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15 Best Tourist Places in Chennai

Welcome newbies to this amazing experience in the city of rich and blending cultural heritage with modern amenities, Chennai. What is new to hear from this city? It is a must-visit for those who want to experience the vibe of India's beautiful and diverse Coromandel coast, with some of the most unique and famous temples of south India and an array of other tourist attractions.

We have prepared a list of Chennai's 15 best tourist destinations that define the city's cultural essence and religious blend. Chennai, which was earlier Madras, is a famous and diversified destination for tourists, which gives you an amazing experience of rich cultural diversity and the aroma of religious places.

Suppose you are a nature enthusiast, solo rider, or love riding with your family. In that case, Chennai's destination can be captivating, and you will enjoy the destination.

Travelers come from around the world to visit Chennai. Also, they use it as a stopover on their journey to Pondicherry, Madurai, Kanchipuram, Kochi, Varkala, and other attractions of the country. Chennai, on the other hand, is much more. It is a historically significant city with several tourist attractions.

Best Tourist Places in Chennai

  1. Covelong Beach: A beautiful beach known for its water activities and picturesque setting, perfect for picnics and relaxation.
  2. Marina Beach: A renowned beach with breathtaking sunrises and sunsets, offering a serene atmosphere and delicious South Indian food.
  3. Marundeeswarar Temple: A famous Shiva temple on the Bay of Bengal beaches, known for its Dravidian architecture and medicinal significance.
  4. Breezy Beach: A peaceful getaway from the city's hustle, offering beautiful sunrises, delicious breakfast options, and a tranquil ambiance.
  5. Fort St. George: The first English fortress in India, now a museum showcasing British history with many artifacts.
  6. Madras War Memorial: A memorial honoring World War II martyrs featuring well-maintained gardens and structures made of white stone.
  7. Arignar Anna Zoological Park: A must-visit for animal lovers, housing over 500 species and offering attractions like aquariums and butterfly houses.
  8. Mylapore: Chennai's oldest housing sector, known for its religious monuments like the Kapaleeswarar temple and Ramakrishnan Math.
  9. Royapuram Fishing Harbour: A popular fishing place in Chennai, offering an insight into the life of Chennai residents and a vibrant seafood market.
  10. Ashtalakshmi Temple: A temple dedicated to the goddess of wealth and knowledge, offering a serene environment near Besant Beach.
  11. Government Museum: The second oldest museum in India, housing a vast collection of paintings, including works by Raja Ravi Varma.
  12. MGR Film City: A major tourist attraction featuring shooting locations, replicas of village and urban areas, and beautiful gardens.
  13. Nettukuppam: A peaceful and less crowded beach in Chennai's northernmost tip, offering a serene environment and scenic beauty.
  14. Vadapalani Murugan Temple: A renowned temple devoted to Lord Murugan, known for helping devotees solve their life's issues.
  15. Kolli Hills: A mountainous region with natural beauty and religious importance, with the beautiful and appealing Arappaleshwar Temple and a challenging road to the summit.

1. Covelong Beach

Tourist Places in Chennai

Covelong Beach is a beautiful beach located in the charming village of Covelong on the Coromandel coast. It stands out as one of the top attractions in Chennai. With its clean and untouched shoreline, crystal-clear blue waters, and tall swaying palm trees, this beach provides a peaceful getaway from the busy city life.

As you step onto the golden sands of Covelong Beach, you'll be greeted by a breathtaking vista that stretches as far as the eye can see. The gentle waves beckon you to take a refreshing dip in the sea or try your hand at thrilling water sports. Whether you're a seasoned surfer or a novice seeking new adventures, Covelong Beach offers various activities to suit every water enthusiast.

Indulge in the thrill of riding the waves as you go surfing or test your skills at windsurfing, a popular sport on these shores. For a more relaxed experience, stroll along the coastline, feeling the soft sand beneath your feet and the cool sea breeze caressing your skin. Don't miss the opportunity to witness the mesmerizing sunset, casting hues of orange and pink across the sky as the sun dips below the horizon.

