TAMIL NADU: THE LAND OF GODS, ART & RAJINIKANTH
The state of Tamil Nadu is ranked 11th amongst the 29 states in India, with Chennai as its capital. The state is bordered by Kerala, Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh, and the Union Territory of Puducherry. The name literally means “The Land of Tamils”, and holds the key to one of the longest surviving classical languages, Tamil. The land serves as home to numerous natural assets, classical art, music, and literature, Dravidian structured Hindu Temples, hill stations, beach resorts, multi-religious pilgrimages along with eight UNESCO World Heritage Sites.
Best time to Visit Tamil Nadu
Tamil Nadu commonly enjoys a tropical weather all throughout the year without any major variation in comparison with North India. As humidity levels soars up during summers (March to June) till 25°C – 45°C, it becomes difficult to travel all the way to South to divulge in sheer hot humid climate. The best time to visit South Indian Coastline state is between December to March, when the temperature levels constantly varies between 10°C – 15°C, with cool air waves, mystic greenery and soul and relaxing extended beaches rejuvenating your mind, body and soul.
State’s Special (January Edition)
Pongal is the main religious festival of Tamilians and is widely celebrated throughout the country under various names, such as Makar Sankranti, Lohri, Bihu, Hadaga and Poki. The festival marks the beginning of sun’s six-month long passage towards Uttarayana (northwards). This festival is ecstatically celebrated on 14th January every year, and the date is considered auspicious with effect of the movement of sun towards the zodiac Capricorn (Makarm Rashi). Gets a glimpse into the world of tamilians serving their Surya Devta in the most vibrant way and get a taste of this rice-milk-jaggery dish, also known as Pongal.
- Ecstatic Destinations to visit
There are innumerable tourist destinations you can visit while you are in Tamil Nadu. Some of these are Kanyakumari, Rameshwaram, Chennai, Velankanni, Trichirappalli and Mudumalai National Park, which are best visited during winters. The natural essence of these places exhibits the true art of nature, and several temples, artistic galleries and fests such as Mamallapuram Dance Festival, Tyagaraja Aradhana (Annual Carnatic Music Festival) which happens in the month of January and February are a big highlight.
- Tollywood & Rajinikanth
Tollywood has made a critical impact on the Tamilians with their up-and-coming film productions in every genre. Rajinikanth has made a great impact, such that people worship his movies, style and him as well. Pick any little kid and ask him to narrate a heavy dialogue from his movie! Experience the maddening love for the Thalaiva, book tickets for one of his on-going movies (even if you don’t understand the language) and watch the deafening crowd whistling over his actions and fights!
“Yanna Rascala.. Mind It!”
- Explore the Art, Religion and Culture
A humble abode to some of the world’s oldest civilizations, heritages and religious sites, Tamil Nadu has a lot to offer to its tourists with their cultural presentations. Some of them are briefly described below:
The temples are the show-stealers here, with some of the oldest structured temples built by its Pallava, Chola, Pandya, Nayak and Vijaynagar rulers. Some of the famous temples are Chidambaram Temple, Kailashnathar Temple, Hazrat Peer Mohammed Waliyullah Dargah, Thanumalayan Temple, Adi Kumbeswarar Temple, Meenakshi Amman Temple, Thiruparankundram Dargah, Arunachaleshwara Temple of Thiruvannamalai, Sri Thyagaraja Temple, St. Stephen’s Church and much more. Visit them for a cosmic experience.
- Music and Dance
The ecstatic sound waves of Carnatic music, Villuppāṭṭu, Nāṭṭuppur̲appāṭṭuI etc. gives a sense of peace. In the month of December-January, Chennai hosts a nationwide event, the Annual Madras Music Season, which acts as a platform for hundreds of artists from the city. If you re in Tamil Nadu, some of the best dance performances in Karakattam, Mayilāṭṭam, Ōyilāttam, Poikkal, Kuthiraiyaaṭṭam, Manattam, Paraiyāṭṭam, Thīppandāṭṭam and the most civilized and adapted, Bharatanatyam will blow your minds.
- Arts and Crafts
Some of the best art and craft sculptures, paintings, wood works, stone carvings and much more are found here. If you are an avid historian, then travelling to one of these places is a must. Tanjore paintings, wooden crafting from palm trees, fibre and baskets, bamboo shoot art and much more can be explored. Chingleput and Mamallapuram act as the best sites for granite carvings.
- Gorge on some of the best South Indian dishes
Tamil cuisine comprises of rice-made dishes with sweet and sour curries. Relish the most exotic dishes being served on a banana leaf. The world-acclaimed Idli-Dosa-Sambhar-Uttapam is the symbol of Tamil cuisine. Keep your fork and knife aside, and eat like a true tamilian, i.e. with hands. Take your cup of popular Filter Coffee to the terrace and enjoy a delighted view. Taste some of the best prepared non-veg items with a multitude of Achaars or pickles, such as Kootu, Aviyal, Poriyal, Thuvayal, Chutni, Karaisal, Kothsu, Avial, Varuval, Peratal, Appalam and much more. Food Lover, eh?
- Beaches and Resorts- The Epitome of Serenity
Craving for inner peace? Take a walk on one of your favourite sandy beaches, such as Dhanushkhodi, Elliot, Covelong, Marina, and Mahabalipuram and experience the eternal beauty of sun setting beneath the cold sea waves. The weather is very cosy, with cold, misty air running down your arms in the month of January. Try water sports, swimming and several other adventure sports for a refreshing and meditative experience. The resorts proposing the best leisure and services are the best along with an elated view.
- Vibrant colours of festivities
Apart from Pongal, several other festivals are celebrated in the month of January, such as Thiruvalluvar Day and Uzhavar Thirunal. Get chatty with the locals, and take part in every ceremony during these festive times. Experience the colourful merriments, taste the exotic dishes during these times and witness a big Southern picture.
Free this January? Pack your bags, and head towards the Southern Peninsula to the blissful land of Gods, Religion, Art and Food! Happy Travelling Folks!!!!