Things to Know About South India – A Complete Guide

There is no better place than the South India for a diverse and unique vacation. Starting from waterfalls to barren lands, temple towns to nightclubs, this state is a mixture of everything in abundance. Covered by Arabian Sea, Bay of Bengal and Indian Ocean on three sides, this beauty has a rich natural value. Starting from the romantic beaches of Andaman to the rich biosphere of Nilgiri, this region is famous for numerous elements of tourism.

South India is an important tourism destination, especially during winter season. Top tourist destinations include Goa, Andaman, Lakshadweep, Coorg, Ooty, Kodaikanal, Kumarakom, Wayanad, Hyderabad, Hampi and so on. You can enjoy every kind of vacation from a luxurious Deccan Odyssey or Golden Chariot luxury train vacation to a simple hitchhiking trip on a shoestring budget.

Are you planning a south India trip in future? There is everything that you need to know about South India.

Is South India Safe?

South India, just like any known location in the world, is riddled with opportunistic criminals. In that context, no city in the world is safe to be. Scams and scandals are common. You need to have alertness and common sense to get out of situations, without losing money. Solo travelers and especially women travelers should keep to themselves choose busy regions and end the trip by evening. The best way to be safe is by pre-booking every service and amenities and stay with top service providers or tour organizers.

Rebel, riot and political instability are not common in this part of the country. Pollution is a little higher in many major cities. On the other hand, the clean villages and remote paradises are common in this region. Bangalore is considered as the most polluted land in the country (air pollution).

Water hygiene is a questionable factor throughout India. If you are in an urban location, stick with bottled mineral water of brands, which you are familiar. If you are planning a visit to a rural location, pack a bottle of water with you. When it comes to medical safety, India is a medical tourism destination. You can find all kinds of medical requirements throughout the country. Again, rural places might have a simple primary health care center only.

What Is The Culture South India?

Culture of this region varies with the geographical and historic factors. Yes, a coastal region has a different culture when compared to a temple town like Madurai. The Portuguese colony of Goa still has remains of the European culture, while, French history filled Pondicherry. South Indian women’s traditional attire is saree and you can find a lot of them wearing it on a daily basis.

Apart from this, you can find them wearing chudidar/ salwar kameez (an attire derived from North India) and western wear. The traditional attire of men is Dhoti, a few people wear them today. Western wear is also common among men.

Read More : What To Wear In India – Essential Packing List

The cuisine of the southern India is focused on seafood, as most of the regions are coastal areas. Rice and seafood are the main component of the cuisine. When it comes to Kerala and southern Tamil Nadu, coconut is widely used in the dishes. Andhra and Telengana are famous for pickles and spicy food. Tea and coffee are commonly consumed by people. Non-veg dishes are iconic to Chettinad and Kerala. If you wish to enjoy spicy food, choose southern part of Tamil Nadu or Andhra Pradesh.

If you want to enjoy many delicacies, choose Mysore or other parts of Karnataka. Yes, the ancient ruler of Karnataka has a sweet tooth and he invited chefs from various parts of the country to cook him, unique dishes. While you are at Mysore, you ought to try the royal delicacy, Mysore Pak.

Read More : No Trip Is Complete Without These Five Delicacies In Karnataka

Each state has its own iconic music and dance form. Most of the southern India focuses on Carnatic music. Folk music is regaining popularity among youngsters, now. Top iconic dances of southern India are Bharatanatyam, Kucchipudi, Theyyam, Mohiniaatam, Kathakali, Ottamthullal, Oppana and others.

Ancient rulers of the land built numerous monuments and structures around the regions. When it comes to architecture, there is not much of a difference between the states of Tamil Nadu. The traditional architectural style of Southern India is called as Dravida style. Top places of southern India to enjoy architecture are Mahabalipuram, Badami, Hampi, Tanjore, Halebidu, Pattadakal, Lakkundi, Belur and others.

