TAJ & BIRD WATCHING TOUR

Over 1200 species of birds may be seen in India. You can see over a hundred species anywhere. One can have a field day for birding with over 375 species found in the 30 sq km of Keoladeo National Park situated 60 km from the Taj Mahal. Both of them are listed as World Heritage sites. Keoladeo is unique for both the quantity of birds and the number of species. It is comprised of wetland, woodland and grassland and is heaven for waterfowl, herons, cranes and birds of prey. Mammals such as Samber, Chital, and Nilgai can also be seen very easily. The star attraction of this sanctuary were the Siberian cranes which came in flocks, but the last pair was seen in year 2001. It is said, that lot of them got hunted on their way from Siberia to India, and then they changed their route. A visit is a must for serious birders and it can be conveniently explored on foot. Treks can also be taken by boat, bicycle or rickshaw.

Duration: 20 Nights / 21 Days
Destinations: Delhi – Corbett – Agra – Bharatpur – Ranthambhore – Jaipur – Ahmedabad – Zainabad – Ahmedabad – Bangalore – Mysore - Bangalore

Day 1 : Arrival Delhi
Humayuns Tomb, Delhi Tourism On arrival meeting and assistance at airport then transfer to Hotel.

Delhi is city of Yin and Yang. Most Modern Delhi Metro ply on the 1500 million Year old Ridge. Delhi Ridge is older than Himalyas and house to 252 species of birds and few mammals. Delhi is World’s second most bird rich capital after Nairobi. Make sure when you land here keep your eyes open for some migratory birds. It is easy not to notice these guests which make Delhi their home for few months of the year and get intertwined by the versatility of this city. Over the ages Delhi has witnessed Emperors and Kings and yet this city would surprise you with youth and exuberance.

The city is home to most iconic monuments which find their places rightly on tourist’s postcard. Modern Architecture of Delhi is Edward Lutyen who constructed the buildings such as Parliament and President House. The Auto rickshaw ride – Flea markets of Old Delhi, Street foods, Temples, Mosques all would take time to absorb. So hand pick your memories before you leave.

Day 2 : Delhi
Full day sightseeing tour of Old & New Delhi.

Day 3 : Delhi – Corbett
Morning drive to Corbett National Park.

A park which has been christened more than once before it was called as Jim Corbett National Park in 1955. It was also called Ramganga and Hailey National park before. To capture the beauty of this reserve reading Man eaters of Kumaon is must. 520 square Km of area is beautifully occupied by Sal, ber, bel dhak, semal, kharpat and few bamboo trees. You can sight Leopard, Tiger, Elephant Spotted Deer, sloth bear langur and monkeys. You would find Marsh crocodile, Species of Cobras, Python and Monitor lizard. This forest is feast for Nature and bird lovers. Besides hornbill, barbet, lark, myna, magpie, minivet, partridge you can spot various migratory birds. These include Greylag geese, Black Storks, Great Black headed gull and few species of Pelicans. This forest captures the imagination of both amateurs and professional photographers. A visit to the Corbett National Park would surely be a rewarding experience for you

Day 4 : Corbett
Morning and evening excursion to Corbett National Park.

Day 5 : Corbett
Morning and evening excursion to Corbett National Park.

Day 6 : Corbett – Agra
Peacock,  Bharatpur Birding Tour Morning drive to Agra, visit Taj Mahal and FathepurSikri( TajMahal is closed for tourists on Fridays)

The Majestic reputation of Mughal City has kept the tourists bewitched till date. It was also called Arya Graha or the resting place of the Aryans. This city has found mention in Mahabharata as well. The Hallmark of Love – Taj mahal. Don’t forget to notice its pillars built slightly tilted outwards – The protection mechanism against Earthquakes. Visit to Agra museum and finesse of Agra fort can only be awed. Tomb of Akbar the great would open new definition of the word elaborate. The city of Agrabah in Disney MoveyAladin was inspired from magical city Agra.

Day 7 : Agra – Bharatpur
Morning drive from Agra to Bharatpur Bird Sanctuary.
Bharatpur is city in Rajasthan and located in Brij region. It was once the impregnable Capital of Jat Kingdom. The Keoladeo National park was also known as Bharatpur Bird Sanctuary. Since the beginning this park was the most hunting place of the local rulers. The count has been kept to 4283 birds shot in a day. The Park not only houses Indian Birds but welcomes guests from China, Siberia, Europe and even Tibet.. Don’t worry not everything in Bharatpur has wings !!!!! You can spot deer, antelopes, Monkeys and off course huge pythons. If nature attracts you then also you can easily spend two days in this unique

wetlands and enjoy the sunsets. Keoladeo name comes from Lord Shiva’s temple present in the park.Keoladeo National Park is now UNESCO Natural Heritage site.

Day 8 : Bharatpur
Morning and evening walk in the Bharatpur Bird Sanctuary for Birding.

Day 9 : Bharatpur – Ranthambhore
Morning walk in BharatpurBirdSanctuary. Later drive to Ranthambhore.

Day 10 : Ranthambhore
Morning and evening excursion to the Ranthambhore National Park.

Ranthambhore National Park came into being in 1980. Known for its tiger density in core zone of 274 sq Km. Most of the tiger photographs are clicked in this jungle have three backdrops – Lakes, heritage building and offcourse the Anogeissus Pendula – type of forest found in these areas. This area also forms a transition between true dessert and wet peninsula. This forest offers you variety of topography which is unique in itself. It has Steep slopes and Cliffs, Gentle slopes of Hills, Plateaus, Valleys, Sandy plains and off course Lake Reservoirs. When here you would be lucky to get the glimpse of T16 or Macchli – The famous and celebrity tigress of Ranthambhore. You should be enthralled to meet the silent guard of this forest – Ranthambhore Fort since 8 A.D. It was built by Chauhan rulers, changed hands with Mughal Kings and finally to Rajput kings. This fort has the story of secret Paras stone ( philosophers' stone ) and lot more in archeological circle. Hope you find them interesting enough.

