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Essence of India 2013

8 days with Insight Vacations   Rating: Deluxe

800-680-2858 800-680-2858 Itinerary
Click for Dates and Prices

Day 1 - Depart USA
Board your overnight flight (not included).

Day 2 to Day 3 - Delhi, a Rich Melting Pot of Old and New
Welcome to India! On arrival at Indira Gandhi International Airport, you are greeted with a traditional floral garland and transferred to your modern five-star hotel. Tonight, join your Tour Director for a Welcome Reception with a delicious meal. Start the day with a cycle rickshaw ride through Old Delhi including the bustling lanes of Chandni Chowk market. Stop for a photo at the impressive Red Fort, then visit the Mahatma Gandhi memorial at Raj Ghat. You also explore India’s largest mosque, the magnificent Jama Masjid, built by Shah Jahan in 1650. Continue to the house where Mahatma Gandhi spent the last 144 days of his life, now a National Memorial and Museum. Lunch time finds you in the shadow of the soaring Qutub Minar, a World Heritage listed tower dating back to 1193. Afterwards, tour the wide boulevards of New Delhi. Drive along the ceremonial Rajpath, past the imposing India Gate and Parliament House. Visit the Tomb of Emperor Humayun, one of the best-preserved Mughal monuments in Delhi and round off your day with an insight into the local religion at one of the colourful temples. (WR,BB)

Day 4 - Agra and the Taj Mahal
After an early morning snack, transfer to the station for the two hour train journey to Agra. Upon arrival, enjoy breakfast at the Radisson Hotel. Then proceed to the Taj Mahal, a monument of love and flawless architectural creation, built by an emperor in memory of his beloved queen. Return to the hotel for check-in and relaxation. This afternoon witness the hustle and bustle of everyday life as you make your way through the city to Agra Fort, a powerful fortress of red sandstone. After your tour through the palatial Royal Pavilions and gardens there is free time to relax. Later, you could choose to attend an optional spectacular stage musical production which follows the ‘Saga of Love’ that inspired the construction of the Taj Mahal? (BB)

Day 5 to Day 6 - Jaipur, the ‘Pink City’
There is the option of witnessing the rising sun’s rays glistening on the pure white marble of the Taj Mahal this morning. Then drive west to the ancient Mughul capital of Fatehpur Sikri, now a deserted city full of architectural wonder. Enter from the Agra Gate to the huge rectangular courtyard where ambassadors were received and imagine court life in the 16th century. Lunch is served at the majestic Laxmi Vilas Palace in Bharatpur. This palace and heritage hotel has been home to the Baroda royal family for over 120 years. After lunch, continue to the ‘Pink City’ of Jaipur, stunning capital of the state of Rajasthan. After breakfast enjoy a unique excursion, as you ascend by jeep to the Amber Fort, a superb example of Rajput architecture, its terraces and ramparts reflected in the Maota Lake below. Inside, the royal halls are decorated with intricate ivory, mirrors and glass, complemented by exquisite wall paintings. Back in Jaipur, see the famous ‘Hawa Mahal’ (The Palace of Winds) and visit the city Palace, now a museum housing a fabulous collection of Rajasthani and Mughal Art. A final stop is made at the famous Jantar Mantar, the observatory, constructed between 1727 and 1734 by Maharajah Jai Singh II. Back at the hotel you are at leisure. (BB,HL,BB)

Day 7 - Samode, Medieval Palaces, Forts and Havelis
Enjoy a leisurely morning where you are free to explore the famous bazaars of the city. This afternoon drive to the sleepy village of Samode, only a short drive from Jaipur, but seemingly a world away. Your hotel is set in 20 acres of lush garden, modeled in the Mughal style. This evening you are honoured guests at Samode Palace, the restored ancestral residence of the royal family which is now an exclusive heritage hotel. The highlight is the absolutely brilliant Diwan-I-Khas, covered with original painting and mirror work. Explore the frescoed corridors and intricately carved walls, enjoy the folk dances of Rajasthan along with a special Celebration Dinner at open air rooftop or garden, where dining is a delightful experience. (BB,CD)

Day 8 - Return to USA
Your tour draws to a close after breakfast today. Check out from your hotel and transfer to Jaipur airport to connect with your onward flights or perhaps extend your stay with a Mini Tour? (BB)

800-680-2858 800-680-2858 Map
800-680-2858 800-680-2858 All This Included

Collectively known as the Golden Triangle, the cities of Delhi, Agra and Jaipur showcase India’s rich Mughal and Rajput heritage - imposing forts, sumptuous palaces and gleaming marble temples and tombs, such as the exquisite Taj Mahal.

Tour Pace - Comfortable: This tour starts off rather briskly with a full day sightseeing in Delhi followed by an early morning train departure for Agra. The rest of the tour is far more easy going, with free time and leisurely days in Jaipur and Samode.

  • A Welcome Reception with delicious meal. (WR)
  • 6 Buffet Breakfasts (BB), 1 Highlight Lunch (HL), 1 Celebration Dinner (CD)
  • Escorted by a professional Tour Director
  • Travel in comfort and style on our modern, air-conditioned luxury touring coaches and minibuses
  • Ride the Shatabdi Express train from Delhi to Agra in air-conditioned chair class
  • Insight Hotels include all service charges, taxes and porterage
  • Arrival and departure transfers between New Delhi airport and your Insight tour hotel
800-680-2858 800-680-2858 Highlights
  • Delhi: Enjoy a cycle rickshaw ride through the lanes of the Chandni Chowk Bazaar. Stop for a photo of the Red Fort. Visit the Gandhi memorial at Raj Ghat. Visit Jama Masjid, India’s largest mosque. See the Qutub Minar tower. Drive along the Rajpath to see the India Gate and Parliament House. Visit the Tomb of the Emperor Humayun. Sample and enjoy some Jalebi (Indian sweets). Visit a temple for an insight into the local religion.
  • Agra: Group picture taken at the Taj Mahal.
  • Jaipur: Enjoy a Jaipur city tour including a visit to the City Palace Museum housing traditional Rajasthani and Mughal Art. Visit the Jantar Mantar the Royal observatory built in 1726. A photo opportunity at the Hawa Mahal. (Palace of Winds)
  • Samode: Explore Samode Palace, seeing the brilliant Diwan-I-Khas and enjoy the folk dances of Rajasthan.
800-680-2858 800-680-2858 Accommodations
Delhi: Hyatt Regency
Agra: Radisson
Jaipur: Marriott Jaipur
Samode: Samode Bagh
800-680-2858 800-680-2858 Notes
  • Please ask your Vacations To Go travel counselor for more information.
800-680-2858 800-680-2858 Terms and Conditions
For Insight Vacations terms and conditions, please click here.

* The prices shown are U.S. dollars per person, based on double occupancy, and subject to availability. Prices quoted for land/cruise arrangements are subject to increase without notice. Once we have received your deposit, land/cruise prices are guaranteed. Air prices quoted via phone or email are subject to increase and are guaranteed only from the time that full payment is received. Also, air prices or air promotions mentioned on this site or on the phone do not include baggage fees imposed by airlines.