11 independent reviews for Kerala luxury holiday

Reviews for Kerala luxury holiday

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review 18 Nov 2017

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

The people we met was the most memorable - ALL of them lovely- friendly, genuine, generous. This applies to local s we met, in addition to those employed in the industry. Every single day was memorable and exciting. No exaggeration! Maybe I would have to say the Houseboat was the highlight though. Or the train from Kovalam to Cochin. Im so glad we didn't skip. We could easily have taken another car transfer, but it was so not like any other train ride. I loved it. Oh- and the food- at half of our stays we ate communaly- food prepared for everyone. Everything we had without exception was delicious. I put on half a stone.

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

Book at least two, three maybe nights at each location if travelling around, there is so much to see and experience in each place. We stayed at Dewalakom Homestay, a rubber plantation/organic farm- our hosts were delightful, generous, welcoming, and the place beautiful. We were treated to free cookery demonstration, guided walks, yoga, and trips included with their lovely staff. Then Hornbill Camp- given it was camping- more basic, but great location, we explored by kayak, bike, (free), and guided walk in the nearby Bird Reserve at dawn- all just amazing. Then Coconut Lagoon Hotel- this is simply the best hotel. I have ever stayed in. The wildlife was incredible, and the Ayurvedic treatment the best. Then a backwaters Houseboat 2 night cruise- the boat was comfortable and gorgeous in every respect and the crew were SO nice. I was very sad to depart and could have spent a week there but only had two nights. Then down to The Leela at Kovalam beach. Very chilled. Great location again. Good Hotel. We then took the train back up to Cochin. The train was brilliant, we were nervous of doing so in case we got lost, however the driver helped us with porters, and got us on the right train with no problem. Fort Cochin-small hotel- what great area! absolutely buzzing. Sadly only time for one night. Must go back. The meal we had there was the cheapest, and yet the best of the whole holiday. The owners were a lovely family, very generous.

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

Well, it did I suppose, that's a difficult question to evaluate, with many complex factors of which I would have insufficient knowledge to judge. Certainly Dewalocam Retreat does on all aspects. Not so sure about the larger 5 star hotels. On face value certainly we were led to believe so. I would say they all do so to a greater or lesser extent.

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

We had the most fabulous holiday of a lifetime, due in no small part due to the advice of the staff. Everything was organised and executed like clockwork. Each place we stayed was in its own way perfect. All the accommodation was faultless, and the travel between was well organised and exactly as planned and described. The drivers we had were professional and well spoken.

review 3 Jan 2015

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

By far the most memorable part for us was the houseboat cruise on the back waters. Two nights on a barge - we loved the leisurely pace as we moved slowly along the rivers, giving plenty of time for watching birds and also watching life as lived alongside the river. Memorable in a slightly different way was crossing the lake in the Periyar National Park on a bamboo raft - we had to stand and nothing to hold on to! In many ways the whole holiday was memorable - we had a lovely time.

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

We wished we had taken one or more games such as Scrabble. Some resorts provide a good selection, but not all, and seldom is television available. We did a lot of reading.

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

We certainly felt that our holiday gave local employment, and most of the resorts clearly were attempting to reduce environmental impact and supporting conservation.

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

This was definitely a 4-star holiday!

review 10 Mar 2013

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

The backwaters trip and the stay at Serenity

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

The Tea Bungalow is not the same standard as the rest of the accommodation, so donít accept it as an alternative to the hotel in the itinerary.

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

Yes,all three.

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

Excellent

review 26 Feb 2013

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

Getting really far off the beaten track & to the real Southern India (Kerala & Tamil Nadu). Seeing lots of wild fauna & flora, including elephant three times. Having preconceptions & understandings of different cultures challenged.

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

The agent has a remarkable ability to understand what is really wanted out of a trip. Take time to make use of all the excellent information provided, & advice/feedback.

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?

It was a 100% enjoyable experience. We are currently booking our next trip for Dec '13/Jan '14.

review 19 Oct 2012

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

In order - Meeting up with our English cousins, the food, the people, the colour, the accommodation, our driver

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

Go for it. RT (and the operator) did an amazing job. Everything was so steamlined. Not what you'd expect from an India holiday! Just be prepared for the humidity. Wear your bikini under light full-length clothes. A sarong is a must. Doubles as a skirt, sarong over bathers for the beach and a light bed-sheet.

