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Average Rating: Red-stars

Total number of reviews: 1,843

India:The Golden Triangle Moghuls & Mystics QMG

Visiting: India
Tour Duration 8 Days
  • City Palace, Jaipur
  • Colourful Elephant
  • Taj Mahal
  • Amber Fort
  • Palace of the Winds, Jaipur
  • Tour Style: Simply
  • Tour Type: Small Groups
  • Tour Pace: Moderate
  • Tour Comfort: Simple
 

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3 reviews for this tour

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Tour notes

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We have the following different versions of the India:The Golden Triangle Moghuls & Mystics tour available at present.

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10 , 10/11/13

Name

jane barlow

Tour Name

Moghuls and Mystics

Tour Code

QMG

What Was The Highlight Or Most Memorable Moment Of Your Tour

The highlight of my tour was bonding with a group of 12 complete strangers and finishing the trip the best of friends. We've all been in touch via Facebook and email since our return and I hope we continue to share our memories, stories and pictures. Other highlights? Where to start?! Visiting the beautiful Taj Mahal, a camel ride through the desert, a elephant ride to a fort, tuk tuk races in Delhi, shopping at bazaars, an unexpected game of cricket on the lawn at one hotel, playing charades on a seven hour train journey and visiting a family home and trying on saris.

Tour Leader Name

Gordhon

How Was Your Explore Tour Leader

Our tour leader Gordhon was fab! He was bundles of fun from the first moment we met him - and on our first night in India he took us to a Punjabi nightclub where he impressed us with his disco dance moves. We also loved his late night philosophical chats and the fact he took such good care of us all throughout the holiday making sure we all felt safe and happy. He amazed us during a visit to a bird park, where we found out he was able to name something like 2,000 different species, he was our very own Indian David Attenborough! We loved his enthusiasm, his local knowledge, his bartering to ensure we always got the best deals and his honesty, sharing with us details of his own life, including his arranged marriage at the age of 14.

What Tips Would You Give To Someone Else Booking This Tour

Only pack casual clothes and travel light! Backpacks are a good idea, but small suitcases on wheels also worked well. Be prepared for quite a lot of travelling around and for some early starts - but also for lots of fun and many laughs. Be careful what you eat and drink to avoid Delhi Belly - we found that a vegetarian diet worked quite well!

Do You Have Anything Else To Add

Absolutely fantastic tour, with an exceptionally lovely and wonderful guide - and such a a friendly and lots of fun group of fellow travellers. Be prepared to laugh and to cry on this trip, as the poverty you will see can be upsetting, but also it's a great trip to see the real India and really get a feel for the country and the people. A life changing and unforgettable experience.

 
0 John Saunders, 11/01/12
I had always wanted to visit the Taj Mahal and experience the culture of India. Well, this trip certainly met these aims and provided far more. Joining 12 other unknowns in an organised group we were soon to experience New Delhi. This was the first holiday that I became aware of all of my five senses, added to which was common sense. As our coach took us to our perfectly functional hotel the hustle and bustle of street life was incredible. Randomly hanging cables dangled across roads, challenging even the most adept electrician to determine which were live or inert; buildings were in a state of neglect; children mirrored this image; stallholders displayed footwear and textiles in abundance surely there was a limit to the extent to which such volume could be sold? Tuk-tuks, like energetic bees, passed within an inch of rickshaws, vans and cars. Notices on vehicles to hoot were an invitation for a cacophony of noise. We safely wandered, conscious of the gaze of the locals who perhaps wondered if we westerners had lost our sat-navs, all the while under the glare of private security guards toting shotguns to protect jewellers. We were soon to learn "This is India". My cultural experience enjoyed three wonderful evenings of beautifully flavoured food, incomparable with English equivalents. As a discerning eater, this was what I had hoped for, alongside the beauty and interest of the sights of the forts, mosques, the Taj Mahals as we travelled the Golden Triangle to explore the dynasty of the Moghuls. Having visited New Delhi, Agra and Fatehpur Sikri we encountered the tranquillity of Keoladeo National Park and a chance to cycle and spot exotic birds and animals. I managed to contract something that prevented me from eating any more main meals! Fortunately, I was only really ill for a day which stopped me seeing some of the sights of Jaipur but I certainly made up for this next day seeing the most marvellous buildings that the City had to offer. It was again an opportunity to experience the chaotic street scenes an abundance of litter being picked at by chickens and children, grazed by cows, goats and more heartily devoured by pigs. Covers of sewers were raised for urgent attention whilst gulleys carried the vilest looking and smelling products. Small fires burned the rubbish that had been rejected by scavengers. But, this is all part of the very complex culture of India which has to be 'sensed' to be believed. Next was Pushkar, the centre of the annual camel fair a huge gathering of men and beasts. The vibrant market and fair wrapped up the Indian culture into one composite package, an event combining its economic and religious facets. Our return to New Delhi completed the adventure. Our diverse group had bonded and we had encountered Indian people, many in poverty, who exuded immense friendship and generosity. "This is India" and I had no difficulty on my return home explaining why it had been so enjoyable and memorable - another excellent Explore trip which certainly gives value for money
 
