Important: This destination may have COVID-19 travel restrictions in place, including specific restrictions for lodging. Check any national, local and health advisories for this destination before you book.


Temples and colonial monuments, food and festivals combine to showcase the best of South India’s artistic and religious heritage.

Colonial-era relics, temples and a rich food and arts scene welcome visitors to Chennai. The city was established as a British trading post in 1639. Now Chennai is India’s fourth-largest city and the capital of the southeastern Tamil Nadu state. Chennai’s people are welcoming. A variety of attractions presents the chance to experience the best of Tamil culture.

Chennai’s historic heart is George Town, a medley of narrow streets and bazaars lined with traditional silk and spice shops. Admire the architecture of the red-sandstone High Court and take a tour of the 18th-century Armenian Church, one of the oldest churches in India. Learn about Chennai’s history at the museum of Fort St. George, India’s first British-built fortress.

Take a rickshaw to the Government Museum, set in a complex of British-era buildings. Check out the ancient bronze sculptures and a curious skeleton and taxidermy display. Spot work by notable Indian artists, such as Raja Ravi Varma, at the National Art Gallery.

Wander through the vibrant streets of Triplicane, where you’ll find the impressive eighth-century Parthasarathy Temple. Enjoy a dawn or sunset stroll along Marina Beach. It’s a hive of activity, from cricket matches and kite flying to fortune tellers and street food vendors.

Don’t miss the Portuguese-influenced Mylapore neighborhood. Marvel at the white-washed San Thome Church, built on the tomb of the apostle St. Thomas. See a typical example of Dravidian architecture, characterized by pyramid-shaped buildings, at the Kapaleeswarar Temple.

Chennai thrives in showcasing its Tamil culture through music and dance, most notably during the Margazhi Festival in December and January. See a vast collection of everyday art at the Rukmini Devi Museum. Sample the city’s delectable Tamil cuisine. Try dishes such as spicy chettinad pepper chicken and local vegetarian specialties.

Chennai is the busy transportation hub of South India, and is well served by trains, buses and international flights. The city is notoriously hot and stuffy; after a few days of sightseeing activity many visitors travel to nearby beach resorts and hill stations.

Where to stay in Chennai

T Nagar, Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India

T Nagar

4/5Very Good!(17 area reviews)

Restaurants, shopping and spas are some highlights of T Nagar. You might stop by Valluvar Kottam or Music Academy while you're in the area.

T Nagar
Armenian Church showing a city and street scenes

Central Chennai

4/5Very Good!(57 area reviews)

The churches and monuments are just a few things visitors like about Central Chennai. Marina Beach and Fort St. George are worthwhile spots to check out, and you can hop on the metro at Mannadi Metro Station or LIC Metro Station to get around the larger area.

Central Chennai
Nungambakkam, Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India


4.5/5Wonderful!(15 area reviews)

You'll enjoy the cafes and monuments in Nungambakkam. You might want to make time for a stop at Valluvar Kottam or SDAT Tennis Stadium.

Chennai featuring religious aspects


4/5Very Good!(24 area reviews)

Unique features of Guindy include the shopping and spas. Make a stop by Guindy Race Course or Phoenix Market City while you're exploring the area.

St. Andrew\'s Kirk which includes a church or cathedral and interior views


3.5/5Good!(16 area reviews)

You'll enjoy the monuments and spas in Egmore. You might want to make time for a stop at Government Museum or Mayor Radhakrishnan Stadium.

Kapaleeswarar Temple featuring a temple or place of worship and heritage architecture


4/5Very Good!(31 area reviews)

Mylapore is known for its abundant dining options, and you can plan a trip to Kapaleeswarar Temple and Chennai Citi Center Mall while you're in town.


Top hotels in Chennai

Estimated price for 1 night / 2 adults
Grand Chennai by GRT Hotels
Grand Chennai by GRT Hotels
4.5 out of 5
120, Sir Thyagaraya Road, Chennai, Tamil Nadu
The price is Rs3,716 per night

Located in Mylapore Tiruvallikk, this luxury hotel is within 3 miles (5 km) of Consulate General of the United States, Chennai, Marina Beach and Valluvar Kottam. ...

