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Exploration Tour of India
R22 975.00 p/p sharing
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25 March – 07 April 2017

NOURISH YOUR SOUL…….take spirituality and soul searching to a new and different paradigm. Demystify the purpose of your existence; are you independent, fascinated by yoga, meditation, spirituality, self-care, tired of a mundane existence, wanting to relieve stress, looking at alternate medicine, personal growth, self-development and looking for a holistic better quality of life??? THEN THIS TOUR IS CUSTOM DEVELOPED FOR YOU.

PLEASE SEE BELOW- A DETAILED ITINERARY

25 MARCH 2017, SATURDAY ARRIVE IN DELHI

(BY FLIGHT)

  • Arrive Delhi, our representative will be waiting for you outside the EXIT gate of arrival terminal, holding a placard. Met upon arrival and transfer to hotel. (Early check in is subject to availability.)
  • The capital of modern India has behind it centuries of history, which has enriched its culture. Nowhere has tradition blended with modernity on a scale as evident in New Delhi. Delhi is what you want it to be – a modern city with life or a city of monuments and history.
  • This afternoon you will be taken on a tour through the slums, a great way to understand what to expect is to watch Slumdog Millionaire.
  • Dinner at a local restaurant
  • Overnight stay at hotel.

26 MARCH 2017, SUNDAY IN DELHI

  • Breakfast at the hotel.
  • Morning proceed for half day combined city tour of Old & New Delhi. The tour will begin with a visit to Raj Ghat, a simple memorial to Mahatma Gandhi; drive past the Red Fort continuing to the Jama Masjid, one of Asia’s largest mosques. The magnificent Red Fort, overlooking the river Jamuna was built during the years 1638 - 48 when the Mughal Empire was at its peak.
  • The tour continues to Jama Masjid, one of Asia’s largest mosques and which is viewed from the outside. People stream in and out of the mosque continuously and the presence of a nearby bazaar means that the area is rarely quiet. The tour to Imperial Delhi will include a visit to the Qutub Minar, which is the tallest stone tower in India. The Qutub Minar was started in 1199 AD by Qutub-ud-Din Aibak and completed by the sultan's successor and son-in-law, Iltutmish. The building is 72.5 m high and has 379 steps from the bottom to the top. The Minar is tapering with the diameter of the base is 14.3 m while at the top floor it is2.7 m. The Qutub Minar is still the highest stone tower.The tour also includes a drive past the imposing India Gate, the Parliament building and the Rashtrapati Bhawan, the President’s residence.
  • Mehendi Application Dinner at a local restaurant.
  • Overnight stay at hotel.

27 MARCH 2017, MONDAY DELHI / JAIPUR

(BY SURFACE – 260 KMS/ 05HRS)

  • After breakfast, leave for Jaipur by surface at 0800 Hrs.
  • Upon arrival, check-in at the hotel.
  • Jaipur's past is never too far from hand. The city of victory, Jaipur presides over the fascinating desert state and its people: surrounded by rugged hills, each crowned by a formidable fort; and beautiful palaces, mansions and gardens dotted throughout its precincts. The palaces and forts of yesteryear that were witness to royal processions and splendour are now living monuments, accepted quite naturally into the lifestyles of the people of the "pink city". Except for the busy traffic of bicycles, cars and buses, little seems to have changed. There is a timeless quality to Jaipur's bazaars and its people. With its historical past, Jaipur revives legends of the ancient Rajputs. The dresses of the women and the turbans of the men add colour to this fascinating city.
  • Rest day at your leisure to explore the Pink City. The evening visit the cultural village Chowki Dhani.
  • Overnight stay at hotel.

