SMALL GROUP TOURS
24 days NZ$8985 (US$5854/€5636) per person
Ahmedabad to Kolkata
Max 10 guests
2 Oct to 25 Oct 2023
An ideal trip for:
Solo Traveler, Group of Friends, Couples
If you want a rich and truly authentic experience of the region(s) being visited in a slow and well-paced manner as part of a small group of like-minded people who appreciate the personal care and attention provided to them, then this is the trip for you.
Safe Travels with ATI
We are uniquely qualified to ensure your well-being when travelling with us.
Our local partner offices work tirelessly with us behind the scenes
Our local suppliers and partners know our health & safety requirements, and our requirement to comply with all local regulations.
We follow the health and safety protocols required for your journey
All protocols involving physical distancing, vaccinations, masking, testing and other safety practices are communicated both before and during your journey. These protocols are carried out according to the latest local regulations and service provider requirements.
We facilitate in-country COVID-19 testing and provide round-the-clock support for any health-related matters
ATI’s network of local offices has the contacts and knowledge to support you throughout your journey, from coordinating COVID-19 testing (for travelling between countries and returning home) to answering any questions you have during your journey. Our local partners are experienced in handling any situation and have the contacts and knowledge to support guests 24/7.
ATI Travel will constantly monitor its safe travel plans to comply with global health and safety protocols
In the event that the tour director has to isolate, the tour will continue with the tour director remotely managing the tour in conjunction with the local team members.
If any of the guests have to isolate, all arrangements will be made to find accommodation and their medical support. This is not included in the package costs and must be covered by the individual’s travel insurance.
The guest can join the tour after the required isolation and clearance if the tour is still active. In the event that the tour has been completed, the guest will be supported to make their return passage home.
Threads of tradition
A farm to fashion textiles tour which goes off the beaten track to meet master artisans at work and showcase the best in the traditional textiles industry covering the West, Central and Eastern regions of India.
Along the way, we visit New Delhi in the north-west, a stopover in Agra to feast our eyes on the Taj Mahal e route to Lucknow. Throughout this tour, we will witness for ourselves the hearts and souls, traditions and beliefs that are woven and embellished into the textiles of India.
We embark on this amazing and colourful textiles adventure from the heart and centre of Indian textiles from ancient times, Gujarat. The birthplace of Mahatma Gandhi, Gujarat is renowned for its indigo dyeing, handloom weaving, embroidery, handicrafts, mouthwatering vegetarian cuisine, natural beauty and colourful lifestyle. We will venture off the beaten track and visit villages where indigo dyeing, intricate embroidery (Rabari, Bavalia & Sindhi),
double ikat patola saree weaving, wooden block making, Ajrakh block printing etc. are undertaken in a very traditional way. Along the way, we will stop and marvel at architectural splendours of bygone eras, eat where the locals eat, meet and mingle with tribals and villagers in their natural surroundings and even visit some in their homes.
We will also visit various artisan campuses set up by NGOs to encourage and teach the next generation of artisans in an effort to revive and retain these ancient skills. A trip to Gujarat, with the longest coastline (1290 km) in India, will not be complete without a stay in a beach resort where we get to rest, relax, rejuvenate and reminisce.
After a restful day, we will fly north-west to Delhi, the capital city of India. A fascinating city made up of Old Delhi (a historic walled capital city built by Shah Jahan, the Mughal emperor who also built the Taj Mahal) with its narrow,crowded, colourful and fascinating bazaars and New Delhi (a garden city designed by Lutyens during the British era) with its landscaped parks, boulevards, mini palaces and Government buildings. Being the capital city, it proudly hosts a craft village spread over 6 acres of reclaimed land, where all the various arts, crafts and textiles from all parts of India are on display and for sale. Here we will get to visually treat ourselves to beautifully woven and embroidered textiles (cotton & silk) and meet and talk to the artisans. A visit to Delhi will not be complete without visiting Qutub Minar (a historically significant monument), doing a cycle rickshaw ride through the crowded streets of Old Delhi, visiting State Emporiums, enjoying culinary delights and commuting with the locals on the Metro.
