We all love weekends because it helps us take a break from the mundane life that most of us live. A weekend getaway also helps the whole family get together so we strongly recommend a weekend away from your city at least once a month. Now since you are living in Chennai you have a lot of places nearby that you can visit with your family and children. These places are also suitable for a vacation or holiday with the elderly.
If you are in Chennai and you want to go on a quick, last minute weekend break, here is a list of places we suggest. Places which are within reach of Chennai either by road trip or via a quick train or flight.
Our comprehensive list of the best Family Weekend Getaways from Chennai
Weekend Getaway #1: Mysore
Mysore has the charm that no other weekend getaway near Chennai has – it is mystic, it is grand and it is royal. Located at the base of Chamundi hills, it offers this princely city offers amazing views. It is around eight hours drive from Chennai so some of the travellers also prefer train. The best time to visit Mysore will be from September to March. There are various activities that Chennaiites can do here: Rock climbing, gliding, trekking, zoos, archeological visits, museum visits, garden visit, palace visit, art galleries, nature walks and shopping. The budget can be very cheap and at max may cost you Rs 4000 per person.
Weekend Getaway #2: Kudremukh
This is a mountainside in Chikkamagaluru district of Karnataka which is shaped like the face of a horse and hence the name. The best time to visit between October to May. Because this is 680 kms from Chennai travellers prefer taking a train instead of a car. This is more of a relaxing weekend getaway and instead of sightseeing you can enjoy the forest, the tea gardens and the wildlife. You can also go on a jeep safari, which will be enjoyed, by both adults and kids alike. The cost can be as low as Rs 2000 or if you intend on some luxury it can go up to Rs 18000.
Weekend Getaway #3: Munnar
Munnar is a small hill station in the Idukki district of Kerala. Since it is more than 1500 meters above the sea level it is always cold and can be visited almost throughout the year. Since it is 575 Kms from Chennai the travel time can sometimes take 10 hours. If you are driving from Chennai we recommend you start early and aren’t left to search for your resort in the hills after dark. You can decide to go cheap (in which case it will cost you approx. Rs 5000 per family member) or you can go for luxury in which case it can even go up as high as Rs 20,000). In Munnar there is an ice bird sanctuary and an amazing waterfall which you can’t miss. Besides, you can just put your feet up and enjoy the peaceful hill station.
Weekend Getaway #4: Kumarakom
The location is serene, the backwaters are inviting and the enticing resorts are a treat to self – Kumarakom is one of the finest relaxation places in South India. So much so even erstwhile Prime Minister Atal B Vajpayee came here when he wanted to relax. Kumarakom is 12 hours journey from Chennai so we recommend starting on Friday evening itself – by a train so you reach early morning on Saturday. Cost for a family member can range from Rs 8000 to Rs 20000 depending on what you choose to do. The best time to visit is between September and March. There are houseboats on the backwaters which will be enjoyed both by family and kids alike and great non-vegetarian cuisine to relish.
Weekend Getaway #5: Kabini
Kabini is a cheap weekend getaway from Chennai for it costs not more than Rs 4000 per family member. Kabini is actually a river, which starts from Kerala, and close to the town of Sargur it forms the huge Kabini Reservoir. This reservoir and the Kabini National Park around it is a great source of wildlife. The best time to visit Kabini is from October to May. Since this is eight hours drive from Chennai we recommend starting a day before or taking the train. There are water parks, wildlife sanctuaries, boating, elephant safaris and jeep safaris etc which the family and the kids are sure to enjoy.
Weekend Getaway #6: Mahabalipuram
If you want a quick last minute weekend getaway from Chennai, there is nothing like Mahabalipuram. This port city of the Pallavas is just 60 Kms from Chennai and best approachable by car. This is a cheap getaway and can cost you as little as Rs 4000 per family member. The best time to visit is between October to April – please don’t end up in Mahabalipuram during the summers for it can get really hot. There is a lot of archeology, history, and shopping at this getaway.
Weekend Getaway #7: Thekkady
If you want to see elephants, sambar, tigers, gaur, lion-tailed Macaques and Nilgiri Langurs don’t look further than Thekkady. This is one of the oldest reserved areas in the country and hence the pristine purity of flora and fauna has been preserved since long. You can enjoy safaris through the National park or go for rafting or take a hike along the nature trails. If you want to take it easy, you can just stare at the lake that Thekkady has. The cost for a weekend getaway here will be between Rs 5000 to Rs 20,000 depending on the luxury your family preferred. The best time to visit this place is from September to March. Start early because Thekkady is a 9 hours drive from Chennai.
Weekend Getaway #8: Trivandrum
This is a heavenly city, which is visited by both domestic and international tourists regularly. Trivandrum is home to various attractions such as the Kovalam beach, Sanghumukham Beach, Napier museum and Zoo, Sree Padmanabha Swamy temple etc. This is the kind of destination where you can also extend your weekend break and make it a longer holiday. Please take a train from Chennai to Trivandrum because it is almost 800 Kms from the metro. The best time to visit is between October to February. The cost per family member can be anywhere from Rs 5000 to Rs 20,000.
Weekend Getaway #9: Pondicherry
This is another last minute getaway from Chennai – it is just 160 Kms and hence Chennaiites love this destination. In fact, it is one of the most favorite honeymoon destinations in South India. Since this was a French colony once, there is still a huge French influence. The popular attractions are the beaches here – Promenade Beach, The Auroville Beach and Serenity Beach. People visiting Pondicherry also visit Sri Aurobindo Ashram. The best time to visit is October to April and since the travel time is only three hours families from Chennai keep visiting regularly. The cost can be anywhere from Rs 5000 to Rs 20,000.
Weekend Getaway #10: Alleppey
The backwaters of Alleppey make it a great tourist destination. Like Kumarakom, here also houseboats rule the roost and hence it is a great honeymoon destination as well. A visit to Alleppey can be cheap at Rs 8,000 per family member and can also be costly at Rs 20,000 per head. Since it is 12 hours from Chennai best is to take a train – that too on Friday night. Best time to visit will be September to March.