Chennai, formerly known as Madras is the capital city of the South Indian state of Tamil Nadu is also a centre of temples for various faiths. Built-in the unique South Indian architectural styles, these temples are a symbol of spirituality, culture, art and tradition.
The never-ending shores of Marina, bustling streets of T. Nagar, peaceful stroll in ECR, sparkling classic shopping malls, spicy hot street stalls, and not to miss the ancient spiritual abodes, is what defines Chennai; the capital of Tamilnadu. Modernisation can change many things but be it any era the spiritual thirst of Tamil people will never be replaced. The crowded walls of Chennai temples will authenticate this fact. This capital town is dotted with surplus temples dedicated to all Hindu gods, including Lord Shiva, Lord Vishnu, Goddess Sakthi, Murugan, Vinayaka, Guberar, Lakshmi and many more. Following are the top ten most popular temples to visit in Chennai.
Chennai’s renowned and cherished Kapaleeswarar temple is the chief landmark of Mylapore and one of the popular and prominent temples in Chennai. The prime idol is the Lord Siva in the form of Lingam.
Built-in 7th century by the Pallavas, this serene temple is said to be one of the oldest temples in Tamilnadu. This temple is mostly buzzed with devotees on Mondays and Fridays. The dazzling 12 days celebration of Bhramotsavam during the month of March is a splendour sight to see.
Temple Timings: The temple is open from 5 am to 12 Noon and 5 pm to 9 pm.
Nearby Tourist Attraction: Nearby Kapaleeswarar temple there are surplus places to visit some of them are as follows Gaudiya mutt, Shridi Sai baba temple, Express avenue mall, Parthasarathy temple and Marina beach.
Dedicated to Lord Venkat Krishna, the Parthasarathy temple located at Triplicane is one of the most famous and ancient temples in Chennai.
The splendid feature of the temple is the colourful Gopuram, which entices everyone. This temple has been mentioned in the ancient Tamil scripts of Alvars. Apart from this, the temple houses separate shrines for Lord Narasimha, Lord Rama and Varaha. Every Fridays and Saturdays are crowded as those days are very auspicious to Lord Venkata Krishna.
Temple Timings: The temple is open for Dharshan from 6 am to 12 pm and 4 pm to 9 pm.
Nearby Places To Visit: Parthasarathy temple is located at the heart of the city and so there are surplus options to do after your darshan. The place to see around the Parthasarathy temple are Marina beach, T Nagar, Kapaleeswarar temple, Shridi sai baba temple, Vivekanadha house, Express Avenue mall, Rama Krishna temple and lot more.
The Ashtalakshmi Temple located near the Elliot beach in Chennai is one of the most beautiful temples in Chennai and the ancient temple which is one of its kind as it houses all the eight forms of Lakshmi under one roof.
The colossal effigy of Lord Vishnu inside the main sanctum is a great sight to behold. The architecture of this temple attracts every beholder as it is very unique and can’t be seen anywhere else. Located beside the shore of Besant Nagar beach, Ashtakshmi temple comprises of four floors reach out by steep staircase.
Temple Timings: The temple is open for the devotees from 6.30 am to 12 pm and 6 pm to 9 pm.
Nearby Tourist Places: Nearby tourist attraction to Ashatakshmi temple is Kalakshetra dance academy, Besant Nagar beach, Gandhi statue, Marudeeswarar temple, Arupadai Murugan Veedu temple, Elliot’s beach, Ramakrishna temple, and the Anna centenary library.
Dedicated to Shri Kaligambal and Lord Kamadeswarar, The Kalikambal Temple in Chennai is one of the oldest temples in Tamilnadu, built-in 1640 AD. Located in Thambu Chetty Street, a prominent financial street at Georgetown, running parallel to Rajaji Salai.
Though the temple had faced demolition during the invasion of the Portuguese, it has been restored later and still it holds its grace and sacredness. The idol of the Goddess Kalikambal is very sublime and glows in her peaceful charm.
Temple Timings: The temple is open from 6 a.m. to 12 Noon and from 4.30 or 5 p.m to 9 p.m.
Nearby Tourist Attraction Places: Padi Sivan temple, Shri Ayyappan temple, Viswaroopa Adhivyadhihara Sri Bhaktha Anjaneyaswami Temple, Vada Palani Murugan temple, Thiru Vidanthai temple and Madras War cemetery.
Arupadai Veedu Murugan Temple:
Arupadai Veedu Murugan Temple situated in Besant Nagar is one of the popular temples in Chennai which is dedicated to Lord Murga. The speciality of this temples is that it houses all the Six army camps of Lord Muruga under one roof.
There are separate shrines inside this temple for all the six Lord Murga such as Palani Dhandayuthpani, Thiruthani Murugan, Thiruparankundram Murugan, Palamuthircholai Murugan, Thiruchendoor Subramaniyan, Swami Malai Murugan. People from neighbouring places take Kavadi on the eve of New Year and Thai Poosam. The architecture of this temple is noteworthy and it is well maintained with neat corridors for the devotees to rest a while.
Temple Timings: The temple is open for the public from 7 am to 11 pm and from 5 pm to 8.30 pm
Nearby Tourist Attraction Places:
As this temple is very near to Besant Nagar beach, you can take a lovely stroll on the beach along with your visit to this temple. Pamban Swamigal Jeeva Samadhi Temple is located at a distance of about 1.5kms from this temple and the famous Ashtalakshmi temple is also very nearer to this temple.
