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17 DAYS / 16 NIGHTS
NORTH TO South INDIA

OVERVIEW

This India trip takes you on a journey through the cultural highlights of North India, before heading to South India for the spiritual highlights. Your South India trip begins at the cave temples of the seaside town of Mamallapuram before heading to 'little France' in India. The traces of the rich colonial past of Pondicherry are still visible in the French bakeries and historic French-style hotels. You'll then travel on to the serene sandstone temple of Tanjore, and the awe-inspiring temples of Madurai and Trichy. After an unforgettable temple tour through Southern India, you'll finish your India trip on the beach at Kovalam, to catch your breath and soak up some sunshine.

CITIES TO VISIT

PRICING

FIRST CLASS

Double Occupancy

USD 1749

Single Occupancy

USD 2099

DELUXE

Double Occupancy

USD 2186

Single Occupancy

USD 2623

OPPULENT

Double Occupancy

USD 2733

Single Occupancy

USD 3279

ITINERARY

Day
1
Delhi

When you arrive in Delhi on day one of your India trip, you’ll be collected by your private driver and taken to your hotel. Your accommodation is a comfortable hotel in Central Delhi, an ideal base from which to explore both the spice markets of Chandi Chowk and the modern bars of Connaught Place. Here, you can catch your breath and rest after your flight.

Although there's nothing planned for you today, if you have time you might want to visit the impressive Qutab Minar complex and Humayun's Tomb, both World Heritage Sites. The Qutab Minar has a 5-storey, 72-metre victory tower of red sandstone. Humayun's Tomb is a grand sandstone mausoleum in proper Mughal style. The Taj Mahal, built much later, follows a similar style of architecture.

Day
2
Delhi - Jaipur

(Travel time approx. 5 hours)

On day two of your India trip, you'll be transferred to Jaipur by air-conditioned car, a trip which takes around 5 hours. The Pink City is a fantastic place to kick off a trip in India and during your two nights here you can relax, acclimatise, and explore. There is so much to see in this elegant and astonishing city that you could spend weeks here without getting bored. Jaipur centre is a colourful mix of saris, saddhus, holy cows, spice markets, street vendors, camel carts, elephants, beggars, traffic, temples, forts and palaces.

During your India trip in Jaipur you’ll stay in a cosy family hotel for a firsthand experience of typical Indian hospitality. Breakfast is served in the peaceful courtyard/garden and the family will go out of their way to make your stay as enjoyable as possible. The rooms here are tastefully furnished in traditional Indian-style and some have four-poster beds.

Day
3
Jaipur - City Tour

It\'s the third day of your India trip and today you’ll take a guided tour of the remarkable city of Jaipur, visiting the City Palace, the Observatory and the fairy-tale Palace of the Winds (Hawa Mahal). In the afternoon, you’ll visit the imposing Amber Fort that lies just outside the city limits. From the battlements of the Amber Fort, you’ll have a wonderful view of the rocky hills and the smaller walls and forts constructed by the Rajputs and the Mughals in the area.

The City Palace and the Palace of the Winds both stand in the ancient quarter of the city, and are sure to be real highlights of your India trip. The City Palace has several beautiful museums with fascinating collections. If you see the flag flying, it means that the Maharaja is in residence. The Palace of the Winds is a world-famous, pyramid-shaped building with dozens of windows. This is where the women of the royal harem could watch the processions in the street below, unseen by the masses.

 

Day
4
Jaipur - Fatehpur Sikri - Agra

(Travel time approx. 5 hours)

Early this morning you will head to Galta, a secluded mystical spot that is sure to leave a lasting impression in your memory. The Monkey Temple here is a pilgrimage site that attracts flocks of brightly-robed devotees every day. The stream that trickles out of the rocks here is reputed to be water from the holy River Ganges, although this is geographically impossible. People bathe and sing on the steps (ghats) that lead down into the pools. Their voices echo through the rocky gorge, which opens into a wider valley dotted with temples that have been overrun with monkeys. This is an exhilarating sight. Galta is an optional stop, but well worth a visit during your India trip.

