Classic South India
17 Days/16 Nights: Chennai (01 night), Mahabalipuram (2), Pondicherry (1), Tanjore (2), Madurai(2), Periyar(1), Allepey(1), Cochin(1), Mysore(2), Chikmaglur(2), Bangalore(1)

Travel InterestsCulture & Heritage
Area: South India, Kerala

The Classic Tour of South India, is an Amazing journey to Explore the very best of South India. Tour starts from Chennai and ends in Bangalore, and covers a great area of South India, including Kerala which is a destination on its own. The marvelous temples with beautifully carved statues, the Natural beauty, the backwaters, ancient dances and much more. 

Tailor-Made this Tour. We can adopt and tailor this tour to craft a perfectly suitable itinerary according to your travel time, interests and budget.
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Tour Summary
WhenWhereWhat To Experience and Admire
Day 1-2ChennaiNational Art Gallery and Museum, Cathedral of San Thome, the Mylapore Temple, and St Mary’s Church. 
Day 2-4MahabalipuramThe Five Rathas, the Shore Temple, huge frescoe. Kanchipuram, Visit Ekambareshwar Temple, Kailashnath Temple, Kamakshi Temple, the Vaikunthaperumal Temple
Day 4-5Pondicherry Aurobindo Ashram 
Day 5-7TanjoreChidambram, Kumbakonam ,Darasuram, Ranganathaswamy Temple, Srirangam, The Rock Fort Temple, Brihadeshwara temple .
Day 7-9MaduraiChetinad, Meenakshi  Temple, Tirumal Nayak's Palace, evening ceremony of the Meenakshi Temple.
Day 09-10ThekkadyBoat cruise on the Periyar Lake, spice Plantation tour.
Day 10-11HouseboatHouseboat
Day 11-12CochinThe Paradesi Synagogue, Chinese fishing net, St Francis Church, Kathakali dance performance, 
Day 12-14MysoreMaharaja's Palace, Mysore Arts & Crafts Center, Chamundi Temple, Somnathpur Temple.
Day 14-16ChikmaglurSrirangapatnam , Belur and Halebid, Plantation walk.
Day 16-17BangaloreSharavanbelagola. Optional half day sightseeing tour of Bangalore
Tour Itinerary 


Day 01

Arrive Chennai

Welcome to India! Upon your arrival at Chennai Airport, our local representative will receive you at the arrival hall and escort you to your Hotel in an air-conditioned Car.  Our representative will help you with check-in process, brief you about your tour program and handover your entire tour related documents.

Chennai – this capital city of the state of Tamil Nadu was created 350 years ago by the British- East India Company .Besides being Britain’s first bastion from which flourished an empire, Chennai formerly known as Madras retains a harmonious blend of the old and the New. Elaborate Pujas – prayers are part of every home. Women still wear Jasmine flowers in their hair and young girls practice the age old Bharatnatyam Dance form every day. In this charming city modernisation has not dampened the rich heritage handed down from generations.

Overnight: Chennai
Meals:       Breakfast

Day 02

Chennai – Mahabalipuram

Morning sightseeing tour of Madras to see some of the highlights of India's fourth largest city. Visit the National Art Gallery and Museum, which house some beautiful temple friezes and South Indian bronzes; the Cathedral of San Thome; the Mylapore Temple, and St Mary’s Church.  (Museums are closed on Fridays and National Holidays).
Continue drive for Mahabalipuram, upon arrival check in to Hotel
Overnight: Mahabalipuram
Meals:       Breakfast

Day 03


Morning sightseeing of Mahabalipuram  - an ancient coastal port, south of Madras.  Here you will see many  sculptures   and  temples  of  typical   South   Indian  architectural  design;  the Five Rathas -  a  group  of  monolithic  monuments and animal figures carved out  of  solid  rock; the Shore Temple, lashed by the  waves  of  the  sea;  and  the  huge  frescoe,  "The  Penance   of  Bhagirath".
Afternoon Excursion to Kanchipuram
Kancheepuram, known as the Golden City of a Thousand Temples.  This is one of India’s sacred cities.  Many early styles of temple architecture may be seen here. Visit Ekambareshwar Temple, Kailashnath Temple, Kamakshi Temple, the Vaikunthaperumal Temple, all built in the 7th and 8th centuries.   Kancheepuram has also long been famous for  its silk weaving.
Overnight: Mahabalipuram
Meals:       Breakfast

