Tailor-Made Holiday

Hilltop Forts and Palaces of Rural Rajasthan

Rural Idylls - Away from the well trodden Golden Triangle

14 days

from £4,295pp (excluding flights)

This 14-day holiday idea is the perfect holiday for a return visitor to Rajasthan. Having previously visited those must-see cities in the Golden Triangle, now take time to explore the unique flavours and customs beyond the Amber Fort and Taj Mahal. This holiday suits anyone with a strong love of nature and a sense of place. Ramble through restored forts and palaces, rubbing shoulders with family descendants of former Maharajas. These rural idylls deliver Rajput hospitality at its best.

  • Stay in charming, unpretentious restored forts, havelis, and palaces dating back over 300 years
  • Walk with the red-turbaned Rabari herdsmen in early morning sunshine who live as their ancestors did for centuries
  • Take a walking tour through the hamlets and farms and meet the and herders and villagers
  • Bring your binoculars and explore on foot, by boat or jeep
  • Spend time in Udaipur - the most romantic city of Rajasthan

Leaving the sprawling cosmopolitan city of Delhi behind, see a different side of this region. Travel to the heart of an untamed wilderness, rocky outcrops and ancient lands of rural Rajasthan. Take a short flight to Jaipur and a road journey across the Daang plateau to Ramathra. 

Ramathra

This green farming belt in the Kalisil River valley where the sunsets are spectacular and at twilight watch the herds returning from the forest. Sit on top of the fort's outer walls, looking out over the farmlands, take a village walk and an evening boat ride. With just six rooms and six tents, peace and quiet are the norm in this tranquil rural setting, as well as a strong sense of history.

Bundi

Bundi, a captivating little town, retaining its medieval character. Arriving here feels a little off the beaten track, but well worth the inclusion on this Rajasthan itinerary. Home to intricate and beautiful stepwells and the most stunning palace, looming over the old town, where the famous Bundi murals can be seen. The town’s Rajput legacy is well preserved in the form of the massive Taragarh Fort.  Few places in Rajasthan retain so much of the magical atmosphere of past centuries.

A charming boutique property built only feet away from the rampart walls of Bundi Garh Palace. The 300 year old haveli is reached on foot through the old alleyways leading up from the streets below. The entrance is unique with a magnificent 40ft stone archway.  With only seven rooms and a rooftop terrace with views over the town, the atmosphere here is intimate and romantic with great attention to detail.

Lakshman Sagar

Lakshman Sagar has redefined heritage hotels in Rajasthan by offering a fabulous and fully rural experience. Spend time in the local villages, chatting with goat herders, take a jeep safari in the wildlife sanctuary or visit Raipur Fort.  The 12 beautiful villas, Shikhar Ghars, are colourful, exotic and vibrant, and come equipped with private rock cut plunge pools. The restaurant is menu-less allowing you to eat what you want having watched the chef prepare your meal.

Jawai

Stay at Jawai Camp, renowned for its remarkable record of leopard sightings. Jawai Leopard Camp offers a chic camping experience in Rajasthan, with a particular focus on leopard safaris. The camp’s tents are spread out in this remote setting ensuring peace and tranquillity. Whilst tracking the elusive Leopard travel in a customised 4 x 4 jeep and meet the charismatic herdsmen of the Rabari community who share this landscape. Back at camp visit the spa tents, enjoy sundowners and private dining.

Udaipur

Once the capital of the principality of Mewar, Udaipur sits beside the calm waters of Lake Pichola with the tree-dusted ridges of the Aravali Hills rising up around the city. Often referred to as the 'Venice of the East', the city is famed for the temples and palaces, which fill its historic centre and add a dash of splendour to its tranquil lakeside.

The most famous of these is the City Palace, which adorns the lake's eastern shore, and the Lake Palace, which appears to float on the lake's surface. The latter of these featured in the 1983 James Bond film, 'Octopussy', as the character's lair. Short and frequent flights between Udaipur and either Mumbai or Delhi allow visitors to connect with their international travel.

Perhaps you still haven’t made it to the Taj Mahal? This itinerary allows flexibility - add a visit to Agra, it really is worth the detour. 

Do you yearn to spot a tiger in the wild?  Don’t put it off any longer.  Experience the wild side of Rajasthan, and visit the tiger reserve at Ranthambore National Park.

For a more detailed itinerary with great ideas on what to do and where to stay, please get in touch with our experts.

Price Excluding Flights £Flight cost from 
£ 4295 -

Itinerary at a glance

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Day 1

Fly London to Delhi overnight


VIP Meet and Greet upon arrival
Our representatives will be there to meet you as you disembark the plane and will accompany you to the immigration desk and meet you again at the baggage carousel.

