Flavors of India – Food and Tea Adventure

Icy FPO

Delight in the scents, tastes and outrageous beauty awaiting you in New Delhi, Hyderabad, Kolkata, and at the Glenburn Tea Estate.

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SPECIAL OFFER

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9.0*

ECO SCORE

2

PASSENGERS

11

DAYS

3/5

ACTIVITY LEVEL

India: Drink It In

Welcome Aboard the

 

Epicureans, cultural and nature enthusiasts will fall in love with this 11-day India adventure that travels through some of the country’s most vibrant destinations in search of its mouth-watering menus and historical attractions. Visit Delhi, Hyderabad, Kolkata and the Glenburn Tea Estate, just outside of picturesque Darjeeling. Explore the bustling Chandni Chowk market to immerse yourself in its vibrant street food culture. Spend an evening at an award-winning eatery hosted by a culinary expert. Take a private cooking class and master an authentic Hyderabadi dish. Hike through flourishing forests and learn about India’s fascinating tea heritage – the adventures are seemingly endless.
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    -Learn about local cuisine by cooking and dining with a range of expert chefs and home cooks.
    -Drink in the ancient art of tea growing and preparation with multiple experts. Even stay on a tea plantation!
    -Explore ancient traditions and beliefs plus witness the effects of the British occupation and Indian independence with the help of this passionate operator's expert guides.

Travel Curator’s Insights:

SPECIAL OFFER:

Rates:
From $8,355 per person
Following WHO and South Africa protocols including pre-departure testing. Policies and protocols provided before you book.

Operates October - April
Custom Dates to Fit Your Schedule

Operates October - April
Custom Dates to Fit Your Schedule

Departures:

Trip Sustainability Awards 

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Waste

Has won multiple awards for conservation efforts, and partners with 7+ organizations globally.

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Conservation

740,000 plastic water bottles saved from use per year.

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Community

Partnership with local foundations to facilitate positive empowerment and development of local inhabitants.

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Itinerary 

Day 1: Arrive New Delhi
Upon arrival at New Delhi, you will be warmly welcomed by your host and chauffeured to Imperial Hotel, New Delhi. Just minutes away from New Delhi’s renowned shopping district and cultural attractions, the Imperial is a fascinating blend of colonial and art deco styles. Spacious rooms, crystal chandeliers, marble floors, mahogany furniture and an outstanding collection of original artworks create an atmosphere of warmth and grandeur. Impeccable period decor combines flawlessly with exceptional facilities and all the modern conveniences one could expect.
Accommodation: Imperial Hotel

Day 2: New Delhi
This morning after breakfast you will be taken to Chandni Chowk. Chandni Chowk was once the grandest of markets in India. This experience showcases the street food culture of Old Delhi. Led by a noted food enthusiast, you will visit traditional food stalls that developed in the folds of the culture within Old Delhi. At each stop you will unravel the history, the traditions, and the culture behind the "house specialties" and get to taste them.

Later visit Humayun’s Tomb: Humayun's tomb was built for the second Mughal Emperor and commissioned by his widow Hamida Banu Begum in 1562. It was the first garden-tomb on the Indian subcontinent, and is located near Nizamuddin. It was also the first structure to use red
sandstone at such a scale. The complex was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1993. Evening enjoy dinner at Bukhara Once a rustic cuisine, it was enjoyed in the harsh rugged terrain of the North West Frontier comes alive at this authentic, award winning restaurant making it a landmark dining destination in New Delhi.
Accommodation: Imperial Hotel

Day 3: New Delhi - Hyderabad
Take a morning flight to Hyderabad. Situated on the banks of the Musi river, the 400-year-old city of Hyderabad, referred to as "city of pearls" which is now a burgeoning IT hub, was once governed by and home to the legendary Nizams of India. Steeped in its past of refined courtly life played out in elaborate palaces, it is a memorable place to visit, and despite its modernity has retained much of its distinctive culture.

Explore the city’s streets, grand monuments and architecture, and uncover its fascinating history. Upon arrival at Hyderabad, you will be met and chauffeured to the hotel Taj Falaknuma Palace: Passed on for generations like a precious jewel, Falaknuma Palace or ‘Mirror of the Sky’ was the residence of Nizam Mehboob Ali Khan. After ten years of sensitive restoration, the Taj has infused new life into this sixty-room private palace to offer you a glimpse of the royal lifestyle of the Nizams who governed the legendary city of Hyderabad.

Later enjoy a meal at Gol Bungalow. Gol Bungalow is on a terrace overlooking the city. It has been the venue for royal receptions for rare guests like King George V and Queen Mary in 1912. Accommodation: Taj Falaknuma Palace

Day 4: Hyderabad
Breakfast at the Hotel. This morning, visit the Grand Chowmahalla palace. Once regarded as the center of Hyderabad, the magnificent Chowmahalla Palace was the seat of the Asaf Jahi dynasty, where the Nizams entertained their official guests and royal visitors. Next, walk through the quaint Laad bazaar. This is the main market for bangles. Many forms of bangles with semi-precious stones, pearls, or hand-made in glass or lacquer. The market is also popular for textiles in a vast array of colors and fabric. silks, cottons, brocades, velvets and embroidered. Customers sit, lean against a wall with a round pillow and the salesperson presents all items on the floor. All business is conducted at this level while other employees use the area in the back for sorting or sewing. And you’ll be offered a cup of the famed “Irani chai” with local Osmania biscuits.

