Best of South India & Cruising on Ganges

Tour Type:
Small Group Journeys
Start:
Cochin
Duration:
21 Days
End:
Kolkata
Departs:
Guaranteed Departure Min Pax: 02

Starting From

NZ$ 6489
ENQUIRE NOW

Discover South India with its versatility as this tour offers you the possibility of admiring the rich cultural heritage in its original form. Its awe-inspiring ancient temples will make you change the way you look about India. Its finesse and grandeur are truly unparalleled. You will feel as you are transported back in time at the spice trading port of Cochin and the fragrant tea plantations and hill forests of Munnar are sure to enchant.

Starts Ends Twin Price (NZ$) Solo Price (NZ$) Status
2020
09-Oct 29-Oct 9139 On Request

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06-Nov 26-Nov 9139 On Request

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11-Dec 31-Dec 6489 On Request

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2021
08-Jan 28-Jan 9139 On Request

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05-Feb 25-Feb 9139 On Request

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Itinerary

Expand All


DAY 1

On arrival at the airport meet your Tour Executive who will assist you to transfer to the hotel for two nights stay in Cochin.

DAY 2

Visit Harbour terminus where the Chinese fishing nets present a wonderful sight; Mattancherry Dutch Palace; The Jewish Synagogue and St. Francis Church (built-in 1510 and where Vasco Da Gama was originally buried). Evening witness Kathakali Dance Show at the local theatre you will be collected for a Kathakali Dance Show.

DAY 3

After breakfast travel to Thekkady, well known for the spice plantation and wildlife reserve. Stay two nights.

DAY 4

Visit the spice plantation growing cardamom, pepper, coffee, and tea. Walk amidst the palette displaying variant shades of green, neatly arranged into terraced farms. On your way back we stop at the local market to purchase some fresh spices as souvenirs. Stay two nights at Thekkady.

DAY 5

Travel to Munnar, famous for its scenic beauty, marvellous waterfalls and high mountains. The remainder of the day is free to explore this beautiful town. Stay two nights.

DAY 6

Well known hill station and former resort for the British Raj elite, it’s surrounded by rolling hills dotted with tea plantations established in the late 19th century. Explore a town that is difficult to describe, and witness tea gardens spread like a green carpet over hundreds of kilometres.

DAY 7

Travel to Madurai, day free to relax or explore the town, famous for its ancient culture and silk weaving. Evening enjoy a walk through the local bazaar. Stay two nights.

DAY 8

Start your day with a visit to the largest flower market and later the magnificent Meenakshi Temple showcasing a unique Dravidian style of architecture. Conclude your day with a visit to the textile bazaar and get amazed by the Madurai Silk made famous for its unique style and pattern by the silk weavers, who settled around 400 years ago.

DAY 9

Travel to Thanjavur, also known as the “Rice Bowl” of the south, famous for the ancient handicraft making of bronze icons. Visit intricately carved temples dating back to the 10th century and evening free to explore. Stay overnight.

DAY 10

Drive to Pondicherry and enjoy a sightseeing tour of the city, a French colonial settlement in India until 1954 but its French legacy is preserved in its French Quarter, with tree-lined streets, mustard-coloured colonial villas and chic boutiques. Stay overnight.

DAY 11

Travel to Chennai, Enroute visit Mahabalipuram, a town on a strip of land between the Bay of Bengal and the Great Salt Lake, known for its temples and monuments built by the Pallava dynasty in the 7th and 8th centuries. Stay two nights.

DAY 12

Visit Kalakshetra; a school that teaches local art, music, weaving and design, St. Mary’s Church, Sri Parthasarathy Temple and San Thomas Cathedral Basilica, which was rebuilt in 1606. Evening free to explore the bazaar.

DAY 13

After breakfast transfer to board flight to Kolkata. Evening free to explore this historical city and its culture. Stay overnight.

DAY 14

After a leisurely breakfast, the morning is free until midday later checkout in time to be transferred to the railway station to board the express train to Farakka followed by transfer to the ship. Stay seven nights on board.

DAY 15

This morning cruise along a straight canal section to Jangipur, here we enjoy a full-day tour of Gaur. This quiet, deserted place was once one of India’s great cities, first under the Hindus in the 12th century, then as the Muslim capital of Eastern India from the 14-16th century.

DAY 16

This morning moor at the delightful sleepy village of Baranagar with three gorgeous miniature terracotta temples to which you walk through the fields. After lunch continues to Murshidabad where the Nawab’s great Hazarduari. Palace built-in 1837 dominates the waterfront and later great Katra Mosque and Nashipara Palace before driving out to see the Katgola Palace.

DAY 17

Sail downstream a short distance then walk to the silk weaving village and Khushbagh, a peaceful Mughul-style garden enclosing the tombs of Siraj- Ud-Daulah, the last independent Nawab of Bengal and his family. Continue downstream past the old British cantonment of Berhampur to the battlefield of Plassey. You can walk through the fields to the commemorative obelisk and narrow bustling bazaars.

DAY 18

Visit the brassworking village of Matiari where you can see the whole primitive process of beating out brass water pots and other vessels. Continue through the countryside to Mayapur to visit the vast new ISKCON temple which dominates the skyline.

DAY 19

Continue down to the country town of Kalna. Take rickshaws to explore the culture and see the unique Shiva temple with concentric rings made up of 108 shrinelets and later visit the imposing Imambara at Hooghly for an opportunity to step back in time and relive a slice of Islamic history in Bengal.

DAY 20

Sail downstream – past fine waterfront buildings and the old Dutch settlement at Chinsura – to land at Chandernagore, a French possession until 1950. Visit the 18thcentury church and Dupleix’s House, the erstwhile Governor-General of French India, before continuing down to Barrackpore.

DAY 21

Early this morning, cruise under the Howrah Bridge to central Kolkata and disembark after breakfast. Tour finish with direct transfer to the airport by afternoon.

Inclusion


13 nights of luxury accommodation

07 nights onboard cruise

Group assistance and transfers

Sightseeing as specified

Meals as specified

THO Tour Manager Cochin-Chennai (minimum 06 people)

Cruise Tour Manager onboard ship

Local English-speaking guide

Entry fees and monument charges

Cultural show

Flower market visit

A nature walk in Periyar

Spice plantation visit

Economy class airfare Chennai-Kolkata

Express train ride

Bottled water while travelling

All current collectable taxes

 

Exclusion


Any International Airfare

Airport taxes and Visa fee

Early check-in or late check out 

Meals other than specified above

Tips & Gratuities

Travel & Medical Insurance

Camera and video permits

Expenses incurred due to flight / train cancellation or delay

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

Any optional excursion or tour

Any other expense not mentioned in the prices include column