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With its rich spiritual heritage and architectural ruins from the mists of time, Nalanda was probably established as long ago as the 5th Century BC.At its peak, it housed over 10,000 students from all over Asia staggeringly spread over eight separate compounds and ten temples.Your hotel is the simple three-star Royal Residency with breakfast and dinner.DAY 8 EMBARK AT MUNGER Today we head towards Munger to board our ship for the next eight nights, calling en-route at Nalanda, one of the world’s first residential universities.
This afternoon we take the short flight to Varanasi, staying two nights at the four-star Taj Gateway Hotel Ganges, with breakfast.
The city centre, designed by Sir Edwin Lutyens in 1911, is bisected by wide, tree-lined avenues, a hub which clearly reflects the Raj legacy and home to the former Viceroy, now the Presidential Palace.
Continuing along the imposing Rajpath, we pass the symbol of the modern country, India Gate plus the Parliament building.
Known as the ‘palace of a thousand doors’, most of which are false, it houses an amazing armour, porcelain and palanquin collection.
Next you may wish to join your guide for a fascinating walk through the local market – a great opportunity to experience a real Indian bazaar in all its incredible sound and colour, providing fabulous photo opportunities way off the tourist trail. DAY 13 MATIARI After breakfast we visit the remains of the Katra Mosque by ox cart.