A heavenly vacation experience awaits you in south India. Explore new destinations, get a glimpse of the rich heritage, art and architecture and meet new people. Cruising along the backwaters would be one of the most memorable experiences of your life.
DAY 1: ARRIVAL AT COCHIN
Our services welcome you and will be ready to take you over for an exceptional holiday experience with us. You would get to meet out travel expert who will take you towards a chauffeur driven vehicle that will drive you down to your hotel. We will help you check in at the hotel. There would be a brief given at the hotel in regard to the next day’s schedule, while you will be gifted with a welcome package. This would be a gift for you containing a beautiful hand-made specialty in a form of a guide to let you know about the possible exploration options, along with your travel papers such as your tickets, vouchers and travel itinerary copies that you might have received earlier as well.
DAY 2: EXPLORE COCHIN
The day commences with a guided tour of the island of Cherai. Explore the beauty of the Azheekkal Sree Varaha Venkateswara Temple that was built in the 19th century. The temple has an exciting aspect, being the temple Ratha (Chariot) which is an exceptional aspect here. Following this we will head towards the Portuguese Fort that was constructed back in 1503 and is one of the oldest European structures known in our country. From here on, we would head towards the Pallipuram Church. The church was built by the Portuguese in 1577. You would come across some of the most astounding work of art present in this church.
Relax and unwind yourself over lunch, after which we will take you out on a nature walk at the Cherai beach.
We will drop you back to your hotel, where you can relax for some time.
In the evening, our travel associate would pick you up from your hotel and we will head towards a local theatre that will offer you a brilliant and exceptional experience witnessing Kerala’s age old performing art – Kathakali.
Kathakali factually is a term that means the art of storytelling in a dance form which is a well known and celebrated form of traditional dance that has been a heritage of our country since ages.
After the dance performance, we will drive you back to the hotel. After which we have a special dinner arrangement in your honor. We will lead you to a renowned chef’s house, whose family will greet and serve you the most delicious delicacies of the south Indian cuisine, along with a few recipes too. We will drop you back to the hotel post dinner.
DAY 3: LET US GET CLOSER TO COCHIN
This day is kept for you to explore the mesmerizing city of Cochin and get closer to the miracle it carries in its traditions and structures. This city would give you a glimpse of the European history along with its affluent aboriginal past.
We will start our tour with visiting the Jewish Synagogue that is majorly closed on Fridays and Saturdays, carrying its very own charm. It was built back in the year 1568 while it is still a house of worship for the left behind Jews here. Even if your visit will fall in the above mentioned days, we will arrange a revisit for you to explore this place at length.
Next stop would be Cochin’s historical and vibrant Jew Street that has some of the most interesting antique stores and souvenir shops.
You will find a lot of Jewish influence around you in Cochin, while they have been here since 70 AD. After visiting the synagogue, we will take you to St. Francis Church, which was set up by the Portuguese Franciscan friars back in the year 1503. This is an interesting structure, as it remains to be one of the oldest and initial European churches ever built in our country, while it is famous because popular explorer Vasco Da Gama was buried in the courtyard. A couple of years later his remains were sent back to Portugal.
After this we will take you yet another interesting place, the Chinese fishing nets. As per the tradition still followed here for fishing, these nets are big and huge in size and they have extremely diverse designs, being brought at this port by the well known Chinese Explorer Zhang He nearly 600 years ago. Local fishermen have been using these nets since ages, while the legacy has been transferred to generations and they are very fluent with their use. You will be surprised to look the way they use the big sized nets so easily and without a flaw, with synchronized and harmonious movements. A few of these nets are really old, while these folks manage and repair them pretty much. We will then take you for a short walk towards the Fort Kochi where you will get closer look to the amazing local customs and structural designs. Just to let you know, Fort Kochi is one of the country’s finest cities to be explored while walking.
We will drop you back to the hotel to relax, unwind and call it a day.
DAY 4: COCHIN – MESMERIZING BACKWATERS
Our tour associate will be there to assist you for checkout and guide you towards another magnificent part of your vacation, the backwaters. Upon arrival in Alleppey, you will be transferred to your houseboat.
This will be the most exciting, thrilling and outstanding experience in the entire itinerary. The backwaters cruise would most likely become one of your most precious memories for you.
Get prepared to get closer to the natural and breathtaking surroundings of the lush green plantation that are made even more beautiful being around the fresh water canals, rivulets and lakes, the attractiveness of the water bodies in itself along with the wonderful smell of fresh coconut trees with some more spectacular looking plants creates a serene environment that would transform the way of life exists, at least until the time you are here.
The most interesting fact is that even after attracting a large number of tourists the magnificence and the beauty of this place in intact. For you to know, this is the second place in India that attracts a large number of tourists, right after the Taj Mahal.
