SOUTHERN ESCAPE

Departure Date

Monday

Duration

16 DAYS & 15 NIGHTS

Views

720

Maximum Seats

15

16 DAYS & 15 NIGHTS

BANGALORE I MYSORE I KABINI I HASSAN I HAMPI I HUBLI I GOA I BANGALORE

 

Deccan Odyssey is all set to take you through the real jewels of India. With Jewels of Deccan, get ready to explore the true beauty of India, that lies in its popular tourist destinations. Visit the historic monuments at Bijapur, seek blessings at holy shrines of Aihole and Pattadakal, enjoy sightseeing at Badami, have a look at the architectural marvels of Hampi, relax at the beaches of Goa and visit UNESCO World Heritage Sites- Ajanta and Ellora Caves. Get an insight of India’s glorious history and rich culture with this royal journey.

Detailed Itinerary

Day 1Arrive Cochin by International flight

Arrive Cochin Airport

Meet & assistance on arrival by our travel executive; private transfer to your hotel and remainder of the day at leisure. Check-time is from 1200 hrs. Briefing of the tour by the executive.

Kochi (colonial name Cochin) is a vibrant city situated on the south-west coast of the Indian peninsula in the breathtakingly scenic and prosperous state of Kerala; hailed as 'God's Own Country'. Its strategic importance over the centuries is underlined by the sobriquet Queen of the Arabian Sea. Informally, Cochin is also referred to as the Gateway to Kerala.

Overnight at hotel

Day 2Cochin

Breakfast in the hotel.

Depart for a sightseeing tour of Cochin visiting:

Jewish Synagogue (Closed on Fri & Sat) – Built in 1568 it is the oldest synagogue in the commonwealth. Adorned by hundreds of exquisite hand–painted Chinese tiles in blue, at the heart of what is locally called the Jew Town, lies the synagogue of the white Jews near Mattancherry Palace. The synagogue is now a fascinating mixture of shops, warehouses and spice auction rooms. The Great Scrolls of the Old Testament and the Copper Plates recording the grants of privilege made by the Cochin rulers to the Jewish community are displayed here.

Dutch Palace (closed on Fridays)

The Dutch palace at Mattancherry was actually built by the Portuguese and presented to the Cochin Raja in AD 1555. The palace acquired its present name in 1663 when the Dutch carried out some extensions and repairs in it. The main attractions of the palace lie in its wall murals that depict the scenes from the Ramayana.

Chinese Fishing Nets

Chinese Fishing Nets, Fort Kochi The Chinese fishing nets (Cheenavala) are distinctly unique to Cochin. It is believed that traders from the court of the Chinese ruler Kublai Khan introduced these nets here. Oddly, these nets are found only in Kochi, outside China! Many fishermen earn their livelihood by fishing using these massive nets. A whole stretch of the coast along Fort Kochi and Vypeen are dotted with these nets.

St. Francis Church

St. Francis Church- it is the oldest church built by Europeans in India. On his 3rd visit to Kerala, Vasco da Gama, the Portuguese trader who reached India from Europe by sea, fell ill and died in Kochi. He was buried in the St. Francis Church. Later his remains were taken back to Portugal. In spite of that, his burial spot inside the church has been clearly marked out.

Afternoon is free to relax.

In the evening you will be invited to witness KATHAKALI – the ancient and traditional dance drama of Kerala. The drama shows different scenes from the epics of Maharabharata and Ramayana. To understand the entire process you must reach the place an hour before the show and see the make-up being done on the artists.

Overnight at hotel

Day 03Cochin/Alleppey by road (60 kms/1.5 hrs)

Breakfast in the hotel

Depart for Alleppey to board your Rice Houseboat. Check in at 12 noon at Alleppey & cruise through the Punnamada Lake, venue of the famous Nehru Trophy Boat Race. Enter the enchanting waters of the Vembanad Lake and enjoy the panoramic views and glimpses of the life along the banks. High points of the cruise are the visit to the 400 Year old church and the viewing of Kerala Race Boat…The Snake Boat (110 Ft Long). Lunch in the House Boat and this afternoon visit Chavara Bhavan-the old wooden house where the blessed Kuriakore Elias Chavara was born. Anchor for night stay at Munnatummugham.

