Temples of Tamil Nadu

Itinerary

Day 1: Pick-up from Chennai Airport and drive to Mahabalipuram (56 km, 2 hours)

Day 2: Sightseeing Mahabalipuram 

Day 3: Drive to Pondicherry (105 km, 2 hours)

Day 4: Drive to Tanjavur (180 km, 5 hours)

Day 5: Sightseeing Tanjavur

Day 6: Drive to Tiruchi (60 km, 1 hour)

Day 7: Drive to Madurai (150 km, 4 hours)

Day 8: Sightseeing Madurai

Day 9: Drop at Madurai Airport


We provide private car and driver. Pick-up and drop at the airport is free.

Chennai- Mahabalipuram- Pondicherry- Chidambaram- Tanjavur- Tiruchi- Madurai (8 Nights, 9 Days)

Chennai- Mahabalipuram- Pondicherry- Chidambaram- Tanjavur- Tiruchi- Madurai (8 Nights, 9 Days)

Details

Day 1: Pick-up from Chennai Airport and drive to Mahabalipuram (56 km, 2 hours)


Your driver will pick you up at Chennai Airport and drive you to Mahabalipuram, famous for its UNESCO World Heritage listed temple district, where you can relax the rest of the day from the arrival.


Day 2: Sightseeing Mahabalipuram 


Start your sightseeing tour after a good breakfast and make the first stop of the day at the Shore Temple from the 8th century. The magnificent temple overlooks the Bay of Bengal and was an important center during the reign of Pallavas, when Mahabalipuram was the main port of their kingdom. Follow the street south and you will pass «Descent of the Ganges» Monument which is considered one of India's greatest ancient art pieces and depicts lively scenes from the Mahabharata. Your next stop is the «Five Rathas», five temples and three animal representations (elephant, lion and bull), which were once cut out of huge granite blocks.

Finally head back on the street north to the Light House and proceed to Krishna's Butterball, a granite block standing on a stony slope. This curious boulder seems to defy the laws of gravity and has not moved one centimeter in centuries despite its more than precarious position on the hillside. 


Day 3: Drive to Pondicherry (105 km, 2 hours)


Your driver will take you along the East Coast Road to the former French colonial town of Pondicherry (Puducherry). Sri Aurobindo once lived here, a well-known Indian master whose philosophy is still respected worldwide today. In the afternoon, discover the French flair of the former colonial city. Visit the Sri Aurobindo Ashram, the Ganesha Temple with its magnificent Hindu splashes of color and a Catholic church. Walk through the French quarter and maybe relax in one of the French style Cafés.


Day 4: Drive to Tanjavur (180 km, 5 hours)


Today your tour continues to Thanjavur, the former capital of the Chola dynasty. Because of the fertility of the flat land, this district is also referred to as the "rice bowl Tamil Nadu". On the way you will visit Nataraja Temple in Chidambaram, an historic temple dedicated to Lord Shiva Nataraja and Lord Govindaraja Perumal. In Tanjavur check-in your hotel, and after re-fresh, you can visit Brahdeshwar Temple complex in the lights of the night.


Day 5: Sightseeing Tanjavur


Today you will see Brahdeshwar Temple in daylight. This temple revered a nearly 8-meter-high and more than 1000-year-old Shiva Lingam and is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. In the afternoon you can visit the Nayak Palace with its Thanjavur Art Gallery and the superb collection of bronze and stone sculptures, or walk in the market. 


Day 6: Drive to Tiruchi (60 km, 1 hour)


Your driver will take you the short way to Tiruchi (Tiruchirapalli, Trichy). Check-in your hotel and then start your tour through the Big Bazaar Rd, which takes you to the famous Rock Fort. Climb up the 437 red-white coloured steps, along several cave temples, until you finally reach the Top Temple of the Rock, which offers a sweeping view of Trichy and the surrounding area. After lunch your driver will bring you to Srirangam 6 km north of Trichy, north of the Cauvery river. Here you will visit the Sri Ranganatha Swami Temple, the impressing and largest Vishnu sanctuary in South India. The main temple is surrounded by seven walls, each interrupted by 21 gate towers. After the visit, your driver will take you back to your hotel.


Day 7: Drive to Madurai (150 km, 4 hours)


After breakfast you will drive to the temple city of Madurai, along Saris which are drying on the banks of the Kaveri River, as well as Hindus, who are heading for the holies city in southern India. After relax in the hotel walk in the market. 


Day 8: Sightseeing Madurai


Legend says that Madurai originated when a drop of nectar from Shiva's curls fell to the ground. Later, a Pandya king built the city around a Shiva lingam. Since then, it has been the spiritual center of South India. A visit to the Meenakshi Sundareshwarar Temple is one of the highlights of your trip. The huge complex, built in its present form in the 16th and 17th centuries, is located in the heart of the old town. From a distance, you can see the twelve Gopurams between 45 and 50 meters high. The temple towers are covered with colorful, intricately decorated mythical figures and are considered a perfect example of Dravidian architecture. Everywhere there is something to see: elaborately decorated ceilings, walls and pillars, holy shrines, believers praying, and even the obligatory temple elephant is not missing.


Day 9: Drop at Madurai Airport


After an exciting journey with a lot of new impressions, your driver will drop you at Madurai Airport.