On your arrival, a Tropic Trails representative will pick you up from Cochin International Airport and drop you to the hotel nearby
You will begin your cycling from the airport hotel and head for Paniyeli Poru, a short ride of 30 km through rural areas and plantations. The area is named after the shallow yet rapid-flowing Periyar river which passes along the village. Your hotel will be on the banks of this river, facing the forest on the other side, peaceful and picturesque.
Accommodation – Whispering waters, Paniyeli Poru
We will be cycling towards Thattekad, the foothills of Western Ghats hill range, the hills we will be cycling for the next few days. Your accommodation will be organized at Birds Murmur Camp by the Periyar river. Thattekad is a birdwatching hotspot with multiple ecotones, the lush green moist deciduous patches, riverine forests and plantations all hosts many types of birds throughout the year. In the evening you can cycle around the pretty country side or can go on a kayaking trip in the Periyar river, the river is still and current is not visible at this area which makes it safe for everybody who enjoys the water.
After breakfast you will set off for Munnar, todays ride takes you along the Periyar river and the lush green forest runs parallel to it, eventually to get to the challenging part of today’s cycling in the hills of Munnar. With a picturesque landscape and cool weather Munnar is one of the top destination every traveler has in their list to explore. The rolling hills and Shola patches, tea gardens which lays the green carpet for endless distances with the clear blue sky makes an otherworldly feel. Remember to grab your layers since its cooler up in the hills.
On this day you will be pedaling through the most scenic routes of this holiday, the winding and undulating roads in the tea gardens is such joy to ride with the magnificent views of the hills around. In the afternoon you can explore the Munnar town and visit tea museum and the factory, a perfect place for tasting the local made tea.
The hills of Munnar are also one of the popular places for hikers too, this will be the perfect option if you like hiking in the montane forests of Western Ghats. The undulating terrain has stunning views, waterfalls and plenty of chances to see wildlife too, you may come across Nilgiri Tahr, Nilgiri Langur, Elephants and the Malabar Giant-squirrels.
You will set off towards Vandanmedu, the small town in the Cardamon Hills. You will spin around the magnificent Anaerangal lake, passing tea and pepper gardens, coffee plantations and eventually to get to the cardamon plantations which gives the hills the name.
Your next destination is Periyar, this will be a relaxing ride with only few climbs. Enroute you will visit the Ramakkalmedu viewpoint which gives a panoramic view of the villages below in Tamil Nadu. The place got its name Ramakkalmedu as it is believed that Lord Rama set his foot on this land on his journey searching for his wife Sita who abducted by Ravana, the demon king. You will reach Periyar for lunch, this is the best place for you to enjoy the Keralan martial art ‘Kalarippayattu’.
On your second at Periyar we recommend you to explore the Periyar Tiger Reserve, it is one of the most visited protected places in India. Here you can go on guided hiking and boat safari with forest guides. This wild paradise is known for its unique and diverse flora and fauna, if you’re a nature enthusiast there’s plenty to experience. In the trails of the reserve the chances of seen wildlife are high, you may see Elephants, Gaur, Nilgiri Langur, Stripe-necked Mongoose and many verities of birds such as Great Indian Hornbill, Malabar Parakeet and the Malabar Trogon.
You will set off towards Vagamon today, another thrilling ride through spice plantations and beautiful tea gardens amidst grass covered meadows, waterfalls and countless pine trees. The terrain is undulating with few climbs in between. Vagamon is listed as one of the ‘50 most attractive places to visit in India’ by National Geographic Traveler. You will stay at Winter Vale Resort overlooking the grassy meadows.
You will head towards Pala, today the ride starts with a 15 km stretch of downhill with views of deep valleys and tall rock peaks on the other side. You will cycle past pineapple and rubber plantations, enroute you will also be passing through a village known for its production of cloves. The route is mostly undulating except a challenging stretch of 5 km through a rubber plantation. Your stay is at Pala. Pala is one of the major places in production of natural rubber among spices such as pepper, turmeric, ginger and nutmeg. The culinary characteristics of this place is exceptional; Kallappam, Vattayappam, Paalappam are breads made out of rice, beef Ularth and chicken Peralan are a few remarkable delicacies to try out.
You will pedal towards the backwaters at Kumarakom today, a cluster of small islands in the Vembanad Lake. The terrain is easy today since you are in the plains. Rice fields and coconut plantations cover majority of the area you will ride through. You will get to the resort in the backwaters for lunch, the food here yet again is unique and renowned. Kuttanadan duck roast, Karimeen Fry and Toddy; Kerala’s iconic alcohol beverage are a must try.
You will cycle towards the hub of backwaters, Alleppey. Men fishing in the small canals on the traditional Vallams, women working in the paddy fields, hundreds of house boats and beautiful temples set amidst the small villages, the ride is full of experiences. You will check in to the luxurious house boat for a traditional Keralan meal and cruise the rest of the day in the backwaters.
A short ride towards Marari which is just 15 km from Alleppey. On the way you will stop at Alleppey town to explore market and visit a Hindu temple. The ride goes along fishing villages where coir rope and mat are made by using coconut husk. You will reach the hotel for lunch. Enjoy your beach stay.
Rest and relax in the beach resort
You will start towards fort Kochi the final destination of your Kerala cycling holidays, you will cycle along the beach and the backwaters on the other side through small fishing villages.
Chinese fishing nets, Jewish Synagogue, Dutch & Portuguese buildings and street names remind the colonial era; It’s a delightful place to be around and explore. You will be accompanied by a history guide during the exploration of this beautiful tropical Malabar coast. Fort Kochi is also an important centre for Keralan arts and a standout place to see Kathakali and Kalarippayattu.