Call: 1-559-446-0499 - Email: brij@IndiaTravelerUsa.com
I have never in my life had an experience such as the one that I had in India. That trip truly was life changing and I will never look at things in the same way. I absolutely fell in love with India while we were there. I enjoyed the visit to India immensely and would recommend to my friends. Lauren C.
India Madhubani Art Workshop Group Tour -
Experience one of the world's oldest art traditions in Madhubani with your tour director: Brijesh Sharma – He has guided and escorted about 1500 group tours in India since 1975. During the workshop you will be inspired by prominent artists and students of the Mithila art tradition to paint your own works. All art materials are included in the price. One day is reserved for visiting the humble but fascinating art studios in the villages of Madhubani. Mithila Art is believed to have originated in the period of Ramayana when Raja Janak, father of Sita asked townsfolks to paint murals to decorate his palace. Janakpuri today is a popular Hindu pilgrimage place in Nepal just north of Madhubani across the border. The women of Mithila region in northern Bihar and southern Nepal have preserved this ancient tradition for thousands of years. Even today you will view artists homes decorated with murals though most of this traditional painting is now done on rag paper. During our time in Madhubani we will visit Rashidpur (home village of Ganga Devi), Jitwarpur – a Dusaddh caste village and Ranti – the home village of Santosh Das and many other prominent painters of the region. Visit the ancient historical monuments of India's capital city, New Delhi; be amazed by the beauty of the world famous Taj Mahal in the golden glow of sunrise; and Vaishali, the city that Buddha visited often during his lifetime. Pataliputra was the name of Patna city in post Buddhist period when Megasthanes, the Greek ambassador of Selucus ( the Satrap of Persia appointed by Alexander the Great when he returned home) lived at the court of Emperor Chandragupta Maurya in 322 BCE. The last Guru Gobind Singh of Sikh religion was born in Patna. In Agra visit the tomb of Itmad-ud-Daulah and Emperor Akbar’s Fort. Later visit Fatehpur Sikri on the way to Jaipur. Ride decorated Elephant to the hilltop fort and palaces of Amber. In Nawalgarh and Mandawa you will be enchanted by the medieval mural art of Shekhavati region. Your hotel in Mandawa is profusely painted with traditional murals.
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SCHEDULE: Friday, October 11 to Tuesday October 29, 2019
Day 4 - New Delhi – Patna :
After lunch visit Qutub Minar sightseeing – the site where the first Islamic Dynasty was founded by Qutub-Uddin Aibak, a former slave of Mamluk descent who rose to become the commander of Sultan Muhammad Ghur’s army. He demolished Hindu and Jain temples and used the materials including many panels with floral and geometrical Hindu & Jain designs in the first Islamic Mosque in Delhi. Hindu sculptors were employed to sculpt the Surahs from the Quran. They curved the endings of Arabic script as they were used to carving the Hindu Devnagri script earlier for their Hindu patrons. Lunch near Qutub Minar or domestic airport. Board the Jet Airways flight 9W 727 departing at 2.10 pm and arrive in Patna at 3.45 pm. Rest of afternoon is free at hotel. Overnight in Maurya Patna Hotel.
Day 5 - Patna - Madhubani:
Dinner and overnight at Madhuyamini Inn – this is a basic hotel with clean rooms with air-conditioning, generator for electricity in case of power failure, and a relatively good restaurant.
Day 6 - Madhubani:
Day 7 - Madhubani Villages:
Day 8 - Madhubani – West Champaran Village - Vaishali – Patna:
Buddha made one of his earliest female disciples, Amrapali, a courtesan from Pataliputra (now Patna), in this place. He also predicted his Mahaparinirwana here before going to Kushinagar where he passed away. Near Vaishali is the Kundalpur, Jain religion pilgrimage site of the birth of Vardhaman Mahavir, the 24th and last Tirthankar or teacher of Jain religion who was contemporary of Buddha. On the way to Vaishali stop in West Champaran to see the Goddess Saraswati sculptor studios in the village. Bihar, Bengal and eastern states are predominantly goddess devotees, Durgapuja and Saraswati Puja festivities are big events in villages and towns. Overnight in Maurya Patna Hotel.
