Don’t let yourself be misled by the word “rural” here. The first picture that the word “rural” brings in your mind might be backward and impoverished villages. But this itinerary is totally opposite. This trip will amaze you by the rich and lavish history of India. Of course, there will be travel through some villages but these are historic villages, which used to be old kingdoms. Pamper yourself at some of the most exquisite heritage hotels of India, which used to be old palaces, forts and mansions now turned to luxury hotels. The villages like Bharatpur, Rohet Garh and Deogarh are some very off-beat destinations, which are not thronged by regular tourists. The lesser crowd adds to the rural charms of these locations. You will also get to explore some other most popular attractions of India, like Taj Mahal at Agra, Amber Fort at Jaipur, Mehrangarh Fort at Jodhpur and Lake Pichola at Udaipur. With the English speaking guides for all sightseeing and entry passes covered for all the monuments, you can just sit back and do what you came here for – explore and experience the best of India.
Arrive by flight at Delhi before noon. Welcome to the chaos of Delhi. Love it or hate it, but you cannot just ignore it. It is capital of India and the base location to explore North India. The largest city of India, Delhi is considered to be the city with a heart. The city’s importance lies not just in its past glory as the seat of empires and magnificent monuments, but also in the rich and diverse cultures.
The private car will pick you from Delhi Airport and transfer to the hotel for check-in. In the late afternoon head out for some Delhi exploration. We will cover the central Delhi this day, which is the seat of the country’s political power. Drive past Rashtrapati Bhavan (the official residence of the First Citizen of India – the President) and the Parliament of India. Visit Rajpath (which means the "King's Way”), a ceremonial avenue that is located in the heart of New Delhi. Then visit India Gate, which is like the “Arc de Triomphe” of India. It is a memorial to 70,000 soldiers of the British Indian Army who died in the period 1914–21 in the First World War. Since 1971 it has served as India's Tomb of the Unknown Soldier and as a memorial of the unsung heroes of the wars.
Reach back hotel by late evening. Overnight stay will be at hotel in Delhi.
Enjoy a scrumptious breakfast to start your day of sightseeing in Delhi. A mixture of history with a taste of everyday Delhi, today’s itinerary covers all aspects of this former capital of the Mughal Empire. Stop off at the UNESCO World Heritage sites, Humayun’s Tomb. Built in 1570, it is of particular cultural significance as it was the first garden-tomb on the Indian subcontinent. Then visit the magnificent Jama Masjid, the largest mosque in India built by Mughal Emperor Shah Jahan between 1644 and 1656. After that visit the bustling Chandni Chowk – one of the oldest and busiest markets in Old Delhi. Enjoy a rickshaw ride at Chandni Chowk. Later visit the towering Qutub Minar (a UNESCO World Heritage Site), a 73-metre (239.5 feet) tall tapering tower of five storeys. Qutb ud Din Aibak, founder of the Delhi Sultanate, started construction of the Qutb Minar's first storey around 1192.
Afterwards visit Gurudwara Bangla Sahib, one of the most prominent Sikh temples, or Sikh house of worship in Delhi and known for its association with the eighth Sikh Guru, Guru Har Krishan. There is also a sacred pool inside its complex, known as the "Sarovar."
Have dinner at a nice restaurant and then reach back at the hotel. Overnight stay will be at hotel in Delhi.
Meals: Breakfast & Dinner
After breakfast, check out from hotel & head towards Agra. Welcome to the city of Wonder… because it’s the place of Taj Mahal – one of the seven wonders of the world. Pictures of Taj Mahal don’t do the complete justice to its magnificence. It’s an epitome and symbol of love. You got to be here to feel your jaws drop. Agra used to be the historic capital of the Mughal empire.
Reach Agra by afternoon. Have lunch at a nice restaurant. Check-in at hotel and freshen up. In the late afternoon visit Agra Fort, a historical fort, which remained the main residence of the Mughal emperors till 1638. Walking through courtyard after courtyard of this palatial red-sandstone and marble fortress, your amazement keeps growing as you hear about the history of this fort from the guide. In the evening visit the local market to get the true essence of Agra city. Overnight stay will be at hotel in Agra.
Meals: Breakfast & Lunch
Early in the morning, visit the majestic Taj Mahal (a UNESCO World Heritage Site) built by Shah Jahan in 1560 in memory of his queen Mumtaz Mahal to enshrine her mortal remains. Taj Mahal looks really mesmerizing at the sunrise.
After breakfast check-out from hotel and head towards Bharatpur famous for Bharatpur Bird Sanctuary (AKA Keoladeo Bird Sanctuary). It is a home to over 360 bird species, including aquatic birds, visitors from Afghanistan, Turkmenistan, China and Siberia. It was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1985.
