You have not experience anything like this before; you are about to be blown away with our offerings:
Welcome to India! Or as they say in the local dialect, Namaste! The excitement and fun begin as soon as you disembark at Indira Gandhi International Airport, New Delhi. You will immediately be overwhelmed by the sights and sounds of India; it will appeal to all your senses.
The first port of call is the commercial hub of New Delhi, where you will be treated to the best hospitality as you settle into your hotel room. Here you can freshen up, relax and chill out before your adventure begins. The finest delicacies that Indians have to offer will satisfy your taste buds and melt in your mouth. This is just the beginning, there is much more on the menu for the next two weeks—even a street food tour.
It is time for the fun and excitement to begin. The aroma of the local food with its characteristic spices will make your mouth water, and the energetic buzz of the market is an experience you will want to add to your memories.
You are about to experience the real urban India, from cars, buses and bicycles, to cows and monkeys, all contributing their quota to the traffic gridlocks in the busy streets of New Delhi.
After a visit to Jama Masjid, you will be given a jolly ride in your personal cycle rickshaw through Chandni Chowk and India Gate. In the afternoon, Humayun’s Tomb and Qutub Minar, two World Heritage Sites, are the next stops. In the evening, you will be treated to a culinary experience by an expert who will tell you all there is to know regarding the best Indian dishes. It doesn’t end there; you will have a sumptuous meal afterward, and later you can cool off with an ice-cold Cobra at one of the best bars in New Delhi, to end the day on a good and rewarding note.
Summary of Activities: Half Day Old Delhi City Tour with Cycle Rickshaw Ride in Chandni Chowk, Half Day New Delhi City Tour with visits to the Humayun Tomb and Qutub Minar and an exciting Old Delhi Street-Food Tour.
The journey to Mandawa will start right after breakfast. This interesting town is situated in the arid, semi-desert area of Shekhawati. Mandawa is relatively young in comparison to other Indian cities, considering that it was founded in the eighteenth century. Various affluent Marwari merchants resided in the town and displayed their great wealth by building opulent Havelis, step-wells and temples. These personal monuments were all highly ornate, both inside and out. Later some of the wealthy families and clans who had previously relocated to bigger cities like Delhi decided to return to Shekhawati, with the result that the competition to outdo one another in splendor, started all over again. For lovers of architecture, this region is a wonderful alternative to the usual grandiose tours of Rajasthan’s grand palaces and forts.
On arrival at the hotel, you will be checked in. After lunch, you start the enchanting tour of Mandawa. The town is widely known as the ‘Open-Air Art Gallery’ and you will soon discover why; beautifully decorated Havelis are seen everywhere. Although some have been neglected, most of these mansions are well kept and proudly display their colorful frescoes depicting religious themes and scenes from the everyday life of the Mandawans. Over time the décor has changed from showcasing the people and their folklore to more modern-day depictions, a clear illustration of the British influence on this area during the occupation. Today many Havelis have paintings of cars, trains, hot air balloons, telephones and gramophones, portraits done in the European style, and even British hunting scenes on their walls. Most of the Havelis in Shekhawati have been converted into luxurious hotels. Take a walk through the old part of Mandawa to get a feel for the locals’ rural lifestyle; the best way to get in touch with the heart and soul of the town.
The Castle Mandawa Hotel, once the fortress-palace of the regal family, has all the modern-day comforts the visitor can ask for while retaining its historical atmosphere with exquisite antiques and works of art. Chandeliers dangling from the ceilings bathe the ancient furniture in soft golden hues, the walls are covered with paintings and frescoes hundreds of years old. Family portraits, antique cannons and other weaponry items complete the picture to make this family-run heritage hotel a true treasure. Balconies, towers, and medieval steeples can be admired from the huge pool. Here the visitor can cool off after a hot day. The restaurant offers a fine dining experience. There is no better place to spend the night.
The unbelievable beauty of the Thar Desert will stun the first-time visitor. Here the rural indigenous people continue their untainted way of life. Amongst the golden sand dunes, you will notice large flocks of sheep, carts drawn by oxen, and women in bright saris carrying water from wells many kilometers away.
