India & Nepal: Alternative Delhi to Kathmandu

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16 days, from £3495
Wild Frontiers
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Description

India and Nepal are lands of quite spectacular diversity, straddling the vast gulf between past and present with equal ambivalence. In a world of instant gratification and media overload, both countries still manage to excite and enthral the senses of even the most jaded traveller like few other places on earth.

This incredible adventure takes us from the bustling streets of India's great capital on a journey that follows in the footsteps of Mughal emperors and colonial overlords. We'll explore the wonderful medieval monuments of Gwalior and Orchha and gaze upon the infamous carvings at the temples of Khajuraho. We'll visit the timeless setting of Varanasi, one of the oldest and holiest cities on earth set against the flowing waters of the Ganges, as well as historic Lucknow and its key sites.

Once into Nepal we'll seek out the epitome of the natural world - the Bengal tigers at Bardia National Park, before making our way to historic Kathmandu via the Buddhist pilgrimage site of Lumbini and the beautiful town of Pokhara, where a hike around Sarangkot will offer us incredible views of the Himalayas.

All in all this is a wonderful tour taking in many of the cultural, historical and natural highlights of these two remarkable countries.

Highlights:

- Discover the architectural splendors of Gwalior, Orchha, New Delhi and the majestic temples of Khajuraho
- Varanasi, one of the oldest and holiest cities on earth
- Safari drives in search of wildlife in the beautiful Bardia National Park
- Hiking amongst the stunning mountainous landscapes near Sarangkot
- Boat ride on a traditional 'doonga' on Lake Phewa, Pokhara
- Discover Nepal's historic capital and its famous sites including the sacred Hindu temple of Pashuapti

Tour Includes:

- Full services of a Wild Frontiers Tour Leader with local guides and drivers
- 15 breakfasts, 15 lunches, 13 dinners (mixed between local restaurants and the hotels)
- Drinking water throughout
- All transport, including minibuses, safari jeeps, an overnight train, domestic flights as well as your own two feet!
- 15 nights' accommodation (all in hotels, resoorts and and eco lodges)
- All entrance fees, sightseeing, excursions and activities as per the itinerary
- A carbon-offsetting contribution to Carbon Clear (if booking international flights through WF office)
ALL OUR SMALL GROUP TOURS HAVE NO LOCAL PAYMENTS, HIDDEN EXTRAS OR COMPULSORY SINGLE SUPPLEMENTS.

Itinerary


 Day 1: Tour Starts in Delhi (India)

Upon arrival we'll spend the afternoon exploring some of the sites in New Delhi, including the impressive Humayun's Tomb.


 Day 2: Delhi - Gwalior

Today we'll take the train to the cultural capital of Madhya Pradesh - Gwalior. We'll have time in the afternoon to wander the winding streets filled with temples, palaces and havelis with exquisitely carved doorways.


 Days 3-4: Gwalior - Orchha


 Day 3: This morning we visit Gwalior fort before continuing our journey to the medieval gem of Orchha, situated on the Betwa river. Day 4: A city tour shows us all the significant landmarks dating back to the golden age of Indian architecture, including the delicate murals of the Raj Mahal and the beautiful two-storey Raj Paryeen Mahal.



 Day 5: Orchha - Khajuraho

Khajuraho is a fascinating city of temples, boasting of the largest collection of medieval Hindu and Jain temples in India with a remarkable series of erotic carvings.


 Day 6: Khajuraho - Varanasi

Today we'll visit more temples in Khajuraho and then take a flight to Varanasi, one of the oldest and holiest cities in India.


 Days 7-8: Varanasi - Overnight Train to Lucknow


 Day 7: This morning well take to the river to witness the faithful by the river and visit the famous 'cremation ground'A by the ghats. We'll then visit Sarnath, before taking an overnight train to Lucknow. Day 8: Arriving early in Lucknow - a wonderful city with a bloody history after the struggle of 1857, we'll visit the key sites such as the imposing Bada Imambara.



 Days 9-10: Lucknow - Bardia National Park (Nepal)


 Day 9: Today we'll cross over the border into Nepal and head to Bardia National Park and our spectacular lodge. On arrival we'll visit a local village. Day 10: We'll enjoy a full day in the stunning Bardia National Park looking for tigers, rhinos, elephants and other wildlife.



 Day 11: Bardia National Park - Lumbini

We'll take an early morning walk in the park before driving south east to Lumbini. He'll we'll visit the birthplace of Lord Buddha, the Maya Devi Temple.


 Days -13: Days 12: Lumbini - Pokhara


 Day : Today we drive to Pokhara, located on the stunning Lake Phewa with incredible views of the surrounding himalayas. Day 13: After breakfast we'll drive the short distance to Naundanda, from where we'll hike for 3 hours or so to the stunning village of Sarangkot. Be prepared for spectacular views! On returning to Pokhara we'll enjoy a boat ride on Lake Phewa.



 Days 14-16: Pokhara - Kathmandu


 Day 14: Today we'll fly to the capital Kathmandu, and after checking in take a tour of some of the sites, including Swayambunath Stupa. Day 15: A day of sightseeing including a visit to Durbar Square, the Temple of Pashuapti and Boudhanath stupa. There'll also be some free time to explore before a farewell dinner in the evening. Day 16: The tour ends this morning in Kathmandu. Those on the group flights will transfer to the airport in time for the early morning departure.