Places to Visit in Chennai

Explore Chennai

Chennai fondly called as ‘Madras’ by many and the capital of Tamil Nadu is usually identified as the land of scorching heat and soaring traffic. Chennai is a land of rich tradition, culture and history as well as the land of literature and Dravidian architectural elegance. If you just took a ticket to Chennai, you shouldn’t be muffled by hear say, we at Yatramantra will guide you on how to make the best of this young and growing metropolis. We will take you back to the era of Kings, offer spiritual salvation as well as let you step forward into this diverse metropolis. Find out below some of the best sights to see while in Chennai. The Best Places to visit in chennai :

1. Marina Beach :

marina beach photo

marina beach

Photo Credit : Sakena

Marina beach referred to as the “Pride of Chennai” is the second longest natural beach in the world.It extends 13 kilometers in length from St. George Fort to Mahabalipuram. Enjoy a stroll through the sandy beach by experiencing the twilight and the daybreak. Feel the cool breeze and spot a rare species of olive ridley sea turtles making your mind more relaxed and calm. Enjoy a bird’s eye view of the picturesque, endless beach and Chennai from the Madras Lighthouse, the only lighthouse in India with a lift. Unfortunately, bathing and swimming are strictly prohibited at the beach due to strong undercurrents. Marina Beach is one of the best chennai tourist places.

2. Arignar Anna Zoological Park :

Arignar Anna Zoological Park photo

Arignar Anna Zoological Park

Photo Credit : prabhu ebenezer

Zoological Park is also known as Vandalur Zoo is the first ever zoo in India established in the year 1855. It is a massive park of 510 hectare, housing over 170 species of wildlife. One can find tiger, hyena, lion, panther, wolf, giraffe, elephant and many more. You can either walk your way through the park or ride on a battery operated vehicle to view the animals in one of the biggest parks of South East Asia. If you are interested, you may experience an elephant ride or a lion safari. The park is open on all days of the week except Tuesdays. Anna Zoological Park is one of the best chennai tourist places.

3. Pulicat Lake :

Pulicat Lake photo

Pulicat Lake

Photo Credit : Saivin Muthu

Located on Tamil Nadu border and on the Coromandal Coast in South India, Pulicat lake is the second largest saline water lagoon in India. Enjoy the beauty of the lake with a boat ride. You can indulge yourselves in bird watching as well as fishing, spotting rare fishes and reptile species on a weekend getaway from the city. The Nellapattu Bird Sanctuary located near the lake houses some rare bird species like flamingos, storks, cranes, kingfishers, pelicans and more. The relics of an old Danish Fort dating back to the 17th century can also be found here.Pilicat Lake is one of the best chennai tourist places.

4. Kapaleeshwar temple :

Kapaleeshwar temple photo

Kapaleeshwar temple

Photo Credit : Harini Calamur

A fine example of Dravidian style architecture, the Kapaleeshwar temple was believed to be built during the 7th century dedicated to Lord Shiva and Parvathi. The temple is a marvel in itself adorned with beautiful carvings, pillars and sculptures and a popular pilgrim centre. The shrines are seated on a chariot and many worshipers consider it auspicious to pull the vehicle. The temple observes huge crowd during religious festivals and ceremonies.Kapaleeshwar temple is one of the best chennai tourist places.

5. National Art Gallery :

National Art Gallery photo

National Art Gallery

The magnificence and architecture of the gallery with pink sandstone construction from the exterior will enthrall you upon entering. Established in 1907, the gallery has four sections dedicated for Tanjore Painting, Ravi Varma Painting, Indian Traditional Art and Decorative Art. If you appreciate arts and crafts then the National Art Gallery is a must visit place. It houses manuscripts, books, coins, paintings, handicrafts, stone carvings and many exhibits from the time of the kings and rulers. The museum has the finest collection of artefacts on the history and culture of Tamil Nadu enlightening the visitors. National Art Gallery is one of the best chennai tourist places.

6. Besant Nagar beach :

Besant Nagar beach photo

Besant Nagar beach

Photo Credit : Chandrashekhar Basumat

Also known as Edward Elliot’s beach is a popular spot among youngsters in Chennai. It forms the end of Marina beach. The beach also has a famous landmark called the Karl Schmidt Memorial. It’s  a gate like structure made from bricks. It is named after the Dutch sailor who lost his life while saving a drowning swimmer. The beach is less crowded and offers a calm and serene atmosphere amongst the din and bustle of city. Besant Nagar beach is one of the best chennai tourist places.

7.  St. Thomas Mount National Shrine :

 St. Thomas Mount National Shrinertyred. photo

St. Thomas Mount National Shrinertyred.

Photo Credit : Senthil Mani

The shrine built over the tomb stands 300 feet tall from sea level offering a spectacular view of the city. The church adorned with oil paintings is spotlessly clean spreading peace and divinity. Christian devotees from all over India and tourists from all over the world visit this holy pilgrim. Mount National Shrine is one of the best chennai tourist places.

8. Little Mount Shrine : A pilgrim place for Christians, Little Mount Shrine is a cave where St.Thomas lived in hiding rendering his prayers to the heavenly Father as an apostle in AD 58. The foot imprints of St. Thomas can be seen inside the cave along with the eternal spring that never dries out. It is believed that St.Thomas split the rock and drank the refreshing water while he was thirsty. Many devotees visit this shrine throughout the year. It also offers excellent view of Chennai city along with a cool breeze.Little Mount Shrine is one of the best chennai tourist places.

9. Sri Parthasarathy Temple :

Sri Parthasarathy Temple photo

Sri Parthasarathy Temple

Photo Credit : david Sanabria

Also known as Arulmigu Parthasarathyswamy is dedicated to Lord Krishna. All the four forms of Lord Vishnu namely Lord Krishna, Lord Rama, Lord Narasimha and Lord Varaha are worshiped in a single place. A lot of festivals are staged throughout the year for different gods which flock worshipers and devotees from all over the place. The temple though ancient, depicts its architectural magnificence with sculptures, pillars, stone carvings, entrances, towers etc.Parthasarathy temple is one of the best chennai tourist places.

10. San Thome Church :

San Thome Church photo

San Thome Church

Photo Credit : Rajesh_India

The San Thome Cathedral Basilica built during the 1600s is a sacred shrine chennai places.for Christians all over the world. It is one among the three basilicas built over the tomb of St.Thomas, the other two being in Rome and Spain. The church towers at a height of 155 feet designed in Gothic style of architecture featuring some incredible satin glass painting. An underground chapel also resides beneath the basilica where Pope John Paul prayed in the year, 1986. Relics of St.Thomas along with the lance head that believed to have killed him can be seen in the museum in the church. San Thome Church is one of the best chennai tourist places.

11. Madras Crocodile Bank :

Madras Crocodile Bank photo

Madras Crocodile Bank

Photo Credit : Andy Hay

It is one of the largest reptile zoos in the world. The Crocodile bank has different varieties of reptiles with the main aim to conserve and save them from extinction. The snake park also features lots of poisonous snakes. They also show how the venom is extracted for making medicines. All the animals are well preserved in their natural habitat.Crocodile bank is one of the best chennai tourist places.

12. Fort St. George : chennai fort

The British East Indian Company built the fort in 1640. It comprises of India’s oldest surviving British church, St.Mary’s, a museum containing the artefacts from the British rule along with the Wellesley House containing the paintings of the Fort Governor. The fort is currently under the supervision of the Archaeological Survey of India and is now home to the Tamil Nadu government Legislative Assembly. It is a prominent edifice constructed in British style bringing back historical memories.St. George fort is one of the best chennai tourist places.

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