Madurai Places of Interest

Meenakshi Amman Temple

  1. The Meenakshi temple is the city’s main attraction. A perfect example of Dravidian architecture. Dedicated to Meenakshi, the lovely consort of Lord Shiva, the original temple was built by Kulasekara Pandya, but the entire credit for making the temple as splendid as it is today goes to the Nayaks.

  2. The Nayaks ruled Madurai from the 16th to the 18th century and left a majestic imprint of their rule in the Meenakshi - Sundareswarar Temple.

  3. It is also one of the greatest Shiva Temples of Tamilnadu.

  4. Framework & Architecture: There are 12 temple towers (Gopurams). The temple complex covers 6 hectares right in the middle of the city and is flush with visitors from all over, each and every day.

  5. The towers that loom overhead are famous for detailed carvings of the gods and goddesses, mythological figures and running depictions of legendary tales.

  6. The Temple Museum is at the ‘Thousand Pillared Hall’ where each of the 985 pillars are carved in great detail.

  7. All of the towers are currently draped in scaffolding and opaque coverings obscuring the sculptures at least until the end of 2009.

  8. Located : 1 km from Railway station & Periar Bus stand. 6 km from Mattuthavani Bus stand. 3 km from Arappalayam Bus stand.

  9. Timing : 5am to 12.30pm and 4pm to 10pm.

  10. Contact : Ph : 0452-2344360.

Alagarkoil :


21 km from Periar Bus Stand. 15 km from Mattu Thavani Bus Stand. 18 km from Arappalayam Bus Stand. A celebrated Vishnu Temple dedicated to Lord Alagar. The temple is situated on a hill amidst panoramic surroundings. The shrine is known as Alagarkoil and the hill, Solaimalai. The temple also contains some beautiful carvings and makes the visit rewarding. Pazhamudhirsolai, one of the six abodes of Lord Subramanya is located a top the hill. Ph : 0452-2470228.

Athisayam Theme park :

A water Theme Park situated at Madurai - Dindigul Road at PARAVAI, matter of 15 kms from Madurai. Entrance Fee : Rs.300 for Adults and for Children Rs.200. Contact : 0452-2463848-51.

Gandhi Museum :

Located 3 km from Periyar Bus stand. 4 km from Mattu Thavani Bus Stand. Housed in the old Palace of Rani Mangammal, the Gandhi Museum depicts the highlights of the freedom struggle and contains a picture gallery of the Gandhian movement. Also can be seen are a gallery of relics, khadi and village industries section and South Indian Handicrafts section. Time : 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. & 2 p.m. to 5.45 p.m. (Open all days) Ph : 0452-2522822.

Govt. Museum :

The Govt. Museum, situated within the premises of the Gandhi Museum Complex, was estatblished during the 5th World Tamil Conference (1981). Visiting Hours : 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. & 2 p.m. to 6 p.m. Every Friday and 2nd Saturday of each month are Holidays. Ph : 0452-650298.

Kaalamega Perumal Temple:

Kaalamega Perumal Temple is an ancient Vaishnava pilgrim centre situated at Tirumogur which is 12 km north east of Madurai. It is one of the 108 Divya Desams sung by Alwars. Kalamega Perumal is the presiding deity.There is separate sanctum for Mogurvalli consort of Kaclamega Perumal.Location : 13 km from Mana Madurai Junction Railway Station.Festivals: The annual Brahmotsavam is celebrated in the month of Vaikasi ( May – June) Mohini Avataram is also performed in that period. Panguni uthuram, Aadi Pooram, Janmashtam, Navarathiri and Vaukunta Ekadesi are also celebrated here.Bus & Train facilities are available from Madurai. Ph:0452-2423227

Kazimar Periya Pallivasal :

Hazrat Kazi Syed Tajuddin who came from Oman during late 12th century, got this land from the king Kulasekara Pandiyan and constructed the mosque which is the first ever Muslim place of worship in Madurai. All his descendants (Huqdars - Share holders of that mosque called Syeds) have lived in the same locality for 700 years, and managed the mosque since then. Syed Tajuddin was appointed as Kazi of the sultans, and till now his descendants who live at Kazimar street, Madurai are appointed as Kazis to the government of Tamil Nadu. All syeds belong to the Sunni sect of Islam with Hanafi school. Most of the descendants of Kazi syed tajuddin are shadhilis (shazuli) and follow the Sufi order Fassiyatush Shadhiliya.

Thirumalai Nayakar Mahal :

  1. About 1.5 Kms from the Meenakshi temple, this palace was built in 1636 by the ruler whose name it bears. The imposing edifice is famous for the “Stuccowork” on its domes and impressive arches.

  2. The Sorgavilasam (Celestial Pavilion), measuring 75m x 52m, constructed entirely of brick and mortar without the support of a single rafter or girder, is a marvel of indo-Saracenic architectural style.

