Discover the highlights of Gujarat and the west on this customized India vacation. Flying into Mumbai, continue on to cosmopolitan Vadodara, where you have your first introduction to the rich heritage of tribal communities at Chhota Udaipur. In the art-loving city of Bhavnagar, uncover the ruins of the historic Indus Valley civilization with a trained expert! Next up, visit the beautiful beaches of Diu Island and also discover its famous Portuguese colonial heritage and architecture. Back on the mainland, it’s time to track the rare Asiatic lion in the forests of Gir where the last few of the species live. Enroute to Gondal, take a personalized tour of the imposing Junagadh that dates back to 319 BC! Not just that, you will also see stellar examples of Buddhist, Islamic, and Hindu architecture come together in this ancient city.
Set out on an exciting jeep safari in the haunting landscapes of the Little Rann of Kutch – a stark land of salt flats inhabited by diverse species such as pink flamingoes and wild asses. Take a personalized tour of Ahmedabad next: often referred to as the ‘Manchester of the East’, this UNESCO-listed city houses temples and mosques galore! End with customized excursions in the maximum city of Mumbai, gaining insights into its colonial heritage and ultra-modern traditions.
Personalize this tour to match all your interests and preferences. Get in touch with us for a private and obligation-free trip itinerary.
Vadodara: Rich cultural traditions unfolded! Also called ‘Sanskari Nagari’ meaning means a ‘cultured city’, Vadodara is one of India’s most cosmopolition cities.
Meet the Tribal Communities of Chhota Udaipur Chhota Udaipur is a thinly populated city in the tribal region of Gujarat. Discover the local culture with a visit to tribal villages and hamlets where the Bhils, Rathwas, Bhilalas and other ethnic communities reside. Learn about their lifestyle and traditional attire, and see how local artifacts such as handwoven baskets, pottery, and terracotta figures are made. Uncover the origin and style of the Pithora painting, an art form native to the Rathwas and Bhilalas tribes. The use of this painting is ritual and every household is expected to display these paintings on the walls – both inside and outside. (Full Day; Duration: 6 hrs; Private Activity & Transfer; Fitness Level: Moderate; Please carry comfortable walking shoes.)
Bhavnagar is a city of education and culture, and is known as the cultural capital of Saurashtra.
Uncover the Indus Valley Civilization in Lothal See historic relics from one of the earliest human civilizations at Lothal in the south of Gujarat. The discovery of ancient planned townships during excavations in the 1960s established the existence of the Harappa civilization all the way up to northwest India. It is fascinating to see remains of the planned township, drains, canals, and wells, which showcase how advanced the Harappan civilization had been. Similar beads and semi-precious stones found in Lothal and in Mesopotamia bear testimony to an active trade link between the regions. The archaeological museum in Lothal set up in 1976, hosts a large display of artifacts found during the excavations. Displays include terracotta ornaments, beads, earthenware, ivory, metal objects, figurines representing animals and humans, gorgeously painted pottery. (Enroute Activity; Duration: 2 hrs; Private Activity & Transfer; Fitness Level: Moderate; Please carry comfortable walking shoes)
Highlights of Bhavnagar Bhavnagar, a coastal city in the south of Gujarat, is a prominent trading hub with the world’s largest ship breaking yard! Begin your tour of this laidback town with a visit to the Gandhi Smriti Museum, dedicated to Mahatma Gandhi. The museum boasts a vast collection of books and memorabilia that Gandhi had used during his lifetime. Take a peek into the life of Gandhi through the hundreds of photographs kept on display. In the evening, continue on to the Takhteshwar Temple that is set on a hilltop. Made of marble with many carved pillars, this beautiful temple is dedicated to the Hindu God Shiva. (Half Day; Duration: 2 hrs; Private Activity & Transfer; Fitness Level: Moderate; Please carry comfortable walking shoes. Gandhi Smriti Museum is open between 0900 – 1300 hrs and 1400 – 1800 hrs, The museum is closed on all Sundays and 2nd and 4th Saturdays of every month)
Visit the Jain Temples of Palitana Discover one of the centers of Jainism in Palitana, in Western India. Set in the state of Gujarat, wander through the largest cluster of Jain temples in India that are spread over Shatrunjaya Hill in Palitana. Boasting beautiful architecture and intricate carvings on marble walls and pillars, these 863 temples were built over a span of 900 years! They are dedicated to the 24 ‘Tirthankaras’ – the spiritual teachers of Jainism. Climb 600 meters uphill to visit the magnificent Adishwar temple dedicated to Adhinatha, the first Jain teacher. The deity is adorned with gold jewelry studded with precious stones. Pay a visit to the ‘Chaumukha’ or the four-faced temple, which has four entrances through which the image of Adhinatha can be seen. (Half Day; Time of the day: 0530 hrs; Duration: 4 hrs; Private Activity & Transfer; Fitness Level: Moderate; A palanquin can be arranged for guests if they wish, as there are many steps to be climbed.)
