Journey through Northern India

$730 | €680


Your Journey through Northern India takes you to phenomenal monuments and world heritage sites, ancient cities that still exist, gorgeous wildlife reserves and breathtaking fortresses and palaces. Explore the Mughal era monuments of Delhi, followed by one of the Seven Wonders of the World, the Taj Mahal at Agra, before embarking on an extensive journey through some of Rajasthan's popular as well as lesser known destinations.

New Delhi (2), Agra (1), Jaipur (2), Mandawa (1), Gajner (1), Jaisalmer (2), Jodhpur (1), Udaipur (2)
Arrival (New Delhi), Departure (New Delhi)
Culture & Heritage



Arrive Delhi

On arrival at New Delhi International Airport, meet & greet with our representative. Please look for him in the waiting area or arrivals hall (AFTER you’ve passed through immigration, collected your luggage, passed through customs). Our representative will be holding a placard with Holxo Holiday’s logo and your name on it. He will escort you to your vehicle with the driver and accompany you to your hotel for immediate check-in.

Welcome to New Delhi, the capital of India is a fascinating city with complexities and contradictions, beauty and dynamism, where the past co-exists with the present. Delhi is not only the present metropolis of India but also a Necropolis, where many cities have risen and fallen over the last five millenniums. Many dynasties ruled from here leaving behind a vast legacy of art, architecture and culture in both Old and New Delhi though New Delhi is a stark contrast compared to the alleyways of Old Delhi.


Delhi sightseeing

After breakfast, the thrill of discovery awaits as you explore New & Old Delhi with the guide: see the war memorial, India Gate, the impressive palatial sized buildings of Rajpath and President’s House, designed and built by the British in the 1920’s. Watch or participate in Kar Sewa at the Gurudwara Bangla Sahib, the most prominent Sikh house of worship, in Delhi built in 1783. Kar sewa, a form of selfless service, is considered a privilege and high honour for ever Sikh. The Langar (Community kitchen) prepared by Gursikhs who work there and by hundreds of volunteers, is offered to everyone, regardless of race or religion.

Continue your tour to Humayun’s Tomb, a magnificent structure in red sandstone and white marble is one of the finest examples of a garden tomb and is a precursor to the Taj Mahal. Don’t miss Isa Khan’s garden tomb nearby, within an enclosed octagonal garden, considered the earliest example of a sunken garden in India – a concept later developed at Akbar’s Tomb and at the Taj Mahal.

Drive past The Red Fort, a beautiful red sandstone monument built in 1648. Visit Jama Masjid, the largest mosque in India. A Jain Temple, a Hindu Temple, a Church, and a Sikh Gurudwara Sis Ganj are all within a short walk from each other are in the heart of the Old Delhi. Take a rickshaw ride through the narrow alleys of Chandni Chowk a colourful and bustling market of Old Delhi and climb to the rooftop of one of the ancient buildings in the heart of the spice markets. From here you get an amazing view of Old Delhi and a peek into the architecture and lifestyle of locals, many of whom have lived here for generations.


Delhi – Agra (Drive around 4 Hours)

After leisurely breakfast drive to Agra, home to one of the Seven Wonders of the World – the Taj Mahal. The architectural splendour of mausoleums, forts and the palaces of Agra are a vivid reminder of the opulence of the legendary Mughal Empire. Agra was the capital of the Mughal empire for nearly a hundred years from 1564. It is known for its superb inlay work on marble and soapstone by artisans who are hereditary craft persons. The city is also famous for its carpets, gold thread embroidery and leather shoes.

Then explore the Agra Fort, a UNESCO World Heritage Site situated on the banks of river Yamuna. This is a massive red sandstone Fort provides a glimpse into the medieval lifestyles of 16th and 17th century Mughal emperors. Built by three Mughal Emperors starting from Akbar the Great in 1565 AD, it is a masterpiece of design and construction. Within the fort are several exquisite buildings including the Moti Masjid, Jahangir’s Palace, Khaas Mahal and the Sheesh Mahal, Diwane-i-Am, Diwane-i-Khas and Musamman Burj, where Emperor Shah Jahan, the fifth Mughal Emperor died a prisoner.

Visit Itmad-ud-Daula's Tomb & Sikandra. Itmad-ud-Daula’s tomb often called the Baby Taj, is regarded as a draft of the Taj Mahal. Built by Nūr Jahān, for her father Mirzā Ghiyās Beg, on the left bank of the Yamuna river, the walls are of white marble encrusted with semi-precious stone decorations cornelian, jasper, lapis lazuli, onyx, and topaz.


