Chennai Tourism
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Chennai Tourism

Chennai Info

  • State: Tamil Nadu
  • Famous for/as: City
  • Altitude: 6 m
  • Pincode: 600001
  • District: Chennai
  • Language: Tamil
  • STD code: 044
  • Weather: Summer 23 to 37°C, Winter 20 to 28°C
Chennai is the capital city of Tamil Nadu and the fourth largest city in India. Located on the Coromandel Coast of the Bay of Bengal, Chennai is popularly known as ‘the gateway to the South’ as it is the seat of culture and learning in South India. Hailed as the automobile capital of India, Chennai is the third largest commercial and industrial hub of India.

As per folk lore, the name ‘Chennaipattinam’ arrived from the Chenna Kesava Perumal temple. It is also believed that the region was named after Damarla Chennappa Nayakudu, who was the Nayaka of Kalahasthi and Vandavasi. Several tools related to the Stone Age recovered from Pallavaram of Chennai, by the Archaeological Survey of India, points to the fact that Chennai region held a megalithic cultural establishment.  

The recorded history of Chennai can be dated back to 1st century AD, when it was regarded as an important military and economic hub. Later Chennai was ruled by many South Indian dynasties like the Pallavas, Cholas, Pandyas and Vijayanagara. The Portuguese arrived at Chennai during 1522 and they were followed by the Dutch in 1612.  

The British East India Company came to Chennai in 1639. It was the adjacent village of Madraspattinam that was chosen as the place to settle in by the British. The town of George Town, with the fort of St. George became their stronghold in the South. George Town was granted its first municipal charter in 1688, which makes it the oldest municipal corporation in India.

In the 17th century, Madraspattinam and Chennaipattinam were merged by the British and it was renamed as Madraspattinam. By the end of 18th century, most of Tamil Nadu came under their control. Under British rule Chennai was transformed to become a major urban centre and naval base in South India. It was in 1996 that ‘Madras’ or ‘Madraspattinam’ was renamed as ‘Chennai’ by the Tamil Nadu State Government.

Chennai, today, is one of the major tourist destinations in South India. Chennai is famous for its temples and churches which are considered as fine examples of architecture and craftsmanship. Parthasarathy Temple, Kaapaleshwar temple, Ashtalakshmi temple, Santhome Cathedral Basilica, Velankanni Church, etc. are some of the famous religious attractions in Chennai.

The highlight of Chennai tourism is its beaches. Chennai is home to one of the longest urban beaches in the world, Marina Beach, which is 12 km long. The months from November to March are the best time to visit Chennai, when the weather is pleasant.

The city also enjoys a vibrant culture, which is an amalgamation of the old and new. Of the many festivals celebrated, Tamil New Year is one of the biggest. It is celebrated by locals with great pomp and fervour. Festivities, feasting and giving gifts mark the occasion. The festival is also known as Puthandu in many parts of Tamil Nadu. Tamil New Year is considered an auspicious time by Tamilians to start something new. 

The vicinity of Chennai to Mamallapuram, Pondicherry, Kanyakumari, Chidambaram, Tiruvallur, Tirupati, Madurai, Tirunelveli, Swamithoppe, Kanchipuram, Thanjavur,   Tiruvannamalai and Tiruchirapalli makes it a hotspot among tourists.

Anna International Airport lies 7 km south of Chennai. The airport is connected by several international airlines including Air India, British Airways, Lufthansa, Singapore Airlines, Air Lanka and Malaysia Airlines. Pre-paid taxis and airport coaches are available at the airport.

Chennai has three major railway stations - the Chennai Central is the biggest, Egmore station and Tambaram station. For quick access across the city, the recently introduced north-south MRTS (Mass Rapid Transport System) can be boarded. Chennai Central and Egmore are the main railway stations that link north and west India, respectively with south India.

At Chennai, most government bus services for Tamil Nadu which is TSTC and other private buses ply to all the cities in the state. The interstate bus service now operates from the newly opened Chennai Mofussil Bus Terminal at Jawaharlal Nehru Salai, Koyembedu and is believed to be the largest bus station in Asia. Private bus services along with deluxe Volvo bus services are available from Bangalore, Hyderabad, Cochin and Coimbatore.

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Chennai Traveller Reviews

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Read 298 destination reviews
with average rating of 5.6/7, 1
out of 8792 Chennai reviews 298
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Bharath Nalla

  • Explorer
  • Bharath Nalla
  • Lives in Hyderabad
  • 8 Reviews
  •  1 helpful vote
  •  919 readers

"Good experience in temples" new review

  • 6.5/7
  • Posted 4 days ago
Chennai is a beautiful city with beaches and a lot of temples. Particularly, I had visited for temples after visiting Tirupati. The temples are very nice and we worship with more sacredness. You can get best food at roadside with more spiciness. Beaches are well-maintained and crowd is huge. Dosa is very famous with around 100 varieties.
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Sandeep Solanki

  • Scout
  • Sandeep Solanki
  • Lives in Chennai
  • 1 Review
  •  1 helpful vote
  •  192 readers

"Different colours of cultures" new review

  • 5/7
  • Posted 1 week ago
Chennai is the most sacred for its good health culture, old temples made with great style and techniques. Here we see people with great sincerity and discipline, people here are not very hard working as in other part of the country but they're definitely more mind working as everybody are not the same. So as the land here its not so fertile but it gives ways to enable industries easily, we can see every mixture of things here.
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  • 1 vote

Sanket Suryawansh

  • Scout
  • Sanket Suryawansh
  • Lives in Mumbai
  • 4 Reviews
  •  1 helpful vote
  •  318 readers

"Beautiful, serene but hot and humid" new review

  • 4/7
  • Posted 1 week ago
Chennai has more temples than any other metro in India. It is as close to India and Indian-ness as you could see anywhere else in the country. Beautiful, serene but hot and humid.

