Indian Himalayas

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Run by: Wexas Travel

Reference number: 104320

From: £2710.00

Holiday overview

Start out in Delhi, and become immersed in both its old and new quarters. Then, travel to Shimla, set in the Himalaya's foothills, and steeped in colonial history. Move on to Pragpur, a certified heritage village, famed for its 300-year-old home of the Kathiala Soods. You'll also spend two days in Dharamsala, the residence of the Dalai Lama. Take in the rich history of Amritsar, one of India's most ancient and fascinating cities and home to the Golden Temple, a stunning 16th century Sikh temple. Finish your Himalayan tour with a view of the border between India and Pakistan, and witness the poignant Beating the Retreat ceremony.

Holiday itinerary

Day 1: Depart UK

Board your overnight flight from London to Delhi, beginning your luxury India holiday day two.

Day 2: Arrive Delhi

Arrive at Delhi in the late afternoon or early evening. As soon as you've cleared customs and immigration, you will receive a special welcome with garlands of marigold flowers before you check in to your hotel and explore Delhi, from the boulevards of the late colonial capital New Delhi to the bustling, medieval lanes of Old Delhi. 

Day 3: Old and New Delhi

Start your tour in Old Delhi, which was an ancient walled city. View the Red Fort - the most opulent fort and palace of the Mughal Empire, and Shah Jehan's symbol of power and elegance, built behind red sandstone walls. Afterwards, visit Jama Masjid - the largest mosque in India; Chandni Chowk, and the bustling and colorful market of the old city. You will also visit Raj Ghat, which has a simple memorial to the Father of the Nation, Mahatma Gandhi, marking the spot where Nathuram Godse assassinated him in 1948.

After Old Delhi, continue to visit New Delhi where you will visit two monuments - Qutub Minar & Humayun's tomb. The tomb, is created from a combination of white marble and red sandstone and is generally regarded as a prototype of the famed Taj Mahal of Agra. Drive along the ceremonial avenue, Rajpath, past the imposing 42 metre-high India Gate that commemorates the Indian soldiers who died in the First World War; President House; and Parliament House.

Day 4: Delhi, Kalka & Shimla

Take an early breakfast at your hotel, followed by a transfer to New Delhi railway station, to board a train for Kalka. Upon arrival in Kalka, board the onward 'toy train' for Shimla. Upon arrival at Shimla's railway station, you will be met and guided to the Radisson Hotel for check in.

Stay: Radisson Shimla (Superior) or The Oberoi Wildflower Hotel (Deluxe)

Days 5-6: Shimla

After breakfast, drive down to Shimla and explore the town. The district of Shimla has beautiful forests of firs, pines, oaks and rhododendron. Meadows of hyacinth, celandine, and asphodel climb gently up to the deodar forests and further up to rocky and snowy peaks of the Himalayas. The entire Shimla district has a number of small streams and springs and is a delightful place for those who love walking and nature. The houses of the locals are made of stone and mud with thatched roofs, which are made of a range of materials, but always have a pitched slant on both sides of the house. This helps the snow slide down during the winter. The houses built by the British mostly used a lot of oak, and were built in gothic styles. 

The next day, spend the day at your own leisure enjoying independent activities, which will be an additional nominal cost. Try a full-day excursion to Kufri, which is situated at an altitude of 2,500 metres and is just a two hour drive from Shimla. Alternatively, visit Chail, which is 45km from Shimla, and a quiet peaceful and comfortable hill station. It has the highest cricket ground in the world, surrounded by huge trees of deodar and pine. Another option is Kufri, famous for its Himalayan National Park, where you can take pony and yak rides, and enjoy spectacular views.

Stay: Radisson Shimla (Superior) or The Oberoi Wildflower Hotel (Deluxe)

Day 7: Shimla & Pragpur

Following a leisurely breakfast, take a five-hour drive to Pragpur, where you will check into your hotel on arrival. The afternoon is free for you to enjoy independent activities or visit nearby places. Pragpur is one of India's first certified heritage villages. The government of Himachal Pradesh developed Pragpur into a rural heritage site in partnership with the Indian National Trust for Art and Cultural Heritage. For sightseeing, there are a number of heritage structures in the village including the 300-year-old home of the Kathiala Soods, who set up the village in remembrance of Princess Prag Dei, part of the Jaswan Royal Family.

Stay: The Judge's Court (Superior)

Day 8: Pragpur & Dharamsala

Breakfast at your hotel, before taking the two-hour drive to Dharamsala where you will check in your hotel on arrival, and relax for the rest of the day. Dharamsala was founded in 1849, when it was selected as a site to accommodate a Kangra regiment when its garrison became fully accommodated. The site was previously the site of an old Hindu sanctuary or 'Dharamsala', which gave the town its name. The town stands on the foot of Dhauladhar, has a magnificent view of snowy peaks, deodar and pine forests, tea gardens and hills.

The snow line is more easily accessible at Dharamsala than any other hill station in India. Dharamsala now really has become international, with a number of Tibetan settlements and the residence of Noble Laureate the Dalai Lama. The town is divided into two distinct parts: lower Dharamsala is the civil and business area with courts and Kotwali Bazaar and the upper sector is composed of places like Mcleod Ganj and Forsyth Ganj. In the evening, explore the town at your own leisure, making use of your private car and driver.

Day 9: Dharamsala

After breakfast depart for a tour of Dharamsala. Start with McLeod Ganj: a major Buddhist centre that was established by the arrival of the Dalai Lama in 1959, and became the headquarters of the exiled Tibetan government. The Tibetan Institute of Performing Arts (TIPA) is just one kilometre from Mcleod Ganj and preserves a number of musical, dance and theatrical...

This trip has no fixed departures but restrictions may apply - check operator website

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