2 DAY TRIP FROM CHENNAI | VELLORE - TIRUVANNAMALAI - GINGEE FORT

Historical & Heritage | Pilgrimage | Adventure / Trekking

Photo Credit: Flickr

ITINERARY SUMMARY

Trip Starting Point: Chennai City

Mode of Travel: Car (or Cab)

Trip Duration: 2 Days

Ideal Start Time: 6 AM (Day 1) & 8 AM (Day 2)

Total Places Visited: 8

Day 1 Attractions | Day 2 Attractions

DAY 1 : VELLORE

Travel from Chennai to Vellore

Pilgrimage

Duration of visit: 1 Hour
Timings: 6 AM to 1 PM and 4 PM to 8 PM
Entry Fee: FREE

At a distance of 400 m from Ratnagiri Bus Stop and 17 km from Vellore Town Railway Station, Ratnagiri Balamurugan Temple is an ancient temple located on top of a hillock in Ratnagiri on Vellore - Chennai National Highway. It is one of the important temples around Vellore.

The Ratnagiri Temple is dedicated to Lord Murugan. There are two forms of the deity in this temple, one is Lord Thirukkolam, seen with his wives Valli and Devasena and the other is Lord Gurukkolam. The idol of the main deity Bala Murugan was installed in a chariot which is made of granite. The garbhagriha is made of granite and is modeled according to the Chola architecture. The wall surrounding the shrine has small idols of Ganesha, Dakshinamurthy, Murugan, Brahma, Durga, and Chandikeswarar. There are 2 temples for the Lord Vinayaka, one on top of the hill and another at the bottom of hill.

This temple was built .....

Historical & Heritage

Duration of visit: 1 Hour
Timings: 6 AM to 11 AM and 4 PM to 8 PM
Entry Fee: FREE

At a distance of 650 m from Virinjipuram Bus Stop and 13 km from Vellore Town Railway Station, Sri Margabandeswarar Temple is a 13th century temple situated on Bangalore - Chennai National Highway. The temple has rich sculptures and artistic pillars. The temple was built by Cholas Kings in 13th Century while Bomma Nayakars, who built Vellore Jalagandeswarar temple, made several extensions to the temple including beautiful kalyana mandapa.

The main deity of this temple is Swayambu Lingam known as Margabandeeswarar. The Siva Lingam is slightly leaning to North East direction. The Goddess of the temple is Maragadambal. Other deities seen in the temple are Ganapathy, Subramanya, Chandra Mouleeswara, Pancha Mukha Lingam, Saptha Matrukas, Lakshmi, Saraswathy & Durga. In this temple Lord Brahma is worshiped as Virinjan. He worshipped Lord Shiva .....

Historical & Heritage

Duration of visit: 1 Hour
Timings: 9 AM - 12.30 PM and 2 PM - 5 PM
Entry Fee: Rs. 5

At a distance of 1.5 km from Vellore Town Railway Station, Vellore Fort is the 16th century granite fort surrounded by a deep moat set in the heart of the town. It was built by Bommi and Thimma Reddy in the 16th century during the reign of the Vijayanagar king Krishnadeva Raya. The fort was captured in the 17th century by the Adil Shahis, the Muslim rulers from Bijapur. It was then taken by the Marathas, and later by Daud Khan of Delhi in the early 18th century. The British took control of this fort in 1768 and controlled it until Independence. During British rule, the Tipu Sultan's family and the last king of Sri Lanka, Vikrama Rajasinha were held in as prisoners in the fort. The fort is an excellent example of military architecture and has withstood several attacks.

The Vellore Fort was constructed with granite from the nearby quarries in Arcot and Chittor districts. It spreads over an area of 133 acres. It has huge double walls .....

Historical & Heritage

Duration of visit: 15 Mins
Timings: 9 AM to 5 PM
Entry Fee: FREE

At a distance of 1.5 km from Vellore Town Railway Station, The Tipu Mahal and Hyder Mahal are the palaces located inside the Vellore Fort. The Tipu Mahal has 180 rooms with a central pillar hall and the Hyder Mahal on the same campus housed over 200 rooms.

It is believed that Tipu resided here with his family during the war against the British. The palaces are closed to public nowadays as they serve as a high security prison. During the British rule, Tipu Sultan's family was detained here and the last king of Sri Lanka in captivity.

