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View Price & Dates
$2,349 AUD

* Please click here to read our payment terms

** Prices subject to change

  • $2,349 AUD
  • $3,049 AUD
  • $4,149 AUD
India - Paradise Found - 12 Day Kerala Private Tour - is currently on backorder. You may still purchase now though and we'll ship as soon as more become available.
Travelbay Tours - Inclusions - Meals

20 x Meals
11 breakfasts,
1 lunch, 8 dinners

Travelbay Tours - Inclusions - transport

Private Transport
All transport in a private air-conditioned vehicle

Travelbay Tours - Inclusions - Accommodation

Accommodation
10 nights accommodation in hotels of your choice of star rating + 1 night on houseboat

Travelbay Tours - Inclusions - Tour guides

Private Tour Guides
Your own personal English speaking tour guide in each location


Travelbay Tours - Inclusions - Included activities

Included activities with your personal guide:
Overnight on a houseboat in Alleppey ~ Tour of Kochi including the Chinese fishing nets, Jew Town and the spice markets ~ Visit the Wayanad Wildlife Sanctuary - spot elephants, bison, monkeys and more ~ Enjoy a spice plantation visit ~ Learn about scrumptious Keralan cuisine with a cooking demonstration ~ Visit a tea plantation in Munnar, famous for its picturesque tea fields ~ Explore Eravikulam National Park, home to the unique and rare Nilgiri thar (mountain goat) ~ Relax on Kovalam Beach


Itinerary

Click on the headings below to see details for each day.

Intro

National Geographic featured Kerala as one of the 50 greatest places of a lifetime under their paradise found section, with very good reason!

The Southern state of Kerala stretches along the tropical Malabar Coast - famed for its palmfringed golden sand beaches, its network of backwaters and canals and the spice, tea and coffee plantations of the Western Ghats. It is a gorgeous place to visit and is also home to tantalising cuisine, abundant native wildlife, birdlife and many other treats.

Day 1: Arrival in Kochi  

Your journey begins in the bustling port city of Kochi, also known as Cochin. On arrival you will be met at the airport and transferred to your hotel for check in.

Spend the rest of the day at your leisure.

Overnight in Kochi: Casino Hotel / Dutch Bungalow or similar - Standard room (Standard); Old Lighthouse Bristow or similar Heritage Hotel - Standard room (Deluxe); Brunton Boat Yard / Taj Malabar or similar - Standard Sea Facing room (Super Deluxe)

Meals included: Dinner

Day 2: Discover Kochi and its blend of cultures  

Enjoy a tour in the morning and discover what an interesting mix and blend of cultures Kochi is home to. Chinese, Judaism, Portuguese, Dutch and of course the British have all left their mark on this tropical port off the Malabar coast. It makes for a wonderful city to explore.

Travelbay India Tours - Chinese fishing nets, Kochi, Kerala

Some of the main sights covered will be the Chinese fishing nets, the Vaniar Dhobi unit, the Dutch Palace, the Paradesi Synagogue, the oldest in India, built in 1568), and the vibrant spice markets, still going strong after hundreds of years. The quaint Old Dutch houses around Jew Town are now home to boutiques and antique shops.

Spend the afternoon at your leisure. In the evening enjoy a Kathakali dance performance, the ancient pantomime dance drama of Kerala. Arrive a little early to see the performers getting ready for the night's performance - a fascinating experience.

Optional extra: This evening, rather than having the usual dinner, you can choose to partake in a cooking demonstration followed by dinner with a local culinary expert where you will learn the intricacies of cooking Keralan cuisine. The cost of this is AUD $30 per person.

*Please note: The Dutch Palace is closed on Saturdays and the Paradesi Synagogue is closed on Fridays and Saturdays. We recommend starting this tour any day of the week except for Thursdays and Fridays.  

Overnight in Kochi: Casino Hotel / Dutch Bungalow or similar - Standard room (Standard); Old Lighthouse Bristow or similar Heritage Hotel - Standard room (Deluxe); Brunton Boat Yard / Taj Malabar or similar - Standard Sea Facing room (Super Deluxe)

Meals included: Breakfast and dinner

Day 3: Travel to Wayanad - one of the most beautiful parts of Kerala

This morning you will be taken to the train station for your train to Kozhikhode. Travel on the Jan Shatabdi Express in Air-Conditioned Chair Car Class. The train departs at 9:35am and arrives at 12:55pm where you will be met by your driver and driven to Wayanad (approximately 2 hours).