Overnight on the houseboat
Day 04Alleppey/Munnar by road (163 kms/4-5 hrs)

Breakfast on the houseboat

Disembark the houseboat at Alleppey boat jetty and drive to Munnar.

Munnar is Kerala’s premium hill station. A hill station transcending excellence – Munnar is surrounded by gently undulating hills swathed in the soothing green of vast tea estates making it perfect tourist destination in south India. Situated at an altitude of 1600 m above sea level, its bracing climate with a laid back atmosphere and its delightfully refreshing colonial feel makes it one of the most sought-after destinations in India.

Overnight at hotel

Day 05Munnar

Breakfast in the hotel

Depart for sightseeing tour of Munnar visiting

Tea Gardens

Munnar’s top attraction is its scenic tea gardens and is a top priority on any travel itinerary in this area. There are around 30 tea estates, all are privately owned (about 27 of them owned by Tata Tea Company), and most estate managers will allow visitors to wander around the estate for free. Tea factories at the estates offer a great opportunity to witness the entire process by which tea changes from being a fresh, handpicked leaf to the fragrant product that makes it to breakfast tables across the world. Some tea factories also offer tea on sale for visitors.

Eravikulam Sanctuary

The Eravikulam National Park was established to protect the Nilgiri Tahr, endangered species of the wild goat and the only one to be found south of the Himalayas. Rich in forest and grasses, this park is relatively new as it was in 1978 that the area was notified as a park. The park lies along the high ranges of the western coast in the Munnar Forest Division of Idukki district in Kerala. It is situated on the border of Kerala and Tamil Nadu in the north.

The national park has a large variety of flora and fauna with over 26 species of mammals, 132 species of birds, 101 species of butterflies, 19 species of amphibians and 20 species of orchids already registered in the park books.

Overnight at hotel
Day 06Munnar/Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary by road (100 kms/3 hrs)

Breakfast at the hotel.

Drive to Periyar and check in at your hotel.

Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary set high in the ranges of the Western Ghats, in God’s Own Country, Kerala. Comprising the Periyar National Park and Tiger Reserve the wildlife sanctuary has a picturesque lake at its heart. Formed with the building of a dam in 1895, this reservoir meanders around the contours of the wooded hills providing a permanent source of water for the local wildlife. Though its a Tiger Reserve, visitors come here to view the Indian elephant in the act of ablution and playfulness by the Periyar lake.

In the afternoon you will take the most ideal way to move in the park which is by boat cruiser allowing you to harmonize with the natural surroundings of the Periyar Sanctuary.

Overnight at hotel
Day 07Periyar/Madurai by road (250 kms/5-6 hrs)

Breakfast in the hotel.

Depart for Madurai and check in at your hotel.

Madurai, known as the Temple City of India, is a major city in Tamil Nadu and home to the Meenakshi Temple. It is one of the most ancient heritage sites of India & truly reflective of the cultural ethos of India. You can find temples in almost every street and the city is also called "Thoongaa Nagaram", which means Sleepless City. You can find coffee/tea shops open at almost any time of day and night.

Overnight at hotel

Day 08Madurai

Breakfast in hotel.

Depart for sightseeing tour of Madurai visiting

Meenakshi Temple

Dedicated to the goddess Meenakshi (considered a form of Parvati) with a sanctum for her consort, Sundareshwarar (or Siva). The original temple was built by Kulasekara Pandya however the entire credit for making the temple as splendid as it is today goes to the Nayaks. The Nayaks ruled Madurai from the 16th to the 18th century and left a majestic imprint of their rule in the Meenakshi-Sundareswarar Temple. The temple complex is within a high-walled enclosure, at the core of which are the two sanctums for Meenakshi and Sundareshwara, surrounded by a number of smaller shrines and grand pillared halls. Especially impressive are the 12 gopuras whose soaring towers rise from solid granite bases, and are covered with stucco figures of deities, mythical animals and monsters painted in vivid colours.

