Days 1 - 3
India’s largest city, Delhi, has been one of the country’s commercial and economic hubs for centuries and, as a result, is incredibly rich in culture and history. Made up of the ancient walled city of Old Delhi and the more modern sector, New Delhi, the city encompasses a staggering array of beautiful architecture, notable monuments and age-old temples, including three UNESCO World Heritage Sites – the Red Fort, Qutab Minar and Humayun's Tomb. Other key attractions include the 17th century Chandni Chowk marketplace – still one of the city’s most popular retail centres today, particularly for jewellery and traditional Indian saris; the iconic Bahà’i Lotus Temple – an award-winning architectural gem; and the Jama Masjid, India’s largest mosque.
Days 3 - 6
Dubbed the ‘Venice of the East’, the city of Udaipur is built around three interconnected lakes – Lake Pichhola, Fateh Sagar Lake and the smaller Swaroop Sagar Lake – and encircled by the hills of the Aravalli mountain range. It is home to an array of ancient temples and fairy-tale palaces (several of the latter have been converted into luxury heritage hotels) and is known as one of Rajasthan’s most beautiful and romantic cities. Must-see attractions include the City Palace, the Lake Palace (set on a small island in the middle of Lake Pichola) and the Udaipur Solar Observatory – Asia’s premier solar-gazing site.
Days 6 - 8
Resting on the banks of the River Luni just north of the vast Jawai Dam, the village of Jawai Bandh rests in Western Rajasthan, India. This village serves as an excellent base from which explore the scenic surrounding area including the large glistening Jawai Dam. Built across the Jawai River, the dam encompasses the Jawai Dam Crocodile Sanctuary which protects an array of wildlife such as crocodile and a variety of Indian and migratory birds including a mix of crane and duck species. Bear, hyena, wolf, and many leopards have also been spotted in the surrounds, earning these granite hills the name ‘The Leopard Hills of India’. The Jawai area is known for its harmonious coexistence of humans living amidst wildlife, and it said that this is the reason that Jawai is home to the largest population density of leopards in India. Don’t miss the opportunity to visit the nearby Kambeshwar Ji leopard sanctuary.
Days 8 - 10
Known as the gateway to the Thar Desert, Jodhpur is the second largest city in the state of Rajasthan, India. It is a popular tourist destination featuring a variety of ornate palaces, age-old forts and sacred temples. Dubbed “The Blue City", most houses in the old city are painted a beautiful shade of indigo. While Jodhpur is largely a sprawling modern metropolis, enclosed within its old city walls is a labyrinth of winding, narrow medieval streets and bazaars. Jodhpur is home to one of the largest forts in India, the massive 15th-century Mehrangarh Fort, which towers over the city from its sandstone plinth. Other must-see attractions include: the Umaid Bhawan Palace, one of the world's largest private residences; and the Jaswant Thada, an intricately carved white marble mausoleum.
Days 10 - 12
Fringed by the rugged Aravali Hills, Jaipur is the capital and largest city in India’s northern state of Rajasthan. This city is famed for being India’s first planned city featuring a multitude of pink terracotta buildings within the walled historic centre, earning it the nickname,’The Pink City’. Jaipur falls within the Golden Triangle, a popular tourist circuit, which includes Delhi, Jaipur and Agra, and serves as a gateway to the neighbouring desert cities of Jaisalmer and Jodhpur. This colourful city is a combination of tradition and modernity and offers visitors vibrant bazaars, lavish palaces and ancient temples. The salmon-hued old city is home to the opulent City Palace, encompassing an impressive assortment of palatial structures, sprawling gardens, courtyards and buildings. Don’t miss the fairy-tale splendour of the Amber Fort, set against the backdrop of the arid landscape.
Days 12 - 13
Home of the world-famous Taj Mahal, Agra is one of India’s prime tourist destinations for specifically this reason, though its attractions also extend to an array of other impressive historical sights. These include the red-hued Agra Fort, the sacred Jama Masjid mosque and Itmad-ud-Daulah’s tomb, with its white marble facade embellished with intricate inlaid designs and semi-precious gems. The Taj, however, is in a league of its own and needless to say is a must-see for any visitor to the city. Commissioned by the Mughal emperor Shah Jahan in the 15th century as a memorial to his beloved wife Mumtaz Mahal, it is an architectural masterpiece of exquisite craftsmanship and perfect proportions.