India, Travel Inspiration
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9 Best Experiences I Had In South India

No matter how little or how deeply traveling interests you, the southern part of India is one of those places, that can’t be missed. From carefully watching locals getting hold of their lungis to discovering a culturally intriguing way of life, the southern part of India is where you will never find yourself getting short of most expected, and a little stereotyped, Indian experiences.

But to tell you the truth, I was a wee bit unsure about my survival here, given all the distinctions between the India I was familiar to, living in New Delhi. But when an invitation landed in my inbox, from a friend living in Kerala I’d long known, I knew I had to go there and test the waters. Though I was only staying at his place for a couple of nights, but it came out as a security that I’d, at least, survive my arrival, and it seemed enough for the moment.

Thanks to that friend and to many other I met on the way, here are some incredible moments I had:

eating banana leafTasting The Traditional Banana Leaf Munchies

….and learning related mannerisms, which go from getting hold of the basic ergonomics to carefully learning the art of folding the plate, as you finish your business.

maskmanWitnessing The Cultural Celebration Of Theyyam

An 800-year-old mythological stage play (in the form of different dance performances by maskmen, something familiar to Kathakali in a broad sense) which, still today, has its own importance in the society. It is believed that these performances would remove the perils and bring fortune to the people. And the energy local people conduct this religious festivity with, makes you want to believe that too.

Read: Theyyam, more than just a fancy display of enactments

playing cardsBefriending The Tribal Pania People, In Wayanad

A vast majority of tribes in Kerala state hail from the Paniya tribal sect. And as the ‘Paniyaan’ (which literally means ‘’worker’), they were supposed to be the workers of non – tribes. They inhabit in the regions of Wayanad and the neighboring parts of Kannur and Malappuram. Very shy to the camera and in talking to strangers, I found Paniya people as very hospitable and affable in nature, once shared a few words.

conoeCruising Along The Backwaters

The beauty of backwaters, accompanied by the charming company of local people and all those occasional local coconut beers; need I say more?

Read: Life In The Backwaters Of Alleppey

vivekananda statueVisiting The Blessed Vivekananda Rock Memorial In Knayakumari

…which on one side is surrounded by the never ending blueness of the ocean, and on the other – overlooked by the fading hills. The rock, where the great Indian teacher Swami Vivekananda had once meditated for three long days, before his realization, makes you too, feel the energy that Swami Vivekananda might have felt the time he meditated on the rock.

Read: Kanyakumari, a place constantly inviting us for a secular sabbath

looking at seaExperiencing The Majestic Oceans In Rameshwaram

This is where the perfect blue waters of Bay of Bangal and India Ocean meet each other, making it no less than a place for a ritual bath, for Hindus. When I was here, I remember feeling like an explorer, beckoning myself at the unknown, never ending vastness of the sea.

monks prayerVisiting Namdroling Monastery, in Bylakuppe

Bylakuppe is a small settlement, surrounded by the native Kannadigas, and among them are living a few thousand Tibetan immigrants, trying to rebuild their own Tibet. Namdroling Monastery, the common prayer-ground in Bylakuppe for all Tibetans to practice their religious teachings, is Southern India’s largest monastery having a capacity for 3000 monks. during my visit to Karnataka I happened to attend a special prayers organised on the arrival of revered Yantha Rinpoche (a very renowned and respected Rinpoche from Assam).

Read: Namdroling monastery and its teachings to the world

hampi monumentsExperiencing The Ruins Of Hampi

A world away from where you are, Hampi welcomes you to a totally different atmosphere. Its beautiful but wasted monuments, lying still from centuries, is definitely a must visit destination if you’re visiting the state of Karnataka.

Read: Hampi, a journey to the unknown

cultureMeeting Indigenous People And Learning New Cultures

Meeting new people and learning their philosophies always remain, for me, one of the most sought after experiences. This trip was no different. But many places do not offer conditions favorable in their nature to do so, however, when in Southern India you don’t feel that. Here people are more social, having a fairly good command on basic English making it a lot more easier for you, to talk to them.

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Filed under: India, Travel Inspiration

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Shortly after my first real nine-to-five job, I left that lifestyle behind, and with it, everything that didn't fit in my backpack. I've learned that this world is too big (and too interesting!) to stay in one place. I believe that with a little courage and inspiration, everyone has the power to follow their dreams. Just as I've followed mine!

7 Comments

  1. I like your blog. I am going to visit there on Next Friday and its looks very beautiful according to your tips. I am very excited to see South India.

  2. Believe me, its really awesome post. I really enjoyed. I forgot for sometime that i am not there. I am not a travel lover but i would definitely make plan to enjoy something new in that incredible place.

  3. Hariprasad says

    Hi Dev,

    Its interesting to read your travel experience.

    Am planning for Solo travel in south India.

    Could you please suggest some of the locations?

    Regards
    Hariprasad

  4. Trip to South India is popular amongst travelers as south India is famous for its monuments and temples, has essence of Indian heritage,
    beautiful beaches of Kerala, tea gardens of Munnar and Kerala, wildlife and bird sanctuary.

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