About Madurai Tourism
Known as the "city of nectar" Madurai is considered to be the oldest city of Tamilnadu having a number of ancient temples to see here. Located on Vaigai river this city was the seat of the Pandyan rulers who built many brilliant monuments here. Lets have a sneak peek of the rich past of the city with Madurai tourism.
Madurai in Tamil Nadu - A Historical Perspective
» The Cholas
Travel through the historical gateway of the Cholas with Madurai tourism. The Imperial Cholas of Thanjavur maintained a hegemony over Madurai in Tamil Nadu. This led to a period of sullen co-existence and the Pandyas of Madurai wooed Sri Lanka and Kerala to throw in their lot with them to create multi-focal disturbances in order to get back power.
» The Vijayanagara Empire
Later, when Madurai came under the Vijayanagara Kings and established a governorship under Nagamma Nayak, the city played a pivotal role in holding together
the southern regions of the empire, the development of an army and the accumulation of wealth. Often hidden and unaccounted for, from the central power helped the
Nayaks to break free and establish an independent state centred around Madurai. Gangadevi, the author of Madhuravijayam, has established that the conquest of Madurai was most crucial to the building of the Vijayanagara Empire, as controlling this town permitted them to hold sway over the heartland in the South.
» The Roman Connection
The Pandyas, who ruled Madurai through two millennia, were a sea-faring dynasty and maintained close links with Sri Lanka and other nations and islands in the Indian Ocean. Back home, it was with Kerala. They established trade, the products being pearls, spices, cloth and other commodities. Imperial Rome coveted these riches and the impact of counter-trade can be judged going by the discovery of numerous Roman coins in excavations at Madurai.
Madurai Tourist Places to Visit
Being the oldest city has its own advantage that are reflected in the various travel attractions of the city. Lets have a look at it.
» Meenakshi Temple - The Architectural Wonder
» Vandiyur Mariamman Teppakulam - Another Holy Site
- The Meenakshi temple is a brilliant mix of architectural styles of different dynasties and is one of the most famous Tamilnadu tourist places.
- The temple is dedicated to Meenakshi, the wife of Lord Shiva.
- Initially the temple was built by Kulasekara Pandya, but in later years the Tirumalai Nayak modified the entire structure and took whole credit of it.
- Located at the center of the city, the Meenakshi-Sundareshwar temple is a popular site among the Hindu as well as foreign travelers.
» Thirumalai Nayak Mahal - The Palace
- Vandiyur Mariamman Teppakulam is a huge temple tank located about 5 km east of the Meenakshi temple.
- The mandapam in the center has an idol of Vigneshwara (Vinayaka).
- The tank was believed to be sanctified and was later converted into a teppakulam. It was only during excavation work held for building the Thirumalai Nayakkar Mahal that the tank was discovered.
- This enormous temple tank is fed by water brought from the Vagai through a brilliant system of underground water channels.
- The temple's float festival is the main attraction to see here.
» Koodal Azhagar Temple - The Temple Site
- The palace of Tirumalai Nayak is about 1 km away from the temple and is a well known Tamilnadu tourism places to see.
- Built in the year 1523 this Indo-Saracenic inspired building was originally four times as large as it is today.
- Thirumalai Nayak Mahal has 2 parts, named Swargavilasa and Rangavilasa that are adored with the royal residence, theater, shrine, apartments, armory, palanquin place, royal bandstand, quarters, pond and gardens.
- But the best place to see here is the Swarga Vilasam, that has a huge courtyard.
Koodal Azhagar Temple is dedicated to Lord Vishnu and has sitting, standing and reclining postures idols of him that attracts a whole lot of visitors on Madurai tourism.
» The Gandhi Museum
» Annamalai and Nagamalai - Rock Structures
- The Gandhi Memorial Museum is one of the most well known tourist places to visit in Madurai.
- Here you will find a great deal of info about "The Father of India" and also India's struggle for independence.
» Manalur - The Silent City
- Annamalai and Nagamalai are two amazing rock formations that are a major center forJain and Hindu pilgrims.
- There are inaccessible caves with Tamil Brahmi inscriptions on rock beds inscribed by many sages.
- Just few years back, Manalur was known to be a sleepy suburb of the temple city that was located on the banks of river Vaigai.
- A very silent town it was very few people knew that the place was once the capital of the Pandya kings.
- Manalur was also famous during the rule of later Pandyas for its ideal location.
Celebrating Festivals in Madurai With Tamilnadu Tourism
» The Chittarai Festival
- The Chittarai festival, conducted over 10 days, is one of the most splendid religious celebrations.
- People from every village in and around Madurai and Chennai in Tamil Nadu come towards the temple and the river to celebrate it.
- People march through the night listening to the troubadours and balladeers also recreating the heroic deed of warriors and of saints.
How To Reach Madurai In Tamil Nadu
» By Air:
There are daily flights to and from Tiruchirapalli, Chennai
» By Rail:
There are train connections to Madurai from Madras, which takes eight hours via Trichy and from Rameshwaram
takes six hours. If you approach Madurai from Kerala, some spectacular scenes of the Western Ghats can be viewed.
» By Road:
There is very good service from Madurai to most of the major cities in the state. State run or private buses commute at regular intervals.
Hotels in Madurai
Good, clean and economical hotels can be found along Town Hall Road and Dindigul Road according to you pocket make your pick. You can also check out to stay at
- Hotel Madurai Ashok - 4 Star Hotel
- Pandyan Hotel - 3 Star Hotel