Travelbay India Tours - Wayanad

Wayanad is considered one of the most beautiful parts of Kerala. Located in the Western Ghats and set along the higher slopes of the Nilgiri Biosphere. The lush green forests, valleys and winding roads make it a truly wonderful place to visit.

Spend the evening at your leisure relaxing or perhaps take a wander around the area at your own pace.

Overnight in Wayanad: Vythri Village Resort or similar - Standard room (Standard); The Woods or similar - Deluxe room (Deluxe); Windflower or similar - Deluxe room (Super Deluxe)

Meals included: Breakfast and dinner

Day 4: Wayanad Wildlife Sanctuary & spice plantation

Wayanad is famous for its spice plantations and after breakfast you will be taken to visit a plantation. Wander through plantations of cardamom, cinnamon, pepper, ginger and vanilla. Learn about the plants and what's involved in cultivating and processing these spices.

Travelbay India Tours - Wayanad Wildlife Sancutary

In the late afternoon join a tour of the nearby wildlife sanctuary to spot wildlife - Asiatic elephants, Indian bison, deer, monkeys and more. Depending on the amount of visitors to the sanctuary you may have a driver and a spotter or you may simply have a driver who doubles as a guide. Their English may not be fluent but this does not hinder their wildlife spotting skills.

Overnight in Wayanad: Vythri Village Resort or similar - Standard room (Standard); The Woods or similar - Deluxe room (Deluxe); Windflower or similar - Deluxe room (Super Deluxe)

Meals included: Breakfast and dinner

Day 5: Discover Palakkad, the land of palm trees and paddy fields

Travelbay India Tours - Palakkad

After breakfast, you will be collected from your hotel for the drive to Palakkad (around 5 hours). Enjoy the Keralan scenery along the way.

On arrival in Palakkad you will be taken to Kandath Tharavad, your accommodation for the evening.

Kandath Tharavad is a traditionally built 200 year old house in a village on the outskirts of Palakkad. During your stay at this typical Keralan house, your host, Mr Bhagwaldas or Bugs will be there to welcome you and show you around. Enjoy walks around the village, see basket weaving, pottery, toddy tapping (making local coconut liquor ‐ seasonal) and if time permits visit a local Kalari Martial Arts School.

For those feeling a little more adventurous there are bikes available at the homestay for you to use. Other activities for you to enjoy include Ayurvedic massage, yoga, meditation and dance classes. All these activities can be booked at your own expense with the homestay directly.

In the evening there is a cooking demonstration where you can learn about the intricacies of cooking Tharavad dishes ‐ a Keralan cuisine native to this region.

Overnight in Palakkad: Kandath Tharavad (Heritage Home Stay) - Standard room/Mini suite/Suite (Standard/Deluxe/Super Deluxe)

Meals included: Breakfast and dinner

Day 6: Travel to the tea country of Munnar

Travelbay India Tours - Munnar

After a leisurely breakfast, you will be driven to the tea country of Munnar (approximately a 4 hour drive). A hill station at a height of 1525 metres, Munnar offers incredible views of the surrounding hills covered in tea plantations. Surrounding the rolling hills are rich tropical forests filled with exotic flora & fauna.

The quiet atmosphere and pleasant climate of Munnar make for a very welcoming stay.

Overnight in Munnar: Deshadan Mountain Resort or similar - Standard room (Standard); Windflower/ Mountain Resort or similar - Deluxe room (Deluxe); Windermere Estate - Estate room (Super Deluxe)

Meals included: Breakfast and lunch or dinner

Day 7: Visit a tea plantation & Eravikulam National Park

This morning visit a Tea Plantation and Tea Museum. Remember to have your camera ready as the views all around are quite something to behold!

Travelbay India Tours - Eravikulam National Park, Nilgiri thar

Later in the afternoon visit Eravikulam National Park. The park is home to the rare and endangered Nilgiri thar (a mountain goat), birds, butterflies and more. With great views of Anamudi Peak (the highest in South India) and the surrounding mountains and hills, visiting the park is a delight.

