Intriguing India with Jenny and Zutshi Travel

Overview

Experience Boutique India with Jenny and Zutshi Travel - 17 Day Trip

Join Jenny’s on her Inaugural India Experience with Zutshi Travel! Sept 27th – Oct 13th, 2020

Even as a seasoned travel professional, Jenny was a bit intimidated by the thought of traveling to India. So what did she do? She reached out to our wonderful Ensemble on-location supplier Zutshi Travel to co-create an immersive boutique India travel itinerary like no other for her and her clients to experience together!

Our agency has been working with Zutshi travel in India for many years with phenomenal results. This itinerary boasts an incredible mixture of culture, learning, hands-on fun, tastes, smells, wow experiences, animals and more - all at an intimate unique and boutique level.

This departure is very limited and can accommodate a minimum of 6 and maximum of 12. The number of participants is intentionally limited to ensure jenny can deliver the highest attention to and personalized experience for each guest.

This itinerary takes a hands-on and handheld approach meaning you will be very well looked after by Jenny herself and our skilled local guides. Every detail will be taken care of to ensure a safe, relaxing, and exciting journey through India's most spectacular locations and sights.

Anyone that has been to Africa with Jenny knows that her travel style is comprehensive, secure, and incredibly curated and that she only works with the most amazing local operators. This is truly an opportunity not to be missed for anyone wanting an authentic curated trip of a lifetime experience in India!

Itinerary

Inaugural India with Jenny and Zutshi Travel: 27th Sept 2020 – 13th Oct 2020

All flights, train timings, and sightseeing tours are subject to change. The itinerary is intended to give you a general idea of the likely trip schedule. Numerous factors such as weather, road conditions, the physical ability of the participants, etc. may dictate itinerary changes either before the tour or while on the trail. We reserve the right to change any schedule in the interest of the trip participants' safety, comfort & general well–being.

Day 1 - September 27, 2020


ARRIVE IN DELHI

Arrive in Delhi. Our representative will be at the airport to receive and escort the group to a private vehicle which will transfer them to the Hotel The Imperial.

DELHI: It consists of Old Delhi & New Delhi. It is the capital of the country and third largest city of India. Serves as the travel hub for exploring Northern India.

Overnight in the hotel.

Day 2 - September 28, 2020


DELHI

After breakfast, proceed for City sightseeing with an English speaking guide:

Old Delhi, once known as Shahjahanabad, was established by Mughal Emperor Shah Jahan who made it his capital. This fortified city has a glorious past and history leading through labyrinthine streets past mosques, monuments and forts.

RED FORT (Drive Past): Emperor Shah Jahan shifted his capital from Agra to Shahjahanabad and laid the foundation of Red Fort (Lal Quila) on 16th April 1639. It took nine years to build this mighty citadel. Built of red sandstone, it is octagonal in shape, with two longer sides on the east and west.

CHANDINI CHOWK: One of the main markets of Delhi, congested Chandni Chowk was once lined with beautiful fountains. It is located opposite the Red Fort. Important landmarks here are the Digamber Jain Temple which houses the Birds' Hospital, Fatehpuri Mosque which was erected by the wives of Shah Jahan and Sunheri Masjid from where Nadir Shah ordered his troops to plunder and massacre Delhi.

Cycle-rickshaw ride will be provided in the bazaar. Continue the tour and proceed for sightseeing of New Delhi.

New Delhi was built as the imperial capital of India and displays the finely carved architecture of British Raj with its wide avenues, regal buildings, grass lawns and spaciousness.

HUMAYUN’S TOMB: Built by Haji Begum, wife of Emperor Humayun in mid – 16th century, this red sandstone structure is considered to be the predecessor of the Taj Mahal. Humayun's wife is also buried in the red &white sandstone and black &yellow marble tomb.