After Galta, you’ll drive for another three hours before arriving in Bharatpur. This is a fascinating waterworld, criss-crossed by many pathways that a cycle-rickshaw driver can take you along. Maharajas of the historic Singh family used this region as their hunting grounds. If you like, you can get out and stretch your legs here, just speak to your driver on the day.

There are hundreds of rare birds in the Bharatpur wetlands, such as the rare Siberian crane. Currently, there are several tigers here, originally from Ranthambore National Park, which pounce on the waterfowl as they doze. It’s unlikely that you’ll see this in action, but keep your eyes peeled all the same.

A few kilometres further on, you’ll come to stunning Fatehpur Sikri. The great ruler Akbar set up his capital here, and built a grand city, but after only 40 years the water supply became too difficult to maintain in this dry area, so all of the inhabitants packed up and moved on. Now it is an atmospheric ghost city, full of green parrots and monkeys. You can arrange for a local guide to lead you through the forgotten city, and tell you the stories behind the monuments. This is also an optional stop, so if you'd rather head straight for your Agra hotel just ask your driver. Next, you’ll drive on to Agra, where you’ll arrive at a comfortable hotel near the centre of Agra with a swimming pool and modern facilities.

 

Day
5
Agra - Taj Mahal

After breakfast (or at dawn if you'd prefer), you’ll set off to visit another two breathtaking sites. First, you’ll be taken to the Taj Mahal, a highlight of any India trip. Standing serenely in the first light of the morning, we are sure that this stunning building will surpass all your expectations. It is one of the few buildings in the world that has the ability to move people.

The Taj Mahal was built by Shah Jahan as a token of his love for his deceased wife, and is undoubtedly the most romantic burial site in the world. After visiting the Taj Mahal, the next stop on your India trip is Agra Fort. This huge but restrained structure seems to be immersed in a dreamy atmosphere when it’s bathed in the golden afternoon light, which slants through the pillars and galleries. From its majestic walls and through its arches, you can see the Taj Mahal, just as Shah Jahan would have done centuries ago, when he was imprisoned here by his son.

Day
6
Agra - Delhi

(Travel time approx. 5-6 hours)

Today you will be transferred back to Delhi by air-conditioned car, a trip that takes around 5-6 hours depending on traffic.

You'll stay in a charming hotel in Central Delhi, with comfortable rooms and modern facilities. The hotel is near to both the alleyways and spice bazaars of Old Delhi and the spacious shopping emporiums of Connaught Place.

You can spend the sixth day of your India trip exploring the many sights of Delhi- the crowded, narrow lanes of Chandi Chowk, the stately Humayan’s Tomb, the greenery of Lodi Gardens, and the fascinating and moving Gandhi Museum.

Day
7
Delhi City Tour

Today your driver will pick you up to take you on a Delhi City Tour. You will drive past the India Gate, a war memorial arch, to the impressive Parliament Building and the Rashtrapati Bhawan, once the imperial palace of the British viceroy and now the official residence of the President of India. You\'ll also visit the impressive Qutab Minar complex and Humayun's Tomb, both World Heritage Sites.

Later in the day, you will visit Shah Jahanabad, now known as Old Delhi. The main street is Chandni Chowk, a fascinating bustling jumble of craft shops, traders, mosques and temples. The chief attraction of Old Delhi is the huge Red Fort (closed Mondays) that contains within it palaces and impressive public buildings. Near the Red Fort is the magnificent Jama Masjid, the largest mosque in India.

Day
8
Delhi - Chennai - Mamallapuram

(Travel time approx. 3 hours by plane, approx. 2 hours by car)

Today your India trip will take you by plane to Chennai in South India, and on arrival you will be transferred to Mamallapuram, a friendly coastal town where you can spend a couple of days taking it slow. Mamallapuram is a quiet place and throughout the village you can see several workshops where craftsmen create the most amazing sculptures.

Tonight you'll stay in a simple beach resort with a lovely pool. You can reflect on your journey whilst taking a refreshing dip in the hotel pool. Towards the end of the day you'll see the local women wading into the sea in their brightly coloured saris to cool off in the water. If you'd like to go swimming in the sea in this region of India, please be respectful and keep your clothes on as well. Swim wear is fine if you wish to remain at the pool side.

