Madurai Temple

Madurai temple close-up 2Madurai, also known as the Temple City of South India, is the second largest city in Tamil Nadu.  Situated on the banks of the river Vaigi, this city is tantamount with the Meenakshi Sundareswarar twin Temple.  This gigantic temple complex is dedicated to Shiva, known here as Sundareshwara and his consort Parvati who is known here as Meenakshi.  This temple is the focal point around which the city of Madurai has developed over 2500 years.

The sprawling temple complex is one of the oldest and largest of its kind in our country and is almost like a city unto itself. It covers an area of over 65,000 square meters. Even though the temple was originally built by the Pandya King, Kulasekaran, the temple has grown due to the contribution of each dynasty and victorious monarchs. The Temple, as we see it today was built by Tiurmalai Nayakar who ruled Madurai from the 16th to the 18th century.

madurai temple

madhurai temple at night

close-up of the temple

The Temple itself is set within a high-walled enclosure at the centre of which are the two shrines for Meenakshi and Sundareshwara. There are four massive gateways enclosing there two shrines which are surrounded by a number of smaller shrines and majestic pillared halls. The complex also contains 14 impressive gopurams (gateway towers) which range from 45-50 m in height. The towers have solid granite bases and are covered with stucco figures of deities, mythical animals and monsters painted in bright colors. There is not a single visitor who is not overwhelmed by the vast number of paintings and sculptures. About 33,000 sculptures can be found in the temple complex.

side view of the temple

colourful sculptures on the pillars

The most stunning feature of this temple is the magnificent Hall of Thousand Pillars or “Ayiramkaal Mandapam”. It is an architectural marvel wherein each pillar features high, elaborate and bold sculptures that look life like. What’s more, these pillars appear to be in a straight line when viewed from any angle. The beautiful musical pillars are located in the outermost corridors and are carved out of stone. When tapped, each pillar produces a different musical note.

thousand pillar hall

madurai temple 2

The temple is one of utmost importance for the Tamil people, which can be seen by the number of visitors it attracts. Around 15,000 people visit this temple daily with it increasing to 25,000 on Fridays. It was even in the list of Top 30 nominees of the “New Seven Wonders of the World” and gets annual revenue of sixty million INR.

madurai temple day time

Madurai Temple walkway

Opening Hours: 05:00-12:30pm and 4:00-9:30pm

129 comments to Madurai Temple

  • Bhalchandra

    Wonderful. Must visit and pray here at least once in a lifetime.

  • V Raghavan

    It is just ironical that, born in the south of the country, I never got to see this great temple in younger days. I made up for it by visiting the temple for two full days, after I retired. You cannot but have sense of awe about our ancestors who carried out such magnificent projects. Not to be missed at all!

  • shamladevi naidu

    i want a picture of rishikas the siva statue in the ganges i have being there 2 time i didnt have a camera so please help with a picture please thank you

  • anil

    really very very great TEMPLE

  • Awesom like vellore golden temple should visit once in our life time

    I shall visit this temple in my next trip to south side. I was long thinking of visiting this temple but no chance was there but we should make time for the visit now it seems. Simply marvellous it seems.

  • Awesom like vellore golden temple should visit once in our life time

    I shall visit this temple in my next trip to south side. I was long thinking of visiting this temple but no chance was there but we should make time for the visit now it seems. Simply marvellous it seems.

    No comments is there for me to say because it is superb to see from here itself.

  • LOGANATHAN

    Photos are clear and good. But could have been better and self explanatory.
    above all appriciable. good

  • BALA CHANDRAN KARUPIAH

    This Abode of Goddess Menakshi is meant not only for Hindus but the entire Mankind.
    Jai Adhi Parashakti!

  • tousiff

    Nice pics of the temple… It is worth visiting to watch the magnificent projects undertaken during a very primitive stage..

  • PUSHPA

    Really great, A really great temple- Madurai is awesome I pray to God to let me have a chance to visit this great temply.

  • prakash

    Visited the temple a couple of years ago, the temple an outstanding example of South Indian temple architecture (certainly can qualify as world class structure in its genre) needs to be kept neat n clean n lack the dignity which the Christian churches enjoy. All Hindu temples in India are in sorry state of affair.

  • Deepak K Banerjee

    A place worth visiting.

