The plan originally was to go south through Kerala and sweep up Tamil Nadu, then go from Chennai by air to the Andaman Islands to dive. It turns out that almost all the flights to the Andamans and back were booked from now till late February. Going in late February doesn’t work for me because I’m returning to the US on March 4. The only date available to go was Jan 18, and the only return date was Jan 30. That was a little sudden and a for little longer than I had planned to stay there, but I took the tickets and away I go.
I took the overnight train to Chennai. I t was nice, quiet in my car after 10, and I slept the whole way straight through till 6. That is a rarity. During the ride, I looked at Lonely Planet about Chennai. It had little good to say about it, so upon emerging fromthe train station, I headed 50 km south by bus to Mamallapuram. This is one of the few touristy places in Tamil Nadu, though there are a few spots to see here, especially if you are very into Hinduism. There are lots of westerners here. There are nightly classical dance performances. thee are some nice rock temples andÂ statuary. I’m a little jaded after places like Ajanta and Ellora, but it’s very pleasant. If I wasn’t already rested up, this would be as good a place as any to hang out. There is also a rice harvest festival, Ponga, going on. For that reason, there are many Indian tourists/festival goers here. I’m going to go be part of that this afternoon.
I’m leaving the 18th from Chennai, but should be able to post a few pictures before going.
Happy Martin Luther King Day.