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Golden Triangle with Tigers
Delhi – Agra – Ranthambore – Talabgaon – Jaipur – Delhi
This 11-day Golden Triangle Tour with Tigers is a comprehensive, in-depth look at the fascinating cultures and history of North India. The journey begins from Delhi on 27th October or 26th November 2016 – the capital city. As the capital of India, it is the second largest city (following Mumbai) with about 12 million people, and the world’s eighth largest metropolis. Considered to be the nation’s political, cultural, commercial and trading hub this is a fantastic place to explore. Leaving Delhi, a short journey on Indian railways will take you to Agra – the “city of Taj”. From there you will travel to Ranthambore to see the big cats in their natural habitat. You will also experience Talabgaon, a unique Rajasthani village and embrace their native culture, life style of the people, learning the techniques of farming before heading to Jaipur – famous for its palaces, forts, unique villages.
- Discover the cities Delhi, Agra, Ranthambore, Talabgaon & Jaipur
- Walking tour of Old Delhi
- See the icons of India including the Qutab Minar, Humayun’s tomb, the Forts and Palaces of Rajasthan and Taj Mahal
- Cycle rickshaw ride through the myriad streets/lanes for Chandani Chowk Delhi
- Heritage Walk through Old Delhi
- Cycle rickshaw ride through the myriad lanes of Old Delhi
- A meal with an Indian family
- Game viewing at Ranthambore
- Meeting and inter-acting with local people and experience the village life at Talabgaon
- Saree / turban tying
- Cooking demonstration
Arrive in Delhi: Overnight at the Hotel Claridges.
The day is scheduled for a full day tour covering both Old & New parts of the city with a private chauffeur driven vehicle and an English speaking guide.
Begin with a walking tour of Old Delhi – the walk takes the group through the hidden parts of the Delhi giving an insight into the rich heritage of this country, its culture, tradition and cuisine. Enjoy a cycle rickshaw ride through the bustling bazaar of Chandi Chowk – popularly called “The Silver Street” and relish a typical meal with an Indian family. After the walk, drive past Red Fort and later visit Raj Ghat – the memorial to Mahatma Gandhi – The Father of the Nation.
Afternoon proceed for tour of New Delhi, which reflects the legacy the British left behind. The division between New and Old Delhi is the division between the capitals of the British and the Mughals respectively. The division in the walled city and New Delhi also marks the division in the life-styles. The walled city is all tradition where one will be able to glean a past life-style in all its facets, colours and spells. New Delhi in contrast, is a city trying to live up to the best of 21st century standards.
The tour to Imperial Delhi will start by visit to the Qutab Minar, the tallest stone tower in India. The Qutab Minar was started in 1199 AD by Qutab-ud-Din Aibak and completed by the sultan’s successor and son-in-law, Iltutmish. The building is 72.5 m high and has 379 steps from the bottom to the top. The Minar is tapering with the diameter of the base is 14.3 m while at the top floor it is 2.7 m. The Qutab Minar is still the highest stone tower as well as one of the finest Islamic structures ever raised in India. Then, visit Humayun’s Tomb, built by the widow of the second Mughal Emperor, Humayun, it is an outstanding monument in the Indo-Persian style, a precursor of the Taj Mahal. The tour also includes a drive past the imposing India Gate, the Parliament building and the Rashtrapati Bhawan, the President’s residence.
After breakfast you will be transferred to Agra
Agra in terms of ambiance is still associated with its Mughal period. The Mughals besides being great rulers were also great builders and they preserved their best architectural wonders for Agra & its neighborhood. It has many wonderful monuments and the Taj Mahal, the greatest of them all, is a masterpiece of Mughal architecture at its best.
On arrival, you will be assisted with check in etc
Morning visit Agra Fort, an outstanding example of Mughal architecture. Agra Fort – the seat and the stronghold of the Mughal Empire under successive generations. This was the seat of Mughal rule and administration and the present structure owes its origins to Akbar who erected the walls and gates and the first buildings on the eastern banks of Yamuna River. Shah Jehan added the impressive quarters and the mosque while Aurangzeb added the outer ramparts. Visit its Hall of Public Audience and its Royal Pavilions.
