Along the Bangalore to Chennai Route: Pitstops for a Fascinating Roadtrip

Bangalore to Chennai is a bustling route and one that I have had the pleasure of taking regularly – a regular trip would not take more than 7 hours for normal people. (Hint: I take longer, but only because I stop every 10Km like a little child)

This route is common with business and official travellers as the two cities are their state’s respective capitals. However, the backpacker that I am, I have mostly taken this route for the sheer joys of traversing it.

The road, which passes through the countryside of Tamil Nadu, is full of many interesting stops and detours. Here are some of my favourite places along this route that makes the Bangalore-Chennai shuttle a little bit more interesting.

Bangalore to chennai road

Somewhere on the road between Bangalore and Chennai.

The Bangalore to Chennai Route

Bangalore to Chennai via the Mumbai Highway is around 350 kilometres. There are many interesting towns that one passes on the way. From ancient forts to bustling silk markets, Bangalore to Chennai can become a journey of discovery for those who are interested.

The border town of Hosur is a major industrial hub and is famous for the Chandra Choodeswarar Temple, one of the oldest in the region. Krishnagiri is the next major stop and a meal at one of the well-maintained and efficient dhabas here is highly recommended. Krishnagiri is located in a place with rocky terrain and is surrounded by hills on all sides. The Krishnagiri Fort is worth a climb if there is time for a detour.

Ambur is another enterprising stop on the way. The town is well known for its unique spicy biryani, considered very different from other parts of Southern India. One can also explore its leather markets and pick up some bargains.

The city of Vellore is another major stop on the Bangalore – Chennai highway. It is an ancient city with a modern avatar of a medical hub: thousands of people come from all over the world to visit its famed hospitals. Vellore also has some prominent cultural landmarks. The Vellore Fort is more than 400 years old and is home to the ornate Jalakandeswarar Temple. The captivating Srilakshmi Golden Temple is another recommended stop in Vellore.

Closer to Chennai, another wondrous landscape of architecture and culture awaits the traveller. Kanchipuram is one of Tamil Nadu’s famed temple towns. The Kailasanathar Temple is more than 1300 years old, built by the Pallava dynasty and showcasing the architectural genius of the times. The sculpted pillars and intricate carvings on the walls will delight connoisseurs of ancient South Indian designs and motifs. Before moving on with the journey, a detour to Kanchipuram’s silk markets is a great idea. The town is famous for its textiles, especially its sarees. While exploring its markets, one can also tuck into the quintessential Tamil snacks that Kanchipuram is famous for.

Perumal temple interior - Kanchipuram

The view from inside the giant doors of the Perumal Temple in Kanchipuram.

Why Self Drive?

For the record, I ride my motorbike along this route. But I have talked to many traveller who prefer to drive, but may not have their own vehicle. People who do not want to compromise on their travel experience are nowadays choosing self drive rentals over regular cabs and public transport.


Rentals provide complete privacy and control over the pace of the journey. With app-based platforms like Zoomcar, one can enjoy very affordable rental plans and choose from a wide variety of cars – hatchbacks, sedans, and SUVs. 24/7 on-road support makes Zoomcar even more appealing as it adds an extra security provision, making it a preferred rental for long trips.


Pro-tip: If you are starting from Chennai, Chennai to Ooty is another popular Zoomcar route.

elliots beach chennai

Joyrides at Elliots beach in Chennai

Important Disclaimer: This post was a sponsored post in collaboration with ZoomCar, but the opinions, experiences and photographs are strictly mine.


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About Abhi Surendran

Abhi quit his corporate job, and decided to immerse himself in travels, photography, occasional periods of bankruptcy, and copious amounts of insanity. He is currently working on a book of his experiences, and a dream road trip through South Asia. Both in a haphazard fashion. He blogs at Iamnothome and you can also catch him at times on Facebook and twitter.

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