Embark on a luxurious voyage of discovery through the cradle of Stone Architecture. Journey through the magnificent World Heritage Sites at Hampi & Pattadakkal, the exquisite temples at Belur & and Halebid, Golden beaches of Goa & Wildlife Reserve at Nagarhole.
Day 1 : Monday Bangalore Depart
Report in Lobby of Hotel Taj West End by 4pm for Check-In formalities of Golden Chariot Train Tour , followed by high tea,brief train tour presentation & cultural program. Proceed to visit ISKON Hindu Temple,before reaching Yashwantpura Railway Station by 815pm to board the Golden Chariot Train. At 9pm train departs. Dinner is served onboard.
Day 2: Tue Morning : Mysore Palace & Depart Kabini
Morning 10 a.m. pack overnight clothes for Night stay in Jungle Lodge & first drive to visit early 20th Century built Amba Vilas Mysore Palace,whose architecture style is a mix of Hindu, Muslim, Rajput & Gothic structure.View the Durbar Hall Wing & Personal Art Gallery Of former royaly.
Later drive 2 hrs to Kabini Forest.
Arrive in Kabini by 1.15 pm & check into rooms in Jungle Lodge After lunch & brief rest proceed for Safari to Kabini jungles, abound with herds of Asian Elephants, Sambar & Spooted deer; wild boar,sloth bear gaur & occasional sighting of panther & tiger. Evening return to jungle lodge for screening of wildlife film, followed by campfire & Dinner.
Night stay Kabini Jungle Lodge.
Day 3: Wed: Afternoon: Mysore sightseeing
After brief rest & lunch,proceed at 3.30 pm for excursion to 18th Century built Srirangapatnam Fort, On a river bank-Which witnessed many a skirmishes between Popular King Tipu sultan & British Colonial rulers. After Visiting Dariya Daulat & Tipu Mausoleum drive back to Mysore Town & time free for shopping. Later enjoy cultural program & dinner in Lalita Mahal Palace, now converted into a 5 Star Hotel. Return back to train by 10 p.m. & train is stationary at Mysore Station for the Night.
Day 4: Thurs Morning: Shravanabelagola Monolith
Early morning train departs from Mysore to Hassan Railway station & at 9.am. proceed for excursion (1.5 hrs one way) to Shravanabelagola village. Climb 700 steep steps, carved in a stone hillock to view 10th century built statue of Jain Monk Gommateshvara Bahubali an architectural marvel towering 58 feet high,Later, climb down the steep steps to board your bus standing at base of the hillock & drive back to Hassan Railway station to board the train by 1p.m. for lunch & brief rest.
NOTE: Guests unwilling to climb the steep steps can stay back on board The Golden Chariot
From Hassan Railway Station depart at 2.45 pm. for excursion (1.5 hrs one way) to view ancient Hindu temples at Halebedu & Belur. The 12th Century built Belur Temple is dedicated to Hindu God-Lord Vishnu & filled with intricate sculptures of elephants, lions, horses & sensuous dancers. The 12th Century built Halebidu temple complex is dedicated to Hindu God-Lord Shiva ,but were ransacked & looted by Muslim Invaders from north India in 14th Century. The outer walls of the temples contain intricate array of stone sculptures. Return back to Hassan Railway station by 7.15 p.m. for dinner & depart for Hospet.
Day 5: Friday Morning: HAMPI Palace Complex
From Hospet Railway station at 8.30 a.m. proceed for excursion (30 minutes one way) to UNESCO World Heritage Site of Hampi Palace ruins. Located amongst awesome granite boulder-strewn landscape, Hampi was the capital of mighty South Indian Vijayanagar Empire in 14th Century-with opulent palaces, marvellous temples, massive fortifications, private baths for royalty, markets, pavilions & stables for Royal Elephants. The cityâ€™s merchants traded in diamonds, pearls, fine silks, brocades, horses & much more. Though ransacked by rulers from North India in 16th Century, ruins of these historical monuments have withstood the ravages of man & nature, to evoke memories of regal splendour. Return back to Hospet Railway Station by 1 p.m. to board the train for lunch & brief rest.
At 3.30 p.m. proceed for excursion (30 minutes one way) to 16th century built temple complex of Vithala, dedicated to Hindu God-Lord Vishnu. In courtyard of the main temple is a massive Stone Chariot ,after which Golden Chariot train has been named. The stone wheels of the Chariot can be rotated ,but have been cemented by authorities to avoid damage.
One of the most notable features of Vittala temple are the musical pillars. Each of the pillar that support the roof of the main temple is supported by a pillar representing a musical instrument, and is constructed as 7 minor pillars arranged around a main pillar. These 7 pillars, when struck, emanate the 7 notes from the representative instrument, varying in sound quality based on whether it represents a wind, string or percussion instrument. Time free to sit on banks of nearby located Tungabhadra River for sunset view. Depart by 6 p.m. back to Hospet Railway station to board the train for dinner & depart
Day 6: Sat Morning: Badami & Pattadakal
Morning 8.30 a.m. proceed from Badami Railway station for excursion to UNESCO World Heritage Sites of Badami caves & Pattadkal Temple Complex Carved out of sandstone hills, the 7th century built Badami Cave temples are dedicated to Hindu religious sects of Lord Shiva, Lord Vishnu & Budha and Jain Faiths. Highlight of the cave sculptures is a 18 armed Lord Shiva in Tandav dancing pose.
The Pattadakal Temple complex, built between 7th to 9th Century offers 10 temples built in fusion of various Indian Architectural Styles. There are numerous Kannada language inscriptions on the temple walls.
Return back to Badami Railway Station by 130 pm & depart for Goa, Lunch & Dinner onboard
Afternoon at leisure to enjoy the country side
Day 7: Sun Morning: Old Goa Churches
Train arrives in Goa-Vasco de Gama Railway Station early Morning 1 a.m. At 10 a.m. proceed for sightseeing of UNESCO World Heritage site of Old Goa Churches.
Founded in 15th century by Muslim Rulers of Bijapur Sultanate & capital of Portuguese Colonial rulers from early 16th to mid 19th century, town of Old Goa is famous for itâ€™s churches affiliated to various congregations, including the Se Cathedral (the seat of the Archbishop of Goa), the Church of St. Francis of Assisi, the Church of S. Caetano, and notably, the Basilica of Bom Jesus which contains the relics of Saint Francis Xavier, Later visit Old Portuguese House & time free for shopping.
By 2 p.m. reach luxury beach resort for lunch & at leisure. Option to enjoy sea sports activities at extra cost . Depart from Beach Resort at 5.30 p.m. & drive back to Vasco De Gama Railway Station(1 hr) To board the train & depart
Day 8: Mon Morning-Bangalore Return
Train reach Yeshwanthpura Railway Station Bangalore by 11.30 a.m. and Farewell by the entire crew.
Fun and Memorable Tour
"Thank you so much for organising such a wonderful India trip for myself and colleague Tracy Kells. Vue India team were amazing everywhere, the driver and guides were always there and all excellent and Knowledgeable.
I loved India and the people and cannot wait to come back. It was an amazing work with so much patience and always extremely professional.
I highly recommend Vue India Tours".
Janice, New Zealand
I am reflecting on the wonderful trip that I had to Sri Lanka. I would especially like to thank you and the team at Vue India. I would also like to thank all the hotels who provided so many amenities and also extended this
on many occasions to our friends Mr and Mrs McClure. This was unexpected and greatly appreciated.