Agra – Jaipur (Drive around 6 Hours)

Wake up early to visit the spectacular Taj Mahal, at sunrise. Bathed in the glowing light of dawn bask in the glory of this world-famous mausoleum with its perfect architecture, as its white marble reflects the rays of the rising sun. This is your opportunity to explore the Taj Mahal up close.

Return to your hotel for breakfast. After breakfast drive to Jaipur en-route visit of Fatehpur Sikri – a perfectly preserved red sandstone “ghost town" which was the estranged capital of Mughal Emperor Akbar, built in 1569 and deserted when its water supply failed. Here you can explore the Diwane-i-Am – a vast courtyard in which the emperor gave daily public audience; Diwane-i-Khas – a large quadrangle which contained all the major functions of the Palace, Pachisi court, the Emperor's private living quarter, Jodha Bhai’s Palace, Mariam’s Palace, Birbal’s Palace, Hawa Mahal and Panch Mahal.

Continue your drive to Jaipur, Colour washed in pink associated with hospitality in Rajput culture, it is lovingly nicknamed The Pink City and is a city of fairy-tale palaces, rugged fortresses perched on barren hills and broad picturesque avenues. The first planned city of its time, a formidable wall encircles Jaipur. Upon arrival check into your hotel


Jaipur Sightseeing

After breakfast, full day visit of Jaipur, Start with a stop at Hawa Mahal as a backdrop for a brief photo opportunity. A stunning monument of 5 stories with 365 windows, it is also known as the Palace of Winds. Its façade is encrusted with delicate screens and carved balconies from which the royal ladies, confined to their quarters, could sneak views of the outside world, continue and visit  the massive Amber Fort, (Best done in the morning) one of the most splendid examples of Rajasthani architecture. You have the option to drive up the hill by a vehicle or Walk up. Inside the Fort you will see the Hall of Victory or Jag Mandir and the famed Sheesh Mahal, a room with walls and ceiling completely embedded with glittering mirrors specially imported from Belgium at the time.

In the afternoon, visit the City Palace and the Palace Museum to see its fabulous display of miniature paintings and traditional Rajasthani royal costumes. Also visit Jantar Mantar, Jai Singh's Astronomical observatory, where time has been accurately measured since the 17th century.


Jaipur – Mandawa (Drive around 4 Hours)

After breakfast, drive to Mandawa, the capital of the Shekhawati region, where the fort of Mandawa dominates the town with a painted arched gateway adorned with Lord Krishna and his cows. The entire town has been referred to as the "open art gallery" of Rajasthan because the entire Shekhawati region (not just Mandawa) is dotted with fascinating mansions (havelis) with lavishly painted walls. Every haveli maintains its individuality with beautiful paintings and murals in antique designs once inlaid with precious gems.

The finest frescoes can be seen in the grand havelis of Nawalgarh like the Aath (eight) Haveli complex elaborately and attractively decorated with a strong main entrance. The walls are often covered with murals of local legends and religious scenes from Hindu Mythology. Don’t miss the havelis of the Chokhanis and the Goenkas.


Mandawa – Bikaner – Gajner ( Drive around 5 hours)

After breakfast, drive to Bikaner, once a major trading post between Africa, West Asia and the Far East. Here the arts prospered receiving the patronage of a wealthy merchant community. The royal fortified city retains the medieval splendour that pervades the city’s lifestyle. More popularly called the camel country, the city is renowned for the best riding camels in the world. The magnificent forts and palaces built in reddish-pink sandstone bear testimony to its rich historical and architectural legacy. Undulating lanes, colourful bazaars and cheerful folk make our visit a remarkable experience.

Begin your explorations with the visit of the Junagarh Fort (1593 AD) with its 37 palaces, pavilions, mosaic courtyards, carved balconies, kiosks and windows brings to life the grandeur of a bygone era. The Fort Museum has a rare collection of Sanskrit and Persian manuscripts and miniature painting. Known for its gorgeous red sandstone Havelis, no visit to Bikaner would be complete without seeing them. An important trade center, the Havelis belong to the traders and merchants from the city. Even though Bikaner was founded about 500 years ago, the havelis were built only about 100-200 years ago, after many traders of the city like Rampurias made wealth in Calcutta and other parts of the country. Most were built during the reign of Maharaja Ganga Singh who ruled from 1887 to 1943. Following the architectural style of a Haveli, even the smallest havelis are built around a courtyard, are complete with chajjas, jharokhas and jaalis. have ornate façades with wall murals and bas-reliefs.

