Madurai Meenakshi Amman Temple

Golden Lotus at Meenakshi Amman Temple

Golden Lotus at Meenakshi Amman Temple Tank

The world renowned Meenakshi Sundareswarar Temple popularly known as the Madurai Meenakshi Temple dedicated to Goddess Parvathi and Her consort Shiva (called Sundareswarar here) stands