Stephen Arata, Department Chair and Professor of English

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$4,195 per person, double occupancy, land only.

Air inclusive from Washington D.C., New York or Boston $4,495 (plus taxes and fees of $892) per person,

Air inclusive from Charlottesville $4,895 (plus taxes and fees of $892)

A limited number of single rooms are available for a supplement of approximately $1,395 to the per person, double occupancy rates.

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Mystical and spiritual, chaotic and confounding, India overflows with riches.While staying at excellent hotels, we travel the classic Golden Triangle: bustling Delhi; Agra,home of the sublime Taj Mahal; and Jaipur,great city of the Rajput. We also search forelusive Bengals at Ranthambore Tiger Preserve; and absorb the holiness of Varanasi.

Program Highlights

  • Tours of Old Delhi and New Delhi
  • Home-hosted dinner with a family in Jaipur
  • Visit the Magnificent Taj Mahal
  • Enjoy a two-night stay at the Ranthambore Tiger Preserve
  • Experience a Kalakho camel safari and tribal home visit
  • See the “Pink City” of Jaipur and the Holy city of Varanasi
  • Visit the pilgrimage site of Sarnath temple and museum


Stephen Arata, Department Chair and Professor of English

arata_228Stephen Arata is Professor of English and Department Chair at UVA, where he has taught since 1990. He earned his B.A. and M.A. from the College of William and Mary and his Ph.D. from the University of Chicago. The recipient of the Alumni Board of Trustees Teaching Award and the NEH Mayo Distinguished Teaching Fellowship, he teaches a wide range of courses on modern British literature and culture and on the history of the novel. In 1999 he was a Fulbright scholar in India, in 2007 he lectured in the UVA seminars in Oxford, England, and in 2011 he sailed as a faculty member on UVA’s around-the-world Semester at Sea program. The author of numerous scholarly publications, Steve Arata is currently General Co-Editor of the 39-volume Edinburgh University Press of The Collected Works of Robert Louis Stevenson.


Day 1 - Thursday , September 28, 2017

Depart U.S. for Delhi, India

(Meals Aloft)

Day 2 - Friday , September 29

Arrive Delhi

We arrive in India’s hyperactive capital late evening and transfer to our hotel.
Taj Palace

Day 3 - Saturday, September 30


After a morning briefing with our tour director, this afternoon we tour Delhi, including the 16th-century Tomb of Humayun; Qutab Minar, the 234-step tower dating to 1193; and India Gate, honoring the 90,000 Indian soldiers who died in World War I. Tonight we enjoy a welcome dinner at our hotel.
Taj Palace

Day 4 - Sunday, October 1


Mystical IndiaToday we explore Old Delhi, beginning with the Gandhi Memorial, the simple black marble slab honoring Mahatma Gandhi and Smriti, a museum dedicated to the Indian icon. Next, two renowned 17th-century landmarks: Lal Qila, the Red Fort palaces where we stop for photos; and the red sandstone and marble Jama Masjid, India’s largest mosque. Then we ride rickshaws through Chandni Chowk market and later visit a Sikh temple.
Taj Palace

Day 5 - Monday, October 2


Today we travel by coach to the “pink city” of Jaipur, one of the great cities of the Rajput, with historic forts, palaces, and gardens. We reach our hotel late afternoon.
Jai Mahal Palace

Day 6 - Tuesday, October 3


Mystical IndiaOur first stop is the stunning Hawa Mahal, the elaborately carved pink sandstone “Palace of the Winds.” We continue on to Amber Fort, built by the Kkachhawah Rajputs as their capital from 1037 to 1728; Jantar Mantar, the open-air observatory; and City Palace Museum, housing the magnificent art collections of the Maharajahs of Jaipur.
Jai Mahal Palace

Day 7 - Wednesday, October 4


This morning we visit the village of Sanganer to see traditional block printing and handmade paper industries. Later we see local life up close as we explore an outdoor market.Tonight we are dinner guests in the home of a multigenerational Rajasthan family.
Jai Mahal Palace

Day 8 - Thursday, October 5


Mystical IndiaWe travel today to Ranthambore National Park, the former hunting ground of the Maharajah of Jaipur and now a 512-square-mile natural preserve that is home to hundreds of species of birds, reptiles, mammals, and of course, Bengal tigers. This afternoon we take our first game drive through the park.
Kipling Lodge

Day 9 - Friday, October 6


We take both morning and afternoon game drives today to see not only game (though tiger and leopard sightings are not guaranteed), but also picturesque ruins of forts and palaces.
Kipling Lodge

Day 10 - Saturday, October 7


We depart early for Kalakho, where we embark on a camel cart safari to meet local Meena tribespeople in their homes: huts of mud, with walls decorated with floral and animal designs. Tonight we enjoy a traditional folk dance performance.
Dera Village Retreat

Day 11 - Sunday, October 8


En route to Agra today, we stop in the ancient village of Abhaneri to see the fortified Chand Baori stepwell (c. 800), whose 3,500 steps descend some 13 stories into the ground. Continuing on, we reach the ancient Mughal stronghold of Agra early this afternoon. After lunch on our own, we visit Itimad-ud-Daulah, the two-story marble “Baby Taj” that inspired the Taj Mahal. Dinner tonight is at our hotel.
Courtyard Marriott Agra