Day 9 - Patna:
Day 10 - Patna-Varanasi (278 kilometers or 173 miles via Sasaram in about 7 hours):
Sher Shah Suri was the Afghan governor of Bihar under Mughal Emperor Humayun. He defeated the Mughal Emperor and forced him to flee and eventually take refuge with the Persian Shah Tahmasp. After his death his successors were not very successful and Emperor Humayun re-conquered Delhi Sultanate in 1556. After sightseeing and lunch (at Green Planet Express Restaurant on GT Road in Sasaram) drive further to Varanasi (125 kilometers or 78 miles in about 3 hours). After check in drive to River Ganga to witness the evening ritual Ganga Aartee. Overnight in Radisson Blu
Day 11 – Varanasi – New Delhi:
Day 12 – Delhi – Agra:
Day 13 – Agra – Fatehpur Sikri – Jaipur:
Ample time in the vast complex for photographing and viewing the intricate Pietra Dure (inlay of semi-precious stones in marble art work, used in the exterior and interior of the monument).
After breakfast drive to Fatehpur Sikri for sightseeing of Mughal Emperor Akbar’s deserted capital and the tomb of Sufi saint Sheikh Salim Chistie in the courtyard of the grand mosque. Later drive to Jaipur. Emperor Akbar did not have a male heir to his throne for a long time. He came to the Sikri village to seek the blessings of the Sufi saint, Sheikh Salim Chistie, who prophesied that Emperor Akbar would have three sons. The emperor moved with his Hindu queen, Jodha Bai, to Sikri village to live with the saint and started building an alternative capital at the site which was earlier a query for red sandstone. The entire capital was built with red sandstone from the ridge on which it is located. The first born son was named Salim after the Sufi saint. The second was named Murad or the longed one. The third son was named Daniel, probably influenced by the Jesuit priests from Goa who were invited by the Emperor to teach him about Christianity. Emperor Akbar developed the philosophy of “Sulah Qul” – living in harmony with all religions. Later he developed his own religion, Din-i-Ilahi or faith of God. His dear friend and official biographer, Abul Fazl, was among the first to convert to the new religion which he described in “Akbar Nama”. Visit the grand Friday “Jama Masjid” and the mausoleum of Sheikh Salim Chistie, which was renovated using the white marble by later Mughal Emperors. After Emperor Akbar moved away from this capital, living there only 14 years, the capital was deserted for more than 400 years until Lord Curzon, British Viceroy of India ordered the Archaeological Survey of India to restore this fascinating capital and this renovation work is still going on. The palaces were all covered with wild forest and wild animals lived in the palaces. The “Dargah” or mausoleum of the saint was never deserted and people from Agra and nearby villages have been coming there to seek the saint’s blessings for centuries.
On arrival transfer to hotel. Overnight in Marriott Hotel.
Day 14 - Jaipur:
Drive further north through pink city to Amber Fort where you will enjoy a royal elephant ride to the hilltop palaces of Sawai Jai Singh, Mirza Raja Jai Singh and Maharaja Man Singh (one of nine jewels of Emperor Akbar’s cabinet of nobles). On the way back stop at the Jal Mahal Island Palace.
After lunch visit the City Palace including the Royal portraits gallery in the Diwan-i-Am (Hall of Public Audience), the Diwan-i-Khas (Hall of Private Audience), the Mor Chowk (peacock) courtyard of Chandra Mahal, the palace where the present head of the Jaipur royal still resides.
When he is in the building the family’s royal flag flies on its roof. Later wonder at the 17 working astronomical instruments of the Jantar Mantar observatory of Maharaja Sawai Jai Singh. Overnight in hotel. (lunch at Surabhi Restaurant). Overnight in Marriott Hotel.
Day 15 - Jaipur – Nawalgarh - Mandawa:
Day 16 - Mandawa:
Day 17 - Mandawa - New Delhi:
Day 18 - New Delhi - USA:
The price of US$ 3,999 per personincludes:
Tour Price Exclusions:
An advance payment of $ 1900 per person is payable by personal check with booking, balance will be due and payable 90 days before departure date from USA.
