If you’d like to book a magnificent personal tour across the Sub Continent, or you’d simply like the services of a reliable driver – we offer you a totally flexible and personal service.
Holi festival of colour
Holi festival of colour
Syham and Mike at Udaipur
Houseboat cruise through the backwater canals in Kerala
Pushkar cattle fair
Elephant ride in Jaipur
Villages of rural India
Wildlife tour in Ranthambore National Park
Rural village in Rajasthan
If you’d like to book a magnificent personal tour across the Sub Continent, or you’d simply like the services of a reliable driver – we offer you a totally flexible and personal service.
We can design a complete itinerary for you including suggestions of our favourite places and things to see. We’ll book all your accommodation and transport, and of course we’ll drive you anywhere you like along the way.
We’ll have a friendly driver meet you at the airport and escort you to your destination.
We’ll drive you from each destination to the next - unless you prefer a train or bus which we can also arrange for you.
We will be available 24 hours to drive you around to sightsee and shop.
We’ll recommend great places to see and escort you to wonderful restaurants.
If you like your independence, just say so and we can leave you to it - you can see as much or as little of us as you like.
Our driver will arrange his own food and accommodation.
A tour guide will travel and accompany the guests throughout the tour. A tour guide in India must have a valid guiding license from the Government of India, where they have to compete an exam and undergo 6 months theoretical and practical training.
An accompanying tour guide or escort will assist you with check-in / check-out at the hotels, as well as guide you through and explain the history of monuments, places, culture, traditions and customs of the Indian people. A tour guide will be at your disposal throughout the tour. The tour guide's fee will always include costs for their accommodation and food.
A private driver is not your tour guide, as they are not allowed to enter monuments and show you around. A tour driver’s primary job is to drive you safely and smoothly from one place to another.
They can of course take you to good restaurants, nice places, and up to the monument ticket window, as well as give you relevant information about your tour. Your driver will wait until you finish the visit of any particular monument, and will take care of your luggage and belongings. A cost for the car, their food and accommodation will always be included in the driver’s fee.
Role and Duty of a tour driver:
All our drivers are experienced and have travelled extensively in all over India.
Please note drivers in India speak conversational English and therefore no issues of communication. They have travelled with people from all over the world.
Your tour driver is not a tour guide because one must have a valid license to become a tour guide in India.
In South India we will have different tour drivers, as it is not feasible to send a tour driver from North India to South India.
A tour guide can come to join you in South India and serve you as your local tour guide. His travel expenses for going to South India from North India shall be included in the fee.
We offer you a totally flexible and personal service so you can see India your own way. Here’s a few examples of tours we offer - just for some inspiration!
All of our sample tours can be customised to suit your personal preferences, or request your own personal tour of India.
As we cannot publish all testimonails, we have selected a few testimonials from our customers from various countries. For more testimonials you can check our India Personal Tours Trip Advisor page.
"Once before In 2013 I engaged Manu’s "India Personal Tours," just via surfing the internet, for an amazing 21 day tour of Agra, Rajistan, Rishikesh, Haridwar and Varanasi, even being hosted by his family at his remote home village, and bathing in Ganga Maa (the Ganges) on the occasion of my 72nd birthday. Never would I have braved India alone being an English only speaking westerner nor did I want the idiosyncrasies involved in a small group tour with unknown travelers.
My expectations were exponentially exceeded. It was just so awesome. Each day was one of peak experiences. My guide Nirmal treated me with care and dignity, the driver was expert and kind. Boutique accommodations, palaces, unique hotels, far more charming than western style (big boxes) with superb service and staff and oh the wonderful food. I only had to step off the plane and all my needs and desires were taken care of.
So at 75, tremulously determined to go on a true “pilgrimage of once in a lifetime” to remote sacred sites high in the Himalayas on the border of Tibet, to the glacial source of the Ganges, “The Chota Chardham Yatra.” (Starting out from Delhi to Rishikesh to Yamunotri, Gangotri, Kedarnath, to Badrinath, to Haridwar even including a trek to 10,800 feet,) I contacted Manu once again and asked if he could accommodate me despite this being well off the tourist track and only accessible during the few months of the year when these sites are not snowed in. Even in June the snow covered peaks take one’s breath away and several times we warmed up in the natural hot springs of 4 sacred rivers. BTW this cost me less than a 10 day cruise or group tour :).
I have just returned from 16 ecstatic days of bliss having completed the entire pilgrimage circuit on Himalayan roads, with not one glitch or wrong thing. I saw not one western face the whole time. I was immersed in Indian culture and feel I was treated throughout in the Hindu dharmic style of “Treat the Guest as God.” In fact I feel like a proper Indian :). My breath was taken away so many times by the awesome scenery, the wandering sadhus along the roads, the faces and smiles and welcome of all the local people we met in the numerous hanging villages. I could write a book about the joyful exuberance I felt.