Then you arrive at the Heritage Khimsar Fort Hotel. Like a true oasis in the arid desert, Fort Khimsar blooms with domes, ramparts, steeples and towers. Dating back to 1523, the massive walls that shield the fort show the telltale signs of many centuries of warfare and strife. For no less than 21 generations the fort has belonged to the same family, and today this luxury heritage hotel not only accommodates visitors from all over the world, it is also home to members of the royal family.
The buildings are in excellent condition and you will feel like one of the royals, descendants of the erstwhile rulers of the regions, who call this fort home. The rooms are surrounded by open spaces and large courtyards. Exteriors and arches are adorned with intricate stone carvings and the windows are beautifully decorated. The original, old structure of the buildings has been largely retained, including those of the suites and rooms. Here you can relax in royal splendor and enjoy your room’s antique furniture, some a hundred years old.
The hotel offers numerous facilities like tennis courts, swimming pools, a health club, a steam bath and a sauna. Unwind with a cool drink in the bar before you try the variety of dishes on the restaurant menu. However, for a unique dining experience, book a table in the tower restaurant. If you are fascinated by vintage cars, do not forget to visit the garage; the collection of royal automobiles is quite extensive.
You have the afternoon free to stroll around and explore on your own. You may decide to just wander around to take in the beauty of the location at your own pace. Admire the detailed architecture, feast your eyes on the expansive green gardens, with here and here a colorful peacock displaying its brilliant tail feathers. Then sit down on the charming hotel veranda for a refreshing cup of tea.
If you prefer more action you could choose to take a drive in a Jeep which we will provide. Remember your camera; there are beautiful spotted deer, blackbuck, and other kinds of antelope in the region. The colorful little village close by makes for an interesting visit.
For the more adventurous, there are camel rides. The best time is early evening as soon as the heat has subsided and you can watch the sunset paint the golden dunes in hues of crimson, and the distant women in their colorful saris are reduced to mere dark shadows.
After dinner, the Kalbelia Troupe performs a traditional puppet show accompanied by lively Rajasthani folk music. This event, arranged at the hotel’s discretion, offers an interesting glimpse into the local culture. Then head for your room; tonight you sleep in the comfortable, luxury residence of kings.
In the morning we set off for Jodhpur. The journey through the countryside offers beautiful scenery and along the way you will notice splendid temples, old monuments and other beautifully designed buildings. Rajasthani women dressed in colorful saris with anklets and bracelets brighten up the landscape. (An interesting fact: The popular tight-fitting long pants called jodhpurs, which are so fashionable today, got their name from the horsemen in Jodhpur.) After check-in and lunch at the hotel, we explore the Blue City with a guided tour.
Jodhpur is still ruled over by Maharaja descendants. Our first stop is the 15th century Mehrangarh Fort, the second largest in the country. The immense walls of the fort soar up from the hill on which it stands, to tower over the city below. The ingenuity and skill of its masons and builders are evident in the design, sheer size and width of the walls, all colored on the inside. The complex houses palaces and numerous linked courtyards, typical of Rajput buildings. The Iron Gate or Loha Pol is covered in spikes to prevent elephants from battering it. All seven gates have sati marks or the miniature handprints of Maharaja Man Singh’s widows who threw themselves onto his funeral pyre in 1843. The handprints are covered in red powder and quite a curiosity with visitors. Several buildings have been converted into museums and exhibit interesting collections of antique furniture, royal palanquins, and musical instruments. The cannons installed on the fort’s walls are well-kept and worth a visit.
We leave the fort and make our way to Jaswant Thada, an impressive cenotaph carved out of marble sheets. It was erected in 1899 to honor Maharaja Jaswant Singh the second by his son. It serves as a cremation ground for the other royal Rajputs as well.
We proceed to the old town for our guided walking tour. All the houses in this part of the city are painted a soft blue color and with good reason; it helps to keep the interior cool and deters mosquitos. No wonder Jodhpur is called The Blue City.
When evening falls, our destination is the vibrant Sadar Bazaar, one of the oldest markets in India. It is arranged around the popular landmark Clock Tower and here you can buy anything your heart desires – from juices, vegetables and spices to Bollywood soundtracks, sari fabrics and jewelry. We spend the night in the beautiful Blue City.
