TAJ MAHAL- ETERNAL MASTERPIECE
DAY 1 - Sunday, March 8th, 2015
Following a morning arrival into Male, you will be met and transferred to the airport for your Sri Lankan Airlines flight to Delhi via Colombo.
Upon arrival in Delhi you will proceed through Indian Immigration and Customs formalities before transferring to the Oberoi Hotel.
Dinner will be served at the hotel before you retire for the evening.
Day 2 - Monday, March 9th, 2015
After breakfast and check out, you will drive through New Delhi and proceed toward Agra via the new
Yamuna Expressway. The farther you drive, the more India's vast countryside reveals its beauty.
In time, you will arrive in Agra. As India's premier city in the 16th and 17th centuries, Agra became a great center for learning, art, commerce and culture. Today, it is more famous as the site of the white marble Taj Mahal, perhaps the world's greatest monument to love, certainly for a mausoleum.
After checking in at your hotel, you will enjoy a buffet lunch and then decide how you wish to spend the next few hours. The options are:
(A) 2:00 - 4:00 p.m. Visit the Agra Fort, a World Heritage Site credited to Emperor Akbar, India's great 16th-century visionary. Founded during his reign, this red sandstone fortress encompasses fairy-tale palaces, great halls and two beautiful mosques. Several of the buildings are made of pure marble adorned with artistic carvings.
(B) 2:00 pm on Hourly shopping shuttle to the marble inlay factory and local markets.
(C) 2:00 - 4:00 p.m. Consult with Agra's leading astrologer. Appointments for an analysis of your personal horoscope can be made at the ship's hospitality desk.
4:30 p.m. - Visit the Taj Mahal, remaining until sunset, when the monument appears to change colors and glow.
The Taj Mahal, with its lacy white grandeur, is one of the world's most recognized monuments. In memory of his wife, the great Mughal emperor Shah Jehan planned this extravagant and incomparable monument, built for love. Amazingly graceful from any angle, the monument is even more astounding close up, where the fine details can truly be appreciated.
After some leisure time back at the hotel, enjoy a Kathak classical dance performance in the hotel ballroom. This dance arose from the fusion of Hindu and Muslim cultures during the Mughal era, and is characterized by rhythmic footwork, spectacular spins, mime and gestures that dramatically represent themes from Persian poetry and Hindu mythology.
A buffet dinner follows the dance performance, after which you will overnight at the ITC Mughal Hotel or similar hotel.
DAY 3 - Tuesday, March 10th, 2015
Discover the monumental Taj Mahal at dawn. Tea, Coffee, juices and rolls are served in the lobby, prior to your departure. The magical and monumental Taj Mahal is a place of serenity at this time of morning.
Back at the hotel you will enjoy breakfast prior to checking out and driving back to Delhi. A buffet lunch will be served at the hotel once you check-in.
The capital of India, Delhi has been the seat of power of a number of dynasties - the Rajputs, the Afghans, the Turks and the Mughals who continued their imperial line until the British. Scattered over are surviving ruins, remnants of mighty edifices, tombs of warriors and saints, which, in an impressive sense of magnificence are memorials not of a single city but of supplanted nations.
After lunch you will take a drive around New Delhi with its majestic boulevards and grand government buildings. India Gate, Delhi's triumphal arch, stands at one end of the Rajpath. At the other end of the Rajpath stands the official residence of India's president, the Rashtrapati Bhavan, a complex of buildings that mix Mughal and Western architectural styles. Prior to independence, this was the home of India's last viceroy, Lord Mountbatten. Close by is Sansad Bhavan, the large, though less imposing, parliament building.
Another highlight is the earliest surviving Islamic monument, the Qutb mosque and minar created by the founder of the sometimes-called Slave Dynasty, Qutb-ud-din-Aybak. 73 meters high and consisting of 5 storeys, the Qutb Minar construction started in 1199 on what was intended to be the most glorious tower of victory in the world. This tower doubles as India's and perhaps Islam's, most massive minaret.
Enjoy a buffet dinner back at the hotel before you retire for the evening.
DAY 4 - Wednesday, March 11th, 2015
You will have an early wake -up call in order to make your flight from Delhi to Cochin. Coffee, tea, croissants and juices will be available before you depart and breakfast will be served on the three hour flight.
Upon arrival in Cochin, transfer to the pier and re-board the ship. Along the way you will tour the famous Fort Cochin area.
Overland Program Step by Step:
Please note: The order of sites visited may vary to avoid congestion. The flights and timings indicated are only approximate, and are given here for general reference purposes and are subject to change.
