Welcome to India! Arrival during early morning hours at New Delhi’s Indira Gandhi International terminal and do an internal transfer to the Metro Train Termina and board the train to Haridwar.
On arrival at Haridwar Railway Station, you will be received and transferred to Rishikesh to an Ashram (25 kms / 45 minutes drive). After checking in, day is free at Ashram for meditation and Yoga. In the evening attending an Aarti (worship) with lamps is worth watching for the atmosphere. Overnight stay in Ashram.
|12017||+DDN SHATABDI EXPRESS||*NEW DELHI JN||06:45||HARIDWAR JN||11:30|
Rishikesh – According to mythology, the sage Raibhya Rishi sat on the banks of the Ganga and performed severe penance. He was rewarded when the lord appeared in the form of Rishikesh, thus giving the place its present name.
The Triveni Ghat, in the centre of town is the most prominent bathing ghat in Rishikesh. With its modern images of Hindu deities and white sandy beach, the ghat is ideal for a dip in the holy waters of the Ganga.
Morning yoga at Ashram, This day you are going to visit Bharat Mandir, Swarg Ashram, Gita Bhawan and Laxman Jhoola. Later you may go for trekking to Kunjapuri temple around Rishikesh. Overnight stay in Ashram.
Day free for Yoga and meditation activities.
Day free to visit Neelkanth with Vijay. By night transfer to Haridwar Railway Station for your overnight train to Amritsar. Overnight in an Air-conditioned Saloon.
Upon arrival at Amritsar Railway Station, you will be received and transferred to hotel. Relax at the hotel and get refreshed. In the evening drive about 30 kms from Amritsar to visit the border station of Atari and the Wagah checkpost between India and Pakistan. This is the only overland opening between the two countries, which continue to have hostile relations ever since independence in 1947. The checkpost has now become a popular site for tourists, who come to see the change of guards and retreat of troops at sundown. The drill, choreographed with aggressive posturing and sabre-rattling, draws loud cheers from spectators on both sides.
Morning set out for a sightseeing tour of Amritsar including The Golden Temple. Amritsar was built around the Golden Temple and the Amrit Sarovar Lake, from which it derives its name. The Golden Temple sits on a rectangular platform in the centre of the Amrit Sarovar. It is surrounded by a white marble corridor, which is encircled by pilgrims visiting the shrine. The temple building is three storeys high. The lower storey is in white marble, while the two upper storeys have gold plating. The building is crowned with a dome shaped like an inverted lotus. With the first light of dawn, the reflection of the temple in the tank gives an ethereal atmosphere to the complex. As the sun shifts, the temple presents myriad views, each magnificent and captivating. The Adi Granth, compiled by Guru Arjan Dev, rests on a throne beneath a jewel-encrusted canopy. Priests conduct continuous recitation of verses from the holy book in 3-hour shifts. The Akal Takht, next to the Golden Temple, is the seat of the Shiromani Gurudwara Prabandhak Committee, the religious governing body of the Sikhs Jubi tree, at the north-western corner of the complex was planted some 450 year ago by the temples first head priest. The old, gnarled tree is believed to have special powers and childless women tie strips of cloth on it to be blessed with sons. Marriage deals are also fixed under the tree, though this practice is disapproved by the temple authorities. Later visit The Jallianwala Bagh, about 400 metres north of the Golden Temple, is a small stretch of plain ground now converted into a park. Visit the old city, and surrounding bazaars along narrow alleys.
Also visit the Partition Museum and Jallianwala Bagh during the day. Try the world famous sumptuous Amristari cuisine at one of the famous dhabas of Amritsar. Overnight stay in Amritsar.
Early morning fly from Amritsar to Delhi and on arrival at Delhi, board the connecting flight to Varanasi. On arrival at Varanasi airport, you will be received and transferred to the hotel. Rest of the day is free to relax and unwind.
One of the oldest living cities in the world, Varanasi is situated on the western banks of the Ganga and extends beyond the riverbank into a labyrinth of alleys. Filled to the brim with temples and teeming with pilgrims, the city is a magnet for travel enthusiasts. From witnessing vibrant evening prayers at Varanasi’s oldest ghat to touring one of the most significant Hindu temples in India—here is a guide to making the most of your two-day trip to this spiritual city.
In the evening, you will be picked by boat from the ghats and slowly row down to the happening up to Ganges River AARTI Point. This ghat is particularly sacred and the evening worship with oil lamps – called Aarti – is a mesmerizing experience! Later on, you will continue the ride on the same boat to observe devotees offering oil lamps into the Holy Ganges.