28 MARCH 2017 TUE IN JAIPUR

  • Breakfast at the hotel.
  • Morning proceed to visit the ancient capital of Amber to see the fabulous Amber Fort. Maharaja Mansingh, Mughal Emperor Akbar’s most successful General, started the construction of Amber Fort in the 16th century.
  • An elephant/jeep will spare you the trouble of reaching up to the fortress. Once on top, stroll through the sprawling complex of courtyards and halls. Many of the rooms have delightful wall paintings, with precious stones and mirrors inlaid in the walls. Most fascinating, perhaps, is the Sheesh Mahal (hall of mirrors) where a single lamplight is reflected in the many mirrors, lighting up the room.
  • En-route to Amber you will stop and see the `Palace of Winds’, otherwise known as Hawa Mahal. It is really an elaborate facade behind which the ladies of the court used to watch the daily goings on in the street below. It is extremely intricate in its pink sandstone carving. The cool wind blows through its facade of windows and latticed screens through which the queens of the court once viewed the streets of the city.
  • Continue for sightseeing tour of Jaipur. Among the highlights to be seen while touring Jaipur include the City Palace, which is an overwhelming complex of exquisite palaces, gardens and courtyards, decorative art and carved doorways. The palace museum houses collections of rare manuscripts, armoury, costumes, carpets and miniature paintings. Walk to the adjacent Jantar Mantar or Astronomical Observatory made by the Maharaja of Jaipur, built in 1726 and is one of the five such astronomical wonders built by Sawai Jai Singh and makes accurate predictions even to this day. You will also have the opportunity to wander about the local markets.
  • The vehicle will be at your disposal within city limit.
  • Visit to a local family for dinner
  • Overnight stay at hotel.

29 MARCH 2017, WEDNESDAY JAIPUR / AGRA

(BY SURFACE – 235 KMS/ 5 HRS)

  • Breakfast at the hotel.
  • Later drive to Agra by surface, enroute visit Fatehpur Sikri.
  • Fatehpur Sikri, the deserted red sandstone city, built by the Great Mughal Emperor Akbar as his capital and palace in the late 16th century. It was abandoned soon after it was built when the local wells went dry and it remains today in much the same condition that it was over 300 years ago. It is complete with palaces and mosques and used to be a town larger than London when it was originally constructed. Now it is an extraordinary place to wander around with its buildings in near perfect condition.
  • After your visit, continue your drive to Agra and check-in at hotel.
  • Agra is one of the most famous tourist spots of the country. The city, situated on the west bank of river the Yamuna, is known world over as home to a wonder of the world, Taj Mahal.
  • Upon arrival in Agra you will be taken for a cooking class and lunch.
  • Dinner at a local restaurant.
  • Overnight stay at hotel.

30 MARCH 2017, THURSDAY IN AGRA

  • Breakfast at the hotel.
  • Later visit Taj Mahal & Agra Fort - The Taj Mahal is everything that has been said about it and more. Taking 22 years and 20,000 men to build, the white marble was quarried 200 miles away and was transported to the site by a fleet of 1000 elephants. Built by the Mughal Emperor Shah Jahan as an expression of his love for his wife Mumtaz Mahal, in mid 17th century, the Taj Mahal is truly one of the wonders of the world. Though the Taj appears to be amazingly perfect from almost any angle, it is the close-up marble inlay work, which is really astounding. You will have ample time to view and be mesmerized by this outstanding piece of architecture. (Note: Taj Mahal is closed on Fridays for public visit.)
  • Later visit Agra Fort, an outstanding example of Mughal architecture. Agra Fort - the seat and the stronghold of the Mughal Empire under successive generations. This was the seat of Mughal rule and administration and the present structure owes its origins to Akbar who erected the walls and gates and the first buildings on the eastern banks of Yamuna River. Shah Jehan added the impressive quarters and the mosque.
  • Visit its Hall of Public Audience and its Royal Pavilions.
  • Dinner at a local restaurant
  • Overnight stay at hotel.

31 MARCH 2017, FRiDAY in AGRA/JHANSI

(BY SHATABADI TRAIN 12001 – 0811 / 1045 HRS)

JHANSI RAILWAY STATION/ORCHHA

(BY SURFACE – 25 KMS / 1 HR)

ORCHHA/ KHAJURAHO

(BY SURFACE – 175 KMS / 4 HRS)