Out next leg of the journey takes us to one of the world’s most celebrated structures and an icon of India’s rich history – the Taj Mahal. A symbol of love, that is not only beautiful and romantic but is also so graceful, majestic and deeply memorable. With wonderment in our eyes, we embark on a three-hour train journey to Lucknow, the city of the Oudh Nawabs. The Nawabs were great patrons of the culinary and other arts, particularly dance and music. Away from the tourist route, Lucknow is, to this day, a city of culture, gracious living and rich cuisine. It is the home of Chikan, a delicate and artful hand embroidery that embellishes a variety of textile fabrics like muslin, silk, chiffon, organza, net, etc. Historically of royal significance, it is now a fashion-centric form of needlecraft recognised world over and sought after by the international fashion houses. Lucknow is also famous for its zardozi (gold or silver metal thread) and Ari (stitching using finest threads, beads and pearls) embroidery. Our culinary walk will entreat us to the famous and rich Lucknow cuisine.
We also get to witness metal craft, artificial jewellery and edible silver foil being created by artisans in the bazaars. Staying in a beautiful Taj hotel, we roundup our stay with a taste of the lifestyle of the princely Nawabs of Lucknow.
We fly over to Kolkata, the final leg of the “Threads of Tradition” tour, to marvel at her rich textile traditions. Fine muslins with superior designs, jamdanis, are their speciality here and so it is only apt that we pay a visit to a jamdani master weaver’s workshop in a nearby village. Here, we get to visit a cotton weaver in his home, a cooperative society of weavers and get a real taste of village life. Returning to Kolkata, we will not only visit Mother Theresa’s home but also observe clay statue making and visit Indian fashion designers who are working to revive the traditional textile arts. No visit to Kolkata will be complete without a tram ride, tasting the famous Bengali cuisine (street stalls visited by Rick Stein) and enjoying the majestic colonial architecture.
We bid our farewells, but only after we have had time to chill out, unwind and weave our rich and colourful experiences into yarns that we can take with us to share with family and friends.
Joji has designed this tour and has escorted groups since 2016. He shares his passion for textiles and anything hand-made during this tour. Read More >
Day 1, 2 & 3 – Ahmedabad - Arrival
We will receive you personally at the Ahmedabad International Airport and take you to your hotel.
We start our tour from the Gandhi Ashram and visit Calico Museum, the National Institute of Design, markets, traditional eateries, and private museums and also attend a hands-on tribal art workshop.
Meals: B | – | –
Accommodation: The House of MG
Day 4 & 5 – Bajana
From Ahmedabad, we travel north to Patan to visit an 11th-century stepwell, a UNESCO world heritage site and visit weavers undertaking the complex double IKAT weaving. From Patan, we continue our journey to Bajana in the southwest to the next accommodation. However, on the way, we take a break at a wooden block maker’s workshop and visit the Modhera Sun Temple (an ancient & beautiful architectural marvel built in 1026AD).
Bajana is in the ‘Little run of Kutch’ famous for the Wild Ass sanctuary. Early morning, we will venture out on a safari expecting to see this shy animal in its habitat. During our stay, we visit a salt farm/factory, meet the tribals, dance to their music, and most importantly, see how Tangalia, a supplementary weft beaded textiles, are woven at the artisan’s home.
Meals: B | L | D
Accommodation: The Royal Safari Camp
Day 6, 7 & 8 – Bhuj
Travelling west takes us to the heart of the textiles tradition of the Indian subcontinent. We stay in Bhuj and explore each region day by day. Be prepared to get mesmerised by colours and patterns magically formed in the skilled hands of artisans. We will visit communities, NGOs & museums to understand the textiles and crafts tradition of Kutchh.
Meals: B | – | D
Accommodation: Kutch Safari Lodge
Day 9 – Rann of Kutch
Rann of Kutch, north of Bhuj, is a seasonal salt marsh in the Thar desert. On a full moon night, the salt marsh looks like the moon. The Rann Utsav arts and crafts festival (3 months long) will be in full swing. We meet artisans and enjoy the local culture, textiles, arts and crafts and cuisine. Being in a desert, we will stay in traditional mud huts (Bhungas) to enjoy the ambience.
Meals: B | L | D
Accommodation: Mahefeel E Rann Resort
Day 10 – Mandvi Beach
Meals: B | – | –
Accommodation: Vijay Villas Heritage Resort
Day 11 & 12 – Delhi
Meals: B | – | –
Accommodation: The Park Delhi
Day 13, 14 & 15 – Chambal
A couple of days to explore the village, meet and mingle with the villagers, enjoy bird watching, cycle around or just relax under the shade of beautiful mature trees. Every meal is a culinary experience at Chambal Safari.
