12 days / 11 nights
Mystic Himalayan and Ganges River Quest
HIGHLIGHTS • Haridwar: Watch the blessings of the evening aarti at the holy river Ganga and visit the Chila Wildlife Sanctuary. • Rishikesh: Morning yoga session and a visit to the Ashram, where the famous Beatles stayed. • Ganges River: Cycle along its bank and camp on the river banks. • Vyas Ghat: Trek for four days through beautiful mountains, forests and meadows. • Koteshwar Dam: Rafting on the Ganges crossing up to grade 4 rapids. This multi-activity tour is an exciting adventure to the ‘Abode of the Gods’, the land of the most venerated river in the world, the mystic Ganges River, and of the Gharwal Himalayas, offering spectacular panoramic views of some of the world’s highest snow-capped peaks. What better way to holistically enrich body and soul than to combine your journey with a jungle safari, trekking, camping, mountain biking, rafting, kayaking, bungy jumping and interacting with local hill folk, practicing yoga, meditation and Ayurveda in a land that is truly inspirational.
Assistance on Arrival Daily Full Breakfast Hotel Accommodation on twin / double sharing basis. All tours / activities / shows as per the itinerary All entrance tickets as per itinerary All Pick up drops / transfers mentioned in the itinerary Transport in A/C car / Bus as mentioned Meals as per the itinerary / included in the itinerary
Air Tickets (International / Domestic) Visa and Insurance Hotel Taxes Suggested optional activities/ tours if any. Any meals / snacks other than mentioned in the itinerary Camera Fee and any other entertainment charges Tips of any kind – Guides, Driver, Cruise Crew, etc. Portages at airport Personal Expenses such as Laundry, Telephone etc Beverages of any kind Others Refreshments and snacks with water while on the road and nutritious snacks during the trek
Arrive at Haridwar by air or train from New Delhi. Then you’ll be transferred to your hotel, the Hari Ganga Haveli, which overlooks the Ganges and has its own private bathing ghat. Haridwar is known as the ‘Gateway of the Gods’ and is one of the holiest pilgrimage spots in the world for Hindus as the river Ganges descends to the flatlands here. The bathing ghats are lined with sadhus, temples and ashrams. In the evening, walk through the bustling bazaars to attend the evening prayer to the Goddess Ganges at the Harki Pauri ghat. It is a spectacle of sound and colour with the pealing of temple bells and blowing of conch shells. The ritual starts at dusk with the priests lighting lamps and reaches a crescendo lasting nearly half an hour. Hymns and mantras echo across the banks of the Ganges. Devotees chant along with the clash of cymbals and chiming bells. The reflection of golden hues of floating floral candles in the river Ganges is an inspirational sight. This is one of the most magical moments in India. An auspicious beginning and blessing to our adventure. Return to the hotel and savour your first dinner in this magical city. - Overnight in Haridwar
HARIDWAR GAME DRIVE AND NOMADIC TRIBALS.
Early in the morning, head out in open jeeps into the Chila Wildlife Sanctuary, an area of pristine beauty and rich with biodiversity. It has 23 species of mammals and 315 fauna species. Go on a safari and keep an eye out for a herd of elephants or an elusive tiger or leopard. Here you might also see jungle cats, Himalayan yellow-throated martens, sambers, cheetals, barking dear, wild boar, sloths, reptiles and a large variety of birds. The safari ends at a Van Gujjar Village, a nomadic Himalayan tribe. In the winter season, they used to migrate with their herds to the Shiwalik foothills, and in summer, they migrated higher into the Himalayan wilderness. They sold milk to the nearby villages in exchange for money and other life sustaining goods. They now have semi-permanent settlements on the periphery of the jungle. A visit to the village will provide you with an insight into their daily lives. Share a meal with the locals and then take a short hike into the jungle. Return to Hari Ganga Haveli in the afternoon and, in the evening, we’ll conduct a private ceremony invoking the blessings of Mother Ganges on the hotel private ghat. Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner Activity: 2 hr Game drive/1 hr Village walk and interaction with Nomadic Tribals.
HARIDWAR – RISHIKESH – SHIVPURI (34kms cycling).
