The fourth largest city of the country, Chennai has its own charm. The gateway to south India entices travellers with its golden sandy beaches, bountiful coastlines, rich South Indian culture, mouth watering delicacies, and hospitable people.

There are a range of amazing hotspots surrounding the bustling city. Embark on our amazing one day Chennai to Mahabalipuram and Kanchipuram trip to discover the highlights of these enchanting places.

UNESCO World heritage site Mahabalipuram is a treasure trove of intricately carved temples and rock cut caves. The monolithic cave temples of the ancient town situated on the Coromandel Coast of the Bay of Bengal garner the major appreciation.

Mahabalipuram was a renowned seaport of the Pallava Kingdom known as Mamallapuram. Seven Pagodas is the other name of the town as it is said there were seven temples built at this place out of which only one remains today.

Mahabalipuram was established by Pallava King Narasimhavarman I in the 7th century. A combination of natural phenomena and the incredible work done by mankind allures admiration. UNESCO recognized the Shore temple as a World Heritage site in 1984.

Kanchipuram situated at a distance of 71 km from Chennai proffers an array of astounding temples. Set on the banks of the Vegavathi River and more prominent as the Golden City of Thousand Temples, Kanchipuram is also well known for its silk sarees.

Take in the splendour of these intriguing temples and get close to the marvellous rock cut caves boarding our one day Chennai to Mahabalipuram and Kanchipuram Tour by private cab.

Take in the splendour of these intriguing temples and get close to the marvellous rock cut caves boarding our one day Chennai to Mahabalipuram and Kanchipuram Tour by private cab.

What to Expect

One Day Chennai to Mahabalipuram and Kanchipuram Trip gives a deep understanding of the significant history of the ancient towns. Home to the revered spiritual sights of the Hindus, Kanchipuram is dotted with several magnificent and historically significant temples.

The rock cut caves, magnificent beaches and revered temples give marvellous insights of the ancient art and culture. The astounding monuments reflecting the rock-cut architecture graces the UNESCO list of World Heritage Sites.

Your gratifying journey begins at the gracious Seashore Temple followed by a refreshing stroll along the coastline of the Seashore Beach. Proceed to the remarkable boulder landscapes to witness the stimulating Five Rathas.

Next in the list are the enthralling sites of Mahishamardini Cave and the ancient LightHouse. One the key iconic landmarks of the UNESCO Heritage Sites of the country is the Arjunar Penance.

Move further to the famous town of Kanchipuram to witness the marvellous Kamatchi Amman temple and Ekambareswarar temple. Visit the renowned Kailasanathar Temple before we wind up the remarkable one day tour by private cab.

Places to Visit on this One Day Chennai to Mahabalipuram & Kanchipuram Sightseeing Trip

1. Mahabalipuram Seashore Temple

An enchanting one day Chennai to Mahabalipuram and Kanchipuram trip starts with the visit to the spellbinding Seashore Temple that magnificently sits on a 50 square feet base. This gracious temple is the only temple left out of the seven sacred shrines built by Narasimhavarman I.

The Shore Temple was rebuilt by Narsimhavarman II also known as Rajarsimhan. Displaying the Dravidian style of architecture the sacred complex faces the shores of the Bay of Bengal and as such got the name Seashore Temple.

Made of granite stone the holy place enshrines Lord Shiva and Lord Vishnu. Tourists would be delighted to see the graceful image of Lord Vishnu in the reclining form. Vishnu temple is located between the other two temples enshrining Lord Shiva.

Shore temple is built facing east such that the sunrays beautifully illuminate the image of Shivalinga. Eighteen meters high pyramidal structure sits on a 15 meters square platform. It marks to be the first structural temple constructed by the Pallavas. Large sculptures of Nandi, the vahana of the vehicle of Lord Shiva add to the charm of the temple.

A not to be missed feature of the glorious temple is the monolithic, partly sculpted and partly carved lion structure which has the image of Goddess Durga carved at its back.

  • Must See/Things to do: Visit the shrine of Goddess Durga

2. Mahabalipuram Shore Beach

Wander along the famous Seashore Beach that stretches to a distance of 20 km. Viewing the sunsets and sunrise at the pristine beach offers a captivating experience. Annual Dance Festival organized by the Tourism Department of the Tamil Nadu Government at the beach draws a huge crowd.

  • Must See/Things to do: Take a rejuvenating walk along the golden sandy beach

3. Five Rathas

Head next to witness the rock-cut architecture, namely the Five Rathas. These rocky wonders built during the reign of Narsimhavarman I are more popular as the Panch Rathas and have been named after the Pandavas and their wife Draupadi. Dharmaraja Ratha, Bhima Ratha, Arjuna Ratha, Nakul Sahadev Ratha and Durga Ratha are the names of the five rathas.

Travellers would be fascinated by the five whimsical monolithic structures constructed in Dravidian style of architecture. Tallest among the five rathas are Dharmaraja Ratha that portrays the image of Indra, the king of all heavenly gods. Adorned with the carved images of the Hindu gods, Brahma, Ardhanadishvara, Skanda, Harihara and King Narasimhavarman I, the Dharmaraja Ratha is dedicated to Lord Shiva.

