We invite you to join Brand g Vacations from September 30 through October 12, 2019 for an inclusive, all lgbt, 13-day journey, exploring the splendors of India and cruising the Lower Ganges River.
Stay in a luxurious New Delhi hotel as you explore the capital territory. Fly to exotic West Bengal for an unforgettable cruise along the lower Ganges River with powerful visits to Bandel, Kalna, Murshidabad, Chandernagore, and the stunning new temple complex at Mayapur. Back in Kolkata, the journey continues to Rajasthan and India’s Golden Triangle, with astounding visits to the fabled pink city of Jaipur, the 11th century Agra Fort, and the legendary Taj Mahal.
During the river cruise, you’ll return home each night to a soothing atmosphere of relaxation aboard the elegant, all-suite Ganges Voyager. Breathe in the scenery from the comfort of a top deck lounge. Explore the healing sensations of Ayurvedic or traditional European spa treatments. Gather with your new friends and discuss the meaning of enlightenment as you watch the world go by. No matter where you are on board, you’ll feel a renewing energy and comforting sense of peace.
With just 28 custom-designed suites, space is limited, so contact your travel professional or Brand g Vacations directly.
Welcome reception in New Delhi
2 nights hotel accommodation in Imperial Room at Imperial Hotel New Delhi including breakfast
One lunch and one dinner in New Delhi
7 nights deluxe cruise accommodation.
Gourmet dining with all meals included during your cruise.
Free flowing house wine and local beer with lunch and dinner during cruise.
One hour pre dinner cocktails of domestic spirits throughout the cruise.
Two nights accommodation in Palace Room at Rambagh Palace, Jaipur including breakfast.
One lunch and one dinner in Jaipur.
One night accommodation in Mughal Chambers room at ITC Mughal, Agra including breakfast.
One lunch and one dinner in Agra.
Day room accommodation in Superior room at Radisson Blu Plaza, New Delhi.
Visit the UNESCO World Heritage Sites of Humayun’s Tomb and Qutab Minar.
Go inside the walls of the ancient Mughal capital of Old Delhi to see the Jama Mashid Mosque and Raj Ghat, the memorial to Mahatma Gandhi.
Board an excursion boat for a tour of the Hooghly Imambara in the port of Bandel.
Mosque of Nawab Ali-Wardi- Khan in Khushbagh and the Rani Bhabani temples in Baranagar.
Tour the Hazarduari Palace in Murshidabad and visit the Katra Mosque.
Visit the Sacred heart Church.
See Rajasthan’s fabled pink city of Jaipur, Agra Fort, and the legendary Taj Mahal.
September 30 to October 12 – $6,799.00 USD
*The fares above are per person USD, based on double occupancy. Initial deposit is $850 person, with final payment due June 3, 2019. Cruise Port Charges of $199 per person and pre-paid Gratuities of $250 per person are additional. International airfare is not included. Single Supplement is $2,500 of twin price, for Signature and Colonial Suites. All reservations are subject to Brand g’s Terms and Conditions.
Duration: 13 days
Start in New Delhi
End in Agra/New Delhi
On land, attire is club casual. Aboard the Ganges Voyager, attire is casual and comfortable during the day, with resort-style clothing, and comfortable, but sturdy, footwear for excursions. Evening wear consists of open-neck shirts, trousers, skirt, or similar attire. Footwear is always required in all public areas, and when navigating stairs on board.
The official currency on board the Ganges Voyager is the Indian rupee. During the cruise, we operate on a cashless system, with all purchases billed to your onboard account. At the end of the cruise, bills may be settled in cash with Indian rupees or by credit card with Visa or MasterCard. The Ganges Voyager does not provide a currency exchange service, nor is there an ATM on board. In Delhi, Kolkata, Jaipur, and Agra, you will find options for obtaining rupees at both Indian and international banks, ATMs, and wire services.
Our culinary team will make every effort to accommodate special dietary requests. Please inform our office at least 60 days prior to departure of these requests.
The voltage in India is officially 220/50Hz. To use any electrical product from the US that is not dual voltage, you will need an electrical converter. The Ganges Voyager has multi-configuration outlets, which accommodate most Western plugs. We recommend bringing an adapter for use in the hotels. Because the voltage may fluctuate at times, we also recommend unplugging your devices when not in use or when leaving them unattended.
While you can expect to encounter insects during your trip, most are relatively harmless. Switching off lights when exiting your room or suite, and ensuring that glass or screen doors or windows are closed at all times will minimize the number of insects allowed into your room. On the fast-moving river, mosquitoes are rarely seen while sailing. If planning to be outside in the early morning or evening hours, applying an insect repellent to exposed skin is recommended.
