South India Discovery

11 Days: Cochin / Backwater Cruise / Periya Wildlife Park/ Madurai / Pondicherry / Mahabalipuram / Chennai

On this amazing tour, discover beautiful South India with its tranquil waterways, ancient architecture, colonial influenced cities, mouthwatering cuisine and quaint seaside towns. Start in the historical and colourful spice trading streets of Cochin, experience a house boat cruise, spot wildlife at Periyar National Park, see architectural masterpieces in Madurai and Tanjore and visit the iconic Ashram in charmingly French Pondicherry. End the tour with relaxation at seaside town of Mahabalipuram.

Day 1 - 2 Cochin

Arrive in Cochin and transfer to your hotel. The next morning, enjoy a heritage walking tour of Fort Cochin, discover the Dutch Palace Museum, St. Francis’ Church and Jewish Synagogue. See the iconic Chinese fishing nets on the harbor, watch a traditional Kathakali dance and sample local cuisine for dinner. (1B/1D)

Day 3 Backwater cruise

Drive to Allepy to board on a traditional houseboat to cruise through an intricate network of waterways, palm trees fringed canals and pass by greeny villages, enjoy healty and delicious local meals on board, stay overnight on the boat. (B/L/D)

Day 4 - 5 Periyar

Disembark then drive to picturesque Periyar, on the way see abandoned plantations of rubber, cardamom, cocoa and green pepper. The next morning take a nature walk through the lake of Periyar National Park to catch sight of wild elephants, gaur and other animals in their natural habitat. Enjoy a scenic drive to Madurai to observe a traditional night ceremony. (2B/1D)

Day 6 Madurai

Visit one of India’s greatest cultural and architectural landmarks – Meenakshi Temple, see ornately decorated gateway towers with the most wonderfully coloured statues. Wander around its bazaars full of spices and temple offerings. In the afternoon, drive to Tanjore.

Day 7 Tanjore

Today you will be amazed by marvelous architecture and sculptures at World Heritage listed Bragadeeshwara Temple (Big Temple), followed by a leisurely stroll through massive compound with towers and courtyards at Thanjavur Royal Palace and Art Gallery to see impressive collection of bronze and stone statues, enjoy your peaceful time at the beautiful and well maintained Siva Ganga Garden. (B)

Day 8 - 9 Pondicherry

Drive to former French Colonial Pondicherry, on the way visit Darasuram Temple - a storehouse of art and architecture. The next day experience the enticing colonial atmosphere, from the charming architecture to its patronage of the arts in Pondicherry. Enjoy a walking tour of world famous Shri Aurobindo Ashram before driving along the beautiful coastline to the beachside town of Mahabalipuram. En route visit World Heritage listed Shore Temple, noted for its friezes and the sculptured rock that line a granite hill. (2B/1D)

Day 10 - 11 Mahabalipuram / Chennai

Relax on the beach or go bargain shopping. On Day 11 you will be transferred to Chennai airport for your departure flight. (2B)
Departures daily

Tailor-made Tours

To customise this itinerary, talk to the experts on 1300 760 208 or submit an inquiry request below:

Trip Grading: Easy

Suitable for travelers with an average level of fitness and good mobility.

Pricing

* Standard package price from $1763p.p.
* Superior package price from $2080p.p.

Ask for an air-inclusive quote today!

Inclusions

9 nights selected hotel accommodation
Professional English speaking guide
1 night on a houseboat
Arrival/departure meeting and assistance
All transfers in A/C vehicle
Sightseeing and entrance fees
Listed meals: B-Breakfast, L-Lunch, D-Dinner

Exclusions

International airfare
Travel insurance
India Visa
Personal expenses
Gratuity & tips
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