It is hard to imagine that just a 90 minute drive from the hustle and bustle of Chennai, lies an ancient city filled to the brim with history and culture. Well that’s the magic of Mahabalipuram. I felt like I had entered a time machine and travelled back in time, to the 7th century to be precise.
Mahabalipuram, in addition to the ancient temples and tradition, has now slowly gained importance as a leisure destination owing to the spectacular beaches and luxurious resorts it houses.
Considering Mahabalipuram for your next getaway? Then read on for must visits while you’re there.
1. Shore Temple
At first ,the towering stone temple intimidates you with it’s grandeur, but as you get closer she gets warm and inviting, embracing you into her bosom. This temple dates back to the 8th century, built by the rulers of the Pallava dynasty in a traditional Oriental pagoda style. The Shore Temple complex was also known as ‘Seven Pagodas’ but currently only one remains standing on land, the other six are submerged. If the seas permit, it is possible to take a catamaran out into the ocean and try and spot the submerged tips of the other temples. Once a busy port, now a world famous UNESCO heritage site, the Shore Temple now stands as a mark of a forgotten dynasty.
‘Tans and tides will fade. But memories will last forever.’
Why do you travel? And what sort of a traveller are you? Do you love setting off on romantic escapades with your better half, in an attempt to discover each other in addition to the destination you’re visiting? Or are you an adrenaline junkie and enjoy participating in thrilling, adventurous activities on your vacation? Or you’re a luxury traveller – a vacation for you implies swanky rooms, best of food and wine, and relaxing spa sessions? Or like me, you’re a foodie and believe the best way to explore a new destination is via it’s culinary route? Whatever be your rationale to travel, a good hotel or resort should be able to cater to every sort of traveller and be able to fulfill your every desire while on vacation.
This was my first visit to Mahabalipuram or Mamallapuram – an ancient city of yore in South India that dates back to the 7th century. And just like all ancient cities, Mahabalipuram is a treasure trove of culture, history and art that attracts tourists all year round. But what makes Mahabalipuram special is the fact that it is a coastal town, situated between the Bay of Bengal and the Great Salt Lake. And the Chariot Beach Resort in Mahabalipuram is the perfect holiday spot if you’re looking at enjoying the cultural aspects as well as the pristine beach that Mahabalipuram has to offer.