SMALL GROUP TOURS
Enchanting Western Ghats
Come with us, a small group of 8-10 friendly and curious travellers, on an amazing journey through the lush green landscapes of Southern Karnataka and Northern Kerala, where you will discover charming cities, vibrant silk markets, scenic coffee plantations, stunning natural rainforests and diverse wildlife. These regions are part of the Western Ghats, a UNESCO World Heritage Site that hosts some of the world’s most diverse and endemic species of plants and animals. You will have the chance to see rare and endangered animals such as majestic tigers, gentle elephants, elusive leopards, furry sloth bears, playful lion-tailed macaques, graceful Nilgiri tahrs and colourful hornbills. You will also admire the variety of flora, including delicate orchids, feathery ferns, towering palms, flexible bamboo and medicinal plants.
This tour is one of our ‘Farm-to-Table’ series, where we explore different aspects of India’s rich and varied culture through a common theme. In this case, we will learn how the spices and coffee grown in these areas have shaped the local cuisine, art, craft and lifestyle. You will visit aromatic spice plantations and fragrant coffee estates and learn about their history and production. You will also taste some of the finest coffee and tea in the world and enjoy the aroma of spicy cardamom, pungent pepper, sweet cinnamon and nutty nutmeg. You will see how these products have inspired the creation of beautiful textiles, pottery, paintings and jewellery by local artisans. You will also get to interact with some of the farmers and craftsmen who grow and make these products and learn about their traditions and challenges.
Our tour leader, Joji Jacob, has personally designed this tour based on his extensive knowledge and experience of these regions. He will guide you through 19 days of immersive and authentic experiences that will enrich your understanding and appreciation of these unique places. He will also share his insights and stories about these regions’ culture, history and politics. He will introduce you to some of the local people who live in these areas and show you their hospitality and customs. He will also take you to some of the hidden gems that are off the beaten track and give you a glimpse of real India. He will ensure you have a comfortable and enjoyable stay at some of these areas’ best hotels and resorts.
You will meet inspiring people who are working to conserve the environment and promote education, health and women’s rights. You will also participate in community activities, such as games, cooking classes and various serendipitous activities.
This tour is so much more than just sightseeing. It’s a meaningful adventure that will inspire and connect you with nature and people. So come join us and discover the hidden gems of the Malabar Coast and the Western Ghats. We can’t wait to share this incredible journey with you!
Bengaluru | Mysuru | Coorg | Wayanad | Kozhikode | Cheruthuruthy | Kochi
Joji Jacob, a native of this region, is leading this tour. He has spent many years travelling and studying these regions and has acquired a deep knowledge of their history, culture and natural wonders. He will share his enthusiasm and insights throughout this tour, showing you the hidden gems and the best spots to enjoy the local cuisine, scenery and traditions. You will learn a lot from his expertise and experience and have a memorable and enriching tour with him.
Day 1, 2 & 3 – Bengaluru (Bangalore) - Arrival
Namaskara – Greetings from Bengaluru, the gateway to the beautiful Western Ghats!
Upon arrival at Bengaluru Kempegowda International Airport, one of our team members will personally welcome you and escort you to your private transportation for a comfortable ride to your accommodation.
For two days, we’ll take you on a journey to discover Bengaluru’s rich history, heritage, and modern developments through its unique architecture, art, cuisine, and crafts.
Bengaluru, the capital city of Karnataka in southern India, is famously known as the Silicon Valley of India due to its thriving IT industry and innovative mindset. The city is a beautiful blend of ancient temples, palaces, modern skyscrapers, and malls, offering a diverse cultural experience and a vibrant nightlife for visitors to relish.
Meals: B | – | –
Accommodation: The Pauls
Day 4 & 5 – Mysuru (Mysore)
Meals: B | – | –
Accommodation: Royal Orchid Metropole
Day 6 & 7 – Kodagu (Coorg)
Leaving the hustle and bustle of city life, we head towards Coorg, which is situated in the lap of the biodiversity-rich Western Ghats in Karnataka. Referred to as ‘Scotland of India’, it is famous for its tranquillity, coffee plantations, architecture and rich culture. Here we will visit farms, take in culinary experiences and undertake gentle treks to meet and interact with the tribals of this region before we leave for the next state, Kerala. Coorg is home to the Kodavas, an ancient clan with extraordinary martial abilities and unique culture. They worship nature and their ancestors and celebrate festivals like Kailapodh and Puthari with great fervour. They also have distinctive dances like Umma and Bolak-aat that showcase their grace and valour. Coorg is also known for its diverse wildlife and ecology, with four types of vegetation and four protected areas that are listed as World Heritage Sites by UNESCO. Coorg is a land of beauty, adventure and heritage that will enchant any traveller.
Meals: B | L(1) | D
Accommodation: Heritage Resort
Day 8, 9 & 10 – Wayanad
Leaving the Malabar Coast, we head towards Wayanad, the ‘Land of the Paddies’. Nestled amongst the mountains of the majestic Western Ghats, this region envelopes you with its lush green hillsides covered in coffee, banana, rubber and tea plantations. This breathtaking natural beauty is home to the local tribals, who will share their perspectives with you.
