Kerala Tour

Cochin, India, Asia

Kerala Tour

This outstanding tour covers some of the most scenic, exotic and diverse areas of southern India, from steamy coastal waterworlds to the cool air and uplifting vistas of Kerala's mountains. You will be riding through the pristine forests and jungle gorges of Kerala's many national parks and have the opportunity to spot many of the region's wild animals along the way. Highlights of this trip also include a night on the backwaters in a luxury houseboat and time to explore the historical trading port of Cochin. The riding on this trip is superb - twisty and generally well surfaced - and the accommodation is of a high standard, while retaining a genuine Keralan feel. If you want to experience the best motorcycling destinations that South India has to offer, with the level of back-up that only Blazing Trails delivers, then this is the trip for you.

As a participant in this tour you will fly to Cochin's international airport to be met by Blazing Trails staff and escorted to your hotel in the Fort area of the old city. Here you will be briefed on the adventure ahead and introduced to ‘your' 350cc Enfield Bullet and its eccentricities.

The following morning we will leave the heat of the coast and head up into the relative cool of the mountains. Whenever riding there will be a leader and ‘outrider' guiding and trouble-spotting. A ‘sweeper' rider, a support vehicle with spares and an extensively-equipped medic will travel at the rear.

The trip includes few long days in the saddle, but does take in some challenging mountain chicanery. These twisty rides will require skill and concentration, so we ask that you have a minimum of two year's riding experience before joining this tour. Once away from the coast, there should be little traffic, but that which we do encounter is likely to be behaving ‘erratically' compared to vehicles in the West. The general condition of the roads is, however, very good for this part of the world and the riding experience extremely rewarding.

Weather ranges from very warm/hot on the coast, to a cool UK autumn's evening in the hill stations, where we will venture as high as 6500ft above sea level. We would not expect it to rain at the times of year that we run tours in Kerala, but precipitation is possible in the higher reaches of the mountains.

The two-night stops on this tour offer the opportunity to have clothes laundered while you get out and explore. So try not to over-pack, as you will want to leave some space for mementos, spices and gifts.

This trip is generally characterised by the quality of the riding, the accommodation and the stunning natural settings in which you can enjoy them. We love riding on this tour and are sure you will too.

About Kerala

Kerala comprises a narrow strip of land to the west of South India, wedged between the Arabian Sea and the Western Ghats mountains. It is geographically diverse and rich in colourful cultures, natural resources and wildlife. Periyar, India's largest sanctuary, is one of many superb wilderness areas to be found within the state.

Equally impressive are the ‘Backwaters' - a network of brackish canals and lakes covering hundreds of square miles. Kerala's close relationship with the sea often manifests itself at dinner, with fresh seafood high on the extensive list of Keralan delicacies.

For over 3000 years Kerala has been attracting visitors - although not until recently for motorcycle tours... Phoenicians, Arabs, Romans and Chinese have all been trading with this region of India for millennia and it was via the ‘Malabar' coastline that oriental spices and technologies first travelled west from India and China.

Over the centuries, the value of Keralan trade has encouraged many explorers, traders and invaders. Vasco De Gama arrived here from Portugal in 1498, blazing a trail for future colonialism (and Christianity) by the Dutch and British. The evidence of these immigrants remains on display in coastal cities such as Cochin, still a hub of spice, textile and hand craft export.

It wasn't until 1956, nine years after Indian independence, that Kerala was formed from the states of Cochin, Travancore and Malabar. In elections the following year, the Communist Party took power (the world's first freely-elected communist government) and have enjoyed control for the majority of the time since.

Kerala's socialist leanings can sometimes manifest themselves as militant trades unionism, with occasional general strikes, but on the whole Keralan politics (in terms of education and healthcare) tend to be more progressive than the rest of India. The state's claim of 91 per cent literacy among its 32 million-strong population is certainly impressive for a developing country and the provision of healthcare is also well above the national average, with Keralans' life expectancy being ten years above the average Indian. In general, the state's inhabitants appear very healthy, open and friendly. Perhaps this is due to their history of maritime commerce with foreign seafarers, or maybe it's just a result of living in such a beautiful place.

Organised by Blazing Trails

Kerala Tour

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