BEST OF RAJASTHAN (9 Days)
Day 1 JAIPUR:
Arrival at Jaipur and Transfer to hotel; Jaipur, widely known as the 'Pink City, is color washed pink to welcome Prince Albert, the consort of Queen Victoria of England who visited India in 1883 A.D. The city was founded in 1727 A.D by one of the greatest ruler Jai Singh II. Jaipur is surrounded by hills on three sides, crowned by formidable forts and majestic palaces, mansions and gardens. Jaipur is the only city in the world, which is sub-divided in to nine rectangular sectors symbolizing nine divisions of universe. Jaipur is the first planned city designed in accordance with 'Shilpa Shastra'- epochal treatise of Hindu architecture
Rest of day is at leisure, free for independent activities.
Overnight at hotel
Day 2 JAIPUR:
Morning: enjoy your breakfast at the hotel; later proceed for the excursion to Amber Fort, here you will enjoy the Elephant Ride to reach atop of the palace. (Subject to Availability and optional)This journey on embellished elephants is bound to enrich your memories with the Royal lifestyle of the Maharajas and leave you with a truly unforgettable experience. (Subject to availability Inside the Fort visit the Hall of Victory or Jag Mandir - is the famed Sheesh Mahal- a room with all the four walls and ceiling completely embedded with glittering mirror pieces, which were specially imported from Belgium during that period. Continue your journey: with the city tour of Jaipur- visiting Maharaja's City Palace, the former Royal residence, part of it converted into a museum. A small portion is still used by the Royal family of Jaipur. One of the major attractions in the museum is the portion known as Armoury Museum, housing an impressive array of weaponry-pistols, blunderbusses, flintlocks, swords, rifles and daggers. Later visit the Jantar Mantar, which is the largest stone and marble crafted observatory in the world, having 17 large instruments, many of them still in working condition. During the tour you will also have a brief photography stop at Hawa Mahal - the Palace of Winds.
Overnight at Hotel
Day 3 JAIPUR – AJMER – PUSHKAR - JODHPUR (400KMS):
Enjoy your breakfast this morning at the hotel, check out and proceed and drive to Jodhpur. En route, visit Pushkar and Ajmer, 150 Km & approx 03 Hours. Ajmer is the most sacred of all Muslim places of pilgrimage in India. It is a green oasis on the Shore of Ana Sagar Lake, hemmed in by barren hills. Historically, Ajmer was always of great strategic importance. It was founded in 7th century by Ajaipal Chauhan. He named it Ajaimeru the 'invincible hill'. The city's Muslim history began when Prithviraj Chauhan lost Ajmer to Sultan Muhammad Ghori in 1193 A.D. The Persian saint Khwaja Moinuddin Chishti, who came with Muhammad Ghori from Persia in 1192 settled here. Thus the place where he was buried is today known as the Dargah Sharif. Construction of the shrine was completed by Humayun and the gates were added by the Nizam of Hyderabad. Later Shah Jahan constructed a mosque of white marble; it has 11 arches and a Persian inscription running the full length of the building. Leave for a visit to Pushkar. Pushkar is a mellow, serene and bewitching little town which attracts those in search of some respite from the tumult of India. Pushkar is right on the edge of the desert and is only 11 km from Ajmer but separated from it by Nag Pahar, the snake mountain. This traveler-friendly town clings to the side of the small Pushkar Lake with its many bathing ghats and temples. For Hindus, Pushkar is a very important pilgrimage centre and you'll see plenty of Sadhus (individuals on a spiritual search). Pushkar boasts temples, the most famous is the Brahma Temple, said to be one of the few temples in the world dedicated to this deity. Later drive to Jodhpur – An oasis in the arid Thar Desert, Jodhpur is the second largest city in the state of Rajasthan. Representing this colorful city with shades of blue, Jodhpur has a history that is rich and a present that beckons strongly to the discerning tourist. Forts and palaces, temples and havelis, culture and tradition, spices and fabrics, color and texture, Jodhpur has them all and in plenty. Situated in western Rajasthan, Jodhpur has long attracted both the domestic and outside tourist. It not only offers tangibles, in terms of what you can see and buy but also fills one with a sense of history and the splendors of an era gone forever.
