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Hidden Treasures of the Deccan Plateau

16 days from £3340 per person

Standing separate from the regular tourist-trail, the states of Karnataka and Andhra Pradesh are at the centre of a staggeringly diverse region few visit. A heady mix of culture and history, this novel itinerary represents a journey of rediscovery with visits to Mysore, spectacular Hampi and the exceptional Islamic architecture of Bijapur, Gulbarga and Bidar. This is a land not yet developed for tourism and whilst this journey will take you off the beaten track, it ends with three nights in bustling Hyderabad at the luxurious Taj Falaknuma Palace.

Route: Bangalore – Mysore – Hassan – Hospet – Badami – Bijapur – Gulbarga – Hyderabad

Itinerary Highlights

Hampi was once the centre of the powerful and successful Vijayanagara Empire and there are an amazing array of palaces and temples to explore at the exceptional archaeological site.

Little-visited Bijapur is home to some of the finest Mughal Islamic architecture in India. Visit the Gol Gumbaz, with its huge dome, and the beautiful 17th century Ibrahim Rauza mausoleum.

Hyderabad is the fourth most populous city in India. Its ornate buildings are a delight, displaying the wealth of artistic talent within the region with the Charminar a particular highlight.

Itinerary: Hidden Treasures of the Deccan Plateau

Today depart the UK on the British Airways flight to Bangalore. (N)
Arrive into Bangalore where you will be met and driven to pretty Mysore for a two night stay. In the afternoon take a two hour specialist heritage walk in the city which starts at the Town Hall, visits the Devaraja Market and ends at the Jagan Mohan Palace. During the walk the guide will share various stories from Mysore's past and there will also be a chance to taste ‘Mysore Pak’, the city's famous sweet. (N)
Accommodation in Mysore: Gitanjali Homestay (or similar)
Upgrade option: Royal Orchid Metropole Hotel (or similar)
Today explore Mysore. Visit Chamundi Hill, site of the Chamundeswari Temple and Nandi Bull as well as the vast City Palace which was re-built by Henry Irwin during 1897 in an Indo-Saracenic style. The palace contains extraordinary wall paintings, stained glass work and inlaid doors. Also leave the city to visit the temple complex at Somnathpur and the exquisite Keshava Vishnu temple, one of the finest in India, as well as Srirangapatnam where Tipu Sultan was killed in battle against an East India Company army including Arthur Wellesley, the future Duke of Wellington. (B)
Accommodation in Mysore: Gitanjali Homestay (or similar)
Upgrade option: Royal Orchid Metropole Hotel (or similar)
This morning leave Mysore and visit the Jain pilgrimage site of Sravanabelagola. Defined by its towering statue of Gommateshwara which stands proudly atop its hill, the summit is reached by a steep seven-hundred step climb past several small shrines. (B)
Accommodation in Hassan: Hoysala Village Resort (or similar)
Today visit the nearby temples of Belur and Halebid. Located on the banks of the Yagachi River, the temples at Belur where built during the 12th and 13th centuries under the tutelage of the Hoysala kings whilst nearby Halebid was once the ancient capital of the Hoysala kings. The temples at both sites are quite exquisite and are characterised by their fine sculptures and intricate designs. (B)
Accommodation in Hassan: Hoysala Village Resort (or similar)
After breakfast leave Hassan and continue by road to Hospet, a small market town and base from which to visit nearby Hampi. Once the epicentre of the Vijayanagara Empire, Hampi was one of the largest and most successful Hindu empires in southern India. In the evening enjoy the sunset from Hemakuta Hill. (B)
Accommodation in Hospet: Heritage Resort Hampi (or similar)
Upgrade option: Hampi's Boulders Resort
Alternative upgrade option: Orange County Hampi
Over the next two days explore the exceptional ruins of Hampi, a UNESCO World Heritage Site and centre one of the largest Hindu empires ever to have existed in Indian history. Founded in 1336 AD, evidence of the city's greatness is impossible to miss and an amazing array of palaces and temples still exist in excellent condition. Highlights include the Vitthala Temple, Stone Chariot, Lotus Mahal and Queen's Bath but there are also a plethora of other buildings and ruins. (B)
Accommodation in Hospet: Heritage Resort Hampi (or similar)