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

Yes, absolutely. Felt 'righteous'/good

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

Out of 100 - 100. Out of 10 - 10 Out of 5 -5 It was the most perfect holiday in the whole wide world.

review 23 Feb 2012

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

Being part of a celebration at a temple in Cochin and seeing the elephants parade in all their finery, accompanied by the deafening sound of drums and horns.

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

Let the representative at the company know exactly what you want, they will go out of their way to accommodate your wishes.

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

Yes, particularly the homestays. I would like to know more about the environmental impact of the houseboats.

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

We would like to say that the service from the operator was very efficient. The itinerary they devised for us was exactly what we had asked for, the accommodations were excellent and all the arrangements for transfers worked without any hitches. It was one of the most relaxed touring holidays that we have ever done, Kerala exceeded our expectations.

review 6 Feb 2010

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

The magnificent tea covered mountains at the Munnar hill station, and the indescribably beautiful Periyar national park with its many birds, monkies, and all sorts of other animals. The intense green landscapes, fantastically painted hindu shrines, and the bright red, gold, yellow, orange and every other color saris worn by women everywhere. It was a visual feast!

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

Bring lightweight sneakers with good soles for walking on slippery dirt surfaces or rocks- no need for hiking shoes. Bring binoculars! So many beautiful birds to see! Bring sunscreen and bug spray if you tend to be eaten by mosquitoes. The mountains really get cold at night, so absolutely bring a warm sweater and long pants and a light warm hat.

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

Yes, there was evidence of organic gardening, recycling, and efforts to minimize waste. All of the people involved in the trip appeared to be paid fairly and to feel appropriately deployed in the effort.

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

Completely fantastic! We loved it! The most huge and beautiful tropical place that I had ever been to, I can't wait to return!

review 14 May 2010

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

Definitely the 2 nights spent on the luxury houseboat cruising the Kerala backwaters!

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

Don't be persuaded to spend only one night on the boat and the second at a backwater resort. Make sure you spend at least 2 nights on the boat.

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

Largely it benefited local people in the obvious way that the establishments we stayed in and the activities we engaged in employed significant numbers of locals.

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

It was superb!

review 16 Mar 2010

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

The whole trip was superbly organised and planned by the tour operator. But the highlight must have been our trek in the Periyar tiger reserve - alas no tigers but close up views of the wild elephants was really exciting.

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

Get help from some experts Ė the tour operator know a great deal about the region and are willing to spend time meeting specific requirements. They helped us turn our good trip into a great one.

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

We spent most of our time staying in CGH hotels who specialise in minimising the impact on the environment. I would like to think our stay also helped the local economy.

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

11 out of 10 - can I say more?

review 13 Jan 2010

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

Staying on a farm in the backwaters and then 'Cruising' the backwaters in a houseboat watching the world go by. The food was amazing and there were many opportunities to have lessons which I am looking forward to implementing if I can source the ingredients. The people were so friendly and helpful. The drivers went out of their way to tailor our 'travels'. The diversity of experiences, cultures, scenery in such a small area.

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

Take a plug as not all sinks have one. Children asked for pens but we ran out so take lots. Budget for tipping as it only seems fair to do so but it ends up being quite costly. Depending on how you book your travelling etc, check out eating and accommodation costs. For some reason, I thought these would be similar to South East Asian but it was more expensive.

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

I don't feel 'qualified' to say. We were in good hotels and whilst they employed local people there was a visible divide within the country. However, all the hotels we stayed in had policies about water usage and tended to use local products for soaps and cooking.

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

It was a great holiday with a variety of experiences. Our tour operator clearly understood our needs and preferences and matched that up with their extensive local knowledge to produce an extremely well organised itinerary and memorable experience.

review 1 May 2009

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

So many highlights! Seeing stork-billed kingfishers while floating along the backwaters on a house boat, practising yoga on the beach at sunset, watching the Kathakali dance performers putting on their makeup before a show, mesmerising!!

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

If you have time, visit the area around Munnar. We stayed in a bungalow on a cardamom plantation. The views were stunning.

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

Most definitely. All the hotels employed local people. A few of the hotels recycled waste to use as bio fuel.

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

Fabulous!

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