Road Trips From Chennai You Should Be Taking This Weekend!

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Road Trips from Chennai

Road trips from Chennai are an incredible variation as the city is surrounded by picturesque landscape and amazing places. Many of these places are virgin from the human touch and the roads which lead away from this city are yearning for you to get on your wheels and measure their spread. With precise navigation and a full fuel tank, would the journey not become a smoother affair?

Here is the list of 15 Road Trips From Chennai You Should Be Taking This Weekend!

1. Mahabalipuram - Road trips from Chennai only 56 kms away

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Known For : Shore Temple Mahabalipuram Beach Five Rathas

A UNESCO World Heritage site, Mahabalipuram makes for a quick road trip from Chennai. The temple ruins showcase the rich Dravidian architecture with Buddhist elements. Some local craftsmen and artisans showcase their handiwork in the form of intricate sculptures that you can take home. You can take a bicycle tour to explore the place.
Road Condition - 56 km from Chennai via E Coast Road and should take you just under two hours to complete. Several tender coconut sellers dot the road so be sure it will be a delicious and refreshing journey!

Distance from Chennai: 52 km

Best Time: November to February

2. Yelagiri - 230 kms from Chennai

3.6 /5 View 11+ photos

Known For : Yelagiri Adventure Camp Jalagamparai Falls Nature Park

Yelagiri is for those seeking an easy-paced road trip from Chennai away from the madness of the city. The highway leading up to this hill station is a beautiful route, especially for bikers. The signature landmark of the place is the Punganoor artificial lake-cum-park where tourists can enjoy a walk or some boating. More than that, paragliding and hiking are pretty common. You might wanna carry your track pants and sports shoes.

En-route : Since this route is loved by bikers and adventure seekers, it is marked by roadside eateries and rest stations. Paragliders Pitch their tents wherever they find a nice hill, so if you can carry the equipment, you could also give it a try!

Distance from Chennai: 227 km

Best Time: November to February

3. Munnar - 575 kms from Chennai

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Known For : Echo Point, Munnar Photo Point Atukkad Waterfalls

Nestled between the three mountain rivulets of Kundala, Mudrapuzha and Nallathanni lie a charming little town atop a hill that is Munnar. A popular trekking destination, its highest peak is Anamudi. Lakes, waterfalls, forests just add to the beauty here. Rajmalai Wildlife Sanctuary is famous along with several tea plantations which also make this town an important tea trading centre of India. It is a cosy and quaint road trip from Chennai.
Road Condition - 575 km from Chennai via Grand Southern Trunk Road/NH45 is again a journey to take almost half the day which you can break into parts by stopping at places like Tirchy, Theni and Bodi which will offer many photography spots as well.

Distance from Chennai: 594 km

Best Time: September to May

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4. Kanchipuram - 75 kms from Chennai

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Known For : Kamakshi Amman Temple Varadharaja Perumal Temple Devarajaswami Temple

Well known for its silk sarees, Kanchipuram is also called “golden city of a thousand temples”, and it should be a destination on your travel list. It is also considered one of the seven sacred cities of India. The Kaliasanathar Temple is the oldest in the city which was ruled by the Pallavas, Cholas, and the Vijayanagara Empire. Vedanthangla Bird Sanctuary is also popular with the tourists here.
Road Condition – 75 km from Chennai via the Kanchipuram-Chennai Road taking just hour and a half, the road trip from Chennai is simple, the road clean and no need to make pit-stops anywhere.
En-route : It’ll take about 1 1/2 hours from Chennai to reach Kanchipuram. While it isn’t a very long journey, the highway is a smooth plane, and you can forget all your hassles when you reach Kanchipuram. Shopping in Kanchipuram will be an exciting experience, especially for all you ladies out there. The beautifully designed Kanjeevaram Silks allures the tourists to this temple city.

Distance from Chennai: 72 km

Best Time: October to May

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5. Tranquebar/Tharangabadi - 270 kms from Chennai

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Known For : Fort Dansborg The town gate The Zion Church

For a relaxing, quiet getaway where you can swim in the ocean and be free, Tranquebar is the best place for a road trip from Chennai. A short while from the city, it has calm waters, perfect to swim in. Danish museum, Jerusalem Church, Fort Dansborg are some of the places you can visit on your trip here.
Road Condition - 270 km from Chennai via E Coast Road (NH 45A) which will take about 6 hours or a little more to complete, given the altitude and curvature of the road.

