The gateway to south surely offers a lot in terms of attractions. It is not just about places, rather the heavy dip of culture, food and festivities is what distinguishes this city from others. You won't believe the number of things to do in Chennai for Adults. Kick start your Chennai trip with a visit to one or more of its various beaches with the popular ones being Marina Beach, though the sad thing is you can come here and walk around, enjoy beach activities, but can't swim because of its violent tides. Apart from these, there is a Breezy Beach where spending an evening will just make your day. Of course, a trip to Chennai is incomplete without a visit to its historical places. Believe us, Chennai has many! The exemplary Kapileshwar Temple is one among them and is an absolute Must see must do in Chennai. Apart from these, there are other places to visit as well like San Thome Basilica Church, Big Mosque, and various memorials and monuments. The array of museum and galleries it has including Government Museum does not disappoint either.
Things to do in Chennai for Youngsters
While there are temples and parks to placate the old ones, the city of Chennai has its fair share of attractions to lure the youngsters as well. Of courses, beaches will top the least. While Marina beach is welcoming for all, it is the Edward Elliot's beach which makes the noise among youngsters, thanks to its secluded bustling vibe. The ones who are here for a spiritual detour can hop through the various temples like Karaneeswarar Temple. The vast array of churches including St. Mary's Church and St. Thomas Mount are nice places to visit as well. If you are someone who has a penchant for history and architecture, you can explore the monuments Fort St. George which is one of the Chennai points of interest. If you are still wondering what are the places to visit around Chennai, count in the array of ecological parks and gardens. The city is home to some nice green spreads like Arinjar Anna Zoological Park, and Guindy National Park.
Things to do in Chennai for couples
As far as the attraction for couples goes, there are a number of places to visit in Chennai for couples. Walk through the lush greenery of Guindy Snake Park holding hands or opt for a ride in Kamarajar Salai. The place has some of the best buildings in the city. Go to eco tours which provide some great sightseeing and things to do in Chennai like walking through the Nizhal Tree Walks and Chennai Trekking club. Get a nice peek in the city's history at the Government Museum which is one of the top choice museums in Chennai. Or if nothing pleases you, just laze around in one of its parks chomping on some nice side street food.
Things to do in Chennai this weekend
Save the weekends for your Chennai tour for a nice indulgence in the offbeat places. Since the museums and other attractions get flocked with tourists, better get out for other attractions and experiences. Get the gist of the city by experiencing culture in its roads, alleys, people, markets and street food. That delicious dosa's on the street sides are a must to taste! You can even find some other tourist places in Chennai around 200 km which you can explore in your weekend.
Things to do in Chennai at night
When flocked with questions like What are the things one can do in Chennai? Don't fret! Apart from temples and beaches, the city is well serviced with numerous malls and markets, all of which come to life at nights! If you are on a solo trip, there are a lot of things to do in Chennai alone. While shopping places like the express venue and spencer plaza will keep you busy with its large variety of items, from local to brands, places like The Music Academy and Indian Institute of Music and Arts will entrance you with their performances. In nights, temples throughout the city come alive with evening aarti and beaches get crowded with people coming here in evening stroll.
Things to do in Chennai in a day
People who are visiting Chennai for a day will not get disappointed either. There are a lot of places to visit in Chennai in one day, that is if you are aware of it. Major temples like The Parthasarathy Temple, Karaneeswarar Temple, and Kundrathur Sivan temple are the must. Apart from this, popular museums, galleries and parks can also be included in things to do in Chennai today. You don't have to go for all, just go for the major ones like Valluvar Kottam, Fort St. George, Government Museum, The Birla Planetarium and Arignar Anna Zoological Park and you are set. If nothing, you can spend a whole day at marina beach, just taking walks, chomping on eateries, savouring the view and doing nothing. There is absolutely no dearth of things to do in Chennai India.
Things to do in Chennai in December
Chennai in winter is another matter altogether. Since, in India, the festival season get started from August, which continues till march, the time period between November to January is a great time to visit Chennai. You will be stunned with the festivities that takes place here during this time. If you are coming here in December, there are helluva things to do in Chennai for New Year. You can participate in the Chennai Book fair and interact with the intellectuals there. The pubs and clubs in the city literally get buzzed with the festivities, providing various offers for you and your friend to indulge in. The parks get crowded as people on their holidays come here to spend some quality time with their family. The beaches and ponds and with their boat rides and adventure activities is beguiling enough that you will wish to come here again.