The sights I saw, the experiences I had were life changing, inscrutable, beyond description in Earthly terms, held forever in my memory. In fact, I felt as if I had transcended Earthly life and was living in the land of the Gods and Goddesses of India into Antiquity.
Nirmal my guide, Manoj my driver, Manu who arranged it all, I cannot praise or thank enough and I humbly believe that they felt the same joy and awe that I did, they were my brothers for these experiences rather than guide and driver.
Surely should anyone who reads this, wish to contact me for a recommendation or further detail on India Personal Tours, Manu can provide my email address in Hawaii . I am back to my home on the flank of the world’s most active Volcano now, but I shall always dwell in the pure existence, consciousness, bliss of Mother India and I am already wondering where my intuition will guide me to travel in India next year under the auspicious of India Personal Tours. Since retirement in my younger years, I have traveled the world from Borneo to New Zealand to Patagonia mostly on small group tours. From now on, India is my yearly destination while the body is able as the heart is willing and home has become India under Manu’s careful guidance."
Hiteśvara S, USA - June 2016
"A three-week tour with India Personal Tours, perfect in every way!
My husband and I just returned from a trip of a lifetime thanks to the excellent services of India Personal Tours. This is our third trip to India and after some extensive online research I selected India Personal Tours for a number of reasons. First and foremost was the attentiveness of the agency owner Manu Singh. Communicating with Manu was a breeze, he returned my emails promptly (almost always within hours) and his responses were always thoughtful and enthusiastic. It was clear he was paying careful attention to what we said were our interests and preferences and this, coupled with his deep knowledge of the tour places, helped us arrive at a perfectly balanced itinerary that took us through the fascinating places in Madhya Pradesh and Rajasthan.
I also really liked how flexible the booking was. When I wanted to book specific hotels he was happy to do the booking for me or let me book them directly online. He was also happy to quote me a per day cost of driver and guide so I could decide how long a trip fit within my budget. By the way, I did consider other agencies but I rejected them not only because India Personal Tours consistently offered lower prices but also because I found others way less flexible (wanting to book only the hotels that offered a higher profit margins and only providing me with a total trip cost.)
As to the tour itself-- everything went perfectly. We were very fortunate that Manu elected to serve as our guide (being both tour organizer and guide is probably how he maintains his first-hand knowledge of tour sites and hotels). As a guide, Manu was superb. His English was impeccable, his knowledge extensive, and his energy boundless. Throughout our trip Manu was a fabulous source for information on Indian culture and customs in general so that by the end of our three weeks we had a strong sense of both historic and contemporary India. He sometimes took us to behind the scenes places that made for amazing experiences of daily life India such as our visit to a busy sweets factory the day before Diwali. Again, Manu responded to our specific interests. My husband is an Indian food enthusiast and in response, Manu took us to fabulous restaurants, introduced us to local delicacies and seasonal fruits (which we ate with gusto after a careful washing). Our driver, Mr. Pramod, was also excellent. A seasoned pro who managed to navigate the craziness that is driving in India with a delicate touch and steady hand. Thanks to Manu and Pramod, our trip was much more than a well-conducted tour. During our time together, my husband and I came to deeply value the warm relationship that developed between Manu, Pramod and us. We so enjoyed their company that we came a way with feeling we had been guided by friends fulfilling the promise of the 'personal' in India Personal Tours."
Lisa S., USA - November 2015
"Thankyou so much for organising a wonderful trip for us, we had such a wonderful time. Nirmal and Manoj are assets to your business as both were very professional and very sociable. Nirmel and Karni are both wonderful guides who impart great knowledge and Manoj is an excellent driver who made us feel very safe during our travels. Hopefully we will return to India in the future and will certainly contact to organise our trip. Thankyou again. It was a pleasure meeting you and a very big thankyou for your personal service.
Wayne, Australia - December 2015
"We booked a 3-week personal tour of northern India with Manu Singh, and it was one of the best travel decisions we have ever made. We have traveled in many countries, and hired many personal guides, and have never experienced the level of personal service that we received from Manu. He made our India trip the experience of a lifetime. Not only did Manu help to customize an itinerary that was exactly what we wanted, he provided us access to things that most tourists could never see--interactions with locals (including his own family members) and out-of-the-way sites that no tourist could ever find on their own. The highest praise I can offer is for his integrity. Honest, prompt, friendly, adaptable---what more could you want in a personal tour guide? You won't find anyone better than Manu Ji. I'm happy to offer additional details or recommendation for anyone considering the services of his agency. You may contact me directly here."
