Elements of Kerala tailor made tours

“Tailor a tour of Kerala up in the mountains, on the back waters, in the countryside or by the beach. Personalise a week or two in southern India. ”


Four different tour types to choose from | Cochin | Western Ghats | Kerala backwaters | Rubber plantations and organic fruit farms | Periayar Wildlife Sanctuary | North, central and southern beaches |

Description of Elements of Kerala tailor made tours

Unearth the elements of India – air, earth, water and fire – and reconnect with that long, lost travelling soul. Each of the four tours that we suggest is for a week with each element representing a different activity to help suit your budget and personal interests.

Firstly, Earth - as featured below. This tailor made tour of Kerala and Tamil Nadu takes you into the cool surrounds of the Western Ghats where hill stations and clean and clear mountain air combine to great effect. From a rustic property with just four rooms and so remote that you need to make the final transfer by jeep and there is no mobile signal to a comfortable homestay (both in Wayanad in Northern Kerala) to Kotagiri, a hill station of Tamil Nadu (close to Ooty and Coonoor). Tailor make an Air tour and put your head firmly into the clouds. Prices for Air element tours start from £1,280 (8 days) ex flights.

The element of Earth is next on our list. Get in touch with the ground as you meet Keralites making a living from the fertile soil of southern India. Village homestays, farm visits and plantation tours help to turn this tailor made trip into an authentic and insightful experience with local people, on their level. Prices for Earth element tours start from £880 (8 days) ex flights.

Our penultimate element is Water. The fluid essential of southern India, Kerala’s water ways, rivers and canals all feature throughout this eight day tailor made tour. Thanks to Monsoon seasons, Kerala is blessed with an abundance of fertile foliage and luscious river banks with the port city of Cochin creating an exciting location to start a tour featuring houseboats and riverside homestays. Prices for Water element tours start from £989 (8 days) ex flights.

Last but by no means least, Fire is our final element. Soaking up the southern India sunshine is what this tailor made tour is all about. Beach time, relaxation and travel by train ensure memories will continue to linger long after the tan finally begins to fade. Discover the north and south Kerala coasts as you kick back into the laid back beach life and enjoy the element of relaxation. Prices for the Fire element tours start from £735 (8 days) ex flights.

Top tip: If you’ve got time to spare, why not combine a couple of the elements mentioned above as part of a two week tailor made tour in Kerala. Earth and Fire; Water and Air; the choice is yours.

The suggested itinerary below represents the Earth tour. To find out more about the other elements or combining a tour of more than one element please get in touch with us today.

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?


Departure information

This trip can be tailor-made to suit your dates, budget and requirements
Holiday type

Tailor made holiday

The tour operator offering this holiday is a British company with an intimate knowledge of the destination. All their holidays are tailor made which means that they can create a unique holiday for your individual requirements. They offer a range of accommodation from guesthouses and homestays to the more luxurious hotels. Where possible they use properties that are heritage or characterful. Quality and value are the hallmark of these trips. They are licenced to sell flights from the UK and will search for the best airfare for your dates. If you book flights with them, then the whole holiday will be protected by ATOL. This tour operator is also a member of ABTA – this means that all their holidays adhere to the ABTA Code of Conduct, their finances, insurances etc are checked regularly and if you have a complaint that cannot be resolved there is an arbitration scheme available to you.

Responsible tourism

As the pioneers of responsible tourism, we screen every trip so you can travel knowing your holiday will help support conservation and local people.

All of our customers are supplied with detailed information about their holiday. We supply general advice relevant to all customers as well as more specific facts about your particular tour. These documents offer our customers lots of advice and guidance including how to obtain an Indian Visa, which immunisations are recommended, how much to tip people, how to dress appropriately and how to behave in National Parks. We support local charities and invite our customers to do so too (details are supplied with your travel documents).

Local Community All the accommodation used in the four elements is individually owned and staffed by local people. All the accommodation options are small hotels, guesthouses or homestays. By supporting locally owned properties we are helping to provide employment for local communities. Travelling independently means that our customers have the opportunity to interact with the locals. We encourage you to stop at the small chai (tea) shops as you travel and give business to the chai wallah (even if you do not like the idea of drinking the tea yourself, your driver will appreciate it).

The ground handling of this tour is provided by our local agent and we supply him with 90% of his turnover. All of the drivers and staff are local people. Thus we have fifteen local families that are directly financially reliant upon us. Our drivers have a contract and are paid a monthly wage. This is very unusual in South India where most drivers are normally employed on a commission-only basis (not easy for such seasonal work).

Environment Individual holidays have a lower impact on the environment as waste, power etc is minimal. The owners of the accommodation all have a commitment to environmental issues and as you travel between the properties you will find good practices, eg waste being recycled, low power light bulbs, water being heated by solar panels etc. A number of the homestays are working farms and you can expect a certain amount of your food to be home produced (and in many cases organic). A number of the properties are heritage buildings and tourism is helping to preserve what was previously considered ‘not worth saving’.

4 Reviews of Elements of Kerala tailor made tours

4.5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed on 15 Feb 2020 by

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

We especially liked:
Fort House hotel in Kochi (a very nice 3-star hotel that sits right on the water, unlike most hotels in Kochi)
Vanilla County homestay (especially our interactions with the owners and other travellers, and getting a glimpse into local lives)
And our driver (very careful and fun to talk with, notwithstanding his sometimes somewhat limited ability in English)

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

Working through an excellent travel agent relieves the stress of planning and unforseen problems, makes use of their
indepth knowledge of the areas, and (at a price) makes everything go smoothly.

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

Yes - green hotels and staying in local homestays.

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

Excellent (though expensive - next time we'll try to find less expensive options).

Reviewed on 06 Mar 2012 by

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

The opportunities that presented themselves for us to see real Theyyem in the northern villages with no other westerners for miles. Arriving in the Wayanad hills on the one day in the year that the coffee plants flower and to be enveloped by their amazing scent.

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

No postcards or craft gift shops north of Cohin, we bought the stamps but could find no cards! Say yes to everything!

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

All local guides and drivers used. Local foods eaten. Filtered water freely available at Chera Rocks and boiled ayuvedic water at Harivihar; both helping to avoid plastic water bottles.

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

Fantastic, everything worked out better that we anticipated. The tour operator really listened to everything that we wanted and put together a great package for us.

Reviewed on 04 Sep 2012 by

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

Soooo many extraordinary memories. The children particularly adored the elephant experience, especially watching daddy being drenched by a beautiful creature named Bina, who seemed to be laughing as she did so. We all also cherished the backwater cruise on a stunning rice boat...2 days of exquisite relaxation, with our every need being looked after by 3 courteous and mostly invisible crew members.

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

We were very aware that August is not the ideal time to visit Kerala, however, we were a little taken by surprise by quite how chilly it got in the afternoons and evenings during our time at the homestay.

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

Undoubtedly to all three.

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

A superb experience. Sights, sounds, smells, people....a little overwhelming occasionally; but the backwater cruise in particularly was a wonderful getaway. The operator organised everything wonderfully, and we can't recommend them more highly.

Reviewed on 02 Jan 2012 by

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

The area is stunning. Very beautiful. The homestay aspect was great and enjoyed staying in more representative settings than in hotels. All fabulous for different reasons.

2. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, and minimized impacts on the environment?
Yes. Homestay element was helpful.

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

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