By Jonny Bealby
March 29, 2019
Dave Watts/Wild Frontiers

Jonny Bealby is a member of Travel + Leisure’s A-List, a collection of the top travel advisors in the world, and can help plan your perfect getaway. Below is an example of the type of itineraries he creates. To work with Jonny, you can contact him directly at jonny.bealby@wildfrontiers.co.uk.

Day 1: Arrive in Delhi & Fly Udaipur

Upon arrival in Delhi, you’ll be met at the airport and whisked to domestic departures to board a direct flight to Udaipur. From there, a representative will drive you to the jetty of Lake Pichola, where you’ll take a private gondola to the Taj Lake Palace, a floating hotel in the middle of the lake. For dinner, head up to the rooftop restaurant, Bhairo to experience the best views of the old city.

Stay: Taj Lake Palace, Udaipur

Day 2: Udaipur

Arise early to explore the palaces and markets of Udaipur with an expert guide. At the City Palace, you’ll see the Maharana’s royal collections, as well as panoramic views of the palaces of Jag Niwas and Jag Mandir. From there, head to Jagdish Temple, an important shrine for the local community dedicated to Lord Vishnu, who’s known as the protector of the universe. Sample local delicacies from food stalls at the nearby market, then head back to the hotel for a two-hour private spa treatment on the Lake Palace Spa Boat.

Stay: Taj Lake Palace, Udaipur

Day 3: Udaipur Countryside, Delwara, Eklingji & Nagda

Start the day early on a cycling tour of the countryside and the charming villages near Udaipur. Enjoy a picnic breakfast, then prepare for an afternoon in the village of Delwara. Explore its charming streets and enjoy lunch at Devigarh Fort. There’s the option to take a tour with Seva Mandir, a local company offering heritage walks.

Travel back to Udaipur, just 50 minutes away, to visit the 1,000-year old Eklingji temple and nearby Nagda temple. After glimpsing the complex of some 107 shrines, board an evening sail from your hotel to Jag Mandir Island, where a candlelit dinner inside an 18th-century palace awaits.

Stay: Taj Lake Palace, Udaipur

Day 4: Udaipur to Jodhpur

Transfer to Jodhpur, five hours away. On your way there, visit Ranakpur, home to an exquisite 15th-century Jain Temple with 29 halls and 1,444 pillars. Continue on to lunch at Mountbatten Lodge before driving onto Jodhpur. Check into your hotel and enjoy a five-course meal on the property’s terrace at Darikhana. It offers grand views of the Mehrangarh Fort.

Stay: Raas, Jodhpur

Day 5: Jodhpur & Mehrangarh Fort

Start the day ziplining through the old city. A ride affords panoramic vistas of Jodhpur as you glide over the ancient buildings. After a view from above, see Jodhpur by foot, exploring its markets and sampling the city’s specialities: lassi (yogurt drink) and jalebis (deep fried sweets).

The fort you overlooked from dinner last night is in store for this evening. Arrive and be met by the fort and museum curators, who will show you the battlements and share their expertise. As twilight descends upon the historic fort, sip champagne and walk the impregnable ramparts. The evening will end with an al fresco dinner on the terrace restaurant which looks up to the turrets of the ancient fort.

Stay: Raas, Jodhpur

Day 6: Jodhpur to Nimaj

Gear up for a drive through the countryside to Nimaj. The three-hour ride offers opportunities to stop en route for a cup of local chai tea and take pictures. On arrival at your Nimaj you will be transferred to the renowned Chhatra Sagar camp and have the rest of the afternoon to relax. Later in the evening, enjoy the sunset from an idyllic perch.

Stay: Chhatra Sagar

Day 7: Nimaj Countryside & Village

At sunrise, you can practice yoga on your terrace, overlooking the lake and countryside. When the day begins, you’ll wander to the villages and farms around Nimaj accompanied by a local guide, exploring the vast grazing pastures and fields of wheat, mustard, cotton, and chillies. On this excursion, you’ll get a chance to engage with the farmers and villagers, visit their homes, and see carpenters and silversmiths plying their trade. Later on, the camp arranges cooking classes which you can chose to attend or go on a guided bird-watching walk.

