Situated in the geographic center state of Tamil Nadu, Tiruchirapalli is more commonly known as Trichy or Tiruchi. A truly incredible place, some of the most significant and must-see temples are situated within the city. A big, crowded and busy city, Tiruchirapalli is a truly memorable city with a deep and powerful character coupled with a long history. Overview The historic city of Tiruchirappalli is located on the banks of the river Cauvery and is the fourth biggest city in Tamil Nadu. A citadel of the early Chola kings, which later fell to the Pallava dynasty, in the modern day, Tiruchi is a unique mixture of tradition, culture and a sign of modern times built surrounding the Rock Fort. In the city, there are many places of culture including Colleges, Missions and Churches from as far back as the 1760s with the town and its fort being built by the Nayaks of Madurai. This city has produced great Tamil scholars whose contributions to the Tamil literature have been very significant. One of the most incredible landmarks of this vibrant town is the Rockfort Temple, which is an incredible monument stood on a huge rocky outcrop which can be seen from the ground and which towers over the old city. During the British-French struggle for power in India in the 18th century, it was one of the main centers with which the wars of the Carnatic was fought. As the fourth biggest city in Tamil Nadu, it also takes on the responsibility of being the main commercial centre within the state and is very much famous for its production of goods including handmade clothes, artificial diamonds, cigars, glass bangles and toys. Some years ago, when it was decided that Chokkanatha Nayak would move the capital from Madurai to Tiruchirappalli, he also built the infrastructures to place an administration centre. The result was the Audience Hall that he built to be perceived as a miniature of Thirumalai Nayak Mahai of Madurai and is in this current day being maintained by the Government Museum of Tiruchirapalli. Rich and vast in stone sculptures, it represents the periods of Pallava and Chola, and in the religions of Jainism, Buddhism and Hinduism. Best Season Due to the very warm Indian summer, it is often recommended to visit Tiruchirapalli during the winter months of between November and March as during these months, visitors will be able to enjoy much milder climates of between 19 and 22 degrees Celsius. This mild temperature, although still warm, makes it much more bearable for visitors to visit monuments and temples in the city and region without walking around in a pool of sweat. Summers are warm, and the temperature can often reach the maximum of 41°C and minimum of 36°C. The summer months, you will experience high levels of humidity atmosphere during the season that allows visitors to wear light cotton clothes. Visiting between June and September can also be a bit hit or miss for visitors as it is during these months that the monsoon seasons exists. The city has moderate rainfall, and the atmosphere becomes humid. However, you can enjoy the sights during these days as rains make the atmosphere pleasant and people get relief from the hot climate. All in all, it is best recommended for visitors that the winter months are the best season to visit Tiruchirappalli. Getting There and around It is most common to arrive in Tiruchirappalli from the capital city of the state which is Chennai. Tiruchirappalli is very well connected to Chennai by various modes of transport including bus, train and also internal air services. The most common mode of transport between these two cities is by bus, where there are frequent services across the clock. There is a bus leaving from both directions every hour whilst it is possible to take the state-run buses or private buses. The privately run buses are operated by companies such as KPN Travels, Parveen Travels and SRM Travels and they all offer very convenient, timely and comfortable travel. The privately run companies allow for organized travel as they all accept Internet bookings so you tourists can avoid the scramble of getting a ride. Trains are also commonly used for transport, and best serve the purpose of traveling overnight via night trains. Tiruchirapalli Railways Station is well connected to all major cities in India, and it is one of the busiest stations in Tamil Nadu. It serves as a major junction and has trains operating to Trivandrum, Tirunelveli, Madurai, Kochin, Bangalore, Mumbai, Delhi and Chennai on a daily basis. Situated around 5 km from the city, in 2008 the Tiruchirappalli International Airport became an esteemed point of entry into the city from abroad. The reason for this is because the low-cost carrier Air Asia began a route from Kuala Lumpur in Malaysia to the city. Air Asia as you would expect from a low-cost carrier, offers prices that are incredibly cheap for the four hour journey with tickets booked in advance costing as little as $60 and even cheaper during the common sales. This has made the city directly accessible from abroad. You can also fly rather cheaply from other destinations such as Singapore where Tiger Airways offer services four times per week. Air India Express also offer flights to and from the city to destinations such as Dubai, Kuala Lumpur, Singapore and Abu Dhabi on a frequent basis. As well as offering international flights to and from the city, Air India Express also operate a daily internal service to Chennai and also a weekly service to Mumbai. Other airlines to operate from the city include Sri Lankan Airlines and also Kingfisher Airlines. If arriving by car or vehicle, the major national highway passes through the city and leads to the major road system of India. Tourist Attractions The most prominent tourist attraction in the district is that of the Rock Fort Temples. The Tiruchirapalli Rock Fort is a historic fort and temple complex built on the grounds of an ancient rock. The constructions of the temples are built on a 273 foot High Rock. Inside the Rock fort, you will find two temples, The Uchichi Pillaiyar Koil and The Siva Temple. The High Rock is renowned to date back to over one billion years ago, as geologically tested. Other attractions of great tourist interest in the area include the Pallava-era Ganesa temple and also the Nayaka-era fort. The Fort complex was the location of the fiercely contested battles between the Madurai Nayakas and the Bijapur, Carnatic and Maratha forces. The fort was the place where the Carnatic wars were held and ultimately helped lay the foundations of the British Empire in India. The Sri Ranganathaswamy Temple is also another famous attraction of the district of Tiruchirappalli. The temple is considered as the foremost temple of Lord Vishnu for Vaishnavites whilst also being the temple of where he is laid to rest. It is a temple of considerable size, and there are many things to explore and lots of history to be learned. It possesses great architectural beauty and is rich in culture and history. For non-Hindu visitors, however, access is restricted to the sixth floor only and not inside to the gold topped sanctum. The temple is where the body of the Hindu Saint Ramanuja has been well preserved for over 1000 years. Entry to the temple is free. Accommodation In Tiruchirappalli, there is an accommodation to meet the criteria for a whole host of visitors and tourists. For backpackers and visitors on a budget, there are many budget hotels within the city which offer basic facilities at a cheap price. The highest rated budget hotels include Hotel Arun which offers the option of both air conditioned and not air-conditioned rooms, Hotel Meega which includes TV facilities, Hotel Anand and also Sri Saraswathi Lodge which is a newly renovated hotel which includes cable TV, running cold and hot water, Travel desk assistance and hygienic veg restaurant. For visitors looking for mid-range accommodation then the highly recommended Jenny's Residence is a great option. Other recommended mid-range hotels include Femina Hotel and also the Grand Gardenia which starts from $75 per night. For those travelers who want a luxurious stay whilst in the city, Breeze Residency is the place to stay, offering all kinds of top luxurious facilities to help you most enjoy your stay in the city. A remarkable and ancient city, Tiruchirappalli is an incredibly vibrant place with an abundance of culture and history. With easy access to and from the city, there is now no excuse not to explore this unique place and to visit some of the finest temples and visitor attractions the country has to offer.