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The Great Indian Wildlife Adventure

Brought to you by the Sister Company of African Safaris and Travel, now expanding their horizons to incredible worldwide adventures!

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Brought to you by the Sister Company of African Safaris and Travel, now expanding their horizons to incredible worldwide adventures!

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The Great Indian Wildlife Adventure

 
 
Code: Shivaji#HiTours

The Indian subcontinent is one of the world's most stimulating destinations. While its mélange of human cultures has long drawn the attention of historians and travelers, its spectrum of wild habitats rich with exotic animals offers rare treasures for those who are passionate about nature. This comprehensive safari focuses on India’s wild natural realm, renowned for its dramatic rivers, fabled jungles and profuse wildlife, including the majestic Bengal tiger. Ecotourism has been integral to conservation in India and our travels directly benefit the continued existence of some of the world’s most precious vanishing species.

Trip Highlights

• Explore three of the India’s top national parks on multiple game drives in open 4x4s – you won’t find a fuller wildlife-focused itinerary!
• Safari with our naturalist Expedition Leader in search of tigers, one-horned rhinoceros, Asiatic elephants and other fascinating wildlife
• Relax in vintage-style comfort with modern luxuries at premier eco lodges tucked within India’s best game reserves – yet we avoid the crowds by choosing less-visited destinations

Day 1: The Imperial New Delhi, New Delhi

India’s largest city, Delhi, has been one of the country’s commercial and economic hubs for centuries and, as a result, is incredibly rich in culture and history. Made up of the ancient walled city of Old Delhi and the more modern sector, New Delhi, the city encompasses a staggering array of beautiful architecture, notable monuments and age-old temples, including three UNESCO World Heritage Sites – the Red Fort, Qutab Minar and Humayun's Tomb. Other key attractions include the 17th century Chandni Chowk marketplace – still one of the city’s most popular retail centres today, particularly for jewellery and traditional Indian saris; the iconic Bahà’i Lotus Temple – an award-winning architectural gem; and the Jama Masjid, India’s largest mosque.

Day Itinerary
Day 1: Delhi, India

Arrive in India's capital of New Delhi and transfer to your hotel.
This afternoon, explore India's vibrant capital on a rickshaw ride, this activity provides you with an opportunity to experience an unique and refreshing Old Delhi travel experience. On sightseeing rickshaw tour of Old Delhi your senses will come alive as you will encounter the many captivating sights and sounds this amazing city has to offer. Visit Jama Masjid, India's largest mosque and the architectural magnum opus of Mughal Emperor Shah Jahan. Built in the mid-17th century, the stunning creation is constructed of alternating vertical strips of red sandstone and white marble, with a vast inner courtyard that can hold 25,000 people.

After a thrilling introduction to the country, we enjoy a welcome dinner this evening and an orientation to our India tiger safari by our Expedition Leader
Overnight: The Imperial New Delhi

The Imperial is a 5 star hotel in New Delhi. The hotel was built in 1931 and it's design is contemporary with a colonial style. It is located on Janpath and is steps away from the shopping district and major attractions of the city. Modern and spacious rooms are fitted with high ceilings, a flat screen cable TV, minibar and tea or coffee making facilities. Bathrobes, toiletries and a hairdryer are provided. The hotel offers concierge assistance for tour and theater information, as well as mobile phone rentals. Babysitting services and free overnight shoe shine services are provided. Yoga classes and a book shop are available. English afternoon tea is offered at The Atrium while Italian specialties are served at San Gimignano. Daniell’s Tavern and 1911 Restaurant and Bar are available for live entertainment and drinks.



Activities:

Paddle Rickshaw ride in Old Delhi Bazaar
Chandni Chowk
Jama Masjid
Red Fort
Raj Ghat
Dinner At Spice Route, The Imperial New Delhi

Paddle Rickshaw ride in Old Delhi Bazaar

Brace up for a fun-filled shopping and sinful, gastronomical food experience as you embark on this joyous paddle rickshaw ride, arranged especially for you by Hi! Tours. As you ride through the narrow bylanes of Old Delhi Bazaar, i.e., Chandni Chowk, you will get enticed by numerous colourful shops selling local handicrafts, gorgeous sarees and lehengas, and wedding knick-knacks. Not only this, the journey will incorporate a ride through the aromatic bylanes of this bazaar, offering the best of local Delhi cuisine. This popular shopping hotspot has been here for more than three centuries and has seen merchants visiting from as far as China, Holland and Turkey. When we talk about Old Delhi Bazaar, its mention is incomplete without the vibrant Kinari Bazaar. A fashion lover’s paradise, this colourful bylane is dotted with shops selling zari and zardozi.