Day
9
Mamallapuram

On day nine of your India trip you might like to take a stroll along the sea front where you'll find atmospheric ruins and a cooling sea breeze. The temple directly on the beach (Shore Temple) is one of the oldest temples in India and decorated with many Nandi bulls - Shiva’s chosen mode of transport.

The countryside around the village is dotted with temples many of which are hidden in caves. The temples are visited mainly by the local cows and goats wandering around the temple buildings, but that’s actually quite fitting for a temple dedicated to Shiva and built by the Pallava kings. The temple directly on the beach (Shore Temple) is one of the oldest temples in India and decorated with many Nandi bulls - Shiva’s chosen mode of transport. You'll soak up the mystical atmosphere of these decorative temples during your South India tour.

Day
10
Mamallapuram - Pondicherry

(Travel time approx. 2 hours)

Pondicherry is a little slice of France with an Indian topping. The French street names, the croissants in the French bakeries and the colonial houses with their elegant balconies all point towards the traces of French colonial heritage in Pondicherry. From Mamallapuram, it’s roughly a 2 hour drive to this charming coastal town where you’ll step into a completely different world. The French ruled this area for several centuries, until several years after India gained independence, in 1954. The French District in Pondicherry has a distinctly French feel with its little shops, wide boulevards, European churches and green parks. The best beaches are to the north of the city.

Pondicherry is also the home of the spiritual community, Sri Aurobindo Ashram. The community is still a major institution for yoga, meditation and several charitable benefits, and was established by a French lady better known as The Mother. Today you could visit the Ashram or the village of Auroville during your South India tour. Perhaps have an extra night in Pondicherry to slow the pace for you. Just ask your travel specialist.

Day
11
Pondicherry - Tanjore

(Travel time approx. 5 hours)

Today you’ll travel from Pondicherry to Tanjore, a journey that will take about 5 hours. The sacred treasures in Tanjore are unlike any of the other major temple cities. Instead of the brightly coloured temples you’ll see elsewhere, Tanjore’s holy places are made of sober sandstone. You can visit the famous Brihadeshwar Temple during this India trip, a temple built by the Chola kings, and now a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Slip into the crowd of pilgrims cramming to get to the altar in the centre of the temple and you’ll experience the sense of devotion and the serene rituals of worship that take place here. At the temple entrance you’ll pay your contribution and pay homage to the temple elephant as he deftly fishes the rupees from your hand with his holy trunk. Ask your driver to drop you off at the Palace Museum, to see bronze statues and glass paintings.

Day
12
Tanjore - Madurai

(Travel time approx. 4 hours)

Today you’ll travel from Tanjore to Madurai, stopping off at Trichy, otherwise known as Tiruchirappalli. The temple is surrounded by little stalls and people selling small offerings. The main temple itself (Srirangam Temple) is a more like a city than a temple complex. Enclosed by seven walls, the complex contains several towers, one of which made of pure gold.

In Madurai you’ll stay in a basic but comfortable hotel. The hotel has an excellent restaurant where you can fill up with a tasty lunch before heading out to explore the city. Mind what you order though, the curries of southern India are some of the hottest in the country! Luckily English is widely spoken so the cook can tone down the chillies for you if you ask nicely. At dusk, head up to the hotel roof terrace for an amazing view across the city and the Meenakshi temple complex.

Day
13
Day 13: Madurai

Today, you’ll take a rickshaw tour with an experienced rickshaw guide to the Tirumalai Nayak Palace, the Ghandi Museum and the temple lake. Travelling by rickshaw will help you get your bearings for when you explore on your own.

The history of Madurai dates back over 2500 years. The city is without a doubt the most spectacular temple city in Tamil Nadu, but it's still surprisingly undiscovered by tourists. The Meenakshi Temple, from the 12th century has four towers each intricately decorated with thousands of coloured figures. You could spend hours examining each tower. The northern tower is more bare, so as not to tempt the demons. There are eight more towers and a hall with a thousand decorated pillars. The complex is dedicated to Shiva. His wife Meenakshi was a princess from Madurai and the sculptures in the temple depict her life story.

