Temples and spices South India -

 14 Days / 13 Nights 

Bangalore – Somnathpur - Mysore - Sravanabelagola – Belur – Halebid –
Chennai – Kanchipuram – Mahaballipuram – Pondicherry – Tanjore – Srirangam - Trichy–
Madurai – Periyar NP – backwater trip – Kochi

From the fragrant sandalwood Mysore’s bazaars, to the stone chiselled Hoysala temples, crossing the incredible city temples of Tamil Nadu where rhythms are still dictated by thousand years old rituals. From the lush vegetation of the mountains of Periyar National Park to the peaceful navigation through the backwaters lagoons dotted with palm trees along the Malabar coast here’s an exciting and intense journey that offers the most intriguing destinations of southern India.


Tour Itinerary

Day 01

USA – BANGALORE
Arrival at Bangalore airport, meeting with a representative of Surya Reisedienst and transfer to hotel. Overnight.

Day 02

BANGALORE - SOMNATHPUR – MYSORE (170km – 4h)

Transfer to Mysore, stopping on the way at the village of Somnathpur located in a quiet countryside that hides the magnificent temple of Kesava (XIII century), built on a star shaped platform supported by elephant shaped sculptures. This temple is one of the last treasures left to us by the Hoysala dynasty whose wealth and splendor were already shown in the temples of Belur and Halebid. Proceed to Mysore. Dinner and overnight.

Day 03

MYSORE

The mere mention of the name of Mysore brings us to mind the scent of sandal wood of which the city is its capital. The city tour starts from the Chamundi Hill and his Chamundeswari Temple with wide views over the city. Later we will visit the famous Maharajà Palace with its elaborate and eccentric Indo Saracenic architecture. We will forward between the ancient architecture of the fragrant Devaraja flower market. Free time in the afternoon. Dinner and overnight.

Day 04

MYSORE – BELUR – HALEBID – HASSAN (205km – 4h)

The entire day is devoted to the visit at the magnificent Hoysala temples of Belur and Halebid made with a special kind of stone that allowed the creation of authentic stone chisels. Both locations are included in the UNESCO list. Dinner and overnight in the town of Hassan.

Day 05

HASSAN - SRAVANABELAGOLA - BANGALORE (200km – 4h) – CHENNAI

Transfer to Sravanabelagola where on the Vindhyagiri hill is located the giant statue of Jain Gomateshwara, 17m high, and carved from a single block of stone. We will continue to Bangalore airport for the flight to Chennai (1h). Arrival in the capital of Tamil Nadu and hotel accommodation. Dinner and overnight.

Day 06

CHENNAI – KANCHIPURAM – MAHABALIPURAM (140km – 3h)

We start our day heading towards Kanchipuram where we will visit the important temples of Ekambaranathanar and Kailasanatha dating back to the Pallava dynasty. The city is also famous for its silk saris. We will proceed to Mahabalipuram, one of the most impressive archaeological sites in South India, on the shores of the ocean and famous for its magnificent carved temples. Dinner and overnight.

Day 07

MAHABALIPURAM – PONDICHERRY (110km- 2h)

We leave Mahabalipuram towards the city of Pondicherry where we will visit Sri Aurobindo’s Ashram and seek traces of colonial atmosphere walking thru French Quarter and observing the churches of Our Lady of the Immaculate Conception, the Sacred Heart and of Our Lady of the Angels. Dinner and overnight.

Day 08

PONDICHERRY – CHIDAMBARAM – TANJORE (181km- 3,5h)

Departure for Tanjore. Along the way we visit the majestic temple dedicated to Shiva Nataraja, the lord of the cosmic dance in Chidambaram, dating to the Chola dynasty an another great temple, the Brihadishwara, their greatest work, which we will visit upon arrival in Tanjore. Dinner and overnight.

Day 09

TANJORE – SRIRANGAM - TIRUCHIRAPPALLI - MADURAI (210km – 3,5h)

The first aim of the day is the amazing city of Srirangam with the temple of Sri Ranganathaswamy, enclosed in a circle of seven concentric walls. The temple in constant frenetic activity is dedicated to Vishnu and is one of the largest in all India. Later we visit the nearby Tiruchirappalli, where we will climb to the Rock Fort and will reach Ganesh temple from which we will enjoy wide views over Srirangam. Proceed to Madurai. Dinner and overnight.

