Taj, Tigers, Leopards, Lions of India - The World"s Greatest Land of Big Cats

  • Duration
    16 Days
  • Region
  • Category
  • Best Time
    • October - May


Taj, Tigers, Leopards, Lions of India - The World"s Greatest Land of Big Cats View the rich birdlife of India at the Keoladeo Bird Sanctuary at Bharatpur. Meet the Royal Bengal Tigers at Ranthambore National Park and the Spotted Leopards at Jawai, with these Big Cats roaming the semi-arid desert lands of Rajasthan. Combining this with a visit to the ancient capital of India - Delhi, the Wonder of the World - The Taj Mahal, The great Palaces and Citadels of Jaipur and Jodhpur. Proceed to Gujarat - "Land of the Lions" and visit the Sasan Gir National Park to see the tawny Asiatic Lions. End the tour through the City That Never Sleeps - Mumbai!

In all the jungles witness the cacophony on wings as India is also the land of 1,272 species of birds, a number that makes India have 60% of the bird life of Africa with just 10% of the land mass being close to cold countries north of the Himalayas.

Destinations Covered

Detailed Itinerary

  1. Day 1 Arrive Delhi


    After clearing immigration and customs, our representative will meet you at the receiving area and escort you to your hotel. Thereafter, arrive at the hotel and check-in.

    Delhi is a dynamic city where the past coexists with the present. While historic evidence shows that the area around Delhi was first occupied around 2,500 years ago, Hindu mythology predates that by another 500 years. The British captured the city in 1803 and when they decided to make it the capital of India in 1911, they commissioned Sir Edwin Lutyens to draw up the plans. The result is slightly surprising with spacious tree-lined avenues punctuated with architecture which is among the most striking in the world.

    Overnight at the Hotel (No Meals)

  2. Day 2 Delhi


    After breakfast, experience the combined charm of Old and New Delhi.

    On the tour of “Old Delhi,” you will head out to explore this exotic locale with its narrow dirt roads, myriads of people, and inexpensive and colorful bazaars that keep alive the traditional workmanship for which Delhi has always been famous. Drive past the Red Fort, and visit the Jama Masjid, one of the largest Muslim mosques in India.

    A bicycle rickshaw will take you into the heart of Chandni Chowk (the silver square - so named because of the silver merchants).

    Drive past India Gate, a 42-meter archway built-in memory of Indian soldiers killed during the First World War, and Rashtrapati Bhawan, built in the early 20th century as the Imperial residence of the Viceroy. Today, it is the official residence of the President of India.

    From here, visit the capital's most striking monument; the 70-meter high Qutab Minar.

    Post-visit of the monument return back to the hotel and relax, rest of the day will be at leisure.

    Overnight at the Hotel (B)

  3. Day 3 Delhi – Agra – Bharatpur (Keoladeo National Park) (Approx. 175 miles / 280 Kms / 5 Hours’ drive)


    After breakfast, check out from the hotel and drive to Bharatpur with en-route visiting Agra.

    Two great Mughal rulers, Akbar and Shah Jahan changed the small village of Agra and developed it into the second capital of the Mughal Empire. Today, the city has many contrasting facets, from old sandstone buildings, and white marble, to modern glass constructions, from narrow streets to wide Allen, and still the ubiquitous charm of the Mogul dynasties.

    We visit the Taj Mahal, the magnificent tomb of white marble built by Emperor Shah Jahan in memory of his beloved wife Mumtaz, who had implored her husband to build a monument symbolizing their undying love for each other. Some 20,000 laborers and artisans from around the world spent 22 years constructing what became Mumtaz’s mausoleum, which was begun in 1632. Along with its exquisite symmetry, the Taj features striking examples of pietra dura, a decorative art in which craftsmen embed precisely cut semi-precious stones in marble to form dazzling patterns. (Taj Mahal is closed on Friday).

