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Start: 20 Nov. 2020
End:
4 Dec. 2020

Code: IORJ20

Price: From 2095 pp
excl. flights, based on twinshare

Min 8, max 12 people
Trip is full


Trip is to be confirmed.

Single supplement: 645

Estimated current
flight cost 550

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Impressions of Rajasthan
Itinerary

Day 1: Delhi
Day 2: Jaipur
Day 3: Pushkar
Day 4: Pushkar
Day 5: Pushkar
Day 6: Nawalgarh
Day 7: Nawalgarh
Day 8: Bikaner
Day 9: Bikaner

Day 10: Bikaner
Day 11: Jaisalmer
Day 12: Jaisalmer
Day 13: Jodhpur
Day 14: Jodhpur
Day 15: Tour ends

Website, Images and text Steve Davey/stevedavey.com 1990 - 2020

Land arrangements are sub-contracted to Intrepid Travel, who have many years experience in running small group adventures.

Bookings are made through the Intrepid Tailor Made Dept. in London not the Intrepid website or Stores. Contact Steve Davey for information

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unforgetPlaces4PCThis tour is led by Steve Davey - a professional photographer, whose work appears in publications all over the world. He is the author of the bestselling Unforgettable Places To See Before You Die (BBC Books). Steve recently published Footprint Travel Photography (Footprint Books), which covers everything that you would ever want to know about travelling with a camera. Click for more.

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Nowhere on Earth has as many festivals as India, and we have arranged this exciting photography tour to take in not just one, but two incredible religious gatherings: the iconic Pushkar Mela, and the lesser known Kolayat Mela near the desert city of Bikaner.

Rajasthan is the land of forts, and we will take in some of the most atmospheric of the great forts of the state. The names of the forts are evocative of the days when warring kingdoms seemed to be permanently at war: Jodhpur's Mehrangarh Fort, Jaipur's Amber Fort and my personal Favourite – the breathtaking Jaisalmer Fort, hidden away in the Thar Desert. It is not just these main iconic sites which are

 

The trip will include extensive photography tuition from professional travel photographer, Steve Davey, countless photo opportunities and the company of fellow photography enthusiasts.

Our adventure starts in the capital city, Delhi, where we will have a free afternoon to explore the thriving streets of Old Delhi before catching a train to Jaipur, the capital of Rajasthan.

Jaipur is known at the Pink City, and here we will get to see the incredible City Palace, and also our first fort – the sprawling Amber Fort on the outskirts of town.

From Jaipur, we drive to the holy Lake Pushkar, site of the iconic Pushkar Mela – commonly referred to as the Pushkar Camel Fair. We have three nights here, which will give us plenty of time to explore the town, the sprawling mela ground which will be teeming with camels and walk down by the ghats leading down to the holy Lake Pushkar.

From Pushkar we head into the traditional Shekhawati region. This is a fantastic area that I first visited over 20 years ago, which is noted for the ornately painted havelis, or merchants' houses. This is a little visited, traditional area, and as well as the havelis, we will be able to witness traditional rural life, around the town of Nawalgarh, photographing local markets and temples.

The town of Bikaner is host to our second festival – the Kolayat Mela, which is held at a lake a hour or so outside of the town. We start of exploring the town itself, and the relatively recent Jungarh Fort, built around a hundred years ago, and also the famous Bikaner Camel Centre.

The Kolayat Mela itself is completely new to me, but it sounds like a fascinating thing to witness. Thousands of pilgrims flock to this holy lake. We will definitely aim to witness the ritual of Deep Malika, when devotees float earthen lamps in the sacred lake as a ritual.

The desert town of Jaisalmer is one of my most favourite places in India. It featured in my Unforgettable Places to See Before You Die book, and I am thrilled to be heading back. Uniquely, much of the old town actually lives inside of the fort, and it there is nothing more atmospheric than walking the tiny alleyways, where balconies almost meet above your head – being barged out of the way by the numerous holy cows that think they own the place.

We will also head out into the desert to see some of the local villages and temples, and photograph the sunset at some sand dunes.

Our final destination is the majestic city of Jodhpur, where we will get to photograph the last fort on our itinerary – the majestic Mehrangarh Fort, which towers imperiously over the town. We will also explore the atmospheric blue painted town at the foot of the fort, as well as heading out into the local area to photograph the local Bishnoi people, a religious sect who believe in being at one with nature and wildlife.

 

We have arranged this tour to finish in Jodhpur, to give people the chance to explore further in Rajasthan, head to Agra to see the Taj Mahal or simply spend an extra couple of days in this stunning city. There are flights from as little as $35, and these can easily be incorporated into many international flights giving you the ultimate flexibility. Once you have booked, myself or Intrepid Travel will be able to advise you about any onward arrangements.

