12 Best Places to Visit in Chennai: 2024 Checklist

places to visit in chennai

Best Places to Visit in Chennai

Travelers seeking a variety of experiences will find Chennai to be an enthralling destination due to its unique blend of the old and the new. Its streets are lined with the ruins of a more colorful past, where colonial architecture blends in with the vivid energy of a contemporary Indian city.

Chennai is more than just a city stuck in the past, though. It’s a dynamic hub that embraces progress while holding onto its cultural roots. Join us on a virtual journey as we prepare for an exciting expedition through the charms of Chennai. Below is the list top Places to Visit in Chennai

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Fort St. George

The fort was constructed in 1644 by the British East India Company. During a significant geopolitical shift, it was an important military stronghold and commercial center. Its favorable location has witnessed decades of power-ups and downs, battles, and successes.

Chennai’s distinctive blend of European and Indian elements is embodied in the architecture of the fort. In the museum, objects that reveal the facets of Chennai’s past are conserved and presented. 

Each exhibit tells a different story of how the city has changed, from antique weapons to colonial-era clothing and letters. The collection of rare papers, maps, and ancient coins that trace the evolution of the city over the ages is something you shouldn’t miss.

Kapaleeshwarar Temple

A remarkable example of Dravidian architecture is the magnificent Kapaleeshwarar Temple. For millennia, vivid sculptures, towering gopurams, and intricate carvings have conveyed a tale of harmonious visual storytelling. 

Brace yourself for astonishment as you approach the temple, as each of the enormous gateway towers covered with intricate decoration tells a different story from Hindu mythology. Devotees who seek comfort, blessings, and a spiritual connection to Lord Shiva, the presiding deity, have a special place in their hearts for the temple.

If comfortable, participate in the rituals, but always observe from a respectful distance if you prefer to remain an observer. Seek permission before taking photographs, and avoid capturing individuals engaged in prayer.

Parthasarathy Temple

Situated in the proximity of Marina Beach, the temple offers a unique juxtaposition of spiritual serenity and the calming presence of the sea. 

Devotees and visitors can experience moments of tranquillity by the Beach, contemplating the divine energy that permeates both the temple and the natural surroundings.

The temple features five forms of Lord Vishnu: Yoga Narasimha, Rama, Gajendra Varadaraja, Ranganatha, and Lord Krishna as Parthasarathy.

Government Museum

The museum’s vast halls are home to an extensive collection of objects that cut across civilizations, offering a thorough understanding of India’s cultural mosaic. See the galleries filled with antiquated textiles, coins, ceramics, and sculptures that tell stories of ancient times. 

Every exhibit, which ranges from historic items to colonial relics, is a carefully conserved piece of history for history buffs and curious minds alike.


This outdoor museum provides an enthralling look into the area’s customs, arts, and architecture while masterfully capturing the essence of traditional life.

With its genuine furnishings and artifacts, each home is a time capsule that lets you travel back in time and take in South India’s architectural wonders.

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Kalakshetra Foundation

The Kalakshetra Foundation was founded in Chennai in 1936 by the visionary and renowned dancer Rukmini Devi Arundale. Preserving and elevating the nation’s rich cultural legacy is Kalakshetra’s mission. It has served as both a haven for traditional artists and a hub for new ideas.

Everywhere one looks, one can see how deeply the institution values Bharatanatyam, Carnatic music, and other traditional arts. The best Indian classical arts are often performed on Kalakshetra’s largest campus. 

Marina Beach

The longest urban Beach in India, Marina Beach, pans gorgeously along the Bay of Bengal. The stretch of golden sands draws both locals and visitors who come to enjoy the basic joys of sun, sea, and tranquillity.

Beyond the shore, the horizon seems to go on forever, providing a peaceful diversion from the city’s activity. As the sun sets and warm hues fill the sky, schedule a stroll along the Beach in the evening. 

At Marina Beach, there are opportunities for water sports. Beach volleyball matches and coastal horseback riding are just two examples of a diverse range of activities, much like the waves.

Elliot’s Beach

Elliot’s Beach is less busy and has a more tranquil atmosphere than the well-known Marina Beach. It is a great place to go if you’re seeking peace. The long shoreline cries out for relaxation, offering lots of room for strolls and peaceful times of reflection by the lake.

Discovering Elliot’s Beach’s diverse culinary options, which include hot seafood meals and traditional South Indian munchies, is an exciting culinary trip. Take advantage of the chance to have a refreshing coconut water or a scoop of freshly prepared ice cream while admiring the scenery around the Beach.

Pulicat Lake

This is a birdwatcher’s paradise. The sizable brackish lagoon provides migratory birds with a haven. See the calm waterways by boat, where flamingos, pelicans, and other migratory birds decorate the skies in large flocks.

Through a binocular lens, observe the colorful feathers and unique habits of the avian guests who make Pulicat Lake their second home.

Thousand Lights Mosque  

Built by Umdat ul-Umara, its architectural finesse mirrors the Mughal influence, providing a unique glimpse into the cultural amalgamation prevalent during that era. 

As you step onto its grounds, you embark on a journey through time, resonating with the echoes of the past. 

The name “Thousand Lights” derives from the exquisite chandeliers illuminating the prayer hall, casting a mesmerizing glow during worship. 

Kolli Hills

Kolli Hills provides a nice change of pace from daily life for individuals who appreciate taking photos or are just searching for a lovely drive. Whether you plan a day trip or an extended stay, Kolli Hills caters to both preferences. 

Kolli Hills can also serve as a gateway to exploring other nearby tourist destinations. Its strategic location allows visitors to enrich their hill station experience with visits to other charming spots within close range. 

Whether you’re drawn to historic sites, cultural landmarks, or other natural wonders, Kolli Hills opens the door to many exploration possibilities.

Saravana Bhavan 

It is a renowned eatery responsible for revolutionizing vegetarian cuisine in South India, from crispy dosas and fluffy idlis to aromatic sambar and an abundance of chutneys.

Signature Dishes and Must-Try Items

  • 1. Masala Dosa
  • 2. Mini Tiffin Platter
  • 3. Chana Bhatura
  • 4. Filter Coffee

Amethyst Cafe

It is located in a beautifully renovated colonial-style building. Famous for its creative approach to cooking, Amethyst Cafe combines tastes from all around the world with a dash of regional inspiration. 

Discover a menu featuring a mouthwatering selection of meals, ranging from salads with Mediterranean influences to main courses with Indian influences. 

Quinoa salad with pomegranate dressing is a must-try dish for a cool start, and the Grilled Chicken Panini with hot mango chutney is a great fusion meal. 

Make room for their rich sweets and culinary wonders in and of themselves. Try the Dark Chocolate Fondant or the Pistachio and Raspberry Tart.

Kasivinayaga Restaurant

Kasivinayaga Restaurant is the ideal location for an authentic experience of Chettinad cuisine. Chettinad cuisine is recognized for its bold and complex flavors. It celebrates spices, intricate cooking techniques, and a tapestry of regional specialties.

Local Favorites and Specialties:

  • Chettinad Chicken Curry
  • Meen Kuzhambu
  • Kothu Parotta
  • Chettinad Vegetable Biryani


Enjoy the peace of the seaside scenery, become engrossed in the lively cultural activities, and revel in Chennai’s charm, which makes it a destination unlike any other. Here’s to the enchanting city of Chennai and the countless adventures awaiting you in 2024!