Top 30 Places to Visit in South India

Quest to the land of seraphic beauty- South India. South India represents the glorious past of India with its ancient shrines, lavish palaces, wild seas and rich Dravidian culture.South India has a lot to offer you. You can explore its Hill Stations, beaches, monuments, majestic temples, spiritual sites wildlife activities, and marvellous festivals. It has something to do with everyone whether it’s a couple, family, or solo traveller. This southern state of India welcomes its, tourists, with warmth and love. Kerela which is also known as God’s own country and lands of Ayurveda is one of the top most famous honeymoon spots in the country.

From UNESCO heritage sites to national parks, Karnataka will amaze you at every step. Tamil Nadu will give you a feel of the essence of architecture and spirituality. Here are the top 30 destinations of South India that you should add to your bucket list if you are planning to explore South India.

1. The Historic Hampi, Karnataka

Hampi is considered to be the largest open monument and lost city of Asia. A world heritage site, here lies the ruins of the Vijaynagara empire. While the Virupaksha Temple is one of the oldest and finest Hindu temples of the 7th century, the Vittala Temple with animated carvings and a stone chariot reflects the architectural efficacy. While the royal enclosure, carvings of 1008 Shiva lingams, the Queen’s bath, Lotus Mahal and the elephant stables portray the grandeur of the lost city, the water tanks, irrigation channels and civil structures represent the advanced outlook of the rulers. Know more about top 5 things to do in Hampi.

Read More : Top Places for a Temples Experience in South India

Suggested Tour : 10 Days South India Temple Tour from Mumbai

3 Days - Hampi and Hospet Tour from Bangalore

2. The Celestial Chennai, Tamil Nadu

While the wild waves of Bay of Bengal greets you to Chennai, the old lighthouse at the second longest beach of the world, Marina Beach takes you back to old times. Tour the Fort St. George church and its museum to view the priceless silverware, paintings, porcelain and coins. While the Parthasarathy Temple is bright with its colourful gopuram, the Kapaleeshwar Temple is an epitome of Dravidian architecture. Besides enjoying a mesmerizing sunrise at the Elliot Beach, be close to God at the pristine environment of the Vellankani Shrine.

Read More : Famous beaches of South India

Suggested Tour : 5 Days South India Beach Holidays

3. The Alluring Alleppey, Kerala

The crystalline backwaters of Alleppey quench the thirst of nature lovers. Relax at the luxurious houseboats of Alleppey to wake up to the rippling sounds of water and witness a colourful end of the day. As you pass the beautiful water lilies, green paddy fields and villages, the spotless beauty of the God’s Own Country rejuvenates you. Witness the distinguishing Kerala architecture with multiple mural paintings at the Krishnapuram Palace or get to know the rituals of worship at the Krishna Temple of Ambalappuzha.

Read More : Things To Do In Alleppey – 10 Interesting Activities

Suggested Tour : 7 Days Kerala Houseboat Package

4. The Kaleidoscope Kochi, Kerala

Located at the shores of the Arabian Sea, Kochi offers you a soothing atmosphere. Witness the unique fishing technique of Chinese nets here or just walk along the soft sandy beaches with your loved ones. The Kochi Fort with a Portuguese air is the landmark of the city. While the Dutch cemetery narrates the story of several Europeans, the Hill Bungalow and the David Hall represent the colonial India. Kochi is home to the oldest European Church in India, the St. Francis Church where Vasco-de Gama was buried. The sea food delicacies and coconut water of Vasco-de Gama Square is a popular hangout zone.

Read More : How to Reach Cochin Top 12 Things to do in Kochi

Suggested Tour : Full Day Cochin Sightseeing Tours

5. The Magnificent Madurai, Tamil Nadu

In Tamilnadu, as you approach the Meenakshi Temple, the elegance of the shrine amazes you. With unique stonework, four directional entrances, musical pillars and 33000 sculptures, it exhibits the ancient Shilpi Shastra style. While the Vandiyur Mariamman Teppakulam lies at the middle of an enchanting pond, the Thirumalai Nayak Mahal is aptly known as the wonder of South India with its grandeur and being the blend of Islamic and Dravidian architectural designs. The Vaigai Dam is a relaxing zone with its scenic beauty and also a notable picnic spot while the Gandhi Museum narrates the struggle of the Father of the Nation for the freedom of India.

Read More : The Most Spiritual Meenakshi Amman Temple

Suggested Tour : 12 Days South India Temple Tour

6. The Majestic Mysore, Karnataka

You will surely get awestruck with the grandeur of the Mysore Palace in Karnataka; while day is the time to check out the intricate carvings, the palace is magical at night when it gets illuminated with 98000 lights. While the 90 acres of Karanji Lake offers an arresting view with folks of migratory birds, the Mysore Zoo is entertaining with a collection of animals from all over the world. While the aroma of sandalwood fills the air of Mysore, prayers come out from the deep core of your heart as you climb the 1000 steps to the Chamundeshwari Temple.