Day 12 - Monday, October 9

Taj Mahal

This morning we visit the Taj Mahal, the magnificent tomb built by Emperor Shah Jahan in memory of his beloved wife Mumtaz. Then we take an Indian cuisine cooking lesson and enjoy the results for lunch. Later: imposing Agra Fort.
Courtyard Marriott Agra

Day 13 - Tuesday, October 10


Mystical IndiaWe depart by coach this morning for Delhi, where we board a late afternoon flight to Varanasi, the holiest city in Hinduism. We dine tonight at our hotel.
Taj Gateway Ganges

Day 14 - Wednesday, October 11


Before breakfast today, those who wish can join in a private yoga session. Then we visit nearby Sarnath, where the Buddha first taught after achieving enlightenment. One of Buddhism’s four holiest sites, Sarnath draws pilgrims from the world over. We see some of the temples and stupas then tour Sarnath Museum, housing a superb collection of Buddhist artifacts from excavations here. Mid-day we return to our hotel; lunch is on our own. Late afternoon we attend a traditional aarti ceremony: as we cruise along the Ganges, we watch as devout Hindus offer their lit lamps to the deities. Following this moving experience, dinner tonight is at our hotel.
Taj Gateway Ganges

Day 15 - Thursday, October 12


Mystical IndiaEarly this morning we return to the Ganges where Hindu pilgrims perform their rituals along the ghats (steps) leading to the river. We visit several ghats by boat as we experience for ourselves the spiritual aura of the hallowed Ganges waters. Then we return to our hotel with time to rest before this afternoon’s walking tour and private performance of classical sitar. Tonight we celebrate our journey at a farewell dinner at our hotel.
Taj Gateway Ganges

Day 16 - Friday, October 13


We fly this afternoon to Delhi, where the evening is at leisure.
Pullman Hotel New Delhi Aerocity

Day 17 - Saturday, October 14

Return to U.S.

Early today we transfer to the airport for our return flight to the U.S.

Optional Post–trip extension to Nepal– October 13-17, 2017.

5 days/4 nights for $995 per person; single supplement: $295
Absorb the beauty of the Himalayan kingdom – and the warmth of its people – on this special journey featuring sacred shrines and royal cities and indigenous lifestyles. Please call for further information.

Extension includes:
· Air transportation Varanasi/Kathmandu inclusive of airline taxes and fees
· 4 nights’ accommodations: 2 nights in Katmandu at Crowne Plaza Soaltee (Superior First Class); 2 nights in Nagarkot at Club Himalaya Nagarkot (Super First Class)
· 8 meals: 4 breakfasts, 1 lunch, 3 dinners
· Extensive sightseeing, including Pashupatinath shrine (UNESCO site); Boudhanath monument; colorful Bhaktapur, “city of Devotees;” Swayambhunath Temple; royal city of Patan; and Kathmandu and environs
· Services of a Tour Director
· Private motorcoach transportation
· Gratuities for dining room servers, airport and hotel porters, and all drivers
Please note that guests on this extension will leave the India tour on Day 16 at the conclusion of the Varanasi stay.


  • Delhi – 3 nights – Taj Palace – Deluxe
  • Jaipur – 3 nights – Jai Mahal Palace – Deluxe
  • Ranthambore – 2 nights – Kipling Lodge
  • Kalakho – 1 night – Dera Village Retreat – Not rated
  • Agra – 2 nights – Courtyard Marriott Agra – Superior First Class
  • Varanasi – 3 nights – Taj Gateway Ganges – Superior First Class
  • Delhi – 1 night – Pullman Hotel New Delhi Aerocity – Deluxe


32 meals are provided: 14 breakfasts, 8 lunches, 10 dinners

Program Fees

$4,195 per person, double occupancy, land only. (see air inclusive prices below.)

Air inclusive from Washington D.C., New York or Boston $4,495 (plus taxes and fees of $892)

Air inclusive from Charlottesville $4,895 (plus taxes and fees of $892)

A limited number of single rooms are available for a supplement of approximately $1,395 to the per person, double occupancy rates.

Nepal Extension: $995
Nepal Single supplement: $295

Price includes:

  • All flights within India
  • Exclusive departure for the University of Virginia
  • Small group size limited to 22 participants
  • Round-trip air transportation from listed cities; all flights within itinerary
  • 15 nights’ accommodations in listed properties
  • Extensive sightseeing as described in day-by-day itinerary, including all entrance fees
  • Services of an Odysseys Unlimited Tour Director
  • Private motorcoach transportation throughout the tour
  • Optional post-tour extension to Nepal for 5 days and 4 nights

Prices are per person based on double occupancy.

Does not include:
Airline taxes and departure fees

Airfare when purchasing a land only tour package; costs of passports and visas, if required; personal expenses such as beverages, laundry, room service, and meals not specified; airport transfers when purchasing a land only tour package; communication charges; optional sightseeing; gratuities to your Tour Director, which are at your discretion (suggested gratuity: $10-$15 per day per traveler); travel protection insurance; Additional baggage fees and anything not specifically listed as included.

