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Splendor of The South

The Train FOR SEASON 2015 - 16 & 2016 - 17

  • Tour Itinerary
  • Highlights
  • Tour Tariff
  • Tour Map
  • Tour Schedule
  • Booking

Splendor of the South : Tour Itinerary

Tour Duration : 7 Nights / 8 Days

The journey begins at Bangalore and takes you to the historical Temple cities of Mamallapuram, Kanchipuram, Tiruchirapalli, Thanjavur and Madurai. The beaches of Kovalam await and you with their sandy shores. You will glide by boat trough the palm fringed and silent canals of the Backwaters to Kochi, the lively port city on the Arabian sea. You will experience history and finally reach back to its starting point at Bangalore

Day 1 - Bangalore - Chennai (Monday)

Meeting point at the Leela Palace in Bangalore at 12.00 hrs

After a good lunch depart for sightseeing of the metropolitan city of Bangalore. Towards the evening check In at the Bangalore Railway Station on your hotel train "The Golden Chariot - Splendor of The South“ you comfortable home for the next week.

Departure for Chennai at: 22.00 hrs

Day 2 - Mamallapuram & Chennai (Tuesday)

Arrival at Chennai: 06.00 hrs

Excursion to Mamallapuram, an ancient coastal port, south of Chennai, world famous for its shore temple, Mamallapuram was the second capital and sea port of the Pallava Kings of Kanchipuram, the first Tamil dynasty after the fall of the Gupta Empire.

The whole of Mamallapuram is a fabulous open-air museum of sculptures in living rock, Monolithic shrines scooped out caverns magnificently sculpted within and the world’s biggest Bas relief in rock, are truly wondrous examples of the sculptor’s art. The famous temples of the Rathas, the Penance of Bhagirath, the Shore Temple and the eight Mandapams. (Shallow, rock cut halls) are also located at the beach.

Lunch at Mamallapuram. After lunch we proceed to visit the city of Chennai.

Chennai - India’s fourth largest city, Chennai is the capital of the state of Tamil Nadu. Chennai was the site of the East India Company’s first settlement founded in 1639 on land given by the Raja of Chandragiri, the last representative of the Vijaynagar rulers of Hampi. The East India Company was an English trading establishment and thus was the forerunner to the British Empire, which, came into political prominence towards the end of the 17th Century. Chennai is a conglomerate of over grown villages, and being a major port, today it is also known as the gateway to the South.

Proceed for a sightseeing tour of Chennai. The tour begins from the ‘St. Mary’s Church’, built in 1678 – 80, was the first English Church in Chennai. The Saint Thomas Cathedral, built in 1504, and then re-built in neo - gothic style in 1893, this Roman Catholic Church is said to house the remains of St. Thomas the Apostle. Also visit the Kapaleeshwarar Temple, an ancient Shiva Temple, constructed in pure Dravidian style. The Sri Parathasarathy Temple, dedicated to Lord Krishna, built in 8th century during the reign of the Pallavas. Other attractions include the National Art Gallery and Museum, which house some beautiful temple friezes, the bronze gallery, and archeological section. Drive past the High Court Building, Fort St. George and the famous film studios. Towards the evening return to the train and dinner onboard.

Departure for Pondicherry after the dinner.

Day 3 - Pondicherry (Wednesday)

Arrival at Pondicherry: 08:00 hrs

Pondicherry: In the Northern Tamil Nadu region, quite a contrast to the temple heritage, is located Pondicherry. Formerly a French colony settled early in the 18th century, Pondicherry became part of the Indian Union in the early 50’s when the French voluntarily relinquished control. French is still widely spoken, and seaside villas and cobbled streets are more reminiscent of the South of France than the South of India!

Sightseeing tour of Pondicherry, visiting Auroville. Conceived as a tribute to Sri Aurobindo, Auroville is an entirely new concept in education and urban living. The Aurobindo Ashram is known to the world over as the "Centre of Integral Yoga". Sri Aurobindo, India’s philosopher around 1920 founded it.

After diner the train continuous to Tiruchirapalli at around: 22:00 p.m.

Day 4 - Tiruchirapalli & Thanjavur (Thursday)

Arrival in Tiruchirapalli early in the morning

Trichy (Tiruchirapalli) - Situated on the banks of the River Kaveri, just 320 kms from Chennai, Trichy was a Chola Citadel during the Sangam Age when the Pandyas and Pallavas held sway over this region for short periods. The Nayaks of Madurai built the town and the historic Rock Fort, which played a vital role in the Carnatic wars in the 18th century. The most famous landmark is ‘The Rock Fort Temple’, a spectacular monument perched on a rock outcrop which rises abruptly from the plain to tower over the old city. At the first level are the remnants of a huge hall blasted into ruins in 1772. The next storey is the Mathrubhuteshwar Shrine dedicated to Lord Shiva. Finally at the top of the hill, is the Ucchi Pillayar Koil – A Lord Ganesh Temple, offering a commanding view of the city.

Proceed for a sightseeing tour of Tanjore where you will visit temples built during the 10th and 14th centuries. These later became a part of the Vijaynagar Kingdom, which subsequently passed into the hands of the Marathas and went to the British.

The most famous landmark is the Brihadeshwara temple, which is now a world heritage site.

Day 5 - Madurai (Friday)

Arrival in Madurai: 08:00 hrs

Madurai – is an animated city packed with pilgrims, vendors, business people, bullock carts and legions of under employed rickshaw pullers. It is one of the Southern India’s oldest cities and has been a center of learning and pilgrimage for centuries.

