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Witness the sublime beauty of South India!
The tour starts in the urban metropolis of Mumbai, where you’ll experience big city life, but then slows down when you head south to Kerala. Here you’ll visit Kochi, a colonial port town known as the Queen of the Arabian Sea, stand in awe at Munnar’s majestic tea covered hills, laze about on the backwaters and relax on one of Kerala’s beaches. You’ll then head to the state of Karnataka to the village of Reality Tours co-founder Krishna, before heading back to Mumbai.
Our mission is to improve the quality of lives in the communities where we work. Like all of our tours, 80% of the profits fund Reality Gives, our education NGO based in Dharavi (Mumbai) and Sanjay Colony (Delhi). Thank you for supporting our programs by signing up for the tour!
No of people in Group
Price per Person (INR)
Welcome to the cosmopolitan metropolis of Mumbai! Your tour guide will pick you up from the airport and transfer you to your hotel in Colaba. Depending on your arrival time and how tired you are, you might want to explore the surrounding area on foot on your own or with your guide, seeing places like the Gateway of India, the Prince of Wales Museum and Marine Drive.
Over a welcome dinner at a traditional Indian rooftop restaurant, your guide will go over the itinerary for the next 14 action-packed days!
– Orientation walk in Colaba
– Welcome dinner
We will travel together to Dharavi, one of Asia’s biggest slums and the heart of small-scale industry in Mumbai. The tour of Dharavi, our company’s award-winning and signature tour, shows a balanced portrayal of life for the less privileged in Mumbai and you will learn about the NGO programs directly supported by your tour.
The rest of the day will allow time for some sightseeing of your choice such as Victoria Terminus, Haji Ali Mosque, the view of the city from Malabar Hill as well as the many different, chaotic markets that the city has to offer. You also have an option to take our Bicycle tour in the morning or Food Tour in the evening.
– Dharavi Tour
– Sightseeing Tour
– Bicycle Tour: INR 2300pp
– Food Tour: INR 2300pp
We will take a morning flight to Kochi, one of the big cities of Kerala. After checking into the hotel, in the afternoon we will visit Fort Kochi, known for its Dutch, Portuguese, and British colonial architecture. We will explore the area, spending time with some fishermen at the famous Chinese fishing nets and there will be a chance to try pulling the nets yourself!
– Orientation walk in Fort Kochi
– Chinese Fishing net experience
Today we will visit “Jew Town” where the first Jewish people settled in India and Paradesi Synagogue, the first in India. We will also visit the Dutch Palace, gifted to the Cochin Royal Family by the Dutch.
In the evening, you’ll attend an amazing Kathakali performance. Kathakali, a 17th century dance-drama that originated in Kerala, will capture you with its elaborate costumes, make-up, and most of all, complicated facial expressions.
– Tour of Jew Town
– Visit to Dutch palace
– Local guide in Kochi
– Kathakali Performance: INR 300pp
Today we will drive (6-7 hours) to Munnar in the morning. During the long, winding journey to Munnar, you will make several stops where your guide will show you many aspects of domestic and agricultural Keralan village life. We will also visit a toddy shop (liquor made from coconut sap, which you can try) and we will enjoy a delicious sea food lunch (also visited by Anthony Bourdain and Gordon Ramsey).
Arriving in Munnar in the late afternoon, from the hustle and bustle of Kochi you’ll barely recognize where you are amidst the rolling mountains, fresh air, and tea plantations stretching as far as the eye can see.
You’ll have time to get settled into your guesthouse and explore Munnar a bit on your own. You can go for a short hike or you can sit back and relax with a good book, a nice cup of tea, and enjoy the scenery.
– Visit to a local village
– Drink/Food at toddy shop: INR 200 to 500pp
Today we’ll do a full day tour in Munnar. We will visit Munnar’s tea museum to really understand what makes this hill station famous and you’ll learn how the tea transforms from a simple leaf to a piping hot cup of chai. We will also visit the very scenic Echo Point and the Rose Garden. In the evening you have an option to watch Kalaripayattu (martial art of Kerala), join a tea tasting event or learn some Kerala recipes at your hotel kitchen with the chef!!
– Tea tasting
– Cooking experience
– Entry fee to Tea Museum: INR 150pp
– Kalaripayattu Performance: INR 400pp
Today we’ll continue south from Munnar to Alleppey (5 hrs), home to some of Kerala’s most famous backwaters. Along the way, we’ll stop off at various places including a spice plantation to learn about the ingredients that make Indian cuisine so vibrant. If the season allows, we will meet some beekeepers and taste some of the local produce.
We’ll arrive in the afternoon, settle into our guesthouse, and your guide can recommend a number of restaurants for dinner in the evening after the long journey.
