The Maharajas' Express & Palaces of India

Classic Touring

11 Days from £10,999

Nov 2019 - Nov 2019 Departures

This is the ultimate luxury holiday. You’ll stay in former royal palaces and you'll follow in the footsteps of Sir Trevor McDonald and take a journey on the opulent Maharajas' Express. A once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.

​Quite simply, this is the trip of a lifetime. Follow in the footsteps of Indian royalty as you stay in some of the finest heritage hotels in all of India, exploring treasures including the Taj Mahal, the 'Pink City' of Jaipur, and the bustling cities of Delhi and Mumbai. To get an authentic flavour of this amazing country, you'll take to the train – but not just any train. Your adventure includes three nights on board the world-famous Maharajas' Express, where luxury comes as standard. Truly, this tour – which we're offering for the first time this year – will give you a taste of life as a Maharajah or Maharani.

UNRIVALLED CUSTOMER GUARANTEES

GUARANTEED DEPARTURES

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GUARANTEED PRICE PROMISE

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GUARANTEED PRICE MATCH

We’re confident our holidays offer the best prices around, so if you find an identical holiday cheaper, not only will we match it we’ll also give you an extra £100 towards another trip.

Your holiday at a glance

CLASSIC TOURING
ALL BREAKFASTS
MAX GROUP SIZE 15

What's included

Just You Tour Manager as your host

Return flights from Heathrow 

Use of an airport lounge in the UK

6 nights in 5-star luxury hotels and palaces and 3 nights on the world-famous Maharajas' Express
 
Free VIP door-to-door private transfers

14 meals: 9 breakfasts, 2 lunches and 3 dinners

Welcome drink

Overseas transfers & other transportation

Porterage

Dedicated Just You representative to greet you at all UK airports​

All meals, soft beverages, a selection of Indian wines, beer and spirits on board the Maharajas' Express

Butler service on the Maharajas' Express

Porterage at stations 


 


 

Included excursions

  • Orientation tour of New Delhi
  • 3 nights on the world-famous Maharajas' Express, including a traditional Indian 'grand welcoming' on board
  • Taj Mahal visit followed by a Champagne breakfast
  • Game drive at Ranthambore National Park
  • Sightseeing in Udaipur, the 'Pearl of Rajasthan'
  • Cruise on Lake Pichola to visit Jag Mandir Palace
  • Visit the Ranakpur Jain temple
  • Visit the Mehrangarh Fort & Jaswant Thada mausoleum in the 'blue city' of Jodhpur 
  • Tuk tuk ride around the bazaars of Jodhpur's Old City
  • Sightseeing in Mumbai

Optional excursions

  • Mohabbat-e-Taj Show in Agra
  • Jaipur's City Palace Observatory

Your itinerary

Today you'll depart on your flight to Delhi, India's largest city.

Our welcome ambassador will meet you on arrival at Delhi, where you'll be escorted to the Leela Palace hotel for an overnight stay. Located at the very heart of the capital's prestigious diplomatic enclave, the hotel exemplifies the magnificent architecture, grace and elegance of architect Edwin Lutyens' Delhi. It also features a rooftop pool with panoramic views of the capital and a spa by ESPA London. 

Nothing quite compares to exploring India by train. Today, you'll board the palatial Maharajas' Express at Safdarjung Railway Station in Delhi. You'll receive a traditional Indian welcome, complete with flower garlands as you step on board. You'll then find yourself surrounded by the sort of opulence and luxury that immediately evokes the era of the Maharajas. Spacious, superbly-appointed cabins await you, and you can enjoy an onboard breakfast with your travelling companions.

In the train's two ornate restaurants, you'll dine on gold-edged plates and drink wine from hand-cut Swarovski crystal glasses. There's also a lounge with well-stocked bar, an onboard library and a souvenir shop. After you've explored the train, settle down amongst the luxury and relax as the Maharaja Express takes you to your next destination, Agra. And if there's anything you need in the meantime – just summon your butler!

Agra is one of India's prime tourist destinations. When we arrive in the afternoon, our first experience of this delightful city will be the Agra Fort that lies on the Yamuna River. Created by several rulers of the Mughal Dynasty, the fort was transformed into a glittering palace by the Emperor Shah Jahan. Many years later, it became a gilded cell, where the he was imprisoned for eight years when his son Aurangzeb overthrew him in 1658.

Back on the train, we'll enjoy a delicious banquet in one of the train's two thematically-designed restaurants. Mayur Mahal is named after the peacock, India's graceful national bird, and Rang Mahal is also known as 'The Palace of Colours'. After dinner, there's an optional excursion to watch the enthralling Mohabbat-e-Taj show that tells the story of Emperor Shah Jahan and his wife, Mumtaz Mahal through expressive dance and drama.

