Indian Wildlife and Palaces

Duration 15 days
Price guide
From
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tiger in a pool of water in Ranthambore tiger reserve
Two women walking in the Amber Fort, Jaipur
Group of Gray Langurs in the Forest, at Dawn. Kanha, India
Jaswant at blue cityin Jodhpur, Rajasthan, India
India's cities are blessed with beautiful palaces and majestic forts. Venture further, and you’ll discover awe-inspiring natural landscapes teeming with wildlife. This trip takes you to the beating heart of this vast nation as well as to its vast wildernesses. Discover the mighty metropolis of Mumbai before taking a short flight to Jodhpur, known as the Blue City. Travel south to JAWAI luxury safari camp, in the hope of spotting an elusive leopard. Continue to romantic Udaipur and the vibrant regional capital of Jaipur. Next, Ranthambore, one of India‘s best tiger reserves and finally Agra, home to one of the world’s greatest sights – the Taj Mahal.

Trip highlights

  • Tiger safari in Ranthambore National Park
  • Private tours in Mumbai, Jodhpur, Udaipur & Jaipur
  • Sunrise and sunset visits to the Taj Mahal
  • Two night at JAWAI safari camp

Bespoke trips with Jacada

We design one-of-a-kind journeys incorporating luxury in all its forms. Our bespoke trips include:

  • Luxury accommodation throughout
  • Private transfers
  • Private tours and experiences
  • Full support from your travel designer and concierge
  • Help with restaurant recommendations and reservations
Black and white illustration of two guides pointing to a building in the distance
  • Days 1–3 Mumbai
  • Days 3–5 Jodhpur
  • Days 5–7 Rural Rajasthan
  • Days 7–9 Udaipur
  • Days 9–11 Jaipur
  • Days 11–13 Ranthambore National Park
  • Days 13–15 Agra & the Taj Mahal
Indian Wildlife and Palaces
Price guide
  PP
  • Days 1–3 Mumbai
  • Days 3–5 Jodhpur
  • Days 5–7 Rural Rajasthan
  • Days 7–9 Udaipur
  • Days 9–11 Jaipur
  • Days 11–13 Ranthambore National Park
  • Days 13–15 Agra & the Taj Mahal

Itinerary in detail

Every Jacada trip is tailored to your personal preferences and interests. Below you’ll find a sample itinerary to inspire your own custom-designed journey.

Days 1–3

Two nights in Mumbai

The capital of Maharashtra and India’s economic powerhouse Mumbai is a huge metropolis that’s home to over 22 million people. A melting pot of cultures, the affectionately named City of Dreams envelops all who come in a cloud of colour and sound, its energy undeniably contagious. Mumbaikars have a real love for life, which they live at quite a pace, and the best way to enjoy this city is to simply join them.

The city has many highlights and we highly recommend spending plenty of time with your private guide uncovering markets such as Crawford Market where an estimated 3000 tonnes of produce is traded every day, the dhobi ghats where thousands of pieces of clothing are washed every day and the Mani Bhavan museum, a private residence housing a collection of Gandhi’s personal items and photographs.

Marine Drive Mumbai Panorama

Make it mine

Culture

History

The dabbawalas in action

When it comes to lunch, popping out for a sandwich is just not how they do it in Mumbai. The dabbawalas are a 5,000 strong group who deliver 200,000 lunch boxes every day to offices around the city. Every morning the dabbawalas call on homes to pick up dabbas, or lunch boxes, filled with home cooked food prepared for office workers. All the boxes look identical but a very well organised and precise system ensures they all end up at the correct desk. You’ll visit Churchgate Station to see this amazing process in action.

India Gate

The architecture of Mumbai

The Gateway of India, was built in 1924 to celebrate the visit of King George V and Queen Mary, in the style of a Roman arch with architectural Hindu and Muslim motifs. Whilst serving as an arrival point from the west, its also where the British departed India in 1947. Explore the Kala Ghoda area’s Gothic and art deco buildings and wander the food stalls, cafes and galleries while watching cricket played out on the narrow streets. Visit Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus, a huge Victorian Gothic station where thousands of people create an electric atmosphere.