After a couple of hours’ drive reach Bharatpur by noon. Check-in at the hotel on arrival. In the late afternoon visit Keoladeo Bird Sanctuary. Enjoy an eco-friendly rickshaw ride at the bird sanctuary. Overnight stay will be at hotel in Bharatpur.
After breakfast check out from hotel, and head towards Jaipur. On the way take a short detour to visit Chand Baori, a stepwell built over a thousand years ago in the Abhaneri village of Rajasthan. About 100 feet deep, it is India's largest and deepest stepwells with 13 floors and was built in the 9th century for water harvesting.
Then continue towards Pink City - Jaipur, famous for its broad avenues, massive forts, magnificent palaces, exquisite temples and a proud culture. Reach Jaipur by late afternoon. Check-in to hotel on arrival. In the evening head out for a guided walk tour through the Pink City market. Jaipur is also known as the shopper’s paradise. Jaipur's colorful markets offer a great break to stop and shop on your tour. Take in the glint and sparkle of the rows of shops selling hand-crafted bangles and other decoration items. While moving through the markets, you will come across the vivacious culture of this region.
Reach back at the hotel by late evening. Overnight stay will be at hotel in Jaipur.
After breakfast head out to explore the vibrant city Jaipur. Visit the historic heritage sites of Jaipur - Hawa Mahal ("Palace of Winds" - a high screen wall built so the women of the royal household could observe street festivals while unseen from the outside); followed by Jantar Mantar (a UNESCO World Heritage Site), It is a collection of nineteen architectural astronomical instruments, built by the Rajput king Sawai Jai Singh, and completed in 1738 CE.
Afterwards visit the City Palace. It houses the Maharaja Sawai Man Singh II Museum, and continues to be the home of the Jaipur royal family. The palace complex has several buildings, various courtyards, galleries, restaurants and offices of the Museum Trust.
In the afternoon stop by to visit Jal Mahal, a palace in the middle of the Man Sagar Lake in Jaipur city. It was built in the 17th century. Then visit the grand Amer Fort (or Amber Fort), also a UNESCO World Heritage Site. It is the principal tourist attraction in the Jaipur and the current structure was built during the late 16th century by Rajput Kings. This magnificent fort comprises an extensive palace complex, built from pale yellow and pink sandstone, and white marble, and is divided into four main sections, each with its own courtyard. In the evening visit Nahargarh Fort, which provides a beautiful bird's eye view of entire Jaipur city. There is a food court and a restaurant "Padao" at the top of the fort with an excellent view.
Later in the evening enjoy dinner at a nice restaurant. Overnight stay will be at hotel in Jaipur.
Meals: Breakfast & Dinner
After breakfast check-out from hotel and head towards the holy, spiritual & peaceful town of Pushkar. Pushkar has a magnetism of its own – it’s quite unlike anywhere else in Rajasthan. It’s a prominent Hindu pilgrimage town and devout Hindus visit at least once in their lifetime. It is famous amongst Hindus for having the only temple of Lord Brahma in the whole world.
Reach Pushkar by noon. Check-in at hotel on arrival. Then head out to visit Pushkar town. The main street is one long bazaar, selling anything to tickle a traveler’s fancy, from hippy-chic tie-dye to didgeridoos. Despite the commercialism and banana pancakes, the town remains enchantingly small and authentically mystic. Visit the famous and unique Brahma Temple. Then visit Pushkar Lake and hangout at the Pushkar market. Dinner & overnight stay will be at the resort in Pushkar.
Meals: Breakfast & Dinner
After breakfast check-out from hotel and drive to Jodhpur, the second largest city of Rajasthan. It is a reminiscence of the bygone era. It is also called the “Blue City” as it looks completely blue in color from an aerial view because of its vividly painted blue walls and blue houses. Its mighty Mehrangarh fort overlooking the city is an architectural masterpiece in itself, and is among one of the largest forts in Rajasthan. Jaswant Tada and Umaid Bhawan Palace are also among the top attractions in Jodhpur. Because of its proximity to Thar Desert, it is also known as "Gateway to Thar".
Reach Jodhpur by afternoon and check-in at hotel. The evening is at your leisure. Overnight stay will be at hotel in Jodhpur.
After breakfast set out to explore Jodhpur. Visit the majestic Mehrangarh Fort, regally set on a sandstone hill built by Rao Jodha in 1459. Rising perpendicular and impregnable from a rocky hill that itself stands 120m above Jodhpur’s skyline, Mehrangarh is one of the most magnificent forts in India. After that visit the lavish Umaid Bhawan Palace, a marvel built by Maharaja Umaid Singh of Rathore Dynasty. It was the last royal palace built before the Independence of India. Its foundations were laid in 1929 and completed in 1943. Today it is part palace, part hotel and part museum.
Afterwards visit Jaswant Thada – the milky-white marble memorial to Maharaja Jaswant Singh II, sitting above a small lake 1 km northeast of Mehrangarh, is an array of whimsical domes. It serves as the cremation ground for the royal family of Marwar. The cenotaph is built out of intricately carved sheets of marble. These sheets are extremely thin and polished so that they emit a warm glow when illuminated by the sun.
