Mettur Dam, situated 30 miles from Salem in a small Mettur Village, is one of the largest dams in India. Built across the River Cauvery at the canyon, Mettur Dam was built in the year 1943 and is a sight of sheer beauty. The dam is surrounded by verdant hills and picturesque natural beauty and is quite popular among tourists. One of the most extraordinary features of the dam is its design, which is a testament to the country's engineering genius. Mettur Dam is a huge human-made marvel which spans over a massive length of 1700 metres and is a major hotspot where tourists visit from all across the country to relax and seek solitude.
Distance from Salem: 51 km
After having seen the breathtaking falls, the next most attractive place of Hogenakkal are the Melagiri Hills. The Hills are a few km away and various trekking options upto the hill add to the thrill of finally seeing the ranges. The hills are the point where the Eastern and Western Ghats meet each other. With two mountain ranges converging from both the sides, and dense forests all around the place, the view is simply sublime. You can also spot one horned antelopes in these valleys.
Distance from Salem: 148 km
Close to the Arunachaleshwar temple and the Ramana Ashram, this is one of the caves where the saint Ramana spent his period of stay in Thiruvannamalai. In order to reach this destination, one needs to trek a long way. The view from the top is definitely worth it.
Distance from Salem: 170 km
Kiliyur falls a good choice for a family or group excursion. The pristine water combined with the cold weather makes it a lucrative getaway. The Kiliyur Falls drops from a height of 300 feet and are a popular tourist attraction near Salem. They also offer boating and swimming activities in their vicinity. These waterfalls are a part of the Shervaroyan hill range of the Eastern Ghats. The water from the Yercaud Lake drops 300 feet into the Kiliyur Valley, thus forming these falls.
Distance from Salem: 30 km
Known For : Sri Ranganatha Swamy Temple, Srirangam Tiruchirappalli Rock Fort
A treasure trove of ancient Dravidian temples, Tiruchirappalli is also known as Trichy, is one of the largest cities in Tamil Nadu. Commonly known as Trichy, it lies 320 kilometres away from the state capital of Chennai. Located on the banks of Cauvery River, this city is an effortless blend of old and new. The oldest living city of Tamil Nadu, Tiruchirappalli has a history dating back to the 3rd century BC. The historic site of Rockfort is the main highlight of this region. Packed with cave temples, it is the most beautiful example of temple architecture.
Distance from Salem: 146 km
Sirkazhi is a small town in Nagapattinam district of the Tamil Nadu located 250 km from the capital city of Chennai. It is a part of Cauvery Delta region and is situated at a distance of 13 km from the shores of Bay of Bengal. The small town encompasses an area of 13 sq km and is graced with the number of historic edifices from the Medieval period to the modern period of British colonization. Temples, beaches, fort, museums and very intriguing history, the town of Sirkazhi has everything imbibed in its relatively small parameters. A pleasant, peaceful town with historical past, Sirkazhi is adopting modern developments while upholding and honouring its customs and beliefs of a traditional South Indian village.
Distance from Salem: 201 km
The second largest Mangrove forest in the world, Pichavaram is located off the tourist trail but is totally worth the effort. One can be enchanted by the complex river system and canal network that bind this beautiful place together and support the rich biodiversity of the place. Situated nearby the temple town of Chidambaram, Pichavaram can be enjoyed through a boat ride around the 1100 hectare area of the forest, which takes you through narrow canal, breathtaking sceneries and allows you to witness the amazing life forms of the Mangrove tress while adoring the bird life of the forest. The sea is just 6 km from the forest and one can see the sand bank which separates the forest from the Bay of Bengal during the boat ride.
