Kerala, a state on India's tropical Malabar Coast, has nearly 600km of Arabian Sea shoreline. It's known for its palm-lined beaches and backwaters, a network of canals. Inland are the Western Ghats, mountains whose slopes support tea, coffee and spice plantations as well as wildlife. National parks like Eravikulam and Periyar, plus Wayanad and other sanctuaries, are home to elephants, langur monkeys and tigers.
Bengaluru (also called Bangalore) is the capital of India's southern Karnataka state. The center of India's high-tech industry, the city is also known for its parks and nightlife. By Cubbon Park, Vidhana Soudha is a Neo-Dravidian legislative building. Former royal residences include 19th-century Bangalore Palace, modeled after Englandís Windsor Castle, and Tipu Sultanís Summer Palace, an 18th-century teak structure.
Chennai, on the Bay of Bengal in eastern India, is the capital of the state of Tamil Nadu. The city is home to Fort St. George, built in 1644 and now a museum showcasing the cityís roots as a British military garrison and East India Company trading outpost, when it was called Madras. Religious sites include Kapaleeshwarar Temple, adorned with carved and painted gods, and St. Maryís, a 17th-century Anglican church.
Tirupati is a city in the Indian state of Andhra Pradesh. Its Sri Venkateswara Temple sits atop one of the the 7 peaks of Tirumala Hills, attracting scores of Hindu pilgrims. Sri Venkateswara National Park, home to the temple, also contains the Sri Venkateswara Zoological Park with lions and primates. Nearby, next to a waterfall and cave believed to be sacred, Sri Kapileswara Swamy Temple is dedicated to Lord Shiva.