An Insight in to Agriculture in India

Agriculture in India has a significant history. Today, India ranks second worldwide in farm output. Agriculture and allied sectors like forestry and logging accounted for 16.6% of the GDP in 2007 employing more than 50% of the total workforce and despite a steady decline of its share in the GDP, is still demographically the broadest economic sector and plays a significant role in the overall social-economic development of India.

India is the largest producer in the world of fresh fruit, anise, fennel, badian, coriander, tropical fresh fruit, jute, pigeon peas, pulses, spices, millets, castor oil seed, sesame seeds, sunflower seeds, lemons, limes, cow's milk, dry chillies and peppers, chick peas, cashew nuts, okra, ginger, turmeric, guavas, mangoes, goat milk and buffalo milk and meat. India is also the largest producer of millets like Jowar, Bajra and Ragi. It is second only to China in the production of rice. India is the 6th largest coffee producer in the world. It also has the world's largest cattle population (281 million). It is the second largest producer of cashews, cabbages, cotton seed and lint, fresh vegetables, garlic, eggplant, goat meat, silk, nutmeg, mace, cardamom, onions, wheat, rice, sugarcane, lentil, dry beans, groundnut, tea, green peas, cauliflowers, potatoes, pumpkins, squashes, gourds and inland fish. It is the third largest producer of tobacco, sorghum, rapeseed, coconuts, hen's eggs and tomatoes. India accounts for 10% of the world fruit production with first rank in the production of mangoes, papaya, banana and sapota.

Punjab – capital state of agriculture

Punjab is well-known for its agricultural activities and plantations. Agricultural activities have occupied a high percentage of land in Punjab because of its land which is perfect for cropping.
The hindrance caused by scanty rainfall in the agricultural activities in Punjab is being lessened and compensated by irrigation facilities. The major agricultural products in Punjab comprise of wheat, maize, rice, and bajra. Among all these, the entire crop plantation is devoted to wheat whereas rice and maize are confined to a few regions only. Punjab is the largest producer of wheat in India and it produces around 2 million tons every year. Rice is produced mainly in Gurdaspur, Amritsar and Kapurthala districts in Punjab. The leading cash crop cultivated by the agricultural sector in Punjab is cotton. Other important crops of Punjab agriculture include sugarcane, potatoes, and groundnuts.
The agriculture in Punjab witnessed a marked improvement with the advent of the Green Revolution. This has brought a discernible change in not only the economy of the state but also the country as a whole. The state of Punjab has aided its agricultural sector with a series of services for its growth which act as a boost for the economy.

Desert farming

The ecological environment of Rajasthan doesn't support too much of vegetation but it still boasts some extreme flora and fauna in the sand dunes that have become an attraction for travellers from across the world.
The three most important crops grown here are wheat, corn and millets. Pulses are an essential addition to the diet of the people here. The majority of the population depends on sesame and groundnut oil as a source of cooking. Though the farmers wait for the monsoon season to water their fields but recent introduction of canals, tube wells and modern ways of irrigation have brought a tremendous change in the agriculture scenario in the desert terrain of Rajasthan. Due to these introductions, the fields have become a lot more fertile and now we can see an ample number of crops growing here like citrus fruits, beans, cucumber, watermelon, oranges and lemons to name just a few.

  Arrive Delhi

Buffet breakfast at the hotel.
Arrive at Delhi by an international flight.
You will receive assistance on your arrival and will be escorted to the hotel.

Delhi - the capital of India, a fascinating city with complexities and contradictions, beauty and dynamism where the past co-exists with the present.  Many dynasties ruled from here and the city is rich in the architecture of its monuments. Delhi is not only the present metropolis of India but also a necropolis.
On arrival, check-in at the hotel. (Hotel check-in time is 14:00 hrs)

Spend the rest of the day at your leisure.


Buffet breakfast at the hotel.