After lunch, visit the Salar Jung Museum is the oldest and finest museums in India. It is the product of one-man’s collection of antiques and artifacts from India and Europe. Nawab Mir Yousuf Ali Khan Salar Jung III (1889–1949), former Prime Minister of the seventh Nizam of Hyderabad, spent a substantial amount of his income over thirty five years to make this priceless collection, his life's passion. Late afternoon visit Mrs Vinita Pittie’s beautiful 200-year-old Raja Bahadur Motilal haveli in Hyderabad's Begum Bazaar, or old town house. Vinita is an unconventional fashion designer par excellence, and you’ll meet her over a cup of tea. Vinita Pittie has been in the business of fashion for 30 years and was one of the first designers who put Hyderabad on the national fashion map. (Dinner on own.)
Accommodation: Taj Falaknuma Palace

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Day 5: Hyderabad
This morning you will visit Golconda Fort, and the Qutb Shahi Tombs, Golconda Fort is renowned for its acoustics, beautiful palaces, ingenious water supply system and the famous Fateh Ruben Topee, one of the cannons used in the last siege of Golconda by Aurangzeb, the sixth Mughal emperor, to whom the fort ultimately fell. Qutb Shahi Tombs, one of the oldest historical monuments in Hyderabad, combines Persian, Afghan and Indian architectural styles. Built by the Qutb Shahi rulers, it is a truly fascinating and unique site where an entire dynasty has been buried. Lunch is on your own at the hotel.

In the late afternoon go to the home of Mrs Muntaz Khan, the doyen of Hyderabad’s cooks, and sharer of culinary secrets. She has taught legions of young women the intricacies of the region's cooking. Mrs Khan will tell the history, and demonstrate how to take these dishes home. The evening will conclude with dinner cooked with your help.
Accommodation: Taj Falaknuma Palace

Day 6: Hyderabad - Kolkata
Take a morning flight to Kolkata. Upon arrival at Kolkata, you will be met and chauffeured to The Glenburn Penthouse. The Glenburn Penthouse is a discrete, elegant residence in the heart of historic Kolkata, with spectacular views of some of the city’s iconic landmarks. Calcutta flowered as the capital of British India during the nineteenth century, the heyday of the Raj. The streets of Kolkata still bear the 18th and 19th century imprint with its streets lined with buildings and churches. The collection and variety is outstanding. The Victoria Memorial, the Writers' Building, St. John's Church, Government House (Raj Bhavan), these structures of imperial India coexist with the structures where the soul of Calcutta lies, the Kalighat temple, Jorasanko, Rabindranath Tagore's house, and Mother Teresa's Homes for the Destitute run by the Missionaries of Charity.

After lunch on your own, set off for a cruise up the River Hoogly. In a private river boat, guests are able to discover a hitherto unseen side of Kolkata, with a ring-side view of the myriad happenings on the river's 'Ghats'. This was the view that greeted many an adventurer from the 17th century as he stepped ashore. You will sail past Princep's Ghat and Belur Math, headquarters of The Ramakrishna Mission, as the city's two huge and famous bridges, Howrah and Vidyasagar Setu pass overhead.

Drinks and Bengali dinner at Bomti's - offers a rare glimpse of the old Calcutta way of life, now sadly endangered. Mr Surojit ‘Bomti” Iyenger, an art collector and socialite, is delighted to welcome visitors into his charming heritage flat on historic Chowringhee Road. Authentic and home-cooked Bengali cuisine and stimulating insights into Bengali Art through their private art collection and modern
Kolkata, make up Bomti’s salon.
Accommodation: Glenburn Penthouse

Day 7: Kolkata
Early morning visit to the Flower Market, followed by a walk-through 18th and 19th century Calcutta. Heritage Walk of Dalhousie Square, now a World Heritage Site. The walk takes place in the cool morning so that you can leisurely take in the architecture and history of the city's many unique and spectacular buildings without too much traffic on the roads.

