18 independent reviews for Rajasthan 15 day tour

Reviews for Rajasthan 15 day tour

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review 8 Mar 2020

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

Taj Mahal.

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

Get local currency at airport and change into small notes (10’s , 20’s,100’s) at first hotel check in. Tipping is not expensive but you need plenty of small notes!

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

Yes, focus on sustainability

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

Even better than expected. Literally door to door service at every stage. Felt safe. Excellent driver, hotels, guides and logistics

review 10 Feb 2020

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

Too many to list! The whole trip went really well.

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

Trust the advice of this operator- eg. one night in Jodhpur is enough. Don't get to Delhi airport to early if you have a late flight - they only let you in 4 hours before takeoff.

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

Many of the places we stayed employed entirely local people and were a great opportunity for village lads.

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

Absolutely superb.

review 6 Feb 2020

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

Several highlights: seeing the Taj Mahal at sunrise and the Golden Temple in bright afternoon sunshine; spotting a tiger and a leopard in Ranthambore National park and visiting the beautiful city of Udaipur.

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

Take warm clothes! the North of India was very cold and Rajasthan was very cold at night, especially when eating outside.

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

I hope it did by providing revenue to local drivers, guides, hotel staff etc.

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

Excellent; a really memorable experience.

review 6 Feb 2020

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

We have many happy memories of this trip as it was so varied but we especially loved being out in the countryside, camping in the desert and the cities of Udaipur and Jaisalmer. We also really enjoyed the wide range of accommodation: comfortable homestays in peaceful locations, beautifully painted havelis, grand palaces and of course glamping!

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

Use the expertise of the team to help you plan your trip and how long you'd like to stay in each place, how much free time you like to have and whether you'd like travel by train or car-we did both.

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

Most of our accommodation was run and owned by local people and all of our guides were local so we definitely felt we contributing to local economies.

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

This was a truly fabulous trip which was really well organised. We felt well cared for at all times and all the people we met were exceptionally kind and courteous.

review 4 Jan 2020

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

Being with local guides all the time - this gave us a unique inside into the country. The people are very friendly, gentle and relaxed. India is not efficiancy driven and offers a broader perspective on life in general. The architecture, the landscape, the hotels and the people were marvelous.

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

Be open and don't stress. India is not only its own subcontinent. It is a universe of diversity and challenges. Having been there will change your way of looking at our spoiled and hectic western world.

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

Mostly yes. We would have preferred though to take trains more often, although we do understand that having a personal driver gives you the possibility to reach remote locations/sights. And our driver was the most lovely person - a gentle, calm, authentic and very sympathetic person. He loves his job and is great at it. We absolutely confirm that this holiday benefited many local people. And several hotels - especially Dera Mandawa in Jaipur (a wonderful place!!) - focus on ideas to reduce environmental impacts.

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

Excellent !The entire team was very helpful, supportive and always there for us. We would like to thank them all! Thank you Deepika, Sanjay, Vinay, Nitin, Samir, Rashi and Kamal Sah !

review 9 Mar 2020

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

The highlights of the holiday were * staying at Lakshman Sagar, an upmarket retreat in a stunning quiet location. * staying at Rawla Narlai and climbing Elephant Hill. * Tours, especially the Forts in Jaipur and the Astrology Park. * A female guide for a tour of Delhi who bought colour, engaged in discussion, and bought humour and warmth.

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

This was a bespoke holiday to which I agreed. My tip would be to triple check places where I you are to stay. Devraj Villa in Udaipur and PushKar Palace were not right for me. This is NOT a complaint but advice to other customers to ensure your own requirements are met.

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

I am not sure how much this was so, though many of the hotels employed local staff, some had solar power and some such as Lakshman Sagar were clearly very environmentally conscious and active.

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

Good. Driver outstanding as were guides in Jaipur and Delhi.

review 16 Feb 2020

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

The abundance & variety of the wildlife, especially the Chambal River & Blackbuck safaris. The scents & colours of the spice & vegetable markets. The Taj Mahal, the Amber Fort & the decorations on the buildings. The hustle & bustle of the roads packed with all sorts of vehicles & animals. The colourful clothes of the women. The warm welcome shown by everybody. The authentic cuisine & Dera Mandawa cookery lesson.

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

Before travelling, take note of all the guidance that you are sent. Ensure that you have plenty of small denomination Rupee notes as tipping is commonplace. Be wary of being taken to shops & retailers on the pretext of seeing local crafts & how they are made. These are designed to encourage you to buy. At the start of each guided tour, ensure that both you & your guide are clear about what your priorities are to ensure that enough time is allowed for what you want to see.

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

It benefitted local people in as much as the guides were locals &, we were led to believe that the items that we bought were produced by local people. All of our places of accommodation invited us to not change linen everyday, kept plastic water bottles to a minimum & Delhi Aloft claimed to reuse rainwater in the toilets. In addition, the operator provided replenishable steel water flasks. The two safari parks that we visited claimed to support the local environment.

