Locations Covered:
Kochi - Thattekkad - Periyar - Munnar - Top Slip - Ooty - Mudumalai – Sailent Valley - Kochi
Overview :
Visit to Wildlife Places like Thattakkad, Munnar Hill Stations, Eravikulam, and Periyar National Park. Enjoy spotting wild animals and several rare species of bird. Explore the beautiful hill stations, Ooty. Enjoy Backwater Boat Ride at Kochi.
DAY 01: Kochi - Thattekkad.
On arrival at Kochi International airport, welcomed by Indian Voyages representative and drive to Thattekkad. a lowland forest with several types of eco-systems - riverine grasslands, evergreen, scrub, dry deciduous, lowland forest, enabling it to be one of the best birding destinations in India. This is also home to most of the endemics of the Western Ghats. One should sight the Whitebellied Treepie, Rufous Babbler, Crimsonbacked Sunbird, White Bellied Blue Flycatcher, Wayanad Laughing Thrush, Malabar Parakeet, Malabar Grey Hornbill besides owls like the Mottled Wood Owl, Oriental Bay Owl, Oriental scopes owl, Brown Fish Owl, Oriental Scopes Owl and Spotbellied Eagle Owl. Red Spurfowl, Grey Jungle Fowl, Indian Pitta, Black-throated Munia and the Grey headed fishing eagle. Overnight stay at the hotel.
DAY 02: Thattekad
Breakfast at resort and Spend the day in this reserve we'll have plenty of time to search for species such as Malabar Grey Hornbill, gaudy Malabar Barbet, Yellow-browed and Flame-throated Bulbuls, White-bellied Blue Flycatcher and Black-throated Munia all occur here as does the attractive Asian Fairy Bluebird and the vociferous Lesser Hill-myna. Night at Thattekad.
DAY 03: Thattekkad - Periyar
After breakfast, drive to Periyar Tiger Reserve is one of the finest wildlife & birding destinations in South India, with over 320 bird species identified and a leading habitat for the Bengal Tiger, this sanctuary is an ideal wildlife & birding tour. Asiatic elephants, Gaur, sambar, tigers and sloth bear sightings are possible on safaris into the forest. This is also an ideal place to sight the Great Hornbill. Overnight stay at the hotel.
DAY 04: Periyar Wildlife Sanactuary
Breakfast at hotel and the day full go for bird watching in the sanctuary itself. From our base beside the sprawling multi-fingered lake in the centre of the reserve, we'll explore many of its vast and varied habitats. The ornithological pace will be fast and furious and could include endemics or near-endemics such as Malabar Grey Hornbill, White-bellied Treepie, Wynaad Laughingthrush, Malabar Barbet, Yellow-browed Bulbul, Indian Rufous Babbler, Malabar Whistling-thrush or perhaps even a Ceylon Frogmouth or an Indian Pitta. Other targets include Great Hornbill, White-bellied and Heart-spotted Woodpeckers, Malabar Parakeet and Malabar Woodshrike while in the evening we'll search for some of the region's night birds. All our birding highlights may be rivalled by our many mammal sightings.
DAY 05: Periyar - Munnar
Morning after breakfast go to Munnar via the Ghats to Khambam where we should sight the Large Grey Babbler, Common Babbler, Jungle Bush Quail and the Grey Fancolin. then proceed to Bodi Ghats en-route Munnar and stop over for sighting the rare Yellow Throated Bulbul, Indian Robin, Sirkeer Malkoha, Short Toed Snake Eagle, Bluefaced Malkoha and the Black eagle. We will reach Munnar by evening. The next day we will go birding in the sholas (high altitude montane forests) and grasslands for the Nilgiri Pipit, Painted Bush Quail, Nilgiri Wood Pigeon, Black and Orange Flycatcher, Nilgiri Flycatcher, Whitebellied Shortwing, Broadtailed Grassbird, Grasshopper Warbler. Overnight stay at the hotel.
DAY 06: Munnar
Munnar is a convenient and comfortable base from which to explore the Rajamalai Sanctuary (part of the unique Eravikulam National Park) well above the highest of the tea plantations. The sanctuary consists of areas of high rolling grassy hills interspersed with valleys dotted with small patches of shola evergreen forest - a distinctive and biologically rich habitat and home to a number of equally specialised endemics. Once again we'll concentrate on the region's endemics, notably White-bellied Blue Robin, Kerala Laughingthrush and Nilgiri Pipit. Rajamalai is also a spectacular setting in which to search for Painted Bush-quail, Indian Scimitar-babbler and Nilgiri Flycatcher among many others. We are almost certain to encounter some of the rare Nilgiri Tahr, a large wild goat endemic to the grass hills of southern India.
