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Southern India 1st Time Mom/Daughter HELP

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Hello- Now I've got the plans for my Northern trip with my son in March, it's time for the South!

Going with my mom (70) to Southern India in late Oct/Nov. Planning 12-day (ish) trip. 1st time in the south, so want a taste of places without rushing from one to the next. Do not need animals as she has been on safari in Africa. Would love: some markets, history/architecture, city time and country, a stop where yoga/massage is possible (does not need to be Goa), fun cooking class, a hike/walk?

I know we want to see Kochi and can fly Emirates into Kochi and out of Mumbai. Happy to take express train (she's not keen on multiple interiors flights, and I love trains). Def want rice barge/backwater houseboat. Do not really need tons of time on beach lounging (more active holiday).

Please advise itinerary, even if it means tacking on 2 additional days at end for Mumbai.

She wants higher end accommodations, but prefers heritage over swanky new places.

Advice appreciated.

THANKS!

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