May I begin with the famous Indian greeting “Namaste” to one and all!
I travelled on an unforgettable trip to wonderful India that consisted of visiting three cities Delhi, Jaipur and Agra; other wised known as the The Golden Triangle.
We were all so excited to commence our trip around the Golden Triangle. We stayed two nights in the 5 star Le Meridan Hotel in Delhi and each morning we had the privilege of having our foreheads decorated with the fascinating Bindi, which is a coloured dot made of rice placed in the middle of your forehead. At each hotel we visited we were curious as to what colour Bindi we would be adorned with. During our stay we embarked on a sightseeing tour of the city by coach. A highlight of this tour was visiting the Presidents house and the Parliament buildings, with a quick photo stop at the India Gate on the way! We visited a Sikh Temple still in active worship today. This sacred temple is highly spiritual, so we were asked to remove our shoes as a mark of respect and joined the congregation sitting on beautiful rugs and carpets.
From Delhi we travelled to Jaipur by coach. En route we visited the magnificent 15th century Neemrana Fort Palace; an architectural jewel spread over 25 acres. This was situated amidst green hills and villages with spectacular views and even had its own theatre. Our hotel in the “Pink City” was the wonderful Marriott Hotel. We got to try our hand at cooking Tandoori which was a great experience but doesn’t warrant a career change for me anyway! We then went to visit the magnificent Amber Fort a beautiful sample of Indian Architecture, we then ascended to this hilltop fort on the most amazing mode of transport – an Elephant Ride. Whilst in Jaipur we visited the City Palace and viewed the collection of Mughal Costumes weapons and paintings. This palace featured screened balconies which were especially built so the Royal ladies could view the city and streets behind “Purdah’s” so they remained invisible to the public. Martina brought us to a bazaar where we learned the art of bartering! We managed to buy twenty pashminas for our group at a great price.
Following two nights in Jaipur we headed to Agra for our “Wonder of The World” voyage. Firstly, we watched a live theatre performance on the evening of our arrival. It was called “The Saga of Love” and explained the story of why the Taj Mahal was built. We visited the Taj Mahal at sunrise and witnessed it in all its glory. It is an extravagant display of marble gardens and represents the memories of The Shah’s beloved wife Mumtaz Mahal. The food was amazing. The selection daily was buffet style so there was always something to suit every palate.
Finally, I have to say the Indian hospitality experience was second to none. Their countries principle in English translates to “The Guest is God” and so we were. A trip never to be forgotten, Namaste with folded hands, “I bow to your true self.”
Call me for more information on India.