Day 10

MADURAI

The visit to the city is mainly focused at the great temple dedicated to goddess Meenakshi, the fish-eyed goddess, inside which we will be able to watch the ceaseless flow of pilgrims and the practice of old-age rituals and gestures. We will also visit Tirumalai Nayak palace that bring back to mind the opulence of the past glory, but it will be at the Sri Meenakshi temple that we will return again in the evening to share the magical atmosphere of the ritual puja procession and offerings to the goddess. Dinner and overnight.

Day 11

MADURAI – THEKKADY (143km – 3h)

Transfer to Thekkady and the visit to the Periyar National Park. The park covers an area of 777km2 from the Cardamom Hills to the Western Ghats and is home to one of the largest wildlife reserves in India, enlivened by exotic flora and varied wildlife. In the afternoon visit at the reserve. Dinner and overnight.

Day 12

CAVELOSSIMTHEKKADY – KUMARAKOM (HOUSEBOAT) (124km – 2h)

Today we leave the mountains and descend towards the coast to the town of Kumarakom.We will embark on the houseboat and visit the backwaters. Kerala is known for its backwaters, an intricate system of inland waters, lagoons, rivers and lakes, which lay parallel to the coast of the Arabian sea for nearly half the length of the entire state of Kerala. Navigating this world a part will allow to discover the true soul of this state: green villages, paddy cultivation and slender canoes. Some villages can be reached only by water. This area is also known as Malabar coast. Full board.

Day 13

ALLEPPEY – KOCHI (55km – 1h)

We’ll leave the houseboat at Alleppey and reach the bustling Kochi, located along the southwest coast of the Indian peninsula and stretched over the islands and promontories between the Arabian Sea and backwaters. The town consists of three main sections: Ernakulam, the modern part on the mainland, and the two peninsular districts of Mattancherry and Fort Cochin where the different architectural styles attest the varied colonial past. We will visit the Dutch Palace, St. Francis church of and Jewish synagogue, where we’ll witness the huge rolls of the Old Testament and the copper plates on which the rulers of Kochi guaranteed priivileges to the Jewish community. Dinner and overnight.

Day 14

KOCHI – USA

Transfer to Kochi airport in time to board the return flight to Italy.

Driving times displayed in the itinerary are approximate and depend entirely upon the condition of the roads and the stops requested by the group during transfers and do not include the time for the visits.

The cost is calculated per person in double room on twin sharing basis

Hotels used
City Hotels Nights
Bangalore Lemon Tree 1
Mysore The Windflower Spa and Resort
Certificate of Excellence Tripadvisor
2
Hassan Hassan Ashok 1
Chennai Hotel Accord 1
Mahaballipuram Radison Temple bay 1
Pondicherry Ananda Inn 1
Tanjore Sangam 1
Madurai The Gateway hotel Pasumalai 2
Thekkady Green Woods Resort 1
houseboat houseboat 1
Kochi Holiday Inn 1

Domestics Flights
Bangalore / ChennaiJet Airways 17:30/18:30 or 18:10/19:10the price of the flights will be fixed at time of booking

ITINERARY NOTE: DAY 5: domestic flight Bangalore / Chennai (Jet Airways2716) 17:30/18:30 or 18:10/19:10

THE PACKAGE INCLUDE

  • assistance on arrival and departure
  • accommodation as per itinerary - double room on twin sharing basis
  • daily breakfast at hotel
  • all the visits and excursions included in the itinerary with a local English speaking guide
  • full board during backwater trip cruise;
  • air conditioned deluxe coach for roundtrip with English speaking driver
  • all monument entry tickets included in the itinerary
  • all current government taxes, hotel, road, toll and interstate taxes.
  • service taxes
  • all kind of transport and luxury taxes

THE PACKAGE NOT INCLUDE

  • all International and domestic airfares and any airport taxes
  • Indian Visa
  • camera fee (still or movie) medical
  • medical insurance, luggage and trip cancellation
  • all kind of personal expenses such as tips, laundry, telephone bills, and beverages.
  • everything that not expressely mentioned in the “Package include” section.

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