After a leisurely breakfast, we hit the road. Near Udaipur, we stop at the famous 15th century Ranakpur’s Jain Temples. The exterior of this majestic complex is a cut above any Dilwara temple found at Mount Abu; the facades are opulently carved and the architectural design unique. Every surface of the main temple is decorated with intricately carved sculptures and depictions of the Jain Tirthankaras. Scenes from the life of the deities which are worshipped here, decorate the interior walls. The 29 halls are supported by 1444 hand-carved, light-colored marble pillars, each one unique in design and theme. There are eight domes and 426 columns. No wonder it took 2700 artisans and master builders fifty years to construct his marvel of marvels.
After this breath-taking visit, we continue the short distance to our hotel overlooking Lake Pichola near Udaipur. The afternoon is free and you may choose to wander around the beautiful grounds of this luxurious hotel to admire the view, or maybe go for a relaxing spa treatment.
Another option for the afternoon is a visit to Sajjan Garh Palace just outside the city on one of the Aravalli Range hillsides. Plan your visit to watch the wonderful sunset while enjoying panoramic views of the city’s landscape, lakes and temples. After dark, you can admire the reflections of the city lights on Lake Pichola 340 meters below. The palace, dating back to 1884, was built by Maharana Sajjan Singh, initially as an astronomical center from where he could have a view of his ancestral home and from where he could track the monsoon clouds, hence the name Monsoon Palace. The marble palace stands nine stories high and the nine pillars are decorated with floral designs. An interesting fact: This royal hunting lodge and residence was used in the James Bond movie Octopussy.
We start the day on a high note; the construction of Udaipur City Palace was started by Maharana Udai Singh in 1559 and for the next 450 years work never ceased as ruler after ruler expanded and added to the structure. The end result is an immense, impressive multi-styled complex consisting of no less than eleven palaces, all connected by a grid of arcades and walkways. The massive royal residence sits peacefully on the shore of Lake Pichola and from the windows, its reflection can be seen on the calm waters of the lake. One part of the building, the so-called Ladies’ Chamber has been turned into a museum with antiques, inlay glass, ceramics, paintings, enamel work and miniatures. Another section is home to the Maharaja family, and a third has been converted into heritage hotels.
From City Palace, we head for the Jagdish Hindu Temple where devotees have been worshipping since 1651. Its entrance is guarded by two massive stone-carved elephants. Then it is time for the guided walk through the old city. The streets are lined with small shops selling handmade fabrics, and a variety of arts and crafts. Do not leave without one of the miniature paintings Udaipur is renowned for.
It is late afternoon and time for a relaxing boat trip on the lake. Sit back and feast your eyes on the tableau of majestic mountains turned golden by the rays of the setting sun. Enjoy the sensation of serenity and peace descending on the landscape while watching water birds dive for fish, and ducks slowly glide over the still water. The boat makes its way past the beautiful Oberoi Udaivilas and Taj Lake Palace Hotels, a splendid sight. Observe many of the locals bathing on the steps or ghats, others busy with their daily chores. When your cruise comes to an end, sit down to a long, cool drink in Jag Mandir Island’s restaurant.
We end the day with something special; the Dharohar Folk Dance performance has been going strong for the past 19 years and remains a major attraction in Udaipur. It takes place at a traditional mansion, or Bagore Ki Haveli and lasts for one hour.
Women dressed in bright traditional attire perform astounding feats, dancing with up to 8 clay pots on their heads. And they manage not to spill even one drop of liquid. It is an amazing performance and not to be missed.
Make sure you have a substantial breakfast before we leave, as you will need the energy to explore Chittorgarh, India’s largest citadel. Built by Mewar rulers, this vast fortress served as their capital since its construction in the 7th century. It has been declared a World Heritage Site and consists of many impressive structures like the Rana Kumbha, Kirti Stambh, Ratan Singh and Padmini Palaces, the victory tower, or Vijay Stambh, and the Samadhishvara Hindu Temple. All and all the complex consists of 65 historic buildings, so if you want to explore it all, it might be a good idea to take a tuk-tuk.
We drive on to Bundi, the hidden gem of Rajasthan, take a short rest and prepare for a well-earned, sumptuous dinner. Re-energized, you may enjoy a stroll through the small town with a stop every now and then at one of the quaint little local cafes.
