"I travel because I'd rather look back At My Life,

saying  'I can't  believe I did that,' instead of  'If  Only I Had...'"

-Florine Bos

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India, 13 Days 

January 2022

TBA AUD p.p twin share

with local guides 

Standard occupancy 2 persons, inclusive

Single occupancy extra TBA AUD per person

Tipping everywhere in India is customary, this tour includes all tipping at hotels, guides, monuments, drivers, on safari!

Accommodation Sharing Double / Twin room basis ~ Single rooms incur the single supplement additional extra extra fee. An optional extra extension tour has been added for guests to visit the Taj Mahal.

Begin the new year with Hiteshwar and Devendar on an adventure to a world wonder, luxury palaces, huge forts, temples, markets, and more. India is a welcoming country with endless hospitality and activities for every kind of traveller. You will be captivated by the traditional music, dancing, and festivities as you explore with our crew and local guides in search of culture and an extraordinary camel journey.​

 

Rajasthan is enriched with vibrant history and a culture with an unparalleled call to celebration. This journey is a magnificent way to explore the rustic beauty of the Great Indian Desert and participate in the festivities at the spectacular Bikaner Camel Fair.

Rajasthan, India - Land of the Kings

Rajasthan is India at its colourful best...the incredible light, the austere and atmospheric landscapes of the desert and ancient Aravali mountains, the romance of Rajasthan’s heritage and chivalry, the hospitality and humour of the people whether from regal lineage or dignified desert-dwellers, and their arts and crafts.

 

It is also the largest state of the Republic of India, encompassing the Great Indian Desert known as the Thar. The people of this region have filled the plain canvas of

the arid desert with a profusion of vivid colours. The sheer vibrancy and festivities

in their lifestyle leaves no room for anything dull or pale. 

 

Once guests arrive in India, they will be met at the airport. We provide bi-lingual guides and transportation in an air-conditioned vehicle for most of the journey except in Udaipur where the sightseeing tour will be conducted in local tuk-tuks. The airport transfer will be organised in a comfortable,air-conditioned Tempo Traveller or Innova.

Step back in time...India will change your life!

Day 01: January 2022: New Delhi ARRIVAL

Visiting enchanting Rajasthan is always an exciting experience. Enriched with glorious history and culture, this 13 days and 12 nights Rajasthan tour package is one of the magnificent ways to explore the rustic beauty of the desert. From the luxury palaces to the huge forts, to the havelis, to a safari at the Amber Fort in Jaipur, it has something fascinating to offer to everyone. You will also get captivated with the traditional folk dance and music. So, with our thoughtfully designed adventure, have a brush with history and return with pleasurable memories.

On arrival at Delhi our representatives Devendar, Hiteshwar and Karen will meet you at the airport & welcomes each guest with a traditional Indian greeting or gesture of respect, made by bringing the palms together(NAMASTEY)as well as assist you through the check in process at the hotel.

Meals Included: Dinner

Accommodation: Radisson BLU Plaza / Holiday Inn aerocity.

Day 2: 2022: DELHI – UDAIPUR (FLIGHT)

New Delhi to Udaipur in Rajasthan ~ Udaipur is known as Venice of the East! 

After breakfast, transfer from hotel to Delhi airport - Arrival in Udaipur.

Udaipur, formerly the capital of the Mewar Kingdom, is a city in the western Indian state of Rajasthan. Founded by Maharana Udai Singh II in 1559, it’s set around a series of lakes and is known for its lavish royal residences. The City Palace  overlooks Lake Pichola, and is a monumental complex of 11 palaces, courtyards and gardens, famed for its intricate peacock mosaics.

 

Udaipur has a romance of setting unmatched in Rajasthan and arguably in all India – Udaipur’s tag of ‘the most romantic spot on the continent of India’ was first applied in 1829 by Colonel James Tod, the East India Company’s first political agent in the region. Snuggled beside tranquil Lake Pichola, with the purple ridges of the Aravalli Range stretching away in every direction. Fantastical palaces, temples, havelis  (traditional, ornately decorated residences) and countless narrow, crooked, timeless streets add the human counterpoint to the city’s natural charms. For the visitor there's the serenity of boat rides on the lakes, the bustle and colour of shopping bazaars, a lively arts scene, the quaint old-world feel of its heritage hotels, tempting crafts, clothes, wares and some lovely countryside.

 

Lunch at local restaurant.

 

Udaipur is known as the Venice of East, and has many attractive sightseeing places, Saheliyon ki Bari is one of them. This rambling garden has abundant natural beauty, fountains, and museum, will definitely grab most visitors attention. This 18th century garden built by Maharana Sangram Singh is on the banks of Fateh Sagar lake.

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

AccommodationCastle Mewar or Similar 


 

Day 03:January 2022:150 KMS 3 ½ HRS Visit India's Great Wall of China

Udaipur to Kumbhalgarh, Rajasthan ~ After breakfast we travel to Kumbhalgarh

We check into a local hotel and enjoy lunch then visit the Kumbhalgarh Fort.

