Tour Details at a glance
26 September - 6 October 2019
11 days / 10 nights
US$2590pp twin share US$3020pp including Optional Single Supplement
Minimum 4, Maximum 10
7 nights Heritage Hotels 3 nights 4-star Hotels
Private Air-conditioned minibus Taxis and rickshaws for some sightseeing
10 breakfasts 2 lunches 3 dinners
Arrival and departure transfers; Entrance fees to all sights as per the itinerary; Guide fees; Tips and gratuities
Best Exotic Marigold Hotel Tour
Welcome to the India of The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel. Join us and experience some of the India and sights portrayed in the two very successful films.
Ride auto rickshaws and cycle rickshaws through Jaipur, spend the night at Madge's exclusive 'Viceroy's Club' the ‘Second Best Exotic Marigold Hotel’ and see where Sonny woos Sunaina at the Stepwell. Have a gin & tonic on the terrace overlooking the lake in Udaipur and you'll even get to stay at the original Best Exotic Marigold Hotel itself. In addition there are amazing Moghul sights in Delhi, the truly incredible Taj Mahal in Agra, and the wonders of Rajasthan, the 'Land of Kings'. Included in this tour are the must do's and we have allowed plenty of free time for another of the wonders of India Shopping.
Experience Incredible India and Rajasthan on this Small Group Tour, fully escorted within India by a female western tour leader and local guides for various activities and sightseeing.
* be part of the organized chaos and excitement of India's capital city Delhi
* be left breathless by the unsurpassed Taj Mahal
* visit the film sets of the movie in Jaipur & Udaipur
* stay in the actual Marigold Hotel and the Viceroy Club
* enjoy a sunset drink overlooking the beautiful lake city of Udaipur
* shop till you drop in the markets & bazaars of Rajasthan
Day by Day Itinerary
Day 1 Delhi
Arrival Day. Please arrive in time to meet with the group at 2pm when we have a welcome meeting before we head out for an afternoon of sightseeing in New Delhi, visiting Humayans Tomb and Raj Path.
Hotel: The Visaya or similar
Day 2 Delhi
Spend the afternoon visiting more of the remarkable sights of this misunderstood city, or searching out some wonderful treasures and souvenirs in the many handicraft markets or designer shops throughout Delhi.
Hotel: The Visaya or similar
Day 3 Agra
A morning drive today to Agra. We visit the magnificent Agra Fort and the exquisite 'Baby Taj' and there is time to explore the markets or check out the local Persian style Carpet manufacturers or Inlay Marble workers.
Hotel: The Retreat or similar
Day 4 Kanota
We are up early to visit the Taj Mahal at dawn when it is at its most evocative and ethereal. After breakfast, we drive towards Jaipur, via Fatehpur Sikri, the deserted Moghul city, before stopping the night at Castle Kanota on the outskirts of Jaipur the filming location of the 'Viceroys Club' in the Marigold Hotel movies.
Hotel: Castle Kanota
Days 5-6 Jaipur
Jaipur is known as the 'Pink City' and is the capital of Rajasthan. As the location for the Marigold Hotel in the movie, Jaipur has plenty of sights and scenes you will find familiar. We wander the old city markets colourful bazaars and visit the Stepwell featured in the movie along with other sites such as Jaigarh Fort and the Gaitor memorials.
Amber Fort is a splendid example of Rajput/Mughal architecture and was the old capital of Rajasthan prior to 1727. You also have the chance to see the splendid City Palace Museumand the wondrous Jantar Mantar.
Jaipur is famous for Gemstones & Jewellery, Fabrics & Handicrafts, and you'll have time to explore the markets and shops to pick out a fabulous piece of Rajasthan.
Hotel: Diggi Palace or similar
Day 7 Khempur The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel
A full day's drive today to Khempur, a small Hamlet around one and a half hours drive from Udaipur. The Village is a small cluster of typical rural dwellings and shops, and shaded squares where the villagers sit around drinking chai and discuss the affairs of the world or share the local gossip.
Rawla Khempur is the local chieftains 'Castle', these days a small Heritage Hotel that is famous originally for its Marwari and Kathiawari Horses and as the film set for 'The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel'.
Hotel: Ravla Khempur
Day 8 Khempur
We spend the day here at Khempur where you are free to wander the village, explore the local temples, ride horses or a bullock-cart out to the nearby lake or sit in the garden relaxing. Explore the nooks and crannies of the Rawla and enjoy the hospitality of our hosts who will arrange for a cultural show for us in the evening.
