City | Historical & Heritage | Pilgrimage
At a distance of 4.5 Kms from Chennai Central Railway Station (located in Peter's Road, Triplicane, near local Triplicane Railway Station), Sri Parthasarathy Temple dedicated to Lord Krishna is one of the oldest temples in Chennai. This temple is built by Pallavas in the 8th century. This is one of the top tourist places to visit in Chennai city.
The present structure of the temple is largely based on the renovations and additions carried out in the 16th century by the Vijayanagar Kings. A number of fine carvings adorn the temple. It is one of the 108 sacred centers of Sri Vaishnavites.
Visiting Hours: Daily from 6.30 AM to 12 noon and 4 to 8 PM
Museum & Gallery
At a distance of 4 Kms from Chennai Central Railway Station (on Pantheon Road), the Pantheon complex built in 1789 houses Government Museum, the National Art Gallery and the Connemara Public Library. The Government bought this building in 1830 and later several new buildings were added to it. This is one of the top tourist places to visit in Chennai city.
The Government Museum was established in 1857 and has the country's best collection of South Indian bronzes, both ancient and modern. Among which beautiful bronze icons of Nataraja, Rama, Sita, Lakshmana and Hanuman. The Amaravathi Gallery contains the rare second century marble sculptures, depicting important events in the life of Gautama Buddha. The bronzes from the 10th and 13th centuries and handicrafts from the 11th and 12th centuries also are seen here.
The National Art Gallery exhibits several beautiful paintings of 16th and 18th century from Rajasthan, Mughal period and 17th century Deccani art.
Timings: 9.30 .....
Museum & Gallery
At a distance of 3 km from Chennai Central Railway Station, the National Art Gallery is situated inside the Government Museum Complex on Pantheon Road in Egmore, Chennai. This is one of the oldest art galleries in India and also one of the must visit Chennai Tourist Places.
The National Art Gallery was built of sandstone in the year 1907 by T. Namberumal Chetty. Earlier known as Victoria Memorial Hall, the National Art Gallery was built during the celebration of Queen Victoria's Golden Jubilee in Indo-Saracenic style, designed by architect Henry Irwin. It has been identified as a Heritage site by the CMDA.
The National Art Gallery consists of four different sections, which include Tanjore Painting Gallery, Decorative Art Gallery, Indian Traditional Art Gallery and Raja Ravi Varma Painting Gallery. The miniature paintings from the Mughal era, handicrafts from 11th and 12th centuries and Rajput paintings from the 18th and 19th centuries are also on display. Portraits of various .....
At a distance of 7 Kms from Chennai Central Railway Station (located in Vaikuntapuram, less than 1 Kms from local Kodambakkam Railway Station), Valluvar Kottam is a monument built to pay homage to Tamil Poet Saint Thiruvalluvar.
Inaugurated in 1976, the memorial is the form of 101-feet high temple chariot and is the replica of the temple chariot in Thiruvarur. A 33m tall life-size statue of the saint has been installed in the chariot. Another amazing attribute of the auditorium is that it is not supported by a single pillar and stands without any support.
The 133 chapters of his famous work Thirukkural have been depicted in bas-relief in the front hall corridors of the chariot. All the 1330 verses of the poet's epic are depicted on the granite pillars, which surround the auditorium. The auditorium at Valluvar Kottam is said to be the largest in Asia and can accommodate about 4000 people.
Timings: 8.30 AM - 5.30 PM
Entry Fee: Rs. 10 for Adults & Rs. 5 for Childre .....
At a distance of 4 Kms from Chennai Central Railway Station (located at Kamarajar Road, near local Chepauk Railway Station), the famous Marina beach is the second longest beach in the World and runs to a length of 13 Km. This is one of the top tourist places to visit in Chennai city and also one of the popular attraction not to miss in a Chennai tour packages.
