The diverse state of Rajasthan is a stone's throw from both Delhi and Agra, the latter famed for the Taj Mahal. It is home to the Rajput warrior clan whose legacy is an amazing collection of forts and incredibly impressive castles and palaces.
India evokes images of the shimmering white marble domes of the Taj Mahal, women draped in vibrant, colourful saris, sacred cows wandering freely through the streets and spicy curries... Rajasthan is all this and much more.
Join us as we leave the highways behind and cycle through villages where we will share the road with goats and camels - perhaps even an elephant; see local women pumping water at the communal well and be overwhelmed by magnificent Moghul forts rising above deserts and towns.
*** Combine this tour with our Bicycling Kerala tour. ***
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Day 1: Welcome to Delhi
Highlights: DelhiNamaste! You will be welcomed in the traditional Indian way with hands clapped together and then transferred to our hotel
Day 2: Delhi and Kota
Highlights: Morning in Delhi, train to KotaWe will then take a sightseeing tour of the city that includes the famous India Gate, the Houses of Parliament, Connaught Place and Birla House, the former residence of Mahatma Gandhi, which has been converted into a museum. New Delhi, the capital of India is a reflection of the old and new of India, a blend of Mughal India, Hindu India, British India and modern independent India. After lunch we'll board the train to Kota.
Day 3: Bijaipur
Here we fit the bikes and cycle to the little village of Bijaipur, the countryside becoming progressively more attractive and quiet. Watch out for goats and camel carts on the road. We stay at Castle Bijaipur for two nights. The Castle Bijaipur was built in early 16th century by Rao Vijay Singh, descendent of great Rajput warrior Shakti Singh. Bijaipur was a strategic location in the former kingdom of Mewar, as it defended the frontiers against the invading Mughal and Maratha armies. The present Rao Saheb Narendra Singh has renovated and converted the Castle into one of the first heritage hotels in this region.
Total distance from Kota to Bijaipur: 120 km / 75 mi
Recommended Ride: 60 kms / 38 mi
Day 4: Bijaipur
Highlights: Lunch at Panagahr Lake
A day to either soak up the atmosphere of the castle or explore the surrounding countryside by bike and see the local way of life in this part of Rajasthan. Lunch will be at Panagarh Lake Resort, overlooked by Panagarh Fort. On the western banks of the lake, a luxury camp has been set up by the Bijaipur family. Relax in the castle grounds in the afternoon.
69 km / 43 mi (inc. 5 km unpaved)34 km / 21 mi (direct)
Day 5: Bijaipur to Udaipur
Highlights: India's largest fort
In the morning we cycle to Chittaurgarh, India's largest fort and the ultimate symbol of Rajput chivalry and pride. The glory of Rajasthan echoes with the tales of romance and valor unique to the Rajput tradition. The town boasts a ruined citadel, where the royal past lives on in its imposing forts, graceful palaces and spectacular chattris. Take an hour or so to visit Chittaurgarh fort.
Bicycling Distance: Bijaipur to Chittaurgarh: 40 kms / 25 mi
Day 6: Udaipur
Highlights: Bicycling through small villages
Today we take a beautiful day ride from Udaipur to Jhadol Safari Resort. We drive to the edge of town to commence cycling; a superb day cycling on narrow paved roads through rolling country and little villages. We relax on the lawn with a well earned drink prior to lunch at Jtadol Safari Resort, an oasis nestled in the foothills of the Aravalis at the edge of a magnificent lake. After lunch those with energy to spare could cycle back to town on a circular route, alternatively drive.Optional Bicycle Ride: 45 km / 27 mi or 90 km / 56 mi return
Day 7: Udaipur to Kumbhalgarh (102 km / 63 mi)
Highlights: Kumbhalgarh Fort and a wonderful bicycle ride
We drive out of town to commence cycling on a quiet road ? a little climbing through pleasant rural countryside with increasing views. After lunch we visit impressive Kumbhalgarh Fort. Built by Rana Kumbha in mid-15th century, Kumbhalgarh is the second most important bastion of Mewar, after Chittaurgarh, covering an area of 12 sq km. The fort lies 1,100 metres above sea level and enclosed within its fortified ramparts are palaces, temples, fields, water sources and farms fully self-contained to withstand a long siege. Kumbhalgarh provides an excellent view of the countryside where many fierce battles were fought. It is worth returning in the evening as it is floodlit.Bicycling Distance: 55 km / 34 mi
Day 8: Kumbhalgarh to Ranakpur
Highlights: Glimpse at rural life
Today we'll bicycle to Ranakpur, an easy ride on a quiet road that includes a major downhill. Named after Rana Kumbha, Ranakpur is renowned for some marvelously carved Jain temples dating from 1439; it is amongst the five holiest places of the Jain community. There is the opportunity to visit the impressive Ranakpur temples if you wish.
Bicycling Distance: 54 km / 34 mi
Day 9: Udaipur
Highlights: UdaipurWe drive to Udaipur where there will be time for a short city tour and perhaps a traditional string puppet show, before our final dinner.
Day 10: Udaipur to Delhi
Highlights: Flight back to DelhiAfter breakfast we take you to Udaipur Airport for your flight (not included) to Delhi or other destinations. We will be pleased to make additional travel arrangements within India, such as to the Taj Mahal or Ranthanbore Tiger Reserve. We wish you "bon voyage" and hope to see you again. An airport transfer is included.
HighlightsDelhi, Red Fort in Delhi, Udaipur, Staying at the Castle Bijaipur, Chittaurgarh - India's largest fort, Hindu and Jain temples, Kumbhalgarh Fort, Jodhpur
IncludesUse of a quality 27-speed hybrid bicycle; 10 days, 9 nights accommodation (one on an overnight sleeper train); 9 breakfasts, 9 lunches, 8 dinners (alcohol not included); Domestic flight additional.
Arrive/DepartDelhi Int'l Airport (DIAL)
Total Distance508 - 323 km (313 - 199 miles)
Daily Distance72 - 46 km (44 - 28 miles)
What to ExpectA Visa is required to travel to India. The US has outsourced the process to Travisa Outsourcing.
All roads are paved, and there are daily mileage options. Because of the distances between places shuttling is required.
Click on the "pins" for details about each day's highlights.
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