Temples including Madurai Meenakshi are major attractions of Madurai and the accommodation facilities | Road map from Chennai to Madurai with driving directions

Temples including Madurai Meenakshi are major attractions of Madurai and the accommodation facilities | Road map from Chennai to Madurai with driving directions

Madurai Meenakshi 1 Madurai Meenakshi 2

Madurai is the second biggest city in Tamilnadu state after Chennai.  Railway station of Madurai is at the center of the city.  Bus stand is at a distance of 3kms from the city.  A big main road can be seen next to the Railway station.  On the other end of the road which is opposite to the station there is a choultry  ‘Rani Mangammal’.  This road leads to Meenakshi temple. Opposite to the railway station there are many hotels which provide accommodation to the devotees. The distance between the station and the temple is about three fourth of a kilometer.  One and a half kilometer towards south from the temple, one can see the ‘Nayakar Mahal’.   Auto riskshaw are available to visit this place.  Thiruparankundram, which has the temple of Lord Subrahmanyam is towards south from Madurai.  One can reach this place by buses and auto rikshaws.   Meenakshi temple and Thiruparankundram temple are closed by 12:00O clock in the afternoon and are opened at 04:00 pm.  There is a light and sound show at Nayakar Mahal.  This show can be seen in  Tamil at 06:00 in the evening and in English at 07:00 pm daily.  On one side of Madurai a temple tank ‘Teppakulam’ is situated.  On the middle of the tank there is a temple dedicated to Goddess ‘Adisakti’.  Boating can be done in the tank.  City buses are run to this place.  ‘Alwar Temple’, a temple dedicated to Lord Vishnu is situated at the bottom of hills towards west at a distance of 11kms.  This is the most ancient temple and is very sacred for the people of Madurai.

On top of the hills at a distance of 3kms and in the midst of the forest there is a place ‘Palamudir Solai’ where there is a temple for the third form of Lord Subrahmanyam.  This is a very pleasant place.   Mini bus services are run from station to the temple.

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Arasavelli-One of the few temples for Sun God | Mythological importance of Arasavelli and how to reach there

Arasavelli- One of the few temples for Sun God | Mythological importance of Arasavelli and how to reach there

Arasavalli

Sun is the main source for food cycle. Sun is important for the existence of life on earth. This is the reason why Sun has been worshipped by Aryans, Greeks, Romans and Egyptians. Sun is worshipped in the form of Sri Suryanarayana Murthy at Arasavilli.

Arasavilli is situated in Srikakulam district where sun god is worshipped along with his wife. There are very few temples for Sun and Lord Brahma. Arasavilli is one of the prominent temples of Sun.

Konark temple in Orissa comes to mind when we think of Sun temples. History tells us that this was destroyed by Kala pahad in 1568 A.C. But the statue of the deity is missing. So Arasavilli has become the only temple in India where Sun is worshipped. Devotees believe that people who worship Lord Sun get health, wealth and happiness. That is why this village is also called ‘Harshavalli’.

 

Sthala Puraanam

This temple belongs to seventh century. In Dwapara yugam, Lord Balarama started for a pilgrimage in east direction, at the time of Kurukshetra war.  He created a river for the benefit of people with his plough. That river is called ‘Nagaavali’ now. He installed panchalingaalu on the banks of this river. He invited all Gods to install Sri Umarudra Koteswara Swamy in Arasavelli. Lord Indra was late for the ceremony, and Nandi refused to let him in. And there was a war between these two. Lord Indra became unconscious and fell at the distance of three miles from the temple in the east direction. He prays to Lord Sun. Sun advices him to construct a pushkarini at that place to get the lost grandeur. While digging the pushkarini with his Vajraayudham, Indra could find a beautiful statue of Lord Suryanarayana. This tank is now called ‘Indrapushkarini’. This statue was installed in Arasavelli by Indra. That is the temple now in Arasavelli.

