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INCREDIBLE SOUTH INDIA TOUR

A Classic Tours Collection


India Orient Africa South America South Pacic Greece Turkey Russia

A Classic Tours Collection


India Orient Africa South America South Pacic Greece Turkey Russia

ABOUT OUR

TOUR MANAGER
MARK SOOD With 25 years of experience in the travel industry, Mark Sood brings his expertise and in-depth knowledge of travel destinations to the unique tours arranged by A Classic Tours

DAY 1: JAN. 12 OR 13 DEPART NORTH AMERICA Depending on flight routing and airline, you will depart on Jan. 12 or 13. DAY 2: FRI, JAN. 14 ARRIVE HYDERABAD Arrive in Hyderabad, the richest and largest state at the time of Indias independence. The city is nearly 400 years old and is perched on the top of the Deccan Plateau. A multitude of influences have shaped the citys character. Its palaces and buildings, houses, tenements, gardens and streets have a history coupled with an architectural individuality of its own, making Hyderabad a city of enchantment. On arrival, you will be greeted with a traditional Indian welcome and escorted to the hotel. Rest of the day is at leisure. Taj Faluknama Palace Hotel. D DAY 3: SAT, JAN 15 HYDERABAD City Tour, Arts & Crafts Village The tour of Hyderabad reveals an amalgam of old world charm coupled with modernity. Visit Char Minar, Mecca Masjid, Birla Temple and Salar Jung Museum which houses the Nizams private art collection.
In the afternoon visit Shilpagram, a village that showcase arts, in an endeavor to preserve Indias dying arts & forms. Set amidst picturesque rock formations that are unique to the region, Shilpagram brings together craftsmen and artists of every ilk. It is truly a home to thousands of visiting artisans and is a place where the artistic manifestations of centuries ago mingle with dynamics of modern day life. Enjoy a presentation of South India classical and Folk dances and music before returning to the Hotel. BL

Collection. An avid amateur astronomer, Mark personally designs and hosts all of the companys solar eclipse tours, which have a devoted following of travelers who often book the trips before prices have even been published. Marks numerous contacts in the countries served by ACTC have allowed the company to plan unforgettable experiences for its clients. His logistical coups have included arranging for a clients son to go skateboarding on a cordoned-off section of the Great Wall of China for his 16th birthday. Mark has traveled the world extensively, and frequently leads ACTCs escorted group tours. His expertise extends to organizing large international conferences, meetings and incentive tours involving heads of state, ambassadors and other well-known gures. Most recently, Mark planned a high-prole group tour to Bangalore, India, for civic leaders from the San Francisco Bay area, including Mayor Gavin Newsom.

1801 S. CATALINA AVE., SUITE 101, REDONDO BEACH, CA 90277 TEL: (310) 373-1001 TOLL FREE: (888) 605-TOURS FAX: (310) 378-4852 WEB: www.aclassictour.com E-MAIL : info@aclassictour.com

A Classic Tours Collection


India Orient Africa South America South Pacic Greece Turkey Russia

ACTC TOURS
SPECIAL FEATURES yy Deluxe and luxury hotels with  private bath/shower
yy American breakfast, lunch or dinner daily plus  all meals on board train (Golden Chariot) Assistance by A Classic Tours Collections  yy representative at airport and hotels yy Local English-speaking guide

DAY 4: SUN, JAN. 16 GOLCONDA FORT EXCURSION Visit the Golconda Fort, former capital of the Qutab Shahi dynasty, a mud structure evolving into a magnificent citadel fortress. The Qutb Shahis ruled the Deccan for almost 171 years, contributing to the development and growth of Indo-Persian and Indo-Islamic literature and culture. During the Qutb Shahi reign, Golconda became one of the leading diamond markets in the world. In the afternoon, you will hav time to explore the markets that are famous for traditional handicrafts and pearls. In the evening, enjoy a spectacular sunset over the city viewed from the garden or terraces of the hotel, followed by a traditional Hyderabadi Nawab cuisine dinner. BD DAY 5: MON, JAN. 17 BANGALORE A short flight brings you to Bangalore. The capital of Karnataka is known as the Garden City because of its salubrious climate and lush greenery. The city is unique blend of a rich cultural heritage that co-exists with modern day technological and industrial achievements. Next, transfer to a native village with an eco resort nestled amidst grasslands and organic farmland, the perfect setting for some native fun and learning experiences. Take an art and culture tour, an herbal and medicinal plants tour, learn pottery, enjoy bullock cart rides and even participate in village games. Lunch will be at the village resort. Later in the evening transfer and board our luxury train Golden Chariot. Dinner and overnight on board
the train. BLD

All transfers and sightseeing tours, entrance  yy fees and applicable taxes yy Baggage handling and porterage

