14 Days North India with Golden Temple & Shimla

Itinerary
Highlights
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Day 01
Arrival at Delhi

ADHVAN representative will be meeting you upon arrival at the airport and transfer to the hotel. Check-in and relax.

DELHI, the capital of India has a great historical background. It was ruled by some of the most powerful emperors in Indian history. The history of the city is as old as the epic Mahabharata. The town was known as Indraprastha, where Pandavas used to live. In due course eight more cities came alive adjacent to Indraprastha. Delhi has been a witness to the political turmoil for over five centuries. It was ruled by the Mughals in succession to Khiljis and Tughlaqs. In 1192 the legions of the Afghan warrior Muhammad of Ghori captured the Rajput town, and the Delhi Sultanate was established (1206). The invasion of Delhi by Timur in 1398 put an end to the sultanate; the Lodis, last of the Delhi sultans, gave way to Babur, who, after the battle of Panipat in 1526, founded the Mughal Empire. The early Mughal emperors favoured Agra as their capital, and Delhi became their permanent seat only after Shah Jahan built (1638) the walls of Old Delhi. In the year 1803 AD, the city came under the British rule. In 1911, British shifted their capital from Calcutta to Delhi. It again became the center of all the governing activities. But, the city has the reputation of over throwing the occupants of its throne. It included the British and the current political parties that have had the honor of leading free India.

Overnight will be in Delhi.

Day 02
Delhi 

Have breakfast at the hotel.

Start for a guided tour of Delhi.

Jama Masjid This great mosque of Old Delhi is the largest in India, with a courtyard capable of holding 25,000 devotees. It was begun in 1644 and ended up being the final architectural extravagance of Shah Jahan, the Mughal emperor who built the Taj Mahal and the Red Fort.

Humayun’s Tomb It was built in 1565 A.D. nine years after the death of Humayun, by his senior widow Bega Begam. Inside the walled enclosure the most notable features are the garden squares (chaharbagh) with pathways water channels, centrally located well proportional mausoleum topped by double dome.

There are several graves of Mughal rulers located inside the walled enclosure and from here in 1857 A.D.; Lieutenant Hudson had captured the last Mughal emperor Bahadur Shah II.

Qutab Minar is a soaring, 73 m-high tower of victory, built in 1193 by Qutab-ud-din Aibak immediately after the defeat of Delhi’s last Hindu kingdom. The tower has five distinct storeys, each marked by a projecting balcony and tapers from a 15 m diameter at the base to just 2.5 m at the top. The first three storeys are made of red sandstone; the fourth and fifth storeys are of marble and sandstone. At the foot of the tower is the Quwwat-ul-Islam Mosque, the first mosque to be built in India. An inscription over its eastern gate provocatively informs that it was built with material obtained from demolishing ’27 Hindu temples’. A 7 m-high iron pillar stands in the courtyard of the mosque. It is said that if you can encircle it with your hands while

Standing with your back to it your wish will be fulfilled.

Then visit the Lotus Temple located in south of Delhi. This temple is built in the shape of a lotus flower and is the last of seven Major Bahai’s temples built around the world. Completed in 1986 it is set among the lush green landscaped gardens.

Also drive past India Gate, the Parliament building and the Rashtrapathi Bhawan (the President’s residence).

Overnight will be in Delhi.

Day 03
Delhi – Udaipur
By air 

Have breakfast at the hotel.

Proceed for the visit to Gurudwara Bangla Sahib. Enjoy the temple complex and capture its beauty through your lenses. Also offer service in community kitchen, if interested.

Later, transfer in time to airport for flight to Udaipur.

Upon arrival at Udaipur, you will be met and transferred to hotel. Reach and check-in to the hotel.

Udaipur, also known as The City of Dawn, is located just by the Aravalli hill is a beautiful place to visit for a romantic vacation. At night-time, the beauty of this place goes a notch up when the moon light drenches the city making the place look like a white vision. Many writers, artists and poets come here for inspiration of their work. Adding to the picturesque beauty are the beautiful forts, palaces and lakes, which makes this place worth your visit.

Proceed for Evening Boat cruise on Lake Pichola and witness the majestic view of the city and visit the Jag Mandir Palace – the other island palace in the middle of the lake and spend some time.

Overnight will be in Udaipur.

Day 04
Udaipur

Have breakfast at the hotel.

Proceed for sightseeing of Udaipur.

City Palace: On the eastern bank of Pichola lake lays a series of palaces that are quite massive and serves as the main attraction of the city of the city of Udaipur. Built in 1559 A.D. the palace consists of humongous balconies through which you can take a good look of the very famous Jag Niwas. The main entrance of the palace known as Tripolia is a triple arched gate will lead you to the courtyard, corridors, terraces and gardens in the palace.

Saheliyon Ki Bari: Built during the mid of 18th century by Maharana Sangram Singh, Saheliyon Ki Bari (Garden of the Maiden) portrays the lifestyle of the women of that time. This section of the palace seems to be discreet and depicts made with impeccable taste. It has around four pools with all of them being dainty kiosks. In addition to this there are flowerbeds around the pool with shady trees and walls covering the surrounding. There the rooms have beautiful paintings on the wall.