The Fort is a Mewar fortress on the western range of Aravalli Hills, in the Rajsamand district near Udaipur of Rajasthan state in western India. Some call it by the name of the fort it surrounds – Kumbhalgarh. Others simply refer to it as The Great Wall of India. 

Kumbhalgarh Fort is majestic, it was built in 1458 AD surrounded by hundreds of temples, it is the creation of one of Mewar’s legendary heroes Rana Kumbha. The Fort boasts seven massive gates, seven ramparts folded with one another with designed walls and toughened by curved bastions. Walls enclose around 360 intact and ruined temples, some of which date back to the Mauryan period in the 2nd century BC, as well as the palaces. The fortifications of the Fort extend to the length of 36 km and this fact has assisted this Fort's listing as a World Heritage Site. Its unique location and its grandeur makes it a must visit place in Rajasthan that we look forward to sharing with you.

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Accommodation: Kumbha Bagh or Similar

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Day 04: January 2022: 100 kms / 2 hrs

Kumbhalgarh - Ranakpur ~ After breakfast we travel to Ranakpur

We check in with our friends at Camel Charisma farm near Ranakpur village which is located in Desuri Tehsil near Sadri town in the Pali district of Rajasthan in western India. Camel Charisma has grown out of a long struggle – a struggle to get recognition for the value of camels, a struggle for Livestock Keepers rights on a global level, and a struggle for camel milk to be recognised as a valuable source of nutrition and a nutraceutical. Camel Charisma pioneered the production of bio-diverse paper from the dung of Kumbhalgarh camels. In our tiny factory, local women proudly manufacture the most bio-diverse paper on earth. Their camel milk soaps are handmade from pure camel milk, coconut oil and a splashing of various scents. The Raika shear their camels at the time of Holi and traditionally gave the wool to local weavers for turning into the traditional baql, a heavy-wear rug that they took along on migration. We are trying to revive this craft, introducing some new designs. On our campus we have a wool carding unit in which the wool is cleaned and separated into fine and coarse fibres. The coarse wool is used for dhurries, while the fine fibres are made into shawls in collaboration with Kullu Karishma (link). The coarse wool is spun by men with the drop spindle, while the fine fibres are spun into yarn on the Gandhi cherka by women in Jaisalmer. 

Camel Charisma is a social enterprise that aims to develop, promote and market environment friendly products from the camel. Founded in 2010 by two founders, Mr. Hanwant Singh Rathore & Dr. Ilse Kohler-Rollefson, Camel Charisma has been inspired by the experiences and close connection of Lokhit Pashu Palak Sansthan (LPPS) with Rajasthan’s camel pastoralists. It was set up as an outcome of a project by LPPS to revive Rajasthan’s camel husbandry for creating sustainable rural livelihoods in semi-arid and arid areas, as well as creating job income opportunities for the local communities.

 

The purpose of Camel Charisma is to provide economic incentives for camel breeders to continue keeping camels for their livelihood and to contribute to the sustainable management of the Thar Desert and conserve this biodiversity rich agro-ecosystem.

Rajasthan is famous for its rich and prolific art treasures. Some of its architectural monuments are considered among the best in the world. The Ranakpur Jain Temple excels them all as an exquisite work of art and architecture. There are a number of beautiful and delicately carved sculptures in this shrine which defy comparison. The temple is an eloquent testimony to India's cultural heritage, her unique architecture and the vision and acumen of her past master artists.
This temple is the realisation of the vision and endeavours of four great and devout seekers They were Acharya Somasundatsuri Dharanashah, the Minister to Kumbha Rana, Rana Kumbha himself, and above all, Depa or Depaa, the architect who made the realisation of the dream possible.

 

The Chaturmukha Jain Temple of Ranakpur In the heart of the remote and enchanting valley of the Arvallis, skirting the rivulet Maghai and enveloped in the solitude of the surrounding forest, stands, in solemn grandeur, the Chaturmukha Jain Temple of Rishabhadeva. Placed on a lofty plinth, the three-storeyed marble edifice, to which the genius of the artist has imparted exquisite artistic grace, and which his deep devotion has endowed with serene spiritual dignity is, verily, a poem in stone. Majestic yet in complete harmony with Mother Nature, in whose beautiful lap it rests, this magnificent monument of devotional architecture seems bathed in celestial bliss. The very hills around, dwarfed by its imposing bearing, appear absorbed in mute meditation, as if spell-bound. The concord achieved between the bounteous generosity of Nature and man's creative expression of gratitude, stands uniquely symbolised in this Divine Creation. To behold this holy shrine in its spectacularly sublime settingis to experience instant uplifting of the soul.

 

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Accommodation: Camel Charisma

Day 05: January 2022: ~ 160km 4 hours Ranakpur to Jodhpur 

After breakfast, we say goodbye to our friends at Camel Charisma and arrive in Jodhpur to visit the Mighty Mehrangarh, the muscular fort that towers over the Blue City of Jodhpur. 

