South India Tourist Places
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South India Tourist Attractions

South India has not dearth of natural vistas, magnificent temples, forts, palaces, exotic flora & fauna and other allures that draw the tourists from all over the world. Be it Alleppey backwaters, Meenakshi Temple, Kathakali Dance, Mysore Palace, Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary, picturesque Ooty Hills or Fairs & Fesitvals of Kerala, South India has unending list of charms that will leave you enthralled, mesmerized and amazed.

Some of the world’s most popular beaches and hill stations are found in South India. World’s richest shrines and colorful festivities draw tourists to the temples and churches of South India. Spend some time in South India to bask in the bounties of Mother Nature which the region has got with much generosity. South India tourist places are known for their captivating ambience and great hospitality traditions. South India tourist attractions have great facilities for tourists where you can travel safely and with comfort and ease to explore all the delights of the region.

  • Meenakshi Temple
  • Mysore Palace
  • Alleppey
  • Periyar
  • Ooty
  • Kathakali Dance
  • Fairs and Festivals
Meenakshi Temple Meenakshi Temple

Meenakshi Temple is the greatest draw of Madurai – The City of Nectar. The temple is one of the holiest shrines for Hindus all over. Meenakshi temple complex has a “Thousand Pillars Hall” with carvings and sculptures which are more than 1200 years old. There is a Vasantha Mandapam where the celebrated Spring Festival is organized every year.

The temple is dedicated to Meenakshi, consort of Lord Shiva. Meenakshi Kalyanam festival, which is observed for the wedding of Meenakshi and Lord Sundareshwar is celebrate for 12 days here during the lunar month of Chaitra (April-May).

The temple has 12 gopurams (temple towers) which are an excellent example of Dravidian architecture.

Some Facts about Meenakshi Temple

Temple Name : Meenakshi Sundereswarar Temple

Proper name : Tiru-Aalayam

Location : Tamil Nadu, District - Madurai

Temple Tank : Potramarai Kulam

Consort : Sudareswarar or Lord Shiva

Importance : Chithirai Thiruvizha

Architectural Style : Dravadian Architecture

Opening Time : 04:00 to 12:30 and 16:00 to 21:45

Temple Towers - There are twelve temple towers (Gopurams) which include

  • Tower (Nine Storeys). Height 161'3". This Gopura has 1011 sudhai figures
  • South Tower (Nine Storeys). Height 170'6". This Tower has 1511 sudhai figures.
  • West Tower (Nine Storeys). Height 163'3". This Tower has 1124 sudhai figures
  • North Tower (Nine Storeys). Height 160'6". This Tower has lesser figures of sudhai than other outer towers

Famous Festivals :

  • Teppam festival
  • Meenakshi Kalama
  • Silver Car Procession with Cow
  • Appar Swamigal Birth Star
  • Thirugnana Sambandhar Birth Star

Pooja Timing :

  • Kalasandhi Puja - 7.30 A.M. to 8.30 A.M.
  • Vizha Pooja - 6.30 A.M. to 7.00 A.M.
  • Thrikalasandhi Pooja - 10.30 A.M. to 11.30 A.M.
  • Uchikkala Puja - 11.30 A.M. to 12.30 P.M.
  • Maalai Pooja - 4.30 P.M. to 5.00 P.M.
  • Ardhajama Puja - 7.30 P.M. to 8.30 P.M.
  • Palliarai Pooja - 9.15 P.M. to 10.00 P.M.

DO`s AND DON`Ts

  • Don’t enter the temple without taking bath.
  • Don’t enter the temple wearing shorts, Lunges, and caps
  • Chewing betal leaves, tobacco, Gutka is prohibited inside the temple
  • Devotees should follow the rules of Vaidhika Dharma
  • Any material made of animal skin should not be brought inside the temple

Shopping Center Near Temple : Prithu Mandapam Market

How to Reach: Reach by Southern Railway network from anywhere of India.

Temple Phone: +91-452-2344360

Mysore Palace Mysore Palace

The 145 feet high Mysore Palace is built of grey marble stone and has five storied domes (Kalash) with gold coverings. During Dussehra navratri festival, Mysore Palace is illuminated with ninety seven thousand brilliant bulbs which provide a lifetime viewing experience to the tourists against the shimmering inky black night backdrop.