Distance from Chennai: 266 km

Best Time: August to February

6. Coorg - 582 kms from Chennai

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Known For : Abbey Falls Talakaveri Brahmagiri Wildlife Sanctuary Golden Temple (Namdroling Monastery)

Not just famous for their coffee, Coorg is a beautiful destination a short while from Chennai. Dubbed as the Scotland of India and the Kashmir of South India, do you need any more reasons to convince yourself for a trip here? Coffee plantations, trekking, forests, forts, temples will enchant you and make you not want to go back home!
Road Condition - 582 km from Chennai via NH46 and NH275, has to be the longest road trip taking almost half a day on the road if you maintain a good speed but a trip that will be worth the journey. Be careful of all the speed breakers on the way but don’t let them break your excitement down!

Distance from Chennai: 584 km

Best Time: October to March

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7. Pondicherry - 143 kms from Chennai

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Known For : Paradise Beach, Pondicherry Aurobindo Ashram Auroville

A Union Territory and erstwhile French colony, Pondicherry is one of the best-known places in south India for a getaway. With the calm atmosphere and the beach make for a very inviting road trip. It’s an ideal destination for a road trip from Chennai, and the drive to Pondicherry is one of the most scenic ones you’ll ever embark on. There are plenty of places to visit here like Auroville, Gingee Fort, Promenade Beach, Jawahar Toy Museum apart from indulging in a variety of water sports.
Road Condition- 143 km from Chennai via E Coast Road, taking just over 3.5 hours to cover. The drive is one of the most scenics you will encounter!

Distance from Chennai: 151 km

Best Time: October to March

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8. Vellore - 158 kms from Chennai

2.5 /5

Known For : Vellore Fort Jalakandeswarar Temple St. John's Church

Reminiscent of the Dravidian civilisation, Vellore is the place where Hindus believe that Lord Murugan had appeared. The Vellore Fort is one of the most prominent landmarks of the city. The Srilakshmi Golden Temple is the other famous golden temple of the country you must visit. There is a lot of history and culture here to immerse yourself into on this road trip from Chennai. 
Road Condition – 158 km from Chennai via the Kanchipuram-Chennai Road and NH4 taking just under 4 hours to cover, the road being smooth throughout
Best Time: October to March

Distance from Chennai: 137 km

9. Kumbakonam - 296 kms from Chennai

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Known For : Adi Kumbeshwara Temple Nageswaran Temple Shopping in Kumbakonam

Colourful gopurams dotting the skyline are a prominent feature Kumbakonam. It was once the height of medieval power in southern India and is now a quaint temple town to visit ideally for 1-2 days. It is also well known for the Hindu festival of Mahamaham that takes place every 12 years.
Road Condition – 296 km from Chennai via Grand Southern Trunk Road/NH 45 will take you just under 6.5 hours to cover, the road trip from Chennai has good roads for most of the distance, except for the area near Varudachalam, where driving in top gear can be impossible.
En-route : Taking the road less travelled might serve interesting since this town is a holy city, you won’t come across many bikers or travelling families on the way; but you might want to give it a try for the adrenaline rush! Moreover, if you are lucky enough to be in one of these festivals with many people in the streets, do not panic, mix with the people and see how very quickly you will feel fully integrated.

Distance from Chennai: 281 km

Best Time: November to February

10. Nellore - 175 kms from Chennai

3.5 /5 View 14+ photos

Known For : Ramalingeswara Temple Narasimhaswamy Temple Patu Ru

Nellore has made contributions to art and trade since ancient times. With beaches, temples, waterfalls, bird sanctuaries to see, it has something to offer to everyone. It’s a road trip from Chennai where you can go for either a day or make a long weekend out of it by choosing to relax on the beautiful beaches here. You can visit Ranganatha Temple which is one of the most revered temples of Nellore.

Road Condition
- 175 km from Chennai via NH5 taking just over 3 hours to reach and there are few restaurants like the Silver Inn and Alankar Bakery & Sweets on the route at regular intervals.

