Beyond The Taj
- 4* Accommodation on twin sharing basis
- Guided tour of Taj Mahal (Entrances on direct payment)
- 2 hour rickshaw ride in Bharatpur Bird Sanctuary
- Services of English speaking Naturalist at Bharatpur Bird Sanctuary
- Camel cart ride in Gadoli
- Heena at Gadoli
- One Sundowner at Gadoli (Tea/Coffee, Soft Beverages and Vegetarian Snacks)
- One Farm Dinner at Gadoli
- Breakfast at Bharapur and all meals at Gadoli
- Inclusive of all taxes
The history of Bharatpur dates back to 5th century BC, when the Matsya kingdom flourished here. The Matsyas were allies of the Pandavas in the Mahabharata war. Legends say that the origin of the name Bharatpur is traced to Bharat, younger brother of Lord Ram. Laxman, the other brother, was given the most prestigious position as that of the family deity of the ruling family of Bharatpur. His name also appears in the state seals and coat-of-arms.
Set in the heart of India and nestled amidst the Aravalis, Gadoli village is located in the rural countryside of Rajasthan. One can easily move around on camels or by camel carts. Marvel at the beautiful scenery and potentially spot some of the desert wildlife. The vibrant culture and rich heritage of this place draws innumerable tourists from across the globe.Tucked away within a valley inside the Aravali Hills, home to the community of Meena Tribals, the joy and spirit of rustic life is palpable on the lively faces of the village folks.
Delhi - Bharatpur via Agra by road (Approx. 290 kms / 5 hours drive)
Drive from Delhi to Bharatpur, en-route visit Taj Mahal (Closed on Friday). The greatest monument of love and one of the seven wonders of the modern world, Taj Mahal is also a UNESCO world heritage site. It is a white marble mausoleum commissioned by Mughal emperor Shah Jahan in memory of his third wife, Mumtaz Mahal. It is regarded by many as the finest example of Mughal architecture, a style that combines elements from Persian, Ottoman Turkish and Indian architectural styles. The Taj Mahal is widely recognized as "the jewel of Muslim art in India and one of the universally admired masterpieces of the world's heritage”. The architecture alone has inspired a dreamy rapture over the years, but what really makes this marble monument so endearing is its heart-warming tale of love and loss.
After visit, continue your drive to Bharatpur. On arrival, check-in to the hotel.
Bharatpur is located in the Braj region of state Rajasthan. Bharatpur is popularly known as the home of Keoladeo National Park, which habitats over 370 species of animals and birds. It is recognized as one of the most popular birds feeding and breeding grounds.
Lunch and dinner on own.
Overnight at the hotel (No Meals)Accomodation
Bharatpur – Gadoli by road (Approx. 102 kms / 2 hours drive)
After early breakfast, proceed to Bharatpur Bird Sanctuary, known as Keoladeo National Park - A UNESCO World Heritage Center. This is a vast bird sanctuary and former royal game reserve in the north Indian state of Rajasthan. South of the ancient city of Bharatpur, the park’s woods and man-made wetlands protect over 350 species of migratory and resident birds, including herons, cormorants and eagles. Enjoy bird watching and rickshaw rides at the sanctuary.
Later drive to Gadoli.
On arrival, check-in to the Retreat.
Set in the heart of India and nestled at the base of India's oldest range of fold mountains - the Aravali Hills, Dera Village - The Clement Retreat is located in the rural countryside of Rajasthan. The retreat is located near alake, which is dry in the winter months but lush again in the monsoon months of July and August . The green paddy fields surrounding the Retreat, the bonfire place, the well-planned garden and organic farms - all add to make the retreat a perfect oasis of calm, away from the hustle and bustle of cities.
To explore the bounties of the retreat and its surroundings, one can comfortably move around on foot or on camel carts. The local community members of the village have been employed for various tasks at the Retreat including the supplying of camels.
In the afternoon you will experience the very renowned Indian artistry of Henna. Henna art or as you call it in Hindi - 'Mehndi, is a form of body art that originated in ancient India, in which decorative and very intricate designs are created on a person's hands or feet, using a paste created from the powdered dry leaves of the Henna plant. The shrub also goes by the name of Reseda or Mignonette tree and is native to Asia and North Africa. The same is also popularly used as a hair dye.
This evening you will also enjoy the retreat's Farm to Table dining experience. Our chef carefully prepares each farm dinner menu by selecting the very best and fresh ingredients from our Organic Farm.
Lunch & Dinner at the retreat.
Overnight at Dera Village - The Clement Retreat (B,L,D)Accomodation
Wake up to a relaxed morning. You may choose to either relax inside and explore the indoor activities (Playing cricket, Badminton) or take any below optional experiences offered by the retreat on direct payment.
- Organic farming : Duration 3-4 hours (8 am - 12 noon) - There is a popular slogan that swells every Indian's heart with pride - Jai Jawan Jai Kisan, which translates to, "Hail the Soldier, Hail the Farmer". You will get a hands on experience with the field workers and the toiling that goes into keeping this country well-fed. Your hosts will introduce you to the entire farming process, right from crop selection to harvesting the farms, which are spread over 15 Acres around the retreat. And finally no village experience in the summertime, is ever complete without the surprise of a unique and refreshing rural bathing experience! – INR 699 per person (minimum 2 persons).
- A Day in the Village : Duration 4-5 hours - Travel back in time as you explore the village on the Ship of the Desert- the camels. In India, traditional welcomes feel like a long awaited homecoming, yet royally bestowed with respect. Warm yourselves with honest to heart interactions with the people of the land, the villagers. Listen to their stories, learn about their culture and traditions, testing the sands of time over 5000 years. Visit the village school and interact with happy, curious minds. Teach them something new if you'd like or play the games which we left behind. This is all for the child in you to take the call - so bring him or her out! - INR 950 per person (minimum 2 persons)
- Explore by Pedal : Duration 3-4 hours (6 am - 10 am) - Rise with the birds this morning and take to two wheels to observe the pulse of early morning village life. Interact with the locals as they set their day in motion. Explore the Aravali ranges and the pathways hidden in its folds, all on a bicycle. Enjoy a picnic breakfast over one of its hillocks and behold a stunning panoramic view - a vivid polaroid of bygone eras. INR 3099 per person (minimum 2 persons).
- Hiking & Birdwatching : Duration 3 hours (6 am - 9 am) - Trace the pathways of the oldest fold mountain ranges in the world, the Aravalli Hills, by foot. Along the hike, enter the timorous world of vibrant and musical avifauna, that are beloved to these ranges and make for sightings ever so soothing. Enjoy a rewarding spread of picnic style breakfast upon a hillock. INR 399 per person (minimum 2 persons)
After lunch, we set out on a camel cart (The Ship of The Desert) safari through the surrounding villages. Forget cars, jeeps, buses and aeroplanes while you are a guest at the retreat. In this secluded vale, the road less taken, you travel back in time as camel carts take you to sleepy villages, where time seems to stand still. As the ‘ship of the desert’ gently pulls the cart along unpaved, sandy paths, there is a gentle, undulating rhythm in its movement.
Along the fortress of solitude, the Aravalli mountain range on your side, enjoy the sundowner with a packed picnic basket and the fresh breath of mountain breeze for your soul.
Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner at the retreat.
Overnight at Dera Village - The Clement Retreat (B,L,D)Accomodation
- Day 4 Gadoli - Delhi by road (Approx. 264 kms / 5.5 hours drive)