KALINA JANKOWSKA

Discover Increadible India

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SOUTH INDIA TRIP


12-25 October 2013


Touring three states: Tropical Kerala and the Backwaters, Tamil Nadu and the Western
Ghats, Karnataka and the Arabian sea beaches

Tropical gardens, tea plantations, spice markets

Yoga, meditation and relaxation classes with Kalina (gratis)

Consultation with an Indian astrologer – jyotishi (gratis)

Vedic ritual – yagya – in a Hindu temple (gratis)

Ayurvedic massage, rejuvenating therapies (starting from 15 Euro)



Price: 1830 Euro plus a ticket to/from India, the cost of Indian visa, travel insurance


Contact: kalinajankowska@gmail.com

Tel. + (44) 7950260286




ITINERARY

Meeting/pick up from Kochi International Airport (Kerala), India on the 12th of October 2013

Kerala: Kochi – Allapey – Kerala Backwaters – Munnar
Tamil Nadu: Maitreyi – Ooty
Karnataka: Mysore – Moodabidri – Udupi – Gokarna – Mangalore

Trip ends at Mangalore (Karnataka), India on the 25th of October 2011.


12 Oct 2013 Kochi, Kerala, India
13 Oct 2013 Kochi - Allapey
14 Oct 2013 Allapey - Munnar
15 Oct 2013 Munnar – Maitreyi
16 Oct 2013 Maitreyi
17 Oct 2013 Maitreyi
18 Oct 2013 Maitreyi - Ooty
19 Oct 2013 Ooty
20 Oct 2013 Ooty - Mysore
21 Oct 2013 Mysore - Udupi
22 Oct 2013 Udupi - Gokarna
23 Oct 2013 Gokarna
24 Oct 2013 Gokarna
25 Oct 2013 Gokarna – Mangalore. End.



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Day 1

Meeting at Kochi International Airport, Kerala, India. Transfer to hotel. Tropical Kerala, known for its natural beauty, marvelous landscapes and wonderful climate, is called in India “God’s Own Country”. Kochi, a picturesque city of Northern Kerala, is situated on the Arabian Sea, the bay and numerous islands. If there is time (depends on your arrival), we will visit the Mattancherry palace. For those willing to shop, in the winding streets of five hundred years old Portuguese houses, there is a historical spice market. Kochi is also a home to the oldest church in India (St. Francis), the synagogue from the XVI century, the basilica Santa Cruz, Vasco da Gamma’s house, Dutch Palace and the so-called Jew Town quarter.


Day 2

We travel from Kochi, to Allapey (2 - 3 hours, 55 km). Here we start on kettuvallam (traditional house boat) trip sightseeing the famous Kerala Backwaters, that is the network of rivers and channels by the Arabian Sea and Indian Ocean. From the boat we can observe life of the local population in the fishing villages and the palm jungle. Traditional fishing equipment - Chinese fishnets and the coconut farms are seen everywhere. If time lets us, we will tour the palm fibers factory. The accommodation for the night is on the boat, accompanied by a traditional Kerala cuisine rich in South Indian spices.


Day 3

Travel from Allapey to Munnar (7 - 8 hours, 175 km, part of the journey is through the Western Ghats mountains). Munnar is a charming mountain resort, with marvelous fresh air. It is also an economic centre of this area where there are numerous tea plantations. We will also tour a tea plantation. Around Munnar, aside of tea plantations, there are also coffee, rubber, and spice plantations such as cloves, cinnamon, pepper and cardamom. We will visit the spice market where locally grown fresh spices are traded. Night accommodation in Munnar.


