LUXURY GANGES CRUISE PHOTO TOUR
March 20/28, 2019
INDIA – the adventure …
We are excited to offer you the chance to be one of the first Australian photographers to explore a region of India – where few have travelled before…
We will explore the Ganges River – it’s villages, tributaries and culture – all on board the 5 STAR river boat Bengal Ganga. This is a beautiful ship with luxury defined in every facet from the staff to beautiful food and spacious decks. Teak, mahogany, special art work – the perfect platform to explore regions less visited in India as we slowly cruise, or land and explore the many adventures of Kolkata / Kalna / Matiari / Baranagar / Murshidabad / Mayapur / Chandernagore.
Just one morning…
This morning we enjoy a rickshaw ride through the city centre of Kalna, en route to the enchanting Rajbari complex, with the highest concentration of temples in the region. Bengal’s mixture of temple architecture includes the Nabakailas Temples. Built in 1809 by the Bardhaman Maharaja, the complex contains 108, eight slope-roofed temples – 74 in the outer circle and another 34 making an inner circle.
Itinerary to photo adventure …
DAY 1 – KOLKATA
Meet in Kolkata today. (You might like to arrive one day earlier?) Julia can book extra accommodation to suit. No activities today until 5pm. We meet at this time for details of your adventures to come. We include dinner.
4 Star Hotel accommodation – (D)
DAY 2 – KOLKATA / EMBARKATION (Holi Day)
Breakfast and a morning walk with your guide. After lunch, we transfer to Bengal Ganga. Orientation tour of our beautiful river boat. This boat alone will offer you unique images! However, it is the spacious decks that will offer you fantastic shoot options of a rarely travelled region of India. Camera’s out – start shooting. How exciting!
(B,L,D – with special cultural performance.)
DAY 3 – KOLKATA / MATIARI (GOOD FRIDAY)
This morning we enjoy a rickshaw ride through the city centre of Kalna. Here we ride cycle rickshaws (you sit back and shoot) to visit the enchanting Rajbari Temple Complex in Kalna. These temples take elements from mosques and temple architecture to create a new congregational space of worship. On one side of the road lies the Nabakailas Temples. Built in 1809 by the Bardhaman Maharaja, it contains 108 ‘aat-chala’ or “eight slope-roofed” Shiva temples arranged in two concentric circles, 74 in the outer circle and 34 in the inner circle. On the other side of the road lies a walled complex, containing the most diversified form of Bengal’s temple architecture, notable for their terra cotta plaques depicting themes of Hindu epics and mythical life of saints, gods & goddesses and various aspects of day-to-day life.
We sail to Matiari, this offering you new images at every turn of the Ganges. Farmers working the fields, fisherman setting nets and colourful village life will pass you by. Overnight on board Bengal Ganga.
DAY 4 – MATIARI / MURSHIDABAD
Early morning walk to visit brass-making village of Matiari. We spend quality time exploring this lovely village, which includes working brass from kiln to amazing final plates, statues and other trinkets. Time to explore the streets of this colourful village. Back on board, we include a workshop today and take time to look at your images. Have your cameras ready as their is always a great story image to be shot. We sail the rest of the day to Murshidabad, a hidden architectural gem along the Ganges with dramatic whitewashed colonial era structures. Again, have your camera with you the whole time. Overnight on board Bengal Ganga.
DAY 5 – MURSHIDABAD & BARANAGAR (EASTER)
This morning we take horse carts to Katra mosque. Built by the first Nawab of Murshidabad – Murshid Quli Khan in the 1724 – 25, this mosque has distinctive minarets from which the muezzin calls the faithful to Friday prayers. Ride the horse carts to the Hazarduari Palace, built during the reign of Nawab Nazim Humayun Jah (1824- 1838 AD) by an English architect, McLeod Duncan, in the Greek “Doric” style. The palace has more than a thousand real and false doors in the vast corridors, and is filled with colonial era antiques, artwork and manuscripts. Opposite to the Palace is a vast Imambara – built by the Nawab for worship.