Days 3–5

Two nights in Jodhpur

Rajasthan’s second largest city, Jodhpur may just be its most photogenic. Known as the Blue City, its 16th century old town is crammed with hundreds of houses painted bright shades of blue, connected by labyrinthine streets, bustling spice bazaars and shops selling multi-hued saris, all overlooked by the immense Mehrangarh Fort.

While in the city we highly recommend a private walking tour to explore the heritage of the Blue City. Wander bazaars, residential areas, follow the ancient wall, meet sword and perfume makers and visit Kishanji Temple, dedicated to Lord Krishna, which is famous for its garland makers and sweet shops.

aerial view of jodhpur at dusk

Make it mine

History

Culture

Mehrangarh Fort

Uncover Mehrangarh Fort

Explore the stunning Mehrangarh Fort with your guide. Built in 1460 with cliff sides chiselled flat to make them unscalable and monumental walls built on top. The complex includes several beautiful palaces, courtyards and an extensive garden. There’s a museum that holds a stunning array of arms, costumes and artwork from the Marwar kingdom’s glorious zenith.

Sadar Bazar

Explore Sadar Bazar

Head to the Sadar Bazaar in the old city where you can shop for Jodhpur’s famous glass bangles, rugged leather mojari slippers and incredible fabrics. You will stop at a famous place that makes the famous Jodhpur ‘mirchi pakora’ – large chilies fried in batter – and a famous lassi shop that makes a variety of yoghurt smoothies.

Days 5–7

Two nights at JAWAI

Explore this remote corner of rural Rajasthan on a variety of beguiling activities, from game drives out to spot leopards and other wildlife, to bird watching walks (there are 170 species of birds here including flamingos), strolls with the local shepherds or more challenging treks. You can also visit nearby temples and forts, take mountain bikes out to discover the landscape or relax with yoga sessions in wonderfully secluded locations.

Jawai Rural Rajasthan

Discover Rural Rajasthan

Ancient Jain temple in Ranakpur, India.

A privately guided transfer from JAWAI to Udaipur via Ranakpur

Leave JAWAI and drive south to Udaipur, stopping en route at the village of Ranakpur to see its renowned marble Jain temple, said to be the most spectacular and intricate of the Jain temples, followed by lunch nearby. You can also choose to stop for a walk in the charming village of Delwara and visit the temples at Eklingji.

Days 7–9

Two nights in Udaipur

The scenic city of Udaipur, its grand palaces reflected in serene lakes, is surrounded by the wooded Aravalli Hills. The old city is a bustling jumble of alleys and side streets, but tranquillity is never far away, be it boating on one of the lakes or at the hilltop Monsoon Temple. Udaipur’s ancient bazaars and a vibrant arts scene are a great place to find intricate Mughal inspired miniature paintings, marble and silver craft. For those seeking some adventure, the rolling countryside outside the city can be explored on foot or horseback.

Enjoy wandering the old city with your guide, winding through lanes that teem with cows, elephants and people. Pass shops and pretty houses with latticed haveli windows. Stop to marvel at Jal Sanjhi, the art of drawing on water, a ritual performed at Krishna temples, where coloured powders are used to draw images onto water. A full canvas takes about five hours to create, and you’ll arrive in time to see the picture completed during your tour.

udaipur

Discover the treasures on the lake

Udaipur City Palace

A private tour of Udaipur’s City Palace

The City Palace on Lake Pichola is one of the architectural wonders of Rajasthan, its detailed art and workmanship a tribute to the skills of Rajasthani craftspeople. A collection of towers, domes and arches, the Palace illustrates several architectural styles including Moghal and Rajput. The royal family claim to be ‘surya vansh’, descendents of the sun, and so the whole structure faces east and there is a stunning bejewelled image of the sun at the entrance. Inside the Palace there is an interesting collection of Rajput miniature paintings and in the Crystal Gallery you’ll find an eccentric collection of art and furniture.

