Category Archives: Tamilnadu

Tamil Nadu tourism related information including its beaches, hill stations, pilgrimage centers, wildlife sanctuaries, trekking destinations, falls, historic places, etc.

St. Mary’s Church, Chennai, The oldest British building in India

George Thiruvilakalayil George

Travel Related Blog Writer at touristinindia.com
George Thiruvilakalyil George is a blog writer. George is an expert on Local Business Citations, having created thousands of Local Citations for clients in USA, Australia, India, etc. George is also a web site designer with around 2 decades of experience. George started working on web related technologies from early 1996, immediately after internet access was introduced in 5 cities of India in August 1995.

Saint Mary’s Church is the oldest Anglican church, located East of Suez, at Fort St. George, Chennai, India. Its the first Anglican church in Asia. St. Mary’s church was constructed by the British East India Company.

Saint Mary's Church, Chennai
Saint Mary’s Church, Chennai

St. Mary’s Church at Chennai is a CSI Church and is also known as the ‘Westminster Abbey of the East‘. Construction started on 25 March 1678. Consecrated on 28 October 1680, this church was the only bomb-proof building in the Fort at the time of construction. The Present church tower was added at the end of the seventeenth century. (Fort Saint George which now houses the Tamil Nadu state government secretariat, was constructed by the British East India Company in 1644.) The church was constructed using voluntary contributions from the Governor and other officers, who inhabited the fort.

St. Mary’s church was designed by Edward Fowle or or William Dixon, Gunners of the fort. There are numerous memorials, commemorative inscriptions, wooden and glass furnishings inside the church. A painting of the “The Last Supper” by unknown artist, believed to be brought to Madras by the British troops who stormed Pondicherry in 1761, is synonymous with the Church. In 1710, a spire was added.

During the Second Carnatic War between the British and the French (1758-’59) and again when Hyder Ali invaded, Saint Mary’s Church was used as a barrack and granary.

There are 104 tombstones at the Church premises. The oldest tombstones is that of Lord Pigot, dating back to 1777. (There are a few Catholic tombstones also, which were brought to this church cemetery from a catholic church, which got destroyed.) Baptism, death, burial and marriage registers, right from the consecration day, are still preserved. The very first registers are stored at the Fort Museum and the remaining ones at the Church itself. Fort Museum has some plates and chalices on display, that were presented by Elihu Yale. There is also a large silver basin, silver flagon and communion cup on display at the Fort Museum.

The ancient prayer house which exited before the construction of the church, solemnized the marriages Robert Clive (governor of Fort St. George) and Elihu Yale. Yale University in the United States of America was funded with Elihu Yale’s gift of money to the institute.

How Do I Go to Saint Mary’s Church, Chennai?

Saint Mary’s Church is situated on Rajaji Salai (Salai means Road in Tamil language), which is one of the major roads in Chennai.

Chennai Central railway station, one of the major railway stations in India, is situated at around 3 kilometers distance from St. Mary’s Church. Chennai International airport is at around 20 kilometers distance from Saint Mary’s Church at Chennai Fort Complex.

Suruli Falls, Silapathikaram, Agastya Rishi

George Thiruvilakalayil George

Travel Related Blog Writer at touristinindia.com
George Thiruvilakalyil George is a blog writer. George is an expert on Local Business Citations, having created thousands of Local Citations for clients in USA, Australia, India, etc. George is also a web site designer with around 2 decades of experience. George started working on web related technologies from early 1996, immediately after internet access was introduced in 5 cities of India in August 1995.

Suruli Falls is a 150 feet high, two stage cascading falls near Cumbum Town in Theni District, Tamilnadu state. After falling into a pond, this waterfall again plummets another 40 feet.

Suruli FallsSuruli Falls near Cumbum Town, Tamilnadu.

The falls is on the Suruli River, which originate in the Meghamalai mountain range. Meghamalai mountain range is part of Pothigai Malai or Pothigai hills, which is divine to Hindus.

