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Sacred South: Temples, Heritage, and Beaches Expedition

0/5
Duration

14 Nights / 15 Days

Tour Type

Daily Tour

Group Size

10 people

Languages

English

Overview

Embark on the Sacred South: Temples, Heritage, and Beaches Expedition, a captivating journey through the heart of South India. Starting in Bangalore, explore iconic landmarks and immerse yourself in the vibrant city life. Travel through the historic cities of Vellore, Chennai, and Pondicherry, uncovering architectural marvels and spiritual sanctuaries. Experience the rich cultural heritage of Thanjavur, Chettinad, and Madurai, with their stunning temples and royal palaces. Continue to the coastal charm of Rameshwaram and Kanyakumari, where sacred rituals and natural beauty blend seamlessly. Conclude your adventure in the serene beaches of Kovalam, relaxing and rejuvenating by the Arabian Sea. This expedition offers a perfect blend of spirituality, history, and coastal tranquility, creating unforgettable memories.

Highlights

  • This is a private tour/activity only for your group.
  • Enhanced cleaning/ traveler safety.
  • In-depth cultural experience.
  • Flexible sightseeing & stopover.
  • Most travelers can participate.

Bulk discount (by Percent)

Bulk discount adult
# Discount group From adult To adult Value
1 Discount on 2-person group 2 2 %
2 Discount on 3-person group 3 3 %
3 Discount on 4-person group 4 4 %
4 Discount on 5-person group 5 5 %
5 Discount on 6-person group 6 6 %
6 Discount on 7-person group 7 7 %
7 Discount on 8-person group 8 8 %

Itinerary

Day 1: Arrive Bangalore

Arrive in Bangalore, the vibrant capital of Karnataka, known for its pleasant climate and bustling city life. Check-in at your hotel and relax after your journey. (Note: Hotel check-in time is 2 PM, early check-in subject to room availability)

Day 2: Bangalore

Breakfast at the hotel. Visit Lalbagh Botanical Garden, a 240-acre garden featuring exotic plant species and a stunning glasshouse inspired by London's Crystal Palace. Explore Bangalore Palace, a majestic Tudor-style structure with Gothic windows, woodcarvings, and a collection of paintings and artifacts depicting royal life. Visit Bull Temple (Dodda Basavana Gudi), housing a massive monolithic statue of Nandi, Lord Shiva's sacred bull. Explore Tipu Sultan's Summer Palace, an exquisite example of Indo-Islamic architecture made of teakwood. Visit ISKCON Temple, a grand temple complex dedicated to Lord Krishna, known for its spiritual ambiance and architectural beauty. Stroll through Cubbon Park, a lush, green park in the heart of the city with numerous statues and an aquarium. Visit the Government Museum, one of the oldest museums in India, showcasing artifacts from different periods of Indian history.

Day 3: Bangalore - Vellore (220kms)

Breakfast at the hotel. Drive to Vellore, a city known for its rich cultural heritage and historical significance. Visit Vellore Fort, a 16th-century granite fortification with elaborate moats and ramparts. Explore Jalakandeswarar Temple, noted for its Dravidian architecture and intricate carvings within Vellore Fort. Visit the State Government Museum in Vellore, which houses a collection of ancient artifacts, sculptures, and inscriptions.

Day 4: Vellore - Chennai (145kms)

Breakfast at the hotel. Proceed to Chennai, the capital city of Tamil Nadu. Visit Marina Beach, stretching for 13 kilometers, offering panoramic views of the Bay of Bengal. Explore Fort St. George, housing St. Mary's Church and the Fort Museum displaying colonial artifacts. Visit Kapaleeshwarar Temple, a fine example of Dravidian architecture dedicated to Lord Shiva. Explore San Thome Basilica, a neo-Gothic church built over the tomb of Saint Thomas, one of the twelve apostles of Jesus. Visit the Government Museum, featuring a rich collection of ancient artifacts, sculptures, and bronze idols. Stroll through the vibrant shopping streets of T. Nagar, famous for traditional silk sarees and jewelry.

Day 5: Chennai - Pondicherry (160kms)

Breakfast at the hotel. Drive to Pondicherry (Puducherry), a coastal town with French colonial architecture. Visit Sri Aurobindo Ashram, promoting yoga and spiritual practice. Explore Auroville, an international township dedicated to human unity and sustainable living. Visit the Matrimandir, a golden globe meditation center surrounded by serene gardens. Stroll along Promenade Beach, a picturesque beachfront with colonial-era buildings. Explore the French Quarter, with its charming streets, colonial villas, and vibrant cafes. Visit the Basilica of the Sacred Heart of Jesus, known for its Gothic architecture and beautiful stained glass panels.

Day 6: Pondicherry - Thanjavur (180kms)

Breakfast at the hotel. Travel to Thanjavur (Tanjore), renowned for its cultural heritage. Visit Brihadeeswarar Temple, an architectural marvel of the Chola dynasty with a towering vimana and intricate sculptures. Explore Thanjavur Palace, showcasing the Nayak and Maratha architectural styles with a Durbar Hall and art gallery. Visit the Saraswathi Mahal Library, housing a vast collection of manuscripts, books, and paintings. Explore the Art Gallery, featuring an impressive collection of bronze sculptures and ancient artifacts. Stroll through the local markets, famous for Tanjore paintings, traditional handicrafts, and textiles.

