South India travel highlights include beautiful Hindu temples, palm-fringed tropical beaches and a chance to see wild elephants in South India's national parks.
When planning Places to Visit in South India, it is good to keep in mind that distances are long and travelling between destinations takes time. Many travellers try to see too much in too little time and end up spending most of their holiday moving from one place to another. It is impossible to see all that South India has to offer during just one trip, but here are some highlights.
Tropical Beaches In South india
Kerala is a lush piece of tropical land on India’s South-Western coast and boasts some of India’s most beautiful beaches. Kerala’s most famous beach resorts, Kovalam and Varkala, are busy with domestic and international tourists alike, but on its Northern coast beaches become less developed and more peaceful. If sunbathing on a tropical beach gets boring, a boat trip on Kerala’s backwaters is a classic South Indian travel experience.
Hindu Temples In South India
Some of India’s most beautiful temples can be found in its Southern part, from the magnificent Shri Meenakshi Temple in Madurai to the Shore Temple of Mamallapuram. Many of the South’s most important Hindu temples and pilgrimage sites are in the state of Tamil Nadu.
The temples of Belur and Halebid in Karnataka are stunning examples of Hoysala architecture, and the Virupaksha temple in Hampi is surrounded by the ruins of this 14th century capital of the Vijayanagara kingdom.
Nature And Wildlife In South India
Several wildlife sanctuaries come together in the Nilgiri Biosphere Reserve: Mudumalai in Tamil Nadu, Nagarhole and Bandipur in Karnataka and Wayanad in Kerala. It is possible to see tigers in these woods, although elephants, antelopes and deer are more common. Coorg, or Kodagu, in Karnataka is filled with coffee plantations, forests and cosy homestays, and is a popular trekking area.
South India’s hill stations are the best places to escape to when the heat gets too much. The most popular hill stations in South India include Munnar in Kerala and Ooty, Coonoor and Kodaikanal in Tamil Nadu.
South Indian Cities
Indian cities are generally polluted and overpopulated, and the traffic is chaotic, but there are some South Indian cities that retain a special charm. Mysore is relaxed and laid-back for an Indian city, and Pondicherry (now known as Puducherry) in Tamil Nadu is known for French architecture, the ashram of Sri Aurobindo as well as delicious food.
When To Travel To South India
The rainy season starts in South India Tours around June and ends in October-November. The best time to go to South India is right after the monsoon, in November. In March the heat starts to build up and makes many areas of Southern India unbearably hot in April and May. Find more on India Tour Operator.