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Tamil Nadu

–Enchanting Tamil Nadu

Tamil Nadu lies to the southernmost part of India and is surrounded by the union territory of Puducherry and states of Kerala, Karnataka, and Andhra Pradesh.

It is bounded by the Eastern Ghats on the north, the Nilgiri mountains, the Meghamalai, and Kerala on the west, the Bay of Bengal in the east, the Gulf of Mannar and Palk Strait on the southeast and the Indian Ocean to the south. It also shares a maritime border with Sri Lanka.

The western, southern, and northwestern parts are hilly and rich in vegetation.

The western ghat traverses the entire border with Kerala, effectively blocking much of the rain-bearing clouds that enter during the monsoon.

The eastern parts are fertile coastal plains and the northern parts are a mix of hills and plains.

The central and the south-central regions are arid plains and receive less rainfall when compared with other regions.

History of Tamil Nadu 

Archaeological evidence proves that this area is one of the longest continuous habitations in the Indian peninsula.

In Attirampakam, archaeologists from the Sharma Centre for Heritage Education found ancient stone tools that suggest that a humanlike population existed in the Tamil Nadu region somewhere around 300,000 years before.

The region was also ruled by several empires, including the three great empires- Chera, Chola and Pandyan empires which shape the region’s cuisine, culture, and architecture.

After the fall of the Kingdom of Mysore, British Colonial rule focused on the Chennai region. Modern-day Tamil Nadu was formed in 1956 after the reorganization of states on linguistic lines.

Popular languages of Tamil Nadu:

The official language of Tamil Nadu is Tamil and about 90% of the population speaks this language.

Some other languages are also spoken like Telugu, Kannada, Urdu, Hindi and Malayalam. 

Capital of Tamil Nadu:

Chennai is the capital of Tamil Nadu.

Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu:

Edappadi K Palaniswami is the Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu

Governor of Tamil Nadu:

Banwarilal Purohit is the governor of Tamil Nadu.

High Court of Tamil Nadu:

The Madras High Court is located in Chennai.

Tamil Nadu on Map:

Tamil Nadu Tourism: 

The tourism industry in the state is the largest in India with an annual growth rate of 16 percent.

Tourism in the state is promoted by the Tami Nadu Tourism Development Corporation which is undertaken by the Tamil Nadu government. 

The state boasts some of the majestic Hindu temples built in Dravidian architecture.

The Nilgiri mountains, the Brihadishwara temple in Thanjavur, Gangaikonda Cholapuram, and the Airavatesvara Temple in Darasuram and the shore temples along with other monuments in Mamallapuram have been declared as UNESCO world heritage sites. 

Best Time To Visit Tamil Nadu: 

The best time to visit Tamil Nadu is from November to March.

44 Must-Visit Famous Places in Tamil Nadu:

1.Chennai

Being the home to many temples, churches, beaches, and also being the capital of the state, Chennai is the best place to visit in Tamil Nadu.

Chennai portrays the true South Indian culture and lifestyle. If history or art lies in your list, this place is a must-visit.

2.Pondicherry 

Pondicherry or Puducherry is an ideal place for explorers, beach lovers, and experience seekers interested in French culture and architecture.

This union territory reeks of excitement and vibrancy with a large number of romantic spots as well. Traveling from Chennai has been also made much easier. 

3.Mudumalai

Located in the Nilgiri hills and known for its wildlife persona, Mudumalai is the best place for anyone who loves an encounter with nature in the most unique way. 

4.Dhanushkodi

Far away from city life comes a small town which is an ideal place for people who want solitude and peace.

This beach town’s grandeur and beauty make it one of the best places to visit in Tamil Nadu. 

5.Hogenakkal

Situated in Dharampuri, Hogenakal is a town full of gorgeous waterfalls.

This small village is an absolute hotspot for romantic getaways, a short family vacay, and even an offbeat trip with your friends.

6.Tuticorin

From beaches and wildlife sanctuaries to temples and churches, this is one place in South India that lets you experience all in one place.

It is the place that lets you outshine every moment of your precious holiday.

7.Kanyakumari

Being a paradise and an exotic place, Kanyakumari is the place for experience seekers.

The art, architecture of temples, and even the local cuisine will leave you mind-boggling. 

8.Trichy

Being one of the fastest emerging cities in Tamil Nadu, this whole city can be explored on a weekend.

Various temples and churches bring their own set of uniqueness that will be etched in your heart forever.

9.Nagapattinam

Renowned pilgrimage center with several places connected with history, Nagapattinam is filled with temples and churches which attract tourists from far across the globe.

10.Vellore

Known for two well-established institutions- Christain Medical College and Vellore Institute of Technology, Vellore is an ancient city located in the northeastern part of Tamil Nadu.

There is also an enchanting fort that sits right in the center of the city.

