INDIA SENSES TOUR
What is a “Senses” Tour?
Collect moments, not things. In this age of enlightenment, many travelers are drawn to our new approach to travel: Senses Tours. With an emphasis on flexibility and personalization, Senses Tours are designed around the client’s individual tastes.
All five senses are awakened through art, community, culinary creations, culture, history, music, nature, self-awareness, and wellness. Carefully curated experiences are laced together to create a travel tapestry that inspires new awareness within yourself and your travel companions. Do as little or as much as you like with your valuable time. With the help of our expert travel advisors, come home rejuvenated and appreciative of the planet we call home.
ACCOMMODATIONS IN INDIA
The Oberoi, New Delhi, enjoys views of the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Humayun’s Tomb on one side and a calming view of the forested golf course on the other. It is a storied landmark and a celebrated example of Oberoi’s reputation for taking care of its guests.
The contemporary interpretation of Sir Edwin Lutyens’ New Delhi in the interiors combines with a state of the art clean air technology offering the healthiest air in the city. Eloquently detailed throughout its public spaces, with superlative rooms, restaurants and guest facilities, this is a city hotel perfectly conceived for work or play.
Royal Heritage Haveli Jaipur
An 18th Century hunting lodge meets modern luxury at this Jaipur heritage property known for outstanding service and Ayurvedic wellness offerings.
ITC Mughal Taj Mahal
Sprawled over 24 acres of luxurious gardens, and in close proximity to the Taj Mahal, ITC Mughal, a luxury hotel in Agra is a fitting tribute to the great Mughal builders of the past. The only Indian hotel to have won the prestigious Aga Khan Award for its excellent representation of Mughal architecture. This luxury hotel in Agra comprises of 233 opulent rooms and suites, recreating a paradise for the contemporary Mogul- full of splendor and perfection which was the hallmark of the Mughal Dynasty.
The hotel comprises four original buildings with three additional contemporary structures, influenced by and contributing to its cultural past as part of the Walled City. The new buildings are modern and contemporary in their use of space and light; and yet grounded in tradition. Indeed, each of its structures is adorned with intricate architectural carvings in the iconic Haveli style of the 18th century, juxtaposed against modern designs and patterns. The whole complex is overlooked by Mehrangarh, an awe-inspiring 15th century fort looming 400 feet above the Jodhpur skyline.
Taj Lake Palace Udaipur
The Lake Palace is world famous and has been the site for several iconic film shoots like the James Bond film, Octopussy. It has hosted distinguished and eminent personalities like Jacqueline Kennedy, Lord Curzon, Queen Elizabeth and Vivien Leigh. The Taj has painstakingly restored the palace to its former grandeur and beauty and it has now become one of the most romantic destinations in the world.
India Senses Tour Experiences
Delhi Street Food Tour
During this walk you learn about the famous street food, beloved of all Indians. In the narrow alleys of Old Delhi, steeped in the culture of this area, are stalls with a history that goes back through generations. You will unravel history, traditions and cultures behind these “street specialties” ranging from the 200 year “Ghantewala” sweet shop, to the “Paratha Wallah Galli”, the street that specializes in the flat bread, stuffed with every conceivable ingredient. (culture, cuisine).
Visit Gurudwara Bangla Sahib
The temple of the Sikhs. Their turbans and beards make the men easily identifiable with the sect. Sikhism developed as anantithesis to the caste ridden and ritualistic forms of Hinduism and developed as a simple religion whose foundation was “sewa” –socially responsibility irrespective of a person’s social standing. Thus every Sikh Temple has the famous community kitchen,where it is considered a privilege to assist cooking the food and serving the community. (culture, community)
Dinner at the Spice Route
As the name suggests, this Pan Asian restaurant serves the cuisine of the countries which influenced the travelers on the famous spice route through South East Asia. The decadent décor complements the rich varieties on the menu. (culinary)
The Salaam Balaak Trust
The Salaam Balaak Trust works with street children in Delhi providing them with a secure environment as well as health and education. The Trust has developed a city walk through the inner city, and your guides are the young people who have been rescued and know the area intimately. While introducing you to the heritage and the life of the backstreets of Delhi, little seen by the visitors, they also share with you stories of their life journeys. You will stop at a couple of the contact centers and shelters run by the trust. This is not a slum tour as the walk does not take you into the slums, and photography is restricted. The tour allows you to see the city through the eyes of your young guides. (community)
National Gallery of Modern Art
Housed in Jaipur House, the former home of the Jaipur royal family. NGMA as it is popularly called has one of the largest collections covering the period from the mid 18th century until the present day. Your guide for today is an art historian and expert. We could include a visit to the Delhi Art Gallery. It is emerging as one of the leading galleries for modern and contemporary art in Delhi. (art, culture)
Visit Agra Fort
This imposing red sandstone citadel, which predates the Taj Mahal, was begun as a defensive fort, but completed as an elegant fort palace, highlighting the Mughal talent for blending art and architecture. The complex houses robust barracks and courtly and elegant palaces, pleasure gardens, and galleries. It offers a stunning view of Taj Mahal. (history, culture)
Taj Mahal Sunset
This monument was built by Shah Jahan for his wife Mumtaz Mahal. It took 12 years to build this sublime garden tomb, an image of the Islamic garden of paradise. It’s perfect proportions and exquisite craftsmanship was the work of artisans from both India and overseas. The Taj Mahal represents the wealth and luxury of Mughal art and architecture.