In the evening enjoy a guided heritage city walk tour. Overnight stay will be at hotel in Jodhpur.
After a nice breakfast check out from hotel and head to Rohat. A short drive of an hour from Jodhpur, Rohet Garh (in Rohat) is a family-run former fort. Over the course of fifteen years, the lakeside palace has been nurtured and developed with great love and care by the family into one of the finest Heritage hotels in the country. Guests can get a glimpse of the bygone golden era. The stud of Marwari horses, the cream-colored cupolas, mosaics and murals that remind of the colonial days, and not to mention the manicured lawns, pavilion-lined pool and shade-supplying verandahs.
Reach Rohet Garh before noon. Check-in at the hotel and relax. In the late afternoon head out for a village safari tour. From the warm and hospitable people, to the various customs, ceremonies and abundant wildlife, guests have the rare privilege of being welcomed into local’s homes and interacting with them. They get to experience and understand a way of life that takes them closer to their roots.
Reach back at hotel by evening. Overnight stay will be at hotel in Rohat.
After a nice breakfast check out from hotel and drive to Deogarh, a popular tourist destination, boasting a complex of luxurious heritage resorts managed by the erstwhile royal family of the Deogarh. In the heart of the town, is the Kunjbihari Temple, which is famous for the many bats that live inside the roof of the building. There is one clock tower in the main central chowk (market) of the town at the top of Charbhuja Temple.
Reach Deogarh by afternoon and check-in at the hotel. Deogarh Mahal – a luxury heritage hotel, was converted into a hotel by the Deogarh royal family members. A part of the Mahal (palace) is still occupied by them. The family is closely associated with the hotel and personally supervise and manage it. The care is reflected in the minutest details which have made Deogarh a benchmark of heritage hospitality in Rajasthan. Every guest here is special and is treated with the customary Rajasthani hospitality.
In the early evening enjoy a village walk tour, which will be assisted by a hotel staff member. Explore the natural surrounding with people tending to their fields and cattle, and living in complete harmony with nature. Back to the hotel by evening. Overnight stay will be at hotel in Deogarh.
After a nice breakfast check out from hotel and drive to Udaipur – the City of Lakes. Udaipur is known as a standout amongst the most romantic destinations of India and also known as the ‘Venice of the East’. It has a romantic setting unmatched in Rajasthan, or perhaps in all India – built around tranquil Lake Pichola and Lake Fatehsagar, with the purple ridges of the Aravalli Range stretching away in every direction. Magnificent palaces, temples, havelis (traditional mansions) and countless narrow, crooked, timeless streets add to the stunning juxtaposition of humanity and awe-inspiring natural surroundings.
On the way visit 8th Century Hindu temple Eklingji, which is a great example of ancient architecture. Then visit Nagda Temple (a.k.a. Sas Bahu Temple). The temple of Sas is comparatively larger than that of the Bahu. The 'Bahu' temple has an octagonal ceiling, which is adorned with beautifully carved eight intricate female figures. Reach Udaipur by late afternoon. Check-in at hotel on arrival and relax. The evening is at your leisure. Overnight stay will be at hotel in Udaipur.
After breakfast head out to explore the charms of Udaipur. Start with a visit to Fateh Sagar Lake (one of the most beautiful lake in Udaipur). Then visit the Sahelion ki Badi, which was laid for a group of forty-eight young women attendants who accompanied a princess to Udaipur as part of her dowry.
Afterwards visit City Palace Complex. It was built over a period of nearly 400 years, atop a hill, in a fusion of the Rajasthani and Mughal architectural styles, providing a panoramic view of the city and its surroundings. Also visit the beautiful Jagdish Temple close to the City Palace Complex.
Then visit Bagore-ki-Haveli, a historic haveli (mansion) that stands magnificently on the waterfront of the surreal Lake Pichola at Gangori Ghat. Built in the 18th century by Amar Chand Badwa, the then Prime minister of Mewar kingdom, Bagore Ki Haveli has been restored over the period of time and is now converted into a museum. In the evening enjoy the Dharohar Folk Dance Show at Bagore-ki-Haveli. See Rajasthani folk dancing, with nightly shows of colorful, energetic Marwari, Bhil and western Rajasthani dances, as well as traditional Rajasthani puppetry.
Return to the hotel in the evening. Overnight stay will be at hotel in Udaipur.
After breakfast check out from the hotel and transfer to Udaipur Airport. The private car will drop you at airport to catch your return flight.
To all the good things, comes an end. Bid farewell with the memories of amazing fun-filled 14 days of Rural Heritage Retreat, worth remembering for the lifetime!
Taj Mahal remains closed on Friday. Please select your travel dates accordingly.
Moods: A little Rural