Every day, hundreds of tourists come to enjoy this beach, which provides a range of water sports such as surfing, jet skiing, and boating. The pleasures that these beach offers are unrivaled. Walk along the dunes, rest beneath the palm trees, or watch the sunset.

2. Marina Beach

Tourist Places in Chennai

Marina Beach, one of the top tourist places in Chennai, is a beautiful stretch of golden sand that beckons visitors from far and wide. This iconic urban beach in the city's heart offers a delightful blend of natural beauty and bustling activities. As you step onto the soft sand, you'll be greeted by the soothing sound of crashing waves and a refreshing sea breeze.

Stretching along the picturesque Bay of Bengal, Marina Beach is renowned for its expansive shoreline and panoramic views. Stroll along the promenade, lined with palm trees and adorned with statues of prominent figures. The statues, including the celebrated Anna Memorial and the striking lighthouse, add a touch of grandeur to the beachscape and provide great photo opportunities for tourists.

Marina Beach offers a plethora of recreational activities to keep visitors entertained. Engage in a friendly game of beach volleyball, fly colorful kites in the clear sky, or try horse riding along the coast. The beach also serves as a venue for cultural events and festivities, where you can witness vibrant performances and immerse yourself in the local art and music scene.

Marina Beach, a God-blessed beach in South India, is the ideal escape. Calm winds never fail to rejuvenate you here. Don't miss out on the fantastic south Indian foods on this beach, such as crispy Sundal and Murukku. Tourists can visit historical sites along the seaside to reawaken their inner adventure.

3. Marundeeswarar Temple

Tourist Places in Chennai

On the Bay of Bengal beaches lies Marundeeswarar Temple, a well-known Shiva temple in Chennai. Marundeeswarar is renowned as the 'god of medicines,' Hindu worshippers travel across the country to pray for health and healing.

Marundeeswarar Temple, nestled in the bustling city of Chennai, is a sacred and revered place that holds great significance for locals and tourists alike. This ancient Hindu temple, dedicated to Lord Shiva, is renowned for its architectural splendor and spiritual aura.

As you enter the temple premises, you'll be greeted by intricate carvings and ornate sculptures that adorn the walls and pillars, reflecting the rich cultural heritage of South India. The main deity, Lord Marundeeswarar, is believed to possess divine healing powers and is worshipped by devotees seeking solace and well-being.

One of the highlights of the Marundeeswarar Temple is the stunning Rajagopuram, a majestic gateway that stands tall, welcoming visitors from afar. The temple complex also features several smaller shrines dedicated to various deities, creating a serene and tranquil atmosphere for prayer and meditation.

The temple was erected by the 'Nayanars Appar and the Thirugnana Sambandar between the 7th and 8th centuries and is a remarkable example of typical Dravidian architecture. The Chola monarchy later preserved and popularised the temple in the 11th century. It is now one of Chennai's most popular tourist destinations, attracting pilgrims from the country. The temple's prasadam, a mixture of sacred ash, water, and milk, is a cure-all for all diseases and afflictions.

Lord Marundeeswarar, according to religious texts, educated the renowned Sage Agastya about the therapeutic use of several plants. As a result, many people come here to seek blessings and be cured of their diseases. The temple's prasad is also said to have medicinal properties.

4. Breezy Beach

Tourist Places in Chennai

Breezy Beach, located in the coastal neighborhood of Valmiki Nagar in Chennai, is a serene and idyllic retreat for beach lovers. With its soft golden sands, gentle sea breeze, and panoramic views of the Bay of Bengal, this charming beach offers a delightful escape from the city's hustle and bustle.

As you step onto Breezy Beach, you'll instantly feel a sense of tranquility and relaxation. The soothing sound of crashing waves and the cool sea breeze create a perfect atmosphere for unwinding and rejuvenating. Whether looking for a peaceful stroll along the shore, a spot to sit and watch the sunset, or a place to enjoy a picnic with loved ones, Breezy Beach has it all.