Day 7: Thanjavur - Chettinad (140kms)

Breakfast at the hotel. Proceed to Chettinad, famed for its grand Chettiar mansions and spicy cuisine. Visit Chettinad Palace, featuring intricate woodwork, stained glass windows, and antique furniture. Explore local villages known for their unique craftsmanship, including the making of Athangudi tiles. Visit artisan workshops specializing in Chettinad sarees and traditional crafts. Explore Kanadukathan, a heritage village with opulent mansions showcasing Chettinad architecture. Visit the Chettinad Museum, displaying traditional artifacts, jewelry, and household items of the Chettiar community.

Day 8: Chettinad - Madurai (90kms)

Breakfast at the hotel. Drive to Madurai, known as the "Athens of the East." Visit Meenakshi Amman Temple, an iconic Dravidian architectural masterpiece with towering gopurams adorned with vibrant sculptures. Explore Thirumalai Nayakkar Palace, an Indo-Saracenic architectural marvel with intricately carved pillars and stunning frescoes. Visit Gandhi Memorial Museum, dedicated to Mahatma Gandhi, showcasing his life and the Indian independence movement. Stroll through the bustling markets of Madurai, famous for silk sarees, jewelry, and handicrafts. Visit Koodal Azhagar Temple, dedicated to Lord Vishnu, known for its beautiful carvings and sculptures. Explore Vandiyur Mariamman Teppakulam, a large temple tank known for its float festival.

Day 9: Madurai - Rameshwaram (170kms)

Breakfast at the hotel. Travel to Rameshwaram, a sacred island known for Ramanathaswamy Temple. Visit Ramanathaswamy Temple, featuring long corridors with intricately carved pillars. Take a ritual bath in Agni Theertham, a sacred sea bathing spot believed to purify the soul. Explore Dhanushkodi, a ghost town offering panoramic views of the Indian Ocean. Visit the Pamban Bridge, an engineering marvel connecting the island of Rameshwaram to mainland India. Explore the Five-faced Hanuman Temple, housing a floating stone used to build the mythical Ram Setu bridge.

Day 10: Rameshwaram - Kanyakumari (320kms)

Breakfast at the hotel. Proceed to Kanyakumari, the southernmost tip of the Indian peninsula. Visit Vivekananda Rock Memorial, a meditation hall built on a rock island offering serene views of the merging seas. Explore Thiruvalluvar Statue, a towering structure honoring the ancient Tamil poet Thiruvalluvar. Visit the Kanyakumari Temple, dedicated to the goddess Kanya Kumari, believed to be an incarnation of Parvati. Explore the Gandhi Memorial, built on the spot where Mahatma Gandhi's ashes were kept before immersion. Visit the Kanyakumari Beach, known for its spectacular sunrise and sunset views over the confluence of three seas. Explore Vattakottai Fort, a coastal fort offering panoramic views of the sea and the Western Ghats.

Day 11: Kanyakumari - Kovalam (80kms)

Breakfast at the hotel. Drive to Kovalam, a picturesque beach destination. Visit Kovalam Beach, ideal for sunbathing, swimming, and water sports. Explore local markets offering handicrafts, spices, and souvenirs. Visit Vizhinjam Lighthouse, offering panoramic views of the Arabian Sea and nearby coastal areas. Relax and unwind on the serene beaches of Kovalam. Enjoy an Ayurvedic massage or treatment at a local spa.

Day 12: Kovalam

Breakfast at the hotel. Enjoy a leisurely day in Kovalam. Relax on the beach, indulge in rejuvenating Ayurvedic treatments. Explore nearby attractions such as Samudra Beach and the scenic Karamana River. Visit Halcyon Castle, a historic structure built by the Travancore royal family. Explore the Lighthouse Beach, known for its vibrant atmosphere and beachfront cafes.

Day 13: Kovalam

Breakfast at the hotel. Another day at leisure in Kovalam. Optionally, visit the Napier Museum in Trivandrum, housing a rich collection of artifacts and traditional Kerala art forms. Alternatively, embark on a serene backwater cruise in Poovar, exploring the tranquil waterways and lush greenery. Visit Padmanabhapuram Palace, a magnificent wooden palace showcasing traditional Kerala architecture. Explore the Neyyar Wildlife Sanctuary, known for its diverse flora and fauna.

Day 14: Kovalam

Breakfast at the hotel. Relax and savor the serene ambiance of Kovalam. Enjoy the mesmerizing sunset views over the Arabian Sea. Indulge in local delicacies at beachside restaurants and cafes. Explore Vellayani Lake, a freshwater lake ideal for boating and bird watching. Visit the Kovalam Art Gallery, showcasing works by local and regional artists.

Day 15: Kovalam - Departure

Breakfast at the hotel. Check-out from the hotel by 11 AM. (Note: Hotel check-out time is 11 AM) Depart from Kovalam, concluding your enriching South India Temple Tour Drive. Transfer to Trivandrum (Thiruvananthapuram) airport or railway station for your onward journey.

Included/Excluded

  • Assistance on arrival at airport.
  • 14 Night's accommodation in 4-star hotels.
  • Daily breakfast and meal as per day plane.
  • Private air-conditioned deluxe car for airport transfer, sightseeing and excursion as per program.
  • English speaking tour guide on sightseeing days (local guide in each city), as per program.
  • Monuments entrances and activities charges mentioned in the itinerary.
  • Bottled drinking water in car.
  • Government taxes.
  • Any flight tickets.
  • Camera charges at monuments.
  • Expenses of personal nature like liquor, laundry, tips, telephone, fax, internet etc.
  • Gratuities & optional activities.
  • Anything not mentioned in inclusions.

Tour's Location

FAQs

What is the standard of the hotels on this tour?
Can travelers upgrade the accommodation to 5-star hotels?

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from $ 1,451.00

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