India in Depth

  • days: 26
  • from $10,795

Flights Included

Types of travel:

Countries Visited:

  • India

Description

Max-20-Editable-75px

Immerse yourself in the many different sides of India from the fascinating city of Kolkata, to the ‘Pink City’ Jaipur and vibrant Mumbai. Watch as the sun rises over the Taj Mahal, taste your way through Madurai and cruise through the peaceful backwaters of Kerala to Alleppey. 

From Kolkata to Delhi 

Our tour begins in Kolkata, the capital of India's West Bengal State. Visit the Indian Museum, the diverse flower market and Mother House, to learn about Mother Teresa's life. Then journey to the holy city of Varanasi, the spiritual home of Hinduism and the cultural capital of India. Take a rickshaw down to the holy Ganges River to observe the aarti prayer ceremony, performed at Dashashwamedh Ghat every day as the sun sets. 

Behold the Taj Mahal

We’ll take in the incredible Taj Mahal at sunrise and visit Agra Fort, known for its fine Mughal architecture. 

Indulge the senses 

As our journey heads south, we’ll visit mind-blowing Mumbai and indulge each of the five senses on an extraordinary tour, before heading onwards to Munnar and Kochi, where we’ll spend a night cruising the peaceful backwards of Kerala on a traditional houseboat.

Incredible India 

The Incredible India website is a great resource for anyone visiting India.

Click here to view the website.

 

 

Itinerary

Abbreviation: [B,L,D] Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 1. Depart Australia - Arrive Kolkata 

Welcome to Kolkata, the capital of India's West Bengal State! 

Day 2. Kolkata

Departing late morning, we embark on a sightseeing tour of the city. Highlights include Kalighat Kali Temple, Victoria Memorial and the Indian Museum. We'll also visit Mother House, to learn about Mother Teresa's life. Discover the room she occupied for most of her life and also her tomb. Tonight we'll enjoy a group welcome dinner. [B,D]

Day 3. Kolkata

Enjoy another fascinating day exploring Kolkata, including the Dalhousie Square and the diverse flower market. We'll then drive past Howrah Bridge and make stops at Jain Temple and Marble Palace. [B]

Day 4. Kolkata - Varanasi

Today we fly to the holy city of Varanasi, the spiritual home of Hinduism and the cultural capital of India.

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Special Experience: This evening we take a rickshaw down to the holy Ganges River to observe the aarti prayer ceremony, performed at Dashashwamedh Ghat every day as the sun sets. [B]

Day 5. Varanasi

We start the day with a boat ride on the Ganges. As the sun rises we’ll watch the devotees who come to perform their purification rituals. Later, we'll visit the ancient temple of Bharat Mata Mandir and the historical ruins of Sarnath, a Buddhist pilgrimage site.  [B]

Day 6. Varanasi - Lucknow

Today we travel to Lucknow, the capital city of Uttar Pradesh. 

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Special Experience: Enjoy afternoon tea with a descendant of the Nawab (Royal) family. [B]

Day 7. Lucknow

We'll spend today discovering more of Lucknow. Before lunch we will visit Bada Imambara, Asafi Masjid and Rumi Darwaza, a stunning gate, built by the fourth Nawab of Lucknow. This afternoon, our tour includes La Martiniere College and Dilkusha Palace. [B]

Day 8. Lucknow - Delhi 

Today we fly to Delhi, India's capital. Enjoy a sightseeing tour of Old Delhi this afternoon. The highlights include Red Fort, Jama Masjid, a rickshaw ride through the narrow lanes of Chandni Chowk and a spice tour of Khari Baoli Market. [B]

Day 9. Delhi 

A busy morning touring New Delhi. Highlights here include Qutub Minar and Humayun's Tomb. This afternoon is free for you to enjoy some time at leisure. [B]

Day 10. Delhi - Agra

Today we travel by the Gatimaan Express train to Agra. This afternoon we'll explore Agra Fort, known for its fine Mughal architecture, and then step back in time visiting Baby Taj, otherwise known as the Tomb of Itmad-Ud-Daulah. [B]

Day 11. Agra 

Awaken early this morning and watch as the sun rises over the breathtaking Taj Mahal. We'll return to the hotel for breakfast and some time at leisure before learning more about Agra during an afternoon heritage walk. [B]

A note on Taj Mahal renovations: The iconic Taj Mahal is still undergoing a mud-pack therapy treatment to clean and protect its ivory-white surface. The restoration process is nearing the end, however some restoration on the Dome is still continuing.