Day 4

Munnar sightseeing. Munnar has the highest hills of southern India. We visit the Raja Hill, where we can also look for Kurinji plants. These small purple flowers are very rare and they bloom only once every twelve years (next time in 2018). Later on an unforgettable visit in the aromatic tea factory. We will see the technology of processing different kinds of tea and get to know the secrets of tea preparation – Indian style. Next, the ride to Maitreyi in the state of Tamil Nadu (8 - 9 hours, 138 km, part of the road through Western Ghats). This picturesque mountain road is amongst many admirable landscapes around here, amongst the tea, spice and coffee plantations. Rich, subtropical flora. Banana trees, subtropical scents. Night stay at Maitreyi.


Day 5 and Day 6

Stay at Maitreyi. This luxury centre is a perfect space for the rest – for your body, mind and the spirit – in the middle of our trip. Consultation with an Indian astrologer is included in the price of the trip. We have on offer free hatha yoga, meditation and relaxation classes. In addition it is possible to order an ayurvedic massage or rejuvenating treatments (starting from 15 Euro).

Maitreyi is a truly unique place. The entire complex is placed on 25 acres of land and it has been built according to Vastu- Sthapatya Veda or Vastu Vidya that is architectural principles described in the Vedas, the holy scriptures. This means that there is a special flow of the energy created through the entire complex. The whole centre is built of eco-friendly materials and Maitreyi is free of air pollution or noise.

The climate is warm and pleasant all through the year. The complex has its own organic vegetable garden and the barn with cows and, thank to that, fresh organic milk. The accommodation is in luxurious traditional houses which are also built according to Vastu. Big rooms, narrow corridor with the wardrobe, wooden furniture and the separate bathroom are in all houses. In the middle of the centre there is a big meditation/yoga hall. There is plenty of walking possibilities in surrounding forests and coconut farms. There are numerous temples which can be visited in the nearby villages.


Day 7

Further travel through Tamil Nadu - the ride from Maitreyi to Ooty situated amongst Nilgiri hills in Blue Mountains (7 - 8 hours, 135 km, partly through the mountains). The blue mist and the delicate scent of eucalyptus trees in Ooty also gives a taste of Australian Blue Mountains. Kurinji, blue and purple flowers, cover considerable land area, and this also contributes to the name Blue Mountains. Ooty, known at the queen of Tamil Nadu’s hill stations, is the most popular mountain resort of South India and it is located at the 2300 m above the sea level.


Day 8

Ooty sightseeing. Very well known for its scenic landscapes, valleys and the hills, Ooty has also lush botanic gardens. In these gardens we will admire rare species of trees such as cork, paper bark and the araucaria, blooming ferns and orchids, luxuriant orchards. On the lake, we will take a ride on a boat. Apart from natural beauty Ooty is well-known for its agricultural production of vegetables and fruits of European origin. One of the biggest markets in India is also in Ooty. Picturesque steam mountain train - Nilgiri Mountain Railway, is one of the oldest in India and it is on the world heritage list of UNESCO. Night stay in Ooty.


Day 9

Ride from Ooty to Mysore (125 km), the cultural capital of Karnataka, the charming city of palaces set at the foot of Chamundi hills. This city is famous for its silk sari weaving using zari - special gold threads, Mysore style of painting using gold foil, and sandalwood and rosewood carvings. Apart from the sightseeing of the city, we will visit the Mysore palace and beautiful Brindavan gardens with colourful fountains. Accommodation in Mysore.


Day 10

Travel from Mysore to Udupi (6 - 9 hours, 308 km). On the way we visit one of the most well known in India Jain temples – basadi - Tribhuvana Tilaka Chudamani in Moodabidri (one of the 18 ones located in Moodabidri). This historic one thousand column temple is entirely carved out of white granite. In the evening we arrive in Udupi, a well known South Indian pilgrimage site for the devotees of Lord Shiva and Krishna. In Udupi also originated Masala Dosa, a dish that is now known all throughout the world. This is the place to try this dish. Night stay in Udupi.