Thirumala Nayak Palace

Thirumalai Nayak Palace is a 17th century palace was built by King Thirumalai Nayak, one of the Madurai Nayak rulers in 1636 AD in the city of Madurai, India. This Palace was built with the help of an Italian Architect and is a classic fusion of Dravidian, Islamic and European styles. The building, which can be seen today, was the main Palace where the king lived. The original Palace Complex was four times bigger than the present structure. In its heyday,Tirumalai Nayak's Palace at Madurai was considered to be one of the wonders of the South Also visit the bustling market of Madurai outside the Meenakshi Temple.

Afternoon is free to relax.

Overnight at hotel
Day 09Madurai/Trichy by road (140 kms/4 hrs)

Breakfast in the hotel.

Depart for Trichy and check in at your hotel.

This afternoon depart for sightseeing tour of Trichy (Tiruchirapalli), situated on the banks of the river Cauvery, and is the fourth largest city in Tamil Nadu. It was a citadel of the early Cholas which later fell to the Pallavas. Trichy is a fine blend of tradition and modernity built around the Rock Fort. Apart from the Fort, there are several churches, colleges and missions dating back to the 1760's. The town and its fort were built by the Nayaks of Madurai. This city has produced great Tamil scholars whose contributions to Tamil literature have been very significant. The most famous landmark of this bustling town is the Rock Fort Temple, a spectacular monument perched on a massive rocky out crop which the wars of the Carnatic were fought in the 18th century. The city is a thriving commercial centre and is famous for artificial diamonds, cigars, hand-loom cloth, glass bangles and wooden and clay toys.

Overnight at hotel

Day 10Trichy/Pondicherry via Thanjavur (240 kms/5 hrs)

Breakfast in the hotel.

Depart for Pondicherry en route visiting Tanjore.

Thanjavur (formerly Tanjore) is the "rice bowl of Tamil Nadu" and famous for the Brahadeeswarar Temple. The temple was constructed more than thousand years ago by the King Rajarajan, is an architect's marvel. It is a flourishing centre for bronze sculpture and painting.

Thanjavur was the royal city of the Cholas, Nayaks and the Mahrattas & gained prominence during the period of Chola Kings, who made it as their capital. The Big Temple and the other famous temples in the district are known all over the world. Thanjavur was also the cultural capital of the country in 1790. It is known as the Granary of south India lying in the delta region of the famous river Cauvery and criss-crossed by lengthy network of irrigation canals.

Continue your drive to Pondicherry and check in at your hotel.

Pondicherry is a former French colony consisting of four non-contiguous enclaves, or regions, and named after the largest region, Pondicherry. It is also known as The French Riviera of the East and is also considered an educational hub of southern India.

Rest of the day is free to relax

Overnight at hotel

Day 11Pondicherry/Chennai via Mahaballipuram (170 kms/5 hrs)

Breakfast in hotel

Depart for a sightseeing tour of Chennai

Visit the Sri Aurobindo Ashram which was founded by Sri Aurobindo on the 24 November 1926 (Siddhi Day). At the time there were no more than 24 disciples in the Ashram. Located on rue de la Marine it is one of the most well known and wealthiest ashrams in India, with devotees from India and all over the world flocking to it for spiritual salvation. Its spiritual tenets represent a synthesis of yoga and modern science.

And also visit the Light House, Glass House & French Institute.

Next drive to Chennai en-route visiting Mahaballipuram.

Mahabalipuram, also known as Mamallapuram, is a town in Kancheepuram district in the Indian state of Tamil Nadu. It has an average elevation of 12 metres (39 feet). Mahabalipuram was a 7th century port city of the south Indian dynasty of the Pallavas around 60 km south of Chennai. It is believed to have been named after the Pallava king Mamalla. It has various historic monuments built largely between the 7th and the 9th century, and has been classified as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The monuments are mostly rock-cut and monolithic.

