Looking for guesthouses and budget hotels in Mahabalipuram? There are some decent options close to the action in town and by the beach. Backpackers typically head to the thriving traveler scene on Othavadai Street and Othavadai Cross Street, which lead down to the beach near the Shore Temple. They're lined with brightly painted, inexpensive accommodations with rooftop restaurants. East Raja Street, the main street in Mahabalipuram, is also a popular area. All tourist attractions and the beach are within walking distance.
If you don't mind paying more and want to stay at a resort, you'll find most of them located to the north of Mahabalipuram where the beach is better. Check out these Top 5 Mahabalipuram Beach Resorts.
This modernized, well-known 25 year old hotel has a central location on East Raja Street. The highlights are a small swimming pool and two restaurants, one of which is vegetarian. The rooftop non-vegetarian restaurant is one of the best in Mahabalipuram, especially for seafood. The hotel's staff are very accommodating and friendly. Facilities include free wireless Internet and bicycle hire. There are 43 guest room. Rates start from 2,400 rupees per night, plus tax. Breakfast is included.
Also conveniently located on East Raja Street, Hotel Mamalla Inn is another quality budget hotel. It's been newly constructed and has 30 spacious, modern guest rooms with private balconies. There's also a rooftop swimming pool. Although the hotel doesn't have a restaurant, there is a cafe adjoining it and guests are provided with a complimentary breakfast from there. Unfortunately, wireless Internet isn't free though! Expect to pay 2,100 rupees per night for a double room.
You'll find the superb Silver Moon Guest House on Othavadai Cross Street, a couple of minutes walk from the beach. It's a well-run property with a helpful owner, and a cafe on the first floor that serves (among other things) delicious pancakes, espresso coffee, and continental food. There's also a rooftop terrace and cane swings on each floor for chilling out on. Many of the 10 guest rooms have been renovated and decorated with eye-catching wall motifs. Rates start from about 800 rupees per night.
Daphne Hotel is owned by the same family as Silver Moon Guest House, and its welcoming white building with leafy garden courtyard is situated just a couple of minutes walk away. You can expect a similarly good experience staying there. The atmosphere is very relaxing with swinging chairs and breezy balconies. Guests can use the kitchen to cook their own meals if they wish. There are 15 rooms spread over three floors with rates starting from about 850 rupees per night. Breakfast is served on the upstairs terrace. If you'd prefer to stay by the sea, check out Hotel Daphne Beachfront.
Sri Harul Guesthouse is a reliable choice bang on the beach. You'll have a splendid view of the fishing boats and be serenaded by the soothing sound of the ocean. The guesthouse has a rooftop restaurant that's a great spot to have a casual beer. The friendly owner is a surfer, so do have chat to him if you want to try it. Be sure to book ahead early to get a sea facing room (highly recommended), as they fill up fast during the December-January peak season! Expect to pay about 950 rupees per night.