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Bucket List Places in Tamil Nadu
Babuji Memorial Ashram in Chennai
There's a lot to see and do in Tamil Nadu - where to start? How about this list of 10 wonderful places? You won't go wrong with these popular tourist attractions.
Have you been to Tamil Nadu?
Babuji Memorial Ashram
Located in Manapakkam, Chennai, this wonderful Ashram attracts seekers from all over the world. The serene meditation hall is famous for its simple yet wonderful architecture. Inspiring architecture and the beauty of nature complement each other at Babuji Memorial Ashram.
Here you can learn relaxation technique, meditation and more. I have visited this Ashram alone and with my family many times. The atmosphere inside the Ashram, which is also known as SRCM Manapakkam Ashram, is special.
Chennai is well-connected by air, rail and road. Prepaid cabs are available from the airport to the Ashram. If you are travelling by train, you will arrive either at the Chennai Central station or at the Egmore station.
Suburban railways are available from Park station (which is opposite Chennai Central) to Guindy and from Egmore station to Guindy. You can take a cab, autorickshaw or bus from Guindy to the Ashram. Bus numbers 54RR and 54B stop at the gate of the Ashram.
Babuji Memorial Ashram
Babuji Memorial Ashram Chennai Address
Babuji Memorial Ashram
Shri Ram Chandra Mission Road,
Chennai - 600 125
Phone #: +91 44 4217 1111/ 2252 1099
Center of Light.— Shiva Shankar
Also known as the Meenakshi Amman Temple and Minakshi - Sundareshwara Temple, this historic Hindu temple is located on the south bank of River Vaigai in Madurai.
This large temple is dedicated to Sundareswar (a form of Lord Shiva) and Meenakshi (a form of Goddess Parvati). Sundareswar means "the beautiful lord" and Meenakshi means "the fish-eyed goddess".
If Tamil Nadu is the seat of South Indian temple architecture, the square-shaped Dravidian-style Madurai Meenakshi Amman Temple is its crowning glory.
The temple complex covers an area of around 45 acres. The 14 colorful gopurams (gateway towers) of this wonderful temple are covered with bright carvings of Hindu gods.
This temple is open from 5.00 am to 12.30 pm and from 4.00 pm to 10.00 pm. More than a million devotees attend the annual 10 day Meenakshi Tirukalyanam festival, which is celebrated during April–May.
Madurai is the third largest city in Tamil Nadu. It is well-connected by air, rail and road. The temple is at the heart of the city and can be easily reached by cab, auto rickshaw or bus.
Also known as Rajesvara Peruvudaiyr and Brihadeeswarar Temple, this Hindu temple in Thanjavur is dedicated to Lord Shiva. The large temple complex covers an area of around 102,400 square meters.
This more than 1,000 year old temple is an excellent example of the Tamizhan architecture from the Chola period. This magnificent temple of phenomenal beauty and proportion is the first complete granite temple in the world. Around 60,000 tons of granite was used to build the temple. It was built by emperor Raja Raja Chola in 1010 AD. It is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
The Lingam inside the temple is 3.7 meters tall. The temple tower, which is the tallest in the world, is around 66 meters. The bulbous structure on the top of the temple weighs around 80 tons. It is carved out of a single rock.
Each wall of the temple and the surrounding architecture are filled to the brim with carvings and paintings depicting the rich history of art, culture, mythology and science of the era.
Visit the temple at the time of the Hindu month of Visakha or May month according to the English calendar. This is when the annual festival of the temple is celebrated for a span of 9 days, starting from Satabhisha star day.
Tiruchirapalli International Airport, which is around 60 kilometers, is the nearest airport. Thanjavur is well-connected by rail and road. The temple is open from 6.00 am to 12.30 pm and from 4.00 pm to 8.30 pm.
Ramanathaswamy Temple, which is one of the 12 Jyotirlinga temples, is located in Rameswaram. This Dravidian style temple is famously known as the "Temple of 1,000 Pillars". The main tower or rajagopuram is 53 meters tall.
Madurai Airport, which is around 180 kilometers, is the nearest airport to Rameswaram. From Madurai you can reach the town by train, bus or cab. Rameswaram is well-connected by rail and road.
Vivekananda Rock Memorial
Located in Vavathurai, Kanyakumari, this monument was built in 1970 in honour of Swami Vivekananda, the spiritual teacher, prophet and patriot-monk of modern India. He is said to have attained enlightenment on the rock. It was on this rock that he meditated before leaving for Chicago to address the World Religious Conference in 1892.
The architectural style of the monument, which is a unique symbol of unity and purity, is a blend of conventional and modern styles. The entrance is inspired by the Ajanta and Ellora cave temples.
Inside the main hall is a life-size statue of Swamiji. Shripada Mandapam (with a study hall and a museum) and the Vivekananda Mandapam add to the spiritual significance and purity of the memorial.
Trivandrum International Airport, which is around 100 kilometers, is the nearest airport. Kanyakumari is well-connected by rail and road. You need to take a ferry from the mainland to the monument, which is open from 7.00 am to 5.00 pm.
It took 2,081 working days to build Vivekananda Rock Memorial.
Mudumalai National Park
Mudumalai National Park and Wildlife Sanctuary also a declared tiger reserve. It is in the northwest part of the Nilgiri Hills. It houses endangered species like Bengal tiger (around 50), long billed vulture, white-rumped vulture, Indian leopard and Indian elephant (more than 2,000).
The park is open throughout the year. There are three types of safari:
- Jungle Safari – twice daily; duration: two hours.
- Road Safari – twice daily; duration: two hours.
- Elephant Safari – only in the morning; duration: 40 minutes
Timings – 6.00 am to 8.00 am and 4.00 pm to 6.00 pm.
The region has tropical wet climate, so visit during early summer months or just after the monsoons. The reserve straddles the Ooty -Mysore interstate national highway, roughly midway between the two cities. It is accessible by bus or cab.
This is a perfect place to see wild animals. I have been here thrice since 2008 and every time I came here I loved it.— Atul Shirodkar
© 2017 Srikanth R