Overnight at hotel
Day 4 JODHPUR – JAISALMER (300KMS):
Enjoy your breakfast this morning at the hotel, check out and proceed and drive to Jaisalmer. Jaisalmer - a fairy-tale town in the Thar Desert founded about 800 years ago by Rajah Jaisal. Unlike any other city, this desert fortress is one of Rajasthan's most exotic and unusual towns. Jaisalmer, an important ancient trading centre because of its strategic location on the camel trade routes, is often described as the 'golden city'. The havelis, built by merchants of the 19th century, are exquisitely carved from golden-yellow sandstone and are still in a beautiful condition. The fort built by Rawal Jaisal in the 12th century, stands on the 80 meter high Trikuta hill, with beautifully carved Jain temples. The annual desert festival takes place in January and February each year and is a riot of color and activity. Jaisalmer is also famous for its embroidery, Rajasthani mirror work, rugs, blankets, antique, and stonework and camel safaris into the barren sand-dune desert.
Afternoon is free to walk around in the colorful and bustling bazaars.
Overnight at hotel
Day 5 IN JAISALMER :
Enjoy your breakfast this morning at the hotel, check out and proceed and drive to Jaisalmer. Visit the famous Havelis (mansions) known for their frescoes. Jaisalmer's strategic position on the camel terrain route bought it great wealth. The merchants grew prosperous and commissioned great havelis, or mansions, to flaunt their ever-growing status in society. Made of local golden-yellow sand stone and wood, some of the havelis are still in excellent condition. The most elaborate and magnificent of all the Jaisalmer havelis is the Patwaon Ki Haveli. Five Jain brothers built the Haveli between 1800 and 1860. Salim Singh Ki Haveli and Nathmal Ki Haveli are the other two havelis that are opened to visitors. Built in 1156 by the Bhatti ruler, Jaisal, THE FORT here stands atop the 80 m high Trikuta hill. 3 walls and features 99 bastions surround the fort. Over the centuries, the golden sand stone fortress witnessed many battles between the Bhattis, the Mughals and the rathores of Jodhpur. Within the fort complex lie the beautifully carved Jain Temples built between the 12th and 15th centuries. The Maharawals (rulers) of Jaisalmer were devout Hindus but were tolerant of Jainism, and encouraged art and religion. There are 7 temples in the complex - Chandraprabhu, Parasnath, Shitalnath, Sambhavnath, Shantinath, Kunthunath and Rikhabdev Temple. In the evening, proceed for the excursion to Sam Sand dunes. Located at a distance of 42 kilometers from Jaisalmer, Sam Sand Dunes is the closest point to witness the total sandy desert. You can also see the patterns and motifs created by the shifting sands and air. Moreover, Sam Sand Dunes also provide you with an unforgettable experience of camel rides and the sunset.
Overnight at hotel
Day 6 JAISALMER – JODHPUR (300 KMS):
Enjoy your breakfast this morning at the hotel, check out and proceed and drive to Jodhpur. The 15th century city of Jodhpur, stands at the edge of Thar Desert and is the largest city in Rajasthan after Jaipur. Jodhpur is a resplendent city, with a blend of modern and traditional buildings. The city is totally dominated by a massive fort sprawled across 125- meter high hill known as Meherangarh Fort, founded by Rao Jodha in 15th century. A flourishing trade center in the 16th century, Jodhpur is still one of the leading centers of wool, cattle, Camels, salt and agricultural Crops . It boasts of some of very fine reminders of its glorious past palaces, temples and other elegant monuments of architectural and historical significance. Also Jodhpur is popularly known as the 'Blue City' because of the beautiful houses painted with indigo color mostly belonging to the Brahmin caste. You can get a magnificent view of this Blue city from the ramparts of the Meherangarh Fort. Visit the Meherangarh Fort, which was impregnable for the rocky base which is on. It totally dominates the city and within its walls are the royal palaces, priceless jewels and a striking collection of arms. Also visit Jaswant Thada, the white marble memorial to Maharaja Jaswant Singh II built in 1899.
