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Chennai Sightseeing
 

Kapaleeswarar
 

Kapaleeswarar, an ancient Shiva temple, is the biggest temple in Chennai. A masterpiece of Dravidian style and displays the architectural elements - gopurams, mandapams and a tank. There are some fragmentary inscriptions dating back to 1250 AD.

Kapaleeswarar
Sri Parthasarathy Temple
 

Sri Parthasarathy Temple, devoted to Lord Krishna, was originally built by the Pallavas in the 8th century and renovated in the 16th century bt the Vijayanagars. It houses the five 'avatars' of Lord Vishnu, and has a small temple shrine dedicated to Vishnu's consort, Vedavalli Ammai. It's one of the oldest surviving temple in Chennai.

Sri Parthasarathy Temple
 
The Santhome Cathedral Church
 

The Santhome Cathedral Church built in 1504, then rebuilt in neo-Gothic style in 1893, this Roman Catholic Church near Kapaleeshwarar temple is said to house the remains of St. Thomas the Apostle.

The Santhome Cathedral Church

 
St. Thomas Mount
 

St.Thomas is believed to have lived in Little Mount Shrine (a tiny cave) when he came to India around 58 A.D. Known locally as Chinnamalai, the cave is entered via the Portuguese Church that was built in 1551.

St. Thomas Church

 
Fort St. George
 

Fort St. George was built in the 1640 A.D., the first bastion of British power of India, the fort has undergone much alteration. The fort is now used by the Tamilnadu Legislative Assembly and the Secretariat office. The 46m high flagstaff at the front is actually a mast salvaged from a 17th century shipwreck.

Fort St. George
 
St. Mary's Church
 

St. Mary's Church built in 1678-80, was the first English Church in Chennai, and is the oldest surviving British Church in India. There are reminders in the Church of Clive, who was married here in 1753, and of Elihu Yale, the early Governor of Chennai who later founded the famous American University bearing his name.

St. Mary's Church

 
The Fort Museum
 

The Fort Museum has a collection of objects from the tenure of the East India Company in Chennai including letters from Robert Clive. There are many contemporary paintings too.

 
The Snake park
 

The Snake Park with its lizards, crocodiles and turtles is more interesting. It is well maintained with generous enclosures. The Snake Park has a wide variety of reptiles. The next compound is the Children Park, which has a small collection of animals and birds and a big play area for children.

The Snake park

 
Kalakshetra
 

Kalakshetra devoted to the revival of classical arts, was founded by Rukmini Devi  Arundale in 1936. Classical dance, music, traditional textile designs and weaving are taught in natural surroundings.

Kalakshetra

 
The Theosophical Society
 

The Theosophical Society, is set in a tranquil spot on the banks of the Adyar river. There is a huge banyan tree, with its branches spreading over an area of 40,000 square ft, where discourses are conducted.

The Theosophical Society

 
Valluvar Kottam
 

The Valluvar Kottam, on the corner of Kodambakkam High Rd and Village Rd, honours the acclaimed Tamil Poet, Thiruvalluvar, whose classic work - one thousand three hundred and thirty kurals (couplets) - are reputed to be about 2000 years old. Established in 1976, Valluvar Kottam replicates ancient Tamil architecture with the 1330 verse Kural inscribed on panels. The outer structure in stone is a replica of the temple car of Thiruvarur in Tamilnadu.

Valluvar Kottam

 
BM Birla Planitarium
 

Situated in Kotturpuram in Chennai, the B. M. Birla Planetarium houses a modern, fully computerised projector, which depicts the heavens on a hemispherical dome.

 
National Art Gallery
 

The National Art Gallery situated in Egmore were established in 1857. There are sections on geology, archaeologym anthropology, numismatics, botany, zoology and sculpture, besides a collection of armoury.

National Art Gallery

 
Government Museum
 

Well worth visiting, the Government Museum is on Pantheon Rd, between Egmore and Anna Salai. The buildings originally belonged to a group of eminent British citizens, known as the Pantheon Committee, who were charged with improving the social life of the British in Chennai. The main building has a fine archaeological section representing all the major south Indian periods including Chola, Vijayanagar, Hoysala and Chalukya. It also houses a good ethnology collection. The bronze gallery has a superb collection of Chola art. One of the most impressive is the bronze of Ardhanariswara, the androgynous incarnation of Shiva.

Government Museum
 
Marina Beach
 

The stretch of beach known as the Marina extends for 13km. South of the pitiful aquarium is the Ice House, once used to store massive ice blocks transported by ship from North America. It later became the venue from which Vivekanand preached his ascetic philosophy.

Marina Beach