Arjuna Ratha which is similar to Dharamaraja Ratha stands out with its marvellous octagonal dome. Unlike the three tiered vimana of Dharamraja Ratha, Arjuna Ratha has a two tiered Vimana and enshrines Lord Shiva.

Dedicated to Lord Vishnu Bhima Ratha resembles the Sala-Shikara or the Buddisht cave architecture. Adjacent to the Bhima Ratha stands the Nakul Sahdev Ratha dedicated to Lord Indra. A monolithic stone sculpture of an elephant built behind the Ratha attracts the attention of the visitors.

Draupadi Ratha is the last among the five treasure troves and represents a chariot. Built out of a single granite stone, it is the smallest among the five rathas and dedicated to Goddess Durga.

  • Must See/Things to do: Get a glimpse of the wonderful carvings of gods adorning the walls of these structures

4. Mahishamardini Cave

Head next to experience the imposing Indian rock-cut architecture at the celebrated Mahishamardini Caves. It stands out to be an extraordinary example of the Vishwakarma Sculptures and is dedicated to Goddess Mahishasura Mardini, an incarnation of Goddess Durga.

An imposing image of Lord Vishnu in the reclining form and the striking relief portraying Goddess Mahishasura Mardini slaying the demon king Mahishasura are notable features of the caves. Next to the image of Lord Vishnu there are images of the four divine weapons of Lord Vishnu called the Ayudha Purushas.

Somaskanda panel displays Lord Shiva along with his consort Goddess Uma and son Skanda seated amidst them.

  • Must See/Things to do: Wonderfully sculpted panels of the walls forms the major focus of interest at the captivating cave

5. LightHouse, Mahabalipuram

Next stop of the insightful one day Chennai to Mahabalipuram and Kanchipuram tour is the Lighthouse at Mahabalipuram built by Pallava King Mahendra Pallava in 640 AD. Well maintained by Archeological Survey of India, the lighthouse is said to be the oldest lighthouse in the country.

  • Must See/Things to do: Take in the views of the surrounding places

6. Arjunar penance

One of the greatest tourist attractions of our one day Chennai to Mahabalipuram and Kanchipuram tour is the man-made structures built to signify the victory of Hinduism or Buddhism. Archaeological enthusiasts would be delighted to witness the priceless treasure illustrating the story of how Arjuna did penance to obtain the weapon called Pashupatastra from Lord Shiva.

Spellbinding life-size carvings of elephants, ganas, sage bhagiratha, divine nagas, the Ganges descending from heaven, carvings of divinities, celestial couples and animals.

  • Must See/Things to do: Exclusive carvings on the walls of the cave

7. Butter Ball

Explore the Butter Ball that fascinates the archeological enthusiasts as the next stop of our one day Chennai to Mahabalipuram and Kanchipuram Trip. This natural formation sticks to the same place for more than 1200 years today. The incredible rock weighs around 250 tons soaring to a height of 6 meters.

  • Must See/Things to do: Be sure to take amazing snaps at the startling place

8. Kamatchi Amman temple

Get enchanted with the visit to Kamatchi Amman Temple, one of the most favourite stops of our one day Chennai to Mahabalipuram and Kanchipuram Trip. Devoted to Goddess Kamakshi, the revered Kamakshi Amman temple holds the graceful image of the Goddess seated in padmasana, which is believed to be a yogic posture illustrating peace and prosperity.

Spanning over an area of 5 acres, the glorious temple is one of the most significant Shakti Peethas of the country. Four towers of the sacred complex are adorned with magnificent mural of various gods and goddesses.

  • Must See/Things to do: Experience an aura of divinity

9. Ekambareswarar temple

Witness the most treasured landmarks with our One Day Chennai to Mahabalipuram and Kanchipuram Trip. Exhilarating towers or the gopurams dotted with remarkable murals of images from the ancient history and mythological stories embraces the ancient temple.

Lord Ekambareswarar is the presiding deity who is also worshipped as Pirthvi Lingam. An interesting feature of the holy place is the 3000 years old Mango tree which is believed to yield different types of mangoes.

  • Must See/Things to do: Southern tower soaring to a height of 152 feet.

10. Kailasanathar temple

Another imposing site explored with our exciting one day Mahabalipuram and Kanchipuram Trip is one of the oldest structures of the holy town, the Kailasanathar Temple. Built in dravidian style of architecture the main shrine accommodates a sixteen sided Shivalinga that exudes admiration.

  • Must See/Things to do: Appreciate the serenity and splendour of the enigmatic place

One Day Chennai to Mahabalipuram and Kanchipuram Trip is a gratifying journey especially for those having an insatiable quest for history. It gives an opportunity to unveil the history and the rich heritage of one of the country’s most important tourist destinations.

Browse our electrifying list of one day Chennai tour packages and learn about the history and culture of the amazing city.

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