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Sights and Sounds of the South

4 stars


Discover the sights and sounds of southern India on this private tour. This tour travels from Chennai down the southeast coast to Pondicherry, then inland through Tanjore, Madurai and Periyar to Kochin on the west coast. Along the way you'll visit historic cities, elaborate temples, spice plantations and nature reserves. Enjoy colourful local entertainment, witness a traditional religious ceremony and cruise a scenic lake spotting wildlife. Local guides will enlighten you with historic and cultural information to reveal the charms and delights of southern India. To complete your Indian holiday, why not extend your holiday with a few days on the beach in Goa?

Tour Highlights

  • Pondicherry - French colonial atmosphere
  • Tanjore - Brihadishwara Temple
  • Madurai - Meenakshi Temple Pooja ceremony
  • Periyar - Lake cruise in nature reserve
  • Kochi - Kathakali Dance'

DAY 1 – Fly to Mumbai

Fly from Heathrow overnight to Mumbai.


Connect with the flight to Chennai. In the afternoon tour the city which was formerly a British colonial city known as Madras.

  • Overnight: GRT Grand, Chennai.


Drive 170 km to Pondicherry (now known as Puducherry) with a stop at Mahabalipuram and Kanchipuram en route. Mahabalipuram has many sculptures and temples of typical south Indian design. These include the Five Radhas carved out of solid rock and the famous Seashore Temple. Kanchipuram is famed for its temples and hand-woven silk saris. (b)

  • Overnight: Ananda Inn, Pondicherry.


Explore Pondicherry where a hint of its former French colonial atmosphere can still be detected. Later drive to Tanjore, also known as Thanjavur (180 km/4 hours). (b)

  • Overnight: Ideal River View, Tanjore.


In the morning, visit Brihadishwara Temple, one of the great monuments of South India which is now a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Drive to Madurai (160 km/4 hours) visiting the Rock Fort, Srirangam Temple and Jambkeswaram Temple in Trichy en route. (b)

  • Overnight: GRT Grand, Madurai


Visit the outstanding Meenakshi Temple and the Palace of Nayak Tirumalai. In the evening witness a Pooja ceremony at the Meenakshi Temple. (b)

  • Overnight: GRT Grand, Madurai.


Drive to Periyar (140 km/6 hours). Enjoy an afternoon cruise on the Periyar Lake and spot game in the surrounding wildlife sanctuary. (b)

  • Overnight: Cardamom County, Periyar.


Visit a nearby spice plantation and then drive to the west coast city of Kochi (185 km/5 hours). (b)

  • Overnight: Casino Hotel, Kochi.


Explore the city of Kochi on a city tour and enjoy a 'Kathakali Dance' at a local theatre in the evening. (b)

  • Overnight: Casino Hotel, Kochi.

DAY 10 - India Holiday Extension or Fly Home

After an early breakfast, proceed with your chosen India holiday extension or transfer to Kochi to fly to Mumbai and connect with the return flight to Heathrow. (b)

All distances and driving times are approximate. Tour routing and hotels may vary for operational reasons.

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Holidays at Sights and Sounds of the South

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