B.M. Birla Planetarium is a large planetarium in Chennai, providing a virtual tour of the night sky and holding cosmic shows on a specially perforated hemispherical aluminium inner dome. It is one of the most modern and sophisticated planetariums in India, serving as a popular place for school trips and astronomy enthusiasts.
It is located inside the Periyar Science and Technology Centre in Kotturpuram, which also houses various halls of science and technology, galleries, museums and parks. Visit during Chennai One day tour By cab
Location of B.M. Birla Planetarium
B.M. Birla Planetarium is located at Gandhi Mandapam Road, Kotturpuram, Chennai, Tamil Nadu, 600025, India. It is about 10 km (6.2 miles) from the city center and 15 km (9.3 miles) from the airport. The planetarium is easily accessible by road, rail and metro from different parts of the city.
Timing/Entry Fees B.M. Birla Planetarium
B.M. Birla Planetarium is open to the public daily, including Sundays (excluding public holidays) between 09:00 am and 06:00 pm. There is an entry fee for visiting the planetarium, which is 30 per person for adults and 15 per person for children below 12 years. The entry fee also includes access to some of the shows and exhibits in the Periyar Science and Technology Centre.
How to Reach B.M. Birla Planetarium
There are many ways to reach B.M. Birla Planetarium from different parts of Chennai and nearby areas. Some of the common modes of transport are:
- By Road: B.M. Birla Planetarium is well-connected by road with various parts of the city and nearby towns. There are many buses, taxis, auto-rickshaws and cycle-rickshaws that ply to and from the planetarium. The planetarium road, also known as Gandhi Mandapam Road or Sardar Patel Road, runs parallel to the Adyar River and has signboards indicating the direction to the planetarium.
- By Rail: B.M. Birla Planetarium can be reached by train from various railway stations in Chennai and nearby areas. The nearest railway station is Kotturpuram, which is about 1 km (0.6 miles) away from the planetarium. Other nearby railway stations are Guindy, Saidapet and Mambalam. From these stations, one can walk or take an auto-rickshaw or cycle-rickshaw to reach the planetarium.
- By Metro: B.M. Birla Planetarium can also be reached by metro from various metro stations in Chennai. The nearest metro station is Little Mount, which is about 3 km (1.9 miles) away from the planetarium. Other nearby metro stations are Guindy, Saidapet and Nandanam. From these stations, one can walk or take an auto-rickshaw or cycle-rickshaw to reach the planetarium.
Things to Do/Must See B.M. Birla Planetarium
B.M. Birla Planetarium offers a starry experience for visitors who want to learn about astronomy and explore the wonders of the universe. Some of the things to do and see at the planetarium are:
- Watching the cosmic shows: B.M. Birla Planetarium has a fully computerized projector that depicts the skies on a specially perforated hemispherical aluminium inner dome that can seat 236 persons at a time. The projector can execute diurnal, annual, latitudinal and precessional motions and recreate some of the most awe-inspiring astronomical phenomena on the dome. The planetarium presents audio-visual programs on various topics related to astronomy, such as solar system, life cycle of stars, are we alone in the universe?, sky and seasons, comets, our universe, man on the moon, etc. The shows are conducted in English and Tamil languages at different timings throughout the day.
- Visiting the halls of science and technology: B.M. Birla Planetarium is located inside the Periyar Science and Technology Centre, which houses various halls of science and technology that showcase various exhibits and models related to science and technology fields, such as defence research, life science, electronics and communication, innovation hub, ocean science, fun mirrors, heart museum, India in space, etc. The halls are interactive and informative and aim to educate and inspire visitors about science and technology.
- Exploring the galleries and museums: B.M. Birla Planetarium also has various galleries and museums that display various artifacts and collections related to science and technology fields, such as Ramanujan math gallery, hall of nuclear power, science on a sphere, etc. The galleries and museums are designed to enhance the understanding and appreciation of science and technology among visitors.
- Enjoying the outdoor parks: B.M. Birla Planetarium also has various outdoor parks that offer a recreational and educational experience for visitors, such as science park, traffic park, evolution park, etc. The parks have various exhibits and models that demonstrate various scientific principles and concepts in a fun and engaging way.
Significance of B.M. Birla Planetarium
B.M. Birla Planetarium is not only a tourist attraction but also a significant place for Chennai and India. Some of the reasons why B.M. Birla Planetarium is important are:
- It is an educational site that promotes the awareness and interest in astronomy and science and technology among visitors, especially students and young minds. It is a place where visitors can learn about the universe and its mysteries, as well as the achievements and challenges of science and technology in the modern world.
- It is a cultural site that reflects the vision and contribution of B.M. Birla, who was a great Indian industrialist and philanthropist. He was the founder of the Birla Group of Industries, which is one of the largest and most diversified business conglomerates in India. He was also a patron of education, art, culture and social welfare. He established various institutions and foundations to support various causes and fields, such as Birla Institute of Technology and Science (BITS), Birla Institute of Technology (BIT), Birla Foundation, etc.
- It is a social site that brings together people from different backgrounds and walks of life. It is a place where people can interact, communicate, share and learn from each other. It is also a place where people can express their opinions, voice their concerns and celebrate their achievements.
Q: Is photography allowed at B.M. Birla Planetarium?
A: Yes, photography is allowed at B.M. Birla Planetarium for personal use only. However, visitors are requested to be respectful and discreet while taking photographs and not to disturb or offend anyone.
Q: Are there any facilities or amenities at B.M. Birla Planetarium?
A: Yes, there are some facilities and amenities at B.M. Birla Planetarium, such as toilets, drinking water, benches, parking, etc. There is also a resident manager who lives within the planetarium premises and can assist visitors with any queries or issues.
Q: Are there any other attractions or places near B.M. Birla Planetarium?
A: Yes, there are some other attractions or places near B.M. Birla Planetarium, such as Gandhi Mandapam, which is a memorial dedicated to Mahatma Gandhi; Anna University, which is one of the premier engineering universities in India; Guindy National Park, which is a protected area with a variety of flora and fauna; Phoenix Marketcity, which is a shopping mall with many shops, restaurants, cinemas, etc.
B.M. Birla Planetarium is one of the most modern and sophisticated planetariums in India. It offers a starry experience for visitors who want to learn about astronomy and explore the wonders of the universe. It also houses various halls of science and technology, galleries, museums and parks that showcase various exhibits and models related to science and technology fields. B.M. Birla Planetarium is a must-visit destination for anyone who wants to experience the charm and diversity of Chennai.