Southern India Overview

Explore the tropical and spiritual Indian south. Join holiday-makers in Ooty, relax in Pondicherry and tour through Mudumalai. This corner of India is magical.

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Travel to the cultural and scenic highlights of southern India

Lush and tropical, southern India is inspiring and delightful. Beneath the green shade of a coastal paradise, meet with locals in their fishing villages and tribal homes. Join them in the bazaars, on buses and boats or even on pilgrimage in Madurai. From iconic cultural sights like the Maharaja's Palace in Mysore to French-infused Pondicherry and the vast landscape of Periyar - southern India's spirituality, friendly people and wild animal sanctuaries make it a fascinating part of the country to explore.

  • Admire the mish-mash of colonial styles in Kochi
  • Be awed by Mysore's ornate Maharaja's Palace
  • Cycle around the fishing village of Mamallapuram
  • Experience island life on a homestay in the Kerala backwaters
  • Join pilgrims in Madurai
  • Ride a train through tea plantations in Ootacamund
  • Safari into the wilds of Mudumalai National Park
  • Savour the aromas at a spice farm

What's included in this trip

  • Start:

    Kochi, India
  • Finish:

    Kochi, India
  • Group size:

    Min 1 , Max 12
  • Ages:

    Min 12
  • Meals:

    6 breakfasts, 3 lunches, 3 dinners
  • Accommodation:

    Homestay (1 nt), Hotel (11 nts), Jungle resort (1 nt), Overnight sleeper train (1 nt)
  • Transport:

    4x4 Safari Vehicle, Auto rickshaw, Boat, Bus, Ferry, Overnight sleeper train, Private vehicle, Train
  • Included activities:

    Backwaters - Guided walk, Backwaters - Pole Boat Ride, Kochi - Dutch Palace, Kochi - Fort Kochi sightseeing, Kochi - Kathakali performance, Madumalai - Wildlife safari, Madurai - Sri Meenakshi Temple, Mamallapuram - Cycling tour, Mamallapuram - Shore Temple, Mysore - Chamundi Hill temple, Mysore - Home cooked lunch & family visit, Mysore - Keshava Temple, Mysore - Maharaja's Palace, Ooty - Tea factory visit and toy train ride, Periyar - Guided National Park wildlife walk, Periyar - Spice farm tour & dinner, Pondicherry - Auroville, Pondicherry - Walking tour and Sri Aurobindo Ashram

  • Carbon emissions offset:

    338kg pp per trip
  • Notes:

    1. A single supplement is available on this trip. See under the Single Traveller section of your Trip Notes for more information.

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About India

Southern India Summary

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Days 1-2 Kochi

As a centre for the spice trade for centuries, cosmopolitan Kochi has an intriguing mix of cultural influences from both the Indian continent and overseas.

Days 3-4 Ootacamund

One of India's more famous hill stations, Ootacamund has spectacular views, a wonderful food market and a cool 'toy' train into the Nilgiri mountains.

Day 5 Mudumalai National Park

Set against the mist-covered peaks of the enchanting Nilgiri Mountains, Mudumalai National Park is one of the best game sanctuaries in India to observe diverse wildlife in close proximity.

Days 6-7 Mysore

The peaceful city of Mysore has a score of lovely parks, grand buildings, well-regarded yoga centres and an incredible palace, the product of its Wodeyar Dynasty heritage.

Day 8 Mamallapuram

Mamallapuram (also Mahabalipuram) is a town with ancient origins. It has nice beaches, good restaurants and the intricately carved Shore Temple, still standing from the 9th century.

Day 9 Pondicherry

A former French colony, Pondicherry (now Puducherry) has a distinct French feel while retaining its Indian roots, making it one of India's more surprising and delightful cities.

Day 10 Madurai

With incredible temple complexes and a recorded history going back to the 3rd century BC, Madurai has some wonderful buildings and heritage sites to discover.

Days 11-12 Periyar National Park

Periyar is an area of Kerala famed for its spice plantations and wildlife sanctuary, which is home to tigers and elephants, among other creatures, and beautiful scenery.

Day 13 Kerala Backwaters Homestay

Swaying palm trees, lush rice paddies, winding waterways, Ayurvedic massage and welcoming locals all await on this amazing Kerala Backwaters homestay.

Days 14-15 Kochi

Kochi is a fascinating city made up of a number of islands and peninsulas, and its numerous attractions are best seen by rickshaw or boat.
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