On this Golden Triangle tour, discover India’s fascinating heritage and beautiful architecture as you explore the capital New Delhi and then the famous monuments of Agra and Jaipur.
Delhi, the capital of India, is endowed with historical grandeur and edifices. The Rashtrapati Bhavan, Rajpath, India Gate, Parliament House and Teen Murti are a part of the capital better known as Lutyens Delhi.
The Taj Mahal, one of the New Seven Wonders of the World, is also a UNESCO World Heritage Site.The beautifully-designed abandoned city of Fatehpur Sikri, once the capital city of the Mughals, was built by Emperor Akbar using red sandstone and marble. Its attractions include the Bulund Darwaza, an arched gateway that is 40 metres high, the tomb of Sufi saint Salim Chisti and the palace of Jodha Bai, Akbar's Rajput queen.
In Jaipur see the grand Amber Fort perched on top of a hill. This Rajput fort-palace has beautiful mosaics and marble relief panels. Pick up tie and dye fabric, blue pottery items and a whole range of products made from camel skin while you are there
Day 1: Arrive in Delhi
Upon arrival at the New Delhi airport, you will be met by a representative and transferred to your hotel in Delhi. Check into your hotel, Hotel Surya. Rest of the day is at leisure.
Overnight at the Hotel Surya. It has a multi-cuisine restaurant and all its well-appointed rooms have contemporary amenities and styling.
Day 2: Sightseeing in Old and New Delhi
After breakfast at your hotel, your local English-speaking guide will meet you at your hotel and take you in an air-conditioned vehicle for a sightseeing tour of Old and New Delhi.
In New Delhi, visit the 12th century Qutab Minar, gracefully hand-carved for its entire height of 234ft, and the famous Iron Pillar, which has withstood the ravages of time and not rusted even after 1500 years.
Visit the Humayun Tomb, mausoleum of emperor Humayun - a forerunner of the Mughal style of architecture and the imposing modern Lakshminarayan temple. Drive past the India Gate (war memorial dedicated to the lives of laid down by the Indian soldiers), the Rashtrapati Bhavan, the president's residence - formerly the Viceroy's Palace, Parliament House and the Secretariat buildings - an interesting blend of the Victorian and 20th century architecture.
Later, sightseeing of Old Delhi takes you to the Raj Ghat (memorial to Mahatma Gandhi), Jama Masjid, the largest mosque in India.
Drive past Chandni Chowk, once an imperial avenue of Mughal royalty which today is the busiest commercial area of the city. Walk through Chandni Chowk to savour the ambience of an oriental bazaar.
Return to your hotel in Delhi for your overnight stay.
Day 3: Delhi - Agra
Leave Delhi in the morning after breakfast, and travel in an air-conditioned vehicle towards Agra. Agra is approximately 204 kms from Delhi and the journey takes about 4-5 hours.
Arrive in Agra and check into your hotel, the Clarks Shiraz. The Clarks Shiraz is a luxury hotel located near the Taj Mahal. The hotel has air-conditioned rooms, multi-cuisine restaurants, a swimming pool and other modern amenities.
Later, you will be picked up from your hotel and taken on a sightseeing tour of Agra city. A local English-speaking guide will accompany you on your tour. The highlight of any trip to Agra is, of course, the world-famous Taj Mahal. A UNESCO World Heritage Site, the Taj Mahal is built entirely out of white marble, built by Shah Jahan in 1560 in memory of his queen Mumtaz Mahal to enshrine her mortal remains. This architectural marvel is a perfectly proportioned masterpiece fashioned from white marble that stands testimony to the skill of 20,000 craftsmen brought together from Persia, Turkey, France and Italy. It took 21 years to complete this ' Love Poem in Marble'. Explore this historical landmark and see the fine ‘pietra dura’ (marble inlay work), marble screens and cenotaphs of Emperor Shah Jahan and Mumtaz Mahal.
From the Taj Mahal, proceed towards the Agra Fort. The fort is built of red sandstone and marble and offers incredible views of the Taj Mahal and Yamuna River. Visit the Diwan-e-Aam (House of Commons), mosques and royal pavilions like the Macchi Bhavan and Shah Jahani Mahal. Marvel at the ingenuity of Mughal architecture that kept rooms cool by constructing walls hollowed out for water to flow through them. Some of the buildings are made of pure marble and have beautiful carvings.
Return to your hotel where you will spend the night.
Day 4: Agra - Fatehpur Sikri – Jaipur
After breakfast at your hotel, set out in an air-conditioned vehicle with your English-speaking guide for Fatehpur Sikri which is located 40 kilometres away from Agra.
Fatehpur Sikri is the beautiful, deserted capital city of the Mughals and was built by Emperor Akbar in the late 16th century. According to legend, the city was built in honour of the great Sufi Saint Sheikh Salim Chisti after whose blessings a childless Akbar got an heir. Visit the remarkably well-preserved buildings like the tomb of Salim Chisti, red sandstone structures of the Jama Masjid (a mosque), Panch Mahal and the Palace of Jodha Bai. The structures reflect a blend of Islamic, Hindu and Persian styles of architecture.
From Fatehpur Sikri, drive 221 kilometres to Jaipur in Rajasthan. Check into the Four Point by Sheraton for your overnight stay. The five-star Four Point by Sheraton is nearby to railway station, airport and major shopping complexes. Four Point by Sheraton is surrounded by beautiful gardens that create a very peaceful atmosphere. All rooms are beautifully decorated and offer all the modern amenities. The restaurant offers national and international cuisine.
Day 5: Jaipur
In the morning after breakfast, set out from your hotel in Jaipur accompanied by an English-speaking guide for the hilltop fort at Amber. Along the way, stop at the Hawa Mahal, the Palace of the Winds and get some photographs of this beautifully crafted structure which overlooks a bustling market. The palace has a number of small windows and screens with arched roofs and intricate carving and was constructed so that the women from royal families could watch processions below without being observed themselves.
Continue to the Amber Fort, a classic, romantic Rajasthani fort-palace. This journey to the Amber fort will be made either in a jeep or on an elephant! Built on top of a hill, it has a commanding view of the surrounds and you can take an elephant ride from the base of the hill to the fort. Constructed by Raja Man Singh I in 1592, this Rajput fort-palace is a must visit for its mosaics and marble relief panels. Miniatures painted on the walls depict hunting and war scenes and offer a glimpse into the lives led by the King and his nobles. Sheesh Mahal, a room whose walls and ceiling is embedded with mirrors is particularly beautiful. A guide will light a candle inside Sheesh Mahal and the room glitters like a million diamonds. This is a sight you will never forget.
In the afternoon, take a sightseeing tour of Jaipur, the Pink City and visit the Maharaja's City Palace. The residence of the royal family of Jaipur, a part of it is now a museum while the rest is occupied by the royal family. The palace is built in the style of a fortified campus and the Armoury Museum is a must visit for its armoury section. Continue to the Jantar Mantar, built by King Jai Singh II who had a deep interest in astronomy. This is the largest stone and marble crafted observatory in the world. Situated near the gate of the city palace, the observatory has 17 large instruments like the sun dial, and many of them are still in working condition.
Return to your hotel, where you will spend the night.
Day 6: Jaipur – Delhi
After breakfast, the rest of the morning is at leisure.
In the afternoon, you will travel back to Delhi in an air-conditioned vehicle. This is a distance of about 258 kms and the journey will take about 6 hours. You will be driven straight to the Delhi airport in time to catch your flight for your onward destination.