Kerala tailor made holiday

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Departure information

This trip can be tailormade throughout the year and can be adapted to suit your requirements for 2 to 12 people. This tour can be taken anytime
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Responsible tourism

Responsible tourism: Kerala tailor made holiday

In this trip we have made an arrangement with a local ground handling agent who takes care of our hotel bookings and other logistic support, hence 60% of the revenue generated from this tour goes back in the local hands of Kerala people. Throughout trip we only use local guides & escorts who are very well paid. The transport company is locally owned and we sometimes visit local restaurants en-route which are family run & owned locally.

One of hotels we use was a former palace and a living example of maintaining an old heritage building in its former glory.

Not only does our custom contribute to conservation of the building, but we also make it a point that they should give employment to the local people so that the local economy can benefit from tourism. In Munnar we use Tea County Hill resort, designed in the local style and surrounded by sprawling tea plantations. All staff is from the local area and purchasing is done locally from Munnar itself. This hotel has kept its old world charm by maintaining the old gardens which are dependent on recycled waste water.

On the backwaters cruise, the boats are owned by the local people, an ancient tradition and way of life which is still alive in Kerala and which we help maintain by our custom. At Kumarakom we use Backwater Resort whose staff is all locally appointed and very well paid.

While visiting Periyar National Park the clients are informed about the Park and advised: Stay in the vehicle all the time except at designated camps, do not leave your track while walking on foot, take all litter back home with you or put it in a bin at a camp, do not drop anything from the vehicle, please do not feed the animals or birds, please do not smoke or take matches or lighters into the park – fires can be devastating, please do not enter park under the influence of alcohol.

We work in partnership with Jagriti which works for the poor children who have no homes and make their shelter in railway platforms. We donate £5 per person to this association and help the children to find job placements.

Reviews of Kerala tailor made holiday

You can trust Responsible Travel reviews because, unlike many other schemes, reviews can ONLY be written by people who we have verified have been on the holidays.

I am reborn! Simply the best holiday I have ever been on
Some great stories to tell the grandchildren. Would recommend to a friend
Very enjoyable
It was OK
A bit disappointing really

Reviewed on 29 Mar 2012 by

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?


It was the holiday of a lifetime and there were so many memorable parts. Trekking in the nature reserve at Periyar and having a very close shave with wild elephants was one of them! When we stayed on the houseboat there was a strike which could have spoilt our day, but our captain moored next to his village the night before. We went for a guided walk around the village with our Captain and he took us to his house where we were looked after! It was brilliant.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?


Just make sure you have time to relax at the end, the first 2 weeks were full on and our last week was a planned week of relaxing. We needed it and it rounded the trip off perfectly.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?


I think it benefited local people and our eco-lodge stays were very low impact.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?


Wonderful! We really had the best holiday ever. So much to see and do and the food was incredible. People were very hospitable and welcoming.

Reviewed on 27 Jan 2012 by

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?


There were too many to mention, but floating on the backwaters at sunset, felt
pretty magical.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?


Ensure to do your research beforehand, so that you can make the most of your
trip. My driver was really helpful to a certain degree, but the language barrier was a little difficult, so it was hard for him to understand if there was anywhere that I wanted to visit which wasn't part of the tour/schedule.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, and minimized impacts on the environment?


Yes, to a certain degree.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?


It was everything that I had expected and more. Kerala is a fabulous place.

Read the operator's response here:

Dear Colette,

Its such a great feeling to hear the feedback. We are happy that you enjoyed your recent trip to Kerala.

However at the time of arrival there was some confusion with the Hotel Booking which you have not pointed, we much appreciate & look forwards to have you here again.

Reviewed on 30 Sep 2010 by

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?


The Nehru Snake Boat races were truly amazing- they take place once a year on the second Saturday of Augusts, which also marks the start of the religious festival of flowers. The boats carry more than 120 rowers plus drummers and singers, and four race at a time, making them the largest races in the world. We were found places on a barge near the finish from where we viewed the days festivities- tens of thousands of Indians having a carnival.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?


Try a home stay- it's a humbling experience to stay in local peoples' homes. Be aware that Periyar in August may be swathed in mist which restricts wild life visibility. Everyone we met was wonderfully hospitable and helpful.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, and minimized impacts on the environment?


Yes- the homestays certainly were. Driving around Kerala wasn't necessarily the most eco-sensitive way to travel, but there weren't trains going up to Periyar.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?


A fantastic experience for adults, teenagers and pre-teens alike. A wonderful combination of culture and the outdoors, plus plenty of wildlife.

Reviewed on 19 Mar 2010 by


1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?


Going to places where we were the only non-Indian visitors and being greeted with laughter, waves and smiles; elephants at dawn in the river; noise, chaos, colour and smells; the contrast of staying in Kaiaikudu...and the ghost-like silence of the empty mansions; eating wonderful curries every day!!

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?


Know what type of holiday you want, research different places and be prepared to take time to plan it with your provider...

I must have exchanged 50 emails....but it was worth it. Accept that most hotels in big towns aren't 'atmospheric'!! (Though we did stay at a wonderful one in Bangalore). Absorb the clamour and chaos and relax. Learn to ignore the countless offers for 'guiding'... it's hard but for your own sanity you must. There will be the odd unexpected change to your plans... but this is India! Dress appropriately. Oh, and you must like curry!

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, and minimized impacts on the environment?


Yes. All our hotels were owned and/or managed by Indians. We had local drivers, did local shopping, and the company we booked with is based in India and uses other Indian companies to back them up.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?


It was all I had hoped for and more. It was up there with the best. I cant wait to go to Northern India!!

The tour operator was great and I had contact with them all through the trip and any problems were sorted immediately. There were some minor hiccups along the way but they were sorted and didn't spoil my enjoyment at all...

Reviewed on 02 Mar 2009 by

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?


Watching my partner taking a shower with an elephant - the video is hilarious!!

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?


It helped that we had read about some of the additional things we might want to do in the different areas we stayed. That, along with the knowledge of our guide, meant that we had lots of different activities and visits to choose from.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, and minimized impacts on the environment?


Difficult to tell as I am not sure whether the hotels were owned by local people or larger companies? Certainly the self employed guide was great and we did as many local activities as we could, thereby benefiting local people.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?


We had a really great time. We got to chill out as well as do different things and activities. We were able to see different parts of Kerala which we could have planned ourselves but this saved us a lot of time and stress.

Read the operator's response here:

Greetings… We always very carefully choose all our accommodation and make it sure that they are all owned by locals. We are happy that the trip went well and we look forward to further improve ourselves and deliver our best.

Reviewed on 30 Nov 2009 by

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?


Taking a canoe ride along the canals at sunset, listening to the dusk chorus of birds and the chanting from a water-side Hindu temple.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?


The standard route does involve a lot of travelling time in a car. If you have more time (we had 12 nights), it might be worth spacing out the intervals in Munnar and Periyar or alternatively not staying on the south west coast (we stayed in Kovalam - not that impressive) but somewhere closer to Cochin and the backwaters.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, and minimized impacts on the environment?


Our trip was more at the "luxury" end of the spectrum, but we did trips with local people, some of whom appeared to be self-employed. This is a well-trodden tourist route and if want to get away from the plush hotels, you will need to proactively ask for "homestay" arrangements as this did not feature in our itinerary.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?


Beautiful place, tasty food, very friendly people. Very chilled holiday, good introduction to India. Good honeymoon idea.

Read the operator's response here:

First of all we would like to thank you for your feedback as it helps us always to perform better. We have taken all the suggestions in a very positive manner and have instructed our tour section to mention the distance well in advance before finalising the itinerary.

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