History, spirituality, and nature merge into a territory full of obligatory visits. Tamil Nadu enjoys its artistic personality, its language being the only one with roots as old as Sanskrit. Tamil Nadu smells of sacrificial ashes, masala, and jasmine. Among stone-engraved gods, traditional life goes by with few similarities to the modern and upcoming progress that unfolds in places like Bangalore.
Here, life was stopped centuries ago, and here inhabitants profess their gods most devoutly in this amazing land. There are drawings with the intricate geometry of mandalas on almost all doors, and the presence of tourists could be counted on the fingers of one hand. Whoever has traveled previously in the north of the country, where the tourist’s areas of India are crowded, you will find in the villages of Tamil Nadu – the triangle that forms the country’s most southerly – whole new roots to be discovered.
Here I present you my selection of Things that you cannot miss | #MacroTraveller
Mahabalipuram – This small fishing village has recovered from the terrible impact of the 2004 tsunami. The Temple of the Shore, the 7 Pagodas and the Penance of Arjuna are works of the Pallava dynasty that reigned from Kanchipuram and had here its main port.
Dosa & Pongal – These dishes have triumphed in Chennai and Tamil Nadu by chain restaurants like Saravana Bhawan. The Tamil crepe is entirely vegetarian, based on rice and black lentils. Take it along with the sambar and the chutneys to get their different nuances.
The Aarti in the Meenakshi Temple – Madurai. Meenakshi Amman Temple is an ancient and one amongst the most famous temples of India. Located in the holy city of Madurai in Tamil Nadu, Meenakshi Temple can be reached quickly using local transport from Madurai. Priests and faithful from the ensemble of devotees who accompany the palanquin of the god Shiva to the sanctum where the goddess Meenakshi resides.
The slopes of Ooty – This ancient refuge for the British allowed them for decades to escape the tropical heat. Today, it is a holiday destination that maintains its European architecture and relaxed atmosphere. Besides, tea and spices are grown on the slopes of Ooty.
Kanyakumari – The Indian Ocean, the Bay of Bengal and the Arabian Sea are joined here. The southern end of India is a symbolic place for Hinduism, a large Ramakrishna sculpture rises above the waters, and here a part of the ashes of Mahatma Gandhi was thrown into the sea.
The Silk Workshops – Kanchipuram is the capital of Indian Silk. Throughout Tamil Nadu, silk spinning and weaving are traditional arts, and it is relatively easy to access a workshop to observe how these vibrantly colored fabrics are worked.
The Basilica of St. Thomas in Chennai – The tradition considers that only three apostles have their tomb in a basilica: San Pedro, Santiago, and Santo Tomas. In the district of Mylapore, a church of a pure white remembers the place of the tomb of St. Thomas, the location of pilgrimage obliged for the Christians of India.
Auroville – With a futuristic architecture and social and spiritual approaches based on the teachings of Aurobindo and Mother, the territory of Auroville is located in Pondicherry, the former French colony in India. The visit to Matrimandir will not leave you indifferent.
The ashram of Ramana Maharishi – One of the most influential gurus of Hinduism of the twentieth century has been Ramana Maharishi. His ashram in Tiruvannamalai is located at the foot of the mountain Arunachala, the seat of Shiva in South India. In the ashram, you will be able to know the teacher’s teachings and practices of meditation and yoga.
The memorial of the ‘Missile Man of India,’ Dr. APJ Abdul Kalam at Rameswaram – This landmark in the hometown of the people’s President would continue to ignite young minds to dream big. The interiors of the memorial reflect the various facets of Dr. Kalam’s life, including the Pokhran nuclear test. The outside area of the monument has a replica of Kalam’s Agni, the intercontinental-range ballistic missile.