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

Good value for money. Through Sanjay, we were able to tailor the holiday to meet our needs. Sanjay's guidance was invaluable in helping us get the best out of our trip. Overall, it fully met our expectations & we had a very rich experience, packing a lot into our 13 days. However, at a number of places we were asked for vouchers which we hadn't been given. At a number of the hand-offs from one guide or location to another, no-one seemed quite sure of the timings until it actually happened. In the end, although it did not stop us from doing anything, it did cause a little concern at the time. At a number of sights we were squeezed for time & didn't have as long as we would have liked, e.g. the Lotus Temple in Delhi which we were taken to on a Sunday afternoon when it was at its busiest & on another occasion also in Delhi, we were not taken to the Craft Museum as requested because we had supposedly 'run out of time' in the day having first been taken to a craft retail outlet which we had not asked to go to. Also, the driver that we had was not the one that we had been sent details of. In the event, he was very good but it gave us a slightly uneasy feeling when we first arrived in what was for us, a new country. Sugar-free sweets in the car would have been preferable. Notwithstanding these few, slightly negative comments, we really enjoyed our trip & would not hesitate in recommending the company.

review 18 Oct 2019

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

I went for a track in the forest with a ranger and was able to see some amazing flora and fauna including bison, monkeys, fish owls and racquet tailed drongos.

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

Do go hungry to breakfast and try the local dishes and breads on offer it beats cereal and toast anytime.

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

Plastic waste is a problem and several of the places we stayed were starting to address this by providing safe water in reusable glass bottles. One place we stayed at produced its own food and the dung from the cows and buffalo was used to create gas to fuel the kitchen hobs.

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

We really enjoyed our visit to India. Our driver knew we liked local markets and would stop of enroute at places he knew would interest us. This was just one of the many things that made this trip truly tailor made.

review 17 Oct 2019

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

The variety of a holiday split between Ladakh and Rajasthan. The mountain scenery in Ladakh was particularly spectacular.

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

Extremely well organised trip in which just about everything went to plan - any minor hiccoughs were promptly dealt with by the Indian agent who also contacted us several times to ensure all was OK. There were long drives in Ladakh but the views made them worthwhile and we were particularly impressed with all our drivers who took really good care of us. Our one minor criticism was that local guides were booked for us at various places and they often added a visit to a “cottage industry” centre which was a bit like a tourist department store - you might start in a clothes department where you would be offered scarves, blouses, shirts etc, and when they finally decided they would not get a sale, you would be shepherded to the carpet/rug department, then to the wood/metal carvings, then the pictures department etc etc. - all very nice stuff and friendly staff but they could be quite persistent in trying to make a sale with “special discounts”. We really were not interested in buying anything, it was not on our itinerary, took time out of sight-seeing and irritated us a bit - even a guide could be quite pushy in making us visit these places. So if it is not your thing, be firm and tell the guide you absolutely are not interested.

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

Yes especially when we stayed in small family hotels/ homestays. Had local drivers and guides throughout trip

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

Excellent trip - we thoroughly enjoyed it

review 10 May 2019

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

Seeing a tiger up close and personal in the wild takes some beating but the Taj Mahal was an amazing site. The most exciting part was a ride through Old Delhi; definitely got the adrenaline going.

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

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

The lodges that we stayed in outside the National Parks all employed and supported local people and the local economy. The park entrance fees and the park guides also helped local employment as well supporting the government's conservation programmes, not just for tigers but also other endangered species.

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

An amazing adventure. We were guided and assisted every step of the way. The tour operator and their organisation in India helped to make our holiday truly memorable.

review 20 Apr 2019

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

There were several! The Golden Temple of Amritsar, the border ceremony at Wagah, obviously the Taj Mahal, the beautiful views of the Himalayan foothills from Shimla, the chaos of Dehli and the wonderful experience visiting an elephant sanctuary near Agra.

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

Take the best hotels you can, maybe start your itinerary somewhere less busy than Delhi... we started in Amritsar which gives you the chance to get used to India 'gently' rather than being 'thrown in at the deep end' !

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

Overall yes, although it is a shame that the local business practice appears to be that drivers are often required to sleep in their cars if not in their home city/town. We were told that some of the more thoughtful hotels at least provided shared accommodation and facilities for the various drivers. We were very pleased to go and see and support the elephant sanctuary near to Agra, and hope they will continue their excellent work.

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

This is the second holiday we have booked via Responsible Travel, the other trip being to Borneo, and we were not disappointed!

review 14 Apr 2019

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

The tour operator went above and beyond to make this experience as tailored as possible. The hotels were all fantastic, especially the Samode Haveli in Jaipur and the RAAS in Jodhpur. The expert guides in each city were excellent and informative. Our two week trip was the perfect mix of relaxation, history, food, shopping, and sightseeing.

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

If you don't mind the temperatures heating up a bit, booking in March/April was ideal because there were far fewer tourists than there would be during the high season of November/December/January. It was nice to experience cities and towns and not be completely surrounded by other tourists.

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

I was very happy to provide work for people during the start of the low season -- our presence was important for their livelihood so it felt great to be able to provide gratuity to these hardworking individuals. I know it can't be helped, but the plastic bottle usage throughout the trip was a bit concerning. There is starting to be more and more filtered water in India but every time I tried to use it to fill my water bottle, I was advised against it saying that it would still make me ill. I am hoping that the next time I visit India, I am encouraged to use fewer plastic bottles.