Please note: The National Park is closed for around 30-40 days during the breeding period. This is usually between January and February but can extend into early March. For tours during this time of year, a visit to the local spice markets will be arranged.

Overnight in Munnar: Deshadan Mountain Resort or similar - Standard room (Standard); Windflower/ Mountain Resort or similar - Deluxe room (Deluxe); Windermere Estate - Estate room (Super Deluxe)

Meals included: Breakfast and lunch or dinner

Day 8: Board your houseboat and cruise the backwaters of Alleppey

Drive down the hills of the Western Ghats (mountain range) for around 4 hours to the backwaters of Alleppey. Set on Vembanad Lake, this is one of Kerala’s most beautiful spots and where you board your Houseboat.

Travelbay India Tours - Houseboat, Alleppey

Enjoy cruising in the labyrinthine waterways and see local village life as it has been for years - fisherman casting their nets, children coming home from school by canoe, and ‘toddy tappers’ men who can scale the tallest coconut palms in order to extract the sap.

A note on the houseboats or kettuvallam as they are called:

These are traditional boats made out of wood, bamboo, coconut fibre, jute, coir etc and have air-conditioned rooms with an ensuite toilet and shower. There are 2 - 4 bedrooms depending on the size of your group and houseboat and each boat has a kitchen where the cook prepares the meals, plus a big open area with a dining table and sitting area with sofas and chairs.

After you board your boat there is usually a short cruise before the boat is moored at a place where lunch is served. After lunch the cruise again begins through the narrow canals and stops are made to show you the local life. The boat is again moored around sunset and this is where dinner is prepared and then served. The boats stay put for the night and there is no cruising during the night. In the morning after breakfast the boat again starts cruising before returning to the jetty.  

Overnight in Alleppey: Standard AC Houseboat - Standard room (Standard); Deluxe AC Houseboat - Standard room (Deluxe); Premium AC Houseboat - Standard room (Super Deluxe)

Meals included: Breakfast, lunch and dinner

Day 9: Travel to the palm fringed beach Kovalam

Travelbay India Tours - Kovalam beach

After a leisurely breakfast, cruise through the narrow backwater canals towards your boat jetty. Along the way, relax and watch the local villagers working in the rice fields, ferries plying their trade and local fisher folk fishing as you pass by. Disembark your boat and drive for 5 hours to Kovalam, one of the most popular palm fringed beaches of Kerala.

Overnight in Kovalam: Isolo Di Coco or similar resort - Cottage room (Standard); Travancore Heritage Beach Resort - (Deluxe); Surya Samudra Niraamaya Resort or similar - Rock Garden room (Super Deluxe)

Meals included: Breakfast

Day 10: Relax at leisure in Kovalam

Spend your day at leisure in Kovalam.

Travelbay India Tours - Kovalam beach 2

You may like to enjoy some local Ayurvedic treatments, a stroll on the beach, a bicycle ride through the surrounding area or you may prefer to simply relax and delight in the pleasures of a day at the beach.

Overnight in Kovalam: Isolo Di Coco or similar resort - Cottage room (Standard); Travancore Heritage Beach Resort - Heritage Home (Deluxe); Surya Samudra Niraamaya Resort or similar - Rock Garden room (Super Deluxe)

Meals included: Breakfast

Day 11: Enjoy the beach, resort and surrounding area

Spend the day as you wish enjoying the resort, the beach and the surrounds of Kovalam.  

Overnight in Kovalam: Isolo Di Coco or similar resort - Cottage room (Standard); Travancore Heritage Beach Resort - Heritage Home (Deluxe); Surya Samudra Niraamaya Resort or similar - Rock Garden room (Super Deluxe)

Meals included: Breakfast

Day 12: Time to go home or onto your next adventure

This morning you will be driven to Trivandrum (45 minute journey) and taken to the airport in time for your flight home or onto your next destination.

Meals included: Breakfast

Additional details

*All accommodation and hotels are subject to change. If the stated hotel is not available a hotel of a similar standard will be booked.

This is a Private Tour and on arrival you will be met by your personal guide. In each location you may have a different guide.

The size of the vehicle used will depend on how many people you are. For further details: you can read about the cars, minibuses and mini coaches we use in India here.

If you would like a quote for your international flights to and from India, please let us know. Likewise, if you would like any stopovers or travel insurance, we would be happy to provide you with a quote.

