One of the most asked questions by visitors is: What is the longest beach in India? The answer to that is Marina Beach in Chennai.
Stretching up to approximately 13 kilometres (8.1 miles), Marina Beach in Chennai has been declared the longest beach in India and the second-longest in the world.
The coastline of this famous urban beach in India starts from Fort St. George in the North and runs down to the Foreshore Estate in the South. And in between, there is much to explore and experience, making Marina Beach an absolute gem that every traveller must visit during their journey to Chennai, India.
How To Get There?
Located under 20 kilometres from the Chennai International airport, Marina beach is 30 to 45 minutes away by taxi cab, depending on traffic conditions. Other modes of travel including buses, trains and trishaws are also available.
Facts & Figures
The length is not the only impressive thing about Chennai Marina Beach as it is also one of the busiest beaches in India. Records of visits indicate that the beach draws crowds of up to 30,000, on a daily basis. The super-wide coastline ranges between 300 and 437 metres, so there is space for the beachgoers and the street vendors to spread out and make this beautiful beach one of the most happening places in South India.
Your next question might be, can you take a dip in the sea? The answer to that is no. People are warned against swimming in this part of the sea. Nestled along the East-Chennai coastline, facing the Bay of Bengal in the Indian Ocean, Marina Beach has an undercurrent, which has proven to be quite unpredictable & turbulent from time to time – making it rather unsafe for beach visitors.
Video Footage of Marina Beach
Coastline Attractions Along India’s Longest Beach
The white sand and sea are not the only things you can expect to see along the longest beach in India. Here are a few major attractions you should not miss while exploring this Chennai coastline.
VGP Marine Kingdom
This massive aquarium comes with 5 aquarium zones, which include an underwater tunnel, live feeding shows and a touch pool exhibit. Just 20 minutes away, this aquarium is the next best place to be after the beach itself.
Initially known as the Ice House, the Vivekananda House is a historical Landmark in Chennai, India. Located facing Marina Beach, it is now an exhibition gallery dedicated to work done by Swami Vivekananda – an important public figure in India.
St. Thomas Cathedral Basilica
This beautiful Basilica is also known as Santhome Church. The stunning edifice was built in the 16th century and its architectural marvel certainly adds an extra effect to the drive along the coastline and the beach itself. Built on the top of Saint Thomas’s tomb, it’s known to be one of the 3 famous churches across the globe to be built over the tomb of an apostle.
The Chepauk Palace
Another historical landmark in India is just a few minutes away from the famed, longest beach. This is the residence of the Nawab of Arcot. Most visitors to this site are either interested in the history of this structure, or the unique Indo-Saracenic architectural style.
An Eventful Chennai Marina!
Thanks to the sand-filled spaciousness of the beach, the open air and its general popularity, it is an ideal place for popular public events such as the annual Idol Immersion event – like the Vinayaka Chaturthi, the many annual walkathons and marathons and the super epic music festivals.
Fun In The Sun, Sea and Sand!
Most travellers are advised that November to February is the best time to visit this famous beach. Because the humidity is low and the weather is cool, unlike the summertime, which makes the whole sea-coast superheated till it’s almost boiling hot. But, whichever time you choose to visit, there are several incredible beach activities to engage in at Marina Beach. Sunrises can look absolutely serene and stunning while you take a morning stroll along this long stretch of beach.
More towards the evening, the sand coast begins to fill up with family crowds, couples and tourists who have come to enjoy the open air and cooling breeze. The coastline is lined up with various beach shacks, beach cafes and restaurants, serving delicious Indian food, as well as small stalls ready to sell beachgoers souvenirs and little toys that will entertain the kids to no end.
It’s like a beachside carnival! So do we think that Marina Beach – the longest beach in India, is a must-visit? Yes, especially if it’s your first time visiting Chennai, India.
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