Delhi to Kathmandu

15 days
from
£1,599
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Traveller ratings
4.8 / 5 from 11 reviews >
Leisurely
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Trip code: 
AIN
Ways to Travel:
Guided Group, Tailormade Adventures
Activity:
Culture
Min age:
16
Group size:
4–16

Explore sacred cities and temples in India and Nepal

To travel between Delhi and Kathmandu, from the bustling cities of the Indian plains to the peace and tranquillity of the highest mountains on Earth, is one of the most beautiful and fascinating journeys in Asia. For culture, the Taj Mahal, 'the Pink City' of Jaipur and the holy city of Varanasi are the highlights. We also follow the footsteps of Buddha, visiting the sacred Buddhist sites of  Sarnath and Lumbini. For nature, spotting rhino in Nepal's Chitwan National Park or the first view of the mighty Himalayas will provide lasting memories.

Highlights

  • See the magnificent Taj Mahal
  • Ganges at Varanasi by boat
  • Explore sacred cities and temples
  • Mountain views at Pokhara

Key information

  • 13 nights hotels and lodges, 1 night sleeper train
  • Group normally 4 to 16, plus leader. Min age 16 yrs
  • Travel by private air-conditioned bus and train

What's included

  • All breakfasts, 2 lunches and 2 dinners included
  • All accommodation
  • Transfer for group flights

 

What's not included

  • Travel insurance
  • Visas and vaccinations
  • Single supplement
Call for general departures:
020 8772 3936
Call for tailormade trips:
020 8772 3874
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

Responsible Travel

At Exodus we believe in the power of Responsible Travel.

Every time we travel, we are part of a global movement that creates jobs, builds more sustainable societies, encourages cultural understanding and safeguards common natural and cultural heritage. To learn more about what Responsible Travel means to Exodus click here… 

Itinerary

Delhi
to
Kathmandu
  • Day 1

    Start Delhi; afternoon free.

    The group flight will arrive into Delhi in the morning and we will transfer to our hotel. Those who have made their own flight arrangements will join us at the hotel during the day. You are free today to explore Delhi and rest after your flight; rooms may not be available until noon but it is often earlier than this.
    Comfortable Hotel

  • Day 2

    Visit Humayun's Tomb and New Delhi

    After breakfast we will have a tour of the capital. In Old Delhi we visit Jama Masjid (India's largest mosque). We then drive past the fine colonial buildings in New Delhi. Built by the British Raj in the early years of last century and set in spacious tree-lined boulevards, these now house various Indian governmental departments. We then visit Humayun's Tomb, one of the earlier Moghul Emperors. In the afternoon we drive to the 'Pink City' of Jaipur. This drive will take approximately 5 to 7 hours, depending on local traffic.
    Comfortable Hotel

     

    Meals included: Breakfast
  • Day 3

    Full day sightseeing Jaipur, including City Palace and Amber Fort; evening free.

     A full day to explore Jaipur, the capital of Rajasthan and one of the most attractive and colourful cities in India. Built in the late 18th century, it is a planned city of broad avenues built of sandstone and painted pink at a later stage. First we visit the City Palace. Formerly the residence of the Maharaja it is now a fine museum containing rare manuscripts, paintings, royal garments and weapons. Close to the palace is one of the most intriguing sites of India, the observatory of Jai Singh. This is an assembly of immense astronomical instruments made of marble and brass set in a pleasant garden. We will also see Jaipur's impressive landmark, the Hawa Mahal, or Palace of the Winds. A few miles from the main city is the splendid Amber Palace, rising above a lake. The imposing hilltop fort contains large courtyards and interiors with fine decorations including inlaid alabaster panels and a Chamber of Mirrors. We can walk up the hill through the massive gateway to the courtyard. Jaipur is a centre of many handicrafts, such as durries (woven rugs), carpets, printed cloth, semi-precious stones, leatherwear etc.
    Comfortable Hotel

    Meals included: Breakfast
  • Day 4

    Drive to Agra via Fatehpur Sikri

     We begin the day by driving to Agra via the deserted ancient city of Fatehpur Sikri. Formally the capital of the Mughal Empire, this wonderfully preserved 'ghost town' was constructed by Emperor Akbar between 1570 and 1585 and reflects his ideals in art, religion and architecture. This impressive and well-preserved citadel became his capital in 1571, after the blessing of a local Moslem holy man correctly predicted the birth of a longed-for son, his successor the Emperor Jehangir. The mosque, designed to hold ten thousand worshippers, the palaces, residences and halls of audience are all of decorative red sandstone. But this magnificence only lasted 14 years, as in 1584 Akbar left Fatehpur Sikri to secure his outlying territories, leaving this city much as we see it today. The site is one of the most atmospheric in northern India and its position on a ridge overlooking the modern village below, and its wonderful state of preservation give us with a taste of this city's majestic past.
    Comfortable Hotel

     

    Meals included: Breakfast
  • Day 5

    Sunrise visit to Taj Mahal and later visit the Red Fort; overnight train to Varanasi

