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Backwaters of Kerala

10 Days: $ 1,785 per person

From gorgeous tea and spice plantations to palm-lined backwaters, a tour through Kerala offers a glimpse into God’s Own Country!

 
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When to go

  • Jan
  • Feb
  • Mar
  • Apr
  • May
  • Jun
  • Jul
  • Aug
  • Sep
  • Oct
  • Nov
  • Dec
  •  Most Popular
  •  Great Value
  •  Off Season

Itinerary Summary

Day Place Highlights Hotel
1-2 Cochin Jew Town, Chinese Fishing Nets, St Francis Church Eighth Bastion
2-4 Munnar Nature Walks, Coffee & Cardamom Estates The Windermere Estate
4-6 Thekkady Biodiverse Nature, Jeep Safaris, Spice Plantations Shalimar Spice Garden
6-8 Alleppey Local Culture, Temple Visits Punnamada Backwater Resort
8-9 Houseboat Backwater Relaxation River Escape
9-10 Cochin Jew Town, Chinese Fishing Nets, St Francis Church Old Harbour

Ideal For

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Map

 

Guest Speak

“The places we stayed suited us to a tee – a good variety of homestays to a cardamon plantation to a hilltop palace to a houseboat on the lake to a boutique hotel – all very good. We felt like honoured guests wherever we went.”
Viv & Neil Reinhart, Canada 

Cochin (1 night)

Day 1 - 2

International arrival
Cochin
Cochin

Queen of the Arabian Sea Cochin (Kochi), is a commercial town comprising mainland Ernakulam, Willingdon Island, Mattancherry, Fort Cochin, Vypeen and Bolghatty Island. Chinese fishing nets, a Jewish Synagogue, a Dutch Palace, Portuguese architecture and Bolghatty Palace enrich Kerala’s heritage.

Activities

Enjoy murals and antiquities at the Dutch Palace & Cemetery; appreciate the stunning views of the harbour at Fort Kochi; explore Matancherry, the Pardesi Synagogue, Jewish town, St. Francis Church with the grave of Vasco da Gama; stroll through the spice and antique markets and see the Chinese fishing nets. Enjoy a sunset cruise; visit the Hill Palace and Tripunithura ; enjoy a traditional Kathakali dance performances or a kaleidoscope of martial arts and traditional dance forms.

Munnar (2 nights)

Day 2 - 4

Drive from Cochin to Munnar (160 km, 4.5 hrs)
Munnar
Munnar

A haven of peace and tranquility! This picturesque scope of the lofty Western Ghats first came into prominence as a favorite summer resort of the British government. The town of stands at the confluence of three mountain streams. Enjoy trekking, boating, riding, angling or just laze about and fill your soul with peace.

Activities

Explore this beautiful panoramic town. Drive to Matupetty Dam and Kundala Dam; visit Echo Point via sprawling tea plantations; end at Top Station to view lush mountainsides. Dine in the city; stay overnight. Next day, enjoy a drive through winding lanes, a picture-perfect town and scenic plantations; see exotic forest and grassland flora. Do a 20min trek to the top on a paved path. Back in the city, visit the Kannan Devan Tea Museum..housing photographs and machineries depicting each turning point contributing to a flourishing tea industry; the Antiques museum exhibits antique furniture, Telephones, etc, and shows a 30min documentary on the history of Munnar along with a tea production demonstration; take a Tea Tour in the evening.

Thekkady (2 nights)

Day 4 - 6

Drive from Munnar to Thekkady (110 km, 3 hrs)
Thekkady
Thekkady

Thekkady in Kerala State is a nature lover’s delight, with a salubrious climate, seemingly unending contoured hill slopes and coffee-tea-spice scented plantations. Romance in the lap of nature with unspoilt flora and fauna; delight in seeing varieties of birds, animals and flowers of myriad hues! Appreciate the beauty of dense tropical forests; enjoy whispers of a medley of nature’s sounds. Admire an abundant motley of butterflies with unique wing patterns; view the reflection of the forest-clad hills on the lake; notice quaint little hill towns.

Activities

Thekkady, the undisputed ‘spice heartland’ and ‘spice capital’ of the world, has over 12 home-grown varieties. Spices have always dominated Kerala life – cuisine, medicines and cosmetics. Ayruveda masters discovered the use of spices for medicinal purposes. Also called Periyar (home to Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary/Tiger Reserve), its lower mountain location 1000m above sea level, offers captivating plantations to wander in – cardamom, pepper, clove, cinnamon, nutmeg, vanilla, coffee and more spice varieties, as well as medicinal plants. Learn what makes Kerala cuisine so different from most other Indian cuisines. Experience boating in the scenic Periyar lake amid lush, calm environs of Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary. Safely sight animals at close quarters from the boat. A Naturalist accompanying you on the boat explains all about Periyar’s wildlife. Glimpse elephants frolic; see gaurs and bisons along the lake shore bathing, drinking, resting; sight River Otters – the only lake mammal here. A camera and binoculars would be ideal accessories.

