Chennai City Travel Guide

Formerly known as Madras is the capital city of Tamil Nadu and is located on the Coromandel coast of Bay of Bengal. It is a rightly called the 'Gateway of South India' and is the prime cultural, economic and educational hub of the southern part of the country. It became the core of British East India's trading activity in the pre-independence era. Chennai and its suburbs are the living testimonies to distinct components of the Dravidian civilization.The city has a lot to offer to the visitors with its magnificent temples, scintillating beaches, UNESCO heritage sites, and prominent centers of cultural and historical significance. It remains well connected to the rest of the parts of the county and can be reached using air, rail and road.

Covering attraction's type of Chennai: Beach, Botanical Garden, Fishing Harbour, Hindu Temple, History and Culture Gallery, Library, Living history museum, Monument, Mosque, National Park, Sacred Sites, etc.

Ashtalakshmi Temple, Chennai

Ashtalakshmi Temple | #1 of Top 15 Places to Visit in Chennai

Ashtalakshmi Temple is dedicated to eight avatars of goddess Lakshmi. It is located along the shorelines of Elliot Beach in Besant Nagar. The grandiose shrine measures 65ft in length and 45 ft in breadth. The most remarkable feature of the shrine is that it is constructed in the shape of om. Eight forms of goddess symbolizing wealth, offspring, success, prosperity, courage, bravery, food, and knowledge are present in nine separate sanctums on four floors. The second floor of the temple has the shrine of Goddess Lakshmi and her consort Lord Vishnu.

Fees & Timings: It opens 6:30 AM to 12:00 PM and 6:00 PM to 9:00 PM. On Friday, Saturday, Sunday opens 6:30 AM to 1:00 PM. The entry is free.

Location: Elliots Beach, Besant Nagar

Place Type: Religious - Hindu Temple

Nearest Metro: Teynampet Metro Station , Nandanam Metro Station ,

Connemara Public Library, Chennai

Connemara Public Library | #2 of Top 15 Places to Visit in Chennai

Connemara Library Named after the former governor of Madras Lord Connemara the library is a part of the majestic Madras Museum Complex on the Pantheon Road, Egmore. With a humungous collection of over 600,000 books, it has been declared as the National Depository Library by the Central Government of India. It has tall pillars inlaid with intricate designs and impressive interiors that leave one and all mesmerized. The library has a repository of centuries-old publications,including1608 Bible. With the addition of a new three-storied building it now has a textbook section, a periodical hall,a reference room, a video room, an IAS study center, and an entire floor dedicated to books on Indian languages.

Fees & Timings: It opens all days. 9:30 AM to 7:30 PM from Monday to Saturday and 9:30 AM to 6:00 PM on Sunday. There is no entry fee.

Location: Pantheon Road, Egmore

Place Type: Sightseeing - Library

Nearest Metro: Egmore Metro Station , Nehru Park Metro Station (1 KM),

Dakshinachitra, Chennai

Dakshinachitra | #3 of Top 15 Places to Visit in Chennai

Dakshinachitra, literally means a picture of the South. It is one of the living-history museums in India set up with a mission of promoting and exhibiting the south Indian culture. Set up as a traditional village it has an array of 18 authentic dwellings that provide the viewers a glimpse of lifestyle, architecture , performing arts, and craft of South India in the most engaging manner. The museum was conceptualized by an NGO, Madras Craft Foundation and was inaugurated on 14th Dec 1996. The premises house a research unit, playground, community area, and souvenir kiosks. In the house, artisans display their wares and regular workshops are organized to promote the vernacular style of art.

Fees & Timings: It opens 10:00AM to 6:00PM Wed-Fri, closed on Tue. Entry fee: Indian Rs.100-120, Indian Student Rs.50, Foreigner Adult 250, Student Rs. 70.