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What to Do in and around Chennai
Enjoy 35 best Chennai attractions and points of interest to choose from!
#1 of 35 Things to do in Chennai | Added 24180 times in trip plans
Marina Beach, Triplicane, Chennai, Tamil Nadu
One of the most popular attractions in Chennai, Marina beach is as enticing as it gets. The urban beach rests along the Bay of Bengal providing its visitors with the much-needed respite from the city life. Stroll through its sandy shores, bask under the rays of the sun and enjoy tranquillity in a way you have never done before. Swimming, though, will be out of bounds, yet it is always a nice option coming here to just feel the waves (one of the most recommended things to do in Chennai). Being the longest beach in India, it certainly leaves a lot to explore for everyone.
#2 of 35 Things to do in Chennai | Added 20698 times in trip plans
Rajaji Salai, Chennai, Tamil Nadu 600009
09:00 am - 05:00 pm
One of the initially constructed British fortresses in India, Fort St. George is definitely one of the must visited places in India. What lures tourists to this place is its historical significance, which has piqued the interest of many historians and art lovers. Coming here, you can see various paintings that are housed here. Not to mention, the architecture itself is unique and beautiful. Visit the church and spend some tranquil moments there, then head to the museum and check out its vast range of artefacts, ranging from weapons, metals and what not!If nothing, just stroll around, admire the structure and enjoy.
#3 of 35 Things to do in Chennai | Added 20848 times in trip plans
19/38, Santhome High Road, Off Rosary Church Road, Santhome, Mylapore, Chennai, Tamil Nadu 600004
06:00 am - 10:00 pm
One of the most beautiful structures in the city, the cathedral is close to Marina beach and a prominent pilgrimage site for people in the state. Tourists from all over the world come here for its historical significance. Come here to get acquainted with the various aspects of history and witness the splendidness of this gothic style building. Stroll through its premises and bask in its spiritual vibes. Afterwards, move towards museum where you can get great insights on the life and preachings of St. Thomas and Christianity. A must visit place is Chennai.
#4 of 35 Things to do in Chennai | Added 17408 times in trip plans
Pantheon Rd, Egmore, Chennai, Tamil Nadu, 600008
09:30 am - 05:00 pm
If you wish to know more about human history and culture, ensure to give this museum a visit. The second oldest museum in India, it is home to numerous Roman antiques that are worth a sight. Walk around checking out the various artefacts ts and brush up your knowledge on history and arts. Once you are done with that, move towards The National Art Gallery and witness the splendid work of Raja Ravi Varma, a master painter of his time. The place is home to Colossal Museum too, where you can stop by for more artistic indulgence. Historians and art lovers will surely love it here.
Dedicated to Lord Shiva, Marundeeswarar Temple is a beautiful place to visit, especially if you are looking for some quiet time. The temple displays two huge gateway towers which will stun you from the very point of your entrance. Apart from these, there is a huge tank which you should also see during your spiritual detour. Come here with family, seek blessings of Lord Shiva, admire its architecture which is beautiful and just feel the spirituality. The place is known among folks as a temple for curative worships. Try to interact with priests during your visit as they will get you acquainted with ist history.
#6 of 35 Things to do in Chennai | Added 18821 times in trip plans
Near Beach Seashore, Arulmigu Mahalakshmi Temple, Besant Nagar, Chennai, Tamil Nadu 600090
09:00 am - 09:00 pm
Dedicated to the Indian deity of wealth, the AshtalakshmiKovil is a beautiful burst of colour upon the golden sands of Elliot’s Beach. It was the brain child of Sri ChandrashekarendraSaraswatiswamigal of KanchiMut. Whether you want to pray or just enjoy a moment of peach, the temple is the perfect place to spend a few tranquil minutes by the beach. Imagine walking with the sand in between your toes and sun on your back as the winds blows your hair forward and your troubles away. What better way to follow that up than by going to the peaceful Ashtalakshmi temple, to treat your eyes and pay your respects.
