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Magnificent India

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Magnificent India
Delhi - Agra - Jaipur - Udaipur - Mumbai - Kochi - Kumarakom - Alleppy - Chennai - Mahabalipuram (14 Nights / 15 Days)

Day 01 / Arrival Delhi
Arrive Delhi, the capital of kingdoms and empires is now a sprawling metropolis with a fascinating blend of the past and the present. It is a perfect introduction to the composite culture of an ancient land. A window to the kaleidoscope - that is India. Meet assist at the airport & transfer to hotel. Night stay in Delhi.

Day 02 / Delhi
After breakfast gear up for your visit of Old & New Delhi :
OLD DELHI - A sightseeing tour of Old Delhi would entail visiting the Raj Ghat - the cremation site of Mahatma Gandhi is one of the most visited sites in Delhi. It consists of a simple square black-marble platform that stands on the spot where Mahatma Gandhi was cremated. Nearby, there are cremation sites of Jawaharlal Nehru - the first Prime Minister of India, Indira Gandhi, Sanjay Gandhi, Rajiv Gandhi and Lal Bahadur Shastri. Jama Masjid - the largest mosque in India. Red Fort - One of the most spectacular pieces of Mughal Architecture is the Lal Quila or the Red Fort. Built by the Mughal emperor, Shah Jahan between 1638 and 1648, the Red Fort has walls extending up to 2 kms. in length with the height varying from 18 mts. on the river side to 33 mts. on the city side. Chandni Chowk - a place that has a history of about 400 years. More evidences of the ancient times that once existed in old Delhi can be found out by winding through the labyrinthine lanes of Chandni Chowk in a rickshaw. The pleasure associated with the Rickshaw Ride here is ultimate. The rickshaw rides gives the passengers an opportunity to see a different prospective of Chandni Chowk, which is otherwise only regarded as one of the favourite shopping avenues of Delhi.
NEW DELHI - An extensive sightseeing 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 -was built by Edwin Lutyens to pay homage to the Indian soldiers who died in the World War I and the Afgan War. Closely looking at the walls of India Gate would let you know the names of 90,000 soldiers who died during the World War I, the Afgan War and the North-West Frontier operations. The structure was finally completed in the year 1931. India Gate was originally called the All India War Memorial., Laxmi Narayan Temple also known as Birla Temple - one of the landmarks in the nation’s capital New Delhi. It was built in the 20th century by the Birla family of industrialists known for its many other temples in India. It is modern in concept and construction. It attracts several devotees and international tourists. The presiding deity here is Lakshmi Narayan (Vishnu), Parliament House, the President's Residence and would end with a drive through the Diplomatic Enclave. The evening is free to be spent at your leisure. Night stay in Delhi.

Day 03 / Delhi - Agra ( By Superfast train Dep 0615Hrs Arr 0815Hrs )
Early morning pick up from hotel & transfer to railway station to board the superfast air-conditioned train to Agra. Breakfast in the train. Arrive Agra in approx. 02 hours & transfer to hotel. Later proceed to visit the magnificient Taj Mahal -one of the seven wonders of the world surely the most extravagant expression of love ever created. 20,000 men laboured for over 17 years to build this memorial to Shah Jahan's beloved wife. A ride on Tonga upto Taj is sheer fun and frolic all through. Also visit the Red fort - 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-Am (hall of public audience), a colonnaded hall of red-sandstone with a throne alcove of inlaid marble at the back, the Emperor heard public petitions. 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. Evening free to explore the rich handicrafts of Agra. Night stay in Agra.

Day 04 / Agra - Jaipur ( By road approx 235kms/ 05Hrs ) enroute visit Fatehpur Sikri
Morning at sunrise visit the magnificent Taj Mahal - one of the seven wonders of the world surely the most extravagant expression of love ever created. 20,000 men laboured for over 17 years to build this memorial to Shah Jahan's beloved wife. Later drive to Jaipur - enroute visit Fatehpur Sikri, a perfectly preserved Mughal city built at the height of the empire's splendor. Arrive Jaipur & transfer to hotel. Night stay in Jaipur.

