Grand Tour of India & Nepal
Explore the highlights of India and Nepal on this grand tour which includes some of the world's most beautiful temples, sights and scenery. We witness colourful ceremonies, a game drive, and experience breathtaking views of the Himalaya from Pokhara on this adventurous tour.
We depart London on our flight to the Indian city of Amritsar. On arrival in the late-morning of Day 2, we transfer to the Radisson Blu Hotel. After settling in, you have free time to explore Amritsar. Tonight we head to the stunning Golden Temple, a Sikh holy shrine and one of India's most breathtaking sights. At night the temple is beautifully illuminated, with the rich golden glow of its remarkable façades reflecting in the surrounding waters. Here we witness the Palki Ceremony, an atmospheric tradition where the Sikh Holy Book is paraded triumphantly through a crowd of worshippers and 'put to bed'.
This morning we enjoy a guided tour of Amritsar, including another visit to the Golden Temple. We also visit the Jallianwala Bagh Gardens, an important memorial site. This evening, we visit the Wagah Border, which separates Pakistan and India, to witness the flag lowering ceremony. On Day 4 you have a day at leisure, or the chance to join an optional heritage tour of Amritsar (payable locally). This afternoon we travel by train to Delhi for two nights.
On Day 5 we explore Delhi with a tour of the historic streets and colourful markets of Old Delhi and a rickshaw ride through the lively bazaar. We move on to New Delhi where we visit Qutab Minar, Humayun's Tomb, India Gate, and the President's Palace.
Today we board the early train to Agra, where we transfer to the Hilton Agra. We visit the vast Agra Fort before crossing the city later this afternoon for a sunset visit to the Taj Mahal, one of the Seven Wonders of the modern World. Our sunset visit ensures we experience the magical aura as the setting sun highlights the incredible pink and red hues of the mausoleum's stunning white marble.
This morning we travel by coach to the city of Lucknow. Lucknow is now almost forgotten to the British, but, as a key city of the British Raj, wonderful colonial architecture still exists in abundance. We transfer to the Vivanta by Taj Hotel, where we enjoy dinner together this evening.
On Day 8 we visit the famous La Martiniere Boys' School, founded by an endowment from Major-General Claude Martin. We also see the magnificent Imambara. Set in wonderful gardens, its centrepiece is the mosque which houses India's largest hall. We proceed to the moving British Residency, site of the tragic siege of 1857.
Our final train journey of the tour takes us to Varanasi, the Hindu's sacred city which attracts thousands of pilgrims a year, and is one of the world's oldest continuously inhabited cities. We check in to the Taj Gateway Hotel Ganges, where we spend the night. Tonight we watch the spectacular Aarti fire ceremony at the Ghats on the banks of the Ganges.
On Day 10 we experience sunrise during a boat ride on the Ganges. Hindus flock to the river at sunrise to cleanse themselves of their sins, creating one of the most spectacular sights in India. We then explore the Old City on foot, including the Bharat Mata Temple. Later we take an excursion to Sarnath, where Buddha gave his first sermon, and now considered the place where Buddhism took root. This evening, we transfer to the airport for our flight to Delhi, where we spend the night.
Today we fly to Kathmandu in Nepal. As we arrive, the differences in the characteristics of the country are immediately apparent - particularly the Pagoda-style buildings and monks in traditional Buddhist robes. This afternoon we visit the Boudhanath Stupa, the largest Buddhist Stupa in the world, which is adorned with Nepalese prayer flags. Our hotel here is the Gokarna Forest Resort, set in the peaceful forests just outside Kathmandu.
On Day 12 we visit the Durbar Square of both Kathmandu and Patan, the social, religious and urban hubs of the cities and the ancient seats of power in the mountain kingdoms of Nepal. This evening we enjoy dinner at Rum Doodle Restaurant. Though it has since moved locations, the original restaurant was known as a former hotspot for famous mountaineers including Edmund Hillary and Sherpa Tenzing. Before our meal we meet a Sherpa who has climbed Everest and have the opportunity to talk with him about his experiences.
