Selected departures available from January to March 2020
Jaipur may have grown to be the largest city in Rajasthan, but its historic centre has remained the size of a small town, much of it still enclosed by its 18th-century walls. Inside, you’ll find fascinating architecture, markets and streets teeming with people and traffic, including the odd cow or camel-cart. The entire city was painted a shade of terracotta pink, a colour representing hospitality, to honour of the visit of Prince Albert in 1876, and it has remained like that since.
There are many colourful festivals of Jaipur too, depending on what time of year you visit, you might experience the vibrant Kites Festival or the Hindu celebration of light, Diwali. There will be chances to experience Jaipur from an amazing array of points of view, in all senses of the word, whether it be at the top of the incredible ITC Rajputana Hotel, from the impressive Astronomical Observatory or the unique, geometric ‘stepwells’ in the Dausa district. On one day, we journey north to the small traditional village of Samode, where we will experience the everyday community life and marvel at the talented craftspeople of the area. Fans of the big screen will be thrilled to take the trip to the grand Castle Kanota, the famed location of the Viceroy Club in the ‘Best Exotic Marigold Hotel’ film. Whilst the journey to the spectacular Amber Fort, showcases the history and architecture of the region, with its majestic sandstone and marble stature and captivating stories of days gone by.
Tailor your holiday to be as busy or as relaxing as you wish, with our inspiring programme of included and optional visits. All, of course, with the invaluable advice of our tour manager and expert local guide to help you plan your stay. Staying in the heart of Jaipur means it couldn’t be easier to explore and enjoy the incredible Rajasthani food at your fingertips. Think dal baati churma (a platter of curry and pickles, with round dough accompaniments) mohan maas (a tender meat dish cooked in milk and cardamom) as well as fiery deep fried green chillies, known as mirchi bada. Plus, the central location of the city itself means that those who may have not already visited the Taj Mahal or experienced a tiger safari in Ranthambore National Park before, can easily add these trips to their stay.
Embrace the authentic flavours of India, as well as the rich history, bustling atmosphere and incredible nature, right on your doorstep. Using Oman Air flights via Muscat means that we can fly straight into Jaipur airport, avoiding the long drive from Delhi. Plus, with a relaxing eight-night stay in one of the city’s top fivestar hotels, you’ll only need to unpack once.
You should arrive at the airport to take your overnight flight via Muscat to Jaipur.
On arrival we transfer to our hotel for the next eight nights, the excellent five-star ITC Rajputana hotel in the heart of Jaipur.
We enjoy an included dinner at the hotel tonight.
We tour all the wonderful sights of the ‘Pink City’: The famous Hawa Mahal, known as the Palace of Winds, is one of our first stops before we continue to the Astronomical Observatory constructed in 1726 and on to the City Palace, still home to the present Maharajah of Jaipur, where we’ll view collections
of costumes, carpets, paintings.
In the afternoon we’ll enjoy another highlight, you’ll visit the immense Amber Fort, located in the hills just a short drive out of Jaipur. Sampling all the most fascinating sights, our guided tour includes the sections reserved for the Maharajah’s wives and concubines as well as the remarkable hall of mirrors, with tiny delicate convex mirrors embedded like a mosaic in the walls and ceilings.
Travel out of Jaipur to one of India’s largest ‘stepwells’ in Abhaneri village. Built in the ninth century, and an incredible 20m deep, the perfect geometric design of the steps to the bottom, make this one of the unique sights of India.
We continue to Castle Kanota, used as the location of the Viceroy Club in the ‘Best Exotic Marigold Hotel’ film, it’s a very impressive building, still encircled by high walls and ramparts. Inside, the shady veranda overlooking the gardens is the perfect place to relax and enjoy our included lunch. There’s also a fascinating little museum on site charting the history of the building and the incredible life of its most famous owner, Amar Sing, who rose to the rank of general in the Indian army, fought in WWI and, amazingly kept a detailed diary for every day for 44 years from 1892 onwards.
This morning, we’ll travel north to the charming little village of Samode, where we’ll enjoy a guided walk, seeing various artisans busy at their workshops. It’s an intriguing insight into daily life and to interact with the locals!
After an included lunch back in Jaipur, you can have the option to stay in the city or return to the hotel for the afternoon.
A day at leisure to continue your discovery of Jaipur, or alternatively join our pre-bookable optional overnight trip to Ranthambore National Park. See the Personalise Your Holiday section for details.
