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Desert Festival Jaisalmer

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Desert Festival Jaisalmer [05th - 07th Feb 2012]
Delhi - Agra - Jaipur - Pushkar - Udaipur - Jodhpur - Jaisalmer - Bikaner - Mandawa (13 Nights / 14 Days)

Day 01 / Arrival Delhi
Arrive Delhi, meet assist at the airport and transfer to hotel. Night stay in Delhi.

Day 02 / Delhi - Agra ( By Road ) Approx. 4hrs. drive
After breakfast proceed for sightseeing tour of Old & New Delhi:
OLD DELHI - A sight-seeing tour of Old Delhi would entail visiting the Raj Ghat - the memorial site where Mahatma Gandhi was cremated; Jama Masjid - the largest mosque in India.
NEW DELHI - An extensive sight-seeing tour of New Delhi would include a visit to the Humayun's Tomb, the Qutub Minar, a drive along the ceremonial avenue - Rajpath, past the imposing India Gate, Parliament House, the President's Residence and would end with a drive through the Diplomatic Enclave. Afternoon drive to agra, on arrival transfer to hotel. Night stay in Agra.

Day 03 / Agra - Jaipur ( By road ) Approx. 5hrs. drive enroute visiting Fatehpur Sikri
Morning at sunrise visit the world famous Taj Mahal, built by the Mughal Emperor Shahjehan in 1630 for his queen Mumtaz Mahal to enshrine her mortal remains. Also visit Agra Fort, containing the Pearl Mosque - the rusty and majestic red- sandstone fort of Agra stands on the banks of the river Yamuna and the construction was started by Emperor Akbar in 1566. At the Diwan-I-Khas (hall of private audience) where marble pavilions with floral inlays lend an ethereal ambience, the Emperor sat on his gem-studded peacock Throne and met foreign ambassadors and rulers of friendly kingdoms. Also visit Itmad-up-Dau’s tomb, built by Noorjehan in memory of her father. Afternoon drive to Jaipur enroute visiting Fatehpur Sikri, built by Emperor Akbar in 1569 to commemorate the birth of his son and later abandoned due to scarcity of water. Visit the remains, it fortifications within the city including Jama Masjid, Tomb of Salim Chisti, Panch Mahal and other palaces. On arrival transfer to hotel. Night stay in Jaipur.

Day 03 / Jaipur
Morning excursion to Amber Fort. Elephant ride ascent to the fort.
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 it's ultimate expression. Continue sight-seeing.

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.

HAWA MAHAL - The ornamental facade of this "Palace of Winds" is a prominent landmark in Jaipur. Their five-storey 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. Night stay in Jaipur.

Day 04 / Jaipur - Pushkar ( By road ) Approx. 2hrs. & half drive
After breakfast drive to Pushkar. On arrival in Pushkar transfer to hotel. Later visiting sightseeing of Pushkar. Pushkar boasts temples, though few are as ancient as you might expect at such an important pilgrimage site, since many were deserted by Aurangzeb and subsequently rebuilt. The most famous is the Brahma Temple, said to be one of the few temples in the world dedicated to this deity. It's marked by red spire, and over the entrance gateway is the hans, or goose symbol, of Brahma, who is said to have personally chosen Pushkar as its site. Night stay in Pushkar.

Day 05 / Pushkar - Udaipur ( By road ) Approx. 6 hrs. drive
After breakfast drive to Udaipur- an oasis in the desert state of Rajasthan enroute Arrive Udaipur and transfer to hotel. Evening enjoy boat ride on lake Pichola. Night stay in Udaipur.

Day 06 / Udaipur - Jodhpur ( By road ) Approx. 5 hrs. drive
Morning city sight seeing tour of Udaipur. The city is built in 1559 A.D. by Maharaja Udai Singh and has been described as the most romantic spot on the continent of India by Col. James Todd. Visit the City Palace museum, the Jagdish temple, Sahelion Ki Bari (Queen’s resort for their friends) Bhartiya Lok Kala Mandir (Folk art museum) and the Pratap Memorial. Later drive to Jodhpur. On arrival transfer to hotel. Night stay in Jodhpur.