Most towns and cities in Rajasthan are crowded with tourists and travelers. However, there are still a few quiet, hidden spots overlooked by the hordes, and Bundi is one of them. This town has plenty to offer; bustling markets, ancient stepwells, bright colored houses and imposing forts. Start with Garh Palace, made famous by Rudyard Kipling. Dating from the early 15th century, the many frescoes in the Badal Mahal and Chitrasala give a good idea of everyday life at that time. Other places of historic value are the star-shaped Taragarh Fort, Sukh Mahal on the lakeshore where the author wrote ‘Kim’, and the 56 meter-deep Raniji ki Baori. This little town is full of surprises for those who feel the hunger to explore flowing in their veins.
It is time to bid farewell to the small town of Bundi. Immediately after lunch, you will set out on the road straight to Jaipur. Typical rural India reveals itself on the roads; there are many cars and motorbikes, but don’t be surprised when you also see cows, or even camels, trying to compete with the rest of the traffic for a portion of the road.
When you arrive at Jaipur, you will settle into yet another lavish hotel. It is easy to spend a substantial part of your day relaxing by the pool and just chilling out.
Call it one of India’s most revered and precious gems and you will not be far from the truth. You can go about your adventure in two ways: Focus on the Fort’s labyrinthine world of corridor with glistening mirrors, ornate rooms and beautifully designed marble halls, or have an enjoyable time out with the monkeys, even take some selfies as you goof around. If you think you have seen it all, then you are wrong; there’s more to come in the afternoon as the sun sets on Jaipur City and its residents.
The City Palace is an excellent decorative piece of wonder, and the Maharaja Jai Singh 11 ’s Jantar Mantar will pique your curiosity; alien-like instruments and all sorts of astronomical phenomena are on display. Get involved in some retail therapy and allow yourself to be wowed by Jaipur’s bazaars, among the best in India. The day comes to an end in a fun, relaxing mood with a Bollywood movie.
Summary of Activities: An enjoyable and exciting visit to Amber Fort, an awesome Full Day Jaipur City Tour visiting the Bazaar of Old Jaipur, and finally, watching an interesting Bollywood Movie.
Recommendation: If you are a wildlife enthusiast, we recommend you spend one or two days at Ranthambhore National Park. It is only three and a half hours from Jaipur and they offer two safaris per day in a Jeep. You might be lucky to see one of the elusive tigers.
The excitement rises as you become a movie star in your own road movie; you get to film it yourself by pointing your phone anywhere you wish along the road to Agra. You will have perfect scenes for a real blockbuster.
As the journey proceeds, Abhaneri Village is first on the menu, after a 2-hour drive. The ancient stepwell, which is one of the largest in India and has fortifications on all sides, will become a cherished memory. You’ll be completely swept away by what you see. The original idea was to make it a water reservoir.
The next stop is a short visit to the fortified ghost city of Fatehpur Sikri, an array of red sandstone palaces and pavilions. Considering the astounding architecture of these buildings, you will immediately realize that the architect was a Mughal emperor.
Akbar’s creation was abandoned in the 1600s, but the buildings have been restored and are well-preserved. Wandering around the erstwhile capital of the Mughal empire, you will get a peek into the history of this magnificent time.
As soon as you arrive at your hotel in Agra, the rest of the day is yours to spend as you like.
Summary of Activities: Abhaneri Stepwell and Fatehpur Sikri visit.
Would you rather lie in your bed and listen to a description of the remarkable wonder of the Taj Mahal, or jump up and see it yourself as the sun rises?
Paying a visit to the Taj Mahal during sunrise is beautiful to behold. At this time, the crowds are manageable. When you see the shimmering white marble, you will marvel at its utter brilliance. The beautiful, impressive and aesthetic beauty hypnotizes its viewers. Words cannot do justice to the Taj Mahal. Its incredible details just have to be seen to be appreciated.
As the sun rears its head on the horizon, the sky starts to glow in great splendor, casting upon tourists a feeling of wonder. You will learn so much about this beautiful monument—stories of love and loss—and marvel at what you will find.
Agra Fort is known to have played host to many TV soap operas and once housed the famous Kohi-i-Noor diamond. I will leave you to imagine what a great experience it would be to live here. When you are done with the sightseeing adventure, we take the night train to Varanasi. I am sure the sights and scenes of the Taj Mahal will play out in your dreams, leaving you with long-lasting memories.
The rest of the day you are free to spend as you wish. Agra has numerous hidden treasures to explore on your own.