GURUDWARA BANGLA SAHIB: Most prominent Sikh Gurudwara, or Sikh ‘house of worship’ in Delhi. It is known for its association with the eighth Sikh GuruHarKrishan. There is a pond inside its complex, known as "Sarovar" whose water is considered holy by Sikhs and known as "Amrit".

INDIA GATE: It is a 42m high stone ‘Arch of Triumph’. It bears the names of the 85,000 Indian Army Soldiers who died in the campaigns of World War I, the North-West Frontiers operations and the 1919 Afghan Fiasco. Below the arch is the Eternal Flame to honour the “Memorial to the Unknown Soldier”.

RASHTRAPATI BHAWAN (Drive Past): Official home of the President of India. It may refer to only the mansion which has 340 rooms in the main building. Located within 320 acres of huge presidential gardens known as Mughal Gardens, it has large open spaces, residences of bodyguards and staff, stables, other offices and utilities within its perimeter walls.

GANDHI SMRITI: Formerly known as Birla House, the museum is dedicated to Mahatma Gandhi. It is the location where Mahatma Gandhi spent the last 144 days of his life, and was assassinated here on January 30, 1948. It was originally the house of the Indian business tycoons - the Birla family. It is now also home to the Eternal Gandhi Multimedia Museum which was established in 2005.

QUTAB MINAR: It is undoubtedly the finest stone towers in India and most important landmark of Delhi. Iltutmish, the son-in-law and successor of QutubuddinAibak, completed its construction. Built in red sandstone, this tower sports the inscriptions of verses of Holy Quran and intricate carvings. The famous Ashoka Iron Pillar, belonging to the 4th century, has a Sanskrit inscription in Gupta script confirming the date.

In the evening, enjoy the cooking class and Welcome Dinner at a private residence.

Overnight in the hotel. (B, L, D)

Day 3 - September 29, 2020


DELHI – AGRA

After breakfast, check-out from the hotel and proceed for Tie & Dye workshop at Noida. Later, depart for the Mughal City – Agra. Arrive and check-in at the Hotel ITC Mughal.

AGRA: The Mughal love of architecture translated into beautiful monuments such as Taj Mahal, Agra Fort, FatehpurSikri and Sikandra. The glory of Agra was at its peak during the reign of Emperors Akbar, Jehangir and Shah Jahan.

After settling in, proceed to visit Monument of Love – Taj Mahal by Sunset with an English speaking guide:

TAJ MAHAL: Sheer poetry in marble - magnificence unrivaled! The Taj Mahal is a monumental labor of love of a great ruler for his beloved queen. The ultimate realization of Emperor Shah Jahan's dream and one of the ‘Seven Wonders of the World’. It took 22 years &20,000 workers in 1631 AD to make this enchanting mausoleum on banks of River Yamuna.

Return to the hotel for an overnight stay. (B,L,D )

Day 4 - September 30, 2020


AGRA

In the morning, proceed to visit the beautiful Taj Mahal by sunrise with an English speaking guide, return to the hotel for breakfast.

THE AGRA FORT: Mughal Emperor Akbar commissioned the construction of the Fort in 1565 AD. The forbidding exteriors of this fort hide a number of exquisite buildings like Moti Masjid, Diwan-I-Am, Diwan-I-Khaas, Shish Mahal and MusammanBurj - where Shah Jahan died in 1666 A.D.

In the evening, enjoy the “Mohabbat – e – Taj” Show at Kalakriti.

Overnight in the hotel. (B,L,D )

Day 5 - October 1, 2020


AGRA – SAWAI MADHOPUR

After breakfast, depart for the home of the Royal Bengal Tiger – SawaiMadhopur. Arrive and check-in at the Hotel Vivanta Sawai Madhopur Lodge.

SAWAI MADHOPUR: The Ranthambore forests were the former hunting grounds of the Maharajas of Jaipur and it was only in 1955 for the first time that this area was declared as the Sawai Madhopur Wildlife Sanctuary. In 1980, it was notified as a National Park and is famous for the largest number of Bengal Tigers in North India with many BBC documentaries filmed here.