    Two kilometers west of the Taj Mahal, the Agra Fort is a lasting reminder of the glorious past. This well-preserved fortress was built by Akbar and developed by future generations. It is an imposing structure, almost 3 km long, and has mosques, reception halls, and palaces in its walls.

    Thereafter, continue the drive to Bharatpur (Keoladeo National Park).

    Bharatpur is located in the Braj region of the state of 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.

    Arrive and check in to the hotel.

    Overnight at the Hotel (B)

  4. Day 4 Bharatpur (Keoladeo National Park)


    After breakfast, enjoy Bird Watching, and rickshaw rides at the sanctuary. Keoladeo National Park 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.

    In the afternoon, enjoy Bird Watching with rickshaw rides at the sanctuary.

    Colorful kingfishers, graceful pelican’s rare Siberian cranes, and Trans- continental fliers - the migratory waterfowl are amongst the 350 species of birds found in the Keoladeo National Park.

    The most spectacular nesting is that of the egrets, storks, herons, and cormorants, which make over 10,000 nests every year. This makes outstanding bird havens of the world. The park covers an area of 28.73km.

    Overnight at the Hotel (B)

  5. Day 5 Bharatpur – Ranthambore By Train (Kota Jan Shatabdi Express # 12060 – 14:50/17:03 Hrs.)


    You will have one last chance to Bird Watching with rickshaw rides at the sanctuary before boarding your train to Ranthambore.

    Ranthambore – Bordering the outer fringes of the Thar Desert and the former hunting grounds of the Maharajah of Jaipur, Ranthambore is now a 512-square-mile natural preserve (one of India’s largest) that is home to diverse plant life; historic ruins; and hundreds of species of birds, reptiles, mammals, and of course, Bengal tigers.

    Arrive at Ranthambore and check in to the hotel.

    Overnight at the Hotel (B, D)

  6. Day 6 Ranthambore National Park


    Today we explore the national park by morning & afternoon game drives.

    Ranthambore National Park is one of the biggest and most renowned national parks in Northern India.

    The Park is located in the Sawai Madhopur district of southeastern Rajasthan. Being considered as one of the famous and former hunting grounds of the Maharajas of Jaipur, today the Ranthambore National Park terrain is a major wildlife tourist attraction spot that has pulled the attention of many wildlife photographers and lovers in this destination. The Park is mostly famous for its tigers.

    Overnight at the Hotel (B, L, D)

  7. Day 7 Ranthambore National Park


    We have one more day to explore the national park by morning & afternoon game drives.

    Ranthambore National Park is nearly an island rich in flora and fauna lengthen more than an area of 282.03 sq. kms. of deep forest with canals and waterfalls. The plants of the park are the hot dry deciduous and tropical point type. There are three lakes in the park which is known as The Padam Talab, the Raj Bagh Talab and the Malik Talab in the area. Ranthambore National Park is most likely the best place in the world to see wild tigers and also consider being the best place in the world for taking pictures of the tiger. It is a residence for different kinds of animals.

    Overnight at the Hotel (B, L, D)

  8. Day 8 Ranthambore – Jaipur (Approx. 106 miles / 170 Kms / 4 hours’ drive)


    After breakfast, check-out, and drive to Jaipur.

    On arrival, check-in to the hotel.

    Jaipur is the largest city in Rajasthan and was built in the eighteenth century by Sawai Jai Singh as India's first planned city. Jaipur is a major tourist attraction amongst Indian as well as international travellers. Jaipur is often called the Pink City in reference to its distinctly colored buildings, which were originally painted this color to imitate the red sandstone architecture of Mughal cities. The present earthy red color originates from the repainting of the buildings undertaken for a visit by the Prince of Wales in 1876. This royal place is also rich in heritage, culture, and architecture with its splendid fortresses, majestic palaces, tranquil temples, and beautiful Havelis; Other than these captivating attractions, Jaipur displays exquisite handicrafts and spectacular Jewellery. These intricate works of art add life and color to this Pink City's uniqueness. Jaipur city has been declared as the World Heritage Site by UNESCO.

