01 DAY: ARRIVAL MUMBAI
Meeting and assistance on arrival at the airport, our representative welcome and escort you by a private car and transfer to the hotel, whilst the room keys and check-in is organized, our representative would hand over the documents and brief the tour programme to you. Overnight at the hotel.
Mumbai is a cluster of Seven Islands and derives its name from Mumba Devi, the patron goddess of the koli fisher folk, its oldest inhabitants. Mumbai pulsates with activity. It is a city that is disciplined by no time frame neither day nor night. It is also the country's financial powerhouse, the nation's industrial heartland, and its economic nerve center. Dazzling shopping arcades, exciting sport activity, nightclubs & discotheques, theatre & music, gourmet restaurants and interesting sightseeing. It offers visitors a heady mix of all this and more
02 DAY: MUMBAI
After breakfast takes a sightseeing tour of Mumbai, drive to Gateway of India and from here cruise by motorboats to Elephanta Caves. A flight of 100 steps takes you to the top of the hill where it is set. The caves houses large pillars that seem to hold the ceiling which is made of cross beams. The picturesque presentations of the 9 marvelous sculptured panels, set on the walls are awe-inspiring. The most famous of the panels is the Trimurthi, or triple-headed Shiva, where the God is depicted as the destroyer, the preserver and the creator. Later in the afternoon cruise back to Gateway of India, one can have lunch at the Taj Hotel or other several good Restaurants like Leopold & Mondegar serving continental cuisines. Later visit Prince of Wales Museum, Parliament House, Marine Drive, Jain Temple, Hanging Gardens, Return back to the hotel for overnight stay.
Note: Elephanta Caves and Prince of Wales museum are closed on every Monday.
03 DAY: MUMBAI - PUNE (180 KMS: 4 HRS)
After breakfast check out the hotel and drive to Pune. En route Lonavala to see the Then visit the famous Bhushi Dam, the most visited place of Lonavala during monsoons. Later proceed to Pune. On arrival, transfer to the hotel. Rest of the evening is free to explore this cultural capital of Maharashtra and shopping in the local markets. Overnight at the hotel.
Pune: Located in Sahyadri hills near the west coast of India, Pune is a fascinating city with a healthy climate all year around. The city was one of the pivotal basesof the 17th century great Maratha ruler Chhatrapati Shivaji, who was born at the Shivneri Fort here. Pune became the seat of the enterprising Peshwas, under whom Maratha power rose into a major political force. The Peshwas were renowned patrons of the arts and in their time, enriched the city with temples, gardens and educational institutions. It was here that Lokmanya Bal Gangadhar Tilak introduced the principle of Swadeshi during the Freedom Movement.Today Pune is one of the leading metros in India, with the Film and Television Institute of India and National Defence Academy based here
04 DAY: PUNE.
After breakfast, take sightseeing tour of the city visiting Lal Deval (Synagogue) The red-brick-and-stone structure built in the English Gothic style, The Osho International Commune is in Koregaon Park, attracting thousands of foreigners wishing to take part in the meditation courses organized by the Ashram. Aga Khan Palace True to its name this place boasts of Italianate arches and spacious lawns, Shindyanchi Chhatri, amongst the architectural prides of Pune, the memorial to the great warrior Mahadji Shinde, Pataleshwar Cave Temples lies in the heart of the city, at Shivaji Nagar . This 8th century rock-cut temple, hewn from a massive single rock, has huge pillars, a Shiva shrine and a Nandi bull. Kesari Wada, Museum of Arthropoda, museum of Natural History. Vishrambaug Wada was a three storied mansion of the Peshwas. Kirti Mandir - a museum of historical glory with antique material. Raja Dinkar Kelkar Museum is housed in a quaint Rajasthani-style building, Saras Baug. After visit return to the hotel for overnight stay.
05 DAY: PUNE BHIMASHANKAR AURANGABAD (226 KMS: 6 HRS)
After breakfast, check out the hotel and drive to Aurangabad. Enroute visit Bhimashankar, it is the temple containing one of the five Jyotirlinga found in Maharashtra. Nana Fadnis, an eminent statesman of the Peshwa days, constructed the beautiful Shiva Temple at Bhimashankar. The wooden entrance of the temple is beautifully carved. On Mahashivratri day, over 20,000 devotees attend a special religious fair. Bhimashankar is endowed with beautiful scenery and an all-around vibrant atmosphere. Also visit Bombay Point, Gupta Bhimashankar: the origin of Bhima River, Hanuman Tank and Nagphani Point. Later proceed to Aurangabad. On arrival, transfer to the hotel. Overnight at the hotel.
