With the Arabian Sea in the west, the Western Ghats towering 500-2700 m in the east and networked by 44 rivers, Kerala enjoys unique geographical features that have made it one of the most sought after tourist destinations in Asia.
An equable climate & a long shoreline with serene beaches. Tranquil stretches of emerald backwaters. Lush hill stations and exotic wildlife. Waterfalls. Sprawling plantations and paddy fields. Ayurvedic health holidays. Enchanting art forms. Magical festivals. Historic and cultural monuments. An exotic cuisine... All of which offer you a unique experience. From India you'll be transferred to Sri lanka for a comprehensive tour of India. The Deluxe Golden Triangle Tour is the perfect introduction to India. The all-inclusive club Dolphin offers a fun family holiday or a great beach holiday with a delightful animation team and an array of recreation and entertainment. Guests can enjoy tennis, squash, games, theme nights, kayaking on the river and the largest swimming pool in Sri Lanka. Kids will love the special children’s activities and extensive kids’ pool.
- Visit the Rangiriya Dambulla Cave Temple, a UNESCO world heritage site in Sri Lanka dating back to the 1st century
- Climb aboard the traditional kettuvallams (houseboats) one of the 50 "must do" things as described by the National Geographic Traveller magazine
- Explore a spice plantation on a guided walk including a Tea Trail program
- Departs: london
- Arrives: delhi, India
- Departs: delhi, India
- Arrives: colombo, Sri Lanka
- Departs: colombo, Sri Lanka
- Arrives: london
Glimpses of Kerala
- Superior Hotels
- As Per Itinerary
- Enjoy various extras on this tour of a lifetime
- Enjoy a fantastic experience staying on a houseboat
- An English speaking guide will be provided
With the Arabian Sea in the west, the Western Ghats towering 500-2700 m in the east and networked by 44 rivers, Kerala enjoys unique geographical features that have made it one of the most sought after tourist destinations in Asia. An equable climate & a long shoreline with serene beaches. Tranquil stretches of emerald backwaters. Lush hill stations and exotic wildlife. Waterfalls. Sprawling plantations and paddy fields. Ayurvedic health holidays. Enchanting art forms. Magical festivals. Historic and cultural monuments. An exotic cuisine... All of which offer you a unique experience.
The tour starts and finishes in Cochin and comprises 07 nights and 08 days of Glimpses of Kerala.
Cochin - Walking tour of Matancherry followed by a tuk tuk ride, Jewish Synagogue, St. Francis Church, The Dutch Palace and the Kathakali Dance show
Periyar - Common boatride on Periyar Lake located inside the sanctuary, Kalaripayattu Show, a form of Martial Art, a guided walk through the spice plantation and a Tea Trail Programme
Alleppey - Climb aboard the traditional kettuvallams (houseboats) one of the 50 "must do" things as described by the National Geographic Traveller magazine
Day 1 - Arrival in Cochin
This morning you will arrive at Cochin International Airport. Following customs, immigration formalities and baggage collection, a representative will meet you as you exit the arrival terminal building (please keep a look out for a placard with your name on it) and transfer you to your hotel, where you will proceed for check-in. The standard check in time at the hotel is 1400hrs.
Kochi, or more familiarly, Cochin is a city of many parts. Around for a long, long time, Kochi played a pivotal role in the development of shipping and trade in the region. Kochi's prime location on the west coast, its fine bay and protected harbour made it popular with seafarers and merchant ships who made frequent stops to stock up on spices, coffee and wood en-route to the rich markets of Europe and West Asia. And so down the ages, Kochi prospered as a busy port city and commercial centre. Its seafront is still extremely relevant to Cochin and to India: it houses a Naval Base and one of India's busiest ports.
In the afternoon proceed for a walking tour of Matancherry followed by a tuk tuk ride. During the tour the guide will take you to spice warehouses, artists, painters, photographers, hidden shrines, boutiques doing intricate hand embroidery work, cafes and restaurants.
