Pilgrimage took place in January of 2017
Group Leader: Jerry Toporovsky
With visits to: the extraordinary temples of Tamil Nadu; Kkerala; an extended stay at Ramana Maharshi ashram; Pondicherry and Auroville; a visit to an Ayurvedic healing center on the back waters of Kerala for personal healing.
Day 1: 4 Jan 2017 (Wednesday): Arrival Chennai – Mahabalipuram
Day 2: 5 Jan 2017 (Thursday): Mahabalipuram
Day 3: 6 Jan 2017 (Friday): Mahabalipuram – Tiruvannamalai
Day 4: 7 Jan 2017 (Saturday): Tiruvannamalai
Day 5 : 8 Jan 2017 (Sunday ): Tiruvannamalai
Day 6: 9 Jan 2017 ( Monday): Tiruvannamalai
Day 7: 10 Jan 2017 (Tuesday): Tiruvannamalai – Pondicherry
Day 8: 11 Jan 2017 (Wednesday): Pondicherry
Day 9: 12 Jan 2017 (Thursday): Pondicherry – Chidambaram – Tanjore
Day 10: 13 Jan 2017 (Friday): Tanjore – Madurai
Day 11: 14 Jan 2017 (Saturday): Madurai
Day 12: 15 Jan 2017 (Sunday): Madurai – Kollam
Day 13: 1 6 Jan 2016 (Monday): Kollam
Day 14: 17 Jan 2017 (Tuesday): Kollam
Day 15: 18 Jan 2017 (Wednesday): Kollam – Kochi
Day 16: 19 Jan 2017 (Thursday): Kochi
Day 17: 20 Jan 2017 (Friday): Kochi – Depart
04 Jan 2017 (Wednesday): Arrival Chennai & Drive Mahabalipuram (D)
Arrival in Chennai airport. For those interested, there is a possibility to arrive one or more days earlier and book extra nights accordingly. Pick up by our representative at the airport and drive by private A/C coach to Mahabalipuram. This small town on the Bay of Bengal is an excellent place to relax and acclimatize to life in South India. Check in, meeting and dinner.
05 Jan 2017 (Thursday): Mahabalipuram Tour (B+L+D)
We will do morning exercise together every day. We begin by relaxing and acclimatizing by the peaceful, good beaches of the area. We will explore the ancient rock cut Shore Temple and Five Rathas, a UNESCO World Heritage built in the 7th Century, and Arjuna's Penance, the world's largest bas relief carving. In Chennai we will visit the founding place of Theosophy and Khristnamurti.
06 Jan 2017 (Friday): Mahabalipuram – Tiruvannamalai (B+D)
Drive to Tiruvannamalai, the site of the sacred mountain of South India, a power point of pilgrimage forever and the place of the Ramana Maharishi Ashram. En-route we will be able to explore the sacred city of Kanchipuram, one of the most significant pilgrimage sites in all of India. Arrival in Tiruvannamalai and check in. We will stay in a peaceful retreat resort for 4 days, on full board, commuting to Ramana Maharishi Ashram each day.
07-08-09 Jan 2017 (Saturday-Sunday and Monday): Tiruvannamalai (B+L+D)
During this time in Tiruvannamalai will be doing a mini-retreat at our hotel, visiting the sacred mountain and the Ramana Ashram every day to do deep inner work and walk the pilgrimage route around the mountain. Among other activities, we will explore the Arunachaleswar Temple.
10 Jan 2017 (Tuesday): Tiruvannamalai – Pondicherry (B+D)
Drive by our private coach to Pondicherry, the largest French colony in India. There is a strong French influence in the city, especially in the old quarters, with Rues and Boulevards lined with Mediterranean style houses and bakeries, although the city remains very much Indian. French is still understood, and the whole city makes for rather pleasant mix of East and West. On arrival, check in to our hotel and lunch on our own. In the afternoon we will visit Auroville, the international attempt at an ideal spiritual community founded in 1968 and based on the spiritual teachings and practices of Sri Aurobindo and the Mother. Auroville is inhabited by people from across the world and is an ongoing experiment in human unity, transformation and consciousness, as well as sustainable living and the future cultural, environmental, social and spiritual needs of mankind.
11 Jan 2017 (Wednesday): Pondicherry City Exploration (B)
Today we will explore on a guided tour the Sri Kanniga Parameswari Temple dedicated to Goddess Shakthi, the Museum of Pondicherry, the church of the Sacred Heart of Jesus, the Temple of Manarkula Vinayagar. We will stroll in the old neighborhoods and go back to Auroville if we are called to do so.
