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This Naturetrek holiday specificallyfocuses, in equal measure, on bothwildlife and India's fabulous historical,cultural and architectural heritage. Aboveall, and unusually for India, our itineraryachieves a maximum of variety with aminimum of exhausting travel. A briefdomestic flight, two short and comfortabletrain journeys, and just a few hours ofdriving on the peaceful roads of rural Indiaare all that are required to complete thisfascinating and colourful circuit. We will visitsuch fabulous sights as the Taj Mahal, AgraFort, Fatehpur Sikri and the temples ofKhajuraho, all of which so magnificentlyencapsulate the lavish history of northernIndia over the past millennium. We will alsovisit Panna National Park and Tiger Reserve- one of India's most scenic sanctuariesand currently a favourite amongst wildlifeconnoisseurs on account of the sheerabundance and variety of both its mammalsand birds - and conclude our tour in theworld's most famous bird reserve .Bharatpur. We begin in India's capital, New Delhi.Here, we will drive to our comfortable hotel.Later, after a rest and a light lunch, anoptional afternoon tour of Old Delhi mightinclude such magnificent Moghulmonuments as the Jama Masjid mosqueand the Red Fort, though the keenbirdwatchers in our party may chooseinstead to visit the Sultanpur National Parkand Bird Sanctuary.In 1839 a British army engineer stumbledupon a complex of the most remarkableHindu temples. Lost for centuries in remotejungle, these magnificent examples of Indo-Aryan architecture had escaped thedestruction that Moghul rule inflicted onvirtually all other Hindu monuments innorthern India at the time. Today,Khajuraho's temples, so skillfullyconstructed between 950 and 1050 ADunder the later kings of the Chandeladynasty and boasting exquisite (and manyerotic) carvings, are listed as a WorldHeritage Site. Now beautifully restored, theyare set within delightful gardens favouredby abundant birdlife and marauding Rhesusand Common Langur Monkeys. A night inKhajuraho will give us ample time to explorethe temple complexes before we make theshort drive to Panna Tiger Reserve.Panna, a stunning national park of 543square kilometres, has remained largelyunknown and ignored by tourism, mainlybecause its few Tigers remain wary andelusive. Though consisting largely of drydeciduous forest, it boasts great scenicbeauty through its combination of rollinghills and plateaux, grassy meadows, gorgesand waterfalls. The broad waters of theRiver Ken pass through the park and allowus to enjoy wildlife-viewing, abundantwaterbirds and many large Marsh Muggercrocodiles on boat excursions. Primarilythough, we will explore this extensive parkon lengthy jeep tours, and sometimes onelephant back, encountering abundantSpotted Deer, Sambar, Nilgai, Wild Boarand troupes of Common Langurs, the moreelusive Chinkara and Chousingha antelopesand, with luck, a Tiger, Dhole (Wild Dog) oreven a Leopard! With such a variety ofhabitats, Panna also provides a most variedbirdlife, with Painted Sandgrouse, and awide variety of owls and nightjars likely tobe amongst the highlights.We next drive to Orchha, once the capital ofthe Bandela dynasty, and today a mostpicturesque and peaceful village that sitsamongst a proliferation of temples, royalchhattris(tombs) and a striking 16th centuryfort-palace on an island in the Betwa River.There is much to enjoy for a day here,before we take the train from Jhansi toAgra, passing the imposing Gwalior Fort. Astay in Agra will allow us to soak in thesplendour of the Taj Mahal and its environs. and to visit the magnificent Agra Fort.We will then drive on, stopping en route toexplore the fascinating abandoned Moghulcity of Fatehpur Sikri, to Bharatpur, the mostfamous bird reserve of them all, where afeast of birds and other wildlife awaits us.So, is there a down side to our managingdirector's favourite Indian odyssey? Yes,just one! Your chance of a Tiger sighting onthis tour is a fairly slim one. For this reason,we offer you the chance to extend yourholiday with a visit to Ranthambore, one