  • Mohanraj

    it’s agreat in this world

  • KRISHNAN

    I shall visit this temple in my next trip to south side. I was long thinking of visiting this temple but no chance was there but we should make time for the visit now it seems. Simply marvelous it seems. I hope next year without fail i shall go and get her blessings to me and any my family.

  • Rajendran

    superb Madurai Temple – the icon of Tamil culture !

  • Krishna

    Very nice photos

  • Sreesan

    This magnificent temple complex devoutly built by the Pandyas to Goddess Meenakshi is the finest example of Dravidian architecture full of harmony and balance.

  • manjulagirish

    photographs are very nice . Refreshed our memories of the place.

  • rajakumar

    I have seen this temple about 5 times . Excellent architectural construction. Nobody can do in this modern world. We must be proud of our ansestors.

  • Sayed Nabi

    Realy attractive and beuaatiful so the uatiful people sending beuatiful pics i liked it too much

  • CM PRABHAKARAN

    Madurai Meenakshi Temple is worth including in the list of SEVEN WONDERS OF THE WORLD. The construction of the beautiful temple, maintenance in ISO standard and wonderful craftmanship of the construction work are really astonishing

  • joti

    2 gr8 work done.

  • Rohit G. Bhatt

    This is a MARVLOUS TEMPLE. Million Thanks For Pictures.

  • SHAN

    Beauty….a temple must be visited.

  • AJIT KUMAR PARIDA

    wonderful piece of great architecture proud to be born in INDIA a land of devta supreme Bhagawan swaminarayan, krishna ,Sriram and Jagannath Mahaprabhu grand Chariot festival Rath yatra of whole world celebrated tocome ti Sri Jagannath Puri,odisha.As well as to know the true indian art ,heritage culture visit Akshardham Temple ,New delhi. i am doing voluntary seva for atma kalyan in supreme guidance of Param Pujya Pramukh Swami Maharaj.

  • bhattathiripad kms

    STAGGERING AND MOST BEAUTIFUL. KMS

  • subhash bajwala

    Wow! the Best mandir,I have ever seen

  • adiseshu

    I visited the temple, I was lost.

  • Padmanabhan K

    Dear all…… There are so many temples in south India. Especially in TamilNadu ( Further more Especially…!) in the banks of the river cauvery i.e in places of Chola kingdom.( Now Thanjavur,Thiruvarur and Nagaipattinam districts)So many temples can be seen for the beauty of the sturcture, Idols,holiness etc.
    But there are certain important temples which were situated nearby areas. Rameswaram,Thirunelveli, Madurai, Taramangalam ,Aavudiyarkoil etc are also equally there for its importance. In madurai Temple Meenakshi kalyanam (Sivan/Vishnu and Meenakshi) are very very beautiful in all aspects. The architect is soooo brillant and finished his work to withstand for still more thousands years…! Like that Avudiyar koil kodungai, Taramangalam Rama vaali war , Rameswaram 3 rd pragaram are also very nice to see…!

  • Sivakumar

    Wonderful.very good view of the temple meenakshi amman

  • T.V.Anand

    I live in chrompet.Here at the kumaram kundram temple a small gopuram is under constriction for last few months.The progress is very slow and many people have collected funds.So far only civil work done.It would have taken years to complete a gopuram like the one at Madurai.We are not able to maintain these gopurams.Very few people donate,The devotion the people had and the faith they had needs no appreciation.Today we have people who donot have faith in God .Many hindus have changed their religion.Shame.Shame.We ask devotees to pay for darshan .The more you pay you are taken careof and the so called devotee is happy.

  • N.Chakrapani

    Wonderful piece of Temple Architecture…..We are proud of our Heritage.

  • V.Srinivash

    I had been to this temple in the month of April, 2011 with my wide & little daughter. Dying to visit the same place once again.

  • SHANGUBI

    I saw the place, all the way from Oman-Bombay-Kerala.
    I took a full tour of Kerala, which was very enlightening.
    MADURAI Temple is one of the largest and most magnificent, but the surrounding should be dealt with to be more appealing to visitors. I still remember the sight of the man who helped me remove private pics inside, far from the eyes of others, in the hope of something!

