Ancient India Tour

Tour Duration : 20 Nights & 21 Days
Places Covered : Delhi - Mandawa - Bikaner - Jaisalmer - Jodhpur - Udaipur - Pushkar - Jaipur - Agra - Khajuraho - Varanasi - Delhi - Rishikesh - Chandigarh - Delhi

Detailed Itenarary :

Day 1 : New Delhi

Arrive Delhi :: Met upon arrival in Delhi and proceed to the hotel - Later you will enjoy the city tour of Delhi visiting: - Laxmi Narayan Temple :: is the biggest temple in North India, it was built by richest family of India in 1938. It is dedicated to Lakshmi (goddess of prosperity) and Narayan (god of preserver). Jantar Mantar (Observatory) :: is built by Jai Singh in 1725, its passion for astronomy was more notable. Its main feature is the measure the position of stars, altitudes and azimuths and calculating eclipses. President House :: is official residence of the President of the Country designed by Lutyens. It was the official residence of the Viceroy when the British ruled India. Parliament House :: is a circular building where the Indian Parliament meets and the Worlds largest Democracy works. India Gate - is a 42m high stone arch of triumph. Their bear the name of the 85,000 Indian Army Soldiers who died in the campaigns of World War I. Below the arch is the memorial to the Unknown Soldier, India Gate is surrounded by green grass lawns and trees. Lotus Temple (Bahai Temple) :: was designed like a lotus flower. It is made of marble, cement, dolomite and sand. It is open to all faiths and is an ideal place for meditation and obtaining peace and tranquility. Humayuns Tomb :: is a mausoleum of the Mughal emperor Humayun. Bega Begum also known as Haji Begum, wife of Humayun constructed the mausoleum for her husband. It was designed by Mirak Mirza Ghiyuth and built between 1562 and 1572 A.D. Qutab Minar :: is 72.5m tall and takes 379 steps to reach to the top. The construction was started by Qutub-ud-din Akbar and completed by his successor. Red Fort :: is one of the most magnificent palaces in the World. The Mughal Emperor, Sha Jahan, after ruling from Agra for eleven years, decided to shift to Delhi and laid the foundation stone of the Red Fort in 1618. Jama Masjid :: constructed by Mughal Emperor Shah Jahan to complement his palace at the Red Fort. More than 5,000 workers toiled for six years to complete the largest mosque in India. A fine example of Mughal architecture, the Jama Masjid has three gateways. The main courtyard of the mosque is 408sq feet and paved with red stone. Raj Ghat :: a simple sq platform of black marble marks the spots where Mahatma Gandhi was cremated after his assassination in 1948. To North of Raj Ghat is the cremation ground of Jawaharlal Nehru named as Shanti Van. The cremation ground of Indira Gandhi, Sanjay Gandhi, and Rajeev Gandhi are also in the vicinity. Back to hotel for over night stay

Day 2 : Delhi - Mandawa

Delhi - Mandawa (Drive 230 Kms - Approx 4 Hrs) :: Have Breakfast & drive towards Mandawa - the open air art gallery of Rajasthan, This region came into prominence in the 14th century when a number of Muslim clans moved into the area and the towns of this region developed into important trading posts on the caravan routes emanating from the ports of Gujarat. This region is famous for painted havelis most of which date back from the 18th century. It is famous for frescoes on the walls of havelis and forts depicting the life and valor of rajputs. Upon arrival transfer you to the hotel. After couple of an hour, take a tour of the painted ‘havelis’. The famous and must visit among all are Chowkhani Haveli, Gulab Rai Ladia Haveli, Lakshmi Narayan Ladia Haveli, Mohahanlal Saraf Haveli and Bhagchandika Haveli. Watch the splendor of almost 100 year old frescoes. Over night stay in the hotel.

Day 3 : Mandawa - Bikaner

Mandawa - Bikaner (Drive 165 Kms - Approx 3 Hrs) :: Leave after breakfast for Bikaner. On arrival transfer you to the hotel. Get fresh and then proceed to visit - Junagarh :: is built in 1593 A.D. by Raja Rai Singh, a general in the army of Emperor Akber. The structure is encircled by a moat and has beautiful palaces in between made of Redstone and marbles. Devi Kund :: is a royal crematorium with several ornamented cenotaphs built in the memory of Bika Dynasty rulers. Maharaja Suraj Singhs cenotaph is the most impressive one created entirely with white marble with spectular rajputs paintings on the ceilings. Bhandasar Jain Temple :: is dedicated to the 23rd Tirthankara, Parasavnathji. The temples have colorful wall painting and some beautiful carving. Ganga Golden Jubilee Museum :: has one of the richest collections of terracotta ware, weapons miniature paintings of Bikaner schools and coins. It also has separate section displaying exclusive arts and crafts of the region. Over night stay in the hotel.

