Luxury Rajasthan holiday, 14 days

“A two week pure luxury holiday staying in some of the most magnificent heritage hotels in Delhi and Rajasthan. With private guide and chauffeur throughout. About as regal as Rajasthan gets. ”

Highlights

Delhi | Udaipur | Devigarh | Jaipur | Agra | Heritage hotels

Description of Luxury Rajasthan holiday, 14 days

This Rajasthan holiday is all about enjoying this majestic state at a gentle pace, with excellent chauffeur guides, and staying at some of the state’s most stunning heritage and luxurious hotels. In Delhi, for example, where this tailor made itinerary begins, you will be welcomed at the Imperial Hotel in the prestigious Connaught Place. Your guide will take you around the city, Old and New, visiting some of its most splendid sites, such as Mahatma Gandhi’s memorial, Raj Ghat, the magnificent Red Fort, and also enjoying a trip in a rickshaw around Old Delhi.

After transferring to Rajasthan’s city of Udaipur, known as Venice of the East because of its complex lake system that creates waterways around its historic palaces and pretty streets, you will stay in a hotel that matches the city’s propensity for romanticism, The Leela Palace Hotel, with stunning rooms overlooking Lake Pichola. During your time here you can take a boat ride on the lake, visit the magnificent City Palace or just enjoy this city’s unique setting with its mountainous backdrop provided by the Aravali Hills.

You get to immerse yourself even more in the Aravali Hills by spending two nights in another five star heritage hotel, this one in a magnificently restored 18th century fort, with a location that is second to none. Originally built by the Jhala Rajputs who ruled the Mewar Kingdom this is a wonderful place from where to explore the local village, go horse riding into the hills and explore the local Jain temples. As you can imagine, the night skies here are also a magical experience in themselves, which you can take in from your private terrace.

From here, the itinerary takes you to Rajasthan’s capital city of Jaipur, famous for its pink sandstone buildings which give a constant yet ever changing rosy glow. Packed with architectural wonders, such as Jantar Mantar stone observatory, the walled city that is home to two palaces, Hawa Mahal and Jal Mahal and of course the world famous Amber and Nahargarh forts. You will stay in your own feat of architecture out in the hills surrounding the city, the Tree Of Life Resort & Spa, for more luxury and more relaxation.

Leaving Rajasthan, the final couple of days of this holiday take place in Agra, for the icing on the cake: The Taj Mahal seen by carriage ride at sunrise. Staying at the nearby Oberoi Amarvilas hotel, from which you can actually see the most beautiful marble mausoleum in the world, you will end your Indian and Rajasthan holiday ends just as you began. In serenity and style.

Hello. If you'd like to chat about this holiday or need help finding one we're very happy to help. Rosy & team.

01273 823 700

Departure information

This trip can be tailor made throughout the year to suit your requirements
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Responsible tourism

Responsible tourism: Luxury Rajasthan holiday, 14 days

Environment

We put a lot of thought in working with local providers, making sure that everyone involved in your trip is committed to sharing advice on how best to leave a lighter footprint. We promote excursions which foster a more sustainable tourism and commit to maintaining small-group sizes to limit negative environmental impacts in accordance to the carrying capacity of the visited site.

We are trying to keep the extra unneeded waste to a minimum in all our tours through our “bring it in, bring it out” policy for litter and rubbish such as food packaging and recycling wherever possible.

We have a recycling policy in our UK and local offices and re-use or recycle the information booklets we provide to every client on arrival wherever possible. Moreover, we do not produce a glossy brochure, concentrating on a comprehensive website, and providing as much information to our travellers as possible electronically, reducing the use of paper and inks.

On your trip we will include transport modes like traditional rickshaws, boat rides or a ride on a horse carriage to the Taj Mahal, which reduces our carbon footprint and will also give you the opportunity to meet and interact with the local people. During your city explorations, we will give preference to slow, possibly non-motorized forms of mobility, such as city walks or bicycles. If motorized forms are unavoidable, we make sure that vehicle sizes are as small as appropriate and proper licensing on vehicles and certifying to national emission standards are maintained.

