India has much to offer- too much to experience in a single lifetime, let alone a single trip! Yet this Grand Circle Tour of India is a comprehensive tour featuring the best of North and South India. From the holy city of Varanasi, awe-inspiring Taj Mahal, irreplaceable forts and palaces of Rajasthan, 2000 year old art at the Ajanta and Ellora caves, Jewish town of Cochin, pristine Backwaters of Kerala and the temple towns of South India. This tour has it all.

20 DAYS GRAND CIRCLE OF NORTH AND SOUTH INDIA

ESCORTED WITH MINIMUM 12 AND MAXIMUM 18 PASSENGERS OR MAKE IT A WORLDVIEW 'PRIVATELY GUIDED' TOUR- TRAVEL ANY DAY -Guaranteed to operate with minimum 2 persons

Featuring Delhi, Varanasi, Khajuraho, Agra- Taj Mahal, Jaipur, Udaipur, Aurangabad- Ajanta and Ellora caves, Cochin, Kumarakom Backwaters, Periyar, Madurai, Tanjore, Trichy and Chennai- Mahabalipuram

India has much to offer- too much to experience in a single lifetime, let alone a single trip! Yet this Grand Circle Tour of India is a comprehensive tour featuring the best of North and South India. From the holy city of Varanasi, awe-inspiring Taj Mahal, irreplaceable forts and palaces of Rajasthan, 2000 year old art at the Ajanta and Ellora caves, Jewish town of Cochin, pristine Backwaters of Kerala and the temple towns of South India. This tour has it all.


Day 1 ARRIVE DELHI. Late night arrival in Delhi, capital of India. Its history goes back 2000 years.



Day 2 DELHI (B) New Delhi tour visits the impressive Qutab Minar, a 234-ft sandstone tower and Humayun's tomb. See the Government buildings and presidential palace along the broad and majestic Rajpath. Tour Old Delhi to see the Red Fort, a symbol of Mughal power. On return, visit Raj Ghat, a memorial to the great Mahatma Gandhi.


Day 3 DELHI - VARANASI (B) Fly to Varanasi. With its arrayof shrines, temples and palaces, rising in several tiers from the River Ganges water's edge, Varanasi is the holiest city for Hindus. Tour Sarnath, the site where Lord Buddha preached his first sermon. Evening witness the prayer ceremonies at the ghats.


Day 4 VARANASI - KHAJURAHO (B) Early morning boat ride on the Ganges River. Thousands of devout Hindus descend to the holy waters of the Ganges for purification. Fly to Khajuraho. Tour the magnificent Khajuraho temples, known for their symmetry and design, and also for their intricate and erotic carvings.


Day 5 KHAJURAHO - ORCHHA - AGRA (B) Drive to Jhansi rail station for a short train ride to Agra visiting en route palaces and temples of Orchha.


Day 6 AGRA (B) Visit the Taj Mahal built by Emperor Shah Jahan in 1648 AD in memory of his Queen. It took the world's best craftsmen and over 20,000 workers almost 20 years to build this dream. Also visit the Agra Fort and sample the arts of the region.


Day 7 AGRA- JAIPUR (B) An interesting drive to Jaipur visiting en route Fatehpur Sikri, the once fabled Mughal capital that now lies quietly but wonderfully preserved.


Day 8 JAIPUR (B) This morning visit Amber Fort with a thrilling elephant ride. Inside, the fort find lavish courtyards, beautifully decorated halls and the Chamber of Mirrors. Afternoon tour Jaipur city visiting the Royal Observatory and Palace Museum. See the ornate and elaborate Palace of Winds, the Hawa Mahal, a striking landmark of Jaipur. Later explore the exotic 'bazaars' of Jaipur.


Day 9 JAIPUR - UDAIPUR (B) Fly to Udaipur. The city of Udaipur stands in a valley amid green hills on the banks of the wide, steel blue Lake Pichola. Excursion to the beautiful Jain temple of Ranakpur. Built in white marble it has exquisite intricate carvings. In the afternoon, enjoy a scenic cruise on Lake Pichola including visit to the Jagmandir Palace.


Day 10 UDAIPUR - AURANGABAD (B) Tour of Udaipur, visiting the vast and exquisite City Palace of the Maharana. Amber, jade and colored glass gives the palace a sparkling, yet ethereal quality. See the Fateh Sagar Lake and visit the Jagdish Temple. Fly to Aurangabad, home of one of the most impressive sights of India.