The beach is known for its cleanliness and well-maintained surroundings, making it a favorite spot for locals and tourists. You can take a leisurely walk along the shoreline, feeling the soft sand between your toes and enjoying the picturesque views of the sea. The beach also provides ample space for recreational activities like beach volleyball, frisbee, or building sandcastles with your family and friends.

This aptly named beach, tucked away in Chennai's Valmiki Nagar region, is the perfect getaway from the city's frantic everyday life. The beach is famed for its beautiful sunrises and delicious breakfasts from nearby eateries and cafés. The location, which is around 9 kilometers from the city's heart, gives a peaceful feel to it.

5. Fort St. George

Tourist Places in Chennai

Fort St. George is so historic and classic that every other visitor might visit this place. It is situated on the coastal stretch of Chennai and is a historic landmark and a must-visit attraction for history enthusiasts and tourists alike. Built-in 1644 by the British East India Company, this imposing fort holds immense historical significance as the first fortress established by the British in India.

You'll be transported back to the colonial era as you step inside Fort St. George. The fort complex encompasses several fascinating structures that glimpse Chennai's past. The St. Mary's Church, the oldest Anglican church in India, stands within the fort premises and is a remarkable architectural marvel. Visitors can explore its serene interiors with intricate woodwork and stained glass windows.

Another notable attraction within the fort is the Fort Museum, which houses a vast collection of artifacts, relics, and memorabilia from the colonial period. Intriguing exhibits showcasing the fort's history, including arms and armory, coins, paintings, and letters. The museum provides a comprehensive understanding of British rule in Chennai and its influence on the region.

While exploring Fort St. George, make sure to visit the Wellesley House, which served as the residence of the Governor of Madras during the British era. The building now houses the Tamil Nadu Legislative Assembly, and its impressive architecture is worth admiring. The Fort Library and the Flagstaff House are also noteworthy attractions that offer insights into the fort's significance and colonial heritage.

George, the first English fortress in India and one of the official monuments of the British Empire in Chennai, is a live symbol of British history in India. The museum, established in 1644 in the beach city of Madras, is currently open to the public. Tourists are welcome to come and see what's going on. During your tour, you may witness antiques, paintings, coins, jewelry, weaponry, paperwork, and more. The massive structure and architecture will inspire you to admire British engineering.

6. Madras War Memorial

Tourist Places in Chennai

The Madras War Memorial is a poignant tribute to the brave martyrs of the Second World War. Nestled in the heart of Chennai, it is an awe-inspiring destination that pays homage to our fallen heroes and beckons visitors with its captivating beauty.

Immerse yourself in a serene oasis adorned with meticulously maintained gardens, where verdant landscapes provide a tranquil setting for contemplation and remembrance. The architecture, crafted with pristine white stone, is a testament to the courage and sacrifice of those who fought in the war.

As you wander through the memorial, you will be captivated by the stories etched in stone, sharing the heroic endeavors of those who selflessly laid down their lives for their country. Each structure within the memorial serves as a window into history, shedding light on the lives and sacrifices of these brave warriors.

7. Arignar Anna Zoological Park

Tourist Places in Chennai

A must-visit destination and location for adventurers and animal lovers in Chennai. It has been regarded as one of Chennai's most sighted and visited locations. Spread across the lush and beautiful greenery with the mesmerizing escape from the pollution in the city. As you enter the zoological park, you will find yourself in the vibrant ecosystem, bustling with different animal species like deer, elephants, etc.

The big cats like tigers and cheetahs make the zoo's enclosures and habitats more fascinating. It also offers you to connect with nature and helps you connect better with nature and its beauty.

8. Mylapore

Tourist Places in Chennai

Mylapore, a vibrant neighborhood nestled in the heart of Chennai, India, is a captivating destination that offers a perfect blend of tradition, history, and modernity. This ancient area is steeped in cultural significance and serves as a gateway to other renowned tourist attractions in Chennai.

