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The Trans Himalayan Extravaganza Tour
( Delhi - Srinagar - Leh - Delhi - Agra -Delhi )


This delightful tour covers two entirely different cultures - Muslim and Buddhist. The flight into Leh (3554m) from Srinagar (1768m) breathtaking one as you get a bird's eye view of the extensive snow clad Indian Western Himalayan ranges in all their detail. Indian Airlines operates one flight a week from Srinagar to Leh. The ancient monasteries of Ladakh offer the visitor a glimpse into the wealth of images, ancient scriptures, gigantic thangkas, finely detailed wall paintings and awesome architecture that these Buddhist temples hold. A couple of days of relaxation are essential as the thin rarefied air of Leh can be hard on the lungs.

Day 1: Catch the early morning flight from Delhi to Srinagar. On arrival check into a luxurious houseboat which will remain your base for the time spent in this wonderful valley. Take a stroll around the old city window shop and view the unusual merchandise on sale. In the afternoon after lunch stroll along the boulevard and then visit the Shri Pratap Singh Museum known for its ancient sculptures from old Hindu temples besides various other archeological treasures. Return to your houseboat for a relaxed evening on the lake.

Day 2: Visit the beautifully landscaped and planned Chasmashahi, Nishat and Shalimar gardens. All three gardens were designed by Mughal emperors and are still well maintained. From here we head uphill to the Pari Mahal (Fairies' Palace). This palace was originally a retreat for Sufis and is full of crumbling stairways leading to terraces planted with flowers. Built by Dara Shikoh a Mughal prince, the palace is still quite secluded. Return to your houseboat by evening.

Day 3: Catch the early morning flight to Leh operated by Indian Airlines. And arrival transfer to your hotel. Spend the day strolling around the Fort Road the main promenade in Leh with shops, hotels and restaurants. Take its easy as acclimatization at this height of 3554 metres is essential. In the evening return to your hotel.

Day 4: Visit the City Palace a distinct landmark of Leh town perched high up on a craggy hillside. From here you get extensive views of the entire town of Leh. Return to your hotel for lunch. In the afternoon visit the Shanti Stupa a new monastery built with Japanese help. From here also excellent views of the town are afforded. Return to Fort Road and stroll around. Return to your hotel for the night.

Day 5: Visit the Tibetan settlement of Choglomsar and see the Tibetan culture at close hand. Then drive down to the monasteries of Shey and Thiksey. The Thiksey monastery rises tier upon tier on a hillside and is reminiscent of the Potala in Lhasa Tibet. Both these monasteries have a wealth of images, scrolls, volumes of scriptures and intricately painted thangkas. Visit the Stok Palace which is also currently the residence of the King of Ladakh. The museum contains ancient weaponry, utensils, musical instruments and coins and seals and jewellery. Return to leh and your hotel for the night.

Day 6 : Visit the ancient monasteries of Spituk and Phyang both ancient and cleanly maintained. Phyang has some Kashmiri Buddhist bronzes and a collection of weaponry. The terrace offers unparalleled views of the Zanskar ranges and the bare mountain slopes near the Indus River. Spituk has a voluminous library and 23 images of manifestations. After an interesting day return to your hotel for the night.

Day 7: Visit the famous and wealthiest monastery in Ladakh - Hemis which was founded in the 1630's. It is famous for its masked devil dance dramas and annual festival. Every 12 years a gigantic thangka which is embroidered not painted is unveiled. An entire day is needed here and on the return we stop over briefly at the Stakna Gompa dramatically located on an isolated 60 metre high rock rising from a flat plain. There is a silver chorten and within a number of murals. Return to Leh by evening.

Day 8: Transfer to the airport to catch your flight to Delhi. On arrival you're transferred to your hotel. The entire day is free for shopping. Return to your hotel for dinner and the night.

Day 9: Drive to Agra city - a 5 hour drive after an early breakfast. In Agra visit the legendary Taj Mahal, the Fort and the abandoned city of Fatehpur Sikri 37 Kms away. In the evening drive back to Delhi and your hotel in time for dinner.

Day10: Day free till its time (usually late night) to catch your onward international flight to your next destination.

Other Kashmir Cultural Tours
S. No. Tour Days
1. The Kashmir Himalayan Meadows & Forests Culture Tour
(Delhi - Srinagar - Pahalgam - Srinagar - Gulmarg - Khilanmarg - Srinagar - Delhi - Agra - Delhi)

The Southern Kashmir Valley Tour
(Delhi -Srinagar -Anantnag - Kokernag - Verinag - Srinagar - Yusmarg - Srinagar -Delhi - Agra - Delhi)



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