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Birds, Tigers and The Taj Mahal

An Eleven day classic bird watching and wildlife holiday in India, visiting Bharatpur, home of the Kaladeo Bird Sanctuary, and the world famous Ranthambore Tiger Reserve. In addition,this Taj Mahal and Tiger tour, also includes bird watching opportunities at the Chhatra Sagar dam and tented camp, and also visits to the Taj Mahal, and the Pink city of Jaipur.

Delhi - Bharatpur - Ranthambore - Jaipur - Nimaj - Delhi

Day 01: - Arrive Delhi

Arrive at Delhi International Airport.

Delhi : A bustling metropolis and a city of 14 million inhabitants, is also India's capital. A near perfect blend of the ancient and the modern, Delhi, consisting two parts Old & New Delhi, is a city with something for everyone. From Forts and monuments that are almost 500 years old, to modern shopping malls, nightclubs and golf courses, Delhi truly is India's crown jewel.

birla template delhi

Upon clearing Customs and Immigration, you are met by our representative who will present you with a welcome pack including all necessary documentation and arrange your transfer to The Claridges Hotel for check-in. No activity is scheduled today, since most of the International flights arrive into India close to midnight only.

the claridges delhi

The Claridges : Located in the heart of the city, The Claridges has been a landmark in Lutyens Delhi since the 1950's. Set on 3 acres of land, the hotel is a low-rise building with only three floors. It is within close proximity of the business district, ministries, diplomatic missions, shopping & cultural centers and historical landmarks. The Hotel's facilities include a Swimming Pool, Health Club and several Bars and Resautants.

For the ultimate in luxury, you could choose to upgrade to

The Imperial :- The Imperial Hotel, one of Delhi's best known luxury Hotels is also one of the oldest hotels in Delhi .Built in 1933, it has a somewhat unconventional style & design; a mixture of Victorian and old colonial with a playful dosage of art deco. The hotel, which is centrally located on Janpath, is set in beautiful gardens and its facilities include an outdoor swimming pool, a shopping arcade, permanent in-house art galleries and a variety of restaurants.

 the imperial blue

Overnight at hotel.

Day 02: Delhi

This morning you are collected from your hotel for full day tour of Old and New Delhi.

The tour of the 17th-century old city includes the great mosque of Jama Masjid, The main street of Old Delhi is the colorful shopping bazaar known as Chandni Chowk ("Moonlit Street"). Drive past Raj Ghat, the cremation site of Mahatma Gandhi.

humayun tomb

The tour of New Delhi includes the Humayun's Tomb, the precursor of the Taj Mahal. Drive down the spectacular Rajpath ("the Kingsway,") passing the India Gate (the memorial built to commemorate the unknown soldiers,) the President's House, and the House of Parliament. Enjoy a brief respite from the otherwise bustling city at Birla Mandir, a modern and colourful Hindu temple.

Evening at leisure to perhaps venture out and discover the city or its many restaurants on your own.

Overnight at hotel.

Day 03: Delhi - Agra - Bharatpur

This morning you drive to Bharatpur (260kms/5 hrs.)

Enroute visiting Taj Mahal in Agra. Taj Mahal -- a poem, a feeling of love, in white marble, is a fine example of the fusion of many architectural styles. It has been described as the most extravagant monument ever built for love.

After visiting Taj Mahal, continue your drive to Bharatpur, offering undoubtedly the best bird watching in India.

Bharatpur : Now known as Keoladeo Ghana National Park, the Bharatpur Bird Sanctuary, situated in the North Indian state of Rajasthan (actually very close to Agra) is without question one of the finest birdwatching locations in the world. The reserve provides a diversity and abundance of birdlife only equalled in Africa and keen birdwatchers are often overwhelmed by the sheer number of birds present. Notable species amongst the throngs of nesting Painted Storks, White Ibises, Darters and Spoonbills are specialities such as the threatened Black-necked Stork, Comb Duck, and the elusive Spotted Creeper. Thousands of ducks crowd the marshes and pools and include, amongst the more familiar species, hundreds of Ferruginous and Lesser Whistling Ducks plus smaller numbers of Red-crested Pochards and Spotbilled Ducks.

