Welcome aboard the Deccan Odyssey. Early this evening assemble at the Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus at approximately 1530 hours to complete the registration process and check in formalities for your Jewels of the Deccan journey, as you receive a traditional Indian welcome and enjoy a refreshing welcome drink. After completion of all formalities, you will be shown to your delightful cabins. As you settle in, the Deccan Odyssey shall depart Mumbai for Bijapur in Karnataka. Dinner on board, Overnight on Deccan Odyssey
Relish breakfast this morning as the Deccan Odyssey arrives at Bijapur, the historic capital of the Sultans of Deccan. In the second half of 16th and early 17th century, under the aegis of the Adil Shahi dynasty, their capital city of Bijapur occupied a prominent place among the celebrated cities of India and even surpassed great cities of Delhi, Agra and Mughal India. Due to the secular nature and liberal patronage of the Adil Shahi Sultans, many scholars, poets, painters, dancers, calligraphers, musicians, Sufi saints and other men of arts flocked to Bijapur which also came to be known as the 'Palmyra of the Deccan'. After breakfast, disembark and first head to the Gol Gumbaz, literally ‘round dome’, and the second largest tomb in the world; the mausoleum of Adil Shah, the Sultan of Bijapur, it is a structural triumph of Deccan architecture, with a circular gallery where the tiniest of whispers gets magnified owing to the unique acoustics of the dome. Next, head to the Jumma Masjid, known as one of the first mosques in India and then visit Malik-e-Maidan, the largest medieval cannon in the world. Don't hesitate to make a wish here as legend has it that if you touch the gun and make a wish, it will come true! Visit Mehtar Mahal, a 17th century ornamental gateway to a mosque. Then, drive to and explore Ibrahim Rouza, considered amongst the most elegant Islamic monuments in India; its 24m high minarets said to have inspired those of the Taj Mahal. Return to the Deccan Odyssey for lunch on board as it departs for Aihole and Pattadakal. Spend the evening marvelling at the subtly changing shades of the formidable granite landscape as the Deccan Odyssey snakes its way through the Deccan plateau. Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner on board. Overnight on Deccan Odyssey
Rise early this morning, and after breakfast head out to explore the temples and ancient settlements of Aihole and Pattadakal, one of the world's largest temple complexes.
Aihole, is often called the cradle of Indian architecture. Explore a few of the over 70 rock cut temples constructed by the Chalukyan kings in a completely experimental style, with each temple different from the others in the complex and even from other temples in India itself. Continue on to Pattadakal situated on the banks of the Malaprabha River and explore the architectural style here which combines South Indian (Dravidian) and North Indian (Nagara) forms. Enjoy a packed lunch in the lawns at Pattadakal as you continue to take in the beauty of the architecture around you. Thereafter drive to a little town called Guledgud, famous for its hand and power looms of ilkal and khann. Observe the process of weaving and head to an outlet where you can pick up lovely souvenirs to carry back home. Return to the Bagalkot Station and board the Deccan Odyssey which will be stationed here for the night. Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner on board, Overnight on Deccan Odyssey
This morning, after breakfast you will disembark and drive to Badami. Bright yellow sunflower fields and red-ochre hues from the sandstone hills, announce the arrival of Badami. With your guide, explore its four cave temples that represent the secular nature of the Chalukyan rulers, with tolerance and religious beliefs inclined towards Hinduism, Jainism and Buddhism. These cave temples overlook the 5th century Agustyamuni tank which has Shiva temples and a lovely museum on the other bank. Drive to Badami Court for lunch; soak in the views of the red sandstone hills that stand guard to the place. Visit a sculpting school and watch students at work as they deftly and skillfully create emotion out of stone. Continue to the Shiva Yoga Mandir which specialises in the making of vibhuti, sacred ash, from cowdung. Thereafter visit a khadi manufacturing unit, a fabric popularised by Mahatma Gandhi during India’s freedom struggle as a symbol of self-reliance. Return to the Deccan Odyssey. This evening, enjoy a few Deccan specials for dinner. Breakfast on board; Lunch at a local restaurant; Dinner on board, Overnight on Deccan Odyssey