Location: SH 49, Muttukadu

Place Type: Museum - Living history museum

Nearest Metro: Meenambakkam Metro Station (1 KM), Chennai International Airport Metro Station (1 KM),

Elliot's Beach, Chennai

Elliot's Beach | #4 of Top 15 Places to Visit in Chennai

Elliot's beach popularly also known as Bessie is set towards the southern endpoint of Marina beach shore. The beach has been named after Edward Elliot, former Chief Magistrate and Superintendent of police. The dramatically sandy beach lures locals and tourists alike. It does not bustle with a lot of activity and leaves visitors mesmerized by its calmness and tranquility. It is an ideal spot for "me hours" and long solitary walks. Witnessing sunsets and sunrise here is a visual treat. Ashtalakshmi Temple dedicated to eight forms of Goddess Lakshmi and Velankanni Church erected in honor of Lady of Health are the key attractions of this pristine beach.

Fees & Timings: The beach can be visited between 12:00 AM to 11:59 PM and there is no entry fee.

Location: Elliot's Beach

Place Type: Sightseeing - Beach

Nearest Metro: Teynampet Metro Station (1 KM), Nandanam Metro Station (1 KM),

Government Museum, Chennai

Government Museum | #5 of Top 15 Places to Visit in Chennai

The Government Museum famed as Egmore Museum or the Madras Museum is the second oldest museum in India. It offers a peek into human history, tradition, art, and culture. Its exceptional collection of coins, archeological splendor, the biggest collection of bronze idols, and the largest collection of Roman antiquities outside Europe make it the third-largest museum in the world. The museum is located in Pantheon Complex which also houses a Public library and a National Art gallery. The Government museum owes its roots to a museum that was planned by the Madras Literary Society in 1846. The museum complex has six buildings and nearly fifty galleries dedicated to different branches of studies like anthropology, archeology, zoology, contemporary art, geology, and others.

Fees & Timings: It opens 9:30 AM to 5:00 PM All Days, Closed on Friday. The entry fee for Indians is INR 15 and for foreigner INR 250.

Location: Pantheon Road, Egmore

Place Type: Museum - History and Culture Gallery

Nearest Metro: LIC Metro Station (1 KM), Egmore Metro Station (1 KM),

Guindy National Park, Chennai

Guindy National Park | #6 of Top 15 Places to Visit in Chennai

This destination tops the itinerary list of most of the visitors. The park was formerly called "Guindy Lodge " and was the official residence of the governor of Tamil Nadu. It is one of the very few parks located inside the city. Owing to its small area, it is ranked as the eighth smallest National park in India. The park with its rich biodiversity is an abode to around 350 species of plants, over 14 species of mammals, and over 150 species of birds. Its prime attractions include a snake park with king cobras, pythons, and vipers, children's park which has a mini railway, several swings, playground, elephant and pony rides which and memorials to great modern Indian leaders.

Fees & Timings: It opens between 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. all through the week except and Tuesday. Entry fee for adult is INR 15 and for children is INR 10.

Location: Rangeguindy

Place Type: Sightseeing - National Park

Nearest Metro: Saidapet Metro Station (2 KM), Little Mount Metro Station (2 KM),

Kapaleeswarar Temple, Chennai

Kapaleeswarar Temple | #7 of Top 15 Places to Visit in Chennai

Dedicated to Lord Shiva known as Kapaleeswarar and his consort Goddess Parvati is known as Karpagambal (goddess of the wish yielding tree) the temple is a 7th-century exquisite specimen of Dravidian architecture. It is located in Mylapore and according to the legend Shakti worshipped Shiva in the form of a peacock here. The temple has two gopurams one on the eastern and other on the western side and a sacred water tank. The deities in the shrine are seated on vahana or chariots and the pilgrims consider it a privilege to pull or lift them. Religious rituals are performed six times a day and each ritual has four steps of Abhisheka, Alangaram, Nivethanam, Deepa aradanai.

Fees & Timings: The temple opens throughout the week except for Monday between 6:00 AM to 1:00 PM and 4:00 AM to 8:00 PM. No entry fee.

