Airavateswara Temple in Darasuram Tamil Nadu

Here is Some Information about Airavateswara Temple in Darasuram Tamil Nadu India.


Location:  Darasuram near Kumbakonam,Tamil Nadu
Built in: 12th Century
Built By:  Raja Chola the second
Completed By : Pandya Rulers
Dedicated to: Lord Shiva,Airavateshwara
Entry:Free
Photography: Allow
Temple Timing: 6:00 Am to 10 Pm
Visiting Timing:30 Mins
Best time to Visit: all time
Nearest Railway Station: Kumbakonam
Nearest Air Port: Trichy

The biggest highlight of the Darasuram temple is one of the set of steps next to the first structure. These steps when tapped make amazing musical sound. It is dedicated to Lord Shiva. The temple is a World Heritage Monument and was constructed by Raja raja II in the 12th century. Reflecting the rich heritage of art and architecture of Tamil Nadu, the temple is located at a distance of 3 km from Kumbakonam town. Its history dates back to the rein of the Cholas. The shrine houses a linga named Airavatesvarar. The legend goes that the Linga was worshipped by the Devendra's elephant named Airavathan and hence the temple derived its name from them. This stone architecture boasts of several beautiful and graceful sculptures. The temple has a tank whose waters believed to have curative powers. Make sure you take a bath in the tank on your visit to the temple.
This temple was built by Raja Raja Chola II in the 12th century. This temple is now a UNESCO World Heritage Site and has been declared as one of the Great Living Chola Temples. The temple is originally dedicated to Lord Shiva. According to legends, Airavata, the mythical white elephant, worshipped Shiva here and hence the temple gets its name.
 Architecture of Airavatesvara Temple

Airavatesvara Temple, a specimen of the Dravadian style of architecture, is a portrayal of delicate stone carvings, reflecting the artistic grandeur of the proficient artisans of the ancient period. The temple is smaller in shape than the Brihadishvara Temple or the Gangaikondacholapuram Temple. The shrine is deemed to have been constructed with nitya-vinoda, `perpetual entertainment`, in mind. The vimana crowing the temple is 24 metres in height. The southern part of the front mandapam has been splendidly carved in the shape of a gigantic chariot having large stone wheels drawn by horses. These specific features grant the much needed verve and character to this 12th century edifice. The eastern side of the inner court is dotted with a cluster of exquisitely carved buildings. The Balipita i.e. the seat for sacrifice is one of those engraved buildings. The pedestal of the Balipita is linked to a small shrine housing the idol of Lord Ganesha. The southern side of the pedestal is decorated with a set of three delicately carved flights of stairs that mysteriously produce musical sounds upon being stroked.
The southern west corner of the court has a mandapam with four shrines, one of which houses the image of Yama. Huge stone slabs adjacent to the temple are delightfully sculpted with images of the sapthamathas i.e. seven celestial nymphs.
Several essential inscriptions have been carved on Airavatesvara Temple, once of which states about its renovation by Kulottunga III. The northern wall of the verandah comprises 108 sections of inscriptions. These consists of name, image and account of the Saivacharya i.e. Shaivite saints. Another inscription located in the vicinity the gopura reveals about the transportation of as image in the temple from Kalyani. It was then known as Kalyanapura by Emperor Rajadhiraja Chola I. 
 
 How to Rich Airavateswara Temple in Darasuram 

By Air: The nearest airport is Trichy (85 Kms).

By Rail: It is accessible by train from most cities of Tamil Nadu and falls on the Chennai-Tanjore line.

By Road: It is 380 Kms from Chennai and about 35 kms from Thanjavur.
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