The Road to Delhi

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The Road to Delhi

from £670
Duration: 14 days
Countries: India
Embrace your inner hippy in Kathmandu, search for tigers at Chitwan, check out Buddha’s home, fall in love with Varanasi, ogle the Taj, go bazaar mad in Jaipur and finish in Delhi.
Summary

The Road to Delhi

Once you hit Jaipur you'll be sharing the sidewalk with kids, cows, rickshaws, chai wallaws, street food vendors, stray dogs and about 3.1 million other people. Watch your step.

ITINERARY

DAY 1: KATHMANDU
Namaste! Welcome to Nepal. This Himalayan adventure begins with a welcome meeting at 6pm on Day 1. Look for a note in the hotel lobby or ask the hotel reception where it will take place. If you can't arrange a flight that will arrive in time, maybe arrive a day early so you're able to attend. If you're going to be late, please inform the hotel reception. At the meeting have your insurance details and next of kin information ready for collection. If you arrive early there are a number of optional activities for you to take advantage of in this city. Kathmandu’s most important Buddhist shrine Swayambhunath Stupa, the nearby ‘City of Devotees’ Bhaktapur, a panoramic scenic flight, or a number of Urban Adventures will help you discover this city of ancient architecture and modern development, whose rich artistic and cultural heritage means it remains the legendary destination it has been for decades.

OPTIONAL ACTIVITIES:
Kathmandu - Everest Scenic Flight USD210
Exploring Patan & Bhakhtapur: Kathmandu Valley's Other Kingdoms Urban Adventure USD124
Kathmandu by Bike Urban Adventure USD89
Kathmandu Living Urban Adventure USD80
Path to a Hidden Monastery Urban Adventure USD83
Kathmandu Rickshaw Night Explorer USD68
Spiritual Nepal Urban Adventure USD68
Accommodation

Hotel Shakti or similar (1 night)
Meals Included

There are no meals included on this day.

DAY 2: KATHMANDU

Today you’ll head out into a city of crowded markets and bazaars, where the narrow streets are home to holy men, monks, bicycles, incense, goats and sacred cows. You’ll join the join the pilgrims at Bodhnath Stupa, the largest stupa in Nepal and the holiest Tibetan Buddhist temple outside Tibet. It's the centre of Tibetan culture in Kathmandu and rich in Buddhist symbolism. There will also be a stop at Pashupatinath, a Hindu temple on the banks of the Bagmati River in Deopatan, a village 3 km north-west of Kathmandu. It's dedicated to a manifestation of Shiva called Pashupati (Lord of Animals). Take advantage of one of the optional activities on offer if you've got the time today.

INCLUDED ACTIVITIES:
Kathmandu - Pashupatinath Temple
Kathmandu - Bodnath Stupa

OPTIONAL ACTIVITIES:
Kathmandu - Everest Scenic Flight USD210
Exploring Patan & Bhakhtapur: Kathmandu Valley's Other Kingdoms Urban Adventure USD124
Kathmandu by Bike Urban Adventure USD89
Kathmandu Living Urban Adventure USD80
Path to a Hidden Monastery Urban Adventure USD83
Kathmandu Rickshaw Night Explorer USD68
Spiritual Nepal Urban Adventure USD68
Accommodation

Hotel Shakti or similar (1 night)
Meals Included

There are no meals included on this day.

DAY 3: CHITWAN NATIONAL PARK

This morning you’ll take a local bus across to Chitwan National Park (approximately 6 hours), which sits at the base of the Himalayas. UNESCO (who know at thing or two about this kind of stuff) declared it a World Heritage site in 1984, and it offers some of the best wildlife viewing in Asia. Kind of the Jungle Book come to life, there's rhino, deer, monkeys and a wide array of birdlife including the infamous Nepalese wild chickens all here.
Accommodation

Royal Park Hotel or similar (1 night)
Meals Included

There are no meals included on this day.

 

DAY 4: CHITWAN NATIONAL PARK

This morning you’ll hop aboard a jeep and take a safari drive through Chitwan National Park. If you’re a very lucky person then you might catch a glimpse of one of the 100-or-so Bengal Tigers that call the park home. There are also a number of optional activities available through your accommodation, including biking, bird watching, cultural performances, canoe rides and village tours.

Notes: Elephant Performances & Elephant Riding. While we respect each individual’s decisions while travelling, Geckos does not include elephant rides or unnatural performance activities on any itinerary, and we recommend you bypass these activities should they be offered to you during your stay. Professional wildlife conservation and animal welfare organisations, including the World Animal Protection (formerly the World Society for protection of Animals) advise that contrary to common belief, captive elephants remain wild animals and despite good intentions, unfortunately many venues are unable to provide the appropriate living conditions elephants require and this ultimately impacts their well-being. While there is some merit in the argument that the money that you pay for the activity goes towards keeping the elephants and their mahouts employed, we know that it also fuels demand for elephants to be captured in the wild or captive bred. We thank you for your support in improving the welfare of these majestic creatures.

