Premium India in Depth

Trip Code: HHPR

Why we love it

Discover the rich history and architecture of the impressive forts scattered across the province, from Jaipur’s Amber Fort and Royal City Palace to Agra’s Red Fort and iconic Taj Mahal., Take the chance to get closer to India’s incredible wildlife, and perhaps catch more than a glimpse of its elusive animal king, the magnificent tiger, in Ranthambhore National Park, Savour Indian cuisine during Exclusive Experiences, including dinner with a Rajput family in Bundi and a Brahmin family in Jaipur, a street food tour in Agra and a spectacular meal in the sand dunes of Pushkar, accompanied by a traditional dance performance., Your Feature Stay hotel in Jaipur has been delighting visitors since its opening in 1928, offering up elegant decor, traditional touches and world-class service., Visit a royal haveli in Jaipur during an unforgettable Exclusive Experience, where the owner will show you around the ornately decorated property and share photographs and stories of his ancestors who once ruled the nearby provinces.

Is this trip right for me?

Rajasthan is a desert state and so it’s important to prepare for hot sticky temperatures during the day and cooler climates in the evening. Layers are the best way to tackle this disparity in weather.

There are a number of long travel days on this trip. Some journeys take up to six hours, but are a great opportunity to get to know locals, fellow travellers and the diverse scenery.

Important information

1. A complimentary airport arrival transfer is included; valid if you are arriving on Day 1 or if you have booked pre-tour accommodation through us. You must provide your flight details to your booking agent at least 14 days prior to travel.
2. A single supplement is available if you’d prefer not to share a room on this trip. The single supplement applies to all nights of your trip and is subject to availability. Please speak to your booking agent for further information.
3. Please provide a scanned copy of your passport bio page at time of booking to secure a permit for your Ranthambhore National Park visit. Authorities at the park follow a strict booking process whereby permits are issued on a first come first serve basis. If we do not receive your passport scan in time we cannot guarantee you will be able to join the safari. Your full name will need to be provided exactly as it appears on your passport at the time of booking (including any middle names listed on your passport) for flight tickets. Ticketing fees may apply for amendments to details within 45 days of departure, and in some cases, you will be required to cover the cost of issuing a new ticket if an amendment occurs.
4. This trip includes domestic flights. The luggage allowance is 15kg for check in luggage and 7kg for carry on.
5. Travel is always an adventure and, as destinations reopen, there are a few challenges as everyone gets back up to speed and adjusts to the new normal. Our leaders are experts when it comes to dealing with anything unexpected along the journey, so pack your understanding and flexibility, sit back and relax while they take care of the rest.
6. Some activities may be rearranged during Holi (2023: March 8), and other holidays.

What to bring/pack

What you need to bring will vary according to the trip style you have chosen, the countries you are visiting and when you are travelling. We recommend you pack as lightly as possible, ensuring that you are able to carry and lift your own luggage and walk with it for short distances or up or down a flight of stairs. Help will be on hand in most locations, but there may be times you need to handle your own luggage, for example in airports and train stations.

A lockable suitcase with wheels is ideal for this trip. It is recommended that you keep your main luggage weight around 15kg and certainly no more than 20kg. A small or medium-sized backpack (45-50 litres) is another good option.

You'll also need a day pack/bag to carry water, camera, jacket, etc. when you’re exploring during the day.

Below is a link to our ultimate packing list, a guide to get you started:, https://www.intrepidtravel.com/packing-list, LOCAL DRESS:
When packing be aware that dress standards are conservative throughout Asia, especially outside major cities. To respect this and for your own comfort, we strongly recommend modest clothing. This means clothing that covers your shoulders and knees. Loose, lightweight, long clothing is both respectful and cool in the predominantly hot Asian climate. In many rural areas in Asia women will need to wear modest clothing even to swim. Singlets, tank tops and topless sun bathing are all unacceptable. When visiting religious sites men often need to wear long trousers and women a long skirt or sarong.

Physical rating

 
2

Joining your group

The Gordon House Hotel, 5 Battery Street, Apollo Bunder, Colaba, Mumbai, INDIA

Located in the heart of Mumbai with only 600m to the Gateway of India, The Gordon House Hotel is a comfortable, simple and chic hotel with fully-furnished rooms, onsite restaurant and bars for you to enjoy a relaxed and peaceful stay in this busy commercial capital of India.

