Tour Program Summary
India, it is often said, is not a country, but a continent. Stretching from the frozen summits of the Himalayas to the tropical greenery of Kerala, its expansive borders encompass an incomparable range of landscapes, cultures and people. Walk the streets of any Indian city and you’ll rub shoulders with representatives of several of the world’s great faiths, a multitude of castes and outcastes, fair-skinned, turbaned Punjabis and dark-skinned Tamils. You’ll also encounter temple rituals that have been performed since the time of the Egyptian Pharaohs, onion-domed mosques erected centuries before the Taj Mahal was built, and quirky echoes of the British Raj on virtually every corner.
Your grand India tour starts from Delhi, City of Djinns, and 25 million people. Like an eastern Rome, India’s capital is littered with the relics of lost empires. A succession of armies stormed across the Indo-Gangetic plain and imprinted their identity onto the vanquished city, before vanishing into rubble and ruin like the conquerors who preceded them. Modern Delhi is a chaotic tapestry of medieval fortifications, Mughal mausoleums, dusty bazaars, colonial-era town planning, and mega malls.
Your next destination is Agra – India’s capital under the Mughals – remains undiminished, from the massive fort to the magnificent Taj Mahal. Along with Delhi, 204km northwest, and Jaipur in Rajasthan, Agra is the third apex of the “Golden Triangle”, India’s most popular tourist itinerary. Although it’s possible to see Agra on a day-trip from Delhi, the Taj alone deserves so much more – a fleeting visit would miss the subtleties of its many moods, as the light changes from sunrise to sunset – while the city’s other sights and Fatehpur Sikri can easily fill several days.
A flamboyant showcase of Rajasthani architecture, Jaipur has long been established on tourist itineraries as the third corner of India’s “Golden Triangle”. At the heart of Jaipur lies the Pink City, the old walled quarter, whose bazaars rank among the most vibrant in Asia, renowned for their textiles and jewelery.
Fly to Nagpur and drive to Kanha National Park, nestled in the Maikal range of Satpuras in Madhya Pradesh, the heart of India that forms the central Indian highlands. The national park is being popularized as a Tiger reserve and is regarded by many experts as one of the finest wildlife areas in the world. A jeep safari in the park will allow you to take a closer look at many wild animals and to capture their magnanimous images with your camera.
Travel overland by vehicle to Bandhavgarh National Park, another popular national parks in India located in the Umaria district of Madhya Pradesh. Bandhavgarh was declared a national park in 1968, with an area of 105 km² and a buffer zone of over 300 km². This park has a large biodiversity. The density of the tiger population at Bandhavgarh is one of the highest known in India. The park has a large breeding population of leopards, and various species of deer.
Fly back to Delhi for an overnight stay and fly home on the following day.