bird sanctuary bharatpur

Both White and Dalmatian Pelicans may occur and large numbers of Common Cranes along with smaller numbers of Sarus Cranes use the reserve in which to winter. Bharatpur has also been famous as the winter hideaway of the very rare Siberian Cranes, though the sighting of these has reduced considerably in recent years .Bharatpur also provides unrivalled opportunities for observing a large range of raptors, including Spotted,Imperial, Steppe and Tawny Eagles, as well as a host of vultures.Bharatpur is also known for sighting of rare bird species such as Orange-headed Ground Thrush, Dusky Warbler, Marshall's Iora and Large-tailed Nightjar. Other wildlife inhabiting the Bharatpur Sanctuary includes the rare and beautiful Blackbuck, Indian Smooth Otter, Fishing Cat, Soft-shelled Turtle and Indian Python. Nilgai, Sambar, Spotted Deer and Rhesus Macaques .A very interesting feature of Bharatpur is the way game rides are done -- on cycle rickshaws .You could also take a cycling or walking tour of this park.

Upon arrival you will be met & escorted for check-in at the Bagh.

the bagh

The Bagh : The Bagh is a heritage hotel set in 12 acres of beautiful gardens, very close to the Bharatpur Bird sanctuary .The hotel's twenty three rooms are located in three different residential complexes. A restaurant, banquet hall, coffee shop, library and a gym, all situated in a verdant orchard, allow guests to enjoy solitude and companionship in restful indoor and outdoor spaces. Each of the Bagh's twenty three rooms is unique. Spacious bathrooms, luxurious fabrics, fine furnishings and all modern day amenities, let the weary traveler retreat and recoup after a day of sightseeing and bird watching.

Gulmohar, the main restaurant, specializes in the wonderful vegetarian cuisine of the Braj region. With over fifty species of flora, including fruiting trees and flowering plants which attract birds, small animals and insects, guests can enjoy quiet walks in the garden and commune with nature. The handsome buildings made in local stones are designed to merge with their natural surroundings. Works by contemporary Indian women artists are displayed throughout the complex. A stroll through the Bagh's garden and buildings leads a visitor through the realms of nature and art.

Overnight at hotel.

Day 04: In Bharatpur

Morning and afternoon rickshaw rides into Bharatpur Bird Sanctuary. Bird watching tours in Bharatpur are organized on Cycle rickshaw. Local guides and naturalists are at hand to enhance the experience.

Overnight at hotel.

Day 05 : Bharatpur - Ranthambore

Morning rickshaw ride in Bharatpur Bird Sanctuary.

Later drive to Ranthambore (250 kms/06 hrs)

Ranthambore : The most convienently located National Park in the North Indian state of Rajasthan, is considered by many to be one of India's most beautiful national parks .The Ranthambore National Park is one of the prime examples of Project Tiger's conservation efforts in Rajasthan. It covers an area of 400 sq km with many steep crags embracing a network of lakes and rivers. Atop one of these hills, the 10th century Ranthambore Fort stands like a silent sentinel. The terrain is a blend of impregnable forests and open bush land. The forest is the typically dry deciduous type with dhok being the most prominent tree.

ranthambore tiger

Ranthambore is best known for its tiger population, and tiger sightings are common here. Apart from tigers, the park has its share of panthers, too. Kachida Valley is believed to be the place to sight these rather elusive cats. One can also find marsh crocodiles, hyenas, jungle cats and sloth bears apart from Chital, Nilgai, and Chinkara. The avian population comprises of black storks, quails, Bonelli's eagles, spur fowls, crested serpent eagles and painted storks. During the winter months, the park attracts a lot of migratory birds, including a variety of ducks. It is the ideal park for wildlife photography.

