Monday, August 27, 2007
Earlier known as the city of Madras, Chennai is also known as the Gateway to the south. It is Tamil Nadu's capital, which is a state in south India. In 1522, the Portuguese arrived here but the present day city was founded only when East India Company was granted a piece of land to build a trading house. The British later went on to rule India and built some exquisite first and monuments but one of them, situated in George Town, is the Fort St George, which later developed into modern day Chennai. St George Fort is now the seat of power and the state legislative assembly is situated there. Its Town Hall is a remarkable example of architecture.
There are many historical buildings and palaces in Chennai. Victoria memorial is an architectural splendour which has been built according to the Mughals style. There is National Art Gallery and has an excellent collection of paintings, handicrafts and 10th-13th century bronze images.
The high court built in late 19th century, is a great example of Indo Saracen architecture which was popular in those times. The stain glass arches and a minaret 160 feet tall make this structure outstanding.
The beautiful Marina beach is 13 kilometres in length and is the second largest beach in the world. As far as the eyes can see you see never ending stretch of golden sand. It is a favourite place for film shootings! At the northern side of the beach many statues and memorials of Tamil leaders have been put up. It is like a gallery of eminent personalities. On the southern side of the beach is a row of Indo Saracen building. Some of the well known buildings are the PWD house, Senate House, The Madras University and the Presidency College. There are other beaches too like the VGP Golden beach.
Chennai has many temples and churches. Some of the well known ones are the CSI Wesley Church, CSI Church House Of Prayer, Nizhal Thangal & Mary's Church, Mundakaneeyaman Temple, and the Marundeeshwar temple. They all compete with each other in beauty and grandeur. The South Indians were always deely religious people and no where in India will you find so many temples and churches as in the southern part of India.
The Chennai Pondy bazaar, the Spencer Bazaar makes for great shopping experience and their natural parks like the Guindy National Park, Arinjar Anna Zoological Park and the snake park are a new experience for the visitors. All these together make Chennai a distinct metropolitan city of India.
In the December of 2004, Tsunami lashed the city of Chennai but the residents of the city didnt lose hope and have rebuilt all that they had lost to the sea. Their spirit of fighting and overcoming the odds is reflected in this occurrence.
There are many hotels and guest houses in Chennai to suit your needs. Some of the well known five star hotels are Hotel Taj Coromandal, Royal Meridien, Hotel Park Sheraton, Ambassador, Hotel President and many more. On the other hand there are budget hotels like Beverly hotel, Hotel Peninsula, Sudha Inn and many many more.
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