Golden Triangle India Tour by Airconditioned Private Car with English Speaking Guide from Delhi.
Day 01:Arrive DELHI
On arrival at the DELHI International Airport, following customs, immigration formalities and baggage collection, our representative will meet you as you exit the arrival terminal building and transfer you to your hotel.
Day 02:In DELHI
Morning: Sightseeing tour of New Delhi. New Delhi is the blend of old and new. You will first visit the Qutub Minar complex, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, built by Qutub-ud-Din Aibek in 1199. He built the Qutub Minar and Qutub Jami Mosque by destroying 27 Hindu and Jain temples. The Minar is about 230 ft. high with a spiral staircase that has 379 steps. Qutub-ud-Din died in 1210 without completing the minaret. Later Islamic rulers completed, renovated and repaired it. Later, proceed to Humayun's Tomb (UNESCO World Heritage Site), built in the 16th century as a memorial to the Mughal Emperor Humayun. Bega Begum, also known as Haji Begum, the Persian wife of Humayun, supervised the construction of the tomb for her husband. Humayun's Tomb was the first building to be constructed during the reign of Akbar. The mausoleum was built from 1562-1572 AD with the help of a Persian architect, Mirak Mirza Ghiyuath. Thereafter, drive through the new imperial capital designed by Sir Edwin Landseer Lutyens and his assistant, Herbert Baker. A majestic, tree-lined and broad avenue was placed in the center of the new capital. At its eastern end a royal and raised pedestal with an Imperial Canopy covering the statue of King Emperor George V was installed. At the western end was the impressive Viceroy's mansion that now serves as the official residence of the President of India. To the east of the Viceroy's mansion were the south block (now Prime Minister's office) and north block (now Home Minister's office) of the central secretariat on either side of this avenue that was originally called the Kingsway. Its name was changed to Raj Path after independence of India. The circular building of the council chamber was built in the northeast of the central secretariat. It serves as the Parliament of India now. When the construction of New Delhi started, the memories of the First World War were still lingering.
Afternoon: Continue with sightseeing tour of Old Delhi - Shahjahanabad. Old Delhi still has the influence of Mughals with monuments, mosques and forts all through the complicated streets. Visit the Masjid-i-Jahan Numa, commonly known as Jama Masjid, which is the principal mosque of Old Delhi. Commissioned by the Mughal Emperor Shah Jahan and completed in the year 1656 AD, it is one of the largest and best-known mosques in India. It is also at the beginning of a very busy and popular street/center in Old Delhi, Chandni Chowk. Masjid-i-Jahan Numa means "the mosque commanding a view of the world", and the name Jama Masjid is a reference to the weekly congregation observed on Friday (the yaum al-jum`a) at the mosque. The courtyard of the mosque can hold up to twenty-five thousand worshippers. From here, we will take you on Cycle-rickshaws through the little lanes of the old town, where time has virtually stood still for hundreds of years. This ride will be most fascinating as you get a first-hand view of the merchants, the little food and artifact stalls and the teeming population, busy in their daily activities.Later, proceed to Raj Ghat, the serene memorial of Mahatma Gandhi, and then back to the hotel. Overnight at the hotel.
