Day 1: Chennai / Mahabalipuram: Arrival at Chennai international airport and transfer to Mahabalipuram.
Arrival at the Chennai international airport. Welcome by our local representative & drive to Mahabalipuram. Check-in at a hotel in Mahabalipuram. Mahabalipuram is a seashore city, situated about 60 km from Chennai, famous for its Shore temples. Overnight at Mahabalipuram.
Day 2: Mahabalipuram:
Early morning observe the fishermen returning from fishing at Mahabalipuram Beach. Start your tour of Mahabalipuram with a visit to the shore temple, the five “rathas” chariots of Pandavas “The heroes of the Maha Bharat epic”. Afternoon free to explore the city of Mahäbalipuram.
Day 3: Mahabalipuram / Pondicherry:
Drive to Pondicherry. Check-in at the hotel in Pondicherry. Visit of temple Arulmiga Manakula Vinayagar Temple, Auroville, and Sri Aurobindo’s Ashram. Basilica of Sacred Heart of Jesus and Church Notre Dames des Anges. Evening a free walk to explore the French town and the vibrating markets of Pondicherry.
Pondicherry is the first French settlement in India. The city is divided into two parts, which one is French Town, and another is Tamil Town. Some major attractions include the Church of Notre Dame de Anges and Sacred Heart Basilica. The beaches of Pondicherry are also very famous and attract a large number of tourists from all over the world.
Day 4: Pondicherry / Chidambaram / Gangaikondacholapuram / Darasuram / Tanjore:
Drive to Tanjore. On the way visit the temples of Chidambaram, Gangaikondacholapuram Darasuram listed in the world heritage sites of UNESCO. Check-in at a hotel in Tanjore. In the evening, explore the city of Tanjore.
Tanjore is the major temple town of Tamil Nadu, which is known for its mighty Brihadeshwara temple, enlisted in UNESCO’s world heritage monuments. Tanjore is known for its art and culture and its numerous boutiques selling brass and bronze wares and statues.
Day 5: Tanjore / Trichy / Chettinadu :
Visit the Brihideshwara temple, The Marata Palace Museum. Then drive to Chettinadu. En route visit the temple of Srirangam and Rock fort of Trichy. Check-in at the hotel in Chettinadu. Then visit the village and Chettinadu houses.
Chettinad is a small town, mainly of Nattukotai Chettiars. A community is prosperous in banking and business in Tamil Nadu. We find extraordinarily beautiful houses in this region with some of the finest painting art of South India. Chettinadu Cuisine is also very famous for its finest delicacies including sambhar, payasam, and paniyaram.
Day 6: Chettinad / Madurai:
Drive to Madurai. Check in at the hotel in Madurai. Visit the Tirumalai Nayak Palace and the ancient city of Madurai.
Madurai is the second largest city of Tamil Nadu, famous for its Meenakshi Amman temple. This is one of the most ancient cities in India and was the capital of several South Indian dynasties for centuries. The city is visited by numerous visitors from all around the world. The evening ceremony at Meenakshi temple is worth watching and leaves an undying impression on the heart of its visitors.
Day 7: Madurai:
In the morning, depart with an English-speaking guide to discover the local life of the city of Madurai. A walking tour through the ancient city of Madurai to discover flower markets, tea shops, local breakfast vendors, and local artisans. During this walk, you can taste some local specialties of the city of Madurai. In the late morning visit Meenakshi Temple in Madurai.
The Meenakshi temple is divided into two buildings, each dedicated to one of the two spouses, Shiva and Meenakshi. Although it is not the largest temple in the country, it was for a long time the highest in Asia, due to its tower of almost 60 meters high. Then in the afternoon a walking tour to explore the local markets around the Madurai temple. Then depart to visit the temple of Pazamudhir located on a hill near Madurai. At the end of the afternoon, return to the hotel and time at leisure.
Day 8: Madurai / Thekkady :
In the morning drive to Thekkady, a forest reserve in on Southern part of Kerala. Check in to your hotel. In the afternoon visit of a spice garden to explore de spice plantation such as cardamom, cloves, cinnamon. Evening a Kalaripayatu marshal art show.
Day 9 – Thekkady / Munnar :
In the morning a boat safari on the Periyar Lake to explore the flora and fauna of this tropical forest. In the late morning drive to Munnar, a hill station famous for its beautiful tea plantations. Check in to your hotel and evening free at your hotel.
Day 10 – Munnar:
Depart with a local guide for your half-day hiking tour through the tea plantations and mountains of the Western Ghats. Arrive at the top to have a panoramic view of the Western Ghats. Return to the hotel and late afternoon time at leisure.
Day 11 – Munnar / Alleppey
Morning departure for Alleppey, known for its serene backwaters and lush green nature. Check in to the houseboat and explore the backwaters of Kerala. Overnight on the houseboat.
Day 12 – Alleppey / Cochin:
In the morning, a tour of the canals of backwaters. After breakfast transfer by road to Cochin. Check in to the hotel. In the afternoon, visit the Jewish Synagogue. This is one of the oldest synagogues in all Commonwealth countries and explores the spice markets surrounding it. In the evening enjoy a Kathakali dance show at the Kerala cultural center.
(The synagogue is closed on Friday and Saturday)
Day 13 – Cochin:
Visit the Mattanchery Palace also called the Dutch Palace. Built-in 1555 by the Portuguese, the first Westerners to arrive in the region, as a gift for the Raja of Cochin, Veera Kerala Varma. Its nickname as Dutch Palace is in fact due to the restoration assumed by the Dutch in 1663. Despite these Western origins, the palace is built in the Indo-Keral style, with its beautiful worked frames in wood, magnificently painted ceilings, and roofs resembling Chinese pagodas. Free time to explore the colonial houses of Fort Cochin and the Chinese fishing nets.
Day 14 – Cochin:
Your driver will drive you to the Cochin international airport for your onward flight.
END OF OUR SERVICES
3* and heritage hotels:
Mahabalipuram – Mamalla Heritage***
Pondicherry – Anantha heritage (heritage)
Tanjore – Hôtel Gnanam***
Chettinadu – Chettinadu Mainson (heritage)
Madurai – Ramrathna Residency***
Thekkady – Beaumont Plantation***
Munnar – Deepwoods Resort***
Alleppey – House Boat
Cochin – Dutch Bungalow (heritage)