VALUE ADDED FEATURES


yy Visit Shilpagram, showcase to rural  arts and crafts of India yy Visit the traditional markets,  an unusual shopping experience and photographers paradise yy Meals at hotels as well as some prominent  local restaurants, allowing you to taste the varied cuisines of India (western food options also available + any dietary requirements) yy Travel on Luxury Golden Chariot train,  includes air-conditioned private cabins, butler service and more yy Stay on a luxury air-conditioned houseboat  to experience the Kerala back waters, village life and local industries yy Many surprises including temple ceremonies,  interaction with locals, artists, musicians, handicrafts producers, fairs and festivals yy Bird watching, wildlife drives and more Welcome and farewell dinners at  yy special venues. yy Local dances and music presentations

1801 S. CATALINA AVE., SUITE 101, REDONDO BEACH, CA 90277 TEL: (310) 373-1001 TOLL FREE: (888) 605-TOURS FAX: (310) 378-4852 WEB: www.aclassictour.com E-MAIL : info@aclassictour.com

A Classic Tours Collection


India Orient Africa South America South Pacic Greece Turkey Russia

About The Golden Chariot Train


Named after the famous Stone Chariot in Hampi, a World Heritage Site in South India, The Golden Chariot takes you in luxurious comfort on voyages through time and exotic South Indian locales. It unravels for you both eras hidden behind times veil, and the splendors of the present day. The Golden Chariot transports you to the worlds of mythology, heritage, worship, natural wonders, wildlife, adventure, beaches and more. Spanning 7 nights and 8 days, the Pride of the South itinerary begins with Bangalore and encompasses tiger-stalked Kabini, avian paradise Srirangapatna, majestic Mysore, colossal and monolithic Shravanabelagola, transcendent architectural marvels Belur and Halebid, imperial Hampi, sublime Badami and Pattadakal, and finally, the glorious beaches of Goa! Train accommodations include fully air-conditioned, private cabins (choice of twin and double beds), LCD television, DVD with 6 satellite channels, wardrobe, vanity/writing desk and private bathroom with luxurious amenities and accessories. Two dining cars serve local and international cuisines, fully equipped bar, sauna, massage, gymnasium and butler service.

Marilyn Kristian, a regular ACTC client wrote a note to Mark Sood in regards to the tour: I just read over the entire South India tour set for January and must admit it has some really lovely features and it is most inviting. The luxury of the train is a bonus, as it is a super alternative as it serves the dual purpose of transport and accommodations. The cherry on top is that you are leading the tour. I still think the peoples personalities are different in different areas and for me, each has made lasting impressions. Bottom line, I know the power of your name in India. I remember being in many different places and if I mentioned your name, things definitely took an upward swing and each person, would say...he/she knows Mark Sood!"

1801 S. CATALINA AVE., SUITE 101, REDONDO BEACH, CA 90277 TEL: (310) 373-1001 TOLL FREE: (888) 605-TOURS FAX: (310) 378-4852 WEB: www.aclassictour.com E-MAIL : info@aclassictour.com

A Classic Tours Collection


India Orient Africa South America South Pacic Greece Turkey Russia

DAY 6: TUE, JAN. 18 ARRIVE KABINI Nagarhole and Bandipur National Parks Enjoy breakfast on board train and arrive in Kabini in the morning. The name Nagarhole is derived from the Kannada word `Naga meaning `snake and `Hole means `stream. This name is apt as many streams snake through this rich tropical forest. The area houses the habitats of several rare and endangered species, most notably the tiger. The Park mainly consists of moist, deciduous forest in the northern and western parts and dry, deciduous forest in the southeastern part. A unique feature of these forests is the open grassy swamps, where the grass is lush all year-round. The swamps are numerous due to the high rainfall. Plantations of teak and species of eucalyptus cover much of the park. Transfer to Jungle Lodge for lunch.
Enjoy an afternoon jungle safari. The rich lush green bamboo, succulent grass and other shrubs offer ideal conditions for the elephant population. In addition to the elephants, the principal wildlife species found here are tiger, panther, chital, sambar, and sloth bear. Primates include langur, bonnet macaque and slender loris. Notable carnivores are tiger, leopard, jungle cat, jackal, wild dog and sloth bear. Herbivores include elephant, spotted deer, sambar and gaur. Over 250 species of birds are present, including the malabar trogon and malabar pied-hornbill as well as birds of prey such as crested hawk-eagle and crested serpent-eagle. Dinner and overnight at Jungle
Lodge. BLD

