January 7, 2015

Gangaikonda Cholapuram Peruvudaiyar Temple

Distance and Route Details

  • From Kumbakonam - 35Kms
  • From Thanjavur (Tanjore) - 72Kms
  • Route: On the Kumbakonam to Chennai Road. 

Temple Timings

Opening hours: 6AM till 12PM and 4PM till 8PM
Pooja Timings

  • Kala Sandhi (Morning Pooja) 9:00 AM
  • Uchi Kalam (Mid Noon Pooja) 12:00 PM
  • Sayaratchai (Evening Pooja) 6:00 PM
  • Artha Jamam (Night Pooja) 8:00 PM

Maintained by ASI (Archaeological Survey of India)

History

Madurantakan or Rajendra Chola son of the Rajaraja, established this temple. This place is the capital of Cholas those days. He has the other name "Gangaikonda Cholan" and named the capital as "Gangaikondacholapuram". This is established between 1020 to 1029 A.D. More details in Wikipedia (link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gangaikonda_Cholapuram ). This is a UNESCO World Heritage site.

Main Tower and Nandi (Big Bull)

The entrance is facing east. The main tower is built in such a way that, the shadow never falls on the ground at anytime of the day. In evenings, the sun shines on the face of Big Nandi and the light is reflected inside the temple i.e. on the main deity inside sanctum. This golden light brighten up the temple inside. This is so amazing. Even after switching off all the tube lights, with the reflection from nandhi, you can see the main deity clearly. This is a rare sighting.

The Nandhi statue is 11 feet in height and 15 feet length. The height of the main tower is close to 182 feet or 55m. The size of the Lingam is very huge and it seems they make rice using 100 rice bags and
perform "Rice Abhishekam" or "Annabhishekam".  This is one of the famous festivals held here. This temple complex is in 6 acres of land. This vimana is Octagonal or 8 sided and Tanjore is Quadragonal or 4 sided. Main deity is Peruvudaiyar.  The whole temple is full of rich and intricate carvings.

Singa muga kinaru or Simhakeni

There is a well with the big lion statue and it is the entrance to the steps of the well. This is also called "Singa muga kinaru" (or) Simhakeni. This sacred water is been used for temple abhishekam.

Sthala Virutcham

Vanni tree (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Prosopis_cineraria) is the sthala-virutcham (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sthala_Vriksha) of this temple.

Stay options

There are plenty of options in Kumbakonam and Thanjavur. Refer the review sites to checl for best options. We stayed at "Hotel Athithya" which is right behind the hotel Aryaas. Refer my review for full details.

Food options

Hotel Venkata Ramana in Kumbakonam is pretty good. This is right next to Gandhi Park. You can also try Hotel Aryaas which is ok. Don't forget to try "Kumbakonam Degree Coffee" which is famous here.

Nearby Temples (Click the links to read the blog posts)

1. Darasuram
2. Thanjavur / Tanjore - Brihadeeswarar Temple
4. Thiruvaiyaru
5. Poondi Madha Basilica - Catholic pilgrimage centre near Thiruvaiyaru
6. Kumbakonam Temples

Note: Incase if you want to add Chidambaram to your list, you may want to stay one additional day and visit even few more temples closeby. I will add more details in forthcoming blog posts.

Trip Planning

This temple can be combined along with all the temples listed above in 2 days by one night stay in Kumbakonam. 

Now lets move onto the photos

Note: All the images are copyrighted. Click on the image to zoom and see details.

Gangaikondacholapuram Temple
Gangaikondacholapuram Temple


Gangaikondacholapuram Big Nandi
Gangaikondacholapuram Big Nandi - So beautiful

Gangaikondacholapuram Big Nandi
Gangaikondacholapuram Big Nandi - Another view

Gangaikondacholapuram Big Nandi
Gangaikondacholapuram Big Nandi - Closeup


Gangaikondacholapuram Dwarapalaka
Gangaikondacholapuram Dwarapalaka - Notice the beautiful decorations

Gangaikondacholapuram Dwarapalaka
Gangaikondacholapuram Dwarapalaka - Notice the beautiful decorations

Gangaikondacholapuram Gnana Saraswathi
Gangaikondacholapuram Gnana Saraswathi

Gangaikondacholapuram inner temple
Gangaikondacholapuram inner temple


Gangaikondacholapuram main entrance view
Gangaikondacholapuram main entrance view


Gangaikondacholapuram nandi on lawn
Gangaikondacholapuram nandi on lawn - So beautiful and natural !


Gangaikondacholapuram Nataraja
Gangaikondacholapuram Nataraja - So beautiful smiling face !


Gangaikondacholapuram Parrots and Pigeons
Gangaikondacholapuram Parrots and Pigeons


Gangaikondacholapuram Shiva Parvathi
Gangaikondacholapuram Shiva Parvathi


Gangaikondacholapuram Singamuga keni Lion Well
Gangaikondacholapuram Singamuga keni Lion Well


Gangaikondacholapuram Steps to main deity
Gangaikondacholapuram Steps to main deity


Gangaikondacholapuram Tower closeup
Gangaikondacholapuram Tower closeup



Gangaikondacholapuram Tower
Gangaikondacholapuram Tower

Gangaikondacholapuram Tower
Gangaikondacholapuram Tower

Gangaikondacholapuram Tower
Gangaikondacholapuram Tower



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