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Maharajah Tour of India 29 February 2008 Tour Host – Trevor Lake

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					                             Maharajah Tour of India
        $5335.00 per person/twin share* (ex Mumbai)
                               29 February 2008
                             Tour Host – Trevor Lake

                                                                    It is the attention to detail that makes a 'good'
                                                                    tour - 'great'. In designing this tour I spent
                                                                    hours in discussion with my close friend and
                                                                    local ground handler in India - Kapil - to decide
                                                                    what should be included and how we could
                                                                    make subtle changes to the norm to ensure
                                                                    that this tour really would stand out as the
                                                                    'perfect tour of India'. We are both very proud
                                                                    of the final 'product' and are convinced that it
                                                                    will meet the expectations of the most
                                                                    discriminating traveller. Whilst all essential
                                                                    sightseeing is included, there will also be
                                                                    ample time to roam the city bazaars and visit
                                                                    smaller villages where you will witness the day
                                                                    to day life of the 'real Indians'.

                                                              “In planning this tour I have been careful to
                                                              ensure that, as often as possible, your
                                                              accommodation and even the evening meals
                                                              will be highlights of the tour. Centuries old
                                                              maharajah palaces with rooms full of antiques
and stirring views around every corner have been mixed with luxury desert camps tranquil by night, exciting by
day.

The restaurants for the highlight dinners ooze charm and atmosphere; as well as serving exquisite culinary
delights. For those with 'tamer stomachs', milder meals and Western dishes have been included in most menus.”

In closing may I say that the 'horror stories' of travel in India in the past are precisely that "of the past". Modern
day India is a travellers’ delight with superb accommodation, good road networks and safe & healthy food.

I look forward to sharing my 'special India' with you.


Trevor Lake
Founder
Discover Asia
                                                                                                     Trevor Lake
Day 1           29 Feb          Fly Australia - Mumbai
Today we board our international flight to Mumbai & on arrival we will be met & transferred to the
historic, waterfront Taj Mahal Hotel, overlooking the famed “Gateway to India”. The tour has been
designed to fit in with either Qantas or Singapore Airlines, both of whom have good connections;
QF123           Sydney/Mumbai          1010/1915 (transit in Darwin)
SQ220           Sydney/Mumbai          0830/2315 (transit in Singapore)
*Please note that international airfares are not included in the tour cost

Day 2           01 Mar          Fly Mumbai – Aurangabad                                               B
Morning half day sightseeing tour of Mumbai including: Gateway to India, Marine Drive, Hanging
Gardens, Victoria Railway Station, Mani Bhawan and Prince of Wales Museum. Mumbai is the
commercial capital of India, a city of entrepreneurs, concrete towers, clubs and discos, cricket,
Bollywood and more. In 1661, Charles II of England received the islands of Bombay as dowry when
he married Princess Catherine of Braganza. The British Government leased the islands to the East
India Company, who developed it into a thriving trading port. Today, Mumbai is the country's financial
and cultural capital. It is also home to India’s thriving film industry. It is seen, to the teeming masses
that flock there to live and work, as a place where opportunities abound. Its inhabitants, an amalgam
of great wealth and abject poverty, are swept into the endless maelstrom of activity that characterises
this city of dreams. After our sightseeing we will be transferred to the airport for our flight to
Aurangabad. On arrival in Aurangabad we will be met and transferred to the Taj Residency Hotel

Day 3         02 Mar         Full day excursion to Ajanta Caves                                  B
Full day excursion to Ajanta caves. The first Buddhist cave monuments at Ajanta date from the 2nd
and 1st centuries B.C. During the Gupta period (5th and 6th centuries A.D.), many more richly
decorated caves were added to the original group. The paintings and sculptures of Ajanta, considered
masterpieces of Buddhist religious art, have had a considerable artistic influence. Since 1983 these 30
caves have been a World Heritage site.

