Though this trend started before the pandemic, many are now actively signing up for farm tour activities. Ronald Rajesh of Chennai Adventure Club, tells DT Next that city-bred youngsters are looking for fun activities to do along with family and friends. “People living in Chennai, especially youngsters and children, might not have witnessed the village lifestyle. When we launched one day in a village concept, many came forward expressing their interest. A few villages in the outskirts of Chennai are famous for cultural retreats.
One of those villages is Melmaruvathur, about 60 km from the city. We are organising a county farm tour in this village to showcase the deep-rooted culture of Tamil Nadu. During the one-day visit to the farm, you will get to meet the villagers, taste local food, indulge in village activities and play traditional games which old people of the region used to play,” says Ronald.
The one-day tour starts at 9 in the morning and ends at 5. “We have collaborated with traditional artists from the surrounding areas for this tour. There will be village activities like vazhukku maram, uri adithal, undikol, nondi, maattuvandi ride, tug of war, throwball, etc. People can also participate in indoor and outdoor games like pallankuzhi, kallatom, aadu puli aatam, bambaram, goli, kho kho, 7 stones, etc. Depending on the availability of artists, we also host nadhaswaram and karagattam performances,” he adds.
Another venture, Storytrails has been organising story-based walking tours and short excursions. Their village trails are equally popular among adults and children. “In this one-day trip, people get to discover the charms of Chennai’s countryside. The trail is at a paddy field near Kalpakkam. You can listen to stories on how farming is practiced, how it has evolved over the years, what grows on a farm, village economy, farming as a lifestyle and so on. If interested, one can also do a bit of sowing and harvesting,” says Vijay Prabhat Kamalakara of Storytrails.