A Journey to India on the footsteps of Buddha - 15 Nights / 16 Days

Delhi – Bodhgaya – Nalanda – Rajgir - Bodhgaya - Varanasi - Kushinagar – Lumbini – Sravasti – Lucknow – Delhi – Agra – Fatehpur Sikri – Jaipur – Delhi

Discover the major Buddhist Pilgrimage places in India & Nepal like Bodhgaya (enlightenment), Sarnath (first-sermon), Kushinagar (Mahaparinirvana) and Lumbini in Nepal (birth). Along with these Buddhist places, will also get a chance to explore some historic sites and the most exciting Taj Mahal.

Day 01. Arrival Delhi

Transfer to hotel for check-in & overnight.

Day 02. Delhi – Gaya - By Flight AI-433, 13:40 / 15:15 hours

After breakfast, transfer toDelhi airport to board flight for Gaya. Upon arrival in Gaya, transfer to hotel for check-in. Evening attend a lecture on Buddha’s life & teaching by a local Buddhist Monk and Scholar. Dinner & Overnight stay at hotel.

Day 03. Bodhgaya

After breakfast, tour begins with the briefing about Bodhgaya. Start the sightseeing with visit to Mahabodhi Temple. The temple is an immense attraction to the Buddhists and stands near the Maha Bodhi tree under which Gautama attained enlightenment. It is a must visit not only due to its importance but also for the architecture and the art objects. 

Mahabodhi Temple

Mahabodhi Tree- The tree is considered holy since Lord Buddha attained enlightenment under it. It is probably the fifth succession of the original tree. Lunch, Dinner &Overnight stay at hotel.

Bodhi Tree

Day 04. Bodhgaya (Same day excursion to Nalanda & Rajgir-Approx. 100 Kms / 2 Hours drive each way)

Breakfast at hotel. Morning: Excursion to . Nalanda – a great centre of Buddhist learning and one of the most famed university citadels of ancient time. UNESCO has declared the ruins of Nalanda Mahavihara – a World Heritage site. With the inclusion of Nalanda, this would be thesecond UNESCO Heritage Site after Mahabodhi temple in Bodhgaya. Rajgir-Buddha visited this city multiple times and delivered a famous sermon on the Gridhakuta (Vultures Peak). Visit the top of the hill and you will discover a stupa built by the Japanese government, while on top of another hill you will find a cave where the first Buddhist council was held. Lunch at hotel in Rajgir. Evening: Return to Bodhgaya. Dinner&Overnight stay at hotel.

Nalanda

Day 05. Bodhgaya – Varanasi (By flight AI-433, 15:50/16:25 Hours)

After breakfast, again get a chance to explore Mahabodhi Temple. Lunch at hotel. Afternoon:Transfer to Gaya airport to board flight for Varanasi. Upon arrival at Varanasi airport, transfer to hotel for check-in. Dinner & Overnight stay at hotel.

Varanasi Ghat

Day 06. Varanasi

Early morning enjoy boat ride on the river Ganges to see the rituals performed at the Ghat along the Ganges. Watching people taking bath, performing rituals, worshiping to the Sun is always a unique experience. Later return to hotel for breakfast. Morning: Enjoy sightseeing tour of the city including the Bharat Mata Temple with a big relief Map of India in Marble, Kashivishwanath Temple and Banaras Hindu University which is an art Gallery (Closed on Saturday, Sunday and Public Holidays).
Lunch at hotel. Afternoon: Excursion to Sarnath, located 10-km from Varanasi where Buddha preached his first sermon more than 2500 years ago. The site is marked by the massive Dhamek stupa erected byThe Emperor Ashoka who spread the Buddha's message of love and compassion throughout his vast empire. Nearby is an Archeological Museum where rare collection of manuscripts and other items related with Lord Buddha can be seen.(Sarnath Museum remains closed on every Friday.) Evening attend a lecture by a local Buddhist Monk and Scholar. After sightseeing, return to hotel for dinner & overnight.

Sarnath Stupa

Day 07. Varanasi – Kushinagar (Approx. 250 Kms / 07 Hrs drive)

After an early breakfast, drive to Kushinagarwhere Buddha had his last breath. Lunch enroute. Upon arrival, transfer to hotel for check-in. Afternoon: Visit Kushinagar – one of the principle centers of Buddhist Pilgrimage and a place where Lord Buddha passed away (attend Mahaparinirvana). Here are several peaceful, modern temples where you can stay, chat with monks or simply contemplate your place in the world. The Monuments of Kushinagar are situated in three districts comprising the main site of Mahaparinirvana temple, the Rambhar Stupa where Lord Buddha was cremated and surroundings Monasteries.Dinner & Overnight stay at hotel.

Mahaparinirvana

Day 08. Kushinagar – Lumbini (Approx. 200 Kms / 6 Hrs drive)

Breakfast at hotel.

Morning: Drive to Lumbini (Nepal) where Lord Buddha was born. Lumbini is the Mecca of every Buddhist, being one of the four holy places of Buddhism. Upon arrival transfer to hotel for check-in.
Lunch at hotel.

Afternoon: Visit Maya Devi temple, the Stupas and the Pillars - a series of columns erected with edicts by the Mauryan King Ashoka. A visit to Lumbini is not only for spiritual enlightenment but also for solace and satisfaction that one gets in such a calm and peaceful place.

Dinner & Overnight stay at hotel.