Lord Sun is worshipped along with Goddesses Usha, Padmini and Chayadevi. Devotees believe that Sun God gives health and longer life to the living things. Thousand of prilgims throng this temple to offer prayers. Coming to the statue of the Deity, there is a sword at the waist of the God. The Driver of the Chariot is Anurudu. Anurudu means the person who has no thighs. He is the brother of Garutmanthudu. Two servants Sanskasananda serve the God with chatrachaamaralu.

Kalyanam of Lord Suryanarayana is performed on Chairtra sudda Ekadasi. Other important programs at the temple are teppa tirunaallu on kartika sudda dwadasi, Rathasaptami, Kamadahanotsavam on Phalguna Sudda Purnima and Dolotsavam. Rathasaptami is a big festival here. The number of devotees increases in the months of Maagham, Vaisaakham and Karthikam.

Every year the first rays of Sun enter the temple in the dates of March 8, 9, 10, 11 and 1, 2, 3, 4 dates of October. They fall on the Dhwajasthambam through the gopuram of the temple. They directly touch the feet of God. These fall on the foot, naval and head of the statue and the God looks beautiful at that time. The devotees who watch this are in a trance for some time. That is why there is a heavy rush on these days.

Shape of the temple

It can be known through the inscriptions that the temple was constructed in 673 B.C by the King of Kalinga, Devendra Verma. This temple was destroyed by Subedar of Nizam Nawaab, Sher Mohammed Khan. An employee of the Nawab, Yalamanchili Sitaramaswamy threw the statue of the deity in a well to save it from the Subedar. Then he reconstructed the temple in 1778 AC. The temple was renovated in the year 1999. The construction of the temple is in the form of chariot.

Suryanamskaras

Arasavilli is considered to be the place which cures skin, eye and psychological diseases through suryanamaskaras. There is a navagraha mandapam situated here. As part of the suryanamaskaras, 12 different asanaas are practiced by the people here. Seven special namaskaras are dedicated to saptarishis. They are Namaskara mudra, Thadaasna, Paadahasthana, Aswasanchaalaasana, Bhujangaasana, Parvathasana and Ashtaanga namaskaraasana. It is believed that since all the planets revolve around sun, worshipping God is equal to worshipping all the planets. And this gives mental peace and cures all diseases.

To reach Arasavelli

This temple is located at a distance of 13 kilo meters from Srikakulam railway station and nearly 3 kilo meters from Srikakulam complex. Air passengers can get down at Visakhapatnam and reach Arasavelli through road and rail ways.

How to reach Pinjore / Pinjaur in Chandigardh? Location map of Pinjore gardens:

How to reach Pinjore / Pinjaur in Chandigardh? Location map of Pinjore gardens:
Pinjore

Interesting places in Chandigarh:

Chandigarh is an excellent newly designed city. In this city the main place to be visited is Nackchand Rock Gardens. The other places which are looks very attractive for tourists are the construction of University Building and Secretariat Building. From the distance of 20 Km from Chandigarh there is a beautiful garden which is in the form of steps in the mountain ranges like view at a place called Pinjore / Pinjaur which is a one of the tourist place to be visited by everyone. There is a temple called Goddess Manasa Devi which is at the outside of the city. In the same way there is a place called Kalka which as temple of Goddess Kalika which starts at the way from Chandigarh to Simla. Among the Nine temples which are treated as Nava Durgas by the people of that area the Manasa Devi and Kalka Devi temples are two of them.

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What to see in and around Aurangabad | Road (Route) map to Aurangabad from Shirdi

What to see in and around Aurangabad | Road (Route) map to Aurangabad from Shirdi

Aurangabad is the city which is formed based on the name of the king Aurangzeb who is the last of the Mughal Emperors. There are no special places to be visited in this place but the Aurangabad is the way to reach the famous tourist spots, Ajanta and Ellora caves. The Ellora caves are 32km away from Aurangabad. The Daulatabad fort is at the route of Ellora. The Ghrushneshwar temple which is one among the Dwadasa Jyotirlingas is at the second side of the Ellora caves. The Ajanta caves are 105km away from the East of the Aurangabad. There is the construction of Bibika- Macbara which is at one end of the Aurangabad, which is built by the son of Aurangzeb in the memorial of the wife of Aurangzeb. It appears same like that of the Taj Mahal which is in Agra but it is not as big as of the original Taj and also not as beautiful as Taj.

