South India is located in the Peninsular Deccan Plateau and is bordered by the Arabian Sea in the West, the Indian Ocean to the south and the Bay of Bengal to the east. South India also includes two mountain ranges; The Western Ghats and the Eastern Ghats. The Godavari, Krishna, Kaveri and the Tungabhadra are rivers that flow through South India, being an important source of water for this region. South India comprises of the states of Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, Kerala, Tamil Nadu, Telangana and the union territories of Lakshadweep, Andaman and Nicobar Islands and Puducherry. During its past a number of dynasties ruled over South India. The region was finally colonised by Britain and incorporated into the British Empire.
Karnataka is one of the most diverse South Indian states, it's famous for the city of Bangalore, which apart from being the capital city is famous for its many parks and gardens. The state of Karnataka has also been associated with ancient ruling dynasties such as the Maurya Empire, the Vijayanagara Empire and the Deccan Sultanate and is home to many ancient sculptures and battle scarred forts as proof of that.
Andhra Pradesh and Telangana are enriched with rich tradition and breath- taking natural beauty, places of historical significance and an important place of pilgrimage as well. Cities like Hyderabad are famous for historical monuments like the renowned Charminar, built in 1591, by Sultan Muhammad Quli Qutb Shah. The state is also known for its beautiful hill stations and temples.
Kerala, also known as "Tropical Paradise" is a delight to explore. Kerala is known for its gorgeous palm fringed beaches and its peaceful backwaters. Also famous in Kerala are wildlife sanctuaries like Periyar, and destinations such as Alleppey, Kochi and Munnar.
Tamil Nadu has strong historical associations and is blessed with natural gifts such as the Western and Eastern Ghats and the Annamalai Hills. The state is also famous for its beaches like the famous Marina Beach, located in Chennai and magnificent Hindu Temples built in the Dravadian style of architecture located in the city of Madhurai.
The union territory of Puducherry also has lots to offer in terms of beautiful beaches, temples and French style architecture. The islands of Andaman and Nicobar and Lakshadweep, also union territories, impress tourists with their magnificent coral reefs, sun kissed beaches and scenic landscape.
Cuisine of South India
Food from South India is characterised by the consumption of rice as the staple food, along with lentils, spices, dried red chillies, fresh green chillies, coconuts, and native fruits and vegetables like tamarind, plantain, garlic and ginger.
Andhra Pradesh Cuisine
Known to be the spiciest of foods from the states in the south. Food from Andhra Pradesh is characterized by the use of chilli powder, oil and tamarind. Most of the dishes are vegetable or lentil based. Also famous are the kebabs and the ever famous Hyderbadi Biryani, a favourite of the Nizams. Other popular foods from this state are Mirchi Salan, Ghongura Pickle and Korikoora.
Cuisine from Karnataka is known to be very mild as red chillies are substituted by palm sugar and jaggery. Some popular dishes from this state are Bisi Bele Bhaat, Kesari Bhaat, Mysore Pak, Dharwad Pedha and Chiroti.
Food from Kerala is very diverse, as there are a fair share of vegetarians and non-vegetarians in the state and hence the food habits vary. The Nairs and Namboodris are Hindu Brahmins and are vegetarian, whereas the Christians and Muslims are non-vegetarian. Some of the popular dishes from Kerala are Sadya meal, Avial, Malabar parota, Payasam and Irachi Stew.
Tamil Nadu Cuisine
Tamil food is predominantly spicy or non spicy and is mostly vegetarian. Most of the dishes from Tamil Nadu are eaten with steamed rice, the staple food grain of the region. A typical meal from Tamil Nadu is served on a banana leaf and is accompanied by a variety of pickles and ghee (clarified butter). Some popular delicacies from this region are appam, dosai, idli, sambar, rasam and Chettinad chicken.
Last Updated on : 07/10/2013
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