- Tamil Nadu
Best Time To Visit
- November to January
The majestic and magnificent Chola temples were built during the reign of
Chola dynasty in the south India. This period, when the Chola Dynasty was at
the helm of affairs, is described as the golden age of the Tamil culture.
The temples of the Chola dynasty are an outstanding example of architecture
and a true representative of the Chola ideology.
The Brihadisvara Temple
The Brihadisvara temple, located at Tanjavur, was constructed by the great
ruler Rajaraja Chola. It was built in the 16th century and was designated as
a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1987. It is amongst the biggest Chola
temples with its 13 storeyed Vimanam towering upto 216 feet. The various
temples of the Chola dynasty are perfect examples of superb Dravidian
architecture. The Vimana of the temple is the tallest in the world.
from the Brihadisvara temple, Gangaikonda Choleswarar Temple and
Airavateeawarar temple are fine examples of great artistry of Chola empire.
These other two temples belong to the 11th and 12th centuries. These temples
stand testimony to the architectural, sculptural, painting and bronze
casting advancements and achievements during the time of Cholas.
Gangaikonda Choleswarar Temple
This temple is dedicated to Lord Shiva. Gangaikonda Choleswarar Temple was
built by King Rajendra Chola to commemorate his conquest in the North. The
temple bears a resemblance to the Brihadeeswarar shrine of Thanjavur. The
Lingam here is more than four metres in height. The sculptures of this
temple have been laid finely. The annual Annabhishekam around November
attracts a number of devotees. Water from the holy river, Ganga, is offered
to the Lord daily in the form of Dhaara.
Airavatesvara Temple at Darsuram
The Airavatesvara Temple at Darsuram was built by Rajaraja Chola II. It
features a 24m Vimana and a stone image of Siva.
All these three temples are the living example of the brilliant art and
architecture of the Chola dynasty. The trip to south India is incomplete
without paying a visit to the temples.