All shore excursions during your 15-day travel program. Excursions are led by expert guides, and guests are divided into three groups, guaranteeing there are never more than 12 passengers touring together. Electronic listening devices are complimentary to all guests in order to ensure that guests are able to hear their guides, without disturbing nearby wildlife.
The comfort and safety of our guests is our first priority. Smoking is not permitted in the suites or enclosed, public areas on board. There is a designated smoking area on the Sun Deck.
Only guests who possess tickets for passage are allowed on board. Security services are provided on board to ensure everyone’s safety throughout the journey.
Gratuities are customary expressions of appreciation for a job well done. It is our goal to ensure that the service you receive is as wonderful as the sites you visit. Gratuities for the included portions of this program have been pre-paid. At your own discretion you may choose to provide additional tips.
Please do not drink the tap water while on board or on shore, or use it for brushing your teeth. The ship’s water supply comes from the river after passing through a sterilization process. This water is suitable for showers and baths, but should not be consumed. Complimentary bottled water for drinking and brushing teeth is provided on board, as well as during excursions. To save water and reduce detergent use, we will only change towels if they are placed on the floor.
A passport, which is valid for six months after your last date of travel, is required for this trip.
Brand g’s program only requires a single entry visa, which may be obtained through an online application process: https://indianvisaonline.gov.in/visa/tvoa.html
If you have made other independent arrangements which require multiple entries into India, check with your nearest Indian consulate for the appropriate visa application process. Use care to be sure you are accessing information from the official consulate and not an intermediary.
If you prefer you may also use a visa service to assist you with obtaining your visa. One such service that we’d recommend for US citizens is G3 Visa Services: http://www.g3visas.com/
US citizens should consult the Centers for Disease Control website http://wwwnc.cdc.gov/travel/destinations/traveler/none/india or your health care provider for vaccination requirements and recommendations. Citizens of all other countries should consult their government’s national disease center or their physician.
Brand g Vacations has chartered the 28 suite RV Ganges Voyager. Built in 2015, the Ganges Voyager embodies the grace and style of the British colonial era, incorporating modern conveniences and luxuries that rival the finest hotels of Asia. Spacious, well-appointed suites include daily housekeeping and turndown service, fine bed linens, premium mattresses and duvets, your choice of pillows, flat-screen televisions with on-demand movies, international newspapers, individual climate control, as well as spa quality robes, slippers, and bath amenities.
In the kitchen of the ship’s elegant East India Dining Room, the Executive Chef oversees a team of experts that use fresh local produce to cater for a stunning range of specialty dining experiences. While each meal presents the chance to dine on exotic local cuisine, western-style favorites are always available should you desire a taste of home.
The staff aboard the Ganges Voyager have been trained to the very highest western standards, so you can expect an incredible level of service. Whether it’s the genuine smile that greets you or a drink poured just the way you like it, the carefully prepared meals or the turn down your room will receive each day – they provide the ultimate in on board service.
All-Natural Spa-Quality Bath Products
High Quality Linens with Duvet
Bottled Water Replenished Daily
Complimentary Wireless Internet (where available)
Flat Screen LCD Television with Movie System
Shore excursion programs including all admissions
Shoe cleaning after excursions
Complimentary coffee, water, tea soft drinks, select free-flow house wines for dinner, and locally produced spirits and beer.
(Imperial Room) Chosen as India’s best ‘Luxury Historical Hotel’ by World Luxury Hotel Awards 2015, The Imperial is an iconic property in Delhi’s 5 star hotel category and the most distinguished address situated in the heart of the capital. The Hotel is steps away from Connaught Place, the renowned shopping district and is very close to the city’s major attractions.
(Palace Room) The Rambagh Palace, is a royal resort set in a breathtaking oasis of beautiful landscaped gardens. Built in 1835, Rambagh Palace has stepped gracefully through many royal transitions—from the home of the queen’s favorite handmaiden, to royal guesthouse and hunting lodge, and later as the residence of the Maharaja Sawai Man Singh II and his queen, Maharani Gayatri Devi. Today, this jewel in the Taj’s crown offers 78 stunningly restored grand luxury rooms and suites which were the chambers of the former Maharaja.