Day 04

Mahabalipuram – Pondicherry (Puducherry) (100Kms/2Hours)

Morning drive to Pondicherry. Afternoon proceed for a sightseeing tour of Pondicherry. In the Northern Tamil Nadu region, quite a contrast to the temple heritage is provided at Pondicherry.  Formerly a French colony settled early in the 18th century, Pondicherry became part of the Indian Union in the early 50’s when the French voluntarily relinquished control.  French is still widely spoken, and seaside villas and cobbled streets are more reminiscent of the South of France than the South of India. We also visit the famous place, the Auroville, conceived as a tribute to Sri Aurobindo, Auroville is an entirely new concept in education and urban living.  The Aurobindo Ashram is known to the world as the “Centre of Integral Yoga”. Founded by Sri Aurobindo in 1926.
Overnight: Pondicherry (Puducherry)
Meals:       Breakfast

Day 05

Pondicherry (Puducherry) – Tanjore (Thanjavur)183Kms/5hrs

Morning drive to Tanjore (Thanjavur) (approx 5Hrs) enroute visiting Chidambram, Kumbakonam ,Darasuram
Thillai Natarajar Temple, Chidambaram or Chidambaram temple is a Hindu temple dedicated to Lord Shiva located in the town of Chidambaram,
Kumbakonam: Famous for the Mahamaham festival held every 12 years, Kumbakonam, 36 Kms from Tanjore, also boasts of five temples. The important ones among them are Sarangapani, Kumbeswarar, Nageswara and Ramaswamy temples. These temples are noted for their semi erotic sculpture.
Darasuram, 34 Kms away, has a temple dedicated to Lord Shiva which was built by Rajendra Chola. It also boasts a silk weaving centre.
Arrive Thanjavur and check in to hotel.
Overnight: Tanjore
Meals:       Breakfast

Day 06

Thanjavur (Trichy)

Thanjavur or Tanjore –was the ancient capital of the Chola Kings –between 850 to 1270 AD. The main attraction of the city is the Brihadishwara temple built by Raja Raja ,the Greatest of the Chola kings who ruled from 985 to 1014 AD. The Chola dynasty were also responsible for building the enormous temple complex at Srirangam near Trichy –which is probably India’s largest.

Morning visit the Ranganathaswamy Temple, Srirangam, The Rock Fort Temple, a spectacular monument perched on a rocky outcrop which rises abruptly from the plain to tower over the old city. It is reached by a flight of steep steps cut into the rock and from its summit, you get a fantastic view of the town and other landmarks. 
Sightseeing tour of Tanjore where you will visit temples built during the 10th and 14th   centuries.  These later became a part of the Vijaynagar Kingdom, which subsequently passed into the hands of the Marathas and went to the British. Visit the Brihadeshwara temple In the 1000-year-old Brihadishvara (UNESCO World Heritage site) we see the feast of the gods on the walls as frescos and in countless sculptures. One of the greatest lingams of India, the phallic symbol of Shiva, awaits our worship. In the museum we admire the most exquisite bronze sculptures of India. 100 km.
Overnight: Tanjore
Meals:       Breakfast

Day 07

Thanjore to Madurai enroute visit Chetinad approx 200 Kms.

After breakfast drive for Madurai, enroute visit Chetinad. The Chettinad region is well known for its 19th-century mansions, whose wide courtyards and spacious rooms are embellished with marble and teak. Construction materials, decorative items and furnishings were mostly imported from East Asian countries and Europe. Visit the village area and temples.
Continue to Madurai, upon arrival check in to hotel.
Overnight: Madurai
Meals:       Breakfast

Day 08


Morning, proceed for a sightseeing tour of Madurai. The primary interest is the Meenakshi   Temple, where Dravidian temple architecture may be considered to be at its best. Its  Hall  of  a Thousand Pillars is  fabulous  and  is filled  with worshippers at all hours of the day. Also visit the Tirumal Nayak's Palace, which is a highly decorative monument.