Bagore Ki Haveli: Built in front of Lake Pichola, the building lies on the Gangotri Ghat. Built in the 18th century by the Prime Minister of Mewar, Amir Chand Badwa, the palace has more than hundred rooms and wonderful exhibition of modern art and costumes in it. The interior of the Haveli has been completed with intricate mirror and glass designing. The artist of the era had an expertise in glasswork, which can be seen in the two peacocks made of glass.

Jagdish Temple: Jagdish Temple also known as Jagdish-ji is located in the heart of the city and attracts hundreds of tourists every year due to its fantastic artwork. The temple has been raised in a high terrace and it represents art and tradition within it. The temple is attached to a hall known as Mandapa and a Saandhara. Built in 1651 A.D. Maharana Jagat Singh I commissioned this temple and the royalty of the temple can still be witnessed.

In the evening explore the lanes of City of Lakes by walk and witness day-to-day local life.

Overnight will be in Udaipur.

Day 05
Udaipur – Jaipur
By air

Have breakfast at the hotel.

Later proceed to airport for flight to beautiful Pink City – Jaipur.

Reach and you will be met and transferred to hotel. Check-in and relax.

Jaipur capital of Rajasthan, Jaipur was built in 1727 AD by Maharaja Sawai Jai Singh II. It is from his name that the city extracts its name. Jaipur happens to be the first planned city of India. Maharaja Jai Singh, who was only 11 years old, came into power after the demise of his father Maharaja Bishan Singh. Kachwaha Rajputs, who came into power in 12th century, are said to be Jai Singh’s ancestors. Their rivalry with Sisodia Rajputs, rulers of Mewar, helped them in their alliance with Mughals. Mughals too helped the Kachwaha Rajputs against Sisodia Rajputs, resulting in Kachwahas attaining a reputed place in Rajasthan. They ruled the kingdoms of Mewar (Udaipur) and Marwar (Jodhpur) from the glorious Amber Fort. Jai Singh supported Aurangzeb’s son Azam Shah in the battle of succession, which created unrest among people. But Azam Shah lost this bid to throne to his brother Bahadur Shah. Azam Shah then demanded the removal of Jai Singh from the throne. With the ally of Mughals, Jai Singh brought himself back to power. The kingdom flourished in his reign and Jai Singh built his capital around Amber Fort and Jaipur was eventually developed as India’s first ever planned city by chief architect from Bengal, Vidhyadhar Bhattacharya. Vidhyadhar Bhattacharya, following the principles of Shilpa Shastra (the science of Indian architecture), and referencing the ancient Indian knowledge on astronomy, further developed and discussed the plan with Jai Singh. It is said that the foundation of the city was laid down on 18th November 1727 by Jai Singh himself. It took minutely plans strategies and 4 years for the city’s major places-the roads, the square, palaces and the fortification of the boundaries-to come to form. After the death of Jai Singh in 1744, his sons fought for power and without a king, the city became open to intrusion by neighboring states. Rajputs and Marathas took over most of Jaipur. Later in 1876, Maharaja Ram Singh adorned the city in pink colour, which is supposed to be associated with hospitality, to welcome the Prince of Wales (later King Edward VII) to the city; and thus it acquired the name Pink City. Ramgarh Lake was also built by Maharaja Ram Singh to provide water to the budding and prospering city. In 1922, the throne was taken over by Man Singh II, and it was at that time, buildings like secretariat, schools, and hospitals were built. After India got independence, Jaipur merged with Jodhpur, Jaisalmer and Bikaner to form the largest state of India with Jaipur as its capital.

In the evening proceed for the visit of Chokhi Dhani for traditional Rajasthani dinner.

Chokhi Dhani: Enjoy an exuberant Rajasthani Folk Dance Performance and a puppetry show, performed by a local tribe, followed by dinner consisting of typical Indian cuisine. In the magical land of Rajasthan where the heat shimmers like phantom water, where the things you see are not really there and where the things that vanish behind veils of illusion, stands Chokhi Dhani, an ethnic village resort with a blend of rustic environment and modern amenities making it an important destination in Pink City.

Overnight will be in Jaipur.

Day 06
Jaipur 

Start for a guided tour of Jaipur after breakfast.

Enjoy Elephant ride at Amer Fort.

Amer Fort: The Amer Fort, situated in Amber, 11 kilometers from Jaipur, is one of the most famous forts of Rajasthan. Amer, originally, was the capital of the state before Jaipur. It is an old fort, built in 1592 by Raja Man Singh. This fort is also very popularly known as the Amer Palace. The Amer Fort was built in red sandstone and marble and the Maotha Lake adds a certain charm to the entire Fort. Though the fort is quite old and may even look so from the outside, it is beautiful on the inside and boasts of various buildings of prominence like the ‘Diwan-i-Aam’, the ‘Sheesh Mahal’ and even the ‘Sukh Mahal’. The Amer Fort has influences of both Hindu and Muslim architecture. This fort also has the ‘Shila Devi’ Temple and the ‘Ganesh Pol’ which is a gate that leads to the private palaces of the kings. The Amer Fort has many pavilions and halls of great interest and other popular attractions.

