Muslim Pilgrimage Tour
Day 01 : Arrive Delhi
On arrival at the airport meet with our representative and transfer to the hotel. Overnight at hotel.
Day 02 : Delhi
Morning after breakfast Pay visit to Islamic sacred places such as Jama Masjid, Humayon Tomb, and Dargah of Nizamuddin Aulia. Afternoon sightseeing tour of the city.
Jama Masjid : This exquisite red-sandstone and marble mosque, where thousands gather to pray daily, was built between 1644 and 1658 by 5,000 laborers. The mosque is one of the first important examples of Mughal architecture in India, and its design prefigures that of the Taj Mahal. The onion-shaped dome and tapering minarets are traditional Mughal elements, but the stripes on the domes and minarets were an innovation added by Shah Jaha n. Climb the south minaret to see the domes up close (women may not do so without a man).
Open daily to non-Muslims from 8:30 a.m. in winter and 7 a.m. in summer until sunset; closed between 12:15 p.m. and 1:45 p.m. daily.
Humayun's Tomb : Akbar, Humayun's son and the greatest of India's Mughal emperors, built this awe-inspiring monument, probably between 1562 and 1571. His intention, righteously achieved, was to honor his father, India's second Mughal ruler, who had fallen down a flight of stairs to his death. Less flamboyant than the Taj Mahal (which it helped to inspire), Humayun's tomb, composed of earthy red sandstone and pure white marble, is nonetheless quietly impressive. The tomb is surrounded by a meticulously kept garden, divided into precise squares. The garden recently underwent extensive renovation, and water now flows through its hand-chiseled stone channels and fou ntains (previously dry for four centuries).
Dargah of Nizamuddin Aulia : About 16 days after Id-ul-fitr, many Muslims and some non-Muslims in and around Delhi take part in another festive occasion they call the Satrahvin Sharif - literally Holy Seventeenth. This is the Urs or death anniversary of Hazrat Amir Khusrau, the favorite companion of 12th century Saint Nizamuddin Aulia. Thousands of people throng the twin Dargah (tomb) and offer their nazrana (of flowers, chadurs and sweets), say the fatehas (oblation), tie threads of mannat (vow) on the tomb's jali, or just sit there listening to ecstatic qawwalis. There is also Charaghan (illumination with lamps) inside the tomb, and outside, everyone makes merry in a colorful fete, which goes on for three to four days.
Red Fort (Lal Qal'ah) : The greatest of Delhi's Mughal palace-cities, the Red Fort was built by Shah Jahan in the 17th century and was home to about 3,000 people in its heyday. Pass through the Lahore gate and continue down the Chatta Chowk, once the royal harem's shopping district and now a bazaar. On the other side of a huge lawn sits the Diwan-i-Am (Hall of Public Audience). Shah Jahan heard his subjects' pleas here from his royal throne in the center. Other highlights include the elaborate Diwan-i-Khas, the emperor's private suite with sitting room, bedroom, and prayer room.
Qutub Minar : The slender 239-foot column of Qutub Minar was erected in 1199 by Qutbuddin Aibak, the first Islamic sultan of Delhi. It is in a complex of buildings that mingles Islamic and Hindu decorative styles. The Tomb of Iltutmish, built in 1235, is an impressive square red stone chamber bearing a profusion of inscriptions, geometric patterns, and arabesques. The Quwwatu'l-Islam Masjid, decorated with both Koranic texts and Hindu motifs, was the first mosque in India; in its courtyard stands an iron pillar from the fourth century, decorated with Sanskrit inscriptions.
Rest of the day free for own activity. Overnight at hotel.
Day 03 : Delhi / Agra ( 203 km)
Morning after breakfast drive to Agra. On arrival check in at the hotel.
(Today we visit Taj Mahal, symbol of eternal love, which stands on the banks of River Yamuna. It was built by the 5th Mughal emperor, Shah Jehan in the year 1631 in memory of his wife, Mumtaz Mahal. It was completed in 22 years. Further we visit Agra Fort, taken over from the Lodhis by the Mughal Emperor Akbar in the late 16th century. The Fort can be more accurately described as a walled palatial city. It was built from red sandstone, often inlaid with white marble & intricate decorations.
We will also visit Sikandara, Akbar's tomb. His son Jahangir completed the construction of the tomb in the year 1613. Itmad-Ud-Daulah's Tomb, built by Nur Jahan between 1622 and 1628. It belongs to the father of Nur Jahan, Ghiyas-ud-Din Beg. He was the Wajir (Chief Minister of Emperor Jehangir). This white marble tomb was. This tomb was the first complete marble Mughal structure.) Later transfer to the hotel for overnight at hotel.
Day 04 : Agra / Fatehpur Sikri / Jaipur ( 230 km)
Morning after breakfast drive to Jaipur, en route we will visit Fatehpur Sikri (Ghost Capital), the political capital of India's Mughal Empire under Akbar's reign, from the year 1571 until 1585, when it was abandoned, ostensibly due to lack of water. We visit Emperor Akbar's Residential complex, Mosque & Tomb of Salim Chisti.
