The drive from Cochin to the backwaters took us through a number of small villages. Lagoons, lakes, canals, estuaries and the deltas of 45 rivers make up the 900 kilometre backwater network of Kerala. The backwaters mainly cover the four districts of the state: Quilon, Alleppey, Kottayam and Cochin. The Vembanad Lake (second largest lake […]

New Year’s Day & we were up early to drive to Cochin (Kochi) a city, spread over a number of islands and promontories (the main ones being Ernakulam, Willingdon and Fort Cochin/Mattancherry) which are interlinked by a series of bridges and regular local ferry services. Situated at the meeting point of Lake Vembanad and the […]

It was a beautiful drive to Dewalokam, where we will spend New Year’s Eve on an ancestral farm of the Alilakuzhy family, an ancient Syrian Christian family of Kerala. It is in the spice belt of Kerala, nestled on the banks of the Kannadipuzha River. Coffee flower. Dewalokam is an organic farm, producing fish, meat, […]

Happy Christmas everyone. Today we enjoyed nature & strolled around Kamarajar Lake bird & animal spotting: & relaxed by the pool until the sun set behind the Western Ghats, before enjoying a special chicken curry – delicious – with absolutely no Brussels sprouts in sight! Our host was Dr Chris Lucas, a retired British physician, […]

Boxing Day Madurai is known as the ‘City of Nectar’ -legend has it that drops of nectar fell from coils of Shiva’s hair onto the city. The literary and cultural centre of Tamil Nadu in the 4th century AD, Greeks traded here in the 6th century BC and it was the capital of the Pandyan […]

On Christmas Eve, we started our day with a bicycle peacock trail at sunrise, before driving from Chettinad to Dindigul. Today, here is some blurb about Southern India: Southern India is largely defined by the coastal boundaries, and by the limit of the Deccan Plateau northward, generally following a line from Mumbai (Bombay) to Hyderabad. […]

We are staying in an excellent hotel – Visalam – a beautifully restored 1930s Chettiar mansion, built by a father for his daughter. Today we explored the small towns and villages of the Chettinadu region. Here is some blurb on Chettinadu: A stay here provides a fascinating insight into rural life in South India, as […]

In Tandore, there are 2 things to see – the Brihadishwara temple, known locally as ‘Big Temple’, and the palace. Tanjore was the former capital of the mighty Chola empire, with the greatest Chola emperor, Raja Raja (985-1014), responsible for the construction of the Brihadishwara temple. Around the walls of the temple’s courtyard are beautiful […]

Today we drove from Pondicherry to Tanjore stoping off at Chidambaram, Kumbakonam & Gangaikondacholapuram. We left the coast, heading inland to Tanjore stopping to visit impressive temples. Chidambaram was once the capital of the Cholas from 907 to 1310. Today, it is one of the holiest Hindu sites in South India. The ancient city considered […]

Today we further explored Pondicherry. The Muslim Quarter – with a number of buildings with wooden balconies and shaded pavements. The French quarter – with the Governor’s building overlooking a park which is where a memorial to a harlot got Pondicherry into the Guinness book of records. It also is in there because 55 languages […]