Day 4            03 Mar         Fly Aurangabad – Delhi                                           BL
This morning we will be taken on an excursion to the Ellora Caves. The Ellora caves, 34 in number,
are carved into the sides of a basaltic hill, 30kms from Aurangabad. The finest specimens of cave -
temple architecture, they house elaborate facades and exquisitely adorned interiors. These structures
representing the three faiths of Hinduism, Buddhism and Jainism, were carved during the 350 AD to
700 AD period. The 12 caves to the south are Buddhist, the 17 in the centre dedicated to Hinduism,
and the 5 caves to the north are Jain. By far the most outstanding of the many temples is that of
Kailash, which was carved out of the bare cliff face and required the removal of 300,000 tons of stone.
The amazing thing about Kailash is that it was carved ‘from the top downwards’! After this we visit the
Daulatabad Fort - once known as 'Devgiri', this magnificent 12th century fortress stands on a hill just
13km. from Aurangabad. It was given the name Daulatabad, the 'city of fortune', by Muhammad
Tughlaq, Sultan of Delhi. One of the world's best preserved forts of medieval times, surviving virtually
unaltered, Daulatabad yet displays the character that made it invincible. Lunch will be at the Hotel
Kailash in Aurangabad. In the evening we will be transferred to the airport for our flight to Delhi. On
arrival in Delhi we will be met & transferred to The Claridges Hotel.

Day 5          04 Mar         In Delhi                                                          BD
Today we will have a full day sightseeing tour of Old and New Delhi visiting - The mighty Red Fort,
Friday Mosque - Jama Masjid, The silver street of Chandni Chowk, Raj Ghat - the cremation site of
Mahatma Gandhi, The Hindu temple - Birla Mandir, The India Gate - a 42m high war memorial, The
Rashtrapati Bhawan - President's House, The tomb of Emperor Humayun, Qutab Minar - a 73m high
victory tower and The Bahai Temple - shaped like a lotus flower and a proof of India's secularism.
Dinner will be at the Haveli Restaurant at the Taj Mahal Hotel - As the name suggests, the ‘Haveli’
restaurant is redolent of old-world charm interwoven with an essence of royalty that is reflected in
cuisine as well. The restaurant with a view, Haveli overlooks verdant gardens and the verandah
overlooks the pool. Chef Irshad Ahmed Qureshi presents age-old recipes from the royal Mughal
kitchens. Soulful Indian dance performances and music are played in the evening to complete theFort
                                                                                     Delhi – Red
journey back to the bygone era. The charm of ‘Haveli’ draws corporate leaders, Presidents and Prime
Ministers to dine in a serene, relaxing ambience. After dinner we will attend the Sound & Light Show at
the Red Fort.

Day 6           05 Mar         Drive Delhi - Agra (220 kms/4 hours)                              B
This morning we will be driven to Agra. On arrival, we check in at the Taj View Hotel. Afternoon
sightseeing tour of Agra city visiting the Red Fort - a testament to the rise and fall of the Mughal
empire built by Emperor Akbar in red sand stone over 400 years ago and the Itmad-ud-Daula - built by
the empress Noor Jehan as a memorial to her father Mirza Ghiyas Beg, is beautifully ornamented with
pietra dura inlay and lattice work marble screens. In the afternoon we will proceed for a Sunset visit to
the world famous Taj Mahal, one of the wonders of the world - a monument of love created by
Emperor Shah Jahan in memory of his beloved wife Mumtaz Mahal and perhaps the most perfect
architectural monument of the world. The secrets of the Taj’s architecture will be revealed by our
expert guide.

Day 7          06 Mar         Drive Agra - Samode (265kms/6 hours)                               BL
In the early morning we will proceed for a Sunrise visit to the Taj Mahal. Later we will be driven to
Samode, en-route visiting Fatehpur Sikri - the deserted capital of Emperor Akbar approximately 35kms
outside Agra. Built in the 16th century, this city was abandoned 12 years later due to a scarcity of
water. The entire city of Red sand stone (sand stone palaces and temples) is virtually intact and a site
worth seeing is the 54m high main entrance - The Buland Darwaza, The gate of victory constructed to
commemorate Akbar's victory in Gujarat. We will also visit Bharatpur Bird Sanctuary – close to 380
species of birds are found in this 29 sq km stretch, approximately 10 sq km of which comprises of
marshes and bogs. The rest of the area comprises of scrublands, grasslands and more than 44,000
trees that are used for nesting by birds each year. This rather intriguing blend of marshes, woodland
and flora found here represents and, at the same time, substantiates the density and diversity of the
region's forest cover. We will enjoy a Rickshaw ride into the Bharatpur Bird Sanctuary. On arrival in
Samode we check in at the Samode Palace.

