A Tourist's Guide to Madurai
Madurai, also referred to as the Temple city, is the oldest inhabited city in the Indian peninsula. Situated on the banks of the River Vaigai, it's the second largest city in the Indian state of Tamil Nadu. The entire city of Madurai is built around the Meenakshi Sundareswarar Temple. Concentric rectangular streets surround the temple, symbolizing the structure of the cosmos. (Under wikipedia GNU)
Madurai Food and Cuisine:
Madurai cuisine is predominantly south Indian with rice. Mysorepa (a sweet made from lentil flour and ghee), idly, dosa, Halwa (a sweet made of different ingredients like milk, wheat, rice) and vada-sambar and biryani are popular among the locals.
Places often frequented by Tourists in Madurai:
Madurai is the third most visited city in India by foreigners ranked after Delhi and Mumbai.
1. Aliyar Dam, Near Pollachi.
2. Thirumurthy Dam, Udumalpet.
3. Amaravathy Dam, Udumalpet.
4. Kovai Kutralum, Perur, Madurai: 37 Kms away from Madurai is the Kovai Kutralam, a beautiful picnic spot. It has waterfalls of Siruvani River and is said to have the tastiest water in India. The falls are located amidst thick forest which gives you a magnificent view.
5. Top Slip: 90 kms from Madurai near Pollachi, Top slip is a National Park and medicinal plant conservation area in Anamalai hills part of Anamalai Wildlife Sanctuary.
6. Siruvani Dam, Near wallaiyar.
7. Black Thunder (Water Sports): Water Theme Park nested in natural beauty with the green hills of the Nilgiris for a backdrop and the cooling shelter of trees.
8. Narayanakavi Memorial, Udumalaipettai
9. Valparai Hill Station: 95 kms from Madurai, Valparai Hills is known for its tea estates. On the way you will pass through Indra Gandhi Wild Life Sanctuary, famous for Elephants, Boars, Lion tailed Monkey, gaur, spotted deer, sambar, and mountain squirrels. On the way to Valparai is the Monkey falls and Aliyar Dam. At Valparai, Balaji temple situated at Peria Karamalai Tea Industries is the center of attaction. From Valparai Sholaiyar and Nirar dams can be visited.
10. Cholayar Dam, Valparai.
11.Kadamparai Power House, Valparai
12.Tamilnadu Agri. University Botanical Gardens
13.Horticulture Farms, Kallar, Near Mettupalayam.
14.Vaitheki Falls, Narasi Palayam
15.Indira Gandhi Wildlife Sanctuary & National Park (Top Slip), Pollachi
16.V.O.C Park, Madurai
17.Karamadai Range Forest eco-tourism
18. Perks Pyramid: This is a wonderful place to visit and relax. The Pyramid is located inside the Perks school campus and is ideal for meditation.
(With excerpts from Travel Spots in Madurai)
Famous Temples in Madurai:
Perur Patteswar Lord Shiva Temple: The Patteswar temple is situated in the bank of holy river Noyyal. It is 7 Kms. from the west of Madurai. Patteswaran temple was built by Karikal Cholan, 1500 Years ago.
Marudamalai: The temple of Lord Dhandayuthapani is located upon the hill -Marudhamalai. It is located 12 kms from Madurai. Maruthamalai has got its name from marutha trees which are found in large number
Dhyanalinga: multi-religious temple located 30 kms from the city, in the foothills of Vellingiri hills.
Eachanari Vinayagar Temple: located at 10 kms from Madurai on the way to Pollachi. The deity's height is 6 feet and 3 feet and is one of the biggest in south India.
The city has an airport (Madurai Airport) at Peelamedu (11 km from the city) which caters to domestic flights to all the major Indian cities and international flights to Singapore, Kuala Lumpur, Muscat, Sharjah and Colombo. trains connect Madurai to all parts of India and Tamilnadu. The city has six major arterial roads and three National Highways, NH-47, 67 and 209. Madurai also has 5 major bus stands.
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