11.Pollachi 

Being one of the most offbeat places in Tamil Nadu, Pollachi is located down south from Coimbatore.

It is a famous filming spot due to its blissful scenery and it also attracts tourists because of famous attractions like Topslip Tiger Reserve and Annamalai wildlife sanctuary.

12.Yanam 

Situated in the district of Puducherry and famous for its interesting history and culture, this small city is a must-visit in Tamil Nadu.

The city also has some old churches that portray French architecture. 

13.Tranquebar

Known as the land of the singing waves, This tiny beach town dates back to the 14th century with the establishment of the Shiva Temple built-in 1306.

There is a lot of history to learn, amazing architecture to adore in this small city.

14.Chettinad

Known for its ancient mansions and architecture and also at a few distances from Madurai, this hidden region is famous for its lip-smacking meat curries and rich heritage.

It is indeed a food-paradise for all the explorers. 

15.Courtallam

Known as the ‘Spa of the South’ and sitting in the Western Ghats, this place has the power to destress and rejuvenate travelers in an instant.

Blanketing waterfalls, museums, temples, dams, eco-parks are some of the scenics that you can visit.

16.Madurai 

Home to the most popular Meenakshi temple and constructed like a lotus, Madurai is spiritual heaven. If you admire the great architecture or are religious by-heart then this is the place for you.  

17.Chidambaram

A beautiful temple town situated in the eastern part of Tamil Nadu comes to a place that is famous for its glorious history, rich culture, and diverse traditions of this city have the magic of leaving anyone in awe.

18.Mahabalipuram 

Located just a few kilometers away from the capital city and popular for its intricately carved temples, Mahabalipuram has beautiful beaches, magnificent architecture, soothing weather, and offers a refreshing experience to every kind of tourist.

19.Rameshwaram 

Situated on an island and connected by a gargantuan bridge- Pamban bridge, this is one of the holiest places in India.

If temple hopping is the sole objective of your trip then you shouldn’t miss this place. 

20.Thanjavur

This city of temples boasts paintings, antiques, handicrafts, textiles, and sarees, which are amongst the popular things to be admired around Thanjavur. 

21.Velankanni

Velankanni is a gorgeous coastal town popular for a spectacular church that was built in the honor of Mother Mary. Located around 160km from Puducherry, one can find road transport to cover this path.

22.Kanchipuram

Known as the Golden city of thousand temples, Tourists who are interested in Hinduism, or just want to catch a glimpse of the beautiful South Indian architecture be sure to visit this place.

It is also famous for its beautiful Kanchipuram sarees. 

23.Coimbatore

Being one of the largest cities in Tamil Nadu and famous for its industries, Coimbatore is a perfect holiday experience as the place offers you gorgeous waterfalls, breathtaking mountains, and a lot of temples.

24.Tirunelveli

Located alongside the Thamirabarani river, this town offers many exciting tourist attractions like breathtaking waterfalls, scenic beauty, temples.

The city also has some wonderful delicacies that you can try as well.

25.Kumbakonam

Located in the Thanjavur district of Tamil Nadu, this beautiful city is a must-visit place for history lovers to understand the depth of India’s culture and Hinduism and is also one of the oldest towns in Indian history.

26.Tiruvannamalai

Home to the mighty mount Arunachala, this place has spiritual importance connected to itself.

Home to various temples and ashrams as well as the scenic beauty of the mountains make it one of the most visited places in the state.

27.Dharmapuri

Often known as the land of temples and churches along with various places of worship, this town is truly worshipped by the wonders provided by mother earth such as waterfalls, rivers, and lakes. 

28.Ooty

Tamil Nadu

Situated in the Nilgiri district of Tamil Nadu along with a gorgeous backdrop of greenery and hills makes Ooty a great place for honeymooners and family.

Ooty is everything that one needs to escape out of the busy city life and live life a little more.

29.Kodaikanal

Filled with dense forests, huge rocks, beautiful waterfalls, and majestic hills, Kodaikanal is the best place to be with your romantic partner.

The picturesque locations and spots will truly fill the heart of your loved one with emotions.

30.Coonoor

Situated at an altitude of 1930 meters, Coonoor offers a panoramic view of the Nilgiri Hills and the Catherine Falls, which makes it an ideal hotspot for those whose heart belongs in the hills.

31.Yelagiri

Situated at an elevation of 4626 feet, Yelagiri hills are surrounded by green valleys, orchards, and rose gardens is an ideal place to visit with a loved one and even your friends. 

32.Yercaud

Situated close to the eastern ghats, Yercaud is a must-visit for its vast evergreen forests, rich coffee plantations, and unique flora and fauna.

33.Kotagiri 

Situated in the Nilgiris and is known for having the best climate in the world, Kotagiri is a place filled with captivating waterfalls and rich wildlife.