     A very early start to see the incredible spectacle of the sunrise over the Taj. The Moghul Emperor Shah Jahan in memory of his beloved wife, Mumtaz Mahal, who died in 1631, built the beautiful white marble Taj Mahal. The Taj is serenely beautiful and never fails to amaze a first time visitor; the white marble exterior changes colour according to the position of the sun and is matched by the rich interior detail. Within striking distance is the imposing Red Fort of Akbar, whose mighty sandstone walls enclose the beautiful white marble Pearl Mosque and the palaces, halls, courtyards and fountains of his sons and successors, Jehangir and Shah Jahan. It is here that the latter spent his last years, imprisoned by his own son Aurangzeb. Agra also offers a wide variety of handicrafts including jewellery, inlaid and carved marble, carpets and clothes and there should be time for some shopping. In the evening we make our way to Agra Fort train station to catch our overnight train to Varanasi.

    Sleeper  Train

     

     

    Meals included: Breakfast
  • Day 6

    Arrive Varanasi; afternoon visit to Sarnath site of Buddha's first sermon

    On arrival in Varanasi we transfer to our hotel. Please note rooms may not be available until noon but efforts are made to make it earlier if  possible. In the afternoon we vist the nearby Sarnath Temple.  Sarnath is as sacred to Buddhists as Varanasi is to Hindus. The main monument at Saranath is the Dhamekh Stupa which is the very spot where Buddha is believed to have given his first sermon. Evening free. 
    Comfortable Hotel

    Meals included: Breakfast
  • Day 7

    Dawn boat ride on Ganges visiting bathing ghats; free afternoon; evening witness the Ganga Aarti ceremony.

     Varanasi, situated on the River Ganges, is one of the most holy cities in India and stands at the centre of the Hindu universe. As such, the city lives and breathes Hinduism: there are thousands of pilgrims, wandering holy men (Sadhus), religious leaders and casual visitors. Immerse yourself by exploring its maze of narrow lanes, many temples and watch the Hindu ceremonies that take place around the clock. Just before dawn, we take a boat out on the Ganges to witness the extraordinary spectacles on the ghats; the steps leading down to the river. Every day thousands of Hindu pilgrims come to these three miles of riverbank to submerge themselves in the waters of the holy Ganges. In the evening you can witness the aarti ceremony from the banks of the river.
    Comfortable Hotel

    Meals included: Breakfast
  • Day 8

    Cross border to Nepal; to World Heritage Site of Lumbini.

     We board our private bus and make an early departure for Nepal. We drive across the northern plains, passing through a few towns and lots of Indian villages. At the Indian border we leave our bus and walk across through customs and immigration to Nepal (approx. 500 metres). Once in Nepal, we enter the Terai, the narrow plain running along the southern breadth of the country. We have a short drive (approx. 1 hour) to Lumbini, the birthplace of the Buddha, where we spend the night. Total driving time approx. 12 hrs.
    Standard Hotel

    Meals included: Breakfast
  • Day 9

    Drive to Chitwan National Park

    Early this morning there is a short, optional rickshaw ride around the Lumbini gardens. Buddha was born here and the area is being developed into a place of pilgrimage for Buddhists from all over the world. Travelling east and parallel to the mountains, we reach Chitwan (approx. 4 hour drive), where we spend two nights. The park, with its jungle and thick forest, was the former royal hunting ground and was made a conservation area in 1973. During your stay you can enjoy an optional ox cart ride in Tharu village or an evening dance performance; both providing a glimpse into the fascinating lives of the local tribe. 
    Standard hotel

     

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 10

    Chitwan National park; jeep safari and dug out canoe excursion.

    Chitwan National Park and the surrounding forest covers an area of 923 square kilometres of the terai (low land region in southern Nepal) and affords excellent wildlife viewing opportunities. Amongst the larger animals, you have an excellent chance of seeing the Indian one horned rhino, Sambar and Chital deer, guar, langur and Rhesus monkeys, mongoose, jackal, otter and crocodile. The more elusive animals include tiger, leopard, leopard cat, Sloth bear and Indian bison. Over 500 species of birds have been recorded in this area.

    Wildlife activities are managed and escorted by experienced naturalists and shikharis and included in your stay is a jeep safari and a dug out canoe excursion. Birdwatching outings can also be organised.

    Standard Hotel

     

     

     

     

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 11

    Bird watching, breakfast then drive to Pokhara with views of the Annapurnas on route.

     Today, our journey to Pokhara is only 140km but will take 4-5 hours. We follow the gorge of the Narayani River and soon we are in the foothills of the Himalaya. The scenery changes dramatically from the forests and farmlands of the terai to steep terraced hills, and as we get closer to Pokhara we begin to see the formidable Annapurna Range. Set at only 1,000m amongst semi-tropical plants and with a delightfully warm climate, it is actually much closer to the main Himalayan peaks than Kathmandu. Machhapuchhare, the 'Fishtail Peak', dominates the skyline especially on a clear morning. We stay in a simple hotel near to Lake Phewa, with a wide choice of restaurants and other facilities close by.
    Standard Hotel

    Meals included: Breakfast
  • Day 12

    Sunrise over mountains; free day to explore or optional walk to Sarankot.

