands within the lake have been developed over the centuries, with palaces, marble temples, family mansions, and bathing ghats.
Day 10 : Drive to Pushkar
After breakfast visit leave for Pushkar by surface, a journey of about 5hrs. In the Afternoon visit the Brahma Temple and also perform a ceremony as homage to your forefathers at the holy Pushkar Lake. Overnight in the hotel.
Pushkar a holy little town; a pilgrimage for some and a hermitage for others. This little town a 135 km down south of Jaipur has its own charm. The very air of the place is different from any other village or city of India. The city dwells around the holy lake and the whole economy, society, tourism and devotion is in the crescent shaped road along the lake and is famous for Brahma temple Pushkar.
Brahma Temple in Pushkar is one of the few temples dedicated to the Lord Brahma – the creator of everything. The temple is made of stone stabs and marble. The red-colored shikara is a distinguishing feature of the temple. This temple is said to be 2000 years old. Although the original temple was destroyed during the rule of the Muslims, it was again re-built. The temple that we see today is said to have been built in the 14th century. The temple had been renovated a number of times, but it still retains its originality.
The Pushkar Lake is a semi-circular shaped sacred water body, also known as ‘TirthaRaj’. According to the Hindu mythology, the lake was created from one of the petals that fell from the lotus flower with which Lord Bramha killed the demon Vajra Nabh. The Pushkar Lake is surrounded by more than 300 temples and has 52 ghats, where devotees take holy bath. It is a belief that if a person takes a holy dip in the lake on Kartik Purnima, then that person attains salvation it is also a belief that taking a sacred bath in the lake clears one from all sins and that it cures all skin diseases.
* About camel fair: If you are in India in the month of Oct-Nov you can visit Camel Fair which is held in Oct – Nov months for 10 days, so if you lucky to be in India during this period you can include the fair in your tour.
* Camel fair dates depend on lunar calendar, and it is just a 10-day fair for which you have to plan in advance.
Day 11 : Drive to Jaipur
After breakfast leave for Jaipur by surface, a drive of about 2.5 hours. Arrive and proceed to visit the City Palace and Observatory. And we also stop for some photos from across the road of Hawa Mahal – the Palace of Winds. Later check – in at the hotel. In evening attend aarti or a prayer ceremony at Birla Mandir. Overnight in the hotel.
An erstwhile princely state and now the capital of modern Rajasthan. Jaipur is popularly known as the “Pink City” because of the rose-colored wash that adorns most buildings in the old quarter, and it is the first planned city in the country.”
The City Palace reflects Rajput, Mughal and European architectural styles. The Palace has been designed according to a ‘grid style’ and houses various structures such as, ‘Chandra Mahal’, ‘Mubarak Mahal’, ‘Diwan-I-Khas’ and the ‘Govind Dev Ji Temple. The walls and gates are ornately designed to Mughal style, with various murals, lattice and mirrors adorning them from sides.
The Jaipur observatory is by far the most elaborate and complete of Jai Singh’s all other Observatories. The observatory occupies a plot of land just outside the City Palace.
Jaipur’s most photographed landmark, the Hawa Mahal is an extraordinary pink-painted delicately honeycombed hive that rises a dizzying five Storeys. It was constructed in 1799 by Maharaja Sawai Pratap Singh to enable ladies of the royal household to watch the life and processions of the city.
The Birla Temple, of Jaipur is built of pure white marble, whose interiors contain, beautifully sculpted idols of Lord Vishnu and Goddess Lakshmi, as well as other Hindu Gods. Commonly considered a true work of art, this temple forms a wonderful backdrop to witness a traditional ceremony. An Aarti represents the elements of fire, earth, water and air as well as the senses, the priest has a tray with a Diya (lamp), offerings of food, water, flowers, incense and a small bell.
Day 12 : A day in Jaipur
After breakfast visit Amber Fort, the grandest way to reach Amber is on an elephant back. Afternoon relax at your hotel or we can provide car for local shopping. In the evening enjoy a movie at a local theater. Overnight in the hotel.
Amer fort was built with red sandstone and white sandstone. The fort still stands as a grand example of ancient Indian architecture. It is known for its blend of Rajput and Hindu style of architecture and mixture of Hindu and Muslim style of ornamentation. The carvings on the ceiling and the walls are extraordinary features of this fort. There are many paintings of ancient hunting styles, portrait of important Rajput rulers and others. There are a series of gates in the fort and each one has a unique structure and architectural element to enjoy. You can find many buildings inside the fort including Diwan-e-Aam, Sukh Mandir, Sheesh Mahal and others.
Raj Mandir is popular all over the world for its super stylish architecture and royal structure and design. Apart from watching movies, its extraordinary look and elegant style also attract tourists from all over the world to here. It is more of the Pride of India and has also received various awards which makes it a must visit place for tourists.
Day 13: Drive to Agra, en-route Fatehpur Sikri
After breakfast drive to Agra, en – route stop for visiting the celebrated medieval Mughal city of Fatehpur Sikri. A drive of about 7 hours, arrive and check – in at the hotel. In the evening proceed to visit the Moonlight Garden. Overnight at the hotel.
The history of Fatehpur Sikri dates back to the Mughal era in the 16th century. . Lost and abandoned, Fatehpur Sikri stands like a proud maiden showing off her beauty even as an air of melancholy surrounds it. The rich sandstone walls echo the tales of poignancy and erstwhile glory.
Known to exist since prehistoric times, Agra came into full flower during the 16th and 17th centuries as one of the four capitals of Mughal dynasty. It was in Agra that the artistic excellence of the Mughals reached its zenith at a time that coincided with the political high-water mark of their vast and expanding empire.
The Mehtab Bagh or the moonlight garden, was the last of the eleven Mughal-built gardens along the Yamuna River opposite to the Taj Mahal and the Agra Fort. Built during the period 1631- 1635 A.D., Mehtab Bagh literally means “a moonlit pleasure garden”.
Day 14: Drive to Delhi Airport
After breakfast proceed to visit the Taj Mahal (closed on Fridays) and Agra Fort. After visits check –out from the hotel and drive to Delhi International Airport to catch flight back home.
The Taj Mahal is an enormous mausoleum complex commissioned in 1632 by the Mughal emperor Shah Jahan to house the remains of his beloved wife. Constructed over a 20-year period on the southern bank of the Yamuna River in Agra, the famed complex is one of the most outstanding examples of Mughal architecture, which combined Indian, Persian and Islamic influences
Agra Fort was begun by Akbar between 1565 and 1573. It is situated on the west bank of the Yamuna River, about 2km upstream from the Taj Mahal. Akbar built the fort of sandstone; his grandson Shah Jahan, the builder of the Taj Mahal, constructed palaces of white marble within the fort itself.