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North India Tour:

Rural Rajasthan and Tribal Gujarat

HIGHLIGHTS
  • Experience the rural villages of Rajasthan and Gujarat
  • Attend traditional authentic festivals.
    In February: Naguar and Baneshwar Fairs
    In November: Pushkar Fair, Kartik Purnima/Shamlaji Fair and Varutha Fair
  • See a plethora of arts, textiles and handicrafts.
  • Enjoy the hospitality of your hosts, descendants of royal families, and enjoy home-cooked meals 
  • Learn about the tribal groups of Rajasthan and Gujarat and enjoy interacting with these friendly people
  • Fantastic photography opportunities

After you have seen the Taj and visited the “Golden Triangle;” after the forts and castles of the glorious Maharaja period; maybe even after you have visited beautiful South India -  return to India to see the traditional rural lifestyles of the people.  This tour ventures away from the chaos and congestion that India’s cities are known for and we step into the vast heartland of the fascinating states of Rajasthan and Gujarat.

On this tour we attend the Baneshwar Festival, a predominantly tribal fair, just outside Dungarpur at the far south end of the state of Rajasthan.

We shall stay in wonderful restored heritage properties with character and charm. Many are hosted by descendants of the royal families.  There will be ample opportunities to interact with the local people.

Travel India with Original World / Spirit of India for the richly rewarding, unique travel experience of Rural Rajasthan and Tribal Gujarat tour or speak to our travel specialists to create your own custom immersive experience.

trip_photos/333x492_Rural_Rajasthan_Tribal_Gujarat.jpg
Village girl,  outside Bhuj town

Day 1: Meet in Delhi
Arrival in the evening. Transfer to hotel.

Day 2: Alwar
We start our journey into Rajasthan with a drive to Alwar. Nestled in the Aravalli Hills, Alwar is one of the oldest cities in Rajasthan. Areas around Alwar have footprints of stone age men who lived in caves and drew sketches of animals on the walls. These prehistoric sites are an archaeologist's dream.

Day 3: Nawalgarh (Shekhawati)-Mandawa
The towns of Shekhawati are known for their amazing painted havelis in rich artistic tradition and is dubbed  the "open-air art gallery of Rajasthan.” 

February Tour

Day 4: Attend Naguar Festival

The Nagaur Fair aka the Cattle Fair of Rajasthan is the second largest cattle fair of India, and boasts of trading about 70,000 bullocks, camels and horses every year.  Thousands of animals, magnificently garlanded with accessories to provide a vibrant look to them, are gathered for trading. The owners, displaying their colorful turban and long mustaches, sell cows, bullocks, oxen, horses and camels.

In addition to the huge animal exhibition, the fair is popular for its Mirchi Bazaar (red chilly market), which is the biggest in India. The fair also trades for wooden items, iron-crafts and camel leather accessories.

Day 5: Pushkar-Kishangarh
We stop in Pushkar for a walking tour and refreshments. 

Another hour drive brings us to Kishangarh, a sleepy town founded by Kishan Singh, a Rathore prince in the first quarter of the 17th century.

Kishangarh is a treasure trove of art and handicrafts. The town claims one of India’s foremost schools of miniature paintings, founded in the 18th century. One of the most famous paintings representative of this school is that of Radha, Krishna’s consort who is portrayed as an exceptionally beautiful woman with enamoring almond eyes.

Day 6: Bundi
Bundi, an oasis in the desert state, a serene civilization far from the maddening crowds and chaos.

In ancient times, the area around Bundi was inhabited by various tribes, of which the Parihar Meenas were prominent.

Bundi is one of the few places in India with an authentic school of painting, "The Bundi School." The splendid paintings in the Bundi Fort are par excellence.

Day 7: Bijapur
On the way to Bijapur, we visit Bassi village, known for its marvelous historical forts, temples, 'Kurds,' sculptures and woodcraft.

This afternoon, we visit Bundi Palace and Chittashala Gallery which exhibits great Indian miniature paintings; and explore nearby villages.

Day 8: Dungarpur

Morning drive to Dungapur, a picturesque town inhabited by the Bheel tribe.

The city of Dungarpur is well known for its distinguished style of architecture which has been extensively followed in the royal palaces and havelis (mansions).

p>Day 9-10: Dungarpur-Ahmedabad

Morning drive to Ahmedabad.

This afternoon visit the Sabarmati Ashram, founded in 1918 by Mahatma Gandhi.

Second day visit fascinating Calico Museum of Textiles, the Adalaj Step Well and enjoy a traditional Gujrati vegetarian dinner with local dance and music.

Day 11-13: Jambugoda 

We shall engage with the people in the tribal villages of Jambughoda.  Most of the indigenous people living around Jambughoda are ‘Rathwas’ & ‘Nayaks.’

Attend Kavant Tribal Fair.

Excursions to villages.

Day 14-15: Poshina

We will observe the potters making the sacred horses in terracotta and clay utensils.

Excursion to Poshina villages offers glimpses into rural Indian life.

Day 16: Patan-Modhera-Bajana (Little Raan of Kutch)
We visit the exquisite Sun Temple in Modhera where you will see women of all ages dressed in bright yellows, orange and reds representing and honoring the sun.

Next stop is to visit the Salvi family, master weavers of the colorful Potala silk.

We continue to Bajana Village, surrounded by many tribal villages, making the stay here fascinating and especially exciting for photographers. It is famous as the world's last refuge of the Indian Wild Ass (Khur).