Day 07 / Jodhpur - Jaisalmer ( By road ) Approx. 6 hrs. drive
After a relaxed breakfast proceed for city sight seeing tour of Jodhpur. Jodhpur - the stronghold of the fierce Rathore clan, was founded in 1459 by Prince Jodha. Visit the Mehrangarh Fort, situated on a low sandstone hill. Within the fort, visit Moti Mahal and Phool Mahal. Also visit Jaswant Thada, an imposing marble cenotaph, built in memory of Maharaja Jaswant singh II around 1899 and Umaid Public gardens. Later drive to Jaisalmer, on arrival transfer to hotel. Evening at leisure. Night stay in Jaisalmer.

Day 08 / Jaisalmer
After breakfast spend the day to enjoy desert Festival

In every winter and in the middle of the continually rising and falling stark yellow sands of the great Thar Desert, the empty sands around Jaisalmer come alive with the brilliant colour, music and laughter of the Desert Festival.

The very rich and colourful Rajasthani folk culture is on show here for three days.

Activities in the Desert Festival Jaisalmer :

Rajasthani men and tall beautiful women dressed in their bright costumes dance and sing lingering ballads of valour, romance and tragedy. Traditional musicians attempt to outdo each other in their musical superiority.

The high points of the festival are - puppeteers, acrobats, camel tattoo show, camel races, camel polo, traditional procession, camel mounted band , folk dances, etc. Proud mustached villagers, dressed in their ethnic best come astride their picturesquely caparisoned camels to join in the camel dances and competitions of camel acrobatics. Tug of war and Panihari Matka race are the events where visitors to the fair can participate and enjoy the thrill and taste of traditions.

The turban tying competitions are big draws and laughter. The Mr. Desert competitions, which are focused around the length and style of moustaches and rustic physique wrapped in traditional costumes, many visitors.

Day 09 / Jaisalmer
Spend the entire day in desert festival. In the late afternoon proceed to sand dunes to enjoy camel ride at sunset. After camel ride come back to swiss tent in the desert and by the evening enjoy dinner with Rajasthani folk dance. Night stay in Jaisalmer.

Day 10 / Jaisalmer - Bikaner ( By road ) Approx. 6 hrs. drive
After breakfast check out from the swiss tent and proceed for city sightseeing tour of Jaisalmer. Throbbing in the heart of the Thar, the burnished sandstone, is an intricately molded wonderland in place of a barren land, today stands a city of gilded magic. The origins of Jaisalmer go back to the 12th century, when Rawal Jaisal abandoned his old fort at Ludarwa and laid the foundation of a new city. Visit the magnificient fort, the Patwon Ki Haveli ( Mansion) and Salim singh Ki Haveli, with their carved balconies and brackets which are supreme examples of the art. Later drive to Bikaner. On arrival transfer to the hotel. Night stay in Bikaner.

Day 11 / Bikaner
Morning after breakfast city sight seeing tour. Bikaner is named after its founder Rao Bikaji in 1488. But long before this, the city was trade center on the caravan routes from Africa and West Asia. Bikaner’s dominant features are rippling sands and abundant sunshine. The city stands on an elevation, enclosed by a 7 Kms wall, which can be entered from 5 gate. Bikaner City is bolstered by imposing walls and has a 16th century fort housing old palaces, temples and mosque. Founded by Raja Rai Singh the fort is distinguished by its long range of 37 pavilions, a line of balconies and aerial windows of varying designs. Also visit Lallgarh Palace, the museum, Bhanda Sagar Jain and Deshnoke Rat temple. Night stay in Bikaner.