Day 11 : Ranthambhore
Morning and evening excursion to the Ranthambhore National Park.

Day 12 : Ranthambhore – Jaipur
Morning drive to Jaipur. Afternoon sightseeing tour of Jaipur city.

Jaipur – City of Forts, Palaces, Architectural marvels and tales of valor. Jaipur was first planned city of Northern India conceived by Maharaja Sawai Jai Singh in 1727. Its history dates back to 12 Century A. D with Kachchwaha Kings of Amber Fort – who were descendants of Lord Rama. Most surely you would visit the Palace of Wind( HawaMahal) which was designed by Lal Chand inspired by Crown of God Krishna. Count the windows and 953 small windows would leave you all light and airy with its Intricate Latticework. Located on High Hill is Amer fort which is worth a visit. It boasts of artistic styles imbibing both Hindu and Muslim Architecture. Series of Gates and Cobled paths would remain with you forever. Jaigarh Fort – Eagle’s Eyes – Kept a watch on Amer Fort is higher on Aravali range. Don’t miss the

culinary experience of this city. Visit to local flea markets would make you resistant to crowds, weather and submerge you completely into colors. Keep your DSLR s on Burst mode – you never know which pic finds its way to your profile pic on facebook.

Day 13 : Jaipur – Ahmedabad
Morning excursion to Amber Fort. Afternoon fly to Ahmedabad.

Day 14 : Ahmedabad – Zainabad
Morning drive to Zainabad. Afternoon excursion to Rann of Kutch.

If you want to see the most handsome of the species of wild asses then travelling to Zainabad would be great experience. This is only national park in India where you can see the wild asses. This population of wild ass is the only gene pool of Indian Wild Ass in the entire world and one of the six geographical varieties or sub-species surviving on the earth. Internationally the area is recognized for its natural and geomorphological value and has high biodiversity conservation significance. Because of existence of rare and endangered bird species and animals the area is being considered to be declared as World Heritage sight.

Zainabad – not this one but another place in MP where MumtazMahal died and buried. It was only after some time that she was carried to her palace – The Taj Mahal. There are several bird watching sites which play host to several migratory birds during winter. Zainabad is located next to large lake which is perfect setting to watch Flamingos, Pelicans, Storks and variety of Cranes in winter. The Habitat of this area encompasses desserts, Grasslands, rocky and thorny vegetation. The beauty gets accentuated by the presence of lakes and marshlands. Come monsoon the area is filled with fresh water water bodies which harbor variety of prawns and other interesting marine life. Nonetheless you can always find bustard, sandgrouse, partridge, bustard quails, larks, eagle, short toed eagle and few species of vultures. It doesn’t end here. Experience the hospitality, culture of the few villages which are based here. These villages provide you an interesting experience of people living in Koobas and nomadic thinking.

Day 15 : Zainabad
Morning and evening excursion to Rann of Kutch.

Day 16 : Zainabad
Morning and evening excursion to Rann of Kutch.

Day 17 : Zainabad – Ahmedabad
Morning drive to Ahmedabad.

Day 18 : Ahmedabad – Bangalore – Mysore
Morning fly to Bangalore. On arrival proceed to Mysore.

Chances are that if you have heard of Mysore then it would be for its week long Dusshera festival. Well that is just aperitif. It is a place which houses the oldest library in India. It has collection of over 50,000 palm leaf manuscripts. Modern Education began in Mysore only fifty years after Tipu Sultan test fired his rocket Artillery in 1780. These Rockets were perhaps the first models for scuds and patriots used in Gulf war. It was first city which had its private Radio station in 1935 by MrGopalswamy. The Wodeyars ruled this place between 1399 – 1947. Only Indian Royal family to have lineage and control of over 500 years. Mysore zoo can be visited to ponder over 170 species present in the oldest zoo of India. Don’t forget to see the Mysore Palace which had underground drainage system for Palace and the city.

Day 19 : Mysore – Ranganathittu – Mysore
Morning excursion to Ranganathittu Bird Sanctuary.

What would you say if we introduce Ranganathittu Bird Sanctury as Riparian zone. Perfect zones for aquatic lives and hence the birds. The place is named after the incarnation of Lord Vishnu. True crusader for this park was Dr Salim Ali who is called the founder in 1941. You have to be here to believe what 67 sq km can do for the birds. It is heaven for the Birders and ornithologists alike. Even if Birding is not your passion then also the sounds and the backdrop would give you instant release from your worldly tensions. Approach the islets by the river in a boat and you might get the company of a 40 year old marsh crocodile. Though Birds arrive from as far as Australia and North America but Black Headed Ibis is quite sought after. Its curved bill turns dusky yellow and the plumage grey while breeding. There are lot more birds waiting for you at Ranganathittu Bird Sanctuary. I am not including the list as it would be shame to miss any one of them. We will leave it up to you for exploring the small yet wonderful lap of nature.

Day 20 : Mysore – Ranganathittu – Mysore
Morning excursion to RanganathittuBird Sanctuary.

Day 21 : Mysore – Bangalore
Morning drive to Bangalore. Afternoon sightseeing tour of Bangalore. Later transfer to airport to onward destination.

 

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