     We can either relax by or on the beautiful lake in Pokhara, or the more energetic can hike into the surrounding hills for even better views of the peaks. There are many wonderful day walks in and around the Pokhara valley, one of the best being to drive up to the remains of a fort at Sarankot, the hill directly overlooking the lake and then walk back to Pokhara. An early morning start is required to guarantee the clearest view, but once there, the whole Annapurna range can be seen with virtually no intervening hills. This is one of the best of all viewpoints for Machhapuchhare, most people's favourite mountain in the region. For many though, Pokhara is a place to relax by either renting a rowboat or bicycle for a few hours and exploring the lake and its shoreline at a leisurely pace.
    Standard Hotel

    Meals included: Breakfast
  • Day 13

    Follow Marsyangdi and Trisuli rivers to Kathmandu.

     We leave early for the long drive to Kathmandu, along the Chinese-built road running parallel to the main Himalayan range. The distance is only 200km but it is a slow climb through the mountains and the journey will take most of the day (7 - 8 hours). The views, however, are stunning as we follow the Marsyangdi and Trisuli rivers, passing numerous villages and terraces stretching thousands of feet up the hillside. We arrive in Kathmandu in the late afternoon and check into our centrally located hotel.
    Comfortable Hotel

    Meals included: Breakfast
  • Day 14

    Optional Everest flight; visit Pashupatinath and Bodnath; free time.

    We have today to explore Kathmandu and the valley. In the early morning there is the opportunity to take a scenic flight to see Mount Everest (this can be booked and paid for on arrival in Kathmandu; see 'Extra Expenses and Spending Money' section below regarding costs). Today there will be a half-day sightseeing tour visiting Pashupatinath, the most important Hindu temple in the valley, and Bodnath, one of the largest Buddhist stupas in the world. The rest of the time is free for individual exploration of Kathmandu. You may like to visit Durbar Square of Kathmandu with its old Royal Palace and intricately carved temples, or Swayambhunath, the 'monkey temple', set on a hill overlooking the city.

    Kathmandu also offers the most wonderful and varied opportunities for souvenir shopping: clothes, trinkets, Tibetan and Nepalese handicrafts and superb bookshops. It also has a wide variety of restaurants serving some of the best food from the sub-continent and you can also find wonderful pizzas and apple pie.

    Comfortable Hotel

    Meals included: Breakfast
  • Day 15

    End Kathmandu.

    Those on the flight inclusive package will depart for the airport this morning for the daytime flight back to London; Land Only arrangements will finish after check-out from the hotel.

    Meals included: Breakfast
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

Extend Your Trip

Annapurna Extension

Code: XIN

A short 4 day trek is a perfect introduction to trekking in Nepal and can easily be done towards the end of your main tour. The route takes us through the foothills of the Annapurna region, one of the most spectacular of Nepal's Himalayan massifs. We will also pass through Gurung villages set amongst the steeply terraced fields with splendid mountain vistas. A more detailed itinerary can be found here.

Please ask your sales consultant for more details.

Essential Info

Visas

India

Visas are required if you are British and for most other nationalities. For UK residents full details of the visa process can be found here. Other nationalities should check with their travel agent or the relevant embassies.

If your trip visits Ladakh, in the very north of India, or Sikkim in the northeast, do not mention this on your Indian visa application. This can sometimes slow down or even cause the embassy to reject your visa.

When you reach immigration, you are required to pick up an immigration form. If you have an e-visa, ensure you stand in the correct queue - please follow the signs to the e-visa booth (in Delhi this is at the back of the immigration hall). You will need to fill out an additional form at the booth - please make sure that you have the details of your start hotel ready (these details can be found on your Final Joining Instructions).

 

Nepal

Most nationalities require a visa for Nepal, which can be obtained in advance or on entry. If you wish to apply before departure the current visa cost is £20 for a 15-day visa and £35 for a 30-day visa for UK passport holders. The current cost of a visa on arrival is US$25 for 15 days, US$40 for 30 days or if extending your stay $100 for 90 days. All are multiple entry. The visa on arrival fee can be paid for in cash in US Dollars, Pounds Sterling or Euros. Application forms are available in the immigration hall (or for electronic passports, there are visa registration machines which, after inserting your passport, automatically fill out a form for you. If you use the machine you will not need a passport photo). You must first join the queue to pay the visa fee and then go to the relevant immigration desk to obtain your 15, 30 or 90-day visa stamp.  If you use the paper form to obtain a visa on arrival then you will also need one passport photo (a photo is not required if you use the electronic registration machines but we recommend you bring one with you anyway in case, for any reason, the machines cannot read your passport). There can be long queues for visas on arrival.

Non UK nationals should check requirements with their nearest embassy (a few nationalities are not permitted visas on arrival).