The construction of the palace was completed in the year 1912. It was earlier the residence of Wodeyar Maharaja’s of Mysore state.

This national heritage site is the pride of Karnataka. Royal throne and regal seats are displayed for the public during Dussehra festivities in Mysore Palace. Also known as Amba Vilas Palace, it is one of the largest and most magnificent palaces in India.

Some Facts about Mysore Palace

Proper Name – Amba Vilas Palace

Location – City of Mysore in Karnataka, India

Built By – The Wodeyar dynasty in 1912

Architect – Henry Irwin

Architecture Style – Indo-Saracenic

Historical Background – This palace was reconstructed by Ranadheera Kantheerava Narasaraja Wodeyar with a fort around it.

Interior Beauty of Mysore Palace – This is a three storied stone building of finest gray and the domes are of deep pink color. The central arch on the above one there is an impressive sculpture of the goddess of wealth, prosperity and good luck Gajalakshmi.

Festivals Celebrated – Vijaya Dashmi and Dusshera are celebrated in the month of October every year.

Nearby Attractions

  • Jaganmohan Palace
  • Jayalakshmi Vilasa
  • Lalitha Mahal
  • Vasantha Mahal
  • Lokaranjan Mahal
  • Mysore Zoo
  • Brindavan Gardens

Temples – The palace includes twelve Hindu temples those are:

  • Someshvara Temple, dedicated to God Lord Shiva
  • Lakshmiramana Temple, dedicated to God Lord Vishnu
  • Shwetha Varahaswamy Temple, dedicated to Lord Varahaswamy, one of the 10 incarnations of lord Vishnu and many more.

Best Time to Visit - September to April

Days of Operation - Mysore palace remains open throughout the year

Hours of Operation - 10:00 am to 5:30 pm

Entry Charges and Fees - For Indians is Rs. 20

Travelling

By air: Nearest airport is the Bangalore International Airport

By train: Mysore is well-connected by railways networks from all the parts of country so, you can board on train from any of the place to reach Mysore palace.

By roadways: Bus services are easily available every 5 minutes from Bangalore city.

Alleppey Backwaters Alleppey Backwaters

Located along the azure sea shore of Kerala, Alleppey (Alappuzha) is a beautiful town which draws tourists from all over the world due to its pristine backwaters. A houseboat sail in Alleppey backwaters will provide you the glimpses of the rich astounding beauty of the region and rustic life of the villagers working in vast green paddy fields.

Also known as “Venice of the East”, Alleppey is thronged by tourists during the annual Snake Boat Race. Kuttanad, the “Rice Bowl of Kerala” falls within Alleppey backwaters region.

The marine and aquatic life of Alleppey is simply exotic. Alleppey Backwaters favorite destination of honeymooner is equally popular among nature lovers and water sports lovers.

Some Facts about Backwaters in Alleppey

Location : Located in Southern Kerala sharing borders with the districts of Kollam, Ernakulam, Kottayam, and Pathanamthitta, 64 km from Cochin and 162 km from the state capital Thiruvananthapuram.

How To Reach ?

Nearest Airport : 64 km from Cochin International Airport and 159 km from Thiruvananthapuram airport.

Nearest Railway Station : Alleppey is well connected by rail with all parts of India. The railway station is located at the heart of the town.

By Road : Well connected with through an extensive network of roads, The National Highway - NH 47 passes right through the town.

Major Attractions

  • QST and R Block Kayal
  • Krishnapuram Palace
  • Punnapra
  • Mannarasala
  • Kuttanad
  • Ambalapuzha Temple

Activities to Do

  • House Boats
  • Toddy shops
  • Front-seat Boatrace view
  • Sightseeings
  • Fishing

Climate :

  • Average 20 degree Celsius in winter
  • Average 35 degree Celsius in summer
  • Rainfall Close to 229 cm

Best Time to Visit : August to March

Periyar wildlife Sanctuary Periyar wildlife Sanctuary

Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary is spread over an area of 777 sq km and there is a 5500 hectare metre beautiful Periyar Lake at its center. Fringes of the lake have marshy areas with tall grasslands that are home to exotic flora and fauna of the region like Niligir Tahr, Indian Python, elephants and Liontail Macaque.

