Faces of South India

Having flown from the rather gritty Kolkatta to our first south Indian destination, Chennai, we were unsure what to expect when disembarking…would the south continue to be an assault of noise, pollution, people, cows, rickshaws and intense smells?  Would we, at any stage, get a glimpse of what could be a deemed a ‘relaxing holiday’ rather than a ‘hardcore adventure’?


Having been stalked paparazzi styles around practically each and every monument of the north, bamboozled out of more rupees that we can anticipate at every turn and having grown increasingly more wary of people’s intentions with every interaction, we were (as ungrateful as it might seem) ready for a change of pace.  Strolling along the beach in Chennai our first night, we braced ourselves as a large group of young men came running up to us to chat and take photos.  IMG_5093

Feeling the relaxation that a change of scene can sometimes bring about we obliged and were rewarded with…huge smiles, sweet intentions, grateful handshakes and hearty goodbyes.  The end.  No ulterior motives, nothing.  It was a wonderful introduction to the relaxed and generous nature of the southern people and was to be the pattern for the entirety of our stay at this end of the sub-continent.  We spent entire afternoons sitting on beaches, outside temples and cruising around the markets having people approach us to talk and always wanting their photos taken, providing us with the best ingredients for fabulous portraiture.  There’s no anecdotes or narrative here, other than the generosity of our models.  Enjoy!

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Before you think AGAIN that we’ve gone all soft and fluffy, check out this awesome video  we took on the beach the first night in Chennai.  It has been duly added to the file of “Things to Do to Naughty Kids in the ESL Classroom”…hehehe.


Categories: India, TravelTags: , , , , , , , , , ,


  1. Love the pictures of everyone 🙂 Looks like a great adventure!

  2. Fantastic pics! Such friendly-looking people!

  3. Great post — totally traveling vicariously through you guys since I’d love to go to India, right? Cheer!

  4. One of the companies we do business with is located in Chennai. My boss and my friend got to go visit their offices a couple years back and had an amazing time. Unfortunately, I didn’t get to go with them. Hopefully someday…!

    • If you do get the chance to visit this part of India, we highly recommend it. Most people we met didn’t have that much to say about Chennai but we thoroughly enjoyed our brief time there. Part of that was probably the sheer contrast of the south to the north but there was certainly a different feel about the place. We’re already scheming to see if we can justify a trip back to the south of India…

  5. Wow, these are awesome pics guys – I’m picturing them enlarged on a lounge wall!! xoxoxo

  6. Love the colours and vibrancy. How incredibly beautiful the women are in their Sari’s and so very naturally gorgeous.

  7. These are pro ~ incredible photos you guys!!
    So much character and emotion captured!!

  8. I’m chiming in rather late, having just found your blog. Do you regret spending as much time as you did in the north, given that you found the south less harrying (for want of a better word)? Were you to visit again, would you bypass the north and spend your time in the south? Cheers and thanks.

    • Hi! Nope, no regrets – I actually think the full on immersion of the north made us appreciate relaxing in the south all the more. Plus, I think had we only visited the south, we would have a weird image of what India is “like”. It is such a massive country – each state has its own unique characteristics, food, people…it really is like visiting a variety of different countries. Yes, the north is harrying, but also real, interesting, beautiful, historic, immense, wonderful. If we were to visit again, we’d love to visit some of the places we didn’t get a chance to in the north (and revisit some places like Varanasi, and Jaisalmer, and Udaipur), and then go and relax on the beach in Verkala to finish 🙂

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