Day 11 AURANGABAD (B) Morning visit Ajanta cave temples. Completed around the 7th century AD Buddhist monks spent centuries carving 29 caves into a horseshoe-shaped cliff. Afternoon tour of Ellora. Over 2000 years ago stonecutters removed an estimated 200,000 ton of solid rock by using chisel and hammer to build the 34 caves, sculptures, columns and decorative facades. The enormous Kailash Temple carved out of a single rock is perhaps the largest monolith in the world.


Day 12 AURANGABAD - COCHIN (B) Fly to Cochin. The Cochin harbor has been trading spices with the rest of the world for over 2000 years. In the evening witness a colorful Kathakali dance performance.



Day 13 COCHIN (B) Tour of Cochin includes visit to the Jewish Synagogue, one of the oldest in India, Jewish town and the Dutch Palace, well known for its mural paintings. See the picturesque Chinese fishing nets in operation at the entrance of the Kochi Harbor; Chinese traders first brought them back from Kublai Khan's court.


Day 14 COCHIN - KUMARAKOM (BL) Drive to the famous Kerala water canals in Kumarakom. The complex network of lagoons, lakes, rivers and canals form the basis of a distinct regional life-style and traveling by boat is the best way to view it. The boats cross shallow, palm-fringed lakes studded with Chinese fishing nets along narrow, shady canals where coir (coconut fiber), coconut and cashews are loaded on to boats. Enjoy a three-hour cruise on the Backwaters.


Day 15 KUMARAKOM - PERIYAR (B) Drive today to Periyar National Park. A dam constructed on a river led to the submersion of a large forest area and the formation of a lake. The park contains elephants, tiger, sambar, barking deer, lion-tailed macaque and a rich bird life. Enjoy a cruise on Lake Periyar on a forest department run boat and visit a spice plantation.


Day 16 PERIYAR - MADURAI (B) An interesting drive through the scenic countryside to Madurai. The city is planned out in the shape of a lotus with the famous Meenakshi Temple in the center. Tour of Meenakshi Temple, Thirumalai Nayak Palace and Madurai city. It is one of the biggest temple complexes in India. The five pagodas that surround the temple are known for their intricate stucco work and the 156-ft high southern gopuram is the tallest. Thirumalai Mahal Palace is constructed in Indo-Saracenic style. In the evening attend special temple prayer ceremonies.


Day 17 MADURAI- TANJORE (B) Drive to Tanjore visiting en route Chettinad villages near Karaikudi. Tanjore (Thanjavur) is home of the Chola rulers, the greatest temple builders in the south with rich heritage of Carnatic music, musical instruments, dance and traditional handicrafts.


Day 18 TANJORE (B) Tour of Tanjore. The Brihadeeswara Temple built by Raja Chola is said to have been the tallest monument in ancient India, rising to a height of 241-ft in pyramidal form. It is rightly said of the Cholas that they conceived like giants and finished like jewelers


Day 19 TANJORE - TRICHY - CHENNAI (B) Drive to Trichy. Tour the Srirangam Temple, one of the largest and most interesting temple complexes in India. Fly to Chennai (Madras), Southern India's largest city. Tour includes visits to St. Thomas Cathedral which houses the grave of St. Thomas the Apostle and the Bronze Museum.


Day 20 CHENNAI - HOMEBOUND (B) A 37-mile drive to Mahabalipuram - the 'city of the seven pagodas'. See the breathtaking display of the pagodas, chiseled out of boulders in the form of temple chariots. The masterpiece is the 'Penance of Bhagirath' the world's largest bas-relief in stone.

Transfer to the airport for home bound flight.

TOUR ENDS! HAPPY LANDINGS!

LAND TOUR PRICES INCLUDE: First Class train tickets for any train travel 19 nights hotel accommodations at the mentioned or similar hotels, American Breakfast daily, Sight-seeing tours with local English speaking guides including entrance fee. India expert Tour Director (minimum 12 passengers) or locally hosted with minimum 2, Round trip transfers and Baggage handling, Service charges and hotel taxes

LAND TOUR PRICES DOES NOT INCLUDE: International and Internal airfare, any passport and visa fee, any airport taxes, any camera fee at the monuments, any meals except those mentioned, any transportation except those mentioned, tips to room boys, laundry charges, telephone calls or any other charges of personal nature. Nor does it include any end of the trip gratuity to our India expert Tour Director (suggested tipping is $10 per person per day).

'PRIVATELY GUIDED'- TRAVEL ANY DAY This tour can be customized to travel any day as a 'privately guided' tour with locally hosted ground arrangements for two or more guests traveling together.

Call (800) 373 0388 or email info@worldviewtours.com to book this trip