Taj Mahal, Pink City & Tigers

At a GlanceItineraryDetail

Taj Mahal, Pink City & Tigers

8 nights

This is a short tour that visits the principal highlights of Rajasthan and northern India using a combination of private car and driver, and trains. A visit to India, without using the trains, simply isn’t complete!

India Train1

The rickety-clickety trains

Day 1: Train to Jaipur & free time

We’ll collect you early in the morning and drive you to the railway station to board the Intercity train from Delhi to Jaipur – 0610/1050. On arrival at Jaipur, the capital of Rajasthan, we’ll meet you at Jaipur railway station and transferred to the havelis (traditional manor-house, now hotel) which is family-owned and operated . The rest of the day is free to walk around the neighbourhood.

Day 2: Jaipur Sightseeing     

Your private guide will meet you after breakfast and escort you to the Amber Fort. This visit simply isn’t complete without riding up to the fort in a howdah, atop an elephant, which is the way the maharaja would have approached. The fort is a few Km outside Jaipur and sits on top of a hillock. Continue to the City Palace, which is still a royal residence, and visit The Observatory. The observatory is an amazing astrological prediction machine! It predicts eclipses, measures time and tracks the location of stars. The final visit of the day is to Hawa Mahal or “Palace of the Wind” which is in fact a façade – but nonetheless, an impressive piece of architecture.

india elephant

Believe it on not, there’s an elephant under there!

Day 3: Drive to Ranthambore (Approx 4 hrs)

Set off after breakfast  in private car with guide and drive to Ranthambore. Ranthambore National Park is spread over 400 Km² and is home to the Royal Bengal Tiger. Late afternoon game drive in a shared Jeep or Canter (which is a mini-bus without a roof). Overnight at a traditional Rajput hunting palace, long-since converted into a hotel.

Day 4: Ranthambore – Game drives in search of tigers

Early morning & late afternoon game drives in a shared Jeep or Canter.

Day 5: Ranthambore – Game drives in search of the big cat

Early morning & late afternoon game drives in a shared Jeep or Canter.

Day 6: Ranthambore to Agra via Bharatpur & Fatehpur Sikri

Early this morning we will drive you to the railway station to board the train to Bharatpur – 0705/0923. On arrival at Bharatpur your private guide and driver will collect you from the railway station and drive to Fatehpur Sikri (1 hour drive). While Tudor England was enjoying the reign of Henry VIII this was the capital of the Mughal Empire. The architecture is inspired by early Persian influences and the distinctive red sandstone is wonderfully well preserved. After a guided visit to this deserted city, drive on to Agra and check in to your hotel (1 ½ hrs drive).

Taj Mahal

Taj Mahal

Day 7: Taj Mahal & Agra Fort

Guided visit to Taj Mahal at sunrise, which is one of the most romantic buildings in the world. Return to the hotel for breakfast. When you are ready we will drive you out to Agra Fort, which is more like a walled city than a conventional fort! It covers nearly 45 Ha and is much older than its more famous sister, the Taj. It has all sorts of wonderful things including a moat with drawbridge and a pair of life-size elephants who guard the main entrance. Some of the fort is still used by the army, so you can’t access every inch. Overnight Agra.

[N.B. The Taj is closed on Fridays.]

Day 8: Full day at leisure or options; evening train to Delhi

There is so much to do in Agra and it’s such a traveller-friendly place, that we have left today free. Options that you could arrange include a visit to Akbar’s tomb Sikandra; or the mini-Taj which is more formally known as Itmad-ud-Daulah’s tomb. It is thought that this mausoleum is the prototype of the Taj.

Cow

2-speed cows: dead slow and stop.

Late evening we’ll drive you to Agra railway station to board the express train to Delhi – 2030/2240. We’ll meet you in Delhi and run you out to your hotel: we offer either a deluxe room in a family-stay or a nice little boutique hotel – your choice.

Day 9: Departure back home

Departure transfer to International Airport for flight back home or onward travel.

Included in the price:

  1. Hotels in Jaipur, Ranthambore, Agra and Delhi.
  2. All hotels on B&B basis except Ranthambore on full board.
  3. All train journeys in aircon chair car class (1sdt class) except Agra/Delhi in  executive class (subject to availability).
  4. 5 game drives based in a shared Jeep (or Canter depending upon availability) including park entrance fees + forest guide.
  5. Monument entrance fees – Jaipur: Amber Fort, City Palace & Observatory. Fatehpur Sikri, Agra: Taj Mahal x 1 visit & Agra Fort.
  6. Local English-speaking guide for Jaipur, Fatehpur Sikri and Agra.
  7. All transfers and road transport based in an aircon car with private driver.
Sowing

Local tailors who are magicians and can make anything.