This is a brilliant area to visit to enjoy laidback village life in southern India whilst staying in a wonderful mansion. The nearby temples are small and simple with rows of terracotta horses, the likes of which you won’t see anywhere else in India. The Chettiar merchants have left a legacy of dozens of mansions, built largely between 1850 and 1950, once opulent and now mostly displaying a faded grandeur, though some are enjoying a renaissance as stylish hotels.
Reasons to visit Chettinad include:
December to April are the most popular months, avoiding monsoon rains (October to December) and high temperatures (May to July)
Some of the Chettiar mansions have been transformed into hotels and staying in one such as Visalam is very much part of the experience, giving you an insight into the lifestyle of these wealthy families in days gone by.
Time: GMT +5 hours
Flight time from London to Delhi is 8 hours 30 minutes and to Mumbai is about 8 hours.
Language: The official language is Hindi, which about 30% of the population speaks. English is very widely spoken and is used for official and commercial purposes.
Required for British travellers. Other nationalities should obtain advice from their embassy.
There are no compulsory vaccinations.