Explore vibrant South India, where visiting a temple does not just mean seeing superb architecture and sculpture: rites are celebrated and activities take place -- just as they have for millennia. Begin with three nights in Chennai. At a museum full of masterpieces, see beautiful bronzes and stone carvings. At the seaport of Mahabalipuram, experience the open-air museum of 7th- and 8th-century architecture and view extraordinary reliefs. Then, on a day trip, see the rich and evocative temples of the golden town of Kanchipuram. Spend two nights in Thanjavur (also known as Tanjore) to discover more outstanding bronzes as well as one of the most beautiful temples in South India. Continue to Madurai and, at the Meenakshi Temple, witness a ceremony that has been performed every night for at least 2,000 years. In Kochi, attend the celebrated Kochi-Muziris Biennale of contemporary art, considered the largest in the region. End your South India exploration with a traditional houseboat cruise along Kerala's rustic network of waterways. An optional prelude in Hyderabad and Hampi is offered.