making meaningful connections
Festival Specials | Glittering Diwali.
Experience festivals in the Himalayan Foothills – small group holiday.
This special small group holiday offers fascinating insights into life in the foothills together with the opportunity to join in with traditional celebrations. Experience the bright colours, music and dancing as the springtime festival of Holi is celebrated in the Binsar Wildlife Sanctuary, or, in autumn, enjoy the magic of Diwali, the festival of light. Stay in charming mountain villages, enjoy some wonderful walks and experience the traditional, joyous festival celebrations.
Please note, this holiday has fixed departure date: For Diwali from 21st October to 31st October.
Itinerary | Day by Day
We look after you from the moment of your arrival at Delhi airport. Your holiday includes transfers and rail
journeys to the hills, accommodation in the village guesthouses and at Khali Estate with all meals provided and
your own guide through the hills. We have devised each of our holidays to provide a good balance between
activity and relaxation; please feel free to tailor your holiday to your exact requirements.
DAY 1 | Outward Journey
Meet and welcome at 12pm at Delhi guesthouse. The afternoon is yours to meet the group or explore the city at your leisure. Night in Delhi hotel.
An early morning train takes you to Kathgodam, from where you have a road transfer (4 hrs) to Khali Estate for dinner and overnight stay in twin room garden bungalow.
Day 3 | In the Binsar Sanctuary
From Khali enjoy a trip to the nearby town of Almora to explore the markets, alive with colour for the festival. Spend a second night at Khali
Day 4 - Day 8
Meet your guide who accompanies you for the rest of your stay. From Khali head through the pine-forest to experience the individual character and warm hospitality of the Binsar villages. You stay in four of the five villages and in one of them for two nights, and enjoy some wonderful walking with splendid views. You stay in simple twin rooms in the village guesthouses with breakfast, picnic lunch and dinner. You walk between villages in the company of your local guide with your luggage carried by village porters. Get to know the communities and experience the traditional festival celebrations.
Walk back to Khali Estate for another night stay.
Day 10 | Homeward Journey
A road transfer (4 hrs) takes you to Kathgodam to catch the day train to Delhi. Overnight Delhi guesthouse.
Forests and Festivals
Experience the thrilling celebrations of the Holi and Diwali festivals in the Binsar Wildlife Sanctuary. Your stay starts at Khali Estate, a wonderful old residence, where your rooms are in stone ’round houses’ amidst the surrounding trees. From Khali head through the pine-forest to experience the individual character and warm hospitality of the Binsar villages. Enjoy some wonderful guided walking through pine forest and teraced field, nestled in against the backdrop of the majestic Himalayas.
Colours of Holi
On 10th March, the Hindu festival Holi marks the beginning of spring – a season of hope, joy and new life. This Festival of Colours is celebrated across India with bonfires, singing, dancing and bright colours to signify the end of Winter and to welcome the new season. Holi is one of the most colourful and joyous festivals of India, when our rural communities in the warm foothills of the Himalayas are at their most hospitable. Immerse yourself in the spirit of festivity and fun, as you stay in beautiful guesthouses hosted by the local communities.
Holi bridges the social gap as caste, class and gender rules are abandoned. It is a time for great excitement and celebration as people gather together in the spirit of the festival. People throw colourful powders and perfumes on each other, exchange sweets and celebrate together. Bring an old white shirt with you and we will provide a special hat to enable you to enter into the spirit of the day.
Our next special Diwali group holiday departs in November 2020, to coincide with the wonderful festival of light. The festival spiritually signifies the victory of light over darkness or good over evil, and is a time of hope. You can be sure of a very special welcome as you experience being at the heart of traditional village celebrations for the festival, with homes decorated with rangoli and alight with lamps. This is a perfect time to visit the Binsar Sanctuary for many reasons – crystal-clear views of the Himalayan mountains, pleasant temperatures and abundant wild flowers!
Festival Specials10 Nights
All meals at Khali Estate and in the villages
B&B in Delhi Guest house
Guide and Porter services