Madurai Heritage Trip

We provide best service about Madurai and it’s rich culture and architectural monuments of Pandia kings.

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3 to 5 hours


Hotel pickup available


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  • What's included :
    • Air-conditioned vehicle
    • All Fees and Taxes
    • Entry/Admission - Vandiyur Mariamman Teppakulam
    • Entry/Admission - Thirumalai Nayakar Mahal
    • Entry/Admission - Madurai Meenakshi Amman Temple
    • Entry/Admission - Gandhi Memorial Museum
    What's excluded :
    • This is a typical itinerary for this product

      Stop At: Vandiyur Mariamman Teppakulam, Teppakulam, Madurai India

      A temple pond complex with a man-made island in the middle, it is primarily used for religious purposes. Located only 2 km from the famous Meenakshi Sundareswara Temple, it also attracts hordes of devotees. Considered as one of the largest temple tanks not only in Tamil Nadu but in South India, this temple tanks receives its water from the River Vaigai.

      Built in 1645 AD during the rule of Thirumalai Nayak, this temple pond is surrounded by granite steps on all the four sides while in the middle a Vigneshwara Temple is located, which is dedicated to Lord Vinayaka/ Lord Ganesha. These long stairs around the pond along with the temple were built by King Thirumalai Nayak.

      There is a legend behind Vandiyur Mariamman Teppakulam. According to the legend, to build Thirumalai Nayakkar Mahal sand was dug out of this tank to get the soil for creating bricks. Owing to this the palace is considered to be a blessed one. During the digging process, an idol of Lord Ganesh was unearthed. The same idol has been enshrined in the temple. This area was later turned into Teppakulam, which is connected to River Vaigai through underground channels.

      This place gain a livelier aura filled with spirituality during the month of January or February when the temple festival, Teppoothsavam / float festival is celebrated. This festival is said to have been celebrated since the reign of King Thirumalai Nayak. This festival is organized to celebrate the birthday of King Thirumalai Nayak. During the festival the temple is lit with thousands of lamps. It is celebrated on a full moon night. The site of this beautiful temple glittering with lights, reflection of lights on the water with deities arriving at the tank to participate in the festival is incomparable. Idols of Goddess Meenakshi and Lord Sundareswarar are also brought here during the festival. Devotees from all across the country come for a Madurai tour during this time to witness this mesmerizing scene here.

      Duration: 20 minutes

      Stop At: Thirumalai Nayakar Mahal, Mahal Vadampokki St Near Meenakshi Temple, Madurai 625001 India

      When Krishna Devaraya was the King of Vijayanagar, he sent one general Nagama Naick to Madurai to control the internal confusion in the Madurai regional politics. Nagama Naick controled the waring groups and restored peace, but declared himself as an independant ruler. This act provoked the King Krishna Devaraya and he sent Viswanatha Naick, the son of the revolutionary Nagama, to arrest and produce his father in the royal court. Viswanatha fulfilled the order of the King, but justified his father's act and explained the real condition of the region. King, being convinced by the explanation of Viswanatha, released his father and crowned Viswanatha as the ruler of Madurai as a reward to his loyalty. Thus the Madurai Naick Principality was established about 1530 A.D.

      This Palace was built in 1636 by King Thirumalai Nayak with the help of an Italian Architect. The building we see today was the main Palace where the King lived. The original Palace Complex was four times bigger than the present structure. This palace consisted mainly of two parts, namely Swargavilasa and Rangavilasa.

      In these two parts, there are royal residence, theatre, shrine, apartments, armoury, palanquin place, royal bandstand, quarters, pond and garden. King Thirumalai Nayak celebrated festivals like Sceptre festival, Navarathri, Chithirai festival, Masi festival and the Float festival.

      He conducted daily dance and music performances in the palace. This palace was destroyed by his grandson Chokkanatha Nayak and the valuables were transferred to other places.

      During 19th century, Lord Napier, governor of Madras between 1866 and 1872 made several renovation works. Today, only the spacious rectangular courtyard called the swarga Vilasam and a few adjoining biuldings survive, their awesome scale evoking the grandeur of a vanished era. The courtyard measures 3,900 sq.m and is surrounded by massive circular pillars. To its west lies the Throne Chamber, a vast room with a raised, octagonal dome. This room leads to the Dance Hall. Then the palace was utilized to house some officials of the judiciary and district administration. After independence, this palace was declared as a national monument and is now under the care of the Tamilnadu Archaeological Department. It can be visited from 9a.m to 5 p.m on payment of the entrance fee.

      The thousand pillar mandapam is supposed to have been built by Arya Natha Mudaliyar, the Prime Minister of the first Nayaka of Madurai (1559-1600 A.D.) and the founder of 'Poligar System'. An equestrian statue of the Mudaliyar flanks one side of the steps leading to the 'mandapam'. Except the inner shrines, probably no part of the temple is older than the 16th century. The general plan of the sanctuary is typical of the gigantic South Indian temples with vast quadrangular enclosures and lofty 'gopurams' overlooking the central shrine. Round about the temple, outside the higher wall is, a neat garden fenced with iron railings. Even a casual visitor is fascinated by the many paintings and sculptures in this shrine. The ceilings are decorated with large paintings showing Shaivite and Vaishnavite themes. There is a beautiful painting of the marriage of Sundareswarar with Devi Meenakshi. Another beautiful painting is that of Harihara.

      In the outer corridor are the most popular musical pillars, five in number, each composed of twenty two slender rods carved out of a single rock of granite, which produce the 'Saptha Swaras' when gently tapped with a wooden rod. There is a spacious 'pushkarini' in front of the Meenakshi shrine called the Golden Lotus Tank or 'Ponthamaraikulam'. Beautifully paved stone steps on all the four sides are set to reach the placid water. The great tower of the south reflected in the Golden Lilly Tank is perhaps the best known view of the Meenakshi Sundareshwarar temple.

