Day 2: Arrive at Delhi in the evening or at night. You are greeted at the airport by our agent and then ushered to a waiting vehicle and its driver. You are driven to an airport hotel where you are assisted with your check in. The next day’s plans are briefly reviewed and the agent/escort hands over travel documents such as your air tickets and hotel vouchers to you.
Day 3: Delhi - Kathmandu. Board the mid-morning flight to Kathmandu. Arrive at Kathmandu and you are greeted at the Kathmandu airport by an Easy Tours Facilitator and your driver. Transfer to your hotel & check-in with our assistance. Our office will get your final Tibetan permit stamps processed this afternoon. Afternoon – Start your exploration of Nepal with a visit to the Swayambhunath temple, Katmandu’s oldest and best known religious monument. With a history that goes back at least 1500 years for the location, this ancient Stupa is world renown and is visible from miles (from all over the Kathmandu Valley). Also tour Boudhanath Stupa (a World Heritage Site) and Pashupatinath temple, which is one of the most sacred Hindu shrines in the world.
Day 4: Kathmandu. You have the optional of experiencing the Everest flight this morning. Take a tour of Kathmandu city. Visit `Kumari` the Living Goddess, Kasthamandap, the Big Bell, Kal Bharab etc.
Visit the Swayambhunath temple, Katmandu’s oldest and best known religious monument. With a history that goes back about 2500 years, this ancient Stupa is world renown and is visible from miles (from all over the Kathmandu Valley). Afternoon - Take a tour of `Patan City`, one of the three queen cities of the valley. Patan is the city of fine arts, and we visit Durbar Square, Krishna Mandir, and Mahavihar, the Golden Temple of Lord Buddha, built in the 12th century. Also visit the Tibetan centre.
Day 5: Kathmandu - Lhasa. Check out of your hotel and board the morning flight to Lhasa. The spectacular flight crosses the main Himalayan range and the mountain views are magnificent. After arriving at Gonggar Airport in Tibet, it's a 2-hour drive to Lhasa where you will check in to your Hotel. You are at leisure for the balance of the afternoon - due to Lhasa's high altitude, it's advisable to rest and get acclimatized for the remainder of the day.
Day 6: Lhasa. Begin your explorations of Tibet with escorted tours of several of Lhasa's major monasteries. Among these is the Sera Monastery, one of the best-preserved Buddhist monasteries in Tibet. Several hundred monks live and study within its whitewashed walls and golden roofs. After lunch you will visit the Norbulingka, the summer palace of the Dalai Lama, as well as the Jokhang Temple. This temple is one of the the most sacred shrines in Tibet and there is always a procession of devout Tibetans paying their homage in the complex. Your next stop is nearby and actually surrounds the Jokhang - this is Barkhor - the central market of Lhasa, situated in a maze of narrow cobblestone streets that are fascinating to traverse as you absorb the local culture.
Day 7: Lhasa. This morning you will visit the iconic Potala Palace. The Imperial palace towers above the city of Lhasa and contains numerous impressive state rooms and also many important Buddhist chapels. There has been a palace on this site since the 5th or 6th centuries - the present palace was constructed in the 17th century. Finish your day with a visit to the awe inspiring Drepung Monastery. Founded in the 14th century, this monastery was once the largest in the world, housing around 10,000 monks. There are now well below a 1000 monks here. The monastery is one of the best remaining examples of its kind as it was left relatively unscathed during the Cultural Revolution.
Day 8: Lhasa - Gyantse. Check out of your hotel and proceed on the drive to Gyantse and Shigatse. As you travel on the Friendship Highway, you will stop at the spectacular Khamba La pass (4,794 meters – 15,728 feet) from where you get stunning views (across serenely beautiful Yamdrok-Tso Lake) of the magnificent Himalayas, including Nazin-Kang-Sa (7,252 meters – 23,793 feet). Your next stop is at Karo La, another mountain pass (5,045 meters – 16,552 feet). Here you are sure to be awed by a very close up view of a spectacular glacier.
Continue on with your drive, passing through many beautiful valleys and colorful Tibetan villages, until you arrive in the town of Gyantse. Check in to your hotel on arrival.
