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Tamil Nadu


Tamil Nadu, is the most prominent state of India. The capital. Madras is a cosmopolitan city and the capital of the state. Tamil Nadu is a bastion of Hinduism, whose past endures into the present. Temples with towering spires called gopurams are a common feature of this state, seldom seen anywhere else in the country. Temples in Tamil Nadu were the fulcrum of society and even today art forms that have their origin in religious worship continue to colour daily life. Notable among these are splendid bronzes of deities, painting on glass and Bharatnatyam. Kanchipuram,
also called Kanjeevaram, is famous throughout the country as the center where lustrous silk sarees are woven. Likewise Thanjavur is an important center for bronze figure casting. Mahabalipuram has a vast wealth of sculptures. In contrast to the temple heritage Pondicherry is known for long a French colony. Yet another facet of this surprisingly diverse state is two hill stations Ootacamund and Kodaikanal. Both are little patches of England, being much loved by the expatriate population of the Raj. Both places provide delightful relaxation during an extended tour of the south, having a wide range of hotel accommodation. The cuisine of Tamil Nadu, more or less totally vegetarian, has become enormously popular all over the country.

Chennai (Madras)

Madras, the capital of Tamil Nadu is also its principal harbour and has one of the finest beaches in Asia. It was founded at Fort St. George in 1640 A.D. by Francis Day of the East India Company.

Climate: (deg C)-Summer- Max. 37, Min. 22.1. Winter- Max. 32, Min. 19.8., Best Season: Throughout the year (Preferably October to March).

Places Of Interest:
Fort St. George & St. Mary's Church, Gandhi Mandapam, Anna Square, Kapaleeswara Temple, Light House, Marina Beach & Aquarium, Parthasarathy Temple, San Thom Cathedral, Snake Park, Theosophical Society, Valluvar Kottam, Ripon Buildings and War Memorial Fort Museum and Govt. Museum & Art Gallery.

Excursions:
Covelong- 38 kms, Vedanthangal Bird Sanctuary- 85 kms, Pulicat- 61 kms, Kanchipuram- 71 kms, Ennore Beach- 18 kms, Muttukudu- 30 kms, Red Hills- 14 kms, Mahabalipuram- 61 kms, Cholamandal Artists Village- 20 kms, Elliots Beach- 11 kms, Crocodile Bank- 42 kms, Pundi Reservoir- 60 kms, Thirukkalikundram- 80 kms, Anna Zoological Park (Vandalur).

Reach -
By Air: Directly linked to the major cities.
By Rail: Connected with Ahmedabad, Bangalore, Bombay, Calcutta, Cochin, Coimbatore, Delhi, Hyderabad, Kodai Road, Lucknow, Madurai, Mangalore, Ooty, Rameshwaram, Trichy, Tirupati Trivandrum and Varanasi.
By Road: Bombay- 1329 kms, Bangalore- 334 kms, Hyderabad- 669 kms, Kanyakumari- 693 kms, Madurai- 461 kms, Mahabalipuram- 60 kms, Pondicherry- 162 kms, Rameshwaram- 619 kms, Kanchipuram- 71 kms, Tirupati- 143 kms, Ooty- 535 kms, Kodaikanal- 498 kms, Trivandrum- 709 kms, and Thanjavur- 334 kms.




Mamallapuram (Mahabalipuram)


64 kms from Madras, connected by regular bus-services. A major beach resort famous for its magnificent monuments hewn out of rock.

Places of Interest:
Rathas, Arjuna's Penance, Krishna Mandapa, Shore Temple, Mahishasurmardini Cave, Varaha Mandapa and Mandapams.




Kanchipuram

Kanchipuram, the capital of the Pallava and dynasty is one of the serene sacred cities of India. It is situated 76 kms from Madras, 35 kms from Chingleput & 64 kms from Mahabalipuram via Chingleput.

Places of Interest:
Kailashnath Temple, Shri Vaikuntaperumal Temple, Shri Varadaraja Temple, Ekambareshwara Temple and Shri Kamakashi Temple.




