- Tamil Nadu
Best Time To Visit
- February to June
The city of Mahabalipuram is also known as Mamallapuram. It has been named
after Mamalla, the person who is credited for creating the earliest monument
in the city during the reign of Pallave king, Narshimha Varman I.
Mahabalipuram is located at about 58 kms from Chennai. The best of cultures
and art that existed during the reign of Pallavas can be found in the Group
of Monuments at Mahabalipuram. Mahabalipuram, is a temple town that dates
back to 2000 years old. The rock-cut temples are the major centre of
attraction. India's oldest examples of Dravidian buildings and sculpted
rock-panels can be found at Mahabalipuram. The site includes about forty
monuments, including the largest open-air-bas relief in the world. The
monuments are mainly rock-cut and monolithic. In these monuments elements of
Buddhist designs are also very much visible.
- The Shore Temple of Mahabalipuram was built in the 7th
century during the reign of Rajasimha. The temple is a prefect example of
fine architecture of the Pallava Kings. The temple is made of charcolite,
its silhouette is beautiful against the changing colours of the sky. The
temple is dedicated to Lord Shiva. The Shore Temple is also where you can
come across the unique Sthala Shayana Perumal, which is the only temple in
India where Vishnu reclines on the floor, serenaded by the sound of the
'Ratha' Cave Temple
- The magnificent 'Ratha' Cave
Temples of Mahabalipuram were built bu the Pallava King, Narshimha during
the 7th and 8th centuries. There are eight rathas at Mahabalipuram, five of
which are named after 'Pandavas' of Mahabharata and one after their wives
Draupadi. The rathas are constructed in the style of Buddhist Viharas and
Chaityas. The three-storey Dharamaraja ratha is the largest and also
unfinished whereas the Draupadi ratha is the smallest. The rathas of Arjuna
and Draupadi are dedicated to Lord Shiva and Goddess Durga.
- Measuring about 27m by 9m is the
world's largest bas-relief panel -Arjuna's Penance. It holds over hundred
figures of Gods, men and beasts.
Southwards from Arjuna's Penance is the Krishna Mandapam with scenes of
Lord krishna lifting Mount Govardhan hewn in the rock and Pancha Pandava
Feather to the Cap
The Group Of Monuments at Mahabalipuram has been credited as a UNESCO World
Heritage Site in the year 1984, since then it has been enjoying the
attention of the tourists from all over the world.