Highlights of North and East India - The British Raj
Bespoke Holiday Itinerary / Experience Tour

Info : Highlights of North and East India - The British Raj

This unique itinerary takes in the North of India including Delhi and the former summer capital of the British Raj, Shimla. In the countries east you'll explore multi-cultural Lucknow and Kolkatta, the former capital of British India.

Countryside adventures will take you to the Himalayas in the North and the Sunderbans in the east, giving you a flavour of the diversity of landscape found in India combined with a taste of its urban diversity as influenced by the British Empire.

Highlights include

  • Journey on the narrow gauge "toy train", taking in the beautiful forested landscape as you wind your way into the north-west Himalayas
  • Explore the heritage of Shimla, the former summer capital, with the historian behind the hit series, ‘Indian Summers’.
  • Stay in unique and opulent hotels throughout.
  • Trek to the top of Shali Tibba in the Himalayas
  • Explore the former capital of British India, Kolkata on one of our fantastic walking tours.

The city hotels included are just suggestions and can be adjusted according to your preferences, travel style and budget. The hotels in rural areas are generally destinations in their own right where there are fewer alternatives.

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 £4600 per person for the hotels mentioned inclusive of all experiences, entrance fees, guides, transport, international & domestic flights and many meals. 

Note that this price is an estimate only and will 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. 

For more on our pricing policy read here

As every holiday is unique - Call our experts on 1-888-577-8452 for an inclusive, personalised quotation for your preferred dates or use the quote request form below...


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 North and East India - The British Raj

Day 1 Depart The UK

Depart the UK for Delhi

Day 2 & 3 Delhi

Your guide will meet you at the airport and transfer you to your opulent hotel.

During your time here, in order to get a sense of this sometimes chaotic, sprawling and disorientating city, you’ll take a guided exploration of both Old and New Delhi, taking in the main sites, but also building up a sense of where you are: taking in the sights and smells. You’ll be taken by vehicle and rickshaw amd guided on foot too, so you can get as close as possible to the incredible action.

Day 4 Delhi to Shimla by train (express and toy train)

Today your driver will see you off on the Shatabdi Express and you’ll take a 3.5 hour journey to Chandigarh. On arrival you’ll transfer by road to Kandaghat where you’ll board the narrow gauge railway (toy train) to Shimla in the north-west Himalayas. A journey by toy train is a brilliant way to enjoy the natural beauty of the region winding your way through forested hills of fir, pines, walnut, and apricots, corn, capsicum and paddy fields.

Day 5 Shimla

Shimla was once the summer capital of colonial India and today you will explore its heritage zone with a local historian. You’ll explore a number of buildings from the British Raj including the grand Viceregal Lodge where, in 1947, the decision was made to partition India and the two countries that became India and Pakistan.

Day 6 Shimla (hike to Shali Tibba)

 Today you have chance for a truly memorable trek up Shali Tibba, the highest peak in the vicinity of Shimla. The ascent is steep and steady following an ancient trail through dense pine forests and alpine pastures, and from the peak you get an unforgettable view of endless snow covered ranges.

Day 7 - 10 Lucknow

Transfer by road to Chandigarh airport which takes around four hours. From here you’ll fly to the multi-cultural city of Lucknow where, upon arrival, your new driver will meet you for the transfer to your hotel.

 During your time in Lucknow you’ll enjoy guided tours of the varied historic architecture including a morning tour specifically focussing on the European influenced buildings and an evening tour exploring the Victorian era. Here you’ll also enjoy an evening heritage walking tour of the Gol Darwaza, the main market, where you’ll enter a bygone era and you’ll have chance to view an exclusive film about Gandhi. You’ll even have chance to sample  and learn how to cook some original Awadhi cuisine ( including  delicious pasanda lamb kebabs!).

Day 10 Lucknow to Kolkata

Late this afternoon you’ll fly from Lucknow to Kolkata, the former capital of British India,  a riot of colour, a hub of Bengali culture where slums and shopping malls are interspersed with beautiful colonial architecture.

Day 11 and 12 Kolkata

 During your time in Kolkata you’ll take guided walking tours of the vibrant and diverse city, a fascinating way to explore. You’ll also take a short journey on the oldest operating electric tram in Asia, running since 1902. An evening sunset river cruise on the Ganges will give you stunning views of Kolkata at night and will include a visit to Dakshineswar Hindu temple with its beautiful gardens and excellent views.

Day 13 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 14 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. One last night in Kolkata before your flight home tomorrow.

Day 15 – Fly Home (or stay)

Today your drive will transfer you to the airport for your flight home.

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