Premium South India

13 Days | Discover the soul of southern India, from Chennai to Kochi.

5 out of 5 based on 41 reviews submitted.
Explorer
From
EUR 2.460 €
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Swaying palm trees, rolling emerald hills and tranquil backwaters make up the lush surface of southern India, but dig a little deeper and discover a land of charismatic people, ancient religion and cherished cuisine. This 13-day Premium adventure will take you into the home of a local family, down the French-inspired streets of Puducherry, through the maze of food stalls in Madurai and into the wilderness of the Periyar National Park, all with the passionate guidance of a local leader.

Trip overview

Map of Premium South India including India
Start
Chennai, India
Finish
Kochi, India
Theme
Explorer
Destinations
India
Physical rating
Indicates how physically exerting a trip is, and how fit you will need to be to enjoy it. More info on physical ratings
Style
Premium
Ages
Min 15
Group size
Min 1 - Max 12
Trip code
HHPS
This trip generates 48 kg of CO2-e per person per day.
We offset these emissions on your behalf. But we know that is not enough, so we also have a carbon reduction target.
Premium accommodation
Premium experiences
Premium knowledge

Why you'll love this trip
  • Find out what makes Indian cuisine so special during Exclusive Experiences, including an off-the-beaten-path food tour in Madurai, a home-cooked meal with a local family, a fragrant lunch at a spice plantation and an ayurvedic cooking demonstration in Kochi.
  • Enjoy a high-energy Exclusive Experience with a live performance of kalarippayattu in Thekkady – believed to be oldest surviving martial art in India, this will be a show to remember.
  • Witness a fusion of influences in the stunning former French colony of Puducherry, and see touches of a Portuguese, Dutch, Chinese and British past in the exuberantly multicultural Kochi.
  • Experience a thousand shades of green as you tour a scenic tea plantation in Munnar and track footprints in search of wild elephants in the Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary.
  • Enjoy accommodation like no other – a beautiful converted houseboat on the Kerala backwaters is your Feature Stays for this adventure.
  • By travelling on this trip, you’ll directly support our Intrepid Foundation partner, Eden Reforestation Projects. Donations help them provide local employment opportunities and tackle climate change one tree at a time as they restore forests across 10 different countries.

Is this trip right for you?
  • There are a number of long travel days on this trip. Some journeys take up to six hours, but are a great opportunity to get to know locals, fellow travellers and the diverse scenery.
  • The drive to Munnar on Day 8 is on windy roads into the mountains. Motion sickness can be an issue for some, but the scenery is stunning and regular stops will be made to break up your journey.
  • Southern India can get very hot during the summer so remember to bring lots of water and a variety of clothing. Wearing light, loose layers is one of the best ways to tackle the heat.

Itinerary

Map of Premium South India including India

Inclusions

Meals

12 breakfasts, 2 lunches, 4 dinners

Transport

Private vehicle, Ferry

Accommodation

Hotel (9 nights), Houseboat Feature Stay (1 night), Kochi Feature Stay (2 nights)

Premium Inclusions
  • Arrival airport transfer
  • Tipping for accommodation, activities and transport
  • Luggage transfer
  • Daily breakfast and signature local meal experiences
  • 24/7 on-ground support
Activities
  • Complimentary Arrival Transfer
  • Chennai - Welcome dinner
  • Mamallapuram - Shore Temples guided tour
  • Auroville - Experimental township
  • Puducherry - Leader-led French Quarter walking tour
  • Puducherry - Sri Aurobindo Ashram
  • Madurai - Leader-led street food tour
  • Madurai - Sri Meenakshi 1000 Pillar
  • Madurai - Sri Meenakshi Temple
  • Madurai - Gandhi Museum
  • Madurai - Leader-led walking tour
  • Madurai - Thirumalai Nayakkar Palace
  • Madurai - Local family visit and home-cooked Tamil dinner
  • Thekkady - Expert-guided spice plantation visit and lunch
  • Periyar - Kalaripayattu (Indian Martial Art) performance
  • Periyar - Guided nature walk
  • Munnar - Tea plantation
  • Munnar - Tea Museum
  • Munnar - Mattupetty Dam
  • Munnar - Leader-led town walking tour
  • Kochi - Kathakali performance
  • Kochi - Jewish Synagogue
  • Kochi - Ferry to Mattancherry
  • Kochi - Leader-led Fort Kochi walking tour
  • Kochi - Dutch Palace
  • Kochi - Ayurveda-inspired dinner
  • Kochi - Converstation with an expert on Satvik Bhojan (Ayurvedic food)

Dates and availability

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Important notes

1. A complimentary airport arrival transfer is included; valid if you are arriving on Day 1 or if you have booked pre-tour accommodation through us. You must provide your flight details to your booking agent at least 14 days prior to travel.
2. A single supplement is available if you’d prefer not to share a room on this trip. The single supplement applies to all nights of your trip and is subject to availability. Please speak to your booking agent for further information
3. Please provide your full name exactly as it appears on your passport at the time of booking (including any middle names listed on your passport. Fees may apply for adding or amending details within 45 days of departure, and in some cases, you will be required to cover the cost of issuing a new ticket.

Essential Trip Information

Want an in-depth insight into this trip? Essential Trip Information provides a detailed itinerary, visa info, how to get to your hotel, what's included - pretty much everything you need to know about this adventure and more.

Read Essential Trip Information

Reviews

5 out of 5 based on 41 reviews submitted.
Reviews are from travellers who have completed their trip and want to share their experience. We show all reviews, but may remove any that include profanity or inappropriate content, are unrelated to the trip or reveal personal details.

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Jennifer · Traveled January 2024
Fifty words is not enough to describe fully the experience of travelling through South India with Intrepid. The variety and range of different experiences was so unexpected, the food was varied with restaurants happy to adjust the level of spiciness and most importantly our guide Aathi was friendly and very helpful.
Review submitted 13 Feb 2024

Colin · Traveled January 2024
People, places, religions, culture, economy, policies, politics, livelihoods and daily life: all were well interpreted by our excellent and experienced guide on this carefully designed tour. The richness and diversity of South India were revealed by the many visits to temples, reserves, other historic sites and the wayside stops on the sometimes long drives - which also enabled us to see the beauty and verdancy of the natural environment and the intensiveness which which it is often used - also significantly something of the ordinary life of the people. It goes without saying that the food was marvellous - including street food and the cooking experiences in homes.
Review submitted 24 Jan 2024

Emma · Traveled December 2023
Great trip - some long drives but very interesting scenery. Such variety as you go from east to west, and unbelievable food. Parik was a great guide - learnt so much from him!
Review submitted 05 Jan 2024

Caroline · Traveled December 2023
What an amazing holiday. I learnt so much about this fascinating country. Usha Mary was the best guide. The activities were so varied too. I loved it, loved it, loved it. Thank you Intrepid you excelled with this one!
Review submitted 31 Dec 2023

Ann · Traveled November 2023
We had a fantastic trip and would recommend this tour to explore the magic of southern India. Thilip our guide was fantastic!
Review submitted 11 Dec 2023
Premium South India
From
EUR 2.460 €