Golden Triangle Escorted Tour

Exactly what is the Golden Tringle in India? 

The Golden Triangle In india encompasses an itinerary including India's  three most visited cities in the  north west -these are  Agra,Delhi and Jaipur ,transport links between all three are very good.  Looking at a map, these can appear like a triangle, approximately 200-250km along each side.The are has been called "Golden" because of the wealth of culture and beauty which each of these three cities has to offer. 

Rajasthan's capital Jaipur,is the home of Asia's foremost bazarrs. It is a desert state. The Indian capital of Delhi will take a lifetime to fully explore. You will never see everything in Delhi, the sprawling, amazing capital of India. Agra, on the other hand brags the exquisite beauty and spleandour of the Taj Mahal, on the side of the Yamuna river, which was once the centre of the Moghul Empire. The Golden Triangle is a great first visit to India:

Is visiting Delhi a good idea?

Of course it is. All but the most sensitive persons are able to cope with the culture shock and hassle which accompanies any visit to Delhi.It is crowded, it is congested but it is a truly fantastic starter point to a visit to IndiaYes. Delhi is a thickly settled, highly populated area on the way up. The city is young and dynamic. Yes you will see misery but you will also see thousands of individual small businesses still holding the culture.

Delhi's main tourist attraction is its street life, although the bazaars of imagination lie in "Old" Delhi, which is still a mainly muslim area. The huge Jama Masjid (Great Mosue) imposes itself on the area. Strikingly different to the south is the British built New Delhi , spreading out from the designer shops and cafes of Connaught Place. Suddenly the dirt and grime is replaced by large boulevards and grand architure. The India Gate is at the end of Rajpath, the Imperial Mall. It is now the centre of New Delhi's promenade.

A bit too commercial for me?

With a population of around 13.5 million and with such diversity it is a city that easily takes in visitors, while Agra and Jaipur both have a large number of tourists these also are easily absorbed .Jaipur is the capital of Rajasthan state and fulfills a commercial and administrative for the state. The busy old quarter is known as the "pink City" because of it it's red washed buildings selling everything from silk and perfumes to dates and juices. Jaipur has a lot of monuments but the one to visit is the Hawa Mahal which allowed the females of the Royal Home to view the street without being seen. This is an iconic building.

 

The third element of the Golden Triangle

Agra is the final corner of the triangle , ancient architural beauty with it's Moghul fort in the centre of the city and the extremely luxurious Taj Mahal. It can seem a little full occasionally. I am afraid this is where the nagging street sellers are most prominent.  However the marble Taj Mahal makes up for it

.Agra offers other precious jewels and architectural wonders as well as a medieval like maze of old bazaars, a mass of vibrant traffic and some of the most mercenary shopkeepers in the country.

 Our escorted golden triangle tour starts from £1600 Golden Triangle of India tour

 Other private Indian tours can be designed to your requirements.

 

Example of a private tour arranged by ourselves in Sri Lanka

Day

Location

Accommodation

Activity

1

 

Colombo Airport

Arrival Flight & Time TBC

VIP FAST TRACK ARRIVAL. Garland & Betel Leaf Welcome

1

Colombo Airport to Negombo

Approx: 15mins

Jetwing Beach, Negombo

Double Room

Deluxe Room

Bed & Breakfast Basis

Transfer

 

Optional: Negombo City Walk with Mark Forbes

2

Colombo to Habarana

Approx: 4hrs

Cinnamon Lodge, Habarana

Double Room

Superior Room

Bed & Breakfast Basis

Transfer to Cinnamon Lodge, Habarana.

 

Optional: God’s Village

 

3

Habarana

Cinnamon Lodge, Habarana

Double Room

Superior Room

Bed & Breakfast Basis

Visit Sigiriya Rock Fortress.

 

Optional: Lunch at Ulagalla Resort.

 

Visit Anuradhapura

4

Habarana

Cinnamon Lodge, Habarana

Double Room

Superior Room

Bed & Breakfast Basis

Visit Polonnaruwa

 

Optional: Lunch at The Lake Polonnaruwa

 

Afternoon Jeep Safari at Minneriya National Park

*Kindly note that the ‘Elephant Gathering’ in Minneriya National Park is between July to September

5

Habarana to Kandy

Approx: 3hrs

Cinnamon Citadel, Kandy

Double Room

Superior Room

Bed & Breakfast Basis

Visit Dambulla Caves

 

Transfer to Cinnamon Citadel.

