Thousand Lights Mosque is a multi-domed mosque in Anna Salai in Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India. It is one of the largest mosques in the country and a revered place of worship and azadari for Shia Muslims in the city. The mosque also attracts visitors from other faiths and backgrounds, who admire its architecture and history. The mosque gets its name from a legend that it required a thousand oil lamps to illuminate its prayer hall in the past. Visit during Chennai One day tour By cab
Location of Thousand Lights Mosque
Thousand Lights Mosque is located at Royapettah, Peters Road, Peters Colony, Thousand Lights, Chennai, Tamil Nadu, 600086, India. It is about 5 km (3.1 miles) from the city center and 17 km (10.6 miles) from the airport. The mosque is easily accessible by road, rail and metro from different parts of the city.
Timing/Entry Fees Thousand Lights Mosque
Thousand Lights Mosque is open to the public daily, including Sundays (excluding public holidays) between 05:30 am and 09:00 pm. There is no entry fee for visiting the mosque, but visitors are requested to follow the dress code and etiquette of the mosque. Visitors are also advised to avoid visiting the mosque during prayer times, especially on Fridays, when the mosque is crowded with devotees.
How to Reach Thousand Lights Mosque
There are many ways to reach Thousand Lights Mosque from different parts of Chennai and nearby areas. Some of the common modes of transport are:
- By Road: Thousand Lights Mosque 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 mosque. The mosque road, also known as Peters Road or Mount Road, runs parallel to the Anna Salai Road and has signboards indicating the direction to the mosque.
- By Rail: Thousand Lights Mosque can be reached by train from various railway stations in Chennai and nearby areas. The nearest railway station is Nungambakkam, which is about 2 km (1.2 miles) away from the mosque. Other nearby railway stations are Chetpet, Egmore and Central. From these stations, one can walk or take an auto-rickshaw or cycle-rickshaw to reach the mosque.
- By Metro: Thousand Lights Mosque can also be reached by metro from various metro stations in Chennai. The nearest metro station is Thousand Lights, which is about 1 km (0.6 miles) away from the mosque. Other nearby metro stations are LIC, AG-DMS and Teynampet. From these stations, one can walk or take an auto-rickshaw or cycle-rickshaw to reach the mosque.
Things to Do/Must See Thousand Lights Mosque
Thousand Lights Mosque offers a spiritual and cultural experience for visitors who want to learn about Islam and appreciate its beauty and diversity. Some of the things to do and see at the mosque are:
- Admiring the architecture: Thousand Lights Mosque has a medieval architectural style, with five domes and two minarets. The domes are painted in white and green colors, symbolizing peace and harmony. The minarets are adorned with crescents and stars, representing faith and guidance. The interiors are inscribed with verses from Quran, the holy book of Islam.
- Visiting the dargah: Thousand Lights Mosque has a dargah (sanctum sanctorum) on the second floor, which is dedicated to Imam Hussain, the grandson of Prophet Muhammad. Imam Hussain is revered by Shia Muslims as a martyr who sacrificed his life for Islam at the battle of Karbala. The dargah has a silver shrine that contains a replica of his tombstone. Visitors can pay their respects and seek blessings at the dargah.
- Participating in azadari: Thousand Lights Mosque is a center of azadari (mourning rituals) for Shia Muslims in Chennai. Azadari is performed during the month of Muharram, which commemorates the martyrdom of Imam Hussain and his companions at Karbala. Azadari involves reciting elegies, beating chests, carrying taziyas (replicas of Imam Hussain’s coffin) and taking out processions.
- Exploring the surroundings: Thousand Lights Mosque is located in a bustling area of Chennai, which has many other attractions and places of interest nearby. Some of them are:
- Anna Salai Road: Anna Salai Road is one of the main roads of Chennai, which connects various parts of the city. It has many shops, restaurants, cinemas, hotels, etc.
- Apollo Hospital: Apollo Hospital is one of the leading hospitals in India, which provides world-class medical care and services. It is located opposite to the mosque.
- US Consulate: US Consulate is the diplomatic mission of the United States of America in Chennai. It is located near the mosque and provides visa and other services to US citizens and visitors.
- Express Avenue Mall: Express Avenue Mall is a shopping mall that has many outlets, food courts, entertainment zones, etc. It is located about 2 km (1.2 miles) from the mosque.
Significance of Thousand Lights Mosque
Thousand Lights Mosque is not only a tourist attraction but also a significant place for Chennai and India. Some of the reasons why Thousand Lights Mosque is important are:
- It is a religious site that promotes the awareness and interest in Islam and its teachings among visitors, especially non-Muslims. It is a place where visitors can learn about the history and culture of Islam, as well as the achievements and challenges of Muslims in India.
- It is a cultural site that reflects the vision and contribution of Nawab Umdat-ul-Umrah, who was the founder of the mosque. He was the ruler of the Carnatic State under the Mughal Empire and a patron of education, art, culture and social welfare. He donated the land for the mosque and established various institutions and foundations to support various causes and fields.
- 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 Thousand Lights Mosque?
A: Yes, photography is allowed at Thousand Lights Mosque 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 Thousand Lights Mosque?
A: Yes, there are some facilities and amenities at Thousand Lights Mosque, such as toilets, drinking water, benches, parking, etc. There is also a resident manager who lives within the mosque premises and can assist visitors with any queries or issues.
Q: Are there any other attractions or places near Thousand Lights Mosque?
A: Yes, there are some other attractions or places near Thousand Lights Mosque, such as Anna Salai Road, Apollo Hospital, US Consulate, Express Avenue Mall, etc.
Thousand Lights Mosque is one of the largest mosques in India and a revered place of worship and azadari for Shia Muslims in Chennai. The mosque also attracts visitors from other faiths and backgrounds, who admire its architecture and history. The mosque gets its name from a legend that it required a thousand oil lamps to illuminate its prayer hall in the past. Thousand Lights Mosque is a must-visit destination for anyone who wants to experience the faith and harmony of Chennai.