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Sacred Sites of India

A Spiritual North India Journey
March 18th  –  March 30th 2021
3520 USD Single

HOSTED BY:

MICH IMMELMAN

OVERVIEW

 

INDIA! This land of faith; where temple bells echo along with the muezzin’s call to prayer, where the tall spires of temples and churches radiate spirituality and where pilgrimages are also major tourist hubs; India beckons travellers from across the world to witness these beautiful places of worship.

 

Join me as we explore sacred sites in the Northern regions  of India

ITINERARY

 

Day 1: 18 March '21 - Delhi 

On arrival at Delhi International airport after clearing immigration formalities, you will meet our representative in the arrival hall. He will further assist you in your vehicle and then hotel check-in formalities. (Standard check-in time is 1200 hours) 

After breakfast you will proceed for half day city tour of Old Delhi Old Delhi. We start the tour from Old Delhi, Chandni Chowk Chandni Chowk this part of Delhi will take you into the Old Mughal era. On this walk you can see big wooden carved antique doors, big Havelis (mansion), narrow lanes and busy bustling life. You must taste lip-smacking street food in Old Delhi market area. Then you will visit India’s largest Mosque “Jama Masjid” “Jama Masjid” where at a time 25,000 can be accommodated. 

The evening will be at leisure to relax or to pursue independent activities. 

Overnight stay at the hotel.

Delhi – Haridwar by train. Departure 06:45 hrs/11:30 hrs Haridwar- Rishikesh (approx.0.5 hours) 

Early morning, with a packed breakfast you will be transferred to the railway station to board the train for Haridwar. Haridwar. Meeting and assistance on arrival at Haridwar railway station and transfer to Rishikesh. 

On arrival at Rishikesh, check-in at the hotel. The rest of the day will be at leisure to relax and enjoy this beautiful place. 

Overnight stay at the hotel. 

Day 3: 20 March '21 - Rishikesh

Afternoon sightseeing of Haridwar - meaning "Gateway to God". It is essentially a Hindu pilgrim town with temples, hermitages, and Dharamshalas along the banks of the river Ganga. Also, visit the Vashist Yoga Center and Mansa DEarly morning yoga session at the hotel. Later Half-day sightseeing of Rishikesh Rishikesh, which stands for the "Plaits of Sage", is a place of Ashrams where 

solace-seeker come to spend their time in the serenity of meditation and godliness. Visit the Shivananda Ashram where discourses in English on Hindu religious texts can be heard. Also, visit the Lakshman Jhoola Lakshman Jhoola, a suspension bridge spanning the Ganges river. 

evi Temple Vashist Yoga Center and Mansa Devi Temple by cable car. In the evening, attend the evening aarti evening aarti on the banks of the Ganga aarti at Rishikesh. 

Overnight stay at the hotel

Day 4: 21 March '21 - Rishikesh 

Early morning yoga session at the hotel.

Breakfast at the hotel. We will arrange a morning lecture on spirituality lecture on spirituality. The duration will be 01 to 1.5 hours. The rest of the day will be at leisure to relax. 

Overnight stay at the hotel.

Day 5: 22 March '21 - Rishikesh - Delhi by train. Departure 06:30 / Arrival 11:10hrs

Day 6: 23 March '21 - Delhi – Dharamshala by flight AI-9713 Departure 10:55/Arrival 12:40 hrs 

Breakfast at the hotel and thereafter, transfer to the airport to board the flight for Dharamshala. Meeting and assistance on arrival and transfer to the hotel in Dharamshala. 

The rest of the day will be at leisure to relax. 

Overnight stay at hotel

Day 7: 24 March '21 - Dharamshala

Proceed on a full day sightseeing of Dharamsala Dharamsala. Visit Norbulingka Institute, McLeodganj, Dall Lake, War memorial and Kangra Art Museum. 

Norbulinka Institute Norbulinka Institute: Just four km from Dharamsala, Norbulinka was established to preserve and teach the ancient Tibetan arts. The shady paths, wooden bridges, small streams tiny waterfalls make this place look like heaven. Here one can watch the wooden carvings and the tangka paintings, goldsmithing, and embroidery being done. The nunnery close to the institute is a place where women are taught the advanced levels of Buddhist philosophy. 

McLeodganj McLeodganj: Originally the home of the semi-nomadic Gaddi tribe, McLeodganj is today the residence of His Holiness, the Dalai Lama. This mid-19th-century place was developed as a British Garrison. The place was developed as an important administrative point for the whole Kangra valley. Today the place has developed as headquarters of the exiled Tibetan Government. The impressive monastery has larger than life-size images of Buddha, Padmasambhava, and Avaloketeshwara. 