Joining instructions

"The Chhatrapati Shivaji International Mumbai Airport is about 25 km from downtown Mumbai.

Intrepid offer a pre-arranged transfer service option. Enquire with your agent and advise your flight arrival details at least 14 days prior to your trip departure. If you have booked an arrival transfer you will be met in the arrivals hall after clearing customs, your representative with an Intrepid sign board. Please ask them to confirm your name.In case when you have trouble finding the driver or if you are delayed for any reason, please call the following 24 hour numbers:

+91 9560 849 444
+91 9999 005 019

If you do not have a mobile phone, there are public phones within the airport. Calls cost 1 rupee per minute.

Otherwise, taxi is the easiest way to get into Mumbai downtown. At the arrival hall, follow the sign for taxi to go to the official taxi booths. Please note to avoid taxi touts who want to haggle a price with you. You can either prepay for your taxi fair at the booth or go with official taxis that'll will run by meters. Please note that there are different taxi companies and booths at the airport. Normally the taxi will cost about 800-1000 INR depending on traffic and take about 1 hour to get to our hotel."

Finishing your trip

Jaypee Siddharth, 3, Rajendra Place, Delhi, 110008, INDIA, Phone: +91 (11)25760000

Meals & dietary information

Breakfasts included: 13

Lunches included: 2

Dinners included: 9

While travelling with us you'll experience the vast array of wonderful food available in the world. Your group leader will be able to suggest restaurants to try during your trip. To give you the maximum flexibility in deciding where, what and with whom to eat, generally not all meals are included in the trip price. This also gives you more budgeting flexibility. As a rule our groups tend to eat together to enable you to taste a larger variety of dishes and enjoy each other's company. If you have dietary requirements and/or food allergies, please let your booking agent know prior to departure.

FOOD IN INDIA:
Food is a way of life in India. You can snack for a bargain or dine in the finest Indian restaurants. Generally, you can eat very cheaply in India. There is a huge choice of restaurants and street stalls serving traditional and local Indian food. In bigger restaurants in areas frequented by more tourists, there is a choice between Indian, Chinese and Western-style food. Here are some ideas of what to try: https://www.intrepidtravel.com/adventures/best-food-in-india/
https://www.intrepidtravel.com/adventures/foodies-guide-south-india/

Please note that service in restaurants (especially with a group) can be quite slow so patience is a must.

India caters very well towards vegetarians and vegans with almost all restaurants having a veg and pure veg section of the menu. If in doubt please check with your tour leader. See our guide to eating vegan in India here: https://www.intrepidtravel.com/adventures/india-vegan-food-guide/

Your tour leader will be able to direct you towards restaurants that are known to have better hygiene, especially in tourist areas where they are travelling with our groups regularly. For some more advice on avoiding "Delhi belly", see our article here: https://www.intrepidtravel.com/adventures/how-to-avoid-delhi-belly-in-india/

Climate & seasonal information

WEATHER IN INDIA
Due to India's size and topography, there's a huge amount of variation in its climate. We recommend you consider both the season and the part of India you intend to visit, so that you can best pack for your adventure.

One of the most beneficial times to visit India is from September to March when temperatures are at their best, with warm days and cool nights.

During winter (December to January), temperatures can get quite cold in Delhi and the north, especially at night. Hotels in some regions may not have adequate heating. In these months you may like to bring thermals for sleeping and a warm jacket for mornings and evenings. Fog can delay trains travelling throughout this region.

Monsoon is from May to October and offers hot and humid conditions. It is not unusual for trains to be delayed, and for activities in towns near rivers and lakes (ie Varanasi) to require amendment at this time of year. Your leader will be able to advise you locally on any changes.