Delhi may be one of the world's largest metropolises, but architectural wonders - new and old - fill the city, hidden beneath Delhi's urban sprawl. Mughal treasures, including the Red Fort and Jama Masjid, are complemented by more recent additions to Delhi's architectural heritage, such as the stunning Lotus and Akshardham Temples. Meanwhile, contemporary Delhi thrives in Connaught Place, which - with its colonially-designed buildings, - is the most westernised part of the centre. Globalisation is in evidence, with brand names splashed across every storefront.


You will be staying at Claridges, Bed & Breakfast

Day 2

Half a Day Exploring New Delhi
Today discover Sir Edwin Lutyen's beautiful garden city of New Delhi. Now packed with political buildings, the city was designed by British architects during the early 20th century. Visit the Raj Path, India Gate, Rastrapathi Bhawan and other landmarks.

Afterwards, head south to the Lal Kot, the ancient Tomara capital of the region. Explore some of the city's earliest monuments, including the medieval sites of Qutb Minar, Quwwat-ul-Islam and Alai Darwa.

Constructed in the 12th century, Qutb Minar is an impressive brick-built tower of victory that celebrates Islam's march eastwards. One of Delhi's foremost sites, it is the tallest minar in India.

Finish at Humayun's Tomb, one of Delhi's Mughal wonders and the architectural inspiration for the construction of the Taj Mahal. A stunning mix of red stonework and while tiled domes, the emphasis on symmetry makes it particularly spectacular.

Please ensure you carry your passport with you today in case it is required to enter any monuments or buildings.


You will be staying at Claridges, Bed & Breakfast

Day 3

Fly Delhi to Jaipur

Drive from Jaipur to Ramathra (Road Journey)


There will be opportunities to stop enroute for refreshment breaks


You will be staying at Ramathra Fort, Bed & Breakfast

Day 4

Morning Bird Watch and Boating
Take a row-boat trip on Lake Kalisil. It's great for birdwatchers (keep your eyes peeled for kingfishers) and the sunset views are wonderful. Bring a camera; the hotel provides life jackets, a bird book and binoculars.

Alternatively, stay on shore to bird-watch with a naturalist: grey partridges, night jars, hawks, doves, peacocks, orioles, curlew, pelicans, kingfishers and cranes. There's a ticklist of species in your room.


A walking tour of Ramathra Village
A complete walking tour of the Ramathra village, a small hamlet of farmers and herders, takes about three hours. Learn all about farming from tending to crops to herding for animals. See the local religious life when you visit the Ganesh temple and Shiva temple. The local people may want to interact with you and perhaps strike up a conversation. There is no busy and crowded market here, making the place quaint and charming. Visit friendly families at home and in the fields (don't feel shy - this is a highlight for many visitors). You can also volunteer to listen to children read at the local school.


You will be staying at Ramathra Fort, Bed & Breakfast

Day 5

Drive from Ramathra to Bundi (Road Journey)


Bundi, a captivating little town that retains its medieval character . To arrive here feels a little off the beaten track, but well worth the inclusion on any Rajasthan itinerary. Home to intricate and beautiful stepwells and quite the most stunning palace, looming over the old town, where the famous Bundi murals can be seen.The town’s Rajput legacy is well preserved in the form of the massive Taragarh Fort. Few places in Rajasthan retain so much of the magical atmosphere of centuries past.


You will be staying at Bundi Vilas, Bed & Breakfast

Day 6

Full Day of Sightseeing
Spend time exploring the relaxed Rajasthani city of Bundi with your private guide. Highlights include the mural-decorated Bundi Palace and the beautiful Rani Jiki Barol Stepwell, the most impressive of the city's 32 stepwells. Afterwards, have time to wander through the town's narrow lanes, where photo opportunities abound.


You will be staying at Bundi Vilas, Bed & Breakfast

Day 7

Drive from Bundi to Pali (Road Journey)


You will be staying at Lakshman Sagar, Full board

Day 8

Lakshman Sagar- Village Sunrise Breakfast
Go on a sunrise walk through henna fields, then enjoy a hearty Rajasthani 'field breakfast' at a local farmer’s hut. You can help churn the butter and watch bread being made over an earthen oven as you drink hot masala chai


Afternoon at leisure to enjoy this unique retreat


You will be staying at Lakshman Sagar, Full board

Day 9

Drive from Pali to Jawai (Road Journey)


The ancient hills of Jawai in Western Rajasthan is a remarkable place and home to big cats. Through this country wander semi-nomadic herders of the Rabari tribe following ancient routes that take them south into Gujarat and east into Madhya Pradesh. And in the hills live dozens of leopards, predators who by day watch the humans go about their business, and by night come down to hunt.