Dinner will be served early to allow enough time to make our way to the railway station, where we will take the overnight train for Varanasi. Your two-tier compartment has air conditioning and comfortable berths. You will be assisted onto the train by one of our agents. Then all that remains, is for you to make yourself comfortable for the 12-hour journey.
Another option is to use the afternoon to drive the 3-hours to New Delhi and get the direct 1.5-hour evening Varanasi flight.
Summary of Activities: Taj Mahal and Fort Agra.
The train arrives at Varanasi right in time for a terrific breakfast at a local bakery or in your hotel. To enjoy this vibrant city, you will need energy. You will discover the heart of the Hindu religion at the banks of the River Ganges. Varanasi stares you in the face with its bright colors and wonderful aromas. Visit some of the ghats and identify with the pilgrims as the morning puja starts. Next is a trip to Sarnath where you will admire the magnificent ruins of the ancient Buddhist monasteries, especially the Dhamek Stupa, and the extensive collection at the Sarnath Museum.
The day closes with a visit to the riverbank to witness the Ganga Aarti, the exhilarating ritual with fiery lanterns, clanging bells and songs of worship.
Summary of Activities: Sarnath Visit, Ganga Aarti
Your Flashpacker Tour of India comes to an end on this day. If you decide to continue your adventures in Nepal, it turns into a two-in-one vacation. Although the two countries border each other, they differ in so many ways. To put you in the right mood as you prepare to experience Nepal with its pure ambiance, take the sunrise boat ride on the Ganges. It will also give you the time to reflect on India’s wonders.
Early morning, at dawn, is the best time to get to know the sacred Ganges River. It offers a rich collage of different captivating scenes and activities. Ancient religious dwellings, or matts, and palaces line the banks of the river. It is widely believed that the Ganges’s holy waters will cleanse the devout of their sins, so large numbers of people can be seen bathing in the shallows of the river. Bright colored saris are spread out to dry, while priests offer prayers to their Mother Ganga. Others perform meditation and yoga. Maybe you will see the smoke rising from a funeral pyre, the yellow flames reflected on the smooth surface of the river. After this interesting cruise, we return to the hotel for a hearty breakfast.
Come afternoon, we head back to Benares, as Varanasi is often called, for more sightseeing. For centuries this city has been an important religious and cultural center, so a visit to the Hindu University is the place to start. One of the oldest centers of learning in India, it offers a variety of courses, including engineering, philosophy, medicine, liberal arts and languages. We proceed to Bharat Mata Mandir, also called the Mother India Temple. The main attraction here is the huge map of Undivided India carved in marble, complete with mountain ranges, water bodies and plains. The map is a symbol of the people’s struggle for freedom from the British Rajs. We have come to the end of our tour of India, and spend it in holy Kashi, as Varanasi is referred to in the ancient Vedic Sanskrit hymns.
From Varanasi, you will take the one-and-a-half-hour flight back to New Delhi. On arrival, you will be transferred to a hotel close to the airport and tomorrow take the airplane on to Kathmandu in Nepal.
Summary of Activities: Boat Trip on the Ganges and Varanasi City Tour
Our local agent will meet you at the airport and a driver will transport you to the hotel. The accommodation is located just outside the city center near the Swayambunath Temple and will delight you with its characteristic atmosphere and quiet green gardens. If you prefer a livelier area, you can stay at a hotel close to Thamel, a popular area with more activity and perfect for an evening stroll. The remainder of the day is at your leisure. If you want some peace and quiet, you may choose to stay in your hotel and enjoy the pool while looking up at the peaceful Nepalese sky.
Otherwise, explore the buzzing neighborhood near your hotel in Thamel. Take a seat on one of the many café or restaurant terraces to observe the locals going about their business. Relax, acclimatize and feel the excitement rising on the eve of your wonderful Nepal holiday.
We begin our day with a nourishing breakfast and then start on our tour of the city. Durbar Square, first on our list, is a lively World Heritage Site in the center of old Kathmandu, opposite the old royal palace, and one of the 3 such royal squares in the country. The 2015 disastrous earthquake has left its mark on many of the city’s buildings, but you will still be able to admire the architectural beauty of many historic temples and palaces where life had been going on for centuries.
