Duration : 8 Nights / 9 Days
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On arrival at Chennai you are met and escorted to your vehicle. Leave immediately for Mahabalipuram a pleasant 1 and half hours drive from Chennai. You can halt at Dakshina Chitra enroute. Mammalapuram built in 7th century, earlier called Mahabalipuram the ancient Pallava port, today is the site of several antique sculptural marvels. In this ancient seaside town, shrines and huge sculptures cut-out of rocks more than 1200 years back during the reign of Pallava Kings in the region can be seen. The rock carvings depicting mythological episodes - of demons, Gods and animals in battle and others - are truly poems in stone. Visit Butter Ball, Arjunas Penance, 5 Rathas and the magnificent Shore Temples. Checkin to your resort and evening at leisure to enjoy this beautiful seaside resort. Overnite Mahabalipuram.
After breakfast check out hotel and proceed to Pondicherry on arrival check in hotel and proceed for a half day city tour of Pondicherry . Visit the Aurobindo Ashram, which is 10 kms north of Pondicherry. This ashram promotes Aurbindo`s ideas in bringing about a synthesis of Yoga and modern science, so as to unite the spirit and matter. Lunch at hotel and evening free to explore the French and Tamil quarters of this beautiful seaside resort. Overnite Pondicherry.
Today after breakfast visit Auroville - a unique experiment in international living and in creating a new environment where men and women of all nationalities live together in harmony.Enjoy shopping for some wonderful aromas, soaps, clothings and artefacts all manufactured locally at Auroville. Return to resort ,lunch and evening free to enjoy resort facilities and overnite Pondicherry.
After breakfast drive to Chidambaram also called as Thillai, which has the famous Nataraja temple with the root of the sanctum-sanctorum covered with golden plates is located in the centre of the town covering an area of 40 acres. In this temple, postures from the Bharatnatayam form of dance are depicted in sculpture. Natraja is Lord Shiva as a cosmic dancer. After lunch at local restaurant, drive to Thanjavur. Tanjore once the capital of Chola Kings, has the Brahadeswara temple(or the big temple of God).The temple tower rises to a height of 15mts from a square base of 29 mts and then tapers off, making a total of 66mts later continue on via the Unesco World Heritage temples at Gangaikondacholapuram.Checkin at hotel and over night stay at Tanjore Hotel.
After breakfast you proceed to the Chettinad region to arrive in time for lunch. Chettinad is something of a world apart and a truly unique destination. The merchants and traders (the Chettiars) who hailed from this region amassed significant fortunes throughout the 19th and early 20th centuries from their roles as bankers and business go-betweens for many of the empires from both East and West which traded in south India during that time. Many of them poured their fortunes into building remarkable homes- some over 40000sq ft and with dozens of rooms and many courtyards. Your stay is ina mansion fully and delightfully restored . Chettinad is also famous for its unique cuisine which known for complex flavours and innovative use of ingredients. Overnight in Chettinad.
Today after breakfast you have a day visit to cover the local markets in Chettinad,visit a tile making factory to observe the local craft of tile-making,visit a local temple, snack making unit ,a living household in Chettinad. Return to resort for lunch. Evening take a bullock cart ride and explore the district headquarters of Karaikudi. This is a perfect place to slow down, walk the quiet streets and really meet the local people. It does really feel like travelling back a few centuries. Overnight in Chettinad.
After breakfast proceed to Madurai at a distance of approx 1 and half hours and visit the famous Meenakshi temple in the centre. The city isbelieved to be more than 2500 yeras old and the Meenakshi Temple with its exquisite temples/ carvings and pillars is exquisite. Lunch at a resaurant and proceed to Kodaikanal at a distance of approx 2 and half hours. Reach Kodaikanal in late afternoon and checkin to hotel and relax. Evening free to enjoy boating at the Kodaikanal Lake or you can walk around the promenade and overnite Kodaikanal.
After a leisurely breakfast you take a sightseeing tour of Kodaikanal covering the Pillar Rocks, Coakers Walk, Bryant Park and return to resort for lunch. Evening you can shop in local markets for some spices, chocolates or local artefacts. Enjoy resort facilities and overnite Kodaikanal.
Today after breakfast you drive to Madurai airport for your onward connection.