HISTORIC ROUTE, EXOTIC EXPERINCES
This route encompasses vast desert stretches where small oases lay cheek by jowl with magnificent cities and glorious buildings. Diverse and evocative, this desert region with its rich tradition vibrant culture and friendly people makes this sojourn unforgettable. This region breaths history: Ancient monuments, stone forts and majestic palaces tower over the arid landscapes. Cycling through the region, offers an opportunity to experience the landscape and its people at a leisurely, intimate pace.
We begin with an afternoon of sightseeing at Delhi, taking the overnight train to Jodhpur, the Blue City, where Mehrangarh Fort awaits. En route to Udaipur, we visit the Jain Temple at Ranakpur with its exquisite stonework, and also enjoy a bike ride through the Aravalli hills and local sightseeing. A ride to Kumbalgarh fort and palace offers panoramic views. Pushkar beckons: Desert back roads take us there, in time for an evening walk to the hilltop temple. Jaipur offers some historic sightseeing: Amber fort, City Palace, Jantar Mantar before we head to Sariska partly on pedal power. Game drives and wildlife views later, we reach Keoladeo Park, cycling through while bird watching. Finally, we pay homage to the hauntingly beautiful Taj Mahal and Fatehpur Sikri at Agra, before transferring to Delhi.
- Agra’s Red Fort, Fatehpur Sikri and the Taj Mahal
- Exploring the ‘Pearl of Rajasthan’, Udaipur
- The fascinating palaces, forts, temples and shrines
- Tiger spotting and wildlife at Sariska National Park
- 15th century Jain Temple at Ranakpur
- Fascinating Rajasthan culture, architecture and cuisine
Day 2Morning backstreets biking & afternoon sightseeing in Delhi, Overnight train to Jodhpur
After delicious breakfast at the hotel, we will have a leisurely 2-hour cycle ride on some of the quieter backstreets of Delhi. This short ride would be an ideal occasion to get used to our bikes and start the exploration of India on wheels.
Thereafter, we will have lunch and also enjoy a short sightseeing tour that takes us to the Red Fort and stroll in one of the crowded street of Old Delhi. In the early evening, we will be transferred to the Railway Station to board the sleeper train to Jodhpur. Our bikes will be transferred to Jodhpur by road in separate vehicle from Delhi.
Day 3Arrive Jodhpur & Afternoon sightseeing on cycles
We arrive in the morning at Jodhpur and transfer to hotel and relax for some time. In the afternoon, we get out on bikes for the local sightseeing. We will visit Mehrangarh fort (Majestic Fort), one of the most impressive & formidable structures in India. An architectural marvel that boasts of a splendid palace with intricately carved latticed windows the Fort spreads over an area of around 5 kms. An imposing structure that overlooks the city of Jodhpur, the Fort was built in 1459 CE and stands proudly on a 125m long hill as a reminder of the royal splendor and bravery of royal families of those times.
Day 4Cycle to Udaipur- Via Ranakpur (Cycling - 74kms)
Jodhpur - Ranakpur
Today, we take cycling route towards Udaipur for about 40 Kms mostly on the Backroads with less traffic and a fascinating insight into rural life, after covering the distance of 40 Kms on cycle, we would be given a short transfer to Ranakpur, a small town situated in the hills of Pali district. It is home to a very beautiful and one of the biggest and most important Jain temple-complexes of India and one of the five most important pilgrimage sites of Jainism. The main temple that we visit is the Adinath or Chaumukha temple (the four-faced temple) dedicated to the first tirthankara, Adinath and was built during the reign of Rana Kumbha, one of the gifted liberal and gifted Rajput monarchs of the 15th century.
Ranakpur - Udaipur
We then take a short transfer of 15 Kms and get down from vehicle and continue our cycling for further 34 Kms through the beautiful Aravalli hills and finally taking a transfer to reach the beautiful lakeside town of Udaipur.
Day 5Udaipur exploration on Cycles (Cycling - 26Kms)
Located on the east side of Lake Pichola and surrounded by Aravalli Hills, Udaipur is called by different nomenclature such as 'city of rise' and 'Venice of East'. During this leisurely ride,we will visit the complex of City Palace. There are several different palaces, with interlinking courtyards, terraces and gardens that dates back to sixteenth century. There are panoramic views from the palace hill of Lake Pichola and Lake Palace hotel which completely covers the island of Jag Niwas.Contuing with our ride, we reach the Jagdish Temple, a large 17th century Hindu Temple and a fine example of Aryan architecture. There are plenty of Market areas on our route and there may be the opportunity to buy souvenirs. Overnight at our Udaipur Hotel.
Day 6Udaipur-Kumbhalgarh, visit of Kumbhalgarh Fort (Cycling - 65Kms)
Udaipur - Kumbhalgarh
After delicious breakfast, we are given short transfer of about half an hour to Iswal passing through the rural region of Rajasthan. From Iswal, we mount on bikes and ready to explore the beautiful sceneries and heading generally northwards through lots of sleepy villages, to finally reach Kumbhalgarh where we have an overnight stay.
Today's route is hardest as roads are very uneven and undulating. Then, we visit Kumbhalgarh Fort whose fortification extends to over 36kilometers and encloses hundreds of Jain and Hindu Temples. We will have enough time to explore the beautiful and panoramic views from the walls. Moreover, walls of these fort are considered second largest wall in the world first being Great wall of China.
Then, return to the Hotel.
