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Heritage Trail of South India: Chennai to Madurai

0/5
Duration

06 Nights / 07 Days

Tour Type

Daily Tour

Group Size

10 people

Languages

English

Overview

Embark on the “Heritage Trail of South India: Chennai to Madurai,” a captivating journey through the heart of Tamil Nadu. This meticulously crafted itinerary takes you from the bustling city of Chennai to the sacred city of Madurai, uncovering a tapestry of historical landmarks, ancient temples, and cultural treasures along the way. Begin your adventure in Chennai, exploring its colonial heritage and vibrant temples before moving to the coastal town of Mahabalipuram, renowned for its UNESCO-listed rock-cut temples. Continue to the French-influenced charm of Pondicherry and delve into the regal history of Thanjavur, home to the magnificent Brihadeeswarar Temple. Experience the spiritual grandeur of Trichy’s temples and the engineering marvel of the Kallanai Dam. Conclude your journey in Madurai, where the awe-inspiring Meenakshi Amman Temple and the rich cultural tapestry of the city await, leaving you with unforgettable memories of South India’s glorious heritage.

Highlights

  • This is a private tour/activity only for your group.
  • Enhanced cleaning/ traveler safety.
  • In-depth cultural experience.
  • Flexible sightseeing & stopover.
  • Most travelers can participate.

Bulk discount (by Percent)

Bulk discount adult
# Discount group From adult To adult Value
1 Discount on 2-person group 2 2 %
2 Discount on 3-person group 3 3 %
4 Discount on 4-person group 4 4 %
5 Discount on 5-person group 5 5 %
6 Discount on 6-person group 6 6 %
7 Discount on 7-person group 7 7 %
8 Discount on 8-person group 8 8 %

Itinerary

Day 1: Arrive Chennai

Arrival at Chennai Airport. Transfer to the hotel and check-in. Relax and unwind after your journey. Visit Fort St. George: Historical fort built by the British East India Company in 1644, housing a museum with colonial artifacts, showcasing the early military and administrative center of British power in India. Explore San Thome Basilica: A Gothic-style church built over the tomb of Saint Thomas, one of the twelve Apostles of Jesus, known for its stunning architecture and historical significance. Visit Kapaleeshwarar Temple: A colorful, Dravidian-style temple dedicated to Lord Shiva, known for its intricate carvings and vibrant festivals, reflecting the rich cultural heritage of Tamil Nadu. Overnight at the hotel.

Day 2: Chennai - Mahabalipuram (120kms)

Breakfast at the hotel. Depart for Mahabalipuram. Discover Shore Temple: An ancient temple built in the 8th century, part of a group of monuments that showcase the architectural prowess of the Pallava dynasty, offering breathtaking views of the Bay of Bengal. Visit Five Rathas: Monolithic rock-cut temples from the 7th century, each dedicated to different deities and showcasing Dravidian architecture, representing the chariots of the Pandavas from the Mahabharata. Explore Arjuna's Penance: A massive rock relief, one of the largest in the world, depicting scenes from Hindu mythology, including the descent of the Ganges and various celestial beings. Visit Krishna's Butterball: A giant natural rock perched on a slope, seemingly defying gravity, and a popular spot for tourists to take photographs and marvel at nature's wonders. Check-in at the hotel in Mahabalipuram. Evening walk along the beach and local markets, experiencing the coastal charm and local handicrafts. Overnight at the hotel.

Day 3: Mahabalipuram - Pondicherry (120kms)

Breakfast at the hotel. Depart for Pondicherry. Stroll through French Quarter: A charming area with colonial architecture, vibrant cafes, and boutique shops reflecting Pondicherry's French heritage, offering a unique blend of French and Indian cultures. Visit Sri Aurobindo Ashram: A spiritual community founded by Sri Aurobindo, offering peace and meditation spaces, and known for its serene atmosphere and spiritual significance. Explore Auroville: An experimental township aiming for human unity, with the iconic Matrimandir at its center, serving as a place for individual silent concentration and an architectural marvel. Visit Pondicherry Museum: A museum showcasing artifacts from the French colonial era and ancient times, including sculptures, bronze statues, and relics from the Roman times, providing a glimpse into the region's rich history. Check-in at the hotel in Pondicherry. Evening at leisure to explore the seaside promenade, enjoying the sunset and the tranquil ambiance of the coastline. Overnight at the hotel.