The excitement builds every day of this magical tour. We'll realise many a dream today when we make a pilgrimage to the iconic Taj Mahal, a must-see sight in a league of its own. Commissioned by Shah Jahan in the 17th century as a memorial to his beloved wife Mumtaz, it is an architectural masterpiece of exquisite craftsmanship and perfect proportions.

After our invigorating experience at this magnificent symbol of love, we'll follow our visit with a sumptuous Champagne breakfast atop Taj Khema, which offers wonderful views of the Taj Mahal.

Next, we'll retreat to the train for a luxurious lunch that draws inspiration from a variety of cultures. We'll then spend the afternoon on safari in Rathambore National Park. We'll enjoy a breathtaking game drive, where we'll cross our fingers in the hope of seeing an elusive Bengal tiger up close amongst the sprawling greenery.

Our day ends with a feast aboard the Maharaja Express as the train takes us in comfort to our next enchanting destination, Jaipur.

Today, we'll wake up in the gorgeous, terracotta-pink walled city of Jaipur. We'll enjoy a delicious breakfast together, before we set out to explore this particularly enchanting jewel in India's crown. Our first stop will be the sprawling Amber Fort, which sits on a hilltop overlooking the desert. Dating back to the 11th century and featuring 16th century sandstone, this UNESCO World Heritage Site boasts an exquisite exterior that encompasses marble palaces built around beautiful courtyards and gardens.

You'll return to the comforts of the train for a superb lunch on board. This afternoon, optional excursions include an exciting visit to the City Palace and Observatory, known locally as Jantar Mantar.

Enjoy a sumptuous breakfast on board before you bid farewell to the Maharajas' Express. We will then transfer to Delhi airport for our flight to Udaipur, a city known for its lavish royal residences – and we will be staying at one of them!
The Taj Lake Palace hotel is a historic royal residence, built in 1746. It is located in the middle of Lake Pichola, one of the lakes that has helped earn Udaipur the nicknames 'Pearl of Rajasthan' and 'City of Lakes'. Featuring a range of restaurants and bars, an outdoor pool and a fitness centre, the Taj Lake Palace offers everything you'd expect from a luxury hotel, as well as a unique and unforgettable experience for its guests ­– a cruise aboard the Royal Gangaur that includes cocktails and dinner while on board. There's also the chance to visit the Jiva Spa Boat – a floating spa in an anchored boat.   

We'll get our day off to a sparkling start with a visit to Udaipur's Crystal Gallery, spread across the ostentatious Durbar Hall. Housing the largest single private collection of crystal in the world, this fascinating museum features an enormous rare collection of Osler's crystal.

Ordered from England by Maharana Sajjan Singh in 1877, he died before it arrived. The glittering crystal then lay forgotten in boxes for 110 years. The bewildering collection of intricate crystal finery includes dinner sets, perfume bottles, chairs and even the only crystal bed in the world.

We'll visit the beautiful garden of Saheliyo Ki Badi, famous for its lush lawns, marble and fountains before enjoying an evening cruise on Lake Pichola. Tonight, we'll return to the luxury of our hotel.

After breakfast, we'll depart for Jodhpur. An unmissable treat awaits us en route as we visit the incredible Ranakpur Jain temple, one of the major pilgrimage sites for followers of the Jain religion. This stunning building dates back to the 15th century, and is a gorgeous, three-storey, white-marble wonder, with ornate carvings on every surface, inside and out.
On arrival at Jodhpur, your luxury five-star hotel is the Umaid Bhawan Palace. A magnificent piece of Rajasthan's heritage, this building was home to the erstwhile Jodhpur royal family and has one thing in common with the iconic Taj Mahal at Agra – the palm court marble used in its construction.
Perched on Chittar Hill, the highest point in Jodhpur, Umaid Bhawan Palace affords exotic views of this historical 'Blue City', with its blue buildings and rooftops – plus you'll see vast sand dunes and the intimidating Mehrangarh Fort from here. The property also houses a family museum, and is set amidst 26 acres of lush gardens, featuring peacocks and a subterranean zodiac pool. Rooms are finished in stunning Art Deco style, while the hotel's restaurants offer everything from authentic Rajasthani cuisine to an array of European and Mediterranean delicacies. While you're here, perhaps you'll take the chance to pamper yourself with rejuvenating treatments and therapies at the Jiva Grande Spa, or soothe your mind and body with yoga and meditation.

