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12 Night / 13 Days Best of Central India

12 Nights / 13 Central India

Tour Route: Delhi (2) – Gwalior (1) – Khajuraho (1) – Orchha (1) Bhopal (2) Sanchi – Mandu (2) – Aurangabad (2) – Mumbai (1) DEPARTURE

Tour Duration: 12 Nights / 13 Days

Day 1 Arrive Delhi (Room + Check in)

Upon your arrival in the Indian capital city of New Delhi, you will be greeted by Vakantie-India representative at the Indira Gandhi International Airport. After a warm welcome, you will be escorted to your hotel. Overnight stay at hotel

Day 2 Day in Delhi (Room + Breakfast)

Enjoy a morning sightseeing tour of Old Delhi, which includes a visit to Jama Masjid, the largest mosque in India; a rickshaw ride in Chandni Chowk, ‘silver street’, one of the largest trading centres of India; drive past Red Fort, the place that marked the announcement of India’s freedom from the British Raj; visit Raj Ghat, cremation site of Mahatma Gandhi,

This afternoon, discover the modern city of New Delhi, which includes a visit to QutabMinar, a fine example of Indo-Islamic architecture and the world’s tallest minaret; Humayun’s Tomb; Gurudwara Bangla Sahib, the largest Sikh temple of Delhi, with a gold tomb, still in active worship; Photo stop at India Gate, the war memorial arch built in honour of the soldiers who died in the second world war; drive past President's House, Parliament House and other Government Secretariat Buildings, the most imposing features of Lutyen’s Delhi Overnight stay at hotel

Day 3 Drive, Delhi / Gwalior by train (Room + Breakfast)

Early morning transfer to railway station to board a train to Gwalior. Arrival at Gwalior station and transfer to Hotel.

In the afternoon visit Gwalior Fort. Medieval history has described it as shining pearl in the garland of Indian Forts. Different building styles from ancient to modern are encountered here. Built at a height of 700 metres on a hill and protected by tall ramparts and large towers, it was difficult to conquer. There are six gates that provide entry to the fort. Of all the palaces in the Gwalior Fort, Man Mandir Palace is the most beautiful. It is said that the walls were once covered in white plaster and the towers were glad with shining copper. Towers above the wall are decorated with blue tiles.

In the evening, enjoy a sound and light show at the Man Mandir Palace. Overnight stay at hotel.

Day 4 Drive, Gwalior / Khajuraho(Room + Breakfast)

In the morning, visit the famous temples of Khajuraho. Western Group of Temples in Khajuraho constitute some of the most splendid and architecturally marvelous specimen of temple architecture in India. The group includes such magnificent temples like Kandariya Mahadeo Temple, Chaunsat Yogini Temple, Chitragupta Temple, Lakshamana Temple, Matangeswara Temple, and Varaha Temple.

Later visit Eastern Group of temples which are quite different from the other temples in Khajuraho. These are primarily dominated by the Jain temples. These include Parsvanath temple, Adinatha temple and the Ghantai temple. There is also a Brahma Temple which is dedicated to Vishnu and is the only temple built in granite here. In the afternoon leave for Orccha.

Orchha was founded in the 16th century by Rudra Pratap who was the Bundela Rajput chieftain. This is the land that portrays the splendor of the well-known Bundela dynasty. The place is situated at 16 km from Jhansi. It is surrounded by captivating hills and lush greenery. Arrive and check in at hotel

Day 5 Orchha / Jhansi / Bhopal by Train (Room + Breakfast)

This morning visiting Orchha Visit Rai Praveen Mahal, which is famous for its enchanting beauty. The palace was constructed by Prince Inderjit Singh. The palace is well adorned with garden. The walls of the central hall depict various moods of Rai Praveen, the paramour of Indrajit Singh. Laxminarayan temple is the most important tourist attraction of the place. The temple is dedicated to Goddess Laxmi. It displays a unique style of architecture as it boasts a mix of fort and temple molds. It even houses the very post mutiny paintings.Then we shall transfer you to Jhansi station to board a train to Bhopal.