 

Temple of the Tooth Relic

6

Kandy

Cinnamon Lodge, Habarana

Double Room

Superior Room

Bed & Breakfast Basis

Botanical Gardens with Bandara Palipana

 

Optional: Lunch at Empire Café

 

Kandy City Stroll

 

Optional: 3 Loop Temple

7

Kandy to Kandapola

Approx: 3hrs

Heritance Tea Factory, Kandapola

Double Room

Superior Room

Bed & Breakfast Basis

Scenic Train Ride from Kandy to Nanu Oya at 1230PM

 

Visit Tea Plantation

 

Transfer to Heritance Tea Factory

8

Kandapola

Heritance Tea Factory, Kandapola

Double Room

Superior Room

Bed & Breakfast Basis

Day at leisure

 

Optional: Horton Plains Treak

9

Kandapola to Bentota

Approx: 5hrs

Centara Ceysands, Bentota

Double Room

Superior Room

Half Board Basis Plus

Transfer to Centara Ceysands, Bentota

 

Visit Turtle Hatchery

 

Visit Lunuganga Gardens

10

Bentota

Centara Ceysands, Bentota

Double Room

Superior Room

Half Board Basis Plus

Day at leisure

 

Optional: Galle Fort Walk with Juliet Coombe

 

Optional: Village Rider – Boat Safari

11

Bentota

Centara Ceysands, Bentota

Double Room

Superior Room

Half Board Basis Plus

Day at leisure.

12

Departure

Departure Flight & Time TBC

Departure Transfer

 

 

Important note on trains in Sri Lanka: The trains and standard carriages are very basic in Sri Lanka and delays are very common. The best carriages is operated by Expo. Expo can only be booked a month or 14 days in advance (subject to availability please). The train at times can be late departing or even while on route please (in rare cases can get cancelled as well on short notice). The journey on some routes is very scenic and it is great way to see the rural life and the hill country while on wheels, particularly between Hatton to Nanu Oya. It is passenger train which stops at several stations, Expo carriage was added almost a year ago to give tourist a better comfort (though it cannot be compared to European trains). I would recommend carrying your own packed meal (fruits, water and juices, cookies, crisps or sandwiches from the hotel in Kandy. Expo has meal included but I would not recommend it please). Another carriages are operated by Rajdhani but I prefer Expo as they are better.

 

 

Includes:

Accommodation and Meal Plan:

  • Accommodation on Bed & Breakfast basis at all properties except for Centara Ceysands which is on Half Board Plus.

Logistics:

  • Transport in a with the services of an English Speaking Chauffer Guide.
  • Complementary Amenities:
  • Garland & Betel Leaf Welcome.
  • Others:
  • SILK ROUTE ARRIVAL
  • VAT (Value Added Tax) &Tourism Tax.

 

In-Vehicle: We strive to deliver the best possible ‘in-vehicle experience’ – our vehicles are equipped with a TRAVEL KIT which includes comfortable cushions, a sarong, sanitizers, mosquito repellent, socks (for temples), wet wipes, etc… Our vehicles carry a dongle / WIFI and a folder containing a good map as well a very detailed TRAVEL TIPS document. We are constantly improving the information we provide for clients to make the most of their trip.

 

 

 

 

 

Please refer below for your clients proposal. This includes details about the hotels they will be staying in, availability status, room type and meal basis. On top of this I have included some activities around Sri Lanka highlighted in GREEN and some of our unique EXCLUSVIES, highlighted in BLUE. These exclusives carry added value and will enable your clients to connect with Sri Lanka in interesting and insightful ways. In addition to this I have also included a few complementary amenities, highlighted in PURPLE. Whatever is tentative is in YELLOW.

 

 

 

A GUIDED TOUR OF THE BOTANICAL GARDENS WITH A BOTANIST

GENERAL DESCRIPTION: The Peradeniya Royal Botanical Gardens is the largest of the botanical gardens of Sri Lanka and the finest of its kind in Asia. In the Mediterranean climate of Kandy, the gateway to the central highlands, the Gardens lies at an elevation of 460 meters above sea-level, tightly bounded on three sides by the loop of the River Mahaweli (Great Sandy River), Sri Lanka’s largest river. During WWII the gardens were the headquarters of the allied command for the pacific.

EXPERIENCE DESCRIPTION: Your guide will buy your entrance. Your chauffer guide will wait for you in the vehicle outside. It’s a leisurely walk in a circular fashion. Our expert in Botany is a walking encyclopedia. Even if you have very little interest in Botany he makes the visit interesting and insightful with plenty of quirks and little side stories. For some it’s the best visit of them all in Sri Lanka.

Includes: We provide a guide, water, tea and vehicle.

Duration: 1.5 hours.

Difficulty: Easy | Moderate | Rigorous

Suitable for children: Yes, the wide open spaces are great for kids who love to explore

Meeting Time: 10am sharp at the Botanical Gardens

What to wear or bring along: Light, cool clothing, sun cream or a hat are recommended. Bring a camera along too!

Important to know: The walk through the Botanical Gardens is suitable for people of all ages. There are rest rooms inside the gardens and there is a cafeteria as well. Please do take water from the vehicle. You may need to take an umbrella to either protect you from the sun, or the rain.

 

A VISIT TO RAHJU’S ARTIST HOME  

GENERAL DESCRIPTION: Spend a few hours soaking up the tranquility of Rajhu’s home, talk about art, music and life with Rahju over tea and if time permits catch the sun set over the Hunas mountain range. Why meet an artist? Rahju is unique.