 

Jodhpur, the second largest city in Rajasthan is popularly known as the Blue City. The name is clearly befitting as most of the architecture, forts, palaces, temples, havelis, and even houses are built in vivid shades of blue. The strapping forts that tower this magnificent city sum up to a create a memorable spectacle.

 

Mehrangarh Fort is also known as 'Mehran Fort' located in Jodhpur, Rajasthan. The foundation of the Mehran fort was decided on 12 May 1459 by Rao Jodha on a rocky hill 9km to the south of Mandore. Rao Jodha, previously known as Marwar, founded Jodhpur in 1459. Mehrangarh Fort is a magnificent spectacle, and an architectural masterpiece. Rising perpendicular and impregnable from a rocky hill that itself stands 120m above Jodhpur’s skyline, Mehrangarh Fort is one of the most magnificent forts in India. The battlements are 6m to 36m high, and as the building materials were chiselled from the rock on which the fort stands, the structure merges with its base. Still run by the Jodhpur royal family, Mehrangarh Fort is packed with history and legend. Around Mehrangarh Fort's base, is the old city, a jumble of Brahmin-blue cubes, stretching out to the 10km-long, 16th-century city wall. The Blue City really is blue. Inside is a tangle of winding, glittering, medieval streets, which never seem to lead where you expect them to, scented by incense, and roses, with shops and bazaars selling everything from trumpets and temple decorations to snuff and saris.

 

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Accommodation: Marugarh or Similar

Days 06- 10: January 2022: Jodhpur to Thar Desert

Camel Safari towards Bikaner, Rajasthan (5 Days / 4 Nights)

We depart Jodhpur for The Thar Desert, also known as the Great Indian Desert, is a large arid region in the northwestern part of the Indian subcontinent that covers an area of 200,000 km2 (77,000 sq mi) and forms a natural boundary between India and Pakistan. It is the world's 18th largest desert, and the world's 9th largest subtropical desert.


The Thar Desert extends between the Aravalli Hills in the north-east, the Great Rann of Kutch along the coast and the alluvial plains of the Indus River in the west and north-west. Most of the desert is covered by huge shifting sand dunes that receive sediments from the alluvial plains and the coast. The sand is highly mobile due to strong winds occurring before the onset of the monsoon. The Luni River is the only river integrated into the desert

After a few hours drive, we travel with the camels and start on a half day safari tour. Visiting interesting landscapes, reaching remote villages by late afternoon for overnight stays. The 5 days in this region will be full of adventure in the company of villagers, local artists, and musicians.

 

The meals are nothing short of amazing and a credit to what these locals can create fresh in their desert pots and pans. Specialised local dishes are featured and many who consider themselves Indian food connoisseurs are surprised to receive tasty unknown and new dishes on the menu every breakfast, lunch and dinner. Each meal includes three courses with beverages such as delicious masala chai, fresh fruit and salads, hot chapatis, mains and sweets. The cooks are eager to please, so if spicy isn't your cup of tea they will adapt meals to suit individual tastes. There is also never a shortage of clean bottled spring water!

 

Sheltered toilets are set up at each campsite, clean bedding is provided and placed within clean camp tents that sleep two guests. Every day the camp shift crew packs down the tents and bedding, then collects guests luggage that is transported on a camel wagon arriving each night at the next campsite with us. It's as close to glamping as possible whilst offering a traditional safari experience! 

On the fifth day, we return to the guest house to freshen up and attend a cooking lesson from the lady of the house. 

 

  • 08h00 – 09h00:  Breakfast

  • 10h00: Camel Safari for 2 hrs towards Surdhana.

  • Lunch in the middle of the desert (fresh lunch will be prepared in the desert).

  • Safari terminates & transfer towards Bikaner by Jeep.

  • Check-in at local resident guest house (Rajput Family), it’s a Family run guest house by the very famous CAMELMAN family of Rajasthan.

  • Here will get to learn more about Rajasthan Culture and traditions.

  • Clients will get chance to learn more about Indian Food, unique cooking classes will be arranged by lady of the house.

  • Dinner will with the family at guest house   

Meals Included: All meals during the safari.

Accommodation: Safari tents; Guest House

Day 11: January 2022: Bikaner Festival & Bicylce adventure!

Before the start of the celebrations, we will enjoy a leisurely bicycle tour before breakfast that will depart from the guest house and takes us through the narrow lanes of Bikaner. We'll cycle through the mesmerising old Havelis, vegetable market, Jain temple, and stop for snacks as we learn about the Pata System where people used to self-entertain before the distracting use of technology, and more.

