Every city has its quirks, mysteries, legends, haunted houses and interesting stories shared from generation to generation. Chennai too has its treasure trove of such unusual and unfamiliar stories and places that make the city all the more interesting and worth exploring. If you like to go off the beaten track, here are some of the most interesting things nobody told you about these places in Chennai.
#1. History of Broken Bridge:
Bridges are designed to connect, but Chennai’s broken bridge across the Adyar estuary leads to nowhere. When it was constructed in 1967, it did connect Santhome beach and Elliot’s beach, and it was primarily meant to help the local fishermen. The story goes that strong river currents destroyed the bridge partially in 1977, after which it was never repaired. It’s not clear why the broken bridge has not been repaired after so many years or if there are plans to construct a new bridge.
Chennai’s broken bridge has emerged as an offbeat tourist destination for adventure seekers, as it offers scenic views of the Adyar estuary and the city’s skyline. It is a popular shooting spot and has been featured in several movies. The place is also said to be haunted, which adds another layer of intrigue and mystery to the broken bridge. Locals say that not many would dare to visit this place at night time, especially around midnight.
#2. The truth about Demonte Colony:
Located near St. Mary Road, Demonte Colony is one of the spookiest places in Chennai. The place became even more popular after a Tamil horror movie with the same name was launched in 2015. Records show that the property once belonged to the 19th century wealthy Portuguese businessman named John De Monte. He lived a life of luxury, but evil spirits are said to have taken hold of his life. His wife became mentally ill and his son died at a young age of just 22. This left him with unfathomable pain and misery, even when he had all the wealth in the world. De Monte donated all his properties including the Demonte Colony to the Archdiocese of Madras-Mylapore to be used for charitable purposes.
Demonte Colony is said to be possessed by evil spirits and not many are willing to invest in its redevelopment. However, talks are still on and a courageous investor might just come across who may take on the challenge to transform the place. Nonetheless, even today, not many people like to pass through the area at night time.
#3. Alamparai Fort:
Located around 100 km from Chennai, this is one of the most scenic spots you can find on the Coromandel Coast. The Alamparai Fort also has a rich history, as it was constructed in the late 17th century. This makes it more than 300 years old, which in itself is a good reason to visit this place. It is said that Alamparai Fort was once a busy port and it had a 100-meter wide dockyard stretching into the sea. In the 18th century, several different items were exported from here such as ghee, salt, and zari cloth. Alamparai Fort has changed hands several times in its history, from the Mughal, to the French and to the British. Today, the fort is in ruins and is counted among the best offbeat tourist destinations in Tamil Nadu.
#4. Freemasons lodge:
Not much is known about the Freemasonry movement and its activities, which has resulted in a lot of speculation, especially in a negative manner. It is generally believed that Freemasonry is limited to developed countries such as the US, UK and European countries. But not many know that Freemasonry has been active in the Coromandel Coast for around 250 years. The first Freemasons lodge in South India was consecrated in Chennai (Madras) way back in 1752. It works as the controlling and administrative body of all Freemasons lodges in the Southern States such as Kerala, Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka and Tamil Nadu. The Chennai Freemasons lodge, officially known as the District of Madras, controls 18 other lodges in South India and has a total membership of around 1200.
#5. Little Mount Caves:
Also known as Chinnamalai, this is a hillock with small caves, located on the banks of Adyar River in Saidapet. It is believed that one of the apostles of Jesus, St. Thomas, used to live in one of these caves. St. Thomas lived a frugal life and he preached the message of god to the local people. The cave has been well preserved and it is accessible via the old church in the area. It is believed that the hand and foot imprints found in the cave are that of St. Thomas. Near to the cave, there’s also a spring, which is said to be eternal, as it never dries up. Devotees believe that the spring was also created by St. Thomas.
#6. Bodyguard Muneeswaran Temple:
If you want to be safe on the roads, you can consider seeking God’s blessings at Bodyguard Muneeswaran Temple. This is a relatively small temple located in Pallavan Salai, but it has thousands of followers. As per folklore, the idol of Lord Muneeswaran was first installed in 1919 under a neem tree. However, objections were raised by a British officer, who ordered its removal. Mysteriously, the British officer met with an accident on the same day. Since then, people come here to pray to keep them safe on the roads. A number of newly purchased vehicles can be seen at the temple, waiting to be blessed by Lord Muneeswaran.
#7. Perambur Lourdes Shrine:
The original structure was built in 1879 and a year later it was dedicated to Our Lady of Lourdes. Located in Perambur, Our Lady of Lourdes Shrine became the talk of the town in February 2014, when news spread that Mother Mary’s statue kept inside the Shrine had blinked during the organization’s annual feast. This was deemed as a miracle by the devotees and now many people come to visit this place. The occurrence could not be officially verified, but it has certainly helped create another urban legend in the city.
Now, that you have read about these interesting, unusual places in Chennai, it would be a great idea to check these out yourself. It would be an exciting adventure to visit these places and try to find if the stories are real or just pure myths. You can learn a lot more when you interact with local people and other adventurers like you who may be visiting the site. It’s possible you might discover something entirely new about these places and may want to share it with the rest of the world.