Explore one of the world’s richest and most diverse cuisines with an award-winning Indian chef. For the first time ever, chef Siddharth Choudhary, the mastermind behind Vancouver’s popular Indian restaurant, Siddhartha’s Kitchen, will be leading an exciting 15-day journey through the cultural and culinary highlights of India.
Recipient of the Best Asian Food in Vancouver award and credited with putting Indian cuisine on the food map of Western Canada, Siddarth is known for his authentic and delicious Indian dishes. During this unique culinary experience, he will personally lead a select group of foodies through the different cuisines of Northern India and dive into the preparations, traditions and history that make them so distinct.
Savour a unique mix of culture and food as we take part in intimate cooking classes with award-winning chefs, day-long feasts fit for Indian royalty and shopping experiences in India’s most famous markets, as well as experience the cultural highlights of Delhi, Agra, Jaipur and more, including a visit to India’s most splendid monument, the Taj Mahal.
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Day 01: November 11, 2018: Arrive Delhi
Namaste! We are greeted with flower garlands and welcomed to Delhi, our first stop in India!
Overnight: Vivanta by Taj Dwarka - Superior Charm Rooms, Delhi (3 nights)
Day 02: November 12, 2018: Delhi
Our culinary tour kicks off with an intimate visit at the home of Mrs. Jyoti Agarwal, an award-winning chef. Jyoti will introduce us to India’s world-famous cuisine through a cooking demonstration and explain to us the important role of food in Indian culture. After being welcomed into her home, we will join her family for lunch, providing a fascinating firsthand look at how food connects families in Indian culture.
Afternoon is spent exploring the cultural highlights of India’s vibrant capital city, including visits to the 13th century Qutb Minar*, a red sandstone tower and World Heritage Site built over the course of 300 years. We will also stop at Humayun’s Tomb*. Following our city tour, we are treated to a welcome feast at a local Indian restaurant. (B, L, D)
Day 03: November 13, 2018: Delhi
An exciting day ahead as we embark on a specially designed culinary tour of Delhi. We start our exotic food experience at “Parathewali Gali”. The shops that line this street only sell Parathas, a special Indian flatbread stuffed with vegetables, cheeses, spices and everything else the chefs fancy! Here we will get to sample the many varieties of bread. Continue our quest at Khari Bowli, Asia’s biggest wholesale spice market. As we will learnt at Jyoti Aggarwal’s cooking class, spices play an essential role in Indian cooking. This is perhaps the best opportunity to buy fresh spices to take back home. We then stop at Chandni Chowk bazaar, the oldest and busiest in Delhi, followed by Karim's Restaurant, where we sample their internationally known mouthwatering kebabs. After continuing to savour the sights, sounds and flavours of Delhi, we head to the Red Fort*, a massive sandstone fort considered to be the zenith of Moghul creativity. Next we lunch at the famous Moti Mahal Restaurant, birthplace of Butter Chicken. After a delicious meal, we drive through the Houses of Parliament and the famous Connaught Place before heading to our hotel. Dinner will be at our hotel. (B, L, D)
Day 04: November 14, 2018: Delhi/Lucknow (Flight)
A short flight brings us to Lucknow, the culinary capital of India. In the afternoon, a unique experience as we are treated to high tea by the descendants of Lucknow’s ruling class, the Nawab, learning about the history, cultural traditions and cuisine of this unique group. Evening, we join our Chef Siddharth and a Lucknowi culinary expert on an exciting culinary walking tour. As we go along, we will be sampling Lucknow’s famous delicacies and dishes, as well as its first class restaurant scene.
