X  
Contact Us
The Maharajah Palace At Mysore


The Maharajah Palace At Mysore

Grand Tour Of South India

Grand Tour Of South India

15 Days


01 Depart UK  
02 Arrive Bangalore
  • Relax On Arrival At Bangalore
03 Mysore
  • Tippu Sultans Fort
  • Chamundi Hill At Night
04 Mysore
  • The Huge Mysore
  • Rajah’s Palace
05 Ooty
  • Dramatic Mountain
  • Journey To Ooty
06 Ooty
  • Relax At Ooty
07 Coimbatore
  • The Nilgiri Blue Mountain Railway
08 Cochin
  • Kathakali Dance Performance
09 Cochin
  • Historic Sights Of Old Fort Cochin
10 The  Backwaters
  • Rice Boat Journey On The Backwaters
11 Thekkady
  • Wild Elephants At Periyar By Boats
12 Madurai
  • The Ancient Sri Meenakshi Temple
13 Tanjore
  • Sri Brihadishwara And TanjoreBronzes
14 Pondicherry
  • Rickshaw Ride To The French Quarter
15 Mahabali Puram
  • The Stone Temples At Mahabalipuram
16 Mahabali Puram
  • Relax On The Beach
17

Depart Chennai

Arrive UK

  • Transfer To Airport

 

This Is A Private Tour With Your Own Vehicle And Driver-Guide

When To Go: Throughout Year

Grand Tour Of South India

A Comprehensive Tour Of The Majestic Palaces Of Mysore, Tropical Kerala And Delightful Temples Of Tamil Nadu.

The southern half of the Indian Subcontinent presents a very different and unique experience to the well trodden tourist circuit of North India.

 

You start your tour at Bangalore, a vision of a modern India yet to come, and a city at the forefront of the global IT revolution with a rapidly rising skyline. Southwards lies the princely city of Mysore, with grand palaces of its former rulers and evocative historic associations with Tippu Sultan.

 

The journey up the mountain wall of the Western Ghats has dramatic hairpin bends. Here are found legendary Hill Stations of the British Raj like Ooty and Coonoor. The highly scenic Nilgiri Blue Mountain Railway brings you back down to the plains.

 

Through the Southern Ghats lies the tropical paradise of Kerala. Cochin has a great melting-pot harbour, with centuries old historical influences contributing to a unique Syrian inspired cuisine and an old Jewish Quarter.

 

The Backwaters are best enjoyed by spending a night aboard a private Rice Boat - highly luxurious craft with a full compliment of staff to explore the waterways of Kerala in style. Periyar National Park at Thekkady is perhaps the best location in India to observe Indian Elephants in the wild. 

 

Tamil Nadu proudly celebrates its Dravidian heritage with fabulous Hindu temples and their massive towers or gopurams. Tanjore and Madurai are majestic temple cities with some of India’s best architecture housing legendary shrines such as the Sri Meenakshi Temple. The flat, fertile plains lead to the dramatic Coromandel Coast with its quaint French colony of Pondicherry, a mini-France in the heart of Asia. 

 

Recommended For: Anyone seeking a unique Indian tour experience, and are used to travelling.

Tilling Rice Fields In Tamil Nadu

Tilling Rice Fields In Tamil Nadu

 

Golden Turrets Of The Mysore City Palace

Golden Turrets Of The Mysore City Palace

 

Spice Market At Mysore

Spice Market At Mysore

 

Tea Gardens At Coonoor

Tea Gardens At Coonoor

 

Tea Gardens Bungalow At Coonoor

Tea Gardens Bungalow At Coonoor

 

Old Steam Engine On The Nilgiri Blue Mountain Railway

Old Steam Engine On The Nilgiri Blue Mountain Railway

 

Kathakali Dance Performance

Kathakali Dance Performance

 

Kerala’s Idyllic Southern Backwaters

Kerala’s Idyllic Southern Backwaters

 

Rice Boat On A Backwater

Rice Boat On A Backwater

 

Elephants At Periyar National Park

Elephants At Periyar National Park

 

Tigers at Periyar National Park

Tigers at Periyar National Park

 

The Sri Meenakshi Temple At Madurai

The Sri Meenakshi Temple At Madurai

 

The Chettinad Palace

The Chettinad Palace

 

World Famous Tanjore Bronzes

World Famous Tanjore Bronzes

 

Hotel De L’Orient In Pondicherry’s French Quarter

Hotel De L’Orient In Pondicherry’s French Quarter

 

The Indian Ocean At Mahabalipuram

The Indian Ocean At Mahabalipuram

 

Mahabalipuram Temples

Mahabalipuram Temples

 

pondicherry Beach

Pondicherry Beach

 

GRT Temple Bay

GRT Temple Bay

 

Periyar Lake

Periyar Lake

 

The Spice Village

The Spice Village

Day 01 - Depart UK

Depart UK – Overnight flight.

