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Madurai

Madurai, Tamil Nadu

My city, Madurai..!

"The city that never sleeps."

Madurai - Tamil Nadu

Madurai, formerly (until 1949) Madura, city, south-central Tamil Nadu state, southern India. It is located on the Vaigai River, about 30 miles (48 km) southeast of Dindigul. Madurai is the third most populous, and probably the oldest, city in the state.

The ancient history of the region is associated with the Pandya kings, and Madurai was the site of the Pandya capital (4th–11th century CE). Later it was conquered by Chola, Vijayanagar, Muslim, Maratha, and British rulers. In the 1940s it became known as the centre of the civil disobedience movement against the British raj, and it remained an important seat of political leadership.

Madurai is one of the oldest cities of India and was ruled by Pandya kings over most of its history. The city is famous for is rich heritage and promoting Tamil language through "Sangams". The city has been in existence since about 4th century B.C and is mentioned in ancient texts of Greeks, Romans and Arabs. The Meenakshi Amman temple situated in the heart of the city is famous, and there are a number of temples in and around the city. The "Maha Kumbabhishekam" of the temple was performed in April 2009 after the renovation (re-painting) work on the gopurams(towers) of the temple. It is usually performed once every 14 years or more. There are numerous remarkable sculptures on the gopurams as well as inside the premises of the temple. Look out for the "yaali", a mythical creature similar to a dragon on the pillars in the 'pragaram' of the temple. Also, keep looking at the ceiling to catch a glimse of the beautiful ancient paintings that adorn them. Madurai is also an important transit point for travelers bound south and also a local commercial hub.

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