Location: Vinayaka Nagar Colony, Mylapore

Place Type: Religious - Hindu Temple

Nearest Metro: Chennai Central Metro Station (3 KM), Egmore Metro Station (3 KM),

Marina Beach, Chennai

Marina Beach | #8 of Top 15 Places to Visit in Chennai

Marina Beach is acclaimed as one of the longest natural urban beaches in the world. It extends over a distance of 12 km along the Coromandel Coast of the Bay of Bengal between St. George Fort in the North and Beasant Nagar in the South and is easily accessible by different modes of transport. The immaculate charm, blithesome ambiance, and diverse ecosystems make it a popular hangout for all. Dotted by several kiosks of eatables, ethnic handicrafts, souvenirs it is a hot spot of public activity especially during early mornings and evenings. The aquarium and the Icehouse are the prime attractions offered by the place. Kite flying, pony riding, and beach cricket are common sports at the beach.

Fees & Timings: There is no entry fee and you can walk in any time.

Location: Marina Beach

Place Type: Sightseeing - Beach

Nearest Metro: Government Estate Metro Station (3 KM), LIC Metro Station (2 KM),

Marundeeswarar Temple, Chennai

Marundeeswarar Temple | #9 of Top 15 Places to Visit in Chennai

It is a 1300-year-old temple, located in Thiruvanmiyur, with Lord Shiva as the main deity. It leaves the visitors awestruck by its astounding unique architectural style of architecture showing traces from the Chola and The Pallava dynasties. Going by the legend lord Marundeeshwar imparted knowledge about magical medicines to Sage Agastya and since then it is thronged by people with diseases and health issues. The people have a firm belief that the special prasadam acts as a panacea and helps them regain stable health. It has two five-tiered gateway towers (raja gopuram), a huge tank, mandapa with 36 intricately decorated pillars. The shrine has idols of three avatars of shiva Thyagaraja, Marundeeswarar, and Natraja.

Fees & Timings: It can be visited all through the week between 9:00 AM to 8:00 PM and no entry fee is applicable.

Location: Lalitha Nagar, Thiruvanmiyur

Place Type: Religious - Hindu Temple

Nearest Metro: Nandanam Metro Station (2 KM), Saidapet Metro Station (2 KM),

Mylapore, Chennai

Mylapore | #10 of Top 15 Places to Visit in Chennai

Mylapore or the land of peacock scream is a neighbourhood suburb located a few kilometers in the south of Chennai. It is regarded as a cultural hub and is widely acclaimed for its sacrosanct sites and cultural venues. It is the birthplace of the famous Tamil philosopher Valluvar. The primary attractions include a Dravidian architectural marvel Arulmigu Kapaleeswarar temple, Adikesava Perumal Temple, Srinivasar temple, Madhava Perumal temple, Ramkrishna mutt, San Thome Basilica, Luz Church and, madras music academy. Malyapore has been home to several Carnatic vocalists and music organizations. Music sabhas are regularly organized to promote and conserve cultural heritage. It hosts several eateries serving South Indian delights. It is easily accessible and remains well connected with other parts of the city.

Fees & Timings: No Information.

Location: Elliot's Beach

Place Type: Religious - Sacred Sites

Nearest Metro: Thousand Lights Metro Station (2 KM), AG DMS Metro Station (2 KM),

Royapuram Fishing Harbour, Chennai

Royapuram Fishing Harbour | #11 of Top 15 Places to Visit in Chennai

Popularly known as Kasimedu fishing harbor it is one of the most well known aligning grounds located in the north of Chennai Port. The harbor has a capacity of handling over one thousand boats and hundreds of catamarans. It is under the administrative control of Chennai Port Trust and the routine day to day activities are managed by the local fishing community. The local market around the place maintains an inviting display of an exotic variety of seafood and keeps bustling with activity all through the day. It's most remarkable feature is its auction hall where day's catch is sold off for retail selling not just locally but also to the neighboring states.

Fees & Timings: The harbor can be visited anytime during the day and there is no entry fee.