Overnight in the hotel. (B,L,D)

Day 6 - October 2, 2020


SAWAI MADHOPUR

Morning at leisure, In the afternoon, enjoy jeep ride into the jungle to view wildlife.

Overnight in the hotel. (B,L,D )

Day 7 - October 3, 2020


SAWAI MADHOPUR – JAIPUR

Early in the morning, enjoy Jeep ride into the jungle, Return to the hotel for breakfast.

Later, depart for the Pink City – Jaipur. Arrive and check-in at the Hotel Jai Mahal Palace

JAIPUR: It is the capital of Rajasthan state. It has many architectural marvels and palaces and a history of a bygone era involving the Maharaja and Royal family of Jaipur. Amber Fort is one of the three antique forts providing a spectacular view of the city and in the heart of Jaipur lies stunning City Palace.

In the evening, visit the local Spice and Vegetable Market – “ChotiChaupar”.

Overnight in the hotel. (B,L,D)

Day 8 - October 4, 2020


JAIPUR

After breakfast, proceed for an excursion to Amber Fort with an English speaking guide:

THE AMBER FORT: The Amber Fort, located 11 km north of Jaipur, was the capital of KachchwahaRajputs till SawaiJai Singh changed the capital to Jaipur. The Fort is one of the most popular attractions in Jaipur where tourists can enjoy elephant rides to the top of the hilltop - from where one can have excellent views of Maota Lake.

Jeep ride up to the Fort will be provided.

Later do city sightseeing:

HAWA MAHAL: Built in 1799 by Maharaja SawaiPratap Singh, it is the most “recognizable” monument of Jaipur – a 5 storied stunning semi-octagonal monument having 152 windows with over hanging latticed balconies and a fine piece of Rajput architecture. Originally designed for the royal ladies to watch and enjoy the processions and other activities passing by on the street below.

THE CITY PALACE: A major part of the City Palace has been converted into a Museum while the remaining portion is still being used by the royal family of Jaipur as residence. The Palace is built in the fortified ‘campus’ style and covers almost a seventh of Jaipur in area! There are different sections of the Museum dedicated to subjects like arms & ammunition, textile, costumes and art.

JANTAR MANTAR OR THE ASTRONOMICAL OBSERVATORY: Translated into “Instruments of Measuring the Harmony of the Heavens”, JantarMantar was built by Sawai Jai Singh between 1728 and 1734. It is a grand celebration of astronomical science and each instrument here serves a particular function and gives an accurate reading.

GOVIND DEV JI TEMPLE : It is a very famous place for all devotees of Lord Krishna. The temple, built in 1735 by SawaiPratap Singh Ji, is surrounded by many gardens, chandeliers, and paintings of Indian art. Situated between BadalMahal and Chandra Mahal, the location is such that the Maharaja could look directly at the figure of Lord Krishna. Aarti ceremony is held here 7 times in a day.

In the evening, enjoy Rajasthani Gala Dinner.

Return to the hotel for an overnight stay. (B,L, D )

Day 9 - October 5, 2020


JAIPUR – (JODHPUR –MANVAR)

Early in the morning, transfer to the Railway Station to board your train to the Blue City – Jodhpur.

On arrival, the group will be received and driven straight to Manvar. Arrive and check-in at the Hotel Manvar Desert Camp & Resort.

MANVAR: It is a desert hamlet situated mid-way between Jodhpur and Jaisalmer. The Resort is located in the heart of the Great Indian Thar Desert offering a rare opportunity to enjoy Rajasthan’s desert life, culture, wildlife & beauty.

In the evening, proceed for jeep ride over the sand dunes and admire Sunset.

Later, enjoy bonfire with Rajasthani dancers and Mashaals followed by dinner.

