India Royal 5* VIP tour 2017 January - February
Mumbai, Jaipur, Varanasi, Delhi & Taj Mahal
with optional extension to Kochi (formerly Cochin) and Kerala in the South
Tour Dates: Weds Jan 25 – Monday Feb 6, 2017
One of the world’s most exclusive hotel chains, the OBEROIs, will again welcome a strictly kosher Tour,
offering our guests the opportunity to enjoy India in the most opulent surroundings, offering a true taste of India, with the Hechsher of Rabbanut
For recommended flights see below
Wednesday Jan 25: arrival day Mumbai (formerly Bombay)
Whenever you arrive, we will meet you at the brand new Mumbai airport (BOM) and bring
you to the fabulous Oberoi Mumbai Hotel, recently ranked as the 3rd best hotel IN THE WORLD!!!!
We will look after you, let you rest, offer you breakfast and lunch (as required) and begin
the tour with dinner with your new friends and travel companions.
Thurs-Sun, Jan 26-29: Mumbai
There is so much to see here, both of Jewish and general interest. Our guide here will be
the one and only “First Jewish Lady” of Mumbai who, with her husband, will also be our Shabbat guests for our meals in the hotel.
Today there are about 5,000 Jews in Mumbai and 8 active synagogues, some of which we will visit as they have daily services. Mumbai is a city of 10 million inhabitants, billionaires and paupers, which fascinates anew with every corner you turn. It is built on a series of islands connected to the mainland by bridges and low swampy areas.
We’ll visit many of the main sights:
Elephanta caves (by boat):
Prince of Wales Museum:
Gateway of India built to commemorate the visit of King George V and Queen Mary in 1911:
Dhobi Ghat: The world’s largest laundry:
Rajabai clock tower and the High Court built in the Gothic architectural style, at the time so fashionable
in Britain and throughout the Empire:
Marine Drive - also known as "the queen's necklace" as the street lights shining like jewels at
The Hanging Gardens on Malabar Hill: Crawford Market:
Victoria Terminus station
Sun – Weds,Jan 29 – Feb 1: Jaipur From Mumbai there’s a direct flight to the pink city of Jaipur, capital of
Rajasthan, and another Oberoi hotel, the Raj Vilas.
In Jaipur, we’ll ride elephants up to the Amber Fortress, visit the Maharajah’s Palace, see the Palace of Winds (Hawa Mahal - a uniquely designed 5-storey structure
with tiers of overhanging balconies), Mantar Jantar (a 300 year old planetarium) and the colorful markets.
In addition, Jaipur is famous for colored precious stone polishing and jewelry production as well as for carpet weaving. We will be able to visit places where these crafts
continue – and even have the opportunity to make a purchase or two!!
One evening in Jaipur we’ll go to watch (part of) an Indian movie. More impressive than the Bollywood movie itself is the atmosphere as the crowd sing along, stamp their feet or dance in the aisles.
We are also building in “down-time” to enjoy this stupendous hotel’s facilities!!
The way were received at this hotel on our first stay was beyond incredible – perhaps because the GM’s wife is Jewish – and the head chef of the Oberoi chain came to
learn all about Kashrut!!!! www.oberoihotels.com/oberoi_rajvilas/
For those who are interested, we’ll also be offering a yoga session in Jaipur!!
Weds - Thurs, Feb 1 – Feb 2: Varanasi (formerly Benares)
The flight to Varanasi takes us via Delhi, but we’ll still arrive by lunchtime (if everything goes smoothly!!) to the holy city on the Ganges. A short, hair-raising, ride in a
rickshaw will bring us to see the evening “Deempala” ceremony - a loud, colorful and most impressive religious ritual that takes place at the end of each day on the banks of the river.
Dinner and overnight are at the Taj Gateway (Sorry - there’s no Oberoi here!! Also we cannot serve you meat as this is a strictly
no-meat city). At sunrise on Thursday (sorry again!!), we'll take a short cruise down the Ganges River from where we'll watch the multitudes coming down
to the river for their morning purification rituals.
After breakfast back in the hotel we’ll visit the town; from there it's onwards to Benares Hindu University to meet a professor or two. We’ll stop for lunch and
then head off to the airport for a mid-afternoon flight to Delhi.
Thursday – Monday, Feb 2-6: Delhi; Sunday day trip to the Taj Mahal.
We’ll start our visit to the Capital with dinner at our final Oberoi.
On Friday, we’ll visit the major attractions of the city: the Main Bazaar, the Sikh Temple, Ghandi’s Tomb, the Lotus Temple, and others.
We’ll take a Rickshaw tour of the Old City, surrounded by all the colors and smells for which India is so renowned.
Shabbat will be spent resting, eating and davening but also discussing with invited guests our impressions of India and trying to get answers to our open questions.
Sunday, our final full day, is Taj Mahal day. There can be no better finale to a tour of this incredible country than a visit to Agra and the Taj Mahal, regarded by many as the most perfect architectural structure in the world.
Our journey begins with the brand new (2016) Gatimaan express train, departing early from Delhi station, an experience in and of itself. In the morning we’ll explore
Agra Fort, which our guests have found as fascinating as the TM itself. Lunch in Agra will be followed by the visit to Taj Mahal, before heading back to the
station for the train “home”, arriving in time for our Gala final Dinner in the Hotel.
Monday, Feb 6
Departure day – we’ll take you to Delhi airport (DEL) for your flights out as necessary, full of stories to tell the folks back home!!
Minyan 3 times per day Sefer Torah full-time experienced Mashgiach Hechsher
Rabbanut Efrat regular approved milk glatt meat no dress code
Recommended flights (not included in price of tour!!):
PLEASE NOTE: You fly into Mumbai (BOM) and out from Delhi (DEL)!!
From NY area Air India and United fly both legs direct. The Air India flight departing
Jan 24 brings you in early afternoon; the United flight late at night so you may prefer to fly in a day earlier on the 23rd, arriving on the 24th. We’ll be there so feel free to take
Departure from Delhi is late Monday evening, just before or after midnight:
NOTE: the date of the Air India return flight is Feb 7th
From Israel: ElAl fly direct Monday and Weds; Turkish are GREAT too
From London: BA or Jet Airways
We are happy to research flights for you, wherever you are coming from!!
Tour price $12,995pp sharing
(Suites available; single room use supplement $3750)
Tour Price includes:
Fabulous accommodation (double / sharing room) in top
hotels as shown
All internal flights
A/C train: Delhi - Agra - Delhi
All meals, snacks and drinks
Full transportations as tour program indicated by a/c
Local English speaking guides
All entrance fees and English speaking guides
All entertainments, activities as shown
Full time strict
Hashgacha as required to ensure Kashrut - hechsher of Rabbanut Efrat; full time
Mashgiach Rabbi Menhaem Fogel, Efrat Tour
Visas and airport taxes
Travel insurance - Essential
Tips (recommended $450)
Please note – program & hotels can change for any reason at any time; stuff happens!!