Voted as the ninth best of the most metropolitan cities in the world by Lonely Planet, Chennai is a melting point of tradition and culture. The city boasts an old and new world charm and is rightfully dubbed as the “gateway to the south.” As a tourist destination, Chennai attracts foreign tourists from all over the world. This metropolis is flooded with various heritage sites including places of religious significance. Therefore, if you wish to witness the existence parallel influences, plan a visit to Chennai. A convenient way to visit the city is by air. The Chennai International Airport has access from most of the important cities in India and the world. For a hassle-free booking, log on to a mobile app like Yatra that not only lists the most affordable flight tickets but you can also get access to live flight status tracker.
Once in Chennai, the following places of religious significance should not miss your itinerary.
Built in the 7th Century CE by Pallavas, Kapaleerwara Temple is a Shiva Temple located at Mylapore area of Chennai. Home to various shrines and halls, the Temple is famous for conducting six sacred rituals at different times of the day. Below is the details of the rituals:
- Ushathkalam starts at 6:00
- Kalasanthi at 9:00 a.m
- Uchikalam at 1:00 p.m
- Sayarakshai at 5:00 p.m
- Irandamkalam at 7:00 p.m
- Ardha Jamam at 9:00 p.m
Each of these rituals is carried out with much grandeur that includes music and chanting of Vedic texts by the head priest of the temple.
Shirdi Sai Baba Temple
Adjacent to the famous Kapaleerwara Temple, Shirdi Sai Baba Temple is a modern Temple complex located in Mylapore area of Chennai. Built in 1952 by a Sai Baba Devotee by the name of Sri Narasimha Swamiji, the man played an instrumental role in propagating the teachings of Sai Baba throughout India. Today, the temple is an iconic structure located in the heart of the City and is visited by Sai Devotees from all over India & the world. Known for its huge Sai Baba statue amidst other Hindu Gods like Shiva, Krishan, Vinayaka and Hanuman, the temple is well maintained and a must visit place in Chennai.
Santhome Cathedral Basilica,
Santhome Cathedral Basilica is one of the most iconic landmarks in the city of Chennai. Built by the Portuguese explorers in the 16th century, the Church was rebuilt by the British and given the status of Cathedral in 1893. Amongst the Roman Catholic & Christian community of the world, this Church holds a very special place. Built over of the tomb of Saint Thomas, one of the twelve apostles of Jesus, the Church also houses a museum consisting of the artefacts associated with the Saint Thomas’s life and the contemporary era.
St. Mary’s Church
It is the oldest surviving edifices built by the British in India. Also, the oldest Anglican Church in Asia, St. Mary’s Church is known for its beautiful and unique architecture. The beautiful depiction of the last supper at the Church’s Alter is believed to be painted by Raphael himself, the famous Italian painter, and architect belonging to the movement of High Renaissance. Located within the compound of St. George Fort, the church is one of the highly visited places in the city of Chennai.
Velankanni is a pilgrim town located some 350 Kms South of Chennai. Part of the Nagapattinam district, the town sits on the Coromandel Coast of the Bay of Bengal. The town is known for the famous shrine of Basilica of Our Lady of Good Health which is the country’s largest pilgrimage center for Roman Catholics. It is estimated that every year some 2 million pilgrims flock the town of Velankanni from India and abroad to visit this famous shrine.
Chennai is proud of its culture and heritage. The city is also regarded as one of the most livable cities in India. So, if you are planning to visit the city make sure you plan it well. For instance, keeping checking the live flight status tracker so that you can travel without any delays.