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WELLNESS AT PARADISA

India… a country which will enchant you with her beauty and diversity, delight you with her colorful pageantry, enrich you with her culture, stun you with her modernity, embrace you with her warmth, and overwhelm you with her hospitality…a land where the ancient and the contemporary exist side by side, where thousands of brilliant images fill the soul with wonder and where quaint and startling contradictions juxtapose to lend an extraordinary vitality, texture and poetry to life.

India ~ the ancient land of mystery, palaces and kings, romance and intrigue, nobility and grandeur.
A land steeped in a tradition of services and privileges to royalty. A land which has the largest Tiger population in the world.

Kerala – India’s most idyllic state, better known as God’s own Country is today one of the most sought after tourist destinations in Asia. Secluded beaches, palm fringed backwaters, mist clad hill station, lush tropical forests, waterfalls, exotic wildlife, monuments, art form and festival gives it a distinctive charm.

Day 01

ARRIVE COCHIN

Arrive at Cochin International Airport. As guests exit, they are accorded a traditional floral welcome and transferred from airport to hotel.

More popularly known as the Queen of the Arabian Sea, Cochin is a cluster of islands on the vast expanse of the Vembanad Lake. The Lake opens out into the Arabian Sea here to form one of the finest natural harbours in the world. It is this natural advantage that has made Cochin a fascinating blend of the cultures and influences of explorers and traders. The Arabs, Chinese, Portuguese, Dutch, and the British have all left their mark here. The Jewish synagogue, the Dutch palace, the Chinese fishing nets, and other remnants of European and Asian architecture merge smoothly into the traditional fabric of the seaport city.

Evening: Walk through Fort Cochin is the best way to discover historic Fort Cochin at your own pace. Walking along its tree lined avenues and quaint little lanes, you relive an obscure fishing village along the river Cochin that became the first European town- ship in India and later rose to become one of the greatest cities of the world. A unique event in history when a major flood in AD 1341 threw open the estuary at Cochin, till then land locked, turning it into one of the finest natural harbours of the east and a perfect entrance way for a long line of seafaring visitors; the Arabs and the Chinese et al. Its reputation was such that Nicolas Conti, an Italian traveler remarked: "If China is where you make your money, then Cochin surely is the place to spend it.

Overnight: Hotel Brunton Boatyard
www.cghearth.com/brunton_boatyard/index.htm

Paradisa
Day 02

COCHIN
Breakfast at the hotel

Morning:Tour of Cochin or "Kochi" the palm green, commercial capital of Kerala which has one of the finest natural harbours & is known as the "Queen of the Arabian Sea". Visit the Dutch Palace, the Jewish Synagogue, the Church of St. Francis, the Bolghatty Palace & the famous Chinese fishing nets.

It is an interesting experience to walk in the Jew Town – today it is a fascinating mixture of shops.

Evening: Witness traditional Kathakali dance performance. Kathakali dance drama is one of India's most remarkable performing arts. An operatic spectacle involving pantomime, abstract dance, singing, instrumental accompaniment, and elaborate, stylized costumes and makeup, it is truly a multimedia presentation. Kathakali, which literally means "story play," was developed in the 17th century in Kerala as a courtly dance drama enacting mythic stories of the Hindu gods and goddesses.

Overnight: Hotel, Cochin

Day 03

COCHIN-PEERMADE
Breakfast at the hotel

Transfer by car to PARADISA PLANTATION RETREAT in the hills of Peermade, an area of great natural beauty and serenity. The heritage resort is set on an organic coffee or spice plantation. The architecture of the retreat is based on the traditional Kerala style wooden houses. These have been embellished with priceless antique columns and artifacts, all personally handpicked and placed, creating an ambience of quiet cultural richness.

Overnight: Paradisa Plantation
www.paradisaretreat.com

Day 04

PEERMADE
Yoga is an ancient science, which upholds wellness as a state of being where the mind and body co-exist in complete harmony. Yogic exercises are designed for the attainment of peace through physical and mental well-being. Paradisa Plantation Retreat offers you the opportunity to be introduced to this ancient Indian discipline.

