Delhi - Khajuraho - Varanasi - Agra - Jaipur - Shahpura - Udaipur - Mumbai 17 days/16 nights
Taking you deep into the heart of India, this private luxury tour combines some of India’s best-kept secrets with the wonders of the subcontinent’s most vibrant cities. Begin in Delhi, India’s cosmopolitan capital,where relics of lost empires contrast with the grand imperial architecture of Lutyen’s New Delhi. Continue to the erotic temples of Khajuraho before exploring the sacred city of Varanasi, where thousands of pilgrims bathe in the spiritually cleansing waters of the Ganges. Next, fly to Agra to be mesmerised by the spectacular Taj Mahal. Next, is Jaipur, where colour jumps out from all directions, from the ladies’ vibrant saris to the city’s buildings. Then head deep into rural Rajasthan for a few nights, emerging in the magical city of Udaipur and a stay on the shimmering Lake Pichola. Finish in buzzing Mumbai, one of the most dynamic and fascinating cities in the world.
Your private luxury tour of Rajasthan begins on arrival in Delhi, where you will be met at the airport and chauffeured to your luxury hotel. Choose between The Imperial, which blends colonial elegance with modern magnificence, or The Claridges, an elegant property with rolling lawns.Spend the rest of the day at leisure. The nearby Lodi Gardens make for a lovely stroll or head to Khan Market, lined with fabulous fashion boutiques.
Today, you’ll explore both Old and New Delhi including Humayun’s Tomb (thought to have inspired the Taj Mahal), the 17th- century Jama Masjid and the Afghan-styleQutbMinar. Other highlights include: India Gate, Connaught Place and the Lotus Temple.Complete your privately-guided city tour with an exhilarating cycle-rickshaw ride through Chandni Chowk’s tinybazaars, glittering with jewellery, decorations, spices, street food and much more.
This morning, leave Delhi and board a direct flight to Khajuraho, home to the famous erotic temples of India. Check into Lalit Temple View, which overlooks the Western Group of Templesand is the perfect oasis of calm. Spend the rest of the day at leisure – we recommend the tropically-landscaped swimming pool or an Ayurvedic massage at the award-winning Rejuve Spa.
Spend the day exploring Khajuraho, which has some of the finest temples in the world.Restored after nearly a millennium of neglect, these temples are an integral part of India’s architectural legacy. Well-known for their erotic carvings, they are often referred to as the Karma Sutra temples. Set within picturesque gardens full of bougainvillea, the Western group of temples are the most impressive due to the exquisite intricacy of the carvings.
This morning, you’ll fly to sacred Varanasi on the banks of the River Ganges. Upon arrival, you’ll be chauffeured to either Taj Nadesar Palace, an opulent retreat with 40-acres of garden, or Taj Ganges with 130 contemporary rooms and suites.In the early evening, go for a private boat trip along the Ganges to watch Ganga Aarti, a captivating Hindu ceremony where a fire offering is given to the Goddess Ganga.
Rise early for a sunrise boat ride along the Ganges, to take in the religious pilgrims at the river’s edge, the sounds of the city beginning to rise, and get a peaceful view of the ghats before they fill with hubbub. Later, wander thenarrow lanes, browsing the stalls selling local crafts, spices and world-famous silks.Other highlights include Sarnathwhere Buddha is believed to have given his very first sermon and the iconic Banaras Hindu University.
Fly to Agra this morning and settle into The Gateway Hotel, an elegant property with manicured lawns and your home for the next two nights. In the afternoon, visit the breath-taking Taj Mahal, one of the most beautiful buildings in the world. Described by Rudyard Kipling as 'the embodiment of all things pure', this iconic landmark was built as a monument to eternal love by Emperor Shah Jahan in memory of his beloved wife.