      According to mythology, Indra from Devaloka entered this tank and it was filled with golden Lillies. It is said that the tank was also used to judge the literary merit of the manuscripts of poets and authors. When placed on the water, the manuscripts would float supported by a plank if its value was considered worthy otherwise it would sink to the bottom. This testing miraculous plank was called 'Sanga Palkki' (sanga plank) and can still be seen in the temple museum. This tradition amply substantiates the view that Madurai was once a centre of learning and erudition. The Pandyan kings were great patrons of arts and letters. One of the first monarchs of the dynasty, Ugra Paruvaludi (128-140 A.D.) is gratefully remembered for the patronage he extended to poet Tiruvalluvar.

      In the 14th century, Madurai aroused the cupidity of Malikkafur who invaded it and set up a Mohammadan dynasty that remained in power for nearly fifty years, at the end of which it was conquered by a General of the Vijayanagar Empire and became a feudatory. The Vijayanagar Emperor, while guarding the kingdom against the invaders, subsequently restored it to the descendants of the Pandyan kings.

      From the middle of the 16th century, right up to the eighth decade of the 18th century. the city retained its glory as the principal seat of the Nayakas. Although Vishwanatha Nayaka, the first and greatest of a long line of distinguished rulers, is credited with having laid the foundations of a well planned and well fortified city. Tirumala Nayaka, who ascended to throne in 1623 A.D., and ruled over Madurai for 36 years can be said to have made the largest single contribution towards the enhancement of the beauty and splendour of the town by magnificent edifices and monuments.

      A little away from the temple precincts in the town is the ruins of Palace of Tirumala Nayaka constructed during his reign (1623-1645 A.D.). It contains beautiful domes and arches. One of the domes stands without the support of girder -an architectural feat of everlasting wonder. They must have been an extravagance of stucco in its heyday.

      Tirumala Nayaka was undoubtedly the greatest of the Nayaka rulers. The Nayakas of Madurai like those of Thanjavur and gingee ruled South India as the Governors of Vijayanagar emperors and gradually became independent rulers as the empire began to decline and breakup, though they did not like to call themselves as kings due probably to their reverence to the dynasty.

      Duration: 45 minutes

      Stop At: Madurai Meenakshi Amman Temple, Venmani Rd, Sellur, Madurai 625002 India

      The most impressive and important of south India's temples, Meenakshi temple in Madurai dates back as far as 2,500 years! Apparently, the city was built around the Shiva lingam that's inside its sanctum. The temple complex covers 14 acres, and has 4,500 pillars and 14 towers -- it's massive!

      The temple's four main towers and entrances each face one of the four directions (north, east, south, and west). The tallest one, the southern tower, stretches nearly 170 feet (52 meters) high! Inside, there are two main shrines -- one dedicated to Goddess Meenakshi (also known as Goddess Parvati) and the other to her husband Lord Shiva. Meenakshi's shrine, which is green, houses a piece of emerald that was brought back from Sri Lanka in the 10th century. The temple also contains a 1,000 pillared hall, temple art museum, holy golden lotus tank, musical pillars, stalls selling everything from plastic toys to bronze images of the Goddess, and many smaller shrines.

      The bottom part of the temple is made from granite, while its towers (gopuram) are made from limestone. On them is an astonishing array of sculptured and brightly painted gods, goddesses, animals, and demons. The famous southern tower was constructed in 1559. The oldest tower, which is the eastern one, was built by Maravarman Sundara Pandyan from 1216 to 1238. However, much of the work was carried out during the reign of Tirumalai Nayak, from 1623 to 1655.

      The sheer size of the temple means that it's easy to get lost inside, and there's so much to see and marvel over that you could easily spend days there. It's a "living" temple, full of industry and a constant stream of couples waiting to be married in its corridors.

      Duration: 1 hour 15 minutes

      Stop At: Gandhi Memorial Museum, Tamukkam, Madurai 625020 India

      Gandhiji and Madurai share a bond. It was after his visit to Madurai that Gandhi changed his dress code, which he followed until he met his end. Gandhi Museum was constructed in memory of Gandhiji after his assassination. The building, which houses the museum, was constructed around 1670 AD by Nayak Queen Rani. The construction was completed and inaugurated in 1959. The museum houses a Picture Gallery, which presents Gandhiji’s visual biography. The history of Freedom struggle is depicted with 265 illustrations in the Special Exhibition section. The ‘Hall of Relics’ preserves some original and replicas of Gandhi’s personal belongings. Cultural programmes are conducted in the open air theatre here, which can accommodate 8000 people. The library in Gandhi Museum has a vast collection detailing India’s cultural background and books by Gandhiji.

      Duration: 40 minutes

    • Departure Point :
      Traveler pickup is offered
      We will pickup anywhere from Madurai city areaAirports
      • Madurai Airport, Airport Rd, Madurai, Tamil Nadu 625022, India
      Return Detail :
      Hotel Pickup :
      • Confirmation will be received at time of booking
      • A current valid passport is required on the day of travel
      • Not wheelchair accessible
      • Near public transportation
      • Infants must sit on laps
      • Infant seats available
      • Not recommended for travelers with back problems
      • Most travelers can participate
      • This is a private tour/activity. Only your group will participate
    • You can present either a paper or an electronic voucher for this activity.
    • For a full refund, cancel at least 24 hours in advance of the start date of the experience.



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    Organised by Indian HoBo

    Activity ID: V-181365P3

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