Sunset visit to Taj Mahal. An inimitable poem in white marble, the Taj Mahal was built over a period of 22 years (1631-1653), using a workforce of 22000 people, by the Mughal Emperor Shah Jahan for his Queen Mumtaz Mahal to enshrine her mortal remains. The Taj Mahal presents a wonderous sight at different time of the day – at dawn, during the day, at sunset and even on a moonless night. Needless to say it is exquisite on a moonlit night.
Optional: Sun rise visit to Taj Mahal
After breakfast, leave for Ranthambore, en-route visit Fatehpur Sikri.
Fatehpur Sikri – known as the “deserted city” built by Akbar the Great – in 1569 and abandoned due to the scarcity of water. The city is covered with palaces and mosques and used to be a town larger than London when it was originally constructed. Now it is an extraordinary place to wander around with its buildings in near perfect condition.
Ranthambore National Park is an outstanding example of Project Tiger’s efforts at conservation in the country. The forest around the Ranthambore Fort was once, the private grounds of the Maharajas of Jaipur. As a result of the stringent efforts in conservation, tigers, the prime assets of the Park, have become more and more active during the day. More than in any other park or sanctuary in India, tigers are easily spotted here in daylight. It is very easy to chance upon a tiger lolling around lazily in the sun, or feverishly hunting down sambhar around the lakes. Apart from tigers, you will come across a few panthers too. The other permanent residents of the park include marsh crocodiles, hyenas, jungle cats and sloth bears. Sambars are found in abundance all over the area, the prime target of all predators. Chital, Nilgai and chinkara are the other inhabitants of the region.
Morning and Afternoon game drive into the park by canter (open bus)
In Ranthambore there is a fairly good chance of spotting a tiger. A network of four tracks crisscross the park. Each safari takes about three hours. Best known for its tigers, it also boasts of a large number of other wild species including leopards, the highly endangered caracal, jungle cat, hyena, jackal, sloth bear, wild boar, marsh crocodile, porcupine, common langur, spotted deer, Indian gazelle, sambar (Asiatic stag) and nilgai (bluebull). Ranthambore is also rich in migratory, water, and woodland birds.
Morning at leisure.
After lunch leave for Talabgaon
Talabgaon – a small unique Rajasthani village located ideally between Ranthambore and Jaipur.
Talabgaon Castle is a living fort occupied by Singh Rathore family for over 200 years. They had always wanted to share the experience of a bygone era with the guests of Talabgaon. As Rajputs they have a proud history as fearless warriors who lived by a strict code of honor with a reputation for great hospitality. Atithi Devo Bhavah (guest is God) is a Rajput and a Hindu tradition that they strive to uphold.
Reach Talabgaon, check into the Castle
After lunch leave for Jaipur in the afternoon.
Jaipur – The capital of Rajasthan Jaipur – popularly known as the “Pink City “as the Pink sandstone was used to construct the buildings in Old walled city. Jaipur owes its name, its foundation and it’s planning to the Great warrior astronomer Maharaja Jai Singh II (1699–1744 AD).
Arrive Jaipur and check-in at the hotel. Rest of the afternoon at leisure.
After breakfast, a guided tour exploring the palaces, forts and museums of Jaipur. Along with a photo stop at Hawa Mahal “the Palace on Winds” the group will be visiting the Amber Fort, Jantar Mantar and City Palace.
Amber Fort – the capital of the erstwhile State of Jaipur until 1728 is perched on a hill. It has halls of Public and Private audience, a Sheesh Mahal (hall of mirrors) various marble palaces which are marvelous examples of ancient Rajput architecture. The Temple of Amba (Mother Goddess), the patron deity of the Royal family is at the entrance to the palace. Reach the Fort by jeeps. Jantar Mantar – an astrological and astronomical Observatory built by Maharaja Jai Singh in 18th century, which is remarkable for its accuracy of the instruments even in the present times.
A range of optional activities plus a visit to the markets. The markets of Jaipur are famous for block printed textiles, precious and semi-precious gems, silver jewellery, jutis, brocade and carpets as well as handmade paper. Take a walk through the bustling and colourful bazaars of the Pink City.
Breakfast at the hotel, leave for Delhi.
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