Surrounded by the seas on three sides, peninsular India is also known as south India comprising the southern states of Kerala, Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh, Pondicherry, Goa and Karnataka. Here we have included the islands of Lakshadweep and Andamans to the region. Lakshadweep is of coral origin with smaller islands making the archipelago. Andaman and Nicobar Islands to the east are of volcanic origin and still have indigenuous tribes like Onge, Shompen etc on some of the islands. Mainland south India has a distinct culture when compared to northern India. However, Goa and Pondicherry have a distinct colonial heritage and culture. While Goa has the Portugese effect, Pondycherry has the French influence.The Dravidian culture as it is called is believed to be the culture of the original inhabitants of India who were pushed south to the Deccan Plateau by invading armies of Aryans and others. The Deccan Plateau lies to the south of the Vindhya and Satpura ranges and extends upto the Cauvery basin. The region boasts highly developed skills in architecture, astronomy, sea faring and systems of medicine. Since ancient times, the ports of these states maintained trading relations to far off lands like Arabs, Chinese and south east Asians. Even today, we see the cultural effect of these trade ties on entire south east Asia. Each state has long coastline with some of the best beaches, natural harbours and ports. The topography consists of the semi arid Deccan plateau and the mountains of Western and Eastern Ghats on either side with dense forests and beaches of every sort on the coast. The forest cover on Ghats is home to many exotic species of birds and animals. It also has most beautiful gorges and waterfalls resplendent in their glory in the months soon after monsoons. The temples of Tamil Nadu, Andhra and Karnataka have distinctive styles. Hewn out of granite, these are imposing structures carved with a finesse that one can but marvel at. The Cholas and Pallavas were some of the greatest temple builders. The mammoth temples of Madurai, Tanjore, Chidambaram etc were built in an era when only manual and animal power was available. Temple architecture in Kerala is a mix of this style and its own style of wood carvings and murals. After the fall of Kakatiyas of Warangal, the south too came under influence of Muslim rulers who brought with them distinctive architecture and culture. Of note is the heritage of towns like Bijapur and Hyderabad. The Qutb shahi rulers built the timeless monuments like Charminar. The Kingdom of Vijayanagara further south also had the influence of Islam, though a Hindu state. Its chieftains, Hyder Ali and Tipu Sultan were great warriors who kept the colonial powers at bay for long. The south also has one of the finest traditions in silk. Handwoven by expert weavers, they come from different region, each with a distinctive style. Bronze, brass and bell metal statues and vessels are other superlative products of the region. Sandalwood and spices are some of the other attractions of the region. The temples have also been the birthplace of classical music and dance forms. Kuchipudi from Andhra, Bharatanatyam from Tamil Nadu and Mohini Attom from Kerala are few examples. For an art buff, there are many festivals held across south India which showcase the performing arts, classical music and dance. Temples, palaces, backwaters, houseboat cruises, ayurveda, delectable cuisine, arts and crafts, wildlife, beaches and natural beauty- south has it all to be on your tour itinerary.
Hyderabad Hyderabad, the capital of Andhra Pradesh is the sixth largest city in India. The qutb shahi dynasty and Nizams who ruled the region in the 16th and 17th centuries built some of the magnificent forts, palaces, tombs ever built. The Nizams of Hyderabad built beautiful mosques and Islamic monuments, and became India's Islamic art and cultural centre. The city has many impressive and exotic bazaars to explore, as well as the impressive Charminar, built in 1591 and consists of four 56 meter minarets linked by intricately carved arches and a beautiful small mosque on the second floor. The impressive Golconda Fort is a short excursion from the city, and a fine example of a medieval Indian Fortress. The Salar â€“e- jung museum has some real masterpieces of world art. Modern Hyderabad has swanky malls and megastructures. The Ramoji film city is another popular place to see
Bangalore is sometimes referred to as the "Silicon Valley of India" (or IT capital of India) because of its role as the nation's leading information technology (IT) exporter. Bangalore is the second fastest-growing major metropolis in India. Bangalore is known for its pleasant climate throughout the year. Its elevation is the highest among the major cities of India.
Mysore (or Mysuru), a city in India's southwestern Karnataka state, was the capital of the Kingdom of Mysore from 1399 to 1947. In its center is opulent Mysore Palace, seat of the former ruling Wodeyar dynasty. The palace blends Hindu, Islamic, Gothic and Rajput styles. Mysore is also home to the centuries-old Devaraja Market, filled with spices, silk and sandalwood.
Hospet or Hosapete is a city in the Bellary District in central Karnataka, India. It is located on the Tungabhadra River, 12 km from Hampi.