The name Ashtalakshmi stems from the Goddess Mahaaakshmi, the Hindu goddess who grants eight forms of wealth to her devotees. These eight forms of wealth are food, bravery, knowledge, success, offspring, prosperity and wealth, all embodied as different idols inside the temple. According to the Vedas, the Goddess emerged out of the oceans so it’s fitting that the Ashtalakshmi temple is situated facing the waves of the Bay of Bengal.
Being the only temple specifically dedicated to this mighty Goddess, there are numerous effigies of her throughout the temple at different levels, each an aesthetic treat. The primary shrine of the Goddess and her husband, Mahaavishni is on the second level, overlooking the sea. On the third level comes her next form, the bestower of success in all ventures, Vijayalakshmi. On the northern side is Vidyaalakshmi, related with wisdom and learning, Gajalakshmi, bestower of holistic prosperity and finally on the fourth level is Dhanalakshmi, the Goddess of Wealth.
On the southern part are Aadhi Lakshmi, Dhaanya Lakshmi, the Goddess of food grain and Dhairiya Lakshmi, the Goddess of courage! Each of these idols are stunning in their red, blue-purple and golden splendor. The view of the ocean from the top is breath taking. On top of the sanctum santorum is a gold-plated 5.5-foot-high kalasam. The temple itself is vibrantly coloured in blues, greens, red and gold.
Visiting this temple after spending an evening by the beach will be a sweet experience, like desert after a hearty meal. The pilgrims, who travel far to visit Ashtalakshmi, relax by the shore, creating a happy, peaceful vibe outside the temple. This is definitely a place worth visiting, for worshippers, travelers and tourists alike.
Encompassing all colors of faith, beauty and tranquility, the majestic Ashtalakshmi Temple is a known attraction in Chennai situated upon the white sands of Elliot’s Beach. As with all Indian temples, it is free to access and hence no Ashtalakshmi Temple Tickets or Ashtalakshmi Temple Ticket Prices. You don’t have to Buy Tickets for Ashtalakshmi Temple to enter the place, but it would be wise to take some offerings with you, as per the customs. Do take some time out of your busy schedule to delve into its serene surrounding and introspect.
#7 of 35 Things to do in Chennai | Added 13961 times in trip plans
Kalakshetra Foundation, Thiruvanmiyur, Chennai, Tamil Nadu, 600041, India
08:30 am - 08:30 pm
Graceful dancers with expressive eyes, soulful musicians and strict instructors will greet you as you walk through the halls of the Kalakshetra cultural academy. The word ‘Kalakshetra’ literally means ‘a holy place for arts’ and that’s what it is, as only the best students, teachers, musicians and artists are invited to be a part of the institution. The academy, founded by Rukmini Devi Arundale in 1936, is a cultural academy that specializes in the teaching of a particular style of Bharatanatyam, created and perfected by the founder herself. The academy has workshops and concerts, which are a visual treat in artistic expression. The institution offers public events, dances classes and a platform for research and studies about traditional Indian dance styles.
In Rukmini Devi’s words, the academy was established “with the sole purpose of resuscitating in modern Indian the recognition of the priceless artistic traditions of India and of imparting to the young the true spirit of art, devoid of vulgarity and commercialism.” Though her style has its fair share of critics, it has many proponents and famous students. The Kalakshetra style is defined by its angular, straight, ballet like movements. Rukmini Devi created a kind of dance form which is devoid of sexually provocative movements of the chest, lips, hips and neck. The concerts are beautifully choreographed and lauded by all those who witness the shows. The Kalakshetra foundation has been recognized as an institute of national importance.
Spending an evening watching one of the concerts would be well spent. Limbs moving like ocean waves in perfect synchronization with the heady, heavenly music would put anyone into a trance. Stunning backdrops and lighting just add to the over-all experience. These highly professional performances in a relaxed, open sided theater would be an exquisite experience for any kind of art lover.
A wide variety of Indian dances are performed, such as Khatak and Hindustani and Carnatic music is played and sang at these concerts. If you’d like to take away a memory, there’s a gift shop with dance saris, CD’s and tutorials. Steeped in culture, the music, dance, instrumental and art classes are wonderful to watch and would bring out the art lover in any observer. Do visit, especially during the winter months of December/January, when the academy starts putting up their musicals and concerts for all to enjoy.
