Though a travel freak, I must admit I had somehow not travelled to this happening place in South India. Just the mention of Rajani, the boss gives you an idea of the place I am talking about.
Yes, from the hot idlis, to the varieties of chutney,dosa,sambhar and the heated politics between the amma and the talai to the weather,... everything here is Hot!!! :) Yes am talking about Chennai!
Except that once I spent a few hours in Chennai, I knew nothing about the place. When one of my friend decided to marry in his hometown,I got yet another chance to explore a place - so much heard but never visited and I didnt want to miss out any chance.
The best art about the wedding here was that it was early in the morning and after our breakfast we planned to cover two places as we had to catch the train same night.
And here I will try to give a very short update about our visit and here it goes:
Dakshina Chitra: We didnt need any local guides as we had couple of frenz from this place and they planned out this trip in such a way that we saw many places in a single day without any hurry. And thanks to the Chennai broad roads that we were never stuck in the traffic for long unlike our own Bangalore.
Dakshina chitra is something I can compare to a museum like our Janapada loka in Ramanagara. This place is unique in its style and as its name says, gives a overview of whole of South India. It has many houses or the models of different families of south India, few to mention are : the chettinadu, kerala,dakshina kannada,nambiyar. I am sorry that I didnt spend enough time taking pictures of all the places as we were rushing to cover the whole place in order to see them. One can learn a lot about the history of several cultivating families,the occupation of the people of different provinces. It is very pleasant to see that the houses are neatly maintained and along with the feats to the eyes, you can listen to the carnatic music which plays in the background and feel at your granny's place or recall the times when your mom used to wake you up early in the morning with that particular MS subbalaskmi s suprabhata.I hated it then but now I just wish to see those days of where the ladies of each house of the streets would wake up early morning and draw rangolis as we kids would stand behind them rubbing our tiny winy eyes :) .
Each house is neatly named and has the rangolis in place to welcome you to the house and the house holds the household utensils very authentic of those days and style.I was very impressed with the very artistic wooden cradle ,walker for kids, the rain harvesting techniques used in those days.
If you happen to go to Chennai for a visa stamping or for a day, do visit this unique place and get to know the history of south indian houses and relive it for an hour or so!
Not to forget the shops within the premises which sell artistic drawings,handicrafts,jewlery - everything under one roof and girls, I am sure will love this part !
Mahabalipuram: situated around 30km from Chennai this place is worth a visit and the best part is about the drive. This reminded me of my Karwar trip with a drive on the coast and the weather was generous enough to let us enjoy the place.On the way to Mahabalipuram we just had a glimpse of the Open theater - a concept where people sit in thier cars and watch a movie on the Big screen ( You would have seen this in "Shivaji" movie), The Golden Beach. Mahabalipuram has a beautiful archaelogical site and I would not like to bore you with the history part of this place but would like to mention about the beautiful pancharatha of the Pandavas, cave temples and the Shore temple on the shores of the beach. The temple linga is destroyed but it is nice to see a temple on the shores of the beach standing the wear and tear caused by the high tides and the wind.
We sure had fun shopping in the streets and while many of our friends enjoyed playing in the water, me and few of my friends stayed back in the beach building castles.It brought back memories of school days where we built castles and also reminded of not buliding castles in the air :)
With the sun setting, we got a hint to pack up and get back to our rooms to attend the reception party of Bharat and Ramya and after a tasty meal and with a very pleasant memory, we set back to namma bengaluru. Thanks To Bharat and Ramya and hearty wishes to them once again!
If not for our local guides Danny,Muralo and Ballu I dont think we would have had such a wonderful trip and a hearty thanks to you guys too!
Pictures of Dakshina chitra:
|Us in one of the houses, think it was Nambiyar|
|Shopping in Dakshina chitra|
|Happily shopping and of course, bargaining!|
Few pictures of Mahabalipuram:
Link iwth complete details:http://www.dakshinachitra.net/scripts/locationtimings.asp
Places in and around Chennai :
Prarthana Open Theatre