The blue waters of Bay of Bengal mingle with the golden sands at the beaches of Chennai formerly called Madras. Once being a small village of fishermen Chennai attained a significant place during the British Rule. It is one of the four metropolitan cities of India. Chennai has a lot to offer to tourists in the form of ancient temples and Museums, Churches and forts built during the British rule.
Chennai had been part of successive South Indian kingdoms through centuries. The recorded history of the city began in the colonial times, specifically with the arrival of British East India Company and the establishment of Fort St. George in 1644.
The name Chennai is a shortened form of Chennaipattanam, the name of the town that grew around Fort St. George, which was built by the English in 1639.
Chennai is one of the few cities in the world that accommodates a national park, the Guindy National Park, within its limits.
With the history of many neighbourhoods of the city such as Mylapore and Triplicane antedating that of the city itself, the architecture of Chennai ranges in a wide chronology. The oldest buildings in the city dates back to 7th and 8th centuries CE, which include the Kapaleeshwarar Temple in Mylapore and the Parthasarathy Temple in Triplicane built in the Dravidian architecture. This architecture style includes various styles such as those of the Pallavas, the Cholas, and the Vijayanagara empires.
Chennai is home to many museums, galleries, and other institutions, many of which are free of admission charges and are major tourist attractions as well as playing a research role.
Chennai is a major centre for music, art and culture in India.The city is known for its classical dance shows. In 1930, for the first time in India, Madras University introduced a course of music, as part of the Bachelor of Arts curriculum.An arts festival called the Chennai Sangamam, which showcases not only various arts of Tamil Nadu but also from the neighbouring states, like kalari (from Kerala), which is a major attraction, is held in January every year.
For Shopping there are numerous good malls in Chennai.