Dall Lake Dall Lake: Surrounded by high and green Deodar trees is the lake, which fills a mountain bowl. Situated 11-km away from the town, this lake is easily approachable by road and makes an enchanting and serene picnic spot. 

Kangra Art Museum Kangra Art Museum: This treasure trove of the Kangra valley's arts, crafts, and rich past, displays artifacts that date back to the 5th century. The museum also includes a gallery of Kangra's famous miniature paintings and a representative collection of sculptures, pottery, and anthropological items. 

War Memorial War Memorial: Set amidst the pine groves is a war memorial, built on the entry point of the to Dharamsala to commemorate the post-independence war heroes of Himachal Pradesh. A web of narrow paths and landscaped lawns lead towards this monument. After a sightseeing meditation session with Monk. 

Overnight stay at hotel 

Day 8: 25 March '21 - Dharamshala – Amritsar by surface (approx. 4-5 hours) 

Breakfast at the hotel 

Post breakfast drive to Amritsar. On arrival check-in and then relax for some time at the hotel. 

Later in the evening visit Golden Temple Golden Temple. At night, the Temple is lit up and makes for a magnificent spectacle. 

Overnight stay at hotel

Day 9: 26 March '21 - Amritsar 

The most sacred of Sikh shrines, the Golden Temple, is a major pilgrimage destination for devotees from around the world, as well as, an ever-increasing popular tourist attraction. Construction of the Amrit Sarovar (pool of nectar) was initiated by Guru Amar Das, the third Guru, in 1570 and was completed by Guru Ram Das, the fourth Guru. His successor, Guru Arjan Dev began work on the building after inviting Mian Mir, the Sufi saint, to lay its foundation stone in 1588. Completed three years later, the Harimandar Sahib, or Darbar Sahib, as it is also known, required substantial restoration following its sacking by the 18th-century Afghan invader, Ahmad Shah Abdali. It was Maharaja Ranjit Singh who oversaw the gilding of the shrine in the early 19th century, earning it its English moniker. In step with Sikhism’s basic tenet of universal brotherhood and all-inclusive ethos, the Golden Temple is accessed from all directions. 

Breakfast at the hotel, then we visit the Golden Temple Golden Temple again. Later visit Jaliawala Bagh Jaliawala Bagh and visit the local market. 

Later in the afternoon proceed for Wagha Border Wagha Border visit. The Wagah Border Ceremony is a military practice carried out by the Indian Border Security Force and Pakistan Rangers. The soldiers treat it with absolute seriousness. It begins with a parade by the soldiers from both the sides, ending with a coordinated lowering of the flags of both the nation. As the sun sets, the Iron Gate is opened, with an infantryman standing in attendance at both sides of the gate. The flags of India and Pakistan are lowered simultaneously and then folded. The ceremony ends with a retreat that involves a brusque handshake between soldiers of both sides followed by the closing of the gate. Evening return to the hotel. 

Overnight stay at hotel

Day 10: 27 March '21 - Amritsar – Delhi by flight

AI-454 Dep 06:50 / Arr 07:55 //Delhi – Varanasi by flight UK- 631 Dep 10:45 / Arrival 12:10 

Early morning with packed breakfast transfer to airport to board the flight for Delhi. On arrival at Delhi Airport make a connecting flight for Varanasi. 

Meeting and assistance on arrival and transfer to the hotel. 

Varanasi Varanasi is one of the oldest Hindu city also known as Kashi. People come here from all over India to take a holy dip and wash away their sins. People wish to die here and getting rid of the cycle of life and death. The city is also famous for fine Banarasi Silk, betel leaf and Banaras Hindu University. 

The evening has a meditation session at the ghat. Later enjoy a boat ride with Ganga aarti (Hindu ritual). 

Overnight stay at hotel 

Day 11: 28 March '21 - Varanasi 

Early morning you will be picked up from your hotel for a boat ride and ghat visit. 

5:15 am Boat Ride starts from Assi Ghat to Manikarnika Ghat and finishes at Dashaswemedh Ghat Assi Ghat to Manikarnika Ghat and finishes at Dashaswemedh Ghat. 

