Wild Kerala


Wild Kerala

Kerala (South India)

1026 € / 14 days from Cochin

Full immersion journey in tropical rainforest of North Kerala to discover rich biodiversity and exceptional fauna, one of the highest of the planet. Trip on the langurs* way with a 4 days trek in the jungle and inspiring time  at the heart of communities in small villages in Wayanad.

* Langurs : Holy monkeys

From Cochin, old trading post to Mysore, the  beautiful town built by the Maharajas, this travel  in South West India show you scenic views, far from touristic and crowdy places.

The journey begins with a 4 days guided trek in Munnar area, famous for tea plantations. Climbing Meesapulima mountain, walking in Shola Forest, tropical rainforest, and grass lands where are living a very rich fauna as elephants, thars and holy monkeys.

The second part of the travel lead us more in the North in Wayanad mountain. You are welcome for three nights in farmers families in a very quiet and beautiful village.

Then you can discover the north backwaters of the Malabar coast near Kannur, famous for Theyyam tradition, a very colourful danced theater. You will stay in a charming  house  facing the backwaters and clear sand beach.

Trip highlights

Free travel including accomodation (half board or full board), all transports and local guides

4 days guided Trek in Munnar

Homestay in rural village engaged in sustainable tourism developement

English speaking  guide

Backwaters of North Kerala

Cultural cities of Mysore and Cochin

Theyyam Festival in Kannur

Sustainable and ecological tourism

Bambou village and Kabani à Wayanad

Kabani and the village community with URAVU have developped the concept of the” Bamboo village”to help to create a more sustainable community and future for the villagers in the village of Thrikkaipetta, Wayanad.
  The programme includes the establishment of sustainable rural micro enterprises, organic farming, waste management and sustainable energy systems, an annual Jackfruit Festival and a community tourism initiative.

Several homestays have been created bringing an additional income for local people and developing a community fund that allows continuous improvement of the village.

Day 1 – 2

Cochin

Two free days. You ‘ll stay in a homestay in the old area of Fort kochi * where you can visit the places by foot.

Walk in the streets, flanked by a mix of Portuguese, Dutch, and British old style houses, visit the churches, synagogue, and colourful spices market or just enjoy a scenic view at the waterfront with a series of pre-colonial Chinese fishing nets. Chill out to a sunset cruise.

* Kochi was a fishing village in the Kingdom of Kochi in the pre-colonial Kerala. From the following colonial history, Kochi inherited its architecture.

 

Day 3

Munnar

Departure with taxi for Munnar (3h), a high ranges tea town with altitude varying from 1400m to 2680m. The place is a hub of endemism, enabling the area to be included as one of the 35 biodiversity hot spots of the world.

Settle for one night in the guest house of a tea plantation. Visit of the plantation and fabric unit.

 

Day 4

Suryanelli

13km (7 – 8h)

The trek starts at Silent Valley Estate, about 20 kms from Munnar. The trek from an altitude of 1500 m gradually goes to over 2600m, passing through sholas (high altitude rain forests) and grasslands which are typical to the higher areas of the Western Ghats. The area also has wildlife – notably elephants, sambar, sloth bear and the Nilgiri tahr – the latter being endemic and endangered. You will head for Meesapulimala – the second highest peak in the Western Ghats. There is a panoramic views of the plains of Tamilnadu & the world’s highest tea estate Kolukkumalai in the undulating hills below. On the way down, there is also a chance to visit the Kolukumalai Tea factory located in the world’s highest organic tea estate. Descend and continue trekking through grasslands and high altitude rainforest to the camp at Suryanelli, overlooking the magnificent Anaerangal Lake in the valley below.

Accommodation: Cottage Tented camp at Suryanelli

 

Day 5

Butterfly Forest Trek

13km (7h – 8h)

From Suryanelli you will start early for a full day trek. Perched atop the mountains here is the Papathy Shola (‘Butterfly Forest’), so named due the spectacular annual migration of butterflies every October. The thick high altitude cloud forests here provide an ideal home not only for the butterflies but large numbers of birds & wildlife including the endemic Malabar Giant Squirrels.

