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ABTA and ATOL Protected

Escorted Tours

A Passage Through India including

Marari Beach Stay


Route:
  • UK
  • Amritsar
  • Shimla
  • Delhi
  • Agra
  • Jaipur
  • Varanasi
  • Kolkata
  • Darjeeling
  • Mumbai
  • Cochin
  • Alleppey
  • Thekkady
  • Cochin
  • Marari Beach
  • UK

3 NIGHTS from £279pp

Tour Highlights
  • 3 nights of paradise with untouched sandy beaches
  • Admire the Holy city of Amristar
  • Ride on the UNESCO recognised 'Toy Train'
  • City tours of Delhi, Agra, the pink city of Jaipur, Varansei, Kolkata and Mumbai
  • Delight in the magnificent Taj Mahal
  • Visit Darjeeling with unforgettable views of the Himalayas
  • Explore fascinating Kerala and enjoy an overnight stay on a houseboat.

Extension from £279pp

Tour + Extension from £3028pp

To book call us on 0800 781 4893

Marari Beach Stay

Nestled beside the quaint fishing village of Mararikulam, discover the untouched sandy beaches of Marari on your three-night extension within a truly tropical retreat. Whether lounging by the beach soaking up the year-round sunshine, swimming within the Arabian Sea's glistening waters or enjoying a traditional Ayurvedic massage at your hotel, the Marari extension is the ideal way to conclude your tour.

Tour Itinerary

1
UK to Amritsar

Depart London on your scheduled overnight flight to Amritsar via Delhi.

2
Amritsar

On arrival you will be met by a local guide and transferred to your hotel. The rest of the day is at leisure to explore the Sikh's holy city and its network of historic bazaars.

  • Dinner
3
Amritsar

Following breakfast, you'll enjoy a visit to the Golden Temple, one of the most awe-inspiring and memorable sights in India. Sikhism's holiest shrine, the spectacular golden temple blends Hindu and Islamic architecture, which is set off by its stunning location at the centre of a shimmering pool, known as the Pool of Nectar. After lunch, the afternoon is yours to explore at your own pace, alternatively you can take an optional excursion to the Wagah Border. Famous for its fascinating flag-lowering ceremony, Indian and Pakistani guards decked in full uniform lower their respective flags and close the border gates with as much pomp and fervour as they can muster.
Optional excursion (payable locally): A tour to see the Wagah border between India and Pakistan and the daily flag ceremony.

  • Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
4
Amritsar to Shimla

This morning you'll board the train to Chandigarh before taking a winding, scenic drive through lush pine forests to the former summer capital of British India. Beautifully situated on a hilltop in the snow-capped Shivalik Ranges and offering stunning views of the Himalayan mountains, the British Raj would annually transfer here to avoid the heat of Calcutta.

  • Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
5
Shimla

After breakfast this morning you'll depart Shimla for the neighbouring hill station of Kufri. Set in the foothills of the Himalayas, this charming town is surrounded by dense forest and snow-capped mountains, offering staggering viewpoints of the surrounding countryside and the vast mountains beyond. After admiring Kufri's natural wonders, tour the impressive Rashtrapati Niwas, former residence of the British Viceroy. Built in Jacobethan style, this fascinating glimpse into British colonial history allows you to explore the maze of corridors, grand teak-panelled rooms and sprawling lawns.

  • Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
6
Shimla to Delhi

Today, you'll travel in style with a ride on the UNESCO recognised 'Toy Train' - built for the British Viceroy and his delegates, the train is hauled along by a tiny diesel locomotive which rattles at a leisurely pace through breath-taking scenery to its final destination of Kalka. The train will stop at Dharampur Station where you will disembark for lunch. From here you'll transfer by car to Kalka Station and catch a connecting train to Delhi where you will be met on arrival and transferred to your hotel.

  • Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
7
Delhi

The symbol of old and new India, Delhi is simultaneously a buzzing, international metropolis and a city rich in history. Today you'll discover it in all its glory on a full day tour, traversing through Old Delhi's narrow, spice-scented streets by rickshaw, you'll feel like you've travelled back in time while taking in sights such as the Mughal Empire's imposing Red Fort and the UNESCO listed Humanyun's Tomb, whose Persian-style elegance and landscaped garden setting makes it one of Delhi's finest historic sites. Crossing to the intricately planned colonial centre of New Delhi, you'll visit the minimalistic Mahatma Gandhi Memorial adorned in floral tributes, before exploring the ruins of Quatub Minar complex. Before falling to ruin, this red-sandstone city was built in the 13th Century by the Delhi Sultanate and housed a number of mosques and tombs, as well the intricate tower centrepiece from which the complex gets its name.

  • Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
8
Delhi

Having found your bearings on yesterday's tour today is at leisure to explore the city at your own pace. Wander the broad avenues of New Delhi and discover fascinating museums, impressive colonial architecture or lose yourself in the teeming bazaars and monuments of Old Delhi.

  • Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
9
Delhi to Agra

Depart Delhi this morning for the wondrous city of Agra the former capital of the mighty Mughal dynasty, whose legacy can be seen in the colossal forts and opulent buildings. Your afternoon will be at leisure to explore the fascinating mausoleums and bustling marketplaces of this charming city.

  • Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
10
Agra

This unforgettable day begins with a sunrise tour of the truly magnificent Taj Mahal, one of the New Seven Wonders of the World and widely considered to be the most beautiful building on the planet. Built on the orders of heartbroken Mughal Emperor Shah Jahan upon the death of his wife, this stunning white marble mausoleum took over 20,000 people and around 20 years to build and words simply don't do it justice. You'll return to your hotel for breakfast and a well-deserved rest before visiting the impressive, red sandstone Agra Fort. One of the finest Mughal forts in India, this colossal giant began construction in 1565 as a military structure, but was later transformed into an opulent palace for the emperor.

  • Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
11
Agra to Jaipur

After breakfast, drive to the Pink city of Jaipur, stopping en route at the ghost city of Fatehpur Sikri, the former imperial capital of Emperor Akbar. A world heritage site, the city includes three magnificent palaces, one for each of his favourite wives and a stunning mosque, however the reason for the city's abandonment still remains a mystery. After lunch, proceed to Jaipur before arriving in time for dinner.

  • Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
12
Jaipur

Begin your day with a visit to the impressive Amber Fort, built from pink sandstone and white marble this magnificent fort is largely made up of a royal palace, home to the royal family until 1728. Spread over four vast courtyards, you'll ascend to the fort either by jeep or by elephant, experience the grandeur of a Maharaja. The tour will continue to the City Palace, an impressive blend of Rajasthani and Mughal architecture before visiting the famous open-air observatory of Jantar Mantar. Finally you'll marvel at the numerous windows of the stunning Hawa Mahal, also known as the Palace of the Winds, before wandering through the city's colourful markets.

  • Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
13
Jaipur

Today is at leisure to explore this beautiful city at your own pace. Explore the colouful bazaars, temples and museums the city has to offer or simply admire this flamboyant showcase of Rajasthani architecture.
Optional excursion (payable locally): The Elephant Village. Have the opportunity to see, touch and feed the elephants The village was set up by the local Rajasthan Government in 2010.

  • Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
14
Jaipur to Varanasi

Following breakfast, you'll fly to Varanasi where you'll be met on arrival and transferred to your hotel. One of the oldest continually inhabited cities in the world; the great Hindu city of Varanasi stretches along the River Ganges, its waterfront lined with temples and pavilions, interspersed with vast stone steps or ghats used daily by thousand of pilgrims in their daily ritual ablutions. This evening you'll tour the ghats and witness a Ganga Aarti ceremony where a small lamp containing a candle and flowers representing an offering of fire is floated down the river.

  • Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
15
Varanasi

Awake early this morning for a sunrise boat trip on the Ganges where you can gain a different perspective of this colourful waterfront city and the spiritual importance of the river in the Hindu religion. Returning to your hotel for breakfast and a rest you'll then spend the afternoon exploring the ancient temples of Sarnath, a sacred Buddhist pilgrimage site on which the Buddha gave his first sermon after achieving enlightenment around 530BC. After exploring the many ruins you'll return to Varanasi where your evening is at leisure.

  • Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
16
Varanasi to Kolkata

Today is at free for you to explore Varanasi's temples and forts, before your evening flight to Kolkata.

  • Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
17
Kolkata

The showpiece capital of the British Raj, Kolkata (formerly Calcutta) was considered as the greatest colonial city of the Orient. You'll begin today's tour with a trip back to these times by visiting the grand imperial buildings around Dalhousie Square such as the majestic, white-domed General Post Office. Following lunch, enjoy a fascinating boat trip on the Hooghly river offering you a panoramic view of the city whilst sailing through the two spectacular Howrah and Vidyasagar bridges.

  • Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
18
Kolkata

Your day is at leisure offering you the opportunity to explore the delights of Kolkata. Walk the chaotic back alleys, visit the shopping malls or meander through the botanical gardens.

  • Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
19
Kolkata to Darjeeling

Following breakfast, embark on a short flight to Bagdogra. Continue your journey to stunning Darjeeling often referred to as the Queen of Hill stations. Surrounded by emerald green tea plantations, Darjeeling is the centre of India's most celebrated tea growing district whilst also affording you unforgettable views of the Himalayas.

  • Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
20
Darjeeling

Begin your day with a ride on the UNESCO World Heritage Toy train, a unique 2-hour experience absorbing the magnificent beauty of the mountains which covers a total distance of 14kms. The train journeys to Batasia Loop, travelling around a wonderful manicured garden providing unparalleled views of Darjeeling town and the serene snow peaks of Kanchenjunga. The rest of your day is at leisure.

  • Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
21
Darjeeling to Mumbai

Following breakfast, you will transfer to Bagdogra Airport for your flight Mumbai. After checking in at your hotel the rest if the day is at leisure to start exploring this multi-faceted city.

  • Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
22
Mumbai

An early morning start to commence your full day tour of Mumbai awaits you. Your first stop is the iconic stone arch landmark known as the Gateway of India to board a motorboat to Elephanta Island, explore the ancient caves dedicated to the Hindu God Shiva which are a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Back in Mumbai you will delight in admiring such sites as the grand Jain Temple before meandering through the picturesque Hanging Gardens which offer beautiful views of the city and sea before arriving at the beach at Chowpatty. Continue to the museum of Mani Bhavan where Mahatama Gandhi stayed during his visits to Mumbai between 1917-1943 and finally explore the beautiful Kamala Nehru Park.

  • Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
23
Mumbai to Cochin

Following breakfast, you will fly to Kerala and arrive in Cochin known as the 'Queen of the Arabian Sea' for your afternoon tour of the city. Marvel at Mattancherry Dutch palace, and St. Francis church, the oldest European church in India and the impressive promenade lined with distinct Chinese fishing nets.

  • Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
24
Cochin to Alleppey

Today you will board a traditional House Boat at Alleppey for your tranquil journey through the scenic winding backwaters absorbing the stunning rural scenery and admiring the local villages. After an authentic meal served on board by your private chef spend the night on board, a once in a lifetime experience.

  • Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
25
Alleppey to Thekkady

Today you will disembark from the houseboat and enjoy a drive through the spectacular countryside to arrive at the hill station of Thekkady (Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary) which conjures up images of rolling lush hills and spice scented plantations. The Periyar forests of Thekkady are one of the finest wildlife reserves in India, and spread across the entire district are picturesque plantations and hill towns. In the evening, you can choose to relax at the hotel or visit spice market.

  • Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
26
Thekkady to Cochin

This morning you will enjoy a charming boat trip on the Periyar Lake to admire the stunning scenery and view various species of wildlife including wild elephants, water buffalo and you may even catch a glimpse of a tiger. Once you disembark you will proceed to Cochin.

  • Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
27
Cochin

Your last full day is at leisure; we have included a complimentary Ayurvedic massage of 45 minutes per person as a final treat to end this unforgettable tour.

  • Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
28
Cochin to UK

After breakfast, transfer to Airport for return flight to UK via Mumbai.

