(Goa, Kerala & South India)
Called the ‘Cultural Capital of India’ for its deep-rooted traditions and age-old heritage, Chennai also has a young heart. It has grown into a charming city within a span of just over 350 years. Gaining recognition when, in 1639, Francis Day and Andrew Cogan, agents of the English East India Company, acquired a strip of land, called Chennapatnam on lease from the Vijayanagar King. Fort St. George that serves as the Government Secretariat today, was built to set up a factory serving as a nucleus for British settlements. The city was known as Madras till 1996 and later renamed as Chennai. Today this buoyant metropolis is a blend of the old and the new, the traditional and the modern. Spread over 200 sq km with the Bay of Bengal on the east, the city is the gateway to the rest of South India.