Chandni Chowk area encompasses another great place called Khari Baoli, famous for aromatic herbs and spices. Being Asia’s biggest spice market, this place offers rarest of the rare spices too. Besides, the bylane of Dariba Kalan is dotted with shops selling beautiful gold, silver and pearl jewellery. Another great buy here is the fragrant ittar. Ittar is basically a perfume, which was once quite popular with the royal families and now with the common people too.
Other markets worth mentioning are the cloth bazaar of Katra Neel (famous for fabrics such as silk, cotton, crepe and muslin) and Bhagirath Palace (Asia's largest hub for electrical goods and medical equipment).Once you are done with exploring the shopping aspect, focus on savouring the best of Delhi cuisine. Begin with Parathe wali gali (offering myriad varieties of stuffed Indian breads) and then head to taste the world-famous chole bhature, and then sweetest daulat ki chaat as a dessert.

Chandni Chowk

Situated in Delhi’s historical old town, frenetic Chandni Chowk – meaning ‘moonlit square’ – is one of the city’s oldest, busiest and most famed shopping areas, built in the 17th century and originally intersected by (now defunct) canals that were designed to capture and reflect the moonlight. It’s a shopper’s paradise – with an eclectic diversity of wares ranging from traditional Indian sweets and other delicacies, to leather goods, electronics, intricately embellished saris and tailor-made suits. But even if you’re not up for any retail therapy, the sights, sounds and atmosphere of this pulsing, labyrinthine marketplace are captivating enough in their own right.

Jama Masjid

The majestic Jama Masjid – meaning ‘world-reflecting’ mosque – is Old Delhi’s principal place of worship, and the largest and most renowned of its kind in India. Built in the 17th century by the Mughal Emperor Shahjahan – who also built the Taj Mahal and the Red Fort – it’s an elaborate structure featuring an expansive geometric base topped with globe-shaped minarets crafted from strips of red sandstone and white marble, and a massive courtyard that can hold up to 25 000 people. Jama Masjid is particularly impressive just before dusk, when its rosy hues intensify in the glow of the setting sun.

Red Fort

Named for the pink-red sandstone from which it is built, the Red Fort is located deep in the centre of Delhi and is one of the city’s most compelling sights. This magnificent building was built in 1648 and was the residence of India’s Mughal Emperors for almost two centuries, as well as the headquarters for events of ceremonial and political significance. Now a UNESCO World Heritage Site housing several museums, it is an exquisite and immaculately preserved example of Islamic architecture, featuring octagonal towers, turrets and opulent facades inlaid with white marble, as well as elements of Persian and Hindu design.

Raj Ghat

Named after a historical ghat of Old Delhi located nearby, Raj Ghat is a memorial to Mahatma Gandhi, marking the spot where he was cremated after his assassination in 1948. Housed in an open-air garden area inside a walled complex, the memorial consists of a simple, flat black platform (reflecting the simplicity of Gandhi’s life) that is kept constantly decorated with an abundance of fresh flowers. An eternal flame burns at one end, symbolising the ever-lasting legacy of this great man. Two museums devoted to Mahatma Gandhi, his life and teachings are located nearby.

Dinner At Spice Route, The Imperial New Delhi
Considered one of the ten best restaurants in the world by Conde Nast Traveler, The famous restaurant mesmerizes your senses with its delightful sensual exoticism. The spice route reflects the journey of spices from the Malabar Coast in Kerala by Sri Lanka, Myanmar, Malaysia, Indonesia and Thailand and Vietnam.

Included:- Full Board

Day 2-5: Samode Safari Lodge Bandhavgarh, Bandhavgarh National Park

Bandhavgarh National Park

One of the most popular parks in India, Bandhavgarh National Park is renowned for the highest density of tigers in the region. The park has a large array of wildlife including sloth bears, deer, leopards and jackals. Birdwatchers will delight in the plethora of bird species inhabiting all terrains from rocky crags to the auburn forest floor and mottled forest canopy. Declared a national park in 1968, Bandhavgarh was named after an ancient fort built on 800-metre-high (2,624 foot) cliffs in the park. From its zenith one can enjoy incredible views of the park, however prior permission is required.