After returning to the guest house, we refresh and depart for the the festival site. The Bikaner Camel Festival is a government-supported yearly event that Bikaner celebrates in honour of the camel. The festivities include spectacular camel performances like camel dances, camel races, neck shaking, camel rides and more. Over the course of two days, we will be able to see some of the highlights including:

  • CAMEL PARADE

  • CAMEL DECORATION COMPETITIONS

  • CAMEL FUR CUTTING AND STYLING

  • THE WELCOMING OF THE CHIEF GUEST

  • WITNESSING TRADITIONAL MEN’S AND WOMEN’S TRADITIONAL DRESS

  • GAMES AND ACTIVITIES

  • FOLK MUSIC AND DANCE

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Accommodation: Local Guest House

Day 12: January 2022: Bikaner Camel Festival

The festivities continue with events mentioned above as well as plenty of games and activities guests can take part in. There will be folk music and dance performances from all over India. On the last night, there will be an exciting fire dance performance by the SIDH Community of Rajasthan which will make for a truly impressionable experience unlike anything else you'll ever see.

Junagarh Fort was constructed in the year 1593 by Raja Rai Singh. It is believed that crocodiles were bred in the water moat surrounding the formidable fort. The construction is a fine blend of Mughal, Gujarati and Rajput style of architecture. The picturesque courtyards beautify the fort. The amazing architecture inside the fort inspires you. Some of the attractions inside the fort are Anup Mahal, Chandra Mahal, Hawa Mahal, Dungar Mahal, Diwan-e-khas and Ganga Mahal.
 

Deshnok is perhaps the most famous for its Karni Mata Temple where rats are worshipped. This 600 year old temple is the subject of a famous legend and is an important pilgrimage site for many. The rats here are revered and draw many devotees from different parts of India. Many western tourists also heavily visit to observe the uniqueness of this temple. Navratri is an important festival celebrated here most devotees visit during this time.

Guests will have the unique opportunity of taking an overnight train from Bikaner and arrive in New Delhi the following morning. 

 

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Accommodation: Overnight train

Day 13: January 2022: Arrive in New Delhi 

We wake up in New Delhi after a restful train journey from Bikaner, and transfer to our hotel for a wash up and refresh.

Proceed for a sightseeing tour of Old & New Delhi, visit the imposing India Gate and drive pass Rastrapathi Bhawan, the residence of the President of the largest democracy in the world. Few official residential premises of the Head of the State in the world will match the Rashtrapati Bhavan in terms of its size, vastness and its magnificence.

Old Delhi consists of bustling bazaars, centuries-old heritage sites, and winding back alleys. The former walled capital of the Mughal Empire, is one of the world’s most atmospheric historic quarters. With fragrant street food stalls, centuries-old Mughal landmarks, and packed marketplaces, Old Delhi is a feast for the senses!

Visit the Raj Ghat and drive past the Red fort & Jama Masjid.

Raj Ghat is a memorial to Mahatma Gandhi. It’s located not far from the river Yamuna and was originally the name of a historic ghat. There was the ‘Raj Ghat Gate’ of the walled city, opening at Raj Ghat on the Yamuna. Eventually, the memorial area was also called Raj Ghat. It was here where Mahatma Gandhi’s last rites were performed on January 31, 1948, a day after his death.

 

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Accommodation: The Muse Sarovar or similar

Day 14: January 2022: DEPARTURE

Everyone enjoys a final breakfast together before driving to New Delhi international airport to board the flight to onward destination. At Delhi airport, guides travel with you as you take the internal shuttle transfer to International terminal to board your return flight home. 

 

Meals Included: Breakfast

Land Price includes:

 Tour cost inclusions: 

 

  • Traditional welcome at hotels

  • Stay on Full board basis, Room + Breakfast + Lunch + Dinner (veg/non-veg)

  • All breakfasts, lunches, and dinners

  • Assistance and all transfers – hotel / airport. 

  • All private drivers and multi-lingual guides for trip's duration

  • Tips to the guide, driver, and restaurants

  • Air-conditioned transportation as per the itinerary.

  • All the activities during the stay in Camel Charisma.

  • Overnight train from Bikaner to Delhi / Bikaner to Jaipur in extention tour / AC Sleeper.

  • Domestic flight tickets.

  • Unlimited Mineral / Bottled water

  • All monument entrance fees

  • Cooking demonstration

  • Camel safari 04 night / 05 days on full board basis.

  • Inclusion in Bikaner Camel opening ceremony

  • Tuk-tuk ride in Jodhpur.

  • Bicycle tour in Bikaner

  • All ground transportation

  • Travel light to avoid internal excess baggage fees

  • Evening live theatre performance in Agra for extension guests  

Land Price does not include:

 

Tour cost exclusions:

  • International flights and visa application fee

  • Any expenses of personal nature such as, alcoholic drinks, laundry, telephone calls, insurance, camera charges at applicable monuments.

  • Excess baggage, emergency / medical cost etc. 

  • Extra meals if desired.

  • Activities outside of the tour's itinerary

  • Personal insurance

  • Any unavoidable changes during the actual run of the tour e.g. unlikely weather conditions during camel safari requiring guests to seek accommodation. Please note this has never happened and is extremely unlikely.

Final Payment


Clare at Back Track Adventures will notify you more than two months prior to the departure date for final balances.




