Chennai India – Top-10 Tourist Attractions
Chennai, the capital of the state of Tamil Nadu, is often described as the gateway to Southern India. It is one of the most culturally rich cities in the country and the commercial capital of Southern India. However, a holiday in Chennai is not restricted to art and culture alone. There are many tourist attractions in Chennai that reflect the true spirit of the city.
1. Parthasarathy Temple
No doubt, Marina Beach is a prime attraction in Chennai but there are other places like Parthasarathy Temple that deserve special mentioning. It is one of the oldest temples in the city and the striking feature of its architecture is the five figurines that are actually dedicated to various incarnations of Vishnu. This is the best spot in the city where one can relax with an open mind.
The temple is open everyday from 6am with no entry fees.
2. Government Museum, or Egmore Museum
The Government Museum aka Egmore Museum is the 2nd oldest museum in India and possibly the most visited tourist spot in Chennai. The museum has the largest numismatic and archaeological collection in Southern Asia. A number of buildings located inside the premises of the Government Museum are more than a century old. There are several galleries dedicated to numismatics, zoology, contemporary art, anthropology, botany, geology etc. There is also a public library attached to the museum known as the Connemara Public Library – it was in fact was opened to the public in 1862.
The museum is closed on Fridays and there is a charge of INR 15 for Indians and INR 250 for foreign nationals for gaining entry into the museum.
3. Kapaleeshwarar Temple
Chennai is home to a number of beautiful temples and Kapaleeshwarar Temple is one such fine example. Located in Mylapore, the temple looks like a melange of different colours and hues what gives the structure a unique look. The temple is dedicated to Lord Shiva and daily Hindu rituals take place here.
It is open from 5.30 in the morning and everyone is allowed to view any of the 6 puja services.
4. The Victory War Memorial
The Victory War Memorial is located right at the beginning of the renowned Marina Beach. The monument was constructed to honour the memory of the thousands of soldiers who lost their lives during the two world wars. There is also a marble block and a circular structure built in memory of the soldiers. The War Memorial was primarily constructed to commemorate the victory of the Allied forces in World War I. Every day people come here to pay their respects to the martyrs.
It remains open 24 hours a day.
5. Madras Crocodile Bank
The star attraction of the city is definitely the Madras Crocodile Bank. This is, undoubtedly, one of the largest reptile zoos in the world and we enjoyed every minute of our stay here. It is nice to see an establishment doing so much for the conservation of the reptiles. Spread across 8.5 acres, there are more than 2500 amphibians and reptiles one can come to some of the creatures. Guided tours are available to help you learn more about the crocodiles and other creatures. There is also separate conservation area where the elusive olive ridley sea turtles are kept.
The park is closed on Mondays and opens at 8.30 am on other days. There is an entrance fee of INR 35 for adults and INR 10 for children.
6. The Ice House
We round off our trip to Chennai with a visit to the Ice House or the Vivekananda House. Built in 1877, this house served as the residence of Swami Vivekananda at one point of time. The house looks beautiful and the intricate details of the Victorian architecture is evident everywhere. The bedroom of Swami Vivekananda is now used as a meditation room. There is an entry fee of INR 10 per adult and INR 5 per child.