City Palace: Located in the heart of the Pink City Jaipur, the City Palace was where the Maharaja reigned from. This palace also includes the famous ‘Chandra Mahal’ and ‘Mubarak Mahal’, and other buildings which form a part of the palace complex. The palace is located towards the northeast side of central Jaipur and has many courtyards and buildings. The palace was built between 1729 and 1732 AD by Sawai Jai Singh II. He ruled in Amer and planned and built the outer walls of the palace and later rulers added to the architecture of this palace. These additions have been known to take place right up to the 20th century. The urban layout of the city of Jaipur was commissioned to Vidyadhar Bhattacharya and Sir Samuel Swinton Jacob. The architectural styles are largely based on a fusion of Rajput, Mughal and European styles. Today, the ‘Chandra Mahal’ has been turned into a museum which is home to unique handcrafted products, various uniforms of the rulers and many more things pertaining to the royal heritage of the City Palace.

Hawa Mahal: The renowned ‘Palace Of The Winds’, or Hawa Mahal, is one of the prominent tourist attractions in Jaipur city. Located in the heart of Jaipur, this beautiful five-storey palace was constructed in 1799 by Maharaja Sawai Pratap Singh who belonged to Kachhwaha Rajput dynasty. The main architect of this palace built of red and pink sandstone, is Lal Chand Ustad and the palace is believed to have been constructed in the form of the crown of Krishna, the Hindu god. Considered as an embodiment of Rajputana architecture, the main highlight of Hawa Mahal is its pyramid shape and its 953 windows or ‘Jharokhas’ which are decorated with intricate designs. The main intention behind the construction of the Mahal was to facilitate the royal women and provide them a view of everyday life through the windows, as they never appeared in public. Read further to know more about Hawa Mahal, its history, architecture and its visiting hours.

Jantar Mantar: There are plenty of observatories all over the world, but the Jantar Mantar is considered to be one of the largest observatories ever built. Combining religion, science and art, the Jantar Mantar is the name given to a series of five, magnificent structures built in Jaipur, New Delhi, Ujjan, Varanasi and Mathura. Jaipur was the seat of Maharaja Jai Singh II during the 1720’s and this is when this magnificent structure was built here. The Jantar Mantar in Jaipur is considered to be the largest of the five observatories and also houses the world’s largest sundial. The Universe and the Cosmos have always been of interest to man, and it was this interest that compelled the Maharaja to build an astronomical observatory. The term ‘Jantar Mantar’ is derived from the Sanskrit terms ‘Yantra’ and ‘Mantra’ meaning ‘instruments’ and ‘formula’ respectively. The term ‘Yantra’ was replaced with ‘Jantar’ which means ‘magical’. The Jantar Mantar houses various architectural and astrological instruments that have caught the interests of astronomers, historians and architects around the world.

After sightseeing, you will be free to visit local markets.

In evening, An Aarti is a prayer ceremony and a fundamental part of Hindu culture. Representing the elements of fire, earth, water and air as well as the senses, the priest has a tray with a diya (lamp), offerings of food, water, flowers, incense and a small bell.  An ‘Aarti lamp’ is passed around a deity and is generally accompanied by the singing of songs in praise of that particular god. In doing so, the plate or lamp is supposed to acquire the power of the deity which is then passed around the people when the priest circulates the plate or lamp to all those present. The ceremony ends with everyone sharing the food which has been offered to the Gods.

Overnight will be in Jaipur.

Day 07
Jaipur – Fatehpur Sikri – Agra
By road 238 km in 5.5 hrs 

Have breakfast at the hotel.

Drive to Agra visiting Fatehpur Sikri en-route.

Have a refreshment stop at Bharatpur and enjoy lunch.

Drive to Fatehpur Sikri.

Fatehpur Sikri is a wonderful and interesting history related to the origin of Fatehpur Sikri. The Mughal emperor Akbar had many wives but had no heir. The desire for a son led him to many holy men and finally to the renowned Sufi Saint Sheikh Salim Chisti who lived in an isolated cave near Sikri. The saint blessed Akbar and soon a son was born to him. The emperor named his son Salim after the saint and erected the grand Jami Masjid near the saint’s dwelling. According to the legends if Akbar had to be blessed by a son, a sacrifice was to be made of a very dear one. The saint’s son volunteered to be sacrificed so that the heir to the throne could be born. To the west of the mosque lie two empresses, one of the saint and the other of the saint’s infant son. And thus Salim was born to the empress, Mariam-uz-Zamani on 30th August 1569 and the emperor vowed to build a great city; thus emerged the splendid city of Fatehpur Sikri on a stony ridge. This city was built during 1571 and 1585. But due to shortage of water, the Mughal emperor abandoned the city and within 20 years shifted the capital of Lahore.

Later continue the journey to Agra. Reach and check-in at the hotel.

Agra has a rich historical background, which is amply evident from the numerous historical monuments in and around the city. The earliest reference for Agra comes from the epical age, when Mahabharata refer Agra as Agravana. In the sources prior to this, Agra has been referred as Arya Griha or the abode of the Aryans. The first person who referred Agra by its modern name was Ptolemy.

Though the heritage of Agra city is linked with the Mughal dynasty, numerous other rulers also contributed to the rich past of this city. Modern Agra was founded by Sikandar Lodhi (Lodhi dynasty; Delhi Sultanate) in the 16th century. Babar (founder of the Mughal dynasty) also stayed for some time in Agra and introduced the concept of square Persian-styled gardens here. Emperor Akbar built the Agra fort and Fatehpur Sikri near Agra. Fatehpur Sikri remained his capital for around fifteen years after which the city was left isolated in mysterious circumstances. Jahangir beautified Agra with palaces and gardens despite spending most of his time in Kashmir with which he was passionately attached.

