Kanchipuram is an ancient city, which is considered as the “City of thousand temples.” It is the second holiest place in India next to Varanasi. Kanchipuram is one of the seven most sacred pilgrim centers for the Hindus. The city is well known for its hand-woven silk fabrics. Some of the India’s prettiest silk sarees are the products of the skill of kanchipuram crafts men. At present, there are 126 temples in kanchi and few more in its outskirts. << Kanchipuram More Information >>
The city was successfully the capital of the Pallavas, the early Cholas and later Vijayanagar Rulers. During the second century BC it was ruled by the Cholas and it was a Pallava capital between the 6th to 8th centuries. One of the Acharya Peetas of Sri Adi Sankara, Sri Kanchi Kamakodi Peetam is also situated here. Kanchipuram consists of two divisions, Siva or Big Kanchipuram and Vishnu or little Kanchipuram. It is about 73 km from the South West of Chennai. << Kanchipuram More Information >>
Important Temples in Kanchipuram
Kamatchi Amman Temple
Kamatchi Amman Temple is consecrated to the Goddess Kamatchi who is having the loving-eyes. Here the Goddess is worshiped in the form of a Chakra, which is placed in front of this idol. India has three main cities where the Goddess Shakthi is worshiped. Kanchipuram holds the most important rank among the three. They are, in Kanchipuram the Goddess Kamatchi is Worshiped, Madurai (Meenachi) and Kasi(Visalakshi). The Kamatchi Amman temple is the hub of all religious activities in Kanchipuram. << Kanchipuram More Information >>
The main tower of this temple is gold plated (Vimanam). It has the significance of the “Golden chariot” in this temple. This chariot is taken in a procession around the temple on the Friday evenings.
Kailasanatha Temple is dedicated to Lord Siva who is called as Kailasnatha. The shrines of this temple are very old, which was built about 2000 years ago. It was built by the Pallava Ruler Rajasimha Pallava and was completed by his son Mahindra Varma Pallava in the early decades of 8th century AD. This temple is a finest example of Pallava Architecture in South India. It has the oldest structure and it is famous for its beautiful sculptures. The sculpture of Ardhanareeswarar is very wonderful because of its feminine aspect has a Veena in her hand, while the masculine aspect of Siva is seated on a bull. << Kanchipuram More Information >>
This temple is situated just one kilometer west of the town center. The temple has the edifice which was elaborately filled with all the 64 aspects of Lord Siva. It is the one and only temple in India which has some of the edifices, none other temple.
Sri Ekambareshwarar temple is dedicated to Lord Shiva. This temple is one of the largest temples in Kanchipuram. This Siva temple was built over an area of 12.14 hectares, it has 5 corridors and a thousand pillared hall besides a massive tower (gopuram). This ancient temple is surrounded by a huge stone wall built in the early 16th century during the days of the Vijayanagar Empire.
The huge Lingam inside this temple is known as Prithivi Lingam. It is one of the Pancha Lingams of South India, the other four are the Jyothir Lingam at Thiruvannamalai, the Appu Lingam at Jambukeswaram, the Vayu Lingam at Kalahasti and the Akasha Lingam at Chidambaram.
In one of the enclosures of the temple, there is an old mango tree with four branches. These four branches represent the four Vedas. The name of the God Eka-Ambra-Natha has been derived by the meaning the lord of the Mango Tree. The fruits of the four branches are said to be in different taste. Ekambareshwar temple enshrines many traditions. It is a hoary antiquity, beginning as a small fane, It has grown over the centuries into a large one with innumerable shrines, mandapams, gopurams and tanks. It is one of the most ancient temples which were built during the 600 AD.
Sri Varatharajaperumal Temple was one of the most important temples for the vaishnavites. This Vishnu temple is noted for its 100 pillared hall, riders on horseback, beautiful figures of Rathi and Manmatha, massive chains carved out of single stones and exquisite temple jewellery. The annual Garudotsavam festival is the most colorful and draws thousands devotees it is celebrated during the month of May – June.
This temple is also known as “Hastigiri” which is one of the Vaishnava Divya Desams located in ‘Vishnu Kanchi’ or the ‘Little Kanchi’. The Lord of this temple is Sri Varatharajaperumal who was in a standing posture facing the West. He is also known as Devaraja. This temple with Superb Art has a magnificent history, which was associated by the great saint Ramanuja. He was the only person serve here. Many miracles are said to have occurred. This temple was several century old and it got the ministry of Ramanuja and became to gain fane. << Kanchipuram More Information >>
Ulahalanda Perumal Temple
This temple is situated in the center of the town near Kamatchi Amman Temple. It is about half kilometer from there. It is one of the oldest and ancient temples in Kanchipuram. The deity of Sri ulahalanda Perumal represents the Vamana Roopam, it is an incarnation of Lord Vishnu. Vishnu has taken this avatharam to save the Devas from the Demon King Mahabali. The image of this Lord Perumal is about 35 feet high.
Vaikuntha Perumal Temple
Vaikuntha Perumal Temple is dedicated to Lord Vishnu. This temple was built few years after finishing the Kailasanatha Temple. It is also an example for our tradition and Culture by showing the arts and architectures in different manner. << Kanchipuram More Information >>
Kanchipuram is well known for silk sarees. The silk weavers of Kanchi settled more than 400 years ago. They have given an enviable reputation to produce the best silk saree in the country. The weavers weave the saree with pure mulberry silk, attracting colors in a dazzling form and they are embellished with fine gold thread (zarigai). The designs of the sarees are very imaginary and they are available in various forms. This industry is very challenging to gain name and fame through the job of selection and their work.
How to go
Kanchipuram is about 80 km from Chennai and 64km from Mahabalipuram.
By Air :
The nearest airport from kanchipuram is Chennai.
The tracks are connected to Chennai, Arakonam, Villupuram and other places.
Buses are available here frequently. The time journey is about 2 ⅟2 to 3 hours. Kanchipuram has well connected roads with all the major cities in Tamil Nadu. << Kanchipuram More Information >>