Overnight in Tents in the desert. (B,L,D)

Day 10 - October 6, 2020


MANVAR – JODHPUR

Early in the morning, enjoy camel ride over the sand dunes and admire the Sunrise, return to the Camp for breakfast. Later, depart for Jodhpur. Arrive and check–in at Hotel Raas.

JODHPUR: Jodhpur was founded by RaoJodhain 1459 and is named after him. It is divided into two parts - the old city being separated from the new by a 10 km long wall surrounding it - with eight gates leading out. With many beautiful palaces and forts, it is also referred to as the "Blue City" due to the vivid blue-painted houses around the Mehrangarh Fort.

After settling in, proceed for city sightseeing:

MEHRANGARH FORT: Mehrangarh is one of the largest and most magnificent forts in Rajasthan. It is situated on a 150 m high hill and was founded by RaoJodha in 1459. Inside the fort, there are several palaces with sprawling huge courtyards. One of the fort's palaces - the MotiMahal (Pearl Palace) houses the royal throne of Jodhpur. (Audio headsets will be provided)

JASWANT THADA: On the way down from the fort, on the left is Jaswant Thada – the graceful marble cenotaph of Maharaja Jaswant Singh II. His son, Maharaja SardarSinghji, built this ‘TajMahal of Marwar’ in memory of his father. The main memorial has been built like a temple with intricately carved marble stone sculpted by genius artisans. Also visit the Clock Tower.

Overnight in the hotel. (B,L,D )

Day 11 - October 7, 2020


JODHPUR – UDAIPUR

After breakfast, depart for the City of Lakes – Udaipur, stopping enroute to see the beautiful Jain Marble Temple at Ranakpur.

RANAKPUR: Renowned for some marvelously carved Jain temples in amber stone with marble interiors, Ranakpur is one of the five holy places of the Jain community. Open on all four sides, it enshrines the four-faced image of Lord Adinath. Sprawling over 48,000 sq.ft area, the temple is an astounding creation - with 29 halls and 1,444 pillars - all distinctly carved!

Proceed onto Udaipur. Arrive and check–in at Hotel Trident.

UDAIPUR: Located around the shimmering clear blue water lakes, Udaipur is also known as the “City of Lakes” and has a distinct identity of being a ‘romantic city’. It is an inspiration for the imagination of the poets, painters and writers. The exquisitely carved marble palaces, impressively laid out gardens and lakes with hills & ravines all around give Udaipur a totally unique charm distinct from any other city.

Overnight in the hotel. (B,L,D )

Day 12 - October 8, 2020


UDAIPUR

After breakfast, proceed for city sightseeing with an English speaking guide:

THE CITY PALACE: Built by Maharaja Udai Singh, the gorgeous City Palace is a marvel in marble. Majestically set on a hill, it is flooded with balconies, towers and cupolas, along with superb views of Lake Pichola and the city. It has a triple-arched gate at the entrance called Tripolia, which was built in 1725. A perfect amalgamation of Medieval European and Chinese architecture with number of astonishing buildings, well-planned gardens and fountains.

CRYSTAL GALLERY: The visitors here are privy to what is hailed as one of the most exclusive, exquisite and probably the single, largest private collection of crystal anywhere in the world! It was in 1877 that MaharanaSajjan Singh ordered the crystal collection from the Birmingham-based F&C Osler Company. The collection includes a bewildering number of objects d'art, dinner sets, perfume bottles, decanters, glasses, washing bowls and even furniture – including the only crystal bed in the world! The collection has been customized for the Royal family with the Crest of Mewar delicately etched on each crystal.

SAHELIYON KI BARI: On the banks of FatehSagar Lake, a beautiful garden was built for 48 maidens - meant to be a part of the dowry of the princess! Widespread lawns, gushing fountains and dappled walking lanes characterize the garden. The gardens appear distinct and immaculate in taste.

In the evening, enjoy Boat Ride on Lake Pichola in the backdrop of the setting sun.