Day 4 : Bikaner - Jaisalmer

Bikaner - Jaisalmer (Drive 330 Kms - Approx 6½ Hrs) :: Leave after breakfast for the Golden city of India - Jaislamer - you enjoy the ride as the roads are absolutely empty and you only watch the camels and at certain places sometime the Deers and other wildlife - upon arr. have lunch and proceed for a walking tour to: - HAVELIS - Nathmalji ki Haveli :: This late 19th century haveli displays intricate architecture and sheer craftsmanship. One very interesting fact about this haveli is that two brothers carved its two sides. Though not identical they are very similar and in perfect harmony. The interior walls are ornate with splendid miniature paintings. Yellow sandstone elephants guard the building. Patwon ki Haveli :: This is one of the largest and most elaborate havelis in Jaisalmer. Located in a narrow alley, it is five storeys high. It has exquisitely carved pillars and extensive corridors and chambers. One of the rooms is painted with beautiful murals. Salim Singh ki Haveli :: 300 years old, this haveli was the residence of the powerful Mohta clan - ministers of the Jaisalmer rulers. The blue cupola roof with superbly carved brackets in the form of peacocks is distinctive, and an exquisite projecting balcony adorns the top storey. Evening watch the local dances in a restaurant while having the dinner - over night stay in the Hotel.

Day 5 : Jaisalmer

Jaisalmer :: Have breakfast and proceed for full day city tour of Jaisalmer and visit - The Fort :: This 12th century fort that withstood the ravages of time rises out of the sea of sand. Its rounded battlements of golden sandstone, echoes the colors of the desert. The fort has four approach gateways. Several entrances guard the Megh Durbar and the Jawahar Mahal, which bear the imperial symbols of the Bhatti clans lunar lineage. Outside the fort, is the main market place called Manek Chowk. From Manek Chowk, one can walk into the lanes, where the famous carved havelis, beautifully sculptured Jain Temples of the 12th -15th century and five interconnected palaces can be found. Tazia Tower :: The pagoda - like five storey Tazia Tower rises from the Badal Mahal (Palace of Clouds). Each storey of the tower has a beautifully carved balcony. Muslim craftsmen built the tower, in the shape of a Tazia and gifted it to their royal patron. Gadsisar Lake :: It is a scenic rainwater lake surrounded with numerous beautiful shrines. The lake is a tranquil spot for outings. Lodurva (15 Kms) :: Lodurva is the ancient capital of Jaisalmer and an important pilgrim centre of the Jains Some of the magnificent Jain temples are located here. The temples have intricate carvings on the arches at the main entrance. A Kalptaru or a divine tree is the main attraction of the temple. Manak Square :: A main marketplace outside the fort leads to the narrow lanes dotted with famous havelis Sam Sand Dunes (42 Kms) :: No trip to Jaisalmer is complete without trip to Most picturesque dunes of Sam . The ripples on the wind – caressed dunes, that create an enchanting mirage, are surely a delight for trigger- happy photographer. Various cultural programmed are organized against the back drop of these fascinating sand dunes, Exciting camel safaris allow you to get the real feel of the desert on the camel back - dinner and over night in the Hotel.