Day 12. Agra - Jaipur

Our first stop today is the deserted Mughal city of Fatehpur Sikri, which was built in 1569, but abandoned 15 years later due to a lack of water. Our next stop is the Abhaneri Stepwell, built over a thousand years ago, this is one of India's deepest and largest stepwells. We'll then continue to the 'Pink City', Jaipur.

Special-Experience-Icon-30px

Special Experience: Tonight we’ll learn more about the local culture and interact with a local family during a traditional cooking lesson. We'll then join them for dinner! [B,D]

Day 13. Jaipur

Our day in the Rajasthani capital begins with a jeep tour of the majestic Amber Fort. One of the most exquisite creations in the Amber Fort is the Sheesh Mahal (Palace of Mirrors); its walls are covered with tiny mirrors. This afternoon, we drive through the famous Johari Bazaar on the way to the Hawa Mahal (Palace of Winds). Later we visit the rich and prosperous museums located inside the elegant City Palace Complex and the ancient Jantar Mantar Observatory. [B]

Day 14. Jaipur - Mumbai 

This morning we fly to Mumbai, India’s city that never sleeps. Our afternoon city tour includes the Gateway of India, Marine Drive and Mani Bhavan Gandhi Museum. [B]

Day 15. Mumbai

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Special Experience: Today we will undertake an extraordinary tour of Mumbai, indulging each of the five senses. See the historic colonial precinct of Mumbai. Listen to incredible Bollywood music and learn some of the dance moves. Taste some of the amazing local delicacies. Take in the smells of the many flowers on display in Mumbai’s flower market. Touch peoples lives by volunteering in an activity or two at a local charity. [B,L]

Day 16. Mumbai - Kochi 

This morning is at leisure before an afternoon flight to Kochi, a vibrant city situated on India’s southwest coast. Facing the Arabian Sea, Kochi has one of the finest natural harbours in the world. The older parts of the city are an unlikely blend of medieval Portuguese, Dutch and English country village grafted onto the tropical Malabar Coast. [B]

Day 17. Kochi - Munnar

Our destination today is the stunning town of Munnar, surrounded by rolling hills and tea plantations. Enjoy some time at leisure after our arrival before exploring the beautiful surroundings with our guide. [B,L,D]

Day 18. Munnar

We'll enjoy a morning walk through a tea plantation and learn more about the history of tea making during a visit to the Tea Museum. Later we'll visit Eravikulam National Park, home to a range of flora and fauna (during April - November departures). [B,D]

Day 19. Munnar - Madurai 

This morning we'll drive to Madurai, one of India's oldest cities on the Vaigai River in the south Indian state of Tamil Nadu. This evening we'll enjoy a night ceremony at Madurai's most iconic landmark, the Meenakshi Amman Temple. [B]

Day 20. Madurai 

We'll return to Meenakshi Amman Temple this morning to explore some more before travelling by rickshaw to Thirumalai Nayakar Mahal. Along the way we'll pass traditional bazaars and fruit markets. 

Special-Experience-Icon-30px

Special Experience: This evening we'll taste our way through Madurai, India's culinary capital, on a mouthwatering walking food tour. [B,D]

Day 21. Madurai - Periyar 

After breakfast we travel to Periyar, where we will search for amazing wildlife on a river safari in Periyar National Park. [B,D]

Day 22. Periyar 

This morning we'll learn about a diverse range of spices at a spice garden plantation. [B,D]

Day 23. Periyar - Alleppey 

Today we transfer to Alleppey and board a traditional houseboat to cruise through the peaceful backwaters of Kerala. Sit back and relax as we meander through the maze of canals. [B,L,D]

Day 24.  Alleppey - Kochi

After disembarking, we return to Kochi and spend the afternoon seeing the sights of the city. Highlights include the Jewish Synagogue, Dutch Palace and St Francis Church. Tonight we'll enjoy a farewell dinner. [B,D]

Day 25. Depart Kochi 

Today we begin our journey home. 

