Discover ancient forts and temples, revel in the beauty of Agra's Taj Mahal, sail the Ganges in venerable Varanasi, stay with the locals in the Kerala backwaters, smell spices at a plantation in the Cardamom HIlls
From the beautiful symmetry of the Taj Mahal to the unforgettable backwaters of Kerala, this comprehensive Indian journey is a photographer's delight. Walk along the sacred Ganges River in Varanasi and explore Abhaneri’s carved stepwells in the North before flying south to search for tigers in the wild and exotic spices in relaxed hill stations. With an intriguing combination of included activities and free time, city streets and rural spirit, you're sure to gain an understanding of the people and some insight into this fascinating land.
- Walking tour with a guide from the Planeterra-supported New Delhi Streetkids Project. Old Delhi walk with stops at the Jama Masjid, Gurduwara, Chandni Chowk, spice markets and Connaught Place. Taj Mahal and I’timad-ud-Daulah (Baby Taj) entrance. Red Fort entrance and guided tour. Fatehpur Sikri monuments entrance and guide. Amber Fort and Hawa Mahal tour (Jaipur). Orchha Palace complex visit. Western Temple complex visit. River Ganges boat trips at sunrise and sunset, including candle flower ceremony. Fort Kochi orientation walk. Wayanad Wildlife Sanctuary walk. Mudumalai National Park safari. Chaumundi Temple and Mysore Palace visit. Mamallapuram Shore Temple visit. Pondicherry orientation walk. Madurai cycle-rickshaw ride and Sri Meenakshi temple visit. Cardamom Hills spice plantation tour. Kerala backwaters homestay with guide. Internal flights. All transport between destinations and to/from included activities.
- 1 breakfast, 1 lunch, 2 dinners. (Allow USD445-590 for meals not included.)
- Hotels/guesthouses (25 nts), sleeper train (1 nt), homestay (1 nt, multi-share).
- Train, local bus, charter bus, auto-rickshaw, boat, plane.
- Chief Experience Officer (CEO) throughout, local guides.
- Small group experience; Max 15, avg 10
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Day 1 Delhi
Arrive at any time.
Day 2 Delhi
Take a morning walk through the city with a young adult from the Planeterra-supported New Delhi Streetkids Project. Visit Old Delhi, explore the spice markets and visit Jama Masjid and Connaught Place.
Days 3-4 Jaipur
Visit the Palace of the Winds and Amber Fort. Opt to watch a Bollywood movie in the classic art deco Raj Mandir cinema.
Day 5 Tordi Sagar village
Visit this rural Rajasthani village in the beautiful countryside with a close tie to the land.
Days 6-7 Abhaneri/Agra
Stop by the Abhaneri stepwells and Fatehpur Sikri on the way to Agra. Visit the famous Taj Mahal, Baby Taj, Red Fort and Fatehpur Sikri.
Day 8 Orchha
Visit the Orchha Palace complex.
Days 9-11 Alipura/Khajuraho
Visit the Western Temple complex.
Days 12-13 Varanasi
Take an orientation walk along ghats and old city with River Ganges boat trips at sunrise and sunset.
Day 14 Varanasi/Delhi
Take a free morning to wander the city and do some last-minute shopping before flying to Delhi.
Days 15-16 Kochi
Fly to Kochi. An orientation walk includes the Dutch Palace and Jewish synagogue and town. See a kathakali performance.
Days 17-18 Wayanad (Kalpetta)
Take a morning train, then a scenic drive, to Wayanad. Walk the nature trails in Wayanad Wildlife Sanctuary and Eddakal prehistoric caves.
Day 19 Mudumalai Wildlife Sanctuary
Spend the night and enjoy a safari at the Mudumalai Wildlife Sanctuary.
Day 20 Mysore
Enjoy an included visit to Chaumundi Temple and Mysore Palace.
Days 21-22 Mamallapuram (Mahabalipuram)
Take an afternoon train to Chennai and a short bus ride to Mamallapuram to visit the Shore Temple.
Day 23 Pondicherry
Continue to Pondicherry, a former French territory; learn about Sri Aurobindo Ghose at the ashram.
Days 24-25 Madurai
Drive to Madurai and enjoy a cycle-rickshaw tour of the city and Sri Meenakshi Temple.
Day 26 Thekkady (1D)
Drive to Thekkady and take a guided tour of a spice plantation in the Cardamom Hills.
Day 27 Kerala Backwaters Homestay (1L,1D)
Take a private bus to Alleppey, then a riverboat to the homestay. Experience local life and enjoy a guided walk along the lagoon.
Day 28 Kochi (1B)
Travel to Kochi where the tour ends upon arrival. Onward travel can be booked for 4pm or later.
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