Later visit Victoria Memorial followed by visits to Jaggu Bazaar (for fish, Bengali spices and local vegetables) and Balram Mallick sweet shop, one of the oldest sweet makers in Kolkata and finally lunch at the delightful Oh! Calcutta restaurant. Bengalis are known to love fish curry and rice, and sweets! The cuisine at Oh! Calcutta has a large vegetarian repertoire, including some typical local delicacies like Mocha Banana Flower, Thor Banana tree trunk core, chhana (a soft paneer) and much more.In the afternoon, visit north Kolkata to see the potters and clay sculptors of Kumartuli, the remarkable Marble Palace built in 1835, and the opulent Jain Temples built in 1867 (time permitting). Dinner at Glenburn Penthouse.
Accommodation: Glenburn Penthouse

Day 8: Kolkata – Glenburn
Take a morning flight to Bagdogra. On arrival at Bagdogra airport you will be met by your driver and chauffeured to Glenburn Tea estate (approximately 4 Hour drive. The road condition is varied after we leave the main road). On arrival check in at the Glenburn Bungalow. A heavenly little plantation retreat which lies on a hillock above the banks of River Rungeet, and looking toward the mighty Kanchenjunga. The plantation was established in 1860 and remains today as a working
tea estate. Spend three nights at the Glenburn Tea Estate. (Full board included here.)
Accommodation: Glenburn Tea Estate

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Day 9: Glenburn
Picnic by the River and explore the riverine landscape. In the morning after breakfast, a four-wheel drive jeep will take you down through the Simbong Forest to the River Rung Dung, or you can walk down gently (and later drive back up!). Cross small streams and wander into the Badamtam Forest. Walk along the forest path, beside the River Rungeet. On the way, our naturalist will help you identify the birds, butterflies, occasional animals, and the rich plant life.

After about an hour's walk, you will reach the Manjitar Suspension Footbridge, leading the way across the River Rungeet into the old royal kingdom of Sikkim. This spectacular structure was built by the British in 1902, after the original cane bridge was washed away by the floods of 1899. A picnic lunch will be had beside the Rangeet river. Later visit the Tea Factory where you will be taken for a guided tour on how the tea leaf is brought in from the fields, weighed, and then taken through the processes of withering, rolling, fermenting, drying and sorting. The factory tour ends with a tea tasting session with a range of black, green, oolong and white teas.
Accommodation: Glenburn Tea Estate

Day 10: Glenburn
Make a day visit to Darjeeling and enjoy a ride on the 19th century hill train. Steeped in British colonial history, the hill station of Darjeeling stands at a height of approximately 2000m (6,700 feet),
with the world’s third highest peak, Kanchenjunga as a backdrop. The town developed from the mid 19th century as a hill station, and centre of tea cultivation. Take a ride on the famous Darjeeling Hill Railway (now a World Heritage Site) from Darjeeling Town, through the picturesque Batasia Loop and then to the neighbouring towns of Ghoom and Kurseong.

Wander through the Mall, shop for local crafts and antiques along the way, drop in to the famous Das Studios for a peek at their collection of old black and white photographs of the area, and stop for a cup of tea or coffee at Keventers or Glenary's, two famous old cafeterias on the Mall. Pass the grand old Planters' Club, once the Palace of a local Maharaja, and enjoy the views of the surrounding hillside from Chowrasta, where the bandstand still conjures up memories of days gone
by. Lunch will be at a local restaurant. In the Evening enjoy a hands-on cookery at Glenburn estate.
Accommodation: Glenburn Tea Estate

Day 11: Glenburn – Delhi
This morning after breakfast, you will be met and chauffeured to Bagdogra airport (Approx. 4 hour drive) to connect with a flight for Delhi. On arrival at Delhi airport you will be warmly welcomed by your host and escorted to the International Terminal to connect your flight for Onward destination.

Please Note: The names of hotels mentioned in our proposal only indicate that rates have been based on usage of these hotels. It is not to be construed that accommodation is confirmed at these hotels until and unless we convey the confirmations to you on receipt of your acceptance. However in the event of any of the above mentioned hotels not becoming available at the time of initiating the reservations, we shall book alternate accommodation at a similar or next best available hotel and shall pass on the difference of rates (supplement/reduction whatever applicable) to you.

ACHIEVEMENTS 

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Rates

 

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DOUBLE OCCUPANCY

Two people traveling in a room together. Rate is per person.

From in USD:

$8,355pp

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SOLO SUPPLEMENT

As a solo traveler, a cost supplement will be added to your trip.

From in USD:

TBD

Look beneath the surface of Indian life by cooking with locals and learning about all strata of society. This itinerary is particularly rich and immersive while offering stunning accommodations. Highly recommended!

Joy Martinello, Founder

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What’s Included & Cancellation Policy:

WHAT'S INCLUDED
Accommodation on in a Double/Twin bedded room; 1 lunch in Delhi, 1 dinner at Bukhara, 1 dinner at Gol Bungalow, Falaknuma Palace, 1 tea at Mrs Vinita Pittie’s, 1 dinner with a Cooking Demonstration at Mrs
Mumtaz Khan’s House, 1 dinner at Bomti’s, 1 lunch at Oh! Calcutta, 1 dinner at the Glenburn Penthouse in Calcutta and all meals at Glenburn Estate; All transfers, sightseeing and overland trips by 1 air-conditioned Toyota Innova and 1 Scorpio Car at Glenburn; Entrance fee and services of English-speaking local guide during sightseeing; All current taxes as on date; All Internal Regular flights in economy class subject to change at the time of issuing.