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The ancient heritage of India for which it is known world wide is well preserved in its temples, that are also a popular travel attraction of the country. And to choose from all of them, the famous temples in South India are the best of all. Reflecting the architectural wonders of Pallavas, Cholas, Chalukyas, Nayaks, Kakatiyas and Vijayanagar rulers, the famous South Indian temples are a treat for those travelers who are looking to make their holidays a bit extraordinary. So lets have a tour of the most famous temples of South India.

Meenakshi Temple - An Architectural Wonder

Minakshi Temple Located in Madurai, Tamil Nadu Meenakshi temple is one of the most visited temples in South India. Built during the reign of Pandyan King Kulasekara, the temple is a brilliant structure and a wonderful masterpiece created by skilled craftsmen. There are almost 985 beautifully sculptured pillars that support the temple which is dedicated to Lord Shiva. There are also 2 sanctums of Sundareshvara and Meenakshi here.

The Main Attraction of Meenakshi Temple

1. 12 gopuras of the temple whose soaring towers are made of solid granite bases.

2. Mural paintings of different goddess, mythical animals and monsters.

3. During its annual festival eppam and Meenakshi Kalyanam the shrine is visited by millions of devotees.



Rock Fort Temple - A Wonder Made of Rock

Rok Fort Temple, Tiruchirappalli, India Located in the city of Thiruchirapalli or Trichy, Tamilnadu Rock Fort temple is one brilliant piece of architecture of Pallavas rulers. Initially built as a small shrine by them, this famous South Indian temple's compound and the entire structure was later renovated by the Nayakas. The Lord who is worshiped here is Kangaala Moorthy, one of the 64 manifestations of Lord Shiva.

Things To See

1. The entire building compound consists of 3 temples Manikka Vinayakar temple is located at the foot of the hill.

2. The temple compound is Uchhi Pillayar Koyil at the very top and Taayumaanavar Koyil Shivastalam at the middle of the hill.

3. This beautifully rock carved temple comes alive during the annual Bhrammotsavam, Aadi Pooram and the float festival.



Badami Cave Temples - A Perfect Example of Rock Cut Architecture

Sculpture at Badami Cave Temple The unique cave temples of Badami are located in northern Karnataka. Badami temples were built by Pulakesin I in the 6th century A.D. There are four cave temples that are built in the Chalukyan architectural style and are popular temples of South India.

Main Attractions of Badami Cave Temples

1. Agasythya Tank is one top travel attraction of Badami. It is believed that Muni Agasythya worshiped here and this tank is here since ages.

2. The four caves temples respectively dedicated to Shiva, Vishnu, Varaha and Krishna.

3. Dattatreya temple, Bhutanatha temple and Badami Archaeological museum.



Tirupati Temple - World's Richest Temple

Tirupati Temple Known as the Triupati Balaji Temple, this shrine is dedicated to Sri Venkateswara (Lord Vishnu). Located in the Tirupati in Andhra Pradesh, the temple is known to be the richest shrine of the world and also the most famous South Indian temples. Devotees not only from India but also from other parts of the world come here to seek the blessings of the Lord as it is believed that one can attain Moksha in Kaliyuga by worshipping Sri Venkateswara.

Main Highlights

1. The eye catching architecture of the shrine is just worth watching.

2. About it the Padi Kavali Maha Dwara, the main gate of the temple has a quadrangular base.

3. Figures of Hanuman, Kevale Narasimha and Lakshmi Narasimha could be seen on the Dwara.

4. Beside only the priest is allowed to enter the main chamber where the Lord is worshiped.



Sabrimala Temple - Kerala's Top Pilgrim Destination

Sabarimala Temple The temple of Sabarimala is one of the most popular and most visited pilgrim destination of Kerala. Located on the top of Sahyadri mountains.

Popular Beliefs

1. Sabrimala shrine is dedicated to Lord Ayappa.

2. According to ancient believes Parasurama Maharshi who uplifted Kerala from the sea by throwing his axe, installed the idol of Ayyappa at Sabarimala.

3. The temple attracts devotees all round the year especially during its annual festival.



Guruvayoor Temple - Lord Krishna's Holy Abode

Guruvayoor Temple Another famous pilgrimage destination of Kerala, Guruvayoor Temple is dedicated to Lord Krishna. But Krishna here is placed in the sanctum in a complete man incarnation of Lord Vishnu with four arms.

1. Main attraction of the shrine are the mural paintings.

2. It is also believed that Guruvayoor temple holds the reputation of hosting the maximum number of marriages and rice feeding ceremony, the ritual first meal for infants.








Thousand Pillar Temple - Another Wonder of South Indian Architecture

Thousand Pillar Temple Located in the Warangal city in Andhra Pradesh, Thousand Pillar temple is a spectacular site to see and visit.

Main Attraction

1. The temple was built by King Rudra Deva in the 12th century and is dedicated to Lord Shiva, Lord Vishnu and Lord Surya.

2. Built in the shape of a star, the temple is raised on a 1 meter high platform on the slopes of the Hanumakonda hill.







Lepakshi Temple - Andhra's Most Popular Pilgrim

Lepakshi Temple Considered to be one of the Andhra Pradesh's most visited temple and also a famous South India temple, Lepakshi Temple is one brilliant piece of architecture and a great site to see the famous mural paintings of Vijayanagar Kings.

Architectural Design

1. The temple is constructed on a low hill called Kurmasaila and is in a form of a tortoise.

2. The beautiful sculptures on the prakaran attracts the attention of all devotees. They include 14 forms of Lord Shiva.







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