    The evening is free to explore the pink city on your own.

    Overnight at the Hotel (B)

  9. Day 9 Jaipur


    After breakfast, proceed for the sightseeing of Jaipur including a visit to the Amber Fort, and a photo stop at the Palace of the Winds, the Hawa Mahal in the morning. Amber Fort, is a UNESCO World Heritage site built by the Kachhawah Rajputs as their capital from 1037 to 1728 and considered the pinnacle of Rajput architecture.

    We tour the unoccupied citadel this morning, to admire the fresco-covered portal, the impressive room of mirrors, walls of jewel-encrusted marble, and the royal apartments offering beautiful panoramic views of the surrounding valleys.

    We continue on to Jantar Mantar, the incredible open-air Royal Observatory (ca. 1728) housing oversized astronomical instruments and a UNESCO World Heritage site; and City Palace, former residence of the Maharajas of Jaipur, built in the shape of the city itself and now converted to a museum that houses the rulers’ magnificent art collections. Explore the local markets as Jaipur is most famous for its handicrafts.

    Lunch & Dinner on own arrangements.

    Overnight at the Hotel (B)

  10. Day 10 Jaipur – Jawai (Approx. 236 Miles / 380 Kms / 6 Hours’ drive)

    Jawai Bandh

    Today morning after breakfast check out from your hotel and drive to Jawai.

    Jawai Bandh is a dam in Rajasthan built across the Jawai River in Pali district near Sumerpur town. Jawai Bandh is a dwelling for leopards, birds, hyena, white fox, sloth bear, jungle cat, nilgai, crocodiles, and other animals. The Jawai River is a tributary of the Luni River and Jawa Bandh is the largest dam of western Rajasthan providing water to Jodhpur and other nearby areas.

    On arrival, check in to the hotel and relax for the evening.

    Overnight at hotel (B, D)

  11. Day 11 Jawai

    Jawai Bandh

    Jawai is where the hills throw the moon out and just as soon absorb its glow onto their gorges; where nomadic Rabari herdsmen are as much a part of the earth's tales as the mysterious felines that grace these hills and vanish at will into their folds; where pastoral fields meet and merge with wild grasslands and the swells of the JAWAI Bandh's waters lap at the toes of mighty granite forms; where flamingos flock and cranes in their hundreds dance to springtime sounds.

    This morning & afternoon proceed for a thrill of spotting Leopard, take in the breath-taking natural beauty of the rocky outcrops and surrounding Jawai lake as the palette of colours change during sunrise and sunset. The other animals that could be spotted are wolves, hyenas, nilgai, sloth bear, jackals, hanuman langurs, crocodiles, pythons, chinkara antelopes and jungle cats. Over 207 species of birds visit Jawai area throughout the year, the winter months are specially good for sighting the migratory water birds and damesoille cranes.

    Overnight at hotel (B, L, D)

  12. Day 12 Jawai – Udaipur By Road (Approx. 109 Miles / 175 Kms / 3 Hours’ drive) & Fly to Mumbai (6E-6108 – DEP: 19:35 / ARR: 20:55 Hrs.)


    After breakfast, drive to Udaipur to board your flight to Mumbai.

    Mumbai is like a giant piece of soul. Every time a new person comes to Mumbai and attaches oneself to this city regardless of wherever you go after that, it travels with you, enriching you.” Mehak Batra India’s largest port, its commercial and industrial center, as well as the fashion capital and heart of Bollywood (India’s thriving movie industry), Mumbai is an endlessly fascinating hive of activity. A jumble of captivating contradictions, grand colonial architecture rubs shoulders with chaotic bazaars, trendy restaurants, exclusive boutiques, slums, and shanty towns, all interspersed with beautiful, tropical palm trees. A shopper’s haven, this bustling cosmopolitan metropolis offers anything from pavement stalls and ancient markets to glitzy malls and designer outlets. A melting pot for cultures from every corner of the country, Mumbai embodies a little bit of all India’s diverse traditions and rolls it into one.

