Small Palaces and Havelis

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Duration: 12 days | 11 nights

Location: Delhi - Mandawa - Bîkaner - Gajner - Khuri - Luni - Ranakpur - Bijaipur - Bundi - Samode

Highlights of the programme :
  • One night in tents in Khuri in the Thar Desert
  • Ranakpur Jain temples and carved white marble
  • Bijaipur, a charming village in the castle hotel
  • Bundi, the medieval charm in the heart of Rajasthan

Arrive in Delhi. Reception at the airport. Transfer and overnight at the hotel.

In the morning panoramic tour of India’s capital Delhi having fascinating history. Old Delhi or the ancient city of the Mughal sultans with steep, straight streets teeming with people and New Delhi, the capital of the India with wide avenues suitable for a garden city. Visit the Raj Ghat, the site where Mahatma Gandhi was cremated; Jama Masjid, the largest mosque in India; visit the Red Fort which was once the most opulent fort and palace of the Mughal empire and the bustling shopping centr of Chandi Chowk. Then visit New Delhi Qutb Minar minaret, the tallest minaret in the world. Finally Connaught Circus, the heart of public life in New Delhi, Rajpath and India Gate, Parliament and President House. Overnight at hotel.

Morning drive to Mandawa, a small feudal principality. Through a string of villages close enough to each other and forming a unity, Shekhawati is a museum of paintings open in Rajasthan. He was the favorite place of the Marwari community, great merchant families of India from the 17th to the 19th century. Then thanks to trade with the English East India Company, these wealthy merchants did build lavish mansions, havelis decorated exterior and interior frescoes. Mandawa is a village with winding streets that intersect men and animals in total harmony. Stroll through this lively village where camels are king. Overnight at hotel.

Day exploring the many havelis surrounding villages Fatehpur near a small town of Mandawa founded in the 15th century and former capital of a small Muslim state which preserves some of the most beautiful havelis in the region. Nawalgarh, founded in 1737 has dozens of havelis and it is a pleasure to walk through its streets. Jhunjhunu, Dunlod, Alsisar are also part of the towns in which to be. These walks give a good impression of rural life in this region of Rajasthan. Overnight at hotel.

Departure by road to Bikaner famous for its camel farms. Crossed by caravans from the Far East and Arabia, this desert city, known as the Red City, was founded in 1488 It still benefit from the arid climate that surrounds it as protection against his enemies, but the old town however defended by impressive fortifications. Away from the walls, the latter contains a maze of alleys where circulating carts pulled by camels, a bustling bazaar and some havelis. Visit the Junagarh Fort, built in the 16th century palace that houses beautifully decorated. Then walk through town over these streets. Continue to Gajner. Overnight at hotel.

Located about 50 km from Jaisalmer, Khuri is one of many small villages in the desert of Thar and surrounded by dunes. Homes are built in the form of traditional round huts of mud with their thatched roof and painted white washed walls. Some are painted with ocher and red patterns. Here, rural life is pervasive and the gathering point of the village is the well where women come to draw water and talk about the latest events, while the children play and run. This peaceful village of unique charm with its narrow streets, courtyards open is a haven of peace and quiet. People come for the atmosphere in Khuri desert, dinners under the stars and rides a camel in the spectacular desert. Overnight at hotel.

Road in the morning to Luni, located near the city of Jodhpur. Luni is a charming little village that reflects the royal past of Rajasthan. The village craftsmen, cabinet makers, blacksmiths and potters, still working ancestral way. The village, a quiet and peaceful place, houses the Fort Chanwa built of pink stone, an example of the elegance of the architecture of the last century. Tastefully restored, it welcomes visitors for a relaxing time. Overnight at hotel.

Morning drive to Ranakpur. It contains one of the most beautiful Jain temples throughout India, Adinath Temple. It dates from the 15th century and sculptures reminiscent of fine lace. Complex figures represent mythological scenes on the pillars, walls and domes. The entire monastic now houses a small community of Jain monks that many pilgrims visit. Overnight at hotel.

After breakfast, drive to Bijaipur. The city deserves closer attention because of its historical significance. Several large and famous Indian dynasties ruled Bijaipur and its surroundings. Its location made it a strategic base during the wars between Rajputs and Mughal. It is now a quiet, picturesque little town off the beaten path. Its castle, which dates from the 16th century, is now a boutique hotel opened to tourists. Nearby, you can enjoy a wide variety of wildlife and many species of birds. Overnight at hotel.

Morning drive to Bundi, a city so old that it seems to see her emerge from a history book. The town of Bundi is nestled in a narrow valley surrounded by huge fortified walls. The fort, built in 1534, is accessible by an impressive gateway. The view of the city and surrounding area, from Bhim Burj, the imposing ramparts, is magical. We reached the palace of Bundi by a paved ramp. Only one party, the Chittra Mahal, is open to the public. It is a fascinating pavilion contains a gallery of murals in the turquoise and green hues that adorn the palace. His paintings of great finesse, depict moments of life of Lord Krishna and illustrate the hours of court life. Overnight at hotel.

Departure to Samode. Large town nestled in a valley, the feudal stronghold of Samode was built there more than four centuries. Samode Palace is a luxurious built among hills retirement. It is a haven of peace amidst beautiful gardens, spacious bungalows surrounded by fountains. It has perfectly preserved frescoes and a quaint atmosphere of incomparable charm. A walking tour in the village to meet its artisans is highly recommended. Overnight at hotel.

Morning drive to Amber and splendid fort atop a rocky outcrop. Amber was the capital of Rajasthan before being dethroned by Jaipur in 1727 . This ancient fortress is acccessible on elephant back or jeep. Visit multiple mansions contained in the box. The magnificence of this fort demonstrates the power and pound capacities of Rajput princes at that time. Return to Jaipur for a ride by cyclo in the old town full of colorful markets and bazaars. A special atmosphere reign in its ancient streets. Later in the afternoon, drive to Delhi and transfer to Delhi International Airport for the flight back.