6:00am Arrive alongside in Male
6:30am Disembark ship and proceed to the airport. This transfer is by boat
7:30am Arrive at the airport and check-in
8:55am Sri Lankan Airlines flight to Colombo departs (Airline and flight
time subject to change)
10:50am Arrive in Colombo and connect to Sri Lankan Airlines flight to Delhi
(Airline and flight time are subject to change)
2:15pm Flight departs for Colombo
5:50pm Arrive in Delhi, proceed through Immigration and Customs and transfer
to the hotel
7:30pm Arrive at the hotel and check-in
8:00pm Buffet dinner at the hotel
Overnight at the Oberoi Delhi or similar hotel
8:30am Depart for Agra
12:00nn Arrive in Agra and check into your hotel
12:30pm Buffet lunch at the hotel
2-4:00pm (a) Tour Agra Fort
2-4:00pm (b) Shopping shuttle on the hour to the marble inlay factory and
2-4:00pm (c) Consult with Agra's leading astrologer
4:30pm Visit the Taj Mahal, remaining for the sunset experience
6:45pm Return to the hotel
7:15pm Classical Kathak dance performance at the hotel
7:45pm Dinner at the hotel
Overnight at the ITC Mughal Hotel or similar
5:45am Tea, coffee, juices are served in the lobby
6:30am Re-visit the Taj Mahal at sunrise
6:00am Breakfast is available at the hotel from 6am onwards
8:00am Return to the hotel and have breakfast
8:30am Check-out and drive to Delhi
12:00pm Arrive at the hotel and check-in
12:30pm Buffet Lunch at the hotel
2:00pm Driving tour of New Delhi with a visit to Humayun's Tomb and Qutub
6:30pm Return to the hotel
7:30pm Dinner is served at the hotel
Overnight at the Oberoi Delhi or similar hotel
EARLY Tea, coffee, juices and rolls served in the lobby prior to departure
4:30am Transfer to the airport
5:00am Arrive at the airport, check-in
6:00am Air India flight to Cochin (flight time is subject to change).
Breakfast will be served "aloft"
9:20am Arrival in Cochin. Transfer to the port and visit Fort Cochin en
1:00pm Arrive at the pier and re-board the ship in time for lunch on board
Days are sunny and warm with temperatures between 73-77 degrees F (23 to 25 ºC). The evenings are pleasant with temperatures in the mid-50s F (13 to 15 ºC). Temperatures drop as the night progresses.
What to Bring:
Casual wear for the day. Please bring a sweater or jacket for the early morning and evening visit to the Taj Mahal. Also, important is sun block, hat, shades and comfortable walking shoes. As the Taj Mahal is also a mausoleum, certain religious customs must be observed. As a token of respect, it is customary to remove your footwear before entering. Ladies should avoid wearing tank tops or any top with spaghetti straps as well as short shorts. Knee-length shorts are acceptable for men and women.
Indian Rupee, available in denominations of 5, 10, 50, 100, 500 and 1000.
1 U.S. dollar is approximately INR 50.
220 - 240 volts. Hotel rooms are equipped with converters.
Light luggage is recommended for this 3-night trip. A maximum of one suitcase per person and one carry-on is allowed. The suitcase must not weigh more than 15kg (33 lbs.) due to flight restrictions. If your luggage exceeds this allowance, it will be subject to the fees imposed by the airline.
Airline and type of aircraft:
Sri Lankan Airlines, Airbus 320 (subject to change)
Air India, Airbus 320 (subject to change)
All economy class seats
Documents and Visa Requirements:
It is essential to have a valid Indian visa and your passport.
Dr. Zakir Hussain Marg, New Delhi, 110 003, India
Tel : +91 11 2436 3030
Taj Ganj, Agra, Uttar Pradesh - 282001, India
Tel : +91 562 4021700
Please note: If similar hotels are required due to unforeseen circumstances, they will be of equal ratings and standards.
2 nights at the Oberoi Hotel, Delhi with all meals or similar
1 night at the ITC Mughal Agra with all meals or similar
House wines, beer, mineral water and sodas during lunches and dinners
Deluxe buses. Bus Delhi-Agra-Delhi with restrooms inside
Sodas and mineral water onboard the busses at all times
Applicable entrances, camera/video fees at the Taj Mahal and the other monuments
Kathak dance performance in Agra
Fortuneteller for consultation
Economy-class airfare from Male-Colombo-Delhi and Delhi-Cochin
Program Does Not Include:
Items of a personal nature, hotel incidentals including mini bar, gratuities to drivers and guides, any meals not listed above.
Please note: Land programs that encompass multiple days ashore customarily include extensive and prolonged activity, while those of shorter durations typically have more moderate activity levels. However, each program varies and participants should be prepared to negotiate a mixture of surfaces which may include: inclines, cobblestones, sand, and gravel or natural paths. There may also be a need to climb steps or stairs on occasion. Guests who utilize a wheelchair and those with mobility concerns are advised to check with the cruise line in advance to see if any portion of the tour program may not be considered suitable for their individual situation. Weather appropriate clothing; hats; sunglasses; and flat, comfortable walking shoes are generally recommended.
$2,699 Per Guest