As you step into Mylapore, you will be enchanted by its bustling streets, colorful markets, and architectural wonders that transport you to a bygone era. Explore the iconic Kapaleeshwarar Temple, a magnificent masterpiece of Dravidian architecture, and witness its intricate carvings and vibrant festivals that celebrate Chennai's spiritual fabric.

Mylapore is also known for its vibrant cultural events and festivals. Don't miss the annual Arubathimoovar Festival, a grand spectacle that fills the streets with processions, music, dance, and devotion. This festival showcases the city's rich religious heritage and is a sight to behold.

9. Royapuram Fishing Harbour

Tourist Places in Chennai

The Royapuram fishing harbor is one of the top tourist attractions in Chennai for those visitors who are fascinated by taking stunning images of the places they visit. This area, also known as the Kasimedu fishing port or the Chennai fishing harbor, attracts many tourists since it is a popular fishing place in Chennai. If you want to get a glimpse into the life of Chennai residents, you should visit this port. A large number of anglers and boats may be seen catching fish. Locals may also be seen strolling the market and purchasing seafood.

Situated amidst the vibrant city of Chennai, Royapuram Fishing Harbour beckons visitors with its bustling activity and authentic cultural experience. This captivating destination offers a glimpse into the thriving fishing industry and a gateway to other renowned tourist attractions in Chennai.

As you arrive at Royapuram Fishing Harbour, immerse yourself in the lively atmosphere that fills the air. The bustling harbor showcases the daily lives of local fishermen, who diligently prepare their boats and nets for fishing expeditions. Observe the vibrant colors of the fishing boats, adorned with intricate patterns and names, reflecting the rich cultural heritage of the fishing community.

To witness the true essence of the harbor, visit early in the morning when the fishermen return from their overnight fishing trips. Experience the excitement as the boats dock and the fishermen proudly display their catch of the day. Marvel at the diverse range of fish, crabs, and other marine creatures, providing a glimpse into the incredible biodiversity of Chennai's coastal waters.

An added delight is the vibrant fish auction at the harbor. Engage in the lively spectacle as fish are enthusiastically bid upon by local vendors and merchants, creating a dynamic ambiance that showcases the bustling business of the fishing industry.

10. Ashtalakshmi Temple

Tourist Places in Chennai

You can visit the Ashtalakshmi temple in the South of the city in Besant Nagar, which is often a few feet from the beach side and has a good-facing sunset. Enchanting Goddess Asthalakshmi Devi is worshipped in this temple, and everyone wishes for their well-wishers.

The ocean waves echo throughout the temple premises, instantly calming visitors. The temple was rebuilt for almost 7 million rupees, with over 1.6 million rupees spent on performing a spiritually significant Hindu ceremony known as Jeernotharana Ashtabandana Mahakumbhabhishekam, demonstrating the temple's magnificence.

11. Government Museum

Tourist Places in Chennai

The Government Museum, founded in 1851, is the country's 2nd oldest museum, after the Indian Museum in Kolkata. It is located in Chennai's Egmore area and was constructed in the Indo-Saracenic style. It holds an extensive collection of paintings by Raja Ravi Varma. So, you should visit the Government Museum of Chennai, if you are an artist or a painter or has an apid interest in paintings and 90s art of modern India.

12. MGR Film City

Tourist Places in Chennai

If you are a South Indian movies fan, you must have heard about the MGR film city, named after the late MG Ramachandran, a great actor. It was built in 1994 and is quite a new building in respect of others.

The MGR Film City is located in Taramani, Chennai, and spans 70 acres; it is a significant tourist attraction and is the ideal venue for many South Indian directors. The film city has a film school, indoor and outdoor shooting locations, replicas of the village and urban areas, a post office, a police station, a prison, a courtroom, and beautiful gardens in Italian, Japanese, and Mughal styles, in addition to being the best place to catch a glimpse of a famous Tamil actor.