Tracy Collins and Paul Schankman, USA - March 2013
"Hi Manu. This is Geeta Kandhai, Ronesh Kandhai’s mum. Just a little note to say thank you for all your help and personal assistance during our stay at India. Also for you warmth, kindness, telephone calls to us and support to us whilst our stay in India. We are safe back with a lot of good and enjoyable memories. Thank you also for organising and ensuring everyday that we were taken care of. I will not at any time hesitate to recommend you to our families and friends in South Africa. Also a big thank you to your team who also ensured that our holiday was safe and have taken extreme good care of us. With lots of good memories and a safe stay in India. Thank you very much."
Geeta, Preeth & Ronesh Kandhai, South Africa - February 2013
"I knew we had an excellent guide when Manu called our hotel & confirmed he was on his way. He provided a clean car w/AC & driver. He organized all the sites & considered my companion’s need to photograph sites at the “right time of day”. Manu was exemplary in his knowledge of India & has a wonderful sense of humor. He even took us to a local market & cooked dinner for us! I highly recommend Manu for a day, a week or several weeks – he’ll work with you & accomplish everything you want."
Robin S, USA - October 2011
"Mahendra Singh or 'Manu' was an outstanding tour guide in every way! He picked me up at my hotel and transferred us to the express train to Agra. We saw the Taj Mahal & Agra Fort and he expertly shared the history & culture. Lunch was good. At my request he customized the tour so I could get a massage & also visit with a local family. His knowledge and professionalism were very impressive. Drivers were great. I would highly recommend him as a tour guide if you want an exceptional experience."
Lorraine G, USA - October 2011
"I wish I could write a few pages on Manu behavior, nature, attitude and skills. Describing this amazing lifetime experience would worth thousands of words and they'll never be enough. I was a solo traveler who came first time in Delhi; I've had many guides abroad, and no one can even be compared with the skills, the enthusiasm, the reliability, the knowledge and the kindness Manu has. I came for a tour and I got the most complete and educational tour you'll be able to dream for and a most dearing friend. Manu has all India inside, don't miss it."
Marina Fernandez, Spain - September 2011
"I did the tour with Manu in Feb 2009 with my daughter of 12 years. It was my first tour to India and I had some negative perceptions about India. But Manu cleared all that and his kindness, politeness and pro active attitude made my tour a memorable one. He is licensed tour guide by government of India and this gave me extra confidence in him to hire his services. He speaks good French and his knowledge about India culture and history is impeccable and profound. I would highly rate his as one of the best guides I have ever had in my 25 years of travelling across the world."
Auroa, France - February 2009
"Manu is an extraordinary guide and orgeniser. I was travelling first time to India and was bit hesitant to go alone and that is why I had hired manu as my full time tour guide during my 13 days long trip to North of India. His knowledge and skills are remarkable. He would take to you small villages so that you could see real and different India. Visiting monuments is not only the way to discover India. So if you really want to experience India take him as your guide and you would be extremely satisfied and delighted once your tour is finished. With him you will see the places no other general tourist go. NOT TO FORGET, Shyam was my driver and he did a fantastic job driving my to North India. Since Manu was there I could not interact much with him but yes he driving was safe, smooth and attentive. AND his behavior was very kind and polite. Great driver to have !!"
Helen Stocks, England - March 2009
"I have just returned from 2 weeks in India travelling with India Personal Tours & could not recommend them highly enough. From the very first contact via email with Manu to the last day & airport drop off with Shayam the service was faultless.
These guys provided an amazing service for anyone wanting to see India on any budget & it's an excellent alternative to prebooked group tours from home. They do both group & private tours, for us we had 2 of us travelling with our own private car, driver & a guide. We had planned an itinerary with the beauty of flexibility. We saw much more than we had originally anticipated & we were never rushed !! We had a major flight delay of 12 hours into India .. throwing out our first day plans but prior to our arrival our fantastic guide had already arranged to reshuffle our itinerary so that we didn't miss anything - you can't get that sort of service in many places. Our guide, Nirmal Singh absolutely made our holiday! His knowledge of India's history is phenomenal. His enthusiasm & passion for his country is fantastic. He was kind, thoughtful, has a great sense of humor, he's fluent in English, French & of course Hindi....nothing was ever too much..he also had incredible patience when he accompanied us shopping! India's roads are notoriously crazy, our driver Manoj was simply fantastic. A thorough gentleman who is highly experienced & nothing was ever a drama. We thank him for doing his job exceptionally well & ALWAYS with a smile. I have spent 20yrs in the travel industry in Australia & in all of my travels I have never found such an amazing company that ticks pretty much every box with planning a holiday. Efficiency, cost, range of destinations, level of accommodation, modes of transport (we did 3 overnight trains) - it's all your choice!! I feel that their point of difference is to show the real India, our trip included a night in a local village in Rajasthan with a family. It was one of the most memorable experiences of my life...no one else offered anything close to these experiences. Prior to arrival we didn't quite know what to expect but once we set foot in India we knew we were in good hands. I can highly recommend IPT for any travel to India ( long or short ) for honesty, integrity & a very well organised journey to make the most of this wonderful country. A thousand thank-you's Manu, Nirmal & Manoj - We will definitely be back to see more!
