South India is home to a multitude of temples, especially in the Tamil Nadu region, the southeastern part of the vast Indian continent. And among all those temples, the temples created at the time of the Chola Empire stand out, such as the Brihadisvara Temple. It is one of the best places to visit in Thanjavur and a UNESCO approved heritage site.
The Temple of Brihadisvara or Brahadeeswara or Brihadishwara is the most famous temple in Thanjavur. It is located in Thanjavur or Tanjore and within the state of Tamil Nadu. It is one of the largest temples in the area and stands out for its Dravidian architecture. Tanjore was one of the capitals of the Chola dynasty, whose constructions can be found all over the south. It highlights are its sandstone and number of figurines carved on its facades.
This Brihadisvara temple, similarly called Rajarajeswara or Rajarajeswaram place, is a temple built for Lord Shiva. It is similar to the Gangaikondacholisvaram temple situated in the north, and the Airavatesvara Temple placed in Darasuram, very close to Kumbakonam.
Structure Of The Temple
This temple was built by Rajaraja Chola I and the surrounding walls were gradually added, giving it a last name as Temple and Fort. In its heyday, it was also surrounded by a water pit. The orange color with granite and brick makes it very different from the gopurams of other temples in southern India.
There is a large statue of the great Nandi bull, which Shiva rides in some passages of Indian mythology. Behind the Nandi statue is the main tower or Vimana of considerable height which is 64 meters, very striking and also houses the Sancta Sanctorum. Brihadisvara is a word that in Sanskrit means ‘Great Lord, Great Shiva,’ one can simply walk around or sit to enjoy the tranquility of the temple and admire its architecture.
How To Reach?
And how to get to this beautiful temple in Thanjavur? Well, it will depend on where you are and if you want to see many places in Tanjore or go to Thanjavur to visit the Brihadishwara. There are numerous buses plying from various places to Thanjavur. You can visit the city by hiring a car and driving on your own. You can also travel through southern India by train, as it happens in northern India. The bus is usually more comfortable because it has a higher frequency. It avoids waiting and delays, is cheaper, without the need for prior reservations.