DAY 01 : ARRIVAL CHENNAI / MAHABALIPURAM
DISTANCE: 50 KMS DRIVING TIME: 01 HRS
On arrival in Chennai, you will be provided in time assistance at the International airport followed by drive to Mahabalipuram. Upon arrival, check in to the hotel & over night stay.
DAY 02 : MAHABALIPURAM / KANCHIPURAM / MAHABALIPURAM
DISTANCE: 26 KMS DRIVING TIME: 45 MINS
During breakfast tour briefing by India Insight Staff followed by half day sightseeing of Mahabalipuram. It was the second capital and seaport of the Pallava kings of Kanchipuram the first Tamil dynasty of any real consequence to emerge after the fall of the Gupta Empire. Temples to visit include Shore Temple, Rath temples. Then drive to Kanchipuram. Kanchipuram is very famous for its Silk Sarees. This is one of the seven sacred cities of India. Its temples are spectacular and the gopums can be seen from miles away. Temples to visit include: Varadaraja Perumal Temple, Kailasanatha temple, Ekambareshwara temple. Late afternoon return back to Mahabalipuram. Overnight at the Hotel.
DAY 03 : MAHABALIPURAM / PONDICHERRY
DISTANCE: 100 KMS DRIVING TIME: 02 HRS
After breakfast check out from hotel & drive to Pondicherry. Upon arrival, check in to the hotel. Later have a half day city tour of Pondicherry. Places to visit include: Gingee Fort, Pondicherry Museum. After having half day city tour, return back to the hotel. Evening is free to explore the city. Overnight at the hotel.
DAY 04 PONDICHERRY / CHIDAMBARAM / THANJAVUR
DISTANCE: 170 KMS DRIVING TIME: 03 HRS
After breakfast check out from hotel & drive to Thanjavur. En route, visit of Chidambaram. Then continue drive to Thanjavur. Though the history Thanjavur dates back to the Sangam age, it was between the 10th and 14th centuries that Thanjavur reached its zenith becoming the centre of Tamil learning and culture. Modern Thanjavur is a fertile plain which is often referred to as the "rice bowl" of Tamil Nadu. Upon arrival, check in to the hotel. Overnight at the Hotel.
DAY 05 : THANJAVUR / TRICHY / CHETTINAD
THANJAVUR / TRICHY DISTANCE: 04 KMS DRIVING TIME: 10 MINS
TRICHY / CHETTINAD DISTANCE: KMS DRIVING TIME: HRS
After breakfast check out from hotel followed by visits of Thanjavur, Places to visit include Brihadeeswarar temple, Palace, Schwartz church. After having visits commence drive to Chettinad. Enroute visit of Trichy. Trichy has always been a seat of power in south India and it bears the scars of wars fought to control it. Places to visit include Rock Fort temple, Srirangam temple. Below the fort, a must is a walk through china bazaar, the big bazaar and down the narrow side streets. After visits again continue drive to Chettinad. Upon arrival, check in to the hotel & over night stay.
DAY 06 : CHETTINAD / MADURAI
DISTANCE: DRIVING TIME:
Chettinad is rich in cultural heritage, art and architecture, and is well known for its houses, embellished with marble and Burma teak, wide courtyards, spacious rooms, and for its 18th century mansions. Local legend has it that their walls used to be polished with a paste made out of egg whites to give a smooth texture. After breakfast sightseeing of Chettinad. Places to visit include The huge country homes of the Chettiars, Chettinad museum. After visit commence drive to Madurai, it is situated on the banks of Vaigai River. This city is more than 2500 years old and was and important cultural and commercial centre even as early as 550 A. D. when the Pandvas made it their capital. Modern Madurai is a burgeoning industrial centre even though the vast stretches of lush paddy fields. Upon arrival have a city tour of Madurai. Places to visit include Meenakshi temple, Thirumalai Nayak Palace, Teppakulam. At late evening, attend the evening ceremony at Meenakshi temple. Check in to the hotel. Over night stay at the Hotel.
DAY 07 : MADURAI / PERIYAR
DISTANCE: 140 KMS DRIVING TIME: 03 HRS
After breakfast, check out from hotel & drive to Periyar. Periyar is South India's most popular wildlife sanctuary the park encompasses a 26 sq km artificial lake, created by the British in 1895 to provide water to Madurai, and spreads into Tamil Nadu. It is home to Bison, Antelopes, Samber, Wild Boar, Monkeys, Langur, a wide variety of birds, and some 7500 elephants. Upon arrival, check into the hotel. Later evening Nature walk in Periyar. Different nature trails traversing diverse habitats form the trekking routes, generally 4 to 5 km. in length. This is an interpretive program offering excellent opportunity to watch birds, butterflies and other wildlife. The trails often pass through evergreen and moist deciduous forests interspersed with marshy grasslands. The program is offered between 2.00 pm and 3.00 pm and lasts for about 3 hours. The Nature walk is the right program to feel nature, hear her whispers and smell her flowers. (PROVIDED BY PARK AUTHORITY & THE CLIENTS MAY HAVE TO SHARE THIS ACTIVITY WITH OTHER PEOPLE).Over night stay at the hotel.
DAY 08 : PERIYAR / KUMARAKOM
DISTANCE: 110 KMS DRIVING TIME: 02 HRS AND 40 MNS
After breakfast check out from hotel and drive to Kumarakom. Upon arrival check in to the hotel. Rest of the day is at leisure. Overnight at the hotel.
DAY 09 : KUMARAKOM / ALLEPPEY / HOUSEBOAT
DISTANCE: 60 KMS DRIVING TIME: 01 HRS 50 MINS
After breakfast check out from hotel & drive to Alleppey. At Alleppey, board the houseboat from the jetty point. After check in, clients will be given Tender Coconut as a welcome drink. Around 1.30 pm the boat will be anchored near by the paddy fields for lunch. Again, start the cruise around 2.30 hrs up to 6.00 pm. Evening tea / coffee and snacks will be served and at 6.00 pm boat will be anchor near by the village for night stay, because cruise is not possible on late evenings since local fishermen are putting fishing nets on that time. The dinner will be served at 8.00pm. Over night stay at Houseboat.
DAY 10 : HOUSEBOAT / ALLEPPEY / COCHIN
DISTANCE: 53 KMS DRIVING TIME: 01 HRS 20 MINS
Next day morning around 7.30, cruise shall begin again and breakfast will be served at 8.00 am, in this time they can enjoy the morning scenic views from village life. At 9.30 am disembark at Jetty. From there, pick up and drive to Cochin. Upon arrival, check in to the hotel. In the evening visit the cultural center & witness the Indian classical dance performance, this is a must while in Cochin. Overnight at the hotel.
DAY 11 : COCHIN
Cochin is truly a museum city and is found in the most abundant quantities at fort Cochin. Fort Cochin is believed to be the oldest European settlement in India. Vasco Da Gama first arrived in Cochin in 1502. He returned again in1524 as the Portuguese viceroy of the Indies. He died here and was buried in St. Francis church, the first European church in India. Early morning have a Harbour cruise. Return back to the hotel for breakfast. After breakfast, half day city tour of Cochin. Places to visit include Dutch Palace at Mattancherry, The Jewish Synagogue at the heart of what is locally called the Jew Town, The St. Francis Church, the oldest European church in India, The Santa Cruz Basilica, originally built in 1557 by the Portuguese. Drive past the Chinese fishing nets which are huge cantilevered nets believed to have been brought to Kochi by Chinese traders. Overnight at the hotel.
DAY 12 : COCHIN DEPARTURE