Fatehpur Sikri : Fatehpur Sikri, 38 km from Agra, was one of the capital cities of Akbar after the childless Mughal was bl essed with a son with the blessings of the Sufi saint, Sheikh Salim Chisti, who lived here. The new capital came up in 1569. Through the Juxtaposition of the buildings seems whimsical, they are thoughtfully planned, imparting an atmosphere of playful brilliance. Towering, walls on three sides surround the rectangular-shaped city, accessible through nine gates, and an artificial lake is located on the west. Credit for preserving the monuments goes to Lord Curzon. These protected monuments and the city's environs are well maintained by the Archaeological Survey of India.
Further we continue our drive to Jaipur, On arrival check in at the hotel. Overnight at hotel.
Day 05 : Jaipur
Morning an excursion tour of Amer Fort, In the afternoon Visit City Palace, Jantar Mantar, Observatory, Hawa Mahal etc.
(Amber Fort : At a short distance of 11 kms . from Jaipur, the Amer Fort complex stands amidst wooded hills overlooking the Delhi-Jaipur highway, with its forbidding ramparts reflected in the still waters of the Maota Lake below. One of the finest examples of Rajput architecture, it was the ancient capital of the Kachhawah rulers. The original palace was built by Raja Man Singh and additions were made later by Sawai Jai Singh.
Within the palace are the Diwan-e-Aam or the "Hall of Public Audience", the Diwan-e-Khas or the "Hall of Private Audience" and the Sukh Niwas where a cool breeze blows across channels of water for the purpose of air-conditioning. Here are the private chambers of the queens with windows having latticed screens so that the ladies could watch the proceedings of the royal court inprivacy. There is also the Jai Mandir or the "Temple of Vicotry", with its famed Sheesh Mahal, the scintillating "Hall of Mirrors")
(Jaipur (Sheer Symphony in Pink) : The picturesque capital of Rajasthan, Jaipur, is color washed pink - the color associated with hospitality in Rajput culture. Built in 1727 A.D. by Maharaja Sawai Jai Singh II, Jaipur displays a remarkable harmony and architectural splendour. The ancient heart of the Pink City still beats in its fairy-tale palaces, rugged fortresses perched on barren hills and broad avenues that dot the entire city. The only planned city of its time, a formidable wall encircles Jaipur. There is a timeless appeal to Jaipur's colourful bazaars where one can shop for Rajasthani handlooms and trinkets. Beautiful laid out gardens and parks, attractive monuments and marvelous heritage hotels, once the residence of Maharajas, are worth admiration. Not to mention the ambling camels and cheerful people in multi-hued costumes make your trip to the pink city a memorable one.)
Optional - Chokhi Dhani
An evening excursion to Chokhi Dhani complex, ethnic village resort located at a distance of 15 km from Jaipur. Rajasthani village atmosphere is recreated on the sprawling ground & includes the entertainment by folk dancers & musicians. Later drive back to hotel. Overnight in the hotel.
Day 06 : Jaipur / Ajmer ( 144 km)
Morning after breakfast drive to Ajmer, on arrival check in at the hotel. In the afternoon visit the famous Dargah of Khwaja Moinuddin Chisti and Adhai din ka Jonpara. Overnight at hotel.
(Ajmer situated in the green oasis wrapped in the barren hills has been a witness to an interesting past. The city was founded by Raja Ajay Pal Chauhan in the 7th Century A.D. and continued to be a major center of the Chauhan power till 1193 A.D. when Prithviraj Chauhan lost it to Mohammed Ghauri, since then, Ajmer became home to many dynasties, which came and left leaving behind indelible marks of their culture and traditions on the city's history, converting it to an amalgam of various cultures and blend of Hinduism and Islam.
Today, Ajmer is a popular pilgrimage center for the Hindus as well as Muslims. Especially famous is the Dargah Sharif-tomb of the Sufi saint Khwaja Moinuddin Chisti,which is equally revered by the Hindus and Muslims.)
Dargah Khwaja Moinuddin Chisti : At the foot of a barren hill, is situated India's most important pilgrimage center for people from all faiths. It is the splendid tomb of the Sufi saint Khawaja Moinuddin Chisti more popularly known as Khawaja Saheb or Khawaja Sharif. The shrine is next only to Mecca or Median for the Muslims of south Asia. Akbar used to make a pilgrimage to the Dargah from Agra once a year.
The mausoleum has a gigantic gate, which was built by the Nizam of Hyderabad. The two massive cauldrons in the courtyard are of particular interest and on the right side of the courtyard is the Akbari Masjid built in white marble. There is another mosque in the courtyard built by Shahjhan.
Adhai-din-ka-jhonpra : A remarkable structure, this is a masterpiece of Indo-Islamic architecture located on the outskirts, of the city, just beyond the Dargah. As the legend goes, its construction took two and a half days (Adhai-Din) to complete. It was originally a Sanskrit college, built within a temple. In 1193 A.D. Mohhamed Ghauri conquered Ajmer and converted the building into a mosque by adding a sevenarched wall in front of the pillared hall in just two-and-half days(adhai-din) and hence the name. The distinct pillars-and arched "Screen" with its ruined minarets make it a splendid architectural masterpiece.
Day 07 : Ajmer / Delhi (392 km)
Morning after breakfast drive to Delhi. On arrival check in at the hotel. Overnight at hotel.
Day 08 : Departure
Day free for own activity. Late in the evening transfer to the international airport to board the flight for onward destination.
Tour and Services Ends.