INCLUDED ACTIVITIES:
Chitwan - Jeep Safari

OPTIONAL ACTIVITIES:
Bike tour
Bird Watching
Cultural Performance
Canoe tour
Village tour
Note: Prices change frequently and depend on the number of travellers taking part. Please check with your leader or accommodation for the most accurate and up-to-date costs.
Accommodation

Royal Park Hotel or similar (1 night)
Meals Included

There are no meals included on this day.

DAY 5: LUMBINI

Leaving the park in the dust of your private vehicle, drive to the Nepalese border town of Lumbini (approximately 5 hours). This is no ordinary border town, but the birthplace of Gautama Buddha, the founder of Buddhism, and one of his four holy places of pilgrimage. You’ll check out the beautiful Ashoka Pillars and hop on cycle rickshaws to the Maya Devi Temple, the actual site where Lord Buddha is thought to have been born.

INCLUDED ACTIVITIES:
Lumbini - Maya Devi Temple & Heritage Park
Accommodation

Lumbini Budha Garden or similar (1 night)
Included Activities

Lumbini - Maya Devi Temple & Heritage Park
Meals Included

There are no meals included on this day.

DAY 6: VARANASI

Today it’s wave goodbye and say Namaste, as you leave Nepal and cross the border into India. That means it’s time to charge up your music and fish out your book as there’s a long day of travelling ahead (approximately 8-10 hours including stops). You will cross at Sunauli and head for Varanasi. This is one of holiest cities around, the ultimate destination for Hindu pilgrims who travel from far and wide to experience this spiritual city. Overflowing with temples, shrines and devotees, Varanasi might not be one of the world's cleanest cities but there’s no doubt it’s one of the most amazing.
Accommodation

Hotel Surya or similar (1 night)
Meals Included

There are no meals included on this day.

DAY 7: VARANASI
Today’s an early start, but it’s totally worth it as you take a boat ride on the Ganges at sunrise. You’ll pass the many ghats (stairs leading to the water) and temples along the river, and watch thousands of Hindu pilgrims cleanse their sins in the holy water. Then you’ll set off by cycle rickshaw to visit the oldest part of the city, with its maze of narrow alleyways packed full of small shops, stalls and huge, lumbering cows. See pilgrims performing rituals and ceremonies unchanged for hundreds of years and pass temples full of bell chimes and the smell of incense.

INCLUDED ACTIVITIES
Varanasi - Old City Walking Tour
Varanasi - Sunrise Ganges Boat Ride
Accommodation

Hotel Surya or similar (1 night)
Included Activities

Varanasi - Sunrise Boat Ride
Varanasi - Old City walking tour
Meals Included

There are no meals included on this day.

DAY 8: TRANSIT BY TRAIN

Today there’s lots of free time to explore more of Varanasi before you get a unique slice of Indian life aboard an overnight sleeper train bound for Agra (approximately 10 hours). You could take a trip to nearby Sarnath, one of the four main Buddhist pilgrimage destinations. The site is where Buddha preached his message of the path to enlightenment and features a number of stupas and museums to explore. There’s also the crumbling 17th century fort and palace on the eastern bank of the Ganges, Ram Nagar Fort. Otherwise take the chance to perfect your yoga in this most chakra-balancing of places.

OPTIONAL ACTIVITIES
Varanasi - Ram Nagar Fort INR150
Varanasi - Sarnath INR250
Accommodation

Overnight train (1 night)
Meals Included

There are no meals included on this day.

DAY 9: AGRA

Agra might not be the prettiest city in the world, but the minute you check out its top-notch sites that won’t matter one bit. After arriving early into the city this morning you’ll head to the most iconic sight in India. It doesn’t matter who you are, the Taj Mahal will explode all your expectations with the morning light shimmering off its white marble surface. The highlights keep on coming as you jump on a motorised rickshaw to pick out the rest of the city’s monuments. If you’ve got the energy head out to Agra Fort and stroll the palatial gardens of this red sandstone stronghold with cheeky monkeys in tow, or check out Akbar's Mausoleum – a beautiful sandstone and marble tomb built for the greatest of the Mughal emperors.

INCLUDED ACTIVITIES
Agra - Motorised rickshaw tour
Agra - Taj Mahal

OPTIONAL ACTIVITIES
Agra - Agra Fort INR INR300
Agra - Akbar's Mausoleum INR110
Accommodation

Hotel Royal Residency or similar (1 night)
Included Activities

Agra - Taj Mahal
Meals Included

There are no meals included on this day.

DAY 10: TORDI

Keep this one quiet. Your next destination takes a bit of work to get to, but that’s because it’s our little secret! First you’ll take a bus from Agra to Dausa (approximately 4 hours) and from there jump in jeeps to enter Rajasthan and get to Tordi (approximately 3 hours). We stumbled across this tiny village years ago, and everyone loved it so much we put it on the itinerary. The kids will adore you, the locals will feed you and you'll sleep in a 16th century palace with its owner as your host. Take a walk around the village or visit the fortress and ruined temples that lie a bit further away.