Day 03:DELHI - JAIPUR (235 kms)
Morning: Drive to JAIPUR. Afternoon: On arrival, check into the hotel. The picturesque capital of Rajasthan, Jaipur is colour washed pink - the colour associated with hospitality in Rajput culture. Built in 1727 A.D. by Maharaja Sawai Jai Singh Ji, Jaipur displays a remarkable harmony and architectural splendour. The ancient heart of the Pink City still beats in its fairy-tale palaces, rugged fortresses perched on barren hills and broad avenues that dot the entire city. The only planned city of its time, Jaipur is encircled by a formidable wall. There is a timeless appeal to Jaipur's colourful bazaars where one can shop for Rajasthani handlooms and trinkets. Beautifully laid out gardens and parks, attractive monuments and marvelous heritage hotels, once the residence of Maharaja's are worth admiration. Not to mention the ambling camels and cheerful people in multi-hued costumes that make your trip to the pink city a memorable one. Rest of the day, sightseeing tour of Jaipur city. Visit Jantar Mantar (Observatory). The Jantar Mantar is a collection of architectural astronomical instruments, built by Maharaja Jai Singh II at his then new capital of Jaipur between 1727 and 1733. The observatory consists of fourteen major geometric devices for measuring time, predicting eclipses, tracking stars in their orbits, ascertaining the declinations of planets, and determining the celestial altitudes and related ephemeredes; the famous palace of Jaipur which is popularly known as "The City Palace" was built by the Kachhwaha ruler of Amber Sawai Jai Singh II in early 18th century, but a lot of changes and additions were made to the original structure by his successors. The architecture of the City Palace is a synthesis of Rajasthani and Mughal styles. The complex comprises of many structures, courtyards, gardens and buildings. There are many splendid small palaces and halls in the complex, such as the Chandra Mahal, Mubarak Mahal and Badal Mahal. There is also a famous temple called the Shri Govind Temple and a museum inside, named the City Palace Museum. Overnight at the hotel.
Day 04:In JAIPUR
Morning: Excursion to Amber Fort-Palace. En route stop by at Hawa Mahal for a photo session. Hawa Mahal (Palace of Winds) was built in 1799 by Maharaja Sawai Pratap Singh and has now become one of the major landmarks of Jaipur. The palace is shaped like a pyramid and is a five-storied building, with number of small windows and screens, with arched roofs. Since the Hawa Mahal was built at a time when women of the royal families had to observe strict purdah, many believe that the Hawa Mahal was built, just so these ladies could watch the processions and various activities taking place on the streets. The Amber Fort-Palace is set in a picturesque location 11km away from Jaipur. It presents a fascinating blend of Hindu and Muslim architecture. Raja Man Singh built the Amber Fort in the 16th century (the construction of the fort was started in 1592). It is built in red sandstone and white marble. The palace complex of the Amber fort has very attractive apartments. This complex was built by Raja Man Singh, Mirza Raja Jai Singh and Sawai Jai Singh, over a period of about two centuries. The most fascinating way to reach the Amber fort is on "elephant back". This is truly a royal experience. Return to the base will be by jeep. Afternoon: At leisure for independent activities or shopping. (The vehicle will be at your disposal.) Towards evening: Visit the Nahargarh Fort (6km north of Jaipur). Nahargarh Fort is located on the sheer rugged ridge of Aravali Hills and it forms an impressive northern backdrop of Jaipur. It looks most classy when floodlit at night. The fort overlooks the city and presents a glittering view of the city lights. It was built in 1734 and extended in 1868. Nahargarh meaning abode of the tigers was built by Jai Singh to bolster the defence of Amber. The legend also have it that it was named Nahargarh after Nahar Singh a prince whose spirit would destroy the construction and not allow its progress further. So after a tantrik prayer to the spirit it agreed to leave on condition that the fort is named after him. The Madhavendra Bhawan, built by Sawai Ram Singh II has uniquely a cluster of 12 identical suites for queens and at the head is a suite for the king himself. The rooms are linked by corridors and retain some delicate frescos as well as toilets and kitchen hearths. It was used by members of the royal family for excursion in summers and is now even a favoured picnic spot. Overnight at the hotel.
