Mahabalipuram Tourism
Heritage

Mahabalipuram Tourism

Mahabalipuram Info

  • State: Tamil Nadu
  • Famous for/as: Heritage
  • Altitude: 12 m
  • Pincode: 603104
  • District: Kanchipuram
  • Language: Tamil
  • STD code: 044
  • Weather: Summer 21 to 41°C, Winter 17 to 33°C
Mahabalipuram is a tourist destination situated in Tamil Nadu, which has many beautiful places. It is known for its historical monuments, sculptures, scenic beauty, culture and tradition. Mahabalipuram is placed along the Coromandel Coast facing the Bay of Bengal. It is an attractive tourist spot.
 

History of Mahabalipuram

The name ‘Mahabalipuram’ is derived from a myth. The place was ruled by a very arrogant and cruel king named Mahabali who was later killed by Lord Vishnu and this place is named after that King Mahabali. 

The Gupta dynasty declined and Pallavas rose to power in south India and ruled for quite some time. The period between 650 AD and 750 AD was called as the golden age of Pallavas and they were powerful and intelligent thinkers. During their rule, great poets, saints, artisans, scholars, artists and dramatists emerged in the region. 

Mahabalipuram has unique and beautiful sculptures and paintings, which reflect the talent and skill artisans from the era possessed. Their creativity and innovation can be seen in the best possible form as they explored new styles and innovations eliciting the best in art and architecture. Mahabalipuram is not only known for its architecture, but also known for its casuarinas trees and silver sand beach. These attractions are an integral part of Mahabalipuram tourism. 

Things to do in Mahabalipuram

The Pallavas did not expose their creations, as they were not exposed to the outer world and were kept hidden until the late 185th century. Mahabalipuram has temples made out of a single rock, temples of different structures and artistic bas-reliefs, which is the largest in the world. The great architecture is a delight to the visitors even today and attracts devotees from far off places. Mahabalipuram has two low hills whose either sides have excavates temples called Mandapas. It has unique architecture with different sculptures (Nandi, Lion and Elephant), rathas (cut out temples) and a palace.    
    
One of the prominent festivals celebrated here is the Mamallapuram Dance Festival, which is organised by the Department of Tourism every year at the ancient 7th century Centre for Pallava Culture and Arts. As part of the festival, various dance forms are showcased including Bharatanatyam, Kuchipudi, Kathakali and Odissi. There is a lot more to Mahabalipuram tourism and travellers can explore history by opting for Mahabalipuram holiday packages. 

Travelling to Mahabalipuram

To reach Mahabalipuram, tourists can take flights, trains or travel by road. The nearest airport to Mahabalipuram is in Chennai, located close to 60 km away. The nearest railhead is in Chengalpattu, close to 30 km from Mahabalipuram. Tourists can also drive down from nearby cities such as Bangalore. The best time to visit Mahabalipuram is between October and March. 

Accommodation options in Mahabalipuram

Hotels in Mahabalipuram range from beach resorts, luxury hotels to guesthouses, lodges and budget hotels. 
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Most preferred by...

Travellers from Chennai, Bangalore
Couple
Family

Best time to visit Mahabalipuram in the next six months

  • March
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Mahabalipuram Traveller Reviews

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Read 60 destination reviews
with average rating of 5.6/7, 1
out of 951 Mahabalipuram reviews 60
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Kapil Bisht
  • Kapil Bisht
  • Lives in Chennai
  • 2 Reviews

"Great place for those who want private beach not crowded" new review

  • 6.5/7
  • Posted 2 weeks ago
Mahabalipuram is about 2hrs drive from Chennai. We started our journey from Chennai at 2pm and it took only 1. 5hrs. To reach Mamalla Beach Resort by road. Its a great place for those who want private beach not crowded. We played beach cricket and beach volleyball. Except food everything was good.
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  • 3 votes

Prakash Kumar
  • Prakash Kumar
  • Lives in Chennai
  • 2 Reviews

"Don't miss the Sunrise" new review

  • 6/7
  • Posted 3 weeks ago
Enjoy the Beautiful Sunrise at the Mahabalipuram sea shore. It will be nice if you have a private beach access in the hotel that you are staying. You may happen to see the fishermen going for fishing in the morning. A Boat-ride on the sea of Mahabalipuram is the ideal one.
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  • 3 votes

Nupur Anand
  • Nupur Anand
  • Lives in Patna
  • 1 Review

"Calm soothing serene"

  • 7/7
  • Posted 1 month ago
Mahabalipuram is an ancient developed town by Pallavas dynasty , located in the Kancheepuram district of Tamilnadu.

The beauty of this destination lies in its sea shore. If you are a nature lover and sea or beaches crave your holiday moods, then it's a must visit.
The right time is to go from October to March, so that you can avoid the extreme sunstroke conditions.

The sea shore temples, Pancha Rathas, Thirukadalmallai- The temple dedicated to Lord Vishnu , Varaha Cave Temple – a small rock-cut temple dating back to the 7th century, The Shore Temple and Light House- built in 1894, are surely to be paid a visit.

The great thing about this town is it's mixed culture which includes the local people and the foreigners from round the world, be it American, Mexican or French, they all live in harmony despite of the cultural differences.

The town is famous for sea foods, from tiger prawns to tuna fishes, Squids, lobsters, crabs and many more amazing dishes that are sure gonna take away your taste buds to a different horizon, if you are a die hard non vegetarian and fish lover especially. There are many continental food outlets like French and Italian which are famous for their their specialised menus.

