Visit India - Change Your Life
with Shakta Kaur

8 to 19 (or 23) November 2022

FOR ALL SPIRITUAL SEEKERS, TRAVEL TO INDIA HAS A SPECIAL APPEAL.

The very land is steeped in spirituality, where many ancient practices were developed and perfected over 5,000 years ago. Simply walking the land can leave a profound and lasting imprint on your soul. To transform your life requires a journey which will change the way you view yourself and the world. This tour maintains all the comforts of home with the profound experience of India, allowing you to absorb the area's rich spiritual traditions while enjoying safe food, excellent lodging and the guidance of experienced staff.

Highlights of the tour include:

  • Visiting New Delhi, Taj Mahal at dawn in Agra, and the Golden Temple in Amritsar;
  • Four day stay at the tranquil Glass House and imbibe in treatment based on Ayurveda;
  • Participation in many Hindu and Sikh rituals;
  • Be in the midst of an Ayurveda healing village, and experience a multitude of treatments.

India is geographically the size of Europe. There are 17 different languages with their own scripts. As a visit to France is not representative of visiting all of Europe, equally North India is vastly different in all respects to South India. The BBC has listed the Golden Temple and Taj Mahal as two of the top ten sites to visit in the world. Your fee includes breakfast daily, all 3 meals during your Ayurveda treatments, comfortable lodging, sacred ceremonies and English-speaking guides throughout the trip. Besides visiting the great religious and cultural sites, and walking in the footsteps of the Masters, our tour also provides time to "shop with Shakta" in the bazaars and partake in local customs and ceremonies.

Shakta Kaur is your tour leader. Shakta has been to India numerous times since the year 2000. She’s introduced many to the beauty, chaos, sights and sounds of India on tours from North to South India! Shakta has also taught at various Indian conferences on Ayurveda and Yoga.

 

ITINERARY
Map of proposed itinerary. (https://goo.gl/maps/egeqJCxp2yZzJr8c6). Zoom in and out to change detail. Route shows travel by road, but some will be by air and train.

7 NOV’22 (MON): Depart the USA
Depart this afternoon from the USA. Overnight: On board your flight.

8 NOV’22 (TUE): ARRIVE DELHI BY INTERATIONAL FLIGHT
Meeting and assistance on arrival and transfer to hotel.

Delhi, locally pronounced as Dilli is located on the banks of the River Yamuna. Delhi has been known to be continuously inhabited since at least the 6th century BC, though human habitation is believed to have existed since the second millennium BC. Delhi is also widely believed to have been the site of Indraprastha, the legendary capital of the Pandavas during the times of the Mahabharata. Overnight: Delhi.

9 NOV’22 (WED): DELHI – VARANASI BY AIR
Transfer to Delhi airport to board flight for Varanasi, upon arrival visit Sarnath - One of four most important places in the life of Buddha: Where he was born (Lumbini, Nepal), where he gained enlightenment (Bodh Gaya, India), where he gave his first sermon (Sarnath, India) and where he left his mortal body (Kushinager, India). After the Buddha attained enlightenment in Bodh Gaya he came to Sarnath, where, at the Deer Park, he delivered his first sermon. Emperor Ashoka (c 304 - 232 BC), who spread the Buddha's message of love and compassion throughout his vast empire, visited Sarnath around 234 BC, and erected a stupa here. We will visit the Stupas, excavated ruins of monasteries, Ashoka Pillar, Deer Park, Dhamekh Stupa, Bodhi tree, Moolgandha Kuti Vihara and Archaeology Museum (closed on Friday). Overnight: Varanasi.

10 NOV’22 (THU): IN VARANASI
Go to the Holy River Ganga before dawn. Experience Ganges cruise & watch activities on Ghats – The long string of bathing ghats are the principal attraction in Varanasi, one of the older continuously inhabited cities in the World, rich in Hinduism. Ghats are the steps which lead down to the river and the best time to visit the ghats is at dawn, when pilgrims take their morning dip. There are over 100 ghats in all. The best way to see the activities on the ghats is to take a boat ride along the ghats. One can see the women bathing discreetly in their saris, the young men going through yoga exercises, the priests offering blessings. Look for the burning ghats where bodies are cremated.


Manikarnika and Harishchandra are the main burning ghats. The lingams mark each ghat, for Varanasi is the city of Lord Shiva. Return to your hotel for breakfast. Afternoon you can explore city temples and in the evening, be a part of an Aarti on the banks of the Holy Ganga. Overnight: Varanasi.

11 NOV’22 (FRI): VARANASI – DELHI BY AIR – JAIPUR BY ROAD (5 Hrs.)
In time transfer to the airport to board morning flight for Delhi. Upon arrival, immediately drive to Jaipur. Arrive and check-in at the hotel and rest of the day at leisure. Overnight: Jaipur.