Alleppey (2 nights)

Day 6 - 8

Drive from Thekkady To Alleppey (160 km, 4 hrs)
Alleppey
Alleppey

Dubbed ‘the Venice of the East’, Alleppey/Alappuzha skirts the edge of the great Ashtamudi Lake flanked by the Arabian Sea on the west and a vast labyrinth of picture-perfect lakes, mirror-still lagoons and a maze of freshwater rivers criss-crossing it. Silvery waves, palm fringed canals, bustling shores with glimpses of the day-to-day country life of the people as it exists, makes this the best Backwater paradise. Alleppey is also well known for its Boat races, Houseboat Holidays, Beaches, Marine Products and Coir Industry. Be enchanted by breathtaking landscapes, fine monuments, temples and churches, while cruising through its rivers, canals and backwaters.

Alleppey (1 night)

Day 8 - 9

Transfer to Houseboat
Alleppey
Alleppey

Explore nature at its best with a cruise in Alleppey (Alappuzha), tagged the ‘Venice of the East’ and the hub of Kerala’s backwaters. A visit to Kerala is incomplete without experiencing a traditional Kettuvallam houseboat cruise. Meander emerald waterways in the comfort of Kettuvalloms, an improvization on the once large country boats. Glide through a maze of inland waterways and lagoons, via a watery world of villages, mangrove forests, paddy fields and coconut groves. Measuring up to 120ft in length, these crafts once carrying rice and coconuts, were made by tying huge planks of jack wood together without using a single nail! Recently, they have been replaced as modern accomodations – fully furnished with single/double rooms, sundeck, balcony, kitchen, bathroom and a 3-man crew – a cook, guide and oarsman.

Activities

Cruising Kerala’s backwaters in a traditional ‘Kettuvallom’ (boats made by tying together wooden planks with coconut ropes) is a distinctly unique experience! These quaint slow moving exotic barges have all the creature comforts of a hotel – furnished bedrooms, modern toilets, living rooms, kitchen and a balcony for viewing/angling – shaded and with uninterrupted amazing views of an untouched, rather inaccessible rural Kerala. Experience God’s Own Country meandering narrow backwater pathways on the Vembanad Lake via canals, paddy fields, villages, markets, etc on the Alleppey/Kumarakom/Fort Kochi Backwaters. Visit famous temples, churches, ancestral homes; stroll through busy markets, rice fields, meet the locals, etc. Enjoy local cuisine on board, served on traditional banana leaves. Drop anchor overnight…sleep to the sounds of the still of the night with gentle waves swishing.

Hotel
River Escape

River Escape

Cochin (1 night)

Day 9 - 10

Drive From Alleppey to Cochin airport (65 km, 1.5 hrs)
Cochin
Cochin

Queen of the Arabian Sea! Cochin(Kochi)is a commercial town comprising mainland Ernakulam, Willingdon Island, Mattancherry, Fort Cochin, Vypeen and Bolghatty Island. Chinese fishing nets, a Jewish Synagogue, a Dutch Palace, Portuguese architecture and Bolghatty Palace enrich Kerala’s heritage.

Activities

Enjoy murals and antiquities at the Dutch Palace & Cemetery; appreciate the stunning views of the harbour at Fort Kochi; explore Matancherry, the Pardesi Synagogue, Jewish town, St. Francis Church with the grave of Vasco da Gama; stroll through the spice and antique markets and see the Chinese fishing nets. Enjoy a sunset cruise; visit the Hill Palace and Tripunithura; enjoy a traditional Kathakali dance performances or even a kaleidoscope of martial arts and traditional dance forms of Kerala.

Hotel
Old Harbour

Old Harbour

Expert Speak

“Alongside exploring traditional South Indian culture in the bustling port city, this itinerary allows you to absorb yourself in the natural allure of Kerala with its magnificent tea plantations jungle safaris and the calming pleasures of the lush backwaters where fireflies only add to the magic.”

Gunjan Bhatnagar

Gunjan Bhatnagar

Travel Advisor
gunjan@enchanting-travels.com

Price

$ 1,785per person

Prices are in USD and exclude international flights

The price quoted above is an approximate price per person on a twin-sharing basis in the high season for the month of October 2014. Prices may be higher during the Christmas – New Year period and lower in the low season (Apr – Sep). Travel Insurance is not included in the cost.

Inclusions

  • Accommodation for 9 nights (on a twin-sharing basis)
  • Meals: Breakfast in all destinations. All meals in Alleppey on the houseboat
  • All airport and hotel transfers
  • An air-conditioned car with chauffeur in Cochin, Munnar, Thekkady
  • English-speaking local tour guides in Cochin, Munnar
  • Sightseeing & activities incl. all entrance fees when accompanied by a guide
  • 24 hour point of contact
  • Insolvency insurance
  • Fees and taxes.