Days
15
Price from
$4,452NZD

Experience magical Rajasthan on this 15-day journey

If you asked our tour leaders where they would most like to go to in Rajasthan, this special tour would be it! The magic of Rajasthan can best be experienced by being a guest in some very special places and recipient to timeless Rajput hospitality. Overnight stays in ornate 'havelis' and historic palaces that are now heritage hotels enable us to sample the lifestyle of a maharaja, surrounded by opulence and grace. Visits to villages allow us to connect with the local people who in some cases still live a way of life that has changed little in centuries. The fabled cities of Agra - home to the magnificent Taj Mahal, Udaipur, Jodhpur and Jaipur will impress with their grandeur, whilst Karauli, Bundi, Bijapur, Dera Kharwa and Sawarda will entice with their romance and rich cultural legacies. We also seek out India's exotic wildlife, including the magnificent tiger, on an adventure to Sariska National Park. This is indeed the Rajasthan of your dreams!

Independent travel, without the stress. Peregrine’s Independent Journeys are a range of Peregrine's best-selling group tours, available for 1-3 people. They depart on any day and are accompanied by a Peregrine guide in each location and 24/7 support from the local Peregrine office.

TRIP CHANGES FOR 2016:
From 1st July - 30th September all wildlife zones of Ranthambhore National Park will be closed to visitors. This means that no wildlife safaris in the area are permitted, including in Sawai Mansingh Sanctuary which is our usual alternative for when the main zones of the park are closed annually at this time. The reasons for the closure have not been formally announced, however we believe they have been made in the interest of tiger protection during the wet season. Due to the time of year there are no other opportunities to replace our visit to Ranthambhore with an alternative national park, however we have added the following activities and inclusions to tours that are scheduled to be in Ranthambhore from 1st July - 30th September:

Day 4 – Rathambhore Fort Excursion. The fort lies within the boundaries of the park and on the way accesses some parts of the jungle. Wildlife spotting opportunities along the way include monkeys, crocodiles, peacocks, a variety of bird species and deer. On occasion tigers have also been sighted here.
Day 6 – Jeep Safari & Dinner at Castle Bijaipur
Day 7 or 8 – Lake Pichola Boat Trip in Udaipur

Your guide will be able to provide you with further information about these activities at the group welcome meeting.

TRIP CHANGES FOR 2017:
From 1st January 2017 this trip will increase by 2 days to become a 17 day itinerary. These changes come as a result of traveller feedback and will allow us to travel at a more relaxed pace and include additional days in Ranthambhore and Bundi. In Ranthambhore this will give us the chance for an extra safari in search of tigers and in Bundi we will include a meal at a Raj era hunting lodge. To cover the cost of the extra days, a surcharge to the current advertised price is likely to apply to this trip when the full itinerary is launched in the coming months. The new itinerary is outlined below:

1 Delhi
2 Agra
3 Karauli
4 Ranthambhore
5 Ranthambhore
6 Bundi
7 Bundi
8 Bijaipur
9 Udaipur
10 Udaipur
11 Khairwa
12 Jodhpur
13 Jpdhpur
14 Jaipur
15 Jaipur
16 Delhi
17 Depart


Start
New Delhi, India
Finish
New Delhi, India
Country
India
Style
Independent Journeys
Theme
Independent Journeys
Code
PIRRJ
Physical rating
Ages
Min 15
Group size
Min 1, Max 16

Why we love this trip

  • Experience Rajput hospitality, and feel culture and history all around you with stays in heritage properties

  • The opportunity to contrast the exciting chaos of the big cities with the different pace of life and local traditions of remote villages

  • Discover the rich history and architecture of the impressive Forts scattered across the province, and how the Taj Mahal, one of the most recognisable buildings in the world, still has the power to surprise even the most experienced travellers

  • The chance to get closer to India’s exotic wildlife, and perhaps catch more than a glimpse of its elusive animal king, the magnificent tiger, in Ranthambhore National Park

  • You will have the opportunity to seek out India's exotic wildlife, including the magnificent tiger, on an adventure to Ranthambhore National Park. This is the Rajasthan of your dreams!