 

Day 02 - Bangalore 

Bangalore is one of the most hip and happening cities in India and the centre of the Indian Software Industry. The Bangalore Palace Of Tippu Sultan is one of its historic buildings that are worth seeing.

 

YOUR CHOICE OF HOTEL:

4 STAR: St. Marks Hotel

 

Day 03 - Mysore 

Srirangapatnam 

Srirangapatnam is famous as the former capital of Tipu Sultan, who fought and lost a war with the British, dying in battle in 1799. Tipu Sultan's Fort with double wall defenses was considered the second strongest in India. Located just outside the fort is Tipu Sultan's Wooden Summer Palace with ornate and beautiful frescoes. At The Gumbaz lie the tombs of Tipu Sultan and his father Hyder Ali.

 

The Sriranganatha Temple is one of the largest temples in South India with a colossal image of Lord Vishnu, on the back of a snake with a benevolent smile. 

 

Panoramic View Of Mysore

The summit of Chamundi Hill offers a panoramic view of Mysore's lakes, parks and palaces. Half-way up along the stone steps is Nandi, Lord Shiva's Bull, a majestic stone monolith.

 

YOUR CHOICE OF HOTEL:

4 STAR: Regaalis Mysore

 

Day 04 - Mysore

Mysore  

The Mysore Maharajahs were great patrons of art and culture and the city displays some magnificent reminders of their rule. The Maharaja's Palace is one of the most extravagant sights in the whole of India. Built in Indo-Saracenic style with domes, turrets, arches and colonnades, the palace is a treasure house of exquisite carvings and works of art from all over the world. Illuminated on Sundays and public holidays, the palace presents a spectacle of breathtaking beauty. 

 

Brindavan Gardens is one of the best gardens in South India. Spread over 150 acres this beautiful location has featured in the song and dance routines of many Bollywood movies.

 

YOUR CHOICE OF HOTEL:

4 STAR: Regaalis Mysore

 

Day 05 - Ooty And Coonoor 

Spectacular Journey Via 36 Hairpin Bends To Ooty

Travelling through the Mudumalai jungles you are very likely to spot wild elephants by the roadside. A series of 36 Hairpin Bends takes you from the jungle plains of Karnataka to the tea covered Nilgiri Hills

 

Ooty

At a height of 7347ft stands Udhagamandalam (Ooty) the Queen of Hill Stations, founded by the British in the 19th century to escape the oppressive heat and serve as summer headquarters for the Government of Madras.

 

Unfortunately, the hill town now suffers from severe overcrowding, so it is actually better to head to nearby Coonoor for a much more relaxed and peaceful stay. Coonoor, is a lovely town surrounded by forests of pine, eucalyptus and cypress.

 

YOUR CHOICE OF HOTEL:

Boutique Hotel: Taj Garden Retreat Coonoor

 

Day 06 - Ooty And Coonoor

If you are chasing the atmosphere of the Raj, it still just about lingers in places like the Ootacamund Club, the best preserved of all the former British clubs in India, where snooker was invented by Neville Chamberlain. The well-kept Botanical Gardens, Ooty Lake and The Savoy Hotel are also worth visiting.

 

YOUR CHOICE OF HOTEL:

Boutique Hotel: Taj Garden Retreat Coonoor

 

Day 07 - Coimbatore

The Nilgiri Mountain Railway 

From the railway head at Ooty, Mettupalayam is reached in 4 hours by The Nilgiri Mountain Railway (46 km) on a ratchet and pinion track through many hair-raising curves and fearful tunnels beside deep ravines full of verdant vegetation, gurgling streams and tea gardens. The scenery, as it unfolds during the trip, is breathtaking, awe-inspiring and fantastic.

 

YOUR CHOICE OF HOTEL:

Boutique Hotel: Taj Garden Retreat Coonoor

 

Day 08 - Cochin

Drive through the Palakkad Gap and enter the northern ‘rice bowl’ of Kerala for a journey to Cochin. Upon arrival, you can, if you wish, enjoy a performance of Kerala’s world famous Kathakali Dance.