Weather in Rajasthan, January and February


Climate (Weather) of Rajasthan in January:

Avg Rainfall during January: 7mm

Avg Maximum Temperature in January: 23ºC

Avg Minimum Temperature in January: 7ºC

Avg Humidity in January: 40%

Rajasthan in February has sunny days with temperatures around 15-25 degrees Celsius. The evenings can be close to 2-5 degree Celsius. Similarly Delhi and Agra may be pretty cold in the night but day temperature are above 10 degrees normally.




What Should I Pack?


Individuals travelling with us on this tour will be given the opportunity to purchase traditional / India style clothing which will keep you warm and shows a genuine respect to be part of the culture. Our group will visit a store such as

Fab India or Anoki whilst in Dehli.

Your packing list should include the following:

  • A warm jacket, beanie and socks for cool mornings and evenings.
  • Walking / Riding boots that are waterproof / closed shoes; we usually often purchase a cheap pair of shoes in India that we leave in India.
  • Layered clothing - Ensure you have several layers of clothing such as t-shirts under long and short sleeve shirts.
  • Long pants or jodpuhrs for riding and walking; we do not recommend shorts for riding.
  • Padded pants or padded bicycle shorts have been strongly encouraged for those who like to do extra riding!
  • Broad brimmed sun hat / Head scarf for visiting temples if desired.
  • Gloves for the desert evenings on Camel Safari.
  • Pyjamas
  • Sunglasses
  • Hand Sanitisers
  • Papaw ointment / vaseline
  • Toiletries (Tooth brush, tooth paste, shampoo, soap, moisturizers, lip balm/ chapstick, please keep in mind nothing over 100ml will pass through customs )
  • Towel
  • Although bedding is provided throughout the camel trek, persons who feel the cold are welcome to bring their own compact sleeping bags which may be especially enjoyed during nights in the desert.
  • 1 litre drink water bottle; Karen travels with a Life Straw which filters water if you have a sensitive digestive system.
  • Sunscreen / insect repellant.
  • Basic toiletries including hand sanitary wipes and anti-bacterial gel.
  • Camera with fully charged batteries and spare batteries for the Camel Safari component of the journey; extra memory cards for the camera never go unused!
  • Head torch and larger touch if desired.
  • Swimming costume ; some accommodation options may provide a swimming pool and or day spa.
  • We also recommend guests bring an additional back pack for carrying day inclusions - water bottle, sunscreen, hand wipes, camera, hat, beanie, jacket, snacks etc.
  • Coffee is not always easy to purchase, if you love coffee we suggest bringing some ground coffee and a small percolator in your checked-in luggage. Delicious Chai tea is readily available in India!
  • Putting apps such as Facetime, WhatsApp and SnapChat on your mobile are excellent ways to keep in contact wherever we come into Internet service. Please note that obtaining a sim for your mobile phone is not often possible in India. Advise your family before departure that you will not be in contact during the Camel Safari component of the journey.
  • Garbage or rubbish bags are always handy to wrap your luggage and store used clothing
  • You are required by law to carry your passport (with a valid visa) at all times and you will need your passport to check into hotels and check in for flights.
  • Spare batteries and chargers. In India, the power sockets are of type C, D and M. The standard voltage is 230 V and the standard frequency is 50 Hz. We recommend purchasing a universal adapter and a voltage adapter. Not all hotels have razor sockets and hair dryers. Power cuts are frequent; most hotels have back-up generators but this may not extend to air-conditioning. If you use an electric razor, you may wish to bring a battery operated one, along with extra batteries.

We highly recommend wearing your passport on your body throughout the journey. Better still is to invest in a Go Travel RFID Passport Pouch, soft and comfortable to wear, the RFID neck pouch features an innovative protective lining designed to stop illegal scanning of RFID chips embedded in modern-day passports and credit cards.




Culturally Appropriate Clothing


There is no dress code for most of the monuments, however some religious places prefer you dress modestly, so no shorts, no tank tops or revealing clothes. Jeans, below the knee skirts, dresses with sleeves are all fine for women and tees, shirts, jeans, kahkis etc are all fine for men. Occasionally covering one's head many be requested.

When dining out, it is not necessary to be dressed beyond casual. Restaurants etc. do not have any dress codes. Dress as you like.




Laundry


Our trip is over two weeks and it stands to reason that guests may wish to have some of their clothes laundered. Most of the hotels have laundry and dry-cleaning facilities. They will wash and press all garments. Be sure to ask when your garments will be returned so that you will receive them in time before your departure; clearly specify when you would like your garments returned.




Tipping in India: A Brief Guide


Please note guests on this tour will not be requried to tip at all ... our team will take care of all tips, including your room porters who deliver luggage. The below information is for your interest only.

Tipping in India is culturally expected and greatly appreciated by staff at hotels, eateries and places of interest such as temples. Tejvir will offer 'tipping' advise throughout the India journey, and the below information offers some guidelines.