Read More : 15 Unforgettable Places To Visit In Mysore

Read More : 6 Top Places To Visit In Karnataka

Suggested Tour : 5 Days South India Pilgrimage

7. The Quaint Kanyakumari, Tamil Nadu

Kanyakumari lies at the top of India, where the Indian Ocean, Arabian Sea and the Bay of Bengal unites, hence the beauty of sunrise and sunset here is unimaginable. The Kanyakumari Temple is the heaven of peace, besides being one of the 108 ‘shakti peeth’ of Hindu mythology. The Rock Memorial is supposed to the on the island where Swami Vivekananda attained enlightenment. Located amidst the wild confluence, the sail to the memorial is both thrilling and a lifetime memory. The enormous gopurams of Suchindrum temple and the Chinese jars and weapons of the Padmanabhapuram Palace exhibit the rich culture of the city. Know about the Best Route to Travel Kanyakumari from Rameshwaram.

Read More : 10+ Itinerary Favorites Tourist Places in Tamil Nadu

Suggested Tour : 12 Days Tamilnadu Kerala Culture Tour

8. The lively Lakshadweep, Union Territory

Lakshadweep, a cluster of 21 islands is known for spellbinding scenic beauty. While the waters of the Kadmat Island are rich in marine life, the deep bue waters of the Kavaratti Island is ideal for exhilarating water sports. While the secluded Kalpeni beach is the best place to spend sometime with your loved ones, the Minicoy Island portrays the distinctive culture of Lakshadweep.

Suggested Tour : 5 Days Lakshadweep Honeymoon Tour

3 Days Itinerary of Lakshadweep

Read More : Things to Do in Lakshadweep

9. The Peaceful Pondicherry, Union Territory

Pondicherry is a peace heaven where people from all religions and from all over the world can stay in harmony at Auroville, ‘the city of dawn.’ You can find 2007 people residing here from over 44 different countries, irrespective of caste, creed or religion. The memorial of Rishi Aurobindo, the founder of Auroville is at the Aurobindo Ashram. This ashram is self sufficient with several offices, printing press, farms, guest houses, bakeries, play grounds and even nursing homes. The Immaculate Conception Cathedral is graceful with its golden bordered white structured and is also the oldest of town, dating back to 1791.


Suggested Tour : Full day Pondicherry Trip from Chennai

10. The Oomphy Ooty, Tamil Nadu

The chilled weather of Ooty is perfect to refresh your stressed mind and body. While the ‘L’ shaped Ooty Lake is perfect for a charming boat ride, the boathouse of the Pykara Lake is an abode for comfort seekers. While the aroma of red roses beckons you to the Rose Garden, the Avalanche is loved by trekkers.

Ooty Lake, South India

Read More : 8 Romantic Honeymoon Places in Kerala and Tamilnadu

Suggested Tour : 6 Days South India Hill Station Package

11.  Coorg

If you are a newly married couple or you are a nature enthusiast, then Coorg is the perfect destination for you. This beautiful hill station will offer you enthralling views of mountains that are surrounded by clouds all the time. You can make a trip to Nisargadhama Island, Itupu falls, Omkareshwar temple, etc. If you love trekking, it has plenty of options to offer you such as Pushpagiri peak, Mandalpatti peak, Tadiandaol, and many more.

12.    Kumarakom

Kumarkom is one of the major tourist destinations of Kerala and is famous for its pristine backwater. Road surrounded by palm trees, mangroves, coconuts fields, coffee plantations, and rice paddies, its lush greenery will make you fall in love with this land. You can visit Vembanad Lake, Kumarakom Bird sanctuary, houseboat, Pathiramanal island, and many more.

13.    Gokarna

In the last few years, Gokarna has become the top tourist destination for tourists and now it has become a tough task to choose between Goa and Gokarna. Gokarna is famous for its exotic beaches and marvelous landscape. Gokarna beach, om beach, Mahabaleshwar temple, paradise beach are half-moon beach are major tourist attractions of Gokarna.

14.    Halebidu

Helibidu means old city and this place once served as the home of the great Hoysala Empire during the 12th century. It is known for its Hoysala architecture and ornate temples. Hoysala Temple, Kadareshwara Temple, and Halebidu Archaeological sites are major tourist spots in this city.

15.    Lepakshi

Lepakshi is a little village in Andhra Pradesh that offers admiring scenic rural landscapes. It is home to many ancient archaeological sites and ancient temples. If you are someone who loves history, this place is a must-visit for you. Nandi bull sanctuary, Veera Bhadra temple, and lepakshi temple are famous tourist destinations of lepakshi.

16.    Mahabalipuram

Mahabalipuram is a seaside town in south India that is famous for its ancient temple which was built in the 7th and 8th centuries. Pancha Ratna which is a fine example of Dravidian architecture is a major attraction of the city. Shore temple which is dedicated to lord shiva and lord Vishnu is another famous temple in this city. Apart from beautiful temples, this city also offers you some amazing beaches and seaside locations.

