Epic India - 23 Nights India Travel Guide

north east india

Start in New Delhi and end in Kochi (Cochin)! With the discovery tour Epic India, you have a 23 day tour package taking you through New Delhi, India and 11 other destinations in India. Epic India includes accommodation in a hotel as well as an expert guide, meals, transport and more.

Itinerary

  • Delhi

    Namaste, welcome to Delhi! Your adventure begins with an important welcome meeting at 6 pm, if you arrive early, theres plenty to do in this wonderfully chaotic city. Wander the streets, sip on your first chai or practice haggling in one of the many markets. If you prefer some structure, theres a variety of Urban Adventure day tours that offer a great first taste of Delhi. Find out more at urbandventures.com Accommodation: Hotel

  • Overnight train

    This morning head out on a walking tour around the commercial heart of Delhi, visiting Chandni Chowk (Sheeshganj Gurudwara) and Connaught Place along the way. Explore Old Delhi on a bicycle rickshaw to dig that little bit deeper. Youll then have some free time to do as much sightseeing as you can, before boarding an overnight sleeper train bound for Varanasi. The journey should take around 13 hours and youll arrive into Varanasi early in the morning. Accommodation: Overnight sleeper train

  • Varanasi

    Arrive into Varanasi early and head straight to the hotel to freshen up before plunging headfirst into this holy city, which is one of the worlds oldest. Explore the narrow laneways and backstreets on a walking tour with your guide, before watching the world pass by along the ghats. Your evening is then free to do as you wish. Accommodation: Hotel

  • Overnight train

    Wake up early and experience one of the highlights of your time in India. This morning, jump in boats and watch the sunrise over the Ganges. Pilgrims bathing, cremation fires and riverside haircuts - India is best before dawn and this is the best way to see it. The rest of your day is free to explore, before catching an overnight train to Agra tonight (approximately 11 hours). Accommodation: Overnight sleeper train

  • Agra

    Arrive into Agra early this morning, then head to the most iconic site in India, the Taj Mahal. The highlights of India just keep coming. You have a full day to explore Agra on a motorised rickshaw trip, with Agra Fort being another incredible optional activity in the afternoon. The rest of your day is then free. Accommodation: Hotel

  • Jaipur

    Jump on a bus this morning and travel for around four hours to Rajasthans pink capital, Jaipur. On arrival into the city stop off at the Hawa Mahal (pink sandstone palace) before heading to your hotel. Use the opportunity to freshen up and then venture out for a walking tour of the old city. In your spare time, perhaps take an optional tour of the Jaipur City Palace. Accommodation: Hotel

  • Jaipur

    For many travellers, a hot air balloon experience is one of the highlights of Jaipur. Ballooning can be done over Jaipur on the morning of Day 7, between September and June. For additional information, please see the important notes section of your trip notes. Later in the morning, enjoy a guided tour of the medieval Amber Fort with a local guide. Make sure to grab another cup of chai before settling in for this evenings 13-hour overnight train journey. Tonight, youll hop a train bound for Rishikesh. Accommodation: Overnight Train

  • Rishikesh

    In and around RishikeshArrive early in to Rishikesh, a spiritual town lying in the verdant foothills of the Himalayas. Embark on an orientation walk with your leader before enjoying free time to roam at your own leisure. Aptly named the Yoga Capital of the World, Rishikesh is a great place to relax and seek a little enlightenment. In your free time, why not visit The Beatles Ashram ? a spiritual retreat inhabited by the famous band in the sixties. In the evening, perhaps take a stroll along the holy Ganges River as temple bells ring and the nightly fire ritual of Ganga Aarti begins. Accommodation: Hotel

  • Rishikesh

    This morning, get among the relaxing vibes of Rishikesh and take part in a one-hour yoga class. Afterwards, perhaps tuck into a masala dosa for breakfast before walking or riding it off on one of the trails along the Ganges. For something more adventurous there is the option to white-water raft down the Ganges. In the afternoon, reunite with your group for a walk through the jungle nearby. Tonight, experience sleeping under the stars just outside of Rishikesh, you?ll be staying in a fixed campsite with twin-shared tents and western-style toilets surrounded by nature and mountain views. Accommodation: Camping (Basic Facilities)

  • Delhi

    Have a chilled morning at your campsite before returning to Rishikesh where you?ll be able to use a day room to freshen up and have a shower. Spend the rest of the afternoon wandering around Rishikesh before catching an evening train (approximately 5 hours) back to Delhi. Accommodation: Hotel

  • Hyderabad

    In and around HyderabadFly to Hyderabad for the second half of your trip. The flight and local transfers are included in the cost of the trip. Please note you will not be escorted by your North India tour leader on the transfers and the flight. This morning, say goodbye to some of your crew who may not be joining you for the second stage of the trip, and take a flight from Delhi to Hyderabad, the capital of southern Indias Telangana state. At 6 pm, you?ll get to meet your new leader and travel friends. There?s much to see in this busy tech-focused city. Check out the Golconda Fort and its well-manicured gardens, head to Hussain Sagar ? a heart-shaped lake with a large standing Buddha statue, and pick up a delicious biryani on your travels. Once you?ve had your important meeting, get the gang together and tuck into some local food! Your group leader will know a great place to go. Accommodation: Hotel

  • Hyderabad

    This morning, take a walking tour of Hyderabad with your leader to get your bearings and learn a little bit more about this southern Indian city. You?ll also get the chance during the day to discover the weird and wonderful world of Bollywood with a visit Ramoji Film City. This 2000 acres of land is the largest integrated film city and the largest studio complex in the world. It can accommodate up to 20 film units at one time, with various shooting locations such as a London street, Japanese gardens, an airport, a hospital, and even a laboratory. Accommodation: Hotel

