31 days in South India Itinerary

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1
Chennai
— 4 nights
Drive
2
Muttukadu
— 1 night
Drive
3
Thirukalukundram
— 2 nights
Drive
4
Kanchipuram
— 1 night
Drive
5
Thiruvannamalai
— 1 night
Drive
6
Pondicherry
— 4 nights
Drive
7
Kumbakonam
— 2 nights
Drive
8
Thanjavur
— 2 nights
Drive
9
Madurai
— 3 nights
Drive
10
Rameswaram
— 2 nights
Drive
11
Ramanathapuram
— 1 night
Drive
12
Thiruchendur
— 1 night
Drive
13
Thiruvananthapuram (Trivandrum)
— 6 nights
Fly

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1

Chennai — 4 nights

Detroit of South Asia

Chennai, a city hailed for its vibrant atmosphere and historic attractions, remains one of the most visited places in India.
Family-friendly places like Marina Beach and The Theosophical Society will thrill your kids. Change things up with a short trip to Tirumala Tirupati Devasthanams in Tirupati (about 3h 45 min away). And it doesn't end there: contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Kapaleeshwarar Temple, kick back and relax at Besant Nagar Beach, take in the architecture and atmosphere at San Thome Church, and browse the collection at The Anna Centenary Library.

To find other places to visit, maps, where to stay, and other tourist information, refer to the Chennai trip itinerary planner.

The Route module shows you all the different ways you can get to Chennai. In August, plan for daily highs up to 41°C, and evening lows to 29°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 5th (Sun) to allow time to drive to Muttukadu.
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Parks · Beaches · Outdoors · Shopping
Side Trip
Find places to stay Aug 1 — 5:

Muttukadu — 1 night

Start off your visit on the 6th (Mon): find something for the whole family at MGM Dizzee World and then see the interesting displays at DakshinaChitra Museum.

For other places to visit, ratings, reviews, and other tourist information, read our Muttukadu online trip itinerary maker.

Getting from Chennai to Muttukadu by car takes about 1.5 hours. In August, daytime highs in Muttukadu are 40°C, while nighttime lows are 29°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 6th (Mon) to allow time to travel to Thirukalukundram.
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Theme Parks · Museums
Find places to stay Aug 5 — 6:

Thirukalukundram — 2 nights

Start off your visit on the 7th (Tue): admire the striking features of Pancha Rathas, then contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Shore Temple, and then delve into the distant past at Monuments at Mahabalipuram. Here are some ideas for day two: explore the fascinating underground world of Mahishasuramardini Cave, make a trip to Krishna's Butter Ball, pause for some photo ops at Descent Of The Ganges, contemplate the long history of Krishna Mandapam, then contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Varaha Cave Temple, and finally don't miss a visit to Arjuna's Penance.

For where to stay, ratings, traveler tips, and more tourist information, use the Thirukalukundram holiday planning site.

You can drive from Muttukadu to Thirukalukundram in an hour. Expect a daytime high around 40°C in August, and nighttime lows around 29°C. Cap off your sightseeing on the 8th (Wed) early enough to go by car to Kanchipuram.
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Historic Sites · Nature · Parks
Side Trip
Find places to stay Aug 6 — 8:

Kanchipuram — 1 night

The busy town of Kanchipuram enjoys a reputation for its Hindu temples and handwoven silk saris.
Start off your visit on the 9th (Thu): take in the spiritual surroundings of Kailasanathar Temple, then don't miss a visit to Sri Subramaniya Swami Temple, then contemplate the long history of Ekambareswarar Temple, and finally take in the spiritual surroundings of Varadharaja Perumal Temple.

To find reviews, maps, where to stay, and more tourist information, use the Kanchipuram trip itinerary maker site.