Get impressed by the artistically brilliant art performances at the Kalakshetra Foundation with the aid of Kalakshetra Foundation tickets. Although the tickets for Kalakshetra Foundation can be bought from the entrance counter, they are devoid of any special perks or other cultural inclusions and so we recommend you to buy tickets for Kalakshetra Foundation from our tickets section as the Kalakshetra Foundation ticket prices are at an all-time low.
#8 of 35 Things to do in Chennai | Added 13906 times in trip plans
Vandalur, Chennai, Tamil Nadu 600048
09:00 am - 05:00 pm
Slap on some sunscreen and head out to the Arignar Anna Zoological Park, or VandalurZoo as it’s commonly known. Created in 1855, it was India’s first ever zoo and is home to 2,553 species of flora and fauna. Spread over a massive 1,265 acres of dry, evergreen forests, the animals are housed in specially created open, wet and dry, island type enclosures with hidden walls. These enclosures mimic the natural habitats of these animals, birds and reptiles. The park is located in Vandalur, about 15 kilometers from Chennai Airport. If you look at the eastern or western most parts of the park, you will be greeted by the clear waters of the Hassan and Otteri lakes. Taking a trip to this park is literally wild fun and a great way for children and adults alike to explore nature and see animals in their natural environment.
The zoo has more than 100 exhibits of different kinds of mammals, birds, amphibians and reptiles. A few of the zoos inhabitants are barking deer, jaguars, baboons, otters, bears, giraffes, lemurs, vultures, emu and cassowary to name just a few. The park contains 138 species of plants, including a eucalyptus tree. By taking a walk through the forest, you’re bound to see at groups of glittering butterflies colouring the sky as the dense vegetation is home to 56 different species of the insect. You can explore the safari parks and study animals in their natural environment.
Different lion, deer and elephant parks offer you a chance to witness these beautiful beasts coexisting in their respective parks. There are two aviaries, where flamingos, seagulls, painted storks, night herons, teals, and storks can be seen between October and February every year. There’s also a lusciously green walk through aviary, home to 150 birds of 13 different species. You can walk through and see the explosion of colours that are these exotic birds, such as the kingfisher, red-whiskered bulbul, peacocks and partridges as well as shiny, slinky reptiles and amphibians. A crocodile house is sure to thrill, with the sly looking reptiles leering out from under the surface of the waters behind their enclosures. A serpentarium includes around 104 snakes, including cobras, which are kept in an air conditioned environment complete with a hot spot. A shark shaped aquarium at the zoo houses 31 species of fresh water fish.
At the entrance visitors are screened and are not allowed to take snacks and food inside the zoo, however milk and biscuits are allowed if accompanied by small children. Cycles are available for hire and there are many coaches available for visitors who prefer not to walk. A hospital for animals that have been rescued from the wild and also to treat sick animals from the zoo is set up in the area. It’s advisable to set foot into the zoo early in the morning so as to evade the sun which can make one feel warm and tired.
#9 of 35 Things to do in Chennai | Added 21997 times in trip plans
Singarachari St, Triplicane, Chennai, Tamil Nadu 600005
06:00 am - 08:00 pm
Built in the 8th century, it is one of the oldest temples in India and a very popular destination among travellers. The place will let you experience spirituality and tranquillity as you enter through its doors One further delving you will see various shrines dedicated to different deities. Walk around the premises, pay offerings to the deities, seek their blessings and bask in the spiritual vibes that the place has. While it is home to many deities, the temple is primarily dedicated to Lord Krishna, so if you planning to visit Chennai for this temple, anywhere near the Krishna Janmashtami would do.
The beach lies at the end of Marina Beach and is a very popular destination among folks. Coming here, you can get acquainted with nature, revelling in its waves and beautiful surrounding. A right day, when the weather is good, delving into some sports activities will surely keep you sorted here. The place has many restaurants and food joints, so you don't have to worry about a meal after having a nice beach rendezvous. Strolling through its sandy plains is one of the must things to do in Chennai, regardless of you coming with family or alone.