Anne, Australia - September 2014
"I booked a two week trip to Rajasthan and was lucky enough to get Shyam as my driver. We quickly became friends with his friendly and very kind demeanor. He was never brought me anywhere I didn't want to go (like shops that sold rugs). He was very knowledgeable about the area, hotels, food shops etc. I told him what my budget was for housing and food; he went to hotels and negotiated to get me my price or less!
After my wonderful trip to Rajisthan...I wanted to now go see Northern India Himalayas (Manali, Dharamsala, Shimla etc). But, my only stipulation was that I had to have Shyam drive. This time I booked 3.5 weeks and by this time I felt like Shyam was family so I was more than happy to travel with him. Shyam made my India trip an absolute pleasure."
"Shyam was wonderful and we're so
glad we decided to have a driver for our first week in India. Not only was
it a gentle introduction to a very fast paced Country, but Shyam treated us
like Family, and we felt so safe and comfortable from the first moment we
got into the car.
We particularly liked the personal experience, and added extra of having
Shyam as a tour guide as well as driver (not to mention photographer and
professional Chai orderer!)
Udaipur in particular was a highlight. Having dinner with Shyam at Ambrai was such fun - we even went back the
following night to celebrate the fact that we Nick proposed in our hotel!
We can't believe we are home, we had such a good time. Your country has
absolutely beguiled us with it's beauty, and we're missing it already.
We have already recommended your services to our families, and should you
ever come to Australia, please email us and let us know so can
Thank you again Shyam for your warm nature and hospitality."
Vicky and Nick, Australia - January 2013
"It was our first time in India. I don't know how we would have got around without Shyam - it was such a comfort to travel with a good friend who is watching out for us. His local knowledge was invaluable and we got to see much more than we would have alone."
Mike, Australia - November 2003
"I booked a tour with Shyam from New Delhi to Agra and back. The tour was great. Shyam was extremly nice and his english is really good. We made a few stops and visted Taj Mahal at sunrise next morning and the red Fort before we went back to Delhi. Shyam also organized a guide for me and he organized that he entered Taj Mahal through a VIP Entrance to not wait in line too long. Shyam was reliable and totally focused on my needs. I strongly recomment his service. Also the price is very fair!"
"Travelling with a friend of mine through Rajasthan with Shyam was the experience of my life: an exciting and long lasting memory being thrilled by the knowledge he had and the possibilities he offered to discover India with a local person. Absolutely a gem of a person to do North India Tour with."
Daniela, London UK - March 2010
"Dear Shyam, we like to thank from our deepest heart for making our two-weeks journey through Rajasthan such a pleasant, interesting and comfortable experience. During our trip we always felt like being accompanied by a very good and old friend. We always thought that you exactly understood our wishes without telling you. Thank you very much and looking forward seeing you again for visiting together the Himalaya. Our best wishes to you and your family."
Oliver and Wolfgang, Germany
India is a wonderful place of the most extreme contrasts and a bit of culture shock is inevitable when you first arrive. Your driver can answer any questions you may have along the way, and help to ensure you travel safely and with respect to local customs.
Roads are very crowded with cars, trucks, bikes, pedestrians and animals and at first glance there seems to be no road rules at all. This is why we recommend using a local driver to navigate and negotiate the busy roads for you.
Cows are sacred in India, and as a result many Indians do not eat beef - some areas are strictly vegetarian towns.
Some areas also prohibit alcohol.
It is advisable to drink bottled water.
Always remove your shoes before entering a Temple or place of religious significance.
It is also recommended that you cover your head with a scarf and dress modestly as a measure of respect.
Taking photos at a death ceremony, or a religious ceremony or of people bathing (in baths or rivers) may cause offence.
Some of the poorer people may ask or beg for money, this can be distressing to first time travellers especially because many people really do need money. However we discourage giving money to them, instead, it is better make a donation to the local school or charity.
The telephone Country Code is 91.
Mobile Telephone coverage is limited to major towns but is increasing all the time.
Internet and E-mail can be accessed from an increasing number of hotels and from Internet cafes across the country, many now with Wi-Fi.
Indians are very hospitable people and will usually accept your different ways as a foreigner – if in doubt, simply ask your driver.
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