Vaccinations

India

There are no mandatory vaccination requirements. Recommended vaccinations are: Polio, Tetanus, Diphtheria, Typhoid, Hepatitis A. The risk of malaria is slight but you may wish to consult your GP or travel health clinic for further advice. Dengue fever is a known risk in places visited. It is a tropical viral disease spread by daytime biting mosquitoes. There is currently no vaccine or prophylaxis available for Dengue, therefore the best form of prevention is to avoid being bitten. Some of our India trips spend time at altitude. In regions over approx. 2000m, there is low to no risk of mosquito-borne diseases. For trips going to altitudes of over 3000m there is a risk of being affected by Acute Mountain Sickness. Our itineraries are designed to enable everyone to acclimatise to these altitudes, but you should be aware that it is still possible for you to be affected. Please see the TRIP NOTES for further information.

Nepal

There are no mandatory vaccination requirements. Recommended vaccinations are: Polio, Tetanus, Diphtheria, Typhoid, Hepatitis A.

There is low to no risk of malaria throughout Nepal and antimalarial tablets are not usually advised although may be considered for certain higher risk groups; you may wish to consult your GP or travel health clinic for further advice. The risk is highest in the low lying southern ‘terai’ districts bordering India.

A yellow fever certificate is only required if travelling from a country with risk of yellow fever transmission or for travellers having transited for more than 12 hours through a country with risk of transmission.

Dengue fever is a known risk in Nepal. It is a tropical viral disease spread by daytime biting mosquitoes. There is currently no vaccine or prophylaxis available for Dengue, and therefore the best form of prevention is to avoid being bitten. We recommend you take the usual precautions to avoid mosquito bites.

Most of our trips to Nepal go to high altitudes where there is a risk of being affected by Acute Mountain Sickness. Our itineraries are designed to enable everyone to acclimatise to these altitudes, but you should be aware that it is still possible for you to be affected. Please refer to the Altitude Warning within the Trip Notes for further advice on AMS.

Eating and Drinking

All breakfasts, 2 lunches and 2 dinners included.

You should allow £15 (approx. US$24) per day for other meals. You can eat out very cheaply in India and Nepal, but if you go to more expensive restaurants most of the time, you will spend more than the suggested amount. In most of the towns there is a good choice between Indian, Chinese and Western style food. If you are a vegetarian India and Nepal are probably two of the best destinations you can visit. Tea and soft drinks are very cheap. A (large!) bottle of beer is approximately £3 (approx. US$4.80). Drinking water will be provided in large containers in our vehicle, so please bring a water bottle with you to refill. Where meals are not included the leader will encourage people to try certain restaurants and street food vendors. They can make recommendations which will help boost small businesses and celebrate local specialties. In India, we can even see how the food is made, for example, masala chai (tea), samosa (mashed potato snacks), jalebe (Indian doughnuts), lassi (yoghurt drink).

Weather

Is this trip for you?

Activity Level: 1 (Leisurely). This is not a demanding tour physically, but some days can be particularly long, such as the drives between Delhi and Jaipur (approx. 5-7 hours), Jaipur and Agra (approx. 5-6 hours), Varanasi and Lumbini (approx. 12 hours), and Pokhara to Kathmandu (approx. 7-8 hours). The stunning scenery, however, compensates for this. Like the people of Nepal and India, we will have some early starts to take advantage of the daylight. Most of the roads are in fairly good condition but you should be prepared for a few rougher sections. The trains are a fun way to travel and meet Indian people, although delays are always possible.

Please note that the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) are responsible for the conservation of many monuments in India, including the Taj Mahal, and very occasionally this may mean that work is taking place at sites visited on this trip. The ASI’s schedule is never published so it is not possible to forewarn our clients of when work will be taking place.

Holi and Diwali Festivals

Some departures will take place during the festivals of Holi and Diwali. They are great festivals to witness and some very minor itinerary alterations may be made locally in order to make the most of these occasions. Holi celebrations typically involve people throwing coloured water at each other and smearing powder on each other's faces. This is accompanied by dancing, music and traditional Holi sweets such as Ghujiya and Bhanng. It's a riot of colours as the powder bursts into the sky. During Diwali, the festival of lights, people typically light up their houses, shops and streets, and celebrate on the streets with fireworks.

Call for general departures:
020 8772 3936
Call for tailormade trips:
020 8772 3874
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

Accommodation

11 nights hotels, 2 nights lodge, all en suite, and 1 night on a sleeper train

We have 11 nights hotels, 2 nights lodge, all en suite, as well as 1 night on a sleeper train. The hotels we use are of a mixture of standard and comfortable hotels. In Jaipur and Varanasi we stay in heritage hotels. In Kathmandu we stay in a hotel close to the centre and in Chitwan we stay in a comfortable jungle lodge in twin-bedded huts.