Day 26. Arrive Australia 

Inclusions

Travel

  • Return economy-class flights from Australia to India. Taxes included.
  • 4 economy-class flights within India
  • Airport transfers on the first and last day of tour
  • All touring in air-conditioned vehicles. 
  • Train from Delhi to Agra
  • Tipping made easy, $250pp pre-paid

Accommodation & Meals

  • 23 nights in a combination of modern and heritage 4-5 star hotels/resorts
  • 1 night on board a traditional houseboat 
  • Day use of hotel on day of departure
  • 24 breakfasts, 4 lunches and 9 dinners, including group welcome and farewell dinners.

Tour Guides

  • English-speaking locally based guides
  • English-speaking locally based national guide

Porterage

  • Porterage included where available

Sightseeing

Welcome to India and West Bengal's capital city Kolkata 

  • Explore Iconic Kolkata including the Kalighat Kali Temple, Victoria Memorial & The Indian Museum
  • Visit Mother House and learn about Mother Teresa's life, see the room she occupied much of her life and her tomb.
  • Experience the diversity of Kolkata at the Flower Market, drive past Howrah Bridge and stop at Jain Temple, Kumartuli and the Marble Palace
  • Spend time strolling through College street and take a short tram ride.

Experience the culture of Uttar Pradesh, home to some of India's most iconic monuments

  • Take a rickshaw ride and enjoy a sunset boat ride on the Ganges to witness the Aarti Ceremony
  • Enjoy a boat ride on the Ganges to witness the sun rise as well as witnessing people wash in the holy waters and performances for the Sun God.
  • Visit the ancient temple Bharat Mata Mandir
  • Visit the historical ruins of Sarnath, a Buddhist pilgrimate site
  • Travel to the capital city of Uttar Pradesh, Lucknow and enjoy afternoon tea with a descendant of the Nawab family (Royal Family)
  • Take a journey on the Gatimann Express between Delhi and Agra
  • Explore the imposing Agra Fort and Baby Taj.
  • Witness the amazing Taj Mahal at sunrise.
  • Learn about the heritage of Agra on a Heritage walk
  • Visit the deserted Mughal city of Fatehpur Sikri which was built in 1569 but abandoned 15 years later due to lack of water. The sheer size of this city and its well-preserved state will astound you!

Explore India's Capital Territory of India, Delhi

  • Visit old Delhi including Red Fort (Outside Only), Jama Masjid and take a rickshaw ride through Chandni Chowk and tour of Khari Baoli Spice Market.
  • Learn how New Delhi was formed and take a 1/2 Day tour of this part of Delhi's history including Qutab Minar, Humayun's Tomb and Raj Ghat

Travel through the 'Land of the Kings' Rajasthan

  • Visit Abhaneri Stepwell and see their unique method of storing water during the 9th century and beyond.
  • Spend time with a local family as they teach you how to cook their way with delicious Indian spices and wander through a market. Followed by a wonderful dinner.
  • Ride up to the magnificent Amber Fort in Jaipur by jeep, followed by a tour of the many beautiful rooms within the fort including the amazing Hall of Mirrors. Here the light of a single match sets off a dazzling display as it is reflected by thousands of tiny mirrors that line the walls.
  • Enjoy a 1/2 day tour of the pink city of Jaipur including Johari Bazaar, Hawa Mahal (Palace of Winds), City Palace Complex museums and ancient Jantar Mantar Observatory.

Enter the state of Maharashtra, the home of fast-paced capital Mumbai

  • Experience the 5-senses of Mumbai as we experience the best of Mumbai

Relax and explore the southern coastal state of Kerala

  • Spend two nights in the hill station Munnar
  • Walk through a tea Plantation and delve into the history of tea making while visiting the tea museum.
  • Go in search of some amazing wildlife on a river safari in Periyar National Park
  • Learn about the diverse range of spices at a spice Garden Plantation in Periyar
  • Spend a night on a traditional Indian Houseboat while cruising the backwaters.
  • Explore Kochi on an afternoon tour including Jewish Synagogue, Dutch Palace (Mattancherry Palace) and St. Francis Church.