Some important sculptures can be viewed at the Shore Temple - a structural temple along the Bay of Bengal with the entrance from the western side away from the sea. Recent excavations have revealed new structures here. The temple was reconstructed stone by stone from the sea after being washed away in a cyclone and includes Pancha Rathas (Five Chariots) - five monolithic pyramidal structures named after the Pandavas (Arjuna, Bhima, Yudhishtra, Nakula and Sahadeva) and Draupadi. An interesting aspect of the Rathas is that, despite their sizes they are not assembled — each of these is carved from one single large piece of stone.

Continue your drive to Chennai & check in at your hotel.

Chennai, formerly known as Madras, is the capital city of the Indian state of Tamil Nadu and popularly regarded as the Gateway to the South. It is the fourth largest metropolis in India, located on a 17 km stretch of the Coromandel Coast. The city grew up around the English settlement of Fort St. George and gradually absorbed the surrounding towns and villages. However, despite the strong British influence, Chennai has retained its traditional Tamil heritage and effectively blended it to create a unique synthesis of cultures.

Overnight at hotel

Day 12Chennai

Breakfast in the hotel.

Depart for sightseeing tour of Chennai visiting:

Fort St. George, located on the banks of Bay of Bengal, built by the British East India Company in 1640 AD. The fort is believed to be the first establishment of the British in India. It is a military architectural marvel, which was erected as a trading post and later evolved to be the origin of the modern Indian Army. St. George Fort holds great historical importance and is looked after by the Archaeological Survey of India.

The Fort St. George Museum

The Fort St. George Museum was organised and opened to the public from 31st January 1948. The museum began with a small collection of objects of the British Raj donated by the then Madras Presidency Government, the St. Mary's Church authorities, the disbanded army units and others. Over the years many objects were acquired by various means and there are now 3661 registered antiquities in the collection. Best among them (602) are on display in ten galleries. The building housing the museum is one of the oldest surviving buildings built within the fort. The building was completed in 1795 and served as the location for Madras Bank. The museum building has a history of its own.

Marina Beach –the Second longest in the world, beaches running 12 km in length and other places of Interest.

Afternoon is free to relax.

Overnight at hotel

Day 13Depart/Chennai by Int’l flight

Today you will be transferred to Chennai International airport in time to connect your onward flight to next destination.

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Optional Extension – Mysore/Bangalore
Day 13Chennai/Mysore by Shatabdi Express at 0600/1300 hrs

Transfer to Chennai train station in time to board train to Mysore

Meet & assist on arrival and private transfer to hotel.

Mysore is famous for the festivities that take place during the Dussehra festival (Sep or Oct) when the city receives a large number of tourists. Mysore also lends its name to the Mysore Mallige (scandal), Mysore style of painting, the sweet dish Mysore Pak, Mysore Peta (traditional silk turban) and the garment called the Mysore silk saree.

Rest of the day is free to relax.

Overnight at hotel
Day 14Mysore/Bangalore via Srirangapatnam by road (140 kms/4 hrs)

Breakfast in the hotel.

Morning half day tour of Mysore visiting:

Mysore Palace

It is the official residence of Wodeyar's -the erstwhile royal family of Mysore, and also houses two durbar halls (ceremonial meeting hall of the royal court). Mysore has a number of historic places and is commonly described as the City of Palaces. However, the term "Mysore Palace" specifically refers to one of within the old fort. The palace was commissioned in 1897, and its construction was completed in 1912. It is now the most famous tourist attraction in Mysore.

Also visit Mysore Art & Crafts center & the Nandi Bull.

