Arrival into Mumbai, your car & driver will be waiting for you. Check in at your hotel. Overnight Mumbai.
Experience the hustle & bustle of this great metropolitan city. Spend a relaxed day sightseeing/shopping. Visit the Gateway of India, the Prince of Wales museum, the incredible 'dhobi ghat' the world's biggest open air laundry and Mani Bhawan, Mahatma Gandhi's home in Mumbai. Dinner tonight will be a pure vegetarian 'thali' - a traditional Gujarati meal. Overnight Mumbai.
Fly from Mumbai to Cochin. Check in at your hotel. Take a city tour covering the Jewish synagogue, the harbour and the Chinese fishing nets at sunset. Overnight Cochin.
Morning free. In the afternoon you will be taken to a home where you will see a demonstration of, and sample, traditional Kerala cuisine. Overnight Cochin.
Take a boat-ride/ or drive to the famous backwaters of Kumarakom. Check in at your hotel. In the evening a special demonstration of Kerala seafood & other local delicacies will be arranged by one of the leading chefs at your hotel. Overnight Kumarakom.
After breakfast board your "kettuvellam" (traditional rice boat refurbished as a house boat) for a leisurely overnight cruise on the placid backwaters. A simple traditional meal will be cooked and served on board. Overnight on the house boat.
Disembark at Alleppy drive 155 km to Thekkady, check in at Spice Village. Recreating the mood of a local tribal community, the resort comprises individual cottages set amongst a landscaped spice garden. The atmosphere is rustic - terracotta tiled floors, elephant grass thatches and white washed walls - but not lacking in creature comforts: en suite bathrooms with running hot water, a swimming pool and courteous, efficient service. Late afternoon a boat ride on the Periyar lake to view wildlife - elephants, bison, crocodiles and an amazing variety of bird life. Overnight at the Spice Village.
After breakfast a visit to a coffee plantation/spice plantation. In the evening a proactive cooking session with the chef - Cook your own dinner! Overnight.
Drive to Cochin airport to catch your flight to Mumbai. Connect with your International flight.
Mumbai: Mumbai is the financial capital of India. It is also a fun city with a vibrant night life. It is a melting pot of different cultures. People come from all parts of India including the villages to make their fortune in this city of dreams. The public transport system like the local trains and buses, though bursting at the seams, works quite efficiently! You can get a good view of the Arabian Sea from the Gateway of India. The best way to see Mumbai is on foot. Walk down the Colaba road, stop for a beer and lunch at the Leopold Café. The street life of Mumbai is very vibrant. The cuisine is varied – Chinese, Italian, Continental, Lebanese, Thai and a host of others including, of course, all the regional Indian cuisines in all their wide variety. The seafood is exceptional.
Cochin: Cochin or Kochi is known as the ‘Queen of the Arabian Sea.’ It is located on the southwest coast of the Indian peninsula in the prosperous state of Kerala known as ‘God’s Own Country’. The reason will be clear to you when you visit this state! Cochin has a world class port. The Dutch, British and Portuguese have left their mark here, especially in the older areas known as Fort Cochin. The oldest Jewish synagogue is also located in this area. Cochin excels in seafood. The international airport connects it to major cities world-wide.
Kumarakom: Kumarakom is the backwater tourist destination of Kerala. Located on the massive Vembanad Lake, Kumarakom is well connected by its waterway and you can reach this place by boat. The Muhamma Boat Jetty is just 170 km from the Trivandrum International Airport. By road Kumarakom is 160 km from Cochin and 150 km from Thekkady. The popular backwater run is from Kumarakom to Alleppy. The most relaxed, laid-back holiday can be enjoyed in this place. Nothing better than gently cruising down the backwaters in lush tropical surroundings.
Thekkady & Spice Village: The Periyar Wild life Sanctuary in Thekkady is a thick evergreen forest which was declared a Tiger Reserve in 1978. The Periyar river adds to the charm of the forest. It is the only sanctuary in India where you can watch wildlife from a boat. The greatest attraction are the wild elephant herds that come to the water’s edge. Thekkady is 155 km from Aleppy, 110 km from Munnar, 150 km from Kumarakom and 147 km from Kodaikanal in Tamil Nadu. Spice Village is located in Kumily, a small settlement 3 km from Thekkady at the main entrance of the Periyar Tiger Reserve in the heart of the Cardamom Hills which makes it an ideal setting for nature lovers. Enjoy the excellent cuisine with fresh spices and practice your culinary skills.
Marine Plaza - Mumbai
Taj Malabar - Cochin
Kumarakom Lake Resort - Kumarakom
Kumarakom Lake Resort - Kumarakom
Spice Village - Thekkady
Ambassador - Mumbai
Taj Gateway - Cochin
Zuri - Kumarakom
The Elephant Court - Thekkady
Traditional Fish Curry
Chinese Fishing Nets
Cuisine of Kerala
The Arabian Sea runs all along Kerala’s western coast. The backwaters, the hills and forests of Kerala make it a very popular tourist destination. Kerala is also famous for its Ayurvedic treatments, spices and excellent cuisine. Kerala has been the centre for spice trade since centuries. Vasco Da Gama landed on its shore around the 15th Century. Lured by its spices, the Portuguese, Dutch and British have fought for dominance in this rich port state. Fishermen bring in a fresh catch of fish – the sea-food in Kerala is not to be missed. Another favorite is Appam, a fluffy crisp pancake made with rice flour fermented in toddy. Spices, coconut and bananas play an important part in Kerala cuisine.