Essence of Kerala

Tour Type:
Private Escorted Tours
7 Days

Starting From

NZ$ 1697

This tour covers culture, lush tropical scenery, the scent of spices, tea and flowers; colonial buildings that jostle for space with churches, synagogues, mosques and temples, golden beaches, quiet inland waterways and a backdrop of jungle-covered slopes.


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On arrival at the airport, meet your Tour Executive who will assist you with transfer to the hotel in Cochin for an overnight stay.


Next day go for a sightseeing tour of this port city with a rich and interesting past and an active present, with daybreak full of indeterminate promise. A slow lividness at the mist-obscured harbour mouth meets the swelling untamed surge of the ocean. Cargo-laden barges and villas or country boats move ponderously slow, over the sprawling vastness of the Vembanad Kayal, Kerala’s largest lake that spreads full-bosomed and silver-grey in the sultry sun. Cochin has been the business and commercial hub of south India since very ancient days. The Chinese, Jews, Arabs and Europeans sailed into this city to trade and their influence is still found in the buildings and lifestyle of the city. Experience the boat ride along the palm-fringed lakes and backwaters. Enjoy this extraordinary excursion as we sail along the shady canals, witness the everyday life of families living on narrow spits of land between the waters. Dinner and overnight at Cochin.


After breakfast check out and travel to Alleppey, on arrival embark on the houseboat. This day’s journey of backwaters in the boat, through the tropical countryside, enchanting backwaters of Alleppey by regattas (snake boats) for which Kerala is very famous, enjoying palm fringed narrow canals winding through the vast expanse of paddy fields and the neat tiny hamlets lined up along either side of the canals are panoramic sights one can never forget. An enchanting experience, the backwaters of Kerala reveal some interesting facts about the local life of local village people. Fishing lovers can enjoy fishing while watching the sunset from the sun-deck of the houseboats. Lunch, dinner and overnight on the houseboat.


After breakfast, disembark from the houseboat and travel to Kumarakom; an unbelievably beautiful paradise of mangrove forests, emerald green paddy fields and coconut groves interspersed with enchanting waterways and canals adorned with white lilies. Laze in a canoe amidst sylvan surroundings where the only presence is yours and the egrets. Later visit the famous Kumarakom Bird Sanctuary that gives you the pleasure to meet a variety of migratory birds that cluster in thousands some of the Himalayas and some even from the snow-kissed hills of Siberia, a true multicultural avian metropolis. Watch numerous alluring species of birds, including Darters, Bitterns, Brahminy kites, Marsh Harries, Teals and several varieties of Herons roost in their nests on the green acme, chirping and taking flight every now and then. For the inquisitive bird watcher, it is always advisable to carry binoculars at all times. Dinner and overnight at Kumarakom.


After breakfast travel to Kovalam, a beautiful place lying obscurity for a long period of time along the picturesque coast of Kerala. Then in 1930, this little village broke the shackles of its lethargic slumber and the beauty of the fabulous silver sands and palm-fringed shores emerged from the darkness. The boundless blue waters of the Arabian Sea and miles of white sands washed away by the surf at the feet of the stalwart palms and the rocky promontories, make the beaches paradise. On arrival check-in at the hotel. Explore the beaches of Kovalam that offer activities like sunbathing, swimming, and water sports or opt for an Ayurvedic rejuvenation, yoga, and meditation or herbal oil body toning massages. Dinner and overnight at Kovalam.


After leisurely breakfast check out and transfer to the Trivandrum airport to board the flight for your onward journey.


Accommodation with private facilities

Travel by private air-condition car with driver

Local English-speaking guide

Meals as specified (B=Breakfast, L=Lunch, D=Dinner)

Private Backwater cruise 

Entry fee/Monument charges

Kathakali Dance Show

1 Basic Ayurvedic Massage

Assistance and Transfers

All current taxes


Any international or domestic airfares

Train fares other than specified in the what's included section 

Airport taxes, visa & passport fees

Extra baggage charges

Early check in or late check out

Meals other than specified in the what's included section

Tips & gratuities

Travel & medical insurance

Camera & video permits

Expenses incurred due to flight / train cancellation or delay

Any expense of a personal nature, like drinks, laundry, telephone calls, mini bar, postage etc

Any optional excursion or tour

Entry charges at monuments/forts etc

Any other expense not mentioned in the what's included section