Day 6 : Jaisalmer - Jodhpur

Jaisalmer - Jodhpur (Drive 280 Kms - Approx 5½ Hrs) :: Have breakfast and leave for the Blue city of Rajasthan i.e. Jodhpur, which is located on the eastern fringe of the Thar Desert, has the distinction of neither being a part of the Thar Desert nor out of it. At best, it is a doorway to the wonderland of sand dunes and shrubs, rocky terrain and thorny trees. It is the home of the Rathors - the awesome princely state of Rajasthan, who conquered Marwar or Maroodesh, land of the sand after the fall of Delhi and Kannauj. In 1459 AD, Rao Jodha, chief of Rathore clan of Rajputs, who claimed descent from Rama, the epic here of the Ramayana, laid the foundation of Jodhpur. A high stonewall protects the well-fortified city. The wall is nearly 10 km in length and has eight gates facing various directions. Within, stands an imposing fort on a low range of sandstone hills, about 125m above the surrounding plains. Invincible! Moreover, dauntless in its league with time! The city lies at the foot of the hills. The clear distinction between the old and the new city is visible from the ramparts of the fort. On the other side of the city, facing the fort is the Umaid Bhawan Palace, one of the most spacious, sprawling and well-planned palaces in India. Moreover, from here, as you look at the fort, a tantalizing view rises before your eyes at sunset. The peculiar slant of the sunset lends the desert landscape an awe-inspiring glow and the people, a chivalry undaunted. After reach Jodhpur, transfer you to the hotel. After lunch start visit the following: - Mehrangarh Fort :: Still run by the Maharaja of Jodhpur, this Majestic Fort is sprawled across a 125m high hill. This is one of the most impressive and formidable fort in fort-studded Rajasthan. A winding road from the city 5km below approaches the fort. Seven gates lead into the fort. The Second gate is still scarring by cannon ball hits; Maharaja Man Singh built the Jayapol in 1806 following his victory over the armies of Jaipur and Bikaner; the Fatehpol or Victory Gate was erecting by Maharaja Ajit Singh to commemorate his defeat of the Mughals. The Lohapol (Iron Gate) is the final gate beside which are 15 hand prints, the sati (self-immolation) marks of Maharaja Man Singhs widows who threw themselves upon his funeral pyre in 1843. They still attract devotional attention. Inside the fort is a series of courtyards and palaces. The palace apartments with marvellously carved panels, latticed windows have evocative names such as Sukh Mahal (Pleasure Palace), Moti Mahal (Pearl Palace), the Phool Mahal (Flower Palace) and the Sheesh Mahal (Palace of Mirrors). These palaces house a fabulous collection of trappings of Indian royalty including a superb collection of palanquins, elephant howdahs (used when the Maharajas rode their elephants in processions), miniature paintings, musical instruments, costumes and furniture. There is even a display of rocking cradles. The Chamunda Devi Temple, dedicated to goddess Durga, stands on the southern end of the fort. There are also old cannons on the ramparts at this end and the views from here are superb. Umaid Bhawan Palace :: Maharaja Umaid Singhji who built this palace was fascinated with western lifestyles so he marshalled the services of a well-known Edwardian architect, Henry Vaughan Lanchester, a creditable equal of Edward Lutyens (architect of New Delhi) to construct a three hundred and forty seven roomed Umaid Palace. This was to become India last of the great palaces and the biggest private residence in the world. Jaswant Thada :: On the way down from the fort, on left is Jaswant Thada, the graceful marble cenotaph of Maharaja Jaswant Singh II. His son Maharaja Sardar Singhji built the Taj Mahal of Marwar in the memory of Maharaj Jaswant Singhji II of Jodhpur. Maha Mandir :: The Mahamandir Temple is supported by 100 pillars and has carvings depicting yoga postures. Mandore Gardens :: Mandore was the former capital of Maharajas of Marwar and is located about 5 miles north of Jodhpur, but was later abandoned for the security of Mehrangarh fort. Here you will find the dewals, or cenotaphs of Jodhpurs former rulers. Unlike the usual chhatri-shaped cenotaphs typical of Rajasthan, they were built along the lines of a Hindu temple, four stories high, with fine columns and an elegant spire, all in red sandstone. Evening you have the walking tour of Clock Tower market also called as the Spice Market and is quite interesting to see the villagers shopping. Later return to the Hotel for over night stay.

Day 7 : Jodhpur - Udaipur

Jodhpur - Udaipur via Ranakpur (Drive 280 Kms - Approx 5½ Hrs) :: Leave after breakfast for Ranakpur & upon arrival visit the temples, which are beautiful sculptured Jain temples mark the glory of this renowned place. Marked as one of the five holy places for the Jain community, these were created in the 15 the century. During the reign of Rana Kumbha and are enclosed within a wall. The central Chaumukha [four-faced temple] is dedicated to Adinathji the temple is an astounding creation with 29 halls and 1,444 pillars all distinctly carved and no two being alike is an amazing evidence of the genius sense of architecture that enhances the charm of the place - and then proceed for Udaipur. Upon arrival relax and enjoy the surroundings and if you wish to - you can have the sun set cruise at Lake Pichola - which gives the beautiful picture. Over night stay in the hotel.