Hotel: Ravla Khempur
Days 9-10 Udaipur
A short journey this morning brings us to Udaipur. Often called the romantic city, Udaipur, voted the No. 1 tourist destination in the world in 2009, lives up to its name with its white washed Havelis and Palaces lining the banks of the charming Lake Pichola.
Udaipur was also the location for some scenes in the movie and we stay at a hotel featured in the film (the G&T scene) which was also a favourite sunset spot for the cast and crew. We visit the City Palace complex (one of the largest palace complexes in India), wander the local markets and learn how to make a sensational Indian curry. Why not try your hand at a spot of miniature painting or discover the lake on an afternoon cruise. Udaipur is a friendly and charming city just made for exploring, and shopping.
Day 11 Udaipur/Departure Day
There are no organised activities today. You are free to depart at any time.
There are direct daily flights to International airports - Delhi, Mumbai, Chennai and Jaipur.
Minimum 4, Maximum 10
11 days / 10 nights
Arrival and departure transfers
All accommodation as specified
All transportation between overnight stops and to and from included sightseeing
Entrance fees for all sites listed as part of the itinerary
Meals as specified
Tips and gratuities for hotel staff, porters, guides and drivers
Meals other than those listed
Drinks, meal tips, laundry and other items of a personal nature
Hotels (10 nights)
We stay in 3-4 star or Heritage Hotels. Rooms are twin share with private bathrooms with western style toilets.
Optional Single Supplement
If you are a single traveller, you are not required to pay a single supplement as we will match you up with other travelers. However if you do not wish to share accommodation, but would like to guarantee your own room throughout the tour a single supplement of USD430 will be payable.
Private air-conditioned minibus, taxis and rickshaws for some sightseeing.
The following is a list of included activities on this trip. Other activities are optional and will be at your own expense.
Humayans Tomb, Raj Path, Old Delhi, Spice markets, Cycle Rickshaw ride (Delhi)
Taj Mahal, Red Fort, Baby Taj (Agra)
Amber Palace, City walk, Step Well, Jaigarh Fort, Hawa Mahal, Jal Mahal (Jaipur)
City Palace, Old Town Walk, Lake cruise (Udaipur)
10 Breakfasts, 2 Lunches, 3 Dinners
Traveling with Incredible Indian Tours we ensure that you will experience a vast array of the gustatory treats available in India. Some meals are not included in the trip price when there is a choice of eating options. This allows you to choose where, and what to eat. More often than not however we eat together as a group. Your leader will offer suggestions for favourite restaurants throughout the trip.
Exchange rates as at April 2018
AUD1 = 50 INR
CAD1 = 51 INR
EUR1 = 80 INR
GBP1 = 93 INR
NZD1 = 48 INR
USD1 = 65 INR
There are many ATM machines (which accept both Cirrus/Maestro debit cards and Visa and MasterCard) throughout India. This is a safe and convenient way to access money in India, however we suggest that you bring a small amount of money in cash (suggested $300) in case there are times that ATMs are not available. The major currencies, including AUD and CAD are no problem in general to exchange. Visa & MasterCard credit cards are accepted in major shops and restaurants in the bigger cities.
Although entrance fees to specified sites are included in the tour price, there are additional sights that you may like to visit. Many sites levy camera fees.
Spending money requirements will differ from one person to the next. You will need to take into consideration your spending habits when allowing for drinks, shopping, and optional activities.
It is recommended you allow enough money for the following:
Meals USD200 (or equivalent)
Optional Activities USD50 (or equivalent)
Money for drinks, shopping and incidentals.
Tipping is an integral part of Indian life and is essential to a smooth trip. To make things easier we cover tips for hotel room boys, local guides and for drivers of private transport we use. We do NOT cover restaurant tips. You will need to allow approximately 10-15% on top of your restaurant bill.
Physical rating 2/5
You may need to carry your bag/pack up and down railway station and hotel stairs. There will be plenty of walking around towns or sites, which due to the warm to hot weather in India at this time of year will make general sightseeing a little more strenuous.
Culture shock rating 3/5
Conditions in India are not always as comfortable as in other countries. You may need to occasionally deal with a squat toilet, cold showers or power failure.
Travel Insurance is highly recommended whilst traveling to India and is compulsory for any group tour with Incredible Indian Tours.
All foreign nationals require a visa to enter India. Most nationalities can apply for an e-Tourist visa. The Indian Government is in the process of extending this e-Tourist facility to more countries so check this website to find out the latest eligibility details.
