In September 2016, the Jacques Marchais Museum of Tibetan Art took a group of 14 intrepid travelers to India. We traveled with Padam Shresth and A Hospitality Club, and Indian based travel company. Our tour started in Mumbai where we visited Elephanta Caves, and the Prince of Wales Museum. We then participated in the annual Ganesh Festival where we observed the prayers and chanting around the Ganesh statues.
Our Group outside the Elephanta Caves in Mumbai.
The next stop on our journey was the City of Udaipur in Rajasthan where we visited the Royal Palace, a Shiva Temple, and an artists studio. Later that day we enjoyed boating on the lake. For an audio tour of our trip from Mumbai to Rajasthan, click here.
Our group at the Royal Palace, Udaipur.
The trip continued with a stop in Jaipur where we visited the Pink Palace and the Royal Observatory. At night we were entertained by local singers and dancers and some of our group even joined in. We then traveled to Pushkar where some of the braver members of the group rode on camel and camel carts. That evening we visited a Brahma temple.
We had an exciting time in Varanasi and Sarnath. In Varanasi, we sailed on the Ganges and watched the locals bathe. We visited Sarnath, the site where the Buddha gave his first sermon and saw many ancient Buddhist sculpture and ruins. Later that evening we returned to Varanasi and toured the city by rickshaw and then observed evening prayers from a boat on the Ganges.
View of Varanasi from the Ganges.
After Varanasi it was on to Agra where we visited the Red Fort, and of course, the Taj Mahal. We were up at sunrise but it was worth every minute of the early morning wake up call. To hear more about Varanasi click here.
We flew to Delhi where we visited the Qutab Minar and then set out on our flight to Dharamsala.
Making some new friends at the Qutab Minar.
One of the highlights of our trip was a visit to Dharamsala, home to the Dalai Lama and a large community of Tibetans. We had the pleasure of meeting our friend Geshe Pema Dorje who had visited the Tibetan Museum a few years ago, and we also met with Tashi Phuntsok, the Director of the Tibet Museum in Dharamsala. We had a tour of the collection of the Library of Tibetan Works and Archives and we also visited the Nechung Monastery and the Dalai Lama temple complex. We also browsed (and purchased) some wonderful items at the many stalls and shops that line the streets of Dharamsala.
At the Library of Tibetan Works and Archives.
On our way back from Dharamsala to Delhi, we stopped at the Golden Temple at Amristar. In addition to touring the grounds and learning quite a bit about the Sikh religion, we also toured their Community Kitchen where they served 65,000 meals per day.
At the Golden Temple.
We spent our last day in Delhi visiting the place of Gandhi’s cremation as well as the Red Mosque. After a lunch of South Indian cuisine, we visited Tibet House in New Delhi. For a podcast about the last part of our journey, please click here.
Delicious lunch in Delhi.
We hope you have enjoyed this travel blog. If you are interested in traveling with us, please email firstname.lastname@example.org and we will add you to our travel list for updates about future trips.
Next Stop, Japan, September 8 – 22, 2017. Please check our social media pages as we will be posting throughout the trip.