  • SHANGUBI

    KERALA IS A BEAUTIFUL PLACE! KOVLAMAM BEACH IS WONDERFUL. THE BOAT RIDE TOO FEELS LIKE TRAVELLING IN PARADISE.. KERALA IS WORTH MORE THAN A SINGLE, SHORT VISIT. PEOPLE ARE NICE, FRIENDLY – CALICUT, QUILON, KOVLAM, BUT NOT THOSE OF TRIVANDRUM – THE HARSHER ONES!? AND THE GOVT TOO SHOULD DO SOMETHING ABOUT KANYAKUMARI, WHERE THE PRIESTS GO TO THE SEASIDE TO REMOVE THEIR WASTE.
    I JUST HAD TO RUN AWAY THE SAME NIGHT UNABLE TO TOLERATE THE INTENSE SWEET SMELLS.

  • G.S.Rampradheep

    Superb. More photos required like this…

  • viveksheel

    This temple is just heaven. We canot explain its beauty in words

  • SANTOSH CHANODIA

    VERY NICE PHOTO & GREAT TEMPLE

  • K.L.Ganapathi

    This is an additonal information the sanctum sanctorum of Devi meenakshi is more than 3000 yrs old.this is where it is built, celestial persons come and do pooja regularly at this place.there are 11 dwajastumbamsand there are real wonderful stories centred with this temple.

  • siva

    Fantastic Maurai-the madurai photos are also very super-decided to visit Maurai soon-thanks for your information and beautiful photos

  • Govind Pant

    Great.A marvelous structure of temple dedicated to Goddess Meenakshi.

  • selvam

    every indians must VISIT in his life ATLEAST ONCE

  • Ramkrishna Hardikar

    I have visited this temple once long back.It is very huge & spread over a
    Large area.The idols of Shiva & Parvati{Meenakshi} are also very beautiful.

  • pavani

    Absolutely beautiful.I’m floored. Hope to see it someday.

  • sunil.nandihal

    x-lant tampal in the word

  • madhuri

    thanks for send this pictures.

  • Deepak

    nice photos more photo to be uploaded

  • nagesh

    really worth to visit especially after seeing the photos.

  • Ajitsinh Bhatti

    I had been to Madurai specially to see the beauty and stone carving marvels of the great temple. It is very much impressive and well managed monument worth seeing at least once in a life time. How nicely the design aspects have been taken care from all the point of view can be judged only after its visit. Our Hindu mythology and certain sermon stories are depicted in its art work and sculpture with unique stone carving and impressively colorful painting.It is superb and marvelous monument.

  • murali

    The temple is a very great structure by Indian standards. As suggested by someon earlier it should be maintained well. very few temples in Tamilnad are clean. Tamil (hindus) just cant be bothered about cleanliness at public places. BUT THIER HOMES ARE REASONABLY CLEAN Some temples are just filthy. The people in charge are only bothered about making money. Perhaps the Govt should legislate some rules to ensure temples are scruplously clean. The laws should punish those in charge if a temple is dirty,

  • Raja Reddy Maddula

    I Saw the Temple. It is a very good temple and it is having 4 ways. Every body has to visit at least his life span.

  • B R Batra

    Superb.Would like to visit.

  • lingam

    Wonderful piece of Temple Architecture…..We are proud of our Heritage.i like it very much

  • Tiky Ajit Parida

    what a great sculpture really Marvelous art and culture and heritage you can not believe to human eyes to watch such beautiful place in Tamilnadu South India but world famous temple like Akshardham, New delhi is very very rare to visit once in your lifetime which is worth seing….

  • jagadeesh reddy

    amazing incredible India

  • VYAS PINANK

    om………………………….OM………………………OM…………………………………..786………………..786

  • venu cheripadi

    even an atheist will, doubtless, bow his head before the sanctum sanctorum of the deity. she is definitely the mother of all gods.

  • tapan

    this is what we say incredible india!

  • chidhambaram

    hi guys i am also living in madurai i am seeing my lord meenakshi daily there r many temples around madurai but the famous temple is madurai meenakshi temple

  • santosh singh

    it very beautiful place in India.

  • m.Devandara

    I am originally from Malaysia and currently living Florida, US. I have visited india few times and has been to Palani.
    The pictures are great and I wish one day I have a chance to visit all the best temple in India.
    As one of you mention many Indian lost faith in God or in Hinduism.