Aurangabad: Malik Ambar, the Prime Minister of Murtaza Nizam Shah II, founded the city of Aurangabad in 1610 A.D, on the site of a village, Khirki. When Fateh Khan, Malik Ambar's son succeeded the throne in 1626, he named the city 'Fatehpur'. In 1653, when Aurangzeb became the Viceroy of the Deccan, he made it his capital, and renamed it Aurangabad. Maurya rule heralded the advent of Buddhism in the state of Maharashtra. The earliest caves at Ajanta and Pithalkora were excavated in the 2nd century BC, during the Satvahana era. Paithan, then known as Pratishthana, was an important trade centre at the time Aurangabad, 400 kms from Mumbai, is linked by air too. Spectacular rock cut caves and cave paintings exist at two nearby places, Ajanta and Ellora.
06 DAY: AURANGABAD
After breakfast takes a sightseeing tour of Aurangabad visiting Bibi ka Maqbara Built by Azam Shah in 1678, the Bibi ka Maqbara is a son's loving tribute to his mother, Begum Rabia Durrani, the Queen of Mughal emperor Aurangzeb. Standing spectacularly on the lawns of the landscaped garden with ponds, fountains and water channels, the white marbled monument rises majestically in an intentional bid to copy and rival the world famous Taj Mahal of Agra and Panchakki - An engineering feat of the time is the Panchakki, or the water mill built by Malik Ambar in 1695. The water, channeled from a spring on a distant hill was used to power the flourmill and grind grain for the pilgrims. Also visit Daulatabad, once known as Devagiri, is a magnificent 12th century fortress standing atop a hill is one of the few invincible forts in Maharashtra. Mohammed Bin Tughluq, the sultan of Delhi gave the name Daulatabad 'The city of fortune'. Series of trick defense and secret escapes routes are the famous features of this fort. Jami Masjid, Bharatmata Mandir, the Chand Minar, Elephant Tank and 'Chini Mahal' or Chinese Palace are the important monuments inside the fort. Khuldabad ("Heavenly Abode"), a walled town near Aurangabad, is the Karbala (holy shrine) of Deccan Muslims. Many historical figures are buried here including Aurangzeb, the last major Mughal emperor. Return to the hotel for overnight stay.
07 DAY: AURANGABAD AJANTA (105 KMS: 2 HRS)
After breakfast for excursion to famous Ajanta caves. Ajanta is one of the few historical and architectural marvels of India. Recognized as the World Heritage Site today, it was discovered during the 19th century by a group of British officers who were on a tiger hunt. The Ajanta group of caves, located deep within the Sahyadri hills above the Waghora, depicts the story of Buddhism that prevailed here during 200 BC to 650 AD. Ajanta's wondrous cave temples are cut into the rocky sides of a dramatic crescent-shaped gorge, at the head of which is a waterfall that drops over the mountain rim in a series of seven steps to a pool far below deep inside the mountain are the Buddhist chaitya, vihara prayer and monastery caves. They cover a span of 800 years where under the royal patronage of ruling dynasties, professional artists helped Buddhist monks to create magnificent murals narrating the story of Buddha in his cycle of incarnations, while simultaneously creating a painted record of the panorama of life in ancient India. Etched and painted in mineral dyes, the paintings have a languorous stylized beauty and magical eloquence. Overnight at the hotel.
Ajanta:It was only in the 19th century, that the Ajanta group of caves, lying deep within the Sahyadri hills, cut into the curved mountain side, above the Waghora river, were discovered. A group of British officers on a tiger hunt, stumbled on these ancient works of art. They depict the story of Buddhism, spanning the period from 200 BC to 650 AD. The 29 caves were built as secluded retreats of the Buddhist monks, who taught and performed rituals in the Chaityas and Viharas, the ancient seats of learning, and nerve - centres of the Buddhist cultural movement.
Note: The Ajanta Caves are closed to public on all Monday and Ellora caves on Tuesday.
08 DAY: AURANGABAD ELLORA (30 KMS: ˝ HR) - GRISHNESHWARA
After breakfast take a sightseeing tour of Ellora, one of the highly visited World heritage sites of India. It houses 34 monasteries and temples with some exclusive uninterrupted sequence of monuments that date back from 600 to 1000 AD. The temples of Ellora are dedicated to Brahmanism, Jainism, and Buddhism. A particular interest are the architectural marvel of the monolithic Kailasa Temple, the Buddhist Vishvakarma Chaitya and Vihara, the famous Jain cave number 32 famous for a magnificent Yakshi statue and ceiling paintings. It also has some of the excellent stonework depicting the legends related to Lord Shiva. Later visit Grishneshwara Temple. It is an ancient pilgrimage site revered as the abode of one of the 12 Jyotirlinga of Shiva. It is located at a distance of 11 km from Daulatabad near Aurangabad in Maharashtra. Daulatabad was once known as Devagiri. After visit return to the Aurangabad for overnight stay.