You will find below our selection of hotels for this trip. Hotels indicative subject to availability. The choice of the class of accommodation to you. You will be able to specify it in your quote.

Le Roi – Delhi

Team and cozy enough for this modern hotel. Rooms very clean and well appointed. Wifi access. Complete small lunch.

Vivaana Haveli – Mandawa

You fall in love with the place the moment you arrive. Many frescoes refined and elegant. The rooms and bathrooms are large. Very nice garden. The pool is beautiful and the spa without moderation. A wonderful restaurant in Rajasthan.

Gajner Palace – Gajner

Courteous in this former British fighter situated beside a lake. Huge rooms with functional bathrooms. Beautiful shady garden in which to relax. Excellent service at a restaurant by the lake.

Chandani Desert Resort – Khuri

A plus for those who want the authenticity of the desert an hour from Jaisalmer. Beautiful surroundings and a warm welcome. Dinner under the stars is fantastic and a wonderful ride on a camel’s back at sunset. Helpful and friendly staff.

Fort Chanwa Luni – Luni

This ancient fort of Maharaja turned hotel is a total success, everything is authentic. The spacious rooms are furnished with period furniture. The gardens are gorgeous and very well maintained and the pool is significant in fine weather. Very nice stop during a tour to Rajasthan.

Hotel Aranyavas – Ranakpur

Located in a beautiful setting surrounded by the forests of the mountains Aravelli. Great comfortable bungalows and simply decorated with a large terrace overlooking the countryside.

Bijaipur Castle – Bijaipur

Step relaxing in a rural setting. A strong harmonious 16th century palace converted into a hundred years later, that looks good surrounded by extensive green spaces. Warm welcome, excellent comfort. Swimming Pool.

Bundi Haveli – Bundi

Authentic hotel in the city center. Spacious rooms, old world décor with lots of charm. Pleasant and helpful staff. Beautiful roof terrace.

Samode Bagh – Samode

Romantic hideaway, Samode Bagh offers a unique experience in air-conditioned tent, with all due comfort. The atmosphere is relaxed and elegant.


You will find below our suggestion for activities to do throughout your journey. Do not hesitate to contact an advisor Aryavrit Travels for any specific request.

Horseback ride

Expect a complete change: in the saddle on the beautiful Marwari horses with amazing earrings shaped like a crescent moon, discover the breathtaking surroundings and go out to meet the locals. A walk to discover treasures, off the beaten path.

Bike ride

We invite you to immerse in unusual: a bike ride on the roads of India, Nepal and Bhutan. Cycling is a way to meet people, a tool to reach out to the population, which allows you to be closer than at the window of an air conditioned car. Let yourself drift along with your meetings, you will appreciate the paths which reserve surprises, all more enjoyable than the other.


Take a step back to admire the pink city Jaipur, it is possible. Climb aboard the platform of your balloon and fly over the capital of Rajasthan and the impressive Amber Fort which is necessary not far from it. In the early morning light, the emotions are at their peak by the glipse by the history of vastness and beauty which has exisred here for last many centuries.

Polo match

Polo on horseback or elephant, a unique show in Jaipur, Jodhpur or Delhi. Sport in vogue in India, polo on horseback is still today one of the spearheads of the sport in the Indian aristocracy. Polo on elephant back, meanwhile, is not a sport as such. Nevertheless, it attracts large crowds because of the originality of a rapid game with elephants struggling to move on the ground. Very entertaining!

Cricket match

Catch a game of cricket, a sport that is truly thrill the crowds in India. Unknown in France, cricket crystallizes all the passions in the Indian subcontinent, where millions of fans follow live matches of their national team. The best players are idolized as real stars, like Sachin Tendulkar, Kapil Dev considered one of the best cricketers of all time.

Vintage car

Experience the charm side with a vintage ride in Rajasthan. These old cars of the maharajahs take you as a prince through the main streets of the cities. A timeless adventure not to be missed.

Local family

What could be more authentic than sharing a moment with a local family? An opportunity to understand the Indianess from very close which is worth reading several books on India. A unique opportunity to learn about the customs of your hosts, with whom you share a traditional meal. A moment of conviviality, memorable exchanges that will only add magic to your stay.

Film show

Indians like to say that what unites them is a passion for cricket and love of cinema. India is the largest film industry in the world in terms of production and the number of entries. Attend the screening of a film, it’s a unique experience and share a moment of jubilation.


Immerse yourself in the practice of Yoga and meditation which helps you to know your body and mind. An experienced yoga teacher will teach you the various techniques of “pranayama” (breathing), “asanas” (positions) and ‘dhyana’ (meditation). A unique opportunity in the purest tradition.

Henna session

Mehndi usually refers to the art of drawing with henna on the skin. It is an ephemeral equivalent of tattooing. In Rajasthan, mehndi is an fplk art and it is common for women to get as sophisticated as those of newlyweds drawings. Attend a session to decorate your hands with henna and why not take the opportunity to keep track of your visit!

Cooking lessons

You fell for tandoori chicken, Kerala fish curry, samosas, the thali, the dal, biryani? Do not leave without having learned to cook these dishes. We offer courses in vegetarian and non-vegetarian cuisine. At the end of the session, you are invited to examine and taste your own the prepared dishes.

Ayurveda massage

Ayurveda invites us to stay in harmony with nature, in touch with the elements of nature by practicing yoga and meditation which help us to purify and nourish our body and mind. A massage on the eye helps to rebalance the body and its functions. Enjoy your visit to the birthplace of Ayurveda to experience a massage in the purest tradition.