 

YOUR CHOICE OF HOTEL:

Boutique Hotel: The Old Harbour Hotel

 

Day 09 - Cochin 

Cochin 

The ancient port of Cochin has been influenced by traders from the Middle East, China and Europe who came to trade for spices from the Malabar Coast. You should head straight to Fort Cochin, at the mouth of the harbour where the town’s varied past is reflected in an Old Town area with steep-roofed bungalows, colonial residences, spice and antique shops, its cathedral, and synagogue. Travelling at a gentle pace, it is a short walk to the famous Chinese Fishing Nets and the Parade Ground from where a network of streets radiating in all directions is crammed full of charming old mansions and curio shops.

 

YOUR CHOICE OF HOTEL:

Boutique Hotel: The Old Harbour Hotel

 

Day 10 - Backwaters 

Rice Boat Journey On The Alleppey Backwaters

The Backwaters of Kerala are an interlinked body of natural waterways, rivers and lakes connecting coastal towns. Over 900 Km of the Kerala backwaters are navigable and have been used for centuries by local people for the transportation of spices and rice.

 

The best way to enjoy the scenic beauty of the Backwaters is to travel on a traditional converted Rice Boat or Kettuvallam.

 

From your Rice Boat, you can watch rural fisher folk and people who live along the backwaters, or just stop along the canal bank and explore villages on foot or eat freshly caught crabs and lobsters. Water birds such as terns, kingfishers, darters and cormorants, and animals such as otters and turtles are easily observed along the backwaters.

 

The Deluxe Rice Boats are over 90 foot long, and are fully air-conditioned with luxurious facilities. Apart from the boat captain you are provided with a cook and assistants to prepare mouth-watering Kerala cuisine. This unforgettable journey through the backwaters in Kerala is usually the highlight of any South India Tour.

 

Day 11 - Thekkady 

Kumily 

Kumily is a plantation town washed in fresh spice scented air, with panoramas of cardamom, coffee and pepper plantations. Visits to local Spice Markets and spice gardens are easily arranged, as are popular Elephant Back Rides around the town. 

 

Wildlife At Periyar Lake

The Periyar Wildlife Reserve, surrounds the Periyar Lake, and covers hills and verdant forests dominated by trees like Terminalia and Teak extending over a vast area of the Western Ghats.

 

The varied habitat in the sanctuary supports a large number of mammal species including Indian Bison (Gaur), Sambar, Chital Deer, Barking Deer and Wild Boar. Primates include Nilgiri Langur, Bonnet Macaque and Lion-tailed Macaque. Carnivores such as Tigers, Leopards, Jungle Cats and Wild Dogs are present but difficult to spot in the thick forest.

 

You can view wildlife at this reserve only by Safari Boats or Nature Treks on foot organised by Forest Department guides.

 

YOUR CHOICE OF HOTEL:

4 STAR: The Spice Village

 

Day 12 - Madurai 

Madurai

An ancient city and centre of Tamil knowledge with origins lost in the mists of time, said to be over 2000 years old. Madurai was the capital city for the great Pandya kings.

 

The Sri Meenakshi Temple at Madurai is one the wonders of India and is famed for its architectural and religious importance. The complex houses 12 magnificent gopurams that are elaborately sculptured and painted, the tallest of which, the famous Southern Tower, rises to over 170 ft high.

 

Also worth visiting is The Thirumalai Nayakar's Palace (1623), a classic example of the Indo-Saracenic style of extravagant architecture. Madurai is famous for Jasmine flower sellers and spice markets that crowd the narrow streets around the main temple complex.

 

YOUR CHOICE OF HOTEL:

4 STAR: Taj Garden Retreat Madurai

 

Day 13 - Tanjore 

Chettinad

A town that is the home of the Nattukottai Chettiars, a prosperous banking and business community. Their palatial mansions were embellished with marble and Burma teak. The most magnificent was called The Chettinad Palace, built in 1912 with wide inner courtyards and spacious rooms. Huge granite pillars stand against stained glass and imported Italian tiles. 

 

Tanjore 

Tanjore or Thanjavur was the capital of the Chola Empire and is a flourishing centre for bronze sculpture and a unique style of painting. You can go to small workshops around the town to see bronze casting that has evolved to unsurpassed levels.

 

The famous Brihadishwara Temple, built by Rajaraja The Great, ruler of the Chola Empire (11thC) is one of India’s finest UNESCO World Heritage Sites. You need to visit in the late afternoon when the crowds disappear and the sun’s rays turn the granite structure into glorious golden hues.