Situated on the beach, the Anna Park, named after the founder of D.M.K Anna durai and the tomb of M.G. Ramachandran who was a film star (both were former Chief Ministers of Tamil Nadu) and the Statue of Labour is a splendid sculpture depicting the efforts of a team of labourers who are at hard manual labour.
The beach can be ideally visited in the early mornings or in the late evenings when the area becomes a virtual ground with food stalls and other entertainments.
Historical & Heritage
At a distance of 3 km from Chennai Central Railway Station, MGR Memorial is a memorial structure situated within the picturesque surroundings of the Marina Beach in Chennai. It is one of the popular places of sightseeing in Chennai.
The memorial was built in the memory of M.G. Ramachandran, India's first actor cum chief minister and that too for three consecutive terms until his death. Considered as one of the greatest political leaders and actors of the state, his followers idolize him as Puratchi Thalaivar (Revolutionary leader). He was honoured with Bharat Ratna, the highest civilian award of India after his death. Spread over 8.25 acres, the memorial is located adjacent to the Anna Memorial and has the highest number of visitors along the seafront.
The memorial was built in 1988 and was inaugurated by Janaki Ramachandran, wife of M. G. Ramachandran, in May 1990. The memorial was remodeled and the whole complex was laid with marbles and opened in 1992 by J. Jayalalitha .....
At a distance of 1 km from Kanchipuram Bus Station and 2 kms from Railway Station, Kamakshi Amman Temple is the landmark of Kanchipuram. It is believed that the Kamakshi Amman Temple in Kanchipuram was existing even before Aadi Sankaracharya's period (788-820 AD). It has been told that there are three major Shakti's (Amman) in India. They are 'Kanchi Kamakshi, Madurai Meenakshi and Kaasi Visalakshi'.
Even most of the locals are unaware of the fact that there are no shrines for Shakti in any of the Shiva temples in Kanchipuram. The Kamakshi temple is the only traditional temple dedicated to Shakti in Kanchipuram.
The sannathi (sanctum) is covered with a gold plated roof. The temple has a golden charriot of which the procession takes place during festive seasons.
Timings: 6 AM - 12 noon & 4 PM - 8.30 PM
Historical & Heritage | Pilgrimage
At a distance of 2 km from Kanchipuram Bus Station and 3 kms from Railway Station, Sri Ekambareswarar Temple is also known as 'Ekambaranathar Temple' (temple of Lord Shiva). The 'Pallavas' demolished the old structure and rebuilt the existing structure during 600 AD and 700 AD.
The total area of the whole temple is about 40 acres. The temple tower at the main entrance (Raja Gopuram) that you see here was constructed by the king Krishnadevaraya (Vijayanagar Dynasty). The height of this temple tower is 174 feet (about 57 m).
Until recently there was a mango tree in this temple, which was about 3500 years old. The tree has perished about 2 years ago due to its age. It is believed that Goddess Kamakshi Amman, whose temple is about 1/2 km away from here, worshipped Lord Shiva under this mango tree.
Timings: 6 AM - 12.30 PM & 4 PM - 8.30 PM.
At a distance of 3 kms from Kanchipuram Bus Station and 4 kms from Railway Station, the Kailasanathar temple (Shiva Temple) was built during the period from 685 A.D. to 705 A.D. by the Pallava king Rajasimha Pallava, and his son, Mahendra Varma Pallava.
Kailasanathar temple was constructed using sandstones for most of the sculptures. All the walls around and inside the temple are filled with great sculptures.
The architecture and sculpture of this temple resembles the temples found in Mamallapuram (Mahabalipuram) which were also constructed by Pallavas.
This might be the only temple in Kanchipuram which has not been modified after its original creation.
Timings: 6 AM - 12 noon & 4 PM - 7 PM.
At a distance of 3 km from Kanchipuram Bus Station and 4 kms from Railway Station, Sri Varadaraja Perumal Temple is also known as Devarajaswami Temple. This temple is dedicated to Lord Vishnu.
The 100 ft high temple tower (gopuram) was built in 11th century AD and was renovated by the Vijyanagar Kings in the 16th century. This temple has a 100 pillar hall (mandapam) which is beautifully carved. There is a chain that is carved out of a single stone.