Day 05 / Jaipur
After a relaxed breakfast proceed for a 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. Evening transfer to railway station to board the air conditioned train to Delhi, Dinner in the train. Arrive Delhi & transfer to hotel. Night stay in Delhi.

Day 06 / Jaipur - Udaipur ( By flight )
Morning transfer to airport to board the flight to Udaipur- known as the most romantic city of India. It is interspersed with shimmering lakes, marble palaces and fountains. The City Palace is the largest of its kind. It is remarkable for its octagonal towers, brilliant multicolor mosaics of peacocks inlaid in tiles, inlaid mirror work and exquisite paintings. On arrival in Udaipur meet assist at airport and tyransfer to hotel. Later proceed for city sightseeing of Udaipur Visit the City Palace museum, The City Palace, one of the largest palaces in the world, can be approached through the Bari Pol or the Great Gate (1600) with the royal drums and then onto the Tripolia Gate (1725). The Tripolia is a triple gate made of marble arches. Between these two gates are eight carved toranas or archways under which the maharanas were weighed against gold and silver which was later distributed to the poor subjects. Popular entertainment like elephant fights took place in the court beyond the Tripolia Gate. Bhartiya Lok Kala Mandir ( Folk art museum) The interesting collection exhibited by this Indian folk arts museum includes folk dresses, ornaments, puppets, masks, dolls, folk musical instruments, folk deities and paintings. Also visit the Pratap Memorial. A stop the Moti Magri or Pearl Hill, overlooking the Fateh Sagar Lake is the memorial of the Rajput hero Maharana Pratap with a bronze statue of the Maharana astride his favorite horse"Chetak". Evening enjoy Boat Ride on Lake Pichola. Night stay in Udaipur.

Day 07 / Day excursion to Ranakpur
After breakfast proceed for day excursion to Ranakpur - ilocated about 56 miles north of Udaipur and in any case a must, if you are in this region.
This Jain Temple was built under the reign of monarch Rana Kumbha in the 15th century. The Jains are among other things known for their asceticism and absolute nonviolence. With a 4,500 square yards basement (approximately 60 x 62 meters) it is the largest Jain temple in India. Entering this marvel of architecture we were overwhelmed by the lavish abundance of marvellous stonemason works on white marble. There are four subsidiary shrines, 24 pillared halls and all in all 1444 marble pillars each from one piece and all richly decorated with most elaborately carved sculptures and filigrees, including the domes. The creativity and beauty of these elaborate works is unimaginable and the variety is such, that no two of the 1444 pillars are alike! A special effect is the amazing play of shadow, light and colours. As the light shifts through the temple over the day the pillar's colours change from white over bluish to gold. When the mogul emperor Akbar visited this temple he was full of admiration that he had made an inscription on one of the pillars which says, that no one ever will be allowed to destroy this jewel of architecture. Night stay in Udaipur .

Day 08 / Udaipur - Mumbai ( Previuos name was Bombay) ( By flight )
After breakfast transfer to airport to board the flight for Bombay. Arrive Bombay & transfer to hotel. Later half day city tour of Bombay, political capital of Maharashtra, and commercial capital of India, Mumbai is many cities in one. As the world's largest textiles market, a major industrial centre and the country's busiest port handling over 40 percent of India's maritime trade, it contributes around 50 percent of the national exchequer. Bombay's colonial legacy is the Gateway of India. Built to commemorate the royal visit of George V and Queen Mary in 1911 but only completed in 1924, the gateway is a combination of European and Indian ceremonial architecture. The last British troops marched out through this gate when India became independent in 1947. Today it is a favorite haunt of tourists. The Prince of Wales Museum - This museum stands not too far from the Gateway of India. It has a priceless collection of art, sculpture, china and other antics. Carefully presereved, this mid-Victorian Gothic style building built in 1904 with beautiful gardens surrounding it, is worth visiting in Mumbai. Chowpatty Beach & Juhu Beach - Chowpatty beach is situated on Marine Drive. This beach is well-known for it's stalls selling "Bhel-Puri and Pani -Puri chat" a favourite fast food among the Mumbaites and visitors to the city. Juhu Beach is the most popular beach in Mumbai which is 30 kms away from the heart of Mumbai. It is a long stretch of sandy beach from Santacruz to Vile-Parle. This is a very popular beach for picnic. Both these beaches are crowded on week-ends. Night stay in Bombay.