ofIndia's most spectacular and best knownTiger Reserves, or any other of thecountry's fine national parks.Temples & Tigers - The Best of Northern IndiaA 13-day holiday combining the best of India's wildlife and culture, with visits to Agra, Fatehpur Sikri, Khajuraho, Panna Tiger Reserve and Bharatpur Bird Sanctuary, plus an optional 5-day extension to Ranthambore Tiger Reserve.Wednesday 7th November - Monday 19th November 2012 Cost: £2,595Wednesday 6th February - Monday 18th February 2013 Cost: £2,695Wednesday 6th November - Monday 18th November 2013 Cost: £2,695Ranthambore extension available on all tours Cost: £795Book direct on 01962 733051or see page 284 for Booking InformationTIBET NEPAL PAKISTAN NEW DELHI AGRA BHARATPUR KOLKATABAY OF BENGAL INDIA KHAJURAHO ORCHHA JHANSI PANNA RANTHAMBORE TIGER RESERVE (EXTENSION) Outline itineraryDay 1Depart London.Day 2Delhi.Day 3Temples of Khajuraho.Day 4/6Panna Tiger Reserve.Day 7Orchha.Day 8Agra and Taj Mahal.Day 9Fatehpur Sikri; overnightBharatpur.Day 10/11Bharatpur BirdSanctuary.Day 12Evening train to Delhi.Day 13Fly London.Ranthambore extensionDay 12/15Ranthambore TigerReserve.Day 16Evening train to Delhi.Day 17Fly London.AccommodationComfortable tourist hotels in Delhi,Khajuraho and Agra; simple butcomfortable lodges elsewhere. Allrooms have private facilities.FoodAll included in the price, except formeals required in Delhi. Allow £30.Grading A. A wildlife and sightseeing tourthat includes no strenuous walking.Focus India's cultural heritage, mammalsand birds.LeaderNick Acheson, Bunty Mandhayan,Chandra Hada, Ashlesh Sharma orDilip Saini, plus local guides.Single room supplement£395 (extension: £145).Web quick search: IND32231TigerKhajurahoIndian Roller

There is nowhere in the world quite likethe Indian subcontinent! So rich is theregion in flavour and variety, whether itis the scenery, culture, history or wildlifewhich most appeals to your taste, thatevery visit is packed with unique andunforgettable memories. City life in modernIndia may outwardly sport all the trappingsof the 21st century, but underlying this is aunique culture which has developed overthousands of years and permeates everyaspect of society. Delhi has had manyrulers during a long and turbulent history,whereas the machinations of life in thefabled city of Kathmandu were virtuallyunknown to the rest of the world untilcomparatively recent times and it has beendescribed as a city with more temples thanhouses and more gods than people. Totravel through the Himalayan foothillsbetween these two diverse cities is one ofthe most beautiful and fascinating journeysin Asia - a journey that encapsulates thesheer variety of this magnificentsubcontinent.We begin our tour in India's capital, NewDelhi, then board an overnight train to visit Corbett National Park. A mouthwateringmenu of sub-Himalayan birding is on offerat Corbett, but the park also holds a wealthof mammal species, amongst them IndianElephant and that most supreme of Asianpredators, the Bengal Tiger. Arguably oneof the most picturesque of India's nationalparks, Corbett was named in honour of thelate Jim Corbett, a legendary hunter-turned-conservationist who played an importantrole in helping to create the reserve. Manyof the birds we are likely to see in Corbettare characteristic of the Himalayan regionand include a number of Palearctic raritiesto set pulses racing! After spending four nights in Corbett, wetravel next to Bardia National Park, situatedin the lowlands of western Nepal.Comprising magnificent Sal and riverineforests, and extensive grasslands, Bardia's936 square kilometres are home to Tiger,Leopard, Elephant, Rhino, a few Blackbuck,Spotted Deer, Sambar, Barking and HogDeer, Nilgai, Wild Boar and Sloth Bear, aswell as Marsh Mugger Crocodile and theendangered fish-eating Gharial. Nearly 400species of birds occur in the park andduring our 3-night stay here we will hope tofind such species as Great Slaty andStreak-throated Woodpecker, CrestedKingfisher, Wallcreeper, Large-billed LeafWarbler and Greater Racquet-tailedDrongo. Bardia is bordered to the west bythe Karnali River, one of