Deccan Odyssey -Indian Sojourn

(9 days)

New Delhi, Sawai Madhopur, Jaipur, Agra, Sanchi, Aurangabad, Mumbai

For the travelers, explorers and enthusiasts who just cannot seem to have enough, a package has been specially curated to cover popular destinations across the North, West and Central regions of India. Beginning in the North, you can explore the legendary golden triangle circuit that covers New Delhi, Agra and Jaipur. These cities are lined with majestic monuments left behind from the time it was ruled by the illustrious Rajputs and Mughals who actively promoted art. The lesser known Sawai Madhopur is a perfect escape for those that wish to enjoy the calm of nature. Influenced and commissioned by Ashoka the Great, there are a number of awe striking monuments in the city of Sanchi that pay homage to the Buddhist philosophy. Mumbai and the surrounding parts offer a number of thrilling activities to pursue as well.

This tour is recommended for

Culture & Heritage
Family

At a Glance

Delhi (1 night), Ranthambore National Park (1 night), Jaipur (0 night), Agra (1 night), Sanchi (1 night), Aurangabad (1 night), Aurangabad (1 night), Mumbai (1 night), Mumbai (0 night)


Tour Highlights

  • Soak in some history at the capital city’s older but more romantic sections. /li>
  • Get up close to the majestic work and art declared as World Heritage Sites in the cities of Agra and Jaipur
  • Experience the calm and serenity of a Buddhist influenced town in Sanchi
  • Seek out the elusive cats at the Tiger Reserve for those who have the courage to.
  • Quench your thirst for shopping in the beautiful artisanal bazaars where relics, curios and objects of art can be bought at a steal.
  • Tour the fabled Mumbai city, daunting and enchanting at the same time.

Detailed Itinerary


Delhi (1 night)

Days  ( 1 - 2 )

Delhi

Delhi

Formally known as the National Capital Territory; Delhi has been consistently colonized after the 6th century BC and is the country capital today. Legend states that the city was once the location of Indraprastha, the capital of the Pandava clan. Delhi is home to 1,200 heritage structures, over 175 historical monuments and is a major travel hub.

Activities

On arrival trip to India Representative will meet and transfer to the pre-booked hotel.

Overnight at hotel.

Following day morning proceed for a guided tour of Old Delhi.

Afternoon in time transfer to Delhi Cantt station and begin your enchanting journey, heading to the home of Tigers – Ranthambore.

Welcome aboard the Deccan Odyssey.

This evening assemble at the railway station at approximately 1815 hours to complete the registration process and check in formalities for your Indian Sojourn journey, as you receive a traditional Indian welcome and enjoy a refreshing welcome drink.

After completion of all formalities, you will be shown to your delightful cabins. As you settle in, the Deccan Odyssey shall depart Delhi for Sawai Madhopur.

Dinner on board

Overnight on Deccan Odyssey

 

Ranthambore National Park (1 night)

Days  ( 2 - 3 )

Ranthambore National Park

Ranthambore National Park

Based in the North Indian state of Rajasthan; Ranthambore National park is aptly named owing to the presence of the notable Ranthambhore fort in the grounds. Extending over 392 square kilometers, the park impresses travelers from the world over with its abundant resident flora and fauna. A much sought after destination for eco-tourism, the park is visited by wildlife enthusiasts, photographers and naturalists all year.

Activities

Sawai Madhopur in Rajasthan is the alighting point for the famous Ranthambore National Park, and India's efforts to conserve the dwindling tiger population can be seen here. The park is one of the finest tiger reserves in the country and the most likely place to spot one of these majestic cats.

The Deccan Odyssey rolls into Sawai Madhopur at dawn where you will disembark for an early morning safari into the park.

Ranthambore is home to several species other than the tiger; you can see herds of Chital and Sambhar deer as well as wild boar, Nilgai antelope and chinkara gazelles. There are also sloth bear, a few leopards and crocodiles. Extensive bird life includes jungle fowl, partridges, quails, the crested serpent eagle, woodpeckers, flycatchers etc. There are also water birds like storks, ducks and geese at the lakes and waterholes. If it's your lucky day, you could spot a tiger lolling around lazily in the sun, or feverishly hunting down deer around the lakes!

