Mahabalipuram is located in the southeastern part of Tamil Nadu. It stretches between the Great Salt Lake and the Bay of Bengal and is also known for its rich Indian culture and heritage. It is chiefly a seaport, which is situated about 58 km away from the capital city of Chennai.
Mahabalipuram is famous for its monuments and temples, particularly the very renowned Shore Temple. It entails three temples constructed in one single complex that was built way back in the 8th century. Another celebrated temple is the Pancha Rathas.
As the name suggests, they are a group of five temples carved in the form of chariots. The Descent of the Ganga is an enormous rock with an open mouth in the form of a statue. Other tourist attractions in Mahabalipuram are the Crocodile Farm, Arjuna’s Penance, Krishna’s Butterball, the Cave temples, and the Indian Seashell Museum. Along with these, there are countless monoliths, temples, and stone figures that are a testimony to the rich cultural heritage of India.
Even though it is a small town, it is well-connected by buses and cars because of its huge popularity amongst Indians and foreigners. These buses run from different parts of Chennai, Kanchipuram, and Chengal Pattu.
The climate here remains cool and reasonably humid throughout the year, which makes it perfect to visit any time of the year. Local restaurants and multi-cuisine restaurants are available for a rewarding culinary journey as well. The local language is Tamil, although the locals are fluent in other English and Hindi as well.
This prominent lighthouse stands on the rocky covers near the shore. It can be explored between 9 AM and 5.30 PM by paying a minimal entry fee.
This museum is an interesting place to visit. It has a few working models of wooden, steel, and diesel ships, Egyptian papyrus boats, maps of ancient sea routes, and full information about lights, buoys, and many devices used for communication and navigation purposes.
Not many know about the Seashell Museum, which is Asia's biggest seashell museum. This museum has more than 20,000 kinds of shells, corals, conchs, and fossils on display.
This fabulous Shore Temple is a two-temple construction that stands facing the sea. Legends say that here once existed more than five structures, so remarkable that they invited the envy of the gods who unleashed the sea on them.
Panch Rathas, which means five chariots, are splendid stone structures, each impressed out of a single huge boulder.
Well-known for its stone and wooden objects, Mahabalipuram markets also sell soapstone and granite sculptures. These sculptures are generally of gods and goddesses, which capture scenes from everyday life. Seashells are also a key item if you are going shopping in Mahabalipuram.
Decorative items and jewelry made of seashells are also in fashion in the Mahabalipuram markets. Shopping in Mahabalipuram will be quite exciting for travelers if they are travelers or unusual showpieces.
If you want to shop for handicrafts, then visit the Mount Road market in Mahabalipuram. Special South Indian handicrafts can be found in the shops of Mahabalipuram.
Shopping here will be a delightful experience if you are looking for antique art and sculpture relics. You can shop from the renowned Mount Road or the nearby shacks. Also, do not forget to take a souvenir from your Mahabalipuram holiday.
There are no direct flights to Mahabalipuram. The closest airport is in Chennai, about 40 km away. You can rent a taxi from the Chennai airport to reach Mahabalipuram.
You can reach Mahabalipuram through Chennai or drive by car. Bus facilities are available from Chennai and some other metropolises like Bangalore and Coimbatore.
There are no direct train services to Mahabalipuram. The nearest railway station is Egmore, located in Chennai. You can take a taxi from the railway station or a bus that runs regularly from Chennai to Mahabalipuram.
The best time to plan a trip to Mahabalipuram is during the winter season, which is between October and March.
The New Café, Eagles Nest, Chettinadu Virundhu, L’attitude 49, The Wharf, WelcomCafe Riva, etc are a few of the famous restaurants in Mahabalipuram.
Overall, Mahabalipuram has a vibe you cannot escape. So do explore some of these recommendations made by us.
Taj Fisherman’s Cove Resort & Spa, Hotel Mahabs, Hotel Mamalla Heritage, Meya Beach Walk Hotel, Oceanside Mahabalipuram, Alice Paradise by Moonrakers, etc are a few of the famous hotels in Mahabalipuram.
Hotel Sea Breeze, Grande Bay Resort and Spa, Mamalla Inn, Intercontinental Chennai Mahabalipuram Resort, Shelter Beach Resort, etc are a few of the resorts in Kodaikanal.
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