Day 09 / Mumbai - Cochin ( By flight )
Morning transfer to airport to board the flight to Cochin - is a vibrant city situated on the south-west coast of the Indian peninsula in the breathtakingly scenic and prosperous state of Kerala, hailed as 'God's Own Country'. Its strategic importance over the centuries is underlined by the sobriquet Queen of the Arabian Sea. Informally, Cochin is also referred to as the Gateway to Kerala. From time immemorial, the Arabs, British, Chinese, Dutch, and Portuguese have left indelible marks on the history and development of Cochin. Over the years, Cochin has emerged as the commercial and industrial capital of Kerala and is perhaps the second most important city on the west coast of India (after Mumbai/Bombay). Cochin is proud of its world class port and international airport that link it to many major cities worldwide. This lovely seaside city is flanked by the Western Ghats on the east and the Arabian Sea on the west. Its proximity to the equator, the sea and the mountains provide a rich experience of a moderate equatorial climate. Strictly speaking, Cochin is a small town. But, Cochin has outgrown its original bounds and is now the general name given to much of the region adjoining the original town, which now includes Cochin, Fort Kochi, Mattanchery, Ernakulam and many other nearby towns and villages. Cochin is situated in Ernakulam district in the state of Kerala. Ernakulam is also the name of a town - the administrative capital of Ernakulam district - but, for all practical purposes Ernakulam and Cochin, generally, refer to the same place. Rest of the day at leisure. Visit local markets etc. Night stay in Cochin.

Day 10 / Cochin
After breakfast proceed for sightseeing tour of cochin including .
1. The Hill Palace Museum, a fully-fledged archeological museum and Kerala’s first ever Heritage Museum are the main attractions (closed on Mondays).
2. Chinese Fishing Nets, this unique style of huge cantilevered fishing nets were erected between 1350 and 1450 AD by traders from the Court of Kubla Khan, a Chinese King.
3. Santa Cruz Basilica, this historic church was built by the Portuguese and elevated to a Cathedral by Pope Paul IV in 1558. Pope John Paul II proclaimed the Church a Basilica in 1984.
4. The Jewish Synagogue, constructed in 1568, this is the oldest Synagogue in the Commonwealth (closed on Saturdays & Jewish Holidays). The area around the Synagogue, called Jew Town, is the centre for Spice & Handicraft shops.
5. Mattanchery Palace (Dutch Palace), built by the Portuguese in 1557 and presented to the Regent of Kochi (closed on Fridays). Return to hotel rest of the day free/ shopping at Ernakulam. Night stay in Cochin.

Day 11 / Cochin - Kumarakom ( By road approx 65Kms/ 02Hrs & half hour drive )
After breakfast drive tp to Kumarakom - the famous backwater tourist destination in Kerala is located about 12 kms from Kottayam. This place can be reached through a voyage from Alappuzha. Kumarakom is undoubtedly the most invigorating, fascinating paradise in Kerala, God's own country. This rich green, sleepy little village of Kumarkom is located on the Vembanad lake amidst mangrove forests and coconut groves. Kumarakom is an enchanting picnic spot and provides boating, fishing and sightseeing experiences that are truly exhilarating. The slender coconut palms standing here, there and everywhere, its never ending paddy fields, meandering lagoons and backwaters, mangroves nesting birds of a hundred varieties can peacefully calm and invigorate your mind. On the scenic Vembanad lake you will come across plenty of traditional country crafts or houseboats, boats and canoes. The fresh water of the lake runs into the mainland making a labyrinth of lagoons, brooks, canals and waterways. The backwater houses a variety of species of both fauna and flora and marine life. The day is spent on a boat cruising the backwaters visiting palm fringed villages, rural areas and a sanctuary, which is home to thousand of migrating birds. Night stay in Kumarakom.