Day 17-18: Bhuj Villages
Visit various fascinating tribal villages surrounding Bhuj including Dhamaeka, the block printing village; Bhujodi to meet the nomadic Rabari who weave camel wool on pit looms into blankets and shawls and Banni settlements to see the traditional handicrafts of these Abyssinian settlers.  

We also visit the Shrujan organization, a network of over 2500 craftswomen spread across 85 villages. Their excellent exhibit displays the various embroidery styles done by a variety of communities and tribal groups. 

Day 19: Bhuj-Mumbai-Depart
Morning drive to Bhuj and visit the Kutch Museum and Prag Mahal followed by a walk in the old city.

We’ll enjoy our last Indian meal, a traditional Gujarat Thali lunch and then a short visit to the house of Mr. Alli Mohamad Isha, a tie and dye specialist, for an interactive workshop on the art.

Afterwards, transfer to the airport for a flight to Mumbai and depart.

November Tour

Day 1-3: Same as February tour.

Day 4: Chomu Village
En-route to Chomu, we shall stop to visit Samode Village and enjoy lunch at the Samode Palace.

We stay at Chomu Palace, a reflection of the Royal Palaces of India, is a 300-year-old elegant fortified palace hotel.

Day 5:  Pushkar-Kishangarh
We attend the Pushkar Fair.

Day 6: Bundi
Bundi, an oasis in the desert state, a serene civilization far from the maddening crowds and chaos.

In ancient times, the area around Bundi was apparently inhabited by various local tribes, of which the Parihar Meenas were prominent.

Bundi is one of the few places in India with an authentic school of painting, "The Bundi School." The splendid paintings in the Chitrashala in the Bundi Fort are par excellence and can be compared with probably the best anywhere in the world.

Day 7: Bijapur
On the way to Bijapur, we visit Bassi village, known for its marvelous historical forts, temples and 'Kurds' as well as for its sculptures and woodcraft.

This afternoon, we visit Bundi Palace and Chittashala Gallery which exhibits great Indian miniature paintings; and explore nearby villages.

Day 8-9: Narlai
We'll stop en route to visit Ranakpur Jain Temple Complex, one of five important pilgrim centers for the Jain community. Noted for its grandiose scale and elaborate ornamentation, it is surrounded by tangled forests with monkeys abounding in the courtyard.

We continue to Narlai - a royal hunting retreat, is an enchanting new destination. It is located between Jodhpur and Udaipur, amidst dramatic boulders and ancient temples.

A full day to explore the surrounding region including villages and bustling bazaars.

Day 10: Dungarpur
Morning drive to Dungapur, a picturesque town inhabited by the Bheel tribe.
Dungarpur is well known for its distinguished style of architecture which has been extensively followed in the royal palaces and havelis (mansions).

Day 11: Dungarpur-Ahmedabad

Attend Shamlaji Tribal Fair.

Day 12-14: Ahmedabad

Attend the Vautha Tribal Fair.

Additional sightseeing same as Feb tour.

Day 15-16: Jambughoda
We stop en-route and visit the World Heritage Site of Champaner (the site of Pavagarh Archeological Park) to see the vast complex of mosques built by Mahmud Begada.

Excursions to tribal villages

Day 17-18: Poshina
Drive to Posina, a beautiful place surrounded by Garasia and Bhil villages.  

We'll drive through the picturesque countryside and enjoy fascinating glimpses into rural Indian life with visits to remote tribal villages.

Day 19: Patan-Modhera-Bajana (Little Raan of Kutch)
We visit the exquisite Sun Temple in Modhera where you will see women of all ages dressed in bright yellows, orange and reds representing and honoring the sun.

Next stop is to visit the Salvi family, master weavers of the colorful Potala silk.

We continue to Bajana Village, surrounded by many tribal villages, making the stay here fascinating and especially exciting for photographers. It is famous as the world's last refuge of the Indian Wild Ass (Khur).

Day 20-21: Bhuj Villages
Visit various fascinating tribal villages surrounding Bhuj including Dhamaeka, the block printing village; Bhujodi to meet the nomadic Rabari who weave camel wool on pit looms into blankets and shawls and Banni settlements to see the traditional handicrafts of these Abyssinian settlers.  

We also visit the Shrujan organization, a network of over 2500 craftswomen spread across 85 villages. Their excellent exhibit displays the various embroidery styles done by a variety of communities and tribal groups. 

Day 22: Bhuj-Depart
Morning drive to Bhuj and visit the Kutch Museum and Prag Mahal followed by a walk in the old city.

We’ll enjoy our last Indian meal, a traditional Gujarat Thali lunch and then a short visit to the house of Mr. Alli Mohamad Isha, a tie and dye specialist, for an interactive workshop on the art.

Afterwards, transfer to the airport for a flight to Mumbai and depart.

 

Trip Details

TRIP LENGTH
FEB TOUR 19-day trip begins in Delhi and ends in Mumbai
NOV TOUR 22-day trip begins in Delhi and ends in Mumbai
2018 DATES
February 19-March 10
November 13-December 4
LAND COST
From $4825 Feb

From $5140 Nov
Single room discount. Limited quantity.
ACCOMMODATIONS
4-star and heritage hotels
GROUP SIZE
6-12 guests
INCLUDED MEALS FEB
Daily breakfast, 15 lunches, 17 dinners
INCLUDED MEALS NOV
Daily breakfast, 19 lunches, 19 dinners
 
 

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