Langkawi is a beautiful island in the northwestern part of Peninsular Malaysia; many people describe the island as one of the most beautiful islands in the world. The island is not (yet) spoiled by tourists, which makes it a perfect holiday destination for travelers. Accommodation is affordable on the island. You can stay in a resort for a mere $30 a night, but also for $3000 for a single night. The island is especially renowned for the many great attractions. Besides that you can shop at some of the shopping malls, you can have splendid dinners at one of the many hawkers, or you can rent a motorcycle (moped) to explore the island (RM40 for 24h). The island is easy accessible from Kuala Lumpur or the neighboring island of Penang.
Genting Highlands otherwise known as Resorts World Genting, is a hill resort in Malaysia developed by Genting Group.The hill resort is at an average elevation of 1,740 metres (5,710 ft) within the Titiwangsa Mountains on the border between the states of Pahang and Selangor of Malaysia. Resorts World Genting is operated by Genting Malaysia Berhad (formerly known as Resorts World Bhd), which also operates Awana chain of resorts & hotels. It is accessible by car from Kuala Lumpur in one hour, or also accessible by a cable car called Genting Skyway, which at its opening was the world's fastest and South East Asia's longest gondola lift.The comprehensive indoor and outdoor theme-park was promoted as the destination for "Fun at The Peak". The entire resort was subsequently billed; "The City of Entertainment".Resorts World Genting is the only legal land-based casino, Casino de Genting, in the country and is owned by Genting Malaysia Berhad, a subsidiary of Genting Group.
Tung Choi Street is a street situated between south of Sai Yeung Choi Street and Fa Yuen Street in Mong Kok, Kowloon, Hong Kong. It is one of the most well-known street markets in Hong Kong. Its southern section, popularly known as Ladies' Market or Ladies' Street sells various, low-priced products for women and also other general merchandise. Its northern section not far above Bute Street, has a wide variety of affordable plants, pet supplies and animals especially goldfish since it is also known as "Goldfish Street".
The Ten Thousand Buddhas Monastery (Man Fat Tsz), located Po Fook Hill at Pai Tau Village, Sha Tin in the New Territories is one of Hong Kongâ€™s most famous Buddhist temples and popular tourist attractions. The temple was founded in 1949 by the Reverend Yuet Kai and completed in 1957. The monastery is not residential and is managed by lay-persons. It should not be confused with the Po Fook Hill Ancestral Halls which lie directly below it. The monastery, which occupies over 8 hectares, is made up of two groups of architectural structures at lower and higher levels respectively. There is a pagoda, a hall, two pavilions and a tower in the architectural structure at the lower level. There are four halls in another structure at the higher level. The five halls in the monastery are used to house the statues of Buddhas. The main journey up to the monastery is an attraction itself, as the path is lined on both sides with golden Buddhas, each unique and in different poses.
Wong Tai Sin Temple is a well known shrine and major tourist attraction in Hong Kong. It is dedicated to Wong Tai Sin, or the Great Immortal Wong. The temple is located on the southern side of Lion Rock in the north of Kowloon. The architecture is the traditional Chinese temple style with grand red pillars, a golden roof adorned with blue friezes, yellow latticework, and multi-coloured carvings. Aside from the Daxiong-baodian or Grand Hall, Sansheng Hall and the Good Wish Garden are also worth seeing. The temple grounds also feature three memorial archways. The first one stands outside the temple and is carved with the name of the temple. If you walk past the soothsayers and the fortune-telling stalls, you can see another memorial archway. And if you continue further along the third memorial archway standing before you.
Standing 44-metres tall, the old Clock Tower was erected in 1915 as part of the Kowloonâ€“Canton Railway terminus. The once-bustling station is long gone, but this red brick and granite tower, now preserved as a Declared Monument, survives as an elegant reminder of the Age of Steam. It has also been a memorable landmark for the millions of Chinese immigrants who passed through the terminus to begin new lives not just in Hong Kong, but in other parts of the world via the cityâ€™s harbour.
Tian Tan Buddha, also known as the Big Buddha, is a large bronze statue of Buddha Shakyamuni, completed in 1993, and located at Ngong Ping, Lantau Island, in Hong Kong. The statue is sited near Po Lin Monastery and symbolises the harmonious relationship between man and nature, people and faith. It is a major centre of Buddhism in Hong Kong, and is also a popular tourist attraction.The statue is named Tian Tan Buddha because its base is a model of the Altar of Heaven or Earthly Mount of Tian Tan, the Temple of Heaven in Beijing. One of the five large Buddha statues in China, it is enthroned on a lotus on top of a three-platform altar. Surrounding it are six smaller bronze statues known as "The Offering of the Six Devas" that are posed offering flowers, incense, lamp, ointment, fruit, and music to the Buddha. These symbolise the Six Perfections of generosity, morality, patience, zeal, meditation, and wisdom, all of which are necessary for enlightenment