Southern Grandeur (13 Nights / 14 Days)

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Chennai – Mahabhalipuram – Pondicherry – Tanjore – Chettinadu – Madurai – Periyar – Kumarakom – Mararikulam - Cochin

day 01
Arrive Chennai

Arrive Chennai International Airport. You will be met on arrival and transferred to your hotel. Check-in to your hotel for the night. Evening enjoy a sightseeing tour of Chennai visiting San Thome Basilica, Kapaleeshwara Temple, Fort St. George and St. Mary’s Catherdal. Later take a drive along the Mareena Beach and return back to your hotel for overnight stay.

day 02
Chennai – Mahabhalipuram - Pondicherry

After breakfast fast we drive to visit the impressive coastal site of Mahabalipuram which was constructed between the 7th and 9th centuries and portrays, by way of impressive rock calving and relief, the historical, mythological and philosophical Indian epic known as the Mahabharata. You visit the famous Shore Temple, Five Ratha’s and Arjuna’s Penance. Later drive south following the coastline to the former French colony of Pondicherry. Overnight at hotel in Pondicherry.

day 03
Pondicherry

Today enjoy a sightseeing tour of Pondicherry visiting the Aurbindo Ashram, French quarters, Handmade Paper making unit and Pondicherry Museum. Later explore the French Quarters. Overnight at hotel in Pondicherry.

day 04
Pondicherry - Tanjore

Today’s drive will take you away from the India's eastern coast and inland to Tanjore via Darasuram, home of the UNESCO World Heritage Airavetisvara Temple. In Tanjore you visit the Brihadeeshwara Temple complex, its 62m high tower is the highest in India and the Bronze Museum. Overnight at the hotel in Tanjore.

day 05
Tanjore - Chettinadu

After breakfast drive to Chettinadu. Chettinadu is the homeland of the Nattukottai Chettiyar, a prosperous banking and business community, many of whose members migrated to South and Southeast Asia, in the 19th and early 20th centuries. Chettinadu is well known for its Chettinadu cuisine, Mansions, and Temples. Today evening enjoy a sightseeing tour of the local town. You could visit the Chettinadu Raja’s Palace, local handmade tile making, Saree Weaving and a daily local market. Overnight at the hotel in Chettinadu.

day 06
Chettinadu – Madurai

Today you drive to the town of Madurai which is home to some fine examples of Dravidian architecture and in particular the stunning Meenakshi Temple complex with its vast colourfully carved gopuram (towers). Thiru Malai Nayak Palace, actually designed by an Italian architect, makes for an interesting visit, along with the Puthu Mandapam and Pillared Hall (which now houses a Museum of Temple Art.) This evening enjoy an atmospheric tour of the Meenakshi temple complex. Overnight at the hotel in Madurai.

day 07
Madurai – Periyar

After breakfast drive to Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary. On arrival check-in to your hotel for 02 nights. Afternoon is at leisure to explore the spice town. Evening enjoy a spice garden visit to learn more about the spices grown in this region and later enjoy an elephant ride in the plantation.

day 08
Periyar

Early morning enjoy a nature trek in the Periyar Tiger Reserve with the tribal trackers. Later return to your hotel for breakfast. Afternoon enjoy a boat cruise on Lake Periyar to spot herds of Wild Elephants, Bisons, Sambar Deers, Nilgir Langurs, Malabar Giant Squirrels and variety of species of birds.

day 09
Periyar - Kumarakom

Descending from the Western Ghats you drive to Kumarakom, a sleepy village on the shores of Lake Vembanad and Kerala's backwater canals. On arrival, check-in to your backwater resort where you stay for the night. Remainder of the day at leisure

day 10
Kumarakom

Late morning drive to Mararikulam, a quaint little fishing Village. Stay at your beach resort for 02 nights. Remainder of the day at leisure.

Day 11
Mararikulam

Full day at leisure to relax by the beach or to experience some authentic ayurvedic therapies at the resorts Ayurveda Centre.

day 12
Mararikulam - Cochin

After breakfast you leave the peace and quiet of the backwaters and head for the port city of Cochin where you will stay for next 02 nights. Take an evening sunset cruise on the harbour. Today evening you will take a sunset cruise past the island shores and you’ll doubtless see arrays of Chinese fishing nets.

day 13
Cochin

Governed by many nations over the years, Cochin has a rich multi-cultural history. Today you will visit the Jewish Synagogue, St Francis' Church and the Dutch palace which is home to murals depicting the Ramayana. In the evening you could arrive early to watch a traditional Kathakali dance performance and the preceding elaborate make-up preparation.

day 14
Depart Cochin

In goodtime you will be transferred to Cochin International Airport to board your return flight.

Enquire about this itinerary

India via Kerala
Suite 301
Travancore Twingle Soho Suites
Kannachanthodu Road
Ayyappankavu
Cochin - 682 018. Kerala
kerala mob:0091 9400052501
tel:00 91 484 239 2144
      00 91 484 406 3744
email:
Overseas Office
Ms. Sindhu Varghese,
Mulistatt 2,
8955 Oetwil an der Limmat,
Switzerland
mob:00 41 79 286 2875
tel:00 41 44 810 3502
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