Temple Tour of South India
Day 01 : Arrive – Chennai
Upon arrival in Chennai, meet our representative who’ll assist you in smooth transfer to the hotel for overnight stay.
Day 02: Chennai
On day 2 of the tour, leave your hotel for a city tour. Fondly known as the ‘Gateway of South’, Chennai is home to a number of tourist attractions. The list of attractions that you cover during the sightseeing includes the Theosophical Society, Sri Parthasarathy Temple, Kalakshetra, the St. Mary’s Church, Kapaliswara Temple, San Thomas Cathedral Basilica, Mylapore, Fort St. George and houses the Secretariat and Legislative Assembly of Tamil Nadu. The evening is at leisure. Stay overnight.
Day 02: Chennai – Tirupati – Chennai
Morning after an early breakfast we will go on an excursion to Tirupati. Upon arrival in Tirupati proceed for Tirupati Temple Darshan. Tirupati is located in Andhra Pradesh. Tirupati is an ancient Hindu temple town having historical references in Puranas. The temple of Lord Venkateswara is located on the Tirumala hill and Tirupati is at the footsteps of the Tirumala hills. Every day around 1 lakh people visit this place. It has great reputation for famous temples. Temples located in and around Tirupati include: Sri Padmavathi Devi temple at Tiruchanoor, Kalyana Venkateswara Swamy Temple at Srinivasa Mangapuram. According to legend, Lord Venkateswara stayed here after his marriage with Sri Padmavathi Devi, before proceeding to Tirumala. Govindaraja Swamy Temple, Saint Ramanujacharya consecrated this temple in 1130 AD. Kapila Theertham in Tirupati town at the base of Tirumala Hills dedicated to Lord Siva, Sri Kodandaramaswami Temple, Tirupati built by Chola kings during the tenth century AD, Sri Kalahasteeswara Temple at Srikalahasti and Sri Kalyana venkateswara swamy temple at Narayanavanam (40 km from Tirupati). Lord Sri Venkateswara Swamy and Sri Padmavathi Ammavari, daughter of Akasa Maharaja were married here. Later in the afternoon return to Chennai for night stay.
Day 3: Chennai
On the 3rd day, leave for Kanchipuram, by road. Around 70 km westwards of Kanchipuram- Mahabalipuram Mahabalipuram, Kanchipuram is referred to as one of the 7 sacred cities of Hinduism. The Chola capital during the 2nd century, Kanchipuram today is an important place where people come to gain knowledge about Jainism, Hinduism and Buddhism.
You may visit the city’s popular temples such as Kamakshi Amman temple, Ekambareswarar temple and so on. Also visit the silk weavers of the city, residing here from past four centuries. Thereafter, continue towards Mahabalipuram. On arrival, complete the check-in formalities at the hotel. Overnight stay.
Day 04: Mahabalipuram
The 4th day is scheduled for sightseeing in Mahabalipuram. Also known as Mamallapuram, it has been the ancient port of the Pallava rulers. During their reign, the Pallava rulers constructed a number of architectural marvels such as caves, sculptural panels, temples and Monolithic rathas.
One of such attraction that you will visit today includes Krishna Mandapam. Dedicated to Lord Krishna, it is the world’s largest cave-cut Hindu temple. The walls of this temple consist of several figures, including those of Lord Krishna, humans, birds and demi-gods.
The other attraction will be the Shore temple. Dating back to the 8th century, this temple is one of the finest examples of Dravidian style of architecture.
The last attraction of the day is the Five (Paanch) Rathas. Also called the Paandava Rathas, it is a group of 5 monolithic temples, each erected in a different architecture styling. Back to the hotel for an overnight stay.
Day 05: Mahabalipuram – Tiruvannamalai – Pondicherry
Today we will have an excursion to Tiruvannamalai. One of the holiest towns of Tamil Nadu, its name meaning the “red mountain” derives from the spectacular extinct volcano behind it. The temple town of Tiruvannamalai is one of the most ancient heritage sites of India and is a centre of the Saiva religion. The Arunachala hill and its environs have been held in great regard by the Tamils for centuries. The temple is grand in conception and architecture and is rich in tradition, history and festivals.
Arunachala Temple: The temple dedicated to Lord Shiva was built between the 9th and the 10th centuries by the Chola kings of the Tamil empire. The temple is famous for its massive gopurams. This has been determined from an inscription in the structure that was made during the reign of Chola kings who ruled in the ninth century A.D
Later in the afternoon drive to Pondicherry. Upon arrival check into the hotel. Overnight stay at hotel.
Day 06: Pondicherry
On day 6 of the tour, get all set for sightseeing in Pondicherry. The attractions that you visit today include the Sacred Heart Church, the Rai Niwas and Sri Aurobindo Ashram. Apart from being a religious site, Basilica of the Sacred Heart of Jesus is an oriental specimen of Gothic style of architecture. The other attraction, Raj Niwas, is the official residence of the Lieutenant Governor of Pondicherry. The last attraction of the day is Sri Aurobindo Ashram, founded by Sri Aurobindo, way back in the year 1926. This spiritual community is flocked by a huge number of visitors all round the year. Stay overnight in Pondicherry.
