• Chennai,  Kids

    VGP Marine Kingdom, Chennai’s aquarium

    Two days before the new year, on the 29th of December 2022, I visited the VGP marine kingdom in the famous East Coast Road (ECR) stretch of Chennai. It is the largest and only ‘real’ aquarium in the city. The entry fee was INR 695 (USD 8.5) per person. Surprisingly, it was crowded – more primates than aquatic animals. I was happy to see kids still interested in these places. I know it is not easy to maintain a place like this, and the pandemic was tough on the owners, but I do wish they expand and improve the park to world-class levels soon.

  • Venkatarangan Thirumalai visiting the Salar Jung museum on the 3rd of April 2022
    Travel Review

    Salar Jung Museum, Hyderabad

    Salar Jung Museum in Hyderabad exceeded my expectations with the variety and the nature of its collections. Everyone visiting the city should spend a minimum of half-a-day here. While the other two important museums in India I had visited earlier, the National Museum in Janpath, New Delhi and the Indian Museum, Kolkata (Imperial Museum at Calcutta) were established or benefitted with the collections of Indian Government (and earlier by British India), the Salar Jung museum owes its founding and breathtaking artefacts to a private (aristocratic) family, mainly the Prime Minister of Hyderabad during the Nizam’s rule, Mr Mir Yousuf Ali Khan aka Salar Jung III (1889–1949). The present-day building was…

  • Chennai

    Tamil Nadu Police Museum, Egmore, Chennai

    Last month, one weekday afternoon, I went to see the recently opened Police Museum in Egmore, Chennai. Tamil Nadu Police Museum is situated in the erstwhile Madras Police Commissioner’s Office in the city. The british-era building, an Indo-Saracenic structure, was built in the 1842 and following the City Policer Act of 1856, the 14 acre property with its bungalow became the first Police Commissioner’s office. It continued to function there till the second millenium, for over hundred-and-fifty years. Following an extensive conservation and renovation activities undertaken by the state government it was opened to public as Tamil Nadu Police Museum by (then) Chief Minister Thiru Edappadi K Palaniswami on the 26th…

  • Travel Review

    Gandhi Memorial Museum, Madurai

    After my brief visit to Rameswaram, I am staying for two days in Madurai. Today, I went to Gandhi Memorial Museum in Madurai. This follows my trip to the Sabarmati Ashram in Ahmedabad, the residence of Mahatma Gandhi, and the Raj Ghat in Delhi, the memorial dedicated to Mahatma Gandhi. Gandhi Memorial Museum, Madurai was established in 1959, in memory of the father of the nation, Mahatma Gandhi. The museum preserves and exhibits the blood-stained garment worn by Gandhi when he was assassinated. The museum is on a campus called Tamukkam, which in Telugu means a sports pavilion. The museum is free for entry and is open on all days…

  • Lounge,  Travel Review

    Pudukkottai Government Museum

    Today while driving to Rameswaram from Chennai (Madras), I stopped for an hour at the Government Museum, Pudukkottai (அரசு அருங்காட்சியகம், புதுக்கோட்டை). Surprisingly, they had a sizeable number of artefacts. Unfortunately, due to the extensive renovation of the building, which had been stalled for two years due to the pandemic, the items on display are all cramped in the few available display windows – for example, marine animals and ancient musical instruments share a display and so on. If you are in the region, then spending an hour or two here will be a welcome break in your journey. Thanks to Subashini THF whose post about this place a few years…

  • Chennai

    Visit to Fort St.George Museum in Madras

    During every visit to Fort St. George Museum, I learn something new about the British era. It may be because I keep forgetting most of what I saw the next day of the visit! It was 2010 when I had last visited the Fort St.George Museum which is in the same compound as that of the Tamil Nadu State Government’s Secretariat. Today after my meeting at the secretariat, I had some time to spare, so I visited the museum. There is an entry fee of Rs.25 per person (Indian Citizens) collected by Archaeological Society of India (ASI) who own and maintain the museum. Compared to what I remember, the museum…

  • திரு ராஜீவ் காந்தி நினைவிடம், ஸ்ரீபெரும்புதூர்

    Rajiv Gandhi Memorial, Sriperumbudur

    I was a teenager when India’s former prime minister Sri Rajiv Gandhi got assassinated on the 21st May 1991. He was India’s youngest PM and was seen to be full of ideas for a modern India that was waiting to be unshackled. For my generation, he symbolised our aspirations for the future in a prosperous India; with his death, we saw our dreams and hopes come crashing down. A part of the young me and millions of other Indians died with him on that day. It was a double blow for residents of Tamil Nadu as the tragedy took place in our state near Chennai and the suicide bombers were…

  • Sri Venkateswara Museum, Tirumala (திருமலை திருப்பதி தேவஸ்தானம் அருங்காட்சியகம்)

    Sri Venkateswara Museum, Tirumala

    Being a Vaishnavaite, I have been to Tirumala Tirupati for many times to offer my prayers to God Sri Venkateswara there. Almost always I go there with my family – we would’ve pre-booked for a time for our darshan – it being Tirupati it would be crowded and we would’ve stood in the queue for at least a few hours, being tired, the majority decision will be to return to Chennai immediately after – this would leave me no time to see around the hills. A few times when I had the time it would be in the late evenings or early mornings when nothing else, other than the main…