In the morning start the city tour of Delhi. Visit Old Delhi - drive past the Red Fort– Shah Jahan's elegant citadel in red sandstone, the Jama Masjid, India's largest mosque and Raj Ghat - the memorial to Mahatma Gandhi. Enjoy a Cycle Rickshaw Ride through the bustling bazaar of Chandni Chowk. The Rickshaw ride takes you to the majestic bazaars of Chandni Chowk thru Khari Baoli the major spice and grain market – Sikhsand Muslims from Afghanistan moved here decades ago and have stood shoulder to shoulder and in competition with centuries old trading families of Delhi.

An old colonial building in the Spice Market has got converted into a Red Chilies Market which trades a substantial value of chilies daily. A little walk in the spice market gives you the feel and the pulse of the hectic activity and of the traditional informal and customary ways of business of the local merchants. Also conspicuous here is the Marigold Flower Market that sets the contrasts in the environment. Marigold is the auspicious ornamental flower used for all Hindu religious rites and for offerings to deities, gods and goddesses.

NOTE: Chandni Chowk market remains closed on Sundays

In the afternoon visit Dilli Haat; an open-air food plaza cum craft bazaar located in Delhi, run by Delhi Tourism and Transportation Development Corporation. Dilli Haat provides the ambience of a traditional Rural Haat or village market, but one suited for more contemporary needs. Here one sees a synthesis of crafts, food and cultural activity. This Food and Craft Bazar is a treasure house of Indian culture, handicrafts and ethnic cuisine, a unique bazaar, in the heart of the city, it displays the richness of Indian culture on a permanent basis.

Across the street from Dilli Haat, visit the INA Market. The Indian National Army Market, popularly known as INA Market, is known as the food bazaar of Delhi. Fresh seafood, meat, spices, vegetables, fruits - if you don't get it anywhere else, you get it at this market. You can also get some rare wine and liquor. The shops here sell varieties of imported foodstuff and the shopkeepers can speak in foreign languages such as French, German and Japanese.

NOTE: INA market remains closed on Mondays.

Later return back to the hotel.


Buffet breakfast at the hotel.

In the morning is a visit to Asia's biggest Vegetable Market.

In terms of arrivals, this is the biggest Fruit & Vegetable market in Asia. This is a market of national importance as it has assumed the character of a National Distribution Centre for important fruits like Apple, Banana, Orange, Mango and Vegetables like Potato, Onion, Garlic & Ginger. This market was constructed in 1977 and the government has allotted shops to traders. There are more than 4000 Wholesalers in regulated market & the purpose of regulation is to ensure orderly marketing to safeguard the interests of both producers/sellers and consumers by eliminating various malpractices like under-weighing, short payment, delayed payments, unauthorized deductions & presence of too many intermediaries.

Return to the hotel.

In the afternoon visit National Agricultural Science Museum situated in the National Agricultural Science Centre campus. It is the first of its kind in the country. Spread over a two storey specially designed building of floor area 23,000 square feet, the museum portrays the development of agriculture in India since prehistoric time and the present state-of-the-art technology in agriculture in our country, with a futuristic projection.

NOTE: NASM remains closed on Mondays/ Public holidays

  Delhi / Amritsar (Train Journey)

Breakfast will be packed from the hotel.

Early morning proceed to New Delhi Railway station on time to board your train to Amritsar.

Enjoy the train ride to Amritsar.

There will be assistance from our side on arrival at the Amritsar railway station and you will be escorted to the hotel.

Amritsar is a city in the northern part of India. It is the spiritual and cultural centre of the Sikh religion. Amritsar literally means "the Pool of Nectar". The city boasts of being the main centre of Sikhs' cultural, religious and political history. Amritsar is also known for the tragic incident of Jallianwala Bagh Massacre in 1919. The main commercial activities include tourism, carpets and fabrics, farm produce, handicrafts and light engineering.

In the afternoon proceed to visit The Golden Temple; the central gurdwara, or worship place, for all Sikhs in the world. The gurdwara is constructed of white marble overlaid with gold leaf and stands in the centre of a sarovar, or pool of fresh, clear, water which reflects the image.

