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Himalayas and Golden Triangle Group Tour

Duration:
14 days / 13 nights
Destinations:
Amristar, Dharamshala, Shimla, Kalka, Delhi, Agra, Fatehpur Sikri, Jaipur
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Overview

This fantastic tour encompasses the amazing border city of Amritsar, Dharamshala home to the Dalai Lama, and the beautiful mountain town of Shimla, before heading for the iconic Golden Triangle destinations of Delhi, Agra and Jaipur.

Witness Amrtisar's famous ceremonies, explore beautiful gardens and be wowed by dramatic views. Discover stunning Shimla and step back in time to the days of the British Raj before a trip on the iconic 'Toy Train'.

Then enjoy the hustle and bustle of the Golden Triangle while you see glorious sights including India Gate in Delhi, the Taj Mahal in Agra, Fatehpur Sikri, and the glorious ‘Pink City’ of Jaipur. 

Highlights of the Himalaya Foothills and Golden Triangle Group Tour:

  • Golden Temple in Amritsar and Palki Ceremony
  • Witness the Wagah Border flag retreat
  • Tour of Dharamshala home to the Dalai Lama
  • See the dramatic views from the ‘Toy Train’ from Shimla
  • Explore the historic sights of New and Old Delhi
  • Sunset and sunrise visits to the Taj Mahal
  • Visit the ancient city of Fatehpur Sikri
  • Amer (Amber) Fort, City Palace, Hawa Mahal (Palace of Winds) and Jantar Mantar observatory in Jaipur

Golden Triangle and Himalaya Foothills Group Tour - 14 Days / 13 Nights

Discover beautiful palaces, stunning scenery, historic buildings and a journey by mountain railway on this Himalaya foothills and Golden Triangle Tour.

Experience the Palki religious ceremony at the Golden Temple and the poignant Wagah Border flag retreat in Amritsar before journeying to modern Chandigarh with its beautiful lakes and parks. Then take the mountain railway to the hillside retreat of Shimla with its rainbow houses, admiring the gorgeous views along the way.

From Shimla, head to Delhi where you can explore the historic sights and the different styles of New and Old Delhi. After that, gaze in wonder at the romantic and iconic Taj Mahal. Then your tour heads to the Pink City of Jaipur, where you can visit its famous forts, palaces and the observatory before concluding back in Delhi for your return flight home.

 
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Day 1: Arrive Amritsar

You will be met at Amritsar Airport by your Authentic India Tours representative and will be taken to your hotel which will take about 30 minutes.

The afternoon is free for you to relax and enjoy the facilities of the Hyatt Regency hotel or explore the local area.

In the evening, a visit to the Golden Temple has been arranged to see the “Palki Ceremony” also known as the putting to bed ceremony. To the sound of hymns and drums, a gold and silver gilded palanquin (a carriage carried by bearers) decorated in silk carries the Guru Granth Sahib holy book from the main shrine to the gate of the inner sanctum. 

This is follwed by a welcome dinner hosted by your tour leader.

Accommodation: Hyatt Regency Amritsar
Meals included: Breakfast and Dinner
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Day 2: Amritsar

Today's half-day sightseeing tour of Armistar is an excellent introduction to this amazing city.  Amritsar was founded in 1577 by the fourth Sikh guru, Ram Das. It was built on a site donated by the Mughal Emperor Akbar and is today the spiritual centre for Sikhs.

Located in the heart of the city is the iconic Golden Temple which is surrounded by a water tank, the Amrit Sarovar, from which Amritsar gets its name. Believed to have healing powers, you can see pilgrims who have often travelled many miles bathing in the lake. The city is known for its rich cuisine and culture, and for the tragic incident of the Jallianwala Bagh massacre in 1919 under British Rule. During the tour, you can also visit the Durgiana Temple and have a haggle in Katra market, where you'll find everything from fabric and beaded dresses to shoes and street food.