Day 8          07 Mar           Excursion to Jaipur                                                BL
This morning we set off on a full day sightseeing tour of Jaipur; our tour of the ‘Pink City’ takes us to
the Hawa Mahal - The Palace of Winds, the facade of which is all pink windows and filigree screens
from behind which the ladies of the court would peer out at the city, The Jantar Mantar - the largest
and best preserved 18th century stone observatory, The City Palace -still the home of the former
royalty H.H Bhawani Singh Ji of Jaipur housing an extensive collection of art, carpets and old
weapons. Lunch today will be at the City Palace Gardens in the City Palace. Later we visit Amber Fort
which is situated 11kms away from Jaipur. Amber was once the ancient capital of Jaipur state. The
Fort is a superb example of Rajput architecture, stunningly situated on a hillside and overlooking a
lake, which reflects it's terraces and ramparts. The climb to the fort is on gaily-bedecked Elephants.
Overnight at Samode Palace with an optional ‘cocktail hour’ on the terrace.

Day 9 08 Mar            Drive Samode-Khimsar(300kms/6hours)                                         BLD
Today we will be driven to Khimsar. En route we’ll stop for a lakeside lunch in the grounds of Pushkar
Palace, followed by a brief visit to the colourful Pushkar bazaar. On arrival in Khimsar we check into
The Khimsar Fort Palace. This afternoon we’ll enjoy a picnic tea at the Sand Dunes & then at dusk
we’ll embark on a Black Buck Safari. On one hand, Khimsar Palace Hotel of Rajasthan provides all the
comforts of a contemporary hotel. While, on the other, its scarred walls and battlements remind you of
it's rich and glorious past. Perched high on the edge of the Great Indian Thar Desert, it serves as a
window to the rural life of India. The piece de resistance at Khimsar is a candlelit Gala dinner set in the
ancient ruins of Fateh Mahal, located within the Khimsar Fort. Dinner in the ‘ruins’ provides an
exquisite experience where the reverberating sound of drums and folk dances mingles with the
warmth of the bonfire that lights the central dome.
Day 10          09 Mar         Drive Khimsar – Jodhpur - Manvar (190kms/4 hours)                   BLD
This morning we’ll be driven to Manvar & en route we’ll visit Jodhpur. Our tour of this desert city takes
us to one of the most imposing Forts - The Mehrangarh Fort, with its intricately carved sandstone
edifice setting, seemingly impregnable and built atop a 400 ft high rock. Close to the Fort is The
Jaswant Thada -- the royal crematorium and a cenotaph to the rulers of Jodhpur built in translucent
white marble. Walk through the local giridkot and The Sardar market, colourful bazaars where one can
shop for textiles, handicrafts and clay figurines. Lunch will be at the picturesque Ajit Bhawan Resort
hotel. On arrival we check in at the Manvar Desert Camp. The Manvar Desert Camp is located in the
midst of the wilderness surrounded by sand dunes. The camp consists of 20 deluxe tents tastefully
decorated with attached bathrooms providing running hot and cold water. Meals are provided in the
strategically located dining tent, which offers breathtaking views of the sunrise, sunset and the
surrounding countryside. Evenings are livened up by campfire, mashaals and local musicians and
dancers.

Day 11           10 Mar        Excursion to Jaisalmer (175kms/2.5 hours each way)                  BLD
This morning we’ll set off on an excursion to Jaisalmer; rising out of the hot, sandy wasteland of the
Thar Desert, Jaisalmer is the oldest of the great Rajput cities, dating from 1156 AD, and, possibly, the
highpoint of Rajput glory. We will visit many temples, palaces, forts – Jaisalmer Fort is the largest
living fort in the world with more than 5000 residents - and havelis (mansions) - Patwon Ki & Salim
Singh Ki being the most elaborate...all intricately decorated with incredible skill and beauty. Lunch will
be at the Hotel Fort Rajwada in Jaisalmer.

Day 12         11 Mar         Drive Manvar – Kumbalgarh (280kms/6 hours)                      BD
Today we’ll be driven to Kumbalgarh. The journey includes a visit to the spectacular Ranakpur
Temple. The 1444 columns of this Jain temple are all intricately carved and no two are the same. On
arrival in Kumbalgarh we’ll check into the Aodhi Hotel. Dinner tonight will be at the hotel.

