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Itinerary:  PROJECT MALA INDIA 2016

 

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Day 1 - Thu, 11 Feb 2016 - Arrive Delhi

> Arrive Delhi

> After clearing immigration and customs, you are met by a representative and transferred to hotel, a drive of about 40 minutes 

> Two nights in Delhi


Day 2 - Fri, 12 Feb 2016 - Delhi

 > Morning tour of Old Delhi: begin at Rajghat, the site of Gandhi’s funeral memorial, before travelling by cycle rickshaw through the crowded lanes of Chandni Chowk market (closed Sundays/holidays), over 350 years old with shops and people of almost every description

> End the morning at the medieval Jami Masjid, India’s largest mosque

> In the afternoon, view the India Gate war memorial, North & South Block secretariat, visit Indira Gandhi’s house where she lived as Prime Minister of India and was assassinated, and  Rashtrapati Bhawan (Presidential Palace) and Parliament

> Continue to south Delhi to visit the late 12th century Qutb Minar tower before returning to the centre again to visit the mid 16th century Humayun’s Tomb, considered to be the forerunner of the Taj Mahal and now splendidly restored by the Aga Khan Foundation

> An after sunset visit to Nizamuddin for a Sufi evening, a medieval village highlighted by various shrines and particularly the Tomb of Nizamuddin Auliya.


Day 3 - Sat, 13 Feb 2016 - Delhi / Jodhpur

>> Leisure time during the morning

> In the afternoon, fly Delhi/Jodhpur (Jet Airways 9W721 – 2:00PM/3:00PM)

> You are met on arrival and transferred to your hotel, a drive of about 25 minutes

> Later, visit to the old city bazaar, noted for its crafts ateliers where silver jewellery, lacquer ware, tie dyed fabrics, bangles and pottery are manufactured

> Two nights in Jodhpur


Day 4 - Sun, 14 Feb 2016 - Jodhpur

> Tour of the gigantic Mehrangarh Fort, which spreads over nearly three miles on and rises vertically from a rocky hill and now magnificently restored after several years of painstaking effort, its sheer cannon festooned ramparts are straight out of a Kipling fable. 

> It also has a museum with a rich collection of palanquins, royal cradles, and miniature paintings of various schools, folk music instruments and costumes.

> Near the fort complex lies Jaswant Thada memorial, a group of royal cenotaphs made of white marble.

> In the late afternoon, tour of the old city bazaars and explore old royal buildings and havelis, lanes and public squares, street side markets and workplaces of local artisans.

> Maharani, a fantastic store – the collection of textile and antiques are unmatchable both in terms of quality and prices.


Day 5 - Mon, 15 Feb 2016 - Jodhpur / Pushkar / Jaipur

> This morning, drive eastwards to Jaipur (330 km/6 hours plus stop)

> Lunch will be arranged en route in Ajmer 

> Optional stop can be made in the sacred town of Pushkar, set around a small, picturesque lake.  Pushkar is one of the very few sites in India with a temple dedicated to Lord Brahma.

> Two nights in Jaipur


Day 6 - Tue, 16 Feb 2016 - Jaipur

 > This morning, drive to Amber, a half hour north, site of the old settlements and fortress that preceded Jaipur and ride upto Amber Fort and explore the interiors of the fortress; 

> This afternoon will be spent touring through the country’s first planned city, with the graceful City Palace as its centre piece and the old quarter spread on a grid around it, with the distinctive orange coloured wash adorning most buildings.  

> Around the City Palace’s courtyards are a clutch of private museums displaying royal 

memorabilia armaments, arts, books, manuscripts, paintings and textiles.  Adjacent to the City Palace, is the royal Jantar Mantar observatory whose curiously shaped and oversized instruments are astonishingly accurate till today.


Day 7 - Wed, 17 Feb 2016 - Jaipur / Agra

 > Transfer to the Railway Station this morning for a train ride to Agra (Shatabdi Express – 7:05AM/10:35AM)

> Transferred to hotel, a drive of about 20 minutes

> A visit is arranged to the Taj Mahal.  Built by the grieving emperor Shah Jahan in tribute to his favourite wife, it was 22 years in the making (1631-53).  It is described as “a vision, a wonder, a poem, a dream”.  

> Nearby is the Agra Fort, strategically situated along a bend in the Yamuna River.  Built by three generations of Mughal emperors, starting with Akbar, it combines and contrasts stern military fortifications with delicate interior detail. 

> One night in Agra


Day 8 - Thu, 18 Feb 2016 - Agra / Delhi / Varanasi

> A sunrise visit is made to the Taj Mahal

> Drive to Delhi airport (223 km/3 hours)

> Fly Delhi/Varanasi (Indigo Airlines 6E#118 – 1:10PM/2:10PM)

> You are met by a representative in Varanasi and transferred to hotel, a drive of about an hour 

> One of the world’s most ancient cities, already in existence when the Buddha first visited around 500BC, it is the citadel of Hinduism, enlivened by the throngs of pilgrims who congregate to bathe and worship in the sacred waters of the river Ganges.

> In the evening, a walk through the old brass and sari markets, before viewing the evening prayer ceremonies on the banks of the Ganges.

