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Chennai is the capital city of the Indian state of Tamil Nadu. Located on the Coromandel Coast off the Bay of Bengal, it is a major commercial, cultural, economic and educational center in South India.
The area around Chennai had been part of successive South Indian kingdoms through centuries. The recorded history of the city began in the colonial times, specifically with the arrival of British East India Company and the establishment of Fort St. George in 1644.
The British defended several attacks from the French colonial forces, and from the kingdom of Mysore, on Chennai’s way to becoming a major naval port and presidency city by the late eighteenth century. Following the independence of India, Chennai became the capital of Tamil Nadu and an important centre of regional politics that tended to bank on the Dravidian identity of the populace.
Mahabalipuram, also known as Mamallapuram is a town in Kancheepuram district in the Indian state of Tamil Nadu. It is around 60 km south from the city of Chennai. It is an ancient historic town and was a bustling seaport during the time of Periplus (1st century BC) and Ptolemy (140 BC). Ancient Indian traders who went to countries of South East Asia sailed from the seaport of Mahabalipuram.
Kanchipuram is a Spectacular Temple city known as city of thousand temples which reflects the Glorious Traditions of South India with its noted temples. Located on the banks of the Vegavathy River, Kanchipuram has been ruled by the Pallavas, the Medieval Cholas, the Later Cholas, the Later Pandyas, the Vijayanagar Empire, the Carnatic kingdom, and the British. The city’s historical monuments include the Kailasanathar Temple and the Vaikunta Perumal Temple. Historically, Kanchipuram was a centre of education and was known as the ghatikasthanam or “place of learning”. The city was also a religious centre of advanced education for Jainism and Buddhism between the 1st and 5th centuries. Kanchipuram based Buddhist institutions were instrumental in spreading Theravada Buddhism to South East Asia.
Hogenakkal Falls or Hogenakal Falls is a waterfall in South India on the river Kaveri. It is located in the Dharmapuri district of the southern Indian state of Tamil Nadu, about 180 km (110 mi) from Bangalore and 46 km (29 mi) from Dharmapuri town. It is sometimes referred to as the “Niagara of India”. With its fame for medicinal baths and hide boat rides, it is a major site of tourist attraction. Carbonatite rocks in this site are considered to be the oldest of its kind in South Asia and one of the oldest in the world. This is also the site of a proposed project to generate drinking water.
Pondicherry or Puducherry is a city, an urban agglomeration and a municipality in Pondicherry district in the Indian union territory of Puducherry.
Thanjavur, formerly Tanjore, is a city which is the headquarters of the Thanjavur District in the south Indian state of Tamil Nadu. Scholars believe the name Thanjavur is derived from Tanjan, a legendary demon in Hindu mythology. Thanjavur District is the Rice Bowl of Tamil Nadu. The Big Temple and the other famous temples in the district are known all over the world. Thanjavur was the cultural capital of the country in 1790. Thanjavur gained prominence during the period of Chola Kings, who made it as their capital. Thereafter, it was ruled by Nayaks and Maratta Kings, who nurtured art and culture. The cultural, the architectural and the scholarly pursuits of these rulers are reflected in the great monuments like Grand Anaicut, Big Temple and Serfoji Mahal Library etc. in the district.
Madurai is the administrative headquarters of Madurai District in the South Indian state of Tamil Nadu. It is the third largest city and the second largest municipal corporation in Tamil Nadu. Located on the banks of River Vaigai, it has been a major settlement for two millennia and is one of the oldest continuously inhabited cities in the world.
Rameshwaram According to Hindu mythology, this is the place from where the Hindu god Rama built a bridge, across the sea to Lanka to rescue his wife Sita from her abductor Ravana. The Ramanathaswamy Temple dedicated to the Hindu god Shiva is located at the centre of the town and is closely associated with Rama. The temple along with the town is considered a holy pilgrimage site for both Shaivites and Vaishnavites.
Kodaikanal is a city in the hills of the taluk division of the Dindigul district in the state of Tamil Nadu, India. Its name in the Tamil language means “The Gift of the Forest”. Kodaikanal is referred to as the “Princess of Hill stations” and has a long history as a retreat and popular tourist destination.