FESTIVALS & HOLIDAYS
As a country of many cultures and religions, India has many festivals and public holidays. Here are some of the key dates and events:

HOLI (Festival of Colours)
2021 28-29 March
2022 17-18 March

DIWALI (Festival of Light)
2021 4 November
2022 24 October

RAMADAN (Muslim Holy Month)
2021 12 April-11 May
2022 01 April-02 May

In case of emergency

While we always endeavour to provide the best possible holiday experience, due to the nature of travel and the areas we visit sometimes things can and do go wrong. Should any issue occur while you are on your trip, it is imperative that you discuss this with your group leader or our local representative straight away so that they can do their best to rectify the problem and save any potential negative impact on the rest of your trip.

We recognise that there may be times when your group leader/local partner may not be able to resolve a situation to your satisfaction - if this is the case, please ask the leader to speak to their direct manager.

You may also choose to provide details in your online feedback, which we ask you to complete within 30 days of the end of your trip. Please do be aware that it is very difficult for us to provide any practical help after the trip is completed, so informing us while still travelling will give us the opportunity to resolve the issue in real-time.

For general contact details please use the following page: http://www.intrepidtravel.com/ourtrips/contact/

In case of a genuine crisis or emergency, you can reach our local office on the number below.

Intrepid's Local Operator: +91 9999 005 019

Accommodations

The style of accommodation indicated in the day-to-day itinerary is a guideline only and may change. On some occasions, alternative arrangements may need to be made due to the lack of availability of rooms in our preferred accommodation. In these cases, we will use a similar standard of accommodation.

Throughout the trip, we request that our properties prepare rooms in time for our arrival, especially if we're arriving prior to normal check-in time. However, this isn't always possible which means we won't be able to check-in immediately on arrival at some hotels. Instead, we can store our luggage and explore our new destination or on some trips, have use of shared day rooms until all rooms are available.

ACCOMMODATION
The hotel accommodation on this trip is in air-conditioned rooms. Some areas of India experience daily load shedding. This is where the power may be turned off at certain times of the day and usually occurs for a few hours in the early afternoon. Most hotel properties have a restaurant or cafe serving local meals. Many restaurants and hotels do not serve alcohol for religious reasons or due to local laws. 

SHOWERS:
Showers at some hotels only have hot water at peak times (usually morning and evening). Outside of these times, you may need to speak to reception to obtain hot water.

WIFI:
Generally, WiFi is available in most parts of India and at most of the accommodation we use. Sometimes it's free in the room, other times only available in reception or public areas. A general rule of thumb is the more expensive the hotel, the higher charge for WiFi access. Your tour leader can assist locally in accessing the internet.

ISSUES:
If you have any issues with your room, please speak to the hotel and your tour leader right away rather than your travel agent so that the problem can be addressed without delay.

Transportation

TRANSPORT IN INDIA:
Main roads in India are usually very busy with an assortment of vehicles from the biggest trucks (who always have right of way) down to bikes (and animals!). Overtaking on blind corners at speed is common as is the total use of the horn as a form of communication. Our leaders have complete authority to remove groups from local transport if the driver is not driving safely. Drivers of our private vehicles are experienced and well trained. If you are uncomfortable with your driver, please always let your tour leader know immediately. Please ensure you wear your seat belt at all times.

TRAVEL TIMES:
Distances in India do not reflect the driving time and to cover 100km may take much longer than you would expect at home, even if much of the route is on a highway.

TRAINS:
India has a massive network of trains and millions of people travel by rail every day. Trains often travel the length of the country over several days. Trains are a great way to see the countryside and get you away from the busy road system. Delays and cancellations are common on trains. Your tour leader will check the train status to see if there are delays and will do their best to keep you informed of any changes.

From December to February, delays are more common, especially in the north of the country due to fog. It’s not uncommon for trains to be delayed for up to 12 hours. On occasion, your trip will may to be rerouted to allow for these delays. Your tour leader in conjunction with our local office will advise any changes to the itinerary.

FLIGHTS:
Airlines in India are of excellent quality. Airports are becoming more modern (especially in the major and tourist cities). To enter the airport, you must have a copy of your flight ticket and passport. Schedule changes and delays do occur, especially when weather conditions make visibility poor.

AUTO RICKSHAWS:
On this trip we may travel in a local style of transport called an auto-rickshaw. These small, motorised three-wheeled vehicles are a common form of transport in India and do not have seatbelts.


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