The forest area of Periyar wildlife sanctuary is a mixture of semi-evergreen and deciduous sholas that are characterized by tall teak and rosewood trees with closed canopies. Periyar Lake provides a perfect setting for houseboat ride for honeymooners and romance seekers.

Periyar Wildlife sanctuary also houses a Tiger Reserve and Bird Sanctuary where you can watch some rare mammalian and bird species along with Indian tiger.

Some Facts about Wildlife Sanctuary

Location : Idukki and Pathanamthitta, India, in the southern part of India

Coordinates : 9°28 N 77°10E

Area Covered : 305 km²

Established : 1982

Visitors : 180,000

Governing body : Kerala Forest Department

Climate : Ranges between 15° Celsius in December and January and 31° Celsius in April and May. The annual amount of precipitation lies between 2000 and 3000 mm.

Geography : Delimited by mountain ridges of over 1,700 m (5,600 ft) altitude and toward the west it expands into a 1,200 meters (3,900 ft) high plateau. The highest peak is the 2,019 m (6,624 ft) high Kottamalai.

How to reach there ?

  • By Air : Chennai International Airport
  • By Road : Kumily serves both state and private buses from Kottayam, Ernakulam and Madurai in Tamil Nadu.
  • By Rail : Kottayam (114 km).

Nearby Accommodation sources : KTDC wildlife resorts, Aranya Nivas and Periyar House besides Lake Palace, Taj tourist resort, Spice Village Hotel

Main Wildlife Found : Elephants, Tiger, Nilgiri Tahr, Nilgiri Langur

Other Attractions :

  • Kumily
  • Cardamom Hills
  • Boat Cruises

Flora : Approximately 75% of the entire protected area is covered of unaffected evergreen or semi-evergreen rain forest. Typically tall tropical tree species include:

  • Vateria indica
  • Cullenia exarillata
  • Hopea parviflora
  • Canarium strictum
  • Artocarpus hirsutus
  • Bischofia javanica

Fauna :

  • Mammals - 62 different kinds of mammals such as tiger, elephant, gaur, barking deer, mouse deer, Dhole, Leopards, mongoose and foxes
  • Birds - 320 different species of birds include: darters, cormorants, kingfishers, the great Malabar Pied Hornbill and racket-tailed Drongos.
  • Reptiles - 45 different kinds of reptiles include: snake, turtle, lizard, Monitor lizards, Python and King Cobra
  • Insects - Salmon and Trout and other 38 different species
  • Amphibians - frogs and caecilians and other 27 kinds of species

Best time to Visit : October and June

Ooty Hills Ooty Hills

Ooty Hills are tucked into the Nilgiri Hills range of Tamil Nadu. These picturesque hills are a popular hill station of India. Also known as the “Queen of Hill Stations” in India, Ooty Hill resorts draw a large number of tourists from all around the world all year round.

The temperature remains comfortably pleasant at Ooty Hills and you will simply be carried away by the scenic beauty of the region which is embossed with green blue misty fog and aroma of green tea and coffee plantations.

Ooty Hills provide a perfect escapade from the busy city life and are a favorite picnic and hill station destination for tourists since colonial days.

Some Facts about Ooty Hills

Other Name of Ooty – Udhagamandalam

Also Known As - “Queen of all Hill Stations”

Location - Nilgiri District

State - Tamilnadu

Discovered By - British in 1800

Rainfall - 121 cms

Temperature

In summer: Maximum 25 C and Minimum 10 C

In winter: Maximum 21 C and Minimum 5 C

Language Spoken - Tamil, Malayalam, Kannada and English

Ooty Hill Station Quick facts - It is covered with dense forests, tea bushes and scenic greens

Ooty Festivals - Tea and Tourism festival in January and summer festival in Botanical garden in May.

Nearby Attractions - Botanical Garden, Ooty Lake, Lambs Rock, Kodanadu and Dodabetta Peak, Madumalai Wildlife Sanctuary Government Museum and many more.

Ooty Shopping - Todas Showroom sells silver and tribal shawls. Municipal Market and Coop. Super Market and Upper and Lower Bazaar Roads

Famous Cuisines to Eat in Ooty - Chettinad cuisine, Chettinad chicken pepper, cheese and chocolates

Best Time to Visit - February to May and September to November.