> Evening, welcome dinner at hotel, hosted by Project Mala.  

> Three nights in Varanasi


Day 9 - Fri, 19 Feb 2016 - Varanasi

> Just before dawn, guided private boat cruise on the Ganges.  This a magical time, pilgrims trickle out from the labyrinthine lanes and head for the Ghats (steps leading to the river) at dawn.  Here they wash clothes, perform yoga asanas, offer prayers and take ritual dip.

> Return to your hotel for breakfast 

> Later, visit the Project Mala schools - programme arranged by Project Mala 


Day 10 - Sat, 20 Feb 2016 - Varanasi

> Visit Project Mala schools and see rural India -programme arranged by Project Mala


Day 11 - Sun, 21 Feb 2016 - Varanasi / Delhi; Depart Delhi

> More time in the morning to explore Varanasi and its surroundings

> In the afternoon, fly back to Delhi (Jet Airways 9W2424 – 2:50PM/4:25PM)

> You are met and assisted with your homeward flights


Note

Tour Guide Price:



Five star standard hotels


Twin sharing: USD 3,000 per person

**Single room supplements: USD 900


INCLUSIONS:


> 10 nights at hotels, in room categories, as indicated in the itinerary

- Delhi/The Lalit (Deluxe Room – 2 nights)

- Jodhpur/ITC Welcome Hotel (Deluxe Room – 2 nights)

- Jaipur/ITC Rajputana (Rajputana Chamber – 2 nights)

- Agra/ITC Mughal (Mughal Chamber – 1 night)

- Varanasi/The Gateway Hotel Ganges (Standard Room – 3 nights)

> All meals – from breakfast on February 12th through dinner on February 21st

> All overland transportation in an air-conditioned vehicle, with soft drinks/bottled water provided

> Private boat ride in Varanasi

> Sightseeing with a local English speaking guide as mentioned in the itinerary

> Welcome dinner on February 18th in Varanasi

> Economy class airfare – Delhi/Jodhpur + Delhi/Varanasi/Delhi

> Railfare – Jaipur/Agra (air-conditioned chair car)

> All applicable taxes


Five star LUXURY hotels:


Twin sharing: USD 5300 per person

**Single room supplements: USD 2300


INCLUSIONS:


> 10 nights at hotels, in room categories, as indicated in the itinerary

- Delhi/The Imperial (Imperial Room – 2 nights)

- Jodhpur/Raas (Luxury Fort View Room – 2 nights)

- Jaipur/Oberoi Rajvilas (Premiere Room – 2 nights)

- Agra/Oberoi Amarvilas (Premiere Taj Facing Room – 1 night)

- Varanasi/The Gateway Hotel Ganges (Executive Suite – 3 nights)

> All meals – from breakfast on February 12th through dinner on February 21st

> All overland transportation in an air-conditioned vehicle, with soft drinks/bottled water provided

> Private boat ride in Varanasi

> Sightseeing with a local English speaking guide as mentioned in the itinerary

> Welcome dinner on February 18th in Varanasi

> Economy class airfare – Delhi/Jodhpur + Delhi/Varanasi/Delhi

> Railfare – Jaipur/Agra (air-conditioned chair car)

> All applicable taxes



Exclusions – Flight from home country to India

 

TOFTThe Hotels covered in this Itinerary are:
The Lalit / The Imperial
ITC Welcome Hotel / Raas
ITC Rajputana / The Oberoi Rajvilas
ITC Mughal Agra / Amarvilas,Agra
Taj Ganges Varanasi / Taj Ganges Varanasi

The Lalit

 Standing tall in the heart of the business and commercial district of Connaught Place, The Lalit New Delhi is one of the finest luxury hotels in the city. The hotel is located just minutes away from the government offices, cultural centres and international trade fair grounds.

Surrounded by upscale shopping centres, heritage monuments and neighbourhoods buzzing with cafés and bazaars, this five-star hotel offers the perfect gateway to India’s vibrant capital.
Seven distinctive dining and nightlife destinations, the award-winning Rejuve – The Spa, and sophisticated event venues ensure that every expectation is surpassed.
Amidst the urban bustle of India’s capital, The Lalit New Delhi is the destination to relax, unwind and discover the city at your own pace.

The Imperial

From the time The Imperial opened its doors in the 1930s, when India was beginning to write the last chapters of its saga on independence, there was little space in New Delhi for an Indo- British rubbing of shoulders. The Imperial provided such a space. Pandit Nehru, Mahatama Gandhi, Muhammad Ali Jinnah and Lord Mountbatten would meet at The Imperial to discuss the partition of India and creation of Pakistan.The Nehru family had a permanent suite here.

The Imperial is a fine confluence of a rich historical past and contemporary international appeal. After many restorations, it has managed to preserve its charm, and exudes it’s former glory. The original Frasers and Daniells paintings and the tavern named after them, the symbolically baptized “1911” restaurant and bar, the Royal ballroom were the places where have met and are still as popular today. The Hotel is a jewel of architecture and its location in the heart of the city makes it the ideal venue for tourists around the world.