Proceed for a sightseeing tour of Madurai – The primary interest is the Meenakshi Temple, where Dravidian temple architecture may be considered to be at its best. Its Hall of a thousand Pillars is fabulous and is filled with worshippers at all hours of the day. The tour also includes a visit to the – Thirumalai Nayak Palace & Thiruparangundram temple.

Day 6 - Thiruvananthapuram and Poovar (Saturday)

The tour begins from “The Padmanabhaswamy Temple”, which, was constructed in the Dravidian style, by the Maharaja of Travancore in 1733. Only Hindus are allowed inside this temple. It has a 7 storey high tower with a curious pagoda – Shaped Peak. Later also visit the Napier Museum, housed in a bizarrely attractive, decaying Indo-Saracenic building dating back to 1880. The museum has a good collection of historical and contemporary bronze ornaments, temple carts, ivory carvings and life size figures of kathakali dancers in full regalia.

The tour also includes a visit to the Sri Chitra Art Gallery, which houses paintings of the Rajput, Mughal and Tanjore schools. It is renowned for its collection of art from Tibet, China and Japan as well as from North and South India.

For lunch we continue to Poovar a beautiful island just off the coast of the Arabian sea. Lunch in a nice hotel and time to explore the beaches.

Evening Gala dinner with music and dance.

Day 7 - Backwaters & Kochi (Sunday)

Arrival in Allepey: 09:00 hrs

From Alappuzha enjoy the bewitching Vembanad lake, the largest backwater stretch in Kerala, cruising along in a traditional boat. We will take you to Kumarakom, one of the prime tourist attractions of Kerala. The green shores throbbing with vigour and pure beauty will never tire you. The soft sunlight lends the calm water a new enchantment as the palms on both shores welcome you with a gentle whisper in the wind. Your mind will assure you that this scene will remain within you, to relieve you during all your busiest hours.

On reaching Kumarakom, you enter another world of wonders. This small backwater village, which is a cluster of islands, has a life of its own, with a slow, serene rhythm. The sights, sounds and fragrances will simply captivate you.

Lunch at kumarakom and afterwards drive to Kochi.

The tour of Kochi begins from “The Dutch Palace also known as Mattancherry Palace, built by Portugues in 1555, which is famous for its murals depicting scenes from the Ramayana and the puranic legends. Adjacent to the palace is the Jewish Synagogue (closed on Fridays & Saturdays) built in 1568. Also visit the St. Francis Church (closed on Sundays), established by the Portuguese Franciscan friars in 1503. Vasco Da-Gama was buried in the courtyard of this European church built in India. Other attractions include the traditional fishing hamlets and the fisher folk in their colorful costumes. The tour also includes a visit to the seaside where one can still see the, nearly a century old Chinese fishing nets, which, are still in use.

In the evening Kathakali dance and dinner

Departure at 22:00 hrs for Bangalore

Day 8 - Bangalore (Monday)

Arrival at Bangalore in the Morning.

After breakfast departure to your next destination.

Splendor of the South : Tour Highlights

Splendor of the South - Tour Tariff

April 2015 - March 2016
Occupancy Type
Per person / night (In USD)
Total for 7 nights per person
Single
650
4550
Double
490
3430
Triple
425
2975

Note: 10% Surcharge shall be levied on departures during Christmas / New Year.

Tour Cost Includes:

Drive with the hotel train "The Golden Chariot - Splendor of The South“ in a deluxe cabin with attached bathroom

All meals, including tea, coffee and mineral water

Gala Dinner in Poovar

Kathakali dance show in Kochi

Transport for sightseeing’s with an air-conditioned deluxe bus

Entrance fees to monuments and museums

Accompanying German and English speaking guides

Local Taxes and fees

Travel documents

Tour Cost Does Not Include:

Alcoholic beverages

Personal expenditures like tips, Spa Wagon, Business - centre, etc.

Visa for India

Flights

Please note:

  • @ 2.58% Service Tax shall be levied on the tariff of Splendor of The South.
  • Tariff Subject to change without notice.

Reservation Policy:

In case of FITs:

  • 20% of ticket value at the time of confirming the booking.
  • Remaining 80% of ticket value 30 days prior to departure.

In case of Group:

  • 50% of ticket value at the time of confirming the booking.
  • Remaining 50% of ticket value 60 days prior to departure.

Cancellation Policy
In case of FITs:

  • 5% of the ticket value if cancellation is made until 60 days prior to departure.
  • 20% of the ticket value if cancellation is made between 30-59 days prior to departure.
  • 50% of the ticket value if cancellation is made between 15-29 days prior to departure.
  • 100% of the ticket value if the cancellation is made 14 days prior to departure.

In case of Group:

  • 10% of the ticket value if cancellation is made until 60 days prior to departure.
  • 25% of the ticket value if cancellation is made between 30-59 days prior to departure.
  • 75% of the ticket value if cancellation is made between 15-29 days prior to departure.
  • 100% of the ticket value if the cancellation is made 14 days prior to departure.

Splendor of the South- Tour Map

Splendor of the South - Schedule

Departure Dates:

2015
2016
October
4 , 18
January
10 , 24
November
1 , 15 , 29
February
7 , 21
December
13 , 27
March
7 , 21
 
 
April
4

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