This morning we see Pashupatinath Temple, one of the most significant Shiva temples in the world which only Hindus are allowed to enter. We also see Kathmandu's ghats before leaving the city and driving west to Chitwan National Park, stopping for lunch together. Chitwan is home to a fabulous variety of wildlife, including rhinos, sloth bears, leopards, crocodiles and the elusive Royal Bengal tiger. We stay at the Safari Narayani Lodge, which offers basic but comfortable accommodation.
On Day 14 we enjoy a wonderful Jeep safari through the jungles and grasslands of Chitwan National Park. We are likely to see rhino, and if very lucky, the elusive tiger. After lunch in the hotel, we take a canoe ride on the river, which provides an opportunity to see two types of crocodile and lots of species of birds.
This morning we drive back towards the Himalaya, a journey past turquoise glacial rapids and jungle-covered peaks to Pokhara. Set on the shores of beautiful Lake Phewa and with staggering views of Fishtail Peak (at 22,900 ft), Pokhara is undoubtedly one of the world's most scenic places. We stay for three nights at the unforgettable Fishtail Lodge, set on a peaceful island in Lake Phewa, accessible only by boat. Day 16 is at leisure in Pokhara.
On Day 17 we drive up to Sarangkot, a mountain viewpoint which offers a once-in-alifetime experience - witnessing sunrise over the Himalayas. After breakfast we explore Pokhara, visiting Devi's Waterfall and the Gurkha Museum, where we have the chance to chat with an ex-British Army Gurkha. We then enjoy an early evening cruise on Lake Phewa to watch the sun set on Fishtail Peak.
This morning we drive back to Kathmandu and check in to our hotel. After a free afternoon, we enjoy farewell dinner this evening at our hotel. On Day 19 we return to Kathmandu Airport for our flight to London via Delhi.
Your holiday to India & Nepal enables you to visit many world famous land marks and take part in exciting excursions, in order to do this you will experience different modes of transport and stay in multiple resorts.
Along your journey you will encounter some areas that someone with reduced mobility may find difficult, we therefore recommend a moderate level of fitness to enjoy this tour to its fullest. Please call for more details.
For certain departure dates the days of specific excursions may change. All advertised tours and, inclusions and excursions will take place, however not necessarily on their originally designated day.
Provisional departure and return times, where available, can be found together with our dates and prices by clicking on the 'Prices & Availability' button. We write to all booked customers approximately 10 weeks prior to the start of their tour to advise the exact departure and return time for their particular group.
An escorted experience and all travel arrangements
Comfortable accommodation in your destination
Delicious meals included
Exciting excursions and free time to explore
British Citizens require a visa to enter India and Nepal. We can help you with visa applications up to 21 days before departure - please see the Visa section of 'Things You Should Know' for further details.
of travellers would recommend this tour
based on 8 verified reviews
The tour fulfilled our expectations, the choice of hotels superb the tour locations magnificent and even saw a tiger! The whole group really jelled together and are now firm friends.
excellent all round - value for money, staff on the ground, hotels, visits etc.
This was a fantastic tour, but an extremely demanding one. Every day was crammed with seeing fantastic sights or travelling to or from them. Therefore, there was no time to relax or even shop, apart from the 3 upmarket stores chosen by GRJ! We stayed in 10 different hotels, all of which were of a very high standard. Our group of 31 got on so well, very supportive and caring for those of us who had 'the runs'
Everything about the holiday was fabulous msde even better if that was possible by the great management and dedication of the tour manager Roger Marsden
lots of wonderful places to see and learn about and a lovely group of people
What an adventure we had, with the best of care.
It was a great tour. The only problem was perhaps too long bus journey from Kathmandu to Pokhara and back. But the organization, accommodation were excellent and our Tour manager was really great, helpful, considered and extremely well prepared.
Good tour guide, excellent hotels. All 30 of us .got on really well and a bonus no one fell ill
An action packed tour that covered most aspects of interest.There wasn't enough travel by train(2 journeys) and too much uncomfortable coach travel. The hotels were mainly good but the food was often disappointing.
Very well organised right from the start. Excellent Tour Manager, very knowledgable and willing to go that extra mile to ensure group were well catered for.
The majesty of India and Nepal by train