My Golden Tour of India with Enable Holidays – Part 2

Jama Masjid An early start to try and avoid the traffic, we set off to visit Jama Masjid – one of Asia’s largest mosques. As mentioned yesterday, the ring road is a complete free-for-all. Today, however, the challenge was stretched even further when I noticed that in the inside lane (if there is such a thing here in Delhi) was a bull elephant as large as you like going about his business in a most nonchalant fashion. He actually turned out to be the first of three elephants I would see before reaching my destination.

After visiting the famous mosque, I took a ride along Chadni Chowk in a native cycle-rickshaw. This mode of transport is very popular in India and it’s surprising how effective they are for getting from A to B. The ride was a real experience with the guy pedalling as fast as he could down the narrow streets that were populated by bullocks and carts on one side and tuck tucks on the other. It was amazing to see the locals setting up for the day there with their colourful offerings of flowers, food, fabric, fresh fruit, pots and ceramics – and every other form of saleable item. It was a sight to behold, and almost as if I had stepped back in time to India of old. Truly memorable!

Our next stop was Raj Ghat where Ghandhiji was cremated. I’m pleased to report that it was accessible for most part, and truly amazing to still be in the centre of Delhi whilst surrounded by a peacefulness that was only broken by the constant sweet notes of birdsong. And the variety of birds you can see is staggering – from small common garden birds to parakeets, crows, circling kites and other birds of prey. Upon leaving Raj Ghat, the therapeutic feathered chorus was replaced by honking horns and the sounds of hectic life in a modern city. My next stop was a visit to Humayan’s tomb, which is another very worthwhile historical site to experience – and again mainly accessible, apart from the last staircase of this precursor of the Taj Mahal.

Raj Ghat Today is the Hindu festival of Goddess Durga. This is celebrated in many ways, including fasting for a single day or up to seven days, the shaving of hair, and the sacrifice of animals in the street. In fact, I witnessed the sacrifice of a lamb, a goat and a chicken, before seeing a little girl of around two years of age having her head shaved. It all made pretty sad viewing to be honest, and the little girl seemed very distraught to see her locks falling to the ground. I do however accept it is a local ritual and did appreciate the colour and excitement that was mounting when I left the celebrations.

My afternoon was spent at the Anna Ruche logical site and inspecting four hotels, where once again I was able to witness smiling faces, excellent service and superb facilities.

Agra

An early start this morning and time to say goodbye to Delhi and move onto Agra. The journey took us along the new Express Way, which was 5 years in the making but has now reduced the journey from Delhi to Agra substantially and there are several adapted comfort breaks on the way. The land north of Delhi is very flat and mainly comprises miles and miles of farmland; but the nearer we got to Agra the temperature increased dramatically and the fields were populated by local farmers – men, women and children – all working on the land with their rustic carts being pulled by loyal oxen and donkeys.

Family in cart As we approached Agra we crossed the Yamuna River where a herd of water buffalo were basking in the muddy water alongside children enjoying their daily dip. The traffic in the centre of Agra was just as hectic as that witnessed in Delhi with carts, tuk tuks, cycles, coaches and cars all competing for the same two lanes. It was noted however that cows clearly had priority above everything else – but as they are sacred animals it was hardly surprising. So we had no option other than to manoeuvre around them.

In the distance I caught my first glimpse of the amazing Taj Mahal which we will be visiting tomorrow morning – and as we took the main road into Agra we could see monkeys watching the traffic and chattering among themselves on the windowsills of derelict buildings. Now I do realise that these chummy characters are very nifty souls and will happily steal anything edible from anything or anyone, but they did look really innocent and endearing.

Read an interview with Lynne Kirby.

For holidays for those in wheelchairs, with limited mobility or slow walkers, Silver Travel Advisor recommends Enable Holidays.

198 people found this helpful
16915

Share Article:

Silver Travel Advisor

Leave a comment

*

Sign up to our newsletter to receive the latest travel tips on top destinations.

Join the club

Become a member to receive exclusive benefits

Our community is the heart of Silver Travel Advisor, we love nothing more than sharing ideas, inspiration, hints and tips between us.

Most Recent Articles

Geoff Moore joined events across the island to celebrate Liberation Day, one of the most important dates in Guernsey’s calendar…
The Royal Shakespeare Company offers far more than just live theatre as Gillian Thornton found out on a visit to…

Come feel the love on a Princess cruise. You’ll enjoy the MedallionClass experience others simply can’t, and it’s exclusively for everyone. Visit incredible destinations and be involved in the best experiences around each one of them.

Experience more with Princess and connect effortlessly with the world around you, spend time away with loved ones, take a moment for yourself, and fall in love with your holiday of a lifetime, every time.

With over 20 years of experience, Wendy Wu Tours has mastered the art of creating exceptional, fully inclusive tours which showcase the very best of each destination.

Each tour is led by a world-class guide, who will highlight the very best of their homeland, and includes authentic cultural experiences so you are not just seeing the sights, but truly immersing yourself in local life.

Say hello to ease at sea. Ambassador’s purpose is simple: they want to inspire every guest to experience authentic cruising, effortlessly and sustainably. Passionate about protecting our oceans and destinations, their ships comply with the highest industry emission standards and there is no single-use plastic on board.

On your voyage, you will receive the warmest of welcomes from the Ambassador community as you sail upon the friendliest ships afloat.

This is a global co-operative co-owned by local partners using real local experts and guides, which supports local communities, environments and wildlife. It offers travellers quirky places to stay, activity holidays and learning experiences. Not In The Guidebooks gets travellers off the beaten track into local culture with day experiences and longer, immersive adventures.

From wild wellness breaks in Wales to painting in Portugal, sustainable adventures in Mauritius to food safaris in Brazil, this is immersive, exciting travel.

Seabourn’s five intimate ships carry guests to the heart of great cities, exclusive yacht harbours and secluded coves around the world, while two new purpose-built expedition ships will combine exhilarating adventures in remote destinations with the sophisticated amenities of the world’s finest resorts at sea.

From the luxury of all suite accommodations to complimentary fine wines and spirits, and a no tipping policy, Seabourn exemplifies the definition of travelling well.