It is believed that Lord Shiva and Goddesses Parvati were married at Mount Kailash. Due to the presence of the large number of holy beings witnessing the marriage, Mount Kailash got unbalanced. Therefore, Maharishi Aagastya or Agastya Muni (meaning Saint Agastya) was sent to this mountains by Lord Shiva to balance the world, which he did successfully. At the same time, Agastya Muni was able to visualize the wedding of Lord Shiva and Goddesses Parvati, at a Shivalingam at Tiru Kalyana Teertham, at Pothigai hills. This area is frequented by saints, on full moon days. There is an idol of Aagastya Muni, situated at the peak of Agasthyamalai.

Many 11th Century caves can be found near Suruli Falls. These caves are fine examples of Indian rock-cut architecture. Tamilnadu Tourism Development Corporation (TTDC) conducts an annual summer festival at Suruli falls. Chinna Suruli or Cloudland Falls is another fall, at around 54 kilometers distance from Theni town.

Suruli Aandavar temple (Subramania Swami temple) is a famous temple at Suruli hills. Suruli Velappar Temple, shaped like an OM Pranava, is another temple near the falls. (Om is a sacred icon in Hindu religion. Om is also a sacred mantra in Hinduism, Sikhism, Buddhism and Jainism.)

as a matter of fact, Suruli Falls is mentioned in Silappathikaram, the ancient Tamil epic written by Ilango Adigal.

How Do I Go to Suruli Falls?

Suruli Falls is well connected by roads. Tamilnadu state government buses are available frequently from Cumbum and Uthamapalayam. Cumbam is the nearest town, at a distance of 10 kilometers from the falls. Uthamapalayam town is at around 20 kilometers distance from the Falls at Surali. Theni Town is at around 55 kilometers from the falls. The falls is on the way to Periyar National Park.

Which is the Ideal Season to Visit Suruli Falls?

June – October months are the ideal season to visit Suruli falls; although there is some flow all through the year. #SuruliFalls

Vellore Fort, Historical Places, Historical Monuments

George Thiruvilakalayil George

Travel Related Blog Writer at touristinindia.com
George Thiruvilakalyil George is a blog writer. George is an expert on Local Business Citations, having created thousands of Local Citations for clients in USA, Australia, India, etc. George is also a web site designer with around 2 decades of experience. George started working on web related technologies from early 1996, immediately after internet access was introduced in 5 cities of India in August 1995.

Vellore Fort is a situated in heart of the Vellore city in Tamilnadu state. This fort was constructed by Vijayanagara kings, during the 16th century.

Vellore Fort
Vellore Fort, Tamilnadu

The fort at Vellore is considered as one of the best military architecture in Southern India. Known for its grand ramparts and wide moat, this magnificent fort is spread over 133 acres of land in 0.54 square kilometers. It is situated at an altitude of 220 meters, i.e. 720 feet. It is believed that there existed an escape tunnel of 12 kilometers long, connecting this fort with Virinjipuram.

This fort is unique in that it houses 3 religious places of worship; a temple, mosque and a church. Jalakandeswarar temple, a mosque and St. John’s Church are the historical places to visit, all situated inside the fort.

Vellore Fort once served as the headquarters of Aravidu Dynasty (of Vijayanagara Empire). This fort is one among the leading historical places in India, during 16th to 20th centuries. The fort changed hands to Bijapur sultans, Marathas, Carnatic Nawabs and finally to The British, before Indian Independence. Archaeological Department of the Indian Government now maintains the fort.

The British has held Tipu Sultan‘s family and Sri Vikrama Rajasinha (the last king of Sri Lanka), as prisoners in this fort. Sriranga Raya of Vijayanagara royal family was massacred in this fort. This fort is where the first significant military rebellion against The British, Vellore Mutiny, erupted in 1806.

How Do I Go to Vellore Fort?

One among the leading historical monuments in India, Vellore Fort, is easily accessible by road and train. Its at the heart of the town and cabs can take you to the fort entrance. Katpadi Junction railway station is the nearest railway station to Vellore fort, at around 7.2 kilometers distance.