Late in the afternoon, you will be taken to the Atari (Wagah) Border, to witness the Flag Retreat ceremony. Since 1959, the security forces of India and Pakistan have lowered flags accompanied by elaborate and rapid dance-like manoeuvres. The ritual signifies both rivalry and cooperation between the two nations.

Accommodation: Hyatt Regency Amritsar
Meals included: Breakfast
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Day 3: Amritsar - Dharamshala

After breakfast, a 4 - 5 hour drive takes you through scenic mountainous territory to Dharamshala. Here you can enjoy the magnificent views of the snow covered Dhauladhar peaks. The hill station is surrounded with oak and conifer woodlands and snow-capped mountains on three sides, while the lush valley stretches out in front.

Upper Dharamshala and significantly the area of McLeod Ganj is known as the home of the Dalai Lama, the Tibetan spiritual leader. Since 1960, when it became a temporary headquarters of His Holiness the Dalai Lama, Dharamshala has risen to international fame as “The Little Lhasa in India”. The area is home to Tibetan performing arts and crafts, monasteries and temples with their eye catching red and gold prayer wheels and fluttering prayer flags from the rooftops.

Approximate travel time and distance: 4 hours 30 mins, 200 kms

Accommodation: Hyatt Regency Dharamshala
Meals included: Breakfast and Dinner
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Day 4: Dharamshala

Today's activities include an early morning walk to McLeod Ganj to see the pilgrims and worshippers engrossed in their morning prayer. After breakfast your guide will take you to the most significant Buddhist sites including the Namgyal Monastery, where the Dalai Lama has his residence and administrative offices.

Your tour will also include visits to the Bhagsu Nag Hindu Temples, Dal Lake and the Norbulinka Institute which is dedicated to the preservation of the Tibetan culture.

Accommodation: Hyatt Regency Dharamshala
Meals included: Breakfast and Dinner
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Day 5: Dharamshala - Shimla

It's a 6-7 hour drive today to the hill station of Shimla, the former summer capital of British. 

Accommodation: Oberoi Cecil
Meals included: Breakfast
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Day 6: Shimla

Until the British arrived, there was nothing at Shimla but a sleepy forest glade known as Shyamala (a local name for the Goddess Kali). By the mid-1860s, owing to the cooler climate and crisp, fresh air, Shimla had developed into the summer capital of the Raj. Every summer until 1939, the entire government of India fled here from the sweltering heat of the plains, with servants, families and all their clerks’ books and forms filled out in triplicate. When the Kalka to Shimla railway line was constructed in 1903, Shimla’s status as India’s premier hill station was assured.

On this morning’s tour, you will visit the mock Tudor library, the famous Gaiety Theatre, and the Viceregal Lodge. You will also have time to explore the Mall.

The afternoon is free to explore this hill station at your leisure.

Accommodation: Oberoi Cecil
Meals included: Breakfast
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Day 7: Shimla

Today is a day of leisure or if you wish there are some optional extra activities which can be arranged.

Perhaps explore Shimla on a nature walk from the house where Rudyard Kipling wrote Plain Tales From The Hills. Enjoy afternoon tea at the Oberoi Wildflower Hall or visit the princely state of Dhami to spend the day with the noble family, birdwatching and enjoying their stories over lunch.

Accommodation: Oberoi Cecil
Meals included: Breakfast
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Day 8: Shimla - Kalka - Delhi

After a leisurely breakfast, you will be transferred to Shimla railway station to board the Himalayan Queen narrow gauge train for the spectacular ride to Kalka. At Kalka station you will then board the Shatabdi Express train to Delhi, arriving in Delhi around 10pm. At Delhi station, you will be met by your driver for a private car transfer to your hotel.


