Tour 3: Exploring Kerala and Optional Yoga & Wellness Retreat
Exploring Kerala (14 days) plus optional extra Yoga & Wellness Retreat (7 days)
From glistening backwaters to traditional homestays, discover the radiant beauty of Southern India and immerse yourself in authentic cultural experiences with Pure Kerala Tours.
Soak up Kerala’s lush landscapes, boat through tranquil backwaters and immerse yourself in local life at a Brahmin homestay. Pick fresh tea leaves, watch ancient religious rituals and learn about traditional Indian dance, art and music. Stay at a tea field on the edge of the jungle, a 300 year old farm homestay and a peaceful island resort. With unique experiences and exclusive accommodation, we’ll take you away from the tourists and dive deep into local culture.
Whether you watch, touch, hear or taste, India is a true feast for the senses. But don’t worry; there’s plenty of time to relax as well. It simply wouldn’t be India without yoga, glorious beaches and Ayurvedic massage.
Not quite ready to leave? Treat yourself to another week in this beautiful country and unwind at our Optional Yoga & Wellness Retreat. Enjoy a restful stay at a private royal heritage homestead, and submerge yourself in massage, yoga and an assortment of handpicked activities designed to rejuvenate your body and mind.
Exploring Kerala (14 days)
- Start Kochi (Cochin). Arrive at Kochi airport and get whisked away to the intricate network of sparkling waterways, quiet canals and tranquil lagoons in Alleppey. Often referred to as the Venice of the East, a soothing boat ride through these beautiful backwaters to your accommodation is all part of the experience, and the perfect start to your two week tour. After a long flight, there’s nothing better than a gentle boat ride in one of the most serene and charming regions of Kerala!
- We will spend two days relaxing in this mesmerising watery world, where you can enjoy a rejuvenating massage and watch the sun set over the ocean with fresh toddy (an alcoholic beverage made using the sap of a coconut tree). We’ll also visit a traditional fish auction and a local who makes boats the old fashioned way, by hand.
Accommodation: 2 nights at a peaceful island resort set amongst the beautiful backwaters.
- Our next stop is historical Kochi (also known as Cochin) in the Ernakulum district. Steeped in the history and culture of local and foreign traders who settled here throughout the ages, Kochi is widely known as the commercial or economic capital of Kerala. Having played host to travellers, explorers and traders over the past 600 years, Kochi presents an intriguing and exotic blend of ancient mosques, Portuguese style houses, remains from the British Raj, 400-year-old synagogues and enormous Chinese fishing nets. It’s certainly an eye opener! We’ll visit a number of heritage buildings, a Jewish synagogue and a selection of churches, and take a tour of the local Folk and Art Museum.
Accommodation: 2 nights in a heritage hotel.
- A train journey is a must on any trip to India, so we’ll make our way north as the locals do, on a passenger train. After a four hour train journey, we’ll disembark and travel for 45 minutes by car to our Brahmin farm homestay.
- We’ll spend two nights on a traditional farm, immersing ourselves in local life and learning about the Brahmin people of Kerala (priests, teachers and protectors of sacred learning). Witness a unique and fascinating religious ritual and meet a traditional family who have an extensive collection of Kathakali dress and ornaments. Mingle with talented village artisans and dive deep into the art and culture of their religion.
Accommodation: 2 nights on a 300-year-old traditional farm (homestay).
- A stay on the spectacular River Nila is a real treat. During breakfast we may even be lucky enough to see elephants bathing in the river! We’ll spend one night here, where you will visit a popular local community centre which shines a spotlight on traditional art forms, music and dance. We’ll also enjoy authentic folk music performed on bamboo drums by a distinguished local music group.
Accommodation: 1 night in a comfortable hotel overlooking the River Nila.
- Our adventure continues in the Kannur district, a traditional coastal village where you can adopt the local fishermen’s way of life and enjoy some truly authentic experiences. Visit a local market, stop at the local weaving mill and see the largest fort in Kerala and a must see in this region. However, the real highlight of our stay here will be the opportunity to participate in the colourful ritualistic performance of Theyyam at a local temple. There will also be plenty of time to relax, perhaps with a yoga class or a swim in the ocean.
Accommodation: 3 nights in traditional Kerala cottages, in a quiet east coast beach resort.
- From our beach resort we head inland to the rolling hills and lofty peaks of Wayanad. This lush green rural district is home to nature reserves, walking trails, wildlife sanctuaries, tea and coffee plantations and rice fields. We might even spot some monkeys as we’re driving through this beautiful landscape!
- We arrive at a scenic and lesser known tea estate plantation that will be our home for the next three days. Right by the edge of a dense jungle, wake up to the sounds of birdsong every morning and truly immerse yourself in tropical Kerala. We’ll spend our days breathing the fresh mountain air, helping the tea workers on the plantations and taking a jeep ride to explore the local area.
Accommodation: 3 nights in a tea plantation at the edge of the jungle.
- Unless you’re joining us on our seven day Yoga & Wellness retreat, this is your final day with the group. We make our way back to the coast, where we’ll visit one of India’s very first spice markets and do some last minute shopping. We wave goodbye to some members of the group as they head home, while those staying on can start looking forward to our wellness retreat!
Optional Yoga & Wellness Retreat
Nestled in an exclusive and private location, we will spend approximately one week in a royal heritage homestead dating back to the 1850s, submerging ourselves in a range of relaxing activities designed to rejuvenate the mind and body. (Retreat is for 7 days approx.)
Yoga and Ayurveda Retreat | Northern Kerala
Wellness activities include:
- Waking up to a daily morning yoga class to begin your day refreshed and rejuvenated.
- Indulging in yoga and meditation sessions in the dedicated on-site yoga room.
- Taking courses in yoga, ranging from basic to advanced.
- Enjoying a range of relaxing massage and Ayurveda therapies.
- Fuelling your body with delicious vegetarian cuisine.
- Watching or participating in occasional performances of traditional Kerala art forms.
- Taking daily relaxing walks within the retreat and in the local surrounds.
- Enjoy drives to the splendid beaches and hills in and around Calicut.
- Going on day trips (full day or part day) to local places of interest.
- Plus other local cultural activities.
Your retreat package includes:
- Accommodation in a single/ double room.
- All meals and beverages during your stay.
- Five yoga sessions per person with an experienced yoga teacher.
- A visit with staff to the local spice market.
- A traditional Kalahari dance performance.
Pricing: This one week retreat is an optional extra. As a guide, the estimated cost for 6 days / 5 nights is $1200 AUD per person. Please note the final itinerary may run for 7 days / 6 nights. This will be confirmed at the time of your initial enquiry.
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Upcoming Tour Dates
To be confirmed due to Covid-19
Cost of Tour
Cost per person
Twin share: $5,500 AUD 14 days Kerala (approx.) (minimum of 6 people)
Single occupancy: $6,000 AUD 14 days Kerala (approx.) (minimum of 6 people)
Twin Share: $1,200 AUD 6 days Yoga and Wellness Retreat (approx.)
- Return flights – group departing from Melbourne.
- All accommodation and transport.
- Airport transfers with group.
- Guides & entrance fees to historical sites.
- Meals as listed.
- *Slight variations may occur on tour
- Visa and passport fees.
- Travel insurance.
The Optional Yoga & Wellness Retreat
- Costs associated with the yoga and wellness retreat week are not included in the tour price.
- Pricing for this aspect of the trip will be confirmed at the time of your initial enquiry.
- As a guide, the estimated cost for 6 days / 5 nights is $1200 AUD per person.