EXPERIENCE DESCRIPTION: A tuk tuk will pick come to the Kandy House and take you up a hill to Rajhu’s home. You will be met by Rajhu and his daughter Rudrani who will welcome you into their home. Tables and chairs are set in the garden and tea is served. They views are spectacular. Rajhu and Rudrani are lovely people, very friendly and easy to talk to. Feel free to wonder around the house and garden. The views are absolutely stunning. It’s one of those views that make you wonder and reflect. Should you wish to see the studio where Rajhu paints and creates music, he will be delighted to show you his work.

Includes: We provide a guide, water, tea and vehicle.

Duration: 1.5 hours.

Difficulty: Easy | Moderate | Rigorous

Suitable for children: Yes, a crash course art course could be arranged with Rahju’s daughter Rudrani on request 

Meeting Time: 5.30pm at Rahju’s, a tuk-tuk will pick you up from Kandy House and take you

What to wear or bring along: A camera, the views are amazing!

Important to know: Feel no pressure to buy art – the experience was conceived as a way of granting you private access into an artist’s home and life in Sri Lanka, and for charisma of Rajhu and Rudrani and the beauty of their simple home and its sublime surroundings. No alcohol is served at Rahju’s but if you’d like to bring your own you are welcome to.

Making the most of it: If you love music, feel free to ask Rahju about his studio – he may just oblige you to a jam session!

 

COLOMBO CITY WALKS WITH MARK FORBES

GENERAL DESCRIPTION: Colombo is the largest city of Sri Lanka. Colombo is a busy and vibrant city with a mixture of modern life and colonial buildings and ruins. Due to its large harbour and its strategic position along the East-West sea trade routes, Colombo was known to ancient traders 2,000 years ago. It was made the capital of the island when Sri Lanka was ceded to the British Empire in 1815, and its status as capital was retained when the nation became independent in 1948. Colombo is currently experiencing an exciting revival after decades long stagnation during the war.

EXPERIENCE DESCRIPTION: Spend an afternoon with resident host Mark Forbes as he takes you through the glory days of the Colombo Fort. The walk starts at 3:30pm. Mark will pick you up from your hotel in his jeep and take you to the Dutch Hospital where the walk begins. The walk places focus on photography, architecture and history in two stages; stage one covers the Fort while stage two covers the Pettah markets. The walk includes a break for tea and stops along the way to sample street food. Water will be provided if required along the way. The walk ends at the Old Dutch Hospital.

Includes: We provide a guide, water, snacks and vehicle.

Duration: 2.5 hours.

Difficulty: Easy | Moderate | Rigorous

Suitable for children: Not for small children, but a walk tailored to suit the interests of children can be organized

Meeting Time: 3.30pm at your hotel, Mark will pick you up in his vehicle.

What to wear or bring along: Cool, light clothing and a cap

Important to know: In the event of an emergency where Mark is unable to conduct the walk, his wife Ruvi Forbes will take his place. The walk is never scheduled on a poya day. The Fort is the historical and calmer part of the tour, while the Pettah is a chaotic and crowded market place – both great for photography.

Making the most of it: Remember to bring your camera!

 

GALLE, PAST TO PRESENT WITH SHAHIRA MAHUROOF

GENERAL DESCRIPTION: First built in 1588 by the Portuguese, the Galle Fort was extensively fortified by the Dutch during the 17th century from 1649 onwards. Once a busy port, trading with Greece, China and Arab countries the Galle Fort is a historical, archaeological and architectural heritage monument – a living and breathing UNESCO Heritage site with a colorful history, and a multi-ethnic and multi-religious population.

EXPERIENCE DESCRIPTION: Shahira Ifthikar is a 4th generation resident of Galle. Her hosted walk takes you through the past and present, from the spot where the first Portuguese boats landed to where the English left off. The walk through one of the modern wonders of the world is a factual one, and full of tales from legendary past battles for the Fort, alliances that were forged and destroyed and insider knowledge of the Fort’s unique urban ensemble, a melting pot of culture, styles and traditions spanning over three centuries. Stroll through fortifications, public administration buildings, warehouses, underground cells and business houses of the past and present interspersed with churches, temples and mosques.

YOUR HOST: Shahira Ifthikar’s Moorish ancestors first arrived on the shores of Galle in the mid-17th century in one of the earliest waves of spice traders and gem merchants. Having traveled the world, she now resides in Galle with her husband, Sri Lanka’s one time ‘King of Gems’ and her four children.

INCLUDES: Host, cold towels, water, a vehicle.
DURATION: 2 hours.
DIFFICULTY: Easy
SUITABLE FOR CHILDREN: Yes, Shahira will customize the walk for children.
TIMES: Afternoons: 4.00 PM to 5.30 PM. The meeting place is always by the jetty.
WHAT TO WEAR OR BRING ALONG? Cool, light clothing and a camera!
PRIVATE OR NOT? The excursion is private.

 

Flight details:

 

SRI LANKAN AIRLINES UL 504 ECONOMY HEATHROW TO COLOMBO 2030 1245+1 (NEXT DAY)                   

SRI LANKAN AIRLINES UL 503 ECONOMY COLOMBO TO HEATHROW 1300 1900