IMPACT: Taj & Jaipur with Service (5 nights)

KOC 603-102
  • Day-trip to Taj Mahal from Delhi
  • Several opportunities for authentic community engagement
  • Off-the-beaten path itinerary
  • Give-back while still enjoying all that North India has to offer
Program Overview
Country: India
Depart: 03/01/2017 0930
Return: 03/06/2017 1500
Duration: Overnight
Difficulty: Moderate
Capacity: Min 20 / Max 34

IMPACT Opportunity

Program Fee
$1773 (early booking: $1699)

Field Work Conflicts
  • SPCM 434 Intercultural Communication
  • PSY 228 Psychology of Human Sexuality
  • MKT 365 International Marketing
  • PHIL 205 Introduction to Ethics
  • PHIL 479 Topics in Comparative Religions
  • DM/MKT 360 Retailing
  • SOC 330 Social Stratification
  • MGT 340 Fundamentals of Entrepreneurship
  • HDFS 101 Individual and Family Development
  • HDFS 302 Marriage and Family Relationships (Section 2)

This program features the best of North India (including the Taj Mahal and Jaipur) with an added focus on responsible tourism and service learning in Bandhwari Village outside of Delhi. Fly from Cochin to Delhi, take the train to Agra to visit the Taj Mahal (day-trip only, not overnight), spend a day engaging with village members outside of Delhi, and experience the best of Jaipur all in a short 5 nights, 6 days.

*Please note! The Taj Mahal is currently undergoing cleaning and will likely have scaffolding surrounding parts of the famous monument while you are there. Though it won’t affect your itinerary, it will affect your photos and we don’t want you to be surprised by this.  See this article for additional details. 



Day 1

Wednesday, 1 March 2017

Spend the day traveling from Cochin to Northern India. After arriving in Delhi, retire to the hotel for the evening and rest up for the early morning.

Day 2

Thursday, 2 March 2017

Wake up early in order to catch the train to Agra, about 2 hours. Enjoy a packed breakfast and scenic route on the way to India’s most well known site. The Taj Mahal is called the finest architectural achievement of the Moghuls, and perahps of mankind. Built over a period of 22 years by the Mughal Emperor Shah Jahan in 1630 for his Queen Mumtaz Mahal to enshrine her mortal remains, it is one of the Seven Modern Wonders of the World.

Form there, visit the Agra Fort.  The Fort was built by three Mughal Emperors starting from Akbar the Great in 1565 AD, and is a masterpiece of design and construction. Within the fort are a number of exquisite buildings including the Moti Masjid, Jahangir’s Palace, and Musamman Burj, where the 5th Mughal Emperor Shah Jahan died as a prisoner.

After exploring the Fort, enjoy a traditional Indian lunch before being transferred back to Delhi, about four hours. Retire to the hotel for the evening.

Day 3

Friday, 3 March 2017

Enjoy a breakfast at your hotel before proceeding  to Bandhwari village. Engage with the local school children and women of the village, and learn about daily life in this village.  On the way back from Bandhwari Village, stop at TERI Retreat for environmental awareness training. TERI has successfully built the local area which integrates various forms renewable sources of energy and is an ideal example for architects, builders and others for the promotion of renewable energy technologies in the country.

After lunch, proceed on a tour of New Delhi visiting Qutub Minar, the famous minaret of Delhi. The soaring conical tower is a Tower of Victory, built in the 12th century by Qutbuddin Aibak. Within its spacious courtyard stands the Iron Pillar, which dates back to the 4th century AD and bears a Sanskrit inscription in the Gupta style. The pillar has puzzled scientists, as its iron has not rusted in all these centuries. Drive through the streets of New Delhi, past the architecture of British India – the imposing President’s House, the North and South Blocks, the government offices and Parliament House and India Gate, the memorial to the Unknown Soldier. End the tour with the Humayun’s Tomb – built in the 16th century and is architecturally considered the forerunner of the Taj Mahal. Commissioned by the widow of Humayun’s, the second Mughal emperor, it was subsequently used as a burial place for members of the royal family. Then, transfer to the hotel and enjoy the evening at leisure.

Day 4

Saturday, 4 March 2017

After checking out of the hotel, drive for about five hours to Jaipur. Stop for lunch at a local restaurant during the scenic drive.

Upon arrival to Jaipur, enjoy a city tour. Along this tour visit City Palace, the former royal residence, and the Jantar Mantar, a stone astrological and astronomical observatory built by Maharaja Jai Singh in the 18th-century. The afternoon orientation of the `Pink City’, includes an exciting rickshaw ride and walk-about in the traditional market with its fruits and vegetables, its perfumes, bangles and flowers.

Day 5

Sunday, March 5 2017

Begin the day with a guided tour and exploration of Amber Fort*, the capital of the State of Jaipur until 1728 which feastures marvelous examples of ancient Rajput architecture. Enjoy lunch at  restaurant built in 1135 AD and located in the fort complex. Spend the afternoon at the Jaipur Foot Organization. This large organization has a clear vision and commitment to help people with disabilities regain mobility and dignity. After the visit, enjoy dinner at the hotel before reiring for the evening.

*In effort to support responsible tourism best-practices, Semester at Sea strongly advises against use of wild animals in tourism activities, which includes elephant rides. Many people enter the Amber Fort in Jaipur via elephant back, however, your program fee does NOT include this. We encourage you to research this complex issue and make a decision for yourself.  Recommended articles:

Day 6

Monday, 6 March 2017

Check out the hotel for an early morning flight. Travel to Cochin and arrive back to the ship mid-afternoon.

Meals Included

All meals are included

Special Note

This program includes several early mornings.