Explore classic Rajasthan on an adventure tour through romantic India

The enchanting northern province of Rajasthan is awash with all the colours of India. On our classic adventure we discover the grisly history of massive forts and the opulence and splendour of Maharajahs' palaces. Stroll bustling markets, search for the elusive Bengal tiger, enjoy a sunset camel safari and soak up the culture of the local people. This is truly the essence of Rajasthan.

TRIP CHANGES FOR 2016:
From 1st July - 30th September all wildlife zones of Ranthambhore National Park will be closed to visitors. This means that no wildlife safaris in the area are permitted, including in Sawai Mansingh Sanctuary which is our usual alternative for when the main zones of the park are closed annually at this time. The reasons for the closure have not been formally announced, however we believe they have been made in the interest of tiger protection during the wet season. Due to the time of year there are no other opportunities to replace our visit to Ranthambhore with an alternative national park, however we have added the following activities and inclusions to tours that are scheduled to be in Ranthambhore from 1st July - 30th September:

Days 5 or 6 – Bollywood Film in Jaipur
Day 7 – Rathambhore Fort Excursion. The fort lies within the boundaries of the park and on the way accesses some parts of the jungle. Wildlife spotting opportunities along the way include monkeys, crocodiles, peacocks, a variety of bird species and deer. On occasion tigers have also been sighted here.
Day 10 – Additional dinner at Castle Bijaipur

Your leader will be able to provide you with further information about these activities at the group welcome meeting.

Start
New Delhi, India
Finish
New Delhi, India
Countries
India
Themes
Explorer
Code
HHSC
Physical rating
Cultural rating
Ages
Min 15
Group size
Min 1 Max 12
Carbon offset
224kg pp per trip


Highlights

  • Keep your adrenaline charged with a tiger spotting adventure among the lakes and crags of Ranthambhore National Park
  • Ride camels through the desert in Pushkar, gaining insight into the life of rural Rajasthan
  • Ballooning over Jaipur while the sun rises is an unforgettable experience
  • The hills and shimmering lakes of Udaipur make it India’s capital of romance
  • A trip to India wouldn’t be complete without a visit to the Taj Mahal – a masterpiece of Indian architecture
  • Enjoy a variety of accommodation - from a fortified mansion to camping under the stars

Itinerary

This itinerary is valid for departures from 01 January 2016 to 31 December 2016. View the itinerary for departures between 01 January 2017 - 31 December 2017

Namaste! Welcome to India. Your adventure begins with a welcome meeting at 6 pm. If you have any free time before the meeting, perhaps visit the World Heritage-listed Mughal masterpiece of Humayun's Tomb or the tall brick tower of Qutub Minar.

Note: We'll be happy to book additional accommodation for you (subject to availability). If you're going to be late, please inform the hotel reception. We'll be collecting your insurance details and next of kin information at this meeting, so please ensure you have all these details to provide to your leader.
In the morning, navigate the city’s metro system to discover Old Delhi on a guided walking tour. Hitch a ride in a traditional cycle rickshaw through a typical Indian traffic jam in the streets around Chandni Chowk marketplace. Visit Delhi’s oldest mosque of Jama Masjid, which is also India’s largest. Then head to the Sheeshganj Gurudwara (Sikh Temple) to learn about the Sikh religion.


Travel to Agra by one of India's faster air-conditioned trains (approx 3 hours/230km). Steeped in Mughal heritage, Agra has a wealth of gardens, temples and open rooftops. Visit the Taj Mahal and learn why Emperor Shah Jahan built it as a memorial to his wife Mumtaz. Buzz around Agra in a motorised rickshaw and explore inside the spectacular sandstone walls of the Red Fort, built to encompass the imperial city of the Mughal rulers in the 16th century. If you have time, move on to Akbar's Mausoleum to honour the great emperor.
Take a local bus to Bassi, a small town in the middle of rural Rajasthan (approx 4 hours/210km). Travel by private transport to your accommodation for the night (approx 45 min/20km). On a walk through the village, see craftspeople at work and meet the locals. In the evening, stay in the beautiful heritage property of Fort Madhogarh, which has belonged to one of Rahasthan’s royal families for centuries.
Travel by private vehicle to Jaipur (approx 90min/50km). On arrival, take an orientation tour around the ‘Pink City’ of Jaipur. Get among the crowds of the city’s bazaars to shop for artisan goods and semi-precious stones. Set on a hilltop overlooking Maota Lake, visit the Amber Fort, an excellent example of Rajput architecture. The Sheesh Mahal inside the fort is a must-see. As the walls are completely covered in little mirrors, the hall illuminates with the light of a single match.
This morning, take an optional hot air balloon ride. Floating across the skyline of Jaipur in a hot air balloon can be a highlight of the trip. Take a cycle rickshaw to Hawa Mahal, also known as the 'Palace of the Winds’. Alternatively, head to Jaipur's Royal City Palace or the observatory of Jantar Mantar to see a collection of astronomical instruments. After a long day of exploration, perhaps head to the Raj Mandir Cinema to experience the glamour of a Bollywood film.