Overnight Train Journeys

The overnight train from Agra to Varanasi will be booked in 2-tier where it's 4 people to a compartment (or 3-tier with 6 to a compartment if 2-tier is not available) sleeper A/C. There are many excellent trains in India but the standard is not in line with European standards. All seats are pre-allocated when the tickets are issued, meaning that we cannot guarantee the whole group are together in the same carriage: your leader will manage this as best as possible and will always check on you during the journey. Indian trains are safe but we recommend that you keep valuables with you at all times. Snacks are often offered on board (at an additional cost) but you may wish to purchase your own food prior to the journey. Whilst some trains have western-style facilities, the majority of services are equipped with squat toilets. Please note trains are sometimes delayed for reasons beyond our control, but we endeavour to minimise the impact of these delays on the overall itinerary.

Call for general departures:
020 8772 3936
Call for tailormade trips:
020 8772 3874
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

Expert Blog Entries

Here at Exodus we are incredibly passionate about wildlife and the conservation efforts to save it.

Embracing a healthy lifestyle can be a challenge, but if you’re going to keep it up there’s got to be more to it than

  • Reviewed October 2018
    Louie Tham

    Great, varied trip

    Concise itinerary of some key sights in Northern India and Nepal. Varied sights covering important Moghal, Buddhist, Hindu sites, mixed with wildlife, rural landscapes, lakeside resort and Himalayan vistas. Good pace, not too rushed, not too many bus trips, chance to experience overnight rail journey. Good standard of hotels, good breakfasts with local and Western choices. Trip was considerably enhanced by having Mayank as our leader.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Seeing Varanasi in all it's intensity ; driving through rural Bihar and seeing all village life on the road, the paranama of Everest on a mountain flight ; the energy of Kathmandu, great end to the trip

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Mayank was outstanding : incredable knowledge, good communicator, ever helpful, always going the 'extra mile' to solve problems, and good company at meal times with an easy, natural manner.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    India is an assault on your senses - come with an open mind and flexible attitude, it will grip you like no other country. Nepal is more chilled, nice contrast to India but people and mountains will want you to return.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Ask for Mayank
  • Reviewed March 2018
    Julie Woodward

    Excellent jam-packed adventure

    After a fair amount of research into which trip/company to select, I opted for this one. I opted for this trip for a few reasons - I'd previously done another excellent trip with Exodus, only 1 overnight train (just enough!), the itinerary sounded fascinating with some different places included to other similar tours. I was extremely pleased with my choice - an adventure from start to finish, amazing places, loads learned, a fabulous group and a brilliant tour leader.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    So many to mention - a true sensory experience. Varanasi was a huge highlight - people watching, the Ganges, the Ghats and the various ceremonies we saw - including beautiful weddings. The mountain scenery in Nepal was breathtaking - including the drives to get to Pokhara and Kathmandu, the Pokhara paragliding experience and Everest flight from Kathmandu. The Pashupatinath complex and Bodnath temple in Kathmandu. Learning about the Hindu and Buddhist history, beliefs and traditions was fascinating (including the Bodhgaya stay and day trips). Finally, our 13 strong group and Jatin were very special people to share this experience and adventure with.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Jatin was absolutely brilliant - this would have been a tough and complex trip to manage and Jatin worked tirelessly to make sure everything came together, that we were all safe and well, and that we had a brilliant time. Whether someone needed meds, first aid, money, recovery of a misplaced/lost/left-behind item, souvenirs ... Jatin was always on hand and happy to help (he even rolled his sleeves up to help fix the bus!). Jatin's knowledge and experience was superb, he cared and his happy nature made us smile. A huge credit to Exodus.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Bring plenty of hand sanitiser (and use it regularly!), drink loads of water, bring an open-mind and be prepared to go with the flow. This is a really fun adventure trip - there are some early morning starts (for activities or to travel), rough and bumpy roads, long days, squat toilets and often facilities which might not meet our usual standards - go with it, it's really worth it. The long travel days weren't so bad as the views and outside life was fascinating to watch. Try and carry some snacks to keep the energy levels going - Jatin and the drivers often stopped at street vendors to get us fruit or other snacks during the day. During the long journeys, we stopped every couple of hours for a leg stretch, cuppa and a loo break. We were always told to shout if anyone needed an earlier stop. We encountered an unscheduled 6 hr delay, due to protests, on the morning train to Varanasi and many of us were very grateful for saving some our breakfast box leftovers which kept us going. The overnight train was an adventure. We made sure we had a good feed at lunchtime and we stopped off at the shop for some snacks. I carried a lightweight sleeping bag liner for the overnight train - I used it because I carried it, but the bedding provided seemed clean enough to use without the liner. However, it did get a little chilly during the night so the extra layer was welcomed. One thing I wished I'd packed was some cards or small games, but we made our own fun in the end. US $ are very useful to carry - crisp and un-torn notes. Indian rupees can be carried into and used in Nepal. Don't overpack - hotel laundry facilities were cheap and good, and best used on 2 night stays. I used the hotel laundry facilities in Bodhgaya and Varanasi. Bodhgaya was slightly cheaper, but neither expensive at all. Get over the cappuccino love! Mainly instant coffee all the way until Pokhara - but the Masala Chai is a good substitute.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    This is a superb trip for an India first-timer or someone wanting to get a taster of Nepal and North India- It gives a taste of so much - people, ways of life, forts, palaces, mountains, countryside, nature, temples, Hindu and Buddhist insights/learning, trains, roads etc. The trip visits many UNESCO world heritage sites. It requires a bit of stamina (for the travelling days and early starts). Both India and Nepal are challenging and daunting countries and this trip made the experience do-able, straighforward and easy.
  • Reviewed May 2017
    Mary Spencer

