In all honesty, I never thought much of Madras or Chennai, the capital city of Tamil Nadu. I'd much rather go to the hip and happening Bangalore or the picturesque Kochi, Chennai with its conservative tag and rather dull life had nothing much for me, or so I thought. However, as I stepped out of the Kamraj terminal of the Chennai Airport, I realised how wrong I was. Chennai turned out to be all that I never expected it to be.
Despite being a metropolitan city, Chennai is like a breath of fresh air. Devoid of hypocrisy, pretension and the race to outdo the other. The 5 am temple bells, the colourful malipoo in a row, the many coconut sellers, the Tamilian Mamis jostling each other for space, the kind strangers - what is there not to love in Chennai.
A mere 2 days spent in Chennai are not enough in the city (obviously) but I was on a very tight work schedule yet I managed to find and be floored by these
Marina Beach - I live in a concrete locked city. Therefore, the mere mention of beach makes me very very happy. We reached Marina Beach at 5:30 am and oh boy, what a sight it was. To see the sun rise in all its glory and to search for its reflection in the bluish water waves.
Elliot Beach - Less crowded and much cleaner than Marina
Sowcarpet - For a second, you may just feel you've been transported to some town in Rajasthan or Gujarat, it is busy, it is crazy and yes, it is crowded. From chaats to bhajiyas to farsaan to zari borders and clay items- this place as everything
Mylapore - Who doesn't love South Indian food? The many hole in the wall eateries dotting Mylapore serve the best breakfast you could ever have - Dosa, vadai, fluffy idlis with the best sambhar and of course Rasam to cleanse it all off.
British Library on Mount Road - You will surely fall in love! The world of books in any case is enticing for anybody.
This was short and very sweet. I hope to cover more on my next visit to Chennai.