INDIA

ROAD TRIP INDIA - "NORTH BY NORTHWEST"

Adventure and cultural excursions around the country

Get to visit SEVEN vastly distinctive regions of this exotic and diverse country and experience the perfect road trip of a lifetime!

This Road trip takes you all the way from the foothills of the Himalayas to the sandy beaches of Goa. You'll see the magnificent Taj Mahal, spend a night in a desert in Rajasthan, travel to the home of the Dalai Lama, trek, ride camels, explore palaces, visit world heritage sites, and give back by participating at our project in Goa.

This road trip is guaranteed to give you an amazing and an unforgettable adventure!

SUMMARY OVERVIEW

This is an Eco-tourism travel project that lets you visit 4 distinct states in India in a month. You'll experience everything from its amazing culture to its sublime cuisine by travelling through a cross section of this vast sub-continent.

Price:
£1,795 (approx. US$2,290) for the 4-week Road Trip. Excludes flights. Please see Full Price List in other currencies
Duration:
Four weeks.
Requirements:
Minimum age 18. If you're 16 or 17, you'll need signed parental permission. If you're under 16, you'll need to be accompanied by parent or guardian.

Due to the length and active nature of this programme, a decent level of fitness is required. Participants must have appropriate insurance before joining the programme.

What's included:
Arranging your Programme,
Full pre-departure support and assistance,
Payment Protection insurance,
Accommodation at hotels, home stays, and at our accommodation facility - Shared accommodation.
Food: Authentic Indian meals and European (breakfast, lunch, dinner) for the duration of the entire programme,
Meeting you at the New Delhi Airport,
All road-trip-related Transport to venues,
Entry fees to all trip-related places,
Local in-country team support and backup (Presence of a dedicated programme coordinator throughout your travel, at the projects and facilities, Logistical management support in case of emergencies),
24-hr emergency support,
Certificate of Completion
What's not included: Flights, Travel Insurance, Cost of Visas.

Additional exclusions include:

  • Personal expenses such as table drinks, room service items, laundry, telephone calls, tips, portage at hotels or airport, bottles of water during your road travel etc.
  • Any additional expenses caused by or liability for disturbance in the trip programme due to circumstances, weather conditions, sickness, natural disasters, riots etc.
  • Any camera fee where applicable.
  • Any service not specified above
Who can do this Programme?
SOLO travellers or travelling with friends.
GAP YEAR BREAKS from School or University.
GROWN-UP GAPPERS, career breakers and retired.
ANYONE interested in adventure, travel, cultural immersion
Can be done before or after a Volunteering project or internship.

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DESCRIPTION

This 4-week route takes you from Delhi to Shimla and then we head north towards Dharmshala. We travel down again to Delhi and Agra and move further to the Western India to the state of Rajasthan. Then we head down south to Mumbai and finally into Goa.

This is an Eco-tourism travel project that lets you visit 4 distinct states in India in a month. You'll experience everything from its amazing culture to its sublime cuisine by travelling through a cross section of this vast sub-continent. In keeping with the values of our organisation, this programme is environmentally friendly.

The Road trip takes you all the way from the foothills of the Himalayas to the sandy beaches of Goa. You will see the magnificent Taj Mahal, spend a night in a desert in Rajasthan, travel to the home of the Dalai Lama, trek through forests, ride camels, explore palaces, forts and temples and visit world heritage sites.

The programme also focuses on a variety of projects. You will have the opportunity to work alongside local people at our renovation projects at our community schools and also take part in environmental initiatives.

BRIEF TRAVEL SUMMARY:

During the 28-day trip you'll visit 9 Key Locations (see the Schedule tab for full details

1. Deli (the capital of India)
2. Shimla (Himalayan range)
3. Dharamshala (Tibetan Experience)
4. Amritsar (Golden Temple)
5. Agra (Taj Mahal)
6. Udaipur (the city of lakes)
7. Jaisalmer (Desert experience)
8. Mumbai (the Gateway of India and home of Bollywood)
9. Goa (Spice plantation and beaches)

Accommodation:

Along the route you will have overnight stays in hotels/guest houses, our Volunteer House, buses and trains.

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SCHEDULE

You'll arrive on a Sunday, be welcomed at the airport and taken to the hotel where you'll be introduced to everyone. Your Trip Itinerary begins the next day (Monday).