Day Itinerary
Day 02: Delhi – Jabalpur
Jabalpur/ Bandhavgarh National Park

Transfer early this morning to the Delhi airport for our flight south to Jabalpur. Our Indian adventure continues as we journey by road through the bucolic countryside of rural Madhya Pradesh en route to Bandhavgarh National Park. An essential stop on any serious tiger safari, Bandhavgarh is renowned for one of India’s highest concentrations of this magnificent and endangered cat. On arrival, we check in to Kings Lodge, surrounded by wild natural forest just outside the park boundary. After getting settled and enjoying lunch, we set out on our first wildlife drive in open 4x4 safari trucks.

Days 3 & 4: Bandhavgarh National Park

Over the next two days we explore the park’s varied habitats on morning and afternoon wildlife drives. Bandhavgarh was established as a national park in 1968 and declared a protected tiger reserve under Project Tiger in 1993. At 444 square miles, it is a relatively small park with a thriving tiger population, offering guests a good chance of encountering this lord of the jungle, as well as a selection of other exotic wildlife.
Predominantly covered with sal and mixed deciduous forest, thickets of bamboo and expansive grasslands that line the stream valleys, the park’s hilly terrain harbors one of the highest densities of tigers in the world. Bandhavgarh was once a prime hunting reserve for the Maharajahs of Rewa, where Maharaja Raman Singh himself shot an astounding 111 tigers by 1914.

Today it is one of the premier pacesetters in tiger protection. With tigers at the apex of the food chain, Bandhavgarh’s rich biodiversity includes a multitude of other fauna. Among its 37 mammal species are leopard, jungle cat, civet, wild boar, sambar, spotted deer, muntjac (barking deer), sloth, Asiatic jackal, striped hyena and dhole (wild dog). There are 250 bird species, while 70 different butterflies and various reptiles round out the diverse wildlife population.
Overnight: Samode Safari Lodge Bandhavgarh

The Samode Safari Lodge is based at the Bandhavgarh National Park. It is a private and remote establishment adjacent to the Bandhavgarh Tiger Reserve.
Available at the lodge is a heated swimming pool, Jacuzzi, children’s pool, gymnasium, spa, steam room, library, snooker table, a boutique as well as indoor and outdoor lounges for guests. There is also a host of activity options at the Samode Safari Lodge. Guests can partake in cooking demonstrations or go for picnics on the lodge grounds. Sightseeing excursions and safari trips can be arranged and are accompanied by an in house guide. Cycling, going for nature walks and visiting nearby villages are some other activity options.



Activities
Morning game drive inside Bandhavgarh National Park
Evening game drive inside Bandhavgarh National Park

Included - Full Board

Day 5-8: Banjaar Tola Safari Lodge, Kanha National Park

Kanha National Park

Also known as the Kanha Tiger Reserve, the Kanha National Park is widely considered to be the greatest of India’s wildlife reserves and the inspiration for Rudyard Kipling’s classic, 'The Jungle Book'. This impressive expanse of wilderness is set in the central Indian state of Madhya Pradesh, encompassing about 950 square kilometres of lush rolling hills, peaceful rivers, saal and bamboo forest, and endless stretches of savanna grassland. This spectacularly scenic environment provides a diverse range of habitats for an extraordinary array of wildlife including tigers, leopards, jackals, swamp deer, foxes, porcupines, sloth bears, pythons, hare, chitals, gaur monkeys, mongooses, and hundreds of species of bird.

Day Itinerary
Day 5: Bandhavgarh / Kanha National Park & Tiger Reserve

After a last morning safari in Bandhavgarh, we drive on to Kanha National Park and Singinawa Jungle Lodge, in the heart of the Kanha Tiger Reserve. Situated in central India in the Satpura Hills, Kanha National Park covers 750 square miles of rich and varied wildlife habitat. Its lush sal and bamboo forests, grassy meadows and ravines provided inspiration to Rudyard Kipling for his famous novel The Jungle Book. Kanha National Park was established in 1955 and forms the core of the Kanha Tiger Reserve, created in 1974 under India's Project Tiger. The park's landmark achievement is the preservation of the rare hard-ground swamp deer (barasingha), saving it from near-extinction. Stringent conservation programs for the overall protection of the park's fauna and floras make Kanha one of the
most exemplary national parks in Asia.

