When you find yourself in the backwaters of Kerala, in southern India, you'll be astounded at how appropriate that saying is with the scenery before you. It’s not without reason that Kerala is known as‘God’s own country’. A paradise, nestled between the Western Ghats and the overwhelmingly beautiful Arabian Sea and Indian Ocean, Kerala has a little bit of everything that India has to offer.
"Right from the pristine beaches full of colourful and rich culture to delectable cuisines for you to savour, this is one holiday you must make to not just experience but rejuvenate yourself." – Lonely Planet, India 2011.
And when you can do all of this for as little as only £1199 per person, that's almost half what it usually costs, you surely need no reason to pack your bags and find yourself on the ultimate holiday.
“To awaken alone in a strange town," wrote British explorer and travel writer Freya Stark "is one of the pleasantest sensations in the world.” So what’s stopping you? Do yourself a favour and travel to the fascinating places of Kerala solo – no one to answer to, no limits and a fresh clean slate for you to splash with the colours of India! Of course, travelling by yourself doesn’t mean you will be alone – unless that is your preference. Sure, you might start your journey by yourself, but you’ll soon discover that our small-group trip allows you to explore Kerala in the company of like-minded people.
As Lonely Planet perfectly sums up: "Kerala is a world away from the frenzy of elsewhere, as if India had passed through the Looking Glass and becomes an altogether more laid-back place". Thus, naturally this part of the world attracts those looking to get up close and personal with the dazzling gems of India. You’ll enjoy the journey even more by sharing the experience with a small group of passionate travelers, over a glass of wine or meal after a packed day of treasures.
Your journey of a lifetime begins in Kochi, the glorious gateway to Kerala, then onto Munnar where you will enjoy the finest tea with new friends. Continue to Thekkady to board the wildlife viewing boat at the Periyar Tiger Reserve before setting out on an enchanting overnight house boat from Alleppey. Your final destination is Poovar where you will enjoy the "paradise" of South India, with its coconut trees and sweeping beaches!
We understand that the first step towards taking a solo holiday may feel daunting, so we're here to ensure you have the perfect adventure from the get go!
Nepal is a twinkling paradise of mystical mountain ranges and large, sloping plains which are home to an impressive range of wildlife, religious heritage and cultural charm. Tourists flock from all over the globe to this impressive central Himalayan country not only because of the interesting Hindu and Buddhist heritage flowing through its veins, but also because it houses eight of the world’s tallest mountains, including the jaw-dropping, snow-capped Mount Everest. It’s no wonder why Nepal features only too often on the bucket-lists of mountaineers, rock climbers and thrill-seekers alike.
Your 12 night trip starts in style in Kathmandu, Nepal’s largest metropolis and a hub of the country’s history, art, culture and economy. As a gateway to the Nepalese Himalayas, Kathmandu bursts with exotic landscapes and dazzling monuments, such as the Pashupatinath Temple Complex, a UNESCO World Heritage Site which,along with the Buddhist Bouddhanath holy shrine and Kathmandu Durbar Square, you’ll have the chance to scope out on your second day. You’ll also have the amazing opportunity to visit Patan, also known as Lalitpur, one of the towns which make up the Kathmandu Valley, where you’ll stand in awe at the beauty of the Monkey Temple and find yourself drawn to the enticingly beautiful Tibetan carpets on sale within the Tibetan refugee center.
After a jam-packed couple of days exploring Kathmandu’s hidden crevices and architectural sensations, you’ll take a trip to Chitwan. You will visit Chitwan National Park, whose 932 square kilometers are a haven for Bengal tigers, leopards, crocodiles, monkeys and more. Keep your eyes peeled for these sensational beasts, as well as the endangered one horn rhinos, which roam the plump grassland. In addition to marveling at the colorful flora and fauna, you can also go on elephant rides, jungle canoeing, nature walks and tiger and rhino viewing. Here you will spend 2 nights at the Jungle Villa, a leafy location right in the thick of all the glorious flora and fauna.
When you finally tire of Chitwan National Park charm, you’ll head to Pokhara, the second largest city in Nepal. As the starting point for many of the treks to the Annapurna Mountain Range, Pokhara is a lively hub of culture vultures and hiking enthusiasts. It is also home to the Phewa Lake, one of Nepal’s most idyllic spots, perfect for rowing across and gazing at the mesmerizing views of the towering peaks and dense forests which surround it.
The second portion of your trip will see you touch down in Delhi, India. From Delhi, you will be taken to the Mughal city Agra through Yamuna Expressway without complaining about an exhaustive journey through crammed roads. In Agra, you can find the UNESCO World Heritage Sites of Agra Fort however the most striking has to be the impossibly beautiful Taj Mahal which you’ll experience on day 9 of your trip. This fabulous building, built by Emperor Shah Jahan, is one of India’s most iconic symbols, displayed on millions of postcards and travel guides worldwide. If you happen to tire of its stunning backdrop and taking photos, Agra also offers a myriad of fascinating tombs and mausoleums, left behind by the Mughal Empire.
The trip concludes with a two night stay in the Pink City of Jaipur, the capital of the Indian State of Rajasthan. In 2015, TripAdvisor ranked this unparalleled jewel of Northern India as the number one Indian destination for the year in its Traveller’s Choice Awards and it doesn’t take a genius to work out why. Its colorful flamboyancy is echoed through landmarks and monuments such as the honey-colored Hawa Mahal, a five storey pyramid-shaped monument, as well as the astronomical observatory of Jantar Mantar which, along with Amer Fort, Jaipur’s star attraction, are classed as World Heritage Sites.
Towards the end of the trip you will visit the capital city Delhi. Delhi offers a wealth of temple complexes and shopping destinations, as well as three UNESCO World Heritage Sites (the Qutub Complex, Red Fort and Humayun’s Tomb) and the India Gate, a memorial to the soldiers of the British Indian Army who perished during WWI. After marveling at these impressive landmarks, as well as the Lotus Temple, the Raj Ghat and Chandni Chowk (a marketplace) you’ll then tear through the streets of Delhi on a rickshaw ride like a true Delhiite.