Reasons to Visit
India's central parks are home to a vast range of species - on any game drive you might see spotted and barking deer, sloth bears, Indian gazelle, numerous bird species and of course the majestic tiger. But India can boast a lot more than this - visitors to the Chambal Sanctuary might spot the rare Gangetic dolphin and the elusive Asiatic lion can be found at Sasan Gir.
Whether it's the bright saris and traditional jewellery worn by Indian women, the colourful mounds of spices adorning market stalls, or the soft, pastel pink of a sunset over Agra, every way you turn in India you are confronted by vivid and beautiful colours.
As Brits we are famously fond of a curry, but anyone who has been to India will tell you that traditional Indian food is in many ways very different. The subtle and expertly blended herbs and spices create an incredibly tasty meal and the variation of flavours and ingredients between each region is remarkable.
India has perhaps the greatest diversity of landscape of any country; from the mighty Himalaya range to arid lunar landscapes in Ladakh, forested foothills, tea and spice plantations, deserts, mangrove forests, vast plains, tropical backwaters and remote islands. You won't have to travel far to feel like you are in a completely different world.
From the Mughal forts of Jodhpur and Gwalior to the palaces of Jaipur and Udaipur, there are majestic buildings in every major city. There are also numerous smaller forts and palaces which have been carefully restored, providing an excellent place to stay and experience regal Indian life as it once was.
India is the meeting place of several different world religions. We can suggest the most important places to visit to enjoy the beauty of ancient Buddhist sculptures or marvel at Hindu temples adorned with the pantheon of colourful gods. Our guides will point out the intricacies of mosque design or explain the meaning of a ceremony in a Sikh gurdwara.
Any trip to India should include at least one journey by train. Rail travellers will experience a glimpse of a bygone era, and an overnight journey offers the excitement of waking in your private car to a new and vibrant landscape beyond the window.
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Shalimar Spice Garden is a haven of tranquillity. Set in a rural location with comfortable rooms, the hotel is just a 10 minute drive from Kumily.
A 10 minute drive from Kumily, where most of the other accommodation serving Periyar is located, brings you to the tranquil setting for Shalimar Spice Garden. In this rural location, surrounded by fruit trees and plantations, Shalimar Spice is the nearest you will get to a jungle experience in Periyar. It has a total of 15 bedrooms, all in traditional thatched cottages with modern boutique style interiors. Each room is individually decorated with bright splashes of colour provided by the soft furnishings. The rooms have individual sit-out areas overlooking the spice gardens where a wide variety of birds can be spotted and heard. Spices from the garden are used in the cooking and dishes for the evening buffet. An a la carte menu is also sometimes available. An Ayurvedic centre offers a range of treatments and there is also a small pool to further your relaxation.
Thekkady is a popular resort and spice trading town next to Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary in the Cardamom Hills and provides convenient access to the park.
Our rating: Medium
Thekkady & Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary
Include a stay at Shalimar Spice on your tailor-made trip around India by contacting one of our specialists...
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Further reading:Tours in IndiaRegions of IndiaWhen to GoHighlightsItinerary IdeasTrain journeys in IndiaPlaces to GoThings to DoAccommodationAbout IndiaCountry Guides
Other countries in The Indian Subcontinent:BhutanNepalSri LankaThe Maldives
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