    Delhi to Kathmandu

    This was a great trip which involved a lot of travelling ( by bus, train, jeep and boat) but with the reward of visiting some beautiful and historical places and having some wonderful experiences. The travelling times for our group were often longer than suggested in the trip notes but this was because at the time of our travel there was some major road construction occurring. However the long bus trips did give one an opportunity to observe the countryside, the Indian and Nepalese cultures and ways of life as one passed through towns and villages. There was also the opportunity for the odd nap as there were quite a few early morning starts. Also this gave an opportunity to read up on, or reflect on the places visited as the trip moves quickly across India and into Nepal.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    For me the inspirational moments of the trip were visiting the Taj Mahal, getting close to the Indian one horned rhino in Chitwan national park and the flight to Everest . The Taj Mahal is such an iconic building and to have experienced its beauty and atmosphere at sunrise was inspiring. Our group were so lucky at Chitwan ...we saw about 10 rhino with 7 being distant viewings but 3 were really close to the jeeps. Being a keen photographer of animals this really made my trip !!! Am still wondering how Gaj our " all things can be sorted" guide managed to arrange that !!! Seeing Everest and the Himalayas above the clouds..... not to be missed.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Gaj was our fantastic leader who looked out for our safety but also ensured that we had a good time. He frequently asked us if our tummies were in order... "because if your tummy isn't in the right place your head isn't going to be in the right place". For the majority, tummies were in the right place for the whole trip and I am sure that this was partly owing to the fact that Gaj knew where to take us to eat. A guide is always worth his money for giving good advice to avoid unhappy occurrences and then if they occur being able to sort things out . Gaj always gave us good tips on things to do or not to do and always knew where we could change money, find a chemist, procure a chain and lock for your suitcase or get passport photos done . Besides all the practical stuff Gaj told us lots about the history and culture of his country and answered all our questions enthusiastically.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Be prepared for the long drives.. its what you have to do to visit places where some roads are not great. The Nepalese immigration insist on pristine US dollar notes ( no markings and flat) for your visa.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Its not a rest .. its an experience.....but a great one !!!
  • Reviewed April 2017
    Jane Dare

    Delhi to Kathmandu

    A fantastic adventure from start to finish. India was hot, dirty, crowded and chaotic. It was a riot of colour, noise and amazing photo opportunities! Nepal was slightly less chaotic and provided a wonderful contrast to the madness.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Both morning and evening trips on the Ganges were incredible. Not for the faint-hearted, we watched cremations on the banks of the river. We loved Chitwan even though we didn't see the elusive tiger. We went paragliding in Pokhara which was great fun.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Ronit was a great leader. We were a very small group, just four of us and Ronit. We got on extremely well and Ronit just made everything easy. He was knowledgable, informative and fun. He made navigating the chaos easy, getting us on to the train for our overnight trip, getting us tuktuks and rickshaws and adding his own experiences that he thought we would enjoy such as taking us to the Sikh temple in Delhi where we made roti, stopping at the brick factory, walking over a suspension bridge on the way to Pokhara and taking us to eat street food at a stall in Agra.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    This is not a relaxing holiday. It is an adventure. Be prepared for long journeys on terrible roads. There is always something to see but you will spent a lot of time on the road. There are also some early starts. The standard of driving, generally, is not great. It was particularly dusty in Kathmandu. Some of the hotels are quite basic. Be prepared for sights you would not see in the UK. Embrace the chaos and you will have an amazing time!

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    I would highly recommend this trip. It was well organised from start to finish. Excellent!
  • Reviewed March 2017
    Penelope Phillips

    Delhi to Kathmandu

    Very enjoyable experiences.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    I enjoyed all that we saw and did. We visited a school on request to give pens and paper. Thought seeing sun rise on the Ganges and sending a light down the river very moving. Loved staying at Chitsan another chances to flot on the water and seeing all the animals. Didn't see the tigers though.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Gajraj was very good with information and helped us to understand his country. He was full of fun to that helped us all to get on together. Pleased that he fixed for us to visit a school.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Water in Nepal is readily available no need for water purifying stuff. Lot of dust a face mask is a good idea to have if you suffer with a bad chest.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Loved all the things we saw and did.
  • Reviewed December 2016
    Jennifer Dixon

    delhi to kathmandu

    a trip that far exceeded expectations.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    the human spectical of Veranasi

    What did you think of your group leader?

    simplly the best
  • Reviewed November 2014

    Delhi to Kathmandu

    This is an ideal trip for those who want to have a taste of India and Nepal and not much time to do it in.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Being the first people into the Taj Mahal and having no-one in our photos...and then the place being absolutely rammed 10 minutes later. The amazing Hindu ceremony along the river Ganges at sunset where thousands and thousands of people turned up to worship. Trekking fishtail mountain to see the sunrise. Visiting the amazing Buddist and Hindu Temples... and of course Bang Bang Bollywood film!

