MUMBAI - AURANGABAD - AJANTA CAVES - ELLORA CAVES - HYDERABAD - CHENNAI - MAHABALIPURAM - KANCHIPURAM - MYSORE - BELUR - HALEBID - BANGALORE - MUMBAI TOUR.
This 13 days western India to southern India by train tour starts from Mumbai and ends in Mumbai. This is one of the few Ajanta & Ellora train tours from Mumbai in this site. Indian tour operator Services International Ltd offers you many Mumbai to south India travel by train tours. Contact us for suggested trips of South India. Rail tour Packages in India are at a budget price as you will be spending some nights in the trains and will be saving on the hotels. You are visiting Mumbai, Ajanta and Ellora in West India and the rest of Southern India holiday tour is by rail. This is a good itinerary for rail lovers wishing to explore India by trains.
Day 01 : - Arrive Mumbai
On your arrival in Mumbai, you will be transferred to your hotel. Rest of the time is at leisure. Rest of your time is at leisure. Mumbai or Bombay is the finance capital of India. Mumbai influxes a large number of people from all over and throughout the year for pilgrimage, sightseeing or employment. It gets described as the city of peopling shrouded in wealth as well as people rolling in extremely poverty, where one can say highly posh areas along with Asia’s biggest slum Dharavi. Overnight is in Mumbai.
Day 02 :- Mumbai to Aurangabad by overnight train.
This morning in your morning tour of this Bollywood city, you will be visiting the Hanging Gardens located on, the slopes of the Malabar Hills as well as Kamla Nehru Park offering a marvelous and panoramic view of the Chowpatty Beach as well as the Marine Drive. You will continue your tour and taken to Mani Bhawan, Prince of the Wales Museum, Gate of India and Dhobi-Ghat and will drive through Marine Drive, Flora Fountain and Crawford market. Check-out from the hotel is at 1200 hrs.
Your Afternoon is at leisure or you could take an optional tour to Elephanta Caves. The Caves on Elephanta Island located in the Arabian Sea; about 10 km from the Mumbai Harbor are a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The caves dating back to the 5th to the 8th century AD are divided into five Hindu caves dedicated to Shiva and two Buddhist caves. The caves are closed on Monday and can be reached by boat from Gateway of India. Late evening you will be transferred to rail station in time for your Aurangabad night train. Overnight is on board train.
Day 03 :- Aurangabad Ajanta Caves Aurangabad by road.
This morning on your arrival in Aurangabad you will be transferred to your hotel. Aurangabad built in 1610 AD by Malik Ambar was named after the Emperor Aurangzeb. Some of the places of interest in Aurangabad are Bibi Ka Maqbara, Panchakki, Kali Masjid, Jumma Masjid, Quila-E-Ark, Aurangabad Caves, etc. Bibi Ka Maqbara built in 1678 is the tomb of Aurangzeb's wife Dilras Banu Begum and is called the Baby Taj as it has a similar design as Taj Mahal. Aurangabad is an ideal base for visiting Ajanta & Ellora Caves. Ajanta Caves are closed on Mondays and Ellora Caves are closed on Tuesdays.
Today you will be visiting the UNESCO World Heritage Site - Ajanta Caves. The Ajanta sight-seeing takes you to the Buddhist Chaityas and Viharas with carvings and fantastic wall paintings. The paintings show Buddha’s life and rituals of the Mahayana Buddhism period. The Mural paintings prove that the ancient Indians had mastered a fluent style, dealing with large groups of people and were painted on top of a dry plaster surface rather than into a wet plaster. The paintings show in detail the life of a wealthy court. The ceilings are painted with detailed decorative motifs and some of them represent the Jataka tales showing the previous lives of Buddha as a ruler. Overnight in Aurangabad.
Day 04 :- Aurangabad Ellora Caves Aurangabad by road.
This morning, you will be visiting the UNESCO World Heritage Site Ellora Caves dating back from 5th century to 11th century. The 34 caves with Buddhist monasteries, Hindu temples and Jain temples were excavated out of the vertical face of a rock. The Kailasa Temple is the largest monolithic structure in the world. Afternoon is at leisure or you could take optional tours to discover the nearby places. Some of the places of interest are Bibi Ka Maqbara, Panchakki, Kali Masjid, Jumma Masjid, Quila-E-Ark, Aurangabad Caves, etc. Bibi Ka Maqbara built in 1678 is the tomb of Aurangzeb's wife Dilras Banu Begum and is called the Baby Taj as it has a similar design as Taj Mahal. Overnight is in Aurangabad.
