You will be met on arrival at the Delhi International Airport and drive to Mandawa.
Mandawa is capital of the Shekhawati region of Rajasthan. Shekhawati a unique area where houses have turned into books telling stories from the past. Shekhawati is a semi-arid region located in the northeast part of Rajasthan, India. It encompasses the administrative districts of Churu, Jhunjhunu and Sikar. Mandawa is world famous for its heritage Havelies and colourful fresco art. Thousands of tourists came here to see ‘The open art gallery of Rajasthan & lovely Havlies’.
Arrive Madawa in the evening and check into Castle Mandawa.
Like many historic homes, Castle Mandawa is a curious mixture of the old and the new. Medieval turreted towers, palanquin-roofed balconies, blend with modern comforts in old-world rooms. Family portraits, antique cannons and arms add to the charm of this family-run resort where tradition still runs strong. Even time is measured by a different clock. A huge brass gong struck by the resident timekeepers at the fort every hour!
Morninmg after breakfast take a walking tour through the bazaar of a colorful little provincial town, and visit the Painted Mansions - glowing with frescoes on almost every inch of their walls and ceilings. Come back to the hotel for Lunch.
After Lunch drive to Bikaner, the royal fortified city, with a timeless appeal in the north state of Rajasthan, retains the medieval splendour that pervades the city’s lifestyle. The magnificent forts and palaces, in reddish-pink sandstone created with delicacy; bear testimony to its rich historical and architectural legacy. Undulating lanes, colourful bazaars and bright and cheerful folks make the visit to Bikaner an interesting experience.
On arrival check into Gajner Palace Hotel.
Gajner Palace is a Grand Heritage Palace Hotel is spread over 6000 acres, the palace is a 30-minute drive from Bikaner. Sir Ganga Singhji, one of the greatest Maharajas of Bikaner, built Gajner Palace on the banks of Gajner Lake in the early decades of the twentieth century. The former Maharajas and visiting British dignitaries during the days of the Raj used Gajner Palace as a hunting resort.
Morninmg after breakfast you will visit the Junagadh Fort, built in 1593 AD by Raj Rai Singh, one of the best in Rajasthan. It comprises of 37 palaces with pavilions, mosaic courtyards, carved balconies, kiosks and windows dotted all over the structure. The Shish Mahal, the Grand Durbar Hall, the 17th century Karan Mahal, Anup Mahal and the Phool Mahal bring to life the grandeur of a bygone era. The Fort museum has a rare collection of Sanskrit and Persian manuscripts and miniature painting.
Come back to the hotel for Lunch. After lunch drive to Jaisalmer.
Jaisalmer lies in the heart of the Thar Desert surrounded by sand dunes. It would be just any desert town but, looming over the city, and apparently rising out of the desert haze, is the spectacular golden Jaisalmer Fort. Even modern Jaisalmer has a medieval feel to it - 'jharokhas' look down into cobbled streets, veiled women walk a pace behind their turbaned, strapping mustachioed men folk; undulating sand dunes and camel trains drink from an ancient water trough in the main market square. Hardly surprising that Jaisalmer retains an untouched aura, given its remote location and inaccessibility.
On arrival, check into your hotel - Gorbandh Palace Hotel.
Gorbandh Palace is ideally located in the desert city of Jaisalmer, distinguished over the centuries for its golden fort or 'Sonar Kila'. A Royal Retreat of the HRH Group of Hotels, Gorbandh Palace provides spectacular views of the acclaimed fort and is well-connected to the famous Sam sand dunes. Abundant greenery within the hotel, its fountain and blue waters of the swimming pool create a comfortably cool environment that defies the heat and sand of this golden desert city.
Visit this city of gilded magic. See the citadel, the fort built by Rawal Jaisal and where a fourth of the population lives. Jain temples of the 12th to the 15th centuries, Patwon ki Haveli, which is a five-storey building with carved pillars and murals, Salim Singh and Nathmalji ki Haveli are some of the places you will visit.
Late this afternoon visit Sam Sand dunes and enjoy a camel ride at sunset.
Morninmg after breakfast drive to Jodhpur.
On arrival check into your hotel for overnight stay.
Post Lunch you visit the Mehrangarh Fort, situated on a low sandstone Hills including the palaces within, namely, Moti Mahal and Phool Mahal. Also visit Jaswant Thada, an imposing Marble Memoriam built in 1899 and the museum located in the Umaid Public Gardens.
