Famed for its remarkable Dravidian temple towns, Tamil Nadu is a state that boasts of a culture that seems to resonate in every nook and corner. This temple architecture that catalogues the tradition of various dynasties makes it the ‘land of temples’. Besides this pervasive religious ethnicity, it offers a quintessential south-Indian experience be it in the aromatic, spicy cuisine or the ubiquitous amplitude of regional festivities. Being home to the longest coastline in the country, quiet hill stations, wildlife sanctuaries and many heritage sites this state is backed with eventful activities that will keep you on your feet all throughout your holiday.
Ooty, a hill station belonging to the Nilgiris federation of mountains, is a treasure trove of scenic views, beautiful lakes, botanical gardens, tea plantations and lush greenery. This hill town is known as the ‘Queen of the Nilgiris’ and is a popular tourist destination. The cold climate in Ooty is a great escape from the harsh South Indian summer. This is a great place to enjoy some peaceful walking, rejuvenation and exploration. The rugged terrain of Ooty makes it a great place to go trekking, mountain biking and adventuring. This town is also a great place to do some trinket shopping and feast on delicious homemade chocolate sold at the many sweet shops.
Mahabalipuram, known by locals as Mamallapuram, is an architectural conglomeration, a little ways from Chennai. This artistic town is an open-air museum of South-Indian architecture with exhibits that will make your jaw drop and your eyes go wide. The monuments of Mahaballipuram are listed as UNESCO World Heritage Sights and rightfully so. The magnificent art and tradition reflected in the town’s attractions are unmatched in brilliance and beauty and displays rich Buddhist, Pallava and Dravidian artistries. The city is a great place to analyse and study beautiful sculptures and revisit the past through stories depicted by intricate art and profound culture.
On the southern tip of India, with a carpet of water flowing around it, lies Kanyakumari. This Coastal town is popular for its remarkable view of the sunrise and sunset over the vast Indian Ocean. Kanyakumari, amongst other things, is famous for street food like “appam” and “fried fish”. This town, also known as Cape Comorin, is bound by grandiose hills, fertile plains and beautiful flora. Kanyakumari is also a pilgrimage destination with gorgeous temples and beautiful churches. Shopping for tiny trinkets, sculptures and antiquities is another unique feature in this town. Kanyakumari is rich in art and architectural heritage and offers a proud representation of the South-Indian culture.
6000 feet above sea level lies Coonoor, a member of the Nilgiris mountain range. This hill station is a scenic vantage point with gorgeous green, lush surroundings. A train ride through this town is a definite treat for all nature lovers. Coonoor is a great destination to unleash the adventurer in you. The hill town offers various trekking trails and contains a wide expanse of terrain waiting to be explored. This small forest hamlet is one of the cooler areas in South-India with a quiet and calm atmosphere making it a great place to visit to escape harsh summers and noisy cities.
On the banks of the Bay of Bengal, lies the soul of all things South-Indian, Chennai. This colourful metropolis is a preserver of diverse Indian cultures and is home to some of the world’s most distinct customs and traditions. The city is a conglomerate of temples, art, architecture, museums, beaches and foodie hotspots. A trip to Chennai is incomplete without the taste of deliciously spicy South-Indian cuisines and a ride through the bustling streets in an auto. This city, which is fondly referred to by its locals as ‘Madras’, is a great swanky shopping destination and exhibits the luxe city life.