Hola Mahalla or simply Hola is a Sikh festival, which takes place on the first of the lunar month of Chet, which usually falls in March. Hola is derived from the word halla (a military charge) and the term mohalla stands for an organized procession or an army column. The words ‘Hola Mohalla’ would thus stand for ‘the charge of an army.’” Hola is a masculine term, meant to be distinguished from the more feminine Holi; the Hindu spring festival of Holi takes place the day before Hola Mahalla. But unlike Holi, when people playfully sprinkle color, dry or mixed in water, on each other, the Guru made Hola Mohalla an occasion for the Sikhs to demonstrate their martial skills in simulated battles.
The festival lasts for a week, and consists of camping out and enjoying various displays of fighting prowess and bravery, followed by kirtan, music, and poetry. For meals, visitors sit on the ground in neat rows called pangats and eat vegetarian Langars (voluntary community kitchens) organized by the local people as a part of sewa (community service). Raw materials like wheat flour, rice, vegetables, milk and sugar are provided by the villagers living nearby. Women volunteer to cook and others take part in cleaning utensils and other manual tasks that need to be carried out. Traditional cuisine is served to the pilgrims who eat while sitting in rows on the ground (pangat). The festival concludes with a long, military-style procession near Takht Sri Keshgarh Sahib, one of the five most sacred places in Sikhism.
Welcome at Indira Gandhi International Airport in Delhi, assistance on arrival, our representative escorts you by a/c car and transfer to the pre-booked hotel. After your check in, you will be given all the required documents related to your tour plan; he will explain all your queries about the entire tour plan. After relaxation in the evening witness Light and Sound show at Red fort. The show projects splendid history of 5000 years old city, a truly memorable experience. Return to the hotel for overnight stay.
Breakfast at hotel.
Later depart for a combined sightseeing tour of Delhi. The Tour will be commencing from Old Delhi. Drive past and photo stop at Red Fort, a huge settlement that contains within it some very beautiful palaces and public buildings, Visit Jamma Masjid, one of the largest mosques that is still a house of worship for devout Muslims. Also visit Raj Ghat, Shanti Vana – the cremation site of Mahatma Gandhi and Jawaharlal Nehru our first prime Minister of India. Later proceed for New Delhi tour drive past the India Gate, a memorial raised in honor of the Indian soldiers who were martyred during the Afghan War, Rashtrapati Bhawan, once the imperial residence of the British Viceroys, it is now the official residence of the President of India Parliament House, a circular building that is a symbol of Indian democracy. Visit Bangla shahib.
Also visit Qutub Minar the 11th century victory tower. The tallest stone tower in India. Qutub-ud-din Aibak started it in 1199. their columns erected the attached Quwat-ul-Islam mosque also built by him.
Over night at hotel.
Early morning transfer to railway station to board your train Kalka Shatabdi (Dep 0740/Arr 1105 Hrs) to Chandigarh. Upon arrival in Chandigarh transfer to your hotel and get some rest. Later in the afternoon start half day city tour of Chandigarh and visit the famous Rock Garden of Chandigarh followed by scenic Sukhna Lake excursion. Evening is free at leisure. Overnight at hotel.
Morning breakfast at hotel. Later take excursion to Anandpur Sahib, is one of the most important sacred places of the Sikhs and is closely linked with their religious traditions and history. The ninth Guru, Guru Teg Bahadur founded Anandpur Sahib in 1665, near the ruins of ancient Makhowa. Witness the Hola Mohalla festival. Overnight at hotel.
Morning breakfast at hotel. Later check out at hotel and drive to Amritsar. Upon arrival in Amritsar check into your hotel. Evening explore local food try out the Amritsari Kulcha (Indian flatbread stuffed with boiled potatoes & onions), Amritsari Fish fried and Lassi (A healthy & refreshing drink made by blending yogurt with water & sugar). Overnight at hotel.
Morning breakfast at hotel. Later visit to the revered Golden Temple and Jalianwala Bagh followed by the sacred visit to Durgiana Mandir. Afternoon Tour of Wagha Border to witness the famous beating the retreat ceremony at Indo-Pak. Return to city by late evening. Overnight at hotel.
Morning breakfast at hotel. Later check out at hotel and drive to Gurdaspur. Upon arrival in Gurdaspur check into a Farmhouse to experience the rural Indian life. If you want can go for village ride on tractor, milking the cow/buffalo, picking the eggs, plucking fruits/vegetables, sowing / harvesting / weeding etc. evening is free at leisure. Overnight at hotel / local farm house.
Morning breakfast at hotel. Later check out at hotel and drive to Dharamsala. Upon arrival in Dharamsala check into your hotel. Rest of the day at leisure. Overnight at hotel.
Morning breakfast at hotel. Later visit Mcleodganj, located in upper Dharamsala, is a beautiful hill station with breathtaking views of mountains, lush forests and a bustling Tibetan settlement. Nestled in the foothills of the Western Himalayas, Mcleodganj serves as headquarters of the Tibetan Government in Exile and home of Dalai Lama. The place is famous for some vibrant Tibetan Restaurants, souvenir shops and handicraft markets. Overnight at hotel.
Morning breakfast at hotel. Later check out at hotel and drive to Shimla - The former summer capital of the British in India, and the present capital of Himachal Pradesh, Shimla has been blessed with all the natural bounties which one can think of. It has got a scenic Destination, it is surrounded by green hills with snow capped peaks. The spectacular cool hills accompanied by the structures made during the colonial era creates an aura which is very different from other hill.
Upon arrival in Shimla check into your hotel. Evening free for Leisure. Overnight stay at hotel.
This morning, you will visit Half day local sightseeing of Shimla, visiting Sankat Mochan, State Museum, Jakhu Temple & City Church. Later proceed to visit Kufri, situated at an altitude of 2500 meters (1 hour drive from Shimla.) Evening walk down the Mall Road for some shopping. Evening, return back to the hotel for a night stay.
Morning after early breakfast check out at hotel and drive to Kalka railway station to board your train Kalka Shatabdi (Dep 1745/Arr 2155 Hrs) to Delhi. Upon arrival in Delhi transfer to your hotel. Overnight at hotel.
Morning breakfast at hotel. Later check out at hotel and drive to airport to board your flight to your onward destination.