Overnight at Hotel
Day 7 JODHPUR - RANAKPUR- UDAIPUR (300KMS):
Enjoy your breakfast this morning at the hotel, check out and proceed and drive to Udaipur. You'll drive through valleys in the remote and peaceful Aravalli Range to Udaipur. In the Aravalli Hills of Rajasthan has a range of natural and cultural bounties which makes it an excellent destination.
Enroute you will visit the Ranakpur Jain Temple. The Ranakpur Jain temples are hidden in the dense forests of the Aravalli hills in a peaceful setting and are one of the five holy Jain pilgrimages and they were built during the reign of the liberal and gifted monarch Rana Kumbha in the 15th century. An enormous basement covers 48,000 sq. feet area. There are four subsidiary shrines, twenty four pillared halls and eligibly domes supported by over four hundred columns. The total number of columns is 1,444 all of which are intricately carved and no two being alike. The artistically carved nymphs playing the flute in various dance postures at a height of 45 feet are an engrossing sight. In the assembly hall, there are two big bells weighing 108 Kg and their sound echoes in the entire complex. (Temple opens only at 1200 Hrs. Leather belts, footwear, bare legs and black clothing not allowed).
Later continue driving south towards Udaipur, the 'City of Sunrise'. On the banks of the shimmering lake Pichola, is one of the most romantic cities of Rajasthan. Nestled among the lush hills of the Aravali, it has inevitably been dubbed the 'Venice of the East'. It is a kaleidoscope of fairy-tale palaces, lakes, temples, gardens and narrow lanes strewn with stalls, carries the flavor of the heroic past, epitomizing valor and chivalry. Udaipur Founded in 1568 A.D by Maharana Udai Singh, the city is a harmonious Indian blend of whitewashed buildings, marble palaces, lakeside gardens, temples and Havelis.
In the evening you will enjoy leisure boat ride on Lake Pichola with its main attractions the beautiful stretch of water surrounding the two marvelous structures the Jag Niwas and Jag Mandir, is the life line of Udaipur city. Lake Pichola is about 4 kms in length and 3 kms wide. Jagniwas was earlier the summer retreat of the prince of Mewar and now a five-star hotel Lake Palace. All the palaces in the city are constructed to have a magnificent reflection in this lake. This lake was created in the 15th century and widened later and a dam across was also created in that period. It was Maharana Udai Singh II who strengthened the Dam and widened the lake, as he was building his capital on the shore of the beautiful Lake. The lake was surrounded by many exquisite palaces, temples, hilly terrains, bathing ghats and many gardens. The city palace extends along the eastern shore of the lake and you can go for a boat ride from Bansi Ghat. (Subject to water level in the lake)
Overnight at hotel
Day 8 IN UDAIPUR:
Enjoy your breakfast this morning at the hotel, check out and proceed and drive to Udaipur. Udaipur is also a centre of historic arts and crafts of Mewar. During a guided tour you will visit the CITY PALACE built in 1725, the grand City Palace is actually a conglomerate of eleven palaces overlooking the sprawling Lake Pichola. One of the largest, most beautiful palaces in the state of Rajasthan, it is now a museum, royal residence and a luxury hotel. This intricately designed monument is an architectural wonder in granite and marble; JAGDISH TEMPLE built in 1651 by Maharaja Jagat Singh, this temple is dedicated to Lord Vishnu and is located in the centre of the old city. The temple has a black marble image of Lord Vishnu, which is unusual for the northern part of the country, where statues of Gods are normally in marble; Later visit Sahelion Ki Bari that is a small ornamental garden built in the honor of Royal Ladies for recreational purpose. Next is the visit to Bhartiya Lok Kala Museum. Bharatiya Lok Kala Mandir is home to an attractive collection of folk dresses, puppets, ornaments, dolls, masks, folk musical instruments, folk deities and paintings. The museum is the best place for those interested in puppetry. Short amusing puppet shows are staged throughout the day. In addition, the museum runs short courses in puppet making and theatre, followed by visit to Eklingji & Nagda Temples - built in white marble with a double storied porch on the bank of Lake Bageela - 22 kms from Udaipur