– Spice plantation tour
We will begin early in the morning with a visit to a local fish market, where your guide will help you choose delicious seafood to be cooked on board our very own houseboat for lunch! We’ll then make our way to the backwaters and board our kettuvallam (Keralan houseboat). It will be a relaxing day spent cruising along the backwaters, a vast network of lakes, rivers, canals, and lagoons, observing and occasionally visiting some villages and rice farms. We’ll stay overnight on the open water on our houseboat (bedrooms have en-suite bathrooms) and enjoy the Kerala style lunch, dinner and breakfast cooked by our chef on board.
– Full day stay on private houseboat cruise (seafood lunch with vegetarian options included onboard)
This morning we will check out of the houseboat and will travel to Kovalam (3 to 4 hrs). In the afternoon, you will have free time to relax on the stunning beach or you can partake in water activities, cooking classes, yoga/pilates, ayurvedic treatments and shopping.
– Water activities, cooking classes, yoga/pilates, ayurvedic treatments
Today we will go on a day trip to the very southern tip of India, Kanyakumari, where you will experience some incredible views of the Indian Ocean and Arabian sea. We will get a boat to the 41-metre-tall Thiruvalluvar Statue. In the evening we have the optional visit to Jatayu Park to see the world’s largest bird sculpture.
– Entry fee to Jatayu Park: INR 100pp
– Ropeway at Jatayu Park: INR 150pp
Today is a free day to relax on the beach or to do any of the activities mentioned on Day 9, before we climb aboard a night train (12 hrs) to take us back north to Heranjalu village, the home of Krishna, one of the founders of Reality Tours, in the state of Karnataka.
Our train will arrive in Byndoor in the early morning and from there we will take a tuk tuk to Heranjalu. After arriving we’ll have breakfast with Krishna’s family in their home, where we will be spending the next few days. Following breakfast your guide will orient you with an introductory walk through the village where you will meet the people and learn about their lives.
In the afternoon we will participate in whatever village activities are happening at the time. This could be farming, a celebration, walking to the nearby river that is central to local life, or visiting the nearby coast and backwaters. We will once again join the family for a group dinner in the evening. After dinner, we will visit a live Yakshagana performance, one of the most popular folk theatre forms of Karnataka, and learn about the history and beliefs of this cultural and religious art.
– All meals in the village
– Yakshagana performance
Today we’ll spend the morning relaxing or participating in more village activities and also visit Murudeshwar Shiva Temple, the second tallest Shiva idol in the world, before we travel back to Byndoor in the evening to catch our overnight train to Mumbai leaving at 5pm and arriving the next day at 6am in Mumbai. If you prefer to fly back to Mumbai, that is possible.
– Visit to Murudeshwara
– Lunch in a local restaurant
We will arrive in Mumbai early in the morning and this will be the last day of our tour. We will do some last minute sightseeing if you wish.
– Mumbai sightseeing
We will transfer you to the airport.
– Airport transfer
At present all our tours in South India are of fixed itinerary and duration. Unlike many operators we directly arrange all the tour services ourselves without using any agents. This makes sure we are confident in the quality of the service offered and allows us to focus on our unique local community connections in the areas visited.
Yes, we do offer private tours, but the price will need to be increased accordingly. Please get in touch for a quote!
Mumbai has an international airport (Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport). Domestic flights from Delhi and other major Indian cities are also available.
Our minimum group size is 2 and maximum is 12.
We stay in well-appointed mid range hotels, locally owned where possible. All hotels have hot water and most have Wi-Fi. Single passengers will share a twin room with another group member of the same gender if required. One night we will stay on a houseboat. You are welcome to pay extra to ensure you have a room to yourself throughout the trip – please get in touch for costs. Upgrades to 4* accommodation are available at an additional cost.
The tour package includes various meals including breakfast in the majority of our overnight hotels, several lunches and dinners.
The package includes several activities and entry fees. We also have additional suggestions for activities that aren’t included in the tour price. Please see the itinerary tab to see the included and optional activities.
A deposit payment of 20% is required. Full payment is then due by at least 60 days before tour departure. Advance payment is necessary in order to confirm the booking and can be made via bank transfer or by using our online card payment system
Yes absolutely! Our tours are minimum 2 people but for private tours we can look at providing dates that completely suit you. If you are interested in a shared tour we can often also still offer your preferred dates, guarantee the tour and invite other passengers to join.
All our tours ensure easy international and domestic flight connections before and after the tour. We do not arrange therefore but if there are any flights within your tour itinerary we do organise these and they are included within the tour cost.
All of our nearest arrival airports offer pre-paid, safe and simple taxi options to your start hotel. So we prefer to provide detailed information on this in advance rather than charge you extra unnecessarily like some operators!