The states of Tamil Nadu, Kerala and Karnataka make up the southern cone of India. Here we suggest ten essential travel experiences to do South India, to discover the essence of this destination.
- BACKWATERS: AN AMPHIBIOUS WORLD.
This Anglicism refers to a network of 9000 km² of canals, lakes and inland lagoons that run parallel to the coast of the state of Kerala and that form an amphibious world of singular beauty, a natural garden of marshes, coconut palms, rice fields, and cashew plantations. Navigating the region in a canoe or in the traditional kettuvalam allows you to surprise the daily life of its inhabitants and enjoy the rural charm of its small villages with its own customs and customs. Authentic slow tour at 10 km per hour to enjoy the amphibious world of this complicated river network.
- KATHAKALI: CLASSIC THEATER OF INDIA.
Kathakali is the most authentic cultural manifestation of South India. It is a dramatic play with recitation and dance, with themes always linked to the great epic cycles of Ramayana and Mahabharata (the founding text of Hinduism). The prodigious gestural movements, rich clothing and colorful makeup of the actors make up a show as unusual as bewitching to the eyes of the western traveler. Cochin is the right city to attend a performance.
- UNESCO HUMANITY HERITAGE IN TAMIL NADU.
South India has two jewels that stand out above its varied and rich historical-artistic heritage. These are the monumental complexes of Mahabalipuram and the so-called Great Living Chola Temples, both in the state of Tamil Nadu. Admiring the bas-relief carved on a single monolithic rock from La Penitencia de Anjuna (or “Descent of the Ganges”) in Mahabalipuram is a completely joyful experience for any art lover.
- MADURAI, THE VENERABLE.
If the traveler could only visit a temple in southern India, this should be the Meenakshi temple in the venerable Madurai, as it is the essence of Indian architecture and sculpture. Almost 2,500 years of Madurai history have allowed him to accumulate the greatest treasure of sacred art of Tamil Nadu. The Meenakshi temple with its twelve towers and polychrome statues of gods of the Hindu pantheon tumultuous exemplifies the essence of architecture and sculpture of India: exuberance, saturation, vitality, build…
- WATCH WILD FAUNA IN THE PERIYAR NATIONAL PARK, KERALA.
The Periyar National Park (also known as Thekkady), the nature reserve of the state of Kerala, is the most visited in southern India. It occupies almost 1000 km² and houses copies of some of the most emblematic species of the country, such as the Bengal tiger and the elephant, in addition to others such as monkeys, bears, wild boars, antelopes … It also stands out for hosting several species of endangered animals and a splendid birdlife, which congregates around a huge artificial lake from the period of English rule through which safaris are carried out, either in standard boats or in bamboo rafts.
- REACH SALVATION IN THE HOLY CITY OF KANCHIPURAM.
Kanchipuram, just over 60 kilometers from Chennai (formerly Madras) in Tamil Nadu, is considered one of the seven holy cities of India. It houses more than a hundred temples and was the capital of the Chola and Pallava dynasties. Visiting it means salvation for the faithful.
- BELUR AND HALEBIDU.
The splendor of the Hoysala dynasty in Karnataka bequeathed us these two artistic jewels and their historical capitals. Contemplating buildings of Belur and Halebidu gives an idea of the prodigious mastery that of sculpture and architecture reached in the eleventh and twelfth centuries in this region, and of the enormous influence they had in other parts of Southeast Asia.
- THE CENTER OF SCENIC ARTS OF KALAMANDALAM.
To learn more about the rich cultural and artistic heritage of Kerala, nothing better than a visit to Kalamandalam, a center for the study and dissemination of the prestigious performing arts of South India.
- PILGRIMAGE TO GURUVAYOOR.
Few places in India receive as many daily visits from devotees as this temple dedicated to Krishna. An immersion in the most ancestral spirituality of the country. Guruvayoor, one of the mighty virtuous places of India, is easily accessible from Cochin, in Kerala.
For thousands of years, this science of longevity has in the state of Kerala one of the main exponents of the country. The sagacious traveler would do well to take advantage of his visit to southern India to release his body and soul with a massage or an Ayurvedic treatment.
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