12 NOV’22 (SAT): IN JAIPUR
This morning you will drive 11 kms in the outskirts of the city to visit Amber Fort. The weather-beaten façade of the nearly 420-year old Amer Fort belies the elegant beauty of its majestic interiors. Some of the most spectacular structures of the fort are ‘Diwan-i-Aam’ (hall of public audience), ‘Sheesh Mahal’ (glass palace), and ‘Sukh Mahal’ (pleasure palace). After Amber Fort, spend an hour or so with elephants. While one can go up the Fort on elephant back, we do not promote this elephant joy ride due to animal protection and cruelty.


On the way to Amer Fort, there will be a brief photography stop at Hawa Mahal. This five-storied palace strongly fascinates with its pyramidal shape and hundreds of jharokhas (windows). Hawa Mahal means ‘Palace of Winds’ and it truly lives up to its name as the palace stays breezy even during the blistering summers of Rajasthan. After Amber, return to the city for the sightseeing of Maharaja's City Palace - Built on the orders of Sawai Jai Sigh II, the City Palace is a blend of Mughal, Rajput and European architectural styles as it was built in parts by different succeeding rulers. The Chandra Mahal (Moon Palace) here has been turned into a museum and has lots of interesting exhibits. And visit Jantar Mantar - It’s the world’s largest observatory carved in stone and marble. Many of the huge ancient instruments here are still in working condition. Overnight: Jaipur.

13 NOV’22 (SUN): IN JAIPUR
Own program, allowing you to shop, walk the small lanes of the city, be with local families. Your vehicle will be with you for use within the city for the day. Overnight: Jaipur.

14 NOV’22 (MON): JAIPUR – AGRA BY ROAD (6 Hrs.)
After breakfast drive to Agra en route visiting Fatehpur Sikri, located 40 Km from Agra. The deserted city of Fatehpur Sikri was built by Emperor Akbar in 1569, in honour of the great Saint Sheikh Salim Chisti who blessed Akbar and prophesized the birth of three sons to the heirless Emperor. Akbar used Fatehpur Sikri as his capital and the city was fully occupied for 14 years but slowly became deserted and ruined after Akbar left the city. After sightseeing, drive to Agra.

Agra is a city on the banks of the river Yamuna The city finds mention in the epic Mahabharata where it was called Agrevaa, or 'the border of the forest'. Legend ascribes the founding of the city to Raja Badal Singh (around 1475), who’s fort, Badalgarh, stood on or near the site of the present Fort. However, the 11th century Persian poet Mas'ud Sa'd Salman writes of a desperate assault on the fortress of Agra, then held by the Shahi King Jayapala, by Sultan Mahmud of Ghazni.

Late afternoon spend time in the streets of Agra, and stretch your legs buying from trinkets to museum quality pieces in marble. Overnight: Agra.


15 NOV’22 (TUE): AGRA – DELHI BY ROAD (4 Hrs.)
Before dawn visit the Taj Mahal - the most extravagant monument ever built for love. On the death of his beloved wife Mumtaz Mahal, Moghul Emperor Shah Jehan built her this memorial over which 20,000 men laboured for 22 years to create a masterpiece in white marble inlaid with semi-precious stones; the art is called pietra dura. Stroll down the ornamental gardens laid out along the classical Mughal charbagh lines. This garden is separated by a long watercourse, which reflects the monument in perfect symmetry. Later come back to your hotel for breakfast and thereafter drive to Delhi.

On the way to Delhi visit Agra Fort where Shah Jehan spent the last years of his life, imprisoned by his son Aurangzeb. The most impressive part of the Fort are the Dewan-eAm, Hall of Public Audience where the Emperor met officials and listened to petitioners, and the Dewan-e-Khas Hall of Private Audience where he received foreign dignitaries. The Peacock throne (now in Iran) was in this fort, before being moved to Delhi by Emperor Aurangzeb.

Upon arrival check-in at the hotel and after freshen-up, and if you are inclined, proceed for a few hours of shopping at Lajpat Nagar, haven for all local families, local slippers, clothes, incense, spices, etc. Overnight: Delhi.

16 NOV’22 (WED): DELHI – AMRITSAR BY AIR
In time transfer to the airport to board flight for Amritsar, upon arrival transfer to the hotel and rest of the day at leisure

Amritsar is located in the north western part of India and is 32 kms east of Lahore, Pakistan and is one of the major cities of the Punjab state in India. It is home to Harmandir Sahib, also known as The Golden Temple, the spiritual and cultural center of the Sikh religion. Amritsar, important to Sikh history, is also known for the incidents Jallianwala Bagh Massacre in 1919 under British Rule and Operation Bluestar in 1984 under the late Prime Minister of India, Indira Gandhi.