The magnificent and formidable Mehrangarh Fort dominates the skyline of Jodphur city. Built entirely of red sandstone, this 15th century hilltop fort – one of the largest in India – has palatial period rooms, extensive courtyards and alluring latticed windows.
Later, take a short walk from the fort to reach another prominent landmark of the city – Jaswant Thada. This shimmering white-marble mausoleum was built in the memory of Maharaja Jaswant Singh II.
Take a tuk tuk ride around the bazaars of the Old City and you'll feel as if you've travelled back in time, with the wholesale markets of cotton, grain, vegetables and spices operating much as they did in the 1500s. Visit craft stores selling silver jewellery, tie-dye fabrics and embroidered 'jutis' or slippers in suede, camel skin, velvet and leather.
We'll spend a further night in royal luxury at our hotel.

Today we will fly to Mumbai, where on arrival, we'll enjoy a half-day sightseeing tour. In this melting-pot of new and old India we will discover the fascinating Dhobi Ghat. Each morning laundry from all over Mumbai is brought here to be soaped, soaked, boiled, beaten, and thrashed. The next day, after being aired, pressed, folded and wrapped, the bundles are returned from where they came. The secret that keeps the operation running so smoothly is the coded symbol that each dhobi-wallah places on every item.
Pay a visit to the Prince of Wales Museum, which not only houses many interesting artefacts, but is also a work of art in its own right. Designed by architect George Wittet, who also designed the Gateway of India, the museum is crowned by an impressive white dome. Carry on your tour with a visit to Mani Bhavan, the Gandhi Museum, a building which served as Mahatma Gandhi's Bombay base between 1917 and 1934, and is now a fitting memorial to his life. A series of tiny dioramas tell Gandhi's life story, photos covering the walls capture historic events, and personal artefacts offer insights into Gandhi's hopes and struggles.
End your tour on Marine Drive, dubbed the Queen's Necklace. It's Mumbai's most popular promenade and a favourite spot to watch the sun go down.
Overnight, you'll stay at the Taj Mahal Palace & Tower, a hotel that has played an intrinsic part in the life of the city for over a century, hosting Maharajas, dignitaries and eminent personalities from across the globe. As well as offering an array of activities for guests – such as harbour cruises – the hotel boasts no less than 10 restaurants, serving both local and international culinary dishes. The signature Jiva Spa offers Indian rejuvenation therapies using exclusive natural products.   

After breakfast, it's time to check out of the hotel and transfer to the airport for our journey back to the UK.