Vedanthangal Bird Sanctuary

80 kms away from Madras, the sanctuary is famous for migratory birds (November to February) viewing from an observation tower. It is 30 km away from its nearest railway station Chingleput.




Pondicherry

A French colony upto 1954, Pondicherry is a living monument of French Culture in India. The Aurobindo Ashram and 'Auroville' the international township are famous all over the world.

Temperature: (deg C)-Summer- Max 40.8, Min 31.2. Winter- Max 31.1, Min 25., Best Season: Throughout the year (preferably October to March).

Places of Interest:
Botanical Gardens, Eglise De Sacre Coeur De Jesus, The Promenade, Govt. Park, Manakula Vinayagar Temple, Roman Rolland Library, Sri Aurobindo Ashram, French Institute , Museums & Art Galleries.

Excursions:
Auroville- 10 kms, Arikamedu- 10 kms, Chunnambar Boat House- 8 kms, Mailam- 45 kms, Mandagapattu- 50 kms, Ousteri Lake- 15 kms.

Reach -
By Air: The nearest airport is Madras- 160 kms.
By Rail: Villupuram- 32 kms connected directly to Madras.
By Road: Bangalore- 503 kms, Chidambaram- 68 kms, Kanchipuram- 113 kms, Madras-162 kms, Mamallapuram- 134 kms, Thanjavur- 170 kms, Thiruvannamalai- 103 kms, Trichy- 198 kms.




Thanjavur (Tanjore)

The world famous Brihadeeswara temple is situated here. It is built by Raja Chola The empire builder in the early Dravidian style.

Temperature: (deg C) Summer- Max 36, Min 32. Winter- Max 23, Min 18., Best Season: October to March.

Places Of Interest:
Brihadeeswara Temple, The Palace, Sangeetha Mahal, Saraswati Mahal, Library, Raja Museum, Temple Museum, Schwarz Church.

Excursions:
Velankani-95 kms, Point Calimere/Kodikarai-30 kms, Poompuhar-100 kms.

Reach -
By Air: Nearest airport Tiruchirapalli- 54 kms is connected with Cochin & Madras.
By Rail: Directly connected to Tiruchirapalli, Madurai, Madras and Chidambaram.
By Road: Chidambaram- 113 kms, Kanyakumari- 394 kms, Kumbakonam- 38 kms, Madras- 310 kms, Madurai- 159 kms, Pudukkotai- 58 kms, Rameshwaram- 222 kms, Tiruchirapalli- 54 kms.




Tiruchirapalli (Trichy)

Tiruchirapalli or Trichy, situated on the banks of river Kaveri, is famous for the Ranganatha temple at Srirangam.

Temperature: (deg C) Summer- Max. 37, Min. 26. Winter- Max. 29, Min. 20., Best Season: October to March.

Places of Interest: Rock Fort, Sri Jambukeshwara Temple, Tiruvannaikaval, Srirangam, Museums & Art Galleries.

Excursions: Viralimalai- 30 kms, Kodumbalur- 36 kms, Sittannavasal- 13 kms, Thanjavur- 59 kms.

Reach -
By Air: Directly connected to Cochin & Madras.
By Rail: Connected to Bangalore, Coimbatore, Cochin, Madras, Madurai, Quilon, Rameshwaram, Tuticorin, Tirunelveli.
By Road: Bangalore- 345 kms, Coimbatore- 203 kms, Tanjore- 56 kms, Kumbakonma- 95 kms, Madurai- 142 kms, Ooty- 302 kms, Madras- 320 kms, Kanyakumari- 384 kms, Chidambaram- 162 kms, Rameshwaram- 228 kms, Palani- 135 kms.




Madurai

Madurai, the most famous of the temple towns of the south is known for the Meenakshi Temple.

Temperature: (deg C) Summer- Max. 37.5, Min. 36.3; Winter- Max. 21.6, Min. 20.9., Best Season: Throughout the year.