TRE Demonstration Classes – TRE is Chef Rajiv Vatsyayan Cooking Philosophy
Techniques, Recipes, Execution. TRE Demonstration Classes are a close up and interactive look at cooking. Each class features an entertaining and informative lesson led by Chef Rajiv or a professional chef at The SUJAN Rajmahal Palace, Jaipur! Tastings of each pre-decided dish will be prepared will be a lifetime memory created at the SUJAN Rajmahal Palace. Watch the chef at work. Ask questions as we go. At the end, walk away with the skills to recreate the entire menu at home with the recipe book made by Chef. (culinary)
Curated Walk of Historic Jaipur
The walk takes you past 200 year old temples, shrines, and highlights the many professions that exist within the walled city. You will stop at an Akhara, a traditional gymnasium where the young go to learn Indian wrestling, and stick and sword fighting. The elderly gather for a more sedate game of chess or the 4th century game of Chaupati. You are welcome to join in any of these activities if you wish. From here you continue along the narrow alleys, passing bangle makers, bamboo weavers, gem cutters, sculptors and artists. It is an excellent way to mingle and meet the ordinary people of the city.
Hawa Mahal and Jantar Mantar
Jantar Mantar the astronomical observatory built by Raja Sawai Jai Singh II in 1827. Roughly translated the name means “The Formula of Instruments”. This is one of five observatories he built in northern India. The instruments resembling massive futuristic structures are actually highly sophisticated instruments which are accurate even today.
City Palace and Champagne
A superb marriage of the Rajput and Mughal styles of architecture. Within the palace complex are several museums including an interesting textile gallery exhibiting a fine selection of textiles and costumes from the royal collection. You will have champagne in the grand private drawing room before taking a tour of some of the residential and ceremonial rooms of the palace
Visit Dera Amer
Situated behind the hills of the famous Amber Fort. The Camp is located at the foothills of the Aravalli Range and surrounded by the wilderness of a reserved forest with no urban civilization in the vicinity, just a few hamlets housing the local villagers occupied by farming on the their fields bordering a pretty lake. A local Rajput family who themselves reside in the area have rescued elephants from the hard tarmac road of Amber Fort where they would ferry tourists up and down from the Fort – and now they live a peaceful life walking on soft ground and enjoying life to the max! You will enjoy a personal interaction with elephants here which will be followed by farm fresh home cooked lunch.
Visit Princess Diya Kumari Foundation Society
City Palace and Champagne is making efforts to empower people by ensuring sustainable livelihoods, facilitating improved standards of living, and creating a healthy socio-economic environment. The Foundation is committed to making a positive impact at the grassroots level through engagement with, and the empowerment of, deprived communities in the state. Since its inception in 2013, PDKF has continued to expand its activities, with most projects focused on Jaipur and Sawai Madhopur. The organization has sown the seeds of sustainable entrepreneurship with hundreds of women having acquired know-how in various income generation activities, both in the rural and urban sectors. The organization aims to achieve its goals through direct action and by mobilizing. Tour will end by an Aarti ceremony at local temple .
Performance by the Village of the Langas Desert Musicians
This is the largest single congregation of a musical community in one village. As you approach the village, you will hear the sound of “riyaaz” drifting across the desert. This is the traditional practicing or honing of one’s music by young boys who learn this sacred tradition from their father or grandfather.
Langas Gypsy Musicians
The Langas are gypsy’s musicians who have been working under the “jajmani” or patron performance system for generations, and perform at auspicious occasions. You will spend time with these families, understanding the tradition of this music, perhaps trying out your musical talents, and watch a multigenerational performance.
– in the old city, shop for Jodhpur’s famous glass bangles, rugged leather mojri slippers made usually from camel leather, and the vivid tie and dye fabric; beautiful mirror worked fabric; and embroidered bedcovers and cushion covers which have been sourced from the neighboring state of Gujarat.
The fort is divided into three sections – the public areas, the Maharajas palaces, and the zenana, or queens’ palaces. The zenana is decorated with exquisite sandstone filigree work. Within the fort is the museum which among its varied exhibits has an excellent collection of royal palanquins and the howdah section which has perhaps the finest collection of old ornate elephant howdahs in the world.
Learn Jal Sanjhi
The “art of drawing on water”. A popular religious ritual performed at temples dedicated to Krishna, this is the art of drawing iconic images on water using colored powder. This is a dying skill and at the small Krishna temple in the old city you will watch one the last few practitioners of this art create a picture. It takes five hours to complete a picture and you will arrive in time to see him completing a “canvas”.
The oldest mountain range in the world. Along your route, you will encounter a very traditional way of life still being practiced. Small hamlets, fields being irrigated using a Persian water wheel; outdoor schools and sartorially colorful ladies working in the fields.