If you are in Ranthambore, you will have a further early-morning tiger safari, before returning to Jaipur.
If you chose to stay in Jaipur, rise early to discover the hidden secrets of the Pink City before it awakes, with a specialist walking guide.
In the afternoon, we head out to visit Sanganer village, known throughout Rajasthan for its traditional textile block printing and hand-made paper workshops.
Your last free day for some last-minute shopping in the many markets of Jaipur.
Tonight, we enjoy a specially-arranged theme dinner by the pool.
Fly home via Muscat arriving the same day.
The price of this holiday is per person, based on two people sharing a room. Single rooms are subject to availability, at the relevant supplement. The price includes:
Taj Mahal and Indian Railways experience - from £69 per person
An early start from Jaipur for the drive to Agra to visit the unique and utterly extraordinary Taj Mahal, the ultimate symbol of India! You will have plenty of time to see this amazing monument from all angles. After an included lunch, we will experience travel on Indian Railways on the return journey by train to Jaipur, arriving back in the early evening.
Ranthambore Tiger Safari and overnight stay - from £179 per person
After many years of conservation, Ranthambore is now the best place to spot tigers in the wild in India. We drive from Jaipur to Ranthambore National Park where we embark the open-top four-wheel drive vehicles known as ‘canters’ for a safari tour. We stay the night at the excellent family-run three-star Ranthambore Regency, a most popular hotel with our guests for 13 years. Early the next morning we have another safari in the park before driving back to Jaipur.
Please contact us to pre-book either of the above experiences.
Flights from London Heathrow with Oman Airlines will connect in Muscat on both the outbound and inbound journeys.
Whilst the travelling schedule shall pose no problems for people of any age in normal physical health, we would point out that in visiting a number of historical sites, paths may be uneven and uphill and we often enjoy walking tours of the main sights. Therefore, this holiday may not be suitable for clients of greatly impaired mobility. In the tropics temperatures and humidity levels will also be quite high for most of the year. Please consult your GP regarding the appropriate inoculations required for India at least a month before departure.
We want to ensure you make the correct choice before you book your holiday with us. If you have any concerns regarding the suitability of the holiday due to reduced mobility we would encourage you to call us to discuss these concerns. General information on mobility in connection with our tours can be found here.
All British passport holders require a visa for India. Please ensure that you have at least two empty pages in your passport and that your passport is valid for a minimum of 190 days from the time of submitting your visa application. At the time of departure you will be able to travel as long as both the passport and the visa are valid.
Personal applications: to apply for an Indian visa please visit www.vfsglobal.com/india/uk where you can apply, pay online and schedule an appointment to submit your application in person at your nearest centre, dependent on your home address.
Online applications: British passport holders are now eligible to apply for an e-visa online, you must ensure your passport is machine readable and has a biometric chip (without this you may be denied entry into India). The cost of a single entry tourist e-visa is US$100.00 and will be converted into pounds by your bank. The website to apply for the e-visa is: indianvisaonline.gov.in. Here you will find all the information to assist you with the completion of your application.
Postal applications: you must either apply and pay online, print off the completed application form, payment confirmation and submit by post; or alternatively, you must apply online, print off the completed application and submit along with payment by postal order. Personal cheques are NOT accepted. In both cases you must submit your passport along with a self-addressed stamped envelope and two, 2x2” passport photos to:
India Visa Application Centre (West London),
The Vista Centre,
First Floor – Part A
Full details of costs, application form and addresses can be found on www.vfsglobal.com/india/uk, email: firstname.lastname@example.org or tel: 0905 7570045 (calls cost 95p per minute).
Visa fees are subject to change without notice and non-refundable.
Whilst care has been taken to ensure that the information provided relating to visa requirements is true and correct at the time of publication, changes in requirements after this time of publication may impact on the accuracy of this information. therefore, whilst we strive to provide the most up-to-date information, we strongly suggest that you re-confirm requirements with the relevant embassy prior to travel.
All transfer times listed here are approximate, and dependent on traffic. If you have a question regarding transfer times please don't hesitate to contact us. Please note that flights will connect via Muscat.
|Arrival airport||First hotel location||Transfer time||Final hotel location||Departure airport||Transfer time|
|Jaipur International Airport||Jaipur||30 mins||
|Jaipur International Airport||30 mins|