Day 4. Agra - Ranthambore

Overnight – Aman-i-Khas

Enjoy a sunrise visit to the Taj Mahal. Morning is the best time to experience it during most of the year, except for some years during which morning fog in late December and most of January can affect photography. Since it is more expensive for Indian tourists to enter at this early hour the massive monument and its surrounding Mughal gardens have a lot fewer visitors than the rest of the day. As the rising sun’s rays illuminate the precious stones inlaid in the marble they will gleam momentarily and change colors. When you experience the Taj Mahal with a Trehan Journeys Connoisseur Guide who shares unique insights into its innumerable facets, some of their passion for this masterpiece may rub off on you. Return to your resort in time for breakfast.

You are assisted with your check-out from your resort in the mid-morning and then you will head to the first red sandstone fort of North India, the Agra Fort, another UNESCO World Heritage Site. It was built in 1565 by India’s greatest Mughal ruler, Emperor Akbar. Its royal audience halls, immense stone courtyards, marble mosque and the private royal chambers give us a glimpse of the grandeur of the Mughal Empire. There are unique views of the Taj Mahal from a section of the fort, including the room where Emperor Shah Jahan’s infamous son and successor, Aurangzeb, imprisoned his father during the latter years of his life.

On your drive to Ranthambore you will stop at the Chand Baori stepwell at Abhaneri before you turn into the countryside towards Ranthambore. The massive 10th century Chand Baori stepwell is one of the most impressive in all of India and is located next to a charming Rajasthani village. https://www.cnn.com/travel/article/india-beautiful-stepwells-spc/index.html. The depth of the stepwell is that of a modern 7 story building, and there are stairs (no longer accessible to visitors) leading down to the bottom from three of the 100 foot plus wide (35 meters) sides, creating symmetry and beauty to the ancient structure.

You will proceed nearby to a rural resort which serves farm fresh organic and all-natural produce, as well as pasture raised chicken and lamb in its restaurant. After lunch you will continue on with your journey to Sawai Madhopur (Ranthambore National Park). The second half of this drive is through rural Rajasthan and there are colorful villagers around you going about their daily activities. You will also encounter many camels and other livestock on this drive.

Upon arrival you are assisted with your check-in at one of India’s two Aman Resorts, the Aman-i-Khas. Located on the fringes of Ranthambore National Park with unrivalled access to nature, the small boutique resort has 10 large luxury tents and provides an unsurpassed jungle experience. Since 2006, Trehan Journeys has tracked the percentage of tiger sightings for our guests in Ranthambore National Park. More than 85% of our guests have had tiger sightings during this period, with many of them getting multiple sightings. All 3 meals at Ranthambore are included at your jungle resort.

Enjoy a sunrise visit to the Taj Mahal. Morning is the best time to experience it during most of the year, except for some years during which morning fog in late December and most of January can affect photography. Since it is more expensive for Indian tourists to enter at this early hour the massive monument and its surrounding Mughal gardens have a lot fewer visitors than the rest of the day. As the rising sun’s rays illuminate the precious stones inlaid in the marble they will gleam momentarily and change colors. When you experience the Taj Mahal with a Trehan Journeys Connoisseur Guide who shares unique insights into its innumerable facets, some of their passion for this masterpiece may rub off on you. Return to your resort in time for breakfast.

You are assisted with your check-out from your resort in the mid-morning and then you will head to the first red sandstone fort of North India, the Agra Fort, another UNESCO World Heritage Site. It was built in 1565 by India’s greatest Mughal ruler, Emperor Akbar. Its royal audience halls, immense stone courtyards, marble mosque and the private royal chambers give us a glimpse of the grandeur of the Mughal Empire. There are unique views of the Taj Mahal from a section of the fort, including the room where Emperor Shah Jahan’s infamous son and successor, Aurangzeb, imprisoned his father during the latter years of his life.

On your drive to Ranthambore you will stop at the Chand Baori stepwell at Abhaneri before you turn into the countryside towards Ranthambore. The massive 10th century Chand Baori stepwell is one of the most impressive in all of India and is located next to a charming Rajasthani village. https://www.cnn.com/travel/article/india-beautiful-stepwells-spc/index.html. The depth of the stepwell is that of a modern 7 story building, and there are stairs (no longer accessible to visitors) leading down to the bottom from three of the 100 foot plus wide (35 meters) sides, creating symmetry and beauty to the ancient structure.

You will proceed nearby to a rural resort which serves farm fresh organic and all-natural produce, as well as pasture raised chicken and lamb in its restaurant. After lunch you will continue on with your journey to Sawai Madhopur (Ranthambore National Park). The second half of this drive is through rural Rajasthan and there are colorful villagers around you going about their daily activities. You will also encounter many camels and other livestock on this drive.

Upon arrival you are assisted with your check-in at one of India’s two Aman Resorts, the Aman-i-Khas. Located on the fringes of Ranthambore National Park with unrivalled access to nature, the small boutique resort has 10 large luxury tents and provides an unsurpassed jungle experience. Since 2006, Trehan Journeys has tracked the percentage of tiger sightings for our guests in Ranthambore National Park. More than 85% of our guests have had tiger sightings during this period, with many of them getting multiple sightings. All 3 meals at Ranthambore are included at your jungle resort.