INCLUDED ACTIVITIES:
Tordi - Village Walk
Accommodation

Hotel Tordi Garh or similar (1 night)
Meals Included

There are no meals included on this day.

DAY 11: JAIPUR

Jump back in the jeep for Jaipur (approximately 3 hours). Your free time here in the friendly, busy ‘Pink City’ is perfect for haggling to your heart's content, the bazaars and backstreets filled with textiles, precious and semi-precious gems, and blue pottery. You can also drop by one of India’s finest palaces – the Royal City Palace – an amazing complex with various colourful courtyard gates, fascinating museums, and impressively moustachioed guards. Jaipur’s also a great place to sit back with a thali plate and enjoy some of the world's best people watching.

OPTIONAL ACTIVITIES
Jaipur - City Palace INR150
Jaipur - Bollywood movie at the Raj Mandir Cinema - INR350
Accommodation

Hotel Mrignayani Palace or similar (1 night)
Meals Included

There are no meals included on this day.

DAY 12: JAIPUR

For anyone that wants to see the Pink City a bit differently this morning there’s the option to drift high over Jaipur in a hot air balloon, a highlight for many visitors. For more information please see the important notes section of your trip notes. Later in the morning you’ll drop by Hawa Mahal (Palace of the Winds), the impressive five-storey façade with pink, honeycombed windows making it the most photographed building in the country after Taj Mahal. Then it’s out to the old capital of Amber and an exploration of the hilltop fort complex known as the Amber Fort. The rest of the day is free for you to use as you like. Maybe experience the cinema like never before with an extravagant Bollywood blockbuster at the memorable Raj Mandir Cinema.

INCLUDED ACTIVITIES
Jaipur - Hawa Mahal photo stop
Jaipur - Amber Fort

OPTIONAL ACTIVITIES
Jaipur - Hawa Mahal museum INR5
Jaipur - City Palace INR150
Jaipur - Bollywood movie at the Raj Mandir Cinema - INR350
Jaipur - Hot Air Balloon flight - USD250
Accommodation

Hotel Mrignayani Palace or similar (1 night)
Optional Activities

Jaipur - Balloon Safari - USD250
Meals Included

There are no meals included on this day.

DAY 13: NEW DELHI

It’s back on the rails today as you hop on a day train to India’s capital (approximately 5 hours), sharing the journey with locals as the chai wallahs make their way down the carriages. Watch one of the world's greatest shows unfold as people, traffic, cows and kids all work together in a kind of organised chaos. After arrival you’ll catch the modern metro to Old Delhi and visit the old city's market area by cycle rickshaw, taking in Chandni Chowk as well as Connaught Place. With the rest of your time maybe book an Urban Adventure to get your last proper taste of India. An optional group dinner tonight is a great way to finish a memorable trip in this remarkable country. Otherwise, simply grab a chai, put your feet up and let it all soak in.

INCLUDED ACTIVITIES
Delhi - Old Delhi tour

OPTIONAL ACTIVITIES
Culture Vulture Delhi Urban Adventure USD33
Delhi Food Walk Urban Adventure USD46
Gandhi's Delhi Urban Adventure USD34
Home Cooked Delhi Urban Adventure USD49
Accommodation

Hotel Perfect or similar (1 night)
Meals Included

There are no meals included on this day.
DAY 14: NEW DELHI
Your adventure through India and Nepal ends after breakfast this morning and you're free to leave the accommodation at any time. If you'd prefer to stay on in Delhi a little bit longer, then additional accommodation can be booked prior to travel (subject to availability).
Meals Included

There are no meals included on this day.


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Details

Further Details

More information about this gap year opportunity...

Price details:

from £670

Phone:

Call 0333 333 9952 to enquire or book

Meals

No meals are included on this tour

Transport

Bicycle rickshaw, Boat, Local bus, Private vehicle, Sleeper train, Taxi

Accommodation

Overnight train, Hotels/guesthouses

Included Activities

Lumbini - Maya Devi Temple & Heritage Park
Varanasi - Sunrise Boat Ride
Varanasi - Old City walking tour
Agra - Taj Mahal

About StudentUniverse

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We have a great team of travel gurus that understand what a gap year is all about just waiting to help you, and since we are part of the Flight Centre Travel Group we are able to offer the best flights, gap year packages, hostels, tours, volunteer placements and insurance - the works. This is not your average travel agency, it’s the ultimate backpacker travel agency.

If you’d like to get in touch to chat about your travels, even if you’re in the preliminary stages and you’d just like some advice, give us a call on 0333 333 9923 or submit an enquiry to StudentUniverse – we’d love to hear from you.

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Photos

Photo Gallery

Varanasi

Varanasi

Canoe at Chitwan National Park

Canoe at Chitwan National Park

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