Rajasthan Reimagined

A NEW TOUR: An enthralling, luxury journey through Rajasthan with Australia’s leading connoisseur of India – a small group tour like no other-
jewelled palaces, majestic forts, regal estates, opulent tents, desert landscapes.

There’s nary a corner of Rajasthan Marieke has not explored and toured these last three decades, but she recently took fresh eyes to the region’s magic possibilities, curating a new program that takes you on roads less travelled, preserves the icons, but takes you deeper into this ancient, mesmerising land and fascinating history. 


  • superb heritage properties and romantic palaces that make you feel like royalty
  • sleeping in the sand dunes under desert stars – you might even ride a camel
  • traditional music and authentic folk entertainment
  • fabulous shopping for the beautifully hand-made


LENGTH: 15 Days
TYPE: Small Group Tour | AoL Escorted | Bespoke
STYLE: Culture  | Crafts | History | Food | Adventure
START/FINISH: Delhi | Delhi


All meals, expert Indian guide, activities, tour manager, domestic flights


Deluxe + Heritage hotels, luxury Desert Camp + Palaces


Luxury A/C Mercedes minivan


9 – 23 March 2023


from USD 9,500 per person based on twin/double share
Minimum 6 travellers


  • DAY 1


    Arrive into Delhi and transfer to one of the city’s most prestigious hotels that evokes the British Raj who made it their imperial capital. Meet your fellow adventurers and your exceptional guide, Marieke’s colleague for over two decades, Thakur Durga Singh.

  • DAY 2


    There is a short flight to Jodhpur then a road trip through the Thar desert to arrive at your exclusive camp with beautifully decorated tents. Nightly entertainment includes dinner around a blazing fire as musicians and dancers perform under the stars.

  • DAY 3


    Today’s activities include a jeep safari to traditional Bishnoi villages, and a sunset camel ride over the dramatic sand dunes. For keen early risers – the opportunity to visit Khichan, where thousands of demoiselle cranes come to feed, courtesy of the local Jain community.

  • DAY 4


    This morning drive through stirring desert landscapes to the city of Bikaner, one of Rajasthan’s most northern outposts often bypassed by travellers- yet significant for the achievements of an enlightened Maharaja who modernised education, banking, agriculture, irrigation and the justice system. Your exquisite boutique hotel is the former home of the last reigning Maharaja where art deco meets contemporary European tastes.

  • DAY 5


    A full day’s sightseeing includes the exceptional 16th-century Junagarh Fort, a huge complex of ornate buildings and halls, and Museum that displays traditional textiles and royal portraits; the ornate red sandstone Lalgarh Palace and Laxmi Niwas Palace both built in 1902; the exquisitely decorated Rampuria Havelis and various significant temples.

  • DAY 6


    Explore one of Rajasthan’s most brilliantly restored forts at the heart of the ancient city of Nagaur, one of the first Muslim strongholds in northern India at the fort of Ahhichatragar that dates from the early 12th century and was repeatedly altered over subsequent centuries, especially from the 16th- 18th Century.
    Later check into Jodhpur’s first boutique luxury hotel, a restored 18th Century haveli, housed within the walls of the old city with unparalleled views of the majestic Mehrangarh Fort where modernity meets the daily call to prayer from the local mosque.

  • DAY 7


    Today vist the marvellous treasures and splendidly rich museum collections of the Mehrangarh Fort, the Royal Cenotaphs, the bazaars in the old city, as well as the astonishing Umaid Bhawan Palace’s Museum. There is now also a new elegant precinct for shopping at Chand Haveli (Moon House) near the Tunwar-ji ka Jhalara (Step well).

  • DAY 8

    JODHPUR | Ranakpur | DELWARA

    This morning visit the splendid living Jain temple at Ranakpur with over 1444 white marble pillars, carved in exquisite detail.
This afternoon settle into your sumptuous palace suite at Devigarh – one of Art of Living’s all-time favourite boutique hotels. Surrounded by the majestic austerity of the Aravali mountains, this is a divine hotel (18thC fort on the outside and sleek contemporary Indian on the inside) with wonderful food, service, pool and spa and your sanctuary for two nights.

