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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A wonderful retreat amidst magnificent scenery with the best views in town.
Situated about 3.5 miles from the town centre, the plantation bungalow at Windermere was the long-term home of Captain Matthew, who for 25 years served as the Harbour Master of Cochin. In the last few years his son, Dr Simon, has added a number of additional cottages which resemble Swiss chalets, a new restaurant, a sitting and games room, and a tea hut to provide a greater range of facilities. Simple set lunches can be taken under the shade of a tree while a set three course meal is available in the restaurant in the evening.
In the gardens there are designated areas for bonfires, barbecues and hammocks, and a viewpoint commanding a panoramic view of the estate's 70 acres of cardamom, fruit and tea plantations, Munnar and the valley beyond. It is possible to see how cardamom is processed in the nearby store and, if feeling energetic, you can trek to the caves on the plantation. Be prepared for fluctuating electricity supply due to the mountain location - it would be wise to keep a small torch with you.
Please note that the hotel does not have an alcohol licence.
Enjoy a relaxing river cruise and discover otherwise inaccessible areas as well as experiencing local culture from a different perspective.
The cool climate of Munnar provides a welcome relief from the heat of the plains and is surrounded by some of the world's highest tea plantations.
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Our rating: Medium
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