Kathmandu to Mumbai

Beginning in Nepal's atmospheric capital, we'll overland through the passes of the Himalayas heading for the jungle, where we'll go in search of tigers in Chitwan. Crossing the border into India we travel to the incomparable city of Varanasi, then visit the temples of Khajuraho and Orchha, where we'll camp surrounded by deserted palaces. No trip to India would be complete without a visit to the Taj Mahal, and we'll also visit the beautiful city of Jaipur. Overlanding across Rajasthan, we take a camel trek into the Thar Desert, as well as exploring Jaisalmer and Jodhpur. Continuing our journey across Rajasthan we'll make for the lakeside city of Udaipur, before ending our trip in India's most colourful and cosmopolitan city, Mumbai.

Itinerary

Day 1 Kathmandu

Visit Nepal's capital, Kathmandu, and soak up its rich atmosphere. Perhaps sit on the steps in Durbar Square to see Nepali life swirl past or head out to visit the temples of Pashupatinath and Bodhnath.

Days 2-3 Royal Chitwan National Park

After the bustle and crush of Kathmandu, travel down to the jungle lowlands for a touch of peace and quiet. Visit the local elephants and seek out rare wildlife in the Royal Chitwan National Park.

Days 5-6 Varanasi

Set on the banks of the sacred River Ganges, Varanasi is awash with sights and sounds to overwhelm the senses. Learn the different uses of the Ghats - both spiritual and secular.

Days 7-8 Bandhavgarh National Park

Stop in at the erotic temples of Khajuraho then visit a second national park - this one is famous for its tiger population. Take a safari and keep an eye out for the big cats - as well as deer, hyenas and porcupines.

Days 9-10 Khajuraho

Khajuraho was once the capital of the Chandella Kings who built the magnificent Hindu and Jain temples here around 1000 AD. Considered to be 'one of the seven wonders of India', the temples are in three geographic groups: western, eastern and southern. Because they were built in quite a remote and inaccessible location, the western group of temples have been almost perfectly preserved.

Days 11-12 Agra

Home to the glorious Taj Mahal, Agra also boasts the sprawling Red Fort. Take a rickshaw ride to these impressive monuments.

Days 13-14 Jaipur

Experience the eerie desolation of Fatehpur Sikri and explore the amazing palaces of the renowned 'pink city'.

Days 15-16 Delhi

The journey concludes in Delhi - a metropolis crammed with the magic and mystery of a million stories. Dive into the chaos and perhaps celebrate the adventure with a Kingfisher beer.

Day 17 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 18-20 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.

Day 23 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 24-25 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 26 Ratlam

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

Day 27 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.

Day 4 Sonauli

Spend a morning seeking out Chitwan's shy and rare one-horned rhino on a jungle walk or jeep safari then travel to the Nepal-Indian border.

Days 21-22 Jodhpur

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

Days 28-29 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 30-31 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.

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