LAKE PICHOLA: MaharanaUdai Singh II significantly distended the gorgeous Pichola as a defense measure, when he founded Udaipur. Cradled amongst hills, gardens, havelis, temples and ghats, Lake Pichola is the picturesque spotlight of Udaipur. The lake sports two islands palaces - Jagniwas (popularly known as Lake Palace) and Jagmandir.

JAG MANDIR: Another island palace in Lake Pichola, it was built by Maharaja Karan Singh in 1615. It derives its name from Jagat Singh who started the initial structure. It was never used for the purpose for it was built. This palace was used to provide shelter to the Mughal Prince Khurram (later Emperor Shah Jahan) who rebelled against his Emperor-father, Jahangir in the 1620s. During the 1857 Mutiny this island palace once again served as a safe haven for European women and children.

Return to the hotel for an overnight stay. (B,L,D )

Day 13 - October 9, 2020


UDAIPUR – VARANASI

Today, transfer to the airport for your flight to Holy City – Varanasi. On arrival, the group will be received and transferred to the Hotel Taj Ganges.

VARANASI: Picturesquely situated on the crescent-shaped left bank of the holy River Ganga, Varanasi is said to be a compound of the names of two streams - the Varuna and the Assi - which still flow in the north and south of the city respectively. Varanasi is probably one of the most ancient “living cities” in India, from time immemorial it has been a great religious center for Hindus and one of their most sacred places of pilgrimage, being visited by millions of people every year. The Ganga Ghats are full of pilgrims who flock to the place to take a dip in the holy Ganges, which is believed to absolve one from all sins.

In the evening, witness the "Ganga Aarti Ceremony” on the banks of the holy river with boat ride.

GANGA AARTI CEREMONY: Every evening, a magical “Aarti” is performed at Dasashwamedh Ghat. The presiding priests stand on a wooden chauki (Stool). To the chant of Sanskrit mantras, and the clash of cymbals and drums, the holy river is worshipped with flowers, incense, sandalwood, milk and vermilion. First the blazing camphor and then the many-flamed Aarti lamps are raised high and then arched back – the dark river reflecting the golden flames as Ganga accepts the worship.

Overnight in the hotel. (B,L,D )

Day 14 - October 10, 2020


VARANASI

Early in the morning, enjoy boat ride on River Ganges and participate in ‘’floating of the lamps” – quite an ethereal experience! Later proceed through the narrow streets of the city.

After experiencing the boat ride and narrow streets, proceed for city sightseeing with an English speaking guide:

VISHWANATH TEMPLE: The most sacred temple in Varanasi is the Vishwanath Temple dedicated to Lord Shiva. The Shivalinga at the Vishwanath Temple is among one of the 12 ‘Jyotirlingas’. The current temple was built in 1776 by Queen AhilyaBai of Indore with about 800 kg of gold plating on the towers - which gives the temple its colloquial name - Golden Temple.

DURGA TEMPLE: It was built in the 18th century by a Bengali Maharani and is stained red with ochre. The Durga Temple is commonly known as the Monkey Temple due to the many frisky monkeys that have made it their home. Non-Hindus can enter the courtyard, but not the Inner Sanctum.

BANARAS HINDU UNIVERSITY: This internationally reputed and innovative university was founded by the great nationalist leader, Pandit Madan Mohan Malviya, in 1916. It has produced many great freedom fighters and builders of modern India, as well as a large number of renowned scholars, artists, scientists and technologists. The area of the main campus of this premier University is 1300 acres with well-manicured lawns.

Return to hotel for breakfast and relax.

Later, proceed for an excursion to Sarnath by a private vehicle:

SARNATH: It is located 10 Kms from Varanasi, is where Lord Buddha delivered his first sermon to the five holy men - preaching the middle path to final 'NIRVANA’. Shakyamuni also walked from Bodhgaya to Sarnath to meet the five ascetics who had left him earlier. Also visit the local Museum maintained by the Archeological Survey of India housing important excavations from the area including the famous “Ashoka Emblem.”

