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Chennai (fka Madras Listeni) is a thriving port city and the capital of the state Tamil Nadu in India. It covers a total area of 426 km2 (165 ml2) and has population around 100,000.
The port is located on the Coromandel Coast, off Bay of Bengal. The city is one of South India's largest economic, educational and cultural centres. It is the country's 6th-largest and 4th-most populous as urban agglomeration. Chennai Metropolitan Area is the world's 36th-largest by population - around 9 million.
Chennai City is among the most visited by foreign tourists cities in India, as well as the world's 47th most visited. The Quality of Living Survey rated it as India's safest city. It attracts around 45% of health tourists to India, and 30-40% of all domestic health tourists. As such, it is often called "India's health capital".
- In 2015 Lonely Planet (online tourism guide) ranked Chennai one of the world's top 10 cities to visit. It is also ranked beta-level city in Global Cities Index and "best Indian city" by India Today in its 2014 survey. Lonely Planet also ranked it the world's 9th-best cosmopolitan city.
- BBC named Chennai "hottest" city (worth living in for long term and worth visiting), citing a mixture of both traditional and modern amenities and values.
- National Geographic ranked its food as the world's second best.
Among the signature attractions are the Dravidian temples competing with buildings and monuments from the country's British colonial past. Among those are the High Court and Chepauk Palace. The city is also a leader in Indian film-making, as well as an university and cultural centre. Other places of interest include Kapaleeshwarar Temple (ancient shrine to Shiva in the Mylapore neighborhood - on the photo below), the shore temple at Mahabalipuram, Guindy National Park, and the Cathedral of San Thome, said to have been created over the burial place of Apostle Thomas.
Chennai City grew up around the English settlement of Fort St George and gradually absorbed the surrounding villages and towns. Further afield, travelers can visit the sacred city of Kanchipuram with its impressive shrines and temples.
Chennai is more than 350 years old, having been founded in 1639 by East India Company. It was company's first Indian settlement and was established by Francis Day as a fort and trading post. Some of the villages on the city's site - Mylapore, Pallavaram, Tiruvottiyur and Triplicane, date from more than 2,000 years ago. Chennai is still growing and deficient in housing and services - nearly 1 million peopIe live in the slum "colonies" which line otherwise open urban spaces.
Port Chennai cruise ship schedule shows timetable calendars of all arrival and departure dates by month. The port's schedule lists all ships (in links) with cruises going to or leaving from Chennai, Madras, India. To see the full itineraries (ports of call dates and arrival / departure times) and their lowest rates – just follow the corresponding ship-link.
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