Chennai, the capital city of Tamil Nadu, is situated on the eastern coast of the Indian subcontinent. Neighboring the city is the Bay of Bengal, an endless ocean that offers picturesque views during sunrise and sunset. Chennai, or formerly known as Madras by its earlier British occupants who used it as the roots of a British military garrison and an East India Company trading outpost, is a 400-sq-km conglomerate of urban villages and diverse neighborhoods will pleasantly surprise you. The city stands as a guardian of the rich heritage and culture of South India. If you are planning a trip down south, Chennai is a must visit. Below is a list of the top 10 activities you must do and destinations you must visit to embrace the true sense of the city.
If the thought of eating dosa and sambar makes you drool, then you are in the right place. Chennai is sprawling with outlets that serve some of the best dosas you will ever taste in this country. It is one of the most popular places to have south Indian cuisine.
Theosophical Society Gardens
It’s a space that offers peace and quiet right in the heart of Chennai. You can witness a 450-year old banyan tree here and take a stroll in the park.
Olive Ridley Conservation walk
This initiative was taken by the Student’s Sea Turtle Conservation Network that aims to not merely find these eggs, but relocate them to a safe hatchery, where the baby turtle hatchlings will be released into the sea. Olive Ridley turtles lay eggs on the beaches on Chennai between December and April.
Surfing in Kovalam
One of the perks of having the sea right beside you is the waves that it offers. The beach also has an accredited surfing school and is only an hour’s drive away from Chennai.
Indulge in Filter Coffee
South India is not just famous for its food, but also for the premium filter coffee. There are many markets in Chennai that serve authentic coffee, which is prepared with local beans and has a distinct taste.
Anna Centenary Library
This place is a heaven for all book lovers. The Anna Centenary Library is one of Asia’s largest libraries with 9 floors and more than 1.2 million books where one can explore different genres and spend a relaxing day in the city.
Anyone who has completed their schooling from Chennai knows about this place. The Crocodile Bank was a top favourite for annual school trips. A sight to behold, it’s one of the largest reptile zoos in the world. Whether you check in for the feeding sessions that happen every Sunday, or the night safari (which also happens during the weekends), don’t miss their celebrity resident, Jaws III, which is one of the largest saltwater crocodiles in the world.
Experience the beauty of the Bay of Bengal through this Catamaran Ride- an open boat that allows you to take a dip or two in the ocean.
Folk Art at Dakshinachitra
India is a country rich in its heritage and proud of it. Witness the living museum of South Indian heritage. It’s spread over 10 acres with 18 carefully preserved heritage houses, typical village artisans and displays regular folk performances.
Constructed in the name of Lord Vishnu, this temple is one of Divya Desams, the 108 temples of Lord Vishnu, and believed to have been visited by 12 great poet saints. It has wonderful architecture and exquisite murals, magnificent paintings and beautiful colors. Its most famous attraction is the 9 day celebration of Ram Navami.
After indulging in all these attractions of Chennai, a great place for you to stay is Regenta Central Deccan. Situated in the heart of the city, it is the ultimate sojourn for travellers. It has numerous well equipped rooms & suites and a state-of-the-art spa for you to rejuvenate in. The hotel also has an array of fine dining options: Olives (a multi-cuisine restaurant), L9 Mylai (which specializes in South Indian cuisine) and Downtown (Lounge Bar).