Udhagamandalam sometimes abbreviated Udhagai and better known as Ooty, is a town, a municipality, and the district capital of the Nilgiris district in the Indian state of Tamil Nadu. It is located 80 km north of Coimbatore. It is a popular hill station located in the Nilgiri Hills. Originally occupied by the Todas, the area came under the rule of the East India Company at the end of the 18th century. Today, the town’s economy is based on tourism and agriculture, along with manufacture of medicines and photographic film. The town is connected to the rest of India by road and rail, and its historic sites and natural beauty attract tourists.
Thiruchendur Murugan Temple is a Hindu temple dedicated to Lord Muruga and one of the Arupadaiveedu of Lord Muruga. It is located in the district of Tuticorin, Tamil Nadu, on the Indian Ocean. The seashore temple of Muruga Perumal at Tiruchendur is one of the delightful spots sanctified and venerated by every Hindu. As one of the first spiritual centres for the salvation of man, His shrine has been an attraction for Hindus for ages. This sacred house of God is in the extreme southwest of the Indian peninsula. The rising sun bows in adoration of it each morning as he rises from the rippling expanse of the ocean, and spreads light and life over every living object.
Kanyakumari takes its name from the Hindu goddess Kanyakumari (also called Kumari Amman). Her temple stands on the shores of the Laccadive Sea. In his work on ancient India, Ptolemy had identified Kanyakumari (Cape of Comorin) along with the Gulf of Mannar as a center for pearl fishery. He also identifies Korkai, a place to the east of Kanyakumari as an emporium of pearl trade. Hindu legend, Lord Hanuman dropped a piece of earth as he was carrying a mountain with his life-saving herb, Mrita Sanjivani, from the Himalayas to Lanka (Sri Lanka) during the Rama-Ravana war. This chunk of earth is called Marunthuvazh Malai, literally “hills where medicine lives”. This is said to be the reason for the abundance of unique native medicinal plants in the area. Marunthuvazh Malai is located near Kottaram about 7 km (4 mi) from Kanyakumari town on the Kanyakumari-Nagercoil highway. The Kumari Amman or the Kanyakumari Temple, located on the shore, is a Shakti Peetha dedicated to a manifestation of Parvati, the virgin goddess who did penance to obtain Lord Shiva’s hand in marriage. The temple and the adjoining ghat, situated overlooking the shore, attract tourists from all over the world. The sparkling diamond nose-ring of the deity is said to be visible even from the sea.
Mudumalai National Park The Mudumalai National Park and Wildlife Sanctuary also a declared Tiger Reserve, lies on the northwestern side of the Nilgiri Hills (Blue Mountains), in Nilgiri District, about 150 km (93 mi) north-west of Coimbatore city in Kongu Nadu region of Tamil Nadu. It shares its boundaries with the states of Karnataka and Kerala. The sanctuary is divided into 5 ranges – Masinagudi, Thepakadu, Mudumalai, Kargudi and Nellakota. The protected area is home to several endangered and vulnerable species dinging Indian elephant, Bengal Tiger, Gaur and Indian Leopard. There are at least 266 species of birds in the sanctuary, including critically endangered Indian White-rumped Vulture and long-billed vulture. The Western Ghats, Nilgiri Sub-Cluster (6,000 km2 (2,300 sq mi)), including all of Mudumalai National Park, is under consideration by the UNESCO World Heritage Committee for selection as a World Heritage Site.
Palani Hills The Palani Hills Wildlife Sanctuary and National Park is a proposed Protected area in Dindigul District, Tamil Nadu State South India. The Park will be an upgrade and expansion of the 736.87 km² (PRO) Palani (Kodaikanal) Wildlife Sanctuary which was to be established in 2008. The core of the proposed Kodaikanal Wildlife Sanctuary awaiting government notification is located in this division. There are many waterfalls throughout the Park which are popular tourist attractions like Alanthoni Falls, Bamen Falls, Bear Shola Falls, Glen Falls, Fairy Falls, Neptune Falls and Pool, Palar Upper Falls also called Anju Veedu Falls, Silver Cascade falls etc.
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