We then visit the village of Baranagar. A lovely example of life in rural India, this village is home to several temples dating from the 18th century (1714-1793). Built by Rani (Queen) Bhabani, the landlady of Natore. The brick temples are considered to be among the best examples of Bengal terra cotta art.
Overnight on board Bengal Ganga.
DAY 6 – MURSHIDABAD / MAYAPUR
Known as the birthplace of Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu (1486) and considered an incarnation of Lord Krishna. Mayapur is also the headquarters of the International Society of Krishna Consciousness (ISKCON) movement with a new temple comparable in size to the Vatican and largely funded by Alfred B. Ford, the great grandson of car-maker Henry Ford. Walk through the pilgrim’s bazaar and great street scenes.
Overnight on board Bengal Ganga.
DAY 7 – MAYAPUR / CHANDERAGORE / KOLKATA
Morning sail to Chandernagore, established as a French colony in 1673. The French obtained permission from Ibrahim Khan, the then Nawab of Bengal to establish a trading post on the riverbanks of this city, which became a permanent French settlement in 1688. We will explore the French colonial buildings along the promenade, including the former French governor’s residence (now converted to a museum that features an exhibition of items that depict life during this period).
We then will visit the Sacred Heart Church of Chandernagore. We then return to the ship and continue our journey downstream, heading back to Kolkata.
Overnight on board Bengal Ganga.
DAY 8 – TO KOLKATA & EXPLORING…
Morning Panoramic Tour of the well-preserved British colonial buildings in Kolkata: Writer’s Building, General Post Office, High Court, Raj Bhawan (Governor’s House), Town Hall, Council House, Treasury Building, Reserve Bank of India and Dalhousie Square. Also visit to St. John’s Church, the oldest Anglican Church in Kolkata, built in 1756, which features the oldest functioning pipe organ in India and several tombs of British Generals who died during the Siege of Kolkata by Nawab Siraj-ud-Daula in 1756. Victoria Memorial Museum, which houses the largest collection of British colonial historical artifacts in India. Return to the ship for overnight.
Enjoy cultural performance on board.
DAY 9 – KOLKATA DISEMBARKATION
Following breakfast guests will disembark the vessel and transfer to the Kolkata Airport. Group transfer is included. Tour ends… If you are joining our second linked India tour, we suggest that you fly to Raipur today to link up with the Tiger/Nature tour. Julia can assist with information for these travel requirements, including extra accommodation. This will offer you a couple of days break before the next tour.
(B,L,D) – Confirms if – Breakfast – Lunch – Dinner – are included that day.
Itinerary and price is subject to change.
PHOTO TOUR PRICE
NOTE THAT THIS TOUR IS LIMITED TO A MAXIMUM OF 8 PHOTOGRAPHERS PER PHOTO GUIDE.
Main Deck Twin Share: AU$6,995 per person on twin sharing basis
Main Single Supplement: AU$1,750
Upper Deck Twin Share: AU$7,950 per person on twin sharing basis
Upper Single Supplement: AU$1,895
As per itinerary, with all accommodation, meals, access to unique photo opportunities, small group size – local guide and and professional photo guide. Cabins are subject to availability.
EVENT DEPOSIT REQUIRED – AU$3,000 pp.
We will try our best to find someone to share with you. Note that for this cruise, it is the ship owners responsibility to find someone for you to share with. Single supplement only applies if you ask for it.
THE COST INCLUDES
CRUISE PRICE INCLUDES:
Accommodation with all meals as indicated by the programs, Indian brand mineral water at the time of meals, Sightseeing as described in the Itinerary, English Speaking on board Guide, All Entrance Fees, Transfers by car/minivan/coach as per program, as applicable, still camera fees, local assistance.
CRUISE PRICE EXCLUDES:
International or domestic flights, transportation beyond Kolkata, Wine and Spirits or Beverages, personal laundry, all visa costs, gratuities to staff, all items of a personal
nature; health-accident-baggage or travel protection plan outside the ship’s boundaries.