OPTIONAL FUN ACTIVITIES:
HIGHLIGHTS OF THE SOUTH OF INDIA
You can explore quaint waterways, beautiful sandy
beaches, and meander through forests and coconut
groves, take a ride on an elephant and visit ancient
MADURAI - Madurai is known by many
names; ‘Jasmine city’ for the famous jasmine flowers
that are cultivated here, ‘the city of Nectar’,
Legend tells of a river of nectar that flowed after
blessing from Lord Shiva, and the ‘Temple City’,
Madurai really does have a temple or shrine on
practically every street but it is most famed for
the Sri Meenakshi Sundeswarar Temple. Approximately
10,000 people visit it every day!
Madurai is located on Vaigai River and is filled
with pilgrims, market stalls and tourist shops.
Children will stop you on the streets to chat to you
and shake your hand and even ask for your autograph!
TRIVANDRUM - is the capital of the
gorgeous state of Kerala and lies on the west coast.
Kerala is known as 'God's own country' and the
locals refer to the food as 'God's own food in God's
own country' - with such a reputation, this is
definitely an experience you shouldn't miss!! The
city is built on 7 hills by the shore near the
southern tip of mainland India. It's very popular
with local and international tourists because it has
so much - beaches, temples, mountains, rivers,
museums and zoos, wildlife sanctuaries, palaces
waterfalls ... the list is endless.
KODAIKANAL/OOTY - For a bit of cool
relief, take a trip to the hill station of
Kodaikanal, just 4 hours away from Madurai. A
different world - breathtaking mountains, a
picturesque lake with a wide range of activities on
offer from horse riding, rowing, cycling, trekking.
A trip to Ooty with its tea plantations should not
be missed – ride the toy train for spectacular views
over the Palani hills.
PONDICHERRY & MAHABALIPURUM - In
the French quarter you will find leafy boulevards
and restaurants serving European cuisine. The famous
Sri Aurobindo Ashram is also to be found here. Just
14kms away is the commune of Auroville; stay in a
tree house on the beach for a magical experience. 2
hours north is the delightful fishing town of
Mahabalipurum famed for its shore temple and rock
KERALA has been named ""Gods own
Country" by the locals for its stunning scenery,
wildlife, beautiful beaches, picture postcard towns
and the breaktaking backwaters. It is also the home
of Ayurveda medicine, an ancient system using
essential oils and vigorous massage to aid medical
complaints or just for pampering. Explore delightful
Fort Cochin with its famous Chinese fishing nets,
souvenir shops, art cafes and Jewish quarter;
explore some of Kerala's backwaters - an intricate
network of rivers and smaller tributaries around
Kerala also has one of the best wildlife parks in
the country; Periyar. Jungle trekking and jeep
safari’s take you off the beaten track in the hope
of spotting an elusive tiger although you are more
likely to see elephants, boar, monkeys and many
species of birds. You can also take an elephant
ride, boat ride, visit spice and tea plantations,
watch martial arts – it’s an action packed weekend
and only 4 hours from Madurai!
GOA is famous for its expanse of
beaches, from big touristy ones to smaller, quieter
and more picturesque beaches towards the south of
Goa, where travellers and long term European
residents congregate. In these tiny beach resorts,
the beaches are almost deserted and you can mix with
locals and tourists whilst lazing in the sun.
MUMBAI is a huge modern city.
Bollywood cinema originated in this huge city and
has become a major part of life here. The famous
Chowpatty beach is where you can often see young
Bollywood stars relaxing at sunset. The rest of the
city is just as chaotic as other parts of India,
with overflowing markets, bazaars and lots and lots
of people! From Mumbai you can visit Elephanta
Island, home to ancient temples depicting holy
scenes that have been cut away from the rock and
also Ajanta Caves.