I went to Andaman Islands with my family last year and while coming back to Delhi we had a 5 hour layover at the Chennai airport. We decided to turn this going-to-be-boring layover into an adventurous one by exploring as much of the city as possible in the given 5 hours.
We did a quick Google search on the attractions and things to see near the airport, and we got a handful of them. Chennai is a big city and the airport is in one corner so we had to take the fastest mode of transportation which is the city Metro. It proved to be economical as well.
Here are the 5 things that we did in our short excursion to Chennai.
1. Explore The Forum Vijaya Mall
Reaching by metro: (Route-1)
Chennai Airport >> Alandur (interchange) >> Vadapalani >> The Forum Vijaya Mall
It would take 20-25 minutes or more by taxi depending on the traffic so metro is highly recommended as it took hardly 10 minutes to reach there.
Exploring the mall can be a good time pass. You could definitely shop till you drop and then feast on some freshly baked Australian cookies at the Cookie Man.
2. Watch a movie at Palazzo
This is on the 3rd floor of the Forum Vijaya Mall. Even if you don’t wish to see a movie just visit the place for its grandeur. This place is also known as the ‘Movie Palace’. The grand Chandelier, Classic paintings and the royal fountain all add up to its royal look.
You can book your movie tickets here
3. Watch a 7D show
This is something that we don’t find everywhere and hence highly recommended. The ‘Trix 7D World Cinemas’ offers a good 7D show to enjoy. You can book the tickets right on the spot. This is also located on the 3rd floor of the Forum Mall and the ticket costs 250 INR per person.
4. Visit the St. Thomas Mount
Take Route 2 on the metro, where the route looks like:
Chennai Airport >> Alandur (interchange) >> St. Thomas Mount Station
It would take 15 to 20 minutes or more by taxi again depending on the traffic so metro is highly recommended.
Image by Ajayy99, English Wikipedia
On a peaceful, small scenic hillock in Chennai, the shrine is attributed to bring Christianity in India. It’s a nice place to pay a visit and admire it’s humble surroundings.
5. Explore the Temples around
Exploring the city’s beautiful temples is a good option. The Jain temple is quite close to the airport and is just 6 minute drive from the airport. This temple has a good resting place and eatery. Another temple that should be on your list is the Thirusoolanathar Temple, which is a Hindu temple located about 3kms from the airport.