Tanjore painting, mural paintings of Travancore, Raja Ravi Vama paintings and Mattancherry Dravidian mural paintings are the iconic styles of arts of ancient times. As time passed by, each state derived new artworks mixing the western style and tradition. Paintings are not the only form of artwork in India. Sculptures are inevitable part and can be found in temples and ancient monuments. Handlooms of Kanchipuram and Pachapalli are iconic souvenirs. Handicrafts of Mahabalipuram, accessories of Kanyakumari, wooden articles of Kodapalli, sandalwood articles of Sathyamangalam and Mysore are top ones to mention in this genre.

The most beautiful part of the culture is its colorful festivals. Each state has its own set of local festivals. Even when a festival is common throughout the country, each state and each community celebrates it in a different manner. During festivals, you can enjoy local dance and music, delicious delicacies and watch people perform many unique rituals. Locals allows tourists to be a part of their culture and festivals. Remember to wear and act modestly to blend in. This is the land with hospitality as a spiritual factor. Indians are taught that Guest is God and thus, hospitality is guaranteed.

This cultural element has given rise to a richness in shopping experience. Thanks to the tradition and culture, you can find many antique items, handloom articles, handicraft items and others. The same goes for natural items too. The spices of Kerala is as worthy as a traditional Kanchipuram silk saree.

Main Languages Spoken In South India

Surprisingly, English is more than enough to scale the place and live in South India. Apart from this foreign language, Tamil, Telugu, Kannada and Malayalam are common in this region. You can also find other languages like Hindi, spoken by a small group of people.

In India, the most common language is English itself. The largest population of people speak Hindi and other common languages include Marathi, Urdu and others.

Main Religion Of South India

Hinduism, Islam, Jainism, Christianity and Buddhism are common in Southern India. However, Hinduism is the largest population of the region. Christians are common in coastal regions. Karnataka is famous for Jain pilgrimage. There are many branches of Hinduism, which prevails in India. Commonly, there are two main branches of Hinduism, Shaivam and Vaishnavam. Those who follow Shaivam pray to Lord Shiva and the later pray to Lord Vishnu. Ayyavazhi is a deviant of Vaishnavam, which is common in Kerala and southern part of Tamil Nadu. Malabar Coast has high Muslim population. This is due to the trade link between Oman and Kerala. Kerala holds an old Jew community, which is an important tourism destination in the state.

Which Is The Biggest State Of South India?

South India covers 19.31% of the whole country. There are five main states in this region and union territory of Goa and Pondicherry, islands of Andaman and Nicobar and Lakshadweep. The largest state of this region is Karnataka. A few years ago, the largest state in South India was Andhra Pradesh. Later, it was separated as two different states, making Karnataka, the largest one.

The geographical boundaries keep changing in Southern India. Before 1950, the Telengana, Andhra Pradesh and Tamil Nadu were combined as the state of Madras. It was the largest state of South India. Later, Madras was separated as Tamil Nadu and Andhra Pradesh.

The smallest state in the region is Kerala, which an area of 38,863 sq km. Not just in South India, this is the smallest state in the country. Karnataka has an area of 12,791 sq. km. With regards to population, Tamil Nadu is the largest state with 7.2 crore population.

List Of States In South India

  1. Andhra Pradesh
  2. Telangana
  3. Tamil Nadu
  4. Karnataka
  5. Kerala

Largest City Of South India

The largest city of South India is Hyderabad of Andhra Pradesh. When it comes to population, Chennai is the most populated city, followed by Bangalore, Hyderabad and Thiruvananthapuram.

Top Tourist Destinations Of South India

As mentioned before, South India is a land of diversity. It is impossible to compare two destinations of different genre and give a list of top attractions. Here is the list of different types of vacations to enjoy in South India and the top places to visit under each category.

