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Grand Tour of India & Nepal

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(25 reviews)
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The majesty of India and Nepal by train

18 daysFrom $3,895 per person

2020 Tour code: KTJ20

About the tour

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.

Highlights

What’s included

Itinerary

Day 1 - To Amritsar

Meet your group and Tour Manager at the Radisson Blu Hotel in Amritsar. After settling in, you are free 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'.

The Golden Temple at Amritsar
Days 2-4 - Amritsar to Delhi

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 3 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 4 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.

Humayuns Tomb, Delhi
Days 5 - Agra and the Taj Mahal

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.

Taj Mahal
Days 6-7- Agra to Lucknow

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 7 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.

Imambara, Lucknow
Days 8-9 - Varanasi and sunrise on the Ganges

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 9 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.

Varanasi
Day 10-11 - Varanasi to Kathmandu

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 11 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.

Durbar Square, Patan
Days 12-13 - Kathmandu to Chitwan

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 Jungle Villa Resort.

On Day 13 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.

Chitwan National Park
Days 14-16 - Into the Himalayas

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 15 is at leisure in Pokhara.

On Day 16 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.

Pokhara, Nepal
Days 17-18 - To Kathmandu and Home

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 18 you make your way to the airport for your flight back home.

Kathmandu

Additional information

Please note

Your tour 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.

Recommended Airports

For this tour, we recommend arriving into Sri Guru Ram Dass Jee Airport, which is approximately 0.8 miles from your first hotel. Our recommended departure airport is the Tribhuvan Airport, which is approximately 3 miles from your final hotel.

Airport waiting room
Visa Requirements

It is your responsibility to check and fulfil the passport, visa, health and immigration requirements applicable to your itinerary. We do not accept any responsibility if you cannot travel, or incur any other loss because you have not complied with any passport, visa, immigration requirements or health formalities. You agree to reimburse us in relation to any fines or other losses which we incur as a result of your failure to comply with any passport, visa, immigration requirements or health formalities.

Departure times

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.

Hotels

DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Agra

DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Agra, Agra

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Safari Narayani Hotel, Chitwan

Safari Narayani Hotel, Chitwan

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Taj Palace, New Delhi

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Radisson Hotel Kathmandu, Kathmandu

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Vivanta by Taj Hotel, Lucknow

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Fish Tail Lodge, Pokhara

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The Gateway Hotel Ganges, Varanasi

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Train

Shatabdi Express

Reviews

92% of travellers would recommend this tour

Based on 25 verified reviews

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Anonymous

Submitted May 12, 2019

The flights with Jet Airways were not comfortable and the food was not great. This is separate from the issues with the airlines impending insolvency, it was to do with the lack of comfortable seating and legroom on the plane- and I’m a short person.

Mr D Wakeling

Submitted Apr 24, 2019

It was a superb trip - India is a fabulous country could never disappoint, Nepal is also a great place to visit. However, a crammed itinerary with long coach journeys, long train journeys and many internal flights - not much time to catch your breath! I think the Itinerary needs to cut down on coach time in Nepal - an internal flight would help. Also, the long dirty train journey into Varanasi was unnecessary when there's a high speed alternative! Travellers to Kathmandu need to be aware how dusty the city is and the need for nose and mouth masks. Loved the extension to Kerala for a much needed rest! All in all a brilliant trip.

Anonymous

Submitted Apr 22, 2019

The trip was well organised with everything running smoothly. The whole trip gave a good overall view of the diversity of Indian and Nepalese culture and life. The hotels were excellent with great food. The tour manager and guides were knowledgeable and accessible.

Mrs E Bettridge

Submitted Apr 18, 2019

Excellent, full on itinerary, saw wonderful sights, high quality hotels, friendly and knowledgeable Indian and Nepalese guides, well organised and interesting tours

Mr M Stone

Submitted Nov 23, 2018

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.

Mr S Weeks

Submitted Nov 16, 2018

excellent all round - value for money, staff on the ground, hotels, visits etc.

Grand Tour of India & Nepal

The majesty of India and Nepal by train

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