the largest inNepal, and this enables us to explore thepark by raft, as well as by jeep and on foot.An inflatable raft trip down to the southernboundary of the park is a tranquil way ofviewing the birdlife and water-oriented animals such as Smooth Otters and bothMugger and Gharial Crocodiles. TheKarnali River is also one of the best areasin Nepal to view the highly endangeredGanges River Dolphin.In order to break the long journey toChitwan, we will spend one night in Lumbiniand explore the fascinating complex ofancient temples and modern stupas whichmark the birthplace of Buddha. We will thencontinue to Chitwan National Park. Thismagnificent reserve is one of the fewremaining undisturbed vestiges of the 'terai'region, which formerly extended over thefoothills of India and Nepal. It has aparticularly rich flora and fauna, protectingpopulations of both One-hornedRhinoceros and Bengal Tiger as well asmany other mammals and a stunningvariety of birdlife. A diversity of riverine andforest habitats, interspersed with opengrassland, ensures that there are alwaysnew areas to explore during our stay andever present in the distance are the snowysummits of the Himalayan giants whichstretch across Nepal in an unbroken linefrom east to west. We will spend two nightsinside the park, and two outside, in order toexplore a full range of habitats. We head finally to the capital of Nepal,Kathmandu, pausing along the way to scanfor Ibisbills, White-capped Riverchats andother waterside birds that frequent the fast-flowing Trisuli River, the course of which theroad follows. After a sightseeing tour ofKathmandu, we conclude a memorabletour with a birdwatching trip to the forestedslopes of Phulchowki which, at 2,740metres, is the highest mountain in thevalley. Many species typical of the highHimalaya occur here and, with accessfacilitated by a road, we can enjoysearching for these without recourse tomountaineering or trekking!For those wishing to extend their holiday,we offer an extension east from Chitwan toKoshi Tappu Wildlife Reserve, one of Asia'sfinest wetlands. Here, a remnant populationof wild Water Buffalo may be seen, as wellas other mammals such as Ganges RiverDolphin, Jungle Cat and Golden Jackal.From the delightful Koshi Camp up to 160bird species may be seen in a single day,amongst them such local specialities asRed-necked Falcon, Striated Marsh Warblerand the endangered Swamp Partridge andBengal Florican. It is a restful andrewarding spot to conclude a holiday!India & Nepal - Corbett to KathmanduThis 17-day holiday, in search of birds and mammals, offers a mouthwatering combination of the best national parks in the Himalayan foothills - Corbett in India, and the Sal and riverine forests of Bardia and subtropical jungles of Chitwan in Nepal, plus birdwatching and sightseeing in the Kathmandu Valley. Friday 16th November - Sunday 2nd December 2012 Cost: £3,795Friday 8th February - Sunday 24th February 2013 Cost: £3,895 Friday 15th November - Sunday 1st December 2013 Cost: £3,895Koshi Tappu Wildlife Reserve extension available on all tours Cost: £795Outline itineraryDay 1Depart London.Day 2Delhi; overnight train toCorbett.Day 3/6Corbett National Park.Day 7/9 Bardia National Park.Day 10 Lumbini.Day 11/14Chitwan National Park.Day 15/16Kathmandu.Day 17Return London.Koshi Tappu WildlifeReserve extensionDay 15/18Koshi Tappu WildlifeReserve.Day 19/20Kathmandu.Day 21Fly London.AccommodationComfortable tourist hotels in Delhiand Kathmandu; simple butcomfortable lodges and tentedcamps elsewhere. Most have privatefacilities. FoodAll included in the price, except for main meals in Delhi andKathmandu. Allow £20.Grading A. This is a wildlife tour thatincludes no strenuous walking.Focus Birds and mammals.LeaderTika Ram Giri or Suchit Basnet, pluslocal guides. Single room supplement£695 (extension: £95).Web quick search: IND23232Call now or visit your free Trip ItineraryINDIANEPAL TIBET KOSHI TAPPUWILDLIFE RESERVE(EXTENSION)BIRATNAGAR CHITWAN NATIONAL PARK LUMBININEW DELHI KATHMANDU CORBETT NATIONAL PARK Mt EVEREST BARDIANATIONAL PARKRed-flanked BluetailHimalayanFlamebackTiger