Wake up early in the morning for a yoga and meditation session. After breakfast, put on your cycling gear and pedal 24 kilometres on an extremely picturesque route, with the jungle on your right hand and the Ganges river to your left. Then visit the ashram where Ringo, John, Paul and George came in 1968. The Beatles composed more than 40 songs here in the Maharishi Yogi. A vegeterian lunch will be arranged at the ashram in Rishikesh. Then cycle on another 10 kilometres upstream until you change into a vehicle transfer and drive 5 more kilometres to the Himalayan Hideaway hotel, tucked away on a hillside overlooking the river. Dinner and overnight at the hotel. Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Bonfire Dinner Activity: 1 hr Yoga session / 34 Kms-21mi cycling. Overnight in Shivpuri.
SHIVPURI – VYASGHAT (36kms – 1 hr).
Wake up to yoga and meditation in the morning before breakfast. Then drive about 36 kilometres uphill on the right-hand bank of the river. At the end, after catching your breath, mount your cycles at a village called Dwarikhal for an exhilarating 60-kilometre downhill ride on a mountain road, half dirt, half tarred, high along the ridge overlooking the meandering Ganges as it makes its way through the lower Himalayan ranges. Cycle through oak and rhododendron forest, cultivated terraced fields and quaint villages as we descend to the river at Vyasghat. En route, make a stop for lunch at a wayside village to get a glimpse of the hardy lifestyle of the Garhwali hill folk. Upon arriving at Vyasghat, check in to your tented accommodation with en suite bathrooms at the Banyan by the Ganges. Bonfire and dinner at the camp. Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Bonfire Dinner. Activity: 1 hr Yoga session . Overnight in Vyasghat.
VYASGHAT – DEORIYA TAL (168kms – 5 hrs).
This morning, you’ll begin your ascent into the heart of the Gharwal Himalayas to catch a glimpse of some of the world’s highest and most stunning peaks. After an early breakfast, drive 168 kilometres via Devprayag and Rudraprayag up to the village of Saari. Ponies will be arranged to carry luggage, while trekkers have to carry their day packs. From here, trek uphill for 2.5 kilometres up to the campsite at Deoriya Tal, a beautiful lake located in the Kedarnath Musk Deer Sanctuary perched at an altitude of 2,438 metres. Bottled mineral water will be provided during this short trek. Spend the night at Deoriya Tal, a heavily wooded area with lush green surroundings and great views of the snow-covered mountains. You’ll sleep in two-men quality tents with a separate kitchen and dining tent, and a few toilet tents depending on the number of participants. Overnight is in alpine tents at Deoriya Tal. Two men international quality tents will be provided on twin sharing. There will be a separate kitchen and dining tent and few toilet tents depending on the number of participants. Ponies will be arranged to carry luggage, while trekkers have to carry there day pack during trekking days. Bottled mineral water will be provided during this short trek. Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner. Activity: 2.5kms/1.5mi – 3 hrs trek with steep uphill climb.
DEORIYA TAL – CHOPTA
After a hearty breakfast, start your trek to Chopta. This 13-kilometre walk starts from the lake and takes you through dense oak and rhododendron forests. It alternately goes uphill and downhill through meadows and streams. Finally, a steep hike gets you to the picturesque hamlet of Chopta, where you can take in the stunning views of the surrounding mountain ranges, including Trishul, Nanda Devi, and Chaukhamba. It is located at an elevation of 2,680 metres amidst a thick forest of pine, deodar and rhododendron. Spend the night in alpine tents in Chopta. Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner Activity: 13 Kms./ 8mi Trek – 7 hrs. Overnight alpine tents at Chopta.
CHOPTA – TUNGNATH – CHANDRASHILA – CHOPTA.
This morning we carry a packed breakfast and take a “paghdandi”-footpath into the interiors of the forest on a 20 km track using all terrain bicycles to “man village” of the Baiga tribe in the interiors of the reserved forest. The village show cases traditional tribal life with beautifully painted mud huts belonging to primarily agrarian tribal society. Life in the village remains untouched and allows a rare insight into the anthropological heritage of Central India. The village location also allows panoramic views of the landscapes and forests of the area. After lunch afternoon game drive into the park to continue our search for our jungle book friends. Dinner at the Lodge. Meals: Breakfast, lunch, Dinner Activity: 2 hrs cycling trip to Baiga Tribes / 3 hrs game drive. - Overnight in Chopta.
CHOPTA – VYASGHAT (168kms – 5 hrs).
Wake up early in the morning to watch the sunrise over the magnificent peaks and pay your respects to the divine Mother Nature. After breakfast, we retrace our path 168 kilometres along the Alaknanda and then the Ganges Rivers back to the Ganges Camp at Vyasghat, where dinner, hot showers and comfortable beds await after three nights of trekking and sleeping in tents. Evening at leisure. Dinner and Overnight at your lodge Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner Transfer: 168kms/105mi – 5 hrs . - Overnight in Vyasghat.
