Day - 1 » Mumbai - Cochin
Transfer to the airport for your flight to Cochin founded by Vasco da Gama in 1502, once a centre of the spice trade and now the principal port on the Malabar Coast. A cosmopolitan European influence has been left by the various waves of Portuguese, British, Dutch and Jewish settlers that have made this colourful city their home. Stay for two nights at The Malabar House Residency a beautifully appointed heritage hotel, situated in Fort Cochin or casino Hotel.
Day - 2 » Cochin
Explore the diverse sights of Fort cochin, including the Mattancherry palace, St. Francis Church, the spice market and the fine synagogue. In the afternoon take a cruise around the harbourto see the Dutch-built Bolghatty Palace and the Chinese fishing nets.
Day - 3 » Cochin - Puthenkayal
Today proceed by car and boat to the small island of Puthenkayal, near Kumarakom to stay at Philipkuttys farm, where the owners farm their reclaimed land for coconut, banana, cocoa, nutmeg and pepper. The family reside in their own house nearby and they will be your hosts whilst you stay in a delightful traditional style Mayayali cottage on the waterfront. The cottage with its wooden furniture and tiled floors is spotlessly clean and although not air-conditioned acool breeze comes off the water. A small veranda surrounds the cottage and provides the perfect place to sit and watch river life.
Day - 4 » Puthenkayal
Explore the surrounding area in the company of your hosts or simply relax and enjoy the serene and peaceful surroundings.
Day - 5 » Puthenkayal - Alleppey
This morning transfer by motor boat across Vembanad lake to the market town of Alleppey from where you join your private houseboat for the next two nights. The boats are simply, but comfortably, furnished and consist of a thatch-covered lounge/dining area; one or two double bedrooms withmosquito nets and attached bathrooms with a WC, wash basin anda hand held shower. In the evening the boat is lit by so;ar powered lights and hurricane lamps. Thatched awnings on both sides of the boat allow the breeze and views to flow in. meals are cooked on board, using freshly caught or plucked ingredients from the backwaters. The boat is fully staffed with a captain and a cook. Remainder of the day cruising the backwaters.
Day - 6 » Backwaters
At leisure travelling on the backwaters where life passes by as it has for centuries. Try your hand at catching fish, or discuss the menu with your cook!
Day - 7 » Backwaters - Tiruvalla
This morning leave your houseboat at Changanacherry and proceed just a short distance by car to Tiruvalla, a small quaint town that maintains the richness of its local culture and traditions. Your stay in Tiruvalla will be at Chalakuzhy, an ancestral home that is almost 200 years old. The Paulose family reside in their house and they will be your hosts whilst you stay in a delightful wooden and tiled cottage in the grounds. The cottage with its wooden furniture and tiled floors is spotlessly clean.
Day - 8 » Tiruvalla
At leisure or visit the beautiful 8th century riverside temple at Aranmula. The temple is home to three elephants, which can often be seen frolicking intheriver. This town is also famous for its unique metal mirror work known as Aranmula Kannadi. In Tiruvalla visitthe Sree Vallabha temple where traditional Kathakali dances are performed as an offering to the deity on most evenings.
Day - 9 » Tiruvalla - Mumbai
Proceed to the Cochin airport for your return flight to Mumbai. Alternatively, relax at the Marari Beach Resort an idyllic retreat on the Malabar Coast. Or go intot he hills to stay in Munnar at the Windamere Estate or in Periyar at the delightful Shalimar spice Garden.