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Watch our video to see the highlights of India...
We have a selection of guidebooks to some of our most popular countries in Asia. Written by our specialists, they detail destination information, a wildlife guide, some suggested itineraries and plenty more to inspire your holiday. Fill in the form below and if you live in UK, your guidebook will arrive by post within the next couple of days. For those who live abroad, we will send this via a PDF to your email.
The Golden Triangle is a great starting point for anyone visiting India for the first time. The journey is made up of three of the most visited cities in north India – Delhi, Agra and Jaipur, offering a fantastic combination of history and culture.
Only after stepping foot in India will you realise that Indian cuisine, as you know it, just doesn’t exist. To paint both the delicate and punchy flavours of India with the same broad brushstroke overlooks the smorgasbord of dishes on offer from north to south. Tried and tested recipes balance coriander, cumin and cardamom with almost scientific precision, guaranteeing a culinary experience you will never forget.
Enjoy a sneak peek into daily life in India by staying at a haveli or in a homestay. If only for a few nights, you will be shoehorned into a family, enjoying traditional Indian hospitality, sampling home cooked food and exploring the path less travelled. Staying at one of these unique lodgings will give you an incredible insight into real India, and you will be welcomed with open arms by hosts whose wealth of local knowledge knows no bounds. Coming in all shapes and sizes, from plantation bungalows to historic houses, majestic forts and charming cottages, a short stay in one of these unique properties allows you to immerse yourself in India rather than simply visit it.
India is a magical country which welcomes travellers with a chaotic and colourful assault on the senses. Never is this more prominent than during one of the many festivals. Below we have listed the dates for the major festivals in India in 2017. Speak to one of our specialists about incorporating one of these into a tailor-made itinerary.
With millions of passengers on the move every day, travelling on some 71,000 miles of track, India's intricate network of railways are the arteries of the country, connecting its bustling cities with its sleepy villages and everywhere in between. The sprawling rail network reaches the nooks and crannies of India which are otherwise impossible to find. Amongst the country's miles of train tracks are some of the most picturesque rail journeys in the world, most notable of which are its famed toy trains. Whilst perhaps not the most efficient way of getting from A to B, the experience is an absolute must to add to your India itinerary.
The Elgin Nor-Khill Hotel
Best for: Culture History
The Elgin Nor-Khill is a charming heritage hotel near Gangtok in Sikkim. Redolent with history and Himalayan character, the Elgin Nor-Khill is Gangtok’s loveliest place to stay, and a wonderful base for exploring Sikkim’s amazing temples and mountains.
To start planning your tailor-made holiday, call us on (646) 934-8916
A stay at the Elgin Nor-Khill is like stepping back in time to when this 1932-built heritage hotel served as the Chogyal of Sikkim's royal guesthouse. Countless historical photos, period furniture, dragon murals and exquisite Tibetan carpets lend vintage appeal to the hallways and the lobby, and the Nor-Khill has over the years attracted luminaries such as the Dalai Lama and Richard Gere. The overall tone is unpretentious and welcoming, with white silk scarves placed around the necks of new guests, and a nip of local cherry brandy offered if the weather is chilly. The 25 rooms and suites all look across to the Himalayas, and are spacious and very Sikkimese in character with polished wood parquet floors, thick Nepali rugs and touches of vibrant painted wood lending a traditional Himalayan feel, while amenities are thoroughly modern.
The main Shangri-La Dining Room serves delicious Sikkimese, Indian and western dishes in a superbly atmospheric environment, and local drinks such as Sikkimese millet beer as well as the usual brands of western spirits can be enjoyed at the Dragon Bar, surrounded by Tibetan thangkas, traditional carpets, wall hangings and orchids and shrubs. The staff extremely helpful and will put hot-water bottles into your bed before you turn in for the night, and there’s a lovely relaxing garden where you can enjoy inspiring views of Kanchenjunga over a gin gimlet.
Spend your days trekking through rhododendron forests, rafting raging rivers, hot air ballooning and exploring the wonderful Tibetan monasteries. If you are back by four, you can enjoy a delightful afternoon tea selecting from a wide range of first leaf Darjeeling brews, or settle in for a relaxing Ayurvedic treatment at the spa.
When to go
The region is best visited in the winter months of November to February when there is minimal humidity, temperatures are mild and the weather is drier. Primarily during December and January, the city of Calcutta experiences early morning mists making for spectacular views. Starting in March summers get very hot and humid continuing to June, making this a less comfortable time to visit. Towards the end of the summer it tends to be quite wet due to the oncoming monsoon. Between the month of July and October, the monsoon rains bring the majority of the annual rainfall in the region and August is perhaps the wettest month of all with flooding common during this time.
To start planning your tailor-made holiday, call us on (646) 934-8916
Things to do
Evening prayers in Dali Gompa
A tour around the Dali Monastery, one of the biggest in Darjeeling. You will explore the library and take part in evening prayers in the beautiful prayer room.
Darjeeling walking tour
An extensive walking tour of Darjeeling, where you will see a huge number of things, from the Mahakal Dara to Royal Bengal tigers! You will enjoy breakfast, lunch and afternoon tea in local areas.
Toy Train Ride
The Darjeeling Himalayan Railway, affectionately called the ‘Toy Train’, is a wonderful experience that gets you closer to the Himalayas.
Tiger Hill hike
A hike to Tiger Hill offers stunning views of the colossal Mount Kanchenjunga, as well as many other snow-capped peaks of the Himalayas.
Kumartuli’s Potter Community
A visit to the Kumartuli potter community is a fascinating tour where you can witness the incredible skill with which clay model of gods and animals are created and painted.
Holiday ideas including a stay in this property
Calcutta, Kalimpong, Gangtok, Darjeeling
Discover the delights of India’s most beguiling far-flung region, from India’s vibrant cultural hub of Calcutta to the striking Himalayan scenery that surrounds the hill stations and Buddhist monasteries that dot India’s northeast.