Chennai, voorheen bekend als Madras, is de hoofdstad van de Indische staat Tamil Nadu. De stad is druk en lawaaiig en naar onze mening niet heel speciaal. Maar, het is wel de perfecte startplek voor je trip door het zuiden van India.
Our train from Madurai to Chennai had a scheduled departure time of 8.35 pm. As it was our last trainride in India ,we went for some luxury and took the 2AC class (which includes a pillow, bedsheet and some privacy curtains). The Cost for this 497 kilometer train trip was 1680 Rupees p.p.
We arrived around 6 am at Chennai Egmore Railway station from which we took a local train from platform 11 to the next station Chennai Park. We walked 300 meters to the metrostation At Park Town and from Platform 2, we switched to the metro who took us to Thiruvallikeni.
We have to say, it is best to know in front where you are going, it is not wel singposted, and asking around won't help you a lot. An offline app like maps.me is very helpful with this.
From metrostop Thiruvallikeni it was an easy 1,5 km walk to our hotel. But we did it with a tuktuk..
A really simple but great place to go to for some simple toast with chili, or much better, delicious ice-cream, lassies and milkshakes, is Lemontree. This small ‘restaurant’ can be found on the other side of the street where our hotel is, and it is great.
For a really tasteful Western meal, Chillies is the place to be. We found this place while we were shopping at Express Avenue Mall and we went back the next day again. After almost 2 months eating mostly vegetarian (or in some lucky cases chicken), this was heaven. We had some great steak and burgers here.
We stayed at Treebo Saravana Boutique. It is right on the street, although you won’t here the noise passing by when you are at your room. It is not a fancy hotel with a special twist, it is just a good quality hotel. It is close to Marina Beach and walking distance to the shopping mall called Express Avenue Mall. The rooms are equipped with a watercooker, coffee and tea and comes with a simple breakfast.
** You can find them on booking.com
We visited Chennai one week after a big cyclone hit the city, but to our surprise we could only see damage at the trees. At least, we think that’s the only damage we saw. Since India is one of the dirtiest countries we’ve seen, you never know if the plastic that lies on the roofs and in the streets is the normal street view or that it was there because of the cyclone..
We did not really do that much in Chennai. The only reason we came here, was to fly out of India to Sri Lanka. However, we did spent our time wisely: we went shopping! But if you have a bit more time on your hand there is Marina Beach within 1,5 kilometers from the hotel witch is the best beach in Chennai you can visit. Besides this Chennai has still some old colonial features like the Chennai Fort, which contains some museums and galleries. And for temple lovers the Kapaleeshwar Temple should not be missed.