Dedicated to the 'fish-eyed goddess' and consort of Shiva, Meenakshi Temple is an extraordinary complex at the heart of the city of Madurai. Built between the 16th and 18th centuries, the temple is one of the finest examples of Dravidian architecture and is a constant hive of activity. The temple has nine towering gopurams (monumental gates) with colourful stucco images of gods, goddesses and animals. Inside are numerous temple halls and 12 huge sikaras or towers surrounding the Golden Lotus Tank where worshippers bathe before entering the shrines. The 16th century Thousand Pillared Hall has exquisitely carved columns and a sculptured ceiling which depicts a wheel showing the 60 Tamil years. Each evening there is a closing ceremony which returns an image of Shiva to his resting place and comprises chanting priests, drummers and torch-bearers.
Travel to Meenakshi Temple
Organised group tours: Click here to see 21 tours to South India which may include Meenakshi Temple.