  • Breakfast
29
Cochin to Marari

Transfer to Mararikulam and your hotel by the untouched sandy Marari beach where you will spend the three nights of your extension.

  • Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
30
Marari

Enjoy a day at leisure to relax at your hotel.

  • Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
31
Marari

Enjoy a day at leisure to relax at your hotel.

  • Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
32
Marari to the UK

Depart your hotel and transfer to the airport for your flight back to the UK.

  • Breakfast

Important Information

Visas

A visa is required for entry into India. British Citizen Passport Holders will need to obtain an e-Tourist Visa (eTV) for travel to India. We work closely with The Travel Visa Company who will be able to arrange your visa on your behalf. Please call them on 01270 250 590 and quote 'Mercury Holidays'. The cost of the visa is approximately £114 per person. The Travel Visa Company can only apply for this 30 days before your proposed travel date and takes around 10 working days to issue. It is only valid for a 30-day single entry stay from the date of arrival. When calling the Travel Visa Company they will advise you of any changes to the fees or the procedure, they will also advise you of all information they will require in order to apply for the visa.

Insurance

We strongly recommend that you and all members of your party are suitably insured as soon as you book your holiday. It is a condition of booking that you must have suitable travel insurance. It is important that you purchase travel insurance that suitably covers your participation in whatever activities you may undertake at the time that you make your booking. To assist you with this, we have arranged travel insurance in partnership with Holiday Extras. To arrange your travel insurance with Holiday Extras, please call 0800 781 4237 and quote 'WK830' for preferential rates. Please ensure you provide us with the name of your insurer, policy number and their 24-hour emergency contact number as soon as possible. Mercury Holidays will not be liable for any costs incurred by you due to your failure to take out suitable travel insurance from the date of booking.

Payment

If booking more than 10 weeks before departure a deposit of £250pp will need to be paid at the time of booking with the full amount payable at 10 weeks prior to departure. The deposit applies to adults and children. If you are within 10 weeks of travel then the full balance of the holiday will be payable.

Flight Information

Your initial flight is to Delhi Indira Gandhi International Airport with Jet Airways, departing from London Heathrow Terminal 4. Each passenger is entitled to 23kg of hold luggage, however the restriction on your domestic flights is only 15kg, so you may want to pack less or make heavy items such as cameras easily transferable to your hand luggage to avoid any issues. Should you wish to take additional luggage you will need to pay extra at check-in. Check-in should be at least 3 hours before departure. Checked baggage allowance may vary. Please refer to the bottom right of your E-ticket receipt for the correct baggage allowance. For example, if it shows 20k this means your allowance is 20kg; or 1PC means One Piece not exceeding 23kg.

Health and Vaccinations

It is your responsibility to check any health and vaccination requirements applicable to your booked arrangements. We can only provide general information about this. Health and hygiene facilities and disease risks vary from country to country. You should take health advice about your own needs as early as possible and in good time before your departure. Sources of information include; www.fco.gov.uk, www.travelhealthpro.org.uk/, www.hpa.org.uk, your General Practitioner or a specialist clinic.

Physical Accessibility

This tour is accessible to most people with an average level of fitness and normal mobility. It involves moderate days of walking on uneven paths and small hills, and getting on and off coaches and boats. This tour is not suitable for anyone with walking difficulties.

Group Size

There is no minimum number of travellers for this extension however the main tour passenger numbers will apply for the main part of the tour. If in the unlikely event there are less than the required number of people booked on your main tour date then you may be asked to change to a different date. A full refund will be made available to you should this alternative not be suitable.

Tour Guide

This is an escorted tour, meaning the you will have the services of an English speaking guide during each excursion ensuring that you have first-hand knowledge at all times. Also, local monument guides will be provided subject to the monuments rules.

Currency Information

The currency in India is the Indian Rupee (RS). We recommend that you exchange your currency before you leave the UK.