Day 12 / Bikaner - Mandawa ( By road ) Approx. 4 hrs. drive
Morning drive to Mandawa, on arrival transfer to the hotel. Later visit Mandawa, founded 1755 by Thakur Nawal Singh and still the home of his descendants, has beautiful frescoes, havelis and mansions. Mandawa castle one of the finest castles of Rajasthan, is now a hotel and house of collection of armories, costumes of ancestors, canons from 1820 ancient coins, numismatic collection and many other interesting items, preserved in a museum. Night stay in Mandawa.

Day 13 / Mandawa - Delhi ( By road ) Approx. 5 hrs. drive - Departure
Morning drive to Delhi and transfer to hotel. Night stay in Delhi. airport for onward journey.


Includes:
» 13 Nights accommodation as per the itinerary with daily breakfast.
» All three meals breakfast, lunch & dinner in swiss tent in Jaisalmer sand dunes.
» All transfers & Sightseeing as per the Itinerary by exclusive Air Conditioner Car.
» Surface travel by exclusive Air Conditioner Car.
» Elephant ride in Jaipur ( subject to availability )
» Dinner with Rajasthani folk dance at the time of sand dunes.
» Camel ride at sunset in sand dunes at Jaisalmer , boat ride in Udaipur.
» Local English speaking Guides.
» All taxes, driver allowances, parking, fuel charges.

Does not include:
» Any Airfares.
» Entrance fee to the Monuments.
» Cost of personal nature like beverages, Tips, Laundry etc.
» Any item not shown in Cost includes.

Hotels Selected - Royal (5*)
Delhi : The Metropolitan / The Lalit / The Grand
Agra : Jay Pee Palace / Taj View / Trident
Jaipur : Hotel Trident / Le Meridien
Pushkar : Pushkar Palace / Jagat Palace
Udaipur : Trident/ Fateh Prakash/ Shiv Niwas/ Laxmi Villas
Jodhpur : Taj Hari Mahal
Jaisalmer : Fort Rajwada / Gorbandh Palace/ Taj Rawalkot
Bikaner : Lallgarh Palace/ Bhanwar Niwas
Mandawa : Castle Mandawa / Desert Resort

Hotels Selected - Classic (4*)
Delhi : The Connaught / Hotel City Park / De Marks
Agra : Clarks Shiraz / Howard Park
Jaipur : Golden Tulip / Hari Mahal Palace/ Wall Street / Hotel Clarks Amer
Pushkar : Pushkar Palace / Jagat Palace
Udaipur : Uday Kothi / Shikarbadi / Amet Haveli
Jaisalmer : Jawahar Niwas / Rang Mahal
Jodhpur : Balsamand Palace/ Ajit Bhawan/ Shree Ram International
Bikaner : Lallgarh Palace/ Bhanwar Niwas
Mandawa : Castle Mandawa/ Desert Resort

Hotels Selected - Jewel (3* - 4* & Heritage)
Delhi : Hotel Gautam Deluxe / Hotel Sunstar
Agra : Hotel Amar / Hotel Usha Kiran
Jaipur : Hotel Jas Vilas / Nana ki Haveli / Dera Rawatsar
Pushkar : Raj shree
Udaipur : Hotel Shikarbadi / Hotel Rajdarshan
Jodhpur : Balsamand Palace / Mapple Abhay
Jaisalmer : Hotel Mandir Palace / Garh Jaisal
Bikaner : Lallgarh Palace
Mandawa : Castle Mandawa / Desert Mandawa Resort

Hotels Selected - Economy (2* Moderate)
Delhi : Hotel Blue Bell / Hotel De Gold
Agra : Royale Residency / Taj Plaza / Pushapvila
Jaipur : Hotel Vijay Niwas / Hotel Sarang Palace
Pushkar : Raj shree
Udaipur : Mahendra Prakash Haveli
Jodhpur : Pal Haveli/ Ratan Vilas/ Shreeram International
Jaisalmer : Nachana Haveli /Mahadev Palace
Bikaner : Harassar Haveli/ Desert Winds/ Hotel Sagar
Mandawa: Mandawa Haveli / Hotel Heritage Mandawa


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