Srirangapatna

Afternoon drive to Bangalore en route visiting Srirangapatna
Situated on the Cauvery River, the island-fortress of Srirangapatna is famous as the former capital of the great kings, Hyder Ali, and his son, Tipu Sultan, the 'Tiger of Mysore'. The ruins of the magnificent fortress that stands here is the main tourism attraction. The small size of this island greatly belies its immense historical significance as it was the site of several battles fought against the British. Known as Srirangapatna under British rule, the island was initially named after the Srirangapatna Temple, one of the many ancient structures found here.
Continue your drive to Bangalore and check in at hotel

Silicon Valley

The Silicon Valley and IT Capital of India, Bangalore is a combination of sorts. Popularly known as the Garden City, Bangalore derives its name from 'Bendakaaluroo,' a name fondly given by King Ballala of the Hoysala dynasty. The name went through a number of transformations, before its present form. This hip cosmopolitan city has maintained its essence and roots, adapting well to the needs and norms of growth and culture. The pulse of the city can be felt along the upmarket streets of Mahatma Gandhi Road (M.G.Road), Brigade Road and Commercial Street.

Overnight at hotel

Day 15Bangalore

Breakfast in the hotel

Depart for half day tour of Bangalore:

Vidhana Soudha - The legislative House of the State of Karnataka, this granite building was built by Sri K. Hanumanthaiya, Chief Minister of the then Mysore state from 1951 to 1956. A marvel of neo-Dravidian architecture it is one of the most imposing buildings, not only in Bangalore, but in all India. One of the interesting features of this building the front grand stairs which boast a flight of forty-five steps 62 m (204 ft) wide & 21 m (70 ft) deep giving a direct access to the foyer of first floor leading to an Assembly Chamber. The architecture of the building is based on Dravidian style, comprising richly carved bases and capitals for pillars, deep friezes, kapotha cornices, chaithya arches, heavy pediments domical finials, etc; At the same time, the construction has been on modern designs, making use of the present-day materials like steel, reinforced cement concrete glass, plastic, etc.

Bull Temple

The Bull Temple, located in Basavanagudi, is a typical Dravidian style temple, and is famous for its mammoth bull statue that was carved from a single boulder. Legend has it that the temple was built to appease a marauding bull that stole local crops, and that the offering was effective with the bull subsequently leaving the area. Since then, local farmers have held an annual festival to express their gratitude.

Also visit Viswesevariah Memorial Museum.

Afternoon is free to relax

Overnight at hotel

Day 16Depart/Bangalore by international flight

Transfer to Bangalore airport in time to connect you onward flight to next destination.

COST & INCLUSIONS

PremierLuxuryComfort
SummerUS$2989US$2451US$2252
WinterUS$3322US$2602US$2332
CochinVivanta by TajCrown PlazaHoliday Inn
AlleppeyPremium HouseboatPremium HouseboatPremium Houseboat
MunnarWindermereFrangnat NatureAbad Copper Castle
PeriyarSpice VillageGreenwoodAbad Green Forest
MaduraiHeritageSangamFortune Pandiyan
TrichySanagmSanagmSanagm
PondicherryPalsis De MaheMainsion PerumalMainsion Perumal
ChennaiITC Grand CholaRaintreeRadha Regent
MysoreWindlfowerWindflowerSandesh The Prince
BangaloreITC WindsorThe LalitSt. Marks

The above rates are valid from

Winter – 1st October 2019 – 20th December 2019 & 11th January 2020 – 15th April 2020

Summer – 16th April 2020– 30th September 2020

 

Based on Minimum 2 persons travelling together.

  Tour Inclusions

 

   Share twin room with breakfast;
   Transfers & sightseeing tours by private air conditioned vehicle;
   Lunch & Dinner during stay on the Houseboat;
   Services of English speaking local guides for sightseeing tours;
   Kathakali dance drama ticket in Kochi;
   Boat ride in Periyar;
  Present Applicable taxes as on 15th Oct 2017

  Tour Exclusions

 

   Entrance tickets to Monuments;
   International & domestic Airfare;
   Visa fee & Insurance;
   Items of personal nature i.e. laundry, telephone, camera fee, drinks & tips etc;

END OF SERVICES

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