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16 Days
Availability : 04-02-2019
Chennai, India


•Discover lesser-known yet incredible Southern India with a true expert, award-winning photographer David H. Wells, who has logged over 60 trips in two decades of travel to the subcontinent.

•Explore a region of diverse landscapes, languages, and cultures (crossing three states––Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, Kerala––from the Bay of Bengal to the Arabian Sea).

•Ease into South India’s more relaxed culture at beachside Mahabalipuram, site of a UNESCO-protected Shore Temple that we photograph at sunrise.

•Discover Bangalore from a local’s perspective, including the KR Market (one of the largest flower markets in Asia), a night shoot at Brigade Rood, and a special home-cooked meal at David’s mother-in-law’s house (yes, his wife is from Bangalore, and a photographer no less!).

•Visit and photograph the cultural icons of South India that Indians pilgrimage to, such as the temples of the Hoysala dynasty at Belur and Halebid, known for their exquisite architecture and detailed carvings, and the Jain pilgrimage site of Shravanabelagola, including its 57-ft tall monolithic Gommateshwara Bahubali statue.

•Experience and photograph a spectacular, rarely-visited and very special Theyyam festival.

•In Mysore, enjoy a special-access visit to a silk factory we can photograph, and see its incredible palace both by day for a tour but also one special evening from outside, when it is lit with thousands of lights;

•Enjoy multiple visits to villages and markets, both in cities and the countryside

•Photograph the preparation and intricate make-up for a Kathakali dance we’ll see in Kerela.

•Spend two nights enjoying—and capturing—the tranquility of the stunning highlands on a tea estate.

•Enjoy an afternoon cruise in the Backwaters, after exploring Kochi, capital of Kerala.


February 4, Monday (2019) – Depart home

February 5, Tuesday – Arrive Chennai, India | Transfer to hotel in Mahabalipuram : Overnight in Mahabalipuram

February 6, Wednesday – Full day shooting in and around Mahabalipuram : Overnight in Mahabalipuram

February 7, Thursday – Fly Chennai to Bangalore | Explore KR Market : Overnight in Bangalore

February 8, Friday – Full day shooting in Bangalore : Overnight in Bangalore

February 9, Saturday – Transfer to Belur and Halebid, explore Hoysala sites : Overnight in Hassan

February 10, Sunday – Shravanabelagola | Continue to Mysore Palace (night) : Overnight in Mysore

February 11, Monday – Full day in and around Mysore : Overnight in Mysore

February 12, Tuesday – Transfer to Thalassery | Visit villages en route : Overnight in Thalassery

February 13, Wednesday – Theyyam Festival and local seaside markets : Overnight in Thalassery

February 14, Thursday – Transfer to highlands to visit the Tea Estates : Overnight in Tea Highlands

February 15, Friday – Full day shooting tea estate and local village : Overnight in Tea Highlands

February 16, Saturday – Transfer to Cochin | PM shooting around Cochin : Overnight in Cochin

February 17, Sunday – Photo walk in Alleppy | Backwaters cruise : Overnight in Cochin

February 18, Monday – Cochin | Flights Home

February 19, Tuesday – Arrive home


$6,485 per person, double occupancy*
Single Supplement: $840
*Rates require a minimum of 10 participants (max # of participants is 12).
Small group supplements: With 8 or 9 participants add $300 to above rates.
With 6 or 7 participants, add an extra $300 (minimum # of participants is 6).


• All sightseeing, tours and activities as described in the itinerary
• Stays at carefully selected hotels, as per the itinerary
• Photography instruction by award-winning photo pro David Wells, a South India expert
• All meals as noted in the itinerary
• Baggage handling and airport transfers on arrival and departure
• Gratuities to all guides, drivers, porters, and wait staff for group meals
• Open Sky’s Temu Nana as your personal host and tour leader
• Excellent English-speaking guides throughout
• Comfortable, air-conditioned transport for all land travel – plus bottled water provided onboard
• The internal flight between Chennai and Bangalore
• A detailed and useful Destination and Travel Information Packet to assist with pre-departure planning
• Final documents sent in print together with a personalized travel notebook (or alternate gift for past travelers)


• International airfare.
• Tourist entry visas (US citizens can obtain on arrival), reciprocity fees, passport fees, and photos if required.
• Medical, accident, baggage, or cancellation insurance.
• Personal items and other expenses not specifically mentioned in the program inclusions.
• Alcoholic beverages

About Photographer

David H. Wells

Award-winning photographer David H. Wells is a true South India expert, with over sixty trips to the subcontinent over the last two decades. A visual storyteller and photo-educator based in Providence, RI, he specializes in intercultural communications and the use of light and shadow to enhance visual narratives in both still and moving imagery. He has been exploring India, especially the South, for a quarter of a century on magazine assignments, grant funded projects, during two Fulbright fellowships and when visiting his family. David’s wife and entire network of in-laws are from South India, making the South his second home. His work has been in over fifty exhibitions and he has taught workshops at the International Center for Photography in NYC and at the Maine Media Workshops. David was featured in Photo District News as one of “The Best Workshop Instructors.”