Delhi to Chennai

Start this epic Indian Overland adventure in hectic Delhi before heading out into the rolling dunes of the Thar Desert near Jaisalmer. Make tracks across Rajasthan visiting Jodhpur, Pushkar and Udaipur and eventuate in the modern home to Bollywood, Mumbai. Then travel south to soak up the spoils of the beach, with plenty of time for R&R and beach fun in Goa, Varkala and Pondicherry. This 39-day trip is for those with a sense of adventure and curiosity, who wish to discover the real heart of Indian culture and its people.

Itinerary

Day 1 Delhi

Arrive in India and travel into the heart of Delhi. Chaotic, colourful, captivating - India's capital is a sprawling city full of buzz and activity. Perhaps rub shoulders with the locals in the streets of Old Delhi or explore one of the many museums.

Day 2 Bikaner

Travel into the sandy landscapes of Rajasthan and dare to brave the interior of the Karni Mata Temple, where the very large rat population is revered.

Days 3-5 Jaisalmer/Camel Safari

Explore the Thar Desert outside Jaisalmer from high atop a camel and perhaps even sleep out among the dunes. Visit the Jaisalmer Fort and marvel at the huge city walls.

Days 6-7 Jodhpur

The mighty Mehrangarh Fort dominates Rajasthan's second largest city. Climb the ramparts and look down over the quirky blue city of Jodhpur.

Day 8 Pushkar

World famous for its huge camel fair, Pushkar is a fascinating place to visit at any time of the year. Perhaps explore the main bazaar or soak up the serene spirituality of the many temples.

Days 9-10 Udaipur

An essence of romance is imbued in every stone of Udaipur and a walk through the old town brings a surprise with every corner. Walk the shores of Udaipur's Lake Pichola, look up at the towering City Palace and enjoy an evening Haveli cultural performance.

Day 11 Ratlam

Experience Indian rural life on an overnight camping expedition in the countryside.

Day 12 Mandu

Once known as the 'city of joy' and dating back to the 14th century, the hilltop fort of Mandu is an evocative and slightly eerie place to explore.

Days 13-14 Ajanta/Ellora

The tour continues to the caves at Ajanta and Ellora. Discover these remarkable, ancient complexes which feature beautifully decorated paintings and sculptures.

Days 15-16 Mumbai

Home to massive bazaars and the lights of Bollywood, Mumbai has a wealth of things to sample, taste, try and buy - and plenty of top notch sightseeing. Set off to explore this quintessential Indian city and mark the conclusion of the trip with a hot curry and cold beer.

Days 17-18 North Goa

With palm-fringed beaches and Portuguese-influenced towns, Goa offers options for both exploration and relaxation. Hang out on the sand, taste a fiery fish curry or roam the local markets.

Days 19-20 South Goa

Travelling south, stop by the historical city of Old Goa, a UNESCO World Heritage site, and be amazed by this 15 century city that was eventually abandoned due to Plague. Spend the next few days relaxing on the beach or exploring the restaurants and bars of Palomen

Days 21-22 Hampi

Explore the impressive ruins of the old Vijayanagara Empire, some of the most striking ruins in the world. Hampi is smack bang in the middle of these ruins and is a fascinating place to spend time in.

Day 23 Bush Camp

Leave behind the ruins of Hampi and make the journey to Mysore, setting up camp en route.

Days 24+25 Mysore

Breathe in the scent of sandalwood with a visit to the Maharaja's Palace of Mysore. Count out 1,000 steps on the climb up Chamundi Hill.

Days 26-27 Wayanad District

Explore the tea and coffee plantations and surrounding hills of the Wayanad District.

Days 28-29 Kochi

Imagine an unlikely blend of India, Portugal and an English country village and come up with delightful Kochi. Catch a kathakali dance performance and take a local boat tour.

Day 30 Kerala Backwaters

Cruise the canals, stop for chai and visit the markets of Alleppey.

Days 31-33 Varkala

Unwind another notch with a beach break in Varkala. Soak up the sun, play in the surf and taste the local tropical fruits.

Day 34 Madurai

Stand on the southernmost tip of India then shop up a spice-scented storm in the streets and shops of Madurai.

Day 35 Trichy

Explore the amazing stretches of the largest temple complex in India, Sri Ranganathaswamy.

Days 36-37 Pondicherry

Feel like you've left India and wandered into Europe in the French-style city of Pondicherry.

Day 38 Mamallapuram

Visit the shore temples in laidback Mamallapuram.

Day 39 Chennai

Take a short drive to Chennai where we say goodbye to the pappadams and palm trees of this intriguing continent.

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