Traveling by car from Thirukalukundram to Kanchipuram takes 1.5 hours. August in Kanchipuram sees daily highs of 40°C and lows of 29°C at night. Cap off your sightseeing on the 9th (Thu) early enough to go by car to Thiruvannamalai.
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Historic Sites
Find places to stay Aug 8 — 9:

Thiruvannamalai — 1 night

Kick off your visit on the 10th (Fri): take in the spiritual surroundings of Sri Ramana Ashram, take in the spiritual surroundings of Skandashramam, take some stellar pictures from Annamalaiyar Temple View Point, then contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Arunachaleshwara Temple, and finally take in the spiritual surroundings of Mamara Guhai.

To find ratings, reviews, more things to do, and other tourist information, read Thiruvannamalai day trip tool.

You can drive from Kanchipuram to Thiruvannamalai in 3 hours. When traveling from Kanchipuram in August, plan for slightly colder days and about the same nights in Thiruvannamalai: temperatures range from 36°C by day to 30°C at night. Cap off your sightseeing on the 10th (Fri) early enough to go by car to Pondicherry.
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Historic Sites
Find places to stay Aug 9 — 10:

Pondicherry — 4 nights

Europe of India

South Indian spiritualism meets French chic in Pondicherry, an interesting, unusual, and international destination on the Bay of Bengal.
Bring the kids along to Paradise Beach and Seaside Promenade. Venture out of the city with trips to Silver Beach (in Cuddalore) and Matrimandir (in Auroville). There's much more to do: take in the spiritual surroundings of Arulmigu Manakula Vinayagar Temple, stop by Domus, stroll through Auro Beach, and pause for some serene contemplation at Eglise de Notre Dame des Anges.

To find where to stay, ratings, traveler tips, and other tourist information, go to the Pondicherry trip itinerary maker site.

Drive from Thiruvannamalai to Pondicherry in 2.5 hours. Finish your sightseeing early on the 14th (Tue) to allow enough time to drive to Kumbakonam.
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Side Trips
Find places to stay Aug 10 — 14:

Kumbakonam — 2 nights

A notable temple town, Kumbakonam harbors a wealth of Hindu buildings dedicated to Lord Vishnu and Lord Shiva.
Start off your visit on the 15th (Wed): take in the spiritual surroundings of Uppiliappan Temple, then contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Kampaheswarar Temple, then admire the landmark architecture of Airavatesvara Temple, and finally take in the spiritual surroundings of Sarangapani Temple. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the next day: take in the spiritual surroundings of Nageswaran Temple Kumbakonam Town, steep yourself in history at Arulmigu Naganathaswamy Temple Thirunageswaram, then contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Arulmigu Swaminatha Swami Temple, Swamimalai, then take in the spiritual surroundings of Garbarakshambigai Temple, and finally take in the spiritual surroundings of Patteeswaram Temple.

For maps, ratings, other places to visit, and tourist information, use the Kumbakonam itinerary planning tool.

Getting from Pondicherry to Kumbakonam by car takes about 3.5 hours. August in Kumbakonam sees daily highs of 42°C and lows of 30°C at night. Finish your sightseeing early on the 16th (Thu) to allow enough time to drive to Thanjavur.
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Historic Sites
Side Trips
Find places to stay Aug 14 — 16:

Thanjavur — 2 nights

Rice Bowl of Tamil Nadu

A bastion of South Indian culture and heritage, Thanjavur entrances visitors from all over the world with its architecture, distinct art style, and the Great Living Chola Temples, landmarks of the city and a World Heritage Site.
Kick off your visit on the 17th (Fri): contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Swami Malai Temple, admire the landmark architecture of Gangaikonda Cholapuram, then contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Ramaswamy Temple, and finally take in the spiritual surroundings of Thiruvalasuzhi Pillaiyar Kovil Shri Vellai Pillaiyar Kovil. Here are some ideas for day two: explore the world behind art at Thanjavur Royal Palace and Art Gallery, take in the spiritual surroundings of Naganathaswamy Temple, then steep yourself in history at Manora Fort, then don't miss a visit to Thanjai Mamani Koil, and finally contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Brihadeeswara Temple.

To find where to stay, other places to visit, and other tourist information, read our Thanjavur trip itinerary builder.

