South Indian food tour, Kerala

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Departure information

This trip can be tailormade at a time to suit you and adapted to suit your budget and requirements
Vouchers
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Vacation type
Small group vacations
Small group travel is not large group travel scaled down. It is modelled on independent travel – but with the advantage of a group leader to take care of the itinerary, accommodation and tickets, and dealing with the language. It’s easy to tick off the big sights independently – but finding those one-off experiences, local festivals, traveling markets and secret viewpoints is almost impossible for someone without the insider knowledge gained from years in the field. If you’re heading off on a gap year your, perhaps – but for those with a two-week vacation, a small group tour will save valuable planning time.

The leaders are not guides – they’re not there to shepherd you around. Instead, they’ll let you know which local restaurant serves great value food – without running the risk of travelers’ tummy. They’ll allow you to avoid hour-long queues at train stations and attractions.

We like to think of small group travel as the Goldilocks option. It is independent travel without the fuss, worry and bunk beds – and organised travel without the coaches. And it’s cheaper than a tailor made tour. It’s sits somewhere in the middle – and we think it’s just about right.
What are the main benefits?
Big experiences
Have big, life-enriching experiences that would be impossible to organise without lots of time and insider knowledge.

Simplicity
Make the most of your vacation time by letting someone else do the hard work and boring logistics!

Peace of mind
Small group tours take care of the security aspects – and provide a safety net should anything unexpected happen.
Who is it ideal for?
Travelers who are short of time
If you don’t have three months to spend exploring, small groups trips let you cover more ground in less time. Your days are not spent queuing for tickets or finding hotels – so you can squeeze more into your vacation.

Solo travelers who’d like company
Likeminded travel companions plus peace of mind for those traveling alone. Single supplements are usually available – providing privacy if you want it.

Less confident travelers
Stray from the tourist trail without worrying about getting lost, and meet local people without dealing with the language barrier.
Mythbuster
“I won’t get any privacy!”
Couples and friends have private rooms, and you can choose to eat alone or not. Single supplements give solo travelers their own room.

“There won’t be any free time”
Free mornings or afternoons let you explore on your own, or just relax.

“The accommodation will be basic”
Trips are as high or low end as you like. Though off the beaten track destinations won’t have luxury hotels, this is all part of the adventure.

“I won’t like the other travelers!”
Tour operators try to create groups with a similar demographic – age, families, activity levels... Chances are, you’ll even make new friends.

“Will we be following an umbrella?”
No.
Meet a group leader
As well as taking care of all the day-to-day practicalities, your group leader is the one who will turn your trip into an adventure. Leaders are extraordinary characters – the kind of person who has spent 14 Christmas days on the slopes of Mount Everest, runs marathons wearing tiger suits to raise funds for their conservation and thinks nothing of leading an overland trip in Sudan or Afghanistan. Fearless and inspiring, group leaders are as important as the destination itself.

Meet a local guide
No matter how experienced your group leader, they can never make up for the knowledge gained from a lifetime in the destination. That’s why many of our trips work with local guides around the world – who invite you into their homeland with pleasure. As well as doing crazy things like climbing Kilimanjaro 100 times, they also donate their time to local projects supported by travelers – such as rebuilding Sri Lankan villages following the 2004 tsunami.

Responsible tourism

Responsible tourism: South Indian food tour, Kerala

Rough Guide to India described our tours as “The most original, hands-on and ethical itineraries on the market” - we’re proud of this and like to think that the quote sums up our ethos neatly. When you take a tour with us, around 70% of your money stays in India - supporting the social/environmental work of our partners and the projects they support.

We feel particularly strong that guides should be local, giving you the opportunity to spend time with people local to the country, supporting their livelihoods and assimilating the local culture. All tour partners, tour guides and hosts involved in the South India Food Tour come from the host country. In most cases, your guide is from the specific village in which you are staying (usually the owners, or an employee of the owner). This may mean that your host has imperfect English but we like to think that the benefits are worthwhile.

Most of the food in this tour is cooked specifically by your hosts and is grown locally, thereby benefiting the local community. Home stays create local employment to work on the farm and to help in manage the home stays. An example is Spice Plantation homestay, based on a farm and forest gardens using traditional organic farming methods. Plants and spices grown on the farm supply the vegetarian cuisine prepared for the homestay - coconut, pineapple, bananas, different types of yam, tapioca, spices such as pepper, ginger, nutmeg, cinnamon, turmeric, vanilla and other tropical fruit trees and medicinal herbs.

In terms of transport - you’ll see from the itinerary that we’re keen to cut the driving and encourage guests to stay several days in any one place with a local guide (rather than continuously driving from one place to another), guests will participate in lifestyles that are themselves sustainable - you'll eat locally produced food, use local transport, cook dinner with your host, and visit local environmental projects.

2 Reviews of South Indian food tour, Kerala

4 out of 5 stars
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Reviewed on 12 Apr 2017 by

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your vacation?


The relaxed pace and seeing how different Southern India is compared to the north.

2. What tips would you give other travelers booking this vacation?


Although this is called a Food Adventure, and some cooking demonstrations were involved, there could have been more of an emphasis on food.

3. Did you feel that your vacation benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?


Yes

4. Finally, how would you rate your vacation overall?


The two weeks were very enjoyable. There was a bit of confusion a couple of times about what was included in the journey, but it was quickly straightened out. The chosen homestays were wonderful.

Reviewed on 06 Dec 2016 by

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your vacation?


As this was our first time in India, all the places were memorable for their own reasons. Even our first experience of the traffic was 'exciting' We had an
excellent driver/guide who was able to offer a lot of help.

2. What tips would you give other travelers booking this vacation?


This is also the first time of staying in different places. With hindsight I would have dramatically reduced the amount of clothes we took and used the laundry
service.

3. Did you feel that your vacation benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?


Absolutely. We knew the homestays supported local families and you could see how, particularly at the Spice Plantation

4. Finally, how would you rate your vacation overall?


I would give this vacation a 5 star rating. From the flights to the hotels/homestays - everything was just amazing.

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