Location: Royapuram Fishing Harbour

Place Type: Sightseeing - Fishing Harbour

Nearest Metro: Washermanpet Metro Station (3 KM), Mannadi Metro Station (3 KM),

Semmozhi Poonga, Chennai

Semmozhi Poonga | #12 of Top 15 Places to Visit in Chennai

Established in 2010 it happens to be the first Botanical garden in Chennai, located on Cathedral Road, Anna Salai junction. It is an ideal place to spend leisure time with friends and family while immersing one's soul in the beauty of nature. It has an exotic collection of several oriental varieties plants especially bonsais imported from China and Thailand, exotic flora, medicinal plants, and aromatic herbs. It houses eight sub garden and twenty-five thematic gardens including water and rock garden, golden garden, mural walk, butterfly garden, fern garden, sunken garden, etc. Other prime attractions at the garden include canteen serving savory refreshments, an artificial duck pond, many water cascades,vertical gardens, and an amphitheater.

Fees & Timings: The garden opens 10:00 AM to 7:30 PM all days except Tuesday and the entry fee is INR 15 for adults and INR 10 for children.

Location: Ellaiamman Colony, Teynampet

Place Type: Sightseeing - Botanical Garden

Nearest Metro: Little Mount Metro Station (3 KM), Guindy Metro Station (3 KM),

Sri Parthasarathy Temple, Chennai

Sri Parthasarathy Temple | #13 of Top 15 Places to Visit in Chennai

Situated at Tiruvallikeni, Tamil Nadu the temple has its roots attached to the 8th century Pallava dynasty. It is an existent testimony to India's glorious past. It gets its name Parthasarthy from Krishna's role as Arjuna's (Parth) charioteer(saarthy) in Mahabharata. The temple is believed to be the resting place for pilgrims visiting Tirupati specifically during solar and lunar eclipses. The temple has gopurams and mandapas adorned with ornate carvings. The shrine houses the figurines of all five avatars of Lord Vishnu Narashima, Rama, Varadaraja, Ranganatha, and Krishna.

Fees & Timings: It can be visited all through the week between 5:30 AM to 12:00 PM and 4:00 AM to 9:00 PM and no entry fee is applicable.

Location: Narayana Krishnaraja Puram, Triplicane

Place Type: Religious - Hindu Temple

Nearest Metro: Chennai Central Metro Station (3 KM), Egmore Metro Station (3 KM),

Thousand Lights Mosque, Chennai

Thousand Lights Mosque | #14 of Top 15 Places to Visit in Chennai

The mosque was constructed in the conventional Islamic design with multiple domes and high minarets by the Wallajah family. It is one of the largest mosques in the country and is revered by all Muslim communities alike. The mosque houses the shrine of Imam Hossein, the grandson of Prophet Muhammad, and is therefore of prime significance to the Shia Muslims around the world. Going by a popular narrative it took about 1000 oil lamps to lighten its large assembly hall and this is how the mosque got its name. The walls of the mosque are adorned with the lines from the Holy Quran. The mosque draws pilgrims and tourists from all over the world, especially during Muharram, the first month of the Islamic calendar.

Fees & Timings: The visiting hours at the mosque are from 5.30 AM to 8.30 PM and there is no entry fee.

Location: Royapettah, Peters Road, Peters Colony

Place Type: Religious - Mosque

Nearest Metro: LIC Metro Station (2 KM), Thousand Lights Metro Station (0 KM),

Valluvar Kottam, Chennai

Valluvar Kottam | #15 of Top 15 Places to Visit in Chennai

An architectural marvel erected to commemorate the contributions of a distinguished poet, philosopher and saint Thiruvalluvar. Built under the aegis of architect V.Ganapati Sthapati the monument is designed in the shape of a temple chariot housing the life-size effigy of saint Thiruvalluvar. The monument is built of 3000 blocks of stones and stands baseless. It houses a capacious auditorium and the Kural Manimandapam, where 1330 verses of Thirukkural are inscribed. The figurine of a lion on the main gateway is adorned with splendid designs and the entire chariot is decorated with very famous as Kalamkari designs.

