Everything to know about Bharat Gaurav tour packages - railway tours showcasing India’s cultural heritage
- On March 21, Indian Railways inaugurated its latest tour package under the Bharat Gaurav scheme — a 15-day train journey covering India’s northeastern states.
Gaurav tourtrains are a form of tour package which includes services like off-board travel and excursions by buses, hotel stays, tour guides, meals, travel insurance, etc.
- The first Bharat Gaurav train commenced on June 14, 2022, from Coimbatore to Shirdi.
- As of March 17, 2023, 26 trips of Bharat Gaurav trains have been operated covering around 22 states and four Union Territories.
AdvertisementOn March 21, Indian Railways inaugurated the latest Bharat Gaurav Deluxe AC Tourist train – designed to take travelers through the northeastern states, as part of the ‘North East Discovery: Beyond Guwahati’ theme.
The 15-day train tour will cover Guwahati, Sivasagar, Jorhat and Kaziranga in Assam, Unakoti, Agartala and Udaipur in Tripura, Dimapur and Kohima in Nagaland and Shillong and Cherapunji in Meghalaya.
The package includes an overnight stay in Kaziranga and a morning jungle safari at the Kaziranga National Park, among other services. The package costs ₹1.06 lakh per person for AC 2-tier and includes services such as two fine dining restaurants, a mini library, shower cubicles in coaches, etc.
This is the latest package under the theme-based ‘Bharat Gaurav’ trains announced by the Indian Railways Catering and Tourism Corporation (IRCTC).
What’s the ‘Bharat Gaurav’ scheme?
The Union Government introduced the Bharat Gaurav trains initiative in November 2021 under its “Dekho Apna Desh” programme. These trains showcase India’s rich
As per IRCTC, Bharat Gaurav trains are a tour package wherein services like off-board travel and excursions by buses, hotel stays, tour guides, meals, travel insurance, etc. are provided along with allied onboard services, like a doctor on-board. These journeys terminate at the originating stations but various onboarding and deboarding stations are provided on the way.
Under the initiative, private players, including tour operators, state governments and others, can procure trains from Indian Railways on lease and operate them on any circuit. The private players will also have the right to decide the itinerary, route and tariff. Private service providers can take custody of the trains for a minimum period of two years and a maximum period of the coaches’ service life.
For example, the Government of Karnataka (GoK) launched the “Karnataka Bharat Gaurav Kashi Darshan” covering Kashi, Puri and Dwarka, in association with IRCTC. The eight-day round trip starts at ₹15,000. Under it, two upcoming tours are starting from April 14 and April 28.
The maiden Bharat Gaurav train
The maiden Bharat Gaurav train from Coimbatore North to Sainagar Shirdi commenced on June 14, 2022. Operated by South Star Rail, the 5-day round trip included stoppages at Tiruppur, Erode, Salem, Yelahanka, Dharmavaram, Mantralayam Road, and Wadi.
The First Bharat Gaurav Train!Catch a glimpse of the grand welcome for a memorable journey to the country's rich… https://t.co/a3I3QKMXCh— Ministry of Railways (@RailMinIndia) 1655220427000
Among other services, the maiden train included an on-rail radio jockey, a doctor on board, and private security. As per reports, there were two categories of fares — package fare and regular ticket fare. As for regular ticket fares, first class AC is ₹10,000, second class AC is ₹7,000 and third class AC is ₹5,000. Charges are fixed at ₹2,500 for non-AC sleeper.
As for the package fares, first class AC is ₹12,999, second class AC is ₹9,999, and third class AC is ₹7,999. Non-AC sleeper is priced at ₹4,999. Special Darshan in Shirdi, AC room accommodation for three, tour guide and insurance are included in this package.
Tours available under the Bharat Gaurav scheme
As of March 17, 2023, 26 trips of Bharat Gaurav trains have been operated covering around 22 states and four Union Territories. Currently, over 10 different tour packages are available under the Bharat Gaurav scheme.
One can book the specific package through the IRCTC website. Here’s the link for Bharat Gaurav trains — https://www.irctourism.com./bharatgaurav. Listed below are some upcoming Bharat Gaurav tours:
Bharat Nepal Astha Yatra
Connecting India and Nep, the Bharat Nepal Astha Yatra is a 10-day-long journey covering Ayodhya, Varanasi and Prayagraj in India and Pashupatinath (Kathmandu) in Nepal, starting at ₹27,815 per person for double/triple sharing standard fare.
The round trip starts from Jalandhar City on March 31, 2023. It covers 12 tourist attractions including, but not limited to the Swaymbhunath Stupa in Nepal, Ganga Aarti at Varanasi Ghat, Ram Janmbhoomi temple in Ayodhya, etc.
The package includes onboard and off-board meals, insurance, AC and Non-AC hotel stays and transportation in non-AC buses.
Shri Ramayan Yatra
AdvertisementThe 18-day-long journey is a pilgrimage tour covering the prominent places associated with the life of Lord Ram.
The round trip departs from Delhi on April 7, 2023, and will cover Ayodhya, Nandigram, Janakpur, Sitamarhi, Buxar, Varanasi, Prayagraj, Shringverpur, Chitrakoot, Nashik, Hampi, Rameshwaram, Bhadrachalam and Nagpur, before returning to Delhi.
The tour starts at ₹1.11 lakh for triple-share second AC class. The train only includes AC coaches (first and second AC). The fare includes travel insurance, accommodation, meals (onboard and off-board), and transfers and sightseeing by AC buses.
The itinerary covers 35 tourist attractions. Some of the noteworthy destinations included in the itinerary are Ram Janmabhoomi temple, Hanuman Garhi, Saryu Ghat in Ayodhya, Bharat-Hanuman Temple and Bharat Kund in Nandigram, Tulsi Manas temple, Sankat Mochan temple, Vishwanath temple & Ganga Aarti in Varanasi, among others.
Guru Kirpa Yatra
AdvertisementThe 11-day round trip includes a visit to the five sacred Takht associated with the Sikh religion, along with other prominent Gurudwaras in India.
The round trip departs from Lucknow on April 5, 2023, and will cover Sri Kesgarh Sahib (Anandpur), Sri Kiratpur Sahib, Sri Fatehgarh Sahib (Sirhind), Sri Akal Takht (Amritsar), Sri Damdama Sahib (Bhatinda), Sri Hazur Sahib (Nanded), Sri Guru Nanak Jhira Sahib (Bidar), and Sri Harmandirji Sahib (Patna), before returning to Lucknow.
The tour starts at ₹19,999 for double/triple-sharing sleeper economy class. The train includes sleeper class and 2-tier and 3-tier AC coaches. The fare includes hotel accommodation, meals (onboard and off-board), and transfers.
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