The Panchakki place is on the other end of Aurangabad. There is a story that one orphan old man had made a permanent living in this place by taking care of the orphan children and used to take care of them. As the children cannot do the heavy works he used to place the small utensils which are useful in cooking like grinding stones of flour mill and other heavy utensils which are useful in the process of cooking. He also made arrangements to get the water from the pipes from the water project which is near to the Aurangabad. He used the force of that water to work as the power supplier for those five utensils and made use of those utensils. By this arrangement, the children used to cook the food very easily without any hard work. The place where those five utensils are there is called as Panchakki. The tomb of that old orphan is in that surrounding only. Just one km away Aurangabad, there are Ellora like caves but the complete area has become like a forest and it is not possible to reach that place.

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Melukote is also called Thirunarayanapuram | Road map to Melukote from Bengaluru, Karnataka, India

Melukote is also called Thirunarayanapuram | Road map to Melukote from Bengaluru, Karnataka, India

Thirunarayanapuram

Melukote is also called Thirunarayanapuram.  ‘Mel’ means above and ‘Kotai’ means a small hill having a fort.  As per tradition Melkote is called Gnana mandapam, Kanchi is the Tyaga mandapam, Srirangam is the Bhoga mandapam and Tirumala is called the Pushpa mandapam.  Melkote is situated near Mandya town in Karnataka state.  Devotees can reach this place from Bangalore or Mysore.  As per sthalapuraanam, in the krutha yugam, a sage Sanatkumar brought the Utsavamurthy of Lord Vishnu from Satya lokam.  Thus this place was called Narayanadri.  In Threta yugam, Dattatreya worshipped this idol with Vedadhyayanam and so it was then called Vedadri.   In Dwapara yugam Lord Srikrishna worshipped the idol here and so it was called Yadavadri.

The temple at Melkote belongs to 11th or 12th centuries.  Bhagawadramanujam stayed here for 12 years when the Chola king Krimitantudu was torturing the people.  He restored the Melkote temple with the help of King Vishuvardhana.  Ramanujam re-installed the utsavamurthulu which were with Delhi Nawab.  The idol in this temple appears as a 14, 15 years handsome boy.  Goddess Lakshmi is called Yadugiri nachiyar.  Lord Narsimha swamy temple is situated on a temple here.  Brahmotasavam and Vairmudi festival are the important festivals here.

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How the Kollur Mookambika got that name? | The temple architecture and Mookambika idol details

How the Kollur Mookambika got that name? | The temple architecture and Mookambika idol details

Kollue MookambikaThis temple has a history for its origin.  In Kritayugam there was a demon Kamasura in this place.  He did penance to please Lord Shiva.  Goddess Parvathi  made him dumb to prevent him from asking boons.  Later she killed him on Jesta sukla ashtami on the Kodachadri hill.  So the Goddess is called Mookambika.

Kollur Mookambika temple is built in the Kerala architecture style.  There is a 20 feet Deepa sthambam at the entrance.  Gaja sthambam which has golden plating is a little shorter.  Devotees have the darshan of these stambhas and then enter the sanctum sanctorium.  Male devotees have to take off their vests and shirts before entering the temple.  Mookambika Devi appears in a cross-legged position.  Mookambika has four hands, with the chakram and sankham in the upper hands.

The idol of Goddess Mookambika was installed along with the Srichakram by Adisankaracharya.  Adisankaracharya peetham is at the west side of the sanctum sanctorum.  Earlier Devi appeared ferocious.  Adisankaracharya did penance and make her tranquil.  Adisankaracharya went to north India with the permission of the Goddess, it is said.  All the kings who ruled this place worshipped and developed this religious place.

A Jyothirlingam is present in front of the idol of Mookambika.  This lingam is divided unequally by the line.  Devotees believe that the small portion of the lingam is the place of Brahma, Vishnu and Shiva; the big portion is the place for Saraswati, Mahalakshmi and Mahakali.  Decorations and Pujas are held for the idol and Abhishekam to the Lingam.

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