For shopping sprees, the streets are full of various boutiques and outlets with the modest skirts, tops, beach wears, dungaree, harem pants and you will also notice beautiful handmade loafers and foot wears. I will recommend to design your own style of chappal and order it, because I had bought myself two pairs of daily wear comfortable slippers for on and off purposes and that too with genuine leathers and materials. It's hand made and the best part is the cost is very genuine and economical. Other that that, Jute bags, tote bags, and marble en crafted souvenirs like show pieces are best buy if you want to take back the memories of this place.

We went for the Sunrise and Sunset and its very serene. The beauty of the nature cannot be described. So the best thing is to capture them if you want to see them forever.

It's been a very calm and exotic weekend and that too on the eve of Valentines day. So my overall experience was Just WOW! I really haven't expected that the personified beauty of Mahabalipuram will make me mesmerised to this extent that I would actually advise couples to pay a visit to this place once.

Do keep your sunglasses, slippers and cameras. And yeah enjoy it to the core with your loved ones!
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  • 4 votes

Thulaseedharan achary Neelakandan achary
  • Thulaseedharan achary Neelakandan achary
  • Cityslicker
  • Lives in Punalur
  • 148 photos
  • 124 Reviews

"The place of artistic talents"

  • 7/7
  • Posted 2 months ago
Mahabalipuram is really a place of artistic talents & skills. How beautifully neatly & carefully each artistic creations are made. Sculpture exhibit life. Large number of artistic creations on big stones are visible there. All creations seem to be natural. Idols of gods goddess great men are made on various marbles and are ready for sales. A street near the rock temple is selling all these marble creations, At the end of this street five beautiful temples in the same compound, made in big rock is visible. Creations are highly attractive & worthwhile. Near the sea shore also temple & beautiful creations on different materials are visible. In the main street the mahabharata yudu is displayed on big stones. Altogether this spot is a must visiting place for tourists. All amenities & facilities are there for tourists.
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  • 3 votes

Debjoy Biswas
  • Debjoy Biswas
  • Lives in Bangalore
  • 4 photos
  • 5 Reviews

"Overall, a good destination"

  • 6/7
  • Posted 2 months ago
Mahabalipuram is around 330 kms away from Bangalore. We started our journey at 6 o'clock in the morning and reached by 1 PM. We took Bangalore-Hosur-Krishnagiri-Vellore-Kanchipuram-Mahabalipuram road. Road is very good till Kanchipuram. Mahabalipuram is sea-side historic town. Beach is very clean and not crowded. If you love seafood then it is a heaven for you. You have a couple of good cafes near the main beach and they serve really good seafood. You can also visit to the Crocodile bank which is 20 kms away from the town. I have never seen these many crocodiles in a place before.
Overall a nice place to enjoy your short vacation in South India.
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  • 4 votes

Rajdeep Roy choudhury
  • Rajdeep Roy choudhury
  • Lives in Agartala
  • 4 Reviews

"Perfect place for a pocket friendly weekend getaway"

  • 6/7
  • Posted 2 months ago
We went from Chennai as a office group for weekend getaway twice, and the experience has been amazing. Take the ECR route from Chennai, which is quite scenic.

Some of the key highlights of the place are: Serene and clean beach. Amazing sea food at dirt cheap prices on the sea side shacks. Good options for English style breakfast.

Must visit places/spots: Underwater submerged Shore temple, ancient temples, Butter Ball, Light House, etc.
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  • 3 votes

Soumyajit Kundu
  • Soumyajit Kundu
  • Beachbum
  • Lives in Kolkata
  • 33 photos
  • 44 Reviews

"All sightseeing places are nearby"

  • 6/7
  • Posted 3 months ago
Mahabalipuram is a very small town with a good sea beach. All the sightseeing places are nearby, total walking distance 2.5 KM. The road transport is quite good with frequent buses from chennai, pondicherry. Good for a day or two days trip. The sea shore temple, the other monuments have beautiful carvings and are a must visit.
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  • 3 votes

Saikat Kundu
  • Saikat Kundu
  • Cityslicker
  • Lives in Kolkata
  • 13 photos
  • 7 Reviews

"Nice place to visit"

  • 6/7
  • Posted Oct 16, 2014
I passed a very good time in this place. The major places are Sea Shore Temple and Five Rathas. In both places, you can find stunning sculptures on sand stand. The nearby sea beach is very good. The only problem is humid hot. Otherwise, you can spend few hours here easily.
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  • 6 votes

G Venkata
  • G Venkata
  • Lives in Chennai
  • 2 Reviews

"Nice beach destination"

  • 5/7
  • Posted Oct 6, 2014
It was an amazing experience with the dazzling winds on the shores of mighty Mahabalipuram. It is a well cultured city with its scenic beauty, a must visit place to everyone in their life. The on shore temple and the horse rides in the beach was the add ons.
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  • 3 votes

Shivam Kumar
  • Shivam Kumar
  • 1 Review

"Good beach destination"

  • 5/7
  • Posted Sep 25, 2014
The place you must go while living in Chennai is Mahabalipuram. There you will find the foreign beach where you can hang out with your friends and take bath in the good fresh water. You can do the shopping as well. The temple is also there and you can roam the rocks too.
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  • 3 votes

Mani kandan Dhivya Naveen kumar Gopinath Mani kandan, Dhivya, Naveen kumar and 1511 other people have been to Mahabalipuram.
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