  • Early breakfast at the hotel.
  • You will be transferred to the railway station to board train to Jhansi. Upon arrival, you will be met and straight drive to Khajuraho enroute visiting Orchha.
  • Orchha was founded in the 16th century by the Bundela Rajput chieftain Rudra Pratap who chose this stretch of land along the Betwa river as an ideal site for his capital. Of the succeeding rulers, the most notable was Raja Bir Singh Ju Deo who built the exquisite Jehangir Mahal, a tiered palace crowned by graceful Chhattris. Orchha rises out of the hills and the greens surrounding it. The historical monuments of Orchha still retain their pristine charm and narrate stories of war and peace, of love and destruction. Later, proceed for a temple tour of Orchha. Orchha also has a series of magnificent temples, dating back to the 17th century. They are still in use today and visited regularly by thousands of devotees. The soaring spires of Ram Raja Temple and the well-preserved murals of the Lakshmi Narayana Temple are especially worth a visit. 14 beautiful Chhattris (cenotaphs) or memorials are lined up on the Kanchana Glut of the river Betwa.
  • Later continue drive to Khajuraho. Upon arrival, check-in at the hotel.
  • Khajuraho was once the religious capital of the Chandela Rajputs, a Hindu dynasty that ruled this part of India from the 10th to the 12th centuries. The Khajuraho temples were built over a span of a hundred years, from 950 to 1050, with the whole area enclosed by a wall with eight gates, each flanked by two golden palm trees. There were originally over 80 Hindu temples, of which only 22 now stand in a reasonable state of preservation, scattered over an area of about 21 km² (8 square miles).
  • Lunch in Orchha
  • Dinner at the hotel
  • Overnight stay at hotel.

01 APRIL 2017 SATURDAY IN KHAJURAHO

  • Begin the morning with a gentle session of yoga and meditation.
  • Breakfast at the hotel.
  • Enjoy an Ayurvedic Treatment
  • This afternoon you will have a Stress Relief Workshop
  • Vegetarian dinner at the hotel.
  • Overnight stay at hotel.

02 APRIL 2017 SUNDAY IN KHAJURAHO

  • Begin the morning with a gentle session of yoga and meditation.
  • Breakfast at the hotel.
  • Enjoy an Ayurvedic Treatment
  • This afternoon you will have a Stress Relief Workshop
  • Vegetarian dinner at the hotel.
  • Overnight stay at hotel.

03 APRIL 2017 MONDAY IN KHAJURAHO

  • Begin the morning with a gentle session of yoga and meditation.
  • Breakfast at the hotel.
  • Enjoy an Ayurvedic Treatment
  • This afternoon you will have a Stress Relief Workshop
  • Vegetarian dinner at the hotel.
  • Overnight stay at hotel.

04 APRIL 2017 TUESDAY, KHAJURAHO/VARANASI

(by flight)

  • Breakfast at the hotel.
  • Morning proceed for city tour – Western & Eastern Temples.
  • The tour of Khajuraho will concentrates on the famous erotic temples, which represent some of the finest examples of temple architecture in Northern India. The remote location of Khajuraho meant that the temples were unharmed by Muslim invaders and as a result, the intricately fine carvings are in very good condition and are said to represent life in heaven. They were built during the mighty Chandela dynasty; the majorities were constructed in a sudden burst of creative and religious energy, between the mid-10th and 11th centuries. After ruling for about 500 years the Chandela dynasty fell to the might of Islam and consequently the religious centre of Khajuraho was abandoned. The temples remain as a reminder of a society that believed in the full enjoyment of life, with all the senses being a path to nirvana. Of the eighty-five original temples only 22 remain, but many are in very good condition.
  • You visit the Kandariya Mahadeva, the Chatrabhuj, Parswanath and Ghantai Temples, each remarkable for its beautiful design and architecture
  • Thereafter, you will be transferred to the airport to board flight for Varanasi.
  • Arrive Varanasi meet our representative and transfer to hotel.
  • The antiquity of Varanasi is veiled in immortal times and has been the centre of religion, learning and civilization since ages. It has an endearing universal mystique, which has to be experienced to be understood. The city gets its inherent charm from the location as it’s situated on west side of the Holy Ganges. The principal attraction being the bathing ghats that are always bustling with life at any given time of the day.
  • There is no Indian attraction like Varanasi. There are no architectural splendours, no exquisitely carved palaces or impregnable forts, and yet the city has an inherent charm. Situated on the west bank from the riverbank ghats to a winding maze of picturesque alleys overlooking tall houses alongside, dotted with temples
  • In the evening you would be taken to the Ghats to see the illuminated Ganga Aarti ceremony – an experience of life. The Ganga Aarti is a spectacular sight. Hundreds throng to the ghats to participate in this ceremony. Offerings of lamps and flowers are made to the river immediately following this ceremony and it is a moving sight to watch hundreds of miniature lamps float along the river.
  • Overnight stay at hotel.
  • Dinner at the hotel.

