Indian monuments of spiritual history trace the past of religions in this country. India is a land of diverse culture and consequently secularity in all forms is maintained here. Religion has remained the milieu of Indian civilization in all the ages and the history of this country is associated with history of religions. Years of Indian history replicate the fruition of numerous religions that swayed utmost and perished down. Nevertheless, such religions have left behind its footsteps through consecrated homes. These monuments display the affluent religious past of the country and present a fascinating example of prehistoric architectural brilliance.
This 17 Days and 16 Nights itinerary is an extraordinary journey of discovering spirituality through visiting several historical religious centers to sense the aroma of religious life persistent in India. Through exploring these monuments, a spiritual tourist can witness new thoughts and new perceptions of different religions like Islam, Hinduism, Sikhism, Baha'i, Buddhists, etc.
Depart Delhi from your home country.
On arrival in Delhi, meet our representative who will transfer you to your pre booked hotel. Check in at the hotel. Rest of the day is free for leisure. An overnight stay in the hotel in Delhi.
In the morning after breakfast, proceed for sightseeing tour of Delhi. Start with a rickshaw ride to the Jama Masjid, India's largest Mosque and pass through the bustling streets of the Chandi Chowk market. Later, continue to the Raj Ghat — Mahatma Ghandi's moving cremation site. After lunch, we will go for excursion to the Qutub Minar, the oldest Muslim monument in India, and to the nearby Baha'i Lotus Temple, with its faiths tenets of the oneness of god, the oneness of religions and the oneness of mankind.
Later return back to the hotel for an overnight stay.
After breakfast in the morning, we will visit the shrine of the Sufi saint Nizamuddin Chisti, who believed in growing closer to God through renunciation of the world and service to humanity. Also, we will be visiting the Humayun's Tomb near the shrine. Later in the afternoon, we will take train Amritsar Shatabdi and reach Amritsar.
Today, we will be visiting the spectacular Sikh Golden Temple, the holiest shrine of Sikhism, and learn about every Sikh's goal to build a close loving relationship with God. Later, we will be visiting the poignant Jallianwala Bagh, where General Dyer massacred unarmed Indians in 1919. In the evening, we will be visiting the Wagha boarder. Return back to the hotel for an overnight stay.
In the morning, we will visit the nearby Sikh shrines of Tarn Taran to see the many historical Gurudwaras and to Goindwal, the first ever place of Sikh pilgrimage. An overnight train ride in Golden Temple in 2nd AC sleeper to Mathura.
In the morning, we will Mathura. Check in at the hotel. Mathura is the birthplace of Lord Krishna and one of the 7 most sacred pilgrimage cities for Hindus. In the afternoon, we will visit the temples in Mathura and Vrindaban where myth says Lord Krishna spent part of his childhood.
Enjoy an overnight stay in the hotel in Mathura.
Today, we will visit the villages of Gokul, where Lord Krishna was brought up in secret by his foster Mother, Yashoda, and Goverdhan another important pilgrimage centre. After exploring the place, return back to the hotel for an overnight stay.
In the morning, we will drive to Bharatpur. Here, we will be visiting the bird sanctuary of Bharatpur. Over 300 species of birds live in the small sanctuary, developed by the local Royal family originally as a hunting reserve. Enjoy a night stay at Laxmi Vilas Palace.
Today in the morning, we will drive to Agra via Sikri. Later, we will visit Taj Mahal in Agra to see the beautiful Mausoleum covered in a soft pink hue as the sun's rays caress the stone. Later, we will wander the vast Agra Fort built by successive Mughal Emperors to emphasise their wealth and might. Also, we will visit the Tomb of Itimadu Dauala — a master piece in marble stone carving. An overnight at in the hotel in Agra.
The day is free for leisure. In the evening, we will take an overnight train ride in Magadh Express in 1st AC (2325-0725 hrs) to Varanasi.
In the morning, arrive at Varanasi. In the afternoon, we will take a journey to Sarnath where the Lord Buddha preached his first discourse, and see the Stupas, ancient and modern Temples and Ashoka's Pillar.
Today morning, enjoy a boat ride at Ganges river. As the dawn mists rise on the Holy River Ganges, glide silently on a boat to see the devout come to bathe and pray. In the afternoon, proceed for city tour and enjoy a rikshaw ride in the evening. Later, return back to the hotel for an overnight stay in Varanasi.
Today, we will drive to Bodhgaya. An overnight stay at the hotel in Bodhgaya.
The day is fixed to explore the Bodhgaya temple. It is one of the most holy of places where the Lord Buddha gained enlightenment. We will visit the magnificent Mahabodhi Temple and see the wonderful sculpture of Lord Buddha in the "touching the ground pose", (bhumisparsha mudra), in the exact place where he found enlightenment with his back to the Bodhi tree.
Later return back to the hotel for an overnight stay.
The day is free for leisure in Bodhgaya to spend time in personal meditation and reflexion. An overnight air-conditioned 1st class sleeper train journey in Sealdah Rajdahni (2255-1020 hrs) to Delhi.
On arrival in Delhi, transfer to the hotel and rest of the day is free for leisure perhaps for shopping. An overnight stay at the hotel. Late night transfer to the airport to catch the fight for onwards destination.