34.Valparai

Situated in the Anamalai Hill range and being a part of the Indira Gandhi wildlife sanctuary, Valparai also has a decent number of tea and coffee estates surrounded by forests. 

35.Theni

Nestled amidst the foggy amidst in the Western ghats, Theni is a town for the people who are seeking to avoid the beaten paths and to experience a complete fairyland filled with lush greenery and plantations. 

36.Vedanthangal

If you visit this amazing bird sanctuary during the monsoon seasons you can witness around 30000 birds like spoonbills, herons, and storks.

This place is filled with birds and if you are a bird lover this place will be a paradise for you.

37.Tharangambadi

This is a small beach town that dates back to the 14th century and this town also overlooks the confluence between the Kaveri River and the Bay of Bengal.

Famous for its tranquil nature this place is a hotspot for tourists.

38.Salem

Being home to natural vistas and also being the fifth largest city in Tamil Nadu, Salem is home to some amazing temples that are a must-visit. 

39.Kolli Hills

Located in the Namakkal district and known as the ‘Mountain of Death’, Kolli hills are untouched by industrialization and retains most of the natural beauty. Nature is at its best here. 

40.Palani

Blanketed between two hills- Sakthigiri and Sivagiri, you will get to see some amazing sceneries. 

You will also come across several lakes that flow into the Shanmuga River at the foothills. 

41.Dindigul 

A historic city wedged between Sirumalai and Palani hills, your trip to Tamil Nadu will be incomplete if you don’t visit this place.

It’s full of rocky hills and temples that will fill your hearts with excitement.

42.Mayiladuthurai 

This is a temple town that is famous for the Mayura Natha Swamy Temple that is dedicated to Lord Shiva.

This place was ruled by the Chola dynasty, and it still holds reminiscents of that.

43.Thiruvarur

Apart from being popular for its antiquity as it was ruled by several groups like Vijayanagar Empire, Marathas, Medieval as well as Later Cholas, and the British, it is home to three rivers namely Sukumar, Valaiyar, and Odambokki rivers which add to the beauty of this place.  

44.Pulicat

Home to the famous Pulicat lake, this is a famous place where thousands of birds migrate here between the months of October & March.

You can even get to see the Flamingos that are a jaw-dropping beauty.

Famous National Parks and Wildlife Sanctuaries of Tamil Nadu: 

1.Indira Gandhi Wildlife sanctuary and National Park

This sanctuary is truly an ecological bliss with – Arboreal animals like the lion-tailed macaque, bonnet macaque, grizzled giant squirrel. Terrestrial beasts like tiger, panther, elephant, gaur, pangolin, sambar and spotted deer.

Also, this reserve is a warm and inviting home to a variety of species of birds like the racket-tailed drongo, black-headed oriole, paradise fly-catcher, whistling thrush, emerald dove to name a few.

2.Mudumalai Wildlife sanctuary

The sanctuary is a bird watcher’s paradise with an ample range of migratory and resident birds that include Peacock, Grey Jungle Fowl, Malabar Whistling Thrush, Vultures, and many more.

3.Mukkurthi National Park

The park shows a rare natural beauty.

The golden sunshine upon abundant forests with sylvan lakes, glittering like a mirage of quicksilver paint an accurate and pretty picture of this Sanctuary’s scenery.

4.Kalakuddu Wildlife Sanctuary

It covers an area of 223 sq. km and is located in Tamil Nadu’s Tirunelveli District it also includes the jungle-clad foothills of the Western Ghats and its nearby areas.

A variety of rich flora ranging from tropical wet and evergreen foliage to tropical dry deciduous vegetation made up of thorny shrubs makes up the sanctuary’s natural vegetation.

5.Point Calimere

This sanctuary is home to abundant species of birds spotted in vibrant hues.

During winter months one can see Curlews, Gulls, Terns, Plovers, Sandpipers, Shanks, and Herons and uncountable Flamingoes.

At the beginning of spring, a smell of freshness overwhelms the sanctuary and Koels, Mynas and Barbets humming. 

6.Srivilliputhur Grizzled Squirrel

It is situated in Virudhunagar District, a mere 45 km from Virudhunagar Town.

The reserve is conveniently sited 15 km away from Srivilliputhur Railway station and 100 km away from Madurai airport.

The forest officials also take care of all tourist’s requirements and provide them with comfortable and affordable accommodation.

7.Guindy National Park

Guindy National Park is a sanctuary for several wild species that wander around the place without any care.

This place is home to several wild beasts among which elephant, antelope, spotted deer, jungle cat, toddy cat, Indian civet, and a variety of birds that include the black chested kite, black-winged kite, honey buzzard, and pariah kite to name a few.

8.Vallanadu Black Buck Sanctuary

This sanctuary is located in Thoothukudi District, with Madurai Airport and Tirunelveli Railway station located at a distance of 165 km and 20 km, respectively.

