3-Day Chennai Itinerary

Day 1:

Museums and Historical Tour

10:00 AM – 01:00 PM

It will be ideal to begin your Madras excursion with the first English fortress on Indian soil, Fort St. George which was the trading centre for the British merchants.

Fort St. George was built in the 17th century by the East India Company and made it their headquarters to continue their trade interests with southern India. It now serves as an administrative centre for Government of Tamil Nadu and part of it has been converted into a museum for civilians. The museum doesn’t draw large crowds, but a visit to this iconic building will worth your time.

Time duration: 30 – 45 mins

Mode of transport: Ola / Uber auto or cab will be economical.

Next destination will enlighten with some knowledge about the origin of the city and its culture at the Government Museum located in Egmore.

The museum has a fascinating history and showcases its collection of ancient artefacts at its multiple departments. It also has a special museum exclusively for children. You’re bound to have a good time here.

Time duration: 60 – 90 mins

Mode of transport: Autos are available from Fort St. George.

Luncheon, A Smart Museum Visit & the famous Beach

02:00 PM – 06:00 PM

Just 1 km from the Government Museum is the Annalakshmi Restaurant at Chetpet, which is known to serve authentic south Indian dishes in traditional way. This place is known for its ambiance and temple theme.

Price range: Rs 1000 – 1200 for two.

Mode of transport: A 15-minute walk or a 5-minute auto ride.

Post lunch, your next stop will get you closer to the beach at one of landmarks of Chennai, Vivekananda House, opposite to Marina Beach.

Vivekananda House has an intriguing history and is dedicated to the life of Swami Vivekananda. The museum integrates modern technology to keep the messages and teachings of the celebrated monk alive. Time spend will be memorable.

Time duration: 60 – 90 mins

Mode of transport: OLA/Uber ride.

Then you can head straight towards the longest beach of India, Marina Beach.

Marina beach is the world’s 2nd largest urban sand beach. People from all around the world pays a visit at this beach and its favourite spot for localities to spend their evening. Stay here to enjoy the restless sea, enthusiastic crowd and some mouth-watering street food.

The Light House is a must visit as it offers some breath-taking views of the sea and the Chennai city. It remains open for civilians till 06:00 PM.

Time duration: 90 – 120 mins

Mode of transport: Few steps from Vivekananda House.

Iconic Cathedral and Dinner

07:00 PM – 09:00 PM

Next attraction will be the most revered church of Chennai, San Thome Basilica, and 800 meters from Marina Beach Light House.

The design and architecture of the church is truly feast for the eyes. It is built beside the tomb of Saint Thomas. The tomb was built in 16th century by the Portuguese.

Time duration: 30 – 45 mins

Mode of transport: 10-minute walk from the light house.

Before you call it a day, enjoy some delicious vegetarian thalis at Sangeetha Restaurant at T Nager. They serve some authentic south Indian cuisines at a reasonable rates.

Price range: Rs 700 – 800 for two.

Mode of transport: Autos are available inside the premise of the church.

Also read: Best area to book your hotel in Chennai

Day 2:

Sunrise, Breakfast, Mythology and National Park

06:00 AM – 12:00 PM

Today you need to make maximum utilization of your day. Be an early riser and head out by 6 o’clock to witness the mesmerizing sunrise at the Elliot Beach.

Chennai beaches are thronged with runners and joggers and along with the view of sunrise these beaches give much needed enthusiasm to the wandering souls of visitors and tourists.

Time duration: 60 – 90 mins

Mode of transport: OLA/ Uber can be booked easily in the early hours.

Now to fill your tummy, take a walk to Murugan Idly Shop to relish some authentic south Indian tiffin dishes. The brand has been around for almost two decades and can be seen at multiple locations in Chennai. Their services begin at 07:00 AM.

Price range: Rs 200 – 300 for two.

Mode of transport: A 5-minute walk.

Next, get a chance to seek divine blessings at Shri Ashtalakshmi Temple, 500 meters from Murugan Idly Shop.

The temple complex has a fascinating structure and taking a tour leaves you spellbound. It is opened from 06:00 AM – 12:00 PM.