Click here to download printable itinerary.

This is a Private Tour with your own private vehicle and personal guides and drivers.

View more India Tours here.

Travelbay India Tours - 12 Day Kerala Paradise Found Private Tour Map

Want to customise this tour?

If you would like to change anything on this tour or customise it in any way, please contact us and we can assist you and provide you with a quote.

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Feel free to contact us
email: team@travelbay.com
freecall: 1800 020 020
phone: +61 2 6619 2020


Dates, Availability & Pricing

This tour can start on virtually any day of the year.

We recommend starting this tour any day of the week except for Thursdays and Fridays due to the closure of some sites in Kochi.  

When booking online you will have the option to specify the date you would like to commence your tour. Please do not book any flights until you have received confirmation from us.

There is a surcharge for travel in the months between December and February. If your holiday coincides with these dates we will let you know at the time of your booking or enquiring.

Apart from the above, the stated pricing is valid for travel until 31st April 2021. If you plan to travel after this date, please contact us for a quote.

The above pricing options for Standard, Deluxe and Super Deluxe are per person based on twin share (2 people per room). In most cases triple share is also available at the same per person price.

If you would like a single room or if you are a single traveller, please contact us for a quote.

Hotel Information

Click below to see names of the selected hotels.

Hotel details

Kochi

Standard: Casino Hotel / Dutch Bungalow or similar - Standard room
Deluxe: Old Lighthouse Bristow or similar Heritage Hotel - Standard room
Super Deluxe: Brunton Boat Yard / Taj Malabar or similar - Standard Sea Facing room

Wayanad

Standard: Vythri Village Resort or similar - Standard room
Deluxe: The Woods or similar - Deluxe room
Super Deluxe: Windflower or similar - Deluxe room

Palakkad

Standard: Kandath Tharavad - Standard room
Deluxe: Kandath Tharavad - Mini Suite
Super Deluxe: Kandath Tharavad - Suite

Munnar

Standard: Deshadan Mountain Resort or similar - Standard room
Deluxe: Windflower/ Mountain Resort or similar - Deluxe room
Super Deluxe: Windermere Estate - Deluxe Retreat - Estate room

Alleppey

Standard: Standard AC Houseboat - Standard room
Deluxe: Deluxe AC Houseboat - Standard room
Super Deluxe: Premium AC Houseboat - Standard room

Kovalam

Standard: Isolo Di Coco or similar resort - Cottage room
Deluxe: Travancore Heritage Beach Resort - Heritage Home
Super Deluxe: Surya Samudra Niraamaya Resort or similar - Rock Garden room

*All accommodation and hotels are subject to change. If the stated hotel is not available a hotel of a similar standard will be booked.

Ask a question

Thank you. We will be in contact.
This field is required
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Feel free to contact us
email: team@travelbay.com
freecall: 1800 020 020
phone: +61 2 6619 2020

Enquire

Thank you. We will be in contact.
This field is required
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Feel free to contact us
email: team@travelbay.com
freecall: 1800 020 020
phone: +61 2 6619 2020

Travelbay Vietnam Tours - Customer Reviews

WOW, best holiday ever in Asia! Our wonderful driver Sanil was a delight, got to know him and he could not do enough for us, stopping for all requests. We all loved the interaction with Sanil showing us his beautiful state of Kerala which was an awakening of all your senses. A wonderful introduction to India, the beautiful people, delicious food and amazing scenery makes me smile when I think of India.

 

Clare Killeen

Travelbay Vietnam Tours - Customer Reviews

Thank you for organising a fantastic itinerary for our holiday in Kerala, India. "God's own country" indeed!! We had a great trip. The Western Ghats were stunningly beautiful. All our accommodation was great. The staff we encountered at all places were very friendly, attentive and helpful. We loved it.

 

Debbie Eagles

Travelbay India Tours - Customer Reviews
Travelbay India Tours - Customer Reviews
Travelbay India Tours - Customer Reviews
Travelbay India Tours - Customer Reviews
Booking process

Upon purchase of your tour online you will immediately receive a receipt and order confirmation. Travelbay will contact the tour operator to confirm availability for all accommodation and transportation for your tour.

As soon as we have confirmed the dates (usually within 48 hours sometimes a little longer at weekends) we will email you your booking confirmation.

