Southern India small group holiday

“A leisurely 15 day trip through Kerala and Tamil Nadu, travelling in small group, mostly staying in hotels.”

Highlights

Cochin | Western Ghat Mountains | Munnar hillstation | Madurai | Meenakshi Amman Temple | Periyar National Park | Houseboat on Kerala backwaters | Alleppey | Kovalam

Description of Southern India small group holiday

This two week Southern India small group holiday starts on the Kerala coast in Cochin, and then winds its way through some of region’s most wonderful landscapes. From the coast, so famous for its ancient spice trades, historic fort and beaches. when you take a sunset cruise around the port area, you will soon settle in to Kerala’s wonderfully unique ambiance.

Then for a complete change of scene we head into the Western Ghat mountains to explore the historic hill stations such as Munnar, surrounded by elevated, tropical slopes and opening up a whole other side to Kerala of forests, grasslands and tea plantations.

Wildlife watching is also a feature of this carefully crafted itinerary, with one of the highlights being a day at Periyar National Park, also in the Western Ghats. It is home to a tiger reserve and also elephants, monkeys, wild pigs and an array of birdlife. A colourful array of a very different kind awaits in Tamil Nadu where, in the magnificent city of Madurai for example, the skyline is filled with fourteen massive towers of the Meenakshi Amman Temple.

Our trip draws to a close with a couple of days spent on Kerala’s famous backwaters, which we travel through on a traditional houseboat, sleeping on board as well, and learning about village life through this maze of waterways. From backwater to coastal water, we have a couple of days to enjoy Kerala beach life, fine seafood, and laid back vibe at Kovolam, with an optional trip out to Kanyakumari - the southernmost tip of India.

Travel Team

If you'd like to chat about this holiday or need help finding one we're very happy to help. The Travel Team.

01273 823 700 Calling from outside the UK?

Map

Check dates, prices & availability

Date
Price
Basis
16 Nov 2019
£2079
including UK flights
1 space left
Click here to enquire about or book the 16 Nov 2019 departure
28 Dec 2019
£2299
including UK flights
8 spaces left
Click here to enquire about or book the 28 Dec 2019 departure
11 Jan 2020
£1949
including UK flights
6 spaces left
Click here to enquire about or book the 11 Jan 2020 departure
08 Feb 2020
£2179
including UK flights
Full
 
29 Feb 2020
£1949
including UK flights
Full
 
04 Apr 2020
£2199
including UK flights
7 spaces left
Click here to enquire about or book the 04 Apr 2020 departure
03 Oct 2020
£1949
including UK flights
8 spaces left
Click here to enquire about or book the 03 Oct 2020 departure
17 Oct 2020
£1999
including UK flights
8 spaces left
Click here to enquire about or book the 17 Oct 2020 departure
07 Nov 2020
£1999
including UK flights
8 spaces left
Click here to enquire about or book the 07 Nov 2020 departure
14 Nov 2020
£1999
including UK flights
8 spaces left
Click here to enquire about or book the 14 Nov 2020 departure
12 Dec 2020
£2399
including UK flights
8 spaces left
Click here to enquire about or book the 12 Dec 2020 departure
26 Dec 2020
£2299
including UK flights
8 spaces left
Click here to enquire about or book the 26 Dec 2020 departure
Vouchers
Accepted

Responsible tourism

Southern India small group holiday

Carbon reduction

Your holiday will help support local people and conservation. We must also reduce CO2. Learn about the CO2 emissions of this holiday and how to reduce them.

Environment

Accommodation & Meals
This trip sees you spend most nights in hotels and one night on a houseboat. You will notice that our hotels employ locally and use local produce from markets in the area wherever possible. The hotels are waste and energy conscious and have their own policies like asking guests to turn off the power when leaving a room in order to save electricity. Where meals are not supplied, our group leaders always encourage people to try local restaurants and street food vendors. They can make recommendations which will help boost small businesses and celebrate local specialties. There will even be instances where clients can see the food being made themselves e.g. fresh seafood dishes in Cochin where people bring their own fish.

UK Office:
It all starts at home so we have first worked at reducing our carbon footprint in our UK Offices. Through energy conservation measures and recycling policies, we are proud to be actively reducing the waste produced and our impact on the environment. We support various projects all over the world to try and give something back to the places we visit.

Community

Local Craft & Culture
We are keen to encourage guests to engage with the culture of Southern India and to purchase local crafts and services where possible. Your local guide will be able to recommend the best of the area’s colourful and vibrant markets and small businesses and through our commerce, tourist wealth is more evenly distributed. Cochin and Periyar are famous for the spice shops & antique items, Munnar for different kinds of tea and coffee and Madurai for silk and tailor made cloths. There are locally crafted gifts and souvenirs available by most of the landmarks we visit, and your guides will be able to advise you on which to buy and which to avoid. For example, some bangles and other decorative items on sale may claim to be made of ivory - we are against the popularisation of this kind of product and make a point of including a warning in the briefing.

Charity
For years we have been involved in campaigning for tiger conservation in Bandhavgarh. In late summer 2014 we teamed up with The Corbett Foundation, an Indian charity dedicated to conservation-oriented research. They have proved instrumental in enabling us to get the funds to where they are needed. Through this we have now completed the building of a community hall at Tala Village, solar pumps in the park for wildlife and staff in the dry season, bio gas plants and smart stoves for villagers and provided the salary for 2 full time teachers at the government school. Our work in India continues to be of great significance and most recently we have been able to purchase a 4 wheel drive medical vehicle and pay for outreach medical support.

Group Size:
This small group tour has a maximum of 16 participants, meaning that we have a low impact on the environments and communities we visit and are able to ensure that we do not disrupt or lead to the displacement of local people. The small number also allows us to stay in unique, family-run hotels that cannot benefit from coach tours and other mass tourism due to their limited sizes.

3 Reviews of Southern India small group holiday

4 out of 5 stars
SHOW
0
3
0
0
0

Reviewed on 16 Mar 2019 by

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


Overnight on the houseboat and cruising the backwaters

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


Make sure you take mossie repellant and antidiarrheal tabs

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


yes

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


Excellent

Reviewed on 16 Mar 2019 by

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


The overnight house boat trip

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


You need to enjoy rice and more rice with every meal!

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


Yes, although the home stay was a little disappointing.

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



Reviewed on 08 Feb 2018 by

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


The hike up mountain to have picnic with stunning views was the highlight. Also the early morning tour of the market before breakfast.

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


If you are worried about the way they drive in India. Ask your guide to speak to your driver, who will drive completely differently if requested by the group. You then feel less anxious that you will have a head on crash!

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


Yes. I hope so.

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


Excellent experience of the real India. It was eye opening and informative. The people, colours, sounds, wildlife and all round welcome we recieved from such a well mannered, beautifully dressed, polite and courteous nation will stay with me forever. My only concerns were that the bus was not very comfortable, which made the long days of travelling difficult.

Popular similar holidays

Kerala homestay tour, India

Kerala homestay tour, India

Stay in homestays in various destinations in Kerala

From £1610 15 days excluding flights

Kayaking in the Keralan Backwaters

Kayaking in the Keralan Backwaters

Experience local life kayaking through Kerala backwaters

From US $570 5 days excluding flights

Tamil Nadu and Kerala holiday, India

Tamil Nadu and Kerala holiday, India

Epic exploration from west to east - Tamil Nadu to Kerala

From £1999 - £2399 14 days excluding flights

Karnataka luxury tour, heritage hills & wildlife

Karnataka luxury tour, heritage hills & wildlife

Experience Karnataka 2018 - the state that has it all

From £2450 13 days excluding flights

Convert currencies