IN HOTELS

The following information has been sourced from relevant India culture web sites -

For hotel staff, a blanket figure does not apply. The hierarchy of employees and the category of hotel determine the amount to be paid. For doormen and bell boys, if it's a budget hotel, the tip should be in the range of `20-50 INR'(approx.$1 AUD). For 5-star hotels, the tips could be `100-250 INR'(approx. $3 AUD). Housekeeping staff should also be tipped in the same range. Tipping front desk executives is not the norm. But the concierge deserves a special extra. Concierges should be given generous tips. After all, they are the ones who run errands. A concierge at a luxury hotel should get `200-300 INR'. At a budget hotel, the amount could be between `100-150 INR'.

IN RESTAURANTS

When it comes to tipping service staff at restaurants, many get it wrong. "People usually leave 6-7% of the bill amount as tips," says Mumbai-based restaurant owner Tanu Narang. This is far below international standards, which calls for 15-20% of the bill. Says Pria Warrick, a Delhi-based corporate etiquettes trainer, tip for restaurant staff must be 10-15% of the bill in India. However, many restaurants levy a service charge, a compulsory tip, in the range of 5-10% of the bill amount and it is perfectly all right to not leave a tip if there's a service charge. The tip amount also depends on how the bill is being settled. Liji Thomas, Director, Nouvo Image Consultancy, says: "Indian customers tip better when they pay through their corporate credit cards.

IN SALONS AND SPAS

Tipping at a salon or spa can be tricky as most customers get multiple things done and cannot determine how much each staff member should be paid. Warrick says 10% of the bill should be divided among the staff serving you and you must pay each individual separately. If you are only getting your hair done, then 10% of the bill for the hairdresser is acceptable.

Finally, "If you don't like the service, it's perfectly all right not to pay anything at all. You should never feel obligated to tip."

1 AUD = 48.49 INR

1 USD = 64.39 INR

1 GBP = 82.10 INR

1 Euro = 72.09 INR

( June 2017 )

Spending Money

Foreigners are permitted to exchange foreign currency up to 5,000 rupees (around $100 AUD) per week at banks and foreign exchange bureaus. Be aware that some travellers have reported difficulties in exchanging Australian $100 notes for local currency in India. Hotels and most shops accept credit cards; be sure to advise your bank that you intend to travel to India. Be aware that some travel cards do not work in India.




Flights to India


There are many flights routes and airlines to New Delhi from Australia and other International capital cities. We recommend booking your flights in advance to receive the best rates. We have personally travelled to India via Singapore, Dubai and Malaysia with multiple airlines.




Looking to linger longer?


We have included an optional extra additional itinerary, please review this main page.




Visa Information


All foreign nationals entering India are required to possess a valid international travel document in the form of a national passport with a valid visa obtained from an Indian Mission or Post abroad. Applicants in Australia are required to apply for their visas through VFS Global operated India Passport and Visa Services centres.

Tourist Visa Checklist

Application procedure must be complete online. After completing the application, please follow the below sequence.

  • Download and Print the checklist; Find out your Submission Address.
  • Read the checklist carefully and gather supporting documents.
  • Find out Application Processing Time.
  • Sign required documents where applicable.
  • The recommended option is to Pay online and post in your application.

Please print and complete PDF and post to your relevant state / jurisdiction. Please check with the VHF Global website that all Visa Application steps have been completed.




Health


It is essential that travellers on this tour arrange comprehensive travel insurance that will cover any overseas medical costs, including medical evacuation, before you depart. Confirm that your insurance covers you for the whole time you'll be away and check what circumstances and activities are not included in your policy. Regardless of how healthy and fit you are, if you can't afford travel insurance, you can't afford to travel. The Australian Government will not pay for a traveller's medical expenses overseas or medical evacuation costs.

It is also important to consider your physical and mental health before travelling overseas as we will be unable to cater for individuals in need of medical support.

We encourage all of our guests to consider having a medical check-up before booking and then again at least eight weeks before departure, make an appointment with a travel Doctor / clinic for a basic health check-up, and to discuss your travel plans and any implications for your health, particularly if you have an existing medical condition.

We highly recommend registering your travel plans with Smartraveller.gov if you are an Australian resident.




Australian High Commission


Australian High Commission, New Delhi

No. 1/50 G Shantipath (Gate 1)ChanakyapuriNew Delhi India 110021

Telephone: (91 11) 4139 9900 Facsimile: (91 11) 2687 2228 Website: india.highcommission.gov.au

Email: ahc.newdelhi@dfat.gov.au




Travel Insurance / Travel Doctors & Considerations


We highly recommend guests seek advice from a specialist travel Doctor regarding their en route and return places of travel, especially if you have a known health challenge. Please seek advice from your local General practitioner prior to booking for any current health issues. It is absolutely essential and a condition of travel with Camel Treks Australia Pty Ltd is that appropriate health insurance is obtained for the specifics and location of this India journey. In the rare event of a negative weather pattern affecting flights in the location / travel route you might be coming from it offers peace of mind to be insurance covered. Personal illness and family illnesses cannot be planned for either and travel insurance covers you for the unexpected, so you can reschedule without a loss.