Overnight: Lebua Lucknow Hotel – Heritage Property, Executive Rooms (2 nights) (B, High Tea session, D)
Day 05: November 15, 2018: Lucknow
We continue our exploration of Lucknow today with visits to the 250-year-old Bara Imambara, the city’s grandest building, and the clock tower, perhaps the finest example of British architecture in India. Evening, we enjoy a cooking demonstration of Lucknow’s most popular eats at the Chhat and learn more about the local cuisine by participating in a culinary workshop. Afterwards, an exclusive Awadhi dinner awaits us, giving us the chance to sample both vegetarian and non-vegetarian delights prepared with exotic spices and garnished with dry fruits. (B, D)
Note: (Chhat is a rooftop restaurant with two flights of stairs – no elevator)
Day 06: November 16, 2018: Lucknow/Agra (Drive)
We continue our journey with a drive to Agra, touring the imposing Agra Fort*. This powerful fortress of red sandstone encompasses the spectacular imperial city of the Moghul rulers. Explore fairy-tale palaces, audience halls and two very beautiful mosques. Evening Chef Siddharth will introduce us to a sumptuous meal at a famous Peshawari restaurant, sampling a lavish spread of delicious vegetarian and non-vegetarian kebabs along with local favourite Dal Bukhara, or black lentil dhal.
Overnight: ITC Mughal - a Starwood Luxury Collection Deluxe Rooms (1 night) (B, D)
Day 07: November 17, 2018: Agra/Ramathra (Drive)
We start the day with a sunrise tour of one of the most well-known and majestic cultural heritage monuments in the world, the Taj Mahal*. An immense mausoleum of white marble built between 1631 and 1648 by Shah Jahan in memory of his favourite wife, Mumtaz Mahal, it is the jewel of Muslim architecture in India. After this incredible experience, we drive to Ramathra. This unique city honours Lord Rama, who is believed to have camped here while on his epic journey to Lanka. Here commercial traffic and food stalls are noticeably absent. Instead, everyday at sundown, Bhajan-(devotional) songs are sung by the community. Among its numerous shrines, the Ganesh Mandir and Shiva Mandir give the best flavour of local religious life. Evening as we enjoy an intimate dinner under starlight sky, Chef Siddharth will give us insight into spices and other ingredients secret to Indian cuisines.
Overnight: Ramathra Fort - A Heritage Property – Luxury Tents/Deluxe Rooms (2 nights) (B, D)
Day 08: November 18, 2018: Ramathra
A religious hub surrounded by scenic countryside, Ramathra Fort offers several interesting activities and excursions. Our morning is free to enjoy this spectacular spot. Take an optional boat ride out on the pristine Kalisil Lake to bird watch, enjoy an exciting jeep safari to surrounding rural villages or just sit back and relax. Afternoon, we join our hosts Ravi and Geetanjali, the owners of Ramathra, for an exclusive cooking session focused on Rajasthani cuisine. Evening, we visit a local vegetable organic farm and meet village folks. (B, L, D)
Day 09: November 19, 2018: Ramathra/Jaipur (Drive)
A leisurely countryside drive through Rajasthan to Jaipur. In 1876, during the visit of Queen Victoria, Maharaja Ram Singh painted the city pink to welcome the royalty, leading to Jaipur being referred to as the Pink City. In the evening, we visit an Indian home of Sai Niwas and enjoy a hands-on experience preparing Rajasthani dishes and chappati (Indian bread).
Overnight: ITC Rajputana – a Starwood Luxury Collection – Executive Club Rooms, Jaipur (2 nights) (B, D)
Day 10: November 20, 2018: Jaipur
This morning, we visit the elegant Amber Fort*, located in a picturesque valley among the Kalikho Hills. Known as the gem of Jaipur, this imposing fort dating from the late 16th century was never attacked or invaded. Built from a combination of yellow and pink sandstone and white marble, the fort includes distinguished halls, intricate carvings and ornate gardens. Next we return to Jaipur to visit the majestic City Palace, which houses a rare collection of Indian art. We also visit the stunning Hawa Mahal, or Palace of Winds, where the ladies of the royal harem used to watch the city from behind the intricately carved façade, and the Jantar Mantar*, a historic astronomical observation site boasting instruments used to star-gaze with the naked eye. Jaipur is noted for its craftsmen, skilled in brass inlay, lacquer work and stone setting, and there is time here to shop at it’s one-of-a-kind bazaars. Dinner will be at our hotel. (B, D)
Day 11: November 21, 2018: Jaipur/Jodhpur (Drive)
Scenic countryside views as we drive to one of the most romantic city in India’s state of Rajasthan, the second largest city in the state. Known by many names, the Blue City is probably the right fit. Most houses are painted in blue, which helps keep cool air from escaping the during scorching summer months in the Thar Desert. The architecture of various buildings, big and small, has made Jodhpur one of the most popular photo destinations in India. The city’s bustling bazaars and colourful markets bring to mind Arabian nights. In the evening, we head out on a walking tour of the Old Bazaar, visiting spice and vegetable markets, shops selling antiques and much more. We are then treated to a local Jodhpuri (Thali) cuisine dinner introduced to us by Chef Siddharth.