Day 05 :- Aurangabad to Hyderabad by overnight train.
You have free time or you could enjoy an optional tour to Daulatabad. Daulatabad meaning abode of wealth was a fort city. Muhammad bin Tughluq shifted his capital from Delhi to Daulatabad and moved the entire population of Delhi here but had to abandon it later due to shortage of water. The fort has been built quite strongly and the only means of access to the top is through a narrow bridge, with a small passage. At the summit, and other areas on the slope, huge old cannons. Checkout is at 1200 hrs noon. In the evening, you will be taken to the rail-station in time for your Hyderabad night train. Overnight is on board the train.
Day 06 :- Hyderabad.
This morning on your arrival in Hyderabad, you will be transferred to your hotel. Hyderabad "Lion City" was established by Muhammad Quli Qutb Shah in 1591. The world famous Kohinoor diamond was mined in Golconda. A stroll in the old city through the different bazaars is quite fascinating. Hyderabad historically a pearl and diamond trading centre is called the City of Pearls and its bazaars - Laad Bazaar, Begum Bazaar and Sultan Bazaar are quite busy even today. Hyderabad is emerging as an important centre for technology. Do not forget to taste the delicious Hyderabadi biryani.
The afternoon Hyderabad tour includes visits to Char Minar, Mecca Masjid and Salarjung Museum. The Charminar (four minarets) an icon of the city is located in the olden part of Hyderabad and is a square structure four grand arches and four minarets. The Mecca Masjid is one of the oldest and largest Mosques and is in the old part of the city. The Salarjung Museum established in 1951 is one of the largest museums of India and houses the largest one-man collection of antiques and has a good collection of sculptures, paintings, textiles, manuscripts, etc., collected from all over the world. Overnight is in Hyderabad.
Day 07 :- Hyderabad to Chennai by overnight train.
You have time at leisure or you could take an optional tour of Golconda. The original fort was built by the Kakatiyas in 1143. The fort is on a granite hill surrounded by large ramparts & has a perfect system by which a hand clap at the fort's main gates is heard at the top - 300 ft height. The Fort contains the tombs of the Qutub Shahi kings. Golkonda was famous for its fabled diamonds and some of the world famous diamonds mined here are Kohinoor, Darya-e Nur, The Hope, Nur-Ul-Ain, Princie, Regent, etc. Check-out is at 1200 hrs. Later in the evening you will be transferred to rail station for Chennai night train. Overnight is on board the train.
Day 08:- Chennai.
This morning on your arrival in Chennai you will be transferred to your hotel. The name Chennai was derived from Chennaipattanam, built by the English in 1639. The earlier name of Madras was a short form of Madraspattinam a fishing village. Chennai is the capital of Tamil Nadu and an important centre for Carnatic music. The city is also famous for the Tamil movies and known as Kollywood. Chennai came into prominence because of the British who defended the town against several attacks from the French and converted it to a major naval port. Chennai has numerous places of interest and beautiful museums.
In Chennai you will visit the oldest museum of India - The Government Museum with 46 galleries and different sections for Archaeology, Zoology, Geology, Bronze, etc. The Museum is closed on Fridays and other public holidays. The Bronze Gallery with its beautiful statues going back to a thousand years is worth visiting. San Thome Basilica from the 16th century was originally built by the Portuguese. Drive through the Flower and Fruit market, High court, Marina Beach, and other places of interest. Afternoon is at leisure. Overnight is in Chennai.
Day 09:- Chennai Mamallapuram Kanchipuram Chennai by road.
Today, you will have a full day excursion to Mamallapuram and Kanchipuram. Kanchipuram was the ancient capital of the Pallavas and was the town of a 1000 temples. Kanchipuram sight-seeing takes you through some of the known temples such as Siva temple from the 7th century, Ekambareswara temple, Sri Kailasanathar Temple from the 8th century, the Sri Vardaraja Perumal Temple, etc. Kanchipuram is a shopper’s paradise as it offers the world famous Kanchipuram silk and saris. After the visit, you will continue by road to Mamallapuram.