Agra came to its own when Shahjahan ascended to the throne of Mughal Empire. He marked the zenith of Mughal architecture, when he built the Taj in memory of his beloved wife Mumtaz Mahal. In his later years, Shahjahan shifted his capital to the new city of Shahjahanabad in Delhi and ruled from there. Shahjahan was dethroned in 1658 by his son, Aurangzeb who imprisoned him in the Agra Fort. Aurangzeb shifted the capital back to Agra till his death. After the death of Aurangzeb, Mughal Empire could not touch its peak and many regional kingdoms emerged. The post-Mughal era of Agra saw the rule of the Jats, Marathas and finally the British taking over the city.

Overnight will be in Agra.

Day 08
Agra

Proceed for sunrise visit to TAJ MAHAL.

Taj Mahal was known as the tomb of Begum Mumtaz Mahal. Actually this was the title conferred on the first lady, which means “the exalted of the Palace” and whose actual name was Arjumand Banu Begum. Mumtaz Mahal died on June 17, 1631. The whole nation and Mughal Empire was shrouded in grief on the death of this noble lady. Shah Jahan soon announced a memorial to be erected for the Begum and invited designs and layouts from famous architects. Innumerable designs were presented to the Emperor but he one finally selected was that of Ustad Isa Khan Effendi. On her death Mumtaz Mahal was first buried in Burhanpur. Six months later, her remains were temporarily reburied in a garden on the Bank of river Jamuna. The remains of Mumtaz was finally buried inside Taj Mahal. After the death of Shah Jahan on 1st February 1666, he was also buried beside Mumtaz in the Taj Mahal. The end of Shahjahan brought a golden chapter of Mughal Empire to a close, which portrayed magnificence, colour and elegance of those days. He left his memory behind in the Taj Mahal which serves as a pleasant symbol of dedicated love, conjugal harmony and mutual respect of two lovers. The Taj Mahal is unparalleled in beauty. Millions of people have visited it since centuries, but none has had doubts regarding its all-round supremacy. Their methods of compliments are varied but emotions behind them are essentially the same. Shah Jahan by constructing the world famous Taj Mahal has made this period of Mughal history immortal in the minds of art lovers.

Return to hotel for breakfast.

Start for a guided tour of Agra. 

Agra Fort is also known as Lal Qila. It is about 2.5 km northwest of its much more famous sister monument the Taj Mahal. The fort can be more accurately described as a walled palatial city Agra Fort built by Akbar In Red Sandstone when he was through with the consolidation of his power after accession to power in 1654. Agra Fort worked both as a military strategic point as well as the royal residence. Ever since Babur defeated and killed Abraham Lodi at Panipat in 1526, Agra played an important center of Mughal Empire it was in a ruined condition and Akbar decided to make it his capital and arrived in Agra in 1558 Akbar had it rebuilt with red sandstone Architects laid the foundation and it was built with bricks in the inner core with sandstone on external surfaces. Some 1,444,000 builders worked on it for eight years completing it in 1573.

Itmad-Ud-Daulah’s Tomb is as interesting as the life of the person for whom it was built. Mirza Ghiyas-ud-din was a poor merchant and lived in Persia. While on his was to India for business, his wife gave birth to a baby girl. As th family was extremely poor and had nothing to eat, the parents decided to abandon the child. However, the wails of the baby girl forced the parents to come back and take her with them. The baby girl brought a strok of good luck to her parents, for Ghiyas Beg found a caraven the straightaway took him to the court of the great Mughal Emperor, Akbar. In the course of time, Ghiyas Beg rose to become a minister and a trusted treasurer in Akber’s court. After Akber’s death in 1605, his son Jahangir became the Mughal emperor, who made Ghiyas Beg his chief minister or Wazir. Ghiayas Beg’s daughter grew up to be a beautiful lady and come to be known as Mehr-un-Nissa or the sun of womankind. In the course of time, the fame of her beauty spread. She was married off, but she soon became a widow. She returned to the court of Jahangir where he father was employed. Emperor Jahangir fell in love with her and married her. She soon became a powerful personality in Jahangir’s court and was called Mur Mahal, the light of the palace, and Nur Jahan, light of the world. When Ghiyas Beg died in 1622, Nur Jahan undertook the project to build his mausoleum. Later she built the tomb of her husband (in a similar style) in Lahore. Nur Jahan had a brother whose daughter was married to Jahangir’s son, Shahjahan. She was known as Mumtaz Mahal in whose memory Shahjahan built the world famous Taj Mahal.