#11 of 35 Things to do in Chennai | Added 22488 times in trip plans
Vivekananda House, Kamaraj Salai(Marina beach road), Neelam Basha Dargapuram, Near Triplicane, Chennai, Tamil Nadu 600005
10:00 am - 07:00 pm
Also known as the ice house of Chennai, the place holds great significance for those who are interested in history, especially regarding the happenings of Ramakrishna movement. Your visit to Vivekananda house will be greeted with a large exhibit showcasing artefacts depicting the various aspects of Vivekananda's life. If you have ever been interested in knowing more about this prominent figure, coming here is a must. The place with not only entice you with its stories but will update you on all the preachings of Swamiji. Ensure to spend some time here brushing up your knowledge of Indian history.
The best thing about the park is that it is situated inside the city and easily accessible. Come here to get acquainted with city's rich flora and fauna which is well preserved here, in fact, it is home to some very unique vegetation which is hard to find anywhere else. Delve a little more into its surrounding to look out for animals like black buck, spotted deer, hyenas, and crocodiles. Nature lovers would definitely love it here. Just stroll around taking in the beauty and enjoying its natural surrounding. With so much to see, it is undoubtedly a must-visit in Chennai.
#13 of 35 Things to do in Chennai | Added 1 time in trip plans
12:01 am - 12:00 am
The place is known for its unique architecture which is a quite reflection of the city itself. The colourful sculptures and carving in the walls and monuments would make you stop for a moment and admire it. You will hardly contain your curiosity looking at the various art pieces telling a story of its own. Ensure to walk around checking each one out and click some pictures to take with you as memory. Not to mention, the spiritual vibes that it has. A great place where everything come together to give you a tranquil time.
#14 of 35 Things to do in Chennai | Added 19988 times in trip plans
Mandapam Road, Chennai, Tamil Nadu, 600025
09:00 am - 06:00 pm
Indulge in the world of astronomy with Birla Planetarium, a place which is a must visit for you, especially the ones visiting with family. Come here with your kids and let them learn about the secretive world of stars, planets and what not! All these not only delight them but educate them as well. You visual tour to the skies will be accompanied by artefacts and items housed in various galleries that will further help in enhancing your knowledge. Walk through the various galleries like Physical Science, Life Science, Innovation, International Dolls and such and enjoy a nice knowledgeable journey.
#15 of 35 Things to do in Chennai | Added 22196 times in trip plans
6th Avenue, Besant Nagar, Chennai 600090, India
05:45 am - 10:00 pm
The Besant Nagar Beach is one of the most popular beaches of Chennai, owing to its cleanliness and serenity. Like most of the Indian beaches, there is no ticket for Besant Nagar Beach. You can visit it with a guided tour group, which will have different rates. For details on Besant Nagar Beach ticket prices please refer our ticket section. You can also buy tickets for Besant Nagar Beach from this portal.
Known as one of the cleanest beaches in Chennai, the Besant Nagar Beach or Elliot’s Beach is located southwards from the Marina Beach, down the coastal region. Less crowded than the Marina, this beach is popular with those who enjoy peaceful, early morning walks with few around them as well as the college kids in Chennai. Located in one of the posh areas of the city, the beach is quiet, comparatively clean and safe. Smaller than Marina Beach, this is a popular hangout for many Chennai locals as well as visitors as it’s less crowded and more personal. Police patrol the area in all terrain vehicles to ensure safety. It was named after Edward Elliot, the former governor of Madras.
A notable landmark on the beach is the Karl Schmidt memorial, which is named after a Dutch swimmier who perished in the process of saving a drowning swimmer. Another famous sight is the 20-year-old Ashtalakshmi Temple, a beautiful temple known for its architecture, dedicated to the Indian Goddess of Wealth, Lakshmi. There is also the Velanganni Church, built in honour of the Lady of Healthy, also known as the Madonna of Velankanni. Then there is ‘Chandralekha’s Spaces’ an area allotted for art, theater and general get together which is sure to be an interesting visit. This is a beach where one will see children speeding by on roller skates on the skating ground as elderly folk congregate and discuss life simultaneously.
Another unique feature of this beach is the number of multi cuisine eateries found across the road, which is probably why groups of college students flock to this beach. Malaysian, Chinese and all kinds of South Indian cuisine can be found in restaurants with varying degrees of expensiveness. You can even grab pizza. These restaurants make it a nice place to spend an evening in and perhaps even a romantic lovers' get-away in the evenings. Whether you want to canoodle with your significant other, take photos, stuff your face, take your kids out for the day or just go sightseeing, this beach is an ideal destination. Plus, finding parking is easy!