|2||Mumbai||Elephanta Caves & Gateway Of India|
|3||Chennai||San Thomas Cathedral, the Mylapore Temple and St. Mary’s Church|
|4||Mahabalipuram||Shore Temples (UNESCO World Heritage Site)|
|5 – 6||Thanjavur||Temples at Chidambaram, Gangaikondacholapuram, Darasuram and Brihadeshwara Temple|
|7 – 8||Madurai||Tiruchirapalli Rock Fort Temple and Srirangam Temple. Meenakshi Temple.|
When To Go
South India Temple Tour is about a fascinating journey to a land rich in momentous temples. There are several towns in South India that are especially called the ‘Temple Towns’. This is due to some of the brilliant temples of the town. The south Indian style of temple architecture is called the Dravida Style of Temple Architecture. The Vimana and the Gopurams characterize this style of architecture. South India Temple Tour should be a part of your tour itineraries around India. The Vimana is a tall pyramidal tower. It consists of several diminishing smaller storeys standing on a square base. The Gopuram is a two storeys gateway to the temple separated by a horizontal molding. The Prakara or the outer wall encloses the temple. The Pallavas, the Cholas, the Pandyas, the Vijayanagar rulers and the Nayaks have contributed to the establishment of these South Indian temples.
Day 1 Arrival Mumbai
Meeting assistance on arrival at Mumbai airport and you will be transfer to the hotel. Overnight stay at Mumbai.
Day 2 Mumbai / Chennai
After taking breakfast in the hotel proceed for an excursion to the world-renowned Elephanta caves (Closed on every Monday), located on Elephanta Island. There are two groups of caves, the first is a large group of five Hindu caves and the second is a smaller group of two Buddhist caves. The architecture of rock cut caves has been dated between the fifth and eighth centuries. These caves are granted as a World Heritage Site by the UNESCO. Once you retrun to Mumbai do cover the Gateway of India, Jain Temple at Malabar Hill and some other places if you wish. In the evening you have a flight for Chennai. After reaching Chennai transfer to the hotel. Overnight Stay at Chennai.
Day 3 Chennai / Mahabalipuram (60 Kms & 01 hour drive)
Chennai is the place for a proper South India Temple Tour. The places of interest in and around the capital city of Tamil Nadu are Fort St. George, temples and museum and Marina beach. Marina beach is the second largest beach in the world and a popular tourist destination. It is the perfect example of a mixture of modernism and tradition. Pay a visit to the National Art Gallery and Museum, the San Thomas Cathedral, the Mylapore Temple and St. Mary’s Church. In the afternoon drive to Mahabalipuram. On arrival check in at hotel. Overnight stay at Mahabalipuram.
Day 4 Mahabalipuram
Mahabalipuram is world famous for its Shore Temples also known as Mamallapuram. Mahabalipuram served as the second capital of the Pallava Dynasty of South India. It is considered as a seaside village in the state of Tamil Nadu. It is often called the Seven Pagodas because of the high pinnacles of seven that it possesses. In the morning do go to see the Shore Temple, Arjuna’s Penance and Five Rathas. Overnight stay at Mahabalipuram.
Day 5 Mahabalipuram / Tanjore (260 Kms & 06 hour drive)
The 6th day of your South India Tour should be Tanjore. Enroute visit to Chidambaram Temple, is one of the oldest temples in India. It is one of five Sabha (dance halls) of Nataraja and the most famous is Kanaka Sabha (Golden Hall). Gangaikondacholapuram Temple – In a small town is the imposing stone temple Gangaikondacholapuram the eleventh century, has amazing murals sculptures, huge bull and lion statues, bronzes and statues of various deities. Airavatesvara Temple of Darasuram – The temple complex was built by Raja Chola II. In the heart of the main hall is a carved image of Shiva in stone. Later continue drive to Tanjore. On arrival check in at hotel. Overnight stay at Tanjore.
Day 6 Tanjore / Trichy 60Kms/01 Hour
After breakfast visit to Brihadeshwara temple which was built by the great Chola King Raja Raja I in the 10th century. Also known as the ‘Big Temple’, this massive temple is 216 feet high and the single spherical stone on top weighs 80 tons. A gigantic statue of Nandi, the Bull stands guard for the inner shrine of the temple. The courtyard walls of the sanctum sanctorum are covered with paintings. These paintings are similar to the frescoes of Ajanta. Later you will proceed to Trichy. It was one of the most important cities during the Chola reign in the medieval period. In the 18th century it stood as a witness to the Carnatic Wars fought between the French and the English. This was for supremacy in India. Overnight stay at Trichy.
Day 7 Trichy / Madurai (135 Kms & 03 hour drive)
After breakfast visit to Srirangam Temple and Rock Fort Temple. The Rock Fort Temple has been built on an 83m high rock. It is the landmark of Trichy. Further upwards, a climb of 434 steps leads to the ancient temple of Ganapati. A little further takes one to the top of a Shiva temple. Apart from this do visit Lord Robert Clive’s house and the Danish Church. Later drive to Madurai. A drive to Madurai takes about 3-4 hrs. On arrival check in at hotel. In the evening attend prayer ceremony at famous Meenakshi Temple. Overnight stay at Madurai.
Day8 Madurai / Mumbai
In the morning visit famous Meenakshi Temple, This temple is the best example of the Dravidan School of Architecture. Also visit Trimalai Nayak Palace During the noon hours transfer from your hotel to the airport is arranged to board the flight to Mumbai. On your arrival check in to the hotel. Overnight stay at Mumbai.
The last day is to go back to your respective destination .