Maya Devi Temple

Day 9. Lumbini - Sravasti (Approx. 225 Kms/ 7 Hours drive)

After breakfast, drive to Sravasti enroute visiting Kapilavastu. Upon arrival, transfer to hotel for check in.

Lunch at hotel.

Afternoon:Visit to Sravasti also known as Sahet-Mahet - capital of the ancient kingdom of Kosala, an active centre for Buddhism. The Major attraction of Sravasti is Jetavana which is said to once host Lord Buddha and his pilgrims, where one of his followers, a rich merchant, covered the whole ground of the park (Vana) with gold coins. Lord Buddha used these coins to build a Vihara here. There are some sculptures built by The Ashoka which are none the less attractive than other monuments built by him.Dinner & Overnight stay at hotel.

Day 10. Sravasti – Lucknow (Approx. 175 Kms / 4 Hrs drive)
Lucknow – Delhi By Flight 9W-2638, 18:50/20:05 Hours

After breakfast, drive to Lucknow. Upon arrival transfer to hotel for Lunch.

Later transfer to Lucknow airport to board flight for Delhi.

Upon arrival at Delhi airport, transfer to hotel for check in.

Dinner at local restaurant or hotel.

Overnight stay at hotel.

Day 11. Delhi – Agra (Approx. 205 Kms / 4 Hours drive)

Breakfast at hotel.

Morning: Drive to Agra. Upon arrival transfer to hotel for check-in.

Lunch at hotel.

Afternoon: Visit to the most famous and attractive world Heritage sites – Agra Fort & Taj Mahal.

Agra Fort – Agra Fort is the former imperial residence of the Mughal Dynasty located in Agra. It was built by four generations of Mughal, on the banks of the River Yamuna.

Taj Mahal - An immense mausoleum of white marble, built in Agra between 1631 and 1648 by order of the Mughal emperor Shah Jahan in memory of his favourite wife Mumtaz. The Taj Mahal is the jewel of Muslim art in India and one of the universally admired masterpieces of the world's heritage. (Taj Mahal remains closed on every Friday.)

Dinner & Overnight stay at hotel.

Taj Mahal

Day 12. Agra – Fatehpur Sikri – Jaipur (Approx. 252 Kms / 06 Hrs drive)

Breakfast at hotel.

Morning: Leave Agra for Jaipur by drive enroute visiting Fatehpur Sikri.

Fatehpur Sikri is one of the finest examples of Mughal architectural. It was built between 1569 and 1585 and was intended to be the joint capital with Agra, but was soon deserted because the water system could not support any residents. Fatehpur Sikri is the best example of the culmination of Hindu and Muslim architecture.

Lunch enroute and continue drive to Jaipur. Upon arrival, transfertoHotel for check-in.

Dinner at hotel or(Optional: Enjoy a special Theme Dinner).

Overnight stay at hotel.

Fatehpur Sikri

Day 13 . Jaipur

Breakfast at hotel.

Morning: Excursion to Amber Fort built in the 16th century by Raja Mansingh in red sandstone and white marble. The palace complex has some very interesting apartments. Jai Mandir, Sheesh Mahal, Sukh Niwas, Ganesh Pol and Temple of Kali are some of the prominent areas of interest. Elephants are provided to ascend the fort to visit the complex. (Between 0730 am – 1130 am, subject to availability).

Lunch at hotel.

Afternoon: Proceed to visit Maharaja’s City Palace-the home of the erstwhile royal family and visit the Observatory. Drive past Hawa Mahal or the Palace of winds built in 1799 by Maharaja Sawai Pratap Singh & also drive past the old part of Jaipur. 

Dinner: Evening enjoy an Interactive cooking lesson with dinner hosted by a local family.

Overnight stay at hotel.

Amber Fort

Day 14 . Jaipur– Delhi (Approx. 260 Kms / 6 Hrs drive)

Breakfast at hotel.

Morning: Drive to Delhi. Upon arrival, direct transfer to local restaurant.

Lunch at local restaurant.

After Lunch, transfer to hotel for check-in and relax.

Evening:Enjoy live entertainment show in Bollywood style at Kingdom of Dreams with dinner at its Culture Gully.

Overnight stay at Hotel.

Day 15 . Delhi

After breakfast, proceed to enjoyfull day sightseeing in Old and New Delhi.

In Old Delhi, proceed to visit the Red Fort named for its red-sandstone walls and designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site (Red Fort remains closed on every Monday). This fort complex was constructed by the Mughal Emperor Shah Jahan as to be his residence. In front of the Red Fort, there isthe imperial avenue known as Chandni Chowk. Enjoy Rickshaw ride in Chandni Chowk and pass through alleyways, it seems getting narrower and we end up at the Jama Masjid which is the largest Muslim mosque in India.

Lunch at Local Restaurant.

Afternoon toNew Delhi. Continue visit to Qutab Minar and India Gate, a 42 meters archway built for memorial of Indian soldiers killed during the First World War. Watch the famous War Memorial Arch and see the contrast between old and New Delhi.
Carry on our tour, drive past Rashtrapati Bhawan. It was initially constructed as the Imperial residence of the Viceroy in the early 20th century and nowadays, it becomes the current residence of the President of India. Also drive past to Parliament House and Government secretariat buildings.

Dinner at local restaurant.

Overnight stay at hotel.

Red Fort

Day 16 . Delhi departure

After breakfast, transfer to the International Airport to connect flight for onward destination.

 

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