The atmosphere inside the temple is very real. Most areas are open to visitors except for the central Hindu shrine. During this Madurai to Chennai tour, you’ll see many Brahmas and pilgrims repeating mantras and kneeling before the holy shrines. Don't miss the five famous musical pillars and if you knock on them, they each produce a different sound.

Day
14
Madurai - Kovalam

(Travel time approx. 5 hours)

After a tasty breakfast you’ll be collected by our driver who will drive you to Kovalam. This is a long drive (about 5 hours) and you’ll pass wonderful scenery along the way. When you arrive in Kovalam, you’ll quickly forget the fatigue of travel. This is the best known beach in Kerala and certainly one of the most beautiful. There are plenty of excellent restaurants here, where you’ll find a huge range of freshly caught seafood and fish.

You’ll stay at lovely Nellikunnu Beach, a couple of beaches along from Kovalam itself. Your accommodation will be a teak bungalow situated on the beach. It’s very peaceful here and yet only a 10 minute tuk-tuk ride from the centre of Kovalam. The beach at Nellikunnu has a traditional Ayurvedic spa offering massages and other treatments - the perfect way to wind down after a long day of travelling on your India trip.

Day
15
Kovalam

For these two days, your time is completely free to spend as you wish. Swim, sunbathe, or read in your hammock – it is completely up to you. Simply enjoy the easygoing atmosphere of Nellikunnu beach. The swimming here is delightful as the water is clear, warm, and gets deeper very gradually. You can also go shopping at the lively stalls on Kovalam Beach, packed with tempting souvenirs. The food here is delicious, so get stuck into some tasty local treats.

If you’re feeling ultra energetic, you can take an excursion to Kanyakumari, the most southerly point of India. Just let us know if you want to take this excursion, and we’ll make the arrangements for you as part of your India trip.

Day
16
Kovalam

Enjoy Kovalam , free time to spend as you please.

Day
17
Departure from Trivandrum

Sadly, your India trip must come to an end today, and you'll be transferred to Trivandrum airport to begin your journey home. Of course, you could choose to spend a few extra days on the beach at your Nellikunnu resort. Just add any special requirements to the quote request form, and our travel specialists will include them in your personal Travel Plan. 

Itinerary

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Day
1
Delhi

When you arrive in Delhi on day one of your India trip, you’ll be collected by your private driver and taken to your hotel. Your accommodation is a comfortable hotel in Central Delhi, an ideal base from which to explore both the spice markets of Chandi Chowk and the modern bars of Connaught Place. Here, you can catch your breath and rest after your flight.

Although there's nothing planned for you today, if you have time you might want to visit the impressive Qutab Minar complex and Humayun's Tomb, both World Heritage Sites. The Qutab Minar has a 5-storey, 72-metre victory tower of red sandstone. Humayun's Tomb is a grand sandstone mausoleum in proper Mughal style. The Taj Mahal, built much later, follows a similar style of architecture.

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Day
2
Delhi - Jaipur

(Travel time approx. 5 hours)

On day two of your India trip, you'll be transferred to Jaipur by air-conditioned car, a trip which takes around 5 hours. The Pink City is a fantastic place to kick off a trip in India and during your two nights here you can relax, acclimatise, and explore. There is so much to see in this elegant and astonishing city that you could spend weeks here without getting bored. Jaipur centre is a colourful mix of saris, saddhus, holy cows, spice markets, street vendors, camel carts, elephants, beggars, traffic, temples, forts and palaces.

During your India trip in Jaipur you’ll stay in a cosy family hotel for a firsthand experience of typical Indian hospitality. Breakfast is served in the peaceful courtyard/garden and the family will go out of their way to make your stay as enjoyable as possible. The rooms here are tastefully furnished in traditional Indian-style and some have four-poster beds.

