Discover the Spice of India: 17 Days

Wake up to the serenity of the backwaters in Kerala; let your spirit be lifted by the soothing aroma of sandalwood in Mysore; and feel the rush of a 'historic landing' as Vasco Da Gama must have in the 'City of Spices'- Kozhikode. The alluring aroma of coffee bushes, scintillating wildlife of the Nilgiri Biosphere Reserve and enlivening tickle of the morning mist will etch memories onto your very soul. Come take a journey through the treasures held by South India Tour.



Day 1: Trivandrum

Morning breakfast at hotel and at 0900 hrs leave for city tour for Trivandrum.

Napier Museum: Not only is the Indo-Saracenic building a work of architectural art but inside is Trivandrum's finest collection of 12th century Chola bronzes, ancient carvings, intricate musical instruments and a number of other unique and priceless treasures from Kerala's past. It is located on Museum-Vellaymbalam road.

Shri Padmanabhaswami Temple - Even though Kerala's oldest temple is off-limits to non-Hindus, visitors can get a close look at the amazing structure right in the centre of Trivandrum. There are some excellent photo opportunities of the seven-story entrance tower and the huge water tank where devotees take ritual dips. The temple is located in the Fort district.

Overnight stay at hotel.

Day 2: Houseboat

Enjoy breakfast at the resort.

Proceed to Kumarakom. Check into a traditional houseboat of Kerala Style and go on a leisurely backwater cruise along the lake on a thatched houseboat.

The backwaters of Kerala are a unique product of Kerala and are found nowhere else in the world. Backwaters are a network of lakes, canals and estuaries and deltas of forty-four rivers that drain into the Arabian Sea. The backwaters of Kerala are a self supporting Eco-system teeming with aquatic life. The canals connect the villages together and are still used for local transport. Over 900 km of this labyrinthine water world is navigable.

The houseboat with all modern comforts lets you discover the countryside at your own pace. You will have lunch, dinner and breakfast in the Houseboat. A ride on the houseboat is a fabulous way to explore the fascinating beauty of the backwaters.

Lunch will be served on the boat freshly prepared by the crew.

In the evening the boat will anchor by the lush paddy fields and enjoy the tranquility of the water around.

Dinner would be laid out in the boat. Spend night on houseboat.

Day 3: Cochin

Breakfast will be at the hotel.

Proceed for a sight seeing tour of Cochin.

Chinese fishing nets: The Chinese fishing nets erected on teak wood and bamboo poles work on the principle of balance. Records say they were first set up here between AD 1350 and 1450. Vasco Da Gama Square, the narrow promenade that parallels the beach, is the best place to watch the nets being lowered and pulled out of the sea.

JEWISH SYNAGOGUE: The Jewish community traces its history to nearly 2000 years ago. In 1948 the community numbered 2500 and today there are fewer that 30 people. The community is still centered round JEWTOWN where you will visit its crown Jewel, the Paradesi Synagogue. Built in 1568 and reconstructed after a Portuguese bombardment in 1662, the synagogue is distinguished by its tile roof and bell tower. The small synagogue is also known for its hand-painted, willow-patterned, blue and white Chinese floor tiles, and the many brass and crystal lamps that hang from the ceiling. Later visit the interesting International Pepper Exchange, also located in Jew town.

The Vasco Da Gama Square, Santa Cruz Basilica, St. Francis Church, VOC Gate, Bastion Bungalow etc. are also nice for sightseeing. Take a boat ride and visit BOLGATTY PALACE and VYPPIN ISLAND.

Drive to Thekkady. Reach and check into the hotel.

Drive southwards over rolling hills and coffee plantations to the PERIYAR WILDLIFE SANCTUARY, one of the major wildlife reserves in India. Indian elephants, wild boars, lion-tailed monkeys, ibex, tigers, leopards and sloth bears are on the list. The park surrounds a large, many-fingered lake and a dawn or dusk foray on one of the boats will be a thrilling experience. It is from the lake rather than vehicles that the wildlife is viewed. The sanctuary is rich in bird life. Great hornbills, kites, darters, herons, egrets, owls and kingfishers are in abundance. Surrounding the reserve are many small spice plantations and we spend an absorbing afternoon searching for pepper, cardamom, turmeric, cloves, nutmeg, ginger, cinnamon and betel.

Overnight will be at the Thekkady.

Day 4: Thrissur (Trichur)

Morning proceed for an excursion to Cheruthuruthy.

Cheruthuruthy is a sleepy village by the Bharathapuzha River. Cheruthuruthy is the seat of Kerala Kalamandalam - the premier performing art training centre of Kerala. Proceed to visit t Kathakali and Mohiniattam dance centre.

Proceed for Thrissur by surface. Reach and check into the hotel.

