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Sri Meenakshi-Sundareswarar Temple

Sri Meenakshi-Sundareswarar Temple  Synonymous with Madurai is the Meenakshi Sundareswarar twin-temple. It is the pivot around which the city has evolved. The Meenakshi Temple complex is literally a city on its own. It is one of the largest of its kind in India and undoubtedly one of the oldest too. The temple grew bigger with the contributions of each dynasty and victorious monarchs, into an enormous complex extending over an area of 65000 sq. metres


The temple was first built 2000 years ago and was substantially expanded during the reign of Thirumalai Nayak between the years (1623-55 AD).

Lord Siva in his incarnation as Sundareswarar and his spouse Meenakshi, are enshrined in this twin temple. She is called Meenakshi because it is believed that her eyes are shaped like that of a fish. The name is made up of two words - meen for fish and askshi for the eye. There are four massive gateways enclosing these two shrines. Visitors are fascinated by the many paintings and sculptures that adorn this temple

A striking feature of the temple is the astonishing structure known as Ayiramkaal mandapam or the Hall of a thousand pillars in the outermost corridor. The hall has 985 pillars and each pillar features high, ornate, bold sculptures that look life- like. Viewed from any angle these pillars appear to be in a straight line it is an architectural masterpiece indeed. In the outermost corridors are situated the matchless musical pillars carved out of stone. When tapped, each pillar produces a different musical note and the hall resonates with the sound of this note.

Note: Allow yourself plenty of time to see and appreciate this temple. To avoid crowds, visit the place early in the morning or late evening.

Timings:5.00 a.m and 12.30 p.m. 4.00 p.m. and 9.30 p.m.