Traveling by car from Kumbakonam to Thanjavur takes 1.5 hours. In August in Thanjavur, expect temperatures between 42°C during the day and 30°C at night. Finish your sightseeing early on the 18th (Sat) so you can drive to Madurai.
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Historic Sites · Museums
Side Trip
Find places to stay Aug 16 — 18:

Madurai — 3 nights

Athens of the East

One of the oldest continuously inhabited cities in the world, Madurai sits on the banks of the River Vaigai and serves as a center of Tamil culture.
Family-friendly places like Madurai Meenakshi Amman Temple and Pazhamudhir Solai will thrill your kids. There's still lots to do: contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Alagarkoil Temple and Shrine, take in the architecture and atmosphere at St. Mary's Cathedral Church, take in the dramatic natural features at Samanar Hills, and admire the sheer force of Kutladampatti Falls.

To see other places to visit, ratings, and other tourist information, read Madurai trip planner.

You can drive from Thanjavur to Madurai in 3 hours. Another option is to take a train. Traveling from Thanjavur in August, expect nights in Madurai to be about the same, around 29°C, while days are a bit cooler, around 38°C. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 21st (Tue) early enough to drive to Rameswaram.
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Historic Sites · Nature · Parks · Tours
Find places to stay Aug 18 — 21:

Rameswaram — 2 nights

A trip to Rameswaram on Pamban Island will take you across a long limestone shoal bridge with spectacular ocean scenery.
Kick off your visit on the 22nd (Wed): contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Arulmigu Ramanatha Swamy Temple, take in the views from Annai Indira Gandhi Road Bridge, and then enjoy the sand and surf at Dhanushkodi Beach Point. Get ready for a full day of sightseeing on the 23rd (Thu): stroll through Agnitheertham, then take in the spiritual surroundings of Ruined Temple/Church of Dhanushkodi, then see the interesting displays at Former President A.P.J. Abdul Kalam House, and finally kick back and relax at Kunthu kal Beach, Rameswaram.

To find other places to visit, maps, where to stay, and other tourist information, refer to the Rameswaram journey site.

Getting from Madurai to Rameswaram by car takes about 3 hours. Other options: take a train. Cap off your sightseeing on the 23rd (Thu) early enough to go by car to Ramanathapuram.
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Parks · Beaches · Outdoors · Historic Sites
Find places to stay Aug 21 — 23:

Ramanathapuram — 1 night

Ramanathapuram, also known as Ramnad, is a city and a municipality in Ramanathapuram district in the Indian state of Tamil Nadu. Start off your visit on the 24th (Fri): take in the spiritual surroundings of Lakshmana Teertham and then admire the striking features of Arulmigu Mangalaleswari Udanurai Mangalanatha Swamy Temple.

To see ratings, photos, traveler tips, and tourist information, go to the Ramanathapuram route planner.

Traveling by car from Rameswaram to Ramanathapuram takes 1.5 hours. In August, daytime highs in Ramanathapuram are 38°C, while nighttime lows are 29°C. Cap off your sightseeing on the 24th (Fri) early enough to go by car to Thiruchendur.
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Historic Sites
Find places to stay Aug 23 — 24:

Thiruchendur — 1 night

Tiruchendur is a panchayat town at the southern tip of India, in the Thoothukudi district of Tamil Nadu. On the 25th (Sat), contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Arulmigu Subramaniya Swamy Temple and then contemplate in the serene atmosphere at Thiruchendur Murugan Temple.

To see other places to visit, reviews, maps, and other tourist information, read Thiruchendur trip builder site.

Traveling by car from Ramanathapuram to Thiruchendur takes 3.5 hours. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 25th (Sat) to allow time to drive to Thiruvananthapuram (Trivandrum).
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Historic Sites
Side Trip
Find places to stay Aug 24 — 25:
Highlights from your trip

Thiruvananthapuram (Trivandrum) — 6 nights

Evergreen City of India

Situated among a collection of low hills that lead up to the coastline, state capital Thiruvananthapuram acts as a base for exploration of the southern tip of the country.
Kids will appreciate attractions like Kovalam Beach and Varkala Beach. You'll find plenty of places to visit near Thiruvananthapuram (Trivandrum): Kovalam (Lighthouse Beach, Samudra Beach, &more) and Chowara Beach (in Chowara). Pack the 30th (Thu) with family-friendly diversions at Magic Planet Theme Park. There's still lots to do: admire the landmark architecture of Sree Padmanabhaswamy Temple, learn about wildlife with up-close encounters at Thiruvananthapuram Zoo, stop by Keralashopee, and step off the mainland to explore Poovar Island.

