Kerala - God's Own Country
16 Nights / 17 Days
Chennai (Madras) - Mettupalayam - Madhumalai - Bandipur
- Mukurthy - Ooty - Annamalai Wildlife Sanctuary - Munnar - Periyar - Cochin
Day 1: Arrive-Chennai
On arrival in Madras meet and transfer to Hotel. Stay overnight at Hotel
Day 2: Chennai
Excursion to Vedanthagal Bird Sanctuary. Board the overnight train to Mettupalpyam.
Day 3: Arrive- Mettupalpyam
Transfer to Madumalai. Late afternoon , a trek through the scrub jungles of
Madumalai Wildlife sanctuary. Overnight stay at jungle resort.
Day 4: Madumalai
Visit to deciduous forests and Madumalai Sanctuary. Overnight stay at jungle
Madumalai: Situated 67 kms away from Coimbatore, the sanctuary's dense vegetation
and favourable climate attract a variety of wild animals like Tigers, Leopards,
Elephants, Deer, Snakes, and birds. Elephant rides are a major draw. Dormitory
and hotel accommodation are available within the sanctuary.
Day 5 : Madumalai - Bandipur - Madumalai
Day excursion to Bhandipur Wildlife Sanctuary. Overnight stay at jungle resort.
Bandipur National Park is one of India's best known sanctuaries, and is an
important Project Tiger reserve. It is located in the Chamarajanagar district
of southern Karnataka in south India, and is contiguous with the Mudumalai
National Park in the neighbouring state of Tamil Nadu, the Wynad Wildlife
Sanctuary in Kerala, and the Nagarhole National Park to the northwest.
Bandipur National Park's altitude between 680-1454 metres and is situated
south of the Kabini river at the foothills of the Western Ghats.The rivers
of Kabini, Nagur and Moyar flow through the reserve.Climate - Winter minimum
10, Summer maximum 28 degrees, Monsoon from June to September and best time
to visit is open throughout the year but preferably in monsoon when wildlife
is plenty and forest is green. Greenery is quite lean when viewed from road
but gets thicker as we proceed into the forest.
Day 6: Madumalai-Mukurthy
Drive to Mukurthy Wild life Sanctuary, on arrival check in jungle resort. Overnight
stay at jungle resort. Mukurthi National Park is a national park located in
the state of Tamil Nadu in India. Location is in the south-eastern corner of
the Nilgiris Plateau close to Ooty.Situated along Western Ghats, it is home
to an array of endangered wildlife, including Royal Bengal Tiger and Asian Elephant.
But its main attraction is the Nilgiri Thar (Nilgiritragus hylocrius). In fact
the park was previously known as Nilgiri Thar National Park. The park is a part
of Nilgiri Biosphere Reserve, India's first Biosphere Reserve The peaks of this
park straddle the well-known Silent Valley National Park of Kerala. Notable
among them is Mukurthi peak, which stands about 8380 feet above the sea.
Day 7: Mukurthy
Explore Shola forest. Overnight stay at jungle resort.
Day 8: Mukurthy-Ooty
Drive to Ooty, on arrival in Ooty
Now known as the "Queen of the Hill Station", Ooty or
Udhagamandalam Is the capital of Nilgari district of the southern Indian state
of Tamil Nadu. The history of this region goes back to the reign of Hoysalas
who ruled this region during 12th century. The Nilgari region came under the
control of British by the treaty of Srirangapatnam, which they had signed with
Tipu Sultan in 1799. British started their settlement in this plateau in 1822
and the then collector of Coimbatore constructed the Stone House. It is now
locally called the "Kala Bangla" and is the office of the Principal
of the Government Arts College.
Day 9: Ooty-Annamalai
Drive to Annamalai: Drive to Annamalai Wildlife Sanctuary. On arrival in Annamalai
Wildlife Sanctuary check in lodge. Stay overnight at Lodge.
Day 10: Annamalai Wildlife Sanctuary
Trip to elephant camps and forest. Overnight at Lodge.
Day 11: Annamalai Wildlife Sanctuary
Trip to Anagundi and Varagaliarrain forests. Overnight stay at Lodge.
Day 12:Annamalai Wildlife Sanctuary
Trip to Parambikulam wildlife Sanctuary. Overnight stay at Lodge. Lying adjacent
to the Annamalai Wildlife Sanctuary, the 285 sq km stretch of forest known as
the Parambikulam Sanctuary is one of Kerala's premier wildlife reserves. Parambikulam
lies in the Annamalai Hills, south of the Palghat Gap in the Western Ghats.