Day 8 : Udaipur

Udaipur :: Have breakfast and proceed for city tour & visiting - City Palace :: is one of the largest royal complexes in Rajasthan, situated on a promontory on the picturesque Lake Pichola. The complex has 11 beautiful palaces with balconies and towers. Offering the breathtaking view of the lake the City Lake Palace :: also known as Jag Niwas is a beautiful Island Palace built by Maharana Jagat Singh II in 1754. Situated on picturesque Lake Pichola, the white marble structure appears like emerging out of the shimmering blue waters on the lake, creating a spellbound effect. Jag Mandir :: is another beautiful island palace on Lake Pichola, built by Maharaja Karan Singh in 1615 AD. The palace once sheltered the Mughal prince Khurram (later Emperor Shah Jahan, who built the world-famous Taj Mahal) who rebelled against his father Jehangir in the 1620s. The Palace has a giant stone sculpture of elephants and an impressive chattri (cenotaphs) that add to its beauty. Saheliyon- Ki- Bari :: garden was built in early 18th century AD as a retreat for ladies of the royal household to spend their time in leisure. The enchantingly beautiful Garden is famous for its lotus pool, fountains (in the shape of birds), lush green lawns, flowerbeds, and marble pavilions, offering a breathtaking view to visitors. Maharana Pratap Memorial (MOTI MAGARI) :: an impressive bronze statue of Maharana Pratap and his favourite and loyal horse, who was fiercely protective about his master and stood by him till his last breath, stands at the top of Moti Magri (Pearl Mount) overlooking Fateh Sagar. Lake Pichola :: Pichola Lake derives its name from Pichola Village was submerged and Maharana Udai Singh enlarged the lake after he founded the city. He built a masonry dam known as Badipol and lake is now 4 km long and 3 km wide. This picturesque lake encloses the Jag Niwas Island and the Jag Mandir. And, the City Palace extends along its eastern banks. Eklingji (21 Kms) :: A Religious Complex Northern region of Mewar (22 Km). It houses 108 temples chiselled out of sandstone and marble, this temple of Eklingji was build in 734 AD. Enclosed by high walls, it is devoted to Eklingji (A form of Shiv Deity adored under the epithet of EKLINGA). Built by Maharana Jagat Singh I in 1651 the temple enshrines a black stone image of Lard Vishnu. There is a brass image of Garuda the Lord Bird carrier. The exterior and the plinth are covered with base relief of alligators; elephants, equestrians and celestial musicians rise in tiers. Evening is free and over night stay in the hotel.

Day 9 : Udaipur - Pushkar

Udaipur - Pushkar (Drive 301 Kms - Approx 6½ Hrs) :: Leave after breakfast for Pushkar, the quiet little town of eastern Rajasthan, is located 11 km from Ajmer, on the edge of a small and beautiful lake. Pushkar is a city of 400 temples and 52 bathing ghats. Pushkar prides itself on being the site of the only temple of the Hindu God of Creation, Brahma. Every November, Pushkar comes alive with the vibrancy and colour of the famous Pushkar Fair and the full moon festivities at the Ghats. No pilgrimage is considered complete without a dip in the holy Pushkar Lake. Pushkar has as many as 400 temples and 52 ghats and the only temple in the country that is dedicated to Brahma is to be found here. While Pushkar is a heaven for the religiously inclined, it is also the venue of one of the countrys most colourful cattle fairs - the Pushkar Fair of Hindus. Pushkar became a favorite residence of the great Mughals. One of the first contacts between the Mughals and the British occurred in Pushkar when Sir Thomas Roe met with Jehangir here in 1616. The city was subsequently taken by the Scindias and, in 1818, it was handed over to the British, becoming one of the few places in Rajasthan controlled directly by British rather than being part of a princely state. Upon arrival, check in the Hotel. Take a rest for couple of an hour. After lunch start visiting, Pushkar Lake :: The pious Pushkar Lake is believed to having been created by the falling of lotus from the hand of Lord Brahma. It is considered to be as old as the creation. The lake is considered as one of the most sacred spots, and believed that one dip in the waters of lake on Kartika Poornima ocassion is equivalent to performing yagnas for several hundred years Brahma Temple :: This is the only existing temple dedicated to lord Brahma and was constructed in the 14th century, standing on a high plinth with marble steps leading up to it. A beautiful carved silver turtle sits on the floor facing the sanctorum or Garbha Griha. The marble floor around the silver turtle is embedded with hundreds of silver coins, with donors name engraved on them Saraswati Temple :: Saraswati is the wife of Brahma. Literally her name means the flowing one .In the Rig Veda she represents a river deity and is connected with fertility and purification. She is considered the personification of all knowledge - arts, sciences, crafts and skills. She is the goddess of the creative impulse, the source of music, beauty and eloquence. Evening is free and & over night stay in the Hotel