Meals: B | L | D
Accommodation: Vythiri Resort
Day 11 & 12 – Kozhikode (Calicut)
Another ancient trading port, this city is famous for being the place where Vasco da Gama landed in India. Here, we will visit a local market, marvel at the traditional art of jewellery making, feast on culinary and cultural experiences with one of the renowned chefs of this region, and spend time with a couple of my esteemed friends to enjoy the locals’ perspectives on their unique culture.
Meals: B | L(1) | –
Accommodation: The Raviz Calicut
Day 13, 14 & 15 – Cheruthuruthy
Next, we take a leisurely drive south to a river retreat on the banks of the Nilla river. We will explore Kerala architecture, art & performance, walk through paddy fields and visit various talented local artisans living nearby.
Meals: B | – | –
Accommodation: The River Retreat Heritage Ayurvedic Resort
Day 16, 17 & 18 – Kochi
We continue on our southern route and arrive in the bustling metropolitan city of Kochi, Kerala’s Harbour city. Here we will feast our eyes on silk and cotton textiles, gold and platinum jewellery and everything in between. To really take in this colourful, fun, eclectic and history-rich location, we will stroll through the spice market, cycle through the narrow lanes of Fort Kochi, catch a ferry ride with the locals, and go to the market with a chef who will treat you to a special culinary experience at the chef’s home to draw this tour to its personal conclusion.
Meals: B | L(1) | –
Accommodation: The Dutch Bunglow, Fort Kochi
Day 19 – Kochi Departure!
We have reached the end of our ‘Essence of Western Ghats’ Tour. We sincerely hope that you have enjoyed your journey with us. It brings us great joy to know that you have chosen to travel with us and allowed us to introduce you to the serene pleasures of South India.
We allocate a significant portion of our earnings towards community projects throughout India. Don’t hesitate to enquire about these initiatives if you’re interested. Your contribution towards these initiatives is made possible by joining our tours. We appreciate your support!
We offer an inclusive airport transfer service to Kochi International Airport for those returning home today. We eagerly await your return for another exhilarating ATI Travel experience. Namaskaram!
Our team would love to assist guests who have opted to continue their tour to a beach or hill station by accompanying them to their next destination. We offer two tour extension options:
Tour Extention 1 – (6N/7D) Hill Station, Houseboat & Village experience
Tour Extention 2 – (6N/7D) Beach, Houseboat & Village experience
If you haven’t yet booked your tour extension, kindly get in touch with us for more details.
Meals: B | – | –
Group Organiser Discount Available
A group organiser (4-10) can avail up to $2000 discount on a twin share package price. Please contact us for further details.
- Airport meet and greet with private transfers
- Private air-conditioned coach
- Handpicked boutique accommodations
- Meals as per trip note
- English-speaking local guides
- All entrance fees, tips & gratuity
- Guaranteed departure with just six guests
- Visa fees
- Travel Insurance
- Medical Tests & other medical expenses
- Personal expenses
REQUEST DETAILED ITINERARY
Or call Joji on +64 (0) 21 505 713
An ideal trip for:
Solo Traveler, Group of Friends, Couples
If you want a rich and truly authentic experience of the region(s) being visited in a slow and well-paced manner as part of a small group of like-minded people who appreciate the personal care and attention provided to them, then this is the trip for you.
Safe Travels with ATI
We are uniquely qualified to ensure your well-being when travelling with us.
Our local partner offices work tirelessly with us behind the scenes
Our local suppliers and partners know our health & safety requirements, and our requirement to comply with all local regulations.
We follow the health and safety protocols required for your journey
All protocols involving physical distancing, vaccinations, masking, testing and other safety practices are communicated both before and during your journey. These protocols are carried out according to the latest local regulations and service provider requirements.
We facilitate in-country COVID-19 testing and provide round-the-clock support for any health-related matters
ATI’s network of local offices has the contacts and knowledge to support you throughout your journey, from coordinating COVID-19 testing (for travelling between countries and returning home) to answering any questions you have during your journey. Our local partners are experienced in handling any situation and have the contacts and knowledge to support guests 24/7.
ATI Travel will constantly monitor its safe travel plans to comply with global health and safety protocols
In the event that the tour director has to isolate, the tour will continue with the tour director remotely managing the tour in conjunction with the local team members.
If any of the guests have to isolate, all arrangements will be made to find accommodation and their medical support. This is not included in the package costs and must be covered by the individual’s travel insurance.
The guest can join the tour after the required isolation and clearance if the tour is still active. In the event that the tour has been completed, the guest will be supported to make their return passage home.
We Got You Covered
Something for everyone
Whether you are a first-timer or experienced traveller, our tours meet the expectations, needs and interests of each individual on the tour. Our guests continuously tell us that it surpasses all their expectations.
This tour is suitable for guests who do not mind travelling that extra mile in search of those unique experiences. If you are interested in culture, cuisine, architecture, people interaction and textiles, you will love this tour.
Boutique accommodation, handpicked by us, for you to rest and rejuvenate in beautiful settings such as palaces, homestay, mansions, farm stay, business hotels and glamping is part of the travel experience we curate for you.
Travel in comfort
We provide airport to airport service, for your comfort and safety. Your private vehicle and the English speaking driver will accompany you throughout the journey. Check out the feedback we have received from our guests.