Note: Ballooning can be done over the city on the morning of day six between September and June. For additional information, please see the important notes section of the Essential Trip Information.
Travelling by private vehicle, head to Ranthambhore (approximately 5 hours/200km). Ranthambhore National Park was once a famous hunting ground for the Maharajas of Jaipur, and was one of the original Project Tiger reserves. Explore the ruins of the park’s 10th-century fort, and in the evening take a 4WD safari in search of tigers and other wildlife.


Special Information
IMPORTANT INFORMATION: Intrepid requires a copy of your scanned passport bio page at time of booking to complete bookings for Ranthambhore National Park visit.

The safety of our travellers is our highest concern and your tour leader has the authority to cancel or reschedule the jeep safari if they believe the vehicles available do not meet our safety standards.


Travel to Bundi by private vehicle (approx 4 hours/150km). Navigate Bundi's narrow streets on a walking tour. Wander through the downtown market and engage with the locals. Visit intricately carved baoris (step wells) and explore the 16th-century Bundi Palace (be sure to check out its famous murals).
Take a slow train journey with local villagers to the small town of Bassi (approximately three hours). Head to Castle Bijaipur by jeep, where you’ll spend the night. This fortified mansion is still run by the erstwhile local landlord and his family. Spend the night under the stars camping beside a lake.

Note: During the monsoon period (April to September) we do not camp, but spend both nights in a heritage hotel.
Enjoy a drive in an open-top jeep out into the countryside to visit pastoral villages. As the area is teeming with wildlife, your guide should be able to point out some native animals. While in the villages, perhaps get a temporary souvenir in the form of a henna tattoo. Enjoy a group meal of local Bassi cuisine in the evening, and relax in the castle for the rest of the night.
Our next journey by private vehicle takes us to Udaipur (approximately 4 hours/180km). Take a walk to soak up the city’s hills, lakes and white marble palaces, or delve into its twisting alleys and bazaars filled with silver, leather goods and miniature paintings. A popular centre for artists, dancers and musicians, there’s plenty to entertain you in Udaipur.
Visit Udaipur’s City Palace, one of the largest royal palaces in India. Enjoy an optional boat ride on the famous Lake Pichola (seasonal - depending on the water level in the lake) and marvel at the island palaces off Jag Nivas and Jag Mandir. In the evening, perhaps enjoy a traditional concert that combines seven traditional Rajasthani folk dances.
Take a six-hour air-conditioned train to Ajmer and then a private vehicle to your hotel in Pushkar. Enjoy a walking tour to visit the bustling ghats and temples around Pushkar Lake, and watch as the devout worship by the holy water. A highlight of the visit to Pushkar is a camel ride out into the surrounding desert area. For those who don't want to ride a camel, there’s a camel-cart option.
Early risers can hike up to the Savitri Temple for amazing sunrise views over the town this morning. There might even be a steaming glass of chai waiting for you at the top if the chai man is there. You’ll have free time to enjoy the rest of the morning in Pushkar. The Shatabdi Express train departs Ajmer around 2 pm for the trip back to Delhi, arriving at around 10:40 pm.
There are no activities planned for the final day and you’re able to depart the accommodation at any time.
View trip notes to read full itinerary

Inclusions

Meals
3 breakfasts, 2 dinners
Transport
Auto rickshaw, Bus, Camel, Cycle rickshaw, Jeep, Metro, Private vehicle, Shuttle Bus, Taxi, Train, Van
Accommodation
Deluxe permanent tent (1 night), Heritage Property (3 nights), Hotel (10 nights)
Included activities
  • Delhi - Old Delhi Walking Tour
  • Delhi - Sheeshganj Gurudwara (Sikh Temple)
  • Delhi - Jama Masjid
  • Agra - Taj Mahal
  • Agra - Agra Fort
  • Agra - Red Fort local guide
  • Heritage Stay - Village walk
  • Jaipur - Amber Fort
  • Jaipur - Walking Tour
  • Ranthambore National Park - Evening Safari
  • Bundi - Stepwell
  • Bundi - Bundi Palace
  • Heritage Stay - Village Jeep Safari
  • Udaipur - City Palace
  • Udaipur - City Walk
  • Pushkar - Walking Tour

Dates

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Important notes

IMPORTANT INFORMATION: Intrepid requires a copy of your scanned passport bio page at time of booking to complete bookings for Ranthambhore National Park visit.

1. This trip travels back to Delhi on the afternoon of day 14 arriving into the Capital around 11pm. Please do not book departure flights out until at least 4am on day 15 to allow for delays
2. A single supplement is available on this trip. A single room is available for all nights of the trip.
3. Pushkar Camel Fair departures usually run in early Nov. More details will follow
4. In 2015 Intrepid returned to Ranthambhore National Park after suspending our visits in 2014 due to vehicle safety concerns. The majority of vehicles have now been assessed and upgraded. Safety of our travellers is our highest concern and your tour leader has the authority to cancel or reschedule the jeep safari if they believe that vehicles available do not meet our safety expectations.
5. Ranthambhore National Park is closed from 1st July - 30th September. Please see Itinerary for changes during this time

Trip notes

Want an in-depth insight into this trip? Your trip notes provide a detailed itinerary, visa info, how to get to your hotel, what’s included - pretty much everything you need to know about this adventure and more.

View trip notes

Reviews

Our Classic Rajasthan trips score an average of 4.85 out of 5 based on 393 reviews in the last year.

Classic Rajasthan , July 2016

Classic Rajasthan , July 2016