  3. Among other striking features of the palace are the massive white pillars, several of which line the corridor that runs along the courtyard. Connected by high decorated arches, these pillars measure 20m in height and have a circumference of 4m. Elsewhere, there are polished black stone pillars of varying heights.

  4. The original Palace Complex was four times bigger than the present structure. This palace consisted mainly of two parts, namely Swargavilasa and Rangavilasa. He conducted daily dance and music performances in the palace.

  5. This palace was destroyed by his grandson Chokkanatha Nayak and the valuables were transferred to other places.

  6. Also a wonderful light and show programmes are functioning everyday in this Thirumalai Nayak Mahal that reveals the story about this palace. It can be visited from 9a.m to 5 p.m on payment.

  7. The tourists are allowed to take photographs.

  8. Located at Palace Road, Madurai - 625 001

  9. Ph : 0452-2332945, 2338992.

Koodal Azhagar Temple :

koodal alazhar temple

Situated 1 km from Periyar Bus stand. This ancient and acclaimed Vaishnavite Temple, is noted for its remarkable architectural and sculptural magnificence. The Lord here is in the sitting (Asana), standing (Sthanaka) and reclining (Sayana) postures- all enshrined in one vertical plane. Ph : 0452-2338542.

Kutladampatti Water Falls :

It is located 36 KMs from Periyar bus stand on the way to Kodaikanal. An amusement park lies in a hill called "Sirumalai" with a natural beauty 7 km away from Kutladampatti near Vadipatti village. The height of the falls is 87 feets. During holidays and festive days thousands of domestic tourists take bath and enjoy the natural beauty. Near this falls a 500-years-old temple dedicated to Goddess Thadagai Nachiamman is there.

Kochadai Village Deity Temple :

It is located 5 Kms from Periyar Bus Stand. This temple village deity "Ayyanar" attract thousands of devotees from all over Madurai District. It is believed that those who proxy to this deity receive blessings of health and wealth.


madurai malliSouth is famous for flowers. Particularly the women must adorn their heads with the most fragrant flowers. Madurai is surrounded by several mountains. It is famous for Jasmine Flowers. Jasmine flowers are transported to other cities of India from Madurai. Madurai is well known for its fragrant Jasmine flowers. Jasmine is known as Malli or Malligai in Tamil. Madurai Malli is an important horticultural produce. The buds are transported every day to major cities in India, like Chennai, Mumbai and Bangalore. Even there are online shops like who deliver madurai malligai/madurai malli to any destination you want.


Arokia Annai Shrine :

Miraculous Spring Jesus’ Miraculous Medicine. The Miraculous Spring started pouring out from the right-side of the main Alter from 8th of September 2001, the feast of Our Lady’s birth, at the foot of Our Lady’s statue that attracts thousands of pilgrims from all over the world. Many pilgrims experience physical, spiritual and phychological healings. Hindus and Muslims also come to this shrine. It has been located on 27 km on Madurai Dindigul High Road at Vadimanagar, Vadipatti, Madurai - 625218, Ph : 04543-254499.


Madurai Kamaraj University :

The Madurai Kamaraj University (1966) situated in Nagamalai Pudukottai, has 18 schools, which in turn is made up of 72 departments. It pioneered the concept of Distance Education throughout India, and its Directorate of Distance Education currently boasts of a student strength of about 130,000. Several other Arts and Science colleges are present in and around the city, affiliated to Madurai Kamaraj University. It has departments where one can study traditional beliefs, legends, customs, etc., as well as intricate technologies like Geo Informatics, Bio Informatics and beyond. A complete academic pride for Madurai. Ph : 0452-2458471.  


Vandiyur Mariamman Temple :

This is a huge temple tank about 5 km east of the Meenakshi temple. The mandapam in the centre has an idol of Vigneshwara (Vinayaka). It is said to have been found when the earth was being dug out from here to build the Thirumalai Nayakkar Mahal.

Rajaji Park :

Located near Corporation Office Timings 10:00 a.m. to 08:00 p.m. open all days. Entrance fee: Rs. 1/- per head. No tickets for children below 3 years. Ph : 0452-2531012.

Pazhamudhir Cholai :

Pazhamudhir Cholai is situated 2 kilometers away from Alagar Koil on a small hillock., This is one of the six abodes of Lord Muruga.

Sri Aravindar Annai Trust Meditation Center :

It is 10 Kms south of Madurai Junction at Thirunagar 6th stop. It is dedicated to realise the ideal of Sri Aravindar and Sri Annai. It is one of the oldest places of meditation. Visiting and Meditation Hours at 4:30 p.m. to 08:30 p.m. daily. Ph 0452-6544899.

ThirumohoorTempleThirumohur Temple :

A Vishnu temple located 20 kms from Madurai and 3 KMs from Othakkadai. The Main deity of this temple is "Kalamega Perumal" and Sembagavalli Sudharsana or Chakramis powerful deity in this temple. Ph:0452-2423227.