Approximate travel time and distance: 7 hrs 30 mins, 340 kms

Accommodation: ITC Maurya
Meals included: Breakfast
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Day 9: Delhi

Today you will explore the historical city of Delhi with a full day sightseeing tour. You begin in Old Delhi, once the Mughal city of Shahjahanabad, with its vibrant market lanes and colourful neighbourhoods. A cycle rickshaw ride will take you through the lanes or gallis of Chandni Chowk, where everything from spices, brassware, antiques, jewellery and perfumes are sold. You will then discover the highly decorative Jama Masjid, the largest mosque in India, with a courtyard which can accommodate 25000 devotees before seeing the Red Fort, India Gate and a visit to Raj Ghat.

After lunch it’s time to explore New Delhi which showcases the story of modern India with its open spaces, government buildings, museums and wide tree-lined avenues. Your tour starts with a drive to see the Rashtrapati Bhawan, the official residence of the President of India before going to Qutab Minar, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. This lofty tower inspired by the Minaret of Jam in Afghanistan has numerous inscriptions in Arabic and Nagari. Your tour concludes with visit to Humayun's tomb, the first garden tomb built by the Mughals in India.

Accommodation: ITC Maurya
Meals included: Breakfast
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Day 10: Delhi - Agra

After breakfast, your adventure continues to Agra, famous for the Taj Mahal UNESCO World Heritage Site and its Mughal architecture. The journey takes about 3 - 4 hours on India’s busy roads.

In the afternoon it's time to explore the forbidding red sandstone battlements of the Agra Fort and its impressive Diwan-i-Am & Diwan-i-Khas Hall. Agra Fort is another impressive UNESCO World Heritage Site which was the main residence of the emperors of the Mughal Dynasty until 1638

This is followed by a visit to Mehtab Bhag, the Mughal Park on the other side of River Yamuna to enjoy beautiful sunset views of the Taj Mahal.

Approximate travel time and distance: 3 – 4 hours, 230 kms

Accommodation: ITC Mughal
Meals included: Breakfast
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Day 11: Agra - Fatehpur Sikri - Jaipur

This morning offers a real highlight with a sunrise visit to the iconic Taj Mahal. Built in memorial of Mumtaz Mahal, Mughal emperor Shah Jahan's beloved wife, this magnificent building is made entirely of marble and is decorated with elaborate geometric forms and inlay work that showcases plants, flower and fruit motifs.

After breakfast, your journey continues  into the countryside towards Ranthambhore National Park.  On route, you will stop for a guided tour of the fascinating ancient city of Fatehpur Sikri. The city was once the capital of the Mughal empire and includes a stunning mosque, which is still in use today. After the tour there’s a stop for a quick lunch before proceeding to Ranthambhore.

Approximate travel time and distance: 6 – 7 hours, 290 kms

Accommodation: ITC Rajputana
Meals included: Breakfast
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Day 12: Jaipur

This morning you will visit the stunning 17th century hilltop Amber (Amer) Fort, set in the rugged hills just outside the city. As you ascend the fort by jeep there are striking views of the surrounding gorges and lake to enjoy. Inside the fort, the extensive Maharaja's apartments that are decorated with murals and mosaic and the glistening Hall of Mirrors are all worth exploring

In the afternoon, you will be taken through the colourful bazaars to see the Hawa Mahal or Palace of Winds, built for the royal ladies to catch a glimpse of the outside world through delicate screened windows.  You will also visit the Royal Observatory or Jantar Mantar as it is known locally and the City Palace's collection of rare manuscripts, armoury and costumes.

The rest of the day is free for you to explore Jaipur and maybe pick up a bargain or two in the lively bazaars.

Accommodation: ITC Rajputana
Meals included: Breakfast
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Day 13: Jaipur - Delhi

After a leisurely breakfast it's time to leave Jaipur for Delhi.

On route there is a stop for lunch at the beautiful Neemrana Fort Palace Hotel.

Approximate travel time and distance: 5 - 6 hours, 270 kms

Accommodation: Pullman New Delhi Aerocity
Meals included: Breakfast and Lunch
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Day 14: Departure from Delhi

On the last day of your tour, you will be collected by your Authentic India Tours driver, who will transfer you to Delhi International Airport for your return flight.