Distance from Chennai: 174 km

Best Time: October to February

11. Madurai - 463 kms from Chennai

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Known For : Meenakshi Temple Thirumalai Nayakar Mahal Vaigai Dam

Great food and great architecture should be enough reasons to pay a visit to Madurai! It’s also called the Athens of the East given the lavish temples dotting the city and being one of the oldest cities in India. The Meenakshi Amman temple is the most famous one. Alagar Koil is another exquisite temple near Madurai.
Road Condition: 463 km from Chennai via NH45B and Grand Southern Trunk Road, a long journey taking almost 9 hours. Though many would prefer to cut the drive short and finish it in two days if you’re daring, you can conquer the beautiful and smooth drive in just a day!

Distance from Chennai: 461 km

Best Time: October to March

12. Kodaikanal - 527 kms from Chennai

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Known For : Green Valley View (Suicide Point) Kodai Lake Bear Shola Falls

Cosy and serene, Kodaikanal or Kodai as it’s called lovingly is truly the princess of hill stations. It has waterfalls, a huge lake around which cycling is a favourite pass time, quaint little cafes selling homemade chocolates, trekking which make this one of the most famous getaways from Chennai. It’s also a popular romantic road trip near Chennai.
Road Condition - 527 km from Chennai via the Grand Southern Trunk Road/NH45 clocks in at an 8-hour drive. If you’re not feeling up to drive yourself, you can always take a bus for. The climate is pleasant, and the Dindugal-biryani en-route is something to watch out for!

Distance from Chennai: 524 km

Best Time: September to May

13. Ooty - 561 kms from Chennai

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Known For : Nilgiri Mountain Railway Ooty Lake Emerald Lake, Ooty

Ooty, a spectacular little hill station in the Nilgiris district, is one of the most popular road trips from Chennai. It has beautiful gardens which are nothing short of out of a tv-screen. Tea plantations, toy trains on the Nilgiri Hills, boating in the beautiful lakes are just some of the activities to do here.

Road Conditions
- 561 km from Chennai via the Grand Southern Trunk Road/NH45, taking almost 9 hours to reach the little paradise. Many buses ply here so you can make your journey even more comfortable along the beauty of the ride.

Distance from Chennai: 553 km

Best Time: Throughout the year

14. Bangalore, Karnataka - 350 kms from Chennai

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Known For : Bangalore Palace Cubbon Park MG Road, Bangalore

Having evolved gradually from being the Garden City to the Silicon Valley of India, Bengaluru is the third largest and one of the most livable cities in India. Bangalore is loved for its pleasant weather, beautiful parks and lakes all around the town making it a great metro city for a road trip from Chennai.
En-route: You can take either of the two routes->via Hosur or Chittoor Route 1, is a national highway which is a part of the Golden quadrilateral that connects the four metro cities Route 2, is supposedly shorter as compared to Route 1. However, it is half the width of Route 1. As you drive along, the small towns of Ambur, Vaniyambadi, Walajabad go past, until you reach the outskirts of Vellore. If you are tired and want to take a break, you would find decent restaurants here to cool your heels off until they are ready to take on again.

Distance from Chennai: 345 km

Best Time: Throughout the year

15. Trichy, Tamil Nadu - 373 kms from Chennai

3.1 /5 View 23+ photos

Known For : Kallanai Dam Rockfort Ganpathi Temple Samayapuram Amman Temple

Trichy is a mid sized, fast emerging city in Tamil nadu. It is a refreshing change from cities that are either completely religious and some that are nothing but concrete jungles. Trichy is one of those places that you can explore in a weekend and will hold secrets even after several years.

En-route: Travelling at night can be a problem as this highway is frequented by large trucks, but “follow the taillight” trick is always safe. For breakfast, you can halt at Melmaruvathur or Acharapakkam or in the hotel Highway inn in Tindivanam (before Thiruvannamalai bypass).

Distance from Chennai: 330 km

Best Time: October to March

Some places are worth a long time behind the wheel and some roads trips from Chennai are worth the travel whatever may reside at the end!

This post was published by Akriti Paracer

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