Day 4: Pondicherry - Thanjavur (180kms)

Breakfast at the hotel. Depart for Thanjavur. Visit Brihadeeswarar Temple: A UNESCO World Heritage Site, this 11th-century temple is known for its grand architecture, towering vimana, and extensive frescoes, reflecting the artistic achievements of the Chola dynasty. Explore Thanjavur Palace: A historic palace complex with royal artifacts, paintings, and a library with ancient manuscripts, showcasing the opulence and cultural heritage of the Nayak and Maratha rulers. Visit Saraswathi Mahal Library: One of the oldest libraries in Asia, housing a vast collection of rare palm leaf manuscripts and books, offering a treasure trove of knowledge and literary heritage. Visit Schwartz Church: An 18th-century church built by a Danish missionary, known for its simple yet elegant architecture and historical significance. Check-in at the hotel in Thanjavur. Evening visit to the local markets, experiencing the vibrant local culture and purchasing traditional Thanjavur paintings and handicrafts. Overnight at the hotel.

Day 5: Thanjavur - Trichy (60kms)

Breakfast at the hotel. Depart for Trichy. Visit Rockfort Temple: A historic temple perched atop a massive rock, offering panoramic views of the city and known for its ancient rock-cut architecture and sacred shrines. Discover Srirangam Temple: The largest functioning Hindu temple in the world, dedicated to Lord Vishnu, with seven concentric walls and 21 gopurams, a masterpiece of Dravidian architecture. Visit Jambukeswarar Temple: An ancient temple dedicated to Lord Shiva, known for its unique water shrine representing one of the elements of nature, and intricate carvings. Explore Kallanai Dam: An ancient dam built across the Kaveri River, one of the oldest functioning water diversion systems in the world, a testament to the engineering skills of the Chola dynasty. Check-in at the hotel in Trichy. Evening at leisure to explore the city, visiting local markets and tasting authentic Chettinad cuisine. Overnight at the hotel.

Day 6: Trichy - Madurai (135kms)

Breakfast at the hotel. Depart for Madurai. Explore Meenakshi Amman Temple: A massive temple complex known for its stunning gopurams, intricate sculptures, and vibrant festivals, dedicated to Goddess Meenakshi and Lord Shiva, a significant pilgrimage site. Visit Thirumalai Nayakkar Mahal: A 17th-century palace featuring Indo-Saracenic architecture, known for its grand courtyard, elaborate interiors, and the daily sound and light show narrating its history. Visit Gandhi Memorial Museum: A museum dedicated to Mahatma Gandhi, showcasing his life and contributions to India's independence, including an impressive collection of photographs, letters, and personal artifacts. Check-in at the hotel in Madurai. Evening visit to Vandiyur Mariamman Teppakulam: A large temple tank with a central island pavilion, often used for festivals and famous for its annual float festival. Overnight at the hotel.

Day 7: Madurai - Deaprture

Breakfast at the hotel. Shop at Puthu Mandapam: A lively marketplace within a 17th-century pillared hall, offering local handicrafts, textiles, and souvenirs, a perfect place for last-minute shopping. Visit Koodal Azhagar Temple: A historic temple dedicated to Lord Vishnu, known for its beautiful sculptures, detailed carvings, and significant religious importance. Stroll along the Vaigai River: Enjoy a peaceful walk along this scenic river, taking in the serene views and the local life along the riverbanks before departure. Transfer to the airport for your departure flight.

Included/Excluded

  • 6 Nights' accommodation in 4-star hotels.
  • Daily breakfast & meal as per day plan (B- Breakfast, L- Lunch, D- Dinner)
  • Private air-conditioned deluxe car for airport transfer, sightseeing and excursion as per program.
  • English speaking tour guide on sightseeing days (local guide in each city), as per program.
  • Monument entrances and activities charges mentioned in the itinerary.
  • Bottled drinking water in car.
  • Government taxes.
  • Madurai - Chennai flight fare approx. INR 4,500 per person in economy class.
  • Camera charges at monuments.
  • Expenses of personal nature like liquor, laundry, tips, telephone, fax, internet etc.
  • Gratuities & optional activities.
  • Anything not mentioned in inclusions.

Tour's Location

FAQs

What is the standard of the hotels on this tour?
Can travelers upgrade the accommodation to 5-star hotels?

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