Day 07: Pondicherry – Chidambaram – Thanjavur
After breakfast we will leave for Thanjavur, earlier known as Tanjore. En-route we will visit the Divine land of Chidambaram. Chidambaram is dedicated to Lord Nataraja – (God Siva in the form of a Cosmic Dancer – known as Shiva tandava)). It is one of the few temples where Siva and Vishnu are enshrined under one roof. This ancient temple was built by the Cholas. It is devoted solely to the art of Bharatanatyam and is one of the rare temples where Shiva is represented by an idol rather than the customary Lingam. Spread over an area of 40 acres with a gopuram on each side, the temple is distinguished by five sabhas or courts. Apart from this, the sacred land of Chidambaram, has many exquisite temples and attractions.
Further continue drive to Thanjavur. Upon arrival check into the hotel. Overnight stay at hotel.
Day 08: Thanjavur – Trichy
The morning of day 8 is for an assisted on-road transfer to Trichy or Tiruchirappali. As you reaching Trichy and complete the check-in formalities, you are free to spend the day as per your own liking. You can explore the surroundings and the nearby attractions, can visit the local market to shop for souvenirs, can interact with the locals, can relish tasty food and more. Back to the hotel for an overnight stay.
Day 09: Trichy
Partake in visiting and exploring the prime attractions of Trichy today. The first visit is to the Srirangam, located at a distance of around 5 km from Trichy. Here you visit Sri Ranganathaswami temple, which is dedicated to Lord Vishnu and boasts of having one of India’s largest temple complexes. Your next visit is to the Tiruchirapalli Rock Fort, placed on the banks of the River Kaveri. Overnight stay at hotel.
Day 10: Trichy – Madurai
On the 10th day leave by road for Madurai, also famed as the Athens of the East. As you arrive, check-into the hotel. The rest of the day is at leisure. You can partake in the activities of your interest. Visit the local market to indulge in shopping and relishing the local food, indulge in the facilities of the hotel, have an interaction with the locals and more. Overnight stay in Madurai.
Day 11: Madurai
The morning of the 11th day is for visiting the prime attractions of Madurai. Placed on the banks of Vidai River, this popular city of Southern India is around 2500 years old. Visit the splendid Meenakshi-Sundareswarar Temple or Meenakshi Amman Temple.
This magnificent temple is dedicated to Goddess Parvati, the consort of Lord Shiva. While the Goddess is known as Meenakshi in this part of the country, the Lord is known as Sundareswarar. This magnificent temple has 14 gopurams. The afternoon is at leisure. Attend the wonderful evening prayer ceremony at the Meenakshi Temple. Stay overnight in
Day 12: Madurai – Kanyakumari
Today we will drive to the shore of Kanyakumari. Upon arrival check into the hotel. After fresh-n-up explore the heritage city of Kanyakumari. Overnight stay at hotel.
Kanyakumari, The name of has been christened after the virgin goddess – Kanyakumari Amman. Mythological stories depict that Goddess parvati under the disguise of Devi Kanya did a penance in one of the rocks in this area to reach the hand of Lord Shiva. The enthusiastic scenes of the sunset & sunrise are very enjoyable here, (especially on full moon days).
Swami Vivekananda’s Memorial: The great Indian Philosopher Swami Vivekananda’s memorial is built in a small island like rock 200 meters from the shore. A very great building and other halls are constructed in this rock.
Kumari Amman Temple: This temple is located near the sea shore and it is a beautiful scene for visitors who visit this site. Mythology says that Goddess Devi performed prayers to get Lord Shiva’s hand for marriage. When she did not get in hand to marry Lord Shiva, she promised ever to be a virgin which means Kanya in Tamil. The idol of the goddess in this temple has a nose ring studded with diamond which is visible even from the sea.
Thiruvalluvar Statue: Thirukkural is a precious gem among the classics, unique in the deliverance of code of conduct to the mankind to follow for all time to come. It enshrines in it 1330 couplets under 133 chapters, each chapter comprising 10 verses. The chapters again fall under three major divisions Virtue, Wealth and Love.
Day 13: Kanyakumari – Trivandrum
Today we will leave for Trivandrum. Upon arrival check into the hotel. In the afternoon explore the temples of Trivandrum visiting the Padmanabha Swamy temple. The temple is dedicated to Lord Vishnu. Exquisite carvings and age old murals adorn the walls of the temple also visit Napier Museum, This is a 19th century monument which comprises of a collection which is quite rare and unique. Considered to be an important destination amongst the tourist attractions of Thiruvananthapuram it reflects the features of Indo Saracenic architecture. Later return to hotel for overnight stay.
Day 14: Trivandrum – Departure
Transfer to the Trivandrum international airport to board the flight for onward destination.