After a traditional Welcome with garlands made out of fresh flowers, you will be transferred to your hotel in Kochi which is the palm green commercial town of Kerala with one of the finest natural harbours in the world.
A town with a historic past, this is the gateway to Kerala.
A guided city tour will take you to the Fort Cochin area and the harbour near Vasco da Gama Square. Then on to St Cruz Basilica. This historic Church was built by the Portuguese and elevated to a Cathedral by Pope Paul IV in 1558. Your tour will take you past the Chinese Fishing nets, live fish market and local stalls.
For your first evening in Kerala, you will enjoy scintillating Kathakali Dance Performance, but before that you will go back stage to see the artists apply their flamboyant make up and wigs.
After the show you will enjoy an elaborate Al Fresco dinner.
Your drive next day will take you to Mattancherry where the last remaining Jews live in Kerala. From there to Periyar from the plains through tropical forests, rubber and spice plantations on to tea and cardamom plantations to the high lands. This is an excellent opportunity to see the tea and rubber plantations en route.
You will visit Periyar Tiger Reserve. Periyar has a splendid artificial lake dotted with snags of dead wood, which provide a perch for waterbirds; darter, grey heron, egret and kingfisher and is one of the finest habitats for the Asiatic elephant.
After your first night in the Periyar Resort, you will visit an Elephant farm and spend some time with the resident elephants.
The next morning you will drive to Kumarakom which is a in cluster of little islands on the Vembanad Lake. This small water world is part of the Kuttanad region. The bird sanctuary here, which is spread across 14 acres, is a favorite haunt of migratory birds and an ornithologist’s paradise.
While at the resort you can relax and enjoy the “Ayurvedic” massage treatments which are famous in Kumarakom.
Your final day will consist of an early morning Yoga session, followed by a leisurely cruise on Rice Boats on the backwaters of Kerala.
A special performance of Kerala Martial Arts, followed by a Farewell Dinner and live band before you head off for your flight home.
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