After the excitement of the morning, return to the comfort of the Deccan Odyssey and enjoy a leisurely breakfast. The rest of the morning is free for you to relax on board, and after lunch your next adventure into the jungle begins. Post lunch, you could also choose the option of a village safari in Ranthambore and get a glimpse of how the locals live.

When you're done with the jungle, feel free to share the spoils (of your photo-shoots!) at high tea at Sawai Madhopur Lodge, the former hunting lodge of the erstwhile royal family of Jaipur.

After high tea, it is time to head back to the Deccan Odyssey where you can relax with a drink before dinner on board, as the Deccan Odyssey proceeds towards Jaipur, the Pink City.

Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner on board, High tea at Taj Sawai Madhopur Lodge.

Overnight on Deccan Odyssey

 

Jaipur (0 night)

Days  ( - )

Jaipur

Jaipur

The capital city of the desert state of Rajasthan, Jaipur is reminiscent of the royal way of life that was once integral to this region. Today it is fondly referred to as the “Pink City” because of the trademark structures that sit here.

Activities

Legendary for the triumphs of its proud Rajputs, Jaipur, the City of Victory, is surrounded by the rugged Aravali hills - crowned by formidable forts - and beautiful palaces, mansions and gardens. Royal processions and parades, in all their splendour, graced these palaces and forts once. The city is a colourful oasis in the desert and you will notice a timeless quality to Jaipur's bazaars and its people.

After breakfast you drive to Maharaja Mansingh's 17th century masterpiece, the Amber Fort that overlooks the beautiful Maota Lake. The fort is a sprawling complex of courtyards, halls and rooms adorned with beautiful paintings, precious stones and mirrors. Behold the Sheesh Mahal, 'Hall of Mirrors', where a single lamplight reflects in many mirrors, and lights up the entire room, creating a dazzling effect.

En route to Amber Fort visit the Palace of Winds, otherwise known as the Hawa Mahal, famous for its intricate pink sandstone carving and a beautiful view of the city.

Thereafter you will visit the famous City Palace of Jaipur, an overwhelming complex of exquisite palaces, gardens and courtyards, decorative art and carved doorways. The palace museum houses collections of rare manuscripts, armoury, costumes and carpets. Walk across to the adjacent Jantar Mantar, the astronomical observatory built in the 18th century by Sawai Jai Singh. A wondrous achievement for its time the observatory gives accurate readings even to this day.

Lunch at a City hotel.

Following lunch you may choose to participate in one of the optional tours. Enjoy spa facilities at a palace hotel OR have the opportunity to explore the colorful bazaars of the Pink City which offer a wide range of ethnic handicrafts produced in the city-centre and its outskirts.

In the evening, join in for a Gala Dinner in the Pink City.

After your full day of delving in the royal past of Jaipur you will return to the Deccan Odyssey as it sets off for Agra, the city of the world famous Taj Mahal.

Breakfast on board, Lunch and Dinner off board

Overnight on Deccan Odyssey

 

Agra (1 night)

Days  ( 4 - 5 )

Agra

Agra

Home to 3 UNESCO World Heritage Sites including the Taj Mahal and the Agra Fort, the city of Agra throngs with tourists all year round. Reminiscent of the glory that was once the Mogul Empire, this city is seeping in history and gorgeous architecture.

Activities

Arriving at Agra, you will realize that the Mughals were not just the greatest dynasty to rule India but also its greatest builders. After a leisurely breakfast on board, you will visit the Taj Mahal, which was Emperor Shah Jahan's gift of love to his beloved wife, Mumtaz Mahal, and is truly the world's most wondrous monument. The making of the Taj is as much a fable as the edifice itself. It took 20000 men 22 years to build this unrivaled mausoleum and its exquisite white marble was brought from 200 miles away by caravans of elephants and camels.

Lunch at a City Hotel.

After lunch your tour of Agra continues, as you visit Itmad-ud-Daulah, a marble mausoleum built by Nur Jahan, the wife of Emperor Jahangir, in memory of her father, Ghiyas Beg. Sometimes called the 'Baby Taj', it is beautifully conceived in white marble, mosaic and lattice.

