India's Dravidian Hindu heartland, Tamil Nadu is true temple
country. Nowhere else in India can you find so many beautiful
examples of India's famous primary coloured, carved temples.
Less exposed to the northern influences, over the last thousand
years, Tamil Nadu was run by three powerful dynasties that helped
to maintain the unique religious and political institutions,
leaving a legacy of astounding towering temples throughout the
The capital of Chennai is a chaotic and noisy metropolis that
is situated on the Bay of Bengal. Considered a centre of
performing arts, the city offers several sights of interest
including the seaside Fort of St George, St Mary's, the oldest
surviving Anglican church in Asia and many grand colonial
There are several sites of interest just outside of Chennai
including the ancient seaside town of Mamallapuram boasting several
World Heritage listed temples and carvings and the temple town of
Kanchipuram famed for its hand woven silks. Continue onto the
former capital of French India and discover the unique town of
Puducherry. Stroll along the boulevards and sea front
admiring the blend of French and Tamil culture and architecture,
with the French street names, Gendarmeries and richly ornamented
Other landmark temples in the region include the colourful
Meenaskshi Temples that tower over of the oldest cities in India:
Madurai and the Great Living Chola Temples of Thanjavur.
Chettinad is also well worth a visit with its multitude of
unique lavish, former ancestral homes and famous spiced food.
Far from the madding temple crowds, head to the peace and
quiet of the forested mountains and coffee estates of the Ghats.
Here you can escape the heat and dust in the cool climate of
the hill stations of Ooty, Conoor and Kodaikanal.