Our eco lodge offers a unique experience of central India's jungles with all the comforts of a world-class safari lodge. Its name, Singinawa, is a Sherpa word that means ‘protector of the sacred forest,’ and is
the philosophy that guides its every practice. Located in the tiger heartland of the world, the lodge offers the chance to not only to learn about the tiger and its habitat in depth, but to also experience ecologically responsible tourism and see conservation at work benefitting local communities and the
Tiger reserve itself.

Days 6 & 7: Kanha National Park & Tiger Reserve

We spend two more full days on safari in search of Bengal tigers and other wildlife on excursions through the park in open 4x4 vehicles. Scenic Kanha, once a hunting ground for imperial rulers and viceroys, is now one of India’s most important conservation reserves. With ideal habitat for tigers and their prey, it offers some of India’s best tiger viewing. Dawn arrives each day with an early-morning game drive, entering the park just as the sun’s rays are breaking over the jungle. The open meadows where scores of herbivores are grazing attract tiger, leopard and wild dog to the edges of the clearings.
The Banjaar River, which forms the park’s southwestern border, provides a steady water source for the abundant wildlife. Verdant jungle interspersed with vast grassy meadows called maidans support a range of species similar to those found in Bandhavgarh. Other mammals we might see here include chowsingha (four-horned antelope), common langur, gaur (the world's largest wild oxen), rhesus monkeys and occasionally leopard. Kanha is also home to one of the world’s last populations of barasingha, an endangered swamp deer with 12-point antlers. At the close of each day we retire to the inviting comfort of our lodge, including a refreshing swimming pool and spa.

Overnight: Banjaar Tola Safari Lodge

Kanha National Park is one of India’s largest reserves, covering 1 945 km² (750 square miles) of pristine Indian wilderness. This national park is one of the first nine tiger reserves established in 1973 with the launch of Project Tiger, aimed at protecting tigers and their ecosystems.
An excellent habitat for many mammals and bird species, Kanha’s lowland forest consists of dense trees interspersed with meadows, while its highland forests are made up of tropical deciduous species, with bamboo growing densely on the slopes. The pale bark of the Indian ghost tree, or kullu, shines through the lush vegetation.

Apart from the majestic Bengal tiger, the central parklands are home to approximately 22 animal species, including the jackal, wild pig, black buck, striped hyena, leopard, mouse deer, chinkara, ant-eating pangolin and three-striped palm squirrel. Kanha also supports a thriving population of the highly endangered hardground barasingha, or swamp deer. With over 200 recorded bird species, including the purple heron, pond heron and white-eyed buzzard, the park is a birdwatcher’s paradise.

Banjaar Tola Tented Camp is situated right on the edge of the river of the same name and overlooks the lush forests and grassy meadows of Kanha National Park, situated on the opposite bank. The two intimate camps, each consisting of only nine elegant tented suites, have been designed with a light footprint to protect the sensitive riverine environment. The contemporary suites feature bamboo floors, a canvas roof and walls and glass doors leading out onto a floating veranda overlooking the river. Woven textures and textiles are used throughout the suites, decorated in shades of bleached saffron, forest green and earthy cinnamon. Each camp boasts its own comfortable guest sitting area with a spacious open-air dining area and interpretive library. The lodge swimming pool offers a cool refuge in the summer, while delicious Indian fare is served on the spacious dining decks, boasting dramatic river views. The camp is situated in the heart of a 90-acre (36-hectare) property, home to dense indigenous sal forests, where memorable jungle dinners are frequently arranged, as well as nearly 2 km (one mile) of river frontage.