Late afternoon, visit the border town of Wagah to see the change of guard ceremony. It is a spectacle comparable to 'Change of Guards' in London. The pomp and pageantry of the Beating Retreat and the Change of Guard within handshaking distance of the Indian and Pakistani forces makes for a most charming spectacle. Overnight: Amritsar.


17 NOV’22 (THU): IN AMRITSAR
Leave your hotel before dawn and go to the Golden Temple. Welcome the Guru Granth Sahib from its sleeping quarters to the main temple. Afterwards, have langar for your breakfast. The Golden Temple - the sacred Sikh sanctuary - is spread out in a vast complex around a huge water tank in the midst of which stands a marble sanctum where the holy book of the Sikhs, the Guru Granth is reverently placed. The roof of the sanctum is gold-leafed. The community kitchen provides free meals to up to 10,000 pilgrims or visitors in a day. Also, walk by the busy bazaars of the city; visit the historic Jallianwalah Bagh, where General Dyer’s bullets killed hundreds of innocent Indians. Later, visit the Durgiana Hindu temple which looks like a replica of the golden temple.

After dinner, you may witness a Palki Ceremony in Golden temple. To the accompaniment of drums and hymns that fill the air, a gold and silver gilded palanquin, decorated with silk brocades, is prepared by the devotees to carry the Guru Granth Sahib (the Holy Book) from the main shrine in Hari Mandir to Darshani Deorhi (gateway leading to the inner sanctum). Performed every evening, several devout followers and visitors participate in the ceremony, which offers each individual at least a few seconds to help carry the palanquin. The Holy Book rests for a few hours in the inner chambers until the commencement of the early morning Palki Sahib Ceremony for bringing the Guru Granth Sahib from the Akal Takht (inner chambers) to the main shrine in Hari Mandir. Overnight: Amritsar.

18 NOV’22 (FRI): IN AMRITSAR
Own program, allowing you to shop, walk the small lanes of the city, return to the Golden Temple. Overnight: Amritsar.

19 NOV’22 (SAT): DEPARTURE
In time transfer to Amritsar international airport to board flight for your onward destination.

~ ~ END OF SERVICES AS ARRANGED BY SPIRITUAL JOURNEYS ~ ~

COSTS: US $ 3,275.00 per person. Min of 15 people in group arriving, traveling and departing together, 2-people sharing one twin share room. Single occupancy is US $ 710.00 extra.

Full payment together with a completed Registration Form is due by Friday 5 August 2022. If we are unable to go on the tour due to Covid related reasons, this tour will be postponed till end February/early March 2023.

Payment by Installments: Available. Details depend on amount and date of first payment. Contact Deepak Singh for details.

 

HOTELS ENVISIONED, or Similar:

City
Hotel, Room Type
Nights
Delhi
1
Varanasi
MADIN (Deluxe)
2
Jaipur
Holiday Inn (Superior)
3
Agra
Crystal Sarovar (Premier)
1
Delhi
1
Amritsar
Ramada (Standard)
3


COSTS INCLUDE:
• Hotel accommodation inc breakfast as above on double/twin-sharing room,
• Tips and gratuities to train porters, vehicle drivers and cleaner,
• English speaking local guide for sightseeing in all places as per program,
• All applicable taxes including mandatory government service tax,
• Entrances fee for entry into monuments as per the itinerary,
• The services of a SJI representative at all airport and hotel transfers,
• Economy Class air fare for Delhi to Amritsar, and Amritsar to Delhi,
• Transfers, excursions and sightseeing will be by using an air-conditioned vehicle, and,
• All road taxes, parking fee, fuel charges, interstate taxes and currently applicable taxes.
• Rickshaw ride & Ganges cruise in Varanasi [1-time activity only]

COSTS DO NOT INCLUDE:
• Beverages, mineral water, alcohol, laundry, telephone calls; or other items of personal nature,
• Tips and gratuities to bellboys at hotels and your guides,
• Increases in Airfares or Government imposed taxes or entrance fees,
• Still camera or video camera fees at the various monuments and museums,
• Services not specifically stated in the itinerary,
• Any meals or items ordered in the room/room service,
• Personal or travel insurance,
• Departure Taxes or Visa Handling Fees,
• Any changes you may choose to make during your tour, and,
• Domestic (not specified within) or International Air.