DAY 7: WED, JAN. 19 KABINI/MYSORE After breakfast, board train and travel to Mysore, the abode of untold grandeur and glory. The capital city of the Wodeyars Kingdom has always enchanted its admirers with its quaint charm, rich heritage, magnificent palaces, beautiful gardens, imposing buildings, broad shady avenues and sacred temples.
Enjoy lunch on board the train before embarking on a tour of the palace, which was built between 1897 and 1907 in IndoSaracenic style with domes, turrets, arches and colonnades. The Palace is a treasure house of exquisite carvings and works of art from all over the world. Intricately carved doors open to luxuriously furnished rooms. The majestic Durbar Hall has an ornate ceiling and many sculpted pillars. Continue to Srirangapatnam, an island in Cauvery river where Tipu Sultan built his summer palace. Dinner and cultural show at the Lalitha Mahal Palace. Overnight on board train BLD

1801 S. CATALINA AVE., SUITE 101, REDONDO BEACH, CA 90277 TEL: (310) 373-1001 TOLL FREE: (888) 605-TOURS FAX: (310) 378-4852 WEB: www.aclassictour.com E-MAIL : info@aclassictour.com

A Classic Tours Collection


India Orient Africa South America South Pacic Greece Turkey Russia

DAY 8: THU, JAN. 20 MYSORE / HASSAN Shravanbelagola, Belur & Halebid Travel to Hassan, which prospered under the control of the great Hoysala Empire from the 11th to 13th century AD. This was the period when the great temples of Belur and Halebid were constructed. Hassan was greatly influenced by Jainism, and later became a well-known center for Jain literature. After breakfast, visit Shravanabelagola, an important Jain pilgrim center and home to Asias largest monolithic statue of Lord Gomateswara. Enjoy lunch on board the train.
Next, tour the temples of Belur and Halebid. Both belong to the most artistic period of Hindu cultural development. At Belur, the Channekeshava Temple is a Hoysala masterpiece, built in a walled spacious place where the carvings are as spectacular as the architecture. The construction of Hoysaleswara Temple began by Kedaroja, the ruler Narasimhal in 1141, yet is incomplete despite 86 years of chiseling. Dinner and overnight on board train BLD

DAY 9: FRI, JAN. 21 HOSPET & HAMPI Arrive at Hospet this morning. After breakfast on board the train, tour Hampi. It is said, if dreams were made out of stone, you would be dreaming of Hampi, a World Heritage site. The seat of the famed Vijayanagara Empire was the capital of the largest empire in post-mogul India, covering several states. Although in ruins today, this capital city once boasted riches known far beyond the shores of India. The ruins of Hampi from the 14th Century lie scattered over a 26 sq. km area, amidst giant boulders and vegetation. Lunch, dinner and overnight on board
train BLD

DAY 11: SUN, JAN. 23 ARRIVE GOA Arrive in Goa this morning, a former Portuguese colony also known as Pearl of the Orient situated in the coastal belt known as Konkan. The magnificent scenic beauty and the architectural splendors of its temples, churches and old houses have made Goa a firm favorite with travelers around the world. Leave the train today and check in at the Hotel. Tour the famous churches of old Goa, Old Portuguese homes this afternoon. BD

DAY 10: SAT, JAN. 22 BADAMI Arrive in Badami this morning. After breakfast, tour Badami, picturesquely situated at the mouth of a ravine between two rocky hills. The exquisite sculptures and red sandstone cliffs of Badami tell many a tale of yore. The first sculptural embellishment to dazzle the eye is the 18 armed Nataraja striking 81 dance poses. Also visit Pattadakal. Lunch and dinner is on board train as we travel to Boa. BLD

DAY 12: MON, JAN. 24 GOA Day at leisure to rest, explore the town and visit the beaches etc. BD DAY 13: TUE, JAN. 25 GOA/COCHIN Fly to Kochi this morning, set on a cluster of islands and narrow peninsulas. The influence of Chinese, Jews, Arabs and Europeans is evident in Kochi and its people.Late this afternoon witness Kathakali dance drama performance. TAJ Malabar Hotel. BD

1801 S. CATALINA AVE., SUITE 101, REDONDO BEACH, CA 90277 TEL: (310) 373-1001 TOLL FREE: (888) 605-TOURS FAX: (310) 378-4852 WEB: www.aclassictour.com E-MAIL : info@aclassictour.com