Day 9: Gyantse - Shigatse - Lhasa. Start your day with visits to the Gyantse Dzong and Gyantse Kumbum. The Dzong is a 14th century Fort and provides amazing views of the town of Gyantse itself as well as the surrounding Nyang Chu Valley. The gold-domed Stupa of Kumbum is one of the largest of its kind and it has many small chapels that contain an impressive selection of Tibetan Buddhist murals. After exploring Gyantse, drive about 90 km’s to Tibet’s second largest city, Shigatse. Explore the fascinating local market and then proceed for a tour of the Tashilhunpo Monastery. This monastery is one of the largest functioning monasteries in Tibet and this tour is a fascinating peek at the activities that make up the everyday life of the monks. Drive back to Lhasa in the afternoon. Check in at your hotel on arrival.
Day 10: Lhasa - Kathmandu - Delhi. Board the morning flight to Kathmandu. Arrive at Kathmandu & transfer to the flight to Delhi. Arrive at Delhi and check in to your hotel.
Day 11: Delhi - Agra. Board the early morning (6 am) Express train - two hour journey - to Agra. Half day tour of Agra – The tour includes a visit to Itmad -Ud –Daulah’s tomb, built by the Mughal Emperor Jehangir’s queen as a memorial to her father. It has beautiful ornamentation with ‘Pietra Dura’ inlay and lattice marble screens. The mausoleum rests in a walled garden with a view of the river Yamuna. Constructed in the year 1628, most historians believe that its design provided the inspiration for the Taj Mahal. You then visit the original red sandstone fort in North India, the Agra Fort. It was built in 1565 by Emperor Akbar, the greatest Mughal ruler of India. Its maze of courtyards, marble mosque, and private chambers all serve as reminders of the grandeur of the Mughal Empire.
There is a break for lunch. Afternoon - Visit one of the Seven Wonders of the World, the incomparable Taj Mahal. The world’s greatest monument dedicated to love; the Taj Mahal was built by Emperor Shah Jahan in 1653 AD as a memorial to his beloved queen, Mumtaz Mahal. This pure white marble mausoleum took 22 years and 22,000 craftsmen to build.
Tour the amazing monument and its surroundings till it is time to admire the sun’s rays setting on the Taj Mahal’s façade. Agra is famous for its marble art & manufacturing of the same. Board the express train to Delhi in the evening. Arrive at Delhi and check in to your hotel.
Day 12: Delhi - International flight. Check out of your hotel at your leisure (by noon) and enjoy a brief city tour of Old Delhi – The tour of Old Delhi includes visits to the Jama Masjid (1650 AD) which is the largest mosque in India, and the Red Fort (1639-48) which was the seat of the Moghul Empire for more than 250 years. Most international flights depart in the late evening. If your flight departs late, you can now enjoy a half day city tour of New Delhi – we will arrange for your guide to stay with you for the afternoon. This tour of New Delhi begins with a visit to the Tomb of Mughal Emperor Humayun and then continues with a drive through Lutyens New Delhi. This includes the Embassy area (Diplomatic enclave), various Victorian era Government buildings, India Gate, a golden domed Sikh Temple (Bangla Sahib Gurudwara), Birla Temple and Connaught Place, which is New Delhi’s main shopping area. You drive past Safdarjang’s Tomb (1753 AD) while driving to the Qutab Minar (1193 A.D.). This is a striking medieval Persian tower of victory (73 m – 239 feet high). Within the Qutab complex, amidst the ruins of the Quwat-ul-Islam mosque, stands one of the amazing Ashoka Pillars. This Iron pillar has withstood the vagaries of the weather (and mankind) has not rusted in over 1500 years. Your car & chauffer are available till your assisted check in at the airport. Our services end at Delhi airport, where you are assisted by an Easy Tours Facilitator.
Day 13: Arrive in the United States.
* Daily breakfasts at all the hotels
* All other meals as specified
* Hotel check-in is at 2 pm & check-out is at noon for almost all the hotels
* All transfers and sightseeing by your personal Vehicle
* Services of an Easy Tours' Tour Director or the best English speaking local guides at all destinations as per the itinerary.
* Cycle-rickshaw ride through the ancient bazaar of Chandni Chowk in Old Delhi
* AN Easy Tours EXCLUSIVE: Horse drawn carriage ride to the Taj Mahal in Agra
* Applicable monument entrance fees as per the itinerary.
* Representative for assistance on all arrival and departure transfers.
* Delhi – Agra – Delhi Train travel by AC Luxury Chair Car
* Tibet visa * Bottled water during sightseeing/excursions and long drives. * All currently applicable taxes.
* Everest Flight in Nepal
* International Travel
* Any expenses of a personal nature like tips, laundry, telephone calls, drinks etc.
* Meals other than those specified above
* Travel insurance, India & Nepal visa etc.
* Camera fees – still & video.