    Arrive Mumbai and check-in to the hotel.

    Overnight at hotel (B)

  13. Day 13 Mumbai


    After breakfast, at 0830 hrs your guide will report in hotel lobby along with the chauffer-driven car and you are ready to explore the key sights of Mumbai.

    Begin the tour from the Gateway of India, Mumbai’s very own victory arch, built to commemorate the landing of King George the fifth and Queen Mary for the Delhi Durbar.

    Explore Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Vastu Sangrahalaya (formerly Prince of Wales Museum), founded in the early years of the 20th century, the museum houses approximately 50,000 exhibits of ancient Indian history as well as objects from foreign lands, categorized primarily into three sections: Art, Archaeology and Natural History. The museum houses Indus Valley Civilization artifacts and other relics from ancient India.

    See Mumbai’s Dubbawala, the people who collect freshly cooked food in lunch boxes from the home of the office workers and deliver them to their respective workplace each day utilizing various modes of transport, predominantly bicycles and the railway trains, and return the empty boxes back to the customer's residence that afternoon.

    Also, drive past the Marine Drive, the beautiful promenade stretches from Nariman Point to Chowpatty in crescent shape along the shoreline of the Arabian Sea.

    Drive down to see India’s biggest open-air Laundry called Dhobi Ghat. A popular tourist spot, Dhobhi Ghat is an area where the laundrymen, more popularly known as the Dhobhis, wash the clothes of Mumbai-folks. With nearly most of Mumbai’s washing done here, it comes as a little surprise that these guys can be safely christened as the ‘Washing Machines’ of Mumbai.

    Post lunch; visit Dharavi, “Asia’s largest Slum”.

    The tour aims to break the negative stereotype associated with the slum. It shows that the, mind behind the greatest business ideas in the city are not found in big corporate boardrooms, but inside tiny 100 sq. ft. homes. The epicentre of Mumbai’s dizzying economic growth doesn’t lie behind glass facades of skyscrapers, but in a run-down neighbourhood of Mumbai. The people of this neighbourhood might not be your suit-clad businessmen but are owners of multi-million dollar companies. These are the people of Dharavi – One of Asia’s largest slums.

    Overnight at hotel (B,)

  14. Day 14 Mumbai – Rajkot By Flight (6E-821 – DEP: 11:05 / ARR: 12:10 Hrs.) & drive to Sasan Gir Nationa Park (Approx. 101 Miles / 162 Kms / 4 Hours’ drive)

    Gir National Park

    Morning fly to Rajkot, where a drive takes you to Sasan Gir National park, known for its population on Asiatic Lion and other animals like wild boars, deer and many more.

    Arrive and check-in to the hotel.

    Overnight at hotel (B, D)

  15. Day 15 Sasan Gir National Park

    Gir National Park

    The Gir Forests – the largest compact tract of dry deciduous forests in the semi-arid western part of India is the last abode of the big and regal predator, Asiatic lion an endangered animal species. The sanctuary is internationally acclaimed for successfully saving this precious species from the brink of extinction. It was declared as a sanctuary in 1965. Subsequently out of the 1153.42 sq. km area of the sanctuary, an area of 258.71 sq. km. was declared a National Park. Gir Forests has a topography made up of successive rugged ridges, isolated hills, plateaus and valleys. Besides, being the last abode of Asiatic lions, Gir Forests forms a unique habitat for many mammals, reptiles, birds and insect species along with a rich variety of flora.

    Explore the national park by morning and afternoon game drives.

    Overnight at Hotel (B, L, D)

  16. Day 16 Gir – Rajkot By Road (Approx. 101 Miles / 162 Kms / 4 hours’ drive) & Fly to Mumbai (6E-6259 – DEP: 1:240 / ARR: 13:45 Hrs.)


    After breakfast, drive to Rajkot airport to board your flight to Mumbai.

    Arrive in Mumbai and check-in to the hotel.

    Evening is free to explore on your own.

    Overnight at Hotel (B)

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