Week 1:

  • Day 1: Monday
    Travel from New Delhi to Shimla.
    Early morning on Monday, you will travel to Shimla by train, with the “Himalayan Queen”, which is also recognized by UNESCO. Experience this wonderful heritage train as it journeys through the Himalayan landscape with beautiful views of the Himalayan mountains. After reaching Shimla, we check into a guesthouse located with a great view of Shimla.
  • Day 2: Tuesday
    Early breakfast followed by an orientation session which includes briefing on aspects such as culture, safety and health precautionary measures, transportation, money, etc. Then we will visit the famous Hanuman Monkey Temple atop a hill to reach the highest point of Shimla. Spend the afternoon soaking up the views of the beautiful hill town, visit the local market and then we take a bus ride deeper into the misty mountains.
    A local family in the mountains will host you for the night.
  • Day 3: Wednesday
    Today’s hike includes the more challenging element of the trek which culminates at 3100 meters offering a picturesque view of the Himalayan range. You'll rest and have a packed lunch. The trek through the mountain will be approximately 7 hours long. After lunch you will head back down to the village and catch a bus to Shimla, overnight stay is at a guesthouse at Shimla.
    Trek Distance: 7 Km Trek
    Difficulty Level 2 – Uphill and downhill
    Altitude: Approximately 3100 meters
    Terrain: Rocky, gravel, river crossing and winding tracks.
    Duration of Trek: 7 hours.
  • Day 4: Thursday
    You will go on a beautiful heritage walk through the Deodar forest to visit historical monuments and temples. In the afternoon, you’ll take a bus to Dharmshala (approx 9 hours) and the abode of Buddhist Monks. Arrive in Dharmshala around 11pm and check into a hotel for a night’s stay
  • Day 5: Friday
    Dharamshala - Experience Tibetan culture, visit the heritage site Kangra Fort, visit a tea garden, Kangra temple and a traditional Tibetan market. After breakfast, visit McLeod Ganj and walk into the beautiful Buddhist monastery and then take a 20 minute walk to a wonderful waterfall located in the mountains. Your walk through the markets will give you an outlook into traditional Buddhist shops selling various interesting ornaments and Tibetan traditional and cultural clothing. The evening will be spent walking around McLeod Ganj and treat yourself for a traditional Tibetan dinner.
  • Day 6: Saturday
    Today begins with an early breakfast, after which you will travel by bus to Amritsar. After arrival at Amritsar and check into a hotel to refresh. In the evening, visit the charismatic Golden temple of Amritsar to get a splendid view of the temple at sunset.
    Overnight stay at Amritsar.
  • Day 7: Sunday
    Travel to Agra. Today begins with an early start; you’ll take the morning train from Amritsar to Agra. Arrive in the evening at Agra and check into a hotel just next to the Taj Mahal!

Week 2:

  • Day 8: Monday
    The highlight of the India Road Trip is today witnessing one of the Seven Wonders of the World – The Taj Mahal. Visit the Taj Mahal at sunrise and spend the day by the river Yamuna to marvel at its beautiful architecture and its surroundings. Later in the evening, hop into an overnight train to Udaipur “the city of lakes” in Rajasthan.
  • Day 9: Tuesday
    Experience Rajasthan - Udaipur “the city of lakes” and Jaisalmer. While in Udaipur, you will be hosted at our Volunteer House. Fans of The Jungle Book and James Bond films may recognize Udaipur as the birthplace of Bagheera and the location for Octopussy. You will spend the next 2 days visiting the beautifully architectured palace, enjoy a boat ride in the lake Pichola, and watch a traditional Rajasthani dance and music concert. Overnight stay in Udaipur.
  • Day 10: Wednesday
    Your day will begin with a relaxed morning. After breakfast, go out shopping for vegetable and fruits at the market, return with the vegetables and sharpen your Indian cooking skills. After lunch, we visit a model desert village setup called Shilpgram with its traditional Rajasthani art and handicraft shops and music. We then proceed to monsoon palace to catch the sunset. A nice spread of Indian dinner awaits you back at our center. Overnight stay in Udaipur.
  • Day 11: Thursday
    Today we go on a temple tour in the morning. You'll visit 8th and 10th century ancient temples on the outskirts of Udaipur. We return to our center and then in the evening we taken an overnight bus to Jaisalmer, which is approximately 12 hrs away, for the next highlight of our trip – The Desert experience.
  • Day 12: Friday
    “The experience of a lifetime”. Sleeping in the Desert. We'll go sightseeing around Jaisalmer to a 11th century fort and then take a jeep safari and a camel ride into the Thar desert, where you will stay for the night. Tonight, we camp in the desert under the stars. This overnight stay in the desert will be one of your most memorable moments in life!
  • Day 13: Saturday
    We'll return from the desert to the guest house and spend time in the city of Jaisalmer, visiting a beautiful authentic Haveli and a lake which is considered to be the largest in Jaisalmer. Later this evening, we take an overnight bus back to Udaipur.
  • Day 14: Sunday
    Arrive at our Udaipur center and relax. There are no activities scheduled for the morning. You will have the entire morning to yourself and in the evening, watch a Bollywood movie at the center. Overnight stay in Udaipur.