Day 10 : Pushkar - Jaipur

Pushkar - Jaipur (Drive 138 Kms - Approx 3 Hrs) :: After taking breakfast, leave for Jaipur - the Pink city of India which is - Settled in the rugged hills of the Aravalis, Jaipur is the pristine jewel in the desert sands of Rajasthan. Jaipur is as remarkable for its marvelous architecture and town planning as it is for the lively spirit of the people who inhabit it. The city presents a unique synthesis of culture that has to be experienced in order to be appreciated. With its origin buried deep into the pages of history, the city still exudes a magical old world charm; an aroma of chivalry and romance is evident, despite having evolved into a city that is the hub of modern commercial activity in the region. Tell-tale signs of the glorious past and regal splendor of the city lie strewn across with gay abandon. Widely known as the Pink City, Jaipur is color washed pink to welcome Prince Albert, the consort of Queen Victoria of England who visited India in 1883 A.D. The city was founded in 1727 A.D by one of the greatest ruler Jai Singh II. Jaipur is surrounded by hills on three sides, crowned by formidable forts and majestic palaces, mansions and gardens. Jaipur is the only city in the world, which is sub-divided in to nine rectangular sectors symbolizing nine divisions of universe. Jaipur is the first planned city designed in accordance with Shilpa Shastra- epochal treatise of Hindu architecture. The lively spirit of fanfare, festivity and celebration of the people adequately match the colorful and intricately carved monuments. Even today, one can find weather beaten faces with huge colorful turbans, fierce moustaches and lips that spontaneously crease into a heart-warming smile. A city like Jaipur, where modernity and tradition live hand-in-hand, is truly rare. Perhaps this is what makes it an attractive destination for tourists who flock to Jaipur, year after year. Upon arrival check in the hotel & later proceed for a drive around the city & over night stay in the hotel.

Day 11 : Jaipur

Jaipur :: Have breakfast & full day city tour of Jaipur and visit to: - Hawa Mahal :: The ornamental facade of this "Palace of Winds" is a prominent landmark in Jaipur. Their five-story structures of sandstone plastered pink encrusted with fine trelliswork and elaborate balconies. The palace has 953 niches and windows. Built in 1799 by Pratap Singh, the Mahal was a royal grandstand for the palace women City Palace :: A delightful blend of Mughal and traditional Rajasthani architecture, the City Palace sprawls over one-seventh of the area in the walled city. It houses the Chandra Mahal, Shri Govind Dev Temple and the City Palace Museum Jantar Mantar :: This is the largest and the best preserved of the five observatories built by Jai Singh II in different parts of the country. This observatory consisting of outsized astronomical instruments is still in use Amber Fort Palace :: Amber is the classic romantic Rajasthani fort palace. Its construction was started by Man Singh I in 1592, and completed by his descendent Jai Singh I. Its forbidding exterior belies an inner paradise where a beautiful fusion of Mughal and Hindu styles finds its ultimate expression Jal Mahal :: Also known as Water Palace, Built in the mid 18th century by Madho Singh I The Palace was developed as a pleasure spot and was used for the royal duck shooting parties. A causeway leads to Jal Mahal Palace situated in the middle of Man Sagar Lake, opposite the cenotaphs. Evening is free for shopping and over night stay in the Hotel.

