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Kerala Wildlife and Hill Stations

Cochin - Kumarakom - Periyar - Munnar - Cochin (8 Nights / 9 Days)

Day 01 / Arrival Cochin

Arrival Cochin meet assist at the airport and transfer to Kumarakam (140Km drive). Kumarakam is situated on Lake Vembanad, the hub of backwater tourism in Kerala. Mangrove Forests, Paddy Fields, and Coconut Groves networked by a maze of waterways and canals adorned with waterlillies make Kumarakam an unbelievably beautiful, natural paradise. Transfer to hotel. Night stay in Kumarakom.

Day 02 / Kumarakom Bird Sanctuary

The day is free for trekking in the Mangrove Forests, Water Skiing, Fishing by the Lake or Bird Watching at Kumarakam Bird Sanctuary, an ornithologists’ heaven.
Night stay in Kumarakom.

Day 03 / Periyar
Morning Drive to Periyar (130Km drive). The Periyar Forest is one of the finest wildlife reserves in India. Lying at an altitude of 900 – 1800m above sea level and spread across 777sq.Km, the Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary was declared a Tiger Reserve in 1978.

Noted for its geomorphology, diversity of wildlife and scenic beauty, it’s the only sanctuary in India where you can view wildlife at close quarters from the safety of a boat on the lake. Periyar’s biggest attractions are the Herds of Elephants that come down to water and play lakeside.
Transfer to hotel. Evening at leisure. Night stay in Periyar.

Day 04 / Periyar Boat Ride
Start the day with a short Trek inside the Sanctuary followed by a two hour Boat Ride. Evening leaves you free to explore the local Spice Markets at Kumily, a small town 4Kms from Thekkady. Night stay in Periyar.

Day 05 / Munnar Hill Station
After breakfast depart for Munnar, 110Kms away; situated 1600m above sea level. Munnar is a Hill Station, once the Summer Resort of the ‘British Raj’, Government of South India.

Sprawling Tea Plantations, winding lanes and good holiday facilities make this a popular resort town. Night stay in Munnar.

Day 06 / Munnar
After breakfast proceed for sightseeing tour of Munnar covering 1. Rajamalai & Eravikulam National Park, 15Kms from Munnar, this is the natural habitat of the Nilgiri Thar, a rare mountain goat (Hermitragas Hylocres). 2. Marayoor, 40Kms from Munnar, the only place in Kerala that lays claim to the natural growth of Sandalwood. The Muniyara caves with murals and relics from the New Stone Age Civilization. A Children’s Park, spread across a hectare of land under the canopy of a Single Banyan Tree, are of great interest to tourists. Night stay in Munnar.

Day 07 / Cochin
After breakfast drive to Cochin (150Kms drive). Kerala’s Commercial Capital, and the most cosmopolitan of its cities. Cochin is a fascinating blend of cultures.
The evening is free for leisure & shopping. Night stay in Cochin.

Day 08 / Sightseeing in Cochin
After breakfast proceed for sightseeing in Cochin, that takes you very close to the regions History on the international stage 1. The Hill Palace Museum, a fully-fledged archeological museum and Kerala’s first ever Heritage Museum are the main attractions (closed on Mondays). 2. Chinese Fishing Nets, this unique style of huge cantilevered fishing nets were erected between 1350 and 1450 AD by traders from the Court of Kubla Khan, a Chinese King. 3. Santa Cruz Basilica, this historic church was built by the Portuguese and elevated to a Cathedral by Pope Paul IV in 1558. Pope John Paul II proclaimed the Church a Basilica in 1984. 4. The Jewish Synagogue, constructed in 1568, this is the oldest Synagogue in the Commonwealth (closed on Saturdays & Jewish Holidays).
The area around the Synagogue, called Jew Town, is the centre for Spice & Handicraft shops. 5. Mattanchery Palace (Dutch Palace), built by the Portuguese in 1557 and presented to the Regent of Kochi (closed on Fridays). Night stay in Cochin.

Day 09 / Departure
Transfer to Cochin International Airport to board the onward flight.

Options / Choices / Additions:
“Waterways” – One Night on a Houseboat: The nights stay, ‘Day Two’ of the Tour can be spent on a Houseboat; we board at Alleppey – the “Venice of the East”. Alleppey is a fascinating part of Kerala; land of Canals and Inland Lakes. The classic Kerala Houseboat or “Kettuvallam”, (as it would be locally known), is the giant traditional craft of the waterways. Measuring up to 80 feet in length, they were used to carry tonnes of rice & spices. A standard Kettuvallam can hold up to 30 tonnes. Today these Houseboats have been transformed into an innovative holiday idea, including all the creature comforts of a well-furnished Bedroom, an en-suite Bathroom, cosy Living Room, Kitchen and even a Balcony for Angling. The Houseboat will cruise at a leisurely pace along palm-fringed waterways, giving a panoramic view of Kerala Village Life. On-board catering will provide the best of Kerala Cuisine to suit your tastes.
At night the Boat will be Anchored on Lake Vembanad.

“Super Saver” – Day One & Two at Alleppey: A day trip to Kumarakam to visit the Bird Sanctuary. [Note: This option will save cost on the Deluxe Tour].

Take a Beach Break – [Additional Charges Apply]:

Two nights in any one of the Beach Resorts –
(a) Marari Beach Resort, Mararikulam. (b) Kadapuram Beach Resort, Nattika.

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