4 x 4 Jeep Safari
Customised 4x4 jeeps, with a driver-tracker and naturalist on board will ensure you see every corner of Jawai in search of leopards. Morning and afternoon safaris included.


You will be staying at Sujan Jawai Leopard Camp, Full board

Day 10

Walking with the Rabari herdsman
The countryside is made for walking . Take up the unique opportunity to walk with a Rabari herdsman for a mile in their footsteps.


Night Safari
In the evening the excitement builds after a few cocktails (not too many!) as the jeeps get ready for an evening of leopard tracking.


You will be staying at Sujan Jawai Leopard Camp, Full board

Day 11

Drive from Jawai to Udaipur (Road Journey)


Once capital of the principality of Mewar, Udaipur sits beside the calm waters of Lake Pichola with the tree-dusted ridges of the Aravali Hills rising up around the city. Often referred to as the 'Venice of the East', the city is famed for the temples and palaces that fill its historic centre and add a dash of splendour to its tranquil lakeside.

The most famous of these are the City Palace, which adorns the lake's eastern shore, and the Lake Palace, which appears to float mesmerically upon the lake's surface. The latter of these featured in the 1983 James Bond film, 'Octopussy', as the eponymous character's lair.


Day Visit to Ranakpur Temples
Ranakpur is a relatively small village located in western India, but it is home to a stunning Jain temple. The temple is supported by 1,444 intricately detailed marble pillars and can be easily recognized by its distinctive domes and cupolas from its façade. The building has been renovated and is considered one of the greatest wonders in all of India.


The evening at leisure


You will be staying at Raas Devi Garh, Bed & Breakfast

Day 12

Helicopter Scenic flight
Take to the skies to appreciate the lakes around Udaipur. Travelling high above the city by helicopter take a 15 minute sightseeing flight at sunset.


Half Day City Tour
A fusion of Rajasthani and Moghul architectural styles, the flamboyant city palace is situated on the east bank of Lake Pichola. The palace walls stretch over a mile and within the palace are a maze of inner courtyards, apartments and decorated halls covered with frescoes, mosaics and ornamental doors and painted windows.

Sahelion Ki Bari means the Garden of Maids of Honour and was originally constructed in the early 18th century by Maharana Sangra Singh, using the waters of the Fatheh Sagar to feed the pools. This major garden has played host to many royal parties over the centuries and remains a favourite spot.

Jagdish Mandir was built by Maharana Jagat Singh in 1651 and is the largest and most splendid temple in Udaipur. The central temple is heavily ornamented with excellent carvings.


You will be staying at Raas Devi Garh, Bed & Breakfast

Day 13

Raas Devigarh - Village Walks
Take a guided walk to Delwara, the local village to visit the 12th century Jain temple and see traditional village life. A trek through the Aravalli hills can be arranged if you are prepared to rise early with the sun.


Sunset Boat Trip
This evening take a sunset boat ride to Jagmandir Palace past the city's ghats. These riverside landings are where locals congregate to chat, wash clothes or relax.

Fly Udaipur to Delhi


Use of wash and change room for your comfort this afternoon


You will be staying at Holiday Inn Express - Airside, Room only

Day 14

Fly Delhi to London

Accommodation

Below you can see some of the wonderful places we recommend you stay on your journey.

Lakshman Sagar

Lakshman Sagar

Sat beneath the shadow of Fatehgarh Fort, this property was built in the 19th century as a hunting lodge for noble families....

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Ramathra Fort

Ramathra Fort

Ramathra Fort has been in the Pal family since 1645, with the current owner Thakur Brijendra Raj Pal converting the wonderful building into a charming boutique hotel in 2007....

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RAAS Devigarh

RAAS Devigarh

This is no ordinary palace hotel....

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Sujan Jawai Leopard Camp

Sujan Jawai Leopard Camp

Nearly equidistance between Jodphur and Udaipur you will find Jawai, in the remote lands of the Aravalli Hills....

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For a more detailed itinerary with great ideas on what to do and where to stay, please get in touch with our experts.

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"It was extremely helpful to work in conjunction with Joe and his much more up to date knowledge of India and arrive at an itinerary which we were happy with. We enjoyed the whole trip and probably what made it special for us was the fact that all the arrangements worked so well and we really didn’t have to worry about anything at all. Even when we decided to make a small change it was dealt with efficiently and promptly. We can't think of anything that would have made our trip more enjoyable."

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"We asked for a rather particular kind of Indian holiday. You delivered it in full. Highlights? Honestly, each day was a highlight in itself. "

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For a more detailed itinerary with great ideas on what to do and where to stay, please get in touch with our experts.

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