Witness the evening ceremony of the Meenakshi Temple.
Overnight: Madurai
Meals:       Breakfast

Day 09

Madurai – Periyar/Thekkady (137 kms/4 hours)

Morning drive to Thekkady (Periyar)

Periyar, is one of India's most fascinating natural wildlife sanctuaries, where you can watch wildlife at close range. The vegetation, the flora and fauna and the birds of Thekkady are uniquely rich, vast and varied that it does not bear semblance to any other wildlife sanctuaries in the world. Even a casual visitor to this place will not fail to observe the special ecological pattern of Thekkady.  
Afternoon boat cruise on the Periyar Lake, in  the  cool surroundings. The panorama spreads into  tropical jungles, wild Elephants, Indian Gaur, Monkeys,  spotted Deer,  Barking  Deer,  Wild Boar and  birds  of  myriad varieties.   Encompassing an area of 777 sq  kms, the  wildlife  sanctuary  lies at an elevation of between 914 meters and 1828 meters above sea level on the Periyar Lake in the hills of Western Ghats.
Overnight: Thekkady
Meals:       Breakfast

Day 10

Periyar/Thekkady – Allepey approx 139kms/4Hrs

Morning you will have a Spice Plantation tour. Periyar of Thekkedy district is full of variety of spices like Clove, cardamom, different types of peppers etc.
Later drive to Allepey, enroute visit the Rubber plantations.
Upon arrival embark Houseboat
The backwaters act as a vital waterway for the transport of goods, people and their produce are often the only link between isolated villages and crowded towns. In Kerala, the total expanse of backwater stretches over 1500 kms, with a network of 44 rivers, lagoons and lakes from north to south. Alleppey which forms the main part of this  network has the peculiar geographical feature of having the water in level with the land. This gives the advantage of getting a closer look at the village life on shore while on a backwater ride.

A glide in a "Kettuvallam" (Houseboat) through the enchanting backwaters of Alleppey is sure to rob your heart. Palm fringed narrow canals winding through the vast expanse of paddy fields and the neat tiny hamlets lined up along either sides of the canals are panoramic sights one can never forget. The Chinese fishing nets, the reminiscent of our past trade links, are also found on the way. Flocks of ducks swimming around the banks and tiny birds flying across the sky remains as enduring pictures reflecting the charm of this unique land.

The sparkling water and the caressing cool wind is a temptation too strong to resist. Country boats of various types crisscross the path with passengers from all walks of Kerala's rural life ranging from milkman and newspaper boy to local politicians, priests and wedding parties. It is a unique experience as this is as close as one can get to feel the vibrant life in the countryside of god's own country.

On arrival embark the House Boat and proceed on the backwaters of Kerala.
Overnight stay on Houseboat
Lunch and dinner on board house boat.

Day 11

Houseboat – Cochin

Breakfast onboard houseboat.
Disembark and drive for Cochin 58Kms.

Cochin  – Now known as Kochi is one of India’s largest Ports where the misty silhouettes of  huge merchant ships can be seen anchored off the point of Fort Cochin waiting for a berth in the docks of  Ernakulam or Willingdon island – Dolphins can be seen in the harbour.. With its wealth of historical associations – since the times it was visited by the Portuguese, the Dutch and the British, this city is a magical blend where you can see the oldest church in India, 500 years old Portuguese houses, the  cantilevered Chinese Fishing nets , Jewish Synagogue and the Palace built by the Portuguese .

Morning, sightseeing tour of Cochin. Visit the The Paradesi Synagogue is the oldest active synagogue in the Commonwealth of Nations, located in Kochi, Kerala, in South India. It was built in 1568 (closed on Saturdays).   It contains beautiful Belgian glass chandeliers and is paved with hand painted tiles from China.  Its most important relics are the impressive copper plates recording king Bhaskara Ravi Varma's 4th century decree that guaranteed the Jewish settlers domain over Cranganore (Kodungalore). The Synagogue itself is elaborately decorated with crystal chandeliers and carved wood with blue and white ceramic tiles. Later, visit Chinese fishing net.  Proceed to see the St Francis Church (closed on Sundays), the first European Church built in India.

Evening, witness the Kathakali dance performance, performed by various artists. Kathakali is a traditional dance form, depicting Indian epics (Ramayana and Mahabharata). The dancers are dressed in very colorful and elaborate costumes. Their faces are painted to depict various characters of these epics. This dance has a lot of facial expressions and brisk, yet articulate body movements.
Overnight: Cochin
Meals:       Breakfast

Day 12

CochinBangalore by flight

BangaloreMysore approx 4 hours

Morning in time transfer to airport to connect your flight for Bangalore.
Upon arrival at Bangalore airport you are met assist and drive to Mysore (approx 4 hours)
Overnight: Mysore
Meals:       Breakfast