THE TOUR IN GENERAL
• Total Number of Nights: 11 Nights.
• Any early check-in or late check-out will be charged additional as per the hotel policy.
• Standard Check-in at all the hotel is 1400 hour. Room requests before standard check-in time i.e. @ 1400 hour have to be pre-booked (One-night charge applicable).
• Standard Check-out at all the hotel is 1200 hour (noon). Room requests after standard check-out time i.e. @ 1200 hour (noon) have to be pre-booked (One-night charge applicable).
• All safety, hygiene & social distancing norms to be followed by our guests as per government guidelines.
• Hotel/Travel Company reserve all rights to change/modify tariff or package cost without prior notice during fair/festivals, national or international events, government meetings/conferences, any trade fair, marriages or main event. In case hotel tariff is affected by any unforeseen event then revised tariff will be applicable.
• The prices are subject to change in case of any variation of tax, currency and tariff structure.

REGISTRATION: Fill Registration Form and e-mail to Deepak Singh.

Additional information: E-mail: Deepak Singh, Spiritual Journeys, LLC, 262 Upland Road, Cambridge, MA 02140. USA. Or Text/WhasApp/Telegram Deepak at +1-508-358-4267.

 

EXTENSION TO HARIDWAR/RISHIKESH (Available only to those who go on the main tour, as above)


19 NOV’22 (SAT): AMRITSAR – HARIDWAR BY TRAIN
In time transfer to Amritsar railway station to board train for Haridwar. Upon arrival, spend an hour or so in Hardwar, and then drive to Rishikesh (1 1/2 hrs) and rest of the day at leisure. Overnight: Rishikesh.

20 NOV’22 (SUN): IN RISHIKESH
Full day at leisure, on your own, with no services provided. Overnight: Rishikesh.

21 NOV’22 (MON): IN RISHIKESH
Full day at leisure, on your own, with no services provided. Overnight: Rishikesh.

22 NOV’22 (TUE): IN RISHIKESH
Full day at leisure, on your own, with no services provided. Overnight: Rishikesh.

23 NOV’22 (WED): RISHIKESH – DELHI
In time transfer to international Delhi airport by your private vehicle, (drive of 6 to 7 hrs.) to board flight for onward destination.

24 NOV’22 (THU): ARRIVE THE USA
Arrive the USA this morning.

~ ~ END OF SERVICES AS ARRANGED BY SPIRITUAL JOURNEYS ~ ~


COSTS: US $ 850.00 per person with minimum of six people in group arriving, traveling and departing together, 2-people sharing one twin share room. Single occupancy is US $ 710.00 extra.

Payment by Installments: Available. Details depend on amount and date of first payment. Contact Deepak Singh for details.

HOTEL ENVISIONED, or Similar:

City
Hotel, Room Type
Nights
Rishikesh
Glass House (Deluxe)
4


COSTS INCLUDE:
• Hotel accommodation inc breakfast, as above on double/twin-sharing room,
• Tips to train porters, vehicle drivers and cleaner,
• English speaking local guide for sightseeing in all places as per program,
• All applicable taxes including mandatory government service tax,
• Entrances fee for entry into monuments as per the itinerary,
• The services of a SJI representative at all airport and hotel transfers,
• Train ticket in A/C Chair Car for Amritsar-Hardwar,
• Transfers, excursions and sightseeing will be by using an air-conditioned vehicle, and,
• All road taxes, parking fee, fuel charges, interstate taxes and currently applicable taxes.


COSTS DO NOT INCLUDE:
• Beverages, mineral water, alcohol, laundry, telephone calls; or other items of personal nature,
• Tips and gratuities to bellboys at hotels and your guides,
• Any personal, beauty or other treatments services in any hotels,
• Increases in Airfares or Government imposed taxes or entrance fees,
• Still camera or video camera fees at the various monuments and museums,
• Services not specifically stated in the itinerary,
• Any meals, or items ordered in the room/room service,
• Personal or travel insurance,
• Departure Taxes or Visa Handling Fees,
• Any changes you may choose to make during your tour, and,
• Domestic (not specified within) or International Air.


THE TOUR IN GERNERAL
• Total Number of Nights: 4 Nights.
• Any early check-in or late check-out will be charged additional as per the hotel policy.
• Standard Check-in at all the hotels is 1400 hours. Room requests before standard check-in time i.e. at 1400 hours have to be pre-booked (One-night charge applicable).
• Standard Check-out at all the hotel is 1200 noon. Room requests after standard check-out time i.e. at 1200 noon have to be pre-booked (One-night charge applicable).
• All safety, hygiene & social distancing norms to be followed by our guests as per government guidelines.
• Hotel/Travel Company reserve all rights to change/modify tariff or package cost without prior notice during fair/festivals, national or international events, government meetings/conferences, any trade fair, marriages or main event. In case hotel tariff is affected by any unforeseen event then revised tariff will be applicable.
• The prices are subject to change in case of any variation of tax, currency and tariff structure.