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Tamil Nadu & the Andaman Islands... Cultural Tour & Beach Holiday in South India

16 days from £4,530 per person

This itinerary offers a chance to experience two very different aspects of India; one renowned for its impressive and ancient temples, and the other for its pristine nature and stunning beaches. Travel through centuries of fascinating history and monuments left behind by three major dynasties – the Cholas, Pallavas and Vijayanagars, before relaxing on the untouched hidden beaches of the Andaman Islands.

Tamil Nadu is an enchanting land, where towering temples bustling with devotees dominate the flat landscape. Madurai is home to the majestic and impressive Meenakshi Temple, and will be the first sighting of many beautiful south Indian temples. Explore the ‘city that never sleeps’ and all it has to offer, from the food markets, to the old palace, and Meenakshi Temple. Leave behind the chaos of Madurai and travel north to the splendid mansions sprinkled across arid Chettinad. The ancient capital of the powerful Chola dynasty, Tanjore is the centre for south Indian religion, art and architecture; explore the city whilst staying and the ultra-luxe Svatma. Venture further north to bohemian Pondicherry, a small slice of France on India’s south eastern coast, before heading to the ancient site of Mahabalipuram, 1,300 years old and still standing strong. Leaving the rich and vibrant culture of Tamil Nadu behind you, fly to the Andamans, where powder-white sand beaches, gin-clear waters and untracked jungle awaits you.

This luxury holiday is purely a suggested itinerary; it can be booked as it is or used as a starting point for creating your perfect tailor-made tour of India. If you would like to see similar trips, take a look at our collection of Epic JourneysHoneymoons and Family Holidays; as well as our favourite Beach and Culinary Tour itineraries.


Itinerary details

16 days from £4,530 per person

Madurai Tamil Nadu South India 7 Madurai Tamil Nadu South India 7
SOUTH INDIA - Tamil Nadu (8) SOUTH INDIA - Tamil Nadu (8)
Chettinad Tamil Nadu South India 5 Chettinad Tamil Nadu South India 5
Visalam Chettinad South India 7 Visalam Chettinad South India 7
Svatma Tanjore Tamil Nadu 2 Svatma Tanjore Tamil Nadu 2
Tanjore Tamil Nadu South India 7 Tanjore Tamil Nadu South India 7
Tanjore Tamil Nadu South India 3 Tanjore Tamil Nadu South India 3
Palais De Mahe Pondicherry South India 4 Palais De Mahe Pondicherry South India 4
Pondicherry Tamil Nadu South India 4 Pondicherry Tamil Nadu South India 4
Pondicherry Tamil Nadu South India 2 Pondicherry Tamil Nadu South India 2
Fishermans Cove Mahabalipuram Tamil Nadu 7 Fishermans Cove Mahabalipuram Tamil Nadu 7
Mahabalipuram Tamil Nadu South India 1 Mahabalipuram Tamil Nadu South India 1
SOUTH INDIA - Tamil Nadu (7) SOUTH INDIA - Tamil Nadu (7)
Jalakara Andaman Islands South India 2 Jalakara Andaman Islands South India 2
Jalakara Andaman Islands South India 1 Jalakara Andaman Islands South India 1
The Leela Palace Chennai South India 11 The Leela Palace Chennai South India 11
My favourite thing is to go where I've never been.
Diane Arbus

We had a wonderful holiday - everything was perfect. Thank you for helping us to make a thoughtful plan to enjoy and make most out of our trip. The places we visited, the guides, the transportation and driver, the hotels selected... Everything was great!
- Jaime Benitez, South India
I thought the Ampersand team was outstanding. We couldn’t have hoped for anything more.
- Mr Geoffrey Johnson, India
Everything you did for us whilst we were away was hugely appreciated, and Ampersand has been exemplary in every way. I'll always recommend you!
- Mr Richard Stoughton, Sri Lanka
Ampersand’s details preparation, attention to detail and interaction before and during our trip show exactly why good travel agents have a role in today’s internet/direct booking age. Shalmali was a delight to work with – before and during our trip.
- Mr David Wallace, North India
I had a very lovely time and was looked after splendidly. My first visit to India could not have been better, save for being longer! But I shall return at some point and I shall look to you to make the arrangements.
- Matthew Nicklin, North India
Difficult to articulate just how good the service from you and your team really was. We know you will continue to do well and hope we have the chance to seek your assistance again before long.
- Mr & Mrs Manson, North India
Without question, you put together the best trip I have ever taken. We were shown around like visiting dignitaries, the hotels were fantastic and the itinerary was just right. Everybody I know will hear about how amazing Ampersand is!
- Leslie Siben, India
So many highlights to choose from! The hotels were amazing but Maya Villa was a highlight… I loved just hanging out in the hammock reading my book and watching the peacocks chase the cows!
- Krista Weir, Sri Lanka

From our Instagram

Sunsets at the @gallefacehotel are the best welcome to #Colombo, especially when watching their flag ceremony from the iconic checkerboard terrace with a G&T in hand 🌅
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We also love the wonderful @maniumpathy_boutique_hotel, which is truly an oasis of tranquility within this city 🌿
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There are more colours to the #PinkCity than you may think... 🌸
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The buzzing metropolis of #Shanghai promises an unforgettable stay 🇨🇳
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Visit this city as part of a tailor-made tour of #China with us to discover its heady mixture of impressive skyscrapers, colonial history and incredible gastronomy 🏙🥟🍜
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Spot mighty lions in #SouthAfrica’s game reserves with the help of our expert guides 🐾 🇿🇦
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📸 Beautifully captured by @soaipham
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Follow our stories for live updates!
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The exhilarating city of #Tokyo has a world-renowned culinary scene & rightfully so! 🇯🇵
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Staying at the beautiful @GalOyaLodge means you will experience one of Sri Lanka’s lesser-known National Parks at its very best 🌿
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Take a boat safari here to see swimming elephants and a striking sunset 🐘🌅
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One of our #Cambodia specialists, Simon, has just returned from the wonderful #ShintaManiWild & couldn’t recommend it more! 🇰🇭
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Overlooking a crashing waterfall & immersed in rugged jungle, this luxury camp genuinely lives up to its name 🍃
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