Sikandra Located centrally in the square plan, at the junction of four causeways dividing the garden into four quarters, the main tomb building has five storeys built in the shape of a truncated pyramid. It stands on a high stone platform. There are massive iwans in the centre of all sides that are as high as the tomb and have beautiful panels adorned with inlaid mosaic work. Inlaid arabesque work graces its spandrels, semi-soffits boast of paintings and turrets have chevron designs. They are crowned by white marble chhaparkhat with eight pillars. The mortuary chambers are on the ground floor. The vestibule leading to the Akbar’s tomb is decorated with floresque, arabesque and calligraphic designs. The chamber itself is simple and paved with stone. The other chambers entomb graves of Aram Banu and Shukru-n-nisa (daughters of Akbar), Zebu-n-nisa (daughter of Aurangzeb) and Sulaiman Shikoh (son of Shah Alam). The first storey houses a large platform and corridors roofed by stone arches in each façade. The second storey is built of red sandstone and has arched verandah with twenty-three bays. These bays are crowned by cupolas and white marble pyramidal roofs decorated with glazed tiles arranged in geometrical designs. The third and fourth storeys follow similar plans, though they reduce in size with the ascending storeys. The fifth and the top most storey is entirely in white marble and has no roof. It has delicate marble screens as its walls.

Later proceed for a guided HERITAGE WALK.

Overnight will be in Agra.

 Day 9
Agra – Delhi
By road 235 km in 04 hrs
Delhi – Amritsar
By Train

Have breakfast at the hotel.

Proceed by road for Delhi.

Reach Delhi and you will be transferred to the railway station to board the train for Amritsar.

Company representatives will receive you on arrival at Amritsar railway station and transfer to hotel.

Inextricably linked with the history of Sikhism, Amritsar is amongst the most revered sites of the world. It was founded as recently as the 16th century. Its name is a derivative of the Amrit Sarovar (pool of nectar) amidst which stands the Golden Temple, the most sacred of Sikh shrines. Accounts suggest that Guru Amardas purchased the land from Emperor Akbar and decided to build a tank at the site. Following his death, it was completed by Guru Ramdas and also came to be known as Chak Ramdas or Guru ka Chak. Some of the oldest markets in Amritsar, notably Guru Ka Bazaar, date back to his time. The construction of the Golden Temple was initiated by Guru Arjan Dev while Guru Hargobind, who accorded the religion a martial temper, built the Akal Takht in 1606. Amritsar has a rich history encompassing various mythical and historical narratives including the epic Ramayana. It is believed that the site called Ram Tirath was Maharish Valmiki’s ashram, where Sita reportedly gave birth to her twin sons, Luv and Kush. The Gobindgarh Fort and Ram Bagh were built by Maharaja Ranjit Singh, the founder of the Sikh Empire. While the Jallianwala Bagh continues to be the most evocative monument to India’s freedom struggle. The Khalsa College, established by visionary leaders at the beginning of the 20th century turned Amritsar into a hub of education. Also a centre of thriving industry since its inception, Amritsar is famed for its textiles, particularly shawls, and for its carpets. Amritsar has gained tremendous popularity for its gourmet traditions; especially the dhabas (roadside eatery) that churn out, amongst an inexhaustible list of delicacies, irresistible kulchas, chola-bhaturas, tandoori chicken and fried fish. Amritsar has all the makings of a well-rounded tourist destination; its ancient legends, historical monuments, places of worship, old bazaars, theatre traditions and colourful festivals all serve as a window to its robust past. Excursions to the Harike Bird Sanctuary and visits to the India-Pakistan border at Wagah are an absolute delight, while breaking bread or celebrating Diwali with the denizens of this hospitable city is without parallel.

Overnight will be in Amritsar. 

Day 10
Amritsar 

Have breakfast at the hotel. 

Proceed for the city sightseeing.

Golden Temple: The most sacred of Sikh shrines, the Golden Temple, is a major pilgrimage destination for devotees from around the world, as well as, an ever increasing popular tourist attraction. Construction of the Amrit Sarovar (pool of nectar) was initiated by Guru Amar Das, the third Guru, in 1570 and was completed by Guru Ram Das, the fourth Guru. His successor, Guru Arjan Dev began work on the building after inviting Mian Mir, the Sufi saint, to lay its foundation stone in 1588. Completed three years later, the Harimandar Sahib, or Darbar Sahib, as it is also known, required substantial restoration following its sacking by the 18th century Afghan invader, Ahmad Shah Abdali. It was Maharaja Ranjit Singh who oversaw the gilding of the shrine in the early 19th century, earning it its English moniker. In step with Sikhism’s basic tenet of universal brotherhood and all-inclusive ethos, the Golden Temple is accessed from all directions. The main entrance is through an imposing clock tower, which also houses the Central Sikh Museum, and provides a stunning view of the shrine and its reflection in the Amrit Sarovar. Another entry is through the magnificent silver doors of the beautifully embellished Darshani Deori. It leads onto the causeway that connects the sanctum sanctorum with the Parikrama, the marbled surface surrounding the Sarovar. The lower facade of the Golden Temple is clad in marble, inlaid with precious and semi-precious coloured stones, using the pietra dura technique to create motifs. Within, the Guru Granth Sahib is enshrined on the ground floor, in a room embellished with splendid frescoes. The Parikrama is marked by a number of shrines and memorials of spiritual and historical importance. These include the Dukh Bhanjani Beri, the gilded chhatri of Ath-sath Tirath, a memorial to Baba Deep SinghandGurdwara Lachi Ber. Close to the Darshani Deori lies the Beri Baba Buddha, another revered site. Baba Buddha lived for a 120 years and had the opportunity to serve five Gurus during his lifetime. He oversaw the construction work at the Amrit Sarovar, and this ancient beri (Zizyphus tree) marks the spot where Baba Buddha sat with his tools. Also part of the complex is the seat of the Sikh temporal authority, the Akal Takht, the foundation of which was laid in 1606 by Guru Hargobind, who felt that the Sikh faith required a martial tenor. The ground floor of the Akal Takht was ready by 1774 while the rest of the five-storied edifice was completed during the reign of Maharaja Ranjit Singh.