Time duration: 45 – 60 mins

Mode of transport: A 500 – meter walk from Murugan Idly Shop.

Your next destination will take you closer to the nature at Guindy National Park.

The National Park is home to many species of flora and fauna. Many endangered species are kept under protection here. It has a Snake Park and Children’s Park. Definitely an ideal place for family outings.

Time duration: 60 – 90 mins

Mode of transport: OLA/Uber will be convenient to get here.

After a long and tiresome morning, you need some rest. So head back towards your hotel. Public vehicles can be boarded from the main road outside premises of the National Park.

Arrangement of vehicle: Hire a cab to visit all attractions for evening excursion. The attractions are on the outskirts and getting a vehicle on your way back can be a problem.

For lunch, you have an option of quenching your hunger at your hotel or can look to grab a bite on the way to next attraction. We recommend to try out Paradise Biryani.

Paradise Biryani is name which has been getting immense popularity across the country. They have brought the famous Hyderabadi biryanis to major metropolises. They have multiple outlets in Chennai. Relish some of their delicacies at OMR, Perungudi, 20 minutes from T Nagar.

Price range: Rs. 700 – 800 for two.

A walk-through Aquarium (First in India)

02:00 PM – 07:00 PM

Your next attraction is one of a kind, VGP Marine Kingdom, on ECR.

VGP Marine Kingdomis India’s first and largest walk-through aquarium with underwater tunnel. It has several exotic and indigenous species of marine flora and fauna which are rarely seen. They also have Scuba diving services inside the aquarium. It is a must visit!

Time duration: 2 – 3 hours

Post this, return to your hotel.

Shopping and Dinner

08:00 PM – 09:00 PM

Later satisfy your shopaholic spirits with some street shopping at Pondy Bazaar and relish some south Indian non-vegetarian dishes at AmmaChettinadu Restaurant both in T Nagar.

Amma Chettinadu Restaurant is known for warm hospitality and soothing ambiance. Heavy crowd is quite the norm.

Price range: Rs. 400 – 500 for two.

Also read: Central Chennai Itinerary

Day 3

Today’s attractions are located at different cities and will take more than one hour to reach. The best mode of transportation will be to hire an outstation cab for the entire day. The arrangement of vehicle can be made a day before.

Travellers who are enthusiastic about road trips will have the best experience of their trip. Carry a pen drive loaded with your favourite tracks to make this a memorable journey.

Historical Excursion (Part 1)

10:00 AM – 01:00 PM

First place to visit will be Sriperumbudur which is famously known for Rajiv Gandhi Memorial. It takes almost an hour to cover a distance of 40 km from Chennai via National Highway 48.

Rajiv Gandhi Memorial is the site where Prime Minister of India, Rajiv Ratna Gandhi, was assassinated on 21st May, 1991 while attending his rally. The place has been developed into a tourist attraction. Tourist across the country pay their homage to the youngest and revered Prime Minister. The area is guarded by CISF.

A sense of nostalgia sets in for those who had mourned the loss of the leader. 

Time duration: 60 – 90 mins.

Historical Excursion (Part 2)

02:00 PM – 07:00 PM

After this, you will heading towards an ancient town with historical significance, Mamallapuram or Mahabalipuram which is 60 km from Sriperumbudur. An hour and half long drive via the ECR along the coastline makes the journey all the more enjoyable.

Mahabalipuram or Mamallapuram is an ancient town which flourished under the reign of the Pallav dynasty in the 5th century CE. It has monuments which were constructed during their rule and have been recognized as UNESCO World Heritage sites. Shore temple, Pancha Ratha and Krishna’s Butter Ball are the prominent monuments. The Mahabalipuram beach is next to the Shore Temple.

The town draws tourists from all over the world and has an assortment of restaurants serving fresh sea food by the shore. There are restaurants which serve traditional vegetarian chettinad cuisines.

The Fisherman Colony gives you plenty of options to buy souvenirs from this ancient town which is famously known for its stone sculptures and artwork.

Stay as long as you feel like. Return journey to Chennai will take almost an hour.  THAT’S ALL FOLKS!!!

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