North India is a loosely defined region consisting of the northern part of India. The dominant geographical features of North India are the Indus-Gangetic Plain and the Himalayas, which demarcate the region from the Tibetan Plateau and Central Asia. North India has been the historical centre of the Maurya, Gupta, Pala, Harsha, Mughal, Sur, Maratha, Sikh and British Indian Empires. It has a diverse culture, and includes the Hindu pilgrimage centers of Char Dham, Haridwar, Varanasi, Ayodhya, Mathura, Allahabad, Vaishno Devi and Pushkar, the Buddhist pilgrimage centers of Sarnath and Kushinagar, the Sikh Golden Temple as well as world heritage sites such as the Nanda Devi Biosphere Reserve, Khajuraho temples, Hill Forts of Rajasthan, Jantar Mantar (Jaipur), Bhimbetka Caves, Sanchi monuments, Qutb Minar, Red Fort, Agra Fort, Fatehpur Sikri and the Taj Mahal. Hindi is the lingua franca of North India and has an official status together with Punjabi & Urdu.
On arrival in Delhi, you will be welcomed by our executive and transferred to your hotel (Rooms will be booked from 1200 hrs to facilitate immediate check in). New Delhi, the capital and the third largest city of India is a fusion of the ancient and the modern. Standing along the West End of Gangetic Plain, the capital city, Delhi, unwinds a picture rich with culture, architecture and human diversity, deep in history, monuments, museums, galleries, gardens and exotic shows. Comprising of two contrasting yet harmonious parts, the Old Delhi and New Delhi, the city is a travel hub of Northern India. Narrating the citys Mughal past, Old Delhi, takes you through the labyrinthine streets passing through formidable mosques, monuments and forts. The imperial city of New Delhi displays the finely curved architecture of British Raj. Overnight stay at hotel.
Have a healthy breakfast at the hotel and embark on sightseeing tours of Old and New Delhi.
In Old Delhi drive past Red fort, built in Red Sand stone this imposing fort is 3 Kms in perimeter with the height of the wall varying from 18 to 30 meters at places.
Visit Jama Masjid is one of the largest mosques not only in Delhi but also in India. Completed in 1658 this Mosque has three gateways, four angle towers and two 40 m high minarets. Also visit Raj Ghat - Mahatma Gandhis Memorial.
In New Delhi, drive past Janpath, Rashtrapati Bhawan (Hindi for presidential palace) and India Gate is perhaps one of the most impressive structures built in the capital of India. This historic monument was built as a memorial to commemorate the 70,000 Indian soldiers killed in the First World War.
Visit Humayuns Tomb - built in mid 16th century this is an early example of Mughal architecture.
Also visit Qutab Minar. It is a one of the finest monuments in India and is 238 feet in height. Qutab Minar is 47 feet at the base and tapers to nine feet at the apex. The city tour ends with a visit to Laxmi Narayan Temple (Birla Mandir). Overnight will be at hotel.
Breakfast will be at the hotel. Drive to Jaipur - Jaipur was established by Maharaja Jai Singh II (1693-1743) and painted pink by Maharaja Man Singh II when Prince of Wales, later Edward VII, visited Jaipur in 1876. The Royal heritage of Jaipur lives in its architecture and culture. The city in pink is symbolic of the hospitality that reigned in the Rajput culture.
Overnight will be at hotel in Jaipur.
After breakfast, have excursion trip to Amber Fort with Jeep / elephant ride.
En route, make a photo stop at the Palace of Winds (Hawa Mahal). Hawa Mahal is a sample of the perfection of the architecture. Hawa Mahal was built with the pink & red sandstone, beautifully carved and outlined with white border and motif
Amber Fort is situated on the crest of a hill seven miles north of Jaipur is Amber, capital of the Kuchwaha Rajputs from 1037 to 1728. Man Singh I built it in a style to rival Mughal grandeur and opulence.
In afternoon visit City Palace, a combination of conventional Rajasthani and Mughal architecture. City Palace complex has more than a few palatial structures. City Palace is a huge complex, which houses many courtyards, gardens and buildings.
Also visit Jantar Mantar, built between 1716. It is located within the city palace. Jantar Mantar contains a collection of instruments for observing the movements of sun, moon, planets and stars. It was built to develop the interest of the people in Astronomy.
Overnight stay at hotel.
After breakfast drive to Agra en route visiting Fatehpur Sikri. Fatehpur Sikri - the impressive sandstone fortress was built in the 16th century and only occupied for a few years before being abandoned, leaving the buildings in virtually perfect conditions.
