Mayil means peacock in Tamil language. Mylapore got its name from the cooing noises of the peacocks which used to frequent this area. At first, it was a trading port in India. The Portuguese were the first settlers in this port.The British occupied this area thereafter. The seventh-century Kapaleeshwara Temple, the Santhome Basilica and the Ramakrishna Mutt are places of religious importance. St.Thomas the apostle is said to have died here in 72 AD. Hence, the Santhome Basilica is named after him.
It is also regarded as the birthplace of the Tamil poet and saint, Thiruvalluvar. He is one of the icons of Tamil literature.
Mylapore is known for its cultural and religious heritage. The Kapaleeshwara temple has a famous tank and shops lined on all four sides of the tank. The shops sell everything from spices (Ambika Applam Depot), utensils, jewellery, garments to books & toys. There are dozens of street vendors who sell bangles, flowers, fruits and other small items. Bargaining is allowed and practiced here. It is noisy and crowded especially in the evening. However, the smell of jasmine flowers, the sound of the Temple bells and the sight of the Temple tank is an experience not to be missed.
Shopping near the Mylapore tank is a quintessential Chennai shopping experience as compared to shopping in Chennai Malls.
Golu Dolls (painted mud dolls) for Navratri can be found in streets surrounding the tank known as Madavedhi. Hence, the street is crowded during the Navaratri festival .
Rasi Silks, which is a very well known and is a popular shop, is best known for beautiful silk sarees known as Kanjivaram pattu sarees, scarves and Tanjore paintings. It is one of the best known shops for bridal wear sarees.
Furthermore, Shrinivas Silks, which is closer to the Mylapore tank in the Luz Bazar is another well known shop for Kanjivaram silk sarees & cotton sarees.
Therefore, classical Indian dancers usually stop by in this area to fulfil their dance costume requirements.
Furthermore, “GIRI trading” which specialises in all things spiritual such as deities, puja articles and religious music CDs is a popular shop for devout Hindus.
The Chennai City Center shopping mall in Mylapore, has a multiplex, a food court and the Lifestyle department store.
Read about the best shops in Mylapore.