The countdown to 2018 has officially begun. Gear up Chennaites and those travelling to
Chennai with family or friends to ring in the New Year in complete style and extravagance.
Formerly Madras, the gateway to Southern India is renowned as a cultural hub for its religious,
artistic and culinary traditions. Recently, it has evolved into a haven for party-goers, as well. The
experiences that this fascinating city offers run the gamut.
The 369-year- old heritage city is all set to amaze you with its exuberant street concerts to high-
decibel beach parties, lavish under-the- stars celebrations to great buffets, adventurous nature
camps to serene cruise and more. We have rounded up some of the best things to do in
Chennai on New Year’s Eve to help out with your planning.
Given below is the lowdown of where you should be to end the year on a high-note.
1. Take a stroll around the picturesque beaches
Nestled within the city, but far from the pandemonium and chaos of city life, Chennai’s
coastlines are some of the very famous in the world. Marina Beach and Elliot’s Beach (also
known as Besant Nagar Beach or just ‘Bessie’) are the most happening beachfront where you
will find people of all ages coming together to bid adieu to the year gone by. Watch the sunset or
simply admire the pictorial beauty in silence while the waves play the perfect music to illuminate
your evening. Also, keep an eye out for Karl Schmidt memorial at Elliot’s Beach, which is iconic
to most movies in Chennai. Stay till 00:00 hours to witness amazing fireworks lighting up the
2. Express Avenue – the most exciting mall in India
Express Avenue (or EA, as it is fondly called) is the best place for shopping in Chennai because
it has both national and international brands under one roof, but it offers much more than that. If
you do not feel like indulging in shopping, this mall offers sundry non-shopping activities. The
EA mall houses the multi-screen Escape Cinemas where you can catch movies in all languages
while munching on nachos, popcorns and other delectable items. Kids under the age of 12 can
have an exciting time themselves playing arcade games in the kids zone, called FunCity while
you finish your shopping or spoiling yourself at the salon. You can also pamper yourself with a
rejuvenating spa treatment at Bliss by Oryza before heading to the party at the Elixir Lounge Bar
or the New Year’s Eve family dinner at any one of the fine dining restaurants in the mall.
Location: No. 2 , Club House Road,, Royapettah, Chennai, Tamil Nadu 600002
Timings: Weekdays – 10:30 AM to 9:30 PM. Weekends & Government Holidays – 10:00 AM to
3. Madras Crocodile Bank Trust – spend an exciting day with the crocodiles
The Madras Crocodile Bank Trust and Centre for Herpetology is one of the largest reptile zoos
in the world. Plan a short road trip to Mahabalipuram with your entire family and look forward to
a fabulous day of herpetology. Crocodile bank is a very special treat for the children as they get
to witness the crocs spending their day languorously by the water. It is also a paradise for native
wildlife and you can look forward to finding colonies of water birds and olive ridley sea turtles.
What’s more? You can book tickets for a night safari because that is the time when the reptiles
really come to life!
Location: Post Bag No 4, Mahabalipuram, Tamil Nadu 603104
Timings: Tuesday to Sunday, 9:00 am to 5:30 pm, Last Ticket: 5:00 pm, Closed on Mondays
Entry tickets : Adult: Rs.50/-, Children below 10 years: Rs.30/-
Night Safari : Tuesday – Sunday 07:00 pm to 08:30 pm
Tickets : Adults: Rs.200/-, Child below 15 years : Rs.100/-
4. Explore the Cave Temples of Mahabalipuram
Located an hour away from the city of Chennai, the UNESCO-listed Mahabalipuram Temples is
a treat to the eyes. You are bound to remain smitten by the architectural beauty of the historical
temples, which were built by cutting massive boulders into magnificent caves. Plan a day trip
with your entire family consisting of the elderly and kids, and prepare to come back home in awe
of the various architectural wonders – Arjuna’s Penance, Shore Temple, Krishna’s Butterball and
Pancha Rathas. Relish fresh seafood and bring back some granite or seashell artefacts for your
friends and relatives.
Location: Fisherman Colony, Mahabalipuram, Tamil Nadu 603104
Timings: 6 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Entry fee: Rs.10 for, Free for kids below 15 years
5. Spend an entire day and even night at a Theme Park
Theme Parks in Chennai are not only for the children. For adults, these parks bring back happy
childhood memories and a whole lot of fun. Some amazing theme parks that you can check out
are VGP Universal Kingdom, MGM Dizee World and Kishkinta. These parks boast of attractions
for people of all ages and besides adrenaline pumping dry and water rides, you can also enjoy
awesome nightlife and special performance this New Year’s Eve.
6. Plan a weekend trip to Pondicherry
This New Years, ditch Goa and head to Pondicherry for experiencing serenity, sands and the
sun. Famously known as the French Riviera of the East, it is only 155 km away from Chennai.
Explore the city on heritage or bicycle tours, go scuba diving or head to the myriad resorts and
hotels hosting awesome New Year’s Eve parties with thumping music, free-flowing beverages
and mouth-watering, delicious French and South Indian food. Want some peace and quiet in
your life? You can check out Sri Aurobindo Ashram.
7. Barracuda Bay Sport Fishing – enjoy deep sea fishing
If you are an adventure junkie, go fishing and try your hands in the astounding angling
experience. This is a fun way to end the year and quite different than how you would have
normally spent your New Year’s Eve. Popping, trolling and jigging are the most popular types of
fishing offered by Barracuda Bay Sport Fishing. Even if you are not an avid angler, come for the
azure ocean that will definitely take your breath away.
Location: Royal Madras Yacht Club, Chennai Port, Chennai, Tamil Nadu, 600040, India
Timings: 6:00 AM – 5:00 PM
Entry fees: Rs. 6,500 for 2 hour, Rs. 8,500 for 3 hours
8. Go trekking and camping
Do you like the silence, the beauty of nature and want to do something low key when entering
2018? Thankfully, this New Year’s Eve falls comfortably over a long weekend and you can make
the most of it by opting for exhilarating trekking and camping trips in and around Chennai. You
can count the stars and camp at Yelagiri or Kodaikanal, or trek at the picturesque Munnar or to
the Tada falls. The fresh air and breathtaking views will keep all your worries at bay and
energize you to face the new challenges of a new year. Your friends, family or partner will only
be too happy to spend the New Year’s Eve away from the madding crowd. Start packing your
9. Attend a happening party
Gather all your friends/folks and hit the party scene. The party scene in Chennai has grown over
the years to cater to the requirements of all types of party-goers. From pool parties to
masquerades and Bollywood-themed parties, there is a venue throwing New Year’s Eve party in
every location of the town. 10 Downing Street, the Flying Elephant, Pasha, Illusions: the Madras
Pub, the Leather Bar, Blend at Taj Club House and Gatsby 2000 are some of the nightclubs
gearing up to present a mesmerizing and unforgettable nightlife experience to the revelers.
10. Enjoy a sumptuous meal at a themed restaurant
Chennai offers a broad selection of themed restaurant because a restaurant is no longer just for
eating. Be transported to a world of magic at MadHatter’s Tea Garden, cycle away at Ciclo Cafe,
savour a luxurious meal inside an airline at 747, travel back in time at That Madras Place, or get
arrested at Kaidi Kitchen. If you wanted a tete-a- tete with those from the otherworld, you can
check out Haunted. Rainforest Restaurant will take you into the wilderness and pique the
adventurer in you. The fabulous ambiance and excellent service is sure to take you forward to
the next year feeling completely satisfied and rejuvenated.
Keep in mind this list when planning for New Year’s Eve so that you are able to usher in 2018
with a lot of euphoria, excitement and fervour.