Highlights of Tamil Nadu

Tamil Nadu is certainly distinct. Tamil culture can be traced back over 2,000 years, and the region remains vehemently different from the rest of India, with its unique language, dance, literature, and a particularly colourful take on Hinduism. Tamil Nadu is also a very varied destination, with a thriving and very modern provincial capital in Chennai, tranquillity and tea plantations up in the Western Ghats, and over 1,000km of coastline. Often overlooked in favour of its more compact neighbour Kerala, Tamil Nadu warrants in-depth exploration, either as an entire trip in its own right, or in combination with the wider south.

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Brihadishvara Temple, Thanjavur
This ancient city of Thanjavur, formerly Tanjore, enjoys the distinction of having been the capital of Cholas. 
Urban overview, Chennai
Chennai (formerly Madras) is south India’s biggest, brightest city, and the economic and social capital of Tamil Nadu. 
Shore Temple, Mahabalipuram
A laidback coastal town south of Chennai, Mahabalipuram was once home to a great empire and is famous for its magnificent shore temples. 
Cycle rickshaw, Puducherry
‘Pondy’ is an atmospheric coastal town with bags of charm. This former French enclave has a relaxed air, and an intriguing mix of Gallic and Tamil influences. 
Chettinadu Mansion, Chettinad
The Chettinadu region has a unique history. Home to the famous Chettiar community, the area experienced fabulous wealth throughout the 19th Century. 
Meenakshi Temple, Madurai
Madurai is the heartland of Tamil culture. Once an ancient capital, and now a burgeoning industrial centre, the city is centered around a truly incredible temple complex. 
Rock Fort, Tiruchirappalli
Tiruchirappalli (Trichy) is a former Tamil citadel with a history which stretches back centuries, brought to major prominence by the 17th century Nayaks of Madurai.
Landscape, Coonoor
Coonoor is a peaceful and beautiful hill station located high up in the Nilgiri Hills , famous for its fine tea and scenic mountain railway. 
Shiva statue, Coimbatore
Coimbatore is a busy, bustling city with a fast-growing population, usually used as a stopping point whilst travelling between the hills of Kerala and the plains of Tamil Nadu.
Waterfalls, Palani Hills
The Palani Hills are a beautiful and untouched region of Tamil Nadu: a centre for relaxing, and taking slow walks amongst the hills, forests, and waterfalls.