Is this trip right for you?

  • Rajasthan is a desert state and so it’s important to prepare for hot sticky temperatures during the day and cooler climates in the evening. Layers are the best way to tackle this disparity in weather.

  • Many Heritage hotels are preserved in their original state and so offer a unique accommodation experience, but for this reason the facilities they offer are not the same as standard hotels.

  • There are a number of long travel days on this trip. Some journeys take up to eight hours, but are a great opportunity to get to know locals, fellow travellers and the diverse scenery.

Itinerary

This itinerary is valid for departures from 01 May 2016 to 31 December 2016. View the itinerary for departures between 01 January 2017 - 31 December 2017

Day 1: Delhi
Accommodation: Hotel Jivitesh or similar, Delhi
Activities:
* Upon arrival you will be met at the airport and transferred to your hotel. Your airport representative will be waiting for you in the arrival hall, located after passing through the customs area and beyond the travel desks and exchange counters. Look out for the Peregrine signboard.
* The drive from the airport to the hotel is around 45 minutes. Most flights arrive in Delhi in the late evening, so there is nothing arranged for this day. If you have arrived early, you will be briefed with sightseeing options. This evening (approx. 6pm) there will be a briefing to outline the holiday itinerary and also cover many aspects of travelling in India. Please bring your passport and travel insurance documents to this group meeting.
Accommodation
  • Hotel Jivitesh or similar (1 night)
Meals Included
There are no meals included on this day.
Day 2: Agra
Meals included: 1 breakfast
Accommodation: Raj Mahal or similar, Agra
Activities:
* Early this morning you will leave for Agra, home to India’s most famous site - the majestic Taj Mahal. This amazing 17th century marble mausoleum was built by Emperor Shah Jahan as a tomb for his second wife, who died giving birth.
* Started in 1631, the project was completed in 1648 and employed a workforce of over 20,000 people. Construction materials were brought from all over India with the marble from Rajasthan transported by over 1000 elephants.
* You will also visit the nearby Agra Fort - a huge complex built of red sandstone by Akbar in 1565 and partially converted into a palace during the time of Shah Jahan. (Driving time: approximately 5 hours)
Accommodation
  • Raj Mahal Hotel or similar (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Agra - Agra Fort
  • Agra - Taj Mahal
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
Day 3: Fatehpur Sikri - Karauli
Meals included: 1 breakfast
Accommodation: Bhanwar Vilas Palace or similar, Karauli
Activities:
* From Agra you will make your first stop at the deserted city of Fatehpur Sikri. This magnificent ghost town was capital of the Mughal Empire between 1571 and 1585. Built during the reign of Emperor Akbar it was abandoned shortly after his death due to a lack of available water. Driving time approx. 2 hours.
* You will then drive down to Karauli, where you will arrive mid-afternoon. Karauli is a 600-year-old city founded by Yaduvanshi Rajput kings - descendents of Lord Krishna. The main temple of Karauli is dedicated to Lord Krishna.
* You will stay for a night at a sprawling palace belonging to the family that once ruled Karauli. Bhanwar Vilas Palace was built as a royal residence in 1938 by Maharaja Ganesh Pal Deo Bahadur when he was the ruler of Karauli.
* The palace is designed in a colonial style and the interiors are furnished in Art Deco period furniture. It is a memorable experience being in a part of the country that sees very few tourists. Everything seems to have an air of authenticity about it as you join in with the local people as they go about their everyday life. Exploration of their organic farm and dairy is another highlight of this stay.
* The City Palace is a real highlight, with the fort and the palace being the official residence of the royal family of Karauli until 1938. This amazing structure features impressive archways and interconnecting rooms, many of them colourfully painted with frescoes. Many of the buildings in Karauli feature distinctive pale red sandstone in their construction. After a visit you will also visit the temple of Madan Mohan Ji.
* (Driving time: approximately 4 hours)
Accommodation
  • Bhanwar Vilas Palace or similar (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Fatehpur Sikri
  • Karauli - Village Walk
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
This morning drive (approximately 4 hours) to the town of Ranthambore. Ranthambore National Park is one of the original Project Tiger reserves, a place where nature has reclaimed ancient fortresses and temples, and that is teeming with wildlife. In 4WD safari vehicles take game drives to search for animals and the majestic tigers which stalk through the jungle. You'll also have the chance to explore the 1,000 year old Ranthambore Fort, where two pavilions that have survived the ravages of war and time - Badal Mahal and Hammirs Court - give an idea of its old grandeur.
Accommodation
  • Pugmark Resorts or similar (1 night)
Included Activities
  • National Park
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
Special Information
IMPORTANT INFORMATION: Peregrine requires a copy of your scanned passport bio page at time of booking to complete bookings for Ranthambhore National Park visit.