You trek through vast swathes of forests and grasslands will amaze you with its natural beauty & endemic flora & fauna. As you come down after the walk, the vast Anaerangal Lake is a salve for tired limbs. Anaerangal, meaning “The lake Where the Elephants Come Down” – a vast expanse of water is a draw for elephants to come down for grazing and water. Snaking across a large area, this lake is placid and beautiful and a source of water for farmers downstream. Many tribal colonies have sprung up around it to farm for spices and cardamom which grow abundantly in the salubrious climate here.

Accommodation: Tented camp at BL Ram (dome tents)

 

Day 6

Shantanpara

14km (6h – 7h)

Today you will be trekking through the Mathikettan Shola National Park. This is a high altitude rain forest saved from ‘development’ and preserved through a campaign by environmental activists here in Kerala. Your destination is Santhanpara, set amidst luxuriant vegetation and cardamom growing hamlets. En-route you will be passing large cardamom forests where cardamom, pepper & coffee are grown within the canopy of the forests. Elephants are common here. You will reach Santhanpara by evening.

Accommodation: Tented camp at Shantanpara (dome tents) or nearby resort

 

Day 7

Chaturangapara

12km (6h)

The final day’s challenging trek takes you through sholas and cardamom forests that abound here. The trek through from Shantanpara through thick forests and grasslands through the spine of the mountain range, you get fascinating views of the great plains of Tamilnadu. This area constitutes the world-famed ‘Cardamom Hills’ – the capital of the spice growing areas that have made Kerala famous through millennia. The highlight today is the climb atop the Chaturangapara peak with spectacular views of the plains of Tamilnadu thousands of feet below. After coming down the peak, you will be transferred to a beautiful resort located within a cardamom forest.

Dinner at the resort.

 

Day 8

Wayanad

Departure after breakfast with taxi for Cochin to catch the train for Calicut (3h30).

A taxi pick up you for the small village of Trikkaipetta at the foot of the mountains (3h).

You are welcome in your homestay.

Dinner with family.

Day 9 -10

Wayanad

Walk with your village guide through the spice and vegetables gardens, rice fields and other crops plantations. Visit to craft centre of the Bamboo village where Uravu established a sustainable and responsible business and meet the women who work indifferent units.

Half day trek with a guide from the village to discover local fauna and flora.

Lunch and dinner at the homestay.

Day 11 – 12

Kannur

Departure after breakfast for the Malabar coast facing Oman sea on a very beautiful road passing through rice fields and palmtrees.

You will stay at Samir and Rosie’s house, a very charming beach house near the backwaters.

You can enjoy here the peaceful place, the bath in the arabian sea, the boating on the backwters and the delicious food you ‘ll taste with the owners of the place.

Day 13

Mysore

Departure with taxi for the city Mysore (5h).

Mysore is one of the beautiful city in South India.
Visit Chamundi hills during the afternoon. The place has a very nice and colourful athmosphere where you can view the city from a different perspective.

Night in Green Hotel (Eco hotel).

Evening and dinner free.

Day 14

Bangalore

Visit after breakfast the Maharaja Palace with an audio guide.The Mysore Palace was the official residence and seat of the Wodeyars, Maharajas of Mysore from 1399 to 1950. The palace includes magnificent halls, courtyards, gardens and buildings. Every autumn, the Palace is the venue for the famous Dussehra, during which a parade with caparisoned elephants and floats originate from the palace grounds.

Free lunch

Departure for Bangalore airport in the afternoon (3h).

Timing

All over the year except during the Indian summer (May, June) and moonsoon season (July, august).

Price

The price is based on 4 participants (digressive above 5 participants).

The price is by person based on a double occupancy in a room.

Included

The trek (accomodation, all meals, guide, fully supported trek, bottled water and frafreshments, all permits & passes).

The transport by AC car all the way, the train (AC 2) from Kochi to Calicut.

The repatriation insurance.

The accommodation in tent or camp, double room in guest houses, hotels and  homestays including breakfast.

The full board in Wayanad and the half board in Kannur.

A professional English-speaking guide.

Activities and outing mentioned on the program.

The 5% for the developement fund.

Not included

The international flight tickets, airport taxes, Indian visa.

The cancellation insurance.

The inscription fees.

The half board not mentioned on the program

The tea breaks on the road

The entrance fees for all sites and museums in Kochi, Kannur  and Mysore

The tips (compulsory in India for the staff, drivers…)