Mamallapuram also known as Mahabalipuram or Mamallapattana, an UNESCO World Heritage Site and a historic town and seaport. It was also known by the ancient mariners as the city of "Seven Pagodas". Out of the Seven Pagodas, only the Shore Temple survives. Mahabalipuram was a bustling seaport and the traders went to South East Asia from here. It was an important port for the Pallavas and most of the monuments portray events from the Mahabharata and date back from the 7th to the 9th century.
Your tour of Mahabalipuram takes you through the cave temples and mandapams cut in the rocks showing depiction of incidents from legends, epics and mythology. The temples were built during the rule of Narasimhavarman and Rajasimhavarman. The bas relief Arjuna's Penance with life size images carved on the rock wall is the largest Bas-relief in the world. The five chariots are carved out of a single rock. The structure of the Shore Temple is one of the oldest in South India. After the visit, you will be transferred to Chennai. Overnight is in Chennai.
Day 10:- Chennai to Mysore by train.
This morning transfer to rail station in time for your Mysore train. On your arrival in Mysore, you will be transferred to your hotel. Mysore also known as Mysooru is the city of palaces and also the cultural capital of Karnataka is famous for its Dussehra festival. You will be visiting the Mysore Palace with archways, domes, turrets, colonnades and sculptures. Appreciate the exhibits at the Art Gallery. You will drive to the Chamundi hill to visit the Chamundeshwari Temple. From the hill enjoy the panoramic view of the city of Mysore and on return visit the Nandi bull. Mysore is a good place for buying the famous "Mysore silk". Overnight is in Mysore.
Day 11:- Mysore Belur Halebid Mysore by road.
Your full day excursion of Halebid, Belur and Sravanbelgola will take you to the ancient beautiful temples. Belur was the capital of Hoysala Empire and has one of the finest examples of Hoysala architecture - the Chennakesava Vishnu Temple which was built by king Vishnuvardhana in celebration of his victory over the Cholas in the 12th century. It took 103 years to complete the temple and sculptures include elephants, lions, horses, stories from the Indian legends and dancers.
Halebid or Halibeedu meaning the Old City was also known as Dwarasamudra and was the capital of the Hoysala Empire in the 12th century. In front of the Hoysaleshawara and Kedareshwara temples there is a big lake - Dwara Samudhra which means entrance of the ocean and the city derives its name from this lake. The walls of the temple are covered with depictions of Hindu mythology, animals, birds and dancing damsels. The sculptures of the temple are different from each other and there is a museum in the complex. The nearby Jain temples are quite beautiful.
Sravanbelgola which is an important pilgrimage centre for the Jains. The Gommateshvara Bahubali statue of this city is renowned, popular and an important pilgrimage spot for the Jains. This statue is very huge and can be seen from the distance of around 25 kms of the area that get bathed with honey and milk as a ritual once in every 12 years. At this time, it attracts thousands and thousands of worshippers from all over the world. After the visit of Sravanbelgola, you will proceed by road to Hassan where you have time at leisure. Overnight is in Mysore.
Day 12:- Mysore to Bengaluru by road.
Today morning you will be transferred to Bengaluru also known Bangalore today by road. Bangalore is the Silicon Valley of India and is one of the top preferred entrepreneurial locations in the world. The story goes that a 12th century king lost his way and met a poor woman who offered him boiled beans. The grateful king named the place "benda-kaal-uru" which means town of boiled beans. Bangalore is also an important place for classical music and dance.
Your afternoon sightseeing tour of Bengaluru or Bangalore, also known as "Garden City of India" will take you to Lal Bagh, Maharaja's Palace, etc. The Lal Bagh started by Hyder Ali and finished by his son Tipu Sultan has India's largest collection of tropical plants - over a 1000 species of flora. The construction of the Bangalore Palace started in 1862 was completed in 1944 and looks similar to the Windsor Castle in England. Drive past different Government buildings. Overnight is in Bangalore.
Day 13:- Bangalore to Mumbai by flight.
Today you will be transferred to airport in time for your Mumbai flight where you will connect to your return flight/onwards flight. Hotel accommodation is not included for this night.
Day 14:- Departure
END OF YOUR WEST INDIA + SOUTH INDIA LUXURY RAIL TOUR.