Activities
Morning game drive inside Kanha National Park
Afternoon game drive inside Kanha National Park

Optional
Game Drive

Afternoon game drive inside Kanha National Park
Afternoon game drive
Game Drive
Twice-daily safaris in the Reserve with an AndBeyond trained naturalist. Foot safaris in the nullah can also be enjoyed

Included
Full Board

Day 8: The Oberoi Grand Kolkata Hotel, Kolkata

Kolkata
Located along the eastern bank of the Hooghly River in the lower Ganges Delta, Kolkata is the capital of the Indian state of West Bengal. This 350-year-old metropolis is the heart and soul of eastern India with its crumbling colonial architecture, elegant gardens, countless temples and bustling bazaars. Celebrated as the birthplace of the early 20th-century Bengal Renaissance, Kolkata is a major centre for drama, art, film, theatre, literature, spirituality and music. Visitors can roam the streets and soak up the atmosphere of faded grandeur, or take a ride in a rickshaw to one of the many Indian restaurants serving mouth-watering Bengali cuisine. Must-see highlights include: the Victoria Memorial, with its east-meets-west architecture; the Indian Museum, with its range of rare artefacts; and the Kali Temple, an important pilgrimage centre for Hindus.

Day Itinerary
Day 8: Kanha / Raipur / Kolkata

After last morning wildlife drive in Kanha; we drive to Raipur, and then fly to Kolkata (Calcutta). Our luxury hotel provides a lavish and restful layover point as we transit from one region of the country to another. The first hotel in the world to be registered by United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change for Carbon Emission Reductions, the ITC Sonar provides a resort-like urban oasis in one of India’s most bustling cities. The enchanting expanse of beautifully designed gardens is shaded by more than a million trees and accented with serene ponds dotted with water lilies. Though its architecture is sleek and minimalist, the hotel’s décor and ambience celebrate the golden age of Bengal during the reign of the Pala dynasty, an era of extraordinary cultural advancement. Located outside the city center, the hotel provides convenient accommodations for our airport departure tomorrow. Overnight: The Oberoi Grand Kolkata Hotel

The Oberoi Grand, fondly referred to as the 'Grande Dame of Chowringhee' offers the ultimate classical residence in the City of Joy. The hotel’s facade and entrance feature a blend of classical Victorian and traditional Indian style, reflecting the city’s colonial history.
Standing stately for over 125 years, The Oberoi Grand combines classic architecture and charm with state of the art amenities and facilities, offering guests an oasis of tranquility amidst the bustling city. The hotel features elegantly appointed rooms, equipped with all modern facilities blending uniquely with the colonial architecture. The dining options at the hotel provide a great opportunity to savor cuisines from around the globe. Recreational facilities include an outdoor swimming pool, a fitness center and a full-service Oberoi Spa.

Activities
Jorhat
Kaziranga National Park

Jorhat
Commonly regarded as the ‘Tea Capital of the World’ due to its countless tea plantations, Jorhat is a busy commercial and cultural centre in the northeastern Indian state of Assam. The town is set just below the eastern Himalayan foothills and offers spectacularly scenic views of the rolling hills and lush valleys of the surrounding countryside. The main attraction is the nearby Majuli Island, which holds the title of ‘largest river bound island in the world’ and is situated in the Brahmputra river basin. Other popular attractions in the area include: the Gibbon Wildlife Sanctuary, containing an impressive range of primates; the Kakochang Waterfalls, featuring views of the ruins of Numaligarh; and Kajiranga National Park which lies about 90 km from the town and provides an ideal habitat for an extraordinary range of wildlife including tigers and elephants.

Kaziranga National Park

Home of the renowned and endangered one-horned rhinoceros, Kaziranga National Park lies in the Golaghat and Nagaon districts of Assam state. This world heritage site, bordering the southern banks of the Brahmaputra River, boasts many protected wildlife species including one of the largest populations of tiger in the world, as well as large breeding populations of elephant, water buffalo, swamp deer and an abundance of bird life. The extensive grasslands, forested highlands, marshes and flood plains are a wildlife and nature lover’s paradise. A not-to-be-missed experience for visitors, are the Elephant Safaris – the best way to get up close and personal with the park’s famous rhinoceros.

Included
Full Board

Day 9-12: The Diphlu River Lodge, Kaziranga National Park

Kaziranga National Park
Home of the renowned and endangered one-horned rhinoceros, Kaziranga National Park lies in the Golaghat and Nagaon districts of Assam state. This world heritage site, bordering the southern banks of the Brahmaputra River, boasts many protected wildlife species including one of the largest populations of tiger in the world, as well as large breeding populations of elephant, water buffalo, swamp deer and an abundance of bird life. The extensive grasslands, forested highlands, marshes and flood plains are a wildlife and nature lover’s paradise. A not-to-be-missed experience for visitors, are the Elephant Safaris – the best way to get up close and personal with the park’s famous rhinoceros.