DAY 07: Munnar - Top Slip
Morning after breakfast drive across the Tamil Nadu border to the Indira Gandhi national park - a place known for its great swathes of forests and wildlife - birds, butterflies, elephants, sloth bears, leopards, gaurs dholes, king cobra and the lion-tailed macaques in their natural habitat - all within an area known as Top Slip. We will also bird at the adjacent Parambikulam Reserve as well drive on a wildlife safari through the forest trails. Overnight stay at the hotel.
DAY 08: Top Slip - Ooty
Morning after breakfast drive to Ooty by afternoon, check in at the hotel, 03kms. from town on the Avalanche road will be our main destination, where the endemic Nilgiri Laughing Thrush, White-bellied Shortwing, and Black-and-rufous, Rusty-tailed and Nilgiri Flycatchers all occur. Overnight stay at the Hotel.
DAY 09: Ooty(Masinagudi) - Mudumalai - Ooty
Morning after breakfast, half day birding at Ooty looking for the Nilgiri Laughing Thrush, then drive through the Sirgur Ghats to Masinagudi. Mudumalai at the foot of the of the Nilgiris hills, is one the many reserves located within the forest belt between the Western Ghats and the Nilgiri Mountains. The terrain being varied with hills, valleys, ravines, watercourses and swamps, moist deciduous forests, dry deciduous forests and scrub forests is ideal birding country. Should see Jerdon's Bushlark, Sirkeer Malkoha, Indian Blue Robin, Chestnut-bellied Nuthatch, White-bellied Minivet, Yellow-billed Babbler, White-bellied Woodpecker, Large Cuckoo shrike, Banded-bay Cuckoo, Thick-billed Warbler and Painted Bush Quail. Overnight stay at the hotel.
DAY 10: Ooty – Salient valley
Morning after breakfast drive to Sailent valley national park. Sailent Valley bird watching in an absorbing pursuit, the best part is that they are more approachable than most birds. All it requires is patience and the art of stalking. Attapady is a birding paradise. The region being surrounded by evergreen forests on almost all sides, Attapady has all types of forests, evergreen, semi-evergreen and some areas totally dry shrubby jungles, being rain shadow. Attappady is a part of the nilgiri biosphere reserve. This mixture of types of nature offers plenty of birding possibilities. Lot of migratory birds from adjoining silent valley national park makes seasonal visits. As the temperature is cooler here they are easily approachable, by mid-day most of them retreat into the shade, especially along stream banks and in dense foliage, one could spot them on close observation treks around the lodge and silent valley national park(prior permission required).Over 128 species of birds and 400 species of moths live in this region. According to the park records,13 species are endemic to south India of which 5 species of protected status,7 species where observed to migrate in mixed swarms of thousands towards the valley.
Day 11: Sailent Valley national park
We also offer the services of specialised birding guides for your birding in silent valley national park and the adjoining areas of attappady, the core areas of nilgiri bio-reserve. Do inform us a couple of days in advance.
Day 12: Sailent Valley - Cochin
Morning after breakfast drive to Cochin. Cochin means harbor and even before the building of Ancient Rome, spices, silks, ivory and sandalwood were traded here. Cochin proudly boasts a rich cultural heritage, but is also one of the most fast-paced and modern cities in India. It is also one of the finest natural harbours of the world and a major Indian port. It is its charm and a relatively good infrastructure that make it the ideal gateway to the state. This has been the case since 1341, the year nature carved out Cochin's harbor with a massive flood. As a result, Cochin became the first port of call for Arabs and came to be known as the "Queen of the Arabian Sea." This city offers visitors Forts, palaces, museums, old churches, cool backwaters; palm fringed lagoons, beaches and the practicality of a contemporary metro. On arrival check-in your hotel. In the evening you can go and watch the Kathakali dance performance at a local theatre. Kathakali is a traditional dance form, depicting Indian epics (Ramayana and Mahabharata). The dancers are dressed in very colorful and elaborate costumes. Their faces are painted to depict various characters of the see pics. This dance has a lot of facial expressions and brisk, yet articulate body movements. Overnight at hotel.
Day 13: Cochin – Departure
Morning after breakfast departure transfer to airport for your onward destination.
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