0 Jo Griffiths, 22/09/10
This was my first trip with Explore; solo! Not once (apart from being virtually the last person left at baggage claim in Delhi!) did I feel on my own. So, what made this trip unique and worth a second look if you are undecided? Convoy tuk tuk journeys! Wacky races, competitive drivers, competitive passengers, bonding with your driver, having to get out and push, driving through flooded streets, avoiding cows, dogs, goats and pigs wandering in the middle of the road! Brilliant fun; best way to get around! Bharatupur - pre-dinner balcony cocktail party! After a few days together Raf, our tour leader, decided to organize a little party for us all, he bought rum, coke, spicy chickpeas, Bombay mix and poppadoms. We sat on the balcony; we bonded, we got tipsy and we had a laugh! My birthday! We stayed two nights at The Bissau Palace in Jaipur. This is a beautiful, stunning hotel, I’ll be honest, the service didn’t match up to the décor (jaw dropping inefficiency), but visually a fabulous place to stay. We took an elephant ride up to the Amber Fort, after a long morning in full-on monsoon rain we returned and drank gin and tonics in the Palace lounge. A really special moment when a chocolate birthday cake appeared after dinner, ‘Happy Birthday Ms Joanne’!! I had a tear in my eye; such a lovely gesture! 7 hour train ride! I loved all the train travel, especially taking a nap in the sleeper train; however this 7 hour epic was totally unexpected, mainly because I thought I was going to be bored! Firstly the snack of samosa, cake and Bombay mix, then some tea, then a hour or so later the soup and bread sticks, then the rice, couple of curry dishes, naan, yoghurt followed by ice cream and a mango juice… and the 7 hours have gone and you are back in Delhi!! The toilets on all trains are grim. Tour guide, the lovely Rafeeq! Getting all 16 of us onto the correct platform, the correct train, the correct carriage and correct seats on our way to Agra; we weren’t all sat together which makes this feat even more amazing. Delhi Station is probably the maddest place I have ever been!  It’s exciting and unbearable in equal measures; every sense is prickled/walloped! Raf... ‘I’m never more than 20 minutes away’; we were absolutely in the safest of hands throughout the whole trip. Honestly, I don’t think this trip is for everyone, but as I’ve told my friends, if you like a challenge, enjoy back packing style holidays and have the capacity to step back from the poverty (that you will undoubtedly see; I’m not going to lie) and deal with at a later stage (I sobbed on the motorway driving home from Heathrow) then this may just be the holiday for you! India is a fascinating country; her people are incredibly warm and welcoming; rarely will you meet a local who won’t return a smile or hello!  A challenging but thoroughly rewarding holiday with a fabulous group of like-minded travellers! (QMG- 29th July 2010)
 
 
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