Magniﬁcent palaces and forts are waiting to be discovered on
this Indian rail adventure aboard the Palace on Wheels train.
Experience the lifestyle of the Maharajahs as we visit walled
cities, marvel at the astonishing Taj Mahal and enjoy tiger
spotting in Ranthambore National Park.
The services of a professional UK Tour Manager from start to ﬁnish
Food & Drinks
9 lunches, including 2 packed lunches
Flights and airport transfers
Scheduled return ﬂights from London to Delhi
What’s not included
Cancellation & Travel Insurance is not included in the price of the tour but can be arranged
Days 1-2 - Fly to Delhi
We depart London Heathrow for our overnight flight to the Indian
capital, Delhi. On arrival in the late-morning of Day
2, we transfer to the 4-Star Oberoi Maidens Hotel for a
two-night stay, in the heart of New Delhi close to diplomatic
missions, shops and historical landmarks.
Day 3 - Sightseeing in Delhi
Today is devoted to a fascinating sightseeing tour. We start
with an engaging rickshaw ride through the streets of Old Delhi, an
explosion of sights, sounds, and activity, and visit the Jama
Masjib Mosque. We then go on to New Delhi, passing by President
House and Parliament House. We visit Gandhi's Smriti, a museum
dedicated to Mahatma Gandhi, before discovering Connaught Square on
a walking tour. Finally, we rest and sample high tea at the
Day 4 - The Toy Train to Shimla
After breakfast at our hotel, we transfer to the train station
to board the Shatabdi Express to Kalka. On arrival, we embark on a
scenic journey on the UNESCOlisted narrow-gauge Toy Train to
Shimla. Alternatively, you may choose to make the journey by road.
The mountain town of Shimla was 'discovered' by the British in
1817, and was later used as a fashionable retreat from the summer
heat thanks to its lovely temperate climate.
Days 5-6 - Shimla
Today, we explore Shimla by car and see sights such as the
Viceregal Lodge, a striking 19th century Elizabethan-style mansion
that was the summer seat of the viceroys of India until the 1940's.
After lunch, we take a leisurely stroll along the Mall to the
town's Gaiety Theatre, the Victorian-Gothic Christ Church and
Scandal Point - so called because it was where people would
traditionally meet to gossip.
On Day 6 you are free to explore at
leisure. This provides you with a great opportunity to travel
further into the Himalayas for majestic views towards the higher,
snowcapped mountain peaks of the world's tallest mountain
range, followed by a High tea lunch at Wildflower Hall, with
walk in gardens. (please note, these experiences are
Day 7 - Return to Delhi
We leave Shimla in the morning and travel by road, for the
journey back down the mountains through stunning scenery to
Chandigarh. Here we join the Shatabdi Express to Delhi, for another
night at the Oberoi Maidens Hotel.
Day 8 - Delhi and the Palace on Wheels
Enjoy a free morning today, until this afternoon where we visit
Delhi's National Rail Museum, which tells the history of India's
railways. After, we transfer to our hotel train, the Palace on
Wheels, for an enchanting journey through the bygone eras of the
Maharajas. We have time to settle into our comfortable cabins
before we enjoy dinner together in the restaurant car as the train
heads into the night.
Day 9 - Jaipur
Our first stop is the capital of Rajasthan. Founded in 1727 by
Maharaja Sawai Singh II, this lovely city is often referred to as
'the Pink City' after the buildings were painted pink in the 19th
century to celebrate a visit by Queen Victoria's husband, Prince
Albert. Sightseeing includes the imposing Palace of the Winds,
whose ornate façade once enabled the ladies of the royal court to
observe life in the street below whilst remaining in 'purdah.' We
also visit the magnificent Amber Fort, one of three hilltop forts
that dominate the hills above Jaipur, and enjoy lunch at a local
hotel. During the night the train continues east.
Day 10 - Tigers and Chittorgarh
We leave the train to visit the Ranthambore National Park, one
of the largest national parks in India, covering 151 square miles
of land. It is here that we try and spot tigers, leopards and other
native wildlife before we head to Chittorgarh to see the majestic
hilltop fort that sprawls across an area of 692 acres, as well as
the Tower of Victory and the intricate Tower of Fame.