Have you heard of the Boudhanath Stupa? If you have not, you will not only hear about it in Nepal but also have a chance to visit this iconic monument. It is the holiest temple in Nepal, standing 118 feet high. Tibetan Buddhists revere it and it is their main pilgrimage site; little wonder tens of thousands make it down here every year.
The semi-circular shape of the dome is representative of the emptiness from which all things originate. The Buddha’s eyes which sit above the dome, and look out in all four directions, symbolize total awareness. Tibetan refugees came to settle around the Boudhanath stupa in the 1950s and soon a small village sprung up. They brought with them an atmosphere of Tibet’s sacred city, called Lhasa.
In the afternoon, after lunch, we continue our Nepalese adventure and make for the city of Patan which sits at a height of around 6000 feet above sea level next to the river. It sits comfortably across the Bagmati River like a king on his majestic throne.
The four stupas, otherwise known as the Ashoka Stupas, are located on the four corners of Patan and named after the legendary king Ashoka. In 250 BC, the Emperor built five stupas when he visited Kathmandu with his daughter Charumati; four on the outskirts and one in the center of the city. There are more than 1,200 Buddhist monuments of varying shapes and sizes throughout the city.
When you think of the finest artists and craftsmen, Nepal has them in abundance. It is evident that this has been the case throughout the centuries; the devotion to art is seen in the rich display of the fused cultures of Nepal. We will be visiting a market in Patan, a beehive of activity, and Durban square, which is among one of seven UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Nepal, preserved within the protection of the Monument Zones. Durbar means palace, so every Durbar Square is a plaza facing a royal palace. So do not get confused; Nepal boasts of an array of Durbar Squares, but the one in Patan stands tall and unique. It is the most attractive, owing to its intricate architectural design, delicate wind chimes, and the highly decorated fountains.
You could opt to join us for a flight to Everest if the weather permits. Flights leave at 6 am and 7 am and cost around USD 240 per person, including airport transfers. The duration of the flight is 45 minutes. Mount Everest is known as Chomolungma in Tibet, meaning ‘Mother of the Universe’ or ‘Goddess Mother of the Earth’. In Nepal, it is called Sagarmatha, or ‘Goddess of the Sky’. Passionate climbers fondly call it the ultimate climb, and when you hear people refer to it as the tallest mountain on planet earth, they sure know what they are talking about; it rises to 29,029 feet above sea level.
The impressive views from the snowy peak are indeed breathtaking.
Pashupatinath is up next, the most sacred temple of the Hindu god Shiva, or Pashupati. This temple has copper rooftops covered with gold and beautiful silver crowned doorways. Pashupatinath is so highly respected that the main Bhat priest is answerable only to the king of Nepal.
After this extraordinary experience, we embarked on a tour of Bhaktapur. Bhaktapur also called the City of Devotees, is a UNESCO World Heritage Site extending over four-square miles. Seven hundred years ago it was the crown jewel of the Malla Empire. It is characterized by winding streets with artisans practicing age-old traditions. After lunch, we set out to experience some of these sites with a guided tour. In the evening, we head back to Kathmandu and dinner will be entirely on your own.
Pokhara, Nepal’s second-largest city, is next on our tour and we start the journey immediately after breakfast. Located on the edge of Phewa Lake at the Himalaya foothills, this is the ideal place to recharge your batteries after a rewarding and action-filled adventure. The combination of beautiful scenery, adventure, and recreational facilities make Pokhara a top destination choice; it is richly endowed in all three. After indulging all day long, you have a perfect lakeside hotel to rest your head for tomorrow’s amazing trek.
You have the afternoon at your disposal. A good idea is to take a leisurely stroll all along the lakeshore, which is dotted with multi-cuisine cafes. The scenery is breathtakingly beautiful with the Annapurna Mountain peaks all covered in snow.
Early in the morning, you will have the opportunity to visit the Shanti Stupa. Shanti Stupa is an architectural masterpiece built by the Japanese in the 1980s and rises from the rugged terrain like a cone of ice cream. You’ll get spectacular views of the surrounding mountains. Getting into the temple is a different kettle of fish altogether; you’ll be astounded by the ornaments of beauty it possesses.
Interesting facts: Of the 80 peace pagodas on the globe, two are in Nepal, namely Lumbini’s Shanti Stupa where the Buddha was born, and Pokhara’s Shanti Stupa.
