Sri Meenakshi TempleApprox. Time: 2 hours
Activity Level: Easiest

The Meenakshi Temple attracts pilgrims in thousands from all over India. The temple is named after the daughter of a Pandyan king who, according to legend, was born with three breasts. At the time of the birth, the king was told that the extra breast would disappear, when she met the man she was supposed to marry. This happened when she met Lord Shiva on Mount Kailas. Shiva arrived in Madurai, later, in the form of Lord Sundereswara, and married her. The Meenakshi temple is an excellent example of Dravidian architecture, with gopurams or multi pillared halls, covered from top to bottom, in a profusion of multicoloured images of gods, goddesses, animals and mythical figures. The temple occupies an area of around six hectares, and has four entrances to it. The museum called the Temple Art Gallery, is located within the temple and contains beautiful stone and brass images, examples of South Indian scripts, friezes and attempts to explain the Hindu pantheon and many other legends associated with it.

Courtesy of India Tourism Board