On July 10, 1806, before sunrise, the Indian sepoys stationed in the fort attacked the European barracks there, and had killed about 15 Officers and 100 English soldiers and ransacked their houses. Some of the rebelling soldiers also urged the sons of Tipu Sultan to lead the campaign. After this Sepoy Mutiny, the British transferred Tipu's sons and daughters to Calcutta. The Tombs of Bakshi Begum, widow of Hyder Ali and Padshah Begum, Tipu's wife, .....

Historical & Heritage

Duration of visit: 15 Mins
Timings: 9 AM to 5 PM
Entry Fee: FREE

At a distance of 1.5 km from Vellore Town Railway Station, St John's Church is an ancient church located inside the Vellore Fort. This church is one of the oldest churches in Vellore.

St. Johns Church is a part of the Churches of South India and is one of the biggest churches in South India. The church was started in 1846 by the Reform Church of America (RCA). The church was shifted from the Filterbed Road to its present location in the fort. The British soldiers who lost their life during the Sepoy Mutiny have been buried in the church premises. There are many inscriptions preserved in the church that provide history of the shrine. Regular prayers are still held in this church.

Historical & Heritage

Duration of visit: 15 Mins
Timings: 9 AM to 5 PM
Entry Fee: FREE

At a distance of 1.5 km from Vellore Town Railway Station, Vellore Fort Mosque is situated inside the Vellore Fort. This mosque is also known as Nawab Chanda Sahib Mosque.

This Mosque was built in 1750 by Nawab Chanda Sahib. It is one of the important attractions in Vellore Fort. The entrance of the Masjid is on the northern side of the Vellore Fort. This mosque has been constructed using Brick and lime and still stands in good shape. This Indo-Saracenic style mosque has a prayer hall and the dimensions of the hall are 40 feet in length and 15 feet in breadth. At the centre of the mosque there is a big dome with minars on the sides. The mosque is decorated with floral designs.

Presently prayers are not conducted inside the mosque.

Overnight Stay in Vellore

DAY 2 : TIRUVANNAMALAI - GINGEE FORT

Historical & Heritage | Pilgrimage

Duration of visit: 2 Hours
Timings: 5:30 AM to 9:30 PM
Entry Fee: FREE

At a distance of 120 Kms from Kanchipuram, 195 Kms from Chennai, 204 Kms from Bangalore and 83 Kms from Vellore, the famous Arunachala Temple in Thiruvannaamalai is one of the greatest Shaiva temples in South India. Tiruvannamalai along with Gingee Fort is one of the ideal Chennai weekend getaways and a major pilgrimage site in Tamilnadu.

Built within an area of 25 acres, this temple was constructed by Vijayanagara kings between 16th and the 17th centuries. This temple is famous for its huge & massive gopurams built on four sides of the temple. The Rajagopuram on East Gateway is 217 feet high with 11 storeys. The base measure 135 feet by 98 feet. This tower was built by King Krishna Devaraya of Vijayanagar. The Thousand Pillared Mantapam and the tank opposite to it were also constructed by Krishna Devaraya. The temple is fortified by a huge wall. Each of the prakarams has a huge Nandi.

The .....

Adventure / Trekking | Historical & Heritage

Duration of visit: 2-3 Hours
Timings: 9 AM to 5 PM
Entry Fee: Rs. 5 for Indian & Rs. 100 for Foreigners

At a distance of 2 km from Gingee Bus Stand, 71 km from Puducherry, 85 km from Kanchipuram and 93 km from Vellore, Gingee Fort or Senji Fort in Villupuram District is one of the largest surviving forts in Tamil Nadu. The fort was historically considered most impregnable and it was called the 'Troy of the East' by the British. The fort is one of the prominent tourist places to visit near Villupuram & Chennai also among the best places near Chennai & Pondicherry for a day trip.

Originally the site had a small fort built by the Chola dynasty during 9th century. Gingee Fort, also known as Chinji or Jinji, was modified by Kurumbar while fighting the Cholas and again by the Vijayanagara Empire during the 13th century. As per one account, the fort was built during the 15-16th century by the Gingee .....

Travel from Gingee Fort to Chennai

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