The area's hilly and rocky, drained by several rivers, including the Parambikulam,
the Sholayar and the Thekkedy Thickly forested with stands of bamboo, sandalwood,
rosewood and teak, the sanctuary has some marshy land and scattered patches
of grassland. Parambikulam was once home to some of south India's finest stands
of teak; most of these, however, have now been replaced by teak plantations.
Little remains of the original teak forests, other than the famous Kannimari
teak tree, the largest in Asia. The tree is about 5 km from Thunakadavu, and
is one of Parambikulam's prime attractions. Parambikulam's animal species include
many of India's most prominent mammals: tigers, leopards, wild dogs, sloth bears,
elephants, wild boar, barking deer, spotted deer, langurs and macaques. Parambikulam
is also home to Kerala's largest population of gaur. Besides these, civet, chevrotain,
pangolin, crocodile, jungle cat, porcupine and some 140 species of birds are
found in the sanctuary. Although the larger cats are few and far between, gaur,
monkeys and deer are fairly common in the sanctuary.
Day 13: Annamalai Wildlife Sanctuary - Munnar
Drive to Munar. En-route visit Chinnar Sanctuary. On arrival in Munar check
in Hotel. Stay overnight at Hotel.
Day 14: Munnar-Periyar
Drive to Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary. Stay overnight at Hotel.
Munnar is situated at the confluence of three mountain streams namely Mudrapuzha,
Nallathanni and Kundala. This hill station, located at an altitude of 1600 m
above sea level, was once the summer resort of the erstwhile British government
in South India. Sprawling tea plantations, picture book towns, winding lanes
and holiday facilities make this a popular resort town. Among the exotic flora
found in the forests and grasslands is the 'Neelakurinji'. This flower which
bathes the hills in blue every twelve years will bloom next in 2006 AD. Munnar
also has the highest peak in south India, Anamudi, which towers over 2695 m.
Anamudi is an ideal spot for trekking
Day 15: Periyar
Cruise on Lake Periyar. Overnight stay at Hotel.
One of the well known wildlife sanctuaries in the south, Periyar
sanctuary attracts a large number of nature lovers every year. Also called the
Thekkady Wildlife Sanctuary, this place is ideal for watching the animals in
their natural habitat.
The forest here, slopes into the manmade lake at the bottom of the hill. This
lake serves as the waterhole for the animals and they come here to drink or
take a dip. Elephants, Gaur, Sambhar and even tigers can be spotted here. There
are boat services which takes the visitor around the lake. The best season to
visit the park is between October and June. Spread over 777 sq.km of the Cardamom
Hills of Western Ghats, the Periyar sanctuary is located 137 km from Madurai.
Although an excursion on the splendid artificial lake is the standard way to
experience the sanctuary, you can also walk around with the local guide in a
small group. Wild Elephant herds come to the lake to frolic in the water. Other
attractions of the sanctuary are the Sambhar, Bison, Spotted Deer, Tigers, Leopards,
Malabar Flying Squirrels, Stripe necked Mongooses, etc. There are over 260 species
of birds here, including Nilgiri Wood Pigeons, blue-winged Parakeets, White
bellied Tree Pies, laughing Thrushes and Fly Catchers.
Day 16: Periyar-Cochin
Drive to Cochin, on arrival in Cochin check in Hotel. Stay overnight at Hotel.
Cochin set on a cluster of islands and narrow peninsulas, the port city of Cochin
(Kochi) (Queen of Arabia) reflects the eclecticism of Kerala perfectly. With
a rich past and a bustling present, it has been the business hub of the region
from the very early days after Alleppey (Alappuzha). Cochin consists of mainland
Ernakulam, the islands of Willington, Bolgatty and Gundu in the harbour, Fort
Cochin and Mattancherry on the southern peninsula, and Vypeen Island north of
Fort Cochin, all was linked by ferry but now some islands have bridges. The
influence of Chinese, Jews, Arabs and Europeans is evident in Cochin and its
people. The oldest church in India, 500-year-old Portuguese houses, and old
tiled houses built in the Chinese pagoda style, the famous Chinese fishing nets,
a Jewish community whose roots go back to the Diaspora, synagogues and mosques
all tell the fascinating story of this harbor town. The harbor is still at the
heart of the city and pepper, sea food, rubber and coir mats and matting are
exported from here. Despite this, Cochin is an attractive city with serene creak
& lagoons overhung with feathery coconut palms and picturesque islands.
The older parts of Fort Cochin and Mattanchery are an unlikely blend of medieval
Portugal, Holland and an English country village grafted onto the tropical Malabar
coast. Cochin is one of India's largest ports and a major naval base.
Day 17: Depart-Cochin
Transfer to airport for flight to onwards journey.