Later return back to the hotel for overnight stay.
Early in the morning, you will be driven to ghats to take a boat ride again on the Ganges to view the Sunrise, as seen from the boat can be a spiritually uplifting sight. One of the highlights of the trip is to experience city on the water of the Ganges at sunrise and bathing ghats. You will visit several Ghats – Man Mandir ghat, Tripura Bhairavi ghat, Mir ghat, Nepalai ghat and Manikarnika ghat. From dawn to dusk the riverfront (Ghats) are thronged by thousands of devotees, who perform their holy rituals in the hope of attaining eternal salvation, the “NIRVANA”. Later take a short narrow lane walk to visit the Golden Temple also known as the Vishwanath temple. There stands in its fullest majesty the Kashi Vishwanath Temple in which is enshrined the Jyotirlinga of Shiva. Late Maharani Ahilya Bai Holkar of Indore built the Temple in the present shape way back in 1780. This temple has been a living embodiment of our timeless cultural traditions and highest spiritual values.
Drive back to hotel for having breakfast. Rest at the hotel for a while. After a relaxed morning, you will visit Sarnath – on the outskirts of the city. Sarnath is one of the four most important Buddhist pilgrimage centers of India. It is the site where Buddha delivered his first sermon to his five disciples, preaching the middle path for attaining ‘Nirvana’. Realising the sanctity of the site, emperor Ashoka, in the 3rd century B.C. built some of the finest monuments and legacies. The 34-metre-high ‘Dhamek’ Stupa stands as a remarkable structure.
Later you may set out for the sightseeing of this spiritual city again by visiting Bharat Mata Temple, which was inaugurated by Mahatma Gandhi in 1936, the uniqueness about this temple is, instead of customary gods and goddesses; it houses the perfect relief maps of India. The statute of Bharat Mata is built in marble and is a model of undivided India, depicting the mountains, plains and oceans.
Also visit the Benaras Hindu University, which is the largest residential university in Asia and is a great seat of learning Sanskrit. This University is an internationally reputed temple of learning, founded by the great nationalist leader, Pandit Madan Mohan Malviya, in 1916. The area of the main campus of this premier Central University is 1300 acres, having well maintained roads, extensive greenery, a temple, an air strip and buildings which are an architectural delight. The new Vishwanath temple in the premises of the University is dedicated to lord Shiva and is a replica of the original Vishwanath temple. Later drive back to the hotel for overnight stay.
Morning after breakfast, drive to airport to board your flight to Jaipur. Upon arrival you will be received and transferred to your hotel. Evening visit a local family for culinary classes followed by dinner with the family. Evening is free at leisure.
Today morning after breakfast at hotel, take an excursion tour of Amber Fort, which is the classic, romantic Rajasthani fort. Enjoy an Elephant ride at bottom to top of the hill at Amber fort. In the after noon visit City Palace – a delightful blend of Mughal and traditional Rajasthani architecture, Jantar Mantar, 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; visit to 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. Overnight stay in Jaipur.
Day to be used in visiting Jaigarh and Nahargarh fort today. Remaining day free for shopping and leisure.
Morning drive to Agra. Enroute visit Fatehpur Sikri – the abandoned citadel of Mughal Emperor Akbar. Later continue to Agra and check in at hotel. After some leisure move out to visit the grand epitome of love – Taj Mahal! (Taj Mahal remains closed on Friday) renowned for its spectacular architecture, seven wonders of the world and built by Shah Jahan for his lady love Queen Mumtaz Mahal in 1632. Also visit the Agra Fort and return back to hotel for overnight stay.
Drive to New Delhi today and check in at hotel. Remaining day can be fully utilized for shopping at the bazaars in Delhi.
Morning proceed for a full day guided sightseeing tour of Delhi covering The Jama Masjid one of the Architectural gift given by Shah Jahan, is one of the largest mosques not only in Delhi but in India. Chandni Chowk, – One of the main markets of Delhi, Afternoon visit Qutub Minar, one of the world’s heritage site, built by Qutub-ud-Din Aibek in 1199, Humayun’s Tomb, this red sand stone structure is considered to be the predecessor of Taj Mahal. Also visit India Gate (War Memorial Arch) and Bahai Lotus temple during the day. Evening return back to hotel for overnight stay.
During early morning hours, you will be transferred to International terminal to board your flight back home.