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Day
3
Jaipur - City Tour

It\'s the third day of your India trip and today you’ll take a guided tour of the remarkable city of Jaipur, visiting the City Palace, the Observatory and the fairy-tale Palace of the Winds (Hawa Mahal). In the afternoon, you’ll visit the imposing Amber Fort that lies just outside the city limits. From the battlements of the Amber Fort, you’ll have a wonderful view of the rocky hills and the smaller walls and forts constructed by the Rajputs and the Mughals in the area.

The City Palace and the Palace of the Winds both stand in the ancient quarter of the city, and are sure to be real highlights of your India trip. The City Palace has several beautiful museums with fascinating collections. If you see the flag flying, it means that the Maharaja is in residence. The Palace of the Winds is a world-famous, pyramid-shaped building with dozens of windows. This is where the women of the royal harem could watch the processions in the street below, unseen by the masses.

 

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Day
4
Jaipur - Fatehpur Sikri - Agra

(Travel time approx. 5 hours)

Early this morning you will head to Galta, a secluded mystical spot that is sure to leave a lasting impression in your memory. The Monkey Temple here is a pilgrimage site that attracts flocks of brightly-robed devotees every day. The stream that trickles out of the rocks here is reputed to be water from the holy River Ganges, although this is geographically impossible. People bathe and sing on the steps (ghats) that lead down into the pools. Their voices echo through the rocky gorge, which opens into a wider valley dotted with temples that have been overrun with monkeys. This is an exhilarating sight. Galta is an optional stop, but well worth a visit during your India trip.

After Galta, you’ll drive for another three hours before arriving in Bharatpur. This is a fascinating waterworld, criss-crossed by many pathways that a cycle-rickshaw driver can take you along. Maharajas of the historic Singh family used this region as their hunting grounds. If you like, you can get out and stretch your legs here, just speak to your driver on the day.

There are hundreds of rare birds in the Bharatpur wetlands, such as the rare Siberian crane. Currently, there are several tigers here, originally from Ranthambore National Park, which pounce on the waterfowl as they doze. It’s unlikely that you’ll see this in action, but keep your eyes peeled all the same.

A few kilometres further on, you’ll come to stunning Fatehpur Sikri. The great ruler Akbar set up his capital here, and built a grand city, but after only 40 years the water supply became too difficult to maintain in this dry area, so all of the inhabitants packed up and moved on. Now it is an atmospheric ghost city, full of green parrots and monkeys. You can arrange for a local guide to lead you through the forgotten city, and tell you the stories behind the monuments. This is also an optional stop, so if you'd rather head straight for your Agra hotel just ask your driver. Next, you’ll drive on to Agra, where you’ll arrive at a comfortable hotel near the centre of Agra with a swimming pool and modern facilities.

 

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Day
5
Agra - Taj Mahal

After breakfast (or at dawn if you'd prefer), you’ll set off to visit another two breathtaking sites. First, you’ll be taken to the Taj Mahal, a highlight of any India trip. Standing serenely in the first light of the morning, we are sure that this stunning building will surpass all your expectations. It is one of the few buildings in the world that has the ability to move people.

The Taj Mahal was built by Shah Jahan as a token of his love for his deceased wife, and is undoubtedly the most romantic burial site in the world. After visiting the Taj Mahal, the next stop on your India trip is Agra Fort. This huge but restrained structure seems to be immersed in a dreamy atmosphere when it’s bathed in the golden afternoon light, which slants through the pillars and galleries. From its majestic walls and through its arches, you can see the Taj Mahal, just as Shah Jahan would have done centuries ago, when he was imprisoned here by his son.

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Day
6
Agra - Delhi

(Travel time approx. 5-6 hours)

Today you will be transferred back to Delhi by air-conditioned car, a trip that takes around 5-6 hours depending on traffic.

You'll stay in a charming hotel in Central Delhi, with comfortable rooms and modern facilities. The hotel is near to both the alleyways and spice bazaars of Old Delhi and the spacious shopping emporiums of Connaught Place.

You can spend the sixth day of your India trip exploring the many sights of Delhi- the crowded, narrow lanes of Chandi Chowk, the stately Humayan’s Tomb, the greenery of Lodi Gardens, and the fascinating and moving Gandhi Museum.