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

5 stars all the way!

review 27 Mar 2019

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

Outstanding accommodation in heritage hotels and homestay, especially Dera Mandawa in Jaipur and Coral Court in Agra. Wonderfully well looked after by representatives, guides and driver of the operator.

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

Try to build in longer stays here and there to do your own thing. We loved the National Museum in Delhi and Albert Hall. Museum in Jaipur. Deogarh is lovely, also Ranakpur Jain temple and countryside around.

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

Don’t know; Indian tourism industry seems to be flourishing and good. The operator seems an excellent firm.

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


review 18 Feb 2019

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

The wide range of amazing places we stayed and the very knowledgeable guides. Wonderful palaces and temples and small lanes full of colour and magical littles shops.

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

Be sure you know what you want to do and your overall budget.

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

I hope so it's hard to tell. Local guides and drivers and small hotels but maybe more could be done and be made clearer. I think it would have been better if we had more time to potter about without a rep or guide. Very full days. We'll know next time.

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

Fabulous time excellent organisation and attention to detail.

review 10 Nov 2019

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

This was a tailor-made holiday and for half the party it was a return trip to northern India after a very long gap. Our guide and driver managed to get us into our old house which was great. Other highlights: the Taj Mahal and Baby Taj, the great variety of birds seen at Bharatpur, the view from the roof top restaurant in Jodhpur. We’ll remember the opulence of the maharajahs’ palaces, stunning craftsmanship, the extraordinary way Indian traffic somehow flows along despite the chaos and the solicitous care taken of us by all the Indians we met.

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

Get briefed about the tipping and carry plenty of smaller notes as change. We took 2 stage water filtration bottles though our company also provided us with water in insulated steel bottles daily (a plus point for Q3). Don’t expect to see a tiger in Ranthambhore National Park, there’s still a lot of other visible wildlife and the landscape is beautiful. Be prepared though for other upsetting sights on your travels - poverty, air pollution and plastic rubbish - but it’s clear there’s a national conversation about how to to tackle these issues.

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

Local people - yes, all the reps and guides were local, and we met owners in some of the places we stayed in. Other hotels were probably more luxurious than we’d expected but probably employed more staff as a result. Perhaps it could have been made more explicit how our trip was helping - or not harming. We were sorry to feel that our own travelling could be contributing to pollution. Two suggestions to alleviate this in Delhi in particular - maybe more use could be made of the excellent Metro getting guests to their hotels, or could travel companies jointly push for the use of electric vehicles? And secondly we could have reduced our environmental impact by not flying back into Delhi from Udaipur, particularly as our driver was going back in the Tempo Traveller anyway. A different itinerary could have made this a circular land tour perhaps.

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

An extremely interesting, well-organised trip, where everything ran smoothly. We learnt a lot more about Indian society, religion and history.
14 days KO 11/11/19

review 10 Oct 2018

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

Sunrise at Taj Mahal, and staying at Shapuragh Bagh where we visited a fort at sunset

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

The service is impeccable, book now.

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

Yes

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

11/10

review 15 Nov 2017

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

Where to start? ..... The vibrant colours; friendly people; interesting sights wherever we looked; visiting the village & meeting the local people at Shahpura Bagh; the incredible workmanship in the various palaces & forts.... I can see how India gets under the skin & can be addictive! Shahpura Bagh is a wonderful place to stay - good opportunity to switch off from the chaos & noise (car horns!) for a while.

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

Be prepared for long wait on arrival in Delhi (airport) for finger prints etc (took us 2.5hrs to get through which is difficult after a long flight). If you have a guide, try to avoid being taken into their "friends" various gem / carpet / textile stores - time consuming & irritating! Take time out without a guide to wander through the markets, go to cinema (Raj Mandir in Jaipur is well worth visiting) etc

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

Employment for the guides / local agents / drivers. Drinking lassi from disposable clay cups in Jaipur - so much better than plastic / polystyrene. Shahpura Bagh - Waste paper bins with bags made from old newspaper. Support to local community through encouraging visitor support for various health, environmental & educational initiatives. Use of local produce. Employment of local people. Encouraged visits to the local village to meet people & see their houses so increased understanding.

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

A wonderful holiday - stimulating, relaxing, exciting. Sanjay and his team were helpful throughout & made good recommendations.

review 5 Nov 2017

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

So many highlights and memories. We had an amazing 2 weeks. The vibrancy of India is stunning. The sights, smells, sounds and tastes surrounding us. When booking the trip we particularly hoped to see a tiger and we actually saw 2. So that was obviously a highlight, the range of hotels was stunning from palaces to game lodges - All equally welcoming. The organisation of the trip was great. The driver was very safe and the guides really knowledgeable.

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

If planning a game drive buffs/dust masks are useful. Though if you don't bring one they can usually be bought at the gate.

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

Local guides were used throughout. Most of the hotels were locally owned and staffed. Visiting the reserves hopefully helps with animal conservation.

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

Fabulous.

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