For your tour we have chosen responsible resorts like the Tree House Resort, nestled among the undulating centuries old Aravali Hills. A percentage of its monthly earnings goes towards various renewable projects in the local area, such as continuously creating awareness amongst team members and guests of the impact of greenhouse gases, using all possible means of renewable energy and energy conservation (solar panels, use of natural stone and lime instead of cement and iron), and advocating the need for water harvesting and recycling (natural landscaping requiring minimum use of water, filtering and recycling water system for irrigation). The Tree of Life Resort works on the principles of Reduce, Reuse and Recycle, which form the basics of the work schedule of each and every team member at the resort.

You will also stay at the ecological responsible Leela Palace in Udaipur. The Leela hotel group uses biodegradable detergents in its properties, avoids plastic and exercises strict controls on the usage of electricity, water, heating and lighting, with numerous international and national awards for initiatives towards environment conservation. The resorts implement state-of-the-art waste management practices with the emphasis on conserving all possible natural resources and complying with every applicable legislative and regulatory strictures and procedures. The group moreover landscaped wide swathes of urban property with over 6000 coconut palms and thousands of trees to beautify and cleanse the air.

Through this trip you will contribute to the preservation of precious ancient monuments, knowledge and Unesco World Heritage sites. You will visit the Red Fort for example, demonstrating the exceptional results achieved in planning and architecture. Or you will contribute to the maintenance of the most significant, most comprehensive, and best preserved stone observatory in India, the Jantar Mantar in Jaipur.

Community

We make sure we only work with local guides that come from the very region you are visiting. Through this trip you are hence giving back to their families and communities.

While many operators pay per day or per tour, our guides receive an hourly rate which allows a fair and fruitful reward for their expertise. We provide staff with written employment contracts and fair working conditions (e.g. overtime payment, national wage requirements, no discrimination, grievance mechanisms in place and no child labour). Our tour guides also receive special training in how to leave a lower impact on the trips and in regional conservation projects.

We ensure that our drivers do not more than 9 hours of driving per day and are provided adequate accommodation and do not drive at night (with the exception of airport pick-ups/drop-offs). After a driving period of 4.5 h the driver must take a break of at least 45 min.

Through your stay at the hotels we have chosen, like The Tree of Life resort, you will contribute to organisations that are supporting the local community to the most. The Tree of Life resort for example shares the village with families dependant on farming and livestock. The local community has been involved in the hotel project right from the conceptual stage, with the workforce coming from the village itself. The Tree of Life Resort & Spa has adopted the local school and is working towards making the children computer literate by providing computers and training and making efforts to teach them basic English. They are also setting up a local dispensary to provide medical facilities free of cost, especially to young children and the elderly.

By staying at the Oberoi hotel we chose for you in Agra, you will contribute to an organisation which is conscious of its role in the community, supporting social needs and ensuring employment from within the local community. You will enjoy a place where the staff are nurtured through continuous learning and skill improvement; and are respected, heard and encouraged to do their best. The Oberoi Group is recognised as best practice for training and developing its people.

If you want to do souvenir shopping, we will take you to local markets where locals of that very region craft their products to help keep the money earned in that very community. When we take you to local shops or markets we change the selected shops on a rotating basis. Also we make sure food stops are at locally owned cafes or restaurants and give customers recommendations on locally owned shop and restaurants, especially new start-ups.

We ensure customer awareness by familiarizing our guests with local history, culture, religions and traditions, by informing on culturally appropriate behavior, (e.g. dress codes for religious sites, taking photographs of people, language tips, etc.).

On your trip you can live special experiences which will help keep local wisdoms and traditions alive, encouraging local artisan and culture, for example by participating in the traditional Puja ceremony at the Oberoi hotels, the traditional yoga classes or by learning the traditional art of block-printing while making your very own painting or scarf. Or you can experience a traditional ritual ceremony at the 150 year old Shiva temple and a session with the Astrologer at your stay at the Leela Palace in Udaipur.

