The hidden treasures of South India
Whether you’re a seasoned traveller or a new explorer of South India, it can be difficult to find the perfect getaway for you. If you want to stay away from the typical sights of India and discover your own sanctuary, read all about our favourite hidden treasures of South India.
Take a break to a village of utopia located right on the bank of the river Pennar, in the Kadapa districts of Andhra Pradesh. You’ll soon discover that India isn’t just idyllic beaches and busy cities. Gandikota is the Grand Canyon of South India. You can be easily lost in this paradise, without a care in the world.
If you love a sense of adventure when you’re on holiday, the Belum Caves is the place for you to go. They are the second largest caves in the Indian subcontinent, and the longest in the plains of India. Featuring long passages, spacious chambers, fresh water galleries and siphons, it is an almost mystical hidden haven. There is a constant flow of underground water which helps form the caves, and are 150 feet at their deepest. For any adrenaline junkie heading to India, this is the ideal location for you.
St. Mary’s Islands
St. Mary’s Islands are also known as Coconut Island and Thonsepar. If you want to discover the hidden treasures of South India, a trip here should definitely be on the agenda. Geologically, they are a marvel. Sub-aerial volcanic activity formed St. Mary’s Islands 88 million years ago, when the surface of the earth was entirely different. Formerly attached to Madagascar, these islands now are 6km from the Malpe fishing harbour and feature stunning columnar basaltic lava.
Engulfed in mystery, on an almost spooky level, is Dhanushkodi. Some refer to is as the Ghost Town, whilst others name is the Lost Land, but it’s history is a story of legends. Previously famed for the Dhanushkodi railway line, it now hosts its beautiful ruins. In 1964, a cyclone hit a passenger train, and tragically drowned over a 100 passengers and the island has remained untouched since. Home to the smallest land border in the world at just 45 metres, it is only 29 kms west of Talamannar in Sri Lanka. This lost land is a harrowing yet spiritual place.
A landscape worthy of your dreams, let your soul relax amongst the clouds in Skandagiri Hills. Skandagiri is a mountain fortress hidden by the atmospheric landscape. Only 70 kms from the city of Bangalore, these hills are shrouded in history and the perfect escape from the rather hectic hustle and bustle of city life in India. The hills peak at 1350 metres high, and hold a breath-taking view from a breath-taking height.
If you have any tips or advice you’d like to share about visiting any of these places, or any suggestions for other great South Indian hot spots, share with us in the comments.