We will request further information from you to ensure that all your personal preferences are taken care of. This will include details such as your accommodation preferences, dietary requests, allergies, health issues, emergency contact and any special requirements. We will also request a copy of each traveller’s passport.

Very Important:

It is extremely rare for any of these tours to not have availability (as we remove them when full) however, it is important to note that your dates are only confirmed once we have been in touch with you to confirm availability. Therefore, please wait on purchasing your international flights until you have received booking confirmation from us.

In the unlikely event that there is no availability on your chosen date we will offer you alternate dates. If these do not suit we will fully refund your payment.


Terms & Conditions

Click on the heading below to see the Specific Terms and Conditions for this tour.

Specific Terms & Conditions

Booking Information:

  • Quoted prices are per person.
  • Booking valid for selected and booked travel dates.
  • Please book at least 30 days prior to your desired date of travel.
  • Bookings are subject to availability.
  • Child prices: please contact us for rates.
  • Minimum group size is 2.
  • The pricing options are per person based on twin share (2 people per room). In most cases triple share is also available at the same per person price. If you would like a single room or if you are a single traveller, please contact us for a quote.
  • High season surcharge applies on certain dates, please contact us for details.
  • If you would like to arrive before the start of tour or leave later and require extra nights’ accommodation, please contact us and we can arrange it for you at very reasonable rates.
  • Prior to completion of your booking we take great care to go through all the details together with you until we get everything exactly as you would like it. At that point we confirm your booking and the details and you pay for it. If after payment, you decide to make further changes we will do what we can to accommodate them and will also need to charge an additional $50 administration fee.

Inclusions:

  • 11 nights' accommodation.
    • Check-in & check-out time: generally, check in is after 2 pm and check out before 12 pm. Early check-in and late check-out are subject to room availability and may generate additional full day room rate.
  • 20 meals as per itinerary - 11 breakfasts, 1 lunch, 8 dinners.
  • All airport transfers - by private car. When you arrive in Kochi you will be met by a guide and driver at the airport. When taken to the airport in Trivandrum for departure, you will be with your driver only (no guide).
    • Please note: There is one airport transfer on arrival and one airport transfer on departure for the group booked. If within your group you will be arriving separately, please contact us for a quote.
  • All transportation throughout the tour in a private air-conditioned vehicle. The vehicle used will depend on the size of your group and will range from an air-conditioned car for groups of 2, a Toyota Innova for groups of 3, a minivan for groups of 4-10 people and for groups over 10 a coach will be used.
  • Train ride from Kochi to Kozhikhode (for Wayanad).
  • English speaking guides (in each location you will have a different guide).
  • Entrance and sightseeing fees as stated in the itinerary.
  • Free wifi available at the hotel lobby.
  • Mineral water on tour days.
  • Taxes and service fees.

Exclusions:

  • International airfares to and from India.
  • Meals not outlined in the itinerary.
  • Drinks for all meals.
  • Travel insurance. Please contact us if you would like a quote.
  • Surcharge for high season and special departure dates.
  • Indian visa.
  • Early check-in and late check-out at hotels.
  • Tips and gratuities.
  • Personal expenses such as telephone, laundry etc.
  • Any additional taxes levied by the Government of India on the tourism sector in future will be payable by the guest.
  • Any sudden increase in the entrance fee. The price is based on the presently applicable fee.
  • Cost incidental to any change in the itinerary/ stay on account of flight cancellation due to bad weather, ill health, roadblocks and/or any factors beyond control.
  • Others not indicated in the inclusions.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is my departure guaranteed?

Once you have paid for your booking and received confirmation of your travel dates from Travelbay, your holiday is guaranteed on your chosen departure date - except in cases of major weather events and alike in which case we do our best to adjust your holiday accordingly.

How much is the tour?

Travelbay provides Standard, Deluxe and Super Deluxe pricing options, based on twin share (2 people per room). Please see the pricing at the top of the page. In most cases triple share is also available at the same per person price. If you would like a single room or if you are a single traveller, please contact us for a quote.

Can I add extra nights?

Yes, with pleasure. Just let us know how many extra nights you would like either before or after and we will arrange for you to stay at the same hotel and let you know the cost of the extra nights.

