North India With Kathmandu Tour
Many people conflate India and Nepal into a single tour and this itinerary will give you an idea of how it can be done.
While the countries have a lot in common, you probably won’t be surprised to know there are a huge number of differences, and the contrasts on display will make this a memorable tour in many ways.
Day 1 - Delhi
You’ll be met on arrival in Delhi and assisted with the transfer to your hotel. Overnight in Delhi
Day 2 - Delhi
Begin your time on the subcontinent with a day of sightseeing around Delhi. An ancient city with layer upon layer of history, modern Delhi is all the contradictions of India in a single package: elegance and beauty sit side-by-side with squalor, extreme wealth and grinding poverty exist within blocks of one another, medieval sites are towered over modern glass and steel skyscrapers. But however you experience Delhi and its sights, the joyous resilience of her citizens is never far from the surface. Not everyone loves Delhi, but almost everyone leaves with a strong impression of the place and some unique experiences. Overnight in Delhi.
Day 3 - Delhi - Jaipur
Drive to Jaipur in the morning- it takes around 5 hours to get from Delhi to the Pink City, so there won’t be any other activity scheduled for this afternoon. In the evening you might like to go for a stroll in the markets of the old, walled city or head out to see a Bollywood film at Raj Mandir, probably the grandest cinema in India. Overnight in Jaipur
Day 4 - Jaipur
Historic Jaipur boasts a wealth of interesting sights which you’ll be able to visit today including Amber Fort and the astronomical observatory, Jantar Mantar. The best experience of all for many people is a walking tour in one of the city’s older neighbourhoods, focussing on arts and antiquities, temples, havelis or other areas. Overnight night in Jaipur
Day 5 - Jaipur- Agra
Depart for Agra with en route stops at Abhaneri- an ornate stepwell- and the old Mughal capital at Fatehpur Sikri. There are several sandstone buildings here in a remarkable state of preservation, as well as some very unusual architectural features. Continue on to reach Agra later in the afternoon. Explore the markets of Agra on a night time walking tour this evening. Overnight in Agra
Day 6 - Agra - Gwalior
Sightseeing around Agra in the morning with plenty of time at the Taj Mahal and visits to the Baby Taj and Agra Fort as well, before driving around 3 hours south to the town of Gwalior. Overnight in Gwalior.
Day 7 - Gwalior - Orchha
Sightseeing in Gwalior will focus on the fort and palace which sit on a hill above the city. Hailing from a different time period to the major structures of Agra, there is a major contrast between the two cities. Tour these sites before driving around 4 hours to the small riverside town of Orchha, formerly the centre of an important princely state, but now a relatively sleepy town. Overnight in Orchha
Day 8 - Orchha - Khajuraho
Orchha’s historic sector is quite compact and can easily be toured in a couple of hours in the morning- there are several small palaces with a larger compound, and very nice riverside cenotaphs. Later in the day, drive around 5 hours to Khajuraho. Overnight in Khajuraho..
Day 9 - Khajuraho
Famed for the erotic carvings which were etched into every available surface, the question which Khajuraho will surely raise is, why did India become so conservative when there was clearly a time when morality was viewed through a very different lens to the one which is applied today. Your guide will likely have an answer to this, but regardless, the town of Khajuraho is worth a full day to properly explore as the temples are extraordinarily beautiful. Overnight in Khajuraho
Day 10 - Khajuraho - Varanasi
Morning free before transferring to the airport and flying to Varanasi in the early afternoon. You’ll be met on arrival in Varanasi and assisted with the transfer to your hotel. Your exploration of Varanasi begins this evening with a boat-ride on the Ganges at dusk. Overnight in Varanasi.
Day 11 - Varanasi
Return to the river at dawn for a second boat ride- the contrast between the evening Aarti ceremony which you saw last night and the morning rituals and devotions is stark. After time on the water as the day’s prayers get underway, head back to your hotel for breakfast and later head out on a walking tour to explore an aspect of Varanasi’s unique culture and history. Free time later in the day, or you can opt for a trip out to Sarnath, a very important Buddhist site not far outside the city, and the place where the Buddha preached his first sermon. Overnight in Varanasi
Day 12 - Varanasi – Kathmandu
End your time in Varanasi with a final walking tour, before transferring to the airport and flying to Kathmandu in Nepal. Flight schedules vary, and you may be able to fly direct, otherwise you’ll have to fly to Delhi first and on from there. You’ll be met on arrival in Kathmandu and assisted with the transfer to your hotel. Overnight in Kathmandu..
Day 13 - Kathmandu
Your first day in the Nepalese capital will be spent sightseeing. Although devastated in the 2015 earthquake, Kathmandu has been rebuilt quickly and there are still plenty of interesting places to see. Overnight in Kathmandu
Day 14 - Kathmandu
Further time in the Kathmandu Valley, visiting Bhaktapur and Pashupatinath. Overnight in Kathmandu.
Day 15 - Kathmandu - Pokhara
Option to drive or fly to Pokhara- the drive is long but becomes very scenic as you head up to Pokhara, while the flight is quite spectacular. Free time in the afternoon, Overnight in Pokhara
Day 16 - Pokhara
Full day tour of the beautiful Pokhara valley. Overnight at Pokhara.
Day 17 - Pokhara - Chitwan
Depart Pokhara and drive back towards Kathmandu, before turning south and heading to Chitwan National Park, one of the most famous in Nepal, and home to a wide array of wildlife. Take your first safari into the Park in the afternoon. Overnight at Chitwan.
Day 18 - Chitwan
Along with Kaziranga in Assam in India’s northeast, Chitwan is the only place where you might be lucky enough to see one-horned rhinoceros, elephants and tigers in a single outing. The Park is also rich in smaller mammals and a huge array of birds, and is a very beautiful place indeed. Overnight at Chitwan
Day 19 - Chitwan – Kathmandu- Delhi
A final safari at dawn, then drive back into Kathmandu and take an evening flight to Delhi. Overnight in Delhi
Day 20 - Delhi
As your 3-week India and Nepal adventure winds down, this day can be free for pre-departure rest, or enjoy a day’s shopping and bargaining in some of Delhi’s many and varied markets. There are, of course, more sightseeing options if you’d like to explore further. Overnight in Delhi.
Day 21 - Delhi
Transfer to Delhi airport and depart