Rating in India
$ 2396

Essential Rajasthan

Culture
Culture
min $ 2396
Per person
Tour details
Destinations: Delhi, Bikaner, Jaisalmer, Jodhpur, Udaipur
Guide language: English
Price: min $ 2396
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  • Overview & dates
  • Itinerary
  • What's included

Overview & dates

INTRO

Travel into the heart of India's most colourful state. Visit Rajput palaces and beautiful havelis in the Shekhawati region. Explore the labyrinthine alleyways of Jaisalmer Fort and wander around the Blue City of Jodhpur. Take a camel ride in the desert and star gaze from your luxury desert camp. Finally, head down to the picturesque city Udaipur and enjoy royal treatment in a heritage palace hotel overlooking Lake Pichola.

Pre- or post-tour to include the Golden Triangle (Delhi - Agra - Jaipur) can be arranged.


DATES

This trip can be run on dates to suit you, please contact us for more information and to let us know when you would like to travel.


All tours in India


HIGHLIGHTS

Grand havelis of the Shekhawati region

Hidden alleyways of Jaisalmer Fort

Jodhpur’s blue buildings and magnificent forts

Luxury desert camp in Rohetgarh

Boat ride on Lake Pichola


PLACES VISITED

Delhi - Nawalgarh - Bikaner - Jaisalmer - Jodhpur - Rohetgarh - Udaipur Delhi
Nawalgarh
Bikaner
Jaisalmer
Jodhpur
Rohetgarh
Udaipur

Itinerary

ITINERARY

Short | Detailed | PDF

Day 1 : Delhi

Arrive into Delhi. Tour of Delhi. Overnight Delhi.

Arrive in the morning into Delhi airport. Transfer to guesthouse. Freshen up and relax. Half day tour of Delhi, lunch en route. Drive by India Gate, the Presidential Palace, lunch en route, and then on to Old Delhi, visit impressive Red Fort. Immerse yourself in the chaos of Chandni Chowk on cycle-rickshaw. Stroll around magnificent Humayun's Tomb and its gardens, and watch it change colour as the sun starts to set. Evening to relax and enjoy sumptuous North Indian cuisine. Overnight in Delhi.

Meal plan : n/a


The walled city of Old Delhi, which includes the Lal Qila or Red Fort of Delhi, was established in 1650 AD by the Mughal Emperor Shah Jahan. The Spice Bazaar, or Khari Baoli, is a street in Old Delhi known for its wholesale grocery and is one of Asia’s largest wholesale spice markets selling all kinds of spices, nuts and herbs. Operating since the 17th century, the market is situated close to the historic Delhi Red Fort. Learn about the spices on sale and smell their aromas. One of Delhi's most interesting buildings is the Jama Masjid (mosque), which is surrounded by traditional businesses that showcase centuries’ old arts and crafts. There is also a marvellous old-fashioned shop where you can test Indian perfume from cut-glass bottles. You will saunter through the main bridal street of Old Delhi, Kinari Bazaar, with its dazzling display of embroidered silk wedding saris.
 


India’s capital and a major gateway to the country, contemporary Delhi is a bustling metropolis, which successfully combines the ancient with the modern. Amidst the vast spiraling skyscrapers, the remnants of a bygone era in the form of its many monuments, stand as silent reminders of the region’s ancient legacy. The first impression for any visitor travelling in from the airport is of a specious, garden city, tree-lined with a number of beautiful parks.

Day 2 : Shekhawati Region

Drive to eco-lodge in Shekhawati. Tour of local area. Overnight in Nawalgarh.

Early start for drive to the Shekhawati region with breakfast en route. Check in to your thatched cottage at the eco-lodge. Freshen up, relax. Escorted tour of the local area, where you will witness stunning havelis and walk through the bustling village marketplace. Lunch in the market area. A visit to a local craft workshop can also be organised. Excellent dinner back at the eco-lodge. Overnight in Nawalgarh.

Meal plan : Breakfast & dinner


The Shekhawati Region is a semi desert region in north Rajasthan. It derived its name from its ruler Rao Shekha. Shekhawati means 'the garden of Shekha'.  The towns of Shekhawati region are known for their amazing painted havelis. So varied and architecturally rich are  the havelis that this region is dubbed as the "open art gallery of Rajasthan". The plethora of painted Havelis in rich artistic tradition makes them fascinating. Most of the buildings are dated from 18th century to early 20th century. The Shekhawati region is dotted with so many havelis that tracking them is something akin to a treasure hunt. Various forms of fine art adorn the walls and the ceilings of these structures as a contrast to the otherwise flat and barren land. The havelis are noted for their frescoes depicting mythological themes and huge animals. Some later day frescoes reflect British influence in the form of steam locomotives and trains depicted on them.