Day 12 : Jaipur - Agra

Jaipur - Agra via Fatehpur Sikri (Drive 242 Kms - Approx 5 Hrs) :: Have breakfast and drive to Agra. Enrooted visit Fatehpur Sikri :: The deserted city of sandstone built by Emperor Akbar. He had planned this city as his capital but shortage of water compelled him to abandon the city. After this within 20 years, the capital of Mughals was shifted to Lahore. It is the most perfectly preserved and complete Mughal palace city of all. Fatehpur Sikri is one of the finest examples of Mughal architectural splendor at its height. Although only ruined walls remain of the town, the magnificent palace complex still stands; the elaborately carved red sandstone almost as it was 400 years ago. Continue drive to Agra and upon arrival on sunset - visit Taj Mahal :: is also known as Crown Palace, is in fact the most well preserved & architecturally beautiful tomb in the world. The English poet, Sir Edwin Arnold, as “Not a piece of architecture, best describes it as other buildings are, but the proud passions of an emperor’s love wrought in living stones." It is a celebration of woman built in marble and that’s the way to appreciate it. Construction began in 1631 and completed in 22 years. Twenty thousand people were deploying to work on it. The material was brought in from all over India and central Asia and it took a fleet of 1000 elephants to transport it to the site. The Iranian architect Ustad Isa designed it and it is best appreciate when the architecture and its adornments are link to the passion that inspired it. It is a "symbol of eternal love. Back to hotel for b/fast and then proceed to visit - Agra Fort :: built by Akbar in red sandstone. Most of the buildings within the Agra Fort are a mixture of different architectural styles. The assimilation of these different styles has given the buildings within the fort a distinctive look. Jama Masjid the mosque at Sikri was the first structure to be building in 1571.The exterior is modest but the interior carries the most gorgeous ornamentation in the floral arabesques and ingenious geometrical patterns in brown. Sikandra Tomb :: The tomb of Third Mughal Ruler "Akbar " during the early 16th century , the five storied building is quite Impressive and is an interesting to place to study the gradual evolution in design that culminated in the Taj Mahal. Over night stay in the hotel.

Day 13 : Agra - Khajuraho

Agra - Jhansi (Train) - Khajuraho via Orchha (Drive 195 Kms - Approx 4 Hrs) :: Leave after breakfast to catch a train for Jhansi. Met upon arrival in Jhansi & drive towards Orchha. Upon arrival direct proceed for the city tour visiting: - Raj Palace :: was built in the 17th century by Madhukar Shah, the deeply religious predecessor of Bir Singh Ju Deo. The plain exteriors, crowned by chhatris, give way to interiors with exquisite murals, boldly colorful on a variety of religious themes. Jahangir Palace :: built by Raja Bir Singh Ju Deo in the 17th century to commemorate the visit of Emperor Jehangir to Orchha. The palace also gives breathtaking views of surrounding areas from its numerous multi-storied balconies. Its strong lines are counterbalanced by delicate chhatris and trelliswork, the whole conveying an effect of extraordinary richness. Ram Raja Temple :: is famous Temple of Orchha. This is the only temple in the country where Rama is worshipped as a king -that too in a palace. With its soaring spires and palatial architecture, this temple is surely one of the most unusual in India. Chaturbhuj Temple :: built upon a massive stone platform and reached by a steep flight of steps, the temple was specially constructed to enshrine the image of Rama that remained in the Ram Raja Temple. Lotus emblems and other symbols of religious significance provide the delicate exterior ornamentation. Within, the sanctum is chastely plain with high, vaulted walls emphasizing its deep sanctity. Lakshmi Narayan Temple :: a flagstone path links this temple with the Ram Raja Temple. The style is an interesting synthesis of fort and temple moulds. The interiors contain the most exquisite of Orchhas wall paintings. Covering the walls and ceiling of three halls, these murals is vibrant compositions and covers a variety of spiritual and secular subjects. They are in excellent state of preservation, with the colors retaining their vivid quality. Later drive towards Khajuraho. Upon arrival transfer you to the hotel. Evening is free & over night stay in hotel.