Vellore Airport does not offer passenger transport. Chennai airport is the nearest airport at 140 kilometers distance. Bengaluru airport is at around 215 kilometers from Vellore.

Dr. A.P.J. Abdul Kalam National Memorial

George Thiruvilakalayil George

Travel Related Blog Writer at touristinindia.com
George Thiruvilakalyil George is a blog writer. George is an expert on Local Business Citations, having created thousands of Local Citations for clients in USA, Australia, India, etc. George is also a web site designer with around 2 decades of experience. George started working on web related technologies from early 1996, immediately after internet access was introduced in 5 cities of India in August 1995.

Dr APJ Abdul Kalam National Memorial is situated at Pei Karumbu, Rameswaram, Pamban Island in Ramanathapuram district, Tamilnadu, India.

Dr. A.P.J. Abdul Kalam National Memorial was inaugurated by the honorable Prime Minister of India, Narendra Modi, on the second death anniversary of the great leader, i.e. on 27th July, 2017.

The memorial showcases Dr APJ Abdul Kalam’s history. Personal belongs of the late leader are also displayed here. Statue of the late President Dr. APJ Abdul Kalam, playing the musical instrument Veena, was also unveiled by the Prime minister of India on the same day. There are two other silicon statues of Dr. Kalam, in presidential suit, in sitting and standing postures.

Replica of missiles and rockets with which Dr. Abdul Kalam had worked are also on display. Information on APJ Abdul Kalam’s life is depicted through the 500 odd portraits, displayed at the memorial. Acrylic paintings numbering around 90, are also on display.

Library, planetarium, auditorium, etc, are planned for the second phase of the Abdul Kalam memorial, to be completed in the next 18 months or so.

Dr. APJ Abdul Kalam was the 11th President of India. He was called as ‘Missile Man of India’. Dr. A.P.J. Abdul Kalam contributed immensely to the defense and missile projects carried out by DRDO (Defense Research & Development Organisation) and ISRO (Indian Space Research Organization). Dr. APJ Abdul Kalam worked for both of these organizations, before becoming the president of India.

Built by Defense Research & Development Organisation (DRDO) with which Dr. Kalam was associated as a key scientist, Dr. APJ Abdul Kalam National Memorial is located on the land where the late president’s tomb is situated. (Dr. Abdul Kalam was buried here at Rameswaram in 2015.) This monument is one among the latest national monuments in India; other being Shaurya Smarak, National War memorial at Bhopal, inaugurated on 14th October 2016.

How Do I Go to Dr APJ Abdul Kalam National Memorial?

Dr. A.P.J. Abdul Kalam National Memorial is at Rameswaram. Rameswaram is connected to the mainland by Pamban Bridge. There are direct trains to the island from the state capital, Chennai. RMM is the railway station code for Rameswaram. Road connectivity is also available.

The nearest airport to Abdul Kalam National Memorial is at Madurai, at around 169 kilometers distance. Tuticorin airport is at 192 kilometers from Dr APJ Abdul Kalam National Memorial at Rameswaram.

Kutladampatti Falls, Ashram, Peacock

George Thiruvilakalayil George

Travel Related Blog Writer at touristinindia.com
George Thiruvilakalyil George is a blog writer. George is an expert on Local Business Citations, having created thousands of Local Citations for clients in USA, Australia, India, etc. George is also a web site designer with around 2 decades of experience. George started working on web related technologies from early 1996, immediately after internet access was introduced in 5 cities of India in August 1995.

Kutladampatti Falls is a 27 meter (89 feet) high waterfall in Kutladampatti village, near Madurai in Tamilnadu state, India.


 Kutladampatti Falls, near Madurai

Kutladampatti Falls.

Kutladampatti Falls is easily accessible by public transport. The pavement and steps leading to the falls are well laid out. Last few meters around the falls are slippery and steep. There is an Ashram, downhill the falls, which is good for meditation. A large number of peacocks are found in the Ashram compound.

Kutladampatti Waterfalls is situated inside a reserve forest, which is managed by the state Forest Department. There is an entry fee to be paid, near the falls. The falls is one among the ideal getaway places for the residents of Madurai and other nearby areas.