Places of Interest: Meenakshi Temple- 1.6 kms, Tirumalai Nayak Palace- 2 kms, Mariamman Tank, Koodal Alagar Temple, Gandhi Museum and Government Museum (Timings: 1000-1300 hours & 1400-1800 hours. Closed on Wednesdays).


Excursions: Alagar Koil- 21 kms, Tiruparan Kundram- 8 kms, Pazhamudhirchglai- 25 kms, Srivilliputhur- 74 kms, Vaigai Dam- 69 kms, Kodaikanal- 120 kms, Trichy- 142 kms.

Reach -
By Air: Connected with Madras, Calicut and Bombay.
By Rail: Connected via Madras with all the main places.
By Rail: Madras- 472 kms, Trichy- 142 kms, Rameshwarm- 139 kms, Kanyakumari- 232 kms, Tirunelveli- 151 kms, Kodaikanal- 120 kms, Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary- 136 kms, Palani- 122 kms, Thanjavur- 223 kms, Bangalore- 446 kms, Bombay- 1454 kms.




Rameshwaram

The sacred island town of Rameswaram at the extreme south-eastern limit of the Indian Peninsula, has one of India's most venerated temples. A fine example of South Indian architecture,the temple is renowed for its many pillared corridors, about 1220 metres in length.

Temperature: (deg C) Summer- Max.37, Min. 30; Winter- Max. 30, Min. 25., Best Season: Throughout the year, but preferably October to March.

Places Of Interest:
Agnitheertham, Shri Ramnathswamy Temple, Gandhamadhana Parvadham, Kothandaramaswamy Temple- 60 kms.

Excursions:
Kurusadai Island- 20 kms.

Reach -
By Air: Nearest airport Madurai- 167 kms is connected with Bombay, Calicut and Madras.
By Rail: Connected directly to Madras, Madurai, Trichy and Coimbatore.
By Road: Kanyakumari- 320 kms, Karaikudi- 149 kms, Madras- 666 kms, Madurai- 167 kms, Ramanathapuram- 55 kms, Sivaganga- 136 kms, Pudukottai- 188 kms, Tanjore- 248 kms, Tuticorin- 180 kms, Tiruchendur- 209 kms.




Kanyakumari (Cape Comorin)

Kanyakumari is the southernmost point of peninsular India. It is the meeting point of three oceans - the Bay of Bengal, the Arabian Sea and the Indian Ocean. Besides its importance as a pilgrim centre, it is famous for its beautiful views of sunrise, sunset and moonrise over the waters.

Temperature: (deg C)-Summer- Max34.8, Min 21.6. Winter- Max 33, Min 20.4., Best Season: Throughout the year, but preferably October to March.

Places Of Interest:
Kanyakumari Temple .Only Hindus are allowed inside the inner sanctum), Gandhi Memorial, Vivekananda Memorial, Sunrise-Sunset-Moonrise.

Excursions:
Nagercoil 19 kms, Padmanabhapuram Palace 45 kms, Sunchindrum 13 kms, Tiruchendur 85 kms, Udayagiri 34 kms, Vattakottai 6 kms.

Reach -
By Air: Nearest airport Trivandrum- 80 kms is directly connected with Bangalore, Bombay, Cochin, Delhi, Goa and Madras.
By Rail: Kanyakumari is connected to Trivandrum, Delhi and Bombay. Tirunelveli- 80 kms is the other nearest railway junction which can be reached by road via Nagaarcoil- 19 kms.
By Road: Trivandrum- 86 kms, Nagercoil- 19 kms, Tirunelveli- 91 kms, Tiruchendur via Ovari- 89 kms, Tuticorin- 129 kms, Rameshwaram- 300 kms, Courtallam- 130 kms, Madurai - 242 kms, Thekkady- 358 kms, Kodaikanal- 362 kms, Palani- 370 kms, Ootacamund- 576 kms, Cochin - 309 kms, Coimbatore - 478 kms.




