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Highlights of South India        Safety Tips - Please Read      Cultural Tour    Tour # 1404
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Tour Offered By The Best India Tours
Contact Info Narendra Sinha, The Best India Tours
India, 00919212599301, info@thebestindiatours.com
Cities Covered Chennai / Kanchipuram / Mammalapuram / Pondicherry / Thanjavur / Trichy / Madurai / Periyar / Kochi / Alleppey / Varkala
Number Of Days 17 days
 
Highlights
Famous Temples in South India with the lovely beaches and the famous Kerala backwater
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Description and Day-wise Itinerary
Day 1 (Arrival Chennai}
Arrive Chennai by any convenient flight in the morning. Meet and greet on arrival at the airport and transfer Hotel Ambassador. Your exploration in Tamil Nadu will start from Chennai (formerly known as Madras) owes its origins to the British Empire. Fort St. George was established here along with a trading post in the 17th century. Chennai is today the Fourth largest city in the country. Morning is free for individual pursuits. At noon proceed for the sightseeing of Chennai city visiting: Fort St. George and Fort Museum. The fort was built in the 17th century by the British East India Company is one of the finest examples of British military construction in India. Later you can carry on visiting the High Court and Light House: Built in 1892, it is said to be the largest judicial building in the world after the courts of London. A must visit is also St. Andrews Church, also have a look at San Thomes Cathedral: Built over the tomb of St. Thomas credited to have brought Christianity to South India.
Night halt at the Hotel.

Day 2 (Chennai – Kanchipuram - Mammallapuram)
After breakfast, check out from the hotel and drive towards Kanchipuram - this is one of India's seven sacred cities and known for its handloom silks. You can later relax at Kanchipuram. Proceed for visiting some well-known temples such as: Vaikuntaperumal, Ekambareshwara, Kailasnathar, Kamakshiamma and Sakiswarar Temples. After visiting the Kanchipuram, continue drive to Mammallapuram.
Night halt at the Hotel.

Day 3 (Mammallapuram)
Mahabalipuram city is also known as Mamallapuram and is located in the Kanchipuram district of Tamil Nadu. The city was once the capital of Pallava kings and was named after the Pallava King, Mamalla. Considering the antiquity and the significance of the monuments, it has been listed amongst the world heritage sites of UNESCO. It is flanked by a number of historical monuments of the yore. Situated at a distance of 60 km from Chennai, the rock cut temples and caves situated here are the finest in the world and originated between 7th and 9th century.
Night halt at Mammallapuram.

Day 4 (Mammallapuram)
You can proceed for an entire days sightseeing in Mamallapuram - here you can visit the Shore Temple, which is renowned for its intricate carvings and skilled craftsmanship. The temple is located on the shore facing the sea. The most striking feature of this temple is that it is dedicated to both Lord Vishnu and Lord Shiva. Some other monuments, which you can also visit, are: cave temples, sculpted relief and structural temples, which reflect Dravidian style of architecture. The pillars exhibit Dravidian art, whereas sculptures are excellent specimens of Pallava art.
Night halt at the hotel.

Day 5 (Mammallapuram - Pondicherry - Chidambaram)
Drive to Pondicherry on your way to Chidambaram, after breakfast. The small Union Territory is located in the eastern side of the Indian Peninsula. Pondicherry was under the French rule and it became a part of the Indian Union in 1954, even after the Independence of India. The French legacy is evident in its stunning landscape and old churches - it is here where history lingers in its majestic buildings and boulevards. At noon visit the Sri Aurobindo Ashram - Located on Rue de la marine, is the main attraction of Pondicherry. Sri Aurobindo Ghose founded the Ashram in the year1926. He, the poet philosopher founded the Ashram to help man reach the zenith of his evolution through spiritual exercises and yoga, combined with physical activity and productive work. There are meditation sessions from Mondays to Fridays (except Thursday) 7.30 p.m. to 7.45 p.m. around the Samadhi. Later you can also visit the Pondicherry Museum, where you can see on display the findings of Arikamedu, the Chola bronzes and sculptures, glimpses of French heritage, specimens of modern and traditional handicraft, paintings, armories, and carvings A must see is also the French War Memorial - on Goubert Avenue is solemn reminder of those brave soldiers who laid down their lives for their country during the First World War and the Botanical Garden, Toy rail and the Jawahar BAL Bhavan.
Night halt at Chidambaram

Day 6 (Chidambaram - Thanjavur - Trichy)
Leave for the Nataraja Temple, after breakfast at Chidambaram. It takes at least half a day to thoroughly see the temple of Nataraja and Govindaraja Perumal. Then carry on towards Trichy through Thanjavur. Upon arrival at Thanjavur, visiting Sri Brihadisvara Temple: Built by the great Chola king, Raja Raja I in the 10th century AD, this temple is an outstanding example of the Chola architecture and later visit the Tanjavur Palace: The Palace, adjacent to the temple is a vast structure of fine masonry, built partly by the Nayaks around 1550 AD, and partly by the Marathas. At Trichy, visit the Rock Fort Temple. Trichy the most famous landmark of this bustling town - the Rock Fort Temple, a spectacular monument perched on a massive rocky outcrop, which rises abruptly from the plain to tower over the old city. It is reached by a flight of steep steps cut into the rock and from its summit you get a fantastic view of the town plus its other main landmark, the Sri Ranganathanswami Temple -built on an island in the middle of the Cauvery River and Jambukeshwara Temples. Evening drive back to hotel or take a walk through old city particularly big bazaar street and China bazaar.

