Tailor-made culinary journey • 12 nights’ accommodation in character hotels • Transfers by air-conditioned car • Local English-speaking guides • Entrance fees • Local taxes • 12 breakfasts, 4 lunches, 8 dinners
Perhaps the very best way to reach India’s heart is through the all-important sense of taste and launching yourself into the sights, sounds and smells of South India on a culinary journey like our Gourmet South India tour is to embark on a very interesting journey indeed!
India is nothing if not diverse. Landscape, culture and religion have all played their part in shaping the distinct regional cuisines. Lush, tropical southern India is charming, captivating and hospitable. This fabulous part of India includes Kerala where you’ll discover a thousand shades of green and share smiles with the friendly local people.
Experience the culture, religion and history of this region in its small rural towns, quaint fishing villages, scented spice plantations, beautiful tea plantations, colonial hill stations and bustling markets.
Combine the eclectic cultural mix with the delicious coconut, the seafood, the chutneys, dosas and idlis and you have a wonderfully rewarding travel experience.
Why you’ll love Gourmet South India
Enjoy an itinerary of vibrant cultures, exquisite cuisines, fascinating histories and rich, unique scenery.
Our journeys are designed through personal experience and tailored with passion to ensure a premium, hassle-free travel experience.
On our Gourmet South India trip, you’ll gorge on an array of delicious dishes to satisfy your inner gourmet: aromatic curries, pongal, sāmbhar, vadai, Hyderabadi biryani and south Indian coffee. You’ll dine in opulent palaces, have fun at cooking classes where you’ll learn how to blend some of the unique flavours of South India for yourself, all the while enjoying the hospitality of the South Indian people that is said to be is even warmer than an Indian summer itself.
- Take in the highlights of one of India’s most laid back and beautiful regions.
- Discover a different side to India on a trip that explores hidden waterways and jungle and rolling tea-covered mountains and spice plantations.
- Spend a night on a kettuvallam, our ‘feature stay’ houseboat, in the tranquil canals of Kerala, with your onboard chef creating fresh and flavoursome local dishes.
- Enjoy a fascinating blend of bustle and ancient temples, with lush scenic beauty and charming British Raj era houses.
- Visit Mysore, which Lonely Planet described as “one of South India’s most enchanting cities”. Its World Heritage listed palace is a delight.
- Check out the heady aromas of spices and incense in the bazaars.
- Discover palaces, temples and Portuguese architecture at every turn.
- Experience the flurry of ordered chaos and peace at magnificent temples.
- Explore beautiful seaside towns, a mix of idyllic and contemporary lifestyle and take the opportunity to experience local life.
- Dine daily on scrumptious South Indian cuisine.
Gourmet South India – Itinerary
13 Days / 12 Nights
Begin with an ethnic South Indian seafood dinner, explore the Colonial history of Kochi, visit the tea plantations of Munnar, and cruise on a traditional kettuvallam houseboat in Alleppey. You’ll enjoy lasting memories of a kathakali dance show and Keralan dinner. In Trivandrum savour a lunch at the 18th century Dutch Manor House Villa Maya. Each dish has been carefully handpicked for its cultural heritage and significance in the trading history of the region.
Day 1: Bangalore You will be met and transferred to your hotel.
Day 2: Bangalore Your walking tour will include beautiful St Marks Cathedral, Queens Park, the Government Archaeological Museum, 300-acre Cubbon Park. This evening try an ethnic South Indian seafood dinner experience on a traditional banana leaf just like the locals.
Day 3: Bangalore > Mysore Drive to Mysore via the deserted town of Srirangapatnam located on an island in the holy Kaveri River. This afternoon visit Mysore Palace, Chamundi Hill and enter the sacred Chamundershwari Temple. Enjoy a royal dinner in Lalitha Mahal Palace.
Day 4: Mysore> Ooty Drive to the hill station of Ooty, a fascinating blend of Indian bustle and ancient temples with natural flora and charming British Raj Era houses. Visit the Observatory and watch the sun set over the Nilgiri Hills. Dinner this evening is in the Summer Palace of the Maharaja of Mysore Fernhills Royal Palace.
Day 5: Ooty > Coonoor Visit the Botanical Garden and enjoy a boat ride on Pykara Lake. Visit Willy’s Coffee Pub to enjoy coffee or tea and snacks before joining the heritage steam train to Coonoor Hill Station.
Day 6: Coonoor > Kochi Visit Highfield Tea Estate this morning before driving to Cochin, one of the first European colonies in India. A Kathakali dance show and Keralan dinner will round off your day.
Day 7: Kochi Bicycle ride (or walk) on a heritage tour of Fort Kochi. As you pass the beach, witness the iconic Chinese Fishing Nets before visiting Santa Cruz Cathedral. Drive to Mattancherry Palace and visit the oldest existing Jewish Synagogue. In Jew Town, visit the Spice Markets where shopkeepers explain to you the importance of various spices. This evening join a cooking class and afterwards, taste the fruits of your labour.
Day 8: Kochi > Munnar Drive to Munnar stopping at Mundackal Estate Farm for a South Indian Cooking Class with lunch. Jose and Daisy will show you their family estate which grows everything from coconuts and cardamom to black pepper.
Day 9: Munnar Munnar was developed to cultivate spice and tea plants since the British Raj. Enjoy the area this morning and visit Eravikulam National Park for a glimpse of the rare Nilgiri Tahr. A banana leaf dinner will introduce you to the paper-thin Dosa Bread of the region.
Day 10: Munnar > Alleppey Drive to Alleppey and join your traditional kettuvallam houseboat. Set sail, relax and unwind as you cruise slowly through the narrow canals and backwaters. Join the chef on board in a cooking class with fresh caught fish.
Day 11: Alleppey > Kovalam Disembark this morning and travel to Kovalam. The afternoon is to relax at the beach.
Day 12: Trivandrum Visit the 5000-year-old temple of Padmanabhaswamy, Napier Museum and Sri Chitra Art Gallery. Savour a farewell lunch at the 18th century Dutch Manor House Villa Maya. Each dish has been carefully handpicked for its cultural heritage and significance in the trading history of the region.
Day 13: Trivandrum Transfer to the airport.