    This is because they compare Hinduism to other religions . But Hinduism is not a religion It’s a way of life. Hinduism is so deep and hard to understand for average people. The other problem is our culture ” don’t ask just do what it says.
    We are brain washed to follow what our elders says.
    Which is not practical in this modern world.
    I am spiritual but not religious
    But I would love to visit the Temples in India and appreciate those who build this amazing structures. I am proud to be indian.

  • Pavan kumar.n.

    The are very very very good and nice

  • R.Maliga

    awesome, interesting and fascinating temple for everyone to visit.

  • R.Maliga

    beautiful, awesome and fascinating temple for everyone to visit.

  • Chetan Panchal

    Just Awesome…Nice pictures.

  • ak

    wonderful creation one must see

  • V.GOPALAN

    Hats off to Indian Architecture and should inculcate in the minds of future generation to preserve the culture and not to be carried away by money alone.

  • Paulo Rattes

    Maravilhoso.

    Aranha – Minas Gerais – Brasil

  • Graeme Gee

    Wonderful photos…I taught in Bangladesh and now regret ever going to India to see some the places.

  • poongodi ganesh

    nice place to visit.

  • poongodi ganesh

    I WILL CALL YOU ON 1-8-2012 (WEDNESDAY) . MY CELL NO IS 8056132787. OUR MARRIAGE SHALL BE FIXED ON 20-8-2012 (muhurtham) at tpk or tirupathi temple.Do not avoid my call.Even if u say yes or no , i can proceed to the target 20-7-2012.Even if u keep yr cell on for 3 minutes without any answer, i can tell everything about our marriage.

  • SIVA

    My home is near to this temple. Use to go often.. Great moments..

  • Rahul Ambavane

    Very Nice, Most Beutiful Temple in the world

  • Mukhtar Ahmad Qazi

    The most beautiful places in the world are Mosques (Masajids), where only One AlMighty God (Allah)
    is worshipped.The only One God who is creator of everything and not created by anyone.

  • Shanmugamony

    Awesome pictures

  • bagavathsingh

    everyone should visit this temple in their lifetime and you will be spiritually involved on seeing Lord Meenakshi Temple

  • sajo

    looking amazing and great

  • Arul

    i am really very much like this temple pictures thanks a lot.

  • Ambrose Pereira

    I visited these famous temple buildings as a young school- going- lad in late thirties, and that ageI was not able to comprehend the enormity of these edifices.

  • A.N.Sapthagireesan

    Madurai/Thanjavur/Chidambaram/Rameswaram/Tirunelveli/Mylapore Kapaleeswarar/Kumbakonam Sarangapani-Ramaswami-Kumbheswarar/Tiruvarur/Tiruvannamalai/Tirukoilur/Kancheepuram-Varadarajaperumal-Ekamreswarar/Srirangam temples are all Magnificent in size and popularity and energy level.But in Tamil Nadu there are many many more temples each noted for something and has some spiritual attraction, may be small in size–Eg; Jagatrakshakar temple of AduthuraiPerumalkoil(Tirukkudalar)/ Kann kaartha Amman Koil/Pillayarpatti/Sukavaneswarar temple-/Kottai Perumal Koil – Kottai Mariamman Koil of Salem/and a thousand others and for that matter even Periyandavar ofPuduppalayam, Sidhilingamadam,who does not even have a temple.For those who believe in Spiritualism, There is no place like India , that too South India and there also nothing like Tamil Nadu.

  • Ramachandra Menon

    It is indeed a great temple. Each pillar is a beauty in itself. I had spent hours watching the sculptural beauty of the temple. I used to sit and imagine how many of the tamil literary works were read out and were approved by he Tamizh Changam. How Kamban read out his Ramayanam and got the approval of the conglomerate of literary scholars of those days. The stories of Periapuranam are all around the Sundaramurthy, the presiding deity. It is fascinating to imagine that you are sitting in that hall where centuries ago these great scholars sat and read out their works.

  • Dilip Trivedi

    Never knew south india has these beautiful temples.In my next trip to India, I will make sure to visit them and be gratified. Dilip

  • KISHORE KUVAVALA

    GREAT ARCHITECTURE WONDERFUL COLOR COMBINATION INDICATE WHERE INDIA WERE EVEN 400 YEARS BEFORE.SALAM INDIA

  • SHAKUNTLA

    If i ever get chance i would like to visit this temple.

