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Joe’s North India

Joe’s North India (Tour Code : IN/Pvt) – Joe’s North India is a private tour that can be joined either in Spring or Autumn on the date when it is operating. Joe Roberts is a travel writer who has travelled India extensively and has known it well since the publication of his first book, Three Quarters of A Footprint, in 1994.  Abdul’s Taxi to Kalighat about Kolkata and a novel about Edward Lear’s visit to India, Bengal, The Cold Weather, 1873 are some of his other published works. Joe as a writer contributes to The Times, Condé Nast Traveller, National Geographic Traveler and many other magazines. Joe has been a teacher of Humanities at Bath Spa University and is working on a third Indian travel book about Lucknow. His interests include gastronomy (he is a contributor to The Oxford Companion to Food) and art history, but his real passion has always been India. Joe Roberts leads two private tour series (Spring & Autumn) that originate in London and travel through Delhi, Agra, Lucknow, Allahabad and Varanasi. The tours include some very privileged experiences and hand-picked hotels that are an experience unto themselves and above all they include regular lectures and in-depth knowledge about each aspect of visits by Joe Roberts himself.


(Subject to change/altered as per local conditions but primarily it will be this. Old Delhi & Varanasi are very crowded and traffic conditions change every time, thus the visits and itinerary will be flexible and the local guides will decide upon local time and places to be visited.)


Day 01 London / Delhi

Arrive Delhi today. We will be met assisted and transfer to The Claridges hotel.

This afternoon (or early evening) we have an option to walk down to the nearby Khan Market (just about 2 km walk from our hotel).

Today’s Drinks & Dinner is being hosted by Indian Frontiers & Joe Roberts with a short briefing session (venue for this dinner to be announced later).

Overnight in hotel  The Claridges – New Delhi.

The Claridges 
12, Dr APJ Abdul Kalam Road, 
New Delhi – 110011



Day 02  In Delhi

Post Breakfast at 0830 hrs: We set out for a day tour of Delhi visiting Qutab Minar complex, The National Crafts and Handloom Museum. This followed by a tour of Jama Masjid. We will walk at Chandni Chowk, the crowded market place and visit some local eateries to try out the lip-smacking street food of Old Delhi, including Paranthas. (Possibly a walking food tour).

Back to hotel and overnight at the Claridges New Delhi.



Day 03  In Delhi

Post Breakfast at 0900 hrs driving past the President’s House we visit India Gate. After this we visit Humayun’s Tomb. Later afternoon we reach Lodhi Gardens and will be served a picnic lunch here.

Post lunch drive to Khan Market and then to Nizamuddin Dargah. Today’s dinner will be at a famous local eatery, Karim’s in Nizamuddin. Post dinner return to the hotel.

Overnight in hotel The Claridges Delhi.



Day 04  Delhi / Agra / Lucknow

Post early breakfast at about 0800 hrs we will check-out and drive to Agra (4 hrs drive). Enjoy your lunch in Agra upon arrival and later visit Taj Mahal. After the visit of Taj we continue to drive further up to Lucknow (another 4 Hrs). Upon arrival in Lucknow, check-in at Hotel Lebua.

Overnight at the hotel Lebua in Lucknow.

Lebua - Lucknow
19, Mall Avenue, 
Lucknow – 226001



Day 05  In Lucknow

Breakfast at the hotel. Today we will visit La Martiniere and the British Residency.

Return to our hotel by lunch.

This evening we visit the local market, Chowk as a part of our Heritage Walk and enjoy an unpretentious local food. Enjoy some kebabs and curries, while understand the food history of this local cuisine called, ‘Awadhi’..

Back to hotel and overnight at the hotel Lebua in Lucknow.



Day 06  In Lucknow

Post breakfast we will visit Asfi Imambara and Husainabad Imambara later we will visit home of the Nawab where we admire his antique collection and Nawab Sahib will deliver a talk over a cup of tea.

Return to our hotel by lunch or lunch at a local restaurant.

This evening we will have ample opportunity to see the local crafts as a part of our visit to the home of a celebrated film maker, Muzaffar & Meera Ali’s called the Kotwara House, where we will see the craftsmen at work on Chikan, Zari & Mukaish. We will also enjoy watching a film clip from his landmark film, ‘Umrao Jan’, specially the dance sequence. His home is no less than a living museum and a restored portion of the larger Kaiserbagh Palace complex.

Later this evening we will visit a local market as an option or relax at the hotel.

Return to the hotel dinner at the hotel and overnight at the hotel Lebua in Lucknow.



Day 07  Lucknow / Allahabad

Breakfast will be served at the hotel and post breakfast at about 0800 hrs we will drive to Allahabad (4.5 hrs).

Upon arrival in Allahabad, check-in at the hotel Kanha Shyam in Allahabad, lunch at the hotel and this afternoon we visit Anand Bhawan and Khusro Bagh.

Back to hotel and overnight at hotel Kanha Shyam in Allahabad.

Kanha Shyam
Civil Lines, 
Allahabad – 211001



Day 08  Allahabad / Varanasi

This morning after breakfast at 0800 hrs we will check-out from the hotel and visit an Old Colonial Church on our way to Sangam – the confluence of three rivers, enjoy a bit of boat ride here. Also visit a part of Allahabad Fort (restricted entry).

Later by 1130 hrs we leave the Sangam Ghat and continue the drive to Varanasi (2.5 hrs). Enjoy a packed lunch en route to Varanasi

Arrive Varanasi, check-in at the hotel Tree of Life in Varanasi, later this evening explore the markets around the ghats and attend the evening Aarti ceremony at one of the ghats.

Tree of Life - Varanasi
Varanasi – 221105.



Day 09  In Varanasi

After an early breakfast at the hotel today we take a tour of temples and the Ghats. On this tour we will visit Durga Mata Temple, Sankat Mochan Temple, Banaras Hindu University and Bharat Mata Temple.

Our lunch today will comprise essential Varanasi Street Food that essentially is vegetarian. (Possibly a Food Walk during lunch today to visit the traditional road-side eateries).

Also visit weaving center and see the weavers at work on silk yarns to understand the process.

Back to hotel and overnight at the hotel Tree of Life in Varanasi.



Day 10  Varanasi / Delhi

Pre-breakfast at about 0500 hrs we will visit the ghat for an early morning  boat cruise and see the priests at work for the morning rituals. Also visit Kashi Vishwanath Temple today.

Return to the hotel for a late breakfast and post breakfast we will check out and visit Sarnath, the Buddhist excavation site, where Lord Buddha gave the first sermon. Also visit the stunning Museum here.

Enjoy lunch at a local restaurant in Sarnath and post  lunch we will drive to Varanasi airport in time to connect our flight to Delhi.

Upon arrival in Delhi we will be transferred to Hotel Roseate House – Aerocity, New Delhi for an overnight stay in transit at this airport hotel. Check-in and overnight at the hotel.

Roseate House
Asset 10, Aerocity, 
IGI Airport,
New Delhi – 110037.



Day 11  Delhi / London

Breakfast will be served at the hotel and post breakfast we check-out and transfer to international airport in time to connect international flight to London (Heathrow).