Highlights of East India
Bespoke Holiday Itinerary / Experience Tour

Info : Highlights of East India

Little visited and often overlooked, East India is an incredible place: from the spellbinding contrasts of Kolkata, to the sleepy waterways of the Sunderbans, the Buddhist culture of Sikkim and the mighty Himalayas.

This journey will enable you to explore Kolkata in depth, before heading south for a lovely tranquil experience in the Sunderbans National Park. Whilst you’re unlikely to spot one of the parks many tigers, there is plethora of wildlife here and it’s a lovely place to spend a few days.

Then it’s back up to Kolkata for an overnight train deep in the Himalayas. This is an incredible region: the heart of Buddhist culture in India, a land of monastaries, sleepy hill towns, welcoming friendly people and breathtaking views.


  • Being inspired by the view of the mighty Khangchendzonga Mountain, the third highest in the world, soaring above the horizon.
  • Exploring Kolkata, former capital of British India and a riot of colour, a hub of Bengali culture and an incredibly vibrant place.
  • Discovering timeless Buddhist monastaries and a highly distinct Sikkim culture.

As with all of our suggested itineraries, we can tailor-make your holiday to suit your budget, style and expectations. Find out about our exclusive ‘Journey Planner’ here.

Pricing & Inclusions

An indicative price for this itinerary is £3700 per person for the hotels mentioned inclusive of all experiences, entrance fees, guides, transport, international flights and more. 

Note that this price is an estimate only and may vary according to the time of year. 

We are happy to tailor make the holiday to suit. We can make savings by adjusting the hotels or alternatively upgrade hotels where needed. There is a 'comfort' version of the same holiday with an indicative price of £2800 per person. 

For more on our pricing policy read here


International flights

Privately guided tours and experiences

Hotels on minimum B&B basis

Internal transportation

International flights from the UK

Day-to-Day Itinerary : Highlights of East India


Depart and fly to Kolkata.

DAY 2 Kolkata

Arrive in Kolkata and transfer to your hotel. After lunch and a chance to relax and recuperate, your guide will meet you for a visit to the memorial to Queen Victoria, last Empress of India. It is situated in the centre of Kolkata and is surrounded by 64 acres of beautiful gardens. It also has a museum which houses paintings, manuscripts and sculptures dating back the British Raj.

DAY 3 Kolkata

This morning you will start with a walking tour of the vibrant and diverse city of Kolkata. It’s a fascinating way to explore this city where slums and shopping malls are interspersed with beautiful colonial architecture, lively markets and streets teeming with friendly people. After lunch you will take a short journey on the the oldest operating electric tram in Asia, running since 1902.

Day 4 Kolkata to the Sunderbans

You will be collected from your hotel and transferred to Gothkali by road. From here you will board a boat for a journey of around 90 minutes to your camp.

After you have settled into your cottage at the Sunderban Tiger Camp, take a small boat to the Sajnekhali Tiger Project area. The park's size makes tiger spotting an unusual occurrence. However, it's an incredibly diverse area, rich in all kinds of flora and fauna, so there is plenty more to see and explore.

Day 5 The Sunderbans

This morning you will continue to explore the incredible Sunderbans area, starting with a visit to the Sudhanyakhali Watch Tower, close to a small pond where many animals come to drink. You will then take a cruise around the vast network of winding backwaters, streams and creeks of the Sunderbans region.

This afternoon you’ll be transferred back to Kolkata again by a combination of boat and road. There are some interesting stops which can be made on route if you choose.

Day 6 Kolkata

Early this morning we suggest visiting the Mulik Ghat Flower Market, where 2000 flower sellers arrive every morning to sell their blooms. A riot of colours and smells. The rest of the day is free, before an early evening cruise on the River Ganges. Following that you’ll transfer to Kolkata station for your overnight train journey to New Jalpaiguri.

Day 7 Kalimpong

You will be collected from New Jalpaiguri train station and driven to a local hotel where you have the opportunity to have breakfast, wash and change. You will then be transferred to Kalimpong which roughly takes 3 hours. After lunch and check in and a chance to relax, there is time for a short hike to Deolo Hill to experience the first of many amazing viewpoints.

Day 8 Kalimpong

The hill station of Kalimpong has plenty of dramatic scenery, with colourful Tibetan monasteries clinging to forested hillsides. Today you will visit some of the most picturesque and historically fascinating monasteries in the region.

Day 9 Pelling

Today you will transfer by road to Pelling, visiting Tashiding Monastery en route. The journey with stops will take around six and a half hours. Tashiding Monastery is perched on top of the hill rising between the Rathong River and the Rangit River with breath-taking views of the scenery below. We suggest that you walk uphill to visit the secluded buildings; the walk is beautiful and passes through small villages, surrounded by prayer flags and chortens.

Overnight in Pelling, which is as close as you can get to the mighty mountain of Khangchendzonga itself without leaving creature comforts behind. At a lofty 1,900m, life in Pelling moves at a relaxed pace, with a few monasteries and local traditions such as music, dancing and handicrafts to discover.

Day 10 Pelling

Further explore the Buddhist heritage of Sikkim today with a visit Pemayngtse, one of the largest and most treasured monasteries in Sikkim and the ruins of Rabdentse, once the second capital.

Day 11 & 12 Gangtok

Another long mountain drive today to Gangtok, meaning “hill top” in Tibetan. It’s a small and relaxed hill station town with a comfortable buzz and friendly vibe, popular for those heading off on treks into the Himalayas. There is much to see and enjoy locally, including the Phodong Monastery which is one of the six most important monasteries in Sikkim with a rich collection of ancient murals.

Days 13, 14 & 15 Darjeeling

A 5 hour drive today to reach the heady hill station of Darjeeling. The town is flanked by emerald-green tea plantations and snow-capped Himalayan peaks, with a jaw-dropping view whichever direction you turn in. Best enjoyed, of course, over a steaming cup of Darjeeling tea.

A few days to relax here which you’ll deserve after the walking and travelling you’ll have done over the past few days. There is plenty to do should you wish to and we’d recommend some gentle walks, discovering the tea estate, taking the famous ‘Toy Train’ and even a cooking class. Mostly though, you’ll want to relax and soak in the magnificent views.

Day 16 Darjeeling to Kolkata

Drive to Bagdogra, wave goodbye to your guide and driver and fly to Kolkata for an overnight stop.

Day 17 fly home (or stay!)

Transfer to Kolkata airport for the onward flight.

Highlights of East India Experiences

You can book this holiday tour on its own, with flights or it can be tailored for you.

Here are the experiences & activities within this holiday as standard...

Customer Feedback
Our transport was always clean and comfortable and we were extremely well looked after.

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