You will spend 2 nights in Cochin at Casino Hotel on Bed and Breakfast Basis
Day 2 - Cochin
Today you will start your day with a half day city tour of the city. You will first proceed to visit the oldest Jewish Synagogue in India, built in 1568; it was destroyed by the Portuguese and rebuilt by the Dutch a century later. From Jewish Synagogue you will visit Chinese fishing nets. The cantilevered fishing nets line the entrance to the harbour mouth. Chinese traders are believed to have originally introduced them in the 14th century although, today parts of the nets are known by Portuguese names (Where you will have the chance to visit the local fish shops). You will then visit St. Francis Church, originally named after Santo Antonio and dedicated to him as the Patron Saint of Portugal, St. Francis Church is the first church to have been in the new European influenced tradition.. You will also be visiting The Dutch Palace (Closed on Friday) at Mattancherry, which was built in 1555 and its coronation hall and murals at Ramayana are noteworthy features.
In the evening witness a classical Indian dance show - Kathakali. Kathakali (Katha means story and Kali means play) is the classical dance drama of Kerala, which dates from the 17th century and is rooted in Hindu mythology. It has a unique combination of literature, music, painting, acting and dance. Kathakali is a traditional ritualistic art forms used for centuries to preserve the stories of Vedas. Elaborate costumes and gesture makes the Kathakali dancers something special to be hold.
Day 3 - Cochin to Periyar
This morning you will drive to Periyar. On the way you will do a Tea Trail programme (closed on Public holidays & Sundays). This program includes a guided trip through the garden, an interpretive slide show, a guided factory visit, an opportunity to experience the different flavours of Connemara tea.
Periyar forest of Thekkady is well known for wild life sanctuary, situated on the banks of Periyar Lake and also known for diversity of wildlife and scenic beauty, which attracts visitors from all over the world. It is situated on the high ranges of the Western Ghats which is covered by dense evergreen forests and savannah grass land. The Periyar wild life sanctuary offers a fairy good chance to seeing the herds of elephants, sambars, tigers, gaurs, lion tailed macaques & Nilgiri langurs in its natural habitat.
Spread across an area of 777 sq. km of which 360 sq. km is thick ever green forest. In 1978 Periyar wildlife sanctuary was declared a Tiger reserve.
Interestingly Periyar is often referred to Thekkady and as Kumily. These names are used interchangeably for the same area, however this can be a little confusing. To put it clearly The Periyar National Park and Tiger Reserve lie in Thekkady which is an area in the town of Kumily.
In the evening proceed to The Kerala Kalari Centre which is a great place to witness the ancient Kalaripayattu martial dance performed and practised by dedicated local swordsmen. Traditional masters of the art form perform skits from mythology to entertain the public and show off their swordsmanship.
You will spend 2 nights in Periyar at The Wildernest on Bed and Breakfast Basis
Travelling distance approx. 186 Kms, driving time approx. 6 hours
Day 4 - Periyar
In the morning proceed for a guided walk through spice plantation to see the cultivation of cardamom, pepper, vanilla and coffee.
In the afternoon proceed for common boat ride at the Lake Periyar. The Periyar Tiger Reserve and National Park - Established in 1934 as the Nelliampatty Sanctuary, the park was enlarged in 1950 and is India's southernmost tiger reserve. The lake covers some 10 sq. miles and most of the sanctuary is undulating. Since boat travel is the only means of transport in the park, large areas can be covered in a short time. Among the game found here are gaur (the largest of the world's wild oxen), elephant, wild pig, sambar, barking deer, mouse deer, the rare and endangered lion-tailed macaque, the Nilgiri langur, the common langur and the bonnet macaque, porcupine, Malabar squirrel, wild dog and tiger.
Day 5 - Thekkady to Alleppey
After breakfast you will be transferred to the Alleppey Jetty point to board houseboat.
Climb aboard the traditional kettuvallams (riceboats) converted into houseboats with bedrooms and attached toilets. Originally these boats were used as ferries to carry rice. Cruise through the backwaters of Kerala. Houseboat is one of the 50 "must do" things as described by the National Geographic Traveller magazine. The backwater cruise through the narrow canals that criss-cross a typical Kerala Village, rich with green paddy fields and verdant coconut trees and is a thrilling experience. The boat cruise takes you to small islets tucked away amidst those waters where you get glimpses of village at the best of its serenity and innocence. Lunch and dinner will be served on board.