Day 12 / Kumarakom - Alleppy ( Back water ) ( By road approx 40Kms/ 01Hr drive )
After breakfast drive to Alleppy - is one of the Major Enchanting Tourist Destinations of Kerala.Canal Threaded Town of Alappuzha (ALLEPPY )often called as” the Venice of the East”, behind stretch the Polder Lands of Kuttanad. The Kuttanad, and those magical places known as the back waters, are so unusual that you must take time off to visit them. On Arrival transfer to Kettuvallam ( House Boat). Cruise start after Lunch on board and night stay at Houseboat.

Day 13 / Alleeppy - Chennai ( previously known as Madras) By road approx 55Kms/ 02Hrs drive Cochin - Chennai ( By flight )
After breakfast drive to Cochin to board the flight to Chennai. On arrival in Chennai meet assist at airport and transfer to hotel. Later proceed for city sightseeing of Chennai covering St.Thomas Church - was built by voluntary subscription and consecrated in August 1750. Technically, it was a chapel of ease of St. Peter's, Wolverhampton and known as the Chapel of St. Thomas in Wednesfield. In 1849 it became a separate parish with its own vicar, instead of a curate. In its turn St. Thomas's established Holy Trinity, Heath Town, as a chapel of ease, in 1852; Holy Trinity became a parish of its own in 1869. Likewise, St. Gregory's was established in 1954 and became a parish of its own in 1966. Today a team ministry covers this area, Kapaleshwar Temple -is an emblem of Dravidian style and architecture. The notable feature of this structure is the 37-meter tall gopuram i.e. the pyramidical shaped temple top trying to touch the ultimate cool blue-sky surface which is spread all over the universe. As you enter the temple you can view a sculpture, which has an interesting story behind it. It is believed that a saint known as Gnanasambandar sung and brought a dead girl back to life. Fort St. George - was established in 1639 along the coast of the Bay of Bengal in Chennai city. It is often said that this marked the birth of the city. This monument is a great reminder of the East India Company. The fort has relics of its founders and leaders. It’s a great military marvel and drive pass the Marina Beach. Night stay in Chennai.

Day 14 / Chennai - Mahabalipuram ( By road approx 60Kms/ 01Hr and half drive)
After breakfast drive to Mahabalipuram, the city of the monumental splendors and sunny beaches. On the way, you will be visiting Kanchipuram. Kanchipuram is one of the seven sacred cities of India and it is the only one associated with both Shiva and Vishnu. Visit Ekambareshwar Temple, Kailashnath Temple, Kamakshi Temple, the Vaikunthaperumal Temple, all built in the 7th and 8th centuries. With a weaving tradition dating back to the Pallava era (when silk was the royal cloth), Kanchipuram is justly famous for its particularly fine silk saris, embellished with stunning patterns. Visit the local homes of the weavers and watch them create magic out of silk thread into saris.On your arrival in Mahabalipuram transfer to hotel. Overnight at hotel in Mahabalipuram.