This morning as you enjoy breakfast, the Deccan Odyssey rolls into Hospet. Today you will visit the iconic City of Victory, Hampi, a World Heritage site, famous for its splendid architecture, sculptures and their historical significance. Stop at the Narasimha statue and spend some time taking pictures and looking around. Next head to the mustard Ganesh, located at the base of the Hemkuta hills, and quite a misnomer as the elephant God statue here is anything but small! Take in the breathtaking vistas around the hills with their little caves and alcoves. Walk the banks of the Tungabhadra River as you leave the Virupaksha Temple on to the famed Vittala temple, the polar power sites of Hampi, one is a living temple, the other a most extravagant architectural showpiece. Take a break at the lovely sprawling Sloth Bear resort for a leisurely lunch. After lunch continue your exploration, reaching the Royal Center at Hampi. This area was the citadel of the Vijayanagara kings and encompasses courtly and military structures. Visit the Queens Bath, The Stepped Tank, The Mahanavami Dibba or great platform, where a ramp is available to reach its summit, The Hazararama Temple, The Queens Enclosure with its Lotus Mahal and the Elephant stables. After a full day of visiting the wonders of Hampi, return to the Hospet station. Board the Deccan Odyssey for your onward journey to Hyderabad as you sit down at dinner. Breakfast and Dinner on board; Lunch at the Sloth Bear resort. Overnight on Deccan Odyssey.
This morning the Deccan Odyssey rolls into royal city of the Nizams, Hyderabad. Legends abound over how this capital of the Asaf Jahi dynasty came to be called Hyderabad. One of the more interesting ones is that it was named after Bhagmati, the Hindu wife of Muhammad Quli Qutb Shah, who converted to Islam and changed her name to Hyder Mahal. Breakfast over, disembark and drive to visit to the weaving village of Pochampally, a cluster of about 80 villagers where weavers are striving to keep alive the art of the ikat or tie and dye weaving. One of these skilled artisans will demonstrate to you the uniqueness of the ikat weave which lies in the transfer of design and colouring onto warp and weft threads first and then weaving them together. Return to the Deccan Odyssey for lunch and a little rest before you disembark once again to explore the old city area of Charminar and the bustling bazaar there. Standing tall in the centre of the city, Charminar is a global icon for Hyderabad and one of the most recognized structures of India. It was ostensibly built there by Muhammad Quli Qutb Shah to fulfill his vow of building a mosque if the plague epidemic ravaging the city ceased. It is interesting to walk through and shop in the markets in the Charminar area, a busy bustling area. Walk through Laad Bazaar for the local jewellery, especially exquisite bangles, and to Pather Gatti for the famous Deccan pearls. Continue on to Falaknuma Palace, he name means “like the sky”, as it stands tall, reaching for the clouds. Take a tour of this beautiful palace followed by a sumptuous high tea. Return to the Deccan Odyssey for dinner and a restful evening as you will be stationed at Hyderabad for the night. Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner on board, High tea at the Falaknuma Palace. Overnight on Deccan Odyssey.
After a leisurely breakfast this morning, disembark and drive towards the epitome of Nizami culture and grandeur, Golconda. Originally a mud fort, it soon acquired impressive proportions after becoming the seat of power of the Qutub Shahi dynasty. Explore the serene Qutub Shahi tombs, truly magnificent monuments erected in memory of the departed kings of Golconda that have stood the test of time and the vagaries of nature. Like the Gol Gumbaz at Bijapur, sounds resonate through the entire complex owing to the marvelous acoustics here. Return to the Deccan Odyssey in time for lunch on board. After lunch the afternoon is free to relax and enjoy the last leg of your journey as the Deccan Odyssey sets forth for Mumbai. Enjoy a cocktail from our bar as you relax and catalogue your impressions of India gathered over your journey of the past few days. Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner on board; Overnight on Deccan Odyssey
Early this morning, after breakfast, you will disembark at Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus, Mumbai. Bid farewell to the Deccan Odyssey as your royal passage through the grand vistas of India comes to an end. Breakfast on board
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