Maharaja Ranjit Singh Museum and Panorama: The Ram Bagh Palace was converted into a museum in 1977 and has an interesting collection of archival records from the court of Maharaja Ranjit Singh, including the attire worn by Sikh warriors, paintings, miniatures, coins, and weapons. In close proximity of the museum lies the Maharaja Ranjit Singh Panorama, a permanent visual documentation of the Maharaja’s life. This remarkable feature is housed in a large two-storied circular building and features a magnificent painting depicting six of his major battles on the upper level. Fronted by three dimensional figures replicating the scenes, it is accompanied by a multimedia representation of the sights and sounds of war. Other attractions include life-size paintings, as well as dioramas (three-dimensional scenes) of the Maharaja’s early life and one particularly notable one of his court in Lahore. The latter is a likeness of a painting by the Astro-Hungarian artist, August Schoefft; also called ‘Court of Lahore’, it was completed it in 1852 and exhibited in Vienna for the first time in 1855. (Closed on Monday & Public holidays) 

Jalian Wala Bagh: On 13 April 1919, a peaceful crowd of 2000 men, women and children had gathered in Jallianwala Bagh, a walled garden near the Golden Temple, to protest British rule. A group of British soldiers led by Brigadier-General Reginald Dyer opened unprovoked fire at the innocent crowd, relentlessly massacring the protestors even as the crowd dispersed in panic, many of them jumping into a well to escape the gunfire. Today, the furthest end of the Bagh is marked by a Martyrs’ Memorial built in the shape of an eternal flame. A section of the wall, pock-marked by bullets, as also the well, has been preserved as a reminder of the tragic event.

Later proceed to Wagah Border to witness the afternoon parade ceremony. Experience the Beating Retreat Ceremony with ceremonial closing of gates and lowering of flags of India and Pakistan. An unique experience not to be missed while your stay in Amritsar.

Wagha Border: Located at about 29 km from Amritsar on the Grand Trunk, Wagah border post has become famous for the ceremonial closing of gates and lowering of flags of India and Pakistan. BSF and Pakistani Rangers march towards the gates from their respective sides. After the gate is open, the soldiers salute each other and start lowering the flags. The flags are carefully folded and carried back. The ceremony reaches a crescendo with the soldiers returning to the border line for the final handshake and the blowing of the bugle marks the end of the ceremony.

Overnight will be in Amritsar. 

Day 11
Amritsar – Chandigarh
By road 230 km in 05 hrs 

Have breakfast at the hotel.

Drive to Chandigarh.

Reach and check in at the hotel and relax.

Chandigarh is the best-planned city in India, with architecture which is world-renowned, and a quality of life, which is unparalleled. As the capital of the states of Punjab and Haryana, and the Union Territory of Chandigarh it is a prestigious city. The face of modern India, Chandigarh, is the manifestation of a dream that Pt. Jawahar Lal Nehru envisaged and Le Corbusier executed.

Serenity and a city are two diametrically opposite concepts, which however, get belied in the ‘City Beautiful’. Chandigarh is a rare epitome of modernization co-existing with nature’s preservation. It is here that the trees and plants are as much a part of the construction plans as the buildings and the roads. India’s first planned city, is a rich, prosperous, spic and span, green city rightly called “THE CITY BEAUTIFUL”.

Later proceed for the city sightseeing.

Rose Garden: Named after India’s former President Dr. Zakir Hussain, the garden was established in 1967 under the guidance of Chandigarh’s first Chief Commissioner, Late Dr. M.S. Randhawa. The largest Rose Garden in Asia, is spread over an area of 27 acres and has more than 17000 plants representing some 1600 varieties of roses. Along with the roses, emphasis was also given to the trees of medicinal value and some unique species of trees to enhance the beauty of the garden. The annual “Festival of Gardens” is organized in the Rose Garden in the month of February and is listed in the “National Calendar of Events”.

Rock Garden: Chandigarh has the distinction of having a unique world acclaimed Rock Garden. It Consist of art object, fashioned from industrial and urban waste. It is situated between the capital complex and Sukhna lake in Sector 1. It nestles amidst 20 acres of woods in the form of an open air exhibition hall, theatre trove and a miniature maze all rolled into one vast fantasy land of art and landscape. It is without doubt, a tourist spot that is a must on the itinerary of visitor to Chandigarh.

An unpretentious entrance leads to a magnificent, almost, surrealist arrangement of rocks, boulders, broken chinaware, discarded fluorescent tubes, broken and cast away glass bangles, building waste, coal and clay-all juxtaposed to create a dream folk world of palaces, soldiers, monkeys, village life, women and temples. The open air sculptures and concealed gateways separating them are at places enhanced by a waterfall, pools and an open air theatre with proper stage setting. Several prestigious performances have been staged in this small but very artistic and naturalistic open air theatre.