A Classic Tours Collection


India Orient Africa South America South Pacic Greece Turkey Russia

DAY 14: WED, JAN. 26 KOCHI TOURING In the morning visit Mattancherry Palace, built by the Portuguese in 1557 and presented to the king of Kochi, Raja Verra Kerala Varma, as a gesture of goodwill. The Dutch substantially renovated it after 1663, hence, it is called the Dutch Palace. St. Francis Church is Indias oldest European-built church. Vasco de Gama, the first European to reach India by sailing around Africa, died in Kochi in 1524 and was buried here for 14 years before his remains were transferred to Lisbon. The Jewish Synagogue was constructed in 1568 and is the oldest synagogue in the region. Next we proceed to the Chinese Fishing Nets, reflecting the traditional method of fishing and continue to the spice markets, which was a rich trading center in medieval times. The afternoon is at leisure to explore the island on your own or visit the nearby town of Ernakulum. BL DAY 15: THU, JAN. 27 KOCHI Backwater Cruise And Houseboat Stay The backwaters are a gateway for visitors to see firsthand the unhurried village life of rural Kerala, where life is tough and traditional work is labor intensive. Here, one meets the people engaged in country boat building, prawn cultivation, sand mining, coir manufacture, limestone collection, rice farming, duck rearing, bamboo basket making, straw mat weaving and much more. Visit a coir and coconut farm with spice gardens such as black pepper, coffee, cashew nut, coco, pineapple, nutmeg, beetle nut and much more.
The Vembanad Lake, narrow canals, paddy fields and sleepy villages make Alleppey a beautiful place. Vembanad Lake is the longest in India and is the commercial center of Allappuzha. Parallel to the sea are lakes and backwaters with several openings to the sea. Houseboats of Kerala are a unique way to experience the beauty of Kerala. Enjoy freshly prepared seafood cooked on board. This evening, witness an incredible sunset as you silently glide through the various water canals. Houseboat. BLD

DAY 17: SAT, JAN. 29 MAHABALIPURAM & KANCHIPURAM TOURING Tour Kanchipuram (also known as Siva Vishnu Kanchi), one of the seven holiest Hindu cities. It is also famous for its spectacular temples. Many of the temples are the work of the later Cholas of the Vijay Nagar kings. Kanchipuram is renowned for hand-woven silk fabrics, originated under the patronage of Pallava kings. Weavers were employed to produce clothing and fabrics for kings. After the tour, return to Mahabalipuram for Lunch at Hotel.
Tour Mahabalipuram, the 7thcentury city of the Pallavas. It is considered the pioneer in the Dravidian architectural style. Built in the 5thand 8thcenturies AD, the temples strike a romantic theme. The sculptures in particular are interesting as they depict scenes from daily life. Visit Arjunas Penance, the worlds largest bas-relief measuring 27 meters and 9 meters along its length and breadth respectively. This huge whaleback shaped rock contains figures of Gods, Demigods, men, beasts and birds. Continue to the Five Rathas, which are actually five monolithic temples. The most mesmerizing aspect of this monument is that four of the Rathas are believed to be carved out of a single rock formation. BL

DAY 16: FRI, JAN. 28 KOCHI/CHENNAI/MAHABALIPURAM Wake up to the sound of birds, enjoy a relaxing breakfast before disembarking from the boat and transfer to Kochi airport. From the airport, drive to the laid back beach town of Mahabalipuram. GRT TEMPLE BAY
RESORT. BD

DAY 18: SUN, JAN. 30 CHENNAI & DEPART The morning is at leisure to explore the town. This afternoon travel to Chennai and visit Fort St. George (constructed in 1640 AD), St. Marys Church and San Thome Cathedral (the oldest surviving British building). Enjoy a farewell dinner before boarding your international flight. BD DAY 19: MON, JAN. 31 ARRIVE HOME (OR extend your stay to Visit Sri Lanka.

1801 S. CATALINA AVE., SUITE 101, REDONDO BEACH, CA 90277 TEL: (310) 373-1001 TOLL FREE: (888) 605-TOURS FAX: (310) 378-4852 WEB: www.aclassictour.com E-MAIL : info@aclassictour.com

A Classic Tours Collection


India Orient Africa South America South Pacic Greece Turkey Russia

LAND TOUR Sharing double/twin: $6288 per person Single room: $8666 INTERNAL INDIA AIRFARE $345 per person

FOR MORE
INTERNATIONAL AIRFARE Low discounted airfares available from your home city in Economy, Business class and First class. Please check at time of booking.
Note: Airfares quoted are based on best available airfares as of August, 2010. Airfares require instant purchase and are non refundable, non transferable and are subject to change without notice.

INFORMATION
888.605.TOUR (8687) 310.373.1001 FA X 310.378.4852 EMAIL info@aclassictour.com WEBSITE www.aclassictour.com
TOLL-FREE PHONE

BOOKING PROCEDURE A deposit of $500 per person is required at time of booking and balance is due 60 days prior to departure.
Airfares as applicable are also to be paid in full at time of booking.

Details of this tour are also available on our website.

1801 S. CATALINA AVE., SUITE 101, REDONDO BEACH, CA 90277 TEL: (310) 373-1001 TOLL FREE: (888) 605-TOURS FAX: (310) 378-4852 WEB: www.aclassictour.com E-MAIL : info@aclassictour.com