Agra - The city of Mughals offers you an opportunity to explore the massive monuments, majestic buildings, and the popular arts and crafts. The architectural splendor of the mausoleums, the fort and the palaces is a vivid remainder of the mausoleums, the fort and the palaces is a vivid reminder of the capital in the capital in the 16th and early 17th centuries.
Overnight will be at hotel in Agra.
Transfer to airport for flight to Varanasi - Varanasi is the Worlds most ancient living city. Sunrise on the riverfront, as seen from a boat, can be spiritually uplifting sight. Crowded with temples, and its labyrinth of streets, the city attracts the maximum number of tourists. The religious capital of Hinduism, Varanasi is the carpet manufacturing place of India. It was previously known as Kashi - the city that illuminates. The present name is derived from the fact that the city is at the confluence of the rivers Varuna and Asi.
Overnight at hotel.
In the morning drive to Daswamedh Ghat and take a boat ride on the sacred river Ganges to see the cremation Ghats and witness the living traditions of one of the worlds oldest and most important religions. (To start at 0500 hrs. for the best lifetime experience) For you to appreciate this remarkable city, well transfer you to the banks of the River Ganges before the sun rises. Board a boat with your guide and proceed to the middle of the river, where at sunrise the sight unfolds before you. Thousands of faithful come daily to the banks to bathe and pray while in the background, temples and palaces rise in tiers from the waters edge. Return for a walk through the cobblestone streets along the banks of Ganga. As shops are opening, the place now becomes a beehive of activity as the faithful are coming and going.
Visit Sarnath - 5 miles out of Varanasi for a day excursion - One of the holiest Buddhist sites in the world, where Buddha preached his first Sermon in 590 BC. Witness the ruins of a once flourishing Buddhist monastery and then visit a fine Museum which houses an excellent collection of Buddhist art and sculptures found at the site. Overnight at hotel.
After breakfast drive to Bodhgaya - is the most important Buddhist pilgrimage centre and attracts Buddhists from all over the world. It is the place where Lord Buddha entered into meditation and attained enlightenment. Overnight at Bodhgaya.
Full day sightseeing of Bodhgaya. You will visit the Bodhi Tree and Mahabodhi Temple. Bodhi Tree is at the western side of the Mahabodhi Stupa in Bodhgaya. Under this and historic Bodhi Tree Shakyamuni Buddha, then known as Gautama, attained enlightenment some 2540 years ago.
The Mahabodhi Temple stands east to the Bodhi Tree. Its architectural effect is superb. Its basement is 48 square feet and it rises in the form of a slender Pyramid, till it reaches its neck, which is cylindrical in shape. The total height of the temple is 170 feetAlso visit Sujata Temple, Niranjana River & take part in religious activities. Overnight at Bodhgaya.
In the morning you are drive to Vaishali. It was at Vaishali that Lord Buddha delivered his last sermon and announced about his Nirvana. Here you can see the majestic Ashoka Pillar, the Lotus tank, Chaumukhi.
Proceed to Kushinagar - a small wooded town. It was here Lord Buddha ended his earthly journey passed into Mahaparinirvana. Overnight stay at hotel.
In the morning you can explore the Mahanirvana temple, the modern Japan / Srilanka Buddhist center and monasteries.
Later proceed to Lumbini - a place in the South-Western Terai of Nepal, evokes a kind of holy sentiment to the millions of Buddhists all over the world-as do the Jerusalem to Christians and Mecca to Muslims. Lumbini is the place Lord Buddha - the apostle of peace and the light of Asia was born in 623 B. C.
Lumbini - Kapilvastu Sravasti -Balrampur
After breakfast visit Sacred Garden, a small complex lying at the southern end of Lumbini. It marks the place where the Buddha is reputed to have been born and contains all of the areas important historical monuments and archaeological finds. Also visit Maya Devi Mandir, believed to date as far as the 3rd or 4th century BC. Peepul tree, under which Maya Devi is believed to give birth, Ashoka Pillar and Pushkarni.
Afternoon visit Sravasti - This place seems to have fascinated Lord Buddha very much for he spent over 1/4th of his life over here, recollecting the Jatakas or the stories of his previous births. Today Sravasti is full of old stupas, majestic monasteries and several temples. The city is believed to be founded by Mythological King Sravasti and has old stupas, majestic monasteries and several temples.
Overnight stay at hotel in Balrampur.
After breakfast explore the city in the morning. Later on, drive to Lucknow. Arrival is followed by check in into hotel. Overnight at hotel.
In the morning visit ashram. Later transfer to railway station to connect train to Delhi. On arrival transfer to hotel.
Free to explore city and last minute shopping. Check out in the evening and proceed for The Dances of India Show. After farewell dinner transfer to Airport for onwards destination.