'Cover More' Health Insurance


We have used and highly recommend travel insurance through 'Cover More' for ease of fast application, comprehensive cover, International and Domestic Travel plans.

Camel Treks Australia Pty Ltd has discussed our itinerary with the 'Cover More' sales team and they are able to provide cover for the full itinerary including riding the Bactrian Camels whilst in the Gobi Desert. Please make certain that whatever cover you choose that you are covered for the itinerary as detailed above. For further information please call 'Cover More' Insurance and ask for a sales consultant ph. 1300 72 88 22 or this LINK.




Food and Diet


In the years we have been operating our tours in India, no one has ever become ill. We choose restaurants and cafe's that have an excellent reputation and service for westerners. On the camel safari all food is purchased fresh from the local markets and prepared by cooks on the open fire. Both vegetarian, meat, gluten and dairy free options are available on this tour.

If you are concerned about water quality while traveling or have sensitive digestion we recommend purchasing a Life Straw, or similar portable filter to process the bottled water. Unlimited bottled water will be available on our private coach, train, hotel rooms and camel safari.





Like many before you ... linger longer!

4 Days  

 JAIPUR, AGRA & DELHI

TBA cost inclusive of single supplement

Day 01: Monday, January 2022: Jaipur

  • Transfer with guide to Bikaner railway station on Sunday 12th to board the train towards Jaipur.

  • Overnight on board

We arrive in Jaipur and check into accommodation and enjoy breakfast. Jaipur is capital of Rajasthan, full of intellectual and architectural intrigue. It was painted in pink colour a century ago in honour of a visiting prince and has retained this pink colour ever since. Built by Maharaja Jai Singh, a notable astronomer and one of the best theorists of ancient India. After achieving the milestones of constructing the planned city Jaipur, as well as several other scientific and architectural epitomes, the Maharaja built five astronomical instruments to study space called Jantar Mantar, which means Calculating Instrument. The largest of these instruments is located in Jaipur and has been declared as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO. 

While in Jaipur, we will also visit Maharaja's City Palace, Ram Niwas Gardens, flower gardens, and drive past the Hawa Mahal, also called Palace of the Winds or Palace of the Breeze. Hawa Mahal is a five-story extension in the form of a honeycomb. This unique building has 953 small windows, called jharokas, decorated with intricate lattice work. The entire palace represents the crown of the Hindu god Krishna.

 

After lunch, we arrive at the Amber Fort. In India, the Elephant Ganesha (also known as Ganapati and Vinayaka) is one of the best-known and most worshiped deities in the Hindu pantheon. Although he is known by many attributes, Ganesha's elephant head makes him easy to identify. Ganesha is widely revered as the remover of obstacles, the patron of arts and sciences and the deva of intellect and wisdom. As the god of beginnings, he is honoured at the start of rituals and ceremonies. Elephants in India are therefore revered and cared for as are many other animals such as the cow and monkey.

Located amidst the picturesque and rocky Aravalli Hills, the foundation stone of this palace was laid by Raja Man Singh I and was completed by Mirja Raja Jai Singh. Beguiling beauty of the red sandstone and white marble adds to the magnificence.

Remaining day is free to explore the beautiful bazaars and boutiques of the city.   

You may enjoy shopping at boutique store or may walk through many interesting lanes of Jaipur, which are full of shops, temples and traditional houses.

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Accommodation: Bissaub Palace or Similar

Day 02: January 2022: 250km's / 5 hours Jaipur - Agra

  • After breakfast, depart for Agra.

The Taj Mahal is an enormous mausoleum complex commissioned in 1632 by the Mughal emperor Shah Jahan to house the remains of his beloved wife. Constructed over a 20-year period on the southern bank of the Yamuna River in Agra, India, the famed complex is one of the most outstanding examples of Mughal architecture, which combined Indian, Persian and Islamic influences. At its centre is the Taj Mahal itself, built of shimmering white marble that seems to change color depending on the daylight. Designated a UNESCO World Heritage site in 1983, it remains one of the world’s most celebrated structures and a stunning symbol of India’s rich history.

At the Tag Mahal, you can if desired opt to experience a Tonga, or a two-wheeled cart, driven by a horse. In the past, Tonga wallahs used to be lined up at the railway station and other public places to take visitors on a tour of the city. The horses of the Tonga are equally colourful and active. Most of the Tongas are covered and give you the feeling of being a royal guest.

There will be other activities layered into this day including visiting the family responsible for maintaining the on-going restoration of the Taj Mahal, they are descendants of the original Taj craftsmen.

In then evening you will experience Indian theatre, 'Agra Mohabbat The Taj Show'. 

The amazing Mohabbat The Taj show depicts the romantic love story of Emperor Shajahan and his beloved wife Mumtaz Mahal in the famous theatre Kalakriti Cultural and Convention Centre. Creative dance and dramatic lighting is showcased with a 12’ x 12’ Taj Mahal replica as well as the lavish lifestyle of the Mughal Empire. The live show is in both Hindi and Urdu languages and interpretation is available in English, French and German through headphones. During the one and half hour show, over 80 talented artists perform a lively story in a world class theatre.   

