Tailored from £4,200 per person excl. flights
14 days Delhi, Lucknow, Kolkata, Chennai, Backwaters, Cochin, Mumbai
14 days Delhi, Lucknow, Kolkata, Chennai, Backwaters, Cochin, Mumbai
This culinary adventure starts in Delhi where you can explore the sites and eat delicious Punjabi food. Next you’ll taste the rich Awadhi cuisine of Lucknow and you’ll be able to sample the famous street food. From here you’ll travel to Kolkata where you’ll watch a cooking demonstration and enjoy dinner at a traditional Bengali home. Then you’ll visit Chennai where you can try the wonderful Chettinadu and traditional Tamil Brahmin Cuisine. Next you’ll cruise through the backwaters of Kerala on a houseboat and you’ll have a chance to interact with your onboard cook who will prepare traditional Keralan food. Finally you’ll enjoy a sumptuous seafood meal in Mumbai where this holiday ends.
On arrival in Delhi you will be met at the airport by a representative and transferred to your hotel right in the heart of New Delhi.
This afternoon you’ll have free time to explore the sights of Connaught Place, including the bazaars and stalls, the vintage cinemas, Art Today, the Dhoomimal Art Centre, the Hanuman Temple, Jantar Mantar, the Indian Council for Cultural Relations, and Gurudwara Bangla Sahib.
This morning you’ll discover Old Delhi with an English speaking guide. The tour will start with a visit to the famous Karim’s for a Nihari breakfast, and then you’ll explore the winding alleys of the famous Chandni Chowk Bazaar. During the course of the walking tour you’ll sample some amazing Delhi street food. Later in the afternoon you’ll explore New Delhi, including Humayun's Tomb, Qutab Minar and Lutyens' Delhi, an area named after the British architect Edwin Lutyens who was responsible for much of the architectural design and building when India was part of the British Empire in the 1920s and 1930s.
Later in the evening you will be taken for dinner to a local Punjabi food restaurant. Punjabi cuisine is mainly based on wheat, spices, pure desi ghee (clarified butter), with liberal amounts of butter and cream. The food is tailor-made for the Punjabi lifestyle in which most of the rural folk burn up a lot of calories while working in the fields. Striking feature of the cuisine of Punjab is pulses or dals, cooked on slow fire and flavoured with characteristic Punjabi tadka. Sarson Da Saag and Makki Di Roti and stuffed paranthas are some other popular dishes in this cuisine. Gravy of most dishes is prepared using the basic mix of onion, tomato, ginger, garlic, chillies and liberal dose of spices.
This morning you will be taken to the rail station to board your train to Lucknow. Upon arrival in Lucknow, you will be met at the station and taken to your hotel. Later in the afternoon you’ll have a guided tour of the city.
For dinner you will be taken to a Nawab’s Haveli where you’ll be served the famous local cuisine, Awadhi. The rich Awadhi cuisine of Lucknow region was made popular by the Nawab of Awadh who, to deal with food shortage, ordered his men to cook food in huge handis (vessel) to feed the hungry people. This eventually led to a style of cooking called dum, i.e., the art of sealing ingredients in large handi and cooking over a slow fire, which you can so well relate to the relaxed outlook and attitude of the people of the region. The most well known Awadhi preparations are galouti kababs, boti kababs and biryani.
After a leisurely morning, around noon today you will be collected from your hotel and taken to sample Lucknow’s famous street food - particularly its barbeque ‘tikkas’ and ‘kebabs’. Lunch will be at the famous Tunda’s Kebabs, which is one of the best known food outlets in the city. You can spend the rest of the day relaxing at your hotel, or you may wish to explore Lucknow on your own.
This morning you will be collected from your hotel and taken to the airport to board your flight to Kolkata (formerly known as Calcutta). On arrival in Kolkata you will be met by our representative and taken to your hotel.
You can spend the rest of the day relaxing at your hotel, or you may wish to explore Kolkata on your own.