Sri Marundeeswarar Temple :
Marundeeswarar temple at Thrivanmaiyur in Chennai is the largest temple in Chennai one of the 275 Paadal Petra Sthalams, sprawling across an area of one-acre land. The architectural beauty of this temple is peerless and demands a second visit. The Marundeeswarar temple has been a place of curative worship for people with diseases.
This temple is believed to have the partial feature of Pallava dynasty and partially with Chola art. This colossal temple is beautified with intricate carvings, immaculate paintings and ornate pillars. The five-tier Gopurams with impeccable effigies are a great sight to behold. Dedicated to Lord Shiva, this temple is fund crowded on the days of Brahmotsvam, Siva Rathiri, Pradhosham and on all Mondays.
Temple Timings: The temple is open up for darshan from 5.30 am to 12 Noon and 4 pm to 10 pm
Nearby Places To Visit: Places to see around Marudeeswarar temple are Sri Krishna Balarama temple, Ashtalakshmi temple, Besant Nagar beach, VGP universal kingdom, Rukmini Devi museum, VGP golden beach and lot more.
Sree Ayappan-Guruvayurappan Temple
Sree Ayappan-Guruvayurappan Temple in Mahalingapuram is the first-ever Ayyappan temple at Chennai. Located in Nungambakkam, this scenic temple is dedicated to Lord Ayyappan and it also has separate shrines for Lord Muruga and Lord Vinayaka.
This beautiful temple is built in the blend of Tamil and Kerala style. The Poojas and rituals are done as per the Kerala tradition, the Morning and evening poojas are considered to be very auspicious here. During the month of Karthigai i.e November to December, this temple is fully crowded with Ayyappan pilgrims.
Temple Timings: The temple follows the Kerala style of pooja procedures and it is open for darshan from 4 am to 11 am and 5 pm to 8.30 pm.
Nearby Places To Visit: There are many places to visit near this temple including Semmozhi Park, Mahalingeshwarar temple, Jeeva park, and Panangal park
Vadapalani Murugan Temple:
Vadapalani Andavar Temple or Vada Palani Murugan Temple dedicated to Lord Muruga is the trademark signature spots of Chennai city and is also enriched with people’s faiths from all over the country. The temple is believed to be that worshipping Lord Murugan here is as pious as praying to him at the original Palani temple. The Vadapalani Murugan Temple has a rich history and an ornate architecture.
Lord Muruga here graces in the standing posture. The most amazing fact of this temples of is that eastern tower of the temple is 40 m high which bears the carving of all the 108 Mudras of Bharathanatiyam. And the upper ceiling of the temple pavilion has images depiction the incidents from Skanda Puranam.
Temple Timings: The temple is open from 5 am to 12 pm and 4 pm to 9pm.
Nearby Tourist Places: Tourist attraction places near Vada Palani Murugan temple are Angallam temple, Varasiddhi Vinayaka temple, the forum mall, olive Ayurvedic centre, MA Chidambaram Stadium, and Mahalingapuram Sree Ayyappa Temple.
Sai Baba Temple, Ambattur:
There are more than ten temples dedicated to Shridi Saibaba at Chennai. Among all. this temple is very special as it is believed that Shridi Sai Baba appeared Himself before Santhana Devakumar and ordered him to raise this temple. It took 3 years to finish this temple.
Ambattur Sai Baba Temple is one of the famous and prominent temples in Chennai. At the entrance, there is a 9 feet high idol of Baba in the standing position. Every Thursday there would be Annadhanam(A sacred offering of food) and special poojas for Baba. People from all around Chennai throng here on Thursdays.
Temple Timings: The temple is open from 6 am to 12 pm and 4 pm to 8 pm.
Places to visit nearby: Ambattur is an important landmark at Chennai, there are places like Chinna Thirupathy Aalayam, Guruvayur Krishna Temple, and Ambattur lake to visit nearby.
Vedapureeswarar temple, Thiruverkadu:
Thiruverkadu Vedapureeswarar Temple is one of the prominent temples in Chennai, dedicated to Lord Shiva. This is one of the 276 Devara Paadal Petra Shiva Sthalams and 23rd Shiva Sthalam in Thondai Nadu. The idol of the presiding deity here is the Swayambu Lingam.
Yet another special feature at this temple is the architectural style of the Vimana atop the Sanctorum. It is built in the unique Gaja Brishtam style. This temple is believed to be 1300 years old and is praised greatly by the eminent poet Thirugnanasambanthar. And also this is the birthplace of Saint Moorka Nayanar, one of the 63 Nayanmars. The Brahmotsavam festival celebrated during the day of the Magam (February – March) is the most major festival in this temple.
Temple Timings: The temple is open from 5 am to 12 pm and 4 pm to 8 pm
Nearby Tourist Places: Cholamandalam Artist Village, Vishwaroopa Adhivyadhihara Anjaneyar Temple, Rajiv Gandhi memorial and Padi Sivan Temple.
Set your foot in the divine sands of Chennai and start your voyage into the faith, antique ritual and varied history. These temples are the begetters of classic dance, mind-blowing music, folktales, par fewer poems and whatnot. There are about one lakh temples housed in Tamil Nadu which is unique in their own way. First, make a visit to these top 10 most famous temples in Chennai and continue your journey to the next.
So, which one of these famous temples in Chennai you are going to visit on your trip to Chennai. Take your pick and also check out our temple tour packages and customized tour packages options given by Tamilnadu Tourism.
If you know, any more famous and must-visit temples one can visit in Chennai, tell us in the comments below.
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