Tamil Nadu is one of the states in South India that is well-known for a number of reasons. Whether it’s the famous temples or the beaches and the many cultural hotspots here, there are plenty of tourist places in Tamil Nadu. Visitors are often entranced by these places, the history and heritage that these places are brimming with and they can’t seem to get enough.
Some of the places to visit in Tamil Nadu include the capital city of Chennai, Madurai, Pondicherry, Mamallapuram, Tanjavur and hill stations such as Kodaikanal, Coonoor and Ooty. Whether you love nature, or adore temples or have a penchant for history, many of these places to go in Tamil Nadu should surely be on your list, as they will leave you amazed. While the people of Tamil Nadu are friendly and helpful, knowing at least a smattering of Tamil should help in communication. Be sure you know at least the basics before travelling to Tamil Nadu. Here are some of the must visit places in Tamil Nadu.
Tamil Nadu’s capital city Chennai is beautiful with its wide clean roads and historic monuments. Some of the famous tourist places in Tamil Nadu can be found here, whether it is the 17th century Fort St. George, or the San Thome Cathedral which was built during the 14th and 15th century by the Portuguese. Some of the must visit places in Tamil Nadu can be found here. Chennai is also famous for its beaches such as Marina Beach which is said to be the second longest beach in the world or the more serene Elliot’s Beach. There are several religious places to visit as well, such as the San Thome Church or the ISKCON temple. The Kapaleeshwar Temple in Mylapore or the Thousand Lights Mosque in Royapettah are some of the excellent places to see here. For shopping, head straight to T Nagar if you don’t mind being surrounded by crowds of people everywhere.
The temple town of Tamil Nadu, Madurai boasts of some really famous temples such as the Meenakshi Amman Temple and the Alagar Koyil. Some of the really exciting places to visit in Tamil Nadu can be found here. In the month of April, there are crowds of people, lakhs of them actually, who have come for the Chitri rai Festival that celebrates the marriage of Lord Sundareshwar and Goddess Meenakshi. Some of the other places to see here include Thirumalai Nayakar Mahal, the Koodal Azhagar Temple and the Gandhi Museum. The Vaigai Dam over the river Vaigai is quite magnificent and is a favoured picnic spot for many especially during the evenings.
The coastal town of Kanyakumari is on the southern most tip of the country. The town was known as Cape Comorin when the British ruled and there are various reasons why it is one of the top tourist places in Tamil Nadu. Not only is it the only place in India where you can see the sun rise and set in the same spot, it is also home to pilgrimage sites like Bagavathi Amman Temple and Our Lady of Ransom Church. One of the places to see here is the Vivekananda Rock Memorial which is on a tiny island off shore while the Thiruvalluvar Statue, the Tsunami Monument and the Gandhi Mandapam also draw a huge number of visitors.
Also known as Mahabalipuram, this town is near Chennai and is known for its excellent temples and monuments which go back to the 7th and 8th centuries. The Shore Temple has three granite shrines and it’s one of the most famous monuments here as it faces the sea. A massive boulder on top of a hill near the Ganesha Ratha stone temple is called Krishna’s Butter Ball. There is a group of temples called Pancha Rathas that have been carved from single rocks. In Mamallapuram, you can find several cave temples as well, which have been carved from rocks. This includes the 7th century Varaha Cave as well.
This popular hill station is one of the top tourist places in Tamil Nadu. With its lakes, forests, valleys and waterfalls, it’s a favoured vacation spot for many people especially during the summer vacations especially. The star-shaped manmade Kodaikanal Lake is surrounded by an evergreen forest and visitors often hire boats to traverse the length of the lake. There are several other delightful places to see here as well, such as Bryant’s Park where you can see roses and dahlias on display. Lots of glorious views await if you climb up the slopes of nearby Mount Nebo or the Green Valley Viewing area.
Among the famous places to visit in Tamil Nadu, Ooty is quite popular and for good reason too. Also known as Udhagamandalam, this hill station has a central lake called Ooty Lake. People can often be seen boating on its wide expanse. Surrounded on all sides by lush trees, Ooty is a popular honeymoon destination for young couples. Nearby, the Rose Garden has more than 2000 varieties of roses while the Botanical Garden that has been around since the 19th century has some amazing flora such as ferns, orchids and a fossilised tree that goes back to prehistoric times. On the outskirts, the Doddabetta Peak has some fabulous views as well.
If you have plans to visit Tamil Nadu, do make it a point to check the SOTC website for some great offers and deals on Tamil Nadu Tour Packages.