VYASGHAT – RIVER RAFTING AT BHAGIRATHI – VYASGHAT (35kms – 1.5 hrs).
Your day starts with a yoga and meditation session on the banks of the Ganges River. After breakfast, drive 35 kilometres to Koteshwar Dam for a rafting session on the river Bhagirathi, the upper tributary of the Ganges. After a comprehensive safety briefing and once the raft is loaded, begin rafting from the dam site. The water levels are controlled by the dam and water is released daily at a particular time. With low water, Bhagirathi is a technical river requiring a lot of swift moves. But when the water level is high, it offers some amazing white-water rapids. The grade 4 rapids along this section are ‘Elephant Rock’, ‘Shoot’ and ‘Confluence’. Rest assured, these rapids are bound to give you an adrenalin boost! Cross the confluence point at Devprayag, where the Bhagirathi meets her sister tributary Alaknanda, and these two young mountain rivers together merge to become the Ganges. Return to Banyan on the Ganges for a late lunch by rafts. Then the rest of the day is free for you to relax or walk and explore nearby villages at your own rhythm. - Overnight in Vyasghat.
VYASGHAT – KAUDIYALA – SHIVPURI
Rise early for a yoga session on the banks of the river before breakfast. Then it’s time for some more rafting, along with inflatable kayaking for those keen to try their hand at it as we tackle some mild rapids over the next few hours to reach Kaudiyala. From Kaudiyala, you have the option of continuing the journey for the next level of rapids or simply hopping onto a transfer to your hotel in Shivpuri. After Kaudiyala, the white-water challenges get more exciting, as we soon take on the ‘biggies’ like ‘Daniel’s Dip’ and ‘The Wall’, a solid big water Class 4. Later the sneaky ‘Three Blind Mice’ and ‘Crossfire’ rapids all add to the adrenalin mix of exciting white-water, rounding off our expedition circuit just where we started: at the Himalayan Hideaway Lodge! The rest of the afternoon is free for you to rest and relax and sample an Ayurvedic massage at the lodge. Let body and mind ponder on the adventures you’ve experienced during the past few days while you relax in the warm mists of the lodge sauna! In the evening, bonfire and dinner at the hotel. Bonfire and dinner at the hotel. Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner. Activity: 1 hrs Yoga session / 3 hrs River rafting (Grade 3 & 4 rapids). - Overnight in Shivpuri.
This morning, after your final yoga session and a hearty breakfast, depart for an optional gut-wrenching session of bungee jumping at ‘Jumping Heights’. Alternately, you can ‘give back’ to the region that has contributed to your Himalayan journey of the Mind, Body and Spirit by visiting the social outreach programme of HOLI (Himalayan Outdoor Leadership Programme). Then visit the primary, intermediate and junior schools of the Malaghunti area, where you get to talk with the locals about the environment and conservation issues. Late in the afternoon, drive into the temple town of Rishikesh and explore this fascinating city. At sunset, witness the age-old tradition of the ‘Ganga Arti’. With this farewell arti, we say goodbye to the mystic river Ganges and the Himalayas. Return to lodge for a farewell dinner. Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner Activity: Bungee jumping, 2 hr city tour. - Overnight in Shivpuri
After one last breakfast at the lodge, hop onto your transfer to the airport, about 35 km and takes about an hour to reach Dehradun airport where you’ll catch your flight to Delhi and the tour comes to an end. - Breakfast included.
Banyan by the Ganges or similar, Camping NA, Alpine Tents, Haveli Hari Ganga or similar, Himalayan Hideaway or similar or similar
- Above rates are subject to availability.
- Cancellation charges as per company policy.
- The above rates are subject to change in case of travel during the festive season
- In case we are not able to provide the same hotels as mentioned, then we shall provide similar alternate properties, change in the cost if any will be advised.
- In case of Political Unrest, bad weather or sudden breakdown of the vessel we may shift guest to alternative govt ferry and no refund will be entertained during that situation.
- Our Executive may change your itinerary depending on the weather condition and ferry availability same will be update to you daily basis.
Others Refreshments and snacks with water while on the road and nutritious snacks during the trek Guide options Guide type: Guide Requirements Please note that local conditions prevalent at the time of travel may result in modifications to tour contents without prior notice, including possible change of hotels and/or itinerary Please provide flight details when booking. Please note you will be asked to leave your passport details when booking.
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