Most Inspirational Moment
The trek in Munnar
The early morning walk around the markets in Madurai. It's early, but don't miss this!
The early morning jungle walk in Periyar. Some climbing to spot a wild elephant!
The homestay with lovely home cooked food.
The houseboat, peaceful, so much bird life to see, people living on the banks, fishing, washing clothes and themselves in the river. Boats carrying various cargoes, fruit, shopping, canoe ferries transporting families and schoolchildren across the river, even small boats carrying bricks and stones.
Kovalam, much nicer than we expected, lovely shops, good beach, friendly people.
Thoughts on Group Leader
Manoj was an extremely efficient, informative and friendly guide. He set high standards everywhere we went, hotels, restaurants and trips. He advised us on menu choices so that we had a full appreciation of local food. No matter how early we got up, he was there! He gave us an insight into Indian culture that no guidebook can give. We were very impressed.
Advice for Potential Travellers
Southern India is hot and extremely humid in the evenings. Don't forget sunscreen and a hat. The sun is very strong and sunburn can happen in minutes. Mosquitos are pretty well everywhere so spray well! I got a more natural spray in our health food shop called Incognito. It worked just as well. Bring tissues everywhere, there's never any loo paper on coffee/lunch stops! And hand gel, often no soap . The masala chai is lovely, I had it at every stop.
The Indian people are very friendly, and if you engage with people, you get a lot back. I could never remember the Indian phases we'd been told, so a Good Morning will always be returned. We were frequently asked where we were from (Ireland) and a conversation often followed. In cases where I asked if I could take a photo, it was always agreed, and I'd usually show them the photo I had taken. The friendliness of the Indian people was one of the highlights of the trip for us. The hotels are fine, standard and comfortable (which only means as far as we could see the 2 that had a swimming pool). Every hotel had a redeeming feature. The Ayurvedic massage is lovely, I had two, and the last hotel in Kovalam was particularly good. The cost is very low.