Begin your privately-guided tour this morning with Agra Fort. One of the finest Mughal forts in India, this 16th-century monument stands majestic in red sandstone along the Yamuna River and reflects the collective brilliance of three Mughal emperors — Akbar, Jahangir and Shah Jahan.Then visit Itmad-ud-daulah, otherwise known as the ‘baby Taj’, the exquisite white marble tomb of a Persian nobleman, which features particularly fine carved jalis.
Please note: you can start this journey on any day however the Taj Mahal is closed on Fridays.
Set off this morning for Rajasthan’s vibrant capital,Jaipur. Check into either SUJÁN Rajmahal Palace whose 14 rooms and suites are an explosion of colour with striking wallpaper and contemporary details. Alternatively, choose Rambagh Palace, one of India’s greatest palace hotels. Spend the rest of your day at leisure, enjoying the hotels’ luxurious offerings – both properties have stunning swimming pools and a wealth of excellent restaurants.
Today, led by a local expert, you’ll be discovering Jaipur’s many wonders. Start with the superb City Palace and a tour around its private rooms. Continue with a photo-stop at the extraordinary pink-painted Hawa Mahal (Palace of Winds)before visiting the Jantar Mantar observatory. Later, make your way to the splendid 17th-century Amber Fort on elephant back, before dining at luxury camp DeraAmerwhere you can feed the resident elephants.
Delve deep into rural Rajasthan as you leave the hustle and bustle of Jaipur for Shahpura Bagh, a delightful family-run estate surrounded by picturesque lakes.Owned and run by the former royal family, this stately home is a grand mix of colonial and Rajasthani architecture. The nine light and airy suites are stylish, comfortable and very welcoming. The heated infinity swimming pool is one of the best in Rajasthan. Spend the rest of your day at leisure.
After long car journeys and days full of sightseeing, Shahpura is the perfect retreat to punctuate a tour of Rajasthan with some peace and tranquility. Spend the day doing some gentle exploring – there are some lovely walks. Make sure you visit Fort Dhikola, an unimaginably romantic and glorious location, with far reaching views across the countryside, where we can organise a private candlelit dinner in one of the turrets.
This morning, you’ll be chauffeured to the fairy-tale city of Udaipur, where you’ll take a short boat ride to Taj Lake Palace, one of the most romantic hotels in the world. Built in the 17th century, this magnificent 250-year-old white marble palace floats like a mirage in the centre of sparkling Lake Pichola. In the afternoon, travel across the water to Jagmandir Island, which features a beautiful palace, where the royal family once held summer parties.
One of Rajasthan’s most romantic cities, begin your privately-guided city tour at the City Palace, an impressive complex on the banks of Lake Pichola that elegantly combines Rajasthani, European and Chinese design. Continue through the narrow streets of the old city, soaking up the buzz of the ancient bazaar, which teems with miniature paintings, wood carvings, silver jewellery, bangles, spices, camel-bone boxes, and a plethora of textiles.
Spend the morning at leisure before boarding a direct flight to Mumbai, where you’ll check into the iconiTaj Mahal Palace. The flagship property of the Taj Group, this luxury hotel is filled with antiques, silk carpets, crystal chandeliers, paintings and contemporary art, accompanied by stunning views of the Indian Ocean. Spend the rest of the day at leisure – the seafront in front of the hotel makes for a fascinating wander
Led by your local private guide, rise early for a dawn tour and watch the local food markets unfold. Then, explore the city’s stately mansions and magnificent architecture which stand tall amongst the dense, tropical greenery. Highlights include: the exquisitely sculpted Flora Fountain, the Gateway of India and Elphinstone Circle with its arcaded façade. There’s plenty of great shopping, too, plus a fantastic food scene.
Today your private luxury tour ends. Transfer to Mumbai airport in time for your onward flight.
This tour is purely a suggested itinerary for what your trip to India could include. Treat our Luxury Rajasthan tour with varanasi and Khajuraho as inspiration. Each trip designed by Rajasthan Tours is created uniquely for you, working to your budget and interests with an absolute commitment to quality.