  • DAY 9


    A full day’s excursion to the romantic city of Udaipur to visit the City Palace complex and have enough time to roam and explore the old city’s maze of narrow winding streets, home to merchants, artisans, Mewar folk art, jewellery, antiques. The human cacophony is a bustling contrast to the tranquillity of Lake Pichola where Jagminder palace and the glorious dusks can be contemplated from a boat on the lake to catch the sun setting over the Lake Palace.

  • DAY 10


    This morning reach the charming, unspoiled village of Deogarh and settle into your elegant, stately home and meet dear friends and your hosts, one of Rajasthan’s most hospitable families. This evening, drinks are served in the courtyard, warmed by braziers before a splendid dinner of family recipes. If leopards have been sited, there may even be an opportunity at dusk to go and spot one.

  • DAY 11


    Today enjoy a gentle trek through the beautiful Aravali hills that enjoy a vast and varied birdlife. Relax on bolsters under colourful tents as a lavish “bushtucker” lunch is prepared for you over open fires overlooking a vast temporary lake created by the past monsoon. This stately home is renowned for its cuisine and a cooking demonstration is available for culinary enthusiasts.

  • DAY 12


    A longish travel day today halting for a delicious lunch with a gracious family who have opened their home to visitors near the holy city of Pushkar.
This afternoon reach the “Pink City” of Jaipur – a marvellous synthesis of Hindu, Jain and Mughal influenced architecture. All around the magnificent palaces and buildings are bazaars teeming with people, camels and horses. Your last three nights are at an intimate hotel founded by our guide Durga Singh.

  • DAY 13


    Today, visit the 16thC Amber Fort, the epitome of royal architecture that has enjoyed a sensitive restoration in recent years. Nearby is the wonderful Anohki Textile museum celebrating the history of block printing for which the city is famous. 
After lunch segue back to the heart of the Pink City visiting the City Palace and the UNESCO-listed Royal Observatory (Jantar Mantar), an enthralling 18thC observatory of still functional sculptural forms.

  • DAY 14


    Jaipur is a shopper’s paradise and Marieke has a curated list of the best places.
Alternatively textile enthusiast are encouraged to visit the splendid Nila House; for art and architecture buffs we recommend Jawahar Kala Kendra designed by architect and urban planner, Charles Correa and or the Sculpture park at Nahargarh Fort. We can also arrange a private visit to one of the most outstanding private art collections in Jaipur.
    Farewell banquet at Jaipur’s most exclusive small palace.

  • DAY 15


    Morning at leisure or time for last minute shopping.
    Afternoon fly back to Delhi to meet international flights home.
    Join us for a few extra days to enjoy the privileged participation in one of the region’s most significant celebrations –GANGAUR FESTIVAL  |  Mandawa 23 – 26 March 2023
    Allow us to plan an extension to the Taj Mahal, a luxury wellness retreat, a visit to India’s holiest and oldest city Varanasi or perhaps a wildlife experience.


  • DAY 15


    March 23, 2023

    Join Marieke and her esteemed colleague, friend and guide as Durga Singh returns to his royal ancestral home in Mandawa to preside over the ceremonies of Gangaur – an outrageously colourful festival where women conduct with great pageantry the carrying of the deities of Goddess Parvati/Gauri and Lord Shiva, to pray for Her blessings for a good harvest, matrimonial harmony, health, long life and a good husband for unmarried girls.

  • DAY 16


    The Shekhawati region is renowned for its mansions richly decorated in frescoes. Your stay will be at Desert Resort that captures the essence of the desert through its mud-wall architecture and local craftsmanship.
Visit the ancestral Havelis (mansions) of Nawalgarh and Mandawa created by wealthy merchant families. Participate in the colourful celebrations of the Gangaur festival.