Day 14 : Khajuraho - Varanasi

Khajuraho - Varanasi (Fly) :: Leave after breakfast to visit temples of Khajuraho, which are the superb examples of Indo- Aryan architecture with decorations of exceedingly fine art and artistic stonework. The sculptures around the temple depict many aspects of Indian life a thousand years ago; gods and goddesses, warriors and musicians, real and mythological animals. Stone figures and apsaras or celestial maidens appear on every temple. The temples were building during the Chandella period between the 10th and 11th centuries and their remoteness helped to preserve them from destruction at the hands of Moslem invaders of the later centuries. Later in afternoon drive towards airport to board a flight for Varanasi. Met upon arrival and transfer you to the hotel. In the evening, enjoy the colorful prayer performed on the ghats. Back to hotel for over night stay

Day 15 : Varanasi

Varanasi :: Have breakfast & proceed for the city tour & visit to - Durga Temple :: Located 2 kms south of the old city, this eighteenth century Durga Temple is also known as the Monkey Temple due to many aggressive monkeys that reside here. The temple was building in a common north Indian style with an ornate shikhara, consisting of five segments symbolizing the elements and supported by finely carved columns. Here Durga was represent as the embodiment of Shakti or female power, clad in red, riding a tiger, and fully armed with Shivas trident, Vishnus discus and a sword. A forked stake in the courtyard was used during festivals in the earlier times to behead sacrificial goats. The ritual of sacrifice has now been replaced by a symbolic mark in vermilion. Non-Hindus are admitting to the courtyard but not the inner sanctum. Bharat Mata Temple :: This temple of Bharat Mata (Mother India), inaugurated by Mahatma Gandhi, lies about 3 Kms west of Godaulia, outside the old city. Here, instead of gods and goddesses, one finds a huge relief map in marble of the whole of Indian subcontinent and Tibetan plateau. The map is said to be perfectly to scale both vertically and horizontally with mountains, rivers and the holy tirthas (pilgrimage centres) all clearly visible. Shri Kashi Vishwanath Mandir :: Standing on the western bank of Indias holiest rever Ganges, Varanasi is the oldest surviving city of the world and the cultural capital of India. It is in the heart of this city that there stands in its fullest majesty the Kashi Vishwanath Temple in which is enshrined the Jyotirlinga of Shiva, Vishweshwara or Vishwanatha. Here gravitate the teeming millions of India to seek benediction and spiritual peace by the darshan of this Jyotirlinga, which confers liberation from the bondages of maya and the inexorable entanglements of the world. A simple glimpse of the Jyotirlinga is a soul-cleansing experience that transforms life and puts it on the path of knowledge and bhakti. Vishweshwara jyotirlinga has a very special and unique significance in the spiritual history of India. Tradition has it that the merits earned by the darshan of other jyotirlinga scattered in various parts of India accrue to devotee by a single visit to Kashi Vishwanath Temple. Deeply and intimately implanted in the Hindu mind, the Kashi Vishwanath Temple has been a living embodiment of our timeless cultural traditions and highest spiritual values. All great saints- Adi Shankaracharya, Ramkrishna Paramhansa, Swami Vivekanand, Goswami Tulsidas, Maharshi Dayanand Saraswati, Gurunanak and several other spiritual personalities, have visited the Temple. The Kashi Vishwanath Temple attracts visitors not only from India but abroad as well and thereby symbolises mans desire to live in peace snd harmony with one another. Tulsi Manas Temple :: Built in 1964, the Tulsi Manas Temple stands about 150 m south of Durga Temple. The temple, dedicated to Lord Rama was situating at the place where Tulsidas, the great medieval seer, was believe to have lived and written the great epic "Shri Ramcharitmanas". The two tier walls of the temple were engraves with the verses and scenes from this great epic. Banaras Hindu University :: One of the oldest educational centres in India, the Banaras Hindu University was built in 1917. The university was founding by Pandit Madan Mohan Malviya as a centre for the study of Indian art, culture, music and Sanskrit. The university campus is spreading over five square Kms and houses the Bharat Kala Bhavan. The Bhavan has a fine collection of miniature paintings, sculptures from first to fifteenth centuries, old photographs of Varanasi and brocade textiles. The campus also houses the New Vishwanatha Temple. Now is the time to return to the Hotel - you would be fully exhausted. Over night stay in the Hotel.

