The modern history of Pondicherry, now known as Puducherry, is largely dominated by the French, and the impressions of the colonial rule can still be found out everywhere, from the symmetrically aligned streets to the layout and design of the city. Though the credit for the transformation of a merely fishing village to a big port city goes exclusively to its colonial rulers, it is not hard to find traces of its history before the coming of the Europeans, which included the Portuguese, the Dutch, the English and the Danes in addition to the French. Aurobindo Ashram, Manakula Vinayagar temple, Pondy Beach, Auroville, Aryankuppam Boating are the important sightseeing places.
One of the most beautiful and spectacular wetland areas in South India is the lagoon Pulicat Lake situated on the border between the in Thiruvallur District of Tamil Nadu state near Elavur and Nellore District of Andhra Pradesh in South India. Pulicat Lake is the second largest brackish lagoon on the Indian subcontinent, covering a total area of 461 square km. Pulicat Lake is the second largest brackish-water eco-system in India after Chilka lake in Orissa.
Yellagiri is basically a cluster of villages surrounded by four hills. A peaceful and unexplored area, the destination has not been commercialized, and offers you a picturesque and unpolluted ambience. There are many tourist attractions here like a beautiful and charming lake, Mughal Garden around the lake, Velavan Temple and a children's park. But the real charm of Yelagiri lies in its calmness and uniformly pleasant weather. The up-hill drive, with 14 hair-pin bends, takes you through some spectacular scenery. There is a sort of an observatory, after 12th bend with a telescope pointing towards the plains.
Kone falls is also called "Konai falls" or "Kona falls" or the "Kailashnatha kona". It is about 100 Kms from Chennai. At the base of the small hill, there is a temple of Lord Shiva. To the left of the temple, there is the actual "waterfall". The serene surroundings with a picturesque hillock covered by lichens, ferns and many hanging wild herbs came alive with a downpour from the heights. Though it appears scanty in the summer, it has abundant supply during the rest of the season and overflows in monsoon. Kona hills give a perennial source of water to beat the heat . The experience of oneness with nature and the rejuvenating bath under the water falls is really enjoyable.
Mahabalipuram also known as Mamallapuram is located around 57 km south from the city of Chennai in Tamil Nadu. Mahabalipuram is a 7th century port city of the South Indian dynasty of the Pallavas.
The most famous monument here is the Shore Temple, which looks absolutely mesmerizing when lit by moonlight. This historical city has been crowned as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO. Mahabalipuram beach is famous for its marvelous monuments that include panels, sculptural, Monolithic Rathas (chariots), caves, and temples. These monumental splendors and the sunny beach resorts attract tourists from all over the world.
Genjee Fort, known also as Chenji Fort, is an ancient fort and one of the few surviving forts in the state of Tamil Nadu, India. The fort was called as the "Troy of the East" by the British. Chatrapati Shivaji was impressed by the strength of the fortified region and he ranked it as the "most impregnable fortress in India". The Sathurnur Dam in Thiruvannamalai is a major tourist attraction in this place. It is built across the River Pennar. The dam site houses imposing gardens, beautifully landscaped regions, imposing fountains and many other relaxing and entertaining facilities. The dam region has a swimming pool, boating facilities and a crocodile park. Thirkoilur temple is a nearby attraction. It is an ancient temple with architecturally carved pillars and towering gopurams. Arunachaleswara temple, located on Arunachala hills, in Thiruvannamalai is one of the most scared Shiva temples in India. The temple is dedicated to the form of Lord Shiva known as Arunachaleswarar. It is one of the five Panchabhoota .The temple has majestic towers and pillars adorned with sculpted images showing the artistic excellence of the ancient periods.
Pitchavaram is an amazing location set on the backdrop of 3000 acres of mangrove forests and vast expanse of over 11000 hectares of backwaters. Pitchavaram backwaters consist of numerous channels and creeks perfectly suitable for boating and other water sports activities. Tourists can enjoy backwater cruises and can spend day and nights on water in specially designed houseboats. Pitchavaram Mangrove forest houses many rare species of flora and fauna.
The ancient temple of Sri Venkateswara is located on the seventh peak of the Tirupati Hills and is a major attraction here. The deity here has been described as the great bestower of boons, and the ancient Hindu texts talk of the benefits acquired by a pilgrimage undertaken to this temple. The temple flag post is also gold plated and stands tall in all its magnificence.
TIRUCHANUR, also known as Alamelumangapuram, is situated at about 5 km from Tirupati. Here one can find a temple of Sri Padmavathi Devi or Goddess Lakshmi, the consort of Lord Sri Venkateswara. It is said that a visit to Tirumalai is fruitful only after visiting the Sri Padmavathi Devi temple. The sub-temples in its premises include the Sri Krishnaswamy Temple, Sri Sundara Rajaswamivari Temple, and Sri Suryanarayana Swamivari Temple.
Vellore-Golden Temple, Vellore Fort
Sripuram, a unique South Indian temple situated in Vellore district of Tamil Nadu, is completely covered with gold, created in vedic style of temple architecture, with intricate details of art and culture, hand engraved by hundreds of artisans, tirelessly creating this wonderful masterpiece . This Golden temple is situated in a lush green landscape of 100 acres, with beautiful flora and water bodies.
The Hogenakkal is called the Niagara of India. At Hogenakkal, an area surrounded by hills, the river bifurcates and drops down as a series of misty waterfalls. The falls lie on the border of two states - Karnataka and Tamil Nadu.