South India Temple Tour
Tamil Nadu is the southernmost state of India. To the north and west are the states of Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, and Kerala. To the east and south is the Bay of Bengal and the Indian Ocean. Tours of South India are incomplete without visiting the grand temples and cultural treasures of Tamil Nadu. South India Temple Tour one of the best tours in South India which includes all best and must-visit places in 12 days.
Tamil Nadu is rich in mineral resources like limestone, bauxite, lignite, magnesite and iron ore. Cotton spinning and weaving are the major industries besides fertilizers, cement, paper, chemicals, and electric motors. The most important river is the Cauvery which is an important source of water and power.
Places to Visit in Tamil Nadu
The capital of Tamil Nadu is one of the four major metropolitan cities in India. The city has many tourist attractions:
Marina Beach: is one of the longest beaches in the world.
High Court: is one of the largest judicial complexes in the world.
The Art and Bronze Gallery: where one can find a few examples of the Tanjore school of painting.
Snake Park: A tour of this fascinating park will reveal that more than 40 species of common snakes beside crocodiles, chameleons, monitor lizards, and tortoises can be seen here.
Fort Museum: It is at Fort St George, the first British fort built around 1653 by the British East India Company. The padlocks, old uniforms, old prints, palanquins, paintings of the governors are displayed here.
If you travel 245 km away from Chennai, you will reach Chidambaram, also known as the ‘City of the Cosmic Dancer’. The image of ‘Nataraja (the dancing Shiva)’ in his cosmic dance pose is known throughout the world. ‘The Chitrakootam’, another shrine adjacent to the Nataraja temple is dedicated to Lord Govindraja.
The third-largest city in the state, it is also known as the ‘Manchester of South India’.
The following places are worth seeing on your tour of Tamil Nadu:
Annamalai Wildlife Sanctuary: About 90 km away from Coimbatore, this sanctuary is home to animals like tiger, elephant, sloth bear, black-headed oriole.
Black Thunder: A thrilling and adventurous water theme park.
If you travel 76 km southwest of the Chennai, you will reach Kanchipuram, famous for its hand-woven silk fabrics.
Tours of Madurai will cover the famous sites such as ‘The great Meenakshi temple’, ‘Tirumala Nayak Maha;’, ‘Alagar Hills’ and ‘Tripura Kundran Rock temple’.
If you travel 120 km from Madurai, you will reach this scenic hill station in Tamil Nadu, famous for ‘The Kurinji flower’, which blossoms once in 12 years. Also worth visiting on your tour is the lake and the Solar Physical Observatory.
This city is famous for its seven pagodas – a group of ancient rock temples, which are examples of the Dravidian style of architecture.
It is a sacred place for Hindus, known for its temple.
It is an important center for bronze figure casting. Thanjavur is known for the beautiful Brihadeshwara temple. Other places that can be seen are ‘The Raja Museum and Art Gallery’ and ‘Saraswati Mahal Library’.
The southernmost tip of the country, it is the confluence of the Arabian Sea, the Indian Ocean and the Bay of Bengal. It is famous for its spectacular sunrises and sunsets and is also an important pilgrimage center.
Situated on the banks of the Cauvery river, 325 km away from Chennai, this city is known for its historic temple architecture, worth seeing on your tour of Tamil Nadu.
SOUTH INDIA TEMPLE TOUR ITINERARY
Day 1: Arrival Chennai
Arrive in Chennai, the capital city of Chennai and the gateway of South India. Tour the holidaymaker places in metropolis particularly, the Kapaleeswarar temple, Santhome Church, Fort repository and National picture gallery. Overnight stay at the hotel.
Day 2: Kanchipuram / Mahabalipuram
From Chennai drive to Kanchipuram, one of the sacred 7 cities of India famous for its thousand temples. Also visit the numerous temples like Kailasanatha Temple, Vaikunda Perumal Temple, Varatharaja Temple, and Ekambareswara Temple, which give the city its name as ‘the temple city’. Drive to Mahabalipuram, the only shore temple surviving in India. Overnight stay at the hotel in Mahabalipuram.
Day 3: Mahabalipuram
Morning relax and take breakfast at the hotel. Famous for the monolith temples that made it a World Heritage Site; have an afternoon tour of these temples at Mahabalipuram. After admiring the prevalent and astonishing rock-cut art, The rock carvings depicting mythological episodes – of demons, Gods and animals in battle and others – are truly poems in stone. The only shore temple which remains here is the spectacular two – spired shrine, unique because it houses both Lord Shiva and the Lord Vishnu in its sanctum-sanctorum. Overnight at the hotel.
Day 4: Pondicherry
Pondicherry was once the French settlement, which is now home to the Aurobindo Ashram and Auroville. Also, go to the beach where you can relax perfectly for the whole of the evening. Pondicherry is undoubtedly the seat of Yoga. Overnight stay at the hotel.
Day 5: Chidambaram
Drive to Chidambaram home to the most popular Nataraja temple dedicated to Lord Shiva. Have a short excursion to Kumbakonam, a sacred town known for its four large temples dedicated to Sarangapani, Kumbeswarar, Brahma, Nageswarar, and Swamimalai. Overnight stay at the hotel.
Day 6: Velankanni.
Then move towards Velankanni where you can offer prayers at the Sacred Arokkiya Madha Church. During the months of August and September, the festival organized at the place attracts a large crowd of devotees and tourists. Overnight stay at the Velankanni hotel.
Day 07: Tanjore / Trichy
Half-day city tour of Tanjore covering the tourist places like Brahadeeswara temple (the second largest monolithic sculpture Nandi (Bull)), the Royal Palace complex, which houses library and museums. Trichy was the citadel of the Chola dynasty in the medieval period. See the Lord Robert Clive’s house, Srirangam temple, Rock-Fort temple, Ganapati temple on hilltop and Shiva temple. Overnight stay at the hotel.
Day 8: Madurai
Reach Madurai, known for 1000-pillared Meenakshi Amman temple. You are also taken to the special religious night ceremony held in the temple. Also, visit Thirumalai Nayak’s Palace and Gandhi Museum. Overnight stay at the temple.
Day 09: Rameshwaram
A full-day excursion to Rameswaram, one of the 12 Jyotirlingas in India. The holiness of this place is clear from the belief that even your trip to Kashi is incomplete without your trip to Rameshwaram. The Ramnathswami temple here dedicated to Lord Shiva is thronged by millions of pilgrims every year. Overnight stay at the hotel.
Day 10: Kanyakumari
Drive to Kanyakumari, the confluence of the Arabian Sea, Indian Ocean and the Bay of Bengal which also gives it the name Thriveni Sangamam. The beach is known for its beautiful virgin beaches and breathtaking sunrise and sunset. The tourist places in Kanyakumari are the Vivekananda Rock Memorial, Gandhi Mandapam, and Temple. Overnight stay at the hotel.
Day 11: Trivandrum
Also, visit the Padmanabhaswamy temple and Suchindram temple famous in Trivandrum. Proceed for the sightseeing tour of Trivandrum in the next half-covering Napier Museum, Chitra Art Gallery and Padmanbhapuram Palace. Overnight stay at the hotel.
Day 12: Departure
Depart for your onward destination or way back home from the Trivandrum Airport.