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South India Explored

From £1849 for 20 days
Trip Overview
A region of great charm, southern India offers travellers beautiful cities, colonial hill stations, colourful temples, a relaxed lifestyle, attractive scenery and some of the best food in India. The major cities of the south were once princely capitals of the maharajas, and their magnificent remains contrast dramatically with the cool, mist-shrouded hill stations established by the British Raj. The natural scenery is also immensely rewarding; forest-clad hills slope down to a shoreline of shady lagoons, wooded islands, ancient spice ports and sandy beaches. This is an exceptionally varied and interesting trip and gives a comprehensive view of the whole of South India.
Essential Info
Starts: Start Cochin.
Ends: End Kovalam.
Ages: Min 16
Theme: Discovery
Trip Code: EAIS
Activity Level:     
Countries visited: India
What's Included

Meals

All breakfasts, 1 lunch and 1 dinner included

Transport

18 nights hotels, 1 night houseboat  Group normally 4 to 16, plus local leader. Min. age 16 yrs

Accommodation

Trip Highlights

•    Explore the old spice town of Cochin

•    Marvel at the beautiful palace in Mysore 

•    Madurai's magnificently carved Sri Meenakshi Temple 

•    Cruise the Keralan backwaters on a traditional houseboat 

Dates & Availability
Start date
End date
Price
Availability
Departing: 9th Feb 2020
Returning: 28th Feb 2020
£1,849pp
G
Limited Availability
1 space
Departing: 16th Feb 2020
Returning: 5th Mar 2020
£1,699pp
G
Fully Booked
Departing: 23rd Feb 2020
Returning: 12th Mar 2020
£1,599pp
G
Limited Availability
4 spaces
Departing: 8th Mar 2020
Returning: 26th Mar 2020
£1,399pp
G
Availability: Good
Departing: 4th Oct 2020
Returning: 22nd Oct 2020
£1,649pp
G
Availability: Good
Departing: 18th Oct 2020
Returning: 5th Nov 2020
£1,649pp
Availability: Good
Departing: 25th Oct 2020
Returning: 12th Nov 2020
£1,649pp
G
Availability: Good
Departing: 15th Nov 2020
Returning: 3rd Dec 2020
£1,749pp
G
Availability: Good
Departing: 20th Dec 2020
Returning: 7th Jan 2021
£1,749pp
G
Availability: Good
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Itinerary & Notes
Those on the group flight will arrive in Cochin in the afternoon and transfer to the hotel. Those who have made their own flight arrangements will join us at the start hotel. Set on the Malabar, or 'Pepper Coast', Cochin (Kochi) is one of South India's most interesting towns and is believed to have been the first European settlement in India. Rich in history despite recent growth it retains a relaxed, quiet atmosphere. Narrow spits of land and coconut covered islands jut out into the wide, almost enclosed bay whose neck is lined with the famous Chinese fishing nets. In the afternoon there will be a full trip briefing by your leader.  *Comfortable Hotel*
   Print Trip Notes
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Reviews
       
A wonderful experience, very varied with a generally good standard of hotels. Excellent guide, bus driver and helper.Fantastic places visited, which combined historic places,temples,Ashram,caves and nature reserves where we saw lots of birds and animals. Also had a little time free to soak up the feeling of the areas and of course some retail therapy, ending up at a beautiful seaside resort to relax for the final day.
       
Well i preferred the South generally to the north, but I felt there where to many Temples etc, and I would have preferred more time visiting farming families and being involved with the land more. This was my 1st coach holiday,and I found that quite tiring. Kerala waterways was lovely.
       
A full-on three weeks, travelling around 3,000km by road, rail and water in the three southern most states in India. The trip took in contrasting landscapes, languages, culture, religion, wildlife, history, heritage and daily life.
       
Our first experience of India, what an unforgettable trip. Such a wide mix of history, culture & wildlife. A very busy 2 weeks, very little spare time, but so worth it.
       
This trip has an interesting and varied itinerary, with plenty of excellent cultural visits. There is quite a lot of travel involved, as stated in the trip notes, but it's a big country and there's loads to see....palaces, temples, nature reserves, tea plantations, markets, backwaters and beaches.
       
A thoroughly enjoyable trip which went according to plan with excellent leader Sam Benjamin and with excellent safe driver. Sam went out of his way to show us all the little "incidentals" which make the trip, such as tile making , rubber tapping, rice plantation and spice plantations. The quality of the hotels was excellent. The only real problem we all faced was the slow service at restaurants, whether at hotels or elsewhere, where some people had finished their meal before others had even been served - but realise that this is a problem outside anyone's control.
       
An excellent itinerary, a great variety of architecture, religions, culture, scenery and food all in one holiday. Fantastic!
       
This trip is a great way to cover a steady stream of varying, contrasting and engaging sights spread across southern India, in lush landscapes, undulating hills, ornate temples and impressive palaces to name but a few.
       
If you have three weeks to spare and want to see the highlights of South India, this is the trip for you. Comprehensive coverage of the main temples, palaces, hill stations and other attractions of the region. Although the trip packs in all the sights, it did not feel rushed and there is enough time left free to explore on your own. South India seems much less frenetic than the north and the food is amazing! There is a lot of driving but the bus is air conditioned and spacious and from time to time the group travels by train, which is a fascinating experience.
       
I was already traveling in India and made a fairly last minute decision to join this tour. I’m very glad I did. We had a small group which made it easy to move around, see things, hear the guides, and have a more personal experience. The guide (Santo) was great! He’s very personable, knowledgeable, and tries to make sure that we have a local experience to the extent possible.
       
A busy and very interesting trip. Great company, well organised and good itinerary. We loved southern India.
       
This was my first experience of visiting south India and after a very successful Exodus holiday to Venezuela many years ago, decided to give them another try. The three week tour was very well organised by them and especially our tour leader Mr Sam G Benjamin who really made it special right from the start.
       
An incredibly varied trip, packed with lots of wonderful moments. I loved all of the temples and palaces, particularly Shore Temple and associated monuments. The tea plantation and spice garden were both lovely, and the bird sanctuary was simply amazing! It was great to be there when various festivals were happening, and there was a real party feel to many of the places we visited.
       
This was our first visit to India. The itinerary is excellent and provides a varied experience as shown in other reviews. Each day brought new sights, sounds and encounters, some of which will stay with us for ever. Although this is classed as a leisurely trip it is quite “full on” and tiring at times but the long travel days and early starts are necessary in order to cover the ground. Most of the hotels were good with helpful staff and safe, comfortable accommodation. All were well- located. We enjoyed the food ( some evening meals were eaten in the hotels, others in local restaurants).
       
A completely enjoyable excursion which worked out as expected. We went out the way where we can see all the little "incidentals" which make the excursion, for example, tile making, rubber tapping, rice and spice plantations. The quality of the lodgings was amazing. On the off chance that you have three weeks to spare and need to see the highlights of South India, this is the excursion for you. Far reaching inclusion of the primary temples, royal residences, hill stations and different attractions of the area. Despite the fact that the excursion packs in every one of the sights, it didn't feel hurried and there is sufficient time left allowed to investigate without anyone else. South India appears to be substantially less frantic than the north and the food is astonishing.
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