Unspoilt drape of golden sand kissing the azure sea, heavenly looking backwaters, unusual wildlife, rejuvenating ayurvedic spas, vibrant culture and never-seen-before art forms - a holiday to South India promises all this and a lot more. This is perhaps the most soothing gift of Mother Nature to the mankind seeking some moments of serenity. Visit here and experience a world that is simple yet charismatic, modern yet rooted, divine yet good enough to make you fall for seven deadly sins.
The locals of South India believe in simplicity which mirrors in their food, cultures, festivities and clothing. Each South Indian gem including Tamil Nadu, Kerala, Karnataka, Telangana and Andhra Pradesh embraces its own unique traditions. Same diversity can be experienced in terms of languages spoken here. While the local language of Tamil Nadu is Tamil, language spoken by the natives of Kerala is Malyalum. Kannada is the principal language of Karnataka and main languages spoken by the people of Andhra Pradesh are Telugu, English, Urdu, and Hindi. Also, about 77% of the population of Telangana speak Telugu.
Just like the languages, local dance forms of each state also vary. Some of the most loved dance forms of South India include Bharatnatyam, Kummi, Kathakali, Kuchipudi, Mohiniyattam and Kolattam.
A heaven for honeymooners, South India is immensely blessed with beautiful vistas, including a plethora of immaculate mountains, serene backwaters, cascading waterfalls, emerald valleys and enormous natural beauty. Its aura is perfect to indulge with nature and fall in love with its surroundings. Munnar is an extremely beautiful hill station that remains untouched from the hustle and bustle of city life. Ooty is another pristine hill station of the South that is perfect for honeymooners seeking an escape into cosy cottages raised in the middle of picturesque landscapes.
To experience paradise on earth, Coorg is a great place. Referred as the Scotland of South, Coorg houses vast flora that rises high mingling with the skies. Other than these, Idukki, Kodaikanal, Coonoor, Devikulam and Araku Valley are other hill stations of South India that are rich with bio diversity. Do not forget to spend some time in the backwaters of Kerala that bestow once in a lifetime experience.
The myriad landscapes, streams, sea and backwaters make South India a superlative location to plan an adventure holiday. Be it snorkelling, trekking, water sports or safari, South India never fails to impress even the most veteran travellers. Some of the most popular activities that make adventure freaks fall for South India include bamboo rafting in Thekkady, boat ride in Gokarna, lion safari in Kerala, paragliding in Munnar, river rafting in Coorg, rock climbing at Badami and rafting, scuba diving, snorkelling in various parts of South India.
If you want to spot beautiful wildlife residing peacefully in their natural habitat, then South India is your pick. One can find a number of wildlife sanctuaries dotted all over the region beautified with far stretched nature.
Wildlife in Karnataka: Bandipur National Park, Nagarhole National Park, Kudremukh National Park and Bannerghatta National Park.
Wildlife in Kerala: Periyar National Park, Eravikulam National Park, Silent Valley National Park and Mathikettan Shola National Park.
Wildlife in Tamil Nadu: Guindy National Park, Mudumalai National Park Mukurthi National Park and Gulf of Mannar Marine National Park.
Wildlife in Andhra Pradesh: Sri Venkateswara National Park, Kawal Wildlife Sanctuary, Shivaram Wildlife Sanctuary and Vanasthali National Park.
Wildlife in Telangana: Kasu Brahmananda Reddy National Park and Mahavir Harina Vanasthali National Park.
To take a plunge in the waters of spirituality, a visit to South India is a must. The region brings to you uncountable temples, churches and durgahs - each having its own discrete history. Every year streams of travellers visit the spiritual places of South India and get settled here forever to devote their life to the almighty.
Spiritual Places in Karnataka: Virupaksha Temple, OmkareshwaraTemple, Shrikantheshwara Temple and Shri Kadri Manjunatha Temple
Spiritual Places in Kerala: Achankovil Temple, Thirunelli Temple, Mannarasala Sree Nagaraja, Guruvayur Temple and Sree Padmanabhaswamy Temple
Spiritual Places in Tamil Nadu: Rameshwaram, Kanchipuram, Kanyakumari, Madurai, Nagapattinam and Thiruvannamalai
Spiritual Places in Andhra Pradesh: Bhadrachalam Temple, Diguva Mangalagiri Temple, Srisailam Entrance Gopuram, Madhavaraya temple and Gollalamamidada Rama temple
Spiritual Places in Telangana: Sangameshwar Temple, Ramappa Temple and Thousand Pillar Temple
A shopping spree in South India is as vibrant as the cultures breathing here. Travellers love to bag items like traditional handicrafts, coir products, handcrafted jewellery, bronze items and wood and stone carvings during their holidays to South India. The silk saris of the region are famous for their beautiful colours embroidered with golden thread work. Some of the most popular places to shop in South India are Badami, Hampi Bazaar, Calicut, Chennai, Chikmagalur, Kakinada and Kanyakumari.
Famous for its spices, South India offers you an incredible list of cuisines. Coconut is used in most of the delicacies. Rice is the staple food of the region. However, the eating habits of the locals depend on the state they are residing in. For instance, in Tamil Nadu, dishes like Idlis, Dosas, Uttappam, Rassam, Sambhar and Vada are popular. Kerala is known for banana chips and jackfruit chips. Also, Andhra Pradesh is known for delectable grilled kebabs, kurmas and the mouth-watering Biriyani.
The fairs and festivals of South India reflect the region’s rich cultures. Onam, an annual harvest festival, is highly popular in Kerala. The locals dance and sing cultural songs to thank the deity during the festivities of Onam. The locals of Tamil Nadu are devoted to Pongal which marks the harvesting season. The New Year Festival or Ugadi is celebrated in Andhra Pradesh and Karnataka. Also, the Thrissur Pooram Festival celebrated in Kerala offers the sights of rows of caparisoned elephants decked up with ornaments. In addition, the Hampi Dance Festival offers great chance to explore the local dance forms, drama, music, fireworks and puppet shows of South India.
Though the charms of South India remains flawless all year long, winter months (between November and February) are best to unveil the most beautiful vistas here. These months add to the beauty of the region, giving holidaymakers enough opportunities to partake in sightseeing and adventure activities. Do not forget to pack your woollens to relish the pleasant climate without shivering.
All the states of the region have their own airports. Some of the airports that welcome streams of travellers planning holidays to South India include Hyderabad Airport, Bangalore International Airport, Cochin International Airport and Trivandrum International Airport.
The southern railway is among the largest network of railway lines and platforms in India. It is easier to access states like Karnataka, Tamil Nadu and Andhra Pradesh from all over the country via rail. In addition, South India is also well linked by road with all the major metropolises and states of India.
There is no dearth of local transportation in South India. Where most of the major states are well linked via train and road, small towns can be accessed by taking local buses and private cars.
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