Tamil Nadu

Overview

The cynosure of culture, academia and tradition, Tamil Nadu is one of the richest states to establish a strong socio-cultural context in India. A wide variety of historic events right from the Vedas to British colonialization, make the monuments and buildings of Tamil Nadu extremely diverse and interesting. Unending stretch of beaches, temples, a robust sense of ethnicity and at a simmering urban culture which is fast developing, makes travelling in Tamil Nadu full of adventures. The lush green Nilgiris to the sultry coastline, Tamil Nadu offers great opportunities to understand the diversity of India with its unique culture.

Location

Tamil Nadu is a state in Southern India. Its capital is Chennai and important holiday spots here are Ooty also called Udhagamandalam, which is situated at an altitude of 2,240 meters above sea level, Coonoor which is perched at 1,856 meters above sea level, and Yercaud which is located in Servarayan range at an altitude of 1,500 meters. Pondicherry is 135 kms from Chennai.

History

The state’s history is as glorious as it is old. Stone-age implements were recently discovered in Yercaud. Ooty became a popular summer and weekend retreat under the British Raj.

Ideal time to visit

Due to its location, the hillstation is popular during summers but it is absolutely wonderful all year round. In winters, the temperature dips significantly but it’s a welcome respite for people from tropical parts of the world. The only time to be avoided might be monsoon, for certain people, which is during July.

Ooty:

In summer, fashion shows as well as flower and fruit shows are arranged. Boat races add festivity to the year. In January, one can enjoy a Tea and Tourism Festival. Other important festivals are Thaipoosam in Elk Hill Murugan Temple (February), Bookkapuram Mariamman Annual Festival (February), Ooty Mariamman Temple Festival (April), Coonoor Mariamman Temple Festival (April), Boat Races and Boat Pageantry in Ooty (May), Flower show in Ooty (May) and Fruit show in Coonoor (May).

Yercaud:

Summer Festival is held in the middle of May during the festival of Lord Servarayan. Week-long flower shows, dog shows, boating races and a village fair are organised at the time.

Pondicherry:

The International Yoga Festival brings in participants from all over the world. It is held between the 4th to the 7th January every year and includes discussions, consultation, demonstration of poses, classical dance and music recitals.

Cuisine

The regional cuisine is simple and light. The day is full of snacking on fresh fruits. The vegetables are usually locally grown and add a lively freshness to the meal. Due to the nippy air, alcohol plays a big part in the evening.

Language

Major languages spoken here are Tamil, Kannada, Malayalam, Hindi and English. Though, clearly, the last two are less common. Read more
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