Day 05:JAIPUR - Fatehpur Sikri - AGRA (250 kms)
Early morning: Drive on to AGRA, en route visiting Fatehpur Sikri (210 kms). Fatehpur Sikri (UNESCO World Heritage Site) was the political capital of India's Mughal Empire under Akbar's reign, from 1571 until 1585, when it was abandoned, ostensibly due to lack of water. It was built in honour of Sufi saint Salim Chishti in 1571 by Mughal emperor Akbar. Fatehpur Sikri shared its imperial duties as a capital city with Agra, where a bulk of the arsenal, treasure hoards, and other reserves were kept at its Red Fort for security. It is regarded as Emperor Akbar's crowning architectural legacy. Indeed, its numerous palaces, halls, and masjids satisfy his creative and aesthetic impulses, typical of Mughals. Towards evening: On arrival in Agra (37 kms), check into the hotel. Agra is a city on the banks of the Yamuna river in Uttar Pradesh. It finds mention in the epic Mahabharata when it was called Agrabana or Paradise. Ptolemy, the famous second century A.D. geographer, marked it on his map of the world as Agra. Tradition and legend ascribe the present city of Raja Badal Singh (around 1475 A.D.) whose Fort, Badalgarh, stood on or near the site of the present Fort. However, the 12th century A.D. Persian poet Salman writes of a desperate assault on the fortress of Agra, then held by one King Jaipal, by Sultan Mahmud of Ghazni. It was ruled by Sultan Sikandar Lodi in the year 1506. It achieved fame as the capital of the Mughal emperors from 1526 to 1658 and remains a major tourist destination because of its many splendid Mughal-era buildings, most notably the Taj Mahal, Agra Fort and Fatehpur Sikri. Overnight at the hotel.
Day 06:In AGRA
Morning: The first half of the day will be devoted to the Taj Mahal. The Taj Mahal was built under Mughal Emperor Shah Jahan in memory of his favourite wife, Mumtaz Mahal. It is considered as the finest example of Mughal architecture, a style that combines elements from Persian, Turkish, Indian, and Islamic architectural styles. In 1983, Taj Mahal became a UNESCO World Heritage Site and was cited as "the jewel of Muslim art" in India and one of the universally admired masterpieces of the world's heritage." While the white domed marble mausoleum is most familiar, Taj Mahal is an integrated complex of structures and was completed around 1648. Ustad Ahmad Lahauri is generally considered as the principal designer of Taj Mahal. Afternoon: Visit the Agra Fort and Itmad-ud-Daulah's tomb. Agra Fort is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The fort is also known as Lal Qila, Fort Rouge and Red Fort of Agra. 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. It is the most important fort in India. The great Mughals Babur, Humayun, Akbar, Jehangir, Shah Jahan and Aurangzeb lived here, and the country was governed from here. It contained the largest state treasury and mint. It was visited by foreign ambassadors, travellers and the highest dignitaries who participated in the making of history in India. Before the Taj Mahal was built, its design was already standing in the form of Itmad-ud-Daulah's tomb. This mausoleum houses the body of Mirza Ghiyas Beg, the father of the Mughal Empress Noor Jahan. After Noor Jahan married the Mughal Emperor Jehangir, Mirza Ghiyas Beg was appointed the Lord Treasurer of the Empire or Itimad-ud-Daulah. After her father's death, Noor Jehan built this mausoleum for him from 1622-1625 A.D. The first example of a tomb built on a riverbank in India, Itmad-ud-Daulah's tomb situated on the banks of the Yamuna, has many design features that were later used in the Taj Mahal. The tomb marks a significant departure from the tombs of the Mughal dynasty built earlier, because this tomb follows the central Asian pattern of a domed structure, set in a formal garden, with waterways and paths laid out in a geometrical pattern, a design followed while constructing the beautiful Taj Mahal. The inlaid designs on the wall of the tomb include flowers, trees, fruit, animals and birds as well as wine jars and even people, which is surprising since Islam does not permit the use of human images as decorative forms. Overnight at the hotel. The Taj Mahal remains closed on Fridays.
Day 07:AGRA - Sikandra - DELHI (205 kms) / Next Destination
Morning: Drive to DELHI, visiting Akbar's mausoleum at Sikandra en route. Sikandra was built in 1492 by Sikander Lodi, a ruler of one of the last dynasties of the Delhi Sultanate. Mughal Emperor Akbar, in his time, ordered the construction of Sikandra again, this time as a site for his mausoleum, but he died before it could be completed. The work was completed by his son Jehangir in 1613. The tomb is a combination of Muslim and Hindu architectural styles. The building of red sandstone is four storeys tall, approximately 31 metres in height. The first three storeys are of red sandstone, while the fourth is entirely of marble. Late afternoon: On arrival, transfer to the city center for last minute shopping. Evening: Transfer to the International Airport in time to connect the flight back home.