kerala here we come

#1 Feb 20th, 2009, 02:52
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  • joy cope is offline
#1
Hello


We are three british women who have never travelled to india before. We have flights to cochin and no other arrangements. Budget limited but not parsimonious. Would like to spend a night on a houseboat and to visit the tea plantations. Two of us are so pale that we will be wearing factor 40 sunblock. We like people, food, swimming, beauty, adventure and surprises. Any advice would be massively appreciated - we leave in a week and will be there for the first two weeks of march - Joy
#2 Feb 20th, 2009, 03:01
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  • PEEK is offline
#2
Welcome and enjoy!!!!

March is not a high season. All can be done on the spot. But, just prepare where to ask or go especially for hotels.
#3 Feb 20th, 2009, 03:36
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  • rohit2travel is offline
#3

Smile

Hii joy cope

Welcome to India Mike, SO how many days you will be in Cochin? and you not Traveling to next part of India?
#4 Feb 20th, 2009, 03:45
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#4
kerala only - I dont care for all this crazy rushing around - all taking photos rather than looking at things - joy
#5 Feb 20th, 2009, 03:52
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#5
Lol.. Have a Great journey ahead!!
#6 Feb 20th, 2009, 03:54
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#6
Two weeks and Kerala will go together very nicely

You'll need that sun block!
~
Life gets aadhar every day.
.
#7 Feb 20th, 2009, 04:19
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  • rebeccam is offline
#7

welcome

Hi "Joy"

Two weeks in Kerala...I'm jealous!!

You'll get your quotient of beauty and adventure, that's for sure.

One thing to ask yourselves: do you three ladies want to travel by train/bus, or by car with driver? If the latter, you will have the freedom to stop where you want, when you want, on a whim, and see daily life from roadside level-- in comfort. My daughter and i recently returned. We traveled via Toyaota Innova--very comfortable, and not that much more $ than the smaller cars such as Ambassador, which are used a lot.

Sounds like you want fewer places, more time in each--rather than one day here, one day there.

In addition to tea plantation (Munnar area) and houseboat...do you want beach time, and if so, at a quiet beach in the north of Kerala, or more "built-up" commercialized one in the South? Sorry to possibley be "dstereotyping" but it all the Brits we met insisted on beach time during their trips!

I'd recommend perusing the site below for ideas I learned of this company right here, on Indiamike. Faith and Pandian are marvels at putting together a trip within budget and also at intuively sensing what you want. If you write to Faith what you've written here, she'll help with ideas and give price, itinerary and other options. Originally from UK , she now lives in Tamil Nadu, married to the company's co-director Pandian. They're very "hands-on" to assure their clients are enjoying their trip. When they say, "Call us any time during your trip, if you need help or have a question" they MEAN it!

Faith has a great perspective about the best way we "Westerners" can enjoy and experience her country. This may sound like an advert, but she and Pandian and staff really were terrific, and able to put together a trip for us that was a better itinerary, better lodging, better vehicle, and half the cost of what another local travel agent quoted.

the site is indianpanorama.in Enjoy "traveling" around the website! In particular for Kerala, see below:

http://indianpanorama.in/news_nov08.html

http://indianpanorama.in/news.html
(left hand side of page, scan down to "Kerala" for some great photos and ideas.)
#8 Feb 20th, 2009, 08:48
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  • clivington is offline
#8
Hi Joy, and welcome to IM!
If you happen to be coming to Kovalam you might like to visit the SISP NGO. And if you want to bring any goodies with you for the children (see website for suggestions) they'd be truly appreciated. Of course there are many such projects in India but I know this one first-hand.

(See - the touts have started and you haven't even left the UK!)
Bring me sunshine, in your smile
#9 Feb 20th, 2009, 09:35
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#9
Welcome to Kerala joy. Let us know if we could be of any help.
#10 Feb 20th, 2009, 22:38
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  • joy cope is offline
#10

kerala itinerary - advice please

hello helpful people
For our first two weeks of march we are now thinking:-

Kochi
Munnar by taxi
train kochi to kollam
boat trip kollam to kollam inc monroe island
kovalam and or kumarakom - philip kuttys farm recommended
Varkala?

Also wonder about going north to kannur and wayand? chera rocks recommended - not that mad about wildlife

Unsure about order of itinerary or transport options - would like to inc train trip
Would love to stay in treehouse if anyone can recommend or are homestays a better bet?

many thanks

Joy
#11 Feb 20th, 2009, 22:42
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#11
we may go to kovalam - what do the children need - joy
#12 Feb 20th, 2009, 23:49
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#12
Hi Joy,
Please see SISP's wishlist. Cheers!
#13 Feb 21st, 2009, 04:27
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#13

Change to Kerala forum?

Hi Joy,

Think about changing your questions about places/itin to the KERALA forum thread.

Homestays/hotels and treehouses are not mutually exclusive. Aranyakam in Wayanad has huts built on stilts--not a true treehouse, but similar "feel." Ente Veedu Homestay in Wayanad --same--huts. Vythiri Resort in Wayanad has treehouses. Tranquil in Wayanad, but cost of treehouse is VERY expensive. Carmelia Haven in Thekkady has a tree house, but less expensive. A yr ago, I was researching our first trip to Kerala. It's great fun, but there are so many questions! I'm sure there are others places with treehouses, but can't recall any specifically. Do check reviews on allthese places. I've learned the hard way that pix on websites may not match the reality --some worse, and some far BETTER than the pix.

Philipkuttys is AMAZING!! Not "budget" level, but you'll love it. I'd definitely make this your big splurge for the Kottayam area. The farm is an island, and you take a short rowboat ride to get to other places (if you want to leave!) Anu is a whiz at arranging other activities nearby--she knows everyone it seems. From there, you can easily get the houseboat--or arrive by houseboat. Three days there was hardly enough for us. You can read my review of Philipkuttys (as well as other people's reviews ) at Tripadvisor.com. Look for the review from "Calinurse"

If you contact Anu, tell her hello and love from Rebecca (yours truly)!!!!

I STILL recommend you get in touch with a great travel agent as recommended previously. Your trip can be put together as you wish, but with the right agent, hotels will be less expensive than you could book on your own. And with three of you sharing a car and hotel room--the transport and accomodation will not be much per person. And Faith (or any another great agent) can answer your questions.
#14 Feb 21st, 2009, 06:23
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#14
thank you so much - friends spent christmas at philipkuttys and they loved ana too! I resist being organised too much so that makes me reluctant to contact a tour operator - I like some ideas in place but then just to see what happens. Joy
#15 Feb 21st, 2009, 13:30
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  • brownboy66 is offline
#15
Mod Note

rather than having separate threads with separate answers - have moved the original here (and removed the duplicate). good luck with the planning, and welcome to IndiaMike.
"the last meal is history - its the next one that's important" - Garfield (the cat)


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