Wellington in India

Wellington in India

The Master learns his trade


Wellington in India

The Master learns his trade


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Tour Introduction

Arthur Wellesley, (later Duke of Wellington), arrived in India as a colonel, and left eight years later as a major general. His campaigns in Central and Southern India took place in areas where tourists do not generally go.

Our Guide is ex-Gurkha Officer and acclaimed historian, author and TV Personality, Gordon Corrigan. The tour is for the more adventurous traveller who is happy with some longer journeys by road and air – so a certain amount of stamina and fitness will be required. In return, we can offer a very special tour which takes in spectacular fortresses, un-spoiled local villages and a way of life that has changed little since Wellesley’s time. Although well off the standard tourist trail, we will be staying in the best available hotels.


The 28 year old Colonel Arthur Wellesley left England in command of the 33rd Foot and arrived in India in 1797. He swiftly established his innate ability and campaigned in the Mysore and Mahratta Wars, returning to England as a major general eight years later. It was in India that he learned how to deal with difficult allies, how to successfully campaign in a fourth-world country where terrain and climate conspired against him, and how to supply troops where no established logistics existed. He was the first commander to maintain an army in the field in the wet season, and he established a bullock stud farm to provide transport for rations. In an age when intelligence gathering was regarded as rather bad form, he established a network of informants who kept him aware of the enemy’s movements. All these lessons would be invaluable in his later campaigns in Portugal and Spain


  • The magnificent fortress of Gawilghur
  • Tipu Sultan’s Seringapatam
  • The battle of Assaye
  • Accompanied by Gordon Corrigan

"Perhaps the most pleasurable aspect was the cohesion and companionship experienced on the trip, generated partly by the subject of the tour and by Gordon. Wonderfully entertaining in fact."


Day 1 – Depart London for Bangalore

Day 2 – Arrive Bangalore

Early morning arrival at our hotel in Bangalore for one night. The rest of the morning and afternoon is free to relax and recuperate. In the evening join your guide for dinner and an introductory lecture.

Day 3 - Seringapatam

We drive to look at the attack on the ‘tope’, the first and only time that Wellesley panicked and almost ended his career, and the fortress at Seringapatam, which the British stormed in May 1799, before moving on to our hotel in Mysore

Day 4 - Mysore

Today we continue with the battle of Seringapatam and see where the Tippoo Sultan was killed. We visit his Palace and grave and the British cemetery established by Wellesley after the battle. Time permitting we will take a tour of colonial Mysore before returning to Bangalore for our late flight to Pune. Check-in to an airport hotel for the night.

Day 5 - Ahmednagar & Daulatabad Forts

An early start sees us drive to Ahmednagar, where we visit the 400 year-old Vauban-style fort - one of the strongest in India. Gandhi and Nehru were interned here in WW2 and the fort still has an Indian Army Garrison. We will see where Campbell scaled the town wall and examine Wellesley’s siege and capture of the city and fort during the Second Mahratta War in August 1803. We will also visit the Daulatabad Fort in Maharashtra.

Day 6 - Assaye

We drive to the battlefield of Assaye, where Wellington decisively defeated the Mahrattas in September 1803 in a battle which Wellington described years later as his hardest ever fight. We will tour the battlefield from Peepulgaon, cross the River Kaitna (by modern bridge rather than the historic ford) and follow in Wellesley’s footsteps as he advanced on Assaye itself. We then check-in to our hotel in Akola.

Day 7 - Argaum

At Aragum we see where, in November 1803, Wellesley again defeated a Mahratta army. Thence to Chikaldara and up to our hilltop station hotel via the stunning viewpoint at Mozari Point and check-in to our hotel for two nights.

Day 8 – Gawilghur Fortress

One of the most spectacular battlefields anywhere, the breach created in December 1803 by the East India Company’s artillery in the wall of this double fort, perched on a six hundred foot cliff, is still there. We will walk up to the breach, tour the inner fort and view the great cannon that still remain there. This is a challenging day’s walk – but all the more rewarding for it. After a great day out we return to our hotel.

Day 9 - Nagpur

After yesterday’s exertions, we spend a relaxing day motoring thorough some awe-inspiring scenery on the way to Nagpur where we catch our internal flight to Mumbai and spend the night.

Day 10 – Return

An early afternoon flight from Mumbai to London

Recommended Reading List

Photo Gallery

  • Walking the Fortress grounds
  • Talking outside Ahmednagar Fort
  • Group photo at Gawilghur Fortress
  • Gordon talking to the group by the river
  • Gordon taking us through the Battle of Assaye
  • Gordon addressing the group in Nagpur
  • Gawilghur Fort
  • Bullock-cart in India

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