17.    Adilabad

Adilabad is a city located in Telangana which is known for its numerous waterfalls and it also offers you a stunning view of the Sahyadri range. If you want yourself to feel a bit close to nature, this place can be a perfect gateway for you, Adilabad is also home to various flora and fauna. Kuntala waterfalls, Jainath temples, Adilabad fort, and kawal wildlife sanctuary are major tourist destinations.

18.    Munnar

situated in the western ghat mountain range of Kerela state, Munnar needs no introduction. This place is famous for its green rolling mountains and lush surroundings and weather. Munnar has many options to visit such as Pothamedu viewpoints, Anamudi, and many more.

19.    Bandipur National Park

Bandipur is considered the most beautiful national park in India. Situated in the Nilgiris biosphere reserve this national park was established in the year 1974 and is located on the Mysore-Ooty highway. This place will offer you a wide range of flora and fauna and the road which will take you toward the Bandipur will pass through a soothing forest and by some beautiful indigenous animals.  

20.    Maravanthe

Maravanthe beach is one of the most visited beaches of south India which is located in a small village name kundapura in Karnataka. The mesmerizing view of sunset makes this place a must-visit destination for the one who is looking for a relaxing holiday.

21.    Udupi

Udupi is another beautiful south Indian city that is famous for its splendid building, less explored forest, and pristine beaches. This place offers you some delicious south Indian cuisine. Apart from this, Udupi is also known as a pilgrim center in Karnataka which offers you some beautifully styled temples. Beaches add more beauty to this city and made it a tourist hotspot.

22.    Murudeshwar

Murudeshwar is a well-known pilgrim center and a beach destination that is situated in the Bhatkal taluk district of Karnataka. Murudeshwar is home to shiva’s tallest statutes and it is bounded by the Arabian sea and splendid western ghats which make it the most visited tourist destination in Karnataka.  Negreanu island is another famous tourist destination nearby which offers you various water activities such as scuba diving and snorkeling.

23.    Badami

Badami can steal your heart as it is one of the most beautiful destinations in Karnataka. It offers you a heart-melting landscape and some beautiful rock-cut cave temples which attract tourists from different parts of the world. If you are planning to visit Badami, make sure to enjoy the breathtaking view of the sunset from the bhoothnath temple. The rays of the sun make everything looks golden and this view is something that can’t be expressed in word. Last but not least if you are a solo traveler, this place will give you a chance to discover yourself.

24.    Nagarhole

Nagarhole is a national park which is situated in two districts Mysore and Kodagu. Nagarhole is named after the cobra river in the local Kannada language. This place offers you an amazing wildlife experience and you can witness the mesmerizing waterfalls. This area is dominated by nature and will surely take your breath away.

25.    Varkala

Varkala is a coastal town situated in Kerala and is famous for its natural fisheries and spring. Varkala offers you pristine beaches, lakes, hills, and many more. This place offers you one of the best seafood in the whole of Kerala. If you want to spend some time with nature then pack your bag and explore this hidden treasure of Kerela.

26.    Wayanad

Located in the hills of western ghats, Wayanad is one of the top tourist attractions of Kerala. It is a part of Nilgiri Biosphere Reserve and is famous for spice plantations, historical caves, and mesmerizing waterfalls. One who is looking for peace should pack his/her bag and explore this virgin beauty of Kerela.

27.    Thrissur

If you want cultural feels, then pack your bag and move to Thrissur. Thrissur will introduce you to classical Keralan art and religious sites. Onam and Thrissur pooram festivals will give you an ethnic touch. Vadakkumnathan Temple, Athirapalley falls, heritage garden and archaeology museums are famous tourist attractions of Thrissur.

28.    Dhanushkodi

Dhanushkodi beach is one of the few beaches in India which offers you white sand, pristine blue waters, and breathtaking sunset which makes it paradise. Earlier it was a local market but during the 1964 Tsunami, this place turned into barren land. It is said that Dhanushkodi is the place from where Lord Rama had ordered Hanuman to build a bridge across the sea that could take him to Sri Lanka. if you want a silent walk ad love the silene, this place is a must-visit for you.

29.    Skandagiri

Skandagiri gives you one of the most splendid views of the sky and the earth during the time of sunrise. Situated at a distance of 60km from Bangalore city, this place is surreal beauty. If you are an adventure and nature lover this place is a paradise for you. The short of skanadagiri starts two hours before sunrise and it passes through the wilderness until you reach the peak.

30.    Vattakanal

Vattakanal comes from the word Vatta which means Little Israel. Located on the eastern side of the western ghat this small village is famous among Israeli tourists and you can see several permanent cottages here. If you want to spend some time away from the hustle-bustle of the city, then this is the perfect location for you.

If you have some more time in India do not forget to shop some gorgeous silk and attain classical concerts; the gems of South India.

Also Read : Why India is the Ultimate Destination for Culture Holiday

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