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Be involved in this retreat for a getaway trip to India. This retreat is an extraordinary experience to deepen your practice and connect yourself with the roots of yoga. Explore and learn the wisdom of sacred India by touring Delhi, Agra, Jaipur, Amritsar, and Dharamsala. Explore and learn from the wisdom of sacred India and from expert-yoga teachers!
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A very cozy accommodation, in twin shared and private rooms, will be provided throughout your journey.
Fly from your capital city to Delhi for a traditional 'Swagat’ (welcome). You will then proceed to Agra. It is beautifully situated on the banks of river Yamuna. It achieved prominence as the capital of the Mughal Emperors from the year 1526 to 1628. During this time the Taj Mahal, Agra Fort, and Fatehpur Sikri were built.
In the morning, you will visit Mathura and Vrindavan. Mathura and Vrindavan is the birthplace of the Hindu Lord, Krishna. It is a fantastic insight into the Indian religion. In the afternoon, you will visit the Taj Mahal from the opposite river bank. You will wander through a local village and then rest with the goat herders on the opposite back to the Taj Mahal in a ruined garden. This is a magical experience off the tourist trail.
In the early morning, you will visit Taj Mahal, the symbol of eternal love. It was built by the fifth Mughal emperor, Shah Jehan in the year 1631 in memory of his wife, Mumtaz Mahal. It was completed in 22 years. Further, you will proceed to 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 and intricate decorations.
Later, you will drive to Jaipur route and visit Fatehpur Sikri (The 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. You will also visit Emperor Akbar’s residential complex, mosque, and Tomb of Salim Chisti.
Today, you will start with an optional cycling tour through the old city, flower markets, and a traditional sweet factory. After, you will head to Amber Fort, the palace complex which stands to this date was commenced under the reign of Raja Man Singh. You will see the true opulence of the Raj. Later, you will proceed to the City Palace, a perfect blend of Rajasthani and Mughal architecture. The centre of the palace is a seven-storied building called Chandra Palace, with fine views over the gardens and the city.
Further, you will proceed to Jantar Mantar (Solar Observatory), an astronomical treasure house, with solar devices that give accurate predictions till date. You will also visit Hawa Mahal (Palace of Winds), a five-storied structure of pink sandstone. It was built so that veiled royal women could peer down the busy street market unseen by the world through its 593 stone Jharokas (mini windows). In the evening, you will have an optional visit to a local fair replete with elephants and camels, sideshows, fortune tellers, and so much more.
You will depart by car or train to Chandigarh.
After visiting the beautiful gardens of Chandigarh, you will proceed to Dharamsala, staying at the village of Bhagsu Nag, with Vikas Nehria and his family. Each morning, after yoga and meditation, you will explore the local region. This hill station will enchant you with its scenic mountain beauty. McLeod Ganj is also the seat of His Holiness Dalai Lama. Owing to the presence of the spiritual leader the town is a major seat of Buddhist learning in India.
You will visit the temple of His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama. There will be plenty of free time to truly explore McLeod Ganj relaxed villages and vibrant markets. In the afternoons, you will have mini excursions to local sights. For example, you will visit the Temple at Bhagsu Nag, an ancient Hindu temple dedicated to Bhagsu Nag (a local god). It also has a freshwater spring, in which pilgrims travel to take a holy dip flows through the temple.
Near by is the beautiful Bhagsu waterfall, where you can have a chai and enjoy the enchanting view. In the evening, enjoy a cooking class and a delicious home cooked dinner.
After breakfast, you will check out and drive to Amritsar. In Hindi, the word Amritsar means 'a holy pool of nectar'. One of the ancient cities of India, it is the main seat of Sikh history and culture. At sun down, you will drive 10 kilometers to Wagha Border to witness the pageantry of the lowering of the flags ceremony. It is similar to the ‘changing of the guards’ at Buckingham palace.
After breakfast, you will go on a guided tour of The Golden Temple. It is the most sacred temple of the Sikhs built by Maharaja Ranjit Singh. The lower portion of the temple displays white marble inlay work and the upper portion is embellished with copper coated over by gold plate. Later, you will visit Jallian Wala Memorial, followed by drive to Delhi.
Optional walking tour through Old Delhi. You will travel through time as we explore the magic of this ancient city. You will see how people truly live. This wonderful tour will leave you connected forever with the true India. After lunch, you will explore the New Delhi. First stop will be Raj Ghat, a memorial to the Father of the Nation, Mahatma Gandhi. Drive past India Gate, you will see a memorial built in the year 1931 to commemorate the Indian soldiers who died in the World War I and the Afghan Wars.
Later, you will drive to Parliament House, followed by a visit to Qutub Minar, built in the year 1206 by Qutub-ud-din Aibek. It is the tallest brick minaret in the world, an important example of Indo-Islamic architecture. In the afternoon, you will experience the mystery and history of Old Delhi, visiting the world heritage-listed Red Fort which forms the majestic center piece of Emperor Shah Jahan’s medieval walled city. Next, you will tour Jama Masjid, India's largest mosque, a beautiful memorial of peace at Birla House commemorating Mahatma Gandhi.
Then, you will experience the bustling market maze, Chandni Chowk, by rickshaw. In the evening, you will be reminded of the magnificent power and pomp of the Mughal emperors with a sound and light show at Red Fort.
After lunch, you will board the plane for a trip home full of happy memories. Arrive home in the morning.
Other local places you will visit are:
This retreat will take place in Delhi, Agra, Jaipur, Amritsar, and Dharamsala in India.
Daily breakfast and some dinners are included in the price.
This retreat includes one Ayurvedic massage.
Please book your flight to arrive at Indira Gandhi International Airport, Delhi (DEL). Transfer from and to the airport is included. Swami Sarasvati will pick you up from the airport.
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