Day 13         12 Mar          Drive Kumbalgarh – Udaipur (90kms/2 hours)                              B
This morning we will visit Kumbalgarh Fort; Built in the 15th Century & surrounded by 13 mountain
peaks, this is one of Rajasthan's "impregnable" fortress cities. The Cloud Palace, protected by 7
majestic gates is approachable only by jeep. After this, we will be driven to Udaipur where we will
check in at the lakeside Hotel Fateh Prakash Palace. Founded 1599, the glory, chivalry and valour of
the Rajputs is displayed at its' finest by the grandeur of this lovely, lakeside city. The city is a constant
procession of palaces, temples, lakes and cenotaphs, each outdoing the other in its' beauty. The
bazaars offer fine crafts especially vividly coloured paintings. The rest of the day is at leisure in
Udaipur.

Day 14          13 Mar         In Udaipur                                                       B
This morning we have a sightseeing tour of Udaipur; One of the most romantic cities of Rajasthan,
Udaipur is better known as the city of lakes. Our tour takes us to the City Palace - towering over the
lake, this is the largest palace complex in Rajasthan, the main part of the palace is preserved as a
museum with a large and varied collection of glass, porcelain figures and miniature paintings. Located
only 150 metres from the city palace is the famous Jagdish Temple - which enshrines a black stone
image of Lord Vishnu as Jagannath, Lord of the universe and Saheliyon ki bari - or garden of the
maids of honour. A small ornamental garden with fountains, stone elephants and a delightful lotus
pool. This evening we will enjoy a boat cruise on the Lake Pichola.

Day 15 14 Mar Fly Udaipur – Mumbai – Australia                                             B
We will be transferred to the airport for our flight to Mumbai and on arrival in Mumbai we will be
transferred to the international airport for our flight home.
QF124           Mumbai – Sydney         2045/1435+1
SQ423/219 Mumbai – Sydney               0030/2015 (Transit in Singapore)

Day 16         15 Mar          Arrive Home
Tour Inclusions:-
* Accommodation on twin sharing bed and breakfast basis as follows:-
Day 01-02  Mumbai                 Taj Mahal (Superior Sea View rooms - Tower Wing)
Day 02-04  Aurangabad             Taj Residency
Day 04-06  Delhi                  The Claridges
Day 06-07  Agra                   Taj View
Day 07-09  Samode                 Samode Palace (Deluxe rooms)
Day 09-10  Khimsar                Khimsar Fort
Day 10-12  Manvar                 Manvar Desert Camp
Day 12-13  Kumbalgarh             The Aodhi
Day 13-15  Udaipur                Fateh Prakash Palace (Dove Cote rooms)

* All arrival & departure transfers and land transportation using an air-conditioned Volvo Coach

* Sightseeing tours along with an English Speaking Guide and including entrance fees as follows:-
Mumbai         Half day sightseeing tour of Mumbai
Aurangabad Full day sightseeing tour of Ellora Caves + Daulatabad Fort + Ajanta Caves
Delhi          Full day sightseeing tour of Old and New Delhi + Sound and Light show at the Red Fort
Agra           Half day sightseeing tour of Agra + Fatehpur Sikri + Bharatpur bird sanctuary
Samode         Full day sightseeing tour of Jaipur including Elephant ride at Amber Fort
Khimsar        Black buck safari + Picnic tea at the Sand Dunes
Jodhpur        Half day sightseeing tour of Jodhpur
Manvar         Full day excursion trip to Jaisalmer + camel safari
Kumbalgarh Visit to Kumbalgarh Fort
Udaipur        Half day sightseeing tour of Udaipur + Evening boat cruise on Lake Pichola

* Meals other than breakfast included are as follows:-
- Lunch at Kailash Hotel in Aurangabad
- Dinner at Haveli restaurant at Taj Mahal Hotel in Delhi
- Lunch at City Palace Gardens in Jaipur
- Lunch at Pushkar Palace between Samode and Khimsar
- Gala dinner in Khimsar Palace
- Lunch at Ajit Bhawan Resort in Jodhpur
- Dinners in Manvar Desert Camp
- Lunch at Fort Rajwada Hotel in Jaisalmer
- Dinner at The Aodhi Hotel in Kumbalgarh




Tour Exclusions:-
* International Airfare         (Singapore Airlines ex SYD/MEL/BNE from $1340.00 plus taxes)
* Taxes & items of a personal nature
* Meals not specified in the itinerary
* India Visa
* Travel & Medical Insurance

				
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Description: Maharajah Tour of India 29 February 2008 Tour Host – Trevor Lake