Formerly Mamallapuram, the city of temples, Mahabalipuram forms an integral part of the golden triangle travel destinations of South India, the place has been given the term “the Land of Bali”. The renowned tourist and pilgrimage destination is situated at a distance of 55 kms from Chennai in the state of Tamil Nadu. It was once the capital of the Pallava Dynasty and is a major travel attraction today due to the largest Basilica in the world on the sea side. Called Arjuna’ penance it even is widely known for the mandapams or the large hall that are eye catching in its decorations. This creative piece of architecture offers ample proof of the grand architecture of the 5th and the 8th century artistic creation.
A majority of the temples and rock carvings belongs to the reign of Narashimha Varman1 In the 630-668AD. The conversion of the King Mahendre Varman to accept Shaivism led the creation of the monuments devoted to the Hindu gods like Lord Shiva and Vishnu.
Tourist attractions in Mahabalipuram are; Shore Temple, Arjuna’s Penance, Five Rathas, Tiger’s Cave & beaches
How to reach:
By Rail: Nearest rail head is Chengulpet Railway station 30kms / 40minutes drive
By Air: Chennai Airport is 60kms away
By Road: Mahabalipuram is well connected by road to Chennai, Pondicherry, Chengulpet and Kanchipuram, there are plenty of bus services and taxis