Riding horses through the beautiful rugged terrains of Shekhawati is an incredible life-time experience. The memory of riding the lovely gentle Marwari horses combined with stay in magnificent heritage forts, castles & palaces owned and operated by members of the former ruling families, slow-cooked cuisine and rejuvenating Ayurvedic massages and genuine warmth on display will last long after you have taken this sojourn. Meet simple folks tilling the land, tending their cattle or baking chappatis for a hearty meal. The men wear colourful turbans women bright skirts as if to compensate for the stark landscape.
Shekhawati is a treasure trove of fresco paintings that adorn the havelis ( mansions ) in its several towns. You will get to see and photograph them as you walk through the lanes and colourful bazaars throbbing with activities. The whole region is any photographer's delight.
Distance covered in a day would vary between 25 and 40 kms.
Delicious lunch is served during the ride in a picnic spot.
Stay in beautiful heritage castles and havelis full of character. I call them non-hotel hotels for their exceptional personal touch without being intrusive.
Three rejuvenating Ayurvedic massages of 45-50 minutes.
A thrilling jeep safari deep into the forests of a wildlife sanctuary.
Evenings are enlivened with folk dances sublime desert music & puppet shows as you enjoy bar-be-cue.
A farewell gala dinner with unlimited drinks hosted by the safari organizers KV Singh his wife Rudrani Singh
We request that horse riders bring their riding gear or purchase Jodhpuri breeches, hat and boots etc from the local market.
Basic riding ability is a must for enjoying our horse safaris. Guests should be comfortable putting the horse through its paces.
Best time : Mid-September to March
Day 1 : New Delhi
Guests will be received at IGI International Airport, New Delhi, by our representative whatever time they arrive and will be escorted in an ac car to the hotel. Here the guests will be received in the finest Hindu tradition of garlanding with roses and application of vermillion on the forehead. This marks an auspicious start to your journey to India.
Dinner & Overnight at the hotel.
Day 2 : New Delhi - Mandawa
After an early breakfast leave in an ac car on a 5-hour drive to Mandawa, a beautiful town located in the heart of Shekhawati region. Mandawa is world-famous for its frescoes. Check into Castle Mandawa. After lunch and some rest take a walking tour through the colourful bazaar of the town, stopping now & then to talk to the people or take photographs. Indians are generally delighted to be photographed - and no permission is required !
Return to the Castle for a swim, an Ayurvedic massage and buffet dinner.
Overnight at the Castle
Day 3 : Mandawa
After break and a small briefing about the safari plan the guests will take a fresco trail walk of the town to visit the fresco painted havelis ( mansions ). Return to the Castle for buffet lunch in its Jai Niwas dining hall.
A siesta and a swim in the Castle's pool.
At 4 pm the guests will leave for the stables putting on their riding gear. Take a casual ride in the evening to familiarize with their horses. The purpose to see that everyone is comfortable in their saddles before the safari begins the next day. After the casual ride the guests will take high tea at the stables and have an interactive session with the safari leaders for any issue regarding the horses or equipment.
A sumptuous dinner at the Castle while a soft folk music is played.
Overnight at the Castle.
Day 4 : Mandawa - Churi Ajitgarh
ChuriAjitgarh is a mofussil town situated 28 km from Mandawa. The ride will start from Desert Resort and first head to a water reservoir that was constructed nearly 250 years ago. It is a fine example of water storage in the old times that met the needs of farmers and their cattle. From here we will ride to a hamlet where we will be warmly received by the villagers. They will be delighted to be photographed with the guests. Tea and snacks will be served to the riders where the villagers will join. After this great bonhomie the guests will ride to the point where lunch has been laid out. After a 2-hour break guests we will ride to the lovely 19th century Vivaana Haveli and reach there by sunset.
Dinner & overnight at the haveli.
Day 5 : ChuriAjitgarh - Nawalgarh
After breakfast we will leave for Nawalgarh at a distance of 25 kms. Nawalgarh has the largest number of fresco adorned havelis. An important feature of these havelis is a central courtyard within them. Some of these havelis are more than 300 years old with amazing facades of colourful frescos depicting the social and religious life of the people. As we ride through this beautiful terrain we will get to see these frescos as also village life. We will stop over in a village to have tea and interact with the friendly villagers. We will proceed farther and halt enroute to Nawalgarh for lunch. On reaching Nawalgarh we will check into the exquisite Koolwal Kothi built in 1934. The Kothi reflects the regal grandeur of that era. Its fresco painted restaurant has a beautiful ambience.
Dinner and overnight at this Kothi ( mansion )
Day 6 : Nawalgarh - Meetwas
Before breakfast the guests will take a short tour of the town to visit the iconic Poddar Museum, Sheesh Mahal ( Mirror Palace ), Morarka Haveli temples. On return to hotel and after breakfast at 8 AM guests will mount the horses and leave for Meetwas located 30 km from Nawalgarh. Enroute the riders will halt for lunch and rest. Their night will be spent at Meetwas in beautifully appointed tents with attached bathrooms, sitting area and a verandah. The tent will have facilities of running hot or cold water, proper toilet seat, basin, shower area, clothes and towel rack. The only thing missing would be electricity. Emergency lights will be provided. Enjoy bonfire and bar-be-cue and lilting folk music followed by slow-cooked food. Gaze the stars with telescope on this unforgettable night.