If you have time and would like to discover more of India there are plenty of options. You could visit South India or Kerala, enjoy a beach extension in Goa or explore Mumbai and West India.

Please contact us for more details and to discuss your individual requirements.

Meals included: Breakfast

Accommodation

Hyatt Regency, Amritsar

The deluxe 5-star Hyatt Regency Amritsar is located in the heart of the city, making it the perfect base to explore the Golden Temple, Jallianwala Bagh and the Wagah Border. Dine on sumptuous international cuisine, treat yourself to homemade confectionery and pastries in the in-house tarteria, or unwind in the lounge bar. Indulge in a spa treatment, work out in the fitness centre or watch the stunning sunset from the swimming pool 

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Hyatt Regency Dharamshala

Spread over 6.5 acres and offering 5 star level of service, the Hyatt is the perfect place to relax and enjoy the mountain air.

All the resort guestrooms are spacious and offer fresh Himalayan air and signature views of either the lush garden amid the Deodar forest or the magnificent snow-capped Dhauladhar range.

Oberoi Cecil, Shimla

The beautiful Oberoi Cecil oozes colonial charm and classic elegance and offers amazing views of beautiful Shimla. From the grand atrium lobby to the exclusive spa, you'll find luxurious touches at every turn. Dine on a selection of local and national dishes in a former ballroom, relax in the lounge bar, or simply unwind in your spacious room with personal butler service.

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ITC Maurya, Delhi

A landmark in the capital city of India, the ITC Maurya is a 5 star hotel which has been has been the favoured accommodation by visiting heads of state and global icons for over 40 years. Situated in the diplomatic enclave of New Delhi it epitomizes the luxury hotel experience offering exemplary service and warm hospitality soaked in Indian traditions.

ITC Mughal, Agra

The luxurious ITC Mughal in Agra is the perfect accommodation after a day’s sightseeing at the nearby Taj Mahal. A tribute to the great Mughal builders of the past, you can expect splendour and opulence in every nook and cranny. To date, the ITC Mughal is the only Indian hotel to have won the prestigious Aga Khan Award for Architectural Excellence, in Asia, due to its impressive heritage architecture inspired by Mughal’s famous monuments, the Agra Fort and Fatehpur Sikri.

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ITC Rajputana, Jaipur

Located in the heart of Jaipur, this 5 star luxury hotel was once the estate of the Prime Minister of Jaipur. The ITC Rajputana design and the royal atmosphere that guests can enjoy reflects everything that is splendid about Rajasthan.

The running water streams, the waterfall in the lobby, the ‘Wall of Mirrors’ and the ‘Bazaar’ selling goods prepared by local craftsmen have all been inspired by the forts and palaces of the region.

Destinations

Amritsar

Located in the northwestern Indian state of Punjab, the centrepiece of any visit to Amristar is the magnificent Golden Temple (Harmandir Sahib) the holiest gurdwara (religious complex) of the Sikh religion. Amritsar was founded in 1577 by the fourth Sikh guru Ram Das and offers a beautiful blend of old and new,  tradition and culture combined with the amenities of a modern city.

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Dharamshala

Home to the Dalai Lama and the Tibetan government-in-exile, Dharamshala is a hillside city surrounded by cedar forests on the edge of the Himalayas. Visit the Thekchen Chöling Temple Complex, a spiritual centre for Tibetan Buddhism, or the Library of Tibetan Works and Archives containing a multitude of precious manuscripts.

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Shimla, Himachal Pradesh

The capital city of Himachal Pradesh, Shimla is home to a variety of temples and churches, and its gravity-defying Kalka-Shimla railway which has earned UNESCO World Heritage Site status. Shimla also offers  amazing views of the Himalayas and the largest natural ice skating rink in South Asia. 