3 Reviews of Luxury Rajasthan holiday, 14 days

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Reviewed on 13 Feb 2018 by

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?


The whole three week and four day trip was memorable and to define just one instance is difficult, the places we visited will be with us for a long time and the people couldn't have been more helpful. If I were pressed then I would have to say the tiger sightings at Bandhavgarh, the photographs are stunning, then the Taj Mahal, the ghats at Varanasi all, all absolutely stunning. Incredible India..

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?


I think the most important thing to remember is not to take your European head with you, go with the sights and sounds and enjoy the culture, enjoy the vibrancy ,the spectacular colours and the wonderfull and exciting cusine .. Our Varanasi hotel didn't serve alchohol due the closeness of the ghats and religeous culture there ..

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?


Tourism will always benefit the people of any country .... India is an "up and coming" country with projects such as the Metro being built and should be in place and working in the near future. I visited India twelve or so years ago for the second time then and to see the upgrading that has taken place is truly amazing, especially the roads, just a pity about the amount of traffic in th cities...

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?


We did loose a day due to the fog, all of the trains were held up and no one could define a time for our train to be released such was the backlog..

Apart from that it was a memorable and stunning adventure, memories that will stay with us for a long time to come. Helen is already talking of a return trip ..

Reviewed on 12 Feb 2018 by

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?


Cycling in Delhi. Flying kites on the rooftops in Jaipur.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?


Homestays are wonderful, one gets a proper flavour of the area and the history that would be impossible in a hotel.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?


Yes, see below.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?


Really would highly recommend Sanjay from Bespoke Travel when booking a trip to India, his knowledge was in depth and he also understood clearly what we wanted out of our trip. My only criticism would be that spending 3 nights in Delhi over Republic Day was not clever as many of the sites were closed and our itinerary had to be adapted accordingly. On the plus side our cycling tour in Delhi was one of my highlights.

Having booked through Responsible Travel I would question the option offered of the elephant ride to the fort in Jaipur but that remained a choice for us.

The trip to the textile village in Bagru was wholly responsible and very interesting.
The Homestay way of travelling in India was enlightening, every place was individual and they all had a 'story'.

Read the operator's response here:

Hi Caroline ,

We have investigated with our team in Jaipur and you both should have only been offered the Electric Jeep up to the Amber Fort as per our Responsible Policy - there was a mis-communication which of course we hope did not spoil the experience for you.
The team on the ground does apologise for this and we have re-iterated that our policies are followed.
Thanks Sanjay

Reviewed on 19 Nov 2018 by

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?


Indian food is wonderful! We became vegetarians for most of the trip,
because there were so many interesting foods to try. I think driving through the countryside, cities and villages was the most memorable: dodging cows, bullocks,
goats, sheep, pigs, motorcycles, auto and bicycle rickshaws/tuk-tuks, beautifully
decorated trucks. We were also there during Diwali, so the lights and firecrackers and families traveling in their best clothing was a highlight.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?


INDIA is not for the faint hearted, for those with mobility or respiratory issues or who have trouble with dust/dirty air quality.
We were very grateful to have such an amazing driver, as driving in the crazy
traffic of India is very challenging. The air quality and garbage in Delhi, Jaipur and surroundings was particularly poor during our tour, and we were constantly
aware of the air pollution and haze.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?


We had local guides and visited the Bird Sanctuary in Bharatphur and Ranthambore National Park, so I guess we supported conservation, and stayed in some very interesting family run hotels. I am not sure we reduced environmental
impact, as we drank a lot of plastic bottles of water, as tap water is not safe. It would be wonderful if the trip had included more opportunities to meet local people, local professionals, and local families and cooperatives.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?


We three women had a wonderful time seeing a country with such rich history,
diverse peoples and cultures, colorful clothing, amazing food, markets and ongoing activity. Every day was another adventure! We are definitely planning
on going back to a different region of India.

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