CRUISE ON RIVER GANGES

DAY WISE ITINERARY

DAY 1 - ARRIVE / KOLKATA
Meeting and assistance on arrival at Kolkata airport and transfer to the hotel.

After lunch proceed for Kolkata city sightseeing by visiting the Colonial parts of Kolkata; we will drive a section of the Heritage Buildings of Kolkata covering Writer’s Building, The General Post Office, The High court, The Raj Bhawan, The Town Hall, Council House, Treasury Building, The Reserve Bank of India also visit the Dalhousie Square and then drive past St. John’s Church and stop at Victoria Memorial.

Overnight stay at the hotel.
 
DAY 2 - EXPLORE KOLKATA
Spend the morning at leisure or explore Kolkata on your own.
Late evening
willbe transfer to the ship and sail to Kalna. 
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This journey will take you through the areas where the different European settlers had established their respective East Indian Companies leaving back reminiscence of their settlements during the period of 17th to 19th century.

Overnight on board.
 
DAY 3 - KALNA – MATIARI
After breakfast on board proceed to visit Kalna temples. We take rickshaws to visit the temple town of Kalna – visit the enchanting Rajbari complex that has the maximum concentration of temples built in 1809.
 
Later return to Ship and sail towards Matiari, we cruise past the religious town of Mayapur, quintessentially a temple town known for being the headquarters of the Krishna Consciousness Movement “ISKON” and the birth place of Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu, born in 1486 AD and considered as an incarnation of Lord Krishna. The town is situated on the banks of the confluence of the Ganga and the Jalangi rivers.

Overnight on board.
 
DAY 4 - MATIARI - MURSHIDABAD
Early in the morning (time permitting) we will visit the brass-making village of Matiari. While exploring village, we can hear loud noises of beating metal coming from all the houses. Stroll in the village to see and experience the different process of the brass making with a chance of buying brass artefacts and souvenirs.
 
Return to the ship, and cruise towards Murshidabad sailing past Plassey – which is well known for the battle that took place in 1757 that turned the history of India. The battlefield of Plassey is where Robert Clive of British East India Company defeated the Mughal king, the then ruler of Bengal and his French Allies; establishing the company rule in India which expanded over much of South Asia for the next 190 years.

Overnight on board.
 
DAY 5 - MURSHIDABAD – JANGIPUR
Morning shore excursion of Murshidabad. We visit the Hazarduari Palace, built during the reign of Nawab Nazim Humayun Jah (1824 – 1838 AD) by an English architect, Duncan McLeod following the Greek “Doric” style. 

We will also visit the Katra mosque, built by the first Nawab of Murshidabad, Murshid Quli Khan in 1724-25.

Later sail towards Jangipur and overnight on board.
 
DAY 6 - JANGIPUR – FARAKKA – RAJMAHAL
Morning reach the historic Farakka Lock Gate, which was built during the years 1963-75. 

After crossing the lock, we cruise through the connecting canal to the Ganges revealing vast panoramas. We can also see the Farakka barrage at a distance, which regulates the Ganges water into Bangladesh and India.

Continue our cruise towards Rajmahal & overnight on board.
 
DAY 7 - RAJMAHAL – MANIHARI
Early morning walking tour of the ruins of Rajmahal, once known as Akbarnagar, as it was founded by the Mughal Emperor Akbar as the capital of Bengal in 1592. Shah Jahan, builder of the Taj Mahal, spent a part of his youth here. Walk around and explore the ruins of the mosque, through the areas where China clay is mined.
 
On return we cast off towards Manihari, an area rich in bird life. Large flocks of water birds including common cranes can be seen here.

Overnight on board.
 
DAY 8 - MANIHARI - BATESHWARSTHAN - BHAGALPUR
Early morning sail to Bateshwarsthan and visit the ancient Vikramshila University. Established by King Dharampala in late 8th or early 9th Century A.D.
 
Later we sail towards Bhagalpur, cruising through the Vikramshila Gangetic Dolphin Sanctuary, established in 1991 for the protection and conservation of the Ganges River Dolphins. You will also have the chance to see the species like the Indian smooth-coated Otter, several species of hard and soft shell turtles, and an astounding variety of migratory and resident migratory birds.

Overnight on board.
 
DAY 9 - BHAGALPUR - SULTANGANJ
After breakfast we sail toward Sultanganj, conspicuous for two great rocks of granite on the riverbank, one of which is crowned by a mosque and another one by a temple of Ghaibinath Siva.
 
During the rule of the Maurya, Gupta and Pala many works of art and architecture were raised at Sultanganj. Excavation near Sultanganj has yielded ancient relics like stupas, seals, coins, terracotta, Hindu and Buddha images.

Overnight on board.
 
DAY 10 - SULTANGANJ – MUNGER
After breakfast we sail towards Munger. 

We visit Bihar School of Yoga, established in 1963 by Swami Niranjanananda in order to preserve and regenerate the total scope of yogic science by combining academic and scientific methodology with a spiritual vision.

Overnight on board
 
DAY 11 - MUNGER - SIMARIA
After breakfast, we sail towards Simaria. Enjoy our last full day cruising that will take us through the rugged landscape of Bihar. Spend the day watching birds and other wildlife along the Ganges.

Overnight on board.
 
DAY 12 - DISEMBARK AT SIMARIA / DRIVE NALANDA – BODHGAYA
We disembark the ship and drive to Nalanda, perhaps the oldest seat of learning in India. It treasures a glorious past, rich spiritual heritage and some extraordinary architectural ruins believed to be established in 5th century BC by the Gupta Kings.
 
Thereafter we drive to Rajgir, the first capital of the Magadha Empire. Buddha not only spent many years in Rajgir, but also delivered important sermons here.
 
Later continue the journey to Bodhgaya, one of the most important and sacred Buddhist pilgrimage centre for the Buddhists. It was here, under a banyan tree, “the Bodhi Tree” Gautama attained supreme knowledge to become “Buddha”, the Enlightened One.
Overnight stay at Hotel.
 
DAY 13 - BODHGAYA – VARANASI
After early breakfast we drive to Varanasi – the holiest town for Hindus. Upon arrival, check into the hotel.

Late afternoon we experience the enchanting and the incredible life on the streets of Varanasi. 
 
In the evening, participate in the Sacred Prayer Ceremony at Ghat on the Ganges River, lit with oil-lamps and candles illuminating the river. Here, you can witness the unique "Aarti ceremony". It is an absolute magic with the chanting of Sanskrit mantras, the clash of cymbals and drums, the scent of flowers, incense and sandalwood and the blazing camphor lamp and many flamed Aarti raised high in the air. 

Overnight stay at the hotel.
 
DAY 13 - EXPLORE VARANASI
Early morning boat ride on Holy River Ganges at sunrise to see people bathing and offering prayers.

After breakfast proceed to visit Bharat Mata Temple, Shri Kashi Vishwanath Mandir, Tulsi Manas Temple and Banaras Hindu University.
 
Later drive to Sarnath the holy city where Buddha preached his first sermon after attaining Nirvana. The major events of Buddha’s life are depicted in colourful wall paintings. Visit the Deer Park, Museum and Buddhist Temple.

Overnights stay at the hotel.
 
DAY 13 - VARANASI / DEPARTURE
After breakfast transfer to the airport to board flight for onward destination.

PACKAGE PRICE & INFO

For special discounted prices, please Call us on: + 91 9810068824 or Email us on: newton@royalindiaholidays.in or Skype on: newton.singh
  
 
This itinerary is designed to give you an idea, we can tailor-made this trip to suit your requirements.