Northern India vacations

“As well as Golden Triangle gems, this trip has some sacred specials. Head to Varanasi to see life on the Ganges, and Ranthambore National Park to spot the sacred tiger.”

Highlights

Delhi | Jaipur | 2 game drives in Ranthambore National Park | Fatehpur Sikri | Taj Mahal | Varanasi and the Ganges

Travel Team

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Check dates

2021: 2 Oct, 9 Oct, 21 Oct, 23 Oct, 29 Oct, 6 Nov, 13 Nov, 20 Nov, 27 Nov, 4 Dec, 18 Dec, 23 Dec
2022: 8 Jan, 22 Jan, 5 Feb, 12 Feb, 19 Feb, 5 Mar, 12 Mar, 26 Mar, 2 Apr, 14 Apr, 1 Oct, 8 Oct, 22 Oct, 5 Nov, 12 Nov, 19 Nov, 26 Nov, 3 Dec, 17 Dec
Our top tip:
Have cushion, will travel. This is best rule of thumb for this busy trip, with lots of traveling by bus and train. So have something cosy to cuddle.
Trip type:
Small group with maximum 16 people. Min. age 16
Solos:
Solo travelers welcome, with surcharge for single rooms.
Accomm:
6 nights in standard, ensuite city hotels. 2 sleeper train journeys.
Included:
Flights, accommodation, all breakfasts except day 1, 1 lunch, all transport, tour leader.
Meals:
Allow £13 -15/day for lunch and dinner.
Vouchers
Accepted

Responsible tourism

As the pioneers of responsible tourism, we screen every trip so you can travel knowing your vacation will help support conservation and local people.

Environment
Wildlife
With the exception of summer departures, this tour includes the wonderful chance to visit Ranthambore National Park for 2 game drives. Ranthambore is a tiger reserve under Project Tiger- a conservation effort which has now been running with progressing success for over 40 years. Tigers have been targeted for centuries by poachers for their fur and various body parts for Chinese medicine, but with increasing tourist numbers investing in a mutually safe form of tiger tourism, population numbers are on the rise. By paying National Park fees at Ranthambore, this tour contributes to the upkeep of this vital habitat for the tigers, deer, crocodiles, bird and plant life etc.

Accommodation & Meals
This trip sees you spend 6 nights in standard city tourist hotels with en suite facilities two nights in an overnight train with air conditioning from Agra to Varanasi and Varanasi to Delhi. You will notice that our hotels employ locally and use local produce from markets in the area wherever possible. The hotels are waste and energy conscious and have their own policies like asking guests to turn off the power when leaving a room in order to save electricity. Where meals are not supplied, our group leaders always encourage people to try local restaurants and street food vendors. They can make recommendations which will help boost small businesses and celebrate local specialties. In Jaipur, Varanasi and Delhi, clients can even see how the food is made e.g. Masala Chai (Tea), Samosa (Mashed Potato Snacks), Jalebe (Indian Donuts), Lassi (Yoghurt Drink), etc.

UK Office:
It all starts at home so we have first worked at reducing our carbon footprint in our UK Offices. Through energy conservation measures and recycling policies, we are proud to be actively reducing the waste produced and our impact on the environment. We support various projects all over the world to try and give something back to the places we visit.
Community

The Impacts of this Trip

Charity
For years we have been involved in campaigning for tiger conservation in Bandhavgarh. In late summer 2014 we teamed up with The Corbett Foundation, an Indian charity dedicated to conservation-oriented research. They have proved instrumental in enabling us to get the funds to where they are needed. Through this we have now completed the building of a community hall at Tala Village, solar pumps in the park for wildlife and staff in the dry season, bio gas plants and smart stoves for villagers and provided the salary for 2 full time teachers at the government school. Our work in India continues to be of great significance and most recently we have been able to purchase a 4 wheel drive medical vehicle and pay for outreach medical support.

Local Craft & Culture
We are keen to encourage guests to engage with the culture of Northern India and to purchase local crafts and services where possible. Your local guide will be able to recommend the best of the area’s colourful and vibrant markets and small businesses and through our commerce, tourist wealth is more evenly distributed. You might pick up some street food in Delhi or in Varanasi take the opportunity to explore the emporiums specialising in silks and brocades, have a massage by the banks of the Ganges or buy block printed material and pottery in Jaipur. There are locally crafted gifts and souvenirs available by most of the landmarks we visit, and your guides will be able to advise you on which to buy and which to avoid. For example, some bangles and other decorative items in Jaipur claim to be made of ivory and, although this is mostly fake, we are against the popularisation of this kind of product and make a point of including a warning in the briefing.

Group Size:
This small group tour has a maximum of 16 participants, meaning that we have a low impact on the environments and communities we visit and are able to ensure that we do not disrupt or lead to the displacement of local people. The small number also allows us to stay in unique, family-run hotels that cannot benefit from coach tours and other mass tourism due to their limited sizes.

Climate

3 Reviews of Northern India vacations

3.5 out of 5 stars
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Reviewed on 08 Nov 2016 by

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your vacation?


The visit to Ranthambore

2. What tips would you give other travelers booking this vacation?


Don't bother to take a book to read as you'll spend all your time looking at India passing you by.

3. Did you feel that your vacation benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?


To some extent, although the interaction with local people is limited

4. Finally, how would you rate your vacation overall?


Excellent value for money

Reviewed on 06 Jan 2012 by

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your vacation?


Seeing the Taj Mahal and experiencing the Ganges

2. What tips would you give other travelers booking this vacation?


There is a lot of traveling and local amenities are not at the standard we are used to in Britain.

3. Did you feel that your vacation benefited local people, and minimized impacts on the environment?


I think we probably benefitted a few people who may be associated with the trip leaders rather than the communities we encountered more generally.

4. Finally, how would you rate your vacation overall?


A great experience. Lots of traveling, not easy or relaxing or luxurious but it's India and it is an amazing place, wonderful people and a lot to see. This trip is tiring but worth it.

Reviewed on 02 Mar 2011 by

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your vacation?


Dawn boat trip at Varanasai, the Taj Mahal, a visit to the Sikh temple, the food and the shopping!

2. What tips would you give other travelers booking this vacation?


Think twice if you have a bad back as the roads and very bad and a large proportion of the day is spent traveling either by coach or by train (up to 15 hours by train). Remember to change your rupees back before customs on the way home as it is illegal to take currency out of the country and no-one will help you if you take some through by mistake.

3. Did you feel that your vacation benefited local people, and minimized impacts on the environment?


Yes - trips to local communities, shops and schools, shopping opportunities in local co-operatives.

4. Finally, how would you rate your vacation overall?


Excellent but you need to be prepared for v long days and lots of traveling.

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