Personal Expenses

You will need to take some extra money with you to cover any meals where these are not mentioned on your itinerary and personal purchases, such as souvenirs, drinks and snacks. Approximately (GBP 50-100) per person/ per day should be sufficient for the duration of your tour. Please also bear in mind that there will be several shopping opportunities throughout your tour. Tipping is at your discretion; However we would recommend approximately £2 per day. Tips are accepted in the local currency, however it is asked that if you do not tip in the local currency that you only pay with notes, as coins cannot be exchanged.

Tour Dates & Prices

Depart UKArrive UKExtension PriceTour PriceTotal PriceBook Now
2019 DATES
Marari Beach
15 Jan 201914 Feb 2019£589£3329£3918SOLD OUT
05 Feb 201907 Mar 2019£549£3389£3938SOLD OUT
02 Apr 201902 May 2019£469£2999£3468Book Now
30 Apr 201930 May 2019£429£2969£3398Book Now
29 May 201928 Jun 2019£429£2899£3328Book Now
04 Jun 201904 Jul 2019£559£2899£3458Book Now
03 Sep 201903 Oct 2019£559£2749£3308Book Now
10 Sep 201910 Oct 2019£559£2979£3538Book Now
01 Oct 201931 Oct 2019£559£3299£3858Book Now
05 Nov 201905 Dec 2019£559£3479£4038Book Now
Abad Turtle Beach Marari
15 Jan 201914 Feb 2019£359£3329£3688SOLD OUT
05 Feb 201907 Mar 2019£359£3389£3748SOLD OUT
02 Apr 201902 May 2019£279£2999£3278Book Now
30 Apr 201930 May 2019£279£2969£3248Book Now
29 May 201928 Jun 2019£279£2899£3178Book Now
04 Jun 201904 Jul 2019£279£2899£3178Book Now
03 Sep 201903 Oct 2019£359£2749£3108Book Now
10 Sep 201910 Oct 2019£359£2979£3338Book Now
01 Oct 201931 Oct 2019£359£3299£3658Book Now
05 Nov 201905 Dec 2019£359£3479£3838Book Now

Included in the Price

  • Fully Escorted Tour with local English Speaking Guides throughout
  • Scheduled Flights from the UK.
  • All internal travel including air-conditioned/heated transportation.
  • Accommodation, meals as specified and entry fees to all sights.
  • All airport taxes and security charges.

Additional Expenses

  • Visas
  • Insurance
  • Tips
  • Any meals not specified in your itinerary
Alcoholic drinks

Please note that Kerala has strict laws regarding the governance of the sale of alcohol in public places including hotels and restaurants. The sale and consumption of alcohol is therefore often restricted in hotels, varying from one establishment to another. However, you may bring your own alcohol with you for private consumption in your room.

Please note Shimla is not suitable for clients with walking difficulties, due to the nature of its mountainous location, there are many steep steps, inclines and declines around the town.

Please Note:

Please note there are 120 steps with a steep climb to access the ancient caves on Elephanta Island.

6th November 2018 departure date:

Please note, for this date, whilst you are in Thekaddy, you will be staying at 4* Abad Green Forest. Please refer to your final ticketing documentation for further details.

2019 departures:

Please note, for 2019 departures, within Kolkata you will be staying at 5* Taj Bengal Kolkata. Please refer to your final ticketing documentation for further details.

What to expect

Fact File
Min/Max temperature

11 °C / 41 °C

What to pack
  • Sunglasses
  • Sunscreen
  • Hat in summer
  • Comfortable walking shoes
  • Warm clothing and thermals in winter
  • Camera and charger/spare batteries
  • An electric plug converter
  • Loo paper for public WCs
  • Binoculars
  • Mosquito Repellent
  • Personal First Aid Kit
  • Anti-bacterial hand gel
  • Long sleeve shirt and long trousers
  • Swimwear
Customer Rating:
10/10
Michael Graves
2nd Nov 2018

No comments

  • Overall Satisfaction
  • Value for money
Customer Rating:
7.5/10
Sheila Lillico
11th Dec 2017

Lovely hotels in a variety of styles and places. Food very good and staff very polite and friendly

  • Overall Satisfaction
  • Value for money
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