Arriving early or staying on won't affect your airport transfers - if you're staying at the same hotel and we book it for you, we'll collect you when you arrive and take you to the airport when it's time for your departure flight.

If you want to add on extra tours on your additional days, please contact us for options.

Can I change the itinerary?

Yes, we can alter the itinerary for you so that you get exactly what you are after.

We can provide you with a quote for any changes you wish to make.

What is the size of the group?

This tour is a Private Tour. It will be only you and your travel companions in the group and you will travel in a private vehicle with your own personal driver and guide.

Do you have single traveller pricing?

Yes, please contact us for a quote.

Can we do triple share?

Yes, triple share is available. Please contact us for a quote.

Do I need any vaccinations?

We recommend you check with your doctor as to any immunisations that you may require or that are recommended for your travels. Alternatively, you can visit The Travel Doctor or Travelvax for more information.

Do I need a visa for India?

It is your responsibility to ensure you have obtained a valid visa prior to travel. Most nationalities require a visa when travelling to India. You need to apply for and receive your visa before you depart.

To find out the visa requirements for India, you can check here with Visalink.

To obtain your visa you can use the services on the same link, or you may wish to apply directly yourself.

In addition to the above link, we have provided some more information on visas for India here: Visa Information page.

Please note: We attempt to provide you with the latest information and links. However, please be aware that it is each traveller’s responsibility (and not Travelbay’s) to ensure that you have a valid visa if required for any country you visit. We recommend checking the visa requirements before you go.

Is tipping customary and how much do I tip?

Tipping is entirely at your discretion.

In response to some customers questions here are a few guidelines:

It is usual to tip the waiters, porters, guides and drivers. Tips are not included in the bills for hotels, transport companies or any other suppliers. At hotels and restaurants, about 10% of the bill is usually acceptable. Tipping is not necessary for taxis or for cheaper restaurants. It is a good idea to check if service charges are included in your restaurant bill. If not, a tip of 10% of the total bill is normal.

Although we give below a few general guidelines, it is to be remembered that tipping is a sign of gratification for good service, and therefore please view the guidelines as the middle ground, which can be adjusted depending on the level of service you feel you have received.

Please note the below amounts are per person for individual travellers.

  • Guide (Full Day) Rs 500 – Rs 800 per day
  • Guide (Half Day) Rs 400 – Rs 600 per day
  • Tour Escort Rs 500 – Rs 1000 per day
  • Driver for the tour Rs 300 – Rs 500 per day
  • Driver for local duties Rs - 500 per day
  • Bell Boy Rs 30 – Rs 50 per member of staff
  • Room Service & Restaurants: about 10% of the bill total (Unless service charge is mentioned as included)

Tipping tip: It can be handy to have small notes for tipping.

What is internet access like in India?

WIFI access is common in the cities. In smaller towns and rural villages, internet access may be less common.

Whilst you can find internet cafes in the cities, most of our customers access the internet via their mobile phone or device using mobile sim cards or connecting to WIFI.

Hotels and many good restaurants offer free WIFI (sometimes there is small charge in restaurants). In smaller towns you may find internet cafes but there are no such facilities in rural villages. Here you can access internet with your mobile phone although the network may be a bit erratic.

Can I use my mobile phone in India?

Mobile reception is generally good in urban areas and big cities. Mountainous and more remote areas may not have very good network coverage. You can use your mobile phone in India, however you will need to check with your mobile carrier at home about roaming and other charges and make sure global roaming is activated before you leave home. If your phone is not on a plan you may prefer to purchase and insert a local SIM card for your time in India. It is best to buy a SIM card in the larger cities (eg Delhi, Mumbai, Kochi etc) and you will need to show your passport and visa upon purchase.

What currency do they use in India and can I get money out of an ATM?

The currency used in India is the Indian Rupee.

What currency to take over there is a personal choice. Some people prefer to take US$ cash as a backup whilst others prefer to take AUD$ cash – it depends on what you are comfortable with. Remember to always have your passport with you as identification when changing money.

There are ATM machines available in the large cities. In smaller towns and villages there may be fewer (or none) available.

Well-known credit cards such as Visa, MasterCard and American Express are accepted in hotels, restaurants and in larger shops. Smaller shops, market stalls and in more rural places, there may not be credit card facilities.  

We recommend letting your bank know that you will be using your card in India to avoid them freezing any 'suspicious' activity.

