India: the latest product news for travel to India

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India: the latest product news for travel to India

India is the kind of destination where one visit is merely scratching the surface, and the raft of new developments reflects the diversity of its tourism offering.

Natural Focus Safaris recently released its new 2011/12 India brochure, featuring journeys to India, Bhutan, Nepal and Sri Lanka. New this year is the 13-day Slowly on the Ganges trip, a luxury cruise which runs between Kolkata and Varanasi or vice versa and includes five-star hotels in the cities pre and post trip. A shorter itinerary — the seven-day Bengal Yatra — is also available. Another new addition for the operator is the 12-day Hidden Gems of Kerala tour, with highlights including visits to the forts and colonial architecture of old Kochi and a safari to search for tigers, bears and other wildlife in Nagarhole National Park.

In other news, Adventure World has introduced two new itineraries, one of these being the seven-day Himalayan Village Walk, where clients discover Himalayan landscapes and gain an insight into the lives of the Kumaoni villagers. The other is the five-day Kerala Backwater Cruising Extension, where participants explore the ancient port of Kochi and take an overnight cruise through Kerala’s waterways on a houseboat.

Cox & Kings has recently launched 18 new tours, including two India itineraries, to cater for more intimate small group trips. These itineraries are featured on its website. The eight-day Indian Experience explores the Golden Triangle of Delhi, Agra and Jaipur, while the 16-day Taj Mahal to Tropical Kerala tour takes in the highlights of both north and south India plus the backwaters of Kerala.

And in accommodation news, Taj Hotels, Resorts and Palaces has made its first foray into the north Indian region of Kashmir with the unveiling of the Vivanta by Taj — Dal View, Srinagar. The property is part of the group’s Vivanta by Taj Hotels & Resorts brand, which offers clients contemporary luxury.

Meanwhile, Mumbai-based operator India Unbound has developed independent travel itineraries for a number of lesser known destinations in India including the Andaman and Nicobar Islands, Ladakh, Bihar (for a cruise on the Ganges River), Himachal Pradesh and rural Rajasthan. It has also developed a longer stay Mumbai program which includes market and slum walks, tours by bicycle, and a special Insight walk that takes guests into local homes and local restaurants.