Day 13


Morning, you will visit the beautiful city of Mysore, which is known for its fine craftsmanship in wood, ivory, sandalwood, and for its silk. Visit the Maharaja's Palace, which is lavishly decorated in a mixture of styles. Also visit, the Mysore Arts & Crafts Center and then proceed to the Chamundi Temple on a hill high above the city.
Afternoon visit the Somnathpur Temple
Somnathpur Temple - The temples are fascinating not only as artistic expressions of the past but also as living religious institutions where traditions are integral to the life of the people. By the year 1268 A.D., the year in which the Kesava temple at Somnathpur was built, the Hoysala rule had completed 260 years. The riches and splendour of the Hoysala court were already evident in their grand temples at Belur and Dvarasamudra (present day, Halebid). Coming to the temple at Somnathpur, one need not search far for its history. An inscribed stone slab, in old Kannada, at the entrance says it all. The reigning monarch was Narasimha III (1254-91 A.D.) whose full regal title runs into a sizeable paragraph: "Sri Vishnuvaradhana, Pratapa Chakravarti, Hoysala Bhujabala, Sri Vira Narasimha, Maharajadhiraja, Raja Paramesvara, Sanivarasiddhi, Giridurgamalla etc.
Overnight: Mysore
Meals:       Breakfast

Day 14

Mysore to Chikmaglure via srirangapatnam

After breakfast drive for Chikmaglur, enroute visit Srirangapatnam (approx 194kms /5hrs)
visit Srirangapatnam, once  the summer palace of Tipu Sultan, is known for its fortress and tomb of the famous Warrior King.
Overnight: Chikmaglur
Meals:       Breakfast

Day 15


Plantation walk and Visit Belur and Halebid
Sightseeing tour of Belur and Halebid, which is the finest examples of Hoysala Art.  The soft  stone used  by builders was chiselled with extreme fineness for detail. The temple  at  Belur  is famed  for its profusely ornamented exterior and  the one at Halebid for its sculptured figures and open  air museum.  
Overnight: Chikmaglur
Meals:       Breakfast

Day 16

Chikmaglur – Bangalore approx 258Kms 5 ½hrs

After breakfast drive for Bangalore, enroute visit Sharavanbelagola.

It is one of the oldest and most important Jain pilgrimage centers in India and is the site of the huge statue of Lord Bahubali  (Gomateshvara) which, at 17 metres high and carved out of a single piece rock, is said to be the world’s tallest monolithic statue.  It stands on top of a rocky hill.
Overnight: Bangalore
Meals:       Breakfast

Day 17

Depart Bangalore

Depart Bangalore. Optional half day sightseeing tour of Bangalore.

In time transfer to Delhi Airport to connect flight for onward destinations.

Hotel Suggestions
ChennaiThe Leela Palace
 Taj Coromandal
 ITC Grand Chola
 Radisson Blu
 Park Chennai
MahabalipuramRadisson Blu Temple Bay 
 Taj Fisherman's Cove
 WelcomHotel Kences Palm Beach
 Chariot Beach Resort
 Ideal Beach Resort
PondicherryLe Dupleix
 Le Pondy
 The Promonade
 Maison Perumal
 Palais De Mahe
 Sangam Hotel
 Ideal River View Resort
MaduraiTaj Gateway Pasumalai
 The Heritage Madurai
 Sangam Hotel
ThekkadySpice Village
 Shalimar Spice Garden
 The Elephant Court
HouseboatSpice Coast Cruise
 Deluxe Houseboats
CochinBruntons Boatyard
 Eighth Bastion
 Malabar House
 Taj Malabar
MysoreRoyal Orchid Metropole
 Lalitha Mahal Palace
 Radisson Blu
ChikmaglurThe Serai Resort
 Taj Gateway
BangaloreTaj West End
 Taj Banaglore
 Vivanta by Taj
 The Oberoi
 The Lalit Ashok
Optional Inclusions

Kalakshetra Dance school
Bazaar Trail in to the Crowded Markets and Narrow lanes
Dancers Trail Story Telling Dances of Bharatanatyam

Walking tour Story Trail

Kumbalangi Village Tour
Kodanad Elephant Training Centre
Greenix Village Dance Classes

Allepey/ Kumarakom
Philip Kutty Farm

Walking Tour
Bicycle Tour

Tour MAP

Tailor-Made this Tour. We can adopt and tailor this tour to craft a perfectly suitable itinerary according to your travel time, interests and budget.
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