Our visit to the Kolayat Mela is something of an exploratory phase of the trip. I have been to Pushkar, and a number of other November fairs in hte country, but never to Kolayat. As one of the least touristy melas in Rajasthan, we are somewhat feeling our way. We have researched this as much as possible, and have been assured that photography is possible by the lake, but as with anything in India, things can change due to local conditions. Rest assured though, in a country as fascinating as India, we have a plan 'b', and indeed a plan 'c' in place.

In essence, this is the basis of all of our trips: it is not just the things that are listed on the itinerary that are the things that people remember, we are always seeking out local markets, villages, temples and people working in fields to stop for, engage and photograph. There are a number of times when we have built in time to be flexible. We are assisted in this by having the best local leader that Intrepid Travel have on their books - the incomparable Chetan. Chetan is a great friend and I have been working with him since 2008. He is great at suggesting and finding photo-opportunities along the way.

Highlights of this trip

Pushkar Mela

Kolyat Mela Bikaner

• Historic Jaisalmer Fort

• Picturesque Thar Desert

Hidden Shekhawati

• Jodhpur Blue Town

• Photography tuition

Our adventure starts in the capital city, Delhi, where we will have a free afternoon to explore the thriving streets of Old Delhi before catching a train to Jaipur, the capital of Rajasthan.

Jaipur is known at the Pink City, and here we will get to see the incredible City Palace, and also our first fort – the sprawling Amber Fort on the outskirts of town.

From Jaipur, we drive to the holy Lake Pushkar, site of the iconic Pushkar Mela – commonly referred to as the Pushkar Camel Fair. We have three nights here, which will give us plenty of time to explore the town, the sprawling mela ground which will be teeming with camels and walk down by the ghats leading down to the holy Lake Pushkar.

From Pushkar we head into the traditional Shekhawati region. This is a fantastic area that I first visited over 20 years ago, which is noted for the ornately painted havelis, or merchants' houses. This is a little visited, traditional area, and as well as the havelis, we will be able to witness traditional rural life, around the town of Nawalgarh, photographing local markets and temples.

The town of Bikaner is host to our second festival – the Kolayat Mela, which is held at a lake a hour or so outside of the town. We start of exploring the town itself, and the relatively recent Jungarh Fort, built around a hundred years ago, and also the famous Bikaner Camel Centre.

The Kolayat Mela itself is completely new to me, but it sounds like a fascinating thing to witness. Thousands of pilgrims flock to this holy lake. We will definitely aim to witness the ritual of Deep Malika, when devotees float earthen lamps in the sacred lake as a ritual.

The desert town of Jaisalmer is one of my most favourite places in India. It featured in my Unforgettable Places to See Before You Die book, and I am thrilled to be heading back. Uniquely, much of the old town actually lives inside of the fort, and it there is nothing more atmospheric than walking the tiny alleyways, where balconies almost meet above your head – being barged out of the way by the numerous holy cows that think they own the place.

We will also head out into the desert to see some of the local villages and temples, and photograph the sunset at some sand dunes.

Our final destination is the majestic city of Jodhpur, where we will get to photograph the last fort on our itinerary – the majestic Mehrangarh Fort, which towers imperiously over the town. We will also explore the atmospheric blue painted town at the foot of the fort, as well as heading out into the local area to photograph the local Bishnoi people, a religious sect who believe in being at one with nature and wildlife.

 

We have arranged this tour to finish in Jodhpur, to give people the chance to explore further in Rajasthan, head to Agra to see the Taj Mahal or simply spend an extra couple of days in this stunning city. There are flights from as little as $35, and these can easily be incorporated into many international flights giving you the ultimate flexibility. Once you have booked, myself or Intrepid Travel will be able to advise you about any onward arrangements.

Our visit to the Kolayat Mela is something of an exploratory phase of the trip. I have been to Pushkar, and a number of other November fairs in hte country, but never to Kolayat. As one of the least touristy melas in Rajasthan, we are somewhat feeling our way. We have researched this as much as possible, and have been assured that photography is possible by the lake, but as with anything in India, things can change due to local conditions. Rest assured though, in a country as fascinating as India, we have a plan 'b', and indeed a plan 'c' in place.

In essence, this is the basis of all of our trips: it is not just the things that are listed on the itinerary that are the things that people remember, we are always seeking out local markets, villages, temples and people working in fields to stop for, engage and photograph. There are a number of times when we have built in time to be flexible. We are assisted in this by having the best local leader that Intrepid Travel have on their books - the incomparable Chetan. Chetan is a great friend and I have been working with him since 2008. He is great at suggesting and finding photo-opportunities along the way.

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