(Mughal Chambers Room) Sprawled over 35 acres of luxurious gardens, and in close proximity to the Taj Mahal, ITC Mughal, a luxury hotel in Agra is a fitting tribute to the great Mughal builders of the past. The only Indian hotel to have won the prestigious Aga Khan Award for its excellent representation of Mughal architecture, it now boasts of a brand new Royal Mughal Suites. This luxury hotel in Agra comprises of 233 opulent rooms and suites, recreating a paradise for the contemporary Mogul- full of splendor and perfection which was the hallmark of the Mughal Dynasty.
(Superior Room) As one of the closest luxury hotels to the Delhi airport, the Radisson Blu Plaza Delhi provides a convenient location without compromising comfort. Enjoy the many amenities, Western and Asian dining options and spacious guest rooms during your overnight stay in New Delhi.
(Business Class Room) Situated in what is considered the spiritual capital of India, the Radisson Hotel Varanasi is ideally located for visiting nearby shrines and temples. Our hotel is less than four miles from the River Ganges and the Kashi Vishwanath Temple, the “Golden Temple.” At the hotel, you can enjoy a restful sleep in comfortable business class rooms.
Double occupancy pricing: $1,199 per person
Single occupancy pricing: $1,399
Complete your exciting journey with a visit to captivating Varanasi. Overnight in Delhi on October 12th and on October 13th transfer to the New Delhi airport for your flight to the holy city of Varanasi and one night in a Business Class room at the Radisson Hotel Varanasi. Witness the mesmerizing Aarti Ceremony attended by hundreds of worshipers, from your private boat on the Ganges River. The next morning, discover the early, daily rituals performed along the Ganges during an unforgettable private sunrise cruise. Later, fly to Delhi (expected arrival to Delhi at 4:30pm) for some time at leisure and day room use, or overnight in a Superior room at the deluxe Radisson Blu hotel before your late evening or early morning international flight. Price and hotel properties are subject to change.
We’ll enjoy a tour of St. John’s Church, which was built in 1756 by Lt. Colonel James Agg and houses India’s oldest functioning pipe organ as well as a painting of the Last Supper by German artist Johann Zoffany. As we stroll the grounds, we’ll see several tombs of British Generals who lost their lives during the Siege of Kolkata in 1756 by Nawab Shriaj Ud Daula. Finally, we’ll visit the impressive Victoria Memorial Museum before returning to the Ganges Voyager for lunch and the start of our journey upstream.
This afternoon, we’ll board our excursion boats and go ashore at Bandel, a port founded by Portuguese settlers in the 1800s. Our visit includes a tour of the Hooghly Imambara (completed in 1861), an important Shia pilgrimage center with a clock- tower lookout that boasts views of the Ganges. The structure contains a working clock with a winding key weighing approximately 20 kilograms (44 pounds). Inside the main building, large Persian chandeliers and smaller lamps light the main prayer hall where text from the Quran is engraved in the walls. After our visit, we’ll return to the ship for dinner in the East India Dining Room. (B/L/D)
We then continue our journey upstream. We sail past the battlefield of Plassey, where Robert Clive of British East India Company defeated the Mogul Nawabs in 1757. The rulers of Bengal and their French allies established the company rule in India, which spread through much of South Asia for the next 190 years. (B/L/D)
After an on-‐board breakfast and morning sail, we visit the village of Baranagar. A lovely example of life in rural India, this village is home to several temples dating from the 18th century (1714 – 1793). Built by Rani (Queen) Bhabani, the landlady of Natore. The brick temples are considered to be among the best examples of Bengal terra cotta art. We then return to the ship for lunch and sail downstream.
This afternoon we pass by charming countryside villages filled where locals greet us from the banks. We approach Murshidabad, a hidden architectural gem along the Ganges with dramatic whitewashed colonial era structures. We visit the Hazarduari Palace, built during the reign of Nawab Nazim Humayun Jah (1824 –1838 AD) by an English architect, McLeod Duncan, in the Greek “Doric” style. The palace has more than a thousand real and false doors in the vast corridors, and is filled with colonial era antiques, artwork and manuscripts. Opposite to the Palace is a vast Imambara – built by the Nawab for worship.
We then take a scenic ride by local buggy to the Katra mosque. Built by the first Nawab of Murshidabad –Murshid Quli Khan in the 1724 – 25, this mosque has distinctive minarets from which the muezzin calls the faithful to Friday prayers. This evening we return for dinner and local cultural performance on-‐board. (B/L/D)
Thereafter we transfer to the airport for our short flight to the capital of Rajasthan, Jaipur. Upon arrival we transfer to the magnificent Rambagh Palace Hotel where you’ll check into your Palace Room for an evening of relaxation, including dinner in the hotel’s opulent ballroom. (B/L/D)
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