Signature India & the Taj Mahal (2015)

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Itinerary

Day 1: Arrive Mumbai, India

Arrive in Mumbai, where an A&K representative meets and transfers you to your iconic hotel.

The Taj Mahal Palace
Day 2: Mumbai | Enter the Gateway to India

Explore the city’s classic sights, including the Gateway of India, an 85-foot-high arch whose design reflects India’s Muslim and Hindu traditions. Visit the Prince of Wales Museum and Mani Bhawan, a museum dedicated to the life and works of Mahatma Gandhi. See the Dhobi Ghat open-air laundry.

The Taj Mahal Palace   |   Meals: B
Day 3: Mumbai/Udaipur | Temples and Palaces

Privately cruise Mumbai Harbour to Elephanta Island, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, to see its renowned temples, carved directly out of the basalt rock. Later, fly to Udaipur and check into your hotel.

Taj Lake Palace   |   Meals: B
Day 4: Udaipur | Cruise to Jag Mandir

Visit the City Palace, a marble complex of palaces and galleries overlooking the lake. Take a private tour of the Crystal Gallery in Fateh Prakesh Palace, and stroll through Sahelion Ki Bari (Garden of the Maids of Honor). Later, take a private cruise to Jag Mandir, a palace on an island in Lake Pichola.

Taj Lake Palace   |   Meals: B
Days 5-6: Jaipur | The Pink City

Travel overland to Jaipur and check into your hotel, the former residence of the Maharajah of Jaipur. The next day, explore the Mughal-style Amber Fort, and embark on an elephant ride through the countryside with the help of a mahout (trainer). Visit open-air Jantar Mantar, seeing its astronomical instruments.

Rambagh Palace   |   Meals: B L
Days 7-8: Agra | Monuments of Emperors

Travel to Fatehpur Sikri, a “ghost city” of delicately carved red sandstone. Continue to Agra and your luxury hotel, catching your first glimpse of the breathtaking Taj Mahal from your window. Pay your first visit to the masterpiece the next morning, when the rising sun lends a warm pink tint to its marble face. Continue to the Agra Fort. Return to the Taj Mahal in the late afternoon, as the setting sun bathes it in soft orange.

The Oberoi Amarvilás   |   Meals: B L (Day 7); B (Day 8)
Day 9: Jhansi/Panna National Park | Visit to Orchha

Depart by express train to Jhansi, and continue overland by road to Orchha, visiting its 17th-century abandoned palace. After lunch, continue to remote Panna National Park, checking in to your wilderness lodge.

Pashan Garh   |   Meals: B L
Day 10: Khajuraho/Panna | Incredible Carvings

Drive to Khajuraho to see its Hindu and Jain temples. After lunch, return to Panna for a game drive in a four-wheel-drive vehicle, spotting crocodiles or perhaps the elusive tiger.

Pashan Garh   |   Meals: B L
Days 11-12: Varanasi | India’s Holiest City

After a morning at leisure, fly to Varanasi, a city sacred to Hindus and Buddhists alike. During your stay explore nearby Sarnath, where Gautama Buddha is said to have given his first sermon 25 centuries ago. In Varanasi visit the 18th-century Durga Temple, devoted to the Hindu deity Durga, and Bharat Mata Temple, dedicated by Mahatma Gandhi to Mother India. One evening, at dusk, head to the banks of the sacred Ganges River to witness the Aarti ceremony.

The Gateway Hotel Ganges, Varanasi   |   Meals: B
Day 13: Varanasi/Delhi | Sunrise River Cruise

Rise early for a private sunrise cruise on the Ganges River, seeing where the locals and pilgrims cleanse themselves on the ghats.

The Oberoi, New Delhi   |   Meals: B
Day 14: Delhi | Exploring the Old and the New

Visit the great Jama Masjid, and set off on an exciting rickshaw ride through the Chandni Chowk bazaar. After lunch, tour New Delhi, driving past India Gate and Rashtrapati Bhawan and visiting Humayun’s Tomb, which prefigures techniques later perfected in the Taj Mahal.

The Oberoi, New Delhi   |   Meals: B L
Day 15: Depart Delhi

Board your homebound flight.

Meals: B