Ellora: The Ellora caves, 34 in number, are carved into the sides of a basaltic hill, 30 kms from Aurangabad. The finest specimens of cave - temple architecture, they house elaborate facades and exquisitely adorned interiors. These structures representing the three faiths of Hinduism, Buddhism and Jainism, were carved during the 350 AD to 700 AD period. The 12 caves to the south are Buddhist, the 17 in the centre dedicated to Hinduism, and the 5 caves to the north are Jain.
Note: The Ajanta Caves are closed to public on all Monday and Ellora caves on Tuesday.
09 DAY: AURANGABAD SHIRDI (130 KMS: 4 HRS)
After breakfast, check out of the hotel and drive to Shirdi. On arrival, transfer to the hotel. Later proceed to "The Temple of Sai Baba of Shirdi". Spend your day at the sacred atmosphere of Shirdi. Roam around in the spiritual atmosphere. Overnight at the hotel.
Shirdi is that mystical magical town near the holy city of Nasik, close to Mumbai. This hallowed town exudes such intense devotion, that even the casual visitor is bound to be charged with fervour. Shirdi was the abode of the saint Sai Baba, who lived here for eighty years - and died here over eighty years ago. It is said that Sai Baba himself calls his devotees to Shirdi and that his blessings can heal even the deepest wound. Pilgrims throng for a brief "darshan" at Samadhi Mandir, the shrine of Sai Baba where his mortal remains were interred. Next to the shrine is the peaceful Masjid where Sai Baba spent most of his life. The sacred fire called "dhuni" still burns here and its ash or "udhi" is smeared on devotees. The Chavadi is a small building where Sai Baba used to spend every alternate night.
10 DAY: SHIRDI - SHANISHINGANAPUR - SHIRDI (70 KMS: 2 HRS ONE WAY)
After breakfast takes an excursion to Shanishinganapur. Visit the presiding deity of Shinganapur, Sri Shaneshwara or Shanidev- the personification of the planet Saturn is worshipped with utmost reverence and devotion by multitudes of people from all over the world. The spectacle of the deity in black stone is overwhelming. A unique aspect of this place is that no temple structure houses the Shanidev. There is only a simple platform on which stands the swayambhu idol, in black stone. After visit drive back to Shirdi. Evening is free to move around the temple area and for shopping in the local markets. Overnight at the hotel.
11 DAY: SHIRDI - NASIK (95 KMS: 2 HRS)
After breakfast, check out the hotel and drive to Nasik. On arrival, transfer to the hotel. Later explore the holy city visiting; the ornamental Sunder Narayan Temple is rich in carvings and domed porticoes. the Kapaleeswara Temple, The Kapaleeswara Temple, Rameshwar or Naro Shankar Temple with its white marble structure is the richest and the most elaborate., Balaji Temple built on the confluence of the Godavari and the Saraswati (a mythical river that flows underground) houses copper images of Balaji, Kala Ram Temple, the city's holiest temple with black stone deities of Rama, Sita and Lakshman, Ram Kund (pool) said to have been used by Rama and Sita during their exile. Its holy water is believed to provide moksha (liberation of the soul). More interestingly, the water has the ability to dissolve bones and the remains of famous Indians have ended up here. Return to the hotel for overnight stay.
Nasik: A delightful town, usually bustling with fervent crowds, Nasik is a classic mélange of the past and the present. It paves way to many fascinating forts and royally graceful temples that possess an aura of exuberance. This part of the terra firma is more than a dream destination for zealous lovers of glorious travel. It plays abode to most of the industries located in Maharashtra, including the Security Printing Press of the government, the nation's currency printer. The core of commerce and trade, it was earlier the country's largest market arena.
12 DAY: NASIK - TRIMBAKESHWAR - NASIK (35 KMS: 1 HRS ONE WAY)
After breakfast take an excursion to Trimbakeshwar. Visit the famous Trimbakeshwar Temple and as the source of the Godavari River. Trimbakeshwar enshrines one of the 12 jyotirlingas dedicated to Shiva and this one is considered to be the main Jyotirlinga. After visit drive back to Nasik. Evening is free for shopping in the local markets. Overnight at the hotel.
13 DAY: NASIK - MUMBAI (185 KMS: 4 HRS) - HOMETOWN (BY AIR)
After breakfast, check out of the hotel and drive to Mumbai. On arrival transfer to the airport to board your flight to hometown. Tour concludes here with happy memories.