Fujiyama, Japan

Thursday, 1 May 2014

Madurai

Google Maps: Madurai, Tamil Nadu, India
Trip: Bangalore > MaduraiKodaikanal > Bangalore

We started for Madurai early morning at 7 and as has been the ritual, we broke our fast at McDonalds Krishnagiri. Road from Bangalore to Krishnagiri is under construction. The slow pace was covered up by the fantastic stretch from Salem to Madurai. The 300 miles were covered in 7 hours. Heritage Madurai proved to be an excellent choice for hotel, thanks to Manish who booked in on cleartrip. The stay was royal. We unpacked and refreshed ourselves.

Highway to Madurai

By 6 we were ready to leave for what we came here - the Meenakshi Temple. On first look the crowd around will give you hint of what lies inside. We entered through the eastern gate after a rigorous check. Shorts are not allowed. We first visited the Temple of Thousand Pillars. It has been converted into a sort of museum filled with thousand years old sculptures of Lord Shiva in various poses. At the centre is massive Natraj statue.

Lord Natraj statue @ Madurai Temple

The most impressive and crowded part of Madurai temple is the central piece known as Meenakshi Amman Kovil. Elaborately designed doors which can hold thousands of candles welcome you. The front view has a pillar that cuts across the roof and shimmers like gold.

Golden Pillar @ Central Gopuram

The Madurai Temple is actually a conglomerate of temples which were erected in the same compound. We covered at least half a dozen of them before calling it a day. We had driven most of the day and it was time for a quiet dinner in our beautiful hotel. Kodaikanal was in our list for the next day. It is less than 100 miles from here and is one of the most famous hill stations in South India.