Touch on the Tamil Nadu culture during a 2 night stay in Madurai

  • Enjoy a night ceremony at Meenakshi Amman Temple
  • Explore more in depth the Meenakshi Amman Temple and travel by rickshaw to Thirumalai Nayakar Mahal while travelling through traditional bazaars and fruit markets
  • Taste your way  through Madurai on a food walking tour.

Dates & Prices

Dates & Prices

Starts Ends Save Total Cost* Status Book
13/04/20 08/05/20   $10,795 Available book now
05/10/20 30/10/20   $10,995 Available book now
19/10/20 13/11/20   $10,995 Available book now
09/11/20 04/12/20   $10,995 Available book now
30/11/20 25/12/20   $11,495 Available book now
11/01/21 05/02/21   $11,295 Available book now
25/01/21 19/02/21   $11,295 Available book now
08/02/21 05/03/21   $11,295 Available book now
22/02/21 19/03/21   $11,295 Available book now
08/03/21 02/04/21   $11,295 Available book now
Valid From: Sydney, Melbourne, Adelaide, Brisbane & Perth
Other departure cities: Please contact our office for applicable pricing
Tips: Total cost includes - Tipping Made Easy, $250pp pre-paid
Taxes: Total cost includes - air taxes, $200pp
Single supplement: from $2,595
  • Day/Date Variations: Due to airline flight schedules day of arrival and day of departure may vary depending on your city of departure
  • Taxes & Fuel Costs: Total cost includes air taxes. Taxes and fuel surcharges change regularly so above levies are shown as a guide only
  • T&C: All prices shown are per person based on twin share and include airfares, all taxes and tips (if applicable). Prices and itineraries correct at current time but are subject to change. Please call for more details. View our full terms & conditions here.

Fitness to Travel

Let's Talk Fitness

Levels-of-Fitness-sml

At Bunnik Tours we don’t put specific age limits on our tours, but we also recognise some travellers may find our itineraries challenging.
We have a duty of care to all tour participants and the tour guides, so we do impose a firm policy on the level of fitness required by all our clients to attempt to ensure your safety and the safety of other travellers on our tours.
At Bunnik Tours our goal is for all our travellers to enjoy their tour, not struggle through it! Which is why we want to work with you to ensure you are on the best possible trip for your fitness level. We do reserve the right to refuse bookings if we feel that the requirements of the tour are too demanding.
Bunnik Tours are for independently minded travellers with good levels of mobility.
Our tours include:
1. Generous amounts of free time
2. Lots of walking
3. Local and authentic experiences including various modes of transport and accommodation
In some regions travellers can also expect:
1. Long days of travelling, at times on dirt and gravel roads in Africa
2. Extended periods at high altitude (3,000-4,000 metres) in Ecuador, Peru, Bolivia and Ethiopia
3. Extended periods of walking/hiking through humid forest areas in Rwanda
4. Limited medical facilities in remote areas
Bunnik Tours travellers are required to at least:
1. Be able to walk 2-3 hours on uneven surfaces without the use of any walking aid, on any given day
2. Walk up multiple flights of stairs and short, steep hills
3. Stand for 20 minutes without needing to sit down, often in hot/humid climates
4. Carry their own luggage
5. Get on and off various modes of transport without assistance, including small boats

Accommodation

Accommodation

Accommodation listed is subject to change and should be used as a guide only. Every effort is made to avoid changes, however should it be necessary then accommodation of a similar standard will be confirmed.

Peerless Inn, Kolkata

Centrally located in Kolkata, Peerless Inn provides a 24-hour restaurant and free wi-fi. The rooms are air-conditioned and equipped with a TV, minibar and tea/coffee facilities. 

Facilities: free wifi; restaurant; safe deposit box; air-conditioning; fitness centre; spa 

Radisson Hotel, Varanasi

Located in the heart of the city’s historic district, the Radisson is just a 10 minute walk from JVH Mall, Monkey Temple and Tulsi Manas Temple. Along with spacious guestrooms, the hotel’s amenities include an on-site spa, restaurants, outdoor swimming pool and fitness centre.

