Part of India has witnessed many Dynasties and thus represents
different Cultures. It is still untouched, green and pure. The
delightful south; almost untouched by invasions throughout its
history, the Indian heritage is more intact here than in other
regions of the country.
is a land of temples, a land of the devout where new wonders await
- the profusion of orange flowers, the shade of the banyan tree,
and the soft beat of distant drums as yet another festival starts...
A Myriad of Temples.
devout Dravidian people of the south live and breathe their ancient
religion. Nothing, however, can really prepare a visitor for the
temples, where images of the quiet bustle of the vast halls, the
huge gopurams completely covered by coloured sculptures of gods
and goddesses, the sight of bare feet walking across cool slabs,
the heady smell of incense and the chime of the temple bell rung
by priests and the faithful leave entrancing impressions. Rustic
carts drawn by oxen with their brightly coloured painted horns,
smiling villagers harvesting the hay at the side of the road -
these will be some of the memorable features of the short journey
from Madras to the famous temple town of Mahabalipuram.
swim off the glorious beach will refresh you after absorbing the
wonders of the romantic shore temples and of Arjuna’s Penance,
the huge rock carvings of animals and gods.
are so many impressive temple towns in South India - nearby Kanchipuram
with its spectacular gopurams visible from miles away,
or other magical sounding places - Chidambaram, Tanjore, Tiruchirapalli,
and, most of all, the pilgrim centre of Madurai - one of the oldest
cities in Southern India - with its dramatic and lively Meenakshi
temple, dedicated to the fish-eyed goddess.
for a different style of relaxation, visit the attractive French-style
coastal town of Pondicherry, south of Madras. In the neighbouring
state of Karnataka lie the stone-carved temples of Belur and Halebid.
Relive the exciting era of the Hoysalas, who flourished around
the 12th century, by examining the endless stories which the sculptural
detail portrays the war, the hunt, the animals, the dancing girls
and, of course the gods.