India is an intriguing yet overwhelming place. It is a melting pot of several religions, several hundred languages, and several million people. Due to its staggering size, it can be difficult to know where to start when planning a trip there. Luckily a helping hand isn’t far away. We’ve stripped India back to basics, compiling a list of India’s highlights and more importantly, how, where and when to see them. Exploring the nooks and crannies of its cities, discovering its ancient charm, experiencing its age old rituals, and falling under the spell of India’s irrepressible charm makes for an adventure you will never forget.
Southern India offers an extraordinary variety of things to do and fascinating places to see – from the impressive forts and temples in Chennai and Madurai, to the stunning plantations of Paradisa and the tranquil canals of the backwaters. Imagine India can design your tailor-made luxury holiday to Southern India to fit around your exact requirements.
There is nothing more tranquil than an exploration of Kerala’s Backwaters, made up of winding canals, rivers and huge lakes. The best way to travel this region and to be truly immersed in its way of life is by spending time on a kettuvallam (houseboat). From the moment you get on board you are transported to India’s very own Venice, where the atmosphere is serene and the landscape enchanting.
Enjoy a sneak peek into daily life in India by staying at a haveli or in a homestay. If only for a few nights, you will be shoehorned into a family, enjoying traditional Indian hospitality, sampling home cooked food and exploring the path less travelled. Staying at one of these unique lodgings will give you an incredible insight into real India, and you will be welcomed with open arms by hosts whose wealth of local knowledge knows no bounds. Coming in all shapes and sizes, from plantation bungalows to historic houses, majestic forts and charming cottages, a short stay in one of these unique properties allows you to immerse yourself in India rather than simply visit it.
When to go to Kerala and South India
Isolated from much of India by the Western Ghats, the climate of Kerala & Karnataka is tropical and as a result of the mountain ranges, the area isn’t as dry as much of India. The best time to visit is from January through to April.
Winter - December to February
The weather is very pleasant and this is the best time to visit this part of India. The temperatures cool down and the humidity lets up as winter comes in, with this season lasting until March.
Winter can be a pleasant time to visit, especially if you’re looking to head off the beach and explore this Indian land of mystery.
Summer - March to May
Summers are hot with temperature soaring to a peak of about 30 °C. As Kerala is situated near the Tropics, Summer Season brings hot but not very humid days, with very slight variations in temperature.
While there can be the occasional light showers these are just a prelude of the wet weather to come starting with the beginning of June.
Monsoon Season - June to November
Monsoons offer mild to heavy rains and are pleasant after the hot summers. The monsoon season arrives in early June and thus can wash out July and August.
September is much more humid as a result of the rainy season, and the fall can be dry but with the humidity this makes it feel quite the warm. There can be a little rain in the night in October and November.