Day 3 : Bikaner

Head for Bikaner. Afternoon sightseeing. Overnight in Bikaner.

Early breakfast at the eco-lodge, then set off for Bikaner. Check in to the hotel around lunchtime. Afternoon sightseeing - Bikaner Fort, the Jain temple and the Deshnok 'Rat Temple'. Evening free to relax in the comfort of the heritage hotel. Overnight in Bikaner.

Meal plan : Breakfast


Lying in the north of the desert State, Bikaner is dotted with scores of sand dunes. Bikaner retains the medieval grandeur that permeates the city's lifestyle. The city is often referred to as ' the camel country'. The strategic location of Bikaner on the ancient caravan routes that came from West/Central Asia made it a prime trade centre in those times. Bikaner stands on a slightly raised ground and is circumscribed by a seven km long embattled wall with five gates. The magnificent forts and palaces, created with delicacy in reddish-pink sandstone, bear testimony to its rich historical and architectural legacy. Surging lanes, colourful bazaars with bright and cheerful folks make Bikaner an interesting experience. Modern Bikaner is the result of the foresight of its most eminent ruler Maharaja Ganga Singh (1887-1943) whose reformative zeal set the pace for Bikaner transformation from a principality to a premier princely state.

Day 4 : Jaisalmer

Set off for Jaisalmer. Sunset at the Royal Cenotaphs. Overnight in the Jasmin Haveli.

After breakfast set off for the desert city of Jaisalmer with lunch en route. Arrive for sunset at the Royal Cenotaphs which has fantastic views over Jaisalmer. Evening free. Overnight in a converted haveli just outside ancient Jaisalmer Fort.

Meal plan : Breakfast


Day 5 : Jaisalmer

Day tour of Jaisalmer. Overnight in Jaisalmer.

Full day tour of Jaisalmer. After breakfast visit picturesque Gadesar Lake and spend the rest of the day exploring the myriad alleyways of Jaisalmer Fort. In particular, admire intricate temples and havelis. Bargain in local shops for beautiful handmade artefacts. Evening to relax and soak in the atmosphere of your ancient surroundings. Overnight in Jaisalmer.

Meal plan : Breakfast



Jaisalmer, the golden beauty etched in yellow sandstone, stands tall against miles of gleaming sand. Founded in 1156 AD by Maharawal Jaisal, Jaisalmer’s location kept it almost untouched by outside influences and even during the days of the Raj, Jaisalmer was the last to sign the Instrument of Agreement with the British. Very few cities can boast of the magnificence that surrounds Jaisalmer. There is a fort that seems to rise out of a desert haze, its yellow sandstone walls and bastions taking on a golden hue in the afternoon sun, which is why it is aptly called 'Sonar Kila' or the Golden Fort. The fort stands atop the 80m high Trikuta hill, where a quarter of Jaisalmer's population still lives. Within the fort are also beautifully carved Jain temples of the 12th to the 15th centuries. One can also see Badal Vilas Palace - the former ruler’s 20th century palace, as well as some impressive merchant mansions (havelis) including Patwon ki Haveli (1805), a five-storey building with carved pillars and murals, Salim Singh and Nathmalji ki Haveli.

Day 6 : Jodhpur

Leave for Jodhpur for city tour. Overnight in Jodhpur.

Relaxing breakfast, then leave for Jodhpur, aka 'The Blue City'. Visit the magnificent Mehrangarh Fort with stunning views of Jodhpur's blue buildings. Stop off at the peaceful Jaswant Thada (royal cenotaph) and the impressive Clock Tower. Famous for its textiles, wander around the market for Rajasthani fabrics and handicrafts. Overnight in Jodhpur.

Meal plan : Breakfast


Jodhpur is the second largest city in the Indian state of Rajasthan. It is located 335 kilometres (208 mi) west from the state capital, Jaipur. It was formerly the seat of a princely state of the same name, the capital of the kingdom known as Marwar. Jodhpur is a popular tourist destination, featuring many palaces, forts and temples, set in the stark landscape of the Thar desert. The city is known as the Sun City for the bright, sunny weather it enjoys all year. It is also referred to as the "Blue City". Jodhpur lies near the geographic centre of Rajasthan state, which makes it a convenient base for travel in a region much frequented by tourists. The old city of Jodhpur is surrounded by a thick stone wall.