The Union Territory of Diu, a former Portuguese colony, is a tiny island connected to the mainland of Gujarat by a bridge. Less flamboyant than its Portuguese cousin Goa further down south, Diu has its own colorful charm.
Discover Delightful Diu Uncover the delights of Diu, at the southernmost tip of Gujarat, India. Sparsely populated, Diu retains its old world charm and is characterised by the brick red Zampa Gateway, whitewashed churches, and a rocky fort overlooking the Arabian Sea. Visit the enchanting St. Paul’s Church built by the Portuguese in the 17th century that boast a Baroque architectural style. It’s said to have the most intricately carved façade among all the churches in India. At the 16th century Fort Diu, large brass cannons peek through thick walls, built to keep seafaring enemies at bay. Also discover a quaint old black and white striped lighthouse within the fort overlooking the Arabian Sea. The fort is colourfully lit in the evening and its reflection in the sea is a sight to behold! (Half Day; Duration: 4 hrs; Private Activity & Transfer; Fitness Level: Moderate)
Gir: When the lions roar! The last bastion of the Asiatic lion, nearly 3, is a beautiful but harsh, teak dominated habitat in Junagadh district, Gujarat.
Somnath Temple Tour En Route to Gir En route to Gir, stop to discover the famous Somnath temple complex, set by the Arabian Sea in Western India. A deeply religious place for Hindus, the temple is home to one of the 12 sacred ‘Jyotirlingas’ or devotional representations of the God Shiva. Marvel at the distinctive ancient Hindu-style architecture from the time of the Chalukya dynasty, complete with numerous, intricately carved rock pillars. While the temple site dates back to the ancient Vedic times, the structure itself was attacked and destroyed by several Islamic invaders. After nearly a century, the temple has been reconstructed at the same site. Set by a serene beach on Gujarat’s ample coastline, soak in the spiritual aura at this historic site. (Enroute Activity; Duration: 2 hrs; Private Activity & Transfer; Fitness Level: Easy; Please dress conservatively for your visit to the temple.)
Jeep Safari in Gir Explore Gir National Park, where the celebrated Indian Lion is best seen – with morning and afternoon safaris.
Gondal is an erstwhile princely state of the Jadeja Rajput clan, near Rajkot in Gujarat. Dotted with beautiful palaces, this laidback and charming little town stands by a quietly flowing river.
Discover Junagadh En Route to Gonadal En route to Gondal, stop and discover the ancient city of Junagadh set at the base of Girnar Hills in West India. Although few tourists make their way here, Junagadh’s attractions are many. Scattered around this ancient city are stellar examples of Indo-Islamic, Hindu and Buddhist architecture, including forts, caves, mosques and mausoleums. The jewel in Junagadh’s crown is a magnificent fort built by powerful Indian Emperor Chandragupta Maurya in 319 BC. Having stood the test of time, this strategically constructed fort is believed to have withheld innumerable sieges! Nearby, discover intricate Buddhist caves carved out of rock in the 2nd century AD, featuring monastic cells, ornate pillars and prayers halls. Just as unique are a pair of stepwells in Junagadh, the Adi Kadi Vav and the Navghan Kuvo that were carved from rock during the time of Rajput rulers. Also, witness the Jama Masjid mosque which was converted from a palace to a place of worship by a Muslim ruler in the 15th century. (Enroute Activity; Duration: 2 hrs; Private Activity & Transfer; Fitness Level: Easy)
The charming little rural hamlet of Bajana is part of the unique landscape of the Little Rann of Kutch. The stark flatland is a saline desert that metamorphoses into an amazing wetland during the monsoons, attracting flocks of exotic birds to its lakeshores.