05 APRIL 2017 WEDNESDAY IN VARANASI

  • Early morning you will be taken on a visit to the ghats witnessing the Hindu pilgrims perform the rituals and following the centuries old tradition and belief that by dying in Varanasi or by immersing the mortal remains in the holy Ganges, it clears one from the birth circle and you are incarnated to human life in the next birth. You would be taking a boat cruise on the river Ganges around all the ghats and stopping at the important ones. The riverfront, as seen from a boat, early in the morning, is a spiritually uplifting sight. This religious city is crowded with temples, and its labyrinth of streets with their throngs of people is exciting and enticing.
  • Return to your hotel for buffet breakfast.
  • Later in the morning, you will visit Kashi-Vishwanath Temple, the most sacred of shrines dedicated to Lord Shiva, the patron deity of Varanasi. Reconstructed in the 18th century, its gold plating on the 'shikaras' was a gift of the one-eyed Sikh king, Maharaja Ranjit Singh; Bharat Mata Mandir, inaugurated by Mahatma Gandhi is a unique temple dedicated to Mother India.
  • Late in the afternoon, you will proceed for an excursion to Sarnath, a major Buddhist centre in the world. After achieving enlightenment at Bodhgaya, Buddha, the 'Awakened One', delivered his first sermon here. It was 6th century BC, when he also set in motion the wheel of law, the Dharmachakra. This dwelling place of the rishis, it was also known as 'Rishipatana' (the place of the Rishis or sages). Buddha gave his first sermon in the Deer Park where he initiated his first five disciples into Buddhist monkshood. Buddhism found its roots in Sarnath, the birthplace of this way of life.
  • Overnight stay at hotel.
  • Dinner at a local restaurant.

06 APRIL 2017 THURSDAY 2017 IN VARANASI

  • Breakfast at the hotel. Full day at leisure for independent activities.
  • Overnight stay at hotel.
  • Dinner at a local restaurant.

07 APRIL 2017 FRI VARANASI / DELHI

(by flight)

  • Breakfast at the hotel.
  • Later you will be transferred to the airport to board flight for Delhi.
  • Arrive Delhi, connect your flight for onward destination.

OUR QUOTE INCLUDES:

  • Flights Khajuraho to Varanasi and Varanasi to Delhi
  • Airport taxes
  • 13 nights 5 star accommodation on TWIN sharing basis
  • 12 x breakfasts
  • 12 x dinners
  • 2 x lunches
  • All transfers, sightseeing tours and excursion by Air-conditioned Deluxe Coach as per the above itinerary
  • 1 x bottle of water daily in the vehicle
  • Elephant ride (alternatively by jeeps – one time) to ascend Amber Fort in Jaipur. (Elephant Ride is subject to availability.)
  • Train fare for sector Agra – Jhansi in AC Chair Car.
  • 3 x group yoga sessions with a yogi
  • 3 x group meditation sessions
  • 3 x group sessions with a Life coach
  • Boat ride at river Ganges in Varanasi.
  • Hotel and portage tipping
  • A representative from South Africa will accompany the group.
  • An expert Guide who only does Ivy League University accompaniment will travel with you throughout your holiday.
  • Representative for assistance on all arrival and departure transfers.
  • All currently applicable taxes including service tax

OUR QUOTE DOES NOT INCLUDE:

  • International flight. (please contact us for current rates)
  • Expense of personal nature like, laundry, telephone / fax calls, alcoholic beverages, camera/video camera fee at monuments, medical expenses, etc
  • Any other services not mentioned in the inclusions.
  • Tips for the Spiritual Guide

Terms and conditions

  • Minimum number of people travelling needs to be 16 in order for the tour to operate
  • Single supplement is available for guests who do not wished to be paired with a follow participant
  • A non-refundable deposit of R2000.00 confirms your place, however should the tour not operate you will be reimbursed.