The memory of Mahatma Gandhi, the Father of the Indian nation is, as strong today as it ever was. The humble, dhoti clad venerable gentleman is without doubt the Soul of India. This tour follows in Gandhi’s footsteps from his birthplace in Porbandar, spending time in his ashram near Nagpur and on to the place of his assassination in Delhi. This makes a great academic study tour in India, or as a fascinating holiday for anyone interested in Indian history and this remarkable man. Finish off your holiday with an excursion to Agra to see the immortal Taj Mahal.
Depart from your home country for Mumbai.
Early morning arrival at Mumbai and transfer by domestic flight to Porbandar, Gandhi’s birthplace on the coast of Gujarat. Overnight in hotel at Porbandar.
Today we head out to explore the atmospheric city of Porbandar and really get a feeling for Mahatma Gandhi’s hometown, including a visit to the traditional haveli home in which he grew up. Next door to this is the Kirti Mandir, a memorial temple built in Gandhi’s honour in 1950, containing an intriguing exhibition on his life. Overnight in hotel at Porbandar.
Spend the day exploring and experiencing more of the coastal town of Porbandar. In the evening we transfer to the railway station for the overnight train (“Saurashtra Express”) to Ahmedabad, departing Porbandar at 20:25 and arriving in Ahmedabad the following morning at 06:00 (1st AC sleeper class).
On arrival in Ahmedabad, transfer and check into the hotel. After a quick freshen up we head out to visit the Sabarmati Ashram on the banks of the River Sabarmati, where Gandhi was based from 1917 to 1930. Founded in 1917, it is also known as Gandhi Ashram or the Harijan Ashram. It was from here on 12th March 1930 that Gandhi spearheaded the important Salt March, a 24-day march to the coast to make salt at Dandi, in defiant protest against British salt taxation. Overnight in hotel at Ahmedabad.
In its heyday Ahmedabad was known as the ‘The Manchester of the East’, and the Indian textile industry was central to Gandhi’s swadeshi (“self-sufficiency”) movement. Today visit the world-class Calico Museum of Textiles, for a deeper understanding of this rich tradition. In the evening head to the nearby Vishalla village restaurant for dinner, traditional music and dancing. Overnight in hotel at Ahmedabad.
Days 8 – 9: Sevagram Ashram was Gandhi’s headquarters from 1933 to 1947 where he and his followers lived out their ideals of village economics, and this is our base for the next few peaceful days. Please note that accommodation at the ashram, in keeping with Gandhi’s own philosophy of life, is extremely simple and on a triple share basis. Two nights at Sevagram Ashram.
Today we will visit the nearby ashram of Vinoba Bhave, an advocate on non-violence who is often considered the spiritual successor to Mahatma Gandhi. Overnight train Sampark Kranti Express in 1st AC (1725-0925 hrs) to Delhi.
Arrive at Delhi in the morning and in the afternoon visit to the spectacular Qutub Minar and Baha’i Lotus Temple. Overnight in hotel at Delhi.
Today visit India’s largest mosque, the Jama Masjid and Chandni Chowk bazaar, before taking a late afternoon train to Amritsar Shatabdi in 1st AC (16:50-22:35). Overnight at hotel in Amritsar.
Morning visit the beautiful Golden Temple to join in the daily devotions of the faithful, and later visit the Jallianwala Bagh, site of General Dyer’s massacre of civilians in 1919 following Gandhi’s early non-cooperation speeches. Overnight at hotel in Amritsar.
Day at leisure and evening visit to Wagah border to see the lowering of the flag ceremony at the border of India and Pakistan. Overnight at hotel in Amritsar.
Early morning Shatabdi in 1st AC (05:10-11:15) to Delhi. Afternoon visit to the Nehru Memorial Museum, originally the Prime Ministerial residence, now housing a record of Nehru’s role in the Independence movement. Overnight at hotel in Delhi.
No visit to North India is complete without a stop at the Taj Mahal, the world’s greatest monument to love. Overnight at hotel in Delhi.