4.4/5Excellent! (386 reviews)

"Food items, in two days breakfast items are same, non veg also not satisfied"…"

Reviewed on 10 Mar 2020

Grand Chennai by GRT Hotels
Park Hyatt Chennai
Park Hyatt Chennai
5 out of 5
39 Velachery Road, Raj Bhavan, Chennai, Tamil Nadu

Located in Guindy, this luxury hotel is 0.5 mi (0.9 km) from Chennai Snake Park and within 3 miles (5 km) of Old Mahabalipuram Road and Indian Institute of Technology ...

4.6/5Wonderful! (272 reviews)
A++ hotel! Amazing.

"Amazing! Simply amazing. Comfortable bed, excellent service, great food. Would definitely stay here again. Felt like the price was right for what you get as well."…"

Reviewed on 22 Feb 2020

Park Hyatt Chennai
Hyatt Regency Chennai
Hyatt Regency Chennai
5 out of 5
365 Anna Salai, Teynampet, Chennai, Tamil Nadu
The price is Rs4,632 per night

This family-friendly Chennai hotel is located near the airport, within 2 mi (3 km) of Consulate General of the United States, Chennai and Valluvar Kottam. Marina ...

4.1/5Very Good! (285 reviews)

"Good customer service and exceptional cleanliness."…"

Reviewed on 14 Mar 2020

Hyatt Regency Chennai

Popular places to visit in Chennai

Marina Beach
Image for Marina Beach

Marina Beach

4/5(44 reviews)

Relaxed walks, pretty sunrises, elaborate entertainment, traditional Indian street food and historical landmarks make this one of Chennai’s liveliest beaches.

Old Mahabalipuram Road
Image for Old Mahabalipuram Road

Old Mahabalipuram Road

4/5(24 reviews)

Old Mahabalipuram Road is just one of the places to see in Chennai, so why not enjoy the other things to explore during your travels? You can enjoy the restaurants while in the area.

Kapaleeswarar Temple
Image for Kapaleeswarar Temple

Kapaleeswarar Temple

4.5/5(31 reviews)

Marvel at the Dravidian architecture of this centuries-old temple, spot intricately carved figurines, watch devotees pray and experience a lively Hindu festival.

Elliot's Beach
Image for Elliot's Beach

Elliot's Beach

4/5(16 reviews)

Enjoy relaxed walks on a golden-sand beach, watch a picturesque sunrise, sample traditional Chennai beach food and visit architecturally impressive landmarks.

Valluvar Kottam
Image for Valluvar Kottam

Valluvar Kottam

4/5(6 reviews)

Learn about the history of Valluvar Kottam, a well-known monument in Chennai. Wander the beaches and marina in this culturally rich area.

Fort St. George
Image for Fort St. George

Fort St. George

4/5(25 reviews)

Spot impressive architecture and admire displays of British Raj artifacts as you explore this 17th-century citadel, one of Chennai’s finest colonial monuments.

Reviews of Chennai


Top Destination

5 - Excellent
5 - Excellent 29.746835443037973%
4 - Good
4 - Good 45.56962025316456%
3 - Okay
3 - Okay 19.620253164556964%
2 - Disappointing
2 - Disappointing 5.063291139240507%
1 - Terrible
1 - Terrible 0%

4/5 - Good

Verified traveller

25 Jan 2020

All the places we remember had changed

4/5 - Good


8 Jan 2020

Better roads and infrastructure than Bangalore!

3/5 - Okay

Verified traveller

17 Dec 2019

visit the vivekananda temple and the theosophical society

5/5 - Excellent

Verified traveller

6 Dec 2019


3/5 - Okay

Verified traveller

12 Nov 2019

Traffic tests your patience Weather is hot even in November

5/5 - Excellent

Verified traveller

30 Oct 2019

506 room is dusty

Cities near Chennai



Marina Beach featuring general coastal views as well as a large group of people

Anna Salai

Tiger Cave which includes heritage elements


Other places like Chennai