Come back to the hotel for breakfast. After a good breakfast at the hotel, it is time for the easy hike to the little hamlet of Damsadi. The distance is approximately five kilometers and the terrain not strenuous. From Lake Phewa, it is an easy walk to a long suspension bridge across Seti Gorge, at places up to 80 m deep. From the bridge, you have an impressive view of the valley. Continue on your hike to Ammbot and Damsadi, enjoy a warm cup of aromatic tea with the locals and pick their brains for interesting legends of the region. Then make your way back to the lake. On the boat trip across Lake Phewa, you have time to relax and admire the spectacular views of the Himalayas.
You might enjoy visiting the International Mountain Museum (IMM). Climbers and mountain enthusiasts use IMM as a gateway visit the museum with its collection of records and artifacts of Himalayan expeditions, and it might interest you to know that the organization is doing its best to support the local community, while also extending a hand of support to the international community. The IMM is made up of four galleries, a research center, and offers educational activities and events like climbing opportunities. It also provides comprehensive information as regards the Himalayan Mountain Range.
Rest time at Pokhara is a bag of fun! Indulge yourself and live like a king for a while. Enjoy it best by using the whole day to soak up the magnificent scenery. Snoozing by the pool half a mile above sea level, and paddling in a colorful boat on a lake all add up to the fun and excitement. Your adrenalin will surge if you go paragliding and give you a different perspective on the beautiful nature of this spiritual country. Also, do not forget to explore the cozy cafes on the shore of the lake.
Summary of Activities: Exploration of Shanti Stupa and Boat Ride in Lake Phewa
Nepal’s mountains are a true miraculous beauty to behold and you will marvel at the link between the mountain peaks and the skies. It seems like the mountains are reaching for the skies and want to make a grand entry into heaven. But not to worry, today is not the time for heavy climbing. It is an easy hike, and fit for all age groups. Your hiking excursion will be full of fun and excitement. You will trek down into the mountains to Dhampus, burning a few calories in the process. A full 360-degree view of Annapurna Range is your reward at 1750m above sea level. It is far better than walking in the park, and if you add yoga or medication to the mix, you will love it every step of the way. The fact that you will spend the night in Dhampus is enough to excite you and keep you in the right frame of mind.
Accommodation: Tea House, Dhampus Trek
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Summary of Activities: Dhampus Trek
After a sumptuous breakfast, our adventure takes a different turn as we proceed to where the Sal forest of the Chitwan jungle meets the beautiful, wide valley of the Rapti River. Deep grasslands cover the north up to the Mahabharata Range, with the virgin jungle to the south up to the Churia Hills.
For several years, these parts of Nepal have remained hidden to outsiders due to the dense jungle that covers the foothills of the Himalayas, but the local people of Tharu have lived in this fertile land for generations.
After lunch, we head to Tharu village on board an ox cart. There is one fascinating thing about the Tharu women—they are skillful at turning the exterior of buildings into a masterpiece of art. As we enter the village and marvel at their creative genius, the greetings from the locals come in their numbers and we were furnished with some snippets of information regarding the lives and homes of the people. After that, we retired to our lodge.
As Nepal became a popular travel destination, there was a need to protect the jungle and keep the adventure therein intact. Hence, the Royal Chitwan National Park was established. With a time out in the early evening with a naturalist, we had a swell time as he introduces us to the history and features of what we are about to witness the next day. We had dinner together while reflecting on the delightful experience of the day.
Today’s adventure kicks off in the buffer zone of Chitwan National Park, the oldest park in Nepal. The park is located in the subtropical inner Terai lowlands of south-central Nepal. It was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1984 and covers an area of immense value with a unique ecosystem. The Churiya Range, flood plains of the Rapti River, various lakes, and the Rew and Narayani Rivers are all part of the park.
Chitwan Valley used to be the hunting grounds of the kings of Nepal and their guests. In 1963 the area south of Rapti River was turned into a rhinoceros sanctuary, and in 1970 approval for the creation of the Royal Chitwan National Park was given. It was finally ratified by the late King Mahendra.
As the day breaks, we set out on a walk and canoe ride through the jungle. Your accompanying ecologist will do his best to point out a few things to you, among which will be the flora and fauna thriving in the Chitwan’s buffer zone as you continue your search for endangered birds, for example, the Black stork and Bengal florican.
