Adyar, Chennai

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A view of Adyar and Adyar estuary
A view of Adyar and Adyar estuary
Locality map of Adyar
Locality map of Adyar
Adyar is located in Chennai
Locality map of Adyar
Coordinates: 13°00′23″N 80°15′27″E / 13.0063°N 80.2574°E / 13.0063; 80.2574Coordinates: 13°00′23″N 80°15′27″E / 13.0063°N 80.2574°E / 13.0063; 80.2574
StateTamil Nadu
 • BodyCMDA
 • OfficialTamil
Time zoneUTC+5:30 (IST)
Vehicle registrationTN-07
Lok Sabha constituencyChennai South
Vidhan Sabha constituencyMylapore
Planning agencyCMDA

Adyar or Adayar is a large neighbourhood in south Chennai (formerly Madras), Tamil Nadu, India. It is located on the southern banks of the Adyar River. It is bounded by the Buckingham Canal to the west, Tiruvanmiyur to the south, and Besant Nagar to the east. Adyar is one of the costliest areas in Chennai with property values four times the value of similar sized properties in the northern part of Chennai.[1]

Adyar is situated on a flat coastal plain, near Adyar river


The Adyar River, c. 1905

The neighborhood gets its name from the Adyar River which flows through its northern limits. Adyar and the neighbouring Guindy had been used as hunting grounds by British officials of Fort St. George from the 1680s onwards though Adyar is first mentioned as a suburb of Madras only in a map from the year 1740 when the British purchased the village and integrated it with the Madras Presidency.[2]

Adyar started to grow rapidly at the turn of the 20th century following the founding of the headquarters of the Theosophical Society by Mrs. Helena Blavatsky here in 1883. Following the establishment of the Theosophical Society headquarters, the Kalakshetra, a cultural organisation to promote traditional arts and culture was established by Rukmini Devi Arundale at Adyar in 1936. The 1931 census records Adyar as a zamindari village in Kancheepuram district. Adyar was included within the Chennai Corporation limits in 1948.


As of 2018, Adyar zone had a green cover of 30.1 percent, as against the city's 14.9 percent average. This was the highest green cover recorded in the city.[3]


The Mass Rapid Transit System (Chennai) runs through Adyar and has three stations within the neighbourhood - Kasturbai Nagar, Indira Nagar and Thiruvanmiyur. Adyar has a bus depot operating both intra-city and inter-city buses.


  • The Theosophical Society, is headquartered in Adyar. The campus, located on the south bank of the Adyar river provides a calm environment for quiet contemplation on comparative religion.
  • The Adyar estuary has been home to over a hundred species of birds[4] but has been affected by urbanization.[5] The Adyar Eco Park was set up by the Government of Tamil Nadu in January 2011 to restore this fragile eco-system to its natural state.[6]
Adyar Signal near Malar Hospital
  • The Elliot's beach in nearby Besant Nagar is the nearest point to the sea, and a popular recreation spot.

Educational and Research Institutions[edit]

Adyar is also home to Adyar Cancer Institute and Central Leather Research Institute, the world's largest leather research institute. Fortis Malar, one of the best speciality hospitals in Chennai, is also located in Adyar. IIT Madras, Anna University, National Institute of Fashion Technology, Asian College of Journalism and the Technical Teachers Training Institute are all located in adjacent neighbourhoods.


Schools in the neighbourhood include the oldest and a very big campus school in Adyar St Patrick's Anglo Indian Higher Secondary School, which was started in 1875, St Michael's Academy Kendriya Vidyalaya, Bala Vidya Mandir, The Hindu Senior Secondary School, Bharath Senior Secondary School, Sri Sankara Senior Secondary School, Sishya, Bharath Senior Secondary School, St Johns English School & Junior College, The School K.F.I., Maple Bear Canadian Preschool, and Indus Early Learning Centre, The Chennai School (International Baccalaureate).

The École Franco-Indienne Sishya is co-located with Sishya.[7]


Sub-localities of Adyar include Gandhi Nagar, Kasturibai Nagar, Nehru Nagar, Indira Nagar, Venkatarathnam Nagar, Padmanabha Nagar, Bhaktavatsalam Nagar, Parameshwari Nagar, Jeevaratnam Nagar, Shastri Nagar, Karpagam Gardens, Besant Nagar, Arunachalapuram and Urban Palette.


Location in Context[edit]


  1. ^ "Property values in an unequal city". The Hindu. 2 June 2007. Retrieved 23 September 2009.
  2. ^ Julie Mariappan & Devparna Acharya (22 April 2010). "Rebirth of Adyar creek". Times of India.
  3. ^ Lopez, Aloysius Xavier (31 August 2018). "A Rs.228-cr. project to take city's green cover to 20%". The Hindu. Chennai: Kasturi & Sons. p. 4. Retrieved 2 September 2018.
  4. ^ "How urbanisation watered down the natural wealth". The Hindu. 29 May 2007. Retrieved 23 September 2009.
  5. ^ "Death of an estuary". The Hindu. 12 January 2003. Retrieved 23 September 2009.
  6. ^ "Eco-park may cover all of Adyar Creek". The Hindu. 31 March 2007. Retrieved 23 September 2009.
  7. ^ Home page. Sishya School. Retrieved on 28 April 2015.