The Flapper Life
48 hours escape from Chennai!
Updated: Jun 26, 2021
Beaches, temples, monuments, crowded bazaars, tall city buildings, and a mélange of culture and folklores. Tamil Nadu’s quaint capital city offers an ambitious rich heritage and cultural past. Renowned as the “Gateway of South India” and one of India’s largest six-city is a fast-growing metropolis –Chennai. Even with its pristine beaches and ancient temples, one is liable to get drained from the busy life in the city.
What a perfect respite it can be to escape for 48 hours from this glamorous city! Wondering where to go and enjoy a perfect weekend? The Flapper Life suggests you top weekend getaway destinations to get that relaxation you deserve.
Known for its temples and monuments and the famous Shore temple and Pancha Rathas, framed in rich Indian culture and heritage, this small town is a strip of land stretching between the Bay of Bengal and the Great Salt Lake. This seaport lies only 58 km away from the capital city, Chennai –making it the most popular and first sought-after place for a weekend getaway.
If temples and heritage are your things, then what way to get the best out of Mahabalipuram if not visiting - Arjuna’s Penance, the Crocodile Farm, the Cave temples, the Indian Seashell Museum, and Krishna’s Butterball. While at your stay in Mahabalipuram experience beach camping with a campfire, Fishing Safari, Kadumbadi bicycle tour, and don’t miss the Mahabalipuram Dance Festival (A must-add on your bucket list).
Best time to visit: October to March.
Feeling French? Want to experience something vintage or aesthetic? Pondicherry is a dream because not only do you get to experience a pre-glimpse of France, but you get to stay and live it (even if it was only for a weekend). The sky, the architecture, the smell of the patisseries baking in the air, the yellow walls with oil lamps, and the promenade by the rock beach feels totally different (makes you wonder if you are really in India), like it is said, it truly is a dream.
This beach-town is a three-hour journey (152 km) from Chennai. How to spend your weekend here? Explore the White Town and the effortless beauty of French architecture. Witness the mini Notre-dame salmon-pink colored Churches (Notre-dame des Ange, the Immaculate Conception Cathedral, Church of the Sacred Heart –few to mention). Stroll through the streets and get yourself a coffee at the ‘Instagrammable’ Café Des Artes or Le Café that sits overlooking the Rock Beach. For spiritual restoration visit Auroville -serves as the best. The beaches here are to die for -Serenity Beach known for its clean sand and cabanas (the ideal place to watch the sunset) and the endless Rock Beach in its wide stretch is a must-visit. Don’t ever miss the delectable French cuisine.
In for an adrenaline rush? Surfing, scuba diving, paragliding, boating, kayaking, Banana Ride are quite a few to add to your bucket list.
Best time to visit: October to February
Pichavaram -Mangrove Forest:
If you are in Pondicherry (fondly ‘Pondy’), then you shouldn’t miss the second largest Mangrove Forest in the world –Pichavaram. Two and half-hour drive (70 km) from Pondy and there you are in Pichavaram. The forest spreads over 1000 hectares (50 small islands and 4,400 big and small canals) housing local birds like snipes, cormorants, egrets, storks, herons, spoonbills and pelicans that migrate here. Also, 177 species of birds belonging to 15 orders and 41 families have been recorded (Whoa!).
Hire a rowboat or motorboat and dwell deep into the beautifully arched Mangrove trees. Take the entire day if you must, because the mangrove forest has a lot of hidden curves and watch the sunlight playing hide and seek. Locally known as Thillai Vana, this region is sure to surprise you.
Best time to visit: November to February.
The charm of Kanchipuram, 72 km away from Chennai lies in its glorious Dravidian heritage. Known to be the Golden City of Temples and the second holiest city after Varanasi, it offers the perfect respite to find inner healing and attain that spiritual bliss. Proudly claimed as the Crowning Jewel of Tamil Nadu, Kanchipuram houses unmatched temples in their prime architect - Kailasanathar Temple, Sri Kanchi Kamakshi Amman Temple, and Chitragupta Swamy Temple to mention a few.
From bird sanctuary (Vedanthangal Bird Sanctuary) to cascading lakes (Nathapettai Lake) has quite the best to make your visit a memorable one. Popularly known for the Kanchipuram Saris made out of mulberry silk is a must-add on your shopping list. Soaked in spirituality, Kanchipuram is that perfect weekend getaway to dwell in history and tradition and witness the festivals and fares that draw man visitors from all over India.
Parasailing and scuba diving are becoming popular in Kanchipuram, so, make it your must-try marine experience when you visit.
Best time to visit: March to May, Mid-September to October.