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South India Temple Tour

Chennai*Pondicherry*Thanjavur*Trichy*Madurai*Trivandrum - 08 Nights/09 Days

Day 01: Arrive Chennai

Upon arrival assistance at Chennai Airport and proceed for the hotel.

marina-beachThe East India Company established its presence in southern India on the Bay of Bengal in 1639 with the establishment of Fort St. George. The city of Chennai, formerly known as Madras, grew up around the fort area. It now serves as the capital of Tamil Nadu and is the fourth largest city in India, with over six million inhabitants.

The city grew up around the English settlement of Fort Saint George and gradually absorbed the surrounding towns and villages. However, despite the strong British influence, Chennai has retained its traditional Tamil Hindu culture and effectively blended it with the foreign influence.

Later you will take a tour of Chennai (formerly Madras), the capital of Tamil Nadu, a state renowned for grandiose temple sculpture and architecture of the Chola, Cheran, Pallava and Pandya Dynasties. The Madras Presidency was also one of the four divisions of British India and offers travellers and enthusiasts an interesting blend of the old and the new, the artistic and the academic, the historic and the scenic. You will visit this sprawling city with its National Art Gallery and Museum, Fort St. George, Marina Beach, San Thome Cathedral and the Kapaleeswarar temple.

Overnight in Chennai 

Day 02: Chennai

In the morning, proceed for excursion tour of Mahabalipuram and Kanchipuram.mahabalipuram-chennai

Mahabalipuram, built in the 7th century, is an ancient Pallava port, 64 km from Madras. Today it is the site of several antique sculptural marvels. Declared as the world heritage site by UNESCO, Mahabalipuram boasts of some of India’s most sublime rock-cut art.

Sightseeing tour in MAHABALIPURAM, visit following Temples: Shore Temple – Standing by the sea, now protected by a wall that hides its façade but saves it from the elements that are fast eroding it, this twin-spire is pure poetry wealth of sculpture, includes both Shiva and a Vishnu in repose.

Arjuna's Penance - This is a massive bas relief, 27m long and 9m high carved along the curve of the hill just behind the buss stand. It is thought to be one of the largest in the world. It is commonly known as Arjuna's penance.

The Five Rathas - Also known as the Pancha rathas, after the five Pandya brothers of the Mahabharata, these stand clustered together, about 1km south of the main village.

After visiting Mahabalipuram proceed for visit of Kanchipuram.

Kanchipuram is 75 km from Chennai in Tamil Nadu and is one of the most visited pilgrimage centers in India. Kanchipuram is famous for magnificent and elegant Dravidian temples. On the tour of Kanchipuram, one must visit the Kailashanatha Temple, Kamakshi Amman Temple, Kumara Kottam, Ekambareshwar Temple and Varadaraja Temple.

After the tour come back to your hotel

Overnight in Chennai

Day 03: Chennai - PondicherryAuroville Matrimandir

Morning shall proceed for drive to Pondicherry (170 Kms/04 hrs). Upon arrival proceed for check-in to your hotel. Afternoon proceed for visit of the city.

Take a break from the hustle and bustle of modern life and get engrossed in the calmness and serenity of the beaches of Pondicherry. If you want to get into a spiritualistic mood visit the world famous Aurbindo Ashram and Auroville and be blessed with a lot of peace and goodness. Pondicherry tourism is so dynamic that it has something to offer for everyone.

Pondicherry tourism highlights the trip to the serene beaches in and around Pondicherry. The town is also home to a lot of heritage buildings and monuments.

Having been the capital of French colonies in India, the town is drenched with the French culture. This makes it more attractive.

Pondicherry attractions include a visit to the various beaches, The Ashram, the Arikamedu site, the fairs and festivals, monuments, the churches, temples and mosques. Pondicherry is also considered as the centre for Yoga and Meditation in South India. The Botanical Gardens of Pondicherry is extremely famous and is home to a lot of unusual specimens of plants. Welcome to this diversity of Pondicherry and have a memorable holiday that you would cherish for your life.

Overnight in Pondicherry

Day 04: Pondicherry - Thanjavur

Morning shall proceed for drive to Thanjavur (170 Kms/04 hrs). Upon arrival proceed for check-in to your hotel. Afternoon proceed for visit of the city.Thanjavur

The Chola kings built the majority of Tanjore's (also known as Thanjavur) 93 temples. The enormous gopurams of the Brihadeeshwara Temple built in the 10th century by Raja Chola dominate Tanjore. Fortified walls and a moat surround the temple itself, between the Grand Anicut Canal and the old town. The old town, too, used to be similarly enclosed, but most of the walls have now disappeared. What remains are winding streets and alleys and the extensive ruins of the Palace of the Nayaks of Madurai. The Raja Museum and the Art gallery house a large collection of Chola sculptures in bronze and granite. The Sarawati Mahal library contains over 40,000 rare books and palm leaf inscriptions.

Also see the Tanjore painting is an important form of classical South Indian painting native to the town of Tanjore in Tamil Nadu. The art form dates back to the early 9th Century, a period dominated by the Chola rulers, who encouraged art and literature.

Overnight in Thanjavur

Day 05: Thanjavur – Trichy - Thanjavur

After leisurely breakfast is at the hotel, proceed for full day excursion to the city of Trichy. Visit the ancient temples dedicated to Lord Ganapathi, 434 steps cut out into the rock side and interspersed with shrines, lead to the temple. Return to hotel and relax.

Overnight in Thanjavur

Day 06: Thanjavur - Maduraimadurai

Morning you will drive towards Madurai (197 kms / 5 hrs). Upon arrival proceed for check-in at the Hotel.

In the evening, you will proceed to the Meenakshi temple complex on cycle-rickshaws to witness the evening aarti ceremony in which Lord Shiva is carried in a palanquin accompanied by musicians, temple singers and priests to the temple of his consort Parvati to spend the night.

Meenakshi is the most spectacular temple in Madurai and its boundaries include most of the city. Its bazaars sell temple offering, garlands and spices.

Note: Foreigners (Non Hindus) are not allowed inside the Inner Sanctum of the temple.

Overnight in Madurai

Day 07: Madurai

Your day begins early today with a visit to the flower market. The markets attract up to 10,000 visitors a day. Loud and quiet negotiations hums
as wholesalers examine small bags of jasmine buds, tuberoses and marigolds from farmers who plead their quality. Sold, they are thrown
onto huge piles or scooped up into large jute sacks. Over these piles, the temple flower sellers negotiate their purchases while garlands are
strung, calculators thumped over and weighing scales heaped with white, purple, orange and yellow blooms. Padmanabhaswamy-Temple-in-Thiruvananthapuram

Later, you will take a sightseeing tour of Madurai City - The temple town is unique in that all its temples are living temples and it remains a major religious center attracting pilgrims the year round. Apart from Meenakshi Temple, another attraction is the Tirumalai Palace (1636) restored by Lord Napier, dance drama concerts are performed daily.

Afternoon is at leisure.

Overnight in Madurai

Day 08: Madurai- Trivandrum By: Surface

Early morning, proceed to Trivandrum (270 kms/7 hrs) - the southern tip where the Indian subcontinent meets the sea. Upon arrival proceed for check-in to your hotel.

Afternoon visit the Sree Padmanabha Swami Temple, Napier Museum, Chitralayam Arts Gallery, Zoological gardens, Reptile house, Observatory and Kanakakunnu Palace. Rest of the day is at leisure.

Overnight in Trivandrum

Day 09: Departure Trivandrum By: International Flight

Early this morning in time you will be transferred to the International Airport for your flight back to home



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