Sukhna Lake: Nestled at the foothills of Shivaliks, Sukhna Lake is a beautiful lake set amid the picturesque surroundings of Chandigarh. Stretching for a distance of 3 kms, the Sukhna Lake is a man-made lake and is one of its kind in the city created in the year 1958 by damming the seasonal stream, Sukhna Choe that comes down from Shivalik Hills. With its pristine blue water, the lake serves as a perfect location for a stream of morning joggers and walkers who can also enjoy the fresh air.

Apart from serving as a delight for artists and photographers, the lake is also a spot for sports activities such as boating, trampoline jumping and a recent addition of Solar Cruise. It is home to several species of fishes and migratory birds such as Siberian ducks and cranes. Being the home to several varieties of fishes and migratory birds, Sukhna Lake has been declared by the Government of India as a reserved national wetland. Bounded by a golf course on the south and popular Rose Garden towards west, the lake offers a mesmerizing view for its visitors at all time of the day. Sukhna Lake is quite popular amid the locals and visitors, the place is a perfect destination for solitude seekers.

Capitol Complex: The Capitol Complex is Le Corbusier’s most spectacular work. The magnificent edifices, set against the Shivalik peaks, stand “as massive concrete sculptures, representing the monumental character authority that the complex represents. It is the seat of the government of the States of Punjab and Haryana. It comprises three epoch-making master-pieces: the Secretariat, the High Court and the Legislative Assembly. Separated by large piazzas, the subtle and most evocative grouping of these buildings is of breath-taking beauty. And in the centre stands the giant metallic sculpture of The Open Hand, the official emblem of Chandigarh, signifying the city’s credo of ‘open to give’ ‘open to receive’.

Overnight will be in Chandigarh. 

Day 12
Chandigarh – Kalka
By road 30 km in 1 hr
Kalka – Shimla
By Toy Train in 05 hrs

Have breakfast at the hotel.

Drive to Kalka. Reach and you will be transferred to Kalka railway station for Toy Train to Shimla. 

Enjoy the Toy Train ride journey. It is known for dramatic views of the hills and surrounding villages. The Kalka–Shimla Railway was built in 1898 to connect Shimla, the summer capital of India during the British Raj with the rest of the Indian rail system. It has been listed in world heritage list by UNESCO for its altitude, length and tropical conditions in which it operate. 

Reach and transfer to the hotel. Check-in and relax.

Shimla: The former summer capital of the British in India, and the present capital of Himachal Pradesh, Shimla has been blessed with all the natural bounties which one can think of. It has got a scenic location and is surrounded by green hills with snowcapped peaks. The spectacular cool hills accompanied by the structures made during the colonial era, creates an aura which is very different from other hill.

Bulging at its seams with unprecedented expansion, Shimla retains its colonial heritage, with grand old buildings, charming iron lamp posts and Anglo-Saxon names. The Mall, packed with shops and eateries, is the main attraction of the town, and Scandal Point, associated with the former Maharaja of Patiala’s escapades, offers a view of distant snow clad peaks.

Shimla is ideally located, and though there is an air service to the town, it is best reached by road that takes in the charms of the HIMALAYAN countryside at its best. There is a sense of nostalgia about SHIMLA, with its old bungalows and their gabled roofs and beautiful gardens.

Refresh and proceed for a walking trail to The Mall or visit Lakkar Bazaar popular for its wood crafts and souvenirs.

Enjoy the evening at The Ridge / Scandal Point.

The Ridge: The Ridge: The large open space in the heart of town presents excellent view of the mountain ranges. Shimla’s landmarks – the Neo-Gothic structure of Christ Church and the new – Tudor Library building is worth seeing. Most major places of the colonial town are connected through The Ridge. It is also famous venue for hosting various administrative functions and fairs including the most famous Summer Festival during April / May bringing colours to whole of Shimla with a bouquet of activities.

Christ Church: Standing tall through the tough rapids of time, the Christ Church is one of the most important buildings of Shimla. It tells the story of a part of the town’s rich history – and its pews mark the seats of the Viceroy, the Commander-in-Chief and the Lieutenant-Governor of the Punjab, while the fascinating memorial tablets in brass and marble sound a roll call for some who shaped what was the British Empire.

Overnight will be in Shimla. 

Day 13
Shimla (Excursion to Kufri & Chail) 

Have breakfast at the hotel. 

Proceed for an excursion of Kufri, located at distance of 16 kms from Shimla and at an altitude of 2510 m above sea level, is a site offering some famous hikes and wonderful snow for skiing in winters. An enjoyable walk leads up to the Mahasu Peak. The Himalayan Nature Park here has a good collection of animals and birds found in the region.

Later drive to Chail.

Chail: Located at 43 kms from Shimla, Chail is a lush green setting with breathtaking views of the Himalayan peaks. It was the former capital of the Patiala State. It has the world’s highest cricket ground at a height of 2250 m, built in 1893. It is also a hiker’s paradise and there is a wildlife sanctuary at a distance of 3 kms from here.

Return to Shimla and for exploration of the famous places of the colonial town. 

The Mall: The Mall is the main shopping centre of Shimla with restaurants, the Gaiety Theatre, which is a reproduction of an old British theatre, is a center of cultural activities. A passenger lift of HPTDC can be taken from the Cart Road and the Mall. Lakkar Bazaar adjacent to the Ridge is popular for its wood crafts and souvenirs.

