Tamil Nadu is the cradle of South Indian temple architecture that originated in the 7th century and matured in the huge temple complexes studded with towering gateways called ‘Gopurams’ that soar above the markets of almost every town. Quite a contrast to the temple heritage is provided at Pondicherry which remained a French colony for a long time. French is still widely spoken, and seaside villas and cobbled streets are more reminiscent of South France than South India ! Another facet of this diverse state is the two hill stations of Ootacamund and Kodaikanal. Both are little patches of England in India !!