Day 7 (Trichy - Madurai)
After breakfast drive to Madurai and check in at the hotel. Madurai is synonymous with the celebrated Meenakshi Temple. Situated on the banks of river Vaigai, Madurai has a rich cultural heritage passed on from the great Tamil era Madurai was an important cultural and commercial centre even as early as 550 AD. It was the capital city for the great Pandya kings. The Pandyan King Kulasekarar built a great temple and created a lotus shaped city around the temple. On the day the city was to be named, as Lord Shiva blessed the land and its people, divine nectar (Madhu) was showered on the city from his matted locks. This city was henceforth known as Madhurapuri. Madurai is famous for Jasmine Flowers. At noon you can visit the Thirumalanayakar Mahal: This Palace was built in 1636 by King Thirumalai Nayak with the help of an Italian Architect
Night halt at the Hotel

Day 8 (Madurai - Periyar)
Drive to Periyar nestled in spice and rubber plantations, after breakfast.. Known to be Kerala's pride and testimony to nature's splendor, Periyar is famous for its rare habitat of birds and animals and is one of the most popular destinations for nature lovers. Here at The Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary chances are high that you will spot an elephant in the wild at close quarters and from the safe confines of a boat. You can spend the rest of the day leisure.
Night halt at Periyar

Day 9 (Periyar)
You can visit at Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary one of India's biggest a wildlife sanctuary is a Tiger Reserve, after breakfast. The visit is done in a boat to view animals, you maybe lucky to even sight a tiger. In the evening take a stroll towards the spice plantation tour to see crops of cardamom, cinnamon, pepper, coffee, tea estates, on your way back to the hotel, you could stop at the local market and pick up some fragrant spices.
Night halt at Periyar

Day 10 (Periyar - Kochi)
Drive to Kochi, after breakfast. Kochi is also called the 'Queen of the Arabian Sea'. You can later the Kathakali dance, in the evening - the spectacular classical dance drama of Kerala based on the guidelines laid by Saga Bharatha's Natya Sastra.
Night halt at the hotel in Cochin

Day 11 (Kochi)
Proceed for sightseeing in Cochin, after breakfast. You could also visit: Fort Kochi, Mattancherry Palace, Jewish Synagogue, Jew Town, Old spice market, St. Francis Church, Santa Cruz Basilica and Chinese fishing net. At noon you can visit the Tripunithra Hill Palace and Museum, the summer retreat of the Kochi Rajas, Bisque and granite floors segue into teak ones and the whole place is redolent of bygone opulence.
Night halt at Kochi

Day 12 (Kochi - Alappuzha)
Check into the houseboat at 12 noon for 1 Night/ 2, after breakfast drive. You can through narrow canals, which will make you forget all about city life and its chores. A night stay in the Luxurious houseboat.
Note : Each houseboat will have 02 Bed Room with attached bath.

Day 13 (Alappuhza - Varkala)
Drive to Alappuzha.70 Kms from Cochin After breakfast. This unique backwater destination situated on the banks of the Vembanad lake is considered as gateway to the backwater of Kuttanad, the granary of Kerala. Alappuzha is also known as the "Venice of the East" it's was here that traders from across the seven seas came in search of black gold and souvenirs. Alappuzha or Alleppey is also home to Kuttanad, The rice bowl of Kerala, one of the very few places in the world where farming is done below sea level. Varkala is an important Hindu centre of pilgrimage. You can spend the remaining day at leisure at the beach.
Night halt at Varkala.

Day 14 (Varkala)
The Papanasam Beach at Varkala is a quiet, secluded beach known for its white, silvery stretch of sand, mineral springs and rocky cliffs. It is also the final resting place of Sree Narayana Guru, the great social reformer of Kerala, is near Varkala atop a hill named Sivagiri.
Night halt at Varkala.

Day 15 (Varkala)
Relax the entire day at Varkala Beach.
Night halt at Varkala.

Day 16 (Varkala)
Relax the entire day at Varkala Beach.
Night halt at Varkala.

Day 17 (Varkala – Trivandrum - Departure)
After breakfast, you can head towards Trivandrum airport and carry on for further journey.
The tour comes to an end with happiness in your heart

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