The Gangetic Plain And Lucknow
Trip code: 16-day group or private tour
Price from: £2895
Day 1 London - Delhi
Departing in the morning, take a direct non-stop flight to Delhi. Upon arrival transfer to the luxurious Leela Kempinski Hotel in Gurgaon, close to the airport.
Day 2 Delhi - Chambal (Agra)
Morning drive to the relaxed village of Chambal for a two night stay at the rustic Chambal Safari Lodge. Enjoy a sightseeing tour of the nearby Bateshwar temples.
Day 3 Chambal
In the morning take a relaxing boat ride on the Chambal River with the opportunity of sighting gharial (a highly specialised species of crocodile), the rare Gangetic River Dolphin and a wealth of bird life including Indian skimmers. There is the option of visiting the Taj Mahal this afternoon, for a small supplement.
Day 4 Chambal - Gwalior
A short morning’s drive through rural Indian countryside brings us to Gwalior for a two night stay at the elegant Usha Kiran Palace. The afternoon is free to relax and take in the peaceful surroundings. In the evening enjoy a son et lumiere show.
Day 5 Gwalior
The morning’s sightseeing tour takes us to the imposing Fort and the Scindia Museum. The afternoon is free to explore the area or relax at the hotel.
Day 6 Gwalior - Orchha
Drive to Orchha this morning, stopping on the way to see the Fort at Datia. Stay two nights at the Bundelkhand Riverside Hotel which overlooks the Betwa River.
Day 7 Orchha
The day is set aside to explore this beautiful settlement. Temples, in various states of repair, are strewn€ross the landscape and invite the traveler to explore at will.
Day 8 Orchha - Panna (Khajuraho)
Our journey this morning is to Panna with a stop on the way at Khajuraho where we visit the Chandela temples, famous for their erotic reliefs. From here it is a short drive to Panna. Stay for the next two nights at The Sarai in Toria which is full of rustic charm and ideally located overlooking the Ken River.
Day 9 Panna
There is the option of simply relaxing at the hotel, taking a boat ride on the river or enjoying a jeep safari in the Panna National Park.
Day 10 Panna - Varanasi
A short flight from Khajuraho lands us in the spiritually rich city of Varanasi. On arrival we head straight to the Ganges River where a boat awaits to transfer us to the tastefully restored Suryauday Haveli where we stay for two nights. Varanasi, or Benares, as it is also known, is one of the oldest continually inhabited cities in the world and is a feast for the senses. In the evening we head out onto the ghat and witness the atmospheric ceremonial aarti on the banks of the river.
Day 11 Varanasi
An early morning boat-ride on the holy Ganges River is arranged this morning to watch devotees at prayer as the sun slowly rises. After relaxing back at the hotel we visit Sarnath, the site of Lord Buddha’s first public discourse and a relaxing place to spend some time.
Day 12 Varanasi - Lucknow
After a free morning of relaxation or exploration on Varanasi’s ghats a classic Indian train ride awaits and takes us to the historic and culturally rich city of Lucknow, where the first class Vivanta by Taj hotel is our base for the next three nights.
Day 13 Lucknow
In the morning visit the Residency Complex, site of the infamous siege of 1857 which was one of the first revolts against the British authorities. We also visit the Dilkusha Gardens and La MartiniÃ¨re university. Continue our sightseeing tour of the city with visits to the Islamic Imambara shrine and Romi Darwaja city gate. Round off the day exploring Lucknow’s colourful bazaars.
Day 14 Lucknow
The day is at leisure
Day 15 Delhi
After a relaxing morning take an afternoon flight to Delhi. Spend your last evening in India at the luxurious Leela Kempinski before transferring to the nearby international airport for a late evening departure.
Day 16 Delhi - London
Fly back to London, just past midnight.