  • Gita

    It is absolutely stunning to watch the North Tower where there are lot of sculptures. Also the west tower has the sculpture of Sarabeswara lifting off Lakshmi Narasimha and Lakshmi Narasimha killing Hiranya kasipu. This can be found on the left hand side at the bottom tier when one faces the tower. Also some rare sculptures can be found near the side gate of the kalyana mandapam. Do not miss to see the ceiling as you enter into the Mukkuruni Pillayar ( Lord Ganesa in huge form ) from Amman sannidhi. You can a Shiva Linga drawn on the ceiling in a circular form. Just walk in a circle seeing the Linga. The Linga will also move in the same direction as you are moving. This is just amazing to watch – A 3D EFFECT on the ceiling.!

  • veeran

    Well planed city with temple in the center.When an English officer was incharge of the temple affairs, one day he had a dream of fire in the temple area.In his dream Goddes Meenakshi came and lead him out side and found actually there was a fire attack!Immediately the fire was drowsed.
    He was so devoted to the Goddes.It is told that there was a secret tunnel
    from the Thirumalainaikan palece away from the temple to the Sacred Theppakulam in the temple for the use of Royal ladies.The pllars in the
    Thirumalainaikan palce are so big so that two people are required to cover the round piller.
    Another speciality of madurai is Thiruparam kuntram Murugan temple built inside a small rocky mountain.So many other atractive things are in Madurai Worth to visit.

  • Dr.Ramesh.M.S.

    too good to be real

  • dhanaraj

    A fascinating place to visit.

  • Shah Madhusudan

    very good photos, quite informativ. i had visited years back,the photos reminded me what i saw before. thanks

  • sayed Nabi

    Realy nice and attractive but so many time i tried to come to see INDIA,s different area but i couldn,t

    Thanks for sending me these attractive and beautiful pitures

    wishyou good life

  • Ramkrishna Hardikar

    I have visited this temple about 8 years back.Really it is worth visiting at least once in lifetime.

  • Sivendran

    I have been to Chennai and Worshipped in several temples. But I have been not fortunate to visit Madurai Meenadchi Amman Kovil. This year I earnestly hope to visit this famous temple with my wife and attain the blessings of Meenaksi Amman. Sivendran. Sri Lanka, now in USA.

  • Sivendran

    I have been to Chennai and Worshipped in several temples. But I have been not fortunate to visit Madurai Meenadchi Amman Kovil. This year I earnestly hope to visit this famous temple with my wife and attain the blessings of Meenaksi Amman. Sivendran. Sri Lanka, now in USA.
    Yes. You may ignore this. Thank you.

  • Devdaas

    Really Awesome,hats off to be an Indian.

  • pravin patel

    no words,simpley the best, This is for PRIYA where were you lost all this time!!!!!

  • sathiyamoorthy

    Excellent pictures…..!! I proud to be an Hindu…!!!

  • B.Rajendran

    Where on earth they got so much rock – the only nearby hard rock is 7KMs away, How could they cut it, carve it so intricately, drag them to the spot and lift them to the roof level? Their only work during non-farming time is building temple – temples are not owned by kings, or individuals, or communities – it is for all, art and architecture flourished in them, education for all there in the evenings, free marriage halls for all, business attraction, tourist attraction, ware houses for food grain, protection from enemies, above all the priest there is a single psychiatric for the whole lot of visitors – that people who involved themselves in building them, did it out of pure love rather than for food. My salute to those brave people!

  • S.Sivapathasuntharam

    Fantastic pictures.I got the feeling that I was in Madurai and had visited the Madurai Meenatchi Amman temple

  • Shreyas

    awesome, interesting and fascinating temple for everyone to visit

  • Mike

    Very nice temple that I ever seen!

  • Lakshminarayana.Muttala

    Its awsome to see such a great architeture which our eyes connot belive.As well as we need to belive. We need to imgine such a egg. plan and exicution in a well succeed manner. May be this temples might have built at long long ago, i think there will be no engg. colleges and all but they have done more than an engg. who took degree in civil engg.Just effort they had been put at the time. if we want to lift atleast a 30 kg to 2nd flor we are taking machine help, imagin how they had beed lifted all the big big statues to that more than around 70 feets hight when they don’t have machines and all…. Great peoples great kings… Hads off to all…..