Return to the hotel for an overnight stay. (B,L,D )

Day 15 - October 11, 2020


VARANASI – MUMBAI

Today, transfer to the airport for your flight to the City of Dreams – Mumbai. On arrival, the group will be received and transferred to the Hotel Trident Nariman Point.

MUMBAI: Mumbai, previously named Bombay, is a major metropolitan city and business capital of India. The city has the largest and the busiest port as well as India's largest Stock Exchange. Mumbai cannot be complete without the mention of “Bollywood” - the biggest Indian film industry which churns out hundreds of Hindi block-busters every year.

Overnight in the hotel. (B,L,D )

Day 16 - October 12, 2020


MUMBAI

After breakfast, proceed for city sightseeing with an English speaking guide:

MARINE DRIVE (Drive Past): Marine Drive is a glittering expanse of 3 Kms long boulevard running all along the coast of Arabian Sea. Lit up nowadays with a series of lamps that make the place look like sparkling diamonds - a spectacle that has earned it the name - 'Queen's Necklace'.

THE GATEWAY OF INDIA: Facing the Arabian Sea, this momentous monument was erected to commemorate the visit of King George V and Queen Mary to Bombay. The Gateway of India also, ironically, proved to be the departure point for the last British troops in 1948, after India finally gained its Independence in 1947. The Gateway of India is built on Indo-Saracenic style with elements derived from Muslim architectural style of the 16th Century Gujarat.

THE PRINCE OF WALES MUSEUM: The Prince of Wales Museum, built by George Wittet, was set up to honor the visit of King George V to India. It is built in the Indo-Saracenic style with an imposing white dome adding to its grandeur with three sections: Art, Archaeology &Natural History.

VICTORIA TERMINUS (Drive Past): The Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus, formerly known as Victoria Terminus, is an outstanding example of Victorian Gothic and traditional Indian architecture blended together. The building, designed by the British architect F. W. Stevens, became the symbol of Bombay as the ‘Gothic City’. The Terminal was built over a period of 10 years, starting in 1878. It boasts of remarkable stone domes, turrets and pointed arches.

MANI BHAWAN: It is a “must visit” for all those who are curious about Mahatma Gandhi, the torchbearer of ‘Ahimsa’ (non-violence), legendary freedom fighter and Father of the Nation who stayed here between 1917 and 1934 during India's freedom struggle. It houses a picture gallery, a 20,000-volume research library and film archives.

DHOBI GHAT: A unique feature of Mumbai, the “Dhobi” is a traditional laundryman who will collect your dirty linen, wash it, and return it neatly pressed to your doorstep. All for a pittance! The "laundries" are called "ghats": row upon row of concrete wash pens, each fitted with its own flogging stone. One can see them at work here.

FLORA FOUNTAIN (Drive Past): It is an ornamentally and exquisitely sculpted architectural heritage monument. The Fountain, built in 1864, is a fusion of water, architecture and sculpture, and depicts the Roman Goddess Flora. It was built at a total cost of 9000 pounds sterling, a princely sum in those days.

CRAWFORD MARKET: Mumbai offers an exciting shopping experience for all those who love to splurge. Among the most vibrant markets in the city that jostles with life and enthusiasm is Crawford market situated on the North of Victoria Terminus. Built in 1871, Crawford Market is famous for a lot more than just its wholesale fruits, fresh vegetables and poultry market.

Evening, enjoy a Farewell Dinner.

Overnight in the hotel. (B,L,D)

Day 17 - October 13, 2020


DEPART MUMBAI FOR HOME

Today, transfer to the International airport for your flight back home.

Details

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*prebooked for early arrival as the flights all tend to arrive early

Booking Contact


17 Day Tour


Trip Cost Inclusions

- Everything on the itinerary

- Tips for the guides


Trip Cost Exclusions

- International air

- Meals / drinks (unless stated in the itinerary)

- Visa for India

- Travel Insurance

- Items of a personal nature