Upgrade option: Hampi's Boulders Resort
Alternative upgrade option: Orange County Hampi
Leaving Hospet, drive north through Karnataka to the village of Badami. With a striking location, this former Chalukyan capital is best known for its Hindu and Jain cave temples that occupy a spectacular setting cut into the cliff-face of a sandstone hill that looks over this ancient village. (B)
Accommodation in Badami: Badami Court Hotel (or similar)
Start the day with a visit to the cave temples above Badami which are thought to date from the second half of the 6th century AD. Later continue to the nearby village of Pattadakal, a UNESCO World Heritage Site and home to an impressive 8th century temple complex. End the day in Aihole which is regarded as the birthplace of Indian temple architectural design. Here there are over 140 temples which illustrate a range of differing styles from Hoysala and Dravida to Jain, Buddhist and Nagara. (B)
Accommodation in Badami: Badami Court Hotel (or similar)
This morning continue to Bijapur, a town distinct from the surrounding area and home to a beautiful collection of Mughal Islamic architecture. In the afternoon explore the town, places of interest include the Golgumbaz, a towering mausoleum which has the second largest unsupported dome in the world, and the beautiful 17th century Ibrahim Rauza. (B)
Accommodation in Bijapur: Basava Residency (or similar)
Today continue onto Gulbarga. Noted for its fort this afternoon visit the citadel, the Khwaja Banda Nawaz Darga and the tombs of the Bahmani sultans including the beautiful Haft Gumbaz, the Hazrat Gesu Nawaz and highly decorated Taj-ud-Din Firuz. (B)
Accommodation in Gulbarga: Lumbini's Grand Hotel (or similar)
After breakfast leave Gulbarga and medieval Bidar to visit the palaces, harem and mosques of the fabulous fort, later continue to Hyderabad. Offering a unique insight into the extravagant lifestyle of the Nizams, Falaknuma Palace was completed in 1893 and has hosted visiting royalty from King George V to Russian Tsar Nicholas II. Today this luxury hotel remains home to priceless art, rich handcrafted tapestries, Venetian chandeliers and delicate frescos. (B)
Accommodation in Hyderabad: Taj Banjara Hotel (or similar)
Upgrade option: Taj Krishna Hotel
Alternative upgrade option: Taj Falaknuma Palace
Over the next two days explore Hyderabad with your guide. Founded in 1589 by the fifth Sultan of Golconda, Hyderabad was ruled by a succession of Muslim Nizams from 1724 which many of the city's monuments dating from this period. Highlights here include the Mecca Masjid Mosque, iconic 17th century Char Minar, Chowmahalla Palace, bustling Lad Bazaar and the Salar Jung Museum. Also travel outside of the city to visit the 700 year old Golconda Fort—one of the most impressive citadels of its kind in India. (B)
Accommodation in Hyderabad: Taj Banjara Hotel (or similar)
Upgrade option: Taj Krishna Hotel
Alternative upgrade option: Taj Falaknuma Palace
Today transfer to Hyderabad Airport to catch the British Airways flight non-stop to the UK. (B)
**KEY: N = No meals, B = Breakfast, L = Lunch, D = Dinner

What To Do Next?

We design unique, tailor-made holiday itineraries to suit you, by combining your ideas with our knowledge and experience. Once you have an idea of what you’re looking for, or if you require some advice, please call us or complete the enquiry form online for a quotation.

What's included

  • International flights from the UK
  • Private car with English speaking driver
  • Sightseeing with local English speaking guides
  • Hotel accommodation and taxes

What's not included

  • Cost of visas
  • Travel Insurance
  • Expenses of a personal nature

Guide to Price

The above price is based on two people travelling together and sharing accommodation in low season. The price is only a guide and can vary according to selected airlines, hotels and date of travel. If you wish to travel with your family, friends or on your own we will be very happy to assist you with your arrangements.

Experts in Tailor-Made Holidays

For over 30 years, Pettitts Travel have led the way in creating authentic, tailor-made holidays. Our knowledgeable team have first-hand knowledge of our destinations and no two itineraries we prepare are the same.

Please call us for more information or complete the online enquiry form to request a quotation.

01892 515 966 Request a Quote

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