Historic Hooghly & Ganges River Cruise
DAY 1 – Arrival Kolkata – Embark onboard
After arriving the night before from your home country. This morning you will be collected from your Kolkata hotel and transferred to the to embark your ship by midday. Once on board the ship will set sail past the old Danish colony of Serampore to Barrackpore. We shall Land and take a walk through the cantonment – past the Semaphore Tower, Government House, the Temple of Fame and Flagstaff House – to get a better understanding of India’s journey to independence.
DAY 2 – Chandernagore
Sail up to Chandernagore, a French possession until 1950. Visit the 18th century church and Dupleix’s House, the erstwhile Governor-General of French India. Sail upstream past the old Dutch settlement of Chinsura before landing to visit the imposing Imambara at Hooghly. With verses from the Koran written on its walls, the Imambara is an opportunity to step back in time and relive a slice of Islamic history in Bengal. Sail into the night to a mooring near Kalna.
DAY 3 – Kalna | Mayapur
Sail upstream and, after breakfast, land at the country town of Kalna and take cycle rickshaws to see a group of some of Bengal’s most attractive terracotta temples, as well as the unique Shiva temple with concentric rings made up of 108 shrinelets. Continue on through the countryside to Mayapur to visit the vast new ISKCON (International Society for Krishna Consciousness) temple which dominates the skyline. As the headquarters of ISKCON or the Hare Krishna movement, the temple receives over a million singing and dancing devotees a year from around the world. Sail on through the night to a mooring near Matiari.
DAY 4 – Matiari
This morning visit the brass-working village of Matiari, a charming riverside village. Interact with the locals of Matiari and witness the whole primitive process of beating out brass water pots and other vessels. Later, cruise on and visit the battlefield of Plassey where, in 1757, Robert Clive, the Commander-in-Chief of British India, defeated Siraj-ud-Daulah, the last independent Nawab of Bengal, to change the course of Indian history. Moor close to Murshidabad for the night.
DAY 5 – Khushbagh
This morning, walk to the Khushbagh, a peaceful Mughal-style garden that encloses the tombs of Siraj-ud-Daulah – the last independent Nawab of Bengal – and his family. Continue a little way upstream to where the great Hazarduari Palace dominates the waterfront. Built by an English architect in 1837, the palace hosts an extensive collection of pictures, china, weapons and other objects. Carry on to visit the great Katra Mosque and Nashipara Palace before driving out to see the Katgola Palace. Built in classical Georgian style by rich local merchants, Katgola Palace represents the other side of the coin of the ‘White Mughal’ period when English and Indian cultures came close to fusion. Moor overnight on the riverbank across from town.
DAY 6 – Baranagar
This morning, walk through the fields of the delightfully sleepy village of Baranagar to visit its three gorgeous miniature terracotta temples. This is rural India at its most idyllic. Continue up the lower Hooghly River, which transforms into a charming waterway twisting and turning between banks lined with mustard fields and mango orchards. Carry on up a long canal section to a mooring close to the Farakka Barrage.
DAY 7 – Farakka
During breakfast, we cruise to a mooring by the Farakka lock. Disembark and go on a full-day excursion by road to Gaur, near the town of Malda, or English Bazar. This quiet, deserted place was once one of India’s great cities, first under the Hindus in 12th century, then as the Muslim capital of Eastern India from the 14th to the 16th century. There are plentiful remains of mosques, palaces and gateways and you visit a number of the most interesting before rejoining the ship in the evening above the Farakka lock gate to continue your cruise upstream.
DAY 8 & 9 – Farakka to Varanasi
Disembark from the ABN Raj Mahal and transfer to the train station for a afternoon leisurely train journey to the holy city of Varanasi based on the Holy Ganges River. Next two days are packed with local sightseeing excursions, including local boat rides, temple visits and shopping in the old city street laneways. 1 night Varanasi, 1 night overnight train to Agra
Day 10 & 11 – Agra – The Taj Mahal
Early morning arrival in Agra. Transfer to hotel and after checkin we take a guided walking tour to the Riverside to see the Taj Mahal. Evening dinner at local restaurant and local music entertainment. Next morning sunrise entry into the Taj, followed by a visit to Agra Fort and other local sightseeing.
Day 12– Agra – New Delhi
After breakfast we depart on the 3 drive back to New Delhi. We shall do some local sightseeing and evening transfer to Delhi international to connect with your evening international flights.
7 nights cruise| 5 days land Tour
- Fully inclusive of all airport, hotel and boat transfers in private vehicles
- AC cabin with en-suite bathrooms and French Balconies
- 3 meals per day onboard on land 2 meals per day
- 2 shore excursions from boat per day with experienced local guides
- Morning yoga classes on top deck
- snacks tea & coffee facilities
- Train journey from Farakka to Varanasi & to Agra
- Transport in Varanasi, Delhi & Agra for sightseeing with guides
- All sightseeing land excursions with local guides
Itineraries are subject to river conditions
Terms & Conditions apply