Exuberant India. Treasure Trove of Color, Majesty, & Soul.
This is a 15-day sample itinerary. Remember that R. Crusoe can create an India itinerary of any length to meet your exact specifications.
Interested in an adventure that digs deep into India’s secret side? Join us for a private guided tour that looks right into the country's soul.
Of course, we wouldn't want you to miss the highlights of this remarkable country, either. So we begin in Delhi (Old and New). See her top monuments, great and small. Visit a school, and spend time with the headmaster, to get a handle on India's educational process.
Varanasi, India’s hub of Hinduism, is next. Cruise the Ganges at sunset and sunrise to witness authentic religious rituals unfold. Witness the ancient Aarti ceremony, led by Hindu Brahmin priests.
Buddha came to Sarnath for a hot shower and to preach the way to nirvana. So did Emperor Ashoka, who left behind marvelous monuments to immortalize Buddha’s teachings. We head there, too, for a remarkable experience.
Khajuraho was once capital of the Chandela Dynasty. In a burst of creative energy, the Chandelas built quite a collection of temples. Ornamentation on their facades is not something you soon forget. There are gods, goddesses, warriors, and musicians—and men and women in an assortment of erotic poses. Historians are still trying to figure out their significance, as do we on a private guided tour of the temples.
There's time in Orchha to view a 16th-century palace-fort built by the region's first king. Within, the Jahangir Mahal is thought to be the most perfect example of Hindu architecture in all India.
We now board the Shatabdi Express train to Agra, home of the Taj Mahal. No photograph or description has quite measured up to the beauty of the place experienced firsthand. Watch as the white marble facade is illuminated at sunset. Examine the Taj’s iconic Mughal architecture. But there’s more to Agra than just the Taj. We also visit Agra Fort, the Tomb of Itmad-ud-Dualah, and the mysterious ghost town of Fatehpur Sikri.
In Jaipur, have a look at Jantar Mantar, built as an observatory in 1728. See why Hawa Mahal is called the Palace of the Winds. Tour the City Palace. Fabulous, one and all.
Just outside the city, explore Amber’s fortified palace, a lovely mix of Mughal and Rajput style. There are temples to see before we’re off on an elephant safari in the Aravali foothills. Saddle up! If you'd like, take advantage of a private guide and vehicle at your disposal to further explore or to hit the city's markets.
Fly to Udaipur, home of the Mewar rulers, for a look at another City Palace (compare and contrast) and several of the best local museums (ever see a crystal sofa?). If you're interested, take on the marketplace with a guide and driver at your service. Take a private cruise of Lake Pichola, if you'd like.
Beyond the city limits, head for the Eklingji and Nagda temple complexes. Outstanding, really. In Devi Gahr, your small group can tickle its senses with a spice and cooking demonstration (for a party of at least six travelers). We suggest lunch in a rehabbed royal palace. Snoop around the charming nearby village.
Then it’s back to Delhi via Udaipur. From here you can travel home or extend your journey with R. Crusoe & Son on any (or all) of these tempting mini-journeys:
- Kanha National Park Safari. Safari to see the rare royal Bengal tiger and other glorious creatures. Home sweet home is one of two outrageously plush tented camps.
- Mumbai, Old & New. Some call the former Bombay the New York City of India. See why.
- Treasures of Jodhpur. The city is a cubist’s dream come true in blue. While you’re here, head for the stunning Meherangarh Fort.
- Caves of Ellora & Ajanta. See why UNESCO named these two spectacular sites to its World Heritage list. End in Mumbai.
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