In addition to the inclusions noted above, air-inclusive price includes round-trip air transportation from listed U.S. cities. Airport taxes and fees will be listed as separate items on guests’ invoices and are subject to change until the booking is paid in full.
Prices from other U.S. cities are available upon request.

General Terms & Conditions

General Terms & Conditions

Please read this information carefully, as a payment of a $500 deposit per person represents your acceptance of the following Terms and Conditions.

Cavalier Travels reserves the right to use photos that might include you in marketing materials and other purposes unless you specify otherwise.

Payment Schedule: A deposit of $500 per person confirms your reservation. The balance of your invoice is due 95 days before departure (June 25, 2017). All FINAL PAYMENTS are required to be made by check or wire transfer.

Not Included in Tour Price: Airfare when purchasing a land only tour package; costs of passports and visas, if required; personal expenses such as beverages, laundry, room service, and meals not specified; airport transfers when purchasing a land only tour package; communication charges; optional sightseeing; gratuities to your Odysseys Unlimited Tour Director, which are at your discretion (suggested gratuity: $10-$15 per day per traveler); travel protection insurance. Additional baggage fees may apply and are subject to change at any time. You should confirm directly with your airline prior to departure.

Cancellation and Refunds: If you must cancel your trip, the effective date of cancellation will be upon our receipt of your written notification. Refunds for cancellations are subject to the following per person charges: Cancel 95 days or more before departure: $200 charge; Cancel 94-65 days before departure: 25% of tour price; Cancel 64-45 days before departure: 50% of tour price; Cancel 44-30 days before departure: 75% of tour price; Cancel 29-0 days before departure: No refund. If a guest makes any changes between 94 and 30 days prior to departure, Odysseys Unlimited, Inc. will apply a $100 per person administrative fee, in addition to any fees or penalties imposed by third parties. Changes are subject to availability and cannot be guaranteed. If your reservation changes from double occupancy to single occupancy for any reason, you will be charged the single supplement. No changes are allowed within 30 days of departure.

Upon reservation you must provide your full legal name as it appears on your passport, your date of birth and gender. In the event an airline ticket is issued with incorrect information you have provided, you will be responsible for charges associated with the ticket’s reissue.

Responsibility: The liability of the University of Virginia, as sponsor, and Odysseys Unlimited, Inc., as tour operator, is strictly limited. The University of Virginia and Odysseys Unlimited, Inc. purchase transportation, hotel accommodations, restaurant and other services from independent suppliers not under our control. We serve only as agents for these suppliers in securing tour arrangements, and therefore will not accept responsibility for wrongful, negligent, or arbitrary acts or omissions of these independent contractors, their employees, agents, servants or representatives. The University of Virginia and Odysseys Unlimited, Inc. are not liable for injury, damage, loss, accident, or delay that may be caused by events not within our control, including without limitation, acts of terrorism, war, strikes, the defect of any vehicle, or the negligence or default of any third party. All coupons, receipts, and tickets issued are subject to the terms and conditions specified by the air carriers, cruise line, and other independent suppliers. We will make every effort to operate our tours as planned, but we reserve the right to make itinerary changes as necessary. If unforeseen circumstances require us to change a hotel, we will select alternative accommodations of the same or better quality.

Health and Medical Issues: We request that you be in good health to participate in this Odysseys Unlimited tour. There is a reasonable amount of walking, and you must be able to get on and off motorcoaches and boats on your own. We regret that we cannot offer individual assistance; in such cases you must be accompanied by a companion who will assist you. Please note that our itineraries cannot accommodate wheelchairs. We reserve the right to remove anyone whose physical or mental condition, in our opinion, compromises the operation of the tour or detracts from the enjoyment or safety of the other passengers. In that event, Odysseys Unlimited, Inc. and the University of Virginia assume no financial responsibility for any unused portion of the tour.

Air Transportation – Important Information: Odysseys Unlimited, Inc. includes in its tour price round-trip economy air from designated gateway cities and contracts with those airlines they feel provide the level of service, routings, and value necessary for your entire trip. While another airline may offer a more direct connection, it may be at a price unavailable at the lower group rates. You will receive your preliminary air scheduled approximately 2 ½ months prior to departure. Please note that seat assignments on your international flight are usually done at airport check-in. Odysseys Unlimited is unable to guarantee any seat assignments. Due to the nature of tour operator tickets, other restrictions apply, including but not limited to, frequent flyer mileage accrual, stopovers, alternate travel dates, upgrades, and airline taxes and departure fees. If you prefer to make your own travel arrangements, land only is available on most tours. Since international and domestic air schedules are subject to change at any time, we recommend that if you choose to make your own airline reservation, you do not purchase non-refundable tickets or those with high penalties for changes. If you choose to make your own air arrangements, Odysseys Unlimited, Inc. shall not have any liability for any loss resulting from cancellation of this tour or changes in this tour.