You will spend 1 night in AC Houseboat on Full Board Basis
Travelling distance approx. 150 Kms, driving time approx. 4 Â½ hours
Day 6 - Alleppey to Kumarakom
In the morning you will drive through the countryside to Kumarakom. Upon arrival at Kumarakom, proceed to check in your hotel. Rest of the day is at leisure.
Kumarakom: Located on the Southern coast of India enjoys a well-balanced tropical climate. Nature has composed its magic to perfection here. A million verdant coconut palms lining the rivers lean to examine its reflections on the glassy rivers. Everywhere, nature is at its best. Blooming forth in perfumes of flowers. In the riot of colours of multi-hued birds. In the fresh, succulent and bountiful freshwater fishes.
You will spend 2 nights in Punnamada Resorton, Bed and Breakfast Basis
Travelling distance approx. 50 Kms, driving time approx. 1 ½ hours
Day 7 - Kumarakom
Morning after breakfast you will be taken to the local village of Kumarakom to experience the paddy filed and the local life around the backwaters. A small walking tour of the village will be organised by the local specialist guide (added optional extra not included).
0830 Hrs: Departure from Kumarakom hotel by car
0900 Hrs: Board the shikkara (it is a covered, mechanized country boat) proceed for canal ride (small backwater canal)
0945 Hrs: Visit small scale coir making, toddy tapping, coconut climbing (get down from the boat and spent one hour)
1045 Hrs: Board shikkara and proceed to canals and return back to your hotel
Mineral water / life jacket will be provided
Day 8 - Kumarakom to Cochin
In time you will be transferred to Cochin airport where you will be assisted by a representative to board your onward flight to back home.( It is advisable to leave the hotel 4 Â½ hrs prior to the flight departure time in order to cater to travel time till the airport and time required for immigration and boarding formalities.)
Travelling distance approx. 80 Kms, driving time approx. 1.5 Hrs
**Please note that the Kerala hotels do not have a liquor licence
It was nice to have a quieter week in Kerala after the hustle and bustle of northern India. Unfortunately the weather was quite wet some of the time so we did not see elephants or tigers in the Periyar reserve. The overnight trip in the houseboat was fascinating to see the life on the backwaters and...
Janet Perry reviewing Glimpses of Kerala (20-Nov-2017)
Highlights of Sri Lanka
- As Per Itinerary
- As Per Itinerary
- Visit the ancient city of Sigiriya
- Game drive at Minneriya National Park
- Explore the jewels of Kandy
The Highlights of Sri Lanka Private Tour showcases some of the most cultural and historic sites in the world, including:
- Lion Rock, an ancient fortress
- The town of Sigiriya
- Ancient city of Polonnaruqa
- Minneriya National Park
- Rangiriya Dambulla Cave Temple
- Pinnawela Elephant Orphanage
- Temple of the Tooth
- Kandyan Cultural Dance Show
Day 1 - Arrival to Kandalama
On arrival at the Bandaranaike International Airport you will be met by Your Travel Representative from The Holiday Place and be transferred to your hotel in Kandalama.
(Airport to Kandalama: approximately 04 Hours / 170 km)
Day 2 - Kandalama to Sigiriya
Today you will visit the Lion Rock, one of the seven World Heritage sites in the island.
(Kandalama to Sigiriya: approximately 04 Hour / 36 Km)
This is an ancient rock fortress and ruins of a castle, which was once the home to King Kasyapa. The entrance to the original fortress was through the mouth of a lion, however the ravages of time has resulted with only a part of the massive paws remaining today. A testiment to ancient artistry and architectural ingenuity – Sigiriya has many attractions to its visitors – its gardens (boulder, water & terraced), its artistry (the world renowned frescos), the mirror wall and the dramatic history linked to the construction of the Lion Rock. An original Lost City, Sigiriya is a must see in any visit to the Cultural Triangle.
Return to Kandalama and spend your afternoon at leisure.
Day 3 - Kandalama to Polonnaruwa
This morning set off to explore the medieval capital of Sri Lanka – Polonnaruwa.
