Tamil Nadu is the land of temples. In this enchanted land full of rich history even entire towns have been built around temples. It is here at the ancient ‘Tamizhakam’ that the genesis and development of the Dravidian style of temple architecture took place. Majestic to look at and spiritually awakening, a visit to one of the great temples of Tamil Nadu is an unforgettable experience.
Temples of Thanjavur
Thanjavur, once the seat of power of the Imperial Cholas is an impressive city full of majesty and grandeur. On its outskirts and adjacent towns one can witness first hand the brilliance and splendor of Chola architecture. With its towering Vimana and amazing granite carvings the Brihadeeswara temple dedicated to Lord Shiva and built by the great Raja Raja Chola in 1010 AD, is the epitome of South Indian temple architecture. Along with its name sake temple built by Rajendra Chola at Gangaikondacholapuram and the Airavateswar Temple at Darasuram, it constitutes the UNESCO world heritage site Great Living Chola Temples. An amazing aspect about these temples is that they are living breathing entities showering blessings to millions of devotees every year. At Thanjavur the beauty of history, culture and spirituality comes together in an all-embracing fusion of the senses.
Temples of Madurai
Madurai is another temple city, a town which has been continually occupied for over 2000 years. A city built around the great Meenakshi Amman temple. Dedicated to Meenakshi, a form of the Goddess Parvati and her consort Sundareswar a form of Lord Shiva. The temple forms the heart and lifeline of this ancient city. The most remarkable feature here is the temple’s antiquity. Although the present structure was only built in the seventeenth century, the temple is mentioned in the sangam literary works of ancient ‘Tamizhakam’ thus taking its antiquity back to over 2000 years. The arresting beauty of its 14 richly decorated and painted gateways draw millions of visitors every year. The annual 10 day Meenakshi Tirukalyanam festival alone accounts for nearly a million devotees.
Temples of Trichy
Larger than the St Peters Basilica in Rome, the temple Complex at Srirangam in Trichy district is the largest functioning religious complex in the world. It is also the second largest temple in the world after the Angkor Wat in Cambodia. Dedicated to Ranganathaswamy the reclining form of Lord Vishnu, Srirangam is considered as the first and foremost among the 108 Divya Desams or holy places dedicated to Lord Vishnu. Located on an island in the middle of the Kaveri river, this vast complex has survived countless hoards of invading armies. Enclosed by 7 concentric walls spanning to nearly 10 kilometers, the temple has 21 gopurams, 31 pavillions and 50 individual shrines.
The splendor of Tamil temples have to be witnessed in person as no amount of pictures and journals can substitute the experience of being there. And when you are here why not make your stay memorable and comfortable in one of the Sangam group hotels, where you can experience Tamil hospitality with all its opulence and splendor.