Day 7 : Meetwas - Mahansar
After breakfast you will ride 30 km to reach Mahansar and check into the majestic Mahansar Fort.
Mahansar was well-known in the ancient times for its trading in ornaments, precious stones till the business communities migrated to bigger cities and towns. However this place has maintained its tradition of heritage liquor brewing. The scions of former royal family has continued the tradition and the liquor brewed has earned world-wide fame. It is produced from herbs, clarified butter and dry fruits. You must taste it ! The riders will disembark at the village called Thimoli for lunch. Riders will try their hands at kite flying while folk musicians entertain them. After two hours riders embark on a journey to Mahansar Fort for a warm welcome by its owner. He will show you around and regale you with anecdotes of his ancestors. The rustic environs of the fort lends to its great charm. The family that owns the fort loves cooking and you can look forward to enjoying delicious kebabs, mutton dishes and biryanis. Overnight at the Fort.
Day 8 : Mahansar - Alsisar
Alsisar founded in 1783 ,is a mofussil town located in the arid semi desert. Like in the rest of Shekhawati the place has a heritage castle, havelis and cenotaphs. After breakfast we will leave Mahansar Fort for Alsisar. We will ride through quaint villages & hamlets, the dwellings largely made of mud. At lunch time we will stop at a lovely spot where food will be served. After rest for 2 hours we will embark for Alsisar and check into the exquisite Indra Vilas hotel. After rest and a swim enjoy an Ayurvedic massage. Take a walking tour of Alsisar if you wish. Enjoy a sumptuous dinner which will be followed by a photography & interactive session. Overnight at the hotel.
Day 9 : Alsisar - Mandawa
After breakfast guests will head towards Castle Mandawa situated 40 kms from Alsisar. There will be a 2- hour stopover for a delicious lunch. On reaching Castle Mandawa enjoy a well-deserved rejuvenating Ayurvedic massage. Your safari organizer will host a farewell gala dinner for you with unlimited drinks. This will followed by presentation of mementos to the guests by the safari organize wife Rudrani Singh. Overnight at the Castle.
Day 10 : Mandawa - New Delhi
After breakfast drive to New Delhi well in time to board your flight back home. Our representative will provide you full assistance at the IGI International Airport to ensure your smooth departure.
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A NOTE ABOUT MARWARI HORSES
The Marwari horses are indigenous to Marwar which lies in the Western part of Rajasthan State of India. They were mostly used for battles and endurance. Presently they are bred for riding. A distinctive feature of a Marwari horse is that its 2 turning ears meet at the top. The closest relatives of these horses are the hot blooded Arabian horses. Marwari horses are very intelligent and quick to respond. The history of Marwari horses or battles fought in Rajasthan is incomplete without the mention of the Marwari horse that Maharana Pratap, the king of Mewar rode, in the battles and how it served the master with great faithfulness.
USEFUL ITEMS RIDERS ARE REQUESTED TO BRING OR PURCHASE LOCALLY
Riding cap or helmet * Sheep skin for saddle * Small torch, flashlight and binoculars * Sun hat * Sun cream Bath gown for ladies * Lightweight raincoat * Leather chaps * Camera * Battery charge with a cigarette lighter lead * Sunglasses * Lanyards * Riding gloves * Bandana * Jodhpuris or long trousers * Long-sleeved cotton shirts * Video & picture camera * Inct repellent * Any medicines taken regularly.
PRE-EXISTING MEDICAL HISTORY & ALLERGIC REACTIONS
Please let us know if you have any serious pre-existing medical history and any allergic reaction to food, etc.
OTHER IMPORTANT INFORMATION
Riders should not be less than eight years in age & weigh less than 95 kgs.
The safaris can be extended if we know well ahead of the trip. Also, guests can take heritage, culture, wellness and wildlife tours of incredible India before flying back home.
Every guest is requested to buy travel & health insurance as riding is always at the risk of the riders.
We are not liable for any accident, injury or fatality during the safari.
We strongly recommend wearing of helmets, proper riding breeches and boots.
Non riders can join this tour: they can enjoy several exciting activities on each day.
Best time: Mid-September to March. Below rates valid for years 2023-2024 (March)
Minimum riders : 4 Maximum : 12
AC transport throughout including receiving at IGI Airport New Delhi & driving back on the 10th day on conclusion of the safari.
Accommodation in heritage forts, castles, palaces havelis and ac tents
All breakfasts, lunches & dinners. Includes a gala farewell dinner. This dinner includes unlimited drinks besides bar-be-cue.
A lovely gift for each gift ! Groom charges.
All entrance & other activities fees as per itinerary.
Snacks, mineral water & juices & beer
Insurance of any kind