It is also within reach by road. Tamil Nadu Government and forest officials cater to their guest’s requirements and provide them with adequate transport as well as comfortable accommodation in the affordably priced hotels at Tirunelveli.

9.Vedanthangal Bird Sanctuary

It is located 75 km from the urban metropolis of Chennai. This Sanctuary provides the much-needed freshness to a wild concrete jungle.

10.Viralimalai Wildlife Sanctuary

This Wildlife Sanctuary is over-crowded with tourists during the period spanning from October to April. The reserve is home to several varieties of wild peacocks, each equally exotic.

The Palawan Peacock Pheasant, wandering around the Murugan temple has an enchanting charm that catches the tourists attention

11.Anna Zoological Park

The zoological park – lying in the west of Chennai is situated in the outer environment of the urban metropolis.

The zoo is highly accessible by rail, road, and air and is frequented by tourists as well as local citizens of Chennai accompanied by their families during holidays and weekends. 

Tamil Nadu Is Famous For:

1.Ambur Dum Biriyani

The Vellore district is especially known for its food. But the most special dish is the Ambur Chicken Biriyani.

This biriyani is sure to make your taste buds dance with joy as it is really spicy and flavor-full.

2.Kanchipuram Silk

Woven by the weavers of Kanchipuram, this silk is one of the most demanded silk all over the world. The Kanchipuram Saree or Kanjivaram Saree is the most famous for all.

3.Chettinad Cusine

Also known as Karaikudi cuisine, this palette is a pride of Karaikudi, a town in the Sivagangai district of Tamil Nadu.

The dishes are prepared using age-old traditions and styles with special spices ad herbs that deliver a lip-smacking joy to the eaters. 

4.Marina Beach

This beach is the world’s second-longest beach and India’s longest Urban beach.

The 13km long stretch feels like a never-ending walk with your friends and family. The waves are also so soothing that it can heal all your pains. 

5.Doll Paintings

Also known as ‘Thalayatti Bommai’, these famous doll paintings along with other mesmerizing paintings and scriptures make Thanjavur the most distinct district of Tamil Nadu. 

Popular Fairs and Festivals of Tamil Nadu:

1.Pongal

This is the most important Harvest festival celebrated by the people of Tamil Nadu, mainly celebrated to thank or show appreciation to the Sun God for giving energy towards agriculture.

It lasts for a period of 4 days and is normally celebrated on the 13th of January till the 16th.

2.Tamil New Year’s Day

The Tamil New Year falls in mid-April, the first month of the Tamil Calendar.

On this day people wear new clothes and eat delicious food, one of them being ‘Maanga Pachadi‘ a sweet and sour dish made with mangoes, Jaggery and Neem flowers.

In this month, you can also see the mangoes hanging from the Mango trees, and the flowers on the Neem tree bloomed. The people celebrate this day with these two items to show prosperity.

3.Natyanjali Dance Festival

‘Natya’ means dance and ‘Anjali’ means offering. This is the day where dancers offer their Dance as a tribute to the one and only Lord Nataraja.

This festival is a day best celebrated in the Nataraja temple, Chidambaram in Tamil Nadu.

It is a day when almost 300-400 dancers from all over India bring out their uniqueness. It is celebrated either in the month of February or March and it is a five-day-long festival. 

4.Thaipusam

This festival is celebrated in Tamil Nadu on a full moon day in the month. It celebrates the Birthday of Lord Subramaniam, the younger son of Lord Shiva.

This is the day when people with utmost faith make and keep their promises. The devotee carries two pots attached to a long stick containing rice, milk, and other things that the devotee wishes to offer the Lord and he carries this till the Temple.

5.Mahamaham Festival

This festival is celebrated once in 12 years in the State of Tamil Nadu in a small town called Kumbakonam.

On this day, people from all over the country come to take a dip in the famous ‘Mahamaham tank’ as it is considered sacred.

The day of this festival begins by praying at the Temple, then dipping in the 20 wells, then a visit to the Kumbeswarar Temple, then a dip in the holy tank, and lastly to complete it a dip in River Cauvery.

6.Thiruvaiyaru Festival 

This is celebrated in Thiruvaiyaru, a town in the district of Thanjavur in Tamil Nadu. It is a music festival in honor of the famous music composer and Saint Thyagaraja and is held every year in the month of January.

This is one of the biggest music festivals in India and welcomes music-lovers from all over the country. Apart from the music, rituals and Pujas are also conducted during the two days of this festival.

7.Karthigai Deepam

It is known as the ‘Festival of Lights’, this festival falls between November to mid-December) according to the Tamil Calendar.

The main idea of this festival is to keep away bad things from life and welcome the good ones.

This festival in Tamil Nadu is celebrated with a lot of excitement and joy.

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