A trip to Kerala is not complete without getting to Thrissur, a pavan pilgrimage town. Set amidst paddy fields, coconut and pineapple plantations. If you visit Kerala during the period of April and early May do not miss the spectacle of pooram procession - Kerala's most famous temple festival.

CHAVAKKAD BEACH: A sea shore for rare scenic beauty. It is acknowledged as one of the best beaches along the west coast. Unaltered by modernization and laced on the borders by an array of coconut palms.

Overnight will be at Thrissur.

Day 5: Kozhikode (Calicut)

After breakfast proceed for the sightseeing.

PUNNATHUR KOTTA ELEPHANT SANCTUARY: Punathurkotta is very unique in being the largest elephant park in the world with over 60 elephants. All of them are donated by the devotees of Guruvayurappan.

The elephant race and the feast for elephants are a few of the unique features. There are elephants of all ages including very small elephant to old ones.

SAKTHAN THAMPURAN PALACE: Named as Vadakkekara Palace, was reconstructed in Kerala-Dutch style in 1795 by Sri.Ramavarma Thampuran of the erstwhile Princely State of Cochin, well as Sakthan Thampuran (Greatest ruler of the Cochin dynasty) is preserved by Archaeological Department.

KUDAKKALLU (Umbrella Rock): These umbrella rocks of Chiramanangad have a history of over four thousand years, here people of aristocratic were cremated earthen ums and umbrella rocks were placed on top as land marks.

VILANGANKUNNU: This hillock has been converted by the tourism department as an amusement park. While grown ups relish the scenic splendor from the hill top. Children can relax and play to their hearts.

Leave for Kozhikode by road. Reach and check into the hotel.

Kozhikode on the Lakshadweep Sea, has been known throughout history as a significant port for trade and commerce. Its importance was further enhanced in the 10th century when it became the the capital of the powerful Zamorin dynasty. Known also as Calicut, the quality cotton, calico is believed to have originated here.

Today Kozhikode retains its role as an important centre for timber and boat building. It's a thriving city with evidence of wealth and enterprise- the fruits of Malayali labour in the Middle East.

Overnight will be at Calicut.

Day 6: Kadavu

After breakfast proceed for the sightseeing. Morning sightseeing of Calicut by boat.

Dolphin's Point: Here one can see in the early hours of the morning dolphins playing in the sea. The beach, 2 km from Calicut town centre is along stretch of tree lined sand popular with the local people because of the Lions Club park, the Light House and the two piers - and, of course, the opportunity to enjoy in the evening breeze.

Science Planetarium: Kozhikode wins a place in the planetarium map of the world. Situate within city at Jaffarkhan Colony. It reveals the mysteries of universe and enlightens about the planets and stars. Shows are at 12.00, 2.00, 4.00 & 6.00 pm.

Kalipoika: A recreational boating centre within the heart of city can be seen at Arayadathupalam. Boating in pedal boats and row boats are facilitated here. Timing 8.00 am - 7.00 pm

Leave for Kadavu by road. Reach and check into the hotel. Spend the day at leisure.

In the evening watch a cultural presentation at the resort.

Overnight will be at Kadavu.

Day 7-8: Nagarhole

Enjoy breakfast in the hotel.

Proceed to Nagarhole.

Established in 1955 as a wildlife sanctuary, Nagarhole was designated a national park twenty years later. The park today stretches in a Tours of gentle hills and valleys, over an expanse of 640 sq km, north of the river Kabini. The park came up around a perennial water reservoir formed in 1974, when the Kabini River was dammed.

Nagarhole's vegetation is refreshingly different from Bandipur's dry scrub - moist deciduous forests, including bamboo, teak, eucalyptus and cassia, cover much of the sanctuary, providing a refuge for a wide range of animals and birds. Nagarhole has all the resident wildlife of the Nilgiri hills: Nilgiri Tahr, Nilgiri Langur, bison, leopard, Asian elephant, wild boar, deer, dhole (wild dog) and porcupine, besides tigers. A high canopy of trees- up to thirty meters tall in some places- harbors rare birds such as the endangered Malabar trogon, the Malabar pied hornbill and the crested hawk-eagle.

Nagarhole saw some upheavals in 1992, when quarrelling between the wardens of the park and the local villagers resulted in arson which had an enormously adverse impact on the park and its wildlife. It will still take a few years for Nagarhole's forest and animal count to get back to normal but there has already been a resurrection of sorts and things get better every year.

In the afternoon go on a wildlife tour in the National park in jeeps / vans. Abounding in a rich variety of wildlife, one can find elephants, antelopes and even leopards here.

Overnight stay will be in Nagarhole.

Day 9-10: Mysore

Enjoy breakfast in the hotel.

In the morning go on a Coracle Ride on Kabini River. The Coracle is a round native boat.

In the afternoon leave for Mysore by road.