Week 3:

  • Day 15: Monday
    You will spend the entire morning to yourself and go out for shopping into the city of Udaipur. We will then take an evening bus which is an overnight bus to Mumbai.
  • Day 16: Tuesday
    After arriving in Mumbai early in the morning, you will be taken to a guest house to freshen up. Then you’ll go on a Bollywood tour inside the film city to see various stages and artists at their work. In your free time you can explore the sights of Mumbai.
  • Day 17: Wednesday
    After breakfast we’ll visit the Gateway of India and then go on a boat ride into the Arabian Sea to visit the ancient Elephanta caves. A good Indian lunch will be provided at the island. Return to the mainland and spend the remaining part of the day exploring the sights of Mumbai.
    Overnight stay in Mumbai.
  • Day 18: Thursday
    Today you’ll take an early morning superfast train to Goa, arriving at the Volunteer House before noon where you stay for the remaining days of your trip. After a good Goan lunch, you can relax and freshen up and meet other participants at the house. Our project coordinator will brief you on the activities scheduled for your days in Goa. After dinner we take you to the famous beaches of Anjuna, where you can spend your time at the beach. Overnight stay in Goa.
  • Day 19: Friday
    Today we explore the rich history and impressive architecture of Old Goa, for former colonial capital of the state. The convents and churches are stunning, and the area is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
    We’ll then visit a spice plantation where you will be shown the various spices and how they are grown and processed before they reach your plates. After a sumptuous lunch, we spend some time at the plantation and on the way back, visit a beautiful waterfall. After dinner, you are free to go out for the evening on your own. Overnight stay in Goa.
  • Day 20: Saturday
    Today, you’ll learn a few yoga postures and experience an authentic Ayurvedic massage to relax your body. After lunch, spend your time at one of the beautiful beaches of Goa and return to the accommodation in time for dinner. Overnight stay in Goa.
  • Day 21: Sunday
    This is a day off and you are free to spend it on the beach or spend time with other participants. Overnight stay in Goa.

Week 4:

  • Days 22 to 26: Monday to Friday
    This is a very fulfilling and satisfying part of your Trip. You'll participate in our construction and renovation project during the first half of each day. Your assistance is a huge help to the local community.
    During the second half of each day you'll spend educational and quality time with migratory children at our outreach programme. Your assistance is soooo beneficial for the children!
    Overnight stay in Goa.
  • Day 27: Saturday
    On this day you can go out shopping and get ready for your departure. Overnight stay in Goa.
  • Day 28: Sunday
    Departure. And lots of tears!

Please note, elements of the planned itinerary may be subject to change.

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A few things to consider while you are with us;

  • You'll be requested to be back at the centre or guest houses by 22:30 every day
  • Due to the style of driving in India, you won't be allowed to hire any vehicles on your own.
  • Due to the Indian culture, consumption of alcohol are strictly prohibited at all our Centres

START DATES

During 2019: Jan 7th and 21st
Feb 4th and 18th
Mar 4th and 18th
Apr 1st and 15th
May 6th and 20th
Jun 3rd and 17th
Jul 1st and 15th
Aug 5th and 19th
Sep 2nd and 16th
Oct 7th and 21st
Nov 4th and 18th
Dec 2nd and 16th

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Explore, Learn, Taste, Experience and Make a Difference!

This unique, exciting Road Trip also enables you to complete the India Bucket List Challenge:

Trek the misty foothills of the Himalayas
Experience Tibetan culture
View the sunset over the Golden Temple
Walk into the astonishing Taj Mahal at sunrise
Visit the birthplace of Bagheera from The Jungle Book
Visit the backdrop movies like The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel,the James Bond film Octopussy, and Gandhi
Ride the Indian rail system including the famous Himalayan Queen, considered to be one of the best train journeys in the world and recognized by UNESCO
Ride on a camel safari into the Thar desert
Sleep under the stars in the Rajasthan desert
Visit the Gateway of India in Mumbai
Visit Bollywood film city
Go on a boat ride into the Arabian sea
Learn about various Indian spices and visit a plantation
Find inner peace learning yoga and experiencing an authentic ayurvedic massage
Learn authentic Indian culinary and sharpen your cooking skills
Spend time on the beautiful beaches of Goa
Volunteer and help the local community
And much, much more...!

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