SOUTHERN ODYSSEE - 8 DAYS
Madras - Trichy - Madurai - Thekkady - Cochin

1. Day
Madras
BUSTLING METROPOLIS

Arrival at madras , capital of tamilnadu , with approximately 6 million inhabitants , and the busiest city in south india .

2. Day
Mahabalipuram - Madras
ANCIENT CIVILIZATION

Mahabalipuram is known the world over for its magnificent relics cut out of hard granite rock . The relief arjuna's penance certainly is one of the most photographed monuments in india . All masterpieces date back to the 7th and 8th century. Madras is not only the gateway to south india but also the nucleaus for the south east asian film industry . Huge , handpainted hoardings of filmstars generally distract from beautiful colonial or high rise buildings temples or traffic lights. Crowded markets , st.thomas cathedral , a colourful hindu temple and the world's second largest beach , the marina await your visit .

3. Day
Madras - Trichy - Sringaram
THE TEMPLE - A CITY BY ITSElF

Flight to trichy . The amazing temple of srirangam , near trichy , is surrounded by seven concentric walls and 21 gopurams ( temple - towers nearly one sqkm in size and overflowing with holy and worldly activities of pilgrims and priests alike , srirangam is unique experience of not only a different faith but a different world .

4. Day
Trichy - Tanjore - Madurai
LIVING RELIGION

The landmark of trichy is the picturesque rockfort , rising abruptly out of the flat surrounding plains . The vinayaka temple rises at the highest point of the rock at a height of 84 mtrs above the town and involves a steep climb over steps cut into the rock . Enroute to madurai we visit tanjore . The brihadeswara temple is regarded as the masterpiece of the chola dynasty , the great rulers from the 8th to the 13th century. The drive to madurai will give us many impressions of south india's rural life - style .

5. Day
Madurai
GOD AND GODDESS WITH HUMAN ATTRIBUTES

We spend the full day in madurai , the most typical and traditional town of southern india . The beautiful goddess meenakshi with her lovely fish - shaped eyes together with her consort , lord sundereswara , rule from their magnificient temple at the heart of the town . According to the religious belief god and goddess were married here and every year the marriage is recelebrated for a full week . In the evenings the goddess will be brought to the shrine of the lord and food will be served to the gods like human beings , accompanied by devotional music - only to be seperated again the next morning by reverse ceremonies .

6. Day
Madurai - Thekkady
BLUE MOUNTAINS

A climatic retreat is thekkady , a popular wildlife park . The game viewing by boat on the beautiful periyar lake gives us a rare glimpse of an unspoilt mother nature .

7. Day
Thekkady - Cochin
WHERE PEPPER GROWS

The drive downhill opens panoramic views of the lovely scenary . Tea , coffee , spices and rubber trees are grown at the roadside and as far as one can see . By boat we cruise the famous backwaters of kerala . A performance of katakhali , the typical dance form of kerela , is a spectacular end to our day .

8. Day
Cochin
SYMBOL FOR INDIA'S WEALTH

Cochin is an important harbour for the export of spices tea , and seafood . For centuries the jewish town played a vital role in cochin's economy . The mattanchery palace blends harmoniously with the basic thread of kerala's rich heritage . A curiosity are the chinese fishing boats , their mechanism working as if there had never been any industrial revolution .

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