Well worth visiting , the Government Museum is on Pantheon Road between Egmore and Anna Salai. The building originally belonged to a group of eminent British citizens, known as the Pantheon Committee, who were responsible for improving the social life of the British in Madras. The Main Building has a fine archaeological section representing all the major South Indian periods including Chola, Vijayanagar, Hoysala and Chalukya. It also houses a good ethnology collection. The bronze gallery has a superb collection of Chola art. One of the most impressive is the bronze of Ardhanariswara, the androgynous incarnation of Shiva. The museum complex is open 9.30 am to 5 pm; closed Friday and public holidays.
The National Art Gallery was established in 1857. There are sections on geology, archaeology anthropology, numismatics, botany, zoology and sculpture, besides a collection of armoury.
Silappathikara Art Gallery, Poompuhar
A beautiful seven tired building of great sculptural value has been built as Sillappathikara Art Gallery. The first storey is 12" high, and each storey above it has a height of 5' . The topmost part which has 'Kalasams with a height of 8'. The total height of Art gallery is 50'.
The 'Magara Thoranavayil' at the entrance of the Art Gallery imparts an imposing and beautiful look to the whole structure. Its height is 22½'. It has been designed on the pattern of Magara Thorana Vayil, found in Suruli Malai Mangala Devi Koil. There is also an anklet shaped tank in the Art-Gallery. On this side of this tank are installed the statues of Kannagi (9½') and Mathavi (8½')
Scenes from Sillappathikaram, the Epic of the land have been given lively shapes in stones on the walls of the Gallery. These sculptures carved by the sculptors of Mamallapuram Art College remain the treasure house of Tamil Culture.
Government Museums at Ooty
The government museum, Mysore Road, Ooty has items of tribal objects, district's ecological details and representative sculptural arts and crafts of Tamil Nadu. It was set up in 1989, with a view to provide education benefits to the residing and visiting population of Nilgiris district.
Thanjavur Art Gallery
A remarkable collection of south Indian sculptures and paintings is housed in the old palace buildings at Thanjavur (Tanjore). Thanjavur has been an art centre of great importance throughout almost the entire history of Tamil Nadu. During the Chola period, two magnificent temples were built in this region, the Brihadeswara Temple and the Gangaikondacholapuram Temple ( tenth to 11th centuries). Today, the town is a flourishing centre for bronze sculpture, stonework and paintings.
The palace was originally built by the Nayak rulers of Tamil Nadu. It was this dynasty that added to and enlarged many of the temples, with ornate and often huge sculptures. The palace building, set within a large compound, also contains the Saraswati Library and the Sangeetha Sabha, or Music Hall.
Within the museum there is a gallery with a representative collection of stone sculpture from the Pallava, Chola, Pandya and Nayaka periods. Another gallery contains samples of the characteristic glass paintings of Tanjore.
Hours: 9 am-1 pm; 3-6 pm except government holidays, especially those of importance in south India.
Chennai, one of the four major metropolitan cities of India, is the capital the southeastern state of Tamilnadu-the exotic state famous for its cutworks in the temples, coconut fringes, and silk saris. Stretched out at the coastline of the country, it has number of sites for the tourists to visit. The Marina beach, where the blue waters of the Bay of Bengal mingle with the golden sands, or the forts and palaces, which remind one of the bygone eras, Chennai is a preferred destination of the tourists.
There is something special about Ooty. The lush vegetation and the lavender-blue sheen of the mountains offer a promise of a summer of peace.
Chidambaram, Mamallapuram, Coimbatore, Rameswaram, Kotagiri,Thanjavur, Kanchipuram, Tiruchirapalli, Kanyakumari, Tiruvannamalai, Madurai .