In the early afternoon, we head back to our lodge for lunch and a siesta after which we explore the vicinity from an entirely different point of view. From the back of an elephant, you will have a panoramic view of this entire area. This region is home to the one horn rhinoceros; they frequently move through the jungle without being impeded by the tall tree cover and elephant grass.
The park boasts over 43 species of mammals, more than 450 species of birds, and over 45 species of amphibians and reptiles. After the elephant trek, we head to our lodge for exciting traditional Tharu dances followed by dinner.
On the second last day of the tour, you will wake up bright and early, full of energy, and head back to Kathmandu amid the beautiful scenery that characterizes Nepal. There is an opportunity to engage in some white water rafting if you would like to.
When you finally arrive at Kathmandu, you will once again enjoy the sights and sounds of the city, and take in the wonderful aromas of spices and delicious food. You are free to spend the day as you deem fit.
After having experienced India and Nepal for the past three weeks, chilling out at the hotel’s rooftop pool with a cocktail is the ideal way to reflect back on the wonderful vacation and all the memories you will take with you.
When you are having a good time, it always comes to an end too soon. So always make sure you use every available opportunity to have fun and excitement, joy and happiness.
•Price based on two persons in a double room
• Prices are in USD not Excluding international flights
• Do you prefer to travel alone or would you like to come to India with a group of friends? We will be happy to tailor-made your tour program that meets all your wishes and needs
Our itineraries are always an example and can be changed individually. For example, it can be shortened or extended with additional destinations or monuments, the hotels can be a mix of 4 and 5 star etc. (firstname.lastname@example.org or +1-1800-109-1468). Let us know your personal wishes so that we can adapt the trip to your wishes. Within 24 hours at the most you will receive your personal travel proposal without obligation. Together with the travel request we will send you the hotel list so that you can get a picture of the hotels selected on the internet. We always choose hotels that have a charming character, are centrally located and 100% safe for tourists!
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Delhi: Heritage Hotel Oberoi Maidens or The Lalit
Mandawa: Castle Mandawa or Vivaana Culture
Khimsar: Heritage Hotel Khimsar Fort
Jodhpur: Taj Hari Mahal
Udaipur: Trident by Oberoi or TatSaraasa Resort & Spa
Jaipur: Trident by Oberoi or The Hilton or ITC Rajputana Sheraton
Agra: Trident by Oberoi or DoubleTree by Hilton or The Marriott
Delhi: JW Marriott
Kathmandu: Hyatt Regency
Pokhara: Fish Tail Lodge
Chitwan National Park: Barahi Jungle Lodge
Nagarkot: Country Villa
Delhi: Holiday Inn New Delhi
Mandawa: Vivaana Culture
Khimsar: Heritage Hotel Khimsar Fort
Jodhpur: Heritage Hotel Ranbanka Palace or Radisson
Udaipur: The Lakend or Ananta Resort & Spa
Jaipur: The Ramada or Heritage Hotel Alsisar haveli
Agra: Crystal Sarovar Premiere
Delhi: Lemon Tree Aerocity
Kathmandu: Hotel Akama
Pokhara: Fish Tail Lodge
Chitwan National Park : Tiger Land Safari Resort
Nagarkot : Country Villa
Delhi: Grand Godwin
Mandawa: Vivaana Culture
Khimsar: Heritage Hotel Khimsar Fort
Jodhpur: Heritage Hotel Devi Bhawan
Udaipur: Heritage Hotel Karohi Haveli
Jaipur: Royal Orchid Central
Agra: Howard Plaza The Fern
Delhi: Shanti Palace
Kathmandu : Rama Inn or Hotel Buddy or Hotel Arts
Pokhara: White Pearl
Chitwan National Park: Maruni Sanctuary Lodge
Nagarkot: Country Villa
Chennai / Kanchipuram / Mahabalipuram (Mamallapuram) / Pondicherry (Puducherry) / Tanjore (Thanjavur) / Trichy (Tiruchirapalli) / Chettinadu region / Madurai / Munnar / Thekkady (Periyar tiger reserve) / Alleppey (houseboat through backwaters) / Kumarakom / Mararikulam beach / Kochi
Neu Delhi – Agra – Fatehpur Sikri – Jaipur – Pushkar – Jodhpur – Ranakpur – Kumbhalgarh (UNECO) – Udaipur – Neu Delhi