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Taste Of South (13 nights/ 14 days) Travel Package India

Chennai
Kanchipuram
Mahabalipuram
Puducherry
Chidambaram
Gangaikonda Cholapuram
Kumbakonam
Darasuram
Thanjavur
Trichy
Madurai
Thekkady
Kochi
Hassan
Mysore
Bengaluru

Overview

Kerala, Chennai, Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh and Puducherry, are also known as South India collectively. This region, though invaded by outside forces and later a part of the British Raj has managed to retain its distinctive culture and tradition. The visit to the variety of destinations will give you a chance to see the local life closely. The cultural heritage which is unique to this region has found its way into the individual states which have their own language, traditions and lifestyle. South India is home to ancient civilisations marked with innumerable temples, canals, backwaters, waterfalls, wildlife sanctuaries, lush green hills and beaches fringed with palm trees.

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Day 1
Arrive at Chennai

Upon arrival at the Chennai airport you will find our representative waiting to receive and escort you to the hotel. Chennai is the capital city of Tamil Nadu and is popularly known as the ‘Gateway to the South’. Once you check in, you can relax and make yourself comfortable for the night stay.

Day 2
Chennai- Kanchipuram- Mahabalipuram

The day starts with a hearty breakfast at the hotel after which you proceed to a city tour. A visit to the Victoria Art Gallery would be most enjoyable with its collection of exquisite paintings. Some of these paintings are as old as 16th century. The next stop would be the Bronze Gallery, exhibiting almost 700 bronze artefacts from Pallava and Chola period. Explore the St. Thomas Cathedral which was the first British establishment in India. In the next half of the day, proceed to Mahabalipuram driving past the Marine Drive. Stop at Kanchipuram, the city of 1000 temples dating back to 7th century. Here you can see the Kailash temple, Shiva temple of Ekambareshwara and Vaikunda Perumal temple. Reaching Mahabalipuram check into the hotel and spend a relaxed evening and a comfortable night.

Day 3
Mahabalipuram- Puducherry

After breakfast, visit the fascinating rock temples which are cut out of monolithic rocks. These rock temples are popularly known as shore temples or seven pagodas and are a fine example of 7th century architecture. From here you can enjoy your drive to Puducherry, visiting Auroville en-route. Auroville was an experimental city created to offer harmonious living to all human beings. By afternoon you will reach Puducherry which offers modern heritage mixed with spiritual culture. Puducherry, being the one time French colony, has a lot to offer historically. You can move around the city seeing the French quarters, palm fringed beaches, Shri Aurobindo Ashram etc. Come back to the hotel for a relaxed evening and an overnight stay.

Day 4
Puducherry- Chidambaram - Gangaikonda Cholapuram - Kumbakonam - Darasurnam - Thanjavur

The next destination will be Thanjavur. After an early breakfast you can start your journey. On the way, you would take a break at Chidambaram town to visit the Shiva temple. From here, the next destination would be Gangaikonda Cholapuram - the capital city of Cholas. The temple here is an architectural marvel as the shadow of the main tower never falls on the ground. Similar architectural intricacies can be found at the temples of Kumbakonam, our next stop. Last stop will be another town with Shiva temple from Chola period, Darasurnam . Reach Thanjavur in the late evening and check into the hotel for the night.

Day 5
Thanjavur- Trichy- Thanjavur

Set out for Trichy after breakfast by road. Upon reaching, visit the famous Rock Fort temple of Lord Ganesha and Lord Shiva. Set high on an 83 metre high rock, it is believed to be the oldest rock in the world. Cut out of the rocks, these temples were built around 1000 years back. There are 417 steps leading to the topmost temple from where you can have a panoramic view of Trichy. Return back to Thanjavur and visit the ancient temple of Brihadeswara which was built in 11th century by Chola king. It is one of the most spectacular sites in Tamil Nadu. Best time to visit will be during the sunset. Come back to the hotel for the overnight stay.

Day 6
Thanjavur - Madurai

Proceed to Madurai by road after an early breakfast and reach the city of Madurai by afternoon. Check into the hotel and rest after the long drive. A visit to the Meenakshi temple in the evening to witness the puja ceremony is a must. Return to the hotel for the overnight stay.

Day 7
Madurai Sightseeing

You will spend a full day touring Madurai. Start the day visiting the Meenakshi temple in the day light. The temple is a fine example of the Dravidian architecture. It is perhaps, the most popular temple in South India. Later explore the Tirumalai Nayak Palace. This palace was built by a king in 17th century with the help of an Italian architect. Its glossy exterior is the result of exquisite stucco called ‘chunnam’. Return to the hotel in the evening and enjoy the overnight stay.  

Day 8
Madurai- Thekkady

Start after a sumptuous breakfast from Madurai towards Thekkady (Periyar). It is a hill station with lush green foliage, shimmering lake and aromatic air. The drive itself is beautiful through the undulating hills. Upon reaching Thekkady check into the hotel. You may spend rest of the day either getting a traditional Ayurvedic oil massage known for its healing qualities or take a trip to the spice gardens where different kind of spices are grown. This trip will be paid by you. Enjoy your overnight stay at the hotel.

