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Classic Kerala

Cochin, Munnar, Thekkady, Kanam, Backwaters & Marari Beach

From the bustling fort city of Cochin to the serene backwaters, the breathtaking Cardamom hills and onto the stunning Keralan coast, this itinerary takes you through the highlights that make up the breathtaking Indian state of Kerala.

At a Glance

  • Explore fascinating Fort Cochin and see fishermen bringing in the catch at the Chinese fishing nets at dusk

  • Drive through the lush tea plantations of the western ghats to Munnar and the charming Windermere Estate

  • Visit the spice plantations of Thekkady and learn about the ingredients at the heart of one of the world's best loved cuisines

  • Explore the winding waterways and mangroves of Kerala's backwaters and Lake Vembenad

Couples, Road trip, Beach, Culture

We design each itinerary around you, so this suggested itinerary is a starting point that we can tweak or transform into something completely bespoke to you. Call us on 858 523 9000 to start planning your vacation.


Begin your trip in one of the most interesting towns in southern India. Set on a series of islands and promontories, Cochin's narrow streets, temples and antique shops can be explored for days. It's colonial architecture is an intriguing mix of Portuguese, Dutch and British elements woven together.

From Cochin your car will slowly climb the winding roads to the Western Ghats. Set amidst plantations of Cardamom and tea, the Windermere Estate is the perfect base for walks and to experience the peace and solitude. Munnar is home to the highest growing tea in the world and offers stunning views.

Your journey continues as you drive south towards Thekkady to visit the Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary, where you can see bison, sambar, wild boar, langur, wild elephants and if you are very lucky, Tigers. Here you can cruise through the large artificial lake created by the British in 1895 and visit a range of spice plantations which always make for an interesting visit.

Returning to the plains, your journey through the backwaters of Kerala begins. You will spend the next 24 hours experiencing beautiful scenery and a way of life unchanged for centuries as you return to the backwaters and board your own private houseboat.

Your journey culminates on the relaxed sands of Marari beach. Marari is easily accessible from the backwaters and is close to Cochin for your return flight. You may want to consider driving five hours to Kovalam where there are a number of fantastic properties suitable for longer stays.

Please see our itinerary below. It is a suggested itinerary and can be tailored to suit your individual needs.





1 night Fly to Cochin
2 nights


Old Harbour Hotel
2 nights


Windermere Estate
2 nights


Spice Village
1 night


4 nights


Marari Beach Resort
Fly home from Cochin

Location & Directions

Cochin, Munnar, Thekkady, Kanam, Backwaters & Marari Beach

The Malabar House is in the heart of historical Fort Cochin opposite St. Francis Church and a 3-minute walk to the Chinese fishing nets. From Cochin head east to Windemere Estate in Munnar, part of the Kerala Hill Country, situated at the confluence of three mountain streams - Mudrapuzha, Nallathani and Kundala in the Western Ghats. Then south to Spice Village located in Kumily, a small settlement three kilometers from Thekkady, the main entrance to the Periyar Tiger Reserve. Next, take a Houseboat and journey round Kerala's beautiful backwaters which consist of a complex network of brackish lagoons, lovely lakes and canals. Your final destination is Marari Beach Resort which is a 2km (15-minute) boat or cab ride from the town of Alleppey (Allappuzha).

When to go

Isolated from much of India by the Western Ghats, the climate of Kerala & Karnataka is tropical and as a result of the mountain ranges the area isn’t as dry as much of India. The best time to visit is from January through to April. While there can be the occasional light showers these are just a prelude of the wet weather to come. The weather is generally hot and humid during this early summer. The monsoon season arrives in early June and thus can wash out July and August. September is much more humid as a result of the rainy season, and the fall can be dry but with the humidity this makes it feel quite the warm. There can be a little rain in the night in October and November. The temperatures cool down and the humidity lets up as winter comes in around December, with this season lasting until February when the dry spring returns. Winter can be a pleasant time to visit, especially if you’re looking to head off the beach and explore this Indian land of mystery.

Best time to Visit

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We design each itinerary around you, so this suggested itinerary is a starting point that we can tweak or transform into something completely bespoke to you. Call us on 858 523 9000 to start planning your vacation.

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