|City of Festival “Madurai”|
And a special mention is the “ Meenakshi Ammam Kovil”… apart from that is it gives a unique fragrance of the flower “Jasmine” , and Madurai has always a reason to celebrate… whenever you trip to Madurai you are sure to have a feast to your eyes and ears.
The temple town, the spiritual city, the city of festival…yea all the names are possessed by Madurai, as it has a versatile name so are its places too… you can see many different and unique places in Madurai.
Temples, monuments and ancient cultural wonders abound in Madurai. It is even called ‘The Athens of the East’. Madurai’s Meenakshi Sundareswarar Temple is one of the greatest architectural marvels of India. Built by Pandya King 'Kulasekara' and reconstructed later by Ruler Thirumalai Nayak, the temple has patronized literature, art, music and dance ever since its inception. The entire city is built around the Meenakshi Amman temple.
Madurai Meenakshi temple attracts six thousand visitors a day and gets an annual revenue of rupees sixty million. It attained 26th place in the list of top nominees for the new Seven Wonders of the World.Madurai is firmly anchored in Tamil literature and tradition. It is home to many poets and artisans and houses an abundance of literary wealth of both classical and modern Tamil. It was the seat of the Tamil Academy in the past.
The city has been a centre for learning and pilgrimage for centuries. The three Tamil Sangams evolved and flourished here. The city’s ancient Tamil kings were great warriors, poets and connoisseurs of art. Tamil literature flourished because of their generosity and literary fervor … Apart from literature and Meenakshi temple, Madurai has more wonders which are related to fascinating stories of the Goddess
About 21 kms from the city of Madurai is situated the beautiful temple of Azhagar Kovil. It is a temple that has the residing deity as Vishnu.
The Lord here is known by the name Azhagar. He is the brother of Goddess Meenakshi and when the Wedding of the Lord and Goddess takes place in the month of Chithrai, Azhagar travels from here to Madurai to witness the wedding of the lord. One of the six abodes of Lord Subramanya, Palamudhirsolai is situated above Azhagar Kovil in the hills about 4 kms away. At the top of the hill is situated the natural spring Nuburagangai where the pilgrims take bath.
Gandhi Museum Madurai stands as the living monument of the “Father of the Nation” Mahatma Gandhi. The Gandhi Memorial Trust came into existence after the assassination of Gandhi in the year 1948, through funds raised by public contribution. The trust allocated a huge amount to set up Gandhi Memorial Museums in seven places in the country associated with the life of Gandhi.
Madurai was selected as one among the seven places for setting up the memorial as several important decisions were made by Gandhi during his visit to Madurai. It was during his visit to Madurai in the year 1921, he made up his mind to wear a small towel like dhothi around the waist as his dress after seeing the poor people dressed in scarce clothes.