Jeep Safari in Wild Ass Sanctuary of Bajana Discover unique wildlife at the Rann of Kutch, tucked away in a corner of western India. The silvery saltpans, wide lakes and lagoons in this fascinating part of the country, supports distinctive endemic wildlife. Visit the Wild Ass Sanctuary at the Little Rann of Kutch for an exhilarating safari ride. This dry and dusty desert, dotted with the occasional green oasis around a lake, draws in a wide variety of birds. Catch the iconic sight of huge flocks of pink flamingos silhouetted against the shimmering waters of a lake. The arid flat plains of Kutch with its thorny scrubland is the last remaining habitat of the endangered Asiatic Wild Ass (Ghudkhar). These beautiful chestnut brown creatures are also the last of the subcontinent’s wild horse family. You may spot Indian gazelles, black buck, blue bull (Nilgai), jackals, Indian foxes, and jungle cats on your jeep safari. If you’re lucky, you may even spot the rare Indian wolf (India being the land of Big Cats!). (Half Day; Duration: 3 hrs; Private Activity & Transfer; Fitness Level: Easy; Please don’t forget your cameras or your binoculars).
Ahmedabad: Manchester of the East! This historic center of Ahmedabad is a thriving business district on the Sabarmati river, founded by Sultan Ahmed Shah.
Heritage Walk in Ahmedabad City Embark on a Heritage Walk to explore Ahmedabad, a UNESCO World Heritage site. Begin at the Swaminarayan Temple that was built on a base of Burmese teakwood. You’ll be awed at the immaculate carvings and brightly painted pillars, arches and walls. Your walk takes you through the ‘pols, a unique housing concept where families cluster together based on caste, profession or religion. As you walk past these houses, witness the wooden façades and elaborately carved windows. Further on, visit the beautifully carved Hutheesing Jain Temple built from marble in 1848 AD. Your walk ends at the Jama Masjid, a splendid mosque built with yellow sandstone in the 15th century. Choose to continue your visit to other landmarks such as the Sidi Saiyyed Mosque that has the famous ‘tree of life’ motif delicately etched in its marbled lattice windows. (Half Day; Time of the day: Morning, 0730 hrs; Duration: 2 hrs; Private Activity & Transfer; Fitness Level: Moderate; Please carry comfortable walking shoes.)
Mumbai, formerly known as Bombay during British colonial rule, has welcomed travelers from around the world for centuries.
Half Day Highlights of Mumbai Venture to the waterfront and witness the historic Gateway of India, built during the British rule. Drive by the world’s most expensive real estate along Marine Drive, also known as the Queen’s Necklace, as the streetlights resemble a string of pearls at night. Discover the plethora of colonial architecture including the High Court, Mumbai University, Flora Fountain, Asiatic Library, Prince of Wales Museum, Municipal Corporation Building and the fascinating, fully-functioning Victoria Terminus Railway Station. Whilst the building is closed to the public, you can glimpse the Parsi Tower of Silence with its circling vultures. Unwind amidst the topiary of the Hanging Gardens, or in Kamala Nehru Park and Horniman Circle. Learn more about Mahatma Gandhi at Mani Bhavan, a museum and reference library. (Duration 4 hours).
Prices are in USD and exclude international flights. This trip price is based on low season rates for accommodation and other applicable services, and may change depending on availability, currency fluctuations and number of people traveling together. For high season prices, please contact us with your exact travel dates and preferences.
Accommodation and meals, as specified in the itinerary
Activities and excursions, as specified in the itinerary
Transportation services, as specified in the itinerary
Your Trip Coordinator: a 24/7 point of contact supporting you during your trip
Entrance fees and meals, unless mentioned in the itinerary description