Places to see is the famous Kapaleshwara temple, St Thomas church, Besant beach, Marina beach are some of the spots I enjoyed.

Must try the Biriyani and Wangs Kitchen food. Subway has been a life saver for me though as I don't like spicy food much.

My work keeps me busy though.

Advice - Must have Ola app on your phone and use that to book Ola-auto as Auto's here don't go by meter and thus charge your a lot (double or more rates) generally. People are sweet but in afternoon you might find some auto/cab drivers high so don't get in arguments and ensure they drive in control. People though are sweet and helpful so no worry.
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Deepak  Verma

  • Scout
  • Deepak Verma
  • Lives in Pune
  • 3 Reviews
  •  367 readers

"Memorable trip" new review

  • 5.5/7
  • Posted 2 weeks ago
I was on a Business Trip to Chennai. It was a four month stay in Chennai, if you going to chennai do carry a umbrella, sunscreen to help you protect you from the sun, as it gets hot from the early morning. Do visit Phoenix Market city one of the best mall, and if you get some time, watch a movie or two at spi cinemas luxe, go to besant beach and the golden beach.
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Jacob Jebaraj

  • Scout
  • Jacob Jebaraj
  • Lives in Mumbai
  • 1 Review
  •  1 helpful vote
  •  353 readers

"Hot city but beautiful" new review

  • 6.5/7
  • Posted 2 weeks ago
Beautiful city of wide spread. Climate is really really hot but the ambiance is really good. If you visit Chennai, don't forget to visit Marina Beach and Mahabalipuram. There you can get freshly cooked fish. The taste of the foods are really nice and price-tag is also very less. If you are looking for a visit at reasonable cost, no second thoughts. Just go for it and Enjoy!!!
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Sachin Sonu

  • Connoisseur
  • Sachin Sonu
  • Lives in Hyderabad
  • 13 Reviews
  •  33 helpful votes
  •  2703 readers

"Good place but dint explore much" new review

  • 4/7
  • Posted 3 weeks ago
Although it was not happily done for me, as I had many health issues with the water affecting me, the skin burns etc. They are a lot of places to visit but as I have gone for visa stamping didn't concentrate on them only visited marina beach, the taxi fare was 120 from railway station via taxiforsure.
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  • 1 vote

Neetha Thomas

  • Scout
  • Neetha Thomas
  • Lives in Chennai
  • 1 Review
  •  6 helpful votes
  •  765 readers

"Overall, a good destination" new review

  • 6/7
  • Posted 3 weeks ago
This city can definitely be called the culture capital! Anyone is welcome here despite our differences!
Places to visit - Marina Beach, Mahabalipuram, Lighthouse,
Night Life - 10 Downing, Q bar-Hilton.

The food here is scrumptious. The Dosas and Vadas available at every nook and corner our totally worth the try.
Apart from the standard South-Indian food, there are number of cuisines here.
To travellers, the month of May-July is extremely hot! But that doesn't deter the spirit of the people of the city.
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  • 6 votes

Habeeb Mohamed

  • Scout
  • Habeeb Mohamed
  • Lives in Tirunelveli
  • 1 Review
  •  2 helpful votes
  •  809 readers

"A good trip" new review

  • 5/7
  • Posted 3 weeks ago
Chennai is a developed city. It was a college trip. We enjoyed well by visiting Arignar Anna Zoological park, marina beach, MGM. The food expense cost is more. We went to Queensland and enjoyed more. The traffic was bad.
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  • 2 votes

Smriti Das

  • Guru
  • Smriti Das
  • Highlander
  • Lives in Ludhiana
  • 190 photos
  • 53 Reviews
  •  246 helpful votes
  •  24663 readers

"An excellent trip" new review

  • 6.5/7
  • Posted 3 weeks ago
Chennai is a good place for its beaches & historical places. All of a sudden our program was fixed for visiting Chennai & luckily we got the tickets also. We visited some important beaches just like Marine beach & Besant Nagar beach. From Chennai we went to Pondicherry for two days. Mahabalipuram is an important historical place which I liked most. We took different types of food in some famous restaurants in Chennai. Sangeetha & Adyar Ananda Bhawan restaurants are very famous for its south Indian dishes. A lot of people like to have their food in these restaurants. It was a excellent trip.
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  • 2 votes

Mona Jain

  • Scout
  • Mona Jain
  • Lives in Delhi
  • 1 Review
  •  868 readers

"An awesome place" new review

  • 6.5/7
  • Posted 3 weeks ago
Chennai is a must visit place for everyone. The food there was amazing, we love to eat dosa, Idli, Fafda etc. The malls there were also awesome, prices and varieties all were perfect. We have curiosity to go there again. Delhi is the heart of India and Chennai is the blood circulation of that heart. Really very beautiful place it is. We love it. Also Chennai is a safe place, people can roam there at nights.
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Vani Karunakaran Praveen Safir Vani, Karunakaran, Praveen and 15671 other people have been to Chennai.
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