In the evening, we will leave to explore and discover the beauty of the surroundings. Feel the magical sound of fresh water running around you. We bet you will be extremely happy and content and then enjoy a scrumptious traditional Kerala cuisine. If you want to discover a bit more, you can opt for small excursions to the shore wherein you can get closer to the local communities who are pretty friendly.
DAY 5: BACKWATERS CRUISE
It is time to get down of the picturesque house boat, early in the morning, while you enjoy the beautiful drive towards the Cochin airport. We will assist you with the boarding formalities, to help you catch the afternoon flight to Chennai.
Once you arrive at the Chennai airport, our executive will take you towards a short city tour of Chennai, which is the third largest city in India. We will take you through the St. Mary’s Church that was built in the year 1678 – 80; being the first English Church in the city of Chennai. Following this, we would straight away head towards the National Art Gallery & Museum where you discover the gorgeous temple friezes, the bronze gallery, along with the historical part that outshines here. Next stop would be at the Saint Thomas Cathedral that was initially built in 1504 while it was re-structured in a neo-gothic manner in 1893. This Roman Catholic Church is considered to make place for the remnants of St. Thomas the disciple. We will now take to your resort located in Mahabalipuram which is located nearby, while we help you check in at the Ocean Front Resort, where you call in a day, unwind and relax after a fruitful journey and excursion.
DAY 6: MAHABALIPURAM
We urge you to start this day early, while we help you explore the fabulous and magical aspects located in the ancient port of Mahabalipuram, which is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
This indeed is a little laid back, less noisy, clean and green coastal town situated south of Chennai, being popular for the 8th century shore temple & some more ancient wonders. Mahabalipuram has been known for being the second capital of the Pallava Kings of Kanchipuram which was the first Tamil dynasty after the Gupta Empire collapsed. The enormous rock figurines are engraved being gently sloping mounts, monolithic temples, ancient artificial caves that have some of the most interesting sculptures, and is also counted as one of the largest bas-relief in stone. All this and much more add on to the magic Mahabalipuram, looking just like a well placed museum.
There is yet another magnificence that overlooks this place, being the beach with the opulent view of the Bay of Bengal. The eminent PanchaRathas (Five Chariots) Temples, the Penance of Bhagirath, which is also called Arjuna’s Penance, the Shore Temple along with the huge bas-relief fall of the Ganges as well as the eight Mandapams that are all positioned in around a small coastal community. This is indeed is a charming sight that can be seen and felt right from the beach at least two times in a day, when the fishermen begin their daily chores and also while they head back home, surrounding the entire shore, making it vibrant with colorful boats and so much activity, making this place extremely busy during these hours.
In the evening enjoy a leisure walk wherein you can explore through the beautiful surroundings of the ocean front resort and feel the magic of the place altogether. We recommend you to interact with the local fishing community who are proud owners of these extremely vibrant and beautiful boats made out of wood.
Get closer to their daily activities, while you look around to see many of the fishermen returning back from a hard day at work, wrapping up for the day. You would find them getting really busy with winding up their gears, nets and measuring the fish they could catch. This produce is them measured and negotiated for sale. You will get to see a lot of their women repairing the nets for them, preparing for the next day that has similar schedule and activities for them. Talk to them, click pictures and get closer to the life they lead and you will be surprised to know how content and happy they are.
DAY 7: MAHABALIPURAM
The day is dedicated to exploring Kanchipuram. This being another historical city also called the ‘golden city of a thousand temples’ is one of the seven holy cities of our country. It has numerous outstanding Gopurams (temple domes) that can be seen even while you are on the outskirts of the city, basically because of their length. Kanchipuram’s historical presence has been talked about since ages, while it has been termed as the continuous capital of numerous South Indian dynasties. It has been a large learning centre and has been an important sage for the Buddhist as well as Jain community while their faith began here.
Most of the city people work and earn their bread, working on silk weaving that is done on a large scale here. We would take you for a guided walk towards a family home here, that is involved into silk weaving as a whole.
This would end our tour in Kanchipuram while we would guide you back to your resort near Mahabalipuram.
DAY 8: CHENNAI – INTERNATIONAL FLIGHT OR MUMBAI/DELHI
This more or less ends your holiday of exploring the south of the country. We will guide you back to the Chennai airport so as to catch your flight from there on.
We offer an optional tour of the Chennai city, which is over and above the total package. There is indeed a lot to be seen in this big city, in fact the fourth largest in our country. You can start exploring through the city with the St. Mary’s Church having built in 1678 – 80; being the first ever English Church in the city. Followed by a visit to the National Art Gallery & Museum where you get to see the sights of the attractive temple friezes, the bronze gallery, and the historical portion and much more. You can also visit Saint Thomas Cathedral that had been primarily constructed in the year 1504, while it had been built another time in the neo-gothic fashion in the year 1893, this Roman Catholic Church is considered to make place for the remains of St. Thomas the missionary.
Get on board to your international flight to Mumbai/Delhi now, concluding your trip a happy face and a content heart.
Our services would conclude at the Mumbai/Delhi/Chennai airport.