From 1st July - 30th September all wildlife zones of Ranthambhore National Park will be closed to visitors. This means that no wildlife safaris in the area are permitted, including in Sawai Mansingh Sanctuary which is our usual alternative for when the main zones of the park are closed annually at this time. The reasons for the closure have not been formally announced, however we believe they have been made in the interest of tiger protection during the wet season. Due to the time of year there are no other opportunities to replace our visit to Ranthambhore with an alternative national park, however we have added the following activities and inclusions to tours that are scheduled to be in Ranthambhore from 1st July - 30th September:

Day 4 – Rathambhore Fort Excursion. The fort lies within the boundaries of the park and on the
Day 5: Bundi
Meals included: 1 breakfast
Accommodation: Ummaid Bagh Resorts or similar, Bundi
Activities:
* In the morning you will drive to Bundi, a small town founded in the 12th century. Famous as the place that inspired Rudyard Kipling to write his novel, ‘Kim’, Bundi today is known for its series of step-wells ('baoris'), old houses, narrow streets, and the remarkable Taragarh Fort.
* The view from the highway as you enter the town is magnificent. You will stay overnight in a comfortable tented camp that is full of historic ambiance. This is sure to be one of the real highlights of this trip. (Driving time: approximately 4 hours)
Accommodation
  • Ummaid Bagh Resorts or similar (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Bundi - Bundi Palace
  • Bundi - Town walk
  • Bundi - Stepwell
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
Day 6: Bijaipur
Meals included: 1 breakfast
Accommodation: Castle Bijaipur or similar, Bijaipur
Activities:
* Your next stop is Bijaipur, where you will stay a night in Castle Bijaipur. This 16th century castle is now converted into a heritage hotel run by the local ruling family. The castle has attractive domes and arched windows and doorways. It offers 24 rooms of varying sizes and decor simply furnished using local materials.
* On the way, visit Menal - a temple complex that has been referred to as a ‘mini Khajuraho’, with its elaborate erotic carvings. The name Menal is derived from Maha Nal or Great Gorge. The temple complex is located on both sides of a waterfall and is a favourite spot for local families to picnic.
* (Driving time: approximately 5 hours)
* Please Note: Because of the limited number of rooms at Castle Bijaipur, on occasions you may instead stay overnight in deluxe tented camp nearby, which is under the same ownership and is equally opulent.
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
Day 7: Udaipur
Meals included: 1 breakfast
Accommodation: Swaroop Vilas or similar, Udaipur
Activities:
* En route to Udaipur you will visit Chittorgarh, probably India's greatest medieval fort, perched in a dramatic setting overlooking the town. Also known as Chittor, Chittaur,or Chittaurgarh, this colossal hilltop fort was the ancient capital of Mewar state, ruled by the Sisodia Rajputs.
* Three times in its long history, powerful enemy forces sacked Chittorgarh. On each occasion the men rode out from the fort to certain death, while the women committed 'johar' by throwing themselves and their children on to a huge funeral pyre.
* The immense stretch of Chittorgarh's walls and ruined palaces therefore relate to sagas of innumerable sieges and heroism.
* After visiting Chittorgarh Fort, you will continue your journey towards Udaipur which is also known as “Venice of East”. (Driving Time approximately 4 hours).
Accommodation
  • Swaroop Vilas or similar (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Chittorgarh - Fort
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
Meals included: 1 breakfast
Accommodation: Swaroop Vilas or similar, Udaipur
Activities:
* Udaipur is a beautiful city built around the shores of Lake Pichola and full of fascinating temples, ornate palaces and impressive 'havelis' (merchant homes). The charming setting of the Lake Palace on Jagniwas Island is unforgettable. During your stay, you will visit the Jagdish Temple, an Indo-Aryan temple containing a black stone image of Vishnu as Jagannath - Lord of the Universe.
* You will also visit the City Palace, surmounted by balconies, towers and cupolas, where there are excellent views of the city and lakeside from the upper terraces.

