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Exploring Delhi before driving to Agra in the evening.
You are picked up early in the first half of the day for Delhi exploration.
Old Delhi, Delhi's most fascinating part, is first on the list. Located here is a world heritage site Red Fort. It also has Chandini Chowk, spice market and Jama Masjid.
Lunchtime. (Old Delhi has two famous restaurants. Haldiram's (pure vegetarian) and Karim's (non-vegetarian). McDonald's is here as well. Lunch can be had at any of these establishments.)
The impeccably preserved Humayun's tomb is next. Delhi's first Persian style Mughal mausoleum set in Char Bagh or quartered gardens, it is built in red stone inlaid with black and white marble.
From Humayun's tomb, we drive to Qutub Minar through various different looking parts of Delhi. An archaeological Park, Qutub Minar is a 72.5 m high brick minaret has deeply inscribed Koranic verses and exquisite carvings. There was a time when Qutub Minar was considered to be "Wonders of the East" and was second to Taj Mahal only.
Qutub Minar, Humayun's tomb and Red Fort are designated world heritage monuments.
Back to hotel and rest of the evening free for relaxation.
Travel to Agra from Delhi.
An early morning 6 AM pickup from your hotel by our car and driver. 4 to 5 hours journey time for about 220-240 km distance.
Those new to India, shall find this drive is fascinating. The ease with which human beings and animals mingle with each other is delightful to observe. Expect to see camels, cows, monkeys, donkeys and perhaps even an elephant using the same road as almost all known forms of mechanised transportation are using it. It is a wide road with a divider in between, and each side is at least three lanes in width.
A surfeit of eateries on either side of the road greet you where delicious breakfast can be had. For Western styled fast food fans, there is McDonald's on the Delhi Agra highway, but it is closer to Agra. These restaurants with gift shops, built by local businessmen at strategic places have fairly clean western style rest rooms.
The Agra guide joins you on your arrival in Agra. Expect to reach Agra between 10 through 11 AM
Leave Delhi for Agra.
Our driver shall pick you up at 6 AM from your hotel. Nearly 230 km or 4 to 5 hours driving distance. If you have kids travelling with you or the child that resides in you will be delighted at the fascinating roadside sights. Almost all forms of transportation known to the human kind for centuries should be encountered by you. You travel smoothly as the road quality is good.
Breakfast is on the way, at any one of the hundreds of restaurants that are located on the Delhi Agra Road. Your driver knows which have relatively clean Western-style toilets.
Our Agra guide will join you the moment you arrive in Agra. It is between 10 AM to 11 AM your Agra arrival time shall be. Your Agra touring starts from Taj Mahal, a celebratory monument built to remember departed love.
In spite of having viewed many images and videos of Taj Mahal, you shall be still stunned by its sheer magnificence the moment you come face to face with it.
After the dreamy Taj Mahal visit, it is the turn of Agra Fort. Built by Akbar, grandfather of Shah Jahan, to defend and impress, this red stone Fort is built hugging along the curve of the River Yamuna.
The builder of Taj Mahal, Shah Jahan spent his last years in captivity at Agra Fort, watching Taj Mahal.From the high vantage point of the Fort, Akbar and Shah Jahan used to watch elephant duels on the riverbank.
After lunch we drive to Fatehpur Sikri meaning "City of Victory". This world heritage monument is located 43 km away from Agra on the road to Jaipur. This stunning red stone city was built by Akbar in the honour of Sufi mystic Salim Chishty. After you have revelled enough in the sheer masculinity of this Fort, our drive to Jaipur commences, reaching Jaipur late evening.
Hotel check-in Jaipur
Last Day of Tour
This is your last day of your tour.
A delicious breakfast later your Jaipur exploration starts. Our car and driver shall be there to pick you up. Either the guide joins you at the hotel or meets you on the way to Amber Fort.
The first glimpse of this Fort is spellbinding as it sits easily on the hill oozing authority. The climb to the Fort is up an incline. Caparisoned elephants are available for a ride up and down. As you wander around, you shall encounter many courtyards, palaces, big halls and temples. Striking silver doors of a temple shall draw your attention. It houses the idol of Durga, benefactor of the Royal family.
Next we visit Jaipur city.
However, on the way to Jaipur city, we take two halts. First one is Jal Mahal or the water Palace and can be admired only from the roadside. After Jal Mahal, it is the Hawa Mahal, that we stop to admire. Again, from the roadside like Jal Mahal. In both monuments, no entry is permitted. Take photographs to your hearts content.
It is the sprawling City Palace on the agenda now. Jaipur was conceived as a dual purpose city - seat of government and centre of trade. To achieve this, new Jaipur city was laid out on a grid of nine blocks. City Palace occupies two of these nine blocks. The finer aspects of Rajput and Mughal design styles are amalgamated in this gorgeous structure. The current maharaja resides here with his family in portions inaccessible to the visitors. The Museum of City Palace has an interesting collection of weapons, dresses, carpets and much more.
Next to visit is astronomical Observatory called Jantar Mantar. This is the most important amongst the five that were built by Jai Singh, the assembly of odd shaped structures are the instruments that were used by Jai Singh for his astronomical studies.
As the day draws to an end, the vivid multicoloured markets of Jaipur beckon us.
Leave Jaipur for Delhi.
The setting sun tells us it is time to drive to Delhi. A distance of 275 km or so shall take about six odd hours. Dinner can be had at any one of the numerous restaurants that dot either side of this excellent highway. A popular dinner halt is Midway, operated by the government of Rajasthan.
Closer Delhi, you shall see the swanky buildings of the IT commercial centre that Gurgaon is now. Here in Gurgaon are plenty of malls and restaurants. You can sample some exotic and delicate cuisines here for dinner.
In Delhi, you're dropped at the agreed destination.