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Day
7
Delhi City Tour

Today your driver will pick you up to take you on a Delhi City Tour. You will drive past the India Gate, a war memorial arch, to the impressive Parliament Building and the Rashtrapati Bhawan, once the imperial palace of the British viceroy and now the official residence of the President of India. You\'ll also visit the impressive Qutab Minar complex and Humayun's Tomb, both World Heritage Sites.

Later in the day, you will visit Shah Jahanabad, now known as Old Delhi. The main street is Chandni Chowk, a fascinating bustling jumble of craft shops, traders, mosques and temples. The chief attraction of Old Delhi is the huge Red Fort (closed Mondays) that contains within it palaces and impressive public buildings. Near the Red Fort is the magnificent Jama Masjid, the largest mosque in India.

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Day
8
Delhi - Chennai - Mamallapuram

(Travel time approx. 3 hours by plane, approx. 2 hours by car)

Today your India trip will take you by plane to Chennai in South India, and on arrival you will be transferred to Mamallapuram, a friendly coastal town where you can spend a couple of days taking it slow. Mamallapuram is a quiet place and throughout the village you can see several workshops where craftsmen create the most amazing sculptures.

Tonight you'll stay in a simple beach resort with a lovely pool. You can reflect on your journey whilst taking a refreshing dip in the hotel pool. Towards the end of the day you'll see the local women wading into the sea in their brightly coloured saris to cool off in the water. If you'd like to go swimming in the sea in this region of India, please be respectful and keep your clothes on as well. Swim wear is fine if you wish to remain at the pool side.

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Day
9
Mamallapuram

On day nine of your India trip you might like to take a stroll along the sea front where you'll find atmospheric ruins and a cooling sea breeze. The temple directly on the beach (Shore Temple) is one of the oldest temples in India and decorated with many Nandi bulls - Shiva’s chosen mode of transport.

The countryside around the village is dotted with temples many of which are hidden in caves. The temples are visited mainly by the local cows and goats wandering around the temple buildings, but that’s actually quite fitting for a temple dedicated to Shiva and built by the Pallava kings. The temple directly on the beach (Shore Temple) is one of the oldest temples in India and decorated with many Nandi bulls - Shiva’s chosen mode of transport. You'll soak up the mystical atmosphere of these decorative temples during your South India tour.

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Day
10
Mamallapuram - Pondicherry

(Travel time approx. 2 hours)

Pondicherry is a little slice of France with an Indian topping. The French street names, the croissants in the French bakeries and the colonial houses with their elegant balconies all point towards the traces of French colonial heritage in Pondicherry. From Mamallapuram, it’s roughly a 2 hour drive to this charming coastal town where you’ll step into a completely different world. The French ruled this area for several centuries, until several years after India gained independence, in 1954. The French District in Pondicherry has a distinctly French feel with its little shops, wide boulevards, European churches and green parks. The best beaches are to the north of the city.

Pondicherry is also the home of the spiritual community, Sri Aurobindo Ashram. The community is still a major institution for yoga, meditation and several charitable benefits, and was established by a French lady better known as The Mother. Today you could visit the Ashram or the village of Auroville during your South India tour. Perhaps have an extra night in Pondicherry to slow the pace for you. Just ask your travel specialist.

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Day
11
Pondicherry - Tanjore

(Travel time approx. 5 hours)

Today you’ll travel from Pondicherry to Tanjore, a journey that will take about 5 hours. The sacred treasures in Tanjore are unlike any of the other major temple cities. Instead of the brightly coloured temples you’ll see elsewhere, Tanjore’s holy places are made of sober sandstone. You can visit the famous Brihadeshwar Temple during this India trip, a temple built by the Chola kings, and now a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Slip into the crowd of pilgrims cramming to get to the altar in the centre of the temple and you’ll experience the sense of devotion and the serene rituals of worship that take place here. At the temple entrance you’ll pay your contribution and pay homage to the temple elephant as he deftly fishes the rupees from your hand with his holy trunk. Ask your driver to drop you off at the Palace Museum, to see bronze statues and glass paintings.

