Kanchipuram is a temple city, one of the most sacred Hindu pilgrimage sites in India. It is situated about 70 kms from Chennai in the south Indian state of Tamil Nadu. Famous for its temples and hand-woven silk sarees, it is a popular tourist destination.
Kanchipuram famous as the 'City of a Thousand Temples' has its history intertwined with the glorious reign of the Pallavas, the Cholas and the Rayas of Vijayanagar.The city is also famous as an ancient center of Tamil learning and culture. Kanchipuram was home to great luminaries like Appar, Siruthonder, the great Buddhist bhikshu Bodhidharma and Sri Shankaracharya. Shankaracharya or Adi Shankara established his Episcopal seat here called Kamakotipeetam.
The temples are undoubtedly the foremost tourist attractions in Kanchipuram.The Kamakshi Amman Temple, one of the rare temples where Shakti is worshipped. The golden Chariot in the temple is significant as it is taken in a procession around the temple on Fridays. The temple also has an art gallery which displays the history of Sri Adi Shankaracharya and the Shankara Mutt. The Kailashanathar Temple built in the 8th century is dedicated to Shiva and is the oldest structure in Kanchipuram. Its exquisite architectural work makes it one of the finest examples of Pallava architecture. The Ekambareshwar Temple is one of the largest temples in Kanchipuram with numerous shrines, mandapams, gopurams and tanks. Other famous temples are the Kumara Kottam Temple and the Varadaraja Temple and the Ullahalanda Temple.
Places to See in Kanchipuram
Kailasnatha Temple- Lord Shiva, the supreme ascetic and god of the Hindu pantheon, is worshipped all across India. His temples can be located in every part of the country but nowhere more than Tamil Nadu would you get a chance to see them in number. The land of temples, Tamil Nadu boasts of housing around 2,500 Shiv Temples that hold great importance for the Hindus. More.....
Ekambaranatha Temple- This is one of the Shiva temples in the city.
Ekambareswarar Temple- Located towards the north western side of Kanchipuram this is the largest and highest temple there which belongs to the Pallava era.
Kamakshi Amman Temple- This temple is devoted to Goddess Kamakshi Amman.
Kanchi Kudil- It is a small ancient house that reflects the ancient culture of Hinduism in Tamil Nadu.
Muttukkadu Lake- This large lake is formed of backwaters where one can enjoy wind surfing as well as boating.
Sadras Beach- This sea beach is located at a distance of about 16 km from the place Mamallapuram which is a major beach resort.
Sriperumpudur- Situated at approximately 29 km distance from the city of Chennai and is Saint Ramanujar's birth place and thus an important Vaishnava pilgrim centre.
Vaikunta Perumal Temple- This is among the ancient temples which has got 3 tiered Gopuram cum Sannathi.
Varadharaja Perumal Temple- It is a temple that is based on the Vaishnava culture.
Vedantangal Bird Sanctuary- This place being among the famous sanctuaries of water birds in India is home to a wide variety of birds.
Apart from the above mentioned places Kanchipuram has got numerous temples that can be divided into the two major heads- Shiva Temples and Vaishnava Temples