  • Overnight Train

    Today, take a visit with your group to Charminar, also known as the Four Minarets. Constructed in 1591, this monument and mosque has become an icon of Hyderabad, and provides an area where locals Islamic communities come together in the surrounding markets to celebrate events and festivals. The afternoon is free for you to explore, and a perfect opportunity to take up one of the optional activities on offer, like a visit to the Golcanda Fort and the Salar Jung museum. This evening, be ready to take an overnight train to Chennai. Accommodation: Overnight sleeper train

  • Puducherry

    In and around PuducherryArrive in the morning to Chennai, and then take a private vehicle to Pondicherry via Mamallapuram. You?ll have time to see the sights of Mamallapuram, including the striking granite structure of the Shore Temple overlooking the Bay of Bengal, the ancient carvings of Arjuna?s Penance and the Pancha Rathas (Five Rathas). These five Hindu temples clustered in the southern end of the city are extraordinary examples of structures carved from single large rocks in the 7th century, fully hidden in the sand until they were excavated by the British around 200 years ago. Afterwards, arrive in coastal Puducherry and perhaps relax with a coconut curry. The total driving time today is approximately 5 hours. Accommodation: Hotel

  • Puducherry

    The city of Puducherry (Pondicherry) has a strong French influence, seeing it was a French colonial settlement in India until 1954. Explore this cultural mix on a sightseeing walk with your group leader and visiting the French quarter, as well as Arbindo Ashram and Ganesh Temple. During your free time take a walk along the Beach Promenade. Accommodation: Hotel

  • Madurai

    Today, take a local bus from Pondicherry to Villupuram (approximately 2 hours), and then a 6-hour train journey to Madurai. Once arrived and checked-in, take a leader-led orientation walk around Madurai city, where you?ll spend the rest of tomorrow exploring. This evening your leader can take you on an optional walk through Madurai market, where you can try crispy dosas, flaky parotta (flatbread) and jigarthanda (Madurai?s answer to a lassi). You might even witness the art of a chai walla (chai street vendor) seamlessly pouring between the jug and cup, and putting on a bit of a show while preparing your drink. Accommodation: Hotel

  • Overnight Train

    Wake up in Madurai and go check out the historic Meenakshi Temple, located on the banks of the Vaigai River. It?s colourful and ornate structures are definitely worth a photo. Otherwise, there is the option to visit the National Gandhi Museum, housing important artefacts of Ghandi, as the city of Madurai played an important part of his journey. Make sure you take some time to relax today, as you will board an overnight train bound for Mysore (approximately 14 hours). Accommodation: Overnight Sleeper Train

  • Bandipur

    Arrive in Mysore in the morning (approximately 10 am), and head directly to the ornate Mysore Palace. This is the official royal residence of the Wadiyar dynasty and is the seat of the Kingdom of Mysore. It dominates the skyline of the city and is a clear example of Indo-Saracenic architecture. Afterwards, head by private transport to Bandipur (approximately 1.5 hours). On the way, stop by your local driver?s home for a biryani lunch. Delicious! Accommodation: Jungle Resort

  • Coonoor

    In and around CoonoorThis morning, head out and take up an included safari in the Bandipur National Park. The park covers 874 square kilometres and has many endangered animal and plant species in its boundaries. The park is well-known for spotting elephants and tigers, as well as macaque, civet, giant flying squirrel, striped hyena and leopard, to name a few. After your park safari has come to an end, travel by private vehicle for around 2 hours to the highland district of Coonoor. Accommodation: Hotel

  • Coonoor

    Coonoor is in the heart of India?s tea plantations and one of the three Nilgiri hill stations, along with Ooty and Kotagiri. The actual township of Coonoor is a colourful and bustling place perched on the hillside. Today, enjoy a ride on the famous toy train ride on the mountain railway line, passing through the other Nilgiri hill stations, and enjoying the mountainous scenery along the way. Also included today is a visit to one of the surrounding tea plantations, where you?ll get to walk through the estate and learn more about the process of tea making and have a taste, of course. Accommodation: Hotel

  • Kochi

    This morning say goodbye to Coonoor before taking a private vehicle to Coimbatore (approximately 2.5 hours). Around mid-day, we embark on a five hour train journey to Kochi ? a major port city on India?s southwest coast. Accommodation: Hotel

  • Kochi

    This morning we explore Kochi on a leader-led sightseeing tour of Kochi, where you?ll pass the Dutch Palace, the Jewish synagogue and the unique sight of shore operated lift nets, more commonly known as Chinese fishing nets. There is also the opportunity to book into an optional cooking class or to learn the art of Kathakali dance. Ask your group leader for more information if this interests you. Accommodation: Hotel

  • Kochi

    With no activities planned for the final day, you are free to leave the accommodation at any time. That doesn?t mean that your adventure has to end! There is a selection of Urban Adventures tours that may interest you, including Aromas of Kochi ? a sightseeing experience around the Fort Kochi area, visiting a pappadum factory, among other highlights. Visit urbanadventures.com/destination/Kochi-tours for more information.

Inclusion

  • GST on total package
  • Accomodation in a well appointed room
  • Meals as per hotel plan and ones mentioned in itinerary
  • All transfers and sightseeing as per the itinerary in an air-conditioned vehicle (except in the hills when the air-conditioner will be switched off)
  • All toll taxes, parking fees and driver allowances
  • All applicable hotel taxes

Exclusion

  • Anything not mentioned under ‘Package Inclusions??:tm:
  • All personal expenses, optional tours and extra meals
  • Camera fees, alcoholic/non-alcoholic beverages
  • Vehicle service on leisure days for sightseeing not included in the itinerary
  • Medical and travel insurance
  • Tips, laundry and phone calls

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