When you talk about cultural diversity, the one city that comes to mind down South in India is Chennai. It is a self-sustained city that offers a great quality of life. Also known as the Detroit of Asia, Chennai, the capital of Tamil Nadu, is a city with an ever-increasing population. The city is a mixed bag when it comes to catering to the interests of tourists. There are beaches, shopping malls, places of historical significance and many more tourist attractions in Chennai. This is why Chennai has always remained on the top of the list of popular tourist destinations in India.
Popular tourist places to visit in Chennai
If you wish to explore and get the feel of the city, there are several famous places in Chennai. There are also some unexplored beaches and other less crowded travel attractions around Chennai. Summers are pretty warm and humid in the city and the day time temperatures easily soar over 30degrees. So plan your visit accordingly.
Beaches of Chennai
1. Marina Beach
This is one of the most popular beaches in Chennai. This is the longest natural beach in India. Though swimming is prohibited on the beach, this makes a perfect place to spend a fun evening with family. Evenings are crowded and both during the weekdays and weekends as both tourists and locals visit the beach in large groups. Anna Memorial, MGR Memorial are all located just minutes away from the beach. These are also among the famous tourist attractions in Chennai.
2. Elliot’s Beach
This is another popular beach recommended by the Chennai residents. Smaller than the Marina beach and comparatively less crowded, this is a calm escape from the crowded roads of the city. Pay a visit to the Ashtalakshmi Temple which is located pretty close to the beach and is a temple dedicated to the 8 forms of Goddess Lakshmi. There is also the memorial of Karl Schmidt, a stone structure which is one of the famous places in Chennai.
Popular Historical landmarks
3. Fort St. George- once a historical landmark now a political landmark
One of the oldest landmarks in the city, this is one of the most significant places in Chennai which also marked the beginning of establishing the city as a trading hub. Named after St. George who was influential in Madras, this was the first established trading building built by the British. This building today remains as a politically significant spot where legislative assemblies are held.
4. Government Museum Chennai
Also called Madras Museum, this museum has the distinction of being the second oldest in the country. If you are interested in architecture and numismatics, this is the perfect place for you. Marvel at the Roman Antiquities, and visit the National art gallery which is built in the Indo-Saracenic style and located on the premises.
5. National art gallery
Boasting unique architecture, popular as one of the oldest ones in India, this art gallery is worth a visit. This is a popular choice among the tourist attractions in Chennai, especially for school field trips. The art collection in this gallery, which includes ancient paintings, sculptures and more, is a true tribute to the cultural heritage of the state.
6. Semmozhi Poonga
Often ignored when we talk about the popular tourist attractions in Chennai, this place is something you should definitely add to your list. This botanical garden is located in Teynampet. This stretch of greenery is a fresh change from the bustling crowded city roads.
7. Kapaleeshwar Temple
This temple, situated in Mylapore, is said to have been built in the 7th century. So to get a slice of historical architecture, if you are looking for a pilgrim destination, this is one of the best places to visit in Chennai.
8. St. Thomas Cathedral Basilica
Built way back in the 16th century, and then later rebuilt in the late 1800’s, this church was built over the tomb of St. Thomas. With its historical significance, it remains a popular spot for the tourists.
9. St Thomas Mount
A small hillock located near the Chennai International Airport, St Thomas Mount is revered by the Syrian Christians in India. The St Thomas Garrison Church is located at the foot of the mount and draws pilgrims from all over the country.
Historical landmarks, natural beauty, malls and more make sure you are spoiled for choice in Chennai. Visit the many tourist places in this city and do share your experience with us!