Distance from Salem: 193 km
Known For : Sim's Park Dolphin's Nose Ketti Valley
One of the most beautiful and serene hill stations you will come across in the country, Coonoor is the second largest hill station in the wonderful Nilgiri Hills of the Western Ghats. It is situated at an altitude of 1930 meters and just 19 km from Ooty. Coonoor is a delightful location to have a panoramic view of the Nilgiri Hills and the Catherine Falls. Coonoor is a dream come true for writers and poets due to its rich greenery, the manicured hills, the Colonial culture and amazing sceneries, which will leave you relaxed and inspired. While in Coonoor you can completely lose yourself to nature and its eternal beauty.
Distance from Salem: 200 km
Best Time: October to March
Located in the town of Darasuram near Kumbakonam in Tamil Nadu, Airavatesvara Temple is a revered Hindu temple and a UNESCO world heritage site. Part of the popular trio known as the Great Living Chola Temple along with Brihadeeswara Temple at Thanjavur and the Gangaikondacholisvaram Temple at Gangaikonda Cholapuram, Airavatesvara Temple was built by the Chola King Rajaraja Chola II in the 12th century CE. Presided by the Hindu God Lord Shiva, the temple is amongst the eighteen medieval era Hindu temples in the Kumbakonam area. The shrine displays the Vaishnavism and Shaktism legs of Hinduism, and the traditional Nayanars- the Bhakti saints of Shaivism.
Distance from Salem: 205 km
Mayiladuthari is situated on the banks of river Cauvery, in the Nagapattinam District. It is about 281 kms away from the capital, Chennai. The word 'Mayiladuthari' translates to 'Peacock town.' This place can be referred to as a pilgrimage hub as it has plenty of temples. Most of the temples here are revered due to their distinct significances. This is the reason why a large number of devotees are attracted to Mayiladuthari.
Best time: October to March.
Karaikudi is a heritage town located in the Sivaganga district. Chettinad region happens to be the focal point owing to its history. Many prominent temples, including the Pillayarpatti Temple, are in close vicinity of Karaikudi. There are Chettinad Mansions, Thousand Windows House and Athangudi Palace. These are some of their exclusive heritage sites. The palaces' architecture shows hints of European and East Asian aesthetics. Apart from this, utensils, furniture, antique shops; and Chettinad cuisine are some other things to look forward to, in Karaikudi.
Best time: October to February.
Erode is a city and district in the Kongunadu region. It is famous as one of the leading producers of plantain, white silk, coconuts and turmeric cultivation. There are more than 487 temples in Erode district. Some of the many tourist places are the Vellode birds sanctuary, VOC Park, CSI Brough Memorial Church, Govt. Museum, a few dams such as Kodiveri Dam, Bhavani Sagar Dam etc.
Best time: October to March.
Karur is located on the Kongunadu region of Tamil Nadu. It is an important industrial centre, primarily of cottage and handloom textiles. There are various parks in here. In Karur District, there's a Government Museum as well. The Ponnaniar Dam serves as a small picnic spot. A plenty of temples situated in and around Karur are visited by pilgrims. They are also known for their artistic architecture.
Best time: October to March.
Namakkal is also known as the 'Egg City' as it has a large poultry industry. Salem is about 42 kms by train. Some of the tourist places in and around Namakkal are Kolli hills, Jedarpalayam Dam, Namakkal fort, Namagiri Aman Temple, Namakkal Anjaneyar Temple and other prominent temples.
Best time: October to March.
Pakkanadu is a village and a Gram Panchayat of the Idappadi Taluk in Salem District. Tamil is the local language here. The railway stations are at least 10 kms away; the nearest one being Mettur Dam. There are some noteworthy temples located in Pakkanadu. Erode, Yercaud, MM Hills, Hogenakkal, Namakkal are some places nearby, which can be visited by tourists.
Sankagiri is located about 38 km away from Salem. Various bus routes from Salem, Erode etc. connect to Sankagiri. It is well known for the Sankagiri fort that was built in the 15th century. The Sankagiri fort was an important military base in historic times; due to its strategic architecture. Nearby, there are quite a few temples, the hill resort Yercaud and Mettur Dam that are must-visit.