Meals: B | – | –
Accommodation: Mela Kothi – Chambal Safari Lodge
Day 16, 17 & 18 – Lucknow
We will wander around narrow streets in the old part of Lucknow to view artisans undertaking different types of embroideries (Chikan, Zardozi and Aari); block printing; metal crafts, perfumeries (using local rose petals) and costume jewellery making. Walking around, we will stop as the fancy takes us to taste the local delicacies.
Be the guest of the erstwhile royal family an hour’s drive and join them for a royal lunch. We will also visit one of their initiatives to provide a livelihood for local women.
Meals: B | – | –
Day 19 – Kolkata
Meals: B | – | –
Accommodation: Lemon Tree Premier
Day 20 & 21 – Itachuna
After breakfast, we check out and head out to Itachuna. Enjoy the scenic drive towards rural Bengal, where we will visit a master jamdani weaver’s workshop. Once again, we get to stay in a beautifully restored heritage mansion.
We venture to rural Phulia, where we will visit a cotton weaver’s home and the cooperative societies.
Meals: B | – | –
Accommodation: Itachuna Rajbari
Day 22 & 23 – Kolkata
Meals: B | – | –
Accommodation: The Elgin Fairlawn
Day 24 – Kolkata - Departure
Meals: B | – | –
Tour Price & Offers
Prices are per person, based on twin-share
Ahmedabad to Kolkata – 24 Days
Package Price for 24 days: NZ$8985 (US$5854/€5636)
Group organiser (2-10) discount: Up to NZ$1000 One person on twin share
Single Supplement: NZ$3450 Per Person (US$2260/€2176)
Accommodation (no. of nights): Heritage Mansion (8), Beach Resort (1), 5Star Hotel (2), Safari Lodge (8), Village Retreat (1), Business Hotel (1), Boutique Hotel (2)
Included Meals: 23 Breakfasts, 5 lunches & 6 dinners
Group Organiser Discount Available
A group organiser (2-10) can avail up to $1000 discount on a twin share package price. Please contact us for further details.
- Airport meet and greet with private transfers
- Domestic airfare
- Private air-conditioned van
- Handpicked boutique accommodations
- Meals as per trip note
- English-speaking local guides
- All entrance fees, tips & gratuity
- Guaranteed departure with just six guests
- International airfares
- Visa fees
- Travel Insurance
- Medical Tests & other medical expenses
- Personal expenses
REQUEST DETAILED ITINERARY
Or call Joji on +64 (0) 21 505 713
"I travelled with ATI across the north of India...
The principal focus was traditional textile arts, but there was a marvellous balance of exposure to other arts and traditional crafts, music, design and architecture.
The food and varied accommodations were excellent. Joji, ATI’s owner, led the tour and his genuine care for his clients, as well as his deep knowledge of and love for India’s cultures, arts, food and people, were always evident.
While the itinerary was carefully planned, flexibility was part of its fabric, so we enjoyed several serendipitous adventures and meetings, which were really enriching. I would say that ATI’s tours are designed for the curious and culturally sensitive, and its itineraries take you off the heavily beaten tourist oaths and much further into the heart of India.
Now that its tours are starting up again after the Covid hiatus, I am planning my next trip with the ATI crew as I cannot think of a better way of seeing India again.”
Witness the hearts and souls, traditions and beliefs that are woven and embellished into the textiles of India. Meet master artisans and watch them at work.
Farm to fashion
Tangail Saree Weaving
Ajrak Block Printing
Bandhani (Tie & dye)
Meet Master Artisans
Visit Textiles Museums
Taj Mahal Visit
Arts & Crafts
Folk Music & Dance
UNESCO Heritage Sites
Private Home Visits
We Got You Covered
Something for everyone
Whether you are a first-timer or experienced traveller, our tours meet the expectations, needs and interests of each individual on the tour. Our guests continuously tell us that it surpasses all their expectations.
This tour is suitable for guests who do not mind travelling that extra mile in search of those unique experiences. If you are interested in culture, cuisine, architecture, people interaction and textiles, you will love this tour.
Boutique accommodation, handpicked by us, for you to rest and rejuvenate in beautiful settings such as palaces, homestay, mansions, farm stay, business hotels and glamping is part of the travel experience we curate for you.
Travel in comfort
We provide airport to airport service, for your comfort and safety. Your private vehicle and the English speaking driver will accompany you throughout the journey. Check out the feedback we have received from our guests.