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Day
12
Tanjore - Madurai

(Travel time approx. 4 hours)

Today you’ll travel from Tanjore to Madurai, stopping off at Trichy, otherwise known as Tiruchirappalli. The temple is surrounded by little stalls and people selling small offerings. The main temple itself (Srirangam Temple) is a more like a city than a temple complex. Enclosed by seven walls, the complex contains several towers, one of which made of pure gold.

In Madurai you’ll stay in a basic but comfortable hotel. The hotel has an excellent restaurant where you can fill up with a tasty lunch before heading out to explore the city. Mind what you order though, the curries of southern India are some of the hottest in the country! Luckily English is widely spoken so the cook can tone down the chillies for you if you ask nicely. At dusk, head up to the hotel roof terrace for an amazing view across the city and the Meenakshi temple complex.

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Day
13
Day 13: Madurai

Today, you’ll take a rickshaw tour with an experienced rickshaw guide to the Tirumalai Nayak Palace, the Ghandi Museum and the temple lake. Travelling by rickshaw will help you get your bearings for when you explore on your own.

The history of Madurai dates back over 2500 years. The city is without a doubt the most spectacular temple city in Tamil Nadu, but it's still surprisingly undiscovered by tourists. The Meenakshi Temple, from the 12th century has four towers each intricately decorated with thousands of coloured figures. You could spend hours examining each tower. The northern tower is more bare, so as not to tempt the demons. There are eight more towers and a hall with a thousand decorated pillars. The complex is dedicated to Shiva. His wife Meenakshi was a princess from Madurai and the sculptures in the temple depict her life story.

The atmosphere inside the temple is very real. Most areas are open to visitors except for the central Hindu shrine. During this Madurai to Chennai tour, you’ll see many Brahmas and pilgrims repeating mantras and kneeling before the holy shrines. Don't miss the five famous musical pillars and if you knock on them, they each produce a different sound.

kj,jk,jk,lkjk,kj,
Day
14
Madurai - Kovalam

(Travel time approx. 5 hours)

After a tasty breakfast you’ll be collected by our driver who will drive you to Kovalam. This is a long drive (about 5 hours) and you’ll pass wonderful scenery along the way. When you arrive in Kovalam, you’ll quickly forget the fatigue of travel. This is the best known beach in Kerala and certainly one of the most beautiful. There are plenty of excellent restaurants here, where you’ll find a huge range of freshly caught seafood and fish.

You’ll stay at lovely Nellikunnu Beach, a couple of beaches along from Kovalam itself. Your accommodation will be a teak bungalow situated on the beach. It’s very peaceful here and yet only a 10 minute tuk-tuk ride from the centre of Kovalam. The beach at Nellikunnu has a traditional Ayurvedic spa offering massages and other treatments - the perfect way to wind down after a long day of travelling on your India trip.

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Day
15
Kovalam

For these two days, your time is completely free to spend as you wish. Swim, sunbathe, or read in your hammock – it is completely up to you. Simply enjoy the easygoing atmosphere of Nellikunnu beach. The swimming here is delightful as the water is clear, warm, and gets deeper very gradually. You can also go shopping at the lively stalls on Kovalam Beach, packed with tempting souvenirs. The food here is delicious, so get stuck into some tasty local treats.

If you’re feeling ultra energetic, you can take an excursion to Kanyakumari, the most southerly point of India. Just let us know if you want to take this excursion, and we’ll make the arrangements for you as part of your India trip.

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Day
16
Kovalam

Enjoy Kovalam , free time to spend as you please.

kj,jk,jk,lkjk,kj,
Day
17
Departure from Trivandrum

Sadly, your India trip must come to an end today, and you'll be transferred to Trivandrum airport to begin your journey home. Of course, you could choose to spend a few extra days on the beach at your Nellikunnu resort. Just add any special requirements to the quote request form, and our travel specialists will include them in your personal Travel Plan. 

Inclusions

Accommodation with breakfast.
Transport and Tours as described.

Exclusions

International Flights.
Local Entrance Fees.

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