To find ratings, more things to do, maps, and more tourist information, read our Thiruvananthapuram (Trivandrum) trip planner.

Traveling by car from Thiruchendur to Thiruvananthapuram (Trivandrum) takes 5 hours. In August, plan for daily highs up to 36°C, and evening lows to 28°C. Finish your sightseeing early on the 31st (Fri) to allow enough time to fly back home.
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Parks · Beaches · Outdoors · Theme Parks
Side Trips
Find places to stay Aug 25 — 31:

Chennai District travel guide

3.9
Sacred & Religious Sites · Beaches · Movie Theaters
Chennai district, formerly known as Madras district or "Madarasapattinam", is a district in the state of Tamil Nadu, in India. It is the smallest of all the districts in the state, but has the highest human density. The district is a city district which means that it does not have a district headquarters. Most of the Greater Chennai City comes under this district, erstwhile under Kancheepuram and Tiruvallur districts. As of 2011, the district had a population of 4,646,732 with a sex-ratio of 989 females for every 1,000 males.

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Kanchipuram District travel guide

4.3
Sacred & Religious Sites · Ruins · Landmarks
Kanchipuram district is a district in the northeast of the state of Tamil Nadu in India. In Early Days Chengalpattu is called as the District. In Later Kanchipuram is considered as a District. It is bounded in the west by Vellore District and Thiruvannamalai District, in the north by Tiruvallur District and Chennai District, in the south by Viluppuram District and in the east by the Bay of Bengal. It lies between 11° 00' to 12° 00' latitudes and 77° 28' to 78° 50' longitudes. The district has a total geographical area of 4432km2 and coastline of 57km. The town of Kanchipuram is the district headquarters. The Chennai International Airport is located in Tirusulam in Kanchipuram district now under Greater Chennai Corporation Limit. In 2011, Kancheepuram district had a population of 3,998,252, with a sex-ratio of 986 females for every 1,000 males.The district produces over 15,000 engineering graduates every year, same as Gujarat state.HistoryThe history of Kanchi can be traced back to several centuries BCE. The place finds its name in Patanjali's Mahabhashya, written in the 2nd century BC. Manimekalai, the famous Tamil classic, and Perumpanattu Padai, a great Tamil poetical work, vividly describe Kanchipuram city, as it was at the beginning of the Christian era.

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Thanjavur District travel guide

4.4
Sacred & Religious Sites · Architectural Buildings · Art Museums

Madurai District travel guide

4
Sacred & Religious Sites · Architectural Buildings · Specialty Museums
The Madurai district is the ninth largest in population of the 32 districts of the state of Tamil Nadu in southeastern India. The city of Madurai serves as the district headquarters. It houses the world-famous Sri Meenakshi Sundareshwarar temple and is situated on the banks of the river Vaigai. Thiruparankundram is one of the major tourist place in the district. As of 2011, the district had a population of 3,038,252 with a sex-ratio of 990 females for every 1,000 males. Aside from the city of Madurai, the larger towns are Melur, Avaniapuram, Thirumangalam and Usilampatti. It is an important hub for various film shootings.HistoryMadurai is called with various nicknames like Athens of the East, Thoonga Nagaram (City that never Sleeps), Naan maada koodal (City of Four junctions), Malligai Managar (City of Jasmine), Koodal Managar (City of Junction) Koil Nagar (Temple city) etc. The main kingdoms which ruled Madurai during various times are the Pandyas and the Nayaks.

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Thiruvananthapuram District travel guide

3.9
Beaches · Architectural Buildings · Spas