Mysore city was the capital of the old royal Mysore province. The word Mysore expands to "Mahishasurana Ooru" which means the town of Mahishasura. The story goes that the demon Mahishasura was killed by goddess Chamundeshwari atop the Chamundi hill near Mysore, and hence the name. Ever since, the Mysore royal family has worshipped Chamundeshwari as the palace deity. Hills dedicated to her stand at the eastern end of Mysore town today.

To the people of India the word Mysore is synonymous with Sandalwood, silk and fine inlay-work using ivory. It is the home of incense sticks dipped in sandalwood oil perfume base and has two well known incense factories - the Aravinda Parimala and the Vasu and Cycle brand (together these two account for 70% of the incense stick export from India). Mysore is also the home of many well regarded musicians and artists. It is even today the hub of the tourist map of Karnataka. Nearby are several places of interest to visitors, some of these are Brindavan Gardens, Srirangapattana, Rangana Tittu bird sanctuary, Chamundi Hills, Nanjanagudu, Bandipur forest reserve, Shivanasamudra falls, and Talakaadu.

Within the town are several places of interest. The grand palace with its four arched entrances stands at the centre of the town. Liberally covered with golden domes and home to the most expensive royal chair (Simhasana), made of gold and studded with diamond and precious stones, this palace rivals the best in the world. During weekends the whole palace is lit with thousands of lights, a great sight. Saint Philomina's church is a fine cathedral dating back to the 18th century. The Venkatappa art gallery has inspired many an artist and conducts courses in traditional painting, drawing and woodwork. It is also the birth-place for the Mysore wooden toys, which are exported worldwide.

Reach and check in to the hotel.

Overnight stay will be in Mysore.

Day 11-12: Coorg

Proceed to Coorg by road.

You think a cup of coffee smells great; wait till you experience the coffee blossoms. Their heady fragrance fills the air in Coorg - known as the coffee pot of India and the Scotland of the east - which produces some of the world's best coffee, with a fair amount of cardamom and pepper thrown in. Birthplace of the Cauvery River and home to some of India's finest soldiers, Coorg - now known as Kodagu - is famous for its meandering mists, dense forests, and supremely tasteful coffee. We take up base at the beautiful and relaxing Orange County Resort, which is set amid never-ending manicured coffee and pepper plantations and is just the place for an enjoyable holiday. If you're the type who likes to mingle with nature, romance with the mountains, and whistle to the song of birds, Coorg is the place for you. We also take you 120km away, north of Coorg, to the splendid temples of Belur and Halebid, a timeless legacy of the Hoysala kings and built around the 12th century.

Reach and check in to the hotel.

Enjoy the day at leisure at Coorg.

Overnight stay will be in Coorg.

Day 13: Udupi

After breakfast leave for Udupi by road. Reach and check into the hotel.

Udupi, 60 Kms from Mangalore, is where Madhwacharya, the propounder of Dwaitha philosophy, lived and taught 700 years ago. Madhwacharya established the eight Sanyasi Mutts at Udupi. According to legned, the statue of Sri Krishna in the famous temple here is believed to have turned around to give darshana to the kuruba devotee, Kanakadasa, who was not allowed to enter the temple because Kanakadasa belonged to a different caste. It is best known as the seat of Madhwa renaissance, founded by the sage Madhwacharya, outcome of which are Ashtamathas, located in the famous Car Street, surrounding the Sri Krishna Temple.

The 'Paryaya' festival held once in two years when the management of the temple changes hands is a colourful spectacle drawing thousands of devotees from all over the country. Udupi, known elsewhere as a Temple City is the headquarters of the district, known world over to the millions of food lovers as the birth place of Udupi Hotels. Most of the hotel owners in Karnataka are from Udupi.

Afternoon visit the temples in Udupi. In Udupi, food is the greatest binder.

Overnight will be at Udupi.

Day 14: Hassan

In the afternoon leave for Hassan by road. Reach and check into the hotel.

Hassan is the headquarters of the district. This fairly large city was developed into a tourist centre because of the proximity to Belur and Halebid. Hassan is 194km from Bangalore on the national highway linking Mangalore and Bangalore. The district has a salubrious climate. Rail and roads connect Hassan to important centers of the state.

Overnight will be at Hassan.

Day 15-16: Bangalore

After breakfast proceed for the sightseeing.

Vidhana Soubha: This splendid neo-Dravidian granite building that dominates the northern boundary of the Cubbon Park, is the home of the State Legislature and the Secretariat. The massive sandalwood door of the Cabinet room is a spectacular feature of this imposing building. The Vidhana Soudha is bedecked in illuminated glory during special periods and is a sight worth viewing.

