06 nights and 07 days
Best season: Throughout the year
Rajasthan is the culturally rich and fascinating desert state of India. The royal historical heritage in the form of palaces, forts, havelis, caves, temples, mosques, tombs and monuments set against the desert landscape make Rajasthan a unique destination. The colourful dressing, deep rooted traditions, age old handicrafts, art, folk dance and music and delicious traditional cuisine showcase the rich Rajasthani culture.
This trip will have it all, camel and elephant rides, boat rides, museums, village jeep safaris, visits to see stone makers, potters and handloom weavers and unforgettable sun sets in the dunes.
We start this tour flying from Delhi to Jodhpur and then driving to the ancient sandy citadel of Jaisalmer. The yellow sandstone fort is the town's signature sight. Its uniqueness emerges from the fact that people have been living in it throughout its history. Even today you will see people dressed in traditional colorful turbans and long ghaghras. With haunting folk music being played by the musicians and tribal women selling jewellery, you can walk up to the ramparts and get a fabulous panoramic view of the town and the rocky landscape beyond.
In the town, the other architectural gems include the intricately carved havelis or mansions rich merchants built. Patwon Ki Haveli, Salim Shah Haveli and Nathamal Ki Haveli with intricately carved jaalis, jharaokas (windows) and facades are worth a visit. Some of these are made entirely of stone without the use of any mortar or cement.
You can also enjoy spectacular views from the rooftop of the Raj Mahal, the palace of former rulers. Outside, the narrow lanes with exquisite shops, hotels, temples, houses, restaurants and cows provide a lovely touristy feel to the place. A visit to the Gadisar Lake, which is the source of the city's drinking water is a lovely picnic spot too.
The other unforgettable experience about visiting Jaisalmer is the desert camp at the dunes. We will arrange a special Rajasthani evening experience at Sam Dunes, an hour away from town towards Pakistan border. With glorious white mounds of sand as the backdrop, a typical Rajasthani village is created for the evening with mud walls and brightly painted entrance, food stalls with thatched roofs where Rajasthani woman cook local food in traditional earthenware pots. Local folk music and dances are performed to get the full flavour of Rajasthan's culture. Camel rides and bonfires can also be enjoyed there. You must also experience a Camel Safari especially to a remote part of the desert along with a local village visit for an authentic feel of the place and an unbelievably spectacular sunset view.
Leaving Jaislamer's deserts behind we drive to Jodhpur with the biggest fort in Rajasthan looming large over the blue tinged old city. Meherangarh Fort, its Museum and Jaswant Thada Cenotaph is definitely worth a visit. The grand modern 20th century Palace, Umaid Bhawan was made of sandstone without the use of mortar or cement to provide employment to the poor during the famine of 1920's. Partly converted into a hotel and a museum, it provides a glimpse of a magnificent royal residence too.
The best way to get the feel of the city is to drive through the old city and past the Clock Tower near the largest spice bazaar in the sub-continent. The narrow lanes selling juttis, tie and dye fabrics, antiques, silverware, furniture etc is a shopper's paradise. And for the food connoisseurs, this is heaven. With the most scrumptious sweets, yoghurt lassi, thickened milk and spicy fried snacks, it will be difficult to save space for the delectable traditional main course.
Next we will take you for a memorable outing in jeeps to visit various traditional villages to meet local artisans like stone makers, potters, and weavers. It's the perfect photo opportunity to see men and women in their traditional attire and women clad with stunning ancestral silver jewellery.
Our next destination is Kumbhalgarh where the fort has a 20 ft thick outer wall extending for 36 km. It is billed as second only to the Great Wall of China. With fantastic sweeping views and an ear marked sunset point it is worth a visit. The wildlife sanctuary is the other area of tourist interest here.
Just a 2.5 hrs drive away is Udaipur. This beautiful 16th century city is considered to be the most romantic spot in India. With lakes, lake palaces, gardens, mansions it may be less grand than others but it makes up more than enough in its ambience. Visit Sahelion-ki- Bari (The fountained and flowered garden of Maidens), Partap Smarak : A memorial to the legendary warrior Rana Pratap, City Palace, Crystal Gallery, Vinatge Car Collection and the Bhartiya Lok Mandal Museum. This itinerary leaves enough time to sit by the City palace near the lake or on the rooftops of the restaurants around the Lake Pichola to admire the floating iconic Lake Palace Hotel. Wandering around the old cities narrow lanes you will come across quaint havelis and shops selling the famous miniature paintings and other artifacts.
Spending two nights here, you will carry with you memories of a lifetime as you make your way back to Delhi where this tour ends.
Day 01 Delhi-Jodhpur-Jaisalmer
Meals: On your own
Connect to the morning flight to Jodhpur. Upon arrival you will be met by your car and driver. Drive to Jaisalmer. Afternoon visit to the Gadisar Tank & havelis, like the Patwon Ki Haveli, Salim Shah Haveli and Nathamal Ki Haveli. Overnight stay in a hotel.
Day 02 Jaisalmer
Meals: Breakfast, Dinner
Morning-Embark on a half-day tour of Jaisalmer fort. Camel Safari will be arranged for later. You will visit the small ethnic beautiful villages and meet with the local villagers to know about their way of way of living and culture & also to see the spectacular Sunset. Rajasthani evening At Sam Dunes - a typical Rajasthani village is created for this evening, mud walls gaily painted with an entrance, food stalls are built with thatched roofs where Rajasthani woman cook local food in traditional earthenware pots. Continental and Muglai food will also be served. The group members are entertained with Rajasthani Folk music and Dance. Return to the hotel after a most memorable tour. Overnight stay in a hotel / desert camp.
Day 03 Jaisalmer-Jodhpur (285 km)
Morning drive to Jodhpur, Lunch en route to Jodhpur at Manvar (optional). Afternoon sightseeing of the city includes visit to Meherangarh Fort, drive through the old city and past the Clock Tower near the largest spice bazaar in the sub-continent, the Jaswant Thada Cenotaph, the royal cremation site and then proceed to see the most magnificent, modern 20th century Palace, the Umaid Bhavan Palace and its museum .
Overnight stay in a boutique hotel.
Day 04 Jodhpur-Kumbhalgarh
Morning village safari in a jeep - A memorable outing in Jeeps visit various traditional villages seeing local handicrafts like stone sculpture, pottery, hand weaving and also men in their traditional attire, women clad with ancestral silver jewellery, etc. Drive to Kumbhalgarh. Overnight stay in Hotel Aodhi.
Day 05 Kumbhalgarh-Udaipur
Visit Kumbhalgarh in the morning. Drive to Udaipur. This beautiful 16th century city is considered to be the most romantic spot in India. Proceed for sightseeing of Sahelion-ki- Bari (The fountained and flowered garden of Maidens), Partap Smarak : A memorial to the legendary warrior Rana Pratap, City Palace, Bhartiya Lok Mandal Museum. Overnight stay in a heritage hotel by the lake.
Day 06 Udaipur
Full day guided tour of Udaipur city. Overnight stay in a heritage hotel.
Day 07 Udaipur-Delhi-Onward Destination
Transfer to the airport to board the flight for Delhi or Mumbai. Depart for onward journey. Tour ends.