Day 7Kumbhalgarh-Pushkar (Cycling- 41Kms)
Kumbhalgarh - Pushkar
Today's itinerary is divided into two portions. We begin cycling directly from our hotel. First session of cycling passes through villages on the roads towards the Gomti Village. Here, we board our support vehicle and take the route of 03 hrs to Ajmer from where we resume our cycling to Pushkar. This ride will last for couple of hours and provides the opportunity to pass through dessert and traversing the Aravalis hills before entering the town of Pushkar. On arrival, we check in at the hotel. Later, we go for a visit to the Brahma Temple and the Sacred Lake. This is an important pilgrimage spot for the Hindus as it is the only temple of Lord Brahma in India. Lord Brahma is known as the creator of the world as per Hindu mythology. Evening is free to explore the local bazaar of Pushkar.
Day 8Pushkar-Jaipur (Cycling - 95Kms)
Pushkar - Jaipur
Today, we resume our exploration of the backroads of Rajasthan, we head North from Pushkar across arid farmland with patches of cultivation and through a number of small villages of Rupangarh which is locally known by being a Marble centre. Marble used in construction of the Taj Mahal was excavated from this region. In the vicinity, there is Sambhar Lake. It is being India's largest Saline lake and is the source of most of Rajasthan's salt production. From where, we have choice to continue our ride towards south of Lake to Naraina Railway station crossing, where we board our supporting vehicle and cover the remaining distance to Jaipur. Overnight stay in the Hotel. (Ascent 410m, Decent 520m)
Day 9Sightseeing in Jaipur (No cycling)
A day off from the hectic schedule of biking, as we drive to the ancient capital of Amer, 11 km from Jaipur. Famous for its massive Amber Fort, Amer was the ancient capital of Kachhawaha dynasty for 6 centuries. We take an elephant ride,an experience to remember for a long time, to reach the Fort situated on the hill. Having appreciated its beauty and captured that in our cameras we proceed to the City Palace, a perfect blend of Rajasthani and Mughal architecture. Next, we visit the Jantar Mantar, a Solar Observatory built in the 18th century; an astronomical treasure house that measures time according to the movement of the Sun to an error of just 2 seconds with solar devices that give accurate astrological predictions as well till date. We also visit the Hawa Mahal (Palace of Winds), a five-storied facade of pink sandstone. It was built in the year 1799 to allow royal ladies to watch processions and festivities on the road through its 953 ‘Jharokas’ or small windows without being seen by the public.
Day 10Jaipur- Sariska National Park (Cycling - 75Kms)
Jaipur - Sariska National Park
Leaving back the kingdom of Rajputs, we are given transfer in our support vehicle to Ramgarh from where we mount on Cycles and follow peaceful roads that meander through a part of the Aravalli Hills. On the way, we come across many farms and villages and neat fields dotted with trees. While traversing open valleys and rocky ridges, we will have a reasonable degree of ascent and decent. As our destination approaches, final session of cycling via the small town of Pratapgarh becomes more interesting. On arrival, we check-in at our accommodation. Rest of the evening is free to relax and get prepared for the exploration of the Sariska National Park next day. (Ascent 190m, Decent 240m).
Day 11Sariska National Park
Complete day is to explore the flora and fauna of Reserve.This reserve is well nestled in Aravali Hills covering 800 sq km area divided into the grasslands, dry deciduous forests, sheer cliffs and rocky landscape. We will depart for the Morning Safari and will observe different animal species namely leopard, Sambhar, Chital, Nilgai, Four-horned antelope, Wild boar, Rhesus macaque, Langur, and Hyena and Jungle cat. Returning to the lodge for the breakfast. Thereafter, we will explore the Reserve on our bikes. This experience would be enriching as we peddle through Park inhaling fresh air. We would spot a large variety of bird species coming to small ponds to quench their thrust. Late afternoon, there is an Option to leave for another game drive or visit the nearby village by bike.
Day 12Sariska- Bharatpur (cycling - 60Kms)
After breakfast, we will ride on bikes through the park listening to the chirping of birds. We will see the farmers and women in bright colourful attire working in their field. Continuing our route towards the East and then to the South, we come closer to our next destination. We will board the support vehicle for the last stretch of route. On arrival, check-in at the hotel. (Ascent 55m, Descent 80m)
Day 13Bharatpur- Agra via Fatehpur Sikri (cycling - 34Kms)
Bharatpur - Fatehpur Sikri
Today, we have an option of getting up early for observing the Birds in Park. The amateurs enthusiasts of Wildlife must opt for this experience. This tour will be arranged by your guide and paid locally. Those who opt for this tour, will return to the Lodge for the breakfast, before the group begins the cycling on the short and final ride of the tour. We will cycle easily on back roads to the former Mughal capital of Fatehpur Sikri, the deserted royal city constructed by the Mughal Emperor, Akbar. This impressive and well-preserved citadel served as the political capital of Akbar for 14 years until in 1585 he abandoned Fatehpur Sikri due to dearth of water.
After the visit, we board the support vehicle and head towards Agra. On arrival, check in at the hotel.
Day 14Agra Sightseeing & afternoon drive to Delhi
Agra - Delhi
Today is the day to strike off the Taj from our bucket list. We rise early to visit this astonishing wonder in white marble. Taj Mahal, a symbol of eternal love, stands on the southern bank of River Yamuna. It was built by the 5th Mughal Emperor, Shah Jahan, in memory of his beloved wife, Mumtaz Mahal, who died in the 16th century CE. The charisma of the amazing Taj Mahal never fails to leave a first time visitor spellbound.
visit the Agra Red Fort, a historical fort in the city of Agra and its walls are richly adorned with red sandstone. Till 1638, this fort was main residence of the emperors of the Mughal Dynasty. Thereafter the capital of Mughal was shifted from Agra to Red Fort in Delhi.
After the visit, we drive back to Delhi. Upon arrival, we have the option to visit the vibrant local bazaars of Delhi for last-minute shopping before we pack up for our flight to our next destination the next day.