  • DAY 17


    Return to Jaipur where we will curate a special range of activities according to your interest.
    Overnight at Dera Mandawa, a small, private family-owned boutique hotel with quiet capacious suites and verandahs to the gardens.

  • DAY 18


    After a leisurely breakfast take the lunchtime flight to Delhi to meet international departures.

    GANGAUR FESTIVAL | Mandawa 23 – 26 March 2023

    Taj Mahal
    Ranthambhore National Park to spot tigers
    Bharatpur and Keoladeo Ghana National Park for bird twitchers
    Varanasi and the temples of Khujaraho
    Amritsar and the Golden Temple
    A spa in the Himalayas


Royal Rajasthan Barbie Mark

Hi Dear Marieke, how often we have thought of you and our wonderful Rajasthan trip! Thank you so much for sharing all your wonderful knowledge of India, shared with such a heartfelt passion that it was impossible not to come away sharing a little of that passion!  That to me is an indication of a very well thought out and loved tour, so thank you for taking us on the journey with you!
How wonderful to meet Durga also, a beautiful character and a great addition to the experience. Thank you again Marieke,

Royal Rajasthan Jono

Hi Marieke,
Oh yes, I am definitely back with a bang and trying desperately to keep some sort of ‘Karma’ about me… 
Where to begin….from our magical tented camp in Jodhpur that still sends shivers up my spine….to our picnic in the Aravlli hills with VB and his very elegant mum.
Our wonderful Indian food and desert fires at night. One of my most treasured feelings of India will always be the memory of Durga each morning wearing his beautiful turban and genuine warm smile….. such a lovely, lovely man is our Durga and what a privilege to spend time with him in his homeland.
You really do complement each other beautifully.  It certainly was a special time and only hope it won’t be our last.
Please keep me in the loop for new tours as we would all love to do another group holiday together.
A big hug and kiss from Jono and I xxxxoooo

Royal Rajasthan Lisa Brad

Dear Marieke ,
Thank you for the email and welcome home !
We really loved the Indian adventure Marieke and Durga style and felt we did experience so much more with the tented camps that were a favourite and all  the superbly chosen hotels  sharing some of the essence of India.. Every detail was thought about and the cuisine delicious. I have now stocked the pantry with The Very Best Basmati and have already attempted to make Indian dishes for the family, although not quite the Thali yet . I did love my yoga class with you on the rooftop at Deogarth and particularly loved the small town and our lovely Kashmiri boys at the turban shop. We loved our proud aristocratic Rajput Durga with a wonderful art of storytelling and a great sense of humour. You will be pleased to know that Brad and I are back to yoga once a week and Yin is our new experience .Brad is glued to Indian Summer and I am loving Nine Lives and am able to understand so much more regarding Hindu Jain and Muslim religion with a lot to learn. Thank you for such a wonderful experience in India and we will be back .We already miss the busy street life and the smiling beautiful faces .
Lots Love Lisa and Brad xxx


Mariekes Art of Living - Luxury Travel

Your Tour Leader, Marieke Brugman has designed, refined and escorted this unique tour for more than two decades as well as leading cultural and gastronomic Tours to other regions of the sub-continent and has developed a lifelong attraction to the exotic and compelling experience that ignites all the senses with the sights, sounds, tastes, smells, festivals, music, bazaars like no other on earth. Indeed, it makes you think about the meaning of life, in ways that you don't, living in the west. She brings to the tours meticulous planning, humour, passion and inspired conversation.

Durga at elephant polo

Your Tour Guide + Escort, Thakur Durga Singhji is an exceptional guide and host. A proud, aristocratic Rajput, Durga brings his culture and country vibrantly alive.
A rare Renaissance man healthordisease.com his interests are as diverse as philosophy, religion, contemporary politics, farming, tribal culture, music and poetry.
Durga sports not only a grand moustache but also a wonderful sense of humour. A marvellous and engaging raconteur, his insights will leave a lasting impression and cement new friendships. Durga is revered as one of India’s most in-demand guides and has been Marieke’s friend and professional colleague for over two decades, accompanying all her programmes in India.


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