The land of rice, tea, autorickshaws, crowds and chaos. But it is also the country where the Taj Mahal is located, where a trip on the backwaters creates a romantic atmosphere, where you can smell the wonderful scents of rich dishes. The North is completely different from the South. In the North you can visit many buildings such as the aforementioned wonder of the world. But what does the South have to make your holiday enjoyable?
South India: general info
Source: StockSnap, Pixabay Food South India has 5 provinces and each province has its own typical dishes. It is therefore fun to taste the tasty and varied food. It is not uncommon for tourists to take cooking lessons here so that those staying at home can also enjoy the numerous tasty dishes. You will be introduced to the many rice dishes such as briyani, tomato rice or lemon rice. Or you can enjoy delicious breads such as chapatis, naan, parata or buri that are served with the curry.
Just like the dishes, the climate is also very different between the provinces. The best period to go to South India is from the end of October to April. This way you avoid the rainy season and the stifling heat that you can find in May and June.
India is a large country with immense population. This ensures that you will find many religions here. Unlike other countries, these different religions live harmoniously side by side here. You will therefore find many churches, temples and mosques in the South. Many people visit ashrams, spiritual places that have often been developed into places of peace and harmony under the leadership of a guru.
South India: Some tourist highlights that one must see
Naturally, the itinerary depends on the time one can spend in India. When visiting this country, one should expect a minimum of 3 weeks. The distances between the tourist cities are large, which is why you have to allow quite some transport time if you want to make a trip through South India. When developing this part of India, one should certainly not miss the following cities: Munar, Ooty, Kochi, Mumbai, Goa, Pondicherry and Bijapur. Source: Simon, Pixabay Mumbai and Chennai Mumbai (also called Bombay) or Chennai (alias Madras) are the cities where the plane lands and therefore perhaps their first introduction to India for many tourists. If one has a choice, Mumbai has just more charm than Chennai. One can stay for a few days in Mumbai because it is a booming city. One can walk along Marine Drive, visit quite a few art galleries, visit The Gateway of India and then drop into the luxurious Taj Mahal hotel. Mumbai is a busy place, but on Sundays it is wonderful to see people playing cricket in the street, thus paralyzing the traffic.
Goa is the place where you can catch your breath and stretch out on the beach. You can also visit its flea markets or simply enjoy the trendy sand, sun and sea culture. Source: Jusch, Pixabay Ooty and Munar Ooty and Munar are two towns located in the hills. The climate is cool and it is pleasant to stay among all that greenery. In the past, the English greatly appreciated this area and climate, with the result that the area is covered with tea plantations. A walk along these plantations with the occasional smell of the leaves drying in the associated factory completes the experience. In Ooty you can travel along the Nilgiri Blue Mountain Railway in an authentic steam train. This is fun to do with children and you get to see some beautiful images on the road. Source: FonthipWard, Pixabay Kochi In Kochi, one can experience the culture by attending a kathakali performance or undergoing an Ayurvedic massage. The large Chinese fishing nets are also a tourist attraction, especially when fishermen offer tourists to collect the nets themselves. From Kochi you can arrange an elephant safari or just stroll through the spice district.
If you want to see a completely different city, you can go to Bijapur. Here you will mainly find Persian influences in the architecture. One then imagines oneself in the Middle East instead of India.
South India: Some must do things
Source: Praveenpt936, Pixabay Kathakali Kathakali is a cultural highlight that can be experienced throughout India. It is a combination of dance, music and expression. In this form of theater, sounds are used rather than words and every expression on the face or hand movement represents a word or feeling. A performance can easily last 2 hours and then one has only seen a fraction of a complete kathakali performance that can sometimes last a whole night. If you want to see this flamboyant form of theater, it is best to do so in Kerala. There are numerous Kathakali schools and cultural centers that are happy to teach tourists about the tradition. The actors’ make-up in itself is also worth seeing and can be viewed an hour before the start of the performance. The actor paints himself and as a spectator it is quite interesting to watch the careful process.
This form of massage is based on herbs and healing oils. For example, head or back pain can be treated by allowing warm oil to come into contact with your body. Ayurvedic massages are mainly aimed at medical problems and not so much at relaxation, although one also has that feeling after a treatment. One can find numerous Ayurvedic doctors and hospitals spread throughout South India, treating not only tourists but also Indians themselves. Kerala offers many opportunities to experience such a massage. Please note that you consult a professional institute and not just a hotel that also has this on offer.
This name is given to a unique martial art that is also found in Kerala. This martial art emphasizes not only acrobatics and weapon techniques, but also yoga and the human body.
South India is the paradise of festivals. When you are there, you should definitely try to catch one. Indians sometimes simply participate in a festival without actually knowing specifically why there is a festival and that feeling may also creep up on tourists. But just experiencing the hustle and bustle is a true experience. The festivals are usually held for some divine figure that one worships. Because so many religions live side by side, there is a festival somewhere every month. Source: Brandiar, Pixabay Boat trip on the backwaters The backwaters in Kerala are the ideal environment to experience a romantic boat trip. In this labyrinth of waterways one can find lakes, rivers and canals in combination with tropical plants. One can rent a boat and spend a whole day and night with a personal chef, attendant and driver. One may think that this can be quite boring, but it is absolutely not. One constantly sees new things such as rice fields, glimpses of temples or mosques through the lush trees, rural villages and their people, buffalos, different bird species,
India is the country where the most films are produced. Whenever you are there, you should not miss the opportunity to catch a Bollywood movie. You will notice that many Indians are crazy about films and that there is a hell of a crowd in front of the cinemas at the start of the film. India does not only have Bollywood movies. There is a wide range of different types of films, but for tourists it usually comes across as one thing. However, if you start a conversation about this subject with the locals, they will be happy to explain the differences.
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