Lal Bagh: Hyder Ali laid out this famous botanical garden and his son added horticultural wealth to them by importing plants and trees from several countries. The garden today houses over 1000 species of flora which include rare and enchanting collection of tropical plants, trees and herbs. The Glass House, modeled along London's CRYSTAL PALACE, is the center of attraction in this 2400 acre park. Bi-annual flower shows attracting participants from all over India is held in the Glass House. In July, 2003 it was decided that the Department of Horticulture and Bangalore Development Authority (BDA) would jointly take up the development of Lal Bagh Botanical Gardens.

Tipu's Palace & Fort: The Bangalore Fort was built by Kempe Gowda and expanded by Tipu Sultan. Within its walls is the well preserved 16th century Ganapathi Temple. The Bangalore Palace was built by a Wodeyar king in 1887. Inspired by the Windsor castle, this palace was built in the Tudor style, complete with Gothic windows, the foiled windows, battlements and turrets resembling the Daria Daulat Palace in Srirangapatanam, this summer palace has been constructed largely of wood and is famous for it's carving and paintings.

Government Museum: One of the important buildings, the Government Museum is one of the oldest in India (1886). The special attractions here are the antiquities from MOHENJODARO period. Situated nearby the museum is the VISVESWARAVA INDUSTRIAL & TECHNOLOGICAL MUSEUM named after the great engineer - statesman.

Next to the VITM is the Visveswaraya Industrial Trade Center, the first of its kind in India. In addition to its trade promotional activities, the Center has two exhibition floors housing a permanent display of all that is manufactured in Karnataka. Near the Museum is the K.Venkatappa Art Gallery which has a permanent exhibition of the works of the great artist, K. Venkatappa. The Gallery does much to encourage art in the state.

Also in the Cubbon Park are the Seshadri Iyer Memorial Hall, which houses the public library, the High Court and the Jawahar Bal Bhavan. The Bhavan, with its toy train, fairgrounds and theatre, is a recreational, hobby and educational centre for children.

St. Mary's Church: Established by a French missionary Abbe Dubois in 1811, St.Mary's church is the only church in Karnataka state to be elevated to the status of a minor Basilica. Every September, The Virgin Mary's festival is celebrated with a procession that attracts people of all faiths. The church is situated near the Shivaji Nagar Bus Terminal.

End early and enjoy shopping or just sit in one of the numerous modern pubs in downtown area just enjoying the latest music and crowd. It will be a nice experience as the weather in this city is pleasant all through the year.

Overnight will be at Bangalore.

Day 17: Bangalore - Home

Enjoy breakfast in the hotel.

Relax and spend the day at leisure.

Today as per your flight timings you will be transferred to the airport to take flight back home with sweet memories of the tour.

SPECIAL HIGHLIGHTS INCLUDED

• Coracle ride at nagarhole in Kabini river (depending upon river condition),
• Overnight stay at the houseboat,
• All meals at the houseboat,
• Kathakali dance presentation at cochin,
• Excursion to srirangapattanam from Mysore,
• Udupi lunch or dinner,
• Excursion to Belur and Halebid, and
• Wildlife safari at Nagarhole.

THE TOUR INCLUDES

• Accommodation at suggested hotels on double occupancy,
• Daily buffet breakfasts,
• Sightseeing tours as mentioned in the itinerary,
• All tours and transfers in ac private Toyota Innova at disposal with driver,
• English speaking company authorised guide for all mentioned tours,
• Monument entrances,
• Assistance at the airports on arrival / departure,
• Assistance at stations on departure and arrival,
• 24 hrs dedicated tour manager,
• Unlimited mineral water and tissues during drives,
• Porter charges at stations,
• Economy class airfare for the mentioned sectors,
• All applicable taxes and service charges, and
• Man with Elephant, South India Tour PackagesAll road taxes, government taxes and driver allowances.

EXCLUSIONS

• Lunches and dinners (except for those mentioned in inclusions),
• Personal expenses,
• Camera fees, tips etc,
• International airfare,
• Visa charges.

Hotels

City Luxury Palace & Boutique First Class & Heritage Nights
Trivandrum Taj Residency Taj Residency Taj Residency 01
Alleppey Luxury Houseboat Heritage Houseboat Deluxe Houseboat 01
Cochin Taj Malabar Malabar House Casino 01
Trichur The River Retreat The River Retreat The River Retreat 01
Calicut Fortune Park Fortune Park Fortune Park 01
Kadavu Kadavu Resort Kadavu Resort Kadavu Resort 01
Nagarhole Cicada Cicada Cicada 02
Mysore Metropole Metropole Regallis 02
Coorg Orange County Orange County Orange County 02
Udupi Karavali Hotel Karavali Hotel Karavali Hotel 01
Hassan Hoysala Village Hoysala Village Hoysala Village 01
Bangalore The Oberoi The Leela Palace Kempinski The Chancery Pavilion 02

Tour Price

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