India, they say, is not one but several countries. In topography, culture, traditions, people, cuisine, linguistic origins and artistic expression, the southern peninsula is an experience singularly different from North India.
Your journey begins in Chennai on the eastern coast, a polyphonic city that traverses multiple centuries, the citadel of performing arts in India. Explore the striking sculptural achievements of the 7th century Pallava rulers at Mamallapuram (Mahabalipuram), a prototype they took with them to the Far East, as far as Angkor Wat.
Madurai in southern Tamil Nadu was an important cultural and commercial centre famed for its trade with Rome and Greece since the 6th century BC. At its heart is the magnificent Meenakshi Temple with its soaring towers that can be seen for miles. Climb the Western Ghats to Thekkady, a wildlife preserve in Kerala before driving to the backwaters for a spot of relaxation.