Later proceed to visit Jallianwala Bagh. Jallianwala Bagh in Amritsar is a beautiful garden and contains a Sikh religious shrine. Jallianwala Bagh is associated with the blackest day in the history of Indian Freedom Movement. This place was a popular ground for holding meetings and protests during the freedom movement in India. On 13th April, 1919, a large crowd gathered to protest the arrest of two Indian freedom leaders. The crowd was unarmed and included women as well as children. The British General, Edward Dyer, ordered his soldiers to fire on the unarmed and helpless crowd. Continuous firing went on targeting the crowd while the people were trapped inside the Jallianwala Bagh, which had only one narrow gate.


Buffet breakfast at the hotel.

This day, you will experience a rural side to India, which is basically dependent on Agriculture.

Bhangra Welcome Of The Group At The Village

The group is welcomed by the village in a large house (sort of a village mini haveli) in their courtyard where the guests will be seated on 'charpoys' and a Bhangra performance would be presented. Once settled the group shall be served a non-alcoholic beverage made by the members of the house themselves. Towards the end of the performance the group may joyfully be a part of the dance.

Walk Around The Village

There will be a walk through the narrow brick-tiled paths of the village and views of various old and new homes, huts, cow and buffalo sheds, the local village 'unofficial' assembly ground and an old arched-gate, preferably with a villager and a guide to translate and answer questions of the group.

Playing a Game

Once the group collects at a spot post the walk they shall be shown a simple yet common game played by the local people and children namely, 'Gulli Danda'. If anyone feels like joining in the game or learning about it, they are more than welcome to do so.

Tractor Trolley Ride to The Fields

The group henceforth moves to the tractor-trolleys and once all are seated on the trolley itself, they are driven across to the fields of the villagers and can view their local hermitage. Depending on the season and month, the fields would show sown, growing or harvested crops.

Lunch at The Large Village House

When back from the walk and ride, the guests are welcomed to a warm nice lunch and non-alcoholic beverages.
Later the group will be given a few moments to click pictures or browse around till the time of farewell.
Later proceed to visit Ceremony at Wagah Border. From Amritsar, 35 Kms on the road to Lahore (Pakistan), is India-Pakistan border, which is also known as 'Attari (India)' - 'Wagah (Pakistan)' border. A visit to the border is an interesting experience, especially at sun-set, when the retreat ceremony takes place with the Border Security Force (B.S.F.) on the Indian side and The Sutlej Rangers on the Pakistani side put up a well co-ordinated and spectacular display.

In the evening return back to the hotel.

  Amritsar / Ludhiana (Approx. 145 Kms / 03 hrs) Ludhiana / Hoshiarpur (Approx. 80 Kms / 02 hrs)

Buffet breakfast at the hotel.
Later proceed to visit Punjab Agricultural University in Ludhiana.
Continue on drive to Hoshiarpur.
On arrival in Hoshiarpur, check in at the Local Farm House.

It is a sprawling farm stay getaway in the middle of 75 acres of kinnow and poplar plantations. Set in a sprawling Kinnow orchard, Citrus County promises to be a warm, homely and luxurious getaway and facilitates the experience of rural surroundings.

Lunch will be served at the Farm.
After lunch, proceed to visit the farm.
In the Evening, a bonfire will be set up.

Barbeque Dinner will be served at the Farm.

  Hoshiarpur / Chandigarh (Approx. 140 Kms / 03 hrs)

Buffet breakfast at the Farm.
Later proceed to visit another farm followed by a Village Lunch.
After lunch, drive to Chandigarh.

Chandigarh is a union territory of India that serves as the capital of two states, Haryana and Punjab. The name Chandigarh translates as "The Fort of Chandi". The city of Chandigarh was the first planned city in India and is known internationally for its architecture and urban design. The city has projects designed by architects such as Le Corbusier, Pierre Jeanneret, Matthew Nowicki and Albert Mayer. The city tops the list of Indian States and Union Territories with the highest per capita income in the country.

Arrive at Chandigarh by early evening and check in to the hotel.