Day 16 : Varanasi - Delhi

Varanasi - Delhi (Fly) :: At Sun Rise, visit the Ghats of Varanasi. You ride boats to visit different ghats - Dasawamedh Ghat :: the main ghat of Varanasi that literally means the ghat of ten sacrificed horses. Legend has it those ten horses were sacrifice by Lord Brahma to allow Lord Shiva to return from a period of banishment. In spite of the fact that it is one of the oldest ghats of Varanasi dating back to many thousand years, the ghat has remained unspoilt and clean. Manikarnika Ghat :: is an ancient ghat next only in significance to Dasaswamedh ghat. This is the main cremation ghat of Varanasi. The mortal remains are consigned to flames with the prayers that the soul rests in eternal peace. It is said that this ghat symbolizes both creation and destruction. There is a sacred well at the Manikarnika Ghat, called the Manikarnika Kund. Maharaja of Jaipur built man Mandir Ghat. The ghat houses an 18th century observatory equipped with ornate window casings. There is another fine stone balcony in the northern part of the ghat. Most devotees come to this ghat to pay homage to the lingam of some war, the Lord of the Moon. Asi Ghat :: is the southernmost ghat of Varanasi. This beautiful ghat is located at the confluence of the rivers Ganga and Asi. There is a huge lingum at the ghat where devotes offers prayers However, prior to offering obeisance. it is mandatory for devotees to have a bath in the holy waters. Lalita Ghat :: is popular for Ganga Keshava Temple. Dedicated to Lord Vishnu, this is wooden temple built in typical Kathmandu style. The temple also has an image of Pashupateshwar - a manifestation of Lord Shiva. Then get back to hotel for quick breakfast and proceed towards the Airport to board a flight for Delhi. Met upon arrival and transfer you to the hotel. Evening is free for pleasure. Over night stay in the hotel.

Day 17 : Delhi - Rishikesh

Delhi - Rishikesh via Haridwar (Drive 261 Kms - Approx 5½ Hrs) :: Have breakfast & leave for Rishikesh - is a very important Hindu pilgrimage site. This is also a cluster of a number of Ashrams and temples giving the entire place a spiritual feeling. The ceaseless flow of the river, regarded as Goddess Ganga adds to the beauty and the purity of the place. Along the river, the area is filled with thick green forests in the all-mountainous region. The entire area falls on the Garhwal region of Northern India. Hordes of sadhus (sages) come to this place every year in search of salvation. Rishikesh is famous for its yoga sessions that are taught here by many yoga experts.Thereare wonderful scenery and the numerous pilgrimage sites. Rishikesh also makes some of the most popular adventure sport destinations of India. River rafting, trekking, rock climbing, hiking etc are some of the activities one can easily opt for here. Enroute Visit - Haridwar to see the Evening performance at Har- Ki- Pauri with oil lamp - the bathing Ghats for the hindus and there they have the dip in the river. And watch the performance "Aarti" which is performed every evening at these Ghats and later proceed for Rishikesh. Upon arrival, check in the Hotel. Over night stay in the hotel.

Day 18 : Rishikesh

Rishikesh :: Have breakfast & enjoy full day in Rishikesh. Visit Ashrams, Ghats, Laxman Jhoola, Ram Jhoola, and evening aarti at Parmarth Ashram and later proceed back to the Hotel for over night stay.

Day 19 : Rishikesh - Chandigarh

Rishikesh - Chandigarh (Drive 230 Kms - Approx. 5 Hrs) :: Have breakfast & drive towards Chandigarh. Upon arrival, check in the hotel - over night, stay in the hotel.

Day 20 : Chandigarh - Delhi

Chandigarh - Delhi (Drive 250 Kms - Approx. 5 Hrs) :: After breakfast, drive to Chandigarh. Upon arrival, proceed for the city tour of Chandigarh & visit: - Rose Garden :: is claimed to be the biggest in Asia and contain more than a thousand variety of roses. Rock Garden :: is the strange and whimsical fantasy is Chandigarh’s premier tourist attraction. Its a series of interconnected rocky grottoes, walkways and landscaped waterfalls. The most powerful aspect of the gardens is the thousands of animal or humanoid figures made out of discarded materials, which stand in rigid rows like silent, static armies. The Museum & Art Gallery :: contains a modest collection of India stone sculptures dating back to the Gandhara period, together with some miniature paintings and modern art. The City Museum :: is one is the adjacent museum gives an excellent rundown of the planning, development and architecture of Chandigarh. The Science Museum :: covers the evolution of life on earth and displays fossils and implements of prehistoric human founds in India. Later drive towards Delhi - Upon arrival transfer you to the hotel for over night stay.

Day 21 : Delhi

Delhi - Back Home :: As per your international flight timings, leave the hotel and drive towards International Airport to board flight for back home. Tour End.