Upon arrival check-in at the Vivanta by Taj Sawai Madhopur Lodge.

taj sawai madhopur lodge

The Vivanta by Taj Sawai Madhopur Lodge : Located amidst 12 acres of lush gardens, this 70-year-old hunting lodge exudes a rustic, earthy charm and an air of history. The Lodge is a heritage building and was the the hunting lodge of the Maharajah of Jaipur . It has about 30 newly refurbished rooms , with all modern amenities . Leisure facilities at the Vivanta by Taj Sawai Madhopur Lodge include a swimming pool, a well stocked bar, a library, a billiards/snooker room and massage services.

To experience world class luxury accommodation in Ranthambhore, you could choose to upgrade to the

Oberoi Vanya Vilas in Ranthambore : - Vanya vilas is India's first luxury jungle camp and it is situated adjacent to the famous tiger sanctuary of Ranthambore. Accommodation is in 25 luxury air-conditioned tents, which are located to ensure maximum privacy. In true Oberoi Vilas style, each tent has a large well-appointed marble bathroom with freestanding, bathtub, separate shower stall and double vanity. The resort area totals almost 20 acres and yet only 5% is to be built upon, leaving space for the many trees and extensive natural flora, ensuring the natural beauty of the area is maintained.Leisure facilities at the Oberoi Vanya Vilas , include a Swimming Pool, a Banyan Tree Spa , a library, a fully stocked bar and Cigar lounge .

oberoi vanya vilas

Overnight at hotel.

Day 06 : - Ranthambore

Early morning & evening game safaris into the Ranthambore National Park. Safaris in Ranthambhore are organized in jeeps and open air mini trucks, and local guides and naturalists are at hand to enhance the experience.

Overnight at the Lodge.

Day 07 : - Ranthambore - Jaipur

Early morning game safari at Ranthambore National Park. Later drive to the Pink city of Rajasthan - Jaipur (180 kms/3½ hrs.).

amber fort jaipur

Jaipur : Jaipur is an exuberance of colour, dance, and song with the traditional arts and crafts. It's one of India's most well planned cities, with wide, straight avenues, roads, streets and lanes in a grid system. The great warrior/astronomer Maharaja Jai Singh II carefully planned Jaipur's foundation. Laid out in the 18th century, its design followed specifications from an epochal Hindu treatise on architecture.

This "Pink City," so called because its buildings are painted in the tones of an autumnal sunset, intersperses the play of red and pink with white borders and motifs. The royal family's residence at Amber is only 11 km away. The palaces and forts of yesteryear, once witness to royal processions, now shine amid the splendor of modern monuments, juxtaposition accepted quite naturally into the lifestyles of an amazing people.

Upon arrival in Jaipur, check in at the Jai Mahal Palace.

Jai Mahal Palace :- Set in several acres of beautifully landscaped gardens, the Jai Mahal Palace was the residence of the former Prime Minister of the state of Jaipur. Now a Deluxe hotel, managed by the Taj Group, the hotel has recently been refurbished and upgraded. Almost all rooms offer breathtaking views of the Moghul gardens or the swimming pool. Excellent service and modern amenities make the Jai Mahal Palace one of the finest hotels in Jaipur.

jai mahal palace

For the ultimate in luxury, you could choose to upgrade to the

rambagh palace

Rambagh Palace :- Once the residence of the Maharaja of Jaipur, this magnificent palace is spread over 47 acres of land and is now a luxury hotel managed by the Taj Group. The hotel offers spacious rooms tastefully decorated in traditional Rajasthani style and excellent leisure facilities like an indoor swimming pool, health club and live entertainment every evening. The Rambagh Palace is also home to the Polo Bar, rated as one of the finest Bars in the world.

Overnight at hotel.

Day 08 : In Jaipur

This morning you are collected from your hotel for excursion to Amber fort, situated on the outskirts of the city. Here, you are transported back in time today, riding like royalty atop elegantly draped and painted elephants into the high mountain fortress. Amber Fort was the ancient capital of the State until 1728 and inside the fort, you visit the Jagmandir or the Hall of victory glittering with mirrors, Jai Mahal and the Temple of Kali.

Afternoon sightseeing tour of Jaipur city visiting Hawa Mahal or "Palace of Winds," one of the major landmarks of Jaipur, although it is actually little more than a façade. The five-story building was originally built to enable the ladies of the royal household to watch the everyday life and processions of the city.