The temple owns a chariot (ther) which is parked on Gandhi road. The chariot is taken out for procession (chariot festival) around the city once in a year (during the month of May).
Timings: 6.30 AM - 12 noon & 3.30 PM - 8 PM
At a distance of 6.5 Kms from Chennai Central Railway Station (located in Mylapore), the Kapaleeswarar Temple dedicated to Shiva is built in 8th Century by Pallavas. But the current structure is rebuilt by the Vijayanagara rulers in 16th century. The 37 meters tall and grand gopuram is made in the characteristic Dravidian style of architecture. This is one of the top tourist places to visit in Chennai city.
This temple has some beautiful sculptures, among which the bronze idols of 63 Saivaite Saints or the Nayanmars. The Arubathumoovar festival dedicated to the 63 Nayanmars held in March-April every year is a special attraction.
Timings: 5 AM to 11 AM and 4 PM to 9.30 PM.
At a distance of 7 Kms from Chennai Central Railway Station (located at the Southern end of Marina Beach, in Mylapore), San Thome Cathedral Basilica is one of Chennai's historic landmarks. This Cathedral was originally built in 1504. It was rebuilt in 1890 with a 180 ft basilica.
This is one of the top tourist places to visit in Chennai city. The church gets its name from St.Thomas, the apostle of Jesus who is believed to have come to India sometime during 52 A.D. It is believed he was killed on St. Thomas Mount just outside the city in 78 AD and his remains interred in Santhome beach where a church was later built. Several years later, another church was built further inland and his mortal remains were transferred here.
Timings: 5 AM to 9 PM
At a distance of 10 Kms from Chennai Central Railway Station (located at Kotturpuram near Guindy, less than 1 km from local Kotturpuram Railway Station) the Birla Planetarium is the most modern planetarium in India. It houses a fully computerised projector that depicts the heavens on a hemispherical dome. The Planetarium presents audiovisual programmes on various themes in astronomy.
Adjoining the planetarium is the Periyar Sceince and Technology Museum, which is of interest to students and other science enthusiasts.
Timing : 10 AM to 5 PM, Closed on National Holidays only
English Programme Timings: 10.45 AM, 1.45pm and 3.45 pm.
Tamil Programme Timings: 12.30 AM and 2.30 PM.
Entry Fee: Rs. 45 for Adults & Rs. 25 for Children (which includes Science Centre, Planetarium, 3D Science Movie & Science Park)
At a distance of 12 Kms from Chennai Central Railway Station (next to Guindy National Park), The Snake Park is a popular spot with most visitors to the city. Established in 1972, the park has been home to a wide range of snakes, from the deadly King Cobra to pythons, vipers and other reptiles.
The Snake Park has become a breeding point of endangered pythons in the country. A museum of preserved specimens of reptiles and amphibian's is an added attraction.
Adjacent to the Snake Park, there is a Children's Park with a collection of birds and animals. This area also houses a play park for the kids. The elephant and pony rides are popular with the children visiting this park.
Timings missing 8.30 AM - 5.30 PM, Closed on Tuesday.
Adult: Rs 5/-, Child: Rs 1/-
Still Camera: Rs 5/-, Digital camera: 20/-, Video Camera: Rs 100/-
At a distance of 13 Kms from Chennai (located in Besant Nagar), The Elliot's Beach is a well known destination for people who seek relief from the crowded metropolitan life of the Chennai. The Adyar River drains into the sea here.
Popularly known as 'Bessie' among locals, this is an extremely calm and tranquil place. The Beach has become a popular hangout for the young generation. Elliot's Beach is also a favorite haunt of foreigners where they can peacefully take their sun bath.
The Ashtalakshmi Temple near the beach is around 20 years old and has modern style architecture. Velanganni Church is a pilgrim place for the Christians.
Elliot's Beach has good connectivity and transportation options from Chennai.
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