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Vivek was amazing. I have been on 3 exodus trips now and he was the best by far. His years of experience shone through as he took care of restaurant bookings, extra trips and basically anything else we could possibly want (and we wanted a lot!). He was extremely caring and protective (which as a solo female traveler was appreciated) without making us worried and made the time every day to have conversations with each of us. As well as this he joined in on almost all of the optional activities despite probably having done them countless times already and we were all sad to say goodbye at our last meal as a group. He also provided never ending cough sweets to the whole group as we each passed a cold back and forth to each other all trip!

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    This is an intense trip - I was not prepared for exactly how busy and loud India would be and add this to the long days and early starts and it is hard work but just make sure you take the opportunity for some down time when you can get it. It's absolutely worth doing. Practical info- wifi is at every hotel you go to and there's about 3 places you can get laundry done too so don't be tempted to over-pack.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    It was a fantastic trip but i think the day trip to Chunar once you've arrived in Varannasi is unncessary. A few of us opted to go to the site of the Budda's first sermon instead and get massages in the hotel and it was fantastic and a chance to relax after the overnight train, whereas the people who went on the day trip spent a very long time travelling to go to a fort which they said wasn't as good as the ones we'd already seen. There is so much to do in Varannasi that it seemed odd to spend one of the two days travelling elsewhere. Lastly, in Chitwan there is an elephant ride which I was unsure about as it is agreed upon by most animal charities that elephants should not be used in this way as you cannot know the treatment of the elephant, where they have come from (e.g stolen from herd) or beaten to be tame, worked all day... it would be reassuring to know that Exodus have looked into the company used to verify that the elephants are well treated.
  • Reviewed May 2014
    Reg Odbert

    Delhi to Kathmandu

    The trip started early on the first day in India and continued at pace throughout: the scenery was breathtaking. In spite of repeated early morning starts at 4.30 - 5am we were amazed by the sheer numbers of people everywhere at all times of day and night. The journeys between cities were long even though the distances were relatively short - the roads are dreadful! However, we didn't witness any aggression or accidents even though the views of the chaotic traffic were scary at times! The accommodation was really good and far better than we either expected or that we have had on previous trips. Food was plentiful, tasty and excellent. We deliberately ate veggie and completely avoided any tummy upsets. The overnight 'sleeper' train was quite an experience - we boarded 1.5 hours late around 12.30 am and arrived in Varanassi 6 hours later than planned at 2pm - interesting and actually quite fun even though we didn't sleep much! Our guide Gajendra (G) was experienced, friendly, knowledgeable and super efficient - a great guy!

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    It is hard to choose one experience from such a brilliant trip. There were a lot of amazing moments. The Ganges at both dawn and dusk, the elephants and the swim with the elephants, the sheer colour and smells and noise of the cities - all absolutely fantastic. But - The 'Diana bench' at the Taj Mahal at dawn was beyond anything that we ever anticipated - it was simply awe-inspiring! We were fortunate to be there during the festival of Holi. This was terrific fun, and it took about a week to get all the dye and paint off after being plastered from head to toe in coloured paints.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Brilliant! He was just great. Nothing was too much trouble and he made the whole trip appear effortless. Of course, he was working very hard behind the scenes but he just made everything happen. He didn't even loose anyone in the crowds of Delhi at night!

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Book this trip - it is not a physically energetic trip, but it is great. We added a week of trekking in Nepal to get the legs moving after eating and drinking far too much in India.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    One of the best trips that we have been on. It's quite hard work because India is such a big country and , if you want to see things, you have to put in the time on the road - well worth any minor inconvenience and a few very short nights!
  • Reviewed April 2014
    Lucinda Smith-Lenander

    Delhi to Kathmandu

    What and interesting an amazing trip and one I will never forget. The sheer madness of India and then the peacefulness of Nepal. Both countries where special and great in their own way and I loved every minute.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Every moment was inspiration from seeing the first tuk tuk in Dehli, visiting the Taj Mahal, the mosques in Jaipur and the amazing times on the Ganges in Varanasi. The sunsets and sunrises where amazing, early mornings but it was so worth it. I loved the peacefulness of Nepal and I loved Chitwan, Pokhara and Kathmandu, each had its own beauty and the mountain ranges and scenery was truly magnificent.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Pacham was a gem, an amazing person with so much knowledge of the countries and with a friendly smile no matter when you saw him. He was helpful throughout the trip and made the trip more special. We had so many laughs as a group and Pacham definitely had a few good jokes and stories. He deserves an award :-)

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Have a great time as I know that you definitely will!!