ITC Welcome Hotel

 On the edge of the Thar Desert, set against the somber and arid landscape of Rajasthan is – WelcomHotel Jodhpur. As a tribute to the city of Jodhpur, laden with history, culture & monuments that enliven the royal era of the princely state; WelcomHotel Jodhpur endeavors to bring about an element of grandeur through food, music, colour and an ethnic mélange of unique experiences.


Raas

 Jodhpur's first boutique hotel comprises three new buildings in addition to the original four; a rare and charming complex that reflects in many ways the Walled City itself. Indeed, with its sensational vistas, different styles and angles, a central water body, square and garden; and an all pervasive warm "organic feel" RAAS is a microcosm of the city. And…like virtually every home here, almost every room in the hotel enjoys the most spectacular view of Mehrangarh, rated in 2008 by Time Magazine as "Asia's Best Fortress".

 
The new buildings are modern and contemporary in their use of space and light and context; and yet grounded in tradition. Jodhpur's red sand-stone unites the new with the old, even as modern designs and patterns in its dressing and carving add an exciting and fresh dimension to the region's age-old stone carving industry. This seamless harmony between the old and the new, the modern and the traditional, the familiar and the surprising…extends to all aspects of RAAS; and it is everywhere, and at all times, as comforting as it is inspirational.

ITC Rajputana

 Experience the finest luxury hotel in Jaipur - ITC Rajputana. We’re proud to offer the best accommodations in the city with a host of comforts and services in settings that reflect the spirit of Rajasthan and its royalty. Just 15 kilometres from the airport and half a kilometre from the city centre our regal-influenced design and gardens echo the city’s history. Retreat to our 218 guest rooms and suites equipped with modern amenities.


The Oberoi Rajvilas

The Oberoi Rajvilas is a unique way to experience Jaipur, one of India’s most vibrant and exotic destinations. A luxury resort with its own distinctive character, it revives the gracious lifestyles of India’s legendary Rajput princes.

Recreating the magnificence of princely Rajasthan, in a beautiful fort setting, with Jaipur as its backdrop; The Oberoi Rajvilas is set in 32 acres of landscaped gardens with pavilions and reflection pools that create the romance and grandeur of Rajasthan. Rooms, luxury tents and villas with private pools are clustered around private courtyards in a richly embellished fort setting. At The Oberoi Rajvilas superb attention to detail creates a soothing blend of warm, effortless service and harmonious spaces.


ITC Mughal Agra

 Sprawled over 35 acres of luxurious gardens, and in close proximity to the Taj Mahal, ITC Mughal, a luxury hotel in Agra is a fitting tribute to the great Mughal builders of the past. The only Indian hotel to have won the prestigious Aga Khan Award for its excellent representation of Mughal architecture, it now boasts of a brand new accommodation wing - the 'Khwab Mahal' - Palace of Dreams. This luxury hotel in Agra comprises of 233 opulent rooms and suites, recreating a paradise for the contemporary Mogul- full of splendor and perfection which was the hallmark of the Mughal Dynasty


Amarvilas,Agra

One of India's best premium luxury resorts brings to life the opulent lifestyle of the Moghul emperors. At this Moorish fantasy of sandstone arches and glistening pools, each spacious room—understatedly elegant, with teak floors and rich fabrics—has a breathtaking view of the Taj Mahal over a sea of green treetops. Agra's culture and heritage are celebrated in details taken from the Taj Mahal, from the colonnade with its floral frescoes to the guest rooms' marble-inlay tables. Standards of service from staff, including your own butler, are high. If you don't stay here, come to dine, or stop at the bar for a drink and a terrace view of the Taj Mahal and, in the evening, the Rajasthani dancers performing on the roof of the pool pavilion.


Taj Ganges Varanasi

Centrally located on Raja Bazaar Road at Nadesar Palace Grounds. Set amidst12 acres, the hotel is an oasis of greenery in this bustling temple town. This Western-style high rise has a lavish lobby and spacious modern rooms elegantly appointed with central air-conditioning.


Taj Ganges Varanasi

Centrally located on Raja Bazaar Road at Nadesar Palace Grounds. Set amidst12 acres, the hotel is an oasis of greenery in this bustling temple town. This Western-style high rise has a lavish lobby and spacious modern rooms elegantly appointed with central air-conditioning.


Map of India

Itinerary

Day 1 - Thu, 11 Feb 2016 - Arrive Delhi
Day 2 - Fri, 12 Feb 2016 - Delhi
Day 3 - Sat, 13 Feb 2016 - Delhi / Jodhpur
Day 4 - Sun, 14 Feb 2016 - Jodhpur
Day 5 - Mon, 15 Feb 2016 - Jodhpur / Pushkar / Jaipur
Day 6 - Tue, 16 Feb 2016 - Jaipur
Day 7 - Wed, 17 Feb 2016 - Jaipur / Agra
Day 8 - Thu, 18 Feb 2016 - Agra / Delhi / Varanasi
Day 9 - Fri, 19 Feb 2016 - Varanasi
Day 10 - Sat, 20 Feb 2016 - Varanasi
Day 11 - Sun, 21 Feb 2016 - Varanasi / Delhi; Depart Delhi

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