Buffet breakfast at the hotel.
This day, you will have 04 Technical visits related to Indian Agriculture.
Note: Packed Lunch will be carried from the hotel for this day along with Mineral Water bottles/ Fruit Juice packs/ Cold Drinks in the Coach.
In the evening return back to the hotel.

  Chandigarh / Delhi (Train Journey)

Buffet breakfast at the hotel.
Morning proceed for the sightseeing tour of Chandigarh city. Visit Chandigarh Museum & Art Gallery. Later visit Sukhna Lake and Rock Garden.
In the early evening proceed to Chandigarh Railway station in time to board your train to New Delhi.
Train ride to Delhi.
You will be assisted on your arrival at the Delhi railway station and will be escorted to the hotel.

  Delhi / Agra (Approx. 205 Kms / 05 hrs)

Buffet breakfast at the hotel.
In the morning drive to Agra. Arrive at Agra and check in at the hotel.
You will receive assistance on your arrival at the hotel in Agra and check-in.

Later proceed for a visit to Red Fort - built by three generations of Mughal Emperors, between 1565 and 1573. The Red Fort housed both the residential palaces of the Royal family and the military quarters.
Early in the evening proceed by decorated Tongas to the world famous 'Taj Mahal' - the inimitable poem in white marble, built over a period of 22 years by the Mughal Emperor Shah Jahan in 1630 for his Queen Mumtaz Mahal to enshrine her mortal remains. Witness the changing colours of this magnificent monument at sunset.

NOTE: Taj Mahal remains closed on Fridays.
Later return back to the hotel.

  Agra / Samode (Approx. 277Kms / 06 hrs)

Buffet breakfast at the hotel

Morning visit a rural village (Approx. 50 Kms from Agra). Twenty percent of their economy is based on Agriculture. This place produces wheat, rice, coarse grains, oilseeds, sugar, cotton, jute etc. Meet with the local farmer and know their style of farming throughout the year according to the facilities available.
Continue drive to Samode en route Lunch at Bharatpur.

Samode was the abode of the Rawals of Amber of the 16th century. It is set amidst three imposing forts, high on the mountains and reminds one of the chivalrous tradition of the Rajputs.
On arrival at Samode Bagh, check in at the hotel.

Samode Bagh is a garden paradise situated 4 km from Samode Palace, nestled on 20 acres of beautiful grounds and combines warmth and luxury, an atmosphere that is quiet relaxed & elegant. It is a romantic hideaway where you can be as active or contemplative as you wish. Samode Bagh offers a unique experience of an air-conditioned tented camp where the dune coloured tents is luxuriously furnished with every comfort. The garden is about three blocks long and is enclosed by a 15 foot high stone wall

Spend the rest of the evening at your leisure.


Buffet breakfast at the hotel.
In the morning you will be taken on a Camel Safari in the rugged countryside, villages and fields of Samode and around. Take a closer picture at a rustic, rural life in Rajasthan. Although it differs in every aspect from the busy city life, you definitely must not miss the colourful side of Rajasthan. Buffet Lunch will be served at the Farm.
In the afternoon is a tour of Jaipur city.
Visit the ancient capital of Amber to see the fabulous Amber Fort. Maharaja Mansingh, Mughal Emperor Akbar's most successful General, started the construction of Amber Fort in the 17th century. Before the City Palace was constructed in Jaipur, Amber was the seat of power. The fort is surrounded by fortified battlements and overlooks the Moat Lake. Ruins and remains are spread over the Aravalli hills and sprawling crenulated walls lattice the surrounding area.

Later proceed to the City Palace, now converted into a museum, except a small portion that is still used by the royal family of Jaipur. Built in the fortified campus style, the palace covers almost one-seventh part of the city. One of the major attractions in the museum is the portion that is devoted to the arms and ammunition used by the royal family. Other important attractions are the Textile and Costume Museum, Art Gallery, Chandra Mahal, Mubarak Mahal, Diwan-i-Khas and Diwan-i-Am

  Samode / Nimaj (Approx. 260Kms / 05 hrs)

Buffet breakfast at the hotel.
Later you will be driven to Nimaj. On arrival in Nimaj, check in to the palace hotel.
In the afternoon proceed for an exciting jeep safari to a sanctuary to spot antelope, blue bull, a large number of peacocks, deer and black buck. Continue the safari through the various tribal villages of the "Bishnois" who are well known lovers of nature and staunch environmentalists.