Thereafter proceed to Agra Fort, another outstanding example of Mughal architecture, and the seat of Mughal reign and administration for three generations. The present structure owes its origins to Emperor Akbar who had its first buildings of red sandstone erected on the eastern bank of the river Yamuna. His grandson Shah Jahan, the most artistic and prolific builder of the dynasty, later added the impressive marbled private quarters and the mosque while Aurangzeb added the outer ramparts. A visit to the Diwan-e-Am, 'Hall of Public Audience' and the Royal Pavilions is not to be missed.

Later, you have the opportunity to visit the local markets to admire the exquisite Pietra Dura (marble inlay) artefacts and Mughal ornaments before completing your tour of this historical city. Alternately, you could choose the option of a massage at a Hotel spa.

Return to the Deccan Odyssey to unwind and enjoy cocktails fixed by our bartender on board, followed by a sumptuous dinner and a well deserved rest as the Deccan Odyssey proceeds towards the Buddhist town of Sanchi.

Breakfast on board, Lunch at a City Hotel, Dinner on board

Overnight on Deccan Odyssey

 

Sanchi (1 night)

Days  ( 5 - 6 )

Sanchi

Sanchi

The town of Sanchi is also known as Ashoka’s city and is located in the Indian state of Madhya Pradesh. It is famous for having a Buddhist influence of architecture, especially in the Buddhist vihara as well as the Great Stupa. People travel from far and wide to appreciate the four gateways in Sanchi that depict scenes from Buddha's life.

Activities

This morning as the Deccan Odyssey travels through central India, enjoy a relaxing start to the day as you breakfast and experience the striking panorama of India unfurl past your racing carriages, as you approach Sanchi.

Experience the richness of the Buddhist city of Sanchi, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Explore the well-preserved Stupas, said to have been built from the 3rd century BC onward till the 12th century AD, an astounding period of over thirteen hundred years. The Great Stupa of Sanchi is the oldest stone structure in India and bears four symbols representing each of the four stages of the Buddha's life: birth, enlightenment, preaching of the first sermon and salvation.

Return to the Deccan Odyssey for lunch on board.

The remainder of the day is at leisure for you to relax and enjoy some of the activities available on board. Watch a movie, learn the rules of 'carrom', a popular Indian board game, from a Deccan Odyssey team member or book yourself a relaxing massage in our spa on board.

In the evening watch the tapestry of rural India unfold while you sip a sun downer before dinner as the Deccan Odyssey steams onward towards Jalgaon for your visit to the exquisite Ajanta Caves.

Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner on board

Overnight on Deccan Odyssey

 

Aurangabad (1 night)

Days  ( 6 - 7 )

Aurangabad

Aurangabad

While this city managed to stay out of focus during most part of India’s history, it only made its mark in the map during the rule of Mogul King Aurangzeb, when he made it his capital city between 1653 and 1707. This brief period was sufficient for it to optimize its glory years, witnessing the construction of some of the most fascinating monuments one has seen.

Activities

The Deccan Odyssey arrives at the Jalgaon station early this morning from where, after breakfast on board, you will disembark and drive to the Ajanta Caves, a World Heritage site and an architectural marvel of its time. The 30 rock-hewn Buddhist caves at Ajanta have been masterfully carved and are adorned with sculptures and paintings of Buddhist religious art, depicting universal pictorial art and are known to depict the fusion between Buddhist and Hindu faith.
br> After exploring Ajanta, return to the Deccan Odyssey as it takes you towards Aurangabad.

Savour a leisurely lunch on board as the hinterland of Maharashtra sweeps past, with its ever-changing colours and landscape.

In the evening, enjoy a drink at the Mumbai-Hi before dinner is served.

Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner on board

Overnight on Deccan Odyssey

 

Aurangabad (1 night)

Days  ( 7 - 8 )

Aurangabad

Aurangabad

While this city managed to stay out of focus during most part of India’s history, it only made its mark in the map during the rule of Mogul King Aurangzeb, when he made it his capital city between 1653 and 1707. This brief period was sufficient for it to optimize its glory years, witnessing the construction of some of the most fascinating monuments one has seen.