Overnight: ITC Welcome Hotel – Deluxe Rooms, Jodhpur (1 night) (B, D)
Day 12: November 22, 2018: Jodhpur/Rohet Garh (Drive)
Today we visit the majestic Mehrangarh Fort, one of the largest forts in India. Known for its intricate carvings and expansive courtyards, Mehrangarh was founded in 1459. The museum in the fort has one of the best collections of the splendid trappings of Indian royalty, including amazing elephant’s howdahs (essential for glittering processions) and miniature paintings. Later we visit Jaswant Thada, a white marble memorial to Maharaja Jaswant Singh II with an array of whimsical domes.
A short drive gets us to Rohet Garh - the ancestral home of Thakur Dalpat Singh since 1622 AD. Rohet Garh became one of the most important Jagirs (fiefdoms) of the state of Marwar Jodhpur.
Overnight: Rohet Garh Fort – a Heritage Property, Deluxe Rooms, Rohet Garh (2 nights) (B, D)
Day 13: November 23, 2018: Rohet Garh
The Rajput style fort of Rohet Garh is a true desert oasis, with flower-filled gardens, a swimming pool and beautiful rooms with lakefront views. It is lovingly run by descendants of the ruling Maharajas themselves. Today we will take full advantage of our regal location as we step back in time to the era of the Maharajas and enjoy a traditional Royal Picnic. As we sit on large mattresses with bolsters and soft cushions spread next to a soothing water body, traditional liveried attendants will wait us upon. We’ll spend the day interacting with locals while they prepare local delicacies on open fires and feasting on the best cuisine this region has to offer.
Later in the evening and subject to availability, the princess of Rohet Garh, Rashmi Singh will join us for a traditional cooking session. In Indian tradition, the art of cooking is passed from one generation to the other. Rashmi learnt culinary art under the expert guidance of the ex-rulers at Rohet, and will be sharing her own knowledge with us in this unique workshop. This will be climax of our culinary experiences and an event never to be forgotten. (B, L, D)
Day 14: November 24, 2018: Rohet Garh/Jodhpur (Drive) Jodhpur/Delhi (Flight)
After breakfast, we are transferred to Jodhpur Airport for our flight to Delhi. Balance of the day is free for wandering Delhi’s bustling streets and shopping in its world-famous bazaars. Late evening, we have our farewell buffet feast at our hotel, complimented with a glass of wine or pint of beer.
Overnight: Vivanta by Taj Dwarka - Superior Charm Rooms, Delhi (1 night) (B, D)
Day 15: November 25, 2018: Depart Delhi
Farewell to India as we are transferred to the airport for our departure flight. This will have been an incredible culinary tour through the cuisine and culture of one of the world’s most fascinating countries! (B)
B=Breakfast, L=Lunch, D=Dinner
Departure Dates & Prices
We accept payments in US$, CA$ as well as in other convertible currencies like EUR, AUD and GBP. Tour prices have been costed in US$. CA$ price shown below is an indicative amount reached at by using the conversion rate at the time of web posting and will be applicable if there is no change in the conversion rate. Should the currency conversion rate change, the US$ pricing will prevail. Bestway Tours & Safaris offers a conversion rate protection. Once full payment has been received and no modification has been made to the tour itinerary, we will honour that rate. For complete payment procedures, please click here
India is well known for both vegetarian and non-vegetarian cuisine. As such, there will be a choice of meals, including any specific dietary requirements
This tour operates on a minimum of 15 and a maximum of 20 participants
If you would like to have a tour on dates other than the above ones or with a customised itinerary, please contact us and we will be happy to work out an exclusive program for you.
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