Facilities: air-conditioning; free wifi; fridge/minibar; safe deposit box; outdoor swimming pool; tea & coffee making facilities

Golden Tulip, Lucknow

The Golden Tulip Lucknow hotel is the city's first contemporary business hotel, which provides a very pleasant environment in which guests can relax and enjoy their stay. Golden Tulip provides spacious and modern rooms with en suite bathrooms as well as 2 dining options and a fitness centre. 

Facilities: free wifi; safe deposit box; air-conditioning; fitness centre; restaurant/bar; swimming pool 

Maidens Hotel, Delhi

Maidens Hotel is one of Delhi’s oldest hotels. Built in the early 1900s, it has retained its colonial charm and architecture. Set amidst eight acres of lush gardens and shady trees, it escapes the noise of the main city, but remains within easy access to some of the most magnificent Mughal monuments as well as the famous shopping centre, Chandni Chowk with its quaint bazaars and meandering lanes. Its spacious guestrooms with high ceilings are all unique.

Facilities: air-conditioning; free wifi; fridge/minibar; safe deposit box; outdoor swimming pool; tea & coffee making facilities

Hotel Crystal Sarovar, Agra

With a convenient and strategic location in Agra's tourist hub, the 5-star Hotel Crystal Sarovar offers everything you could need in a hotel. From the opulent, intricately designed interiors and state of the art restaurant, to the magnificent view of the iconic Taj Mahal, the Hotel Crystal Sarovar is truly unique.

Facilities: air-conditioning; wifi; safe deposit box; swimming pool; tea & coffee making facilities

Shahpura House, Jaipur

Shahpura House is located a short stroll from pleasant Bani Park and a short drive from the walls of the 'pink city', Jaipur. The guestrooms are reminiscent of the ones that were used by the royalties of the Shahpura family - spacious with elegant colonial furniture, all modern amenities, each having their own individual character.

Facilities: air-conditioning; free wifi; fridge/minibar; safe deposit box; outdoor swimming pool; tea & coffee making facilities

Fariyas Hotel, Mumbai

Located just off the Colaba Causeway, Fariyas Hotel is right in the heart of the city, yet far from the bustling crowds. The business districts of Nariman Point, Ballard Estate and The World Trade Centre are just 10 minutes away. lts scenic location offers a breathtaking view of the harbour. It's also just 2 minutes away from the Gateway of India and other historical sites. Features include elegant guest rooms with breathtaking sea views, restaurants, bar, health club and spa and an outdoor swimming pool.

Facilities: air-conditioning; free wifi; fridge/minibar; safe deposit box; outdoor swimming pool; tea & coffee making facilities

Courtyard by Marriott, Kochi Airport

Situated within a convenient 5-minute drive from Kochi International Airport, Courtyard by Marriott is a modern premier 5-star hotel that features 2 dining options, an outdoor swimming pool and a fitness centre.

Facilities: free wifi; safe deposit box; swimming pool; air-conditioning; fitness centre 

Fragrant Nature, Munnar

Fragrant Nature creates a premium and authentic hill hotel experience. Enjoy majestic views of the mountains while enjoying the hotel's facilities including a restaurant, gym and amphitheater. 

Facilities: free wifi; safe deposit box; restaurant; gym; garden

GRT Regency Hotel, Madurai

The GRT Regency has a welcoming and friendly atmosphere. Aahaaram restaurant provides a delectable array of multi-cuisine dishes and their well-stocked bar ‘Madhuram’ is there for you to enjoy. Take a dip in the swimming pool and unwind with a treatment or two at the Ayurvedic Health Centre. The Meenakshi Temple is also just a short ride away.

Facilities: air-conditioning; free wifi; fridge/minibar; safe deposit box; outdoor swimming pool; tea & coffee making facilities

Cardamom County, Periyar

Set in the heart of the Cardamom Hills of Kerala, Cardamom County is a popular resort located 3kms from Periyar in Village Kumily. The hotel offers all modern luxuries of a resort blended with the subtle fragrance of cinnamon and cloves. The property features a swimming pool, health club, buffet restaurant and souvenir shop.

