Monday, 2 September 2013

Kovalai Lake - A hidden gem in the outskirts of Chennai

One of these days, I had to go to Chengalpattu, early in the morning (does 6am qualify for morning or night?) for some stupid reason.
Battling a sleepy eyelid, I hopped into the local train to Chengalpattu. Train crossed Tambaram and a few more stations after that. Impatient and irritated I peered out of the window and saw the train getting onto a bridge over a waterbody, with curves (on the train track, I mean) making the trail look sexy. What followed was a wonderful spectacle!

Having been in Chennai for more than a decade now, I cursed myself for missing the beauty of Chengalpattu railway station on a rainy morning. As the train approached Chengalpattu, it halted for a signal. To my left was the Kolavai lake of Chengalpattu, with the sun just above the horizon.

Stealthily the train chugged into Chengalpattu railway station. But the sight didn't cease. Platform No. 8 of the station offered a wonderful view. In few minutes, after the sky cleared quite a few birds that looked like cranes were to be seen.

Serene and soothing the Kovalai lake, (according to statistics) is 60km away from Chennai and the absolute location on the globe is 12.7 degrees north and 79.98 degrees east.
The lake is certainly a place you must try if you like nature. For the wannabe P.C.Shrirams and Hari Menons, here's something your camera lens will fall in love with. Maybe Chengalpattu railway station for sunrise is an option I could use to replace Bessy for sunrise, once in a while. To all my fellow Chennai makkal - shutter-bugs and quarter-bugs alike, watch out!

Destination - Chengalpattu Railway Station

Ideal time to visit - Sunrise.

How to get there - Take the less-frequent direct local train to Chengalpattu. Alternatively take a train to Tambaram, switch platforms and take another train to Chengalpattu.  If you have enough petrol in your auto(mobile), Chengalpattu is approximately 40km from Chennai Airport. Keep driving on NH45 and look for directions to Chengalpattu/Trichy (the lake is on the Chennai-Trichy highway) and you will find yourself in Chengalpattu.

Caution - Carry sapaadu and go. I am not responsible if you get hungry and don't find places to eat at 6.30am.