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Accommodation: Clarks Shiraz or Radisson BLU or similar

Day 03: January 2022:205km's / 5 hours Agra - Delhi

Today we visit the Agra Fort, an UNESCO World Heritage site also known as Lal Qila, Fort Rouge, and Red Fort of Agra. It is about 2.5 km northwest of its much more famous sister monument, the Taj Mahal. You will learn about the significance of these two architectural feats and the romance behind them both.

Agra Fort celebrates an era marked by invasions and fortifications, where power was symbolised by grand palaces and grander forts, during such time was the fort was built. Fortification has always been and still is the prerogative of the mighty and the dividing line between the ruler and the ruled. The mighty towers and overwhelming facades instilling fear and awe in the bravest of the brave, yet there were the few who overcame the daunting adversities and made their mark in history, a signature that still exists. Structures built as a sign of prowess remind us all of the grit and valour of the brave men and women who captured, destroyed and built such overwhelming edifices. The Agra Fort is impressive and opulent, it still remains easy to visualise crocodiles patrolling this moated fort.

 

Following the fort we journey to New Delhi for an evening meal and overnight in Hotel.

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Accommodation: The Muse Sarovar or similar

Day 04: January 2022: A Day in New Delhi and Old Delhi

We wake up in New Delhi after a restful train journey from Bikaner, and transfer to our hotel for a wash up and refresh.

Proceed for a sightseeing tour of Old & New Delhi, visit the imposing India Gate and drive pass Rastrapathi Bhawan, the residence of the President of the largest democracy in the world. Few official residential premises of the Head of the State in the world will match the Rashtrapati Bhavan in terms of its size, vastness and its magnificence.

Old Delhi consists of bustling bazaars, centuries-old heritage sites, and winding back alleys. The former walled capital of the Mughal Empire, is one of the world’s most atmospheric historic quarters. With fragrant street food stalls, centuries-old Mughal landmarks, and packed marketplaces, Old Delhi is a feast for the senses!

Visit the Raj Ghat and drive past the Red fort & Jama Masjid.

Raj Ghat is a memorial to Mahatma Gandhi. It’s located not far from the river Yamuna and was originally the name of a historic ghat. There was the ‘Raj Ghat Gate’ of the walled city, opening at Raj Ghat on the Yamuna. Eventually, the memorial area was also called Raj Ghat. It was here where Mahatma Gandhi’s last rites were performed on January 31, 1948, a day after his death.

 

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Accommodation: The Muse Sarovar or similar

Day 05: January 2022: DEPARTURE

Everyone enjoys a final breakfast together before driving to New Delhi international airport to board the flight to onward destination. At Delhi airport, guides travel with you as you take the internal shuttle transfer to International terminal to board your return flight home. 

 

Meals Included: Breakfast

Are you ready for your next adventure? Make your reservation today!

Before You Go

Did you remember...

  • To review the packing list?

  • To email Camel Treks Australia with your flight arrival and departure details?

  • To print a copy of your waiver form to give to the crew in India?

  • To print copies of your passport?

  • To alert your bank that you will be travelling overseas?

  • To obtain health and travel insurance? 

A Special Note from the Company Owner:

Three years ago, Surender Singh Negi, one of the contributors of the ground crew in India unexpectedly passed away, leaving behind his three school-aged children without any family. Surender had been struggling to support them with a difficult to treat leg infection before his passing. The news reached us in Australia and came as a complete shock. I knew Surender personally from previous trips to India, and it was his oldest son who contacted me with the heartbreaking news, scared, alone, and now burdened with responsibility that no teenager should ever have to face.

 

The Negi children have no parents, grandparents, aunts or uncles. The eldest, Divesh (17), is now entirely responsible for the care of his two younger siblings, Vandna (16) and Koshal (14). Divesh is hoping to attend university in order to build a better life. However, In India, there is no government support for a situation like this where children are left without family. There are no social or government security programs, and children in these situations often have no other option than to accept not being able to afford schooling and eventually beg on the streets to survive.  

Camel Treks Australia has an open fundraiser to provide support for their school supplies, school fees, uniforms, food, and necessities. We welcome any support from our guests and visitors. When making a booking, you have the option of making a $5 or more donation. For more information, ongoing updates, or to make a direct donation without a booking, please visit their GoFundMe page. 

After our India tours, Camel Treks Australia crew personally checks in with the children and we maintain careful financial guidance throughout the year.

A little bit can go a long way in India and we hope you will be able to open your hearts to help us continue supporting the Negi Children.

Warmest Regards,

Karen Ellis

Co-Owner and Director

Booking Office

The Camel Sanctuary trading as

Camel Treks Australia Pty Ltd

cameltreksaustralia@gmail.com

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© 2018/19 CAMEL TREKS AUSTRALIA Pty Ltd

ACN: 609 922 349 ABN: 50 609 922 349

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