If you’re planning a quick trip to Chennai and have just one day to explore, don’t worry! The city has a lot to offer, from magnificent temples to beautiful beaches, museums, parks, and more. In this blog, we’ll highlight some of the best places to visit in Chennai in one day, including the Sri Parthasarathy Temple, Government Museum, Marina Beach, Kapaleeshwarar Temple, Valluvar Kottam, San Thome Cathedral Basilica, Vivekananda House, Guindy National Park, Thousand Lights Mosque, Elliot’s Beach, Dakshinachitra, Mylapore, and MGR Film City.
Here are the Best Places To Visit In Chennai In One Day
1) Sri Parthasarathy Temple
One of the oldest temples in Chennai, Sri Parthasarathy Temple, is a must-visit. Built in the 8th century, the temple is dedicated to Lord Krishna and is known for its intricate carvings and architecture. You can witness the beauty of the temple’s gopurams, vimanas, and mandapams, which are adorned with beautiful sculptures and intricate carvings. The temple is open from 6 am to 12 pm and from 4 pm to 9 pm.
2) Government Museum
If you’re interested in history and culture, the Government Museum is the place to go. The museum is home to a vast collection of artifacts, including ancient coins, sculptures, paintings, and archaeological findings. The Bronze Gallery is a must-visit, where you can see ancient South Indian bronzes, and the Natural History section houses some rare specimens of flora and fauna. The museum is open from 9.30 am to 5 pm.
3) Marina Beach
Marina Beach is the pride of Chennai and the longest urban beach in India. You can take a leisurely walk along the beach, watch the sunset, or simply relax and enjoy the sea breeze. The beach also has some food stalls that serve local delicacies like sundal, murukku, and bhajji. You can visit the beach any time of the day, but it’s best to avoid going there during the peak hours, as it can get crowded.
4) Kapaleeshwarar Temple
The Kapaleeshwarar Temple is another famous temple in Chennai, dedicated to Lord Shiva. The temple’s architecture is a blend of Dravidian and Vijayanagara styles, and its gopurams and mandapams are a feast for the eyes. The temple also has a beautiful tank, which is believed to have medicinal properties. You can visit the temple from 5.30 am to 12 pm and from 4 pm to 9 pm.
5) Valluvar Kottam
The Valluvar Kottam is a monument dedicated to the poet and philosopher Thiruvalluvar. The monument houses a 133-feet tall temple chariot, which is made of granite and is a marvel of architecture. This place also has a hall where you can see the inscriptions of Thiruvalluvar’s Thirukkural, a collection of 1,330 couplets on ethics and morality. The monument is open from 8 am to 6 pm.
6) San Thome Cathedral Basilica
San Thome Cathedral Basilica is a beautiful church built in the 16th century and is believed to be the final resting place of St. Thomas, one of the twelve apostles of Jesus Christ. The church’s architecture is a blend of Portuguese, Gothic, and Roman styles, and its stained glass windows and high arches are a sight to behold. You can visit the church from 6 am to 9 pm.
7) Vivekananda House
The Vivekananda House, also known as the Ice House, is a historical building that played a significant role in India’s freedom struggle. The house was once the residence of the famous Indian lawyer and politician, C. Rajagopalachari. Later, it became the place where Swami Vivekananda stayed during his visit to Chennai in 1897. The house now serves as a museum that showcases the life and teachings of Swami Vivekananda. The museum is open from 10 am to 6 pm.
8) Guindy National Park
The Guindy National Park is a great place to escape from the hustle and bustle of the city. Spread over an area of 270 hectares, the park is home to a variety of flora and fauna, including blackbucks, spotted deer, and over 130 species of birds. You can go for a nature walk, spot some wildlife, or just enjoy the tranquility of the park. The park is open from 9 am to 5.30 pm.
9) Thousand Lights Mosque
The Thousand Lights Mosque is a magnificent mosque that gets its name from the thousands of lamps that used to light up the mosque’s prayer hall. The mosque’s architecture is a blend of Mughal, Persian, and Arabic styles, and its minarets and domes are a sight to behold. You can visit the mosque any time of the day, but it’s best to avoid going there during the prayer times.
10) Elliot’s Beach
Elliot’s Beach, also known as Besant Nagar Beach, is a popular beach among the locals. The beach is less crowded than Marina Beach and is a great place to relax and soak up the sun. You can also find some food stalls that serve local delicacies like fish fry and prawn curry. The beach is open 24 hours.
Dakshinachitra is a cultural center that showcases the art, craft, and architecture of South India. The center has recreated traditional South Indian homes, streets, and markets, where you can see artisans at work and learn about their crafts. Thisalso has a restaurant that serves authentic South Indian cuisine. The center is open from 10 am to 6 pm.
Mylapore is a historic neighborhood in Chennai that is known for its temples, bazaars, and traditional South Indian homes. You can take a stroll through the narrow lanes of Mylapore and witness the daily life of the locals. The Kapaleeshwarar Temple and the San Thome Cathedral Basilica are also located in Mylapore.
13) MGR Film City
MGR Film City is a film studio that is named after the famous Tamil actor and politician, M.G. Ramachandran. The studio has a museum that showcases the history of Tamil cinema, and you can also take a guided tour of the studio and see the sets of various Tamil movies. The studio is open from 10 am to 5 pm.
In conclusion, Chennai has a lot to offer for those who are looking to explore the city in one day. From magnificent temples to beautiful beaches, museums, parks, and more, there is something for everyone. The Sri Parthasarathy Temple, Government Museum, Marina Beach, Kapaleeshwarar Temple, Valluvar Kottam, San Thome Cathedral Basilica, Vivekananda House, Guindy National Park, Thousand Lights Mosque, Elliot’s Beach, Dakshinachitra, Mylapore, and MGR Film City are some of the best places to visit in Chennai in one day.