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Delhi

Busy, bustling and brimming with history, India’s capital city will leave a lasting impression. This city within cities is one of the three Golden Triangle destinations, and as a shopper’s paradise, history lover’s haven and foodie’s utopia, the delights of Delhi will appeal to everyone.

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Agra

Magical Agra is an unmissable destination on any tour to North India. Home to the world-famous Taj Mahal, the impressive sandstone Agra Fort and the ethereal ruins of the abandoned city of Fatehpur Sikri, it’s a must for lovers of architecture, culture, history and photography.

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Jaipur

Named the ‘Pink City’ due to its pink-hued buildings, Jaipur is a melting pot of hubbub and history. Meander through markets or pass camel carts on your way to visit the Amer Fort (a UNESCO World Heritage Site), Hawa Mahal (Palace of Winds), the imposing City Palace and the world’s largest stone sundial at Jantar Mantar.

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Pricing & Inclusions

This Golden Triangle and Himalaya Foothills Group Tour is available from Amristar on the following dates (prices per person):

Travel Dates & Tour Prices
Travel Dates Cost Per Person on Twin / Double Sharing Basis Single Room Supplement
07 Feb 2021 - 20 Feb 2021 £1995 £1110
21 Feb 2021 - 06 Mar 2021 £1995 £1110
07 Mar 2021 - 20 Mar 2021 £1995 £1110
21 Mar 2021 - 03 Apr 2021 £1995 £1110
14 Nov 2021 - 27 Nov 2021 £2150 £1160
06 Feb 2022 - 19 Feb 2022 £2150 £1160
20 Feb 2022 - 05 Mar 2022 £2150 £1160
06 Mar 2022 - 19 Mar 2022 £2150 £1160
20 Mar 2022 - 02 Apr 2022 £2150 £1160

 

The prices quoted are without flights. If you would like us to arrange your flights, all the flights and flight-inclusive holidays on this website are financially protected by the ATOL scheme. 

Included with this group tour:

  • Accompanying tour escort for the entire tour.
  • All internal road travel by a private chauffeur-driven airconditioned vehicle.
  • All scheduled sightseeing expenses and entrance fees at monuments.
  • First class train ticket for Shimla - Kalka and Air-Conditioned Executive chair car ticket for Kalka - Delhi
  •  Accommodation for 13 nights on single/double sharing basis. The properties suggested are used regularly for our discerning clients and are tried and trusted. All have en suite facilities. (Normal check-in time is at 1400 hrs and check out is at 1100 hrs; early check-in/late check-out will be requested where required, but cannot be guaranteed).
  • Meal Plan: 14 Breakfasts, Lunch on day 13. Dinner on day 01, 03 and 04.

Price does not include:

  • International flight tickets
  • Travel insurance and visa
  • Expenses of personal nature like laundry, tips, beverages etc
  • Meals other than mentioned in the above meal plan
  • Camera & video fees at national parks, museums & monuments

Authentic India Tours is a member of ATOL and can provide ATOL protected holidays with flights. We recommend the following flights for these tours.

Suggested Flight
Flight Flight Code Departing Arriving
Qatar Airways QR 10 London Heathrow (LHR)
09:00
Doha (DOH)
18:55
Qatar Airways QR 548 Doha (DOH)
20:45
Amristar (ATQ)
02:45

Qatar Airways

QR 571

Doha (DOH)
09:40

Doha (DOH)
11:45

Qatar Airways

QR 15 Doha (DOH)
15:50
London Heathrow (LHR)
20:25
Call us for AIT specially negotiated flight fares

 

Prices mentioned above are per person based on two people sharing a twin room. The prices which were valid at the time of publication may be subject to change, based on your date of travel and local market fluctuations. You will be informed of any price differences prior to booking.

For a quote based on your dates of travel, any alternative accommodation or changes to this itinerary, please call us on 01792 315499 or email us at info@aitholidays.com