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Meals Included
  • Breakfast
Day 9: Dera Khairwa
Meals included: 1 breakfast
Accommodation: Khairwa Hotel or similar, Dera Khairwa
Activities:
* On your journey between Udaipur and Jodhpur you will stop to spend a night in a most unique place. Dera Khairwa is a 15th century fort-palace located in the village of Khairwa in the Pali District.
* The rulers of Dera Khairwa belong to the noble clan of Jodha-Rathores, who are related to the founders of the city of Jodhpur. During your time here you can imagine what it must have been like to be part of the ruling class in the India of yesteryear, surrounded by elegance and opulence. (Driving time: approximately 5 hours)
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
Day 10: Jodhpur
Meals included: 1 breakfast
Accommodation: Mandor Guest House or similar, Jodhpur
Activities:
* Established in the 15th century on the edge of the Great Thar Desert, Jodhpur was an important trading centre.
* Many of the buildings were painted blue, as historically this was an indication that the home belongs to a high caste Brahmin. Today most of the city is painted blue as other castes have followed suit.
* You will visit the imposing Meherangarh Fort, which sits atop a sheer rocky ridge in the middle of town. You will also explore the many palaces and courtyards contained within the fort, as well as the clock tower and the bustling Sadar Market, located at the foot of the hill.
* This market is a great place to stroll around at leisure, with several alleyways leading off to various bazaars selling all sorts of fruits, vegetables, spices, textiles, and handicrafts. (Driving time: approximately 4 hours)
Included Activities
  • Jodhpur - Meherangarh Fort
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
Day 11: Jodhpur
Meals included: 1 breakfast
Accommodation: Mandor Guest House or similar, Jodhpur
Activities:
* In the morning you will travel by jeep though some of the surrounding countryside and visit the various different caste villages. These are home to people such as the Bishnois, the protectors of trees and animals, and the Meghwals, who are skilled weavers and potters.
Included Activities
  • Jodhpur - Village Day Trip
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
Day 12: Jaipur
Meals included: 1 breakfast
Accommodation: Mahal Khandela or similar, Jaipur.
Activities:
* After breakfast you will travel by road for to Jaipur - the colourful capital of the state of Rajasthan, as well as a vibrant and exciting town.
* Today’s drive is the longest on the trip taking approximately 7 hours with tea, lunch and toilet stops, passing by lots of small traditional villages of Rajasthan. Where kids run towards the road to say hello and wave to the passing by tourist vehicles.
* Nothing is plan for rest of the day.
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
Day 13: Jaipur
Meals included: 1 breakfast
Accommodation: Mahal Khandela or similar, Jaipur
Activities:
* Here, traditionally dressed Rajput men wearing colourful turbans and sporting magnificent moustaches will make their way through crowded streets packed with cars, camel carts, rickshaws, trucks, and bicycles.
* The City Palace is an amazing complex with various courtyards and connecting buildings, as well as fascinating museums displaying royal costumes and weaponry.
* Part of the palace is closed to visitors, as it is still the residence of the royal family.
* The most memorable features of your visit are sure to include the impressively colourful gates the courtyard known as Pitan Niwas Chowk and the incredible moustaches worn by the palace guards.
* Your guide will also take you to the Old Bazaar and Hawa Mahal, better known as the Palace of the Wind. This five-storey façade with its pink, honeycombed sandstone windows is one of Jaipur's best-known landmarks.
* You will then travel 11 kilometres out to the stunning medieval Amber Fort. This fort was built in 1592 by Maharajah Man Singh and is a superb example of Rajput architecture. Several hours are needed to explore this huge fortification. (Driving time: approximately 1 hour)