OPTIONAL EXCURSION TOURS (Please call for details and price):
FROM NEW DELHI:
Nepal Culture Tour- 4 Nights beginning from New Delhi by flight to Kathmandu, sightseeing of Kathmandu Valley including Bhaktapur and Patan, an overnight excursion to Nagarkot Himalayan Mountain Resort and ending with an awesom Mount Everest Flight.
An extra overnight in Delhi to visit one or more of the three important museums of Delhi:
(1) National Museum of artifacts from Indian and foreign antiquity and archaeological excavations, ancient coins, miniature paintings, manuscripts, Buddhist artifacts including the holy relics of Buddha from Kapilvastu where he spent his childhood and youth and/or
(2) National Gallery of Modern Art in the former palace of the Maharaja of Jaipur near India Gate and / or
(3) Craft Museum where you can witness fine traditional crafts in folk painting, textiles, terracotta figurines and pottery, wood carvings etc. and / or
(4) visit the Akshardham Swami Narayan Temple - capital's largest Hindu temple (about 3 hours required for temple sightseeing).
(5) Rishikesh: Is famous for its Yoga Ashrams where we can arrange admission to a Yoga Course. The city is also a haven for white water river rafting, bungy jumping and giant swing bungy jumping.
(1) Sur Sarovar Bird Sanctuary with Bear Rescue Center that has 256 black Himalayan bears and the Elephant Sanctuary (both these are inside the bird sanctuary) and / or
(2) visit the Archaeological Museum at Mathura that has India's largest collections of Kushan, Gandhar and Gupta period sculptures and /or
(3) Krishna Janmabhumi - the birthplace of Bhagwan Krishna, the incarnation of Vishnu and / or the ISCKON. Hare Krishna Temple in Vrindavan.
(4) Gwalior - with one overnight in the luxurious Taj Usha Kiran Palace or Neemrana Deo Bagh Heritage Hotel or in one of its many good 3-star hotels, one can have a full day of sightseeing of Gwalior Fort and Scindia Maharaja's Jai Vilas Palace.
(5) Keoladeo Ghana Bird Sanctuary in Bharatpur where about 150 Indian species of birds reside throughout the year and another 150 species of migratory birds arrive from Tibet, China, Mongolia, Siberia and even Scandinavia. This requires one overnight in Bharatpur. The best hotel in Bharatpur is the Laxmi Vilas Palace Hotel.
(1) Chand Baori: About an hour before arriving in Jaipur is the town of Dausa that is quite close to Chand Baori - the world's deepest stepwell and the Hindu temple of goddess Harshat Mata, there is a large collection of sculptures found in the vicinity here.
(2) Sisodia Rani Garden Palace: Just before entering Jaipur in the valley of Aravali Mountains is the Garden Palace of Sisodia Rani (Queen of Sawai Jai Singh belonging to the royal house of Mewar in Udaipur)
(3) Galta Natural Spring and Hindu Pilgrimage Center: further in the same valley is the Hindu pilgrimage center of Galta with a natural water spring and many beautiful Temples.
(4) Samode Palace: A luxurious palace famous for its glass mosaic audience hall is located in a quiet valley and is surrounded by a small village. A walk in the village is interesting to observe rural life in this region. In winter months children are playing Cricket and it may be possible to join in their game.
(5) Nawalgarh: About an hour and a half drive from Samode (94 kilometers) on the way to Mandawa enjoy the sightseeing of the murals and frescos of Anandilal Poddar Haveli and Murarka Haveli. If one wishes to stay overnight there are three heritage hotels: Roop Vilas Palace Hotel or Roop Niwas Kothi or Vivaana Heritage Hotel.
(6) Mandawa: There is a lot to view in the Mandawa Castle itself that is also the best place to stay in Shekhavati region. Following Haveli (aristocratic mansions) are interesting for their murals and frescos: Hanuman Prasad Goenka Haveli, Goenka Double Haveli, Murmuria Haveli, Jhunjhunwala Haveli, Mohanlal Saraf Havei, Gulab Rai Ladia Haveli, Bansidhar Newatia Haveli, Laxminarayan Ladia Haveli and Chowkhani Double Haveli. Just across the road from Goenka Double Haveli is the Thakurji Temple that also has beautiful mural paintings depicting scenes from British East India Company Period and 1857 during the First War of Indian Independence.
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