Day Itinerary
Day 9: Jorhat / Kaziranga National Park

This morning we fly from Kolkata to Jorhat, the tea capital of India, and then drive to Haroo charai Tea Estate. Following lunch on the grounds, we embark on a tea garden tour where we may observe local workers harvesting leaves, as well as learn how raw leaves are processed into tea.
After our visit, we continue by road to Kaziranga National Park in Assam. The park, which borders the sacred Brahmaputra River, was created in 1926 as a refuge for the one-horned rhinoceros. Once hunted nearly to extinction, today this two-ton beast is a conservation success story, rebounding to more than 1,600. Two-thirds of the world’s population is found within Kaziranga National Park. In addition to the rhino, the park is home to some of India’s other largest mammals including Asian elephant, Asiatic wild buffalo and barasingha. We stay at the Diphlu River Lodge set within lush grounds boasting more than 40 species of trees and some 200 species of shrubs, creepers and climbers.

Days 10 & 11: Discovering Kaziranga National Park

Morning and afternoon 4x4 drives reveal Kaziranga’ s diverse habitats, a mix of elephant grass, thorny rattan cane, tracts of semi-evergreen forest and shallow marshes. Stretching from the banks of the Brahmaputra River to the dense forests of the Mikir Hills, the reserve boasts an amazing variety of wildlife. In addition to one-horned rhinoceros, we keep an eye out for buffalo, elephant, wild boar, hog deer, hoolock gibbons, sloths and pythons, as well as the elusive Bengal tiger. The national park has been declared an Important Bird Area by Birdlife International and is home to a great variety of resident
and migratory birds. Drawn to the life-giving artery of the Brahmaputra, waterfowl abound, and we may
see egrets, pond herons, river terns, black-necked storks, fishing eagles and pelicans. In the river itself,
we look for otters, gharials and rare Gangetic dolphins. This evening, revel in tales of our Indian safari adventures as we gather for a farewell dinner together.
Overnight: The Diphlu River Lodge

Diphlu River Lodge has been in operation since 2008 and is the ideal destination for those visiting the Kaziranga National Park. The lodge sits on the banks of the Diphlu River and overlooks the national park. Diphlu River Lodge has several guest areas for lounging. The Machan, which means ‘jungle platform’, is an air-conditioned sitting and dining area embellished with handicrafts and artefacts. The Machan has 2 verandas, a large one with a high thatched ceiling equipped with a bar and the other small which overlooks the farmland. The hilltop is a naturally open area flanked by bamboo groves and is ideal for barbeques and cultural performances that are arranged through the lodge. There’s also the outdoor coffee area under a tree strung with lights and the river bank area for picnic lunches arranged at the lodge.
Apart from wildlife viewing at the Kaziranga National Park, Diphlu River Lodge also organizes village visits, elephant bathing, visits to the rubber plantation and tea garden.

Included
Full Board

Day 12: Departure

Day Itinerary
Day 12: Guwahati / Delhi / Depart
After breakfast this morning, we set out for the half-day drive to Guwahati to catch our afternoon flight
to Delhi. Upon arrival transfer to the international airport to connect with your onward flight

Included

Ø 11 Nights accommodation at above hotels or similar
Ø All Meals
Ø Welcome dinner in Delhi
Ø Farewell dinner in Kaziranga
Ø Escorted return airport transfers
Ø Sightseeing & Entrance fees as per the itinerary
Ø Still camera fees in all parks
Ø Services of English speaking Naturalist during safaris.
Ø Transportation by air-conditioned vehicle

Excluded

- Domestic Airfare
- Airfare departure taxes
- Beverages with meals
- Fees for video cameras in parks
- Indian Visas
- Items of a personal nature (phone calls, souvenirs, Internet, etc.)
- Tips & gratuities
- Travel insurance
- Items not mentioned as being included

 

  Price:- From $8,143 per person sharing. Please contact us for seasonal rates and availability 

 

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