Facilities: free wifi (public areas); fridge/minibar; safe deposit box; outdoor swimming pool; tea & coffee making facilities

Houseboat, Alleppey

Sit back and enjoy a relaxing journey as we cruise through the peaceful backwaters of Kerala. On board this luxury houseboat, see green palms and vegetation, active aquatic life and local villages engaged in everyday errands. 

Facilities: air-conditioning; fully furnished bedrooms; sundecks; kitchen 

Trident Hotel, Kochi

The Trident Kochi is located on Willingdon Island and is within easy distance of famed sites such as the Jewish Synagogue, Chinese fishing nets, Mattancherry Palace and St Francis Church. Blending classic charm with modern interiors, Trident Kochi is set amidst a picturesque central courtyard and landscaped gardens. Rooms are well appointed and the hotel offers great dining opportunities at either of its restaurants.

Facilities: air-conditioning; free wifi; fridge/minibar; safe deposit box; outdoor swimming pool

Weather

Weather

Kolkata

Summer: June to August

Autumn: September to November

Winter: December to February

Spring: March to May

Kolkata

J

F

M

A

M

J

J

A

S

O

N

D

Ave Max C

26

29

34

36

36

34

32

32

32

32

29

26

Ave Min C

14

17

21

25

26

27

26

26

26

24

19

14

Rainy Days

1

2

2

4

8

15

21

21

18

9

2

1

Mumbai

Dry Season: November to May

Wet Season: June to September

Mumbai

J

F

M

A

M

J

J

A

S

O

N

D

Ave Max C

28

28

30

32

33

32

29

29

29

32

32

31

Ave Min C

19

19

22

24

27

26

25

24

24

24

23

21

Rainy Days

0

0

0

0

1

14

21

19

13

3

1

0

Kochi

Dry Season: January to March

Monsoon Season: May to October

Kochi

J

F

M

A

M

J

J

A

S

O

N

D

Ave Max C

30

31

31

31

31

28

28

28

28

29

30

30

Ave Min C

23

25

26

26

26

25

24

24

25

25

25

23

Rainy Days

3

2

4

9

16

25

28

24

20

17

8

7

Currency

Currency

Indian Rupee

The official currency of India is the Indian Rupee (INR; ₹).

  • 1 Rupee = 100 Paisa
  • Notes are in denominations of ₹5, 10, 20, 50, 100, 500 and 2,000 rupees
  • Coins are in denominations of ₹1, 2, 5 & 10 rupee and 50 paise 
  • Coins up to 50 paise are called 'small coins' and coins of Rupee one and above are called 'Rupee Coins'

Visa Information

Visa Requirements

Passport-AU2

Please note, Australian passport holders need to obtain a visa for this tour. Please check with your travel agent for further details.

  • Australian passport holders
  • Non-Australian passport holders
    • Please check with your travel agent on visa requirements.

The following government websites are also a handy source of general information.

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Special experiences!

  • Take a rickshaw down to the holy Ganges River to observe the aarti prayer ceremony, performed at Dashashwamedh Ghat every day as the sun sets.
  • Enjoy afternoon tea with a descendant of the Nawab (Royal) family. 
  • Learn more about the local culture and interact with a local family during a traditional cooking lesson. We'll then join them for dinner!
  • Undertake an extraordinary tour of Mumbai, indulging each of the five senses. See the historic colonial precinct of Mumbai. Listen to incredible Bollywood music and learn some of the dance moves. Taste some of the amazing local delicacies. Take in the smells of the many flowers on display in Mumbai’s flower market. Touch peoples lives by volunteering in an activity or two at a local charity.
  • Taste your way through Madurai, India's culinary capital, on a mouthwatering walking food tour. 

Trip Info

Group Size

Min: 4 | Max: 20

Transportation

Coach, rickshaw, boat, plane, train, jeep & houseboat

Tips

Total cost includes - Tipping Made Easy, $250pp pre-paid

Tour Highlights

• Discover the highlights of Old and New Delhi • Take a rickshaw down to the holy Ganges River • Enjoy afternoon tea with a descendant of the Nawab (Royal) family • Watch the sun rise over the stunning Taj Mahal • Tour the deserted Mughal city of Fatehpur Sikri • Take a jeep tour of Jaipur’s majestic Amber Fort • Cruise the backwaters of Kerala on a houseboat

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