After boat ride enjoys 45 minutes walking tour walking tour through narrow lanes of Old Kashi popularly known as Banaras or Varanasi. Walk- in a five feet wide alley which used to be the widest road of Varanasi in ancient time is our walk 5. Walking in the oldest markets, narrow and puzzled alleys of Varanasi will take you to an entirely different world. Seeing a 400-year-old saree market, the spice saree market, the spice and grains market, a magnificent mosque built by the Mughals along the river and the temple of Lord Kaal and grains market, a magnificent mosque built by the Mughals along the river and the temple of Lord Kaal Bhairao Bhairao, known as the Kotwal or the Police Chief of Varanasi will give you a real sense of the old city "Kashi". 

Later return to the hotel for breakfast. Post breakfast after some rest proceed to visit Sarnath Sarnath. It is the place where Budha came after achieved enlightenment at Bodhgaya. Later he gave his first famous sermon at Deer Park Deer Park here. In the 3rd Century, BC Emperor Ashoka constructed magnificent stupa and monasteries here. 

Evening return to the hotel. The evening will be at leisure to relax or to pursue independent activities. 

Overnight stay at the hotel. 

Day 12: 29 March '21 - Varanasi 

Breakfast at hotel 

This day will be at leisure to pursue independent activities in this ancient city or to meditate and relax. 

The guests are free to explore the city on their own. 

(No services envisaged on this day) (No services envisaged on this day) 

Day 13: 30 March '21 - Varanasi – Delhi by flight 6E-2025 Dep 08:10 / 09:40 

Early morning breakfast at the hotel 

Post breakfast in time transfer to airport to board the flight for Delhi. 

Meeting and assistance on arrival and transfer to the hotel. Later visit Akshardham Temple Akshardham Temple. (Closed on Monday) 

Swaminarayan Akshardham in New Delhi epitomizes 10,000 years of Indian culture in all its breathtaking grandeur, beauty, wisdom and bliss. It brilliantly showcases the essence of India’s ancient architecture, traditions, and timeless spiritual messages. The Akshardham experience is an enlightening journey through India’s glorious art, values, and contributions for the progress, happiness, and harmony of mankind. 

The Swaminarayan Akshardham complex was built in only five years through the blessings of HDH Pramukh Swami Maharaj of the Bochasanwasi Shri Akshar Purushottam Swaminarayan Sanstha (BAPS) and the colossal devotional efforts of 11,000 artisans and thousands of BAPS volunteers. Heralded by the Guinness World Record as the World’s Largest Comprehensive Hindu Temple, the complex was inaugurated on 6 November 2005. 

After visiting the Akshardham temple, guests will be transferred to the airport hotel for dinner and wash and change. (2 room for wash & change room will be provided). 

Post dinner in time transfer to airport to board the flight for onward destination. 

WHAT'S INCLUDED

 

  • Accommodation for 12 nights single.

  • Meals: On breakfast basis except at Rishikesh & Dharamshala meal plan would be on half board basis (Breakfast & dinner on a buffet basis at respective hotel’s coffee shop).

  • The train journey from Delhi-Haridwar & Haridwar Delhi by Chair Car (class of journey)

  • All transportation i.e. airport transfers, sightseeing, and interstate drives will done using the following vehicles: 04-06 pax-using tempo traveller (minivan), 7- 12 pax Mini coach.

  • Internal airfares: Delhi-Dharamshala / Amritsar-Delhi / Delhi-Varanasi / Varanasi-Delhi (4 traveling traveling sectors sectors)

  • Porter fee is included while boarding of trains.

  • English speaking local guide for sightseeing.

  • 1-time entrance fee as per the itinerary.

  • Bottled water and wet tissue throughout the vehicle

  • All currently applicable taxes. (5% Goods & Service Tax) 

WHAT’S NOT INCLUDED:

 

  • International airfare

  • Domestic airfare or Internal flights

  • Visa charges

  • Any room service, telephone charges, mini bar

  • Gratuities, tips.

  • Any expenses of personal nature & Insurance of any kind.

  • Meals not specified in the itinerary.

  • Any item not specified under ‘cost includes’

DATES:     March 18th - March 30th

PRICING:  3320 USD  Single

    

BOOKING: Click here

What our guests say:

 

I would like to thank Michele of Curious Journeys and her team in India for the incredible trip they put together for myself and my Friend. We stayed in great places, had incredible guides in each city and had the most incredible driver throughout our trip. And when things went awry when the Covid19 hit both home and India and we decided to cut out trip short, Mich worked with our Travel Agent who we had booked our flight with to get us home . The India team has also organized a refund from the hotels that we did not get to.

We were able to keep in constant communication with the entire team through our travels if any questions came up, and when we needed to make changes because of the virus we were accommodated without question.

Much loved India, it is her passion and it shows in everything that she does. - Kim Gaynor Wiehe

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