 

The Royal Palace at Thanjavur was built partly by the Nayaks around 1550 AD. It is possible to climb the Godagopuram, an eight storey watchtower and armory of 190 feet high. The museum’s galleries contain a World Famous Collection Of Magnificent Tanjore Bronzes depicting ancient themes, dancers and deities.

 

YOUR CHOICE OF HOTEL:

4 STAR: Ideal River View Resort

 

Day 14 - Pondicherry 

Pondicherry  

Pondicherry (Pondy), was a small union territory where the French East India Company set up a trading centre in 1673 and ruled even after independence to remain a part of French India until 1954.

 

The former French colony is also known as The French Riviera Of The East (La Côte d'Azur de l'Est), as a remarkable degree of French influence in Pondy exists today. The relics of French rule are evident from the dress of the police to the simplicity of the people.

 

The entire town is divided into 2 sections, the French Quarter (Ville Blanche) and the Indian Quarter (Ville Noire). Many streets still retain their French names. Pondy has a great collection of colonial hotels such as The Hotel De’LOrient that serve excellent French Creole cuisine.

 

YOUR CHOICE OF HOTEL:

Boutique Hotel: Welcomeheritage Calve

 

Day 15 - Mahabalipuram

A lovely new road runs south along the coast to Mahabaliputam, passing casuarina groves and orchards, as well as beautiful arid coastal landscapes containing huge salt pans. 

 

Mahabalipuram

The marvelous city of Mahabalipuram was the seaside capital of the Pallava dynasty. The artistic temperament of these rulers resulted in some of the greatest works of South Indian art.

 

The scenic Shore Temple, The Five Rathas (chariots) made from single stone boulders and Arjuna’s Penance, the largest bas-relief in the world are highlights. The entire city resonates to the sound of chisels from small workshops that produce very ornate stone sculptures.

 

YOUR CHOICE OF HOTEL:

5 STAR: GRT Temple Bay

 

Day 16 - Mahabalipuram

Relax At Mahabalipuram 

Enjoy relaxing by the shimmering Indian Ocean at Mahabalipuram. Fishermen can be seen dragging their boats and nets on to sandy beaches with beautiful red sunsets at the end of each day.

 

YOUR CHOICE OF HOTEL:

5 STAR: GRT Temple Bay

 

Depart Chennai

Daytime flights arrive back in UK the same day.

Grand Tour Of South India

Room And Breakfast (Rice Boat: Full Board)
Based On 2 Persons Sharing Room

 

SUMMER: 01/05 – 30/09 WINTER: 01/10– 30/04

 

FEATURED TOUR – LAND HOLIDAY ONLY
  SUMMER 2015 WINTER 2015
FIRST CLASS HOTELS £1608 PP £2008 PP
STANDARD 3 STAR HOTELS £1232 PP £1538 PP

 

FEATURED TOUR - WITH FLIGHT PACKAGE (LHR)
  SUMMER 2015 WINTER 2015
FIRST CLASS HOTELS £2208 PP £2524 PP
STANDARD 3 STAR HOTELS £1832 PP £2054 PP

 

*Based On Lowest Non – Peak Period Airfares

 

FLIGHTS AND AIRFARES TO KERALA

INCLUDES

  • Private tour of South India in an air-conditioned vehicle with English speaking driver.
  • All entry fees for places of interest as described in itinerary including jeep hire at national parks.
  • Services of local English speaking guides at Mysore, Cochin, Madurai, Tanjore and Mahabalipuram.

 

OFFERS AND DISCOUNTS

  • Children under 5 years of age sharing parents bed are given this tour FREE OF CHARGE!!
  • Special rates available for 2 adults and 1 child sharing triple room.
  • Discounts available for families and groups.
  • Flight and accommodation supplements may apply at peak periods.

 

TAILOR MADE ALTERATIONS

  • You are welcome to suggest changes or alterations such as a more relaxed tour with fewer activities, additional nights at places that may interest you.
  • Tell us about any special interests and we will incorporate them in to your tour schedule.

To get more information about this tour, please contact us using the form below.

Alternatively, Call Us On: 0207 100 2323

▪ Substantial Discounts May Apply

▪ If Flights Are Not Required Write - No Flights


BUDGET / 3 STAR / 4 + 5 STAR / LUXURY / DELUXE?

▪ We also offer a mix of hotels called Special Choice.






We Aim To Reply to You In Detail Within 12 Hours (8 am – 5 pm).



Note: If you want to contact us about a Tailor Made Tour or another holiday idea and not "Grand Tour Of South India", please go to our Contact Page.
 
Contact Us