We owe everything to The Great Chola Empire for making such an advancement in an era back then. One of the perfect examples of the Great Living Chola Kingdom is the city of Thanjavur, formerly known as Tanjore, a magnificent cultural hub with each and every corner of the city reminding of the prosperous history we inherited. This blog, I will be elaborating my personal favourites of this city from my latest visit.
1. Brihadeeswarar Temple
This temple is also known as Peruvudaiyar Kovil or RajaRajeswara Temple. It clearly stands a testimony to the ancient sculptors and their mastery of the art. This temple is also listed in the UNESCO’s list as the “Greatest Living Chola Temple. It’s magnificent to realise the talent and efforts that were put into building this beautiful structure by artisans assigned by Raja Raja Chola some thousand years back. This ancient temple is still operational and is abode to Lord Shiva, manifested in form of a Huge Shiva Lingam with a Huge monolithic Nandi in service of the Lord overlooking from the Nandi Mandapam. The temple is developed around a moat and is garlanded by beautiful structures, intricately designed gopurams and a massive 16 storeyed main Vimana. It took us around 2 hours to complete
2. Thanjavur Palace
This palace of one of the greatest Kingdom is a victim of time. But still, this masterpiece can make anyone aw struck with beautiful interior and intricate sculptures. The walls are decorated with colourful sculptures and paintings. It is something that you can’t take your eyes off from! One need to buy the ticket that allows you entry into six different segments of the palace. But its worth to pay a visit to this beautiful palace and experience our ancient glory.
3. Manora Fort
This doesn’t exactly come under the city of Thanjavur, but it is situated on the road between Trichy and Thanjavur. This beautiful hexagonal eight-storeyed building was built by Maratha ruler Serfoji II in 19th century. This fort acted as a Lighthouse and residence to Royal Family back then.
4. Rajarajan Manimandapam
This is a relatively new construction which was set up during the 8th World Tamil Conference in 1991. This is a grand park, suitable for children as they would find enough space to play around. However, what attracted me was the beautiful museum that describes the history of Thanjavur and the dynasty of the Cholas in an elaborative way.
5. Christ Church – Fort (Schwartz Church)
I found it to be quite a small structure. However, the great thing about this church is the tablet made of white marble at the back gate of the church. It shows the deathbed of Christian Friedrich Schwarz, where he is surrounded by Serfoji II and others.
Besides the places covered here, there are several other important hot spots of our ancient history depicted by great temples and other monuments. Hopefully, I will be visiting them soon!