Spice Route Journey – From Aqaba to Venice by Private Jet

17 days. Guide price from £35,000 per person. Single supplement £5,200

Departs London Stansted Private Jet Terminal, 13 March 2025

... our latest private jet tour follows the footsteps of ancient traders who brought exotic, highly sought-after spices like pepper, nutmeg, cinnamon and cardamon to the western world. 

This 16-night adventure is going to be an aromatic, delicious journey, brought to life with behind-the-scenes tours on spice farms and plantations, hands-on cookery tutorials with professional chefs and renowned food experts, and exclusively chartered cruises on Kerala houseboats and Omani dhows. 

There’ll be 4WD tours over sand dunes and the chance to see Petra’s cinematic Treasury, private art viewing in Venetian palazzos and banquets inspired by heritage recipes from the spice trade.

A marque of all our private jet tours, we’ve selected five-star or the best available hotels and most elegant and exclusive restaurants as you explore the world’s greatest spice kingdoms in ultimate style. 

  • Walking through Petra’s famous Siq to emerge in front of the grand Treasury, or experiencing the amazing landscapes at Wadi Rum

  • Revelling in the wondrous sights, sounds and spices on exotic Zanzibar

  • Joining in the fun and excitement at a Keralan snake boat regatta

  • Watching the sun set over the Arabian Sea from a traditional Omani dhow.

You can reserve your place now for a refundable deposit of just £250pp. 

Simply leave your details and we will call you back to take your deposit and reserve your seat.

We fly first to the Kingdom of Jordan, where spices were offloaded in Aqaba to continue their journey overland to the Mediterranean coast. The spice trade brought immense wealth to the Nabateans, who charged taxes to the travelling caravans and built the Rose Red City of Petra.

Whether you visit Wadi Rum to cross the sands by 4WD and dine in the desert in a tent complete with carpets and chandeliers or walk through Petra’s twisting Siq to see the sun pouring light onto the red-stone Treasury, Jordan sets a high bar for all the incredible sights, sounds and adventures to come.

Zanzibar, the fabled ‘Spice Island’, is where merchants traded exotic and highly sought-after spices like nutmeg, clove, cinnamon, cardamom, and black pepper. The ultimate appetiser for the rest of the tour, Zanzibar is sensory overload from day one, with on-the-ground visits to the island’s largest spice market, behind-the-scenes talks from the Founder and CEO of a leading fairtrade spice company and private guided visits to local spice farms.

Naturally, we’ll be introducing your tastebuds to the tantalising flavours of the Spice Route too, with an array of specially prepared meals and fine dining.

Madagascar comes next, along with the promise of the tropical rainforests, baobab trees and most famous of all Madagascan exports (notwithstanding lemurs): vanilla. Our journey takes us into the forested, sun-dappled hills of the northeast, where we’ll learn how the vanilla orchard vines are grown, hand-pollinated and harvested.

We’ve also arranged an access-all-areas visit to Lemur’s Park, a private reserve on the River Katsaoka where several different species roam free, so you can meet and observe these characterful creatures close up.

Vanilla may be the flavour of Madagascar but there’ll be other tastes to look forward to too, as we enjoy red carpet treatment in some of Madagascar’s finest hotels and restaurants.

Reboarding our private jet we fly to India’s Malabar Coast, from where spices were once transported to empires throughout the world.

India promises scenery, flavour and history in abundance, with private sightseeing at Fort Cochin, a hands-on tutorial revealing how spices are selected, prepared and infused in regional Indian cuisine, a privately chartered cruise on a traditional Kerala houseboat and an invitation to a spectacular gala dinner accompanied by cultural and ritual displays by local artistes.

We’ve also laid on a traditional Kerala snake boat race, where competing boats power through the water spurred on by rhythmic drumming and songs – you can even grab a paddle and join in, if you wish.

Leaving Asia, we fly to the Middle East and Sultanate of Oman on the coast of the Arabian Sea. Oman linked northeast Africa and India on the old Spice Route, bringing flavours like ground cumin and coriander to the western world.

Our adventures here include a sunset cruise on a traditional Omani dhow admiring the grand forts and palaces along the Muscat coastline and a silver service Arabian banquet accompanied by folkloric music and a whirling, dazzlingly colourful Tanoura dance display under the inky black Omani night sky. 

We’ll also be treated to a memorable private lunch inside the imposing 17th century walls of Nizwa Fort, and a private tour of Muscat’s sublime, state-of-the-art Royal Opera House.

Last stop Venice, where merchants in the Middle Ages made fortunes from those simple spices that came all the way from the jungles of Asia.

We’ll take a private water taxi across the Venetian Lagoon, enjoy an evening of classical music and explore the history and flavours of Venetian street food with a food connoisseur, plus you’ll be able to take your pick from special tours of Doges Palace and St Marks Basilica, visits to a gondola workshop or private art viewings at a Venetian Palazzo.

On our final night, we’ll toast our spice adventures with an Italian Spritz before a farewell banquet in one of Venice’s finest palazzos.  

Please note: All excursions and activities are provisional and subject to change, although substitutions will be similar in standard and nature. Accommodation will be in five-star or best available hotels throughout, and international flights are on a privately chartered all Business Class Boeing 757.

With the widest choice of holidays and travel experiences than ever before, you can now personalise your trip so you are in complete control. All this is backed up by the high-standards and service you’d expect from Saga.

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