Bhopal is the capital of Madhya Pradesh. Bhopal is also known as the City of Lakes as there are various natural as well as artificial lakes..Bhopal was founded by king Bhoja of the Paramara dynasty (1000–1055 A.D.), who ruled from his capital at Dhar nearby.

Arrive at Bhopal station and transfer to hotel for check in and overnight stay.

Day 6 Bhopal / Sanchi / Bhopal(Room + Breakfast)

In the morning visit Bhimbetka Caves Bhimbetka Caves are located near Bhopal at a distance of 45 kms. It serves as a chronicle of the history of man. The caves are famous for paintings that date back to prehistoric times. The caves also have Stupas that were made by Buddhist monks. A visit to the cave is like stealing a glimpse into a thousand years of the past. There are scenes of dance, rituals and hunts that are etched on the stone. The rocks of the caves have served canvas to many eras. Each generation has left their imprints on these rocky canvases which were discovered centuries later by a wandering archeologist. Continue drive to Sanchi and Udaygiri caves.

Udaygiri refers to the land of sunrise. It is a unique stone house of rock cut art and architecture. Dating back to the 2nd century BC. These caves used to hold retreats for travelling Buddhist monks in the mighty kingdoms of Malad and Kalinga. The largest and most beautiful cave here is Rani Gufa. It is a double structure cut out to form an inverted U. The walls are adorned with beautiful sculptures and panels. These wall motifs on religious and royal scenes run all through Udaygiri walls.

Later visit Sanchi which is located 46 km north east of Bhopal. It is home to several Buddhist monuments dating from the 3rd century BC to the 12th century AD and is considered to be one of the important places of Buddhist pilgrimage. Ashoka erected the Great Stupa here after redistribution of mortal remains of Lord Buddha for erecting several stupas all over the country in order to spread Buddhism. The ‘Great Stupa’ at Sanchi is the oldest stone structure in India. The Great Stupa of Sanchi displays an austere grandeur and the exquisite carvings of the doorway depict in detail the significant episodes and miracles from Lord Buddha’s life and events depicted in the Buddhist Jataka stories. Finally, return to Bhopal for overnight stay.

Day 7 Drive, Bhopal / Maheshwar / Mandu(Room + Breakfast)

In the morning leave for Mandu.
En-route visit Maheshwar.

During the era of Indian civilization,Maheshwar was a magnificent city. This beautiful temple town is situated on the banks of river Narmada is attractively set in serene and reproducing its shadow on the river. The city finds its name in the great Indian epics such as Mahabharata and Ramayana. The city is even known for its handwoven saris. Continue drive to Mandu and upon arrival check in at hotel. In the present day mandav area,Mandu is a city of ruins that is located on the western part of Madhya Pradesh. This ruined city is a celebration in stone of life and joy. It is a loving tribute shared between the prince Baz Bahadur and his gorgeous partner, Rani Roopmati. Mandu was originally fort capital of Parmar rulers. The fort houses, beautiful palaces like Jazz Mahal, ornamental canals and baths. Every structure of Mandu is an architectural marvel.

Day 8 Day in Mandu(Room + Breakfast)

In the morning we shall go for sightseeing of the city.

Jazz Mahal is brilliantly carved palace and is beautifully located on a narrow strip of land between two lakes, Munj Talao and Kapur Talao. It looks as if the palace is floating on the waters of the lakes. The entrance of the rectangular structure has Gothic architecture. The palace boasts of three huge halls differentiated by corridors. Hindola Mahal is a primeval edifice which was constructed under the rule of Ghiyas-ud-din’s supremacy. It is an ideal spot with wonderful sculptures.