Day 15 / Mahabalipuram - Chennai ( By road ) Departure
After breakfast enjoy full day sightseeing of Mahabalipuram - Mahabalipuram also known as Mamallapuram is a town in Kancheepuram district in the Indian state of Tamil Nadu. It has an average elevation of 12 metres (39 feet). Mahabalipuram was a 7th century port city of the South Indian dynasty of the Pallavas around 60 km south from the city of Chennai in Tamil Nadu. It is believed to have been named after the Pallava king Mamalla. It has various historic monuments built largely between the 7th and the 9th century, and has been classified as a UNESCO World Heritage. Visit the seven pagoda style shore temples - a structural temple along the Bay of Bengal with the entrance from the western side away from the sea. Recent excavations have revealed new structures here. The temple was reconstructed stone by stone from the sea after being washed away in a cyclone, lashed by the waves of the sea and the five rathas or temple chariots, a group of monolithic monuments & animal figures carved out of solid rock, the earliest known examples of Dravidian architecture. They were constructed in a single century long burst of creative enthusiasm, starting in the reign of Narasimhavarman 1 (AD 63068). End the visit by photography of the beautiful Shore temples at sunset. Later transfer to Chennai airport to board the flight back to your home.

Includes:
» 14 Nights accomodation as per the itinerary with daily breakfast .
» All three meals ( breakfast , lunch & dinner ) at the time of staying in Alleeppy Houseboat.
» All transfers, sightseeing, excursion as per the itinerary by exclusive airconditioned car .
» Local English speaking guides.
» Boat ride in Udaipur .
» Elephant ride in Jaipur. ( subject to availability )
» Train tickets from Delhi - Agra by air-conditioned chair car.
» All taxes, driver allowances, permit, parking , fuel charges.

Doesn't Include:

» Entrance fee to monuments.
» Cost of personal nature like camera fee, tips, laundry, porterege.
» Any airfare.
» Any item not mentioned in cost includes.

Hotels Selected - Luxury 5* Deluxe
Delhi : The Oberoi / Imperial
Agra : Amarvilas
Jaipur : Rajvilas
Udaipur : Udaivilas
Mumbai : Taj Mahal Palace & Tower / Maratha Sheraton
Cochin : Brunton Boatyard
Kumarakom : Kumarakom Lake Resort
Alleppery : Spice Coast Cruises

Chennai : Taj Coromandel / Chola Sheraton
Mahabalipuram : Taj Fisherman cove


Hotels Selected - Royal 5*

Delhi : The Metropolitan / The Lalit / The Grand
Agra : Jay Pee Palace / Taj View / Trident
Jaipur : Hotel Trident / Le Meridien
Udaipur : Trident/ Fateh Prakash/ Shiv Niwas/ Laxmi Villas / Grand Laxmi Vilas Palace
Mumbai : Nariman Tower / Taj President
Cochin : Koder House / Trident Hilton
Kumarakom : Coconut Lagoon
Alleppery : Muthoot River Escapes
Chennai : Radission GRT / The Park
Mahabalipuram : GRT Temple Bay

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
Udaipur : Uday Kothi / Shikarbadi / Amet Haveli
Mumbai : Emerald/ Airport International
Cochin : Hotel Casino / Fort Heritage / Old Harbour
Kumarakom : Cocobay / Water Escapes
Alleppery : Rainbow Cruises
Kovalam : Travancore Heritage / Uday Samudra
Chennai : Ambassador Pallava / Residency Tower
Mahabalipuram : Fortune Chariott Resort

Hotels Selected - Economy 3*/ Budget
Delhi : Hotel Blue Bell / Hotel De Gold/ Hotel Sunstar
Agra : Hotel usha Kiran/ Royale Residency / Taj Plaza
Jaipur : Nana Ki Haveli/ Dera Rawatsar/ Jas Vilas
Udaipur : Rajdarshan/ Mahendra Prakash Haveli/ Swaroop Vilas / Sarovar
Mumbai : Suba Palace/ Royal Enclave/ Empire Royal
Cochin : Abad Atrium / Hotel Arches
Kumarakom : Tharavadu Heritage / Paradise Resort
Alleppery : AC Houseboat
Kovalam : Hotel Samudra
Chennai : The Residency / Breeze Benz Park
Mahabalipuram : Mamalla Beach Resort

Interested? Plan Your Trip Now
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