12 Jan 2017 (Thursday): Pondicherry - Chidambaram – Tanjore (B+D)
Drive by coach about 40 miles to Chidambaram. Here we will visit the Nataraja Temple, where Shiva is worshipped as the Cosmic Dancer, depicted in 108 dancing poses in 10th century stone carvings. Late afternoon drive to Tanjore to explore the Brihadisvara Temple and Saraswati Mahal Library. Overnight in Tanjore.
13 Jan 2017 (Friday): Tanjore – Madurai (B+D)
Drive by coach to Madurai, considered the cultural capital of Tamil Nadu and South India and home to the Meenakshi Temple one of the most significant Temples in all of south Asia. We will visit also the Gandhi Museum . Our main focus will be the home where Ramana became enlightened in, right near the Temple. Tonight we will celebrate Mr. Gurdjieff’s birth in this sacred city. During this time in Madurai we will be doing a mini retreat on inner work.
14 Jan 2017 (Saturday): Madurai (B+D)
Further visits in Madurai: Thirupparankundram Temple and Thirumalai Nayak Palace. In its heyday, Tirumalai Nayak Palace at Madurai was considered to be one of the wonders of the South.
15 Jan 2017 (Sunday): Madurai - Kollam (B+L+D)
Drive to the back waters in Kerala to stay at an Ayurvedic center for Ayurvedic treatments (optional), exploring the culture of the backwaters. We will have a mini-retreat on Ayurveda and the Work. The backwaters are an extraordinary natural, cultural and beautiful place to visit. We can only reach the villages by boat and we will do a mini-retreat in the quiet and peace of this extraordinary place.
16 Jan 2016 (Monday)—17 Jan 2017 (Tuesday): Kollam (B+L+D)
We will explore the amazing back waters of Kerala, a natural wonder and we are staying at a resort where we can receive Ayurvedic treatments.
18 Jan 2017 (Wednesday): Kollam – Kochi (B)
Drive to Kochi and spend two days exploring Kochi the capital of Kerala and a place of international tourism and interest; for its music, dance, shopping, the center of the spice trade even today and multi-cultural life. Visit Churches, Synagogues, Mosques and Temples. Evening programs include Kathakali, the famous dance drama of Kerala.
19 Jan 2017 (Thursday): Kochi (B+D)
In Kochi we will visit: the Hill Palace Museum, a fully-fledged archaeological museum and Kerala’s first ever Heritage Museum, Santa Cruz Basilica, built by the Portuguese. We will visit the Jewish Synagogue and the area around the Synagogue, called Jew Town, the centre for Spice & Handicraft shops.
20 Jan 2017 (Friday): Kochi – Depart (B)
Flight back home
The order of events and visits may be subject to change .
$2,550 per person, based on a minimum of 20 participants
*In order to join the pilgrimage it is compulsory to purchase medical insurance that includes emergency medical repatriation. Each participant will be asked to sign a waiver, also compulsory for those who wish to be part of this journey.
Hotels have not been booked. Their availability will be confirmed at the time of second deposit. We choose a combination of 4/ 5 stars hotels. Most likely the accommodation in Tiruvannamalai will be Sparsa Resort (4 stars) Fragrant Nature (5 stars) at the backwaters and Heritage (5 stars) in Madurai.
Booking will be confirmed on receipt of deposit only.
Each Pilgrim will be provided with a registration form to be filled and returned by email or mail at the latest by the first deposit deadline.
Preferred mode of payment is check or money transfer.
Wire Transfer: in US Dollars to Bank of America, ABA: 026009593. Swift Code: BOFAUS3N Account: 004639668822 Beneficiary: Kairos Pilgrimages, Inc.
By check: Payable to: Kairos Pilgrimages
Mailed to: Kairos Pilgrimages/Journeys to the East, 94 Jackson Rd, Suite 206, Devens, 01368, MA, specifying the spiritual leader of the pilgrimage: Jerry Toporovsky
By PayPal and Credit card (additional fees for these services are paid by the participant)
Journeys To The East acts as an agent and it shall not be, in any way responsible or liable for any accident, damage, loss, delay or inconvenience caused in connection with the travel facilities arranged by local companies, its employees or agents. All bookings are accepted and executed with utmost care, yet no responsibility is undertaken for any change or deviation on account of factors beyond our control.
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