Travel Tales of a Backpacker~ Day 4-Chennai

Hello everybody and welcome back to my blog for more from my travel tales in Southern India 🙂

In previous four blogs you read how my travel was planned and what all we explored on my Day 1 and Day 2 in Pondicherry, followed by my visit to Kanyakumari on Day3. If you have not read them already please do so now !!!

By around 16:00 hrs my Kanyakumari site seeing and exploration was about to end and in the meantime I received an update on my phone and that was not a good news 😦

I had booked a wait listed ticket hoping that it will get confirmed by the time its journey time but it didn’t and I since I already had my return ticket from Chennai to Mumbai confirmed I had to be at Chennai any how by next day.

My phone battery was low and I needed to charge it because I were to do some exploring and surfing for checking the availability of another train or bus or any other possible mode of transportation. I came back to railway station got my luggage from cloak room and immediately got down to work. I explored the possibilities and managed to get a bus ticket in an A/C sleeper coach from Kanyakumari to Chennai. The bus was to leave at 18:45 hrs from a spot close to railway station.

The bus came right on time and I boarded it for my further journey to Chennai. It was still bright so I managed to see a glimpse of beauty and local villages close to Kanyakumari on my way to Kanyakumari.

I reached Chennai around 06:30 hrs and got down near Koyambedu Metro station and took a metro for Chennai Central now known as “PURATCHI THALAIVAR DR. M. G. RAMACHANDRAN CENTRAL RAILWAY STATION”

As usual I went in to retiring room their and got freshened up, after which also as usual I checked in my luggage at cloak room and headed out for exploring Chennai. I did some research on google about the places I could visit before I left station.

My first destination was Marina Beach and for going there I took a local train from Chennai Park for Tiruvallikeni and then walked down to Marina Beach. The beach was neat and clean and the good thing was at that hour it was not crowded.

A glimpse of Marina Beach, Chennai

I spend few minutes there and then headed to Vivekananda Heritage Museum which was bang opposite to Marina Beach

Vivekananda Heritage Museum

Just like in Kanyakumari Museum here also showcased the life journey and milestones from the life of Swami Vivekanada. It did not take much time for me to explore the museum. There was an audio visual on Swamiji which I went to see. There were not many visitors just me and 2 more families. We saw the show which lasted for about 15 minutes or so. I then went on to the book shot in the premises to check if I can find anything interesting, and I did find something to quench my thirst on Yoga there.

The books I bought

After spending some time at Vivekananda Heritage Museum and book store I headed to “San Thome Cathedral Basilica” a beautiful monument which dates back to 1523 AD and was built by the Portuguese over the tomb of Thomas the apostle, one of the apostles of Jesus. The present structure was rebuilt in 1896. This church is one of the three known churches in the world built over the tomb of an apostle of Jesus. The other two are in Vatican City ( St. Peter’s Basilica) and Spain (Santiago de Compostela Cathedral in Galacia). To the eyes the cathedral was truly amazing and its Neo-Gothic style of architecture is to marvel at. Unfortunately I could not capture an image which could do justice to this cathedral on my phone camera so sharing am Image from the google images.

San Thome Cathedral Basilica -Image courtesy Google Images
San Thome Cathedral Basilica image taken from my phone 😦

I next headed to the Lord Shiva temple famous in chennai as Kapaleeshwarar Temple located in Mylapore. The temple was built sometime in 7th century CE and is an example of Dravidian architecture.

Kapaleeshawarar Temple- Mylapore, Chennai

By the time I reached Kapaleeshwarar temple it got closed for the visitors, so did not get the opportunity to see the inside of the temple. There is a huge lake adjacent to the temple and the view was astounding.

It was noon already and still had two more places to see, so I rushed to catch local train from Thirumayilai the nearest railway station for Kasturba Nagar to go to Guindy National Park. Somehow after reaching the gates of Guindy National Park I did not feel like going inside so I decided to leave that place and get back to Chennai Central from where I was to take train in the evening at 18:20 hrs.

I still had about two and half hours for my train so I took a last minute call to go to Chennai Railway Museum which was at about 45 minutes distance from Chennai Central. I took metro from Chennai Central to Anna Nagar and then from their I took an auto rickshaw for Chennai Railway Museum.

Once inside the museum I realized that this was probably one of the places I wanted to spend most of my time. There was so much of history to go through about the railways not only Indian but also of the world. I did not had much time so I glanced through the museum gallery there and headed out to see the railway engines and coaches from different era’s of Indian rail history.

My phone battery was dying fast and I needed whatever little was left of it to last at least till I reached Chennai central railway station and catch my train back home, so I could not take as much pics as I wanted. One thing is for sure though, Chennai Railway Museum is one of the most under rated tourist destinations and in my opinion if promoted well this place has a lot of opportunity to pull crowd, not only the tourists visiting Chennai but also the local crowd especially children’s.

My impromptu trip to southern India was great fun and I enjoyed visiting and exploring all the places I went to. I hope you could connect with my posts on this series and are already making plans to visit all these places soon now that vacations are also in order 🙂

Do let me know if you have any questions for me. Also if any of you wants to make a budget trip to all or any of these places and wants to know the cost break up and other details do feel free to write to me on my email or drop a comment and I will be happy to answer your questions.

Until my next post stay safe stay happy!!!

Love & Gratitude,

Nilesh Sharma

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