One of India’s prized jewels, Kerala’s network of tropical waterways, lagoons and hidden riverside villages offer some of the country’s most enchanting experiences. From a mix of colonial and Asian charm around the busy historic port of Kochi (Cochin) to the gentle pace of life on the backwaters and the beautiful hill country, this region is of outstanding natural and cultural diversity.
Depart Heathrow on Emirates overnight flight via Dubai to Kochi.
Arrive Kochi in the morning, India’s oldest European settlement, which grew on the wealth generated from the spice trade; Kochi has an eclectic mix of influences making it a delight to explore. Spend the evening experiencing the Kaleidoscope dance show, demonstrating the authentic performing arts of the region – an integral part of Kerala life. Stay 2 nights at the Trident Cochin Hotel.
Morning tour of Kochi including a visit to the Dutch Palace (Mattancherry Palace), a quaint and charming palace actually built by the Portuguese but refurbished by the Dutch afterwards in 1663. The highlights are intricately carved ceilings and murals. Visit the synagogue of Kochi: paying homage to India’s Jewish community, constructed in 1568, it is the oldest synagogue in the Commonwealth. Finish the morning at the famous Chinese fishing nets, ingeniously designed for this intriguing method of fishing. Spend the afternoon in the Kumbalangi village. Experience the extraordinary local life, including Kerala’s tropical backwaters, sure to rejuvenate your mind and described by National Geographic as one of the 50 must see places on the globe. (B)
Drive up into the hills to Munnar and visit the Tea Museum, the ideal place to showcase the genesis of tea in Kerala’s high ranges, and the process of tea making will be explained to you. Overnight at the Blackberry Resort. (B)
Depart by road to Thekkady, along the spine of the Western Ghats, through countryside, rich plantations and thick jungles. The afternoon is spent at leisure with the chance to see some of the diverse wildlife in Periyar National Park, with over 60 species of mammal and 320 species of bird many of which are endemic to the region. Stay 2 nights at the Pepper County – this is a homestay property for an unforgettable experience! (B)
In the morning enjoy a botanical walk followed by a visit to Elephant Junction where you can get the opportunity to feed, bath and ride the elephants. Afternoon at leisure before the early evening cooking demonstration followed by dinner. (B/D)
After breakfast transfer down to Alleppey to board your houseboat, the most traditional and relaxing way to traverse the mirror-still lagoons and palm-fringed canals, bustling with glimpses of everyday life in the countryside. Overnight under the stars on the calm waters. (B/L/D)
Drive to Kumarakom where you will have the afternoon at leisure; a serene, emerald green peninsula in the backdrop of Vembanad Lake one of the most relaxing places to unwind in Kerala. Stay for 2 nights at the Lemon Tree Vembanad Lake View Hotel. (B)
Spend the majority of the day at leisure with options such as authentic Ayuverdic treatments or visit Kumarakom’s renowned bird sanctuary. This morning, there will be a short visit to a nearby school. You will join the children during their break and get the chance to talk to the children and maybe listen to their songs. (B)
Transfer to the airport for your return day flight with Emirates via Dubai to Heathrow, arriving this evening. (B)
Please note the above price is a guide only as the final price is dependent on flight availability at the time of booking. Please call our travel experts on 0844 417 3382 for our latest prices and offers. Prices shown are per person based on 2 people sharing a twin room. Single room and flight upgrade prices available at a supplement. The prices shown includes any applicable saving mentioned.
Group departure dates:
2013: Every Sunday
2014: Every Sunday until the 27 Apr
Please note this tour is subject to minimum numbers. Please call our travel experts on 0844 417 3382 for prices on a specific departure.
If you would like a more tailored itinerary that suits your requirements, including departure on a different day than Sunday, please call our travel experts on 0844 417 3382 who can create your own holiday.
Why not extend your tour with 3 nights at the Abad Turtle Beach Resort situated on the idyllic Marari beach surrounded by vistas of unspoiled sand and exotic lush greenery?
Prices start from £195
Stop en-route at Dubai and spend 3 nights at the Grand Hyatt Hotel located close to the city centre with stunning views of Dubai Creek.
Prices start from £255