his captivating journey covers some of the finest sites in the south and is designed to highlight the diversity of the region- the beautiful palace of Mysore, most important Jain pilgrimage centre of Sravanabelagola, Acres and Acres of spice plantations and coffee estates of Madikeri, wildlife in the deciduous forests of Nagarhole, toy train ride in the misty hills, the colonial background of the port city of Cochin, the enchanting backwaters of tropical Kerala, the wild elephants in Periyar, the grand temples of Tamilnadu ending with inviting beach at Covelong.
 
Day 01: CHENNAI: Welcome in India. Transfer to your hotel. Day at leisure.
   
Day 02: CHENNAI: Sightseeing trip of the city. Also visit Kalakshetra- the world famous cultural center and Theosophical Society- founded by Dr. Annie Besant with its huge banyan tree, branches of which are spread over an area of 40,000 sq. ft.
   
Day 03: BANGALORE: Train to Bangalore. Afternoon city tour includes Tipu Sultan's Palace, Bull Temple, Lalbagh gardens, Cubbon Park, and imposing edifice of Vidhan Soudha. Evening is free to move around M.G. road area.
   
 
Day 04: SRAVANABELAGOLA: Morning visit ISKCON temple, dedicated to Lord Krishna and Nrityagram- India's only village to learn Indian classical dances. Later proceed to Hassan, visiting enroute Shravanbelagola, the site of the world's tallest monolithic statue of Lord Bahubali (17m).

Monolith of Bahubali, Shravanabelagola

 
Day 05: HASSAN: Day excursion to Belur & Halebid. Visit Chennakeshava temple, which is a fine example of Hoysala architecture. This temple took over a century to complete.
 
Day 06: MADIKERI: Reach Madikeri, famous for its extensive coffee plantation that covers most of the hillsides. Visit Madikeri Fort, Omkareshwara temple, Raja's seat and Abbey Falls. Also
  visit Tibetan settlement at Bylakuppe to see impressive 40-ft Buddha.
   
Day 07: NAGARHOLE: Proceed to Nagarhole National Park- one of the country's finest deciduous forest and home to tigers, elephants, panthers, sloth bears, gaur, barking dear & sambhar. Afternoon enjoy elephant safari in the park.
   
Day 08: MYSORE: Morning Coracle ride on Kabini River. Late morning leave for sandalwood city of Mysore. At Mysore, visit grand Palace and Chamundi Hill. Also visit Brindavan Gardens or sandalwood oil factory & a silk factory.

The enchanting Palace of Mysore

 
Day 09: MYSORE: Morning visit Devraja Fruit & Vegetable Market. Followed by excursion to Srirangapatnam & Somnathpur. The highlights of the day are Sri
  Ranganathswamy temple, Tipu's Summer Palace, 13th century Sri Channakeshara temple, and the Oldest Government Silk Farm.
   
Day 10: OOTY: Drive to Ooty. Enjoy delectable lunch at hotel Taj Savoy, before a short train ride on the toy train, pulled by an old steam locomotive, up to Coonoor, a pleasant town surrounded by tea gardens. Rest of the day at leisure.
   
Day 11: COONOOR: Visit Tea Plantations, tea factory, and Sim's Park- known for its horticulture species and some of the vantage points to get an excellent view of the undulating hills.
   
 
Day 12: GURUVAYUR: Scenic drive to Guruvayur, visiting the Archaeological Museum at Thrissur en route. Later visit the Guruvayur temple (from outside, as non Hindus are not allowed inside the temple) and the Elephant Camp, which has 55 elephants.

Elephant Rearing Centre, Guruvayur

 
Day 13: COCHIN: Proceed to Cochin visiting the Kerala Kalamandalam- renowned the world over for its Kathakali
  training center, and Museum of Kerala History en route. At Cochin, sunset cruise to see Chinese Fishing Nets. Evening is reserved for a spectacular Kathakali dance performance.
   
Day 14: COCHIN: Sightseeing tour of Cochin. Afternoon is free for shopping. Evening, enjoy live performance of Kalaripayattu- the traditional martial art of Kerala (Optional).
   
Day 15: BACK WATERS: Enjoy a backwater cruise to Kumarakom. This most enchanting journey enables you to watch backwaters lifestyle from very close. Stay overnight in Coconut Lagoon, on the banks of Vembanad Lake.
   
Day 16: PERIYAR: Drive through rubber and spice plantations to the wildlife reserve at Periyar. Late afternoon enjoy a boat ride on the lake to see the herds of wild elephants that come to the lake to frolic in its waters.
   
Day 17: MADURAI: Continue to the temple town of Madurai. Afternoon city tour of Madurai including Sri Meenakshi Temple, Tirumalai Nayak Palace, Koodal Alagar temple, and Gandhi Museum. Evening free to roam around the colourful bazaars.
   
Day 18: THANJAVUR: Drive through the fertile rice growing plains to Trichy to visit the amazing Srirangam temple. Later continue to Tanjore (Thanjavur). Visit world heritage Brihadeeshwara temple, built by the Cholas in 10th century AD.
   
Day 19: PONDICHERRY: Drive to the erstwhile French colony of Pondicherry, visiting Lord Nataraja temple in Chidambaram en route. Day free to relax & unwind.
   
Day 20: PONDICHERRY: Morning head out for boat trip to see dolphins. Later visit township of Auroville- a famous centre for spiritual learning & meditation.
   
 
Day 21: MAHABALIPURAM: Drive to a little seaside town of Mahabalipuram to visit Arjuna's Penance, Krishna Mandapam, Varaha Mandapam, Five Rathas and the world heritage Shore Temple. Later continue to Covelong beach to stay in Fisherman's Cove, set amidst whispering casuarinas, and palm trees, on miles & miles of sand.

Shore temple of Mahabalipuram- beautiful work of Pallava art

   
Day 22: COVELONG: Relax on the serene Covelong beach. Alternatively, enjoy a day excursion to Kanchipuram- city of a thousand temples, and a visit to the Traditional Handloom weaving centres.
   
Day 23: COVELONG: Drive to Chennai, visiting en route Dakshinchitra- an arts & crafts village. Arrive Chennai & transferred directly to International airport.
   
Day 24: CHENNAI: Fly back home

To see the suggested hotels for this tour, please click here.

 

 

 
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