When is the best time to travel to India?

Due to the size of India, there is a big variation in the weather.

A popular time to visit is from September to April when the temperatures are cooler.

If travelling in the North, the summer months (June - August) are hot, especially in the dry areas such as Rajasthan.

Diwali and Holi are festivals in India and during this time people come out to celebrate. Diwali falls in October and is the festival of lights. Holi is also known as the Festival of Colours and is celebrated in March. Accommodation can fill up quickly so we recommend booking in advance - it can be a great time to enjoy the festivities with the locals.

What clothing should I pack?

Depending on the season you are travelling in, pack accordingly - the summer months are hot and in the winter time it can be chilly. If you are going up into the mountains you'll need warmer clothes and the early morning starts on wildlife safaris can be fresh.

Some parts of India are Muslim and we recommend wearing shorts, dresses and skirts that cover at least your knees as well as covering your shoulders. You may find it useful to take a scarf or shawl with you in the car in case you need to cover up.

It's always a good idea when travelling to have layers and comfortable shoes to cover all eventualities.

What type of adaptor plug do I need for India?

For India there are three plug types: types C, D and M.

A useful resource to find out what plug or adaptor you might need for any country can be found by clicking here: https://whatplug.info/to/ and then selecting the country or countries you are visiting.

Travel tip: Take a power board with multiple outlets. This way you can use the one adaptor and plug in multiple devices or electronics.

What happens on arrival?

When you arrive into India there will be someone waiting for you after you clear customs at the airport with a sign with your name on it. If you can’t see them inside the arrival lounge, they will be waiting just outside the doors. Sometimes they have the Travelbay logo but it is your name that you will most likely notice.

Do I need travel insurance for India?

Travelbay strongly recommends travel insurance – we are very happy to provide you with a free quote.

Can I contact you?

You most certainly can.

Whilst our official office hours are Monday to Friday - 9am to 5.30pm AET (Sydney time) we are regularly in the office outside of these hours and at weekends.

Feel free to ring at any time before 7:30pm - 7 days a week - 365 days a year. If we are busy on other calls or not available please leave a message including your phone number and area code and we will get back to you as quickly as we can.

You are also very welcome to email us on team@travelbay.com 24/7 - we check our emails regularly. We look forward to hearing from you.


India Holiday Information

India Facts

Capital City: New Delhi

Population: 1.366 billion

Languages: There is no national language in India. Hindi and English are both official languages. India has over 1,000 spoken languages. The languages with the most number of speakers are Hindi, Bengali, Telugu, Marathi and Tamil.

Currency: Indian Rupee (INR)

Time Zone: (GMT+05:30) Chennai, Kolkata, Mumbai, New Delhi

Dialling code: +91

Religion: Hinduism is the predominant followed by Islam, Christianity, Sikh, Buddhism and Jainism


India weather

Travelbay India Tours - India weather

A popular time to visit India is from October through to March. At this time, the weather across India is mostly warm and dry.

India is a large country with a huge range of varying climates. Most of the country is sub tropical with hot, humid summers and mild winters. Below is a very general overview to give you some idea of what to expect.

North India

  • Winter (October to March): The weather in the winter time in North India makes it a pleasant time to travel. It is not too hot nor is it too cold - although in some of the more alpine places it can get chilly - take some warm layers.
  • Summer (April to July): Summers can be hot in North India, particularly in May, June and July. The highs can reach 40°C and the lows drop to around 27°C.
  • Monsoon (July to September): This is when the North sees the most rain.

South India:

  • Winter (October to February): The temperatures are cooler at this time of year on the coastal regions (23°C to 32°C). The areas in the hills can be much cooler (15°C to 21°C).
  • Summer (March to May): Summers can be hot and humid in the South but sea breezes bring down the temperature and it's a great time to visit the hill stations and tea plantation areas.
  • Monsoon (June to September): The rains start in June and bring the temperatures down. The areas in the hills become misty and lush. The beaches in the South can get choppy.

How to get there

Travelbay India Tours - How to get there

This tour starts in Kochi and ends in Trivandrum.

Flights from Australia to India are approximately $900 - $1,200 per person return. The actual price varies depending on departure city, time of year and luck of the draw!

Travelbay works together with an excellent corporate flight booking company and we would be happy to provide you with a free quote.