Days 11-12 - Udaipur and Jaisalmer
The Palace on Wheels reaches Udaipur this morning. We leave the
train for lunch at a local hotel before taking a cruise on the
serene waters of Lake Pichola, an artificial lake created over 650
years ago. We sail around the small island and the Lake Palace
Hotel, originally the Palace of the Maharani of Udaipur, a
breathtaking white marble building that was originally built in
1746. On our return to Udaipur we rejoin the train. On Day
12 we arrive in Jaisalmer, a fairytale walled town in the
Thar Desert. We explore the narrow, twisting streets of the town
centre, see beautiful merchants' houses with intricately carved
sandstone façades and enjoy a camel ride into the surrounding
desert. We dine together at a local hotel before the train departs
Day 13 - Jodhpur
Jodhpur is known as the 'Blue City' due to the hue of the houses
within the old walls. During a morning tour we see the impenetrable
walls of the 'Citadel of the Sun', the Mehrangarh Fort and Palace
with fine sandstone carvings, soaking up the atmosphere and
architecture of this excellent throwback to stately Indian court
life. We enjoy lunch in the Palace Hotel and visit Jaswant Thada, a
white marble cenotaph. We rejoin the train and journey towards
Day 14 - Agra and the Taj Mahal
This morning we arrive into the beautiful city of Agra, where we
disembark the Palace on Wheels for the final time. After leaving
the train, we visit Agra Fort, the majestic red sandstone citadel
and the captivating Taj Mahal, the iconic masterpiece in white
marble. Built by the Mughal Emperor Shah Jahan in 1653, for his
favourite wife Mumtaz Mahal, the Taj Mahal is the world's finest
example of Mughal and Persian architecture.
This afternoon, we take the Gatimaan Express train to the
capital city of Delhi, where we check into our hotel, the 5* ITC
Maurya Sheraton, and enjoy dinner.
Day 15 - The journey home
We bid farewell to India today, as we transfer to the airport
for our flight to London.
On some departures we enjoy a talk from Raaja Bhasin in
Shimla, gaining a detailed insight into the town through its
people, history and culture. Known for his unique insight into this
region's fascinating heritage, Raaja Bhasin is an acclaimed writer
and researcher; most recently serving as a historical consultant on
Channel 4's 'Indian Summers' series. Born locally, he is considered
an authority on Shimla and the wider area of Himachal Pradesh
having written five critically acclaimed books, as well as many
articles, stories and even a TedTalk relating to the subject. He
has been actively involved in many heritage projects, including the
Kalka Shimla Railway line which is the route you will be travelling
along. Thanks to the efforts of Raaja and his team, this route was
awarded UNESCO World Heritage status in 2008 something that, as we
journey through the mountains learning about the distinctive and
inspiring engineering that made the line possible, we will soon
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.
Due to the nature of our tours they are generally unsuitable for those with restricted mobility. If you’d like to discuss any particular holiday with us in this respect, then please don’t hesitate to call us.
Upgrade to a twin occupancy Valley View room at the Oberoi Cecil Hotel
UK rail connections
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Amritsar by Rail
79% of travellers would recommend this tour
Based on 24 verified reviews
Mrs A Liggett
The tour was absolutely excellent. The accommodation, the restaurants chosen, the itinerary, were all superb as were the guides everywhere.
Mr D Alcock
Hotels and itinery first class.
Mr K Wills
Fascinating destinations, well planned, well conducted.,
Mr . Taylor
Absolutely fantastic, the whole experience was great, the organisation was superb, the tour manager was so efficient, yet managed to keep a low profile to allow the group to have a wonderful experience, whilst being immediately on hand for any difficulties / questions.
The local guides were exceptional, particularly in the First phase of the tour, he was a wonderful man who obviously enjoyed demonstrating his pride in his country, and explained all of the details perfectly, he along with the tour manager are a credit to your organisation.
A magical experience and a great way to journey around this part of India.
Mr S Graham
Exciting and fun with plenty of new discoveries each day