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IPL: A Black Opal Tour of India


By Martin Denyer, Tour Manager

This was a Black Opal tour we created to provide a flavour of the sights and sounds of just a small part of an incredible country, with a nice bit of cricket thrown into the mix. The passion and thrill of the IPL games is certainly more Bollywood than Lords, and it confirmed to us how much the locals love their T20 cricket.

The welcome, the food, the colours, the scenery, the hotels were all wonderful. Our tour to watch Indian Premier League action in India was one that will live long in the memory.

Black Opal’s 2023 IPL tour was designed to include four games in a two-week period, pack in plenty of sightseeing and keep internal travel as uncomplicated as possible. Our tour began in Mumbai with a stay at the legendary Taj Mahal Palace Hotel and included our first IPL game, which saw Jofra Archer’s Mumbai Indians win a thriller against Jos Buttler’s Rajasthan Royals. We visited the local flower and fruit markets, the Meyden grounds to watch many local cricket games taking place and also visit to the Dharavi Slum to see the amazing variety of items being produced locally.

A short flight up to Chandigarh was our next stop. This time to see Sam Curran and Liam Livingstone in action for the Punjab Kings against the Mumbai Indians in Mohali. Our stay was in the Taj Chandigarh hotel and we included a visit to the famous Rock Garden. 

Our third game was in the beautiful city of Jaipur to watch the Rajasthan Royals get hammered by the top of the table Gujarat Titans. Our accommodation was the exceptional Oberoi Rajvilas, which was an oasis of calm and luxury. The Amber Fort, Wind Palace and local markets were all visited and, even if there isn’t a game being played in Rajasthan, it’s certainly a region that is well worth a visit.

From Jaipur we took the road to Delhi for our stay at the beautiful Imperial Hotel, which is a throwback to the colonial era. An evening was spent watching England’s Phil Salt help the Delhi Capitals demolish Virat Kohli’s Royal Challengers Bangalore. There was time for sightseeing in the capital before moving onto our final stop to see one of the Seven Wonders of the World.

In Agra the wow factor for those seeing the Taj Mahal for the first time didn’t disappoint, and neither did our stay in the luxurious Oberoi Amarvilas. A wonderful hotel with rooms overlooking the beautiful sunlit Taj.

In my opinion everyone should try and visit India at least once in their life. If you want to see some highlights, in luxury, with a bit of action thrown in, then the Black Opal IPL tour to India is worth considering for April/May ’24. 

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