Part of the day is spent practising Yoga and Ayurveda, with free time being used to explore the plantation and surroundings.

AYURVEDA - THE NEW BALM FOR FEVERED SOULS

Ayurveda, in Sanskrit means “science of life” – AYU meaning life and VEDA meaning knowledge. Ayurveda is an intricate system of healing, indigenous to India and Kerala in particular. Some say it was a secret revealed to the sages by Brahma the Creator. It employs naturalistic methods based on “Panchkarma” to prevent and treat diseases and also to slow-down the ageing process. The cultural heritage of Kerala and Ayurveda are closely interwoven. Ayurvdeic physicians believe that they can promote perfect health of body, mind and soul by administering drugs and treatments based exclusively on herbs, leaves, bark, roots and even stems of certain shrubs. Also included in the list of ingredients that go into ayurvedic medicines are spices and occasionally precious metals like silver and gold in purified powered form. These drugs complemented by a strict diet and daily medicated oil massages, have been known to lead to complete cures, some quite miraculous. Ayurveda treats the cause of the disease, eradicates it and enhances immunity.

There is plenty to do besides soaking up the peace and quiet. A trek through the plantation is an education. See the cultivation and harvesting of coffee, cardamom, cloves and pepper. The tea plantations, factory and the cardamom-processing unit are well worth a visit.

The scenic countryside invites you to take long walks. The heady combination of raw nature and the clean air is a potent restorative. Visit to the EU aided Organic Tea and Spice factory and Sahyadri Ayurvedic Centre and medicine manufacturing unit.

Overnight: Paradisa Plantation Retreat

Day 05-07

PEERMADE
Follow the same routine as Day 04.

Food in Kerala is an outstanding production of locally available produce. Lessons can be arranged for guests who would like to take away some of the amazing recipes of the family.

Overnight: Paradisa Plantation Retreat

Day 08

PEERMADE-PERIYAR-PEERMADE (APPROX. 40 KMS, 1 HRS DRIVE)
Breakfast at the hotel

Depart by surface to Periyar.

Arrive Periyar & Check into Hotel.

Periyar – a small town with its unending chains of hills and spice-scented plantations is famous for the Periyar Wildlife Reserve, noted for its diverse wildlife and beautiful landscape.

Afternoon: Boat cruise on the Lake of the famous Periyar wildlife sanctuary to see wild life. Periyar an artificial lake or reservoir created by a dam on Periyar River is the heart of the 777 sq km Wildlife Sanctuary where wild elephants, Asiatic Deer, Black Buck and even Tigers come to the shores of the lake for a drink.

Return to Peermade in the evening.

Overnight: Paradisa Plantation Retreat

Paradisa
Day 09

PEERMADE-ALLEPPY
Breakfast at the hotel

After breakfast, check out and drive to jetty to embark the traditional rice boats – “kettuvallam” for a fascinating cruise through the backwaters.

Begin your full day journey through the picturesque backwaters and the small lakes relaxing in the tranquility of Kerala’s beautiful scenery and some lovely inland lagoons, fringed by thin green necklaces of vegetation. You are on the boats' forward sundeck, comfortably ensconced in a rosewood-and-cane easy chair. Your boat moves towards the mouth of the Kavanar River at a scorching 6 miles an hour. Hmmm. It would be a fight to keep your eyelids from closing, except that a refreshingly soft breeze angles in westerly direction, off the Vembanad Lake. It carries the cries of distant birds, surprisingly loud over the waters.

You move upstream, and the gentle life of another world unfolds around you.

Lunch and dinner will be served on board.

Overnight stay on the boat

Paradisa
Day 10

ALLEPPEY-COCHIN
Breakfast on board the barge

Later, drive to Cochin International Airport to board your international flight .

END OF TOUR