For many travellers a hot air balloon experience is one of the highlights of Jaipur. Ballooning can be done over Jaipur on the morning of day 13 between Sep & Jun. For additional information please see the important notes section of your trip notes.
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Included Activities
  • Jaipur - City Palace
  • Jaipur - Hawa Mahal photo stop
  • Jaipur - Amber Fort
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
Day 14: Delhi
Meals included: 1 breakfast
Accommodation: Hotel Jivitesh or similar, Delhi

After breakfast you will be driven back to Delhi, where you will arrive around lunch time. You will enjoy an orientation drive around the city that takes you to India Gate and past the President's House (Rashtrapati Bhavan) and Parliament House (Sansad Bhavan), before heading off to do some last-minute shopping at the colourful Janpath Bazaar.
You will then have the chance to enjoy pre-dinner drinks before heading out to one of Delhi's great restaurants for dinner (optional) to commemorate the end of our tour. (Driving time: approximately 6 hours)
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Accommodation
  • Hotel Jivitesh or similar (1 night)
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
Day 15: Delhi
Meals included: 1 breakfast
Activities:
* Your trip ends in Delhi this morning after breakfast. Check out time is 12 noon. If your flight leaves in the evening you may wish to book additional accommodation so you have a room until departure.
* Most flights leave Delhi in the evening. Your tour leader can assist you with transfers to the airport. These are not included, but can be booked through your travel agent or through us.
* If you are spending extra time in Delhi, there is still plenty to see. Humayun's Tomb and Safdarjang's Tomb are other great examples of Mughal architecture and design.
* The narrow streets of Old Delhi are worth exploring, with the highlights being Red Fort and the impressive Jama Masjid (Great Mosque). Raj Ghat is a monument that marks the spot where Mahatma Gandhi was cremated.
* Hauz Khas Village is a great place to escape the hustle and bustle of downtown - a chic artistic enclave set right next to the remnants of a historical site.
Meals Included
  • Breakfast

Meals

14 breakfasts

Transport

Private vehicle

Accommodation

Historic hotel, Comfortable hotel, Luxury tented camp, Comfortable lodge

Included Activities

  • Agra - Agra Fort
  • Agra - Taj Mahal
  • Fatehpur Sikri
  • Karauli - Village Walk
  • National Park
  • Bundi - Bundi Palace
  • Bundi - Town walk
  • Bundi - Stepwell
  • Chittorgarh - Fort
  • Jodhpur - Meherangarh Fort
  • Jodhpur - Village Day Trip
  • Jaipur - City Palace
  • Jaipur - Hawa Mahal photo stop
  • Jaipur - Amber Fort

Dates & availability

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Important notes

IMPORTANT INFORMATION:
Indian authorities have announced that all 500 and 1,000 rupee banknotes will be withdrawn from circulation. ATMs will not operate on 9-10 November 2016.
Until new notes are issued, you should not accept any denomination higher than 100 rupees (around AUD 2)
Please ensure you receive change from any purchases in 100 rupee notes or smaller.

IMPORTANT INFORMATION: Peregrine requires a copy of your scanned passport bio page at time of booking to complete bookings for Ranthambhore National Park visit.

HOT AIR BALLOONING JAIPUR
Hot air balloon flights are operated by Sky Waltz in Jaipur. Flights operate mornings from September to June and morning and evening from September to March. Morning flights depart around sunrise and evening flights late afternoon and last 60 mins. Return transfers, tea and coffee plus light refreshments and a certificate of flight are included in the cost.
You can register your interest and pay your tour leader at your joining meeting on day 1 of your trip.
Payment must be made in cash - INR/USD/AUD/GBP only please
Flights are subject to weather conditions and tickets are fully refundable.

Please note that Ranthambhore National Park is closed from 1st July - 30th September. See itinerary for changes during this time.

Essential Trip Information

Want an in-depth insight into this trip? Essential Trip Information provides a detailed itinerary, visa info, how to get to your hotel, what's included - pretty much everything you need to know about this adventure and more.