Mehrangarh Fort is situated 400 feet (122 m) above the city, and is enclosed by imposing thick walls. Inside its boundaries there are several palaces known for their intricate carvings and expansive courtyards. The imprints of cannonball hits by attacking armies of Jaipur can still be seen on the second gate. To the left of the fort is the 'chhatri' (umbrella) of Kirat Singh Soda, a soldier who fell on the spot defending the Mehrangarh fort. There are seven gates, which include Jayapol (victory) built by Maharaja Man Singh to commemorate his victories over the Jaipur and Bikaner armies. Fattehpol (victory) gate was built by Maharaja Ajit Singh to mark the defeat of the Mughals. The palm imprints upon these still attract much attention even today. The museum in Mehrangarh Fort is one of the most well-stocked museums in Rajasthan. In one section of the fort museum there is a selection of old royal palanquins, including the elaborate domed gilt Mahadol palanquin, which was won in a battle from the Governor of Gujarat in 1730. The museum exhibits the heritage of the Rathores in arms, costumes, paintings and decorated period rooms.


Day 7 : Rohetgarh (Wilderness Camp)

Depart for Rohetgarh. Afternoon village safari and camel ride. Overnight at Wilderness Camp.

After breakfast, depart for Rohetgarh. Lunch on arrival, followed by a village safari where you will observe rural desert life. Venture into the Thar Desert on camel-back. Early evening check into your luxurious tent at the Wilderness Camp settled on the peak of a sand dune in the Thar desert. Evening to enjoy an excellent meal and a night of stargazing. Overnight at Wilderness Camp.

Meal plan : Breakfast & dinner


A village safari in Rohetgarh offers the chance to observe rural desert life. Visitors can explore the enigmatic Thar Desert by camel and stay in luxurious desert camps perched on sand dune peaks. 

Day 8 : Udaipur

Head for Udaipur. Day free. Overnight in Udaipur.

After an early breakfast set forth for Udaipur, possibly Rajasthan's most picturesque city. Arrive in Udaipur early afternoon. Check in to your hotel on the bank of Lake Pichola. Rest of day free to relax and unwind. Overnight in Udaipur.

Meal plan : Breakfast


Udaipur is often called ‘Venice of the East’ or the ‘City of Lakes’, and was founded by Maharana Udai Singh in 1559 AD. According to legend, Udai Singh was guided to establish his capital on the very spot that a holy man was meditating on near Pichola Lake. Surrounded by Aravali Ranges, forests and lakes, this place was less vulnerable to external invasion than Chittaurgarh. Maharana Udai Singh died in 1572 and was succeeded by Maharana Pratap, who valiantly defended Udaipur from Mughal attacks. Maharana Pratap is the most revered Rajput icon who gallantly fought the Mughals in the battle of Haldighati in 1576. Mewar continuously defied foreign invaders and has a history of bloody battles, until the British intervention in the 19th century, when a treaty was signed to protect Udaipur. Upon gaining independence, Udaipur merged with the union of India.

The Lake Palace (Jag Niwas), located in the middle of Pichola Lake, is the finest example of an architectural and cultural marvel. The grand City Palace on the banks of the lake, along with the Monsoon Palace (Sajjan Garh) on the hill above, enhances the beauty of this magnificent city. This is one of the largest palace complexes in the world. Udaipur is also the centre for performing arts, crafts and its famed miniature paintings. The Shilpgram festival is a great crowd-puller during New Year celebrations.


Day 9 : Udaipur

Sight-seeing day. Evening boat ride on Lake Pichola. Overnight in Udaipur.

After breakfast leave for sight seeing. Visit the intricate 17th century Jagdish Temple and the stunning City Palace. Visit the 'Saheliyon ki Bari', renowned for its splendid gardens, water fountains and flowers. In the evening take a relaxing boat ride on Lake Pichola. Evening free to relax. Overnight in Udaipur.

Meal plan : Breakfast


Day 10 : Departure

Transfer to airport.

Early breakfast, then transfer to airport for flight to Delhi. Connecting flight to onward destination.

Meal plan : Breakfast


India’s capital and a major gateway to the country, contemporary Delhi is a bustling metropolis, which successfully combines the ancient with the modern. Amidst the vast spiraling skyscrapers, the remnants of a bygone era in the form of its many monuments, stand as silent reminders of the region’s ancient legacy. The first impression for any visitor travelling in from the airport is of a specious, garden city, tree-lined with a number of beautiful parks.

What's included

INCLUDED Airport pick-up & drop-off Internal flight (Udaipur-Delhi) Ground transport Accommodation Entrance fees to sites & parks All breakfasts Drivers and guides
All tour descriptions and conditions are given in accordance with the information of Travel The Unknown
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