  • SOURISH

    Just visited Meenakshi Amman Temple two days back………..Awesome…You need atleast 2 days to know each and every History related to the temple…being inside the temple…….I was lucky to have a friend, who explained each and everything.

  • A.S.Ramachandra Rao

    Very catchy and beautiful. Thanks a lot

  • mothilal

    must be visit Madurai and also very near Alagar koil

  • CM Prabhakaran

    MADURAI MEENAKSHI TEMPLE SHOULD HAVE A PLACE IN THE SEVEN WONDERS OF THE WORLD. IT IS SUCH A MARVELOUS AND FASCINATING TEMPLE WITH UNBEATABLE SCULPTURES AND OTHER CARVINGS IN THE STONES.WONDERFUL.

  • SARAVANANE

    it is very wonderful temple, now a days we can’t built a temple like this. Now, it is one of the beautiful temple in the world.

  • SENTHIL KUMAR .K

    Realy Super & nice place

  • robert hanson

    really mystical

  • remesan chettiar.J.

    I intend to visit one day to get the blessings of God. I could not get an opportunity so far.

  • izram

    Marvellous. I happened to seethe temple twice and hats off to the sculptures.

  • Yuvaraj.B

    Beautiful Temple In Madurai,Tamilnadu.

  • Jay

    Like many others though I was born in South India, never had the opportunity to visit this temple. Learnt from others about the glory of the temple. Inquired many times with curiousness and an intention to go visit, but never had the opportunity.

    This time, I made up my mind, if I go to India I will spare at least a week to go and visit this temple.

    Thank you very much for posting the details on this site and thank the person who forwarded the link to others.

  • gopalbanavar

    The pictures are asrtounding and a visual treat. although I stayed in Madurai for ten long years during the seventies and visited the temple several times I have not been able to enjoy the grandure as I did it today while witnesing the presentation. A job well done.

  • Pankaj K

    Really its a miracle made by man.
    God is great.
    That is India

  • madhusudan

    fantastic, and a lovely temple and my favourite place.

  • K. SADANANDAN

    We have through these civilisation no words to praise them. But today I use to think , is that we have lost in some sort of cruel uneducated world.

  • GOPINADHAN.C

    FANTASTIC CREATION OF MANPOWER

  • Padmanabhan Jaikumar

    Madurai Temple one of the beautiful construction in design architect and sculpture color combination and interior decoration.It is marvelous temple and must enjoy its beauty and of course the spirit and faith for worship to the Almighty.

  • Babu Bhattacharjee

    Relay proud to be Indian & Born as Hindu.

  • oochappan

    photo of thousand pillar hall is subject of copyright violation,
    it discredit your article and expose you to to legal prosecution
    by the copyright holder oochappan

  • MAMATHA

    MADHURAIIS VERY BEAUTIFULL

  • MEENA

    MY NAME IS MEENAKSHI SHAT CUT NAME MEENA SO HAPPY

  • Telagareddi SatyaNandam

    I visited this temple thrice with my family and friends,it is an excellent monument worth visiting many times everytime a new experience and it is a standing testimony of Great Indian Sculpture and shilpam,particularly the sprawling Gopurams,enchanting Musical Pillars and overwhelming prakaras and mantapams,it is better to visit in person to experience the real deity and blessings showered. Nice Contribution by the Sender. Thanks.

  • N. seethapathi

    Wandrafull. I visted so many tims but I have not angoyed like this

  • N. seethapathi

    I Went there day time. Now I am seeing Night Buty with lights

  • NagarajaM

    I have visited this temple, wondered with its magnificent design of layout, pillars, gateways etc. No one time could I get so much of details and history about this classical Hindu temple. Thanks. The streets form a matrix named after signs of zodiac.

  • bapuraj

    temple was built. when west was in stone age. PROUD to INDIAN.

  • Sankar Mukherjee

    Thank you Priya for viewing these awesome pictures of Madurai temple.

  • arasu

    The city itself is built centering around the temple. Probably a first planned city in the world. All the streets around the temple bear the names of the Tamil months. The food is traditional and the jasmine here has characteristic scent. To be visited once in a life time.

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