How Do I Go to Kutladampatti Falls?

Kutladampatti waterfalls is at a distance of 30 kilometers northwest of Madurai city. The falls is at a distance of 8 kilometers from Vadipatti town, a small town near the falls. There are direct state government buses to the falls form Madurai Periyar Bus stand and also from Vadipatti bus stand.

Madurai, being centrally located, it is well connected by buses to almost all other cities of the state.

Madurai Junction railway station with station code MDU, is the nearest major railway station to the falls. Madurai is connected by direct trains to almost all cites of Tamilnadu and to few of the other major cites of India. Coimbatore and Chennai are the nearest major railway stations, which are well connected with all major cities of India.

There is an airport at Madurai, which serves mainly the domestic passengers. Cities like Chennai, Mumbai, Bangalore, Delhi, Hyderabad, Bhubaneswar, Goa and Pune are connected by different airlines. There are two international flights to Dubai and Colombo.

Top 4 Hill Stations in India, Shimla, Darjeeling, Ooty, Lonavala

George Thiruvilakalayil George

Travel Related Blog Writer at touristinindia.com
George Thiruvilakalyil George is a blog writer. George is an expert on Local Business Citations, having created thousands of Local Citations for clients in USA, Australia, India, etc. George is also a web site designer with around 2 decades of experience. George started working on web related technologies from early 1996, immediately after internet access was introduced in 5 cities of India in August 1995.

Top 4 Hill stations in India region-wise are Shimla in the North, Darjeeling in the East, Ooty in the South and Lonavala in the West.

St. Michael's Catholic Church at Shimla, one of the Top 4 Hill stations in IndiaSt. Michael’s Catholic Church at Shimla, one of the Top 4 Hill stations in India.

Shimla, One Among the Top 4 Hill stations in India

Shimla in North India is situated in Himachal Pradesh state. Shimla hill station offers panoramic view of the Himalayas. Its considered as the best hill station in India. There is a ropeway to Shimla from downtown.

Shimla is at around 223 miles from New Delhi, the capital of India. Shimla is well connected by roads. Kalka railway station is the nearest broad gauge railway station. Kalka station is connected to Shimla by Kalka- Shimla narrow gauge railway line. This railway line is a UNESCO World heritage site and is part of “Mountain Railways of India” along with similar narrow gauge lines at Darjeeline and Ooty. New Delhi airport and railway stations are well connected to other parts of the world.

Darjeeling, One Among the Top 4 Hill stations in India

Darjeeling hill station in West Bengal state is a beautiful hill station in the Western India. Darjeeling offers view of the Lesser Himalayas. Darjeeling Tea is a famous Geo-patented tea from this region.

New Jalpaiguri railway station near Silguri is the nearest railway station to Darjeeling at around 50 kilometers distance. Darjeeling Himalayan Railway starts from here. Bagdogra Airport is the nearest airport at around 90 kilometers distance from Darjeeling hill station.

Ooty, One Among the Top 4 Hill stations in India

Ooty hill station in Tamilnadu is a beautiful hill station in the South. Ooty is also known as Udhagamandalam or Udhagai. Ooty is part of the Nilgiri mountains or Blue mountains.

Coimbatore is the nearest city with airport at 86 kilometers away. Coimbatore junction railway station is the nearest major railway station which is connected to other parts of the country. Mettupalayam is the nearest railway station on the broad gauge. Very few trains go to Mettupalayam. Heritage Mountain railway to Ooty starts from Mettupalayam.

Lonavala, One Among the Top 4 Hill stations in India

Lonavala hill station in Maharashtra state is another beautiful hill station in the Western part of India. Its part of the Sahyadri ranges of Western Ghats. Khandala hill station is an adjacent twin hill station at around 3 kilometers from Lonavala hill station.

All trains stops at Lonavla railway station. Pune city is the nearest major city with an airport, at around 64 kilometers distance. Mumbai is another major city at 104 kilometers away from Lonavala hill station.