Read More : Top 10 Places to Visit in South India

Top Hill Stations Of South India

  • Munnar, Kerala
  • Ooty, Tamil Nadu
  • Kanyakumari, Tamil Nadu
  • Coorg, Karnataka
  • Araku Valley, Andhra Pradesh
  • Coonnor, Tamil Nadu
  • Idukki, Kerala
  • Devikulam, Kerala
  • Ananthagiri hills, Telengana
  • Lambasingi, Andhra Pradesh

Top Cultural Spots Of South India

  • Madurai, Tamil Nadu
  • Hampi, Karnataka
  • Hyderabad, Telengana
  • Mysore, Karnataka
  • Tanjavur, Tamil Nadu
  • Cochin, Kerala

Top Temple Sites Of South India

  • Tirupati, Andhra Pradesh
  • Mahabalipuram, Tamil Nadu
  • Kanyakumari, Tamil Nadu
  • Tanjore, Tamil Nadu
  • Hampi, Karnataka
  • Madurai, Tamil Nadu
  • Rameshwaram, Tamil Nadu
  • Chottanikarai, Kerala
  • Pattadakal, Karnataka

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

Top Heritage Sites Of South India

  • Hampi, Pattadakal and Aihole of Karnataka
  • Hyderabad of Telengana
  • Thajavur of Tamil Nadu
  • Mysore of Karnataka
  • Cochin of Kerala
  • Mahabalipuram of Tamil Nadu
  • Gooty Fort, Andhra Pradesh
  • Warangal, Telengana
  • Nizamabad, Telengana

Top Metropolitan Cities Of South India

  • Bangalore, Karnataka
  • Chennai, Tamil Nadu
  • Hyderabad, Telengana
  • Kochi, Kerala
  • Goa
  • Pondicherry
  • Coimbatore, Tamil Nadu
  • Mangalore, Karnataka
  • Vishakhapatnam, Andhra Pradesh
  • Alappuzha, Kerala
  • Kozhikode, Kerala

Top Beach Locations Of South India

  • Goa
  • Kovalam, Kerala
  • Gokarna, Karnataka
  • Kochi, Kerala
  • Kanyakumari, Tamil Nadu
  • Chennai, Tamil Nadu
  • Rameshwaram, Tamil Nadu
  • Mahabalipuram, Tamil Nadu
  • Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala
  • Nellore, Andhra Pradesh
  • Andaman and Nicobar islands
  • Lakshadweep

Read More : Famous Beaches of South India

Top Shopping Destinations Of South India

  • Bangalore
  • Hyderabad
  • Chennai
  • Kanyakumari
  • Kochi
  • Mysore
  • Badami
  • Kakinada
  • Andaman
  • Thekkady

Also Read : Best Shopping Destinations in India with Specialties

Top Nightlife Destinations Of South India

  • Goa
  • Bangalore
  • Mysore
  • Chennai
  • Hyderabad

Top Secluded Tourism Destinations Of South India (Hidden Gems)

  • Vattakanal, Tamil Nadu
  • Badami caves, Karnataka
  • Pollachi, Tamil Nadu
  • Thalassery, Kerala
  • Gandikota, Andhra Pradesh
  • Belum Caves, Karnataka
  • Maravanthe Beach, Goa
  • Papi Hills, Andhra Pradesh

Top Wildlife Destinations Of South India

  • Periyar National Park
  • Mudumalai National Park
  • Bandipur National Park
  • Nagarhole National Park
  • Kudremukh national park
  • Bannerghatta National park

Popular Tour Packages Of South India

When it comes to vacation in South India, it is literally impossible to scale every beautiful place, within a given time. It also confuses tourists about where to start, which path to take and so on. This is where travel agents like Travelogy India come into the scene. There are numerous customized and general tour packages scaling up to 26 days.

You can choose theme vacations like South India temple tour, Hills and Backwaters of Kerala, South India Wildlife, South India hill station tour and so on. If you are looking for a diverse vacation, stick with geographically arranged packages like Karnataka and Kerala tour, Tamil Nadu and Kerala tour and so on. If you want to start the tour from specific locations, you can pick the itineraries, which start from your destination like South India tour from Chennai, South India temple from Mumbai and so on. For more details about the packages, visit https://www.travelogyindia.com/south-india/

Also Read :

Popular South India Tour Packages :

Want to Visit South India in Luxury Train :

Maharaja Express Train

The Golden Chariot

Deccan Odyssey Train

 

 

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