(Kandalama to Polonnaruwa: approximately 02 Hours / 70 Km)
The second most ancient of Sri Lanka's kingdoms, Polonnaruwa was first declared the capital city by King Vijayabahu I, who defeated the Chola invaders in 1070 CE to reunite the country once more under a local leader. This city is known to have been the pinnacle of the Golden Age of Sri Lanka, during the reign of Parakramabahu I, a ruler whose goal that no drop of water falling from the heavens be wasted led to the development of irrigation systems which are still utilised to this day. The greatest of these systems – the Parakrama Samudra (Sea of Parakrama) is a tank so vast that it is often mistaken for an ocean. It circles the main city like a ribbon, acting both as a defensive border against intruders and the lifeline of the people in times of peace.
In the afternoon enjoy a game drive at the MInneriya National Park.
Located between Habarana and Polonnaruwa, the 8,890 hectares of Minneriya National Park consists of mixed evergreen forest and scrub areas and is home to favorites such as sambar deer, leopards and elephants. However the central feature of the park is the ancient Minneriya Tank (built in 3rd century AD by King Mahasena). During the dry season (June to September), this tank is an incredible place to observe the elephants who come to bathe and graze, as well as the huge flocks of birds (cormorants and painted storks to name but a few) that come to fish in the shallow waters.
Day 4 - Kandalama to Kandy
This morning you will leave Kandalama and drive to Kandy
(Kandalama to Kandy: approximately 03 Hours / 92 Km)
En route you will visit the Rangiriya Dambulla Cave Temple – which is located in the North Central Province. This UNESCO World Heritage Site which dates back to the 01st century BC is an amazing complex of 05 caves, first used as a refuge by an ancient king who on regaining his throne, commissioned magnificent carved images within the living rock. Later kings made further improvements and the caves contain
over 150 images of the Buddha of which the largest is a colossal figure spanning 15 meters. Cave inscriptions from the 2nd Century BC are found and on the walls are many paintings most of which belong to the Kandy period (early 19th century). This temple is a perfect location to view evolution of ancient Sri Lankan art and is an important historical site due to the amalgamation of the material from many eras.
Next you will stop for a break at the Matale Spice Gardens. Here you will indulge your senses and have the opportunity to sample some of the homeopathic remedies of the East.
Continue to Kandy and check in at your hotel.
Day 5 - Kandy to Pinnawala
This morning you will proc-eed to visit the Pinnawala Elephant Orphanage.
(Kandy to Pinnawala: approximately 01 Hour / 40 Km)
The world famous Pinnawela Elephant Orphanage- a venture initiated by the Sri Lankan Government to safe guard one of its National Treasures, the Pinnawela Elephant Orphanage has been operating for over 30 years, nurturing orphaned calves, treating the feeble and rehabilitating the injured. Today, the orphanage has 60 elephants, with hundred watching their antics during their bathing times!! It is a definite treat watching them frolick in the water and observe the unique characteristics of each and every one of Sri Lanka’s gentle giants! The ideal time to watch them is 1000hrs-1200hrs and 1400hrs-1600hrs.
Return to Kandy.
In the afternoon enjoy a city tour of Kandy including a visit to the famous Temple of the Tooth which is commonly known as "Sri Dalada Maligawa" and is situated in the city of hills, Kandy. It is an important shrine for Buddhists as it holds the tooth relic of Lord Buddha. It is famous for its carvings and the beautiful art that is unique to Sri Lanka. The most important part of the Dalada Maligawa is the octagon (Pathirppuwa). The Sri Dalada Maligawa is the most sacred temple in the whole of Sri Lanka. Thousands of people line up each day to get a glimpse of its majesty.
Later you will enjoy a Kandyan Cultural Dance Show.
Day 6 - depart Kandy
After breakfast this morning leave to the airport to board your departure flight.
(Kandy to Airport: approximately 03 Hours / 115 Km)
Incredible trip from start to sad end. Our driver/guide Rayan met us at the airport and whisked us from place to place over the next 6 days showing us all the highlights on our itinerary from Sigirya to Kandy and giving us such knowledgable information about each place we visited. A lot of...
Lisa Cupper reviewing Highlights of Sri Lanka (24-Dec-2017)
£2229 per person
Your holidays include:
- Representation Services