Stay: Chhatra Sagar

Day 8: Nimaj to Jaipur

Get picked up at Chhatra Sagar for a four-hour journey to Jaipur. Stop in the charming town of Ajmer, where you’ll spend an hour exploring before continuing. Once in Jaipur, try cocktails at the lovely Bar Palladio near the hotel and dinner at Suvarna Mahal restaurant in the Rambagh. For a truly royal experience, there is no better place to stay than the magnificent Rambagh Palace. This grand structure has remained in the royal family for generations, and was recently converted into one of the leading palace hotels in the world.

Stay: Rambagh Palace

Day 9: Jaipur & Amber Fort

This morning your guide will collect you from the hotel for your tour of the enigmatic “pink city” of Jaipur. Your visit starts with the Jantar Mantar, or the Royal Observatory, then continues to the fascinating City Palace Museum, followed by the iconic Palace of the Winds, or Hawa Mahal, Jaipur’s most photographed monument. Within the City Palace is Baradari, a wonderful restaurant serving contemporary Rajasthan dishes where you can stop off for a quick lunch before heading to Amber Fort. It’s best visited in late afternoon, once the crowds have subsided.

Stay: Rambagh Palace

Day 10: Jaipur Old City Walking Tour

Gear up for a walking tour of the more unusual parts of the old city, including its colorful flower market. Mingle with locals and try some of the region’s culinary delights from street food vendors. Observe local artisans at work and visit a local resident in his private haveli, or townhouse, which is decorated with gold paintings, rich tapestries, and artifacts. Next, wander around the bazaar at Tripolia Gate to sample the famous lassi, kulfi, kachoris, rabdi, and kanji vada.

Stay: Rambagh Palace

Day 11: Jaipur to Agra Via Abhaneri Stepwell & Fatehpur Sikri

This morning you will be collected from your hotel in Jaipur and driven to Agra. Enroute, visit the Chand Baori stepwell in Abhaneri, which dates back to the 8th century. Afterward, see the the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Fatehpur Sikri, an enormous palace complex built by Emperor Akbar the Great. You will have time to explore with your guide before heading on to Agra where you will be taken to your hotel. (The entire journey takes about six hours.) In the evening, your guide will take you to the iconic Taj Mahal for a sunset tour.

Stay: Amarvilas

Day 12: Agra to Delhi

Start the day with a visit to the magnificent Agra Fort, built by the Mughal emperor Akbar. The fortified citadel overlooks the banks of the Yamuna River. Take time to enjoy this impressive red sandstone fort and its grounds, encompassing the Jahangir Palace and the Khas Mahal. Form the fort, continue to the exquisitely detailed tomb of Itimad-ud-Daulah, often called the 'Baby Taj', which has fine marble inlay work and a beautiful painted ceiling, before heading back to your hotel. In the afternoon, you’ll be transported to your hotel in Delhi, a journey of about four hours. Your home for the next three nights is the luxurious Imperial hotel, an exceptional property located in an oasis of greenery, hidden amongst the hustle and bustle of New Delhi.

Stay: The Imperial

Day 12: Old Delhi, Humayun’s Tomb & Nizamuddin

A local will guide you on your tour of Old Delhi today. The capital of the Mughal Empire until the mid-1800s, vibrant Old Delhi was then the center of the British Raj and, to this day, is filled with the old manors of former aristocrats and members of the royal court. Walking in the old city gets you up close to the old crumbling havelis — some of which date to the 17th century — the vibrant street food stalls, the famous Jama Masjid mosque with its tapering minarets and wonderful marble domes, and the busy spice market, which is considered to be the largest in Asia.

Stay: The Imperial

Day 13: New Delhi & Qutub Minar

Spend half the day exploring New Delhi with a guide. In contrast to the medieval Old Delhi, New Delhi stands in formal splendor; a city of wide boulevards offering ever-changing perspectives of Lutyens’ landscaped city. This part of the city is known for its parks, magnificent parliament building, the Rashtrapati Bhawan (the official residence of the President of India designed by Sir Edwin Lutyens), and the iconic India Gate.

After the tour, spend lunchtime in one of Delhi’s famous restaurants for a North Indian Punjabi meal. Your guide will then take you to South Delhi to visit the Qutub Minar, a sandstone tower dating back to the 13th century. It dominated the Delhi skyline for over 700 years and was once the tallest tower in the world.

Stay: The Imperial

Day 14: Depart Delhi

Today you’ll be picked up from your hotel and transferred in your private vehicle to the international airport for your flight home.

Advertisement