Summer Hill: A picturesque superb on Shimla-Kalka Railway line; offers shady walks in quiet surroundings. The Father of Nation, Mahatma Gandhi during his visit to Shimla lived in the elegant Georgian House of Raj Kumari Amrit Kaur. HP University (Himachal Pradesh University) is situated here.

Chadwick Falls: 7 Km away from the town, past the Summer Hill, surrounded by woods, rain-fed falls greet the visitors here.

Indian Institute of Advanced Study (Viceregal Lodge): 3 kms away, IIAS is housed in the former Viceregal Lodge. Built in 1988 this is a spectacular English renaissance-inspired grey-stone structure with superb Burma teak woodwork on the interiors. It is surrounded by magnificent grounds and also has a small museum. 

Jakhoo Temple: Two Km from city centre, this is Shimla’s highest point and offers a panoramic view of the town’s hills and distant mountain ranges. There are spectacular views at sunrise and sunset especially during the monsoons. The peak has a temple dedicated to Lord Hanuman. Legend has it that he stopped here while searching for the sanjivini plant – the herb required to cure Laxman who lay mortally wounded on a battlefield in Lanka in an episode from the epic Ramayana. A variation of the legend says that his sandal fell here. The temple has been exhaustively renovated and this vantage point is being connected by a ropeway. At the top of the hill in the temple complex is a 108 feet tall idol of Lord Hanuman is a big attraction for the tourists.

Tara Devi: This holy place can be visited by foot around 5 kms walk among dense forests. Temple is accessible through motorable road also and it’s around 20 kms journey from the town. Situated on top of a hill that faces Shimla, the temple offers panoramic views of Shimla town and surrounding hills. A thick forest of oak and rhododendron surrounds it. It is also famous picnic spot among visitors.

Overnight will be in Shimla. 

Day 14
Shimla – Chandigarh
By road 114 km in 04hrs
Chandigarh – Delhi
By Train 

Delhi – departure
By air

Have breakfast at the hotel.

Drive to Chandigarh. Reach and you will be transferred to railway station and board the train for Delhi.

Reach Delhi and as per your flight timings, you will be transferred to Delhi airport to take flight back home / onward destination with pleasant memories of your tour. 

END OF THE JOURNEY

THE TOUR INCLUDES:-

  • ACCOMMODATION AT SUGGESTED HOTELS
  • DAILY BUFFET BREAKFAST AT HOTELS
  • SIGHTSEEING TOURS AS STATED IN THE ITINERARY
  • AC VEHICLE FOR ALL TRANSFERS & SIGHTSEEING AS PER THE ITINERARY
  • MONUMENT ENTRY FEE
  • LOCAL ENGLISH SPEAKING GUIDES FOR ALL TOURS AS PER ITINERARY
  • ASSISTANCE AT THE AIRPORTS/STATIONS ON ARRIVAL / DEPARTURE
  • INTERNAL AIRFARE AS PER ITINERARY IN NORMAL CLASS
  • TRAIN JOURNEY FROM DELHI – AMRITSAR, KALKA TO SHIMLA AND CHANDIGARH – DELHI IN BEST AVAILABLE CLASS,
  • WELCOME DINNER AT DELHI
  • OLD DELHI RICKSHAW TOUR
  • SPICE MARKET WALKING TOUR IN DELHI
  • VISIT TO GURUDWARA BANGLA SAHIB IN DELHI
  • AARTI CEREMONY IN JAIPUR
  • ELEPHANT RIDE AT JAIPUR
  • WALKING TOUR IN THE LANES OF PINK CITY
  • LOCAL BAZAAR VISIT BY RICKSHAW IN JAIPUR
  • VISIT TO CHOKHI DHANI WITH DINNER IN JAIPUR
  • VISIT TO FATEHPUR SIKRI
  • HORSE CART/BATTERY VAN RIDE TO TAJ MAHAL IN AGRA
  • SUNRISE VISIT TO THE TAJ MAHAL
  • HERITAGE WALK IN AGRA,
  • VISIT TO THE GOLDEN TEMPLE IN AMRITSAR
  • WAGAH BORDER CEREMONY IN AMRITSAR
  • VISIT TO ROCK GARDEN IN CHANDIGARH
  • TOY TRAIN RIDE FROM KALKA TO SHIMLA
  • DAY EXCURSION TO KUFRI & CHAIL FROM SHIMLA
  • BOTTLED WATER DURING DRIVES AND SIGHTSEEING VISITS
  • APPLICABLE GOVERNMENT TAXES, ROAD TAXES, PARKING
  • DRIVER ALLOWANCES AND SERVICE CHARGES

TOUR EXCLUSIONS:-

  • MEALS NOT MENTIONED IN TOUR INCLUSIONS
  • ANY KIND OF PERSONAL EXPENSES SUCH AS TIPS, LAUNDRY, PORTER CHARGES, TELEPHONE BILLS AND ALCOHOLIC & SOFT BEVERAGES ETC.
  • CAMERA FEES (STILL OR MOVIE)
  • INTERNATIONAL AIRFARE
  • MEDICAL & TRAVEL INSURANCE
  • VISA FEE
  • ANY SERVICE NOT MENTIONED IN TOUR INCLUSIONS

Prices are available upon request. Rates may vary based on the time of the year and the number of people traveling. Email us if you’re interested in this particular itinerary. This can further be customized according to your preferences and requirements.

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