The rest of the evening will be at leisure to relax in the peaceful setting of your hotel.
Morninmg after breakfast drive to Udaipur enroute visiting the Ranakpur Temples.
Built in 1439, this huge, superbly crafted and well-kept marble temple has 29 halls supported by 1444 pillars, no two alike. You will have lunch at Maharani Bagh Orchard Retreat before continuing your drive to Udaipur and on arrival check into Rana Pratap Palace hotel.
The rest of the day will be at leisure to soak in the environs.
After breakfast this morning you will explore the enchanting city bewitching in all its details- narrow streets lined by vivid coloured stalls, gardens, temples and palaces - every feature, mirrored in the placid blue waters of Lake Pichola. Visit the City Palace and the amazing Crystal Gallery at the Shiv Niwas Palace.
There is no place in Rajasthan, which appeals more to the imagination of poets and painter, travellers and writers than Udaipur. Set on the shores of Lake Pichola and surrounded by hills, Udaipur grew in complete contrast to the harsh deserts of the rest of Rajasthan. The lake itself is a romantic setting surrounding the gleaming white Lake Palace and the Jag Mandir, a refuge of the rebel Mughal prince, Shah Jehan, soon to be the creator of the incomparable Taj Mahal.
In the morning after breakfast you will be driven to Pushkar. On arrival Check into your hotel - Gulab Niwas Palace.
Gulaab Niwaas Palace is luxury heritage hotel in Pushkar, India's most exquisite and remote settings. It is enhanced by its unique surroundings and expands horizons for travellers while respecting local ways of life. Gulaab Niwaas Palace is a family run hotel offering personalised service and attention to detail that makes the welcome warm and the stay unforgettable.
After breakfast, Sightseeing of Pushkar. Later after lunch you will set out for the capital of Rajasthan, Jaipur.
On arrival in Jaipur you will check-in to The Shahpura House. The House built in traditional Rajput architecture; a blend of Mughal and Indian, a facade with domes and frescoes has been converted into a hotel by Rao Dhir Singh. The spacious rooms at Shahpura House with elegant colonial furniture, along with all modern amenities have their own individual character.
The rest of the evening is at leisure - perhaps a candle-lit dinner on the terrace is just apt to unwind after a long day of travel.
This morning you will visit The Amber Fort, the capital of the erstwhile state of Jaipur until 1728 is perched on a hill. It has halls of Public and Private audience, a Sheesh Mahal (hall of mirrors) various marble palaces which are marvelous examples of ancient Rajput architecture.
Later visit the City Palace - the former royal residence built in a blend of the Rajasthani and Mughal styles. It now houses a museum with a superb collection of Rajasthani costumes, an armoury of the Mughals and Rajputs with weapons of arms, an art gallery with an excellent collection of miniature paintings, carpets, royal paraphernalia and rare works in Arabic, Persian, Latin and Sanskrit. Visit the Jantar Mantar - an astrological and astronomical Observatory built by Maharaja Jai Singh in 18th century, which is remarkable for its accuracy.
Today after early breakfast you will be driven to Agra, which is about 260 kms from Agra and will take about 6 hours enroute visiting Fatehpur Sikri. Fatehpur Sikri is the deserted capital of the former Mughal Emperor Akbar. It was built as his capital but abandoned only 15 years later, supposedly due to shortage of water. In many ways it is one of the most impressive and romantic legacies of the Mughal dynasty. Within the walls you will see some very interesting buildings, which remain in excellent condition 400 years later.
On arrival check-in to the hotel Howard Park Plaza. Dinner and overnight.
Morning after breakfast you will visit one of the Seven Wonders of the World. 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 Emperor Shah Jahan as an expression of his love for his wife Mumtaz, 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 mesmerised by this outstanding piece of architecture.
Also visit the Agra Fort - the seat and the stronghold of the Mughal Empire under successive generations. Visit its Hall of Public Audience and its Royal Pavilions. Proceed to the Itimad-ud-Daulah, the beautiful tomb of Mirza Ghiyath Beg. The first building to constructed of pure marble in Moghul India, this two storey mausoleum is small but perfectly executed, with translucent stones etched into its walls and tracery work adding a delicate finishing touch.
Later after lunch drive to Delhi and drop at the airport.
Mr Rakesh Mohan Singh
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