Accommodation

The Leela Ambience Convention Hotel is a five star property that is only 20 minutes from Delhi’s city centre. There are a vast array of excellent facilities at the hotel, which are complemented by the first rate service guests receive. There are two outdoor swimming pools, a spa, sauna, hot tub and even a salon. There are a range of amazing restaurants that serve dishes from all over the world. Rooms are furnished with a minibar, coffee/tea making facilities and a flat screen TV. In the private facilities, guests will find a hairdryer and free toiletries.
Described as the most luxurious train in India, the Maharajas' Express recreates the opulence of the personal carriages created for India's maharajas. Elegant interiors and state-of-the-art facilities combine to create one of the finest ways to experience India and once on board you'll be able to enjoy drinks in the Safari Bar and delicious Indian cuisine in the exquisite dining cars. Each well-appointed cabin offers private facilities and is decorated with rich tapestries, linen, upholstery and antiques.
After the young prince, Maharana Jagat Singh II of Udaipur, was caught frolicking at moonlight picnics with ladies of the ‘zenana (the private chambers of the court)’, he built his own pleasure palace on Lake Pichola. The Maharana (ruler) called this palace which he built in 1746, Jag Niwas. Jag Niwas is today the majestic and magnificent Taj Lake Palace of Udaipur. Restored to its pristine glory, this spectacular palace became world renowned when the James Bond film ‘Octopussy’ was filmed at it. It was the secluded lair of the film’s eponymous Bond Girl. This heritage hotel has 65 luxurious rooms and 18 grand suites. Its location on an island in the midst of a lake affords every room breathtaking views of the neighbouring City Palace, Aravalli Hills, Machla Magra Hills and Jag Mandir. The incomparable location provides the perfect backdrop for the exquisite cuisines at the elegant restaurants of Taj Lake Palace. These are open only to resident guests. Signature speciality restaurants at this palace serves a choice of cuisines. Neel Kamal for authentic Rajasthani and other dishes from India; and the seasonally open-air Bhairo for contemporary European delicacies. In the evening, indulge in signature martinis, cocktails and a grand collection of premium international spirits at the bar, Amrit Sagar. Known as the Venice of the East, the city of Udaipur, with its elaborate palaces, serene lakes, exotic temples and resplendent gardens, has a lot to offer. Guest rooms feature en suite facilities, air-conditioning, mini-bar, tea/coffee-making facilities, TV and hairdryer.
Built between 1928 and 1943, Umaid Bhawan Palace is a magnificent piece of Rajasthan’s heritage, and a symbol of new Jodhpur. Home of the erstwhile Jodhpur royal family and currently the world’s sixth-largest private residence, the palace has one thing in common with the iconic Taj Mahal at Agra—the palm court marble used in its construction. Perched on Chittar Hill, the highest point in Jodhpur, Umaid Bhawan Palace inspires with exotic views of the historical Blue City, vast sand dunes, and intimidating Mehrangarh Fort. The palace is conveniently located 20 minutes from the airport, close to the main shopping areas, and the Balsamand and Kalyana lakes. The last of the great palaces of India, the property houses a family museum, as well as the resplendent Umaid Bhawan Palace. Set amidst 26 acres of lush gardens, with dancing peacocks and a subterranean Zodiac Pool, the luxury five-star Taj heritage hotel offers 70 utterly breathtaking Art Deco- style rooms and suites. Tantalise your taste buds at Risala with authentic Rajasthani and Indian cuisine. Discover an array of European and Mediterranean delicacies at Pillars, set in a lovely colonnaded veranda. Unwind at the Trophy Bar with its unique hunting-themed décor and vast selection of alcoholic beverages and cigars. Pamper yourself with rejuvenating signature treatments and therapies at the Jiva. Soak in the original architecture of a fascinating bygone era and discover the rich history of a palace that has enjoyed actual royal company—Maharani BadanKanwar of Jodhpur having lived here. Guest rooms feature en suite facilities, air-conditioning, mini-bar, TV and hairdryer.
The Taj Mahal Palace opened in Mumbai, then Bombay, in 1903, giving birth to the country’s first harbour landmark. The recently trademarked flagship hotel overlooks the majestic Gateway of India. This legendary luxury hotel has played host to kings, dignitaries and eminent personalities from across the globe, and is acknowledged as a world leader in hospitality. Each of the rooms 285 rooms & suites are a striking blend of nostalgic elegance, rich history and modern facilities. Strategically located in Mumbai’s prime historical and commercial hub, The Taj Mahal Palace is walking distance from Colaba Causeway, known for its touristy tiny roadside shops. The city’s financial hub, parliament, stadium, offices and shopping districts are all located within close proximity; as is a flourishing art and heritage precinct with must visit museums, art galleries, churches and synagogues. The airports are an hour away. For those who would like to experience fine dining in style, we host 9 of the city’s most acclaimed restaurants and bars, renowned for delectable cuisines from India, Europe, the Middle East and the Orient. Relish authentic Indian cuisine at Masala Kraft; world famous Japanese dishes at Wasabi by Morimoto; exquisite Eastern Mediterranean food at Souk and Chinese at Golden Dragon. Dine all day at Shamiana and choose from the exotic range of sumptuous desserts at La Patisserie. Unwind with a refreshing meal at Aquarius, the poolside restaurant; and visit the stylish Harbour Bar. Guest rooms feature en suite facilities, air-conditioning, mini-bar, TV and hairdryer.

The Leela Ambience Convention Hotel

Just You have made every effort to ensure the accuracy of the hotel images provided on this website and images of room types displayed may vary to those offered on your tour. Therefore due to the possibility of inadvertent errors we do not guarantee their accuracy. Hotels, airlines used and flight times are subject to change and will be confirmed in your final documents.

Dates and Prices

You have chosen to arrange your own flights and transfers and meet us at your first hotel. Please see essential information for full terms and conditions.

TOUR DURATION

DEPARTURE DATE

DEPARTURE

PRICE FROM

STATUS

 

10 days

Saturday 16 November 2019

GUARANTEED

£10,399

Available

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DEPARTING FROM

DEPARTURE DATE

DEPARTURE

PRICE FROM

STATUS

 

London (Heathrow)

Friday 15 November 2019

GUARANTEED

£10,999

Available

Outbound
British Airways

Friday 15 November 2019

Departs

18:50 London (Heathrow)

Arrives

08:50 New Delhi (Indira Gandhi)

Operated by

British Airways

Inbound
British Airways - BA

Monday 25 November 2019

Departs

13:15 Mumbai (C Shivaji Intl)

Arrives

17:55 London (Heathrow)

Operated by

British Airways

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0800 112 3329