Location : 250 kms South of
Area : 5 sq. kms
Major Attractions : Nataraja Temple, Thillaikaliamman Temple,
Ideal Time to Visit : February to June
¤ Chidambaram, The Divine Land
The lovely town of Chidambaram is situated in the east-central part
of Tamil Nadu state of southeastern India. It is located in the
Coleroon River Valley on the Madras-Thanjavur road and rail system.
Chidambaram (also Thillai) literally means the sky permeated by an
atmosphere of intelligence and wisdom. It is one of the five Shaivite
mukti sthalams, the other four being Kalahasti, Kanchipuram,
Tiruvannamalai and Tiruvanaikaval.
tourism highlights the beautiful temples in the city, dedicated to
Lord Nataraja - God Siva in the form of a Cosmic Dancer. It is one of
the few temples where Siva and Vishnu are enshrined under one roof.
This ancient temple was built by the Cholas. It is devoted solely to
the art of Bharatanatyam and is one of the rare temples where Shiva is
represented by an idol rather than the customary Lingam. Spread over
an area of 40 acres with a gopuram on each side, the temple is
distinguished by five sabhas or courts. Apart from this, the sacred
land of Chidambarm, has many exquisite temples and attractions. But
the unique feature of Chidambaram is that a person of any race or
religion can visit the shrine and pray.
¤ Places to Visit in Chidambaram
There are quite a good number of tourist attractions in Chidambaram.
Amongst the must visits in Chidambaram is the Nataraja temple located
in the center of the town, covering an area of 40 acres. It is one of
the ancient temples of Tamil Nadu. The highlights of this temple are
the Sivakamiamman temple, the Sivaganga tank and the thousand pillar
hall. The Thillaikaliamman temple in Chidambaram is on the northern
end of the town. It was built by Kopperunjingan, who ruled between
1229 AD and 1278 AD. Annamalai University is one of the major
attractions in Chidambaram. It is a residential University founded by
the Raja Sir Annamalai Chettiar.
¤ Nearby Excursions
Chidambaram tourism offers an array of excursion options. There are
many scenic and lovely destinations that are an important part of the
excursion trip around Chidambaram. Pichavaram, located 16 kms. east of
Chidambaram, is among the most beautiful spot with abundant and varied
tourism resources. Neyveli, located about 30 kms from Chidambaram via
Vadalur, is one of the biggest industrial complexes in the country.
The Kalvarayan hills, situated 150 kms north west of Chidambaram on
the western side of Kallakurichi Taluk is spread over an area of 600
sq. kms. Situated at a height that ranges between 315 mts. to 1190
mts., these hills are ideal for trekking. Every year in the month of
May a summer festival is also held. Another exciting excursion
destination is the Tarangambadi, once the site of a Danish settlement,
has the remains of the Dansborg fort built by Ore Gedde, the commander
of the Royal Dutch Navy, in the 17th century.
¤ Festivals Celebrated in Chidambaram
Some of the important festivals celebrated in Chidambram are,
Markazhi Thiruvadhirai Day Festival celebrated in the months of
December - January. The Adi Thirumanjanam Festival is celebrated in
June and the Panguni Uthiram Festival is celebrated in the month of
¤ Reach Chidambaram
By Air : The airports at
Tiruchirapalli (195 km) and Chennai (245 km) are the nearest airports
from Chidambaram. From Tiruchirapalli, Indian Airlines flights can be
taken to Chennai (Madras). Chennai is connected to all the major
cities in India and abroad through regular flights.
By Rail : Chidambaram is located on the Madras-Tiruchirapalli
main line of the Southern Railway. It is connected with
Tiruchirapalli, Madras, Madurai (335 km), Rameswaram (575 km),
Bangalore (340 km), and Tirupati (290 km).
By Road : There are frequent bus services available to various
places in Tamilnadu, Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, and Pondicherry states
from Chidambaram. Non-stop bus services and express bus services are
also available to major cities like Chennai.
Local Transport : Taxis and auto rickshaws are available
without meter for local transportation. Buses and cycle rickshaws are
also available here, but a ride on bullock carts is a specialty.