In the evening you will be taken for a cooking demonstration and dinner at a traditional Bengali home. Bengali food is characterized by the use of mustard oil and five basic spices: zeera (cumin), kalaunji (nigella), saunf (fennel), methi (fenugreek) and sarson (mustard seeds). The cuisine generally consists of a variety of rice dishes and fresh water fish delicacies. Bengali sweets such as Rasgulla, Sandesh, etc, are popular all over the world.
This morning you will be collected from your hotel and taken to China Town for a traditional Chinese breakfast. Later in the afternoon you will be taken for a short sightseeing tour of the city - visiting the Victoria Memorial, the Botanical Gardens and the Indian Museum.
Today you will be collected from your hotel and taken to the airport to board your flight to Chennai. On arrival you’ll be met by our representative and taken to your hotel.
This evening today you’ll be taken to a speciality restaurant to experience unique Chettinadu cuisine. Chettinad cuisine is famous for its use of a variety of spices in preparing mainly non-vegetarian food. The dishes are hot and pungent with fresh ground masalas and topped with a boiled egg that is usually considered essential part of a meal. They also use a variety of sun dried meats and salted vegetables reflecting the dry environment of the region. Most of the dishes are eaten with rice and rice based accompaniments such as dosas, appams, iddiappams, adais and idlis. The most important spices are marathi mokku (dried flower pods), anasipoo (star aniseed) and kalpasi (dried bark). In addition, tamarind, whole red chillies, saunf (fennel seeds), cinnamon, cloves, bay leaf, peppercorn and cumin seeds are widely used.
This morning you will be taken to explore Chennai - visiting Fort St George where you will see St Mary’s Church and other buildings associated with the Raj. You will also visit Kapaleeshwar Temple, dedicated to Lord Shiva. For lunch you will be taken to a famous local food outlet where you will sample traditional Tamil Brahmin Cuisine (South Indian vegetarian).
This morning you will be taken to the airport for flight to Cochin. On arrival you will be met and driven to board your houseboat.
Your backwater cruise in your houseboat will meander through the tranquil network of water canals, dotted with busy hamlets and lush green paddy fields. Whilst cruising through the backwaters of Kerala you will also have the opportunity to interact with your onboard cook who will prepare you some very traditional Keralan food.
After breakfast you’ll disembark from your houseboat and be driven to Cochin. This afternoon you’ll have time to rest, and this evening you’ll be taken to see a spectacular Kathakali Dance Drama show.
If Kerala is India's most beautiful state, which many believe, then the lovely port of Cochin is its jewel. It has been variously hailed as Queen of the Arabian Sea, Venice of Orient, etc. Some choose to call it simply a museum city for its rich past and colourful present. Cochin displays a blend of people and architecture. It is one place where you can see a Jewish synagogue, Portuguese churches, Dutch architecture, mosques, temples and Chinese fishing nets all in one day.
Today you will enjoy a guided tour of Cochin which will include visits to the Jewish Synagogue, the Mattancherry or Dutch Palace, St Francis Church and the famous Chinese fishing nets.
Today you will be driven to the airport for your flight to Mumbai. On arrival in Mumbai airport you will be met by a representative and taken to your hotel. The rest of the day is at leisure, or you may wish to explore the city on your own.
This evening you will be collected from your hotel and taken to Trishna Restaurant for dinner. A seafood speciality restaurant, Trishna is particularly famous for its crab preparations. It also serves up hyderabadi dal (spicy lentils), prawns koliwada (batter-fried prawns) and pomfret hyderabadi-style (a local fish barbecued with a coating of freshly ground.
This morning you will be taken for a half-day city tour of Mumbai – visiting Dhobi Ghat (Washermen Enclave), Gateway of India and the Prince of Wales Musuem (closed on Mondays).
For lunch you will be taken to famous Café Leopold’s; one of the oldest Cafés in Mumbai. The café is a great hangout place and is known for its relaxed ambiance, great food and reasonably priced drinks. The café was attacked by the terrorists during Bombay seize in November 2008, but it was quickly re-opened as a mark of total defiance of the terrorists.
Sadly your India culinary adventure is coming to an end. This morning you will be collected from your hotel and you will be transferred to Mumbai airport to board your flight home.