Activities

Aurangabad, named after the last Great Mughal Aurangzeb, is an industrial town in Maharashtra and the stop from where to head out to visit the exceptional Ellora Caves, a World Heritage site. The city itself has deep Mughal influences and there are several monuments of note here, the Daulatabad Fort, Bibi-ka-Maqbara and the city's 52 gates, each with its own history, amongst them.

As you enjoy breakfast, the Deccan Odyssey arrives at Aurangabad, from where a scenic drive takes you to the Ellora Caves, carved into the side of a basaltic hill 30 km from the city. The finest specimen of cave-temple architecture in India, the site encompasses 34 rock-cut shrines representing Buddhist, Jain and Hindu art dating from the 4th to 5th century AD. The 12 caves to the south are Buddhist, the 17 in the centre Hindu, and the 5 caves to the north are Jain. The most remarkable is the Kailash temple, meant to be a replica of Shiva's celestial abode on Mt. Kailash. It is the best example of rock cut architecture and an engineering marvel.

Return to the Deccan Odyssey for lunch on board before heading out to the Old City of Aurangabad.

Spend the afternoon visiting Bibi-ka-Maqbara, the mausoleum of Dilras Banu, Aurangzeb's wife, and a replica of the Taj Mahal at Agra. Built between 1651 and 1661 by her son, Prince Azam Shah, the monument is also called the 'Taj of the Deccan' and was intended to rival the splendor of the Taj Mahal, but unfortunately fell short.

If time permits, you will visit a facility that specialises in the weaving of Himroo fabric. The fabric of choice for the royalty of that age, Himroo has been associated with Aurangabad since the 14th century, when Muhammad Tughlaq made it his capital. Himroo features Persian designs woven with gold and silver threads and takes its name from Hum-ruh, which means 'similar' in Persian, as it is a replica of the Kum Khwab fabric that was popular in royal courts before Himroo gained precedence.

Return to the Deccan Odyssey for dinner as it pulls out for the last leg of your journey winding its way up the Deccan plateau.

Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner on board

Overnight on Deccan Odyssey

 

Mumbai (1 night)

Days  ( 8 - 9 )

Mumbai

Mumbai

The Island city of Mumbai was originally an archipelago of Bombay Island, Colaba, Worli, Parel, Mazagaon, Mahim, and Old Woman's Island. The west coast based city capital of Maharashtra has a cosmopolitan way of life and hosts a number of beaches that attract tourists.

Apart from being known as the nucleus of Bollywood; Mumbai showcases distinctive architectural styles. Old buildings in the city are a merge of Gothic Revival and Indo-Saracenic styles making them an intriguing highlight for tourists.

Activities

Early this morning, after breakfast, you will disembark at Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus Railway Station, Mumbai.

Bid farewell to the Deccan Odyssey as your royal passage through the grand vistas of India comes to an end.

Breakfast on board

On arrival our representative will meet and transfer to the pre-booked hotel.

Later proceed for a guided tour of Mumbai and return to hotel for overnight.

 

Mumbai (0 night)

Days  ( 9 - 9 )

Mumbai

Mumbai

The Island city of Mumbai was originally an archipelago of Bombay Island, Colaba, Worli, Parel, Mazagaon, Mahim, and Old Woman's Island. The west coast based city capital of Maharashtra has a cosmopolitan way of life and hosts a number of beaches that attract tourists.

Apart from being known as the nucleus of Bollywood; Mumbai showcases distinctive architectural styles. Old buildings in the city are a merge of Gothic Revival and Indo-Saracenic styles making them an intriguing highlight for tourists.

Activities

Transfer to airport to board flight for onward journey.

When to Travel

Jan

Feb

Mar

Apr

May

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Jul

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Oct

Nov

Dec

Best time to travel

Average time to travel

Not applicable

Locations & Directions

New Delhi, Sawai Madhopur, Jaipur, Agra, Sanchi, Aurangabad, Mumbai



"Dear Mr. Dhir, I wish to thank you for coordinating all the arrangements to make our trip to Rajasthan a memorable one. Thank you again for your time and efforts."

-Prince Sultan bin Salman bin Abdulaziz

(Riyadh)