Kodaikanal

Kodaikanal, a charming hill station, stands amidst sylvan beauty on the southern crest of the upper Palani Hills near Madurai in Tamil Nadu.

Altitude: 2,133 mts., Temperature: (deg C)-Summer- Max 19.3, Min 11.3. Winter- Max 17.3, Min 8.3., Best Season:April to June and September to October.

Places Of Interest:
Kodaikanal Lake, Coaker's Walk, Astrophysical Observatory, Fairy Falls, Kurinji Andavar Temple, Shenbaganur Museum, Pillar Rocks, Green Valley View.

Excursions:
Silver Cascade- 8 kms, Dophin's Nose- 8 kms, Perumal Peak- 11 kms, Beryam Lake- 21 kms, Kukkal Caves- 40 kms.

Reach -
By Air: Nearest airport Madurai- 120 kms.
By Rail: Kodaikanal Road- 80 kms.
By Road: Madras- 520 kms, Ooty- 264 kms, Trichy- 197 kms, Coimbatore- 175 kms, Kumili- 160 kms, Madurai- 120 kms, Kodai Road- 80 kms, Palani- 64 kms, Munnar- 90 kms, Periyar- 160 kms.




Coimbatore

Coimbatore known as the "Manchester of South India" is a commercial city of Considerable importance, the chief commodity being textiles.

Temperature: (deg C)-Summer Max- 39.4, Min- 23.3; Winter Max- 32.8, Min 20.7., Best Season: October to March.

Places Of Interest:
Perur Temple, Marudhamalai Temple, Agricultural University, V.O.C.Park, Forest College, G.D.Naidu Industrial Exhibition, Glass Forest Museum.

Excursions:
Anamalais Wildlife Sanctuary/Indira Gandhi Wildlife Sanctuary- 90 kms Top Slip- 37 kms, Bhavani- 102 kms, Bhavani Sagar Dam- 80 kms, Chennimalai- 80 kms, Coonoor- 70 kms, Kodumudi- 105 kms, Kotagiri- 118 kms, Palani- 105 kms, Udhagamandalam/Ooty- 89 kms.

Reach -
By Air: Connected with Madras, Bangalore & Bombay.
By Rail: Connected with all important places of south.
By Road: Bangalore- 363 kms, Madras- 526 kms, Madurai- 226 kms, Palani- 105 kms, Trichy- 203 kms, Udhagamandalam ( Ooty or Ootaacamund )- 89 kms, Yercaud- 190 kms.




Udhagmandalam / Ootacamund (Ooty)

Ootacamund, the queen of the hill stations of South India, is situated in the Nilgiris at an altitude of 2240 metres. One can see many profiles of nature, each with a distinctive orandeur. Ooty is nited for its extraordinary scenic beauty and salubrious climate amidst the "Nilgiris" or "Blue Mountains".

Altitude: 2240 metres., Temperature: (deg C)-Summer- Max 25, Min 10; Winter- Max 21, Min 0., Best Season: April to June and September to October.

Places Of Interest:
Botanical Gardens, Tiger Hill, Dodabetta Peak, Valley View Lake, Wilson Fish Farm, St. Stephen Church, Marlimund Lake, Wenlock Downs, Avalanche, Elk Hill, Kalhatti Falls, Snowdon, Glen Morgen.

Excursions:
Wellingtion, Kotagiri, Madumalai Wildlife Sanctuary, Coonoor, Bandipur Wildlife Sanctuary.

Reach -
By Air: The nearest airport Coimbatore- 89 kms is connected with Bombay, Calicut, Madras and Madurai.
By Rail: Connected with Mettupalayam which in turn is connected through Madras & Coimbatore to major cities in India.
By Road: Bombay- 1320 kms, Bangalore- 290 kms, Calicut- 178 kms, Coimbatore- 89 kms, Coonoor- 19 kms, Kotagiri- 29 kms, Madumalai- 64 kms, Madras- 535 kms, Mysore- 160 kms, Trivandrum- 498 kms, Tiruchirapally- 302 kms.

How to plan your tours :
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