Travelling

By air: Nearest airport is Coimbatore and you can also take flight from Chennai, Kozhikode, Bangalore and Mumbai.

By train: Ooty railway station is nearby Ooty and the famous toy train is also available that connects with Mettupalayam and Coonoor

By roadways: Ooty is well-connected by many roadways networks and the bus services are available from Bangalore, Mysore, Coimbatore, Calicut, Kanyakumari, Tanjavur, Tirupati and Cochin.

Kathakali dance Kathakali Dance

Kerala is home to several national dance traditions and performances of India. Kathakali Dance is one such performing art of Kerala which is not only popular in the state but is also popular all over India and even abroad.

Kathakali Dance is a mix of careful body movements, chorographical patterns and martial art tactics. In this visual dance performance, make up and costumes of the characters are done according the tenets of Natya Shastra, the Book of Dance.

Face of the artist is painted over to appear as if a mask is worn, with lips, eyelashes and eyebrows made to look prominent. This dance performance is chiefly interpretive and characters are grouped in clear categories like pacha, kathi, thadi etc.

Some Facts about Kathakali Dance

What is Kathakali Dance - Kathakali dance form is the amalgamation of literature, music, painting, acting and dance. This dance is mostly performed only to the festival stages in the temples.

Techniques of Kathakali - This dance consists of a highly developed language of gesture that means the artists convey their messages and stories with expression.

Theme of Kathakali – Kathakali use the ancient forms of themes that deal with the Mahabharata, the Ramayana and the Indian Puranas.

Performance in the Kathakali Dancers - In evening the dancers perform a traditional Kathakali dance that continues throughout the night. Kathakali is also used to be performed in the temple premises.

Costumes in Kathakali - Costumes is in very distinct style and make-up is elaborated as well as the costumes are heavy and large with the heavy jewelry also. Sathwika (the hero), Kathi (the villain), Minukku (females), and Thatti are several kinds of costumes of Kathakali dance.

Music in Kathakali - The music of Kathakali is the blend of South Indian classical music that is called as Carnatic Sangeet. The local instruments are used such as chenda, idakka and shuddha madalam.

Dancers in Kathakali - Men usually perform in Kathakali and their dressed in women’s costumes display female characters as well. Kathakali dancers perfectly express their emotions in various way with skillfully and they also have control over their facial muscles.

Kerala Festivals Fairs and Festivals of Kerala

India is the land of colorful festivals and this statement is hundred percent true if we talk about Kerala. Several festivals like Onam, Vishu, Navratri, Ashtmi Rohini, Christmas, Muharram, Nehru Trophy Snake Boat Race, Cochin Carnival, Malabar Mahotsava, Thrikarthika, Sabarimala Festival and Vettukadu Perunal are celebrated here with full pomp and show in which people and tourists participate in large numbers.

The real charm of enjoying these Fairs and Festivals of Kerala is to be present there at the right time. Not only you will be amazed with the vibrant festivities and colorful rangolis but the exotic festive dishes of Kerala festivals will leave your taste buds vying for more and more.

Fairs of Kerala – Gramam Fair and Gaja Mela
  1. Gramam Fair – This fair is celebrated in the month of January on the golden shimmering sands of popular Kovalam Beach Resort. This exotic fair presents wistful recreation of bygone era and shows the ethic charm and culture of Kerala.

    Unique Features of this Gramam Fair – During this fair the local people wear a new look as well as perform various dance forms, art and martial art are also performed in the open-air auditorium of Gramam.

    Traditional Meal – People relish the delicious taste of the tender coconut and the refreshing tea and the tangy lime juice are served. Local delicacies such as Kappa and Meen that are steamed tapioca which is served with fish curry. Puttu and Kadala is the pounded rice cake that is steamed in bamboo shoots which is served with a lentil dish.

    Shopping – One can go for shopping in this fair where you can buy varieties of ethnic objects, handmade ethnic jewelry, jewelry boxes, intricately-carved priceless furniture, beautiful paintins and musical instruments.