After the visit, continue to Gajner, Gajner Palace a jewel in the Thar Desert. Built on the edge of a lake by HH Maharaja Sir Ganga Singh of Bikaner, it was converted into a heritage hotel in 1976. Lose yourself in this sprawling majestic palace, with its distinctive terraces and balconies. The hotel's compound stretches over 6000 acres. The palace was primarily a hunting resort during the days of the British Raj and attracted several dignitaries, including the Prince of Wales in 1905, Governor General Lord Elgin, Lord Erwin in 1927 and Lord Mountbatten when he was Viceroy of India. Gajner Palace is divided into four distinctive wings: Dungar Niwas, Mandir Chowk, Gulab Niwas and Champa Niwas.

Perhaps explore its fabulous setting and unhurried way of life on leisurely nature-walks & boat-rides. The adjacent Gajner Wildlife Sanctuary was a hunting ground for the Maharajah of Bikaner. The lake attracts many migratory animals and birds. The resident wildlife include several species of wildfowl, deer, antelope, nilgai, chinkara, black buck, desert fox and wild boar.


Gajner – Jaisalmer (Drive around 5 Hours)

After a relaxed breakfast, drive to Jaisalmer, "The Jewel of the Thar Desert", as it is also known. Lying at the extreme edge of Rajasthan, founded by Rawal Jaisal in 1156, Jaisalmer is a tiny jewel in the heart of the Thar, the Great Indian Desert. Once the capital of the Bhati Rajputs, the medieval city rises in a sea of sand on a low range of hills surrounded by a stone wall three miles around- a towering vision in delicate yellow hue-only infrequently broken by green oasis.

On arrival proceed to your hotel. Rest of the day is at leisure. Explore the city which is a treasure trove and a labyrinth of alleys.

Overnight at hotel.


Jaisalmer Sightseeing

Full day to explore this pretty “golden city”. There are several sites to choose from and the visit to the dunes can take a good part of the day. So talk to your guide to plan based on your interest and energy level.

  • Built in 1156 AD Jaisalmer Fort is one of the largest in the world with hotels, museum, shops, hotels, houses and eateries housed within its walls. Here you will visit the Jaisalmer Fort Palace Museum and Heritage Centre, an erstwhile royal residence, later converted into a heritage center and museum. The museum houses a great collection of artefacts depicting the rich culture and heritage of Jaisalmer. The 12C Jain temples are known for their intricate carvings and architecture.
  • Bada Bagh: a cemetery built by Maharawal Jait Singh, as a memorial for the nobles who fought for the city. He also commissioned a dam to create a water tank to be built at the site, so it was the only green area in the region at times during the year, and hence the name Bada Bagh or ‘Big Garden’. The Maharajah had a cenotaph built for his father atop the hill and many more cenotaphs of relatives and important figures followed making it an incredible site for architecture and history of Jaisalmer.
  • One of the largest havelis in Rajasthan, Patwon ki Haveli is a cluster of five small havelis. Started by Guman Chand Patwa, a wealthy banker, it took almost 55 years to build and was completed by his sons. An enchanting shade of gold it instantly draws your attention to the intricacy of its architecture, its fine wall paintings, beautiful jharokhas (balconies), archways and gateways. Salim Singh ki Haveli was built by Salim Singh, the formidable prime minister of Jaisalmer when it was the capital of the princely state. Almost 300 years old, the haveli has a beautiful, arched roof in the shape of a peacock. Nathmal ki Haveli, the residence of Diwan Mohata Nathmal, has two life-size elephants carved in yellowstone and intricately carved exteriors and interiors.
  • A man-made reservoir, the Gadisar Lake was once the only source of water in Jaisalmer. Constructed by the first ruler of Jaisalmer, Raja Rawal Jaisal, it is surrounded by temples and ghats (banks).
  • Lodurva, the original capital of the Bhattis, before Jaisal built the Jaisalmer fort in 1156, is much older than Jaisalmer and was ransacked several times, most notably by Mahmud of Ghazni in the 11th century and then by Mohammad Ghori in the next century. An important center of Jain pilgrimage, the temples at Lodurva are a fine example of intricate craftsmanship on yellowstone and are known for Kalpataru, a mythical tree of wish fulfillment. The entire temple complex is surmounted by an octagonal pyramidal roof, and a fortification wall. A temple in each corner of the complex is dedicated to a different Tirthankara. Perhaps spot the several peacocks that hover around the temple walls lending spectacular color to the dry and stony landscape.
  • Sam Dunes in the evening to watch a beautiful sunset with the sand sparkling in the fading sunlight while doing Camel Safari. There are a couple of options for dinner on the dunes with live folk performances. Or return to your hotel.