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Well done Exodus, you are brilliant.. This was my second trip with you and I have already booked my next trip for December and cannot wait. Keep up the good work.
  • Reviewed February 2014
    Anonymous .

    DELHI TO KATHMANDU

    I have been lucky enough to travel to many places over the years, India and Nepal are now at the top of my list of places I must go back to. Every day brought amazing views, experiences and food! The group were all like-minded and brilliant to travel with.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    We had lovely clear skies for a lot of the trip so the sunrises over the different landscapes were incredible. Although seeing the Taj Mahal and Everest will remain with me forever, it was spending time on the ghats and on the water at Varanasi that took my breath away. Drifting along the river in the Chitwan National Park came a close second.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Badam Sing made all of us feel instantly at ease. He shared a lot of information about his life, childhood and religion with us which gave a very personal insight into India. He dealt with schedule changes calmly and efficiently, changed things around to make the best use of our time, and did his best to arrange things to suit the requests of different members of the group. I was really grateful that Badam didn't bombard us with information on the long journeys - allowing us time and peace to watch the scenery as we drove. I really can't praise him highly enough!

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Do as many of the optional trips as you can. Don't miss the Everest flight. Bring an iPod for the long journeys and several memory cards. january/February was a great time to travel.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Loved it and can't wait to go back!

Dates & Prices

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An overview of flight options

Exodus is committed to making joining our tours as easy as possible, wherever you live. We generally only block book seats from London, but this certainly does not mean that you need to fly from there. Depending on the route and airlines available, there will usually be various options available for those who want to fly from their local airport.

This page aims to provide a useful overview of the options available to our clients. However, the best flight arrangements should be tailored to your personal requirements, so please contact our Sales team for expert advice.

 

What kind of options do I have ?

1. We can book for you: Flights from anywhere in the world - not via London  

Depending on the route, this may be direct or via an overseas hub like Amsterdam, the Middle East or elsewhere. On short haul routes there may be direct flights with low cost airlines, charter flights or scheduled airlines. Exodus can book most, but not all, of these for you. The most appropriate airline may be different to that which we use for the group flight from London, but many people now travel on different airlines and meet up with their fellow passengers at the destination.

Pros Cons
  • May be the most direct route
  • Often the extra fare compared to the London flight is minimal.
  • As you will be in the hands a single airline for your entire journey, the airline will be responsible for your bags and your connections.
  • You may not be able to join the group transfers. However, we can usually arrange private transfers, or book your flights to try and coincide with the group transfers. See notes on transfer arrangements below.

 

2. We can book for you: Connecting flights from your local airport to London

Exodus can book connecting flights to London so you can join the group flight there. Connecting times will be followed according to airline advice, or as requested by clients. There are two types of fares we can use for this option: a 'through-fare' or a 'published fare'.
 
a) A 'through-fare' is where you will be in the main airline's care throughout. You change planes, but your bags are checked all the way through to your final destination. 

b) A 'published fare' ticket is completely seperate from your onward ticket from London. It is usually cheaper than a through-fare but will need to be paid for and issued as soon as it is booked. This can be a problem if your tour has not yet reached minimum numbers. On 'published fares' neither airline is aware that you have connecting flights, so Exodus is responsible for timing your connection, not the airlines involved. The tickets are also usually non changeable and non refundable.

Pros Cons
  • Depending on the fare type, Exodus or the airline is responsible for flight connections.
  • Through fare tickets can be expensive.
  • On a published fare, tickets must be issued immediately; tickets on published fares can be very difficult to change if onward flight times change; bags are not checked though to your final destination.
  • Published fares are non-refundable.

 

3. Booking some or all of the flights yourself

You can also book connecting air travel yourself, either to London, or all the way to the start point. There may be certain airlines or routes we don't have access to, so this is always an option. However, if you make your own travel arrangements you become liable for any delays, cancellations or missed connections, and Exodus is not required to offer refunds if you have trouble reaching the start of your trip.

Pros Cons
  • You might find cheaper fares, or routes not available to Exodus.
  • You are responsible for any delays or missed connections, and the cost of the tour is not protected should you miss your flight be cancelled.

 

 Notes on transfer arrangements

Sometimes it is possible to travel on a different airline to the group flight from London. Where this is the case, we need to think about ensuring you meet up with the group with minimum extra cost and hassle.

  • On certain trips, it is easy to arrive on a different flight and still meet the group at the hotel with time in hand. We can usually arrange private transfers (at extra cost) or offer advice on taking a taxi to the start hotel.
  • On other trips (especially in Europe), the transfer meets the group flight and then travels some distance to the first night's accommodation. Where this is the case, our Sales team will try to arrange flights that arrive before (and depart after) the group. However, we do have to make it clear in your final documentation that if your flights are delayed, the transfer cannot wait for you. While Exodus or our local operators will do what we can to help you reach the start point of the tour, any additional costs must be paid by the client. 

 

Next steps? 

Call our Sales team on: 0203 733 0698

Email your query: [email protected]

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