If you’ve always dreamed of seeing a tiger in the wild or you’ve been inspired by Rudyard Kipling’s wild tales of the jungle, choose this ultimate wildlife itinerary. Visit lesser known national parks for a more intimate wildlife experience and tick off some of India's icons such as the Taj Mahal, Marine Drive in Mumbai and Humayun's Tomb, a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Suggested route & duration
14 nights Mumbai to Delhi
Mumbai: 2 nights
Pench: 2 nights
Kanha: 3 nights
Bandhavgarh: 2 nights
Khajuraho: 1 night
Agra: 2 nights
Delhi: 2 nights
About this independent tour
This is a private itinerary including a car and driver and local English-speaking tour guides for sightseeing. The itinerary is completely flexible, so you can choose your own number of nights, change accommodation, add excursions and extend your holiday.
MUMBAI Formerly known as Bombay, Mumbai is located on the coast of the Arabian Sea and is the most populous of India's cities, home to millionaires, movie stars and humble hard grafters. During your time here you'll visit Rudyard Kipling's birthplace, the J.J. School of Art campus, as well as many others of the city's most famous sights including the Prince of Wales Museum and the simple Mani Bhawan where Mahatma Gandhi stayed when he was in Mumbai. For a unique experience and a glimpse into what makes this city tick, you'll be rising early for the Mumbai by Dawn tour.
PENCH Fly from Mumbai to Nagpur and travel onwards by road. Begin your search for Shere Khan in Pench National Park, one of the two parks considered to be the setting for Rudyard Kipling’s Jungle Book stories. Less visited than some of India's other parks, Pench supports a rich and diverse array of wildlife which you will be spotting on your morning and afternoon game drives.
KANHA This expansive wildlife wonderland is the other park believed to have inspired Kipling. The landscapes are better suited to seeing central India’s wild inhabitants, including the Indian leopard, thanks to its grassy meadows and less-dense sal forests. You'll be staying at the intimate and tranquil retreat that is Chitvan Jungle Lodge. Speak to the in-house naturalists to learn about tigers and dine on dishes created from home-grown ingredients, freshly picked from the lodge's very own organic farms.
BANDHAVGARH It’s likely that your Bandhavgarh game drives will be the best chance for a tiger spotting thanks to the high concentration of big cats and the relatively small size of the park. This National Park was one a hunting preserve of the Maharajas and so it is wonderful to now see the Bengal tigers thriving here. You'll be staying at Bandhav Vilas, a luxury wildlife lodge where when you aren't out on your morning and afternoon game drives, you can soak up the rustic Indian wilderness, refresh yourself with a dip in the pool or take advantage of the spa.
KHAJURAHO The focus shifts away from nature and on to culture as you spend a night in Khajuraho. Here you will explore UNESCO-listed temples which date back to 950 AD and rank amongst the most important archaeological sites in India.
AGRA Travel by train to Agra, home to the world’s most famous mausoleum and ode to love, the Taj Mahal. Visit this icon of India at sunrise, when you will marvel at its beauty as the sun comes up. For a change of pace, go on the Kachpura Heritage Walk following a bridle path through agricultural fields and into the ancient village of Kachpura before finally arriving at Mehtab Bagh from where you'll have the opportunity to watch the Taj Mahal from across the river as the sun sets.
DELHI The last leg takes you to India’s frenetic capital, Delhi. Spend a full day exploring the sights and sounds of New and Old Delhi. In Old Delhi, visit fantastic landmarks including the historic Red Fort, the Chandni Chowk bazaar and the resplendent Jama Masjid - the biggest mosque in India. In New Delhi, you'll drive past the Presidential Palace, India gate and the Parliament house before visiting Qutab Minar and UNESCO-listed Humayun's Tomb.
Tailor your tour
We’ve crafted this itinerary based on our own experiences and our customers’ feedback. It’s fully flexible so talk to us and we can create your perfect trip.
We’ve recommended some unique lodges so you can make the most of the jungle surroundings during downtime between game drives and we have plenty of hotels to recommend in the cities. However, let us know if you are celebrating a special occasion or would like to add a wow factor to your itinerary and we can suggest the perfect upgrades, such as the boutique safari lodge Taj Mahua Kothi in Bandhavgarh or The Oberoi Amarvilas in Agra which has views of the Taj Mahal from almost every window.
We’ve included at least two game drives in each national park as well as guided sightseeing excursions in the cities but it’s easy to add on more experiences and make your holiday even more special. And to make the most of each park and to avoid rushing from place to place, we’ve suggested taking two weeks to complete this itinerary. If you have more time let us know and we’ll tell you how you can extend your trip. Perhaps add an extra day in Bandhavgarh or stay a little longer in Mumbai. While this is already quite a busy itinerary, there are other places that you can easily add. If you want to stop at one of Central India’s lesser-visited national parks like Tadoba or Saptura, just let us know. You could also add a couple of nights in Jaipur to complete the Golden Triangle. Alternatively after such a travel heavy itinerary with some early starts why not fly down to Goa for a spot of beach-side relaxation.
To start creating your own India adventure, contact one of our Personal Travel Experts or pop into one of our stores.