Buffet breakfast at the hotel.
In the morning you will be taken to the local villages. This day will be a synoptic visit to rural India as we will show you many activities which farmers do (including Crop processing, manufacture of Dairy products, producing goat-cheese etc.). It is a treat to see a farmer till the soil with bullocks and camels, manual brick kilns, manual stone quarries, manual milking of cows, buffaloes and goats, 'Gaushallas' which are cow protection centres, cobblers, gold smiths, black smiths & merchants etc. at work.
In the afternoon is a visit to Chattrasagar Dam.
Water is a precious and life giving resource in the desert. Perhaps due to its scarcity the importance of water conservation and harvesting is deeply understood since time immemorial and commissioning any project which harvested or conserved water was considered one of the prime responsibilities of those in power.
In the late nineteenth century, Thakur Chhatra Singh of Nimaj, a powerful noble of the desert kingdom of Marwar (Jodhpur), decided to dam a seasonal stream flowing through his estate. His vision was to create a water reservoir which would harvest the monsoon rains. It was an ambitious project and a great drain on his resources but Thakur Chhatra Singh remained true to his vision.
The dam was completed in 1890 and changed the dry scrub into prime agricultural land. Farmers struggling for sustenance on parched lands were invited by Thakur Chhatra Singh to settle around the reservoir.
The reservoir was named Chhatra Sagar in his memory.

  Nimaj / Jodhpur (Approx., 120Kms / 03 hrs)

Buffet breakfast at the hotel

Later proceed to Jodhpur. Arrive at Jodhpur by afternoon and check in at the hotel.
Jodhpur, the imperial city, echoes with tales of antiquity in the emptiness of the desert. The lifestyle in Jodhpur is unusually fascinating with people wearing lovely multi-hued costumes, artistically designed. Shopping in Jodhpur bazaar is a heady experience with a colourful display of the rich collection of exquisite handicrafts, the tie-and-die fabric, embroidered jutis or slippers in suede, camel skin and an extensive range of useful and decorative items

Late in the afternoon visit Meherangarh Fort which is one of the most impressive & formidable in the whole of fort-studded Rajasthan and Jaswant Thada, the Royal Cenotaph. Visit the Palace rooms & the museum which took 13 years & 3000 artisans to build. This magnificent edifice of hand-chiselled sandstone blocks has no mortar binding – an architectural triumph.


Buffet breakfast at the hotel.
Full day visit to CAZRI (Central Arid Zone Research Institute).

The arid zone of India covers about 12% of the country's geographical area and occupies over 31.7 m ha of hot desert and about 7 m ha is under cold desert. The production and life support systems in the hot regions are constrained by low and erratic precipitation, high evapotranspiration and poor soil, physical and fertility conditions. The local inhabitants have evolved suitable land use and management systems of farming, pastoralism and animal husbandry. This has resulted in over exploitation of the resources causing rapid and widespread land degradation and decline in productivity. To arrest this degradation process and for scientific and sustainable management of the resources, Desert Afforestation Station was established in 1952 at Jodhpur. This was later expanded into Desert Afforestation and Soil Conservation Station in 1957, and finally upgraded to Central Arid Zone Research Institute (CAZRI) in 1959 under Indian Council of Agricultural Research, New Delhi.

Lunch will be served at the institute.
Return to the hotel in the evening.

  Jodhpur / Delhi (or Mumbai)

Buffet breakfast at the hotel.
Spend the day at your leisure.
Hotel check-out is at 12:00 hrs.

Later proceed to Jodhpur airport for flight to Delhi or to Mumbai to connect with your international flight back home.