  2. Gaja Mela - This fair is held in the months of between February and March every year. It is the fair of elephant pageant where over 50 elephants are provided on a ritual procession that is continues for ten days from February to March.
Venue of Celebration - Parthasarathy Temple, Adoor

Unique Features - Elephants are offered as Nercha by the devotees that is the ritual offering to the deity for prosperity and wealth. The various culture programmes are celebrated during this festivity.

Festivals of Kerala - Onam Festival, Kerala Boat Festival and Thrissur Pooram Festival

  1. Onam Festival - It is the harvest festival that is the time sports, festivities and ritual celebrations in Kerala. It is celebrated because this day the king Mahabali arrived here.

    Type of Festival – Harvest Festival/Indian Festival

    Significance - On Thiruvonam

    Date - Thiruvonam Nakshatra in the month of Chingam

    Observances - Sadya, Thiruvathira Kali, Puli Kali, Pookalam, Ona-thallu, Thrikkaakarayappan, Onappottan, Thumbi thullal, Onavillu, Kazhchakkula in Guruvayur, Athachamayam in Thrippunithura and Vallam kali (Boat race).

    Time of the Year - August to September

    Duration - Seven to ten days

    Onam Celebration- The celebration starts within a fortnight of the Malayalam New Year that is continuously celebrated for ten days. The last day of Onam festivity is called the Thiruonam and this day is the most important day of Onam festival and people from all over the states celebrated the rituals with new clothes, traditional cuisines, dances, music.

    Onam Recipes - Onam Sadya the means the grand feast of Onam festival and this day especially the traditional Kerala recipes are prepared. Onam feasts are like Avial, Kalan, Olan, Thoran and Semiya Payasam.

    Onam Gifts - Gifts are also distributed by Keralities to each other or to their friends and relatives. The gifts are exchanged like silver coins, gold jewelry, clothes, home appliances, gadgets and many more.

  2. Kerala Boat Festival - This festival is popularly known as Vallom Kallies in Kerala. This festival brings the diverse cultures and rich traditions of Kerala state. Some of the famous Kerala boat festivals are Nehru Trophy Boat Race and Champakulam Moolam Boat Race.

    • Nehru Trophy Boat Race - It is an annual event that is organized at the Punnamada Lake in Alleppey, Kerala. It is the colorful boat race in Kerala that is also renowned all over the world. Boats of all shapes and sizes are ready to compete with each another.

      Starting Date - Nehru Trophy Boat Race

      Ending Date - Saturday, 10 August 2013

      Category - Entertainment and recreations

      Things to Remember - Purchase Ticket from authorized Government Tourism information office always. Reach at correct time by 11 am to catch the boat for races. Try to carry foods and water with yourself and occupy your seat by exact 12 pm at noon. For any help and assistance you may contact the control room or police.

    • Champakulam Moolam Boat Race - This is the oldest snake boat race that is the main attraction of Kerala. This boat race is held in Champakulam Lake that is very much connected to the Sree Krishna Temple at Ambalappuzha. The boats are decorated with vibrant and colorful parasols.
    • Starting Date - 23 Jun 2013 (12:00 AM)
      Venue - River Pamba

  3. Thrissur Pooram Festival – It is the most vital festival of Kerala that is celebrated in Thrissur. This festival is held for 36 hours that involves taking out elephant procession from both Paramekkavu Tample and Thiruvambadi Temple. The elephants are decorated wonderfully and there are total 15 elephants in each group.

    Type - Temple festival/Public holidays in Thrissur

    Also Known As - Trichur Pooram or Trichur Puram

    Dedicated To - Lord Shiva

    Significance - Created by Sakthan Thampuran

    Date – Pooram Nakshatra in the month of medam.

    Observances - Temple Festival, Kuda Matam, Ilanjithara melam, elephant show

    Tradition and Celebrations - Food/Recipes, Music/Dance, Gift Tradition and others.

Our Services

Customer Speak


Durgaram is a excellent man & further has no more words to express for him. Hotels were really good in Madurai, Kanyakumari, Trivandrum and Kochi. Really good planning and we are so satisfied with the services. Temple visits in Madurai, Rameshwaram and sightseeing in Kanyakumari and also Kathakali in Cochin.


Name: Swami Harishchander Puri

Nationality: United States

 

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