Saga has launched a 15-night tour called Mystical India, offering 18 excursions and the chance to try local cuisine.

The new escorted tour visits Old Delhi, the Taj Mahal at sunrise, temples at Khajuraho and the ‘pink city’ of Jaipur.

Prices start at £2,599 per person, based on two sharing, including return flights, accommodation, transport and 28 meals.

It departs from Heathrow on selected dates in 2020.

Also included is a boat safari to watch for wildlife – such as alligators, otters, tortoises, dolphins and boars – and four rail journeys including Mahamana and Gatimaan Express trains.

The local cuisine can be sampled during visits to Bhopal and at Varanasi (pictured) where guests dine at a traditional Haveli residence.

The ancient city of Varanasi, holy to Hindus, has 88 riverside ghats where steps lead down to the Ganges for bathing and ceremonies. Guests can join an Aarti religious ceremony and try typical cuisine comprising a Litti-Choka meal of choorma (made with wheat, ghee and sugar), daal and rice.