For the e-Tourist visa, you need to apply within 120 days of travel 60 days validity. The visa is issued online and takes up to 3 days.
Regular tourist visas (issued by the Indian Embassy or Consulate) for those nationalities who do not yet have availability of the e-Tourist facility, or for those who require a visa longer than 60 days, are usually issued for 6 or 12 months and are either Single, Double or Multiple Entry. As the validity begins from date of issue, be sure you do not apply for your visa too early. For information, or assistance with obtaining a visa, check out the following websites.
New Zealand https://indianvisaonline.gov.in/visa/index.html
We recommend that you consult your doctor for current medical travel information about before departure. Your leader will be carrying a basic first aid kit, but we suggest you bring along your own as well as any personal medical requirements.
The following websites have up-to-date information about health requirements.
New Zealand http://www.health.govt.nz/your-health/healthy-living/travelling
Communications / Keeping in touch
Most of our hotels have Wifi, as do many restaurants and cafes. You can also purchase a local prepaid sim card (for unlocked cell phones) and data sticks (for mobile internet on your laptop) easily and inexpensively in India. Recommended are Vodafone, Airtel and Reliance. You will need extra passport photos for this as well as photocopies of your photo and visa page from your passport.
Your tour manager
Your tour manager is there to organise and streamline your travels and to help you have the best trip possible. Whilst they are not a guide per se, they will share their local knowledge, give you suggestions for your free time and manage the day to day running of the tour. They will introduce you to their local friends and recommend great local restaurants and experiences. They will have a broad general knowledge of India, so do feel free to tap into their wisdom. At some sites, local guides may be hired where we think more specific knowledge will add to the enjoyment of the places we are visiting.
We believe strongly in responsible travel. This includes being respectful to the local culture (ie dressing appropriately, and learning a few basic cultural do's and don'ts), being mindful of the environment, and leaving a positive image behind. Remember we are ambassadors for our country. Bringing a few photos of your family and home with you is a great way to interact with the locals by giving them a glimpse of your world whilst you visit theirs.
N-82 Panchshil Park
New Delhi 110017
Ph: +91 11 4319 0000
Your airport transfer pickup will await you holding a sign with your name when you exit the baggage claim area of the arrivals hall. There may be large crowds here so please look carefully for your transfer.
Early arrival information
If you are arriving earlier than day 1, extra accommodation in Delhi is available at USD85/130 Single/Double (or equivalent) per night per room. Please notify us as early as possible if you require extra accommodation as our hotel in Delhi books up well in advance.
If you are staying on in Udaipur after the tour, extra accommodation is available at USD55/65 Single/Double (or equivalent) per night per room.
What to take
We will be on the move a lot, so try to pack as lightly as possible. The smaller your bag in India the better, as the various modes of transport we use tend to have limited storage space. In addition, you will find that your bag probably needs space to expand for all that shopping!
India is very conservative and we ask that you dress accordingly. As a guideline, shoulders and knees should always be covered. The wearing of shorts is looked upon by locals as akin to wearing your underwear and will limit your entry into mosques, temples and other places of worship. Loose, lightweight, long clothing is both respectful and cool. Singlets, tank tops and shorts are not suitable attire for India.
Note that some Indian domestic airlines have recently reduced their check-in baggage allowance to 15kg. If you have heavier luggage, you may need to pay the excess at the airport for your internal flights. Excess luggage charges are around Rs300 (USD 5) per kilo.
Upon booking, you will receive a full tour info pack including a suggested packing list an other helpful information on preparing for your trip to India.
Inexpensive laundry facilities are offered by most hotels we use and are generally available wherever we have a two night stop.
The weather during our journey should be great. Daytime temperatures will be warm to hot, in the range 25-35deg c. Night time temperatures will be comfortable. Rain is not very likely at this time of year, but sun is, so sunblock and a hat are essentials. Blankets are provided on the overnight train journey.
Travel documents: passport, visa, travel insurance (don't forget your emergency insurance contact details), air tickets.
Photocopy of above documents
First aid kit
Money: ATM card (widely available and easy to access); credit cards (widely accepted in big cities); cash and travellers cheques (for emergencies)
Alarm clock and torch/flashlight
Ear plugs can be very useful if you are a light sleeper
Lock for your bag or suitcase
We recommend the use of a neck wallet or money belt to store your passport, air tickets, credit cards and cash. Avoid bringing valuable jewellery with you. Some hotels we use have safety deposit boxes. A lock and chain are useful for securing your luggage on overnight train journeys.
Read the full tour dossier here on Issuu