If you choose to book your flights with Travelbay, we charge a $50 booking fee for this service.


Interesting facts on India

  • India, Pakistan and Bangladesh used to be one country. After British rule ended in 1947 these countries eventually became independent.
  • Delhi is the capital of India but Mumbai is the most populated with a population of over 20 million.
  • India prides itself on being the world's largest democracy. In the 2009 election there were over 417 million voters.


Visa information

Most nationalities require a visa when travelling to India. You need to apply for and receive your visa before you depart.

You can apply for an e-visa online or you can apply for your visa via VSF Global who works in conjunction with the Indian embassy. For more information you can visit our visa information page.

To find out the visa requirements for India, you can also check here with Visalink.

Please note: We attempt to provide you with the latest information and links. However, please be aware that it is each traveller’s responsibility (and not Travelbay’s) to ensure that you have a valid visa if required for any country you visit.


Tipping

Tipping is entirely at your discretion.

In response to some customers questions here are a few guidelines:

It is usual to tip the waiters, porters, guides and drivers. Tips are not included in the bills for hotels, transport companies or any other suppliers. At hotels and restaurants, about 10% of the bill is usually acceptable. Tipping is not necessary for taxis or for cheaper restaurants.

Although we give below a few general guidelines, it is to be remembered that tipping is a sign of gratification for good service, and therefore please view the guidelines as the middle ground, which can be adjusted depending on the level of service you feel you have received.

Please note the below amounts are per person for individual travellers.

  • Guide (Full Day): Rs 500 – Rs 800 per day
  • Guide (Half Day): Rs 400 – Rs 600 per day
  • Tour Escort: Rs 500 – Rs 1000 per day
  • Driver: Rs 300 – Rs 500 per day
  • Bell Boy: Rs 30 – Rs 50 member of staff
  • Room Service & Restaurants: about 10% of the bill total (Unless service charge is mentioned as included)

Tipping tip: It can be handy to have small notes for tipping.


Currency

Travelbay India Tours - Currency

The currency used in India is the Indian Rupee.

What currency to take is a personal choice. Some people prefer to take US$ cash as a backup whilst others prefer to take AUD$ cash – it depends on what you are comfortable with. There are ATM machines readily available in the cities.

We recommend letting your bank know that you will be using your card in India to avoid them freezing any 'suspicious' activity.


Shopping in India

There is some wonderful shopping in India and you may wish to leave space in your luggage so you can bring it home.

We personally recommend:

  • Scarves & pashminas - you can find beautiful scarves in India and real pashminas are made from a type of cashmere wool that is costly - if you are offered a cheap pashmina, it's likely it's not real.
  • Textiles - bedspreads, wallhangings, embroidered pillow cases... cotton, silk, wool... beautiful colours and intricate details. There is a huge selection to choose from.


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Below you will find reviews for this particular tour, for more reviews of India click here

Customer Reviews

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C
C.K.
WOW, best holiday ever!

WOW, best holiday ever in Asia!  From the flight into Cochin all was smooth sailing. We were welcomed at the airport by the Indian Agency representative who was delightful. Superb accommodation. Our wonderful driver Sanil was a delight, got to know him and he could not do enough for us, stopping for all requests. We all loved the interaction with Sanil showing us his beautiful state of Kerala which was an awakening of all your senses.
 
And as you strongly recommended the Marari Beach Resort was exceptional. Absolutely the best.  
 
A wonderful introduction to India, the beautiful people, delicious food and amazing scenery makes me smile when I think of India.
 

D
D.E.
Namaste! Thank you.

Namaste! Thank you for organising a fantastic itinerary for our holiday in Kerala, India. "God's own country" indeed!! We had a great trip.

We loved the scenery, the Indian people, the food and all the colour, chaos and beauty of Kerala. Our driver Sanil was fantastic and we felt comfortable and safe with him. He went out of his way to accommodate any requests from us and we felt like we had a new friend in him by the time we said goodbye to him at Marari.

The Western Ghats were stunningly beautiful. All our accommodation was great. The staff we encountered at all places were very friendly, attentive and helpful. Marari resort was fantastic. What a peaceful, relaxing and luxurious way to conclude our holiday. We can not speak highly enough of the resort and all the staff working there. We loved it.

Thank you ("Nanni")