Jami Masjid is situated on the plateau of Mandu. The mosque projects a dome entrance hall and flight of steps. There are also two subsidiary entrances to the north, one of the priests and the other a reserved entrance for the women. The complete design of the mosque gives a presence of quiet soberness. Roopmati’s Pavilion is the most important tourist attraction in the city of Mandu. This pavilion is famous for the tragic love story of Prince Baz Bahadur and Roopmati. This pavilion is located on the hill top near the Baz Bahadur Palace. The corridors of the pavilion have arched openings. The western ledge of the pavilion contains a huge reservoir for rain water harvesting. Overnight stay at hotel

Day 9 Mandu / Omakareshwar / Jalgaon(Room + Breakfast)

In the morning leave for Jalgaon En- route visit Omkareshwar Omkareshwar is a Hindu temple dedicated to God Shiva. It is one of the twelve sacred Jyotirlinga Shrines of Shiva. It is located on an island on the Narmada River. This place has its own stories and legends to tell. This sacred place attracts thousands of pilgrims annually. The temple is a fine example of medieval Brahmin architecture. Then proceed to Jalgaon.

Jalgaon is a city located in the Deccan plateau of the Indian subcontinent. The city is situated near the very famous Ajanta caves which is one of the most important tourist attractions. On arrival check in at hotel for overnight stay

Day 10 Jalgaon / Ajanta / Aurangabad(Room + Breakfast)

In the morning leave for Aurangabad Aurangabad is a gateway to the World Heritage Sites Ajanta and Ellora caves. The city of Auranagabad is named after the Mughal emperor Aurangzeb. Stop en-route to visit Ajanta.

Ajanta has 29 Buddhist temples and monasteries that were built in the 2nd century BC. Ajanta Caves are testament to glorious past when Buddhism was its peak. These caves are mainly prayer halls and vihars. The ceilings on the walls have sculptures depicting scenes from Buddha’s life. To protect the caves from the damage from artificial light, the caves are dimly lit. They are even home to famous reclining Buddha. The caves were excavated in the 19th century.
Continue drive to Aurangabad for overnight stay at hotel.

Day 11 Aurangabad(Room + Breakfast)

In the morning we shall visit Ellora caves.
Ellora Caves have Buddhists, Jain, and Hindu rock cut temples and monasteries that were built in the 7th century. There are 12 Buddhist caves, 17 Hindu caves, and 5 Jain caves which were carved out of serene hills. The most beautiful is the Kailash temple which took 100 years to be carved out from a single piece of rock. Two carved columns and two elephants guard the entrance. The temple is surrounded by pillared corridors. The walls of the corridors are adorned with 6 to 7 feet high sculptures of different avatars of Shiva. Here you can find Shiva in every mood, from slaying demons to meditating posture. The famous carpenters cave has a sculpture of a seated Buddha. Afternoon is free for independent activities. Overnight stay

Day 12 FLY Aurangabad / Mumbai(Room + Breakfast)

Transfer to airport to board a flight to Mumbai.
Mumbai is India’s largest Metropolis city. It is a metropolis of contrast with glitter and glue. The city was first founded by the Portuguese. The city is a well-known tourist hub and is known for its glittering nightlife. The city has turned itself from a small village to a commercial trading center. The city even houses millionaire Bollywood Industry, The industry which brings fashion, glamour and cinema together. Arrive in Mumbai and transfer to hotel In the afternoon leave for sightseeing of the city.

Gateway of India is an important landmark of the city that was built during the British era in the year 1923. The monument was originally built to honor the visit of King George V and Queen Mary to Bombay. The monument constitutes of the large arch and is built in yellow basalt and indissoluble concrete. The structure is designed in Indo-Saracenic style.

Hanging Gardens is located on the Malabar hills. They are generally referred to as Oasis in tranquility. Bushes and shrubs take the shapes of animals and arches. They are well manicured lawns that attract numerous tourists. Below the ground are the hidden reservoirs and behind the trees are the hidden tower. Prince of Wales Museum is an elegant building in Indo Saracenic design encircled by a small park. The central hall crowned by a dome welcomes visitors. There are three exhibition areas that were inaugurated in 1923. The museum features private possessions of the rulers. The first floor of the museum displays a collection of jewelry and weaponry. The museum also houses a large collection of paintings, stuffed animals and prehistoric stone tablets. In the evening you are free for shopping and other activities. Overnight stay.

Day 13 Delhi - DEPARTURE (Breakfast + Check out)

Today morning after breakfast check out from hotel and transfer to airport to board the flight for onwards destination