Rating in India
$ 9995

South India Active Expedition

min $ 9995
Per person
Tour details
Destinations: Bengaluru, Madurai, Kochi
Guide language: English
Price: min $ 9995
Duration: 16 days
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The soothing embrace of India's south

Southern India is truly distinctive from the rest of the country. Pillowy green hill stations are laid out like patchwork quilts, bristling with temples and ashrams. Compared to the hustle and bustle of the North, the pace is slow and the surroundings are tranquil—a perfect recipe for relaxing! The cuisine—subtle yet fiery—is influenced by the sea, replacing the North’s filling meat dishes. On your journey, you’ll experience the grand temples of Madurai, the warm hospitality South India is so famous for and the soothing influences of Kerala.

Trip designed by Travel Expert Karen MacRae

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Day by Day

Welcome to the Garden City of India! From the airport in Bangalore, a private car will take you to your hotel.

Today’s Pete City Walk will be a feast for the eyes as you take in all of Bangalore’s highlights. Discover both new and old areas of the city, with the former offering communities of professionals buzzing with energy and the latter comprised of crisscrossing narrow lanes and century-old temples tucked away behind posters of Kannada films.

After a delicious breakfast you'll drive to Mysore. Options for the afternoon include strolling around art galleries, visiting the palace or walking through one of Mysore’s famous gardens.

You'll walk through Mysore’s amazing market with a local historical expert. Lunch will be at Hitananjali Farm with a gregarious family. Not only will you learn cooking secrets from these excellent chefs, but they are also a goldmine of information about Coorg history.

Spot tigers, panthers, jackal, mouse deer and chital as you spend the day on safari in the Bandipur National Park.

This morning will see a jeep safari. This afternoon you'll have time to relax before heading out for another night safari to catch glimpses of tigers.

Today you'll journey to the beautiful hill station of Ooty in the Indian state of Tamil Nadu. From here you'll visit India's oldest and largest botanical garden.

Today you'll venture to Coonoor, where you will visit a green tea plantation for a tasting session and glorious lunch. To get back to Ooty, you'll ride the famous toy train. Toot toot!

After checking into your hotel in Pollachi, you can either visit the market or check out some of the fabulous colourful temples that dot the region.

After journeying to Madurai, you'll participate in the evening bed ceremony at the Meenakshi Temple, where you’ll witness the Brahmin priests remove Shiva from his sanctum and parade him around the temple.

Enjoy a daytime visit to the Minakshi Temple and spend the afternoon browsing the markets that surround it.

Enjoy a stunningly scenic drive to Thekkady. Once you have settled into your oasis-like hotel, you'll check out a kalaripayattu show and see what is considered to be one of the oldest fighting systems in existence.

Drive to Kumarakom to begin your two-night cruise through the magical canals of backwater Kerala. After boarding, your cruise will set sail along the main waterway of Vembanad Lake entering the Alleppey Canal. Lunch will be on board with a traditional cultural performance.

This morning observe the rich life along these water highways while passing through one of the few areas in the world where farming is done below sea level. Later you’ll have the opportunity to navigate the narrower sections of the backwaters in a traditional rice barge.

Wave goodbye to your floating hotel as you journey to Cochin, stopping along the way to meet Mr. and Mrs. John. Mrs. John, widely known as the “Keeper of Alleppy’s History." Mrs. John will take you on a walking tour sharing her personal memories and extensive knowledge of the area’s history.

Spend the morning exploring the Mattancherri area and its jumble of antique and spice shops. After lunch at the Grand Hotel, famous for its Kerala fish curry and brown rice, discover the Heritage Zone and its many art galleries exhibiting local talent, small cafés, bookshops and boutiques. Enjoy a celebratory final dinner before heading out to watch a Kathakali (story-play) performance.

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What’s included? Everything you need. Plus everything you’d
want. Plus a few things you never knew you wanted ‘til you got them.

In a word: everything. In ninety words? Signature B&R guides; local experts; unique, unforgettable biking and walking routes; private tours; authentic local cuisine; lessons and demonstrations; local artisanal wines; wine tastings; all victuals and libations; all the endorphins you can handle; new insight; interesting, fun and like-minded travel companions; a feeling of total freedom. In short: an extraordinary, hassle-free journey of discovery.

  • All hotel accommodation
  • Meals as indicated
  • Services of B&R-trained local guide
  • Water bottle
  • All special events and private tours
  • All transportation from rendezvous to drop-off
  • Internal flights (business where available)
All tour descriptions and conditions are given in accordance with the information of Butterfield & Robinson
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