Thiruvathavur :

A Siva Temple located 25 KMs from Madurai and 5 kms from Othakkadai. The presiding deity of this temple is Siva and Parvathi. This is the birth place of Saivit Saint Manikka Vasagar.

Thirupparankundram :

8 Kms from Madurai. The temple here is dedicated to Lord Subramanya and is one of the six abodes of the Lord. Its inner-most shrine is cut out of a solid rock. Ph : 0452-2482248.



Ramakrishna Math :

Ramakrishna Math, Madurai is a branch of the world renowned Ramakrishna math and Ramakrishna Mission with its Head Quarters at Belur and Howrah. Ph : 0452-2680224, 2681181.

‘Thiyagi’ Vishwanathadas Memorial House :

Situated 16 km from the city. Born on 1886. A great Poet and Drama artiste he was quite famous among the youth of those Days. He chose drama as his vehicle to fight the British. He was a Devil in the Eyes of British. Died on 31-12-1940. His memorial is situated at 56, Viswanath Das Street, Thirumangalam.

St. Mary’s Cathedral Church

St. Mary’s Cathedral in Madurai is the seat of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Madurai. It is one of the oldest Roman Catholic church is situated 2 km South East of Madurai Railway station and 200 meters from the Thirumalai Nayak Mahal.

Yoga Nara Simha Temple: The Cave Temple at Yanaimalai

There is one temple dedicated Narasimha the cave temple at yanaimalai eight kms from Madurai, on the way to Melur. There is a hill in the shape of an elephant adjoining it. Hence the name Yanaimalai. This temple is situated to its west as a village called Narasingam.The Goddess there is called Narasinga valli. The Chakra Theertham inside the temple is very famous.The cave temple was built on 770 A.D.Location: Narasimgam is situated between Melur and Madurai – 8 kms from Madurai Bus Service is available from Madurai and Melur.


madurai malli

Jil Jil ‘Jigarthanda’

Jil Jil Jigarthanda is a south Indian beverage. It originated in Madurai. In Hindi "Jigarthanda" translates to "Cold Heart". The worlds "Jil Jil" are added to give it a rhyming sound and they roughly translates to "Cool Cool". It is generally prepared and served by road side pull-inns in Madurai as refreshment during the Indian summer.


The Great Man ‘Thiyagaseelar’ Kakkan


KakkanIn the district of Madurai near Melur there is one village Thumbai Patti where our man of simplicity was born on 18-06-1909. In the midst of poverty he was educated only up to 10th standard. Immediately after the completion of school education Kakkan entered into public life. Thiru. N.M.R. Subburayan and Vaidhya Nathayyar of Madurai were very popular in those days. They encouraged Kakkan in his political activities. Thiru. N.M.R. Subbarayan introduced him to Mahatma Gandhiji when he visited Madurai. He was attracted by Gandhijis principles. He became one of the noted congress workers. He was elected in Samaya Nallur constituency in 1957 and in Melur constituency in 1962. He became the minister for Agriculture Department. in the cabinet of Thiru. K.Kamaraj. In 1963 Kamaraj stepped down from the ministry according to K. Plan, Thiru. M. Baktavatchalam became the chief minister; in his cabinet Kakkanji held responsible for Home Department, Finance, Education Hindu Religious endowment and Harijan welfare. He died on 28-12-1981. His statue was unveiled on 31-08-1997 near the High Court at Madurai. The house in which he lived at Thumbaipatti village has been announced as his memorial.


Kadambavanam - Temple of Tamil Tradition


Kadambavanam Cultural centre is the new tourist hotspot in Madurai. Set in an extremely picturesque locale just twenty minutes from the city, Kadambavanam is a centre for and of the tamils, to conserve, preserve and showcase whatever is Tamilian. It features a live showcase of Tamilnadu’s tradition and culture where visitors can enjoy Tamil dances and music, arts & crafts, rural games, food varieties and spiritual practices. You could feast your senses on Bharathanatyam, the divine dance form, with its graceful costumes and the soul stirring Carnatic music performed live at the auditorium. A variety of colourful Tamil folk arts, Karagam, kavadi, Oyilattam, Thappattam, Poikkal kudhirai etc., are performed. The show is well compered with explanation and stories of the region thrown in. The show is completed by a traditional dinner which offers a cross section of the tamil cuisine including yester year food forgotten even at homes – all in a rustic setting. With a wide variety of art form, food choices, mythology and philosophies to be exposed, every day a varied selection is on offer. Kadambavanam works on a social entrepreneurship model involving local villagers to run the show. Kadambavanam is dedicated to the cause of promoting and preserving the tamils’ precious art forms for posterity and in the process providing dignity and livelihood to many an impoverished rural artist. Visit Kadambavanam for an authentic Tamil cultural experience. Open from 5 p.m. onwards everyday. Daily cultural programme starts at 6 p.m. Natham Road, Parali, Dindigul District – 624401. (25 km from Madurai City) Ph: 04544 220322, Mobile Nos: 90039 13063, 90039 26209.


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