Days 9–11

Two nights in Jaipur

The capital of Rajasthan, Jaipur is the state’s commercial hub and one of its most fascinating cultural destinations. The pace of life here is fast, but take your time you’ll find some of India’s most majestic palaces, atmospheric relics and learn the secrets of silk and cotton block printing at the Anokhi Museum, tucked away in a beautiful building on a quaint cobbled street.

During your time in the city, with your expert guide, visit the main sites including the sprawling City Palace and gain exclusive access to private quarters. The palace is pink, in keeping with the rest of the old city with an impressive facade and interiors in Rajput and Mughal styles of architecture. There’s also several museums, including a textile gallery. The well preserved Amber Fort is another site that simply cannot be missed. This former capital of the region has majestic ramparts rising steeply from the hillside. During your guided tour you’ll visit the Jagmandir, with its glittering mirrors, the Jai Mahal and the Temple of Kali.

Make it mine

Around the bazaars

In the stars

Time in the temple

Wander the bazaars of Jaipur's old city

Explore the Badi Chaupad and Johari bazaars in Jaipur’s old city. Wandering through the maze of stalls and studios you’ll see craftspeople working on all sorts of forms of local art including zardozi embroidery, gota, kinary and silver ornament work and precious and semi-precious stonework.

Visit the Jantar Mantar observatory

Maharaja Jai Singh II, the founder of the pink city, was an avid astrologer and built five observatories in northern India. The Jantar Mantar is the largest and houses what is believed to be the world’s largest sundial. The observatory consists of 14 geometric devices for measuring time, tracking constellations and observing the orbits around the sun.

A puja ceremony and market discovery

Take part in a short puja ceremony, where the temple priest will perform worship and offer blessings. You will also take a walk through Jaipur’s traditional markets filled with colourful fruit and vegetable stalls. Set against the backdrop of Sir Samuel Swinton Jacob’s vernacular architecture, the bustling alleyways are still where many merchant families live today.

Days 11–13

Two days on a tiger safari in Ranthambore National Park

Located in the southeastern corner of Rajasthan, Ranthambore National Park is perhaps the most famous place to spot wild tigers in India – and for good reason. You’ll drive through the park in search of these beautiful creatures with an expert guide who knows the park and its big cats like the back of their hand. Ranthambore is a beautiful park, with a 10th-century fort, its crenellations now home to Hanuman langurs looking down onto the lakes below.

wild bengal tiger ranthambore, india

A pause at Fatehpur Sikri en route to Agra

Explore the ancient city of Fatehpur Sikri

Just outside of Agra you’ll find the deserted, spectacular Mughal city of Fatehpur Sikri which was built by Emperor Akbar in 1569 and abandoned after just 15 years due to scarcity of water. See the graceful buildings including the Jama Masjid, the Tomb of Salim Chishti, the Panch Mahal and other palaces, many dedicated to his wives.

Days 13–15

Two nights to explore Agra's highlights

It has graced the pages of books for centuries but nothing quite prepares you for seeing the Taj Mahal for the very first time. The ultimate symbol of eternal love, this is one of India’s most memorable and emotive sights and one of the Seven Wonders of the World. The Taj Mahal sits on the banks of the holy Yamuna River within 42 acres of beautiful gardens. The domed mausoleum sits above the river bank, surrounded by minarets on all four sides.

During your time here you’ll have the chance to experience the Taj Mahal at both sunrise and sunset. As the light changes, so too does the colour of the Taj Mahal. In the early hours the marble is bathed in the ethereal glow of the morning light and sunset is a truly magical time, as the light plays on the marble and its reflection shimmers in the water.

Witiness Agra's other spectacular monument

A fascinating tour of Agra Fort

Just a few kilometres from the Taj Mahal sits the impressive Agra Fort, where the Mughal Emperor Shah Jehan was imprisoned by his son. Here you will see the art and crafting of the white marble that has made the area so famous, the Pearl Mosque and the Halls of Public and Private Audience.