Itinerary 2013-14

For a printable version of the itinerary, click here.

Itinerary for The Urban School of San Francisco
“India: Challenges and Responses”

Dec 19, 2013 – Jan 6, 2014



Evening Location

12/19, Thurs

Evening: Depart SF 9:10pm for overnight flight Overnight Flight



Evening: Arrive in Munich at 5:30pm.  Depart Munich  at 7:40pm  flight

12/21, Sat

Morning: Arrive in Delhi at 7:45am. you are met at the airport by your guide and taken to your hotel to rest.Afternoon:  Orientation to India, perform a puja ceremony at Lakshminarayan Hindu temple to ask for blessings on your trip, followed by a visit to Humayun’s tomb (time permitting).Evening: After dinner, return to your room to turn in early and rest. Hotel,JHT, South Delhi

12/22, Sun

Morning: After breakfast, visit Gurudwara Bangla Sahib, one of the most important religious sites for Sikhs. See the Red Fort in Old Delhi and drive through Lutyen’s Delhi (time permitting).Afternoon:  After lunch, see historical sights of Delhi including the India Gate, Raj Ghat, and the Gandhi Smriti.  Learn about Gandhi’s life and impact on Indian and world history.  In the late afternoon, ride the metro to Connaught Place and wander through the markets.Evening: Dinner at Saravana Bhavan Hotel,JHT, South Delhi

12/23, Mon

Morning: Take an early morning train to Jaipur (time TBD).  Transfer to the Idex facility to drop off your belongings and get an orientation to your upcoming time in Jaipur and Lalsot.Afternoon:  After lunch, enjoy a free afternoon. Time to shop for small gifts you would like to deliver to the children in the mahout or Lalsot villages.  Meet your home stay families and return home with them.Evening:  Dinner with your home stay family and time to share with them. Home Stay, Jaipur

12/24, Tues

Morning/Afternoon: In the early morning, travel to a village of elephant keepers (mahouts) to learn and contribute to the service project dedicated to educating the village’s children. Visit a Hindu temple on the way back to Jaipur.Evening: Dinner at Chokhi Dhani with carnival games, henna painting, etc. Possibly attend a late evening Christmas Eve Mass / service. Home Stay, Jaipur

12/25, Wed

Morning: After breakfast, visit Amber Fort and take an audio tour of the palace. Later, transfer to Lalsot Camp in rural Rajasthan farming community where you will engage in your service project for the next few days.Afternoon: Upon arrival, have lunch followed by a welcome meeting with the project staff & an introduction to the service project.Evening:  Celebrate the holiday over dinner and have a group discussion. Idex Camp, Lalsot

12/26, Thurs

Morning/Afternoon: Participate in an early morning yoga session before breakfast from 6-7 am.  After breakfast, you will divide into two groups.  One group will work on a water conservation project, planting trees, improving school facilities or working on service projects related to children’s education or women’s empowerment.  The other group will spend the day in nearby rural areas to gain a more in-depth understanding of life in a small village.Evening: Dinner and time for reflection and journaling Idex Camp, Lalsot

12/27, Fri

Morning: After breakfast, you will again divide into two groups but will switch activities.Afternoon: After lunch, wrap up your service project by meeting with local community members to reflect on your experience and service project. Depart for Jaipur in time to board your evening train.Evening: After dinner (near train station) in Jaipur, board your overnight train (Ashram Express) departing at 8:35 pm Overnight train

12/28, Sat

Morning: 7:40 am arrive in Ahmedabad and transfer to your hotel.  After breakfast, take the ‘mandir se masjid tak’ (Heritage walk) of the old city which starts at the Hindu Swaminarayan temple and ends at the Muslim Jama Masjid, showcasing the Gujarati culture and heritage.Afternoon:  After lunch, have an afternoon to explore issues related to communalism and modern politics prior to gathering at the hotel to watch the movie Gandhi.  Evening:  Join the festivities at the Darpana Arts Festival (TBD) Le Grand Residency, Ahmedabad

12/29, Sun

Morning:  Join an 8:30 am yoga session at the Darpana Academy of the Arts. Spend the morning engaging with their artists in discussion.Afternoon:  Learn the basics of Indian dance, yoga or puppet makingEvening:   After dinner, join the festivities at the Darpana Arts Festival and possibly help out and/or perform! Le Grand Residency, Ahmedabad


12/30, Mon


Morning/Afternoon: After breakfast, transfer to an urban farm on the outskirts of Ahmedabad and spend the day working with rural women on conservation projects. Transfer back to your hotel.Evening: After dinner, free time for a group discussion and reflection Le Grand Residency, Ahmedabad

12/31, Tues

Morning: After breakfast, visit the Center for Environmental Education, one of the best of its kind in India.Afternoon: After lunch, spend time shopping in one of the local bazaars and head to Vishala, where you can enjoy the museum, music and laid-back atmosphere that typifies a traditional Indian village.Evening: Celebrate the New Year by having dinner at the Vishala restaurant.  After dinner, enjoy an informal group discussion about how you can extend the lessons from your India experience into the New Year. Le Grand Residency, Ahmedabad




Morning: After breakfast, visit the Calico Museum (if open), one of the foremost textile museums in the world and an important Indian institution.  Visit the Jain Temple, step well and local mosques to learn more about regional history and culture (time permitting).Afternoon: After lunch, visit the Sabarmati Ashram, do selected readings by the river followed by a discussion and time to wander the grounds.Evening:  After dinner, free time for reflection and journaling.     Le Grand Residency, Ahmedabad

1/2, Thurs


Morning:  After breakfast, visit the Riverside School to engage with their students and learn about their educational programs (if they are available).Afternoon:  Have lunch and transfer to the train station to board the Shatabdi Express at 2:30pm.Evening: Arrive in Mumbai at 9:35pm.  Transfer to your hotel to get settled in. Hotel Residency, Mumbai (or similar)




Morning: Visit a school (Shivner Vidyamandir, Mohili Village, Pareirawadi) run by “Teach for India” in Sakinaka, Mumbai. The school hours are 7:30 – 10 am. Take a tour of the Dharavi slums with Reality Tours, with emphasis on its recycling industries and entrepreneurial energy.Afternoon:  Have lunch in the Santacruz area before visiting Marketplace India/SHARE at their Santacruz office.  Participate in an orientation session to learn about their programs.Evening:  After dinner, free time for rest and/or reflection and journaling. Hotel Residency, Mumbai (or similar)




Morning:  After breakfast, visit and tour Seva Sadan to learn about their work toward empowering underprivileged girls and women through vocational training (1.5 hours).Afternoon: Have lunch at the adjoining restaurant “By the Way”, featuring some of the best food in Mumbai. Free time to explore Mumbai or for a group discussion.Evening: Bollywood film in Bollywood! Hotel Residency, Mumbai (or similar)




Morning/Afternoon: Spend the day visiting the sites of Mumbai; participate in a ‘closing circle’ to reflect on your time in India.Evening: After dinner at a café in the Colaba area, transfer back to your hotel to rest and prepare for the trip home. Overnight flight



Early Morning: Transfer to the airport for your return flight to the USA. Depart Mumbai  at 3:25am and arrive in Frankfurt at 7:45am.  Depart Frankfurt on at 10:00am and arrive in San Francisco at 12:25pm.  Go home to rest and dream of your time in India! Home!