Southern India

Tamil Nadu and Kerala – The deep heart of the Indian subcontinent where tradition and spirituality go beyond time!

Day 1
Arrive at Bangalore airport. Welcome to India! Meet and greet upon arrival with warm welcome garlanding with fresh flower and transfer to hotel for check in. Overnight at hotel.

Day 2
Morning after leisurely breakfast transfer to airport to board flight for Chennai. Meet upon arrival at airport & proceed for guided city tour of Chennai- include Fort St. George built in 1653 by the British , Kalakshetra – the dance academy is a cultural academy dedicated to the preservation of traditional values in Indian art, especially in the field of Bharatanatyam dance and Gandharvaveda music., St. Thomas Cathedral and drive along the Marina beach.
Later transfer to Mahabalipuram. Upon arrival Mahabalipuram check in at hotel. Overnight at hotel.

Day 3
Morning after breakfast proceed for full day tour of Kanchipuram and Mahabalipuram.
Morning excursion to Kanchipuram – another holiest city for Hindus. Visit the major temples like Ekambareswara Temple with thousand pillars. Ekambareswarar Temple is a Hindu temple dedicated to Shiva, located in Kanchipuram in the state of Tamil Nadu, India. The temple is the largest temple in the town of Kanchipuram and is located in the northern part of the town. The temple gopuram (gateway tower) is 59m tall, which is one of the tallest gopurams in India.
It is one of the five major Shiva temples (each representing a natural element) and represent the element ‘Earth’.
KailasnathTtemple dedicated to Shiva, believed to be 1200 years old, Kailashnath Temple, also Kailash or Kailāsa or Kailasanath Temple. The Temple is notable for its vertical excavation—carvers started at the top of the original rock, and excavated downward. The traditional methods were rigidly followed by the master architect which could not have been achieved by excavating from the front. It is estimated that about 400,000 tons of rocks were scooped out over hundreds of years to construct this monolithic structure.
Vaikunteswara Temple and traditional method of silk weaving. 

Afternoon sightseeing in Mahabalipuram. The town is known worldwide for its Shore Temple, a relic of Pallava art, the temple is a world Heritage site. “The Shore Temple”: though known as the land of Seven Pagodas, there is only one remaining today. The five-storied Shore Temple on the sea beach was built by the Pallava King Raja Singha at the end of seventh century in pure Dravidian sculpture. This temple was the last work of Pallava dynasty. Overnight at hotel.

Day 4
Morning after breakfast drive to Pondicherry. Upon arrival Pondicherry check-in at hotel. 

Afternoon sightseeing tour of Pondicherry and visit paper museum The town has number of colonial buildings, Catholic churches and temples, . The Union territory of India, has a distinct French ambience to it amidst the surrounding Tamil country. Although, it is believed to be the site of ancient Vedapuri in 14th century BC, today it is famous for the Sri Aurbindo Ashram, a philospher who developed a system of internal yoga combining the ancient yogic philosophy with his knowledge of modern science. Auroville or the ’ City of Dawn’ was set up as a tribute to him. “Auroville belongs to nobody in particular. Auroville belongs to humanity as a whole. But to live in Auroville, one must be a willing servitor of the Divine Consciousness. Auroville will be the place of an unending education, of constant progress, and a youth that never ages. Auroville wants to be the bridge between the past and the future. Taking advantage of all discoveries from without and from within, Auroville will boldly spring towards future realisations. Auroville will be a site of material and spiritual researches for a living embodiment of an actual Human Unity. Source: ” http://www.auroville.org/ ”. Overnight at hotel.

Day 5
Morning after breakfast drive to Tanjore, enroute visit Chidambaram – the Nataraja Temple which is famous for its dancing figures – and Kumbakonam, also visit temple Gangaikonda Cholapuram. Overnight at hotel.

Day 6
Morning after breakfast proceeds for tour of Tanjore. The Cholas were great temple builder and Thanjvur bear witness to this, being dotted with no fewer than 74 temples – the most famous of which is the Brahadeeswarar, visit bronze museum. Afternoon at leisure. Overnight at hotel.

Day 7
Morning after breakfast drive to Madurai. Enroute visit Trichy including excursion to Srirangam, this is well known for its Vaishnavite temple dedicated to Lord Ranganathaswamy. Upon arrival Madurai check-in at hotel. Evening visit to Meenakshi temple to attend temple ceremony in Madurai. Overnight at hotel.
Day 08:
Morning after breakfast proceed for city sightseeing of Madurai. Madurai is synonymous with the Sri Meenakshi temple, dedicated to Sri Meenakshi, the consort of Lord Shiva. The temple complex is one of the biggest in India. Also visit ‘Tirumalai Nayak Palace’, old city and temple tank.
Later drive to Periyar. Upon arrival Periyar check-in at hotel. Afternoon about 4 pm proceed for boat ride tour in the Periyar Lake to view wildlife. Evening visit spice market. Overnight at hotel.

Day 9
Morning proceed for full day Jeep Safari to Gavi. This is a full day programme with breakfast/lunch/tea & snacks. This programme start at 6 AM from Kumily and end at about 5 pm . The road leading to the picturesque Gavi is blanketed by tea plantations, which itself is a refreshing experience. Here one can have outstanding trekking experiences, which are over seen by trained local people. The place is rich in flora and fauna. There are hills and valleys, tropical forests, sprawling grasslands, shoals, cascading waterfalls and cardamom plantations. Endangered species including Nilgiri Thar, Liontaled macaque is often sighted at the outskirts of Gavi. Active involvement of tribal in Gavi makes it a unique venture of its kind in the country. Traditional knowledge of the forest and its way of life helps Gavi to sustain its surroundings in its original state. Evening return to hotel. Stay overnight at hotel.

Day 10
After breakfast drive to Kumarkom, enroute visit spice plantation. Noon time check-in on Houseboat (Kettuvalom ) & ride in the direction to Alleppey. Overnight on board.

Day 11
Explore rural life in the Backwaters of Kerala. After breakfast disembark from houseboat in Alleppey and drive to Cochin. Upon arrival Cochin check in at hotel.
Later proceed for city tour of Cochin, the historic city of Fort Cochin – ancient capital of the Dutch, Portuguese and finally the British. A walking tour of Fort Cochin. Visit will include the old Spice Market at Mattancherry, the antique shop on Jews street, The Synagogue, Dutch Palace and the Church of St. Francis where the mortal remains of Vasco Da Gama was buried before it was shifted to Portugal. (Jews Synagogue closed on Fridays & Saturdays)
Evening proceed to witness the Kathakali dance show performance in local typical style. Overnight at hotel.

Day 12
Morning after breakfast time at leisure. Late afternoon transfer to Cochin airport to board the flight for Bangalore. Transit in Bangalore and then International flight.