Fees & Timings: The monument opens all day between 8:30 AM to 5:30 PM. The entry fee is INR 3 for Adults and INR 2 children.

Location: Nungambakkam Lake Area Main Road

Place Type: Sightseeing - Monument

Nearest Metro: Thousand Lights Metro Station (2 KM), AG DMS Metro Station (1 KM),

More best attractions in Chennai

AttractionNearest Metro (KM)
Armenian ChurchChennai Central Metro Station (3 KM)
Express Avenue MallThousand Lights Metro Station (1 KM)
Fort St GeorgeHigh Court Metro Station (2 KM)
Forum Vijaya MallVadapalani Metro Station (0 KM)
MA Chidambaram StadiumGovernment Estate Metro Station (1 KM)
MGR MuseumGovernment Estate Metro Station (3 KM)
Parthasarathyswamy TempleGovernment Estate Metro Station (2 KM)
Pondy BazaarNandanam Metro Station (1 KM)
Spencer Plaza MallThousand Lights Metro Station (0 KM)
St Andrew's Church (The Kirk)Chennai Central Metro Station (1 KM)
St Mary's ChurchChennai Central Metro Station (1 KM)
St Thomas Mount National ShrineNanganallur Road Metro Station (1 KM)
Thousand Lights MosqueThousand Lights Metro Station (0 KM)
Vadapalani Murugan TempleVadapalani Metro Station (0 KM)
Vivekananda HouseGovernment Estate Metro Station (2 KM)

Chennai City FAQs:

𝒜. Chennai, the capital city of Tamil Nadu, attracts many visitors either as tourists or as part of its large workforce.We know that Chennai is popular for IIT and for being an IT and industrial hub.

𝒜. November to February months constitute the winter season in Chennai. It is considered as the best time to visit the city. The temperature during these months hovers between 20 and 25 Degree Celsius.

𝒜. Chennai, on the Bay of Bengal in eastern India, is the capital of the state of Tamil Nadu. British military garrison and East India Company trading outpost, when it was called Madras.

𝒜. Chennai International Airport is an international airport serving the city of Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India, and its metropolitan area. It is located in Tirusulam, 21 km from the city centre.

𝒜. Name of railway station(s) in Chennai city: Chennai Fort railway station, Nungambakkam railway station, Guindy railway station, Chennai Central railway station, Villivakkam railway station, Kasturba Nagar railway station

𝒜. Malls and Shopping places in Chennai city: Phoenix Marketcity, Spencer Plaza, Forum Vijaya Mall, Chennai Citi Centre, Ampa Skywalk Mall, VR Chennai Mall, Fountain Plaza, Express Avenue Mall, Abirami Mega Mall, Gold Souk Grande Mall, Forum Vijaya Mall,

𝒜. Famous Religious places in Chennai city: The Ornate Kapaleeshwarar Temple, The Ancient Parthasarathy Temple, The Sacred Temple of Thyagaraja, The Rich Ashtalakshmi Temple, The Famous Vadapalani Andavar Temple, The Penitent Mangadu Kamakshi Amman Temple, The Royal(ish) Kalikambal Temple, The Standalone Shirdi Sai Baba Temple

𝒜. Fun and Activity places in Chennai city: Sunkissed at Marina Beach, Vandalur Zoo, Nightlife of Chennai, VGP Universal Kingdom, Fun City , Muttukadu Beach, Margazhi Music Festival, East Coast Road, Guindy National Park

𝒜. Following are the names of major bus terminals of the Chennai city: Chennai Mofussil Bus Terminus, TNSTC Bus Terminus, SETC Bus Terminus, MTC Bus Terminus, Kilambakkam bus terminus, Madhavaram Inter-city Bus Terminus

𝒜. Yes, Chennai city has metro rail facility to commute locally. Search Chennai metro routes.

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