Day 9
Thekkady- Kochi

Wake up early morning for a boat cruise on Lake Periyar. This area is dominated by dense greenery, which is a home to variety of animals. You can spot a wild boar or an elephant if you are lucky. After the boat ride come back to the hotel for breakfast. Embark upon your journey towards Kochi in Kerala. En-route to Kochi take a backwater cruise from Kottyam till Allepy. During the cruise you can get a glimpse of the life of the local people and experience backwater life at close quarters. Disembark at Alleppey to continue the journey by car to Kochi. Check into the hotel upon arrival. Spend the night in the hotel.

Day 10
In Kochi

 The most historic port in South India, Kochi possesses a treasure trove of old buildings, colourful markets, and different cultural elements, a result of different historical influences. Spend the morning looking around the city. The places of interest here are - Dutch palace of Mattancherry built by Portuguese in 16th century, beautifully decorated Jewish synagogue and St. Francis Church built by St. Francis in 1582. Jewish synagogue is closed on Friday and Saturday and other public holidays. Another interesting sight is the Chinese fishing nets which the fishermen will show how to use. Return to the hotel in the afternoon to rest. Evening will be dedicated to watching the classical dance of Kerala- Kathakali. Return back to the hotel for the night stay.

Day 11
Kochi - Bengaluru

After breakfast get transferred to the airport for the onward journey to the state of Karnataka, to its capital city, Bengaluru. Upon arrival at the Bengaluru airport you will be received by our representative and then directly proceed to Hassan by road. En-route we stop at Shravanabelagola a city in Karnataka. Here see the famous 58 feet tall statue of Gomateshwara Bahubali made out of monolithic stone which is believed to be the largest in the world. It is the most important place for Jain pilgrimage. After reaching Hassan check into the hotel. Relax in the evening in the hotel and enjoy your overnight stay.

Day 12
Hassan- Mysore

Post breakfast proceed towards Mysore, one of the most popular destinations in South India, by road. There are two stops en-route, Halebidu and Belur. Located at the bank of river Yagachi, Belur is the home of many temples. The most famous temple of Chennakesava was built in 12th century. In Halebid,  Hoysaleswara temple’s exterior  is covered with succession of friezes and intricately curved sculptures. It is an amazing display of medieval art depicting the tableaus of everyday life with intricate figures featuring horsemen, elephants, lions and artistic presentation of celestial beast and birds. Both these temples have inscriptions from Hindu mythology. Enter the city of Mysore late evening and check into the hotel. On Sunday evenings, you can join the locals to watch the incredible sight of Mysore Palace fully illuminated by lights. Return back to the hotel for overnight stay.

Day 13
In Mysore

This day is dedicated to see the beautiful city of Mysore which offers some fascinating sightseeing. After breakfast you can explore the Mysore palace in the day light. It is a three storied structure with pinkish marble domes adorning a number of towers in perfect symmetry. Next, move on to see the Chamunda hills at a height of 3,489 feet. A number of temples are built here, the most famous being the Chamundeshwari temple. A huge monolithic statue of ‘Nandi’, the bull of Lord Shiva is also built on this hill. Later visit the large, colourful and bustling Mysore spice market. Come back to the hotel for a short rest in the afternoon. In the evening, visit the world famous Brindavan gardens. This terrace garden is exquisitely laid out with great many ornamental plants and flowers. The main attraction is the illuminated running water fountains where they perform a water ballet with music and light. It is an enchanting sight which will mesmerize you. Return back to the hotel for the overnight stay.

Day 14
Mysore - Bengaluru

Start in the morning to return back to Bengaluru to catch your flight. En-route visit Srirangapatna. Here you will visit the mausoleum of Tipu Sultan and his family built by Tipu Sultan himself. Once you reach Bengaluru, take a tour of the city. Visit Lalbagh Botanical Garden made by Haider Ali and his son Tipu Sultan; Ulsoor lake; Bengaluru palace with Tudor style architecture, etc. In the evening you will be transferred to the Bengaluru International airport to catch the connecting flight for onward journey.

Taste Of South (13 nights/ 14 days) Sri Aurobindo Ashram
Taste Of South (13 nights/ 14 days) Brindavan Gardens Mysore
Taste Of South (13 nights/ 14 days) Sri Aurobindo Ashram
Taste Of South (13 nights/ 14 days) Chamundeshwari temple Mysore
Taste Of South (13 nights/ 14 days) Dutch Palace Cochin
Taste Of South (13 nights/ 14 days) Gangaikonda Cholapuram
Taste Of South (13 nights/ 14 days) Hoysaleshwara temple
Taste Of South (13 nights/ 14 days) Kanchipuram City of 1000 temples
Taste Of South (13 nights/ 14 days) Mysore Palace
Taste Of South (13 nights/ 14 days) Meenakshi Temple Madurai
Taste Of South (13 nights/ 14 days) Puducherry
Taste Of South (13 nights/ 14 days) Rockfort Temple Trichy
Taste Of South (13 nights/ 14 days) Shore Temple at Mahabalipuram
Taste Of South (13 nights/ 14 days) Chola Bronze Nataraja at the Bronze Gallery Chennai
Taste Of South (13 nights/ 14 days) Alleppy Backwaters
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