DAY 10

Jaisalmer – Jodhpur (Drive around 6 hours)

After a leisurely breakfast drive to Jodhpur (once the capital of Marwar) a very colourful town at the edge of the great Thar Desert. Built on the slopes of a low sandstone hill and above a perpendicular cliff stands the Mehrangarh Fort, an imposing landmark built in 1459. On arrival proceed to your hotel.

Afternoon explore the city,  start with a visit to Mehrangarh Fort which houses gorgeous red sandstone palaces, barracks, temples and havelis with delicately latticed windows and pierced screens. The palaces – Moti Mahal, Phool Mahal, Sheesh Mahal and other apartments are exquisitely decorated with traditional paintings that still grace the ceilings and walls. Nearby is Jaswant Thada, a royal crematorium in marble, built in 1899 for Maharaja Jaswant Singh.

The Umaid Bhawan Palace, one of the world's largest private residences, has 347 rooms and serves as the principal residence of the erstwhile Jodhpur royal family. Construction began in 1929 and completed in 1943 the palace was built to provide employment to thousands of people during a famine. Currently the Palace is divided into three functional parts – 1) The Luxury Taj Palace Hotel, 2) the residence of the erstwhile royal family, and 3) a Museum focusing on the 20th century history of the Jodhpur Royal Family with an antique car collection. If time permits, browse the local markets to shop for Rajasthani fabrics & antiques.

DAY 11

Jodhpur – Ranakpur – Udaipur (Drive around 6 hours)

After breakfast, drive to Udaipur. Enroute visit the superbly preserved Jain Temples of Ranakpur built in the 15th century. In the centre is the main “Chaumukha Temple” dedicated to Adinath. The most distinctive features are the 29 halls supported by 1444 pillars, of which no two are exactly alike. Every conceivable surface is carved and every corner and angle is engraved with Jain images. This is a living temple and guides are forbidden. So the driver will help buy tickets and arrange the audio-set for you to explore on your own. Be careful to not get sucked into parting with cash for “temple guide” or photos or worship. A few unscrupulous people seem to latch on to unsuspecting tourists. After/before your visit perhaps grab a quick lunch at one of the boutique hotels set in a wild, mountain valley, hidden away from the outside world. Then continue to Udaipur.

Welcome to Udaipur, the City of Lakes also called Venice of East. Surrounded by hills and mountains and set on the edge of three lakes that lead to a fertile plain, this is a truly enchanting city. Narrow streets lined with vividly colored stalls, gardens, temples and palaces mirrored in the placid blue waters of Lake Pichola add to the magic of Udaipur. Dotted with marble palaces, hibiscus – laden gardens and fountain pavilions, Udaipur appeals to the imagination of poets and painters, travelers and writers like no other city in the country. The city’s inherent romance and beauty and its remarkable past redolent with episodes of heroism and splendor, continue to enthrall the visitor even today.

DAY 12

Udaipur sightseeing

After breakfast at hotel, explore the city at a leisurely pace starting with a walk through the local market to the Jagdish Temple which is an architectural marvel in the middle of the bustling city, continue on to the majestic City Palace, an architectural marvel perched on a hill with incredible views of Lake Pichola. A conglomeration of courtyards, pavilions, terraces, corridors, rooms and hanging gardens, each palace within its walls is an outstanding creation of art.

Bhartiya Lok Kala Museum houses an immense collection of Indian folk art, costumes, ornaments, puppets, masks, dolls and musical instruments.

On the outskirts of town are the Eklingli and Nagda temples. Nagada, an archaeological site in a valley of the Aravali Mountains with two temple ruins with many erotic carvings. Eklingji, a living Shiva temple is worshiped and maintained by the royal family of Udaipur.

In the late afternoon take a boat ride on Lake Pichola to Jagmandir Island. It was here that Shah Jahan (the Builder of Taj Mahal) was once given sanctuary by the Maharana of Udaipur. The view of the city palace, the ghats and the skyline around the lake is spectacular.

DAY 13

Udaipur – Delhi/Mumbai (Flight)

Enjoy a leisurely morning. Transfer to the airport in time for your flight to Delhi or Mumbai for your final flight back home.


What is included

  • 12 nights’ accommodation on twin sharing basis with breakfast
  • Base Category of rooms
  • All transfers, visits and excursions by Air-Conditioned Car (Dezire/Etois)
  • Cycle Rickshaw Ride in Old Delhi
  • All applicable taxes at the time of quoting
  • Assistance on arrival & departure from our representative


What is excluded

  • International or Domestic Airfare, Visa fee and medical insurance
  • Monument Entry Tickets & any services of guides, Elephant/Camel Ride/Boat Ride
  • Items of personal nature like telecom charges, laundry, beverage, tips, camera fee and gratuities
  • Supplement for Xmas & New Year Eve