13. Nettukuppam

Tourist Places in Chennai

Nettukuppam is Chennai's northernmost tip, featuring a beach that crowds haven't discovered. It's a quiet hideaway for those who like to get up and personal with the rushing river while in a calm environment. Ennore's salty stream meets the sea here, making a type of estuary; the setting is ideal for a relaxed holiday because it is still off the usual tourist road.

There are no loud hawkers here, and the beach lacks tourists. It receives a more significant number during holiday seasons or festivals; however, most of the time, very few groups of people are present. This is the perfect place to unwind on a warm evening if you prefer a calm and quiet environment.

You will enjoy your stay at Nettukuppam Beach by sitting on the bridge with your legs hanging, taking in the sea wind and cool mist as the waves crash against the pier and splash into the white foam below your feet.

14. Vadapalani Murugan Temple

Tourist Places in Chennai

One of the most renowned temples devoted to Lord Murugan is Vadapalani Murugan Temple. The temple, located in Vadapalani, Chennai, is recognised for assisting worshippers in finding solutions to life's issues. People come here to help with marital, intellectual, and professional issues. Many devotees report that coming here to pray has helped them overcome their problems and find serenity in their lives. Worshipping Lord Murugan is likewise seen to be equally devout as worshipping him at the original Palani temple. If people cannot worship at Murugan's native abode, they may do it here, and Murugan will still shower blessing on them.

Many tales and myths surround Vadapalani Murugan Temple, particularly those surrounding its founder and first priest, Annaswamy Naikar. He dreamed about this deed he needed to do for his welfare and the good of society, so instead of looking for Lord Murugan elsewhere, he began worshipping him at home. This modest shrine was subsequently developed into the huge concept you see today, complete with several deities. If you go to the temple on one of the major festival days, you'll notice how popular Murugan is in this place.

15. Kolli Hills

Tourist Places in Chennai

The Kolli Hills, also called Kolli Malai, is a mountainous region in Tamil Nadu's Namakkal region renowned as the "Mountain of Death." Its natural beauty has been retained because commercial tourists have virtually undisturbed it.

The mountains are recognized for their natural scenery and religious importance, thanks to the Arappaleshwar Temple dedicated to Lord Shiva. The summit is also reachable by car, albeit the route going up is treacherous and full of twists and turns. There are adventurous activities also which tourists can do at some places, which are:

1. Scuba Diving

Tourist Places in Chennai

In the summer, Chennai can get fairly hot, and avoiding the heat would be the first concern. Why not dive someplace off the coastline of Chennai in the Bay of Bengal? The best thing about Chennai is discovering a completely new world beneath the sea's surface while also cooling down.

The wonderful chance to dive into the pristine blue waters of the ocean and enjoy the enchanting life of the marine animals. Scuba diving is a breath-taking pastime that provides you with those much-needed underwater thrills. With its pure water and stunning underwater landscape, including historic shipwrecks and lush plant life, Covelong Beach is the ideal location for scuba diving in Chennai. The cost would be INR 6000 per person(approx.)

2. Parasailing

Tourist Places in Chennai

Consider it twice if you think Chennai is only known for its elegant temples and calm beaches. Parasailing is among the most adventurous sports in the world and is available in Chennai. This water sport, unlike many others, is not for the faint-hearted.

Parasailing allows you to soar above the waves with a properly strapped parachute attached to your back. As the forward-moving motor speed boat supplies the parachute with air, the participant may admire the turquoise blue sea. Local businesses provide parasailing activities on the Covelong and Marina beaches, and the fee is around INR 2000 per person (approx.)

Best Time to Visit Chennai

From March to early July, the weather is unsuitable for travellers in Chennai. The tropical environment of Chennai makes the summertime heat nearly intolerable. Going outside in the afternoon is not advised since it is hot and humid. It is also not a good idea to visit sites around Chennai during this time.

When the weather in Chennai cools down after the monsoon, it's the greatest time to organise your vacation. The weather is good between October and early February, making it a great time to see the finest tourist attractions in Chennai and arrange vacations to surrounding destinations like Mahabalipuram and Pondicherry.

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