Planning for a vacation How about the mystical destination of Madurai Madurai happens to the cultural capital of Tamil Nadu besides being the second largest city in the state. The city derives its name from the divine nectar (Madhu) that was showered from the locks of Lord Shiva according to a popular belief. The temple city of Madurai is situated on the banks of the River Vaigai.

Life in Madurai revolves around the Meenakshi Amman Temple. Goddess Meenakshi and Lord Shiva are the main deities of the temple. The temple has 985 beautifully sculptured pillars that form the Thousand Pillar Mandapam Hall. Since ages the temple has been the center of Tamil culture, sponsoring literature, art, music and dance. The temple is worth more than a visit. The other prime attraction in Madurai is the Vandiyur Mariamman Teppakulam. It hosts the annual float festival in the months of January and February. Lord Vigneshwara is the presiding deity at the tank.

Besides the temples the Tirumalai Naik palace is a must visit spot for the tourists. The Indo-Saracenic style of architecture and the Sound and Light shows add to the significance of the palace. Madurai also boasts of another old palace Gandhi Museum that has been dedicated to Mahatma Gandhi. The ancient temple city of Madurai is now days renowned for its textile mills, engineering industries and large university areas.

Munnar, Thekkadi Wildlife Sanctuary and Palani Hills are other places of interest around Madurai. While in Madurai do check out the idlis, vadas and the filter coffee besides the fresh warm Thirumalveli halwa . In terms of shopping Madurai’s Pudu Mandapam Market is the best place to check out the curios. Relax unwind yourself in the evenings at the Pottramarai tank and get entrapped in the magic of Madurai.

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