Not many people are aware that the southern city of Madurai has a history that takes it back as far as the 3rd century BC. Abundantly rich with cultural offerings, its urban spaces are as welcoming as its rural expanses for such delightful explorations.
That Madurai has a very ancient narrative revolving around culinary pursuits is another discovery for first-time visitors. It appears that recipes that go back to the early times are as relevant to gourmands of 21st century Madurai. Wow, it is incredible heritage! Well, one of the most important things to do to delve into this culinary narrative and became a part of it is to head out on a discovery of its street eats. It's also the perfect excuse to chat up the locals and unveil other cultural layers of this ancient Madurai. Mouthfuls of yummy delights of uttapams, soups and biryanis come spiced up by local trivia and lovely anecdotes.
Flavours and aromas, textures and scents are intrinsic to the Madurai experience. The iconic Meenakshi Temple of Madurai puts the spotlight on the streams of devotees who arrive bearing garlands of jasmine to make the sanctum a fragrant bower for the goddess. So integral is it to the culture of the city it attained the GI tag in 2013 and is a protected floral species. A wander around Madurai allows for many exciting things to do, which goes beyond temple visits and foodie trails. Poke around a bit, and you'll discover stories of fickle kings and towering monuments, of whimsical Gods and extraordinary mortals. These stories take you behind the scenes for a glimpse into the Madurai's great heart.
The obsession with delicious, unique, and palate-pleasing dishes has been a work of art in Madurai since its earliest days. That same obsession has pushed the envelope to excel even in the simplest of dishes. And much of the magic which makes this stand out from other southern foodie samplings is how a dish in Madurai engages with the bounty of spices available in the bazaars. One of the things to do is to join a local homemaker in making a meal to discover how the magic of those spices is unleashed. You will savour that finished meal even better. Learn exciting new ways of doing things with familiar spices, vegetables, and condiments! You will simply love it!
Madurai has so many stories and experiences to share, you must create a new bucket list of things to do to get to know it even more closely. You won't regret it!