The City Palace, located in the heart of the old city, is a large complex of courtyards, buildings, and gardens, and also houses an interesting museum.

hawa mahal

Adjacent to the City Palace is Jantar Mantar, the ancient astronomical observatory built by Raja Jai Singh, whose passion for astronomy was even more notable than his prowess as a warrior.

Overnight at hotel.

Day 09 : Jaipur - Nimaj (Chhatra Sagar)

This morning you drive to Chhatra Sagar (230kms/4 hrs.)

chhatra sagar

Chhatra Sagar : In the late nineteenth century, Thakur Chhatra Singh of Nimaj, a powerful noble of the desert kingdom of Marwar (Jodhpur), decided to dam a seasonal stream flowing through his estate. His vision was to create a water reservoir which would harvest the monsoon rains. It was an ambitious project and a great drain on his resources but Thakur Chhatra Singh remained true to his vision. The dam was completed in 1890 and changed the dry scrub into prime agricultural land. Farmers struggling for sustenance on parched lands were invited by Thakur Chhatra Singh to settle around the reservoir. The reservoir was named Chhatra Sagar in his memory.

By early twentieth century Chhatra Sagar had developed into a lush green oasis. With its wide open spaces and enchanting views, it became the entertainment venue of choice. To capture the outdoor "big sky" feel of the place, permanent construction was deliberately kept to a minimum.

Upon arrival in Chhatra Sagar, check in to the Chhatra Sagar Camp.

Chhatra Sagar Camp : A truly magical place which comprises 11 delightful tents pitched on a dam, overlooking a lake teeming with birds (seasonal) and surrounded by grasslands replete with wildlife. The charming Nimaj family are personally involved in looking after guests and the tents are amongst the best of their kind, sited in a location that is truly unique. They are very pretty and comfortable with fabulous stone bathrooms, a small sitting area and a dressing room. Each tent faces directly onto the lake and whilst sitting on your verandah or sit out, you are rewarded with exceptional, uninterrupted views and virtually no sign of habitation - a rarity in India! A stay here allows you to experience rural Rajasthan in a way that few other properties do.

chhatra sagar camp

Overnight in the Camp.

Day 10 : Jaipur - Nimaj (Chhatra Sagar)

A day at leisure to enjoy the Camp and its surroundings. Activities here include Farm and Village walks accompanied by one of the members of the Nimaj family, where you get an opportunity to explore the farm, local temples and meet the villagers. You could also take a drive through the grasslands, spying myriad bird species, herds of bluebull and other animals.

Overnight in the Camp.

Day 11 : Chhatra Sagar- Jodhpur and Fly Jodhpur - Delhi

This morning you drive to Jodhpur (120 kms/3 hrs.) to board flight for Delhi followed by a transfer to the International terminal in Delhi, to connect to your flight home.

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COST USD 2186 per person
Domestic Airfare (not included in land cost) USD 120  per person for the sector Jodhpur ­ Delhi in economy class.
* A supplement may apply for travel between 20th Dec and 05th Jan

Delhi Claridges
  • Accommodation on twin sharing bed and breakfast basis (except in Ranthambore & Nimaj where all meals are included) at he hotels of your choice.
  • All arrival-departure transfers and land transportation using an aircon car exactly as per the itinerary.
  • Sightseeing tours / game rides along with a local English Speaking Guide / naturalist and including entrance fee to monuments / game parks exactly as mentioned above in the Itinerary.
Bharatpur The Bagh
Ranthambore Vivanta by Taj Sawai Madhopur Lodge
Jaipur Jai Mahal Palace
Nimaj/Chhatra Sagar Chhatra Sagar Camp
Supplements for suggested hotel upgrades….
The Claridges to The Imperial in Delhi for 02 nights including breakfast - Usd 238 per person.
Vivanta by Taj Sawai Madhopur Lodge to Oberoi Vanya Vilas in Ranthambore for 02 nights (on bed and breakfast basis) - Usd 456 per person.
Jai Mahal Palace to Rambagh Palace in Jaipur for 02 nights including breakfast - Usd 320 per person
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