After spending an interesting night sharing a single bed in the smallest room known to mankind we had an early start - we got up before sunrise and headed to Munnar up in to the South Indian hills.
Our trip to Munnar included our own private driver called Anthony, an overnight stay in a rather swanky homestay, 2 breakfasts, 1 dinner and lots of stop offs on the way there and back! (all for a mere 35 pounds...our little treat!)
The highlight of our trip was scrubbing the dry skin off of elephants with a coconut shell...and watching them bathe (and poop) in the river! Sarah was given a shower by one of the baby elephants trunks and he played tug of war with the coconut shell.
We stopped at a Spice and Ayuvendic Gardens where a very knowledgable (a bit too knowledgable) guide spoke very very quickly about curing cancer with fig leaves and he pondered over why opium poppies make everyone want to party! Sceptical asn always we ended up only buying some organic mosquito repellent for 2 pounds to keep our guide happy!
(Ayuvendic are natural remedies that many Indians use because they believe they do not cause any side effects - only it takes about 10 days to sure a headache using plants so we're sticking to the ibuprofen!)
The drive towards our hostel was stunning and there were tea plantations around every corner it was so refreshing - the journey would have been even more relaxing if we wern't so worried about our car flying round the mountain cliff edges at 60 mph (he later ran over a cat...)
Our homestay was more like a five star hotel (from our standards) complete with a balcony, satellite TV and hot water!!! O and not forgetting the soft squidgey mattress and a mountain breeze = heaven! The chef at the homestay kept us amused....our theory is that he was sent to the hills so that he could be camp and freely wear pink nail varnish, flowery aprons and comment on our niiiiice refreshing faces!
We visited a tea museum, flower garden and some viewpoints overlooking the tea plantations on our way back down to Fort Cochin - we even ate street food and our bellies are still functioning normally!