Day 11

Udupi sightseeing. Situated near the Arabian Sea, Udupi’s Krishna and Shiva temple complexes are situated in the central market, amongst eight Ashta Matha temples. The central market is remarkably colourful – devotional items of all kinds, silk saris, incense and brass dishes grab the attention of tourist-pilgrims. We plan a very special visit at the Goddess Maha Kali temple, where we will participate in a traditional Vedic ritual. This ceremony, the so-called yagya, will be in the intention of our group and it includes cleansing ritual with holy fire. After the ceremony wonderful temple dinner will be served. After this we travel to Gokarna (3 - 4 hours, 175 km). On the way we drive by Murdeshwara, the highest Shiva monument in the world, situated on a tiny island near the Arabian Sea shore. Karnataka coast is spectacular - the Arabian Sea on one side and coastal hills on the other. Accommodation in Gokarna.


Day 12 and Day 13

Gokarna literally means “Cow’s Ear ”. This small, but fascinating Karnataka town, is the Southern continuation of famous Goa beaches. Likewise, in this region, we find very beautiful, sandy beaches, and around Gokarna itself there are four cozy beaches separated from one another by cliffs and coconut palm jungle. It is the perfect place for a rest and relaxation. There are many picturesque paths to walk to all beaches - one in the very heart of the city, as well as the others along the coast - Kudle, Om, Half-moon and Paradise beach. Gokarna is a town of contrasts, and a melting pot of the Indian and western hippy culture. Along the traditional Indian cuisine it is possible to find dishes from Spain, Italy or Mexico. Gokarna isn't only about beaches, yoga, and ayurvedic centres, but also it is an important pilgrimage centre for Hindus. The most important temple –Mahabhaleshwara- is a temple of God Shiva. Other, smaller ones, equally charming, are the temples of God Ganesh- Ganapati and Sri Mahanganpati.


Day 14


Travel from Gokarna to Mangalore (3 - 4 hours). Mangalore is one of the biggest ports of Southern India. Folk art and many classical dance forms are also practiced here. Most well-known of these is Yakshegana, the all-night dance and a theatre performance in Karnataka traditional costumes. The name of the city derives from the Mangaladevi Goddess. This road to Mangalore, along the Arabian Sea, will be our farewell with the tropical climate, with the Indian Ocean, Western Ghats, and with India.

A lift to Mangalore International Airport

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Price : 1830 Euro, stay in India
(about 2520 AUD, or 2490 CAD, or 2555 USD, or 1570 GBP)

Schedule of fees:

FIRST PAYMENT: 1000 Euro when you reserve your spot, no later than 12 September 2013
SECOND PAYMENT: 830 Euro paid on the first day of arrival in Kochi, India

The package includes:

¨ All accommodation in India, standard hotels (twin rooms, bath attached) and luxury cottages (in Maitreyi)
¨ Three vegetarian meals a day: breakfast, lunch, dinner and bottled water with the meals
¨ All transportation in India – Toyota Innova or Chevrolet Tavera, or minibus Tempo Traveller ( if there are more than 8 people)
¨ A European tour leader, Kalina, and local guides in English during the duration of the entire tour (from the landing in Kochi until the departure in Mangalore)
¨ All entrance fees
¨ A consultation with a jyotishi - an Indian astrologer
¨ A ritual in a Hindu temple
¨ Yoga, meditation and relaxation classes with Kalina, an Australian trained yoga teacher

The package excludes:

¨ All airplane tickets to/from India
¨ Indian visa
¨ Travel Insurance/Health Insurance
¨ Drinks for meals, other than bottled water
¨ Customary tips, around 2 Euro a day
¨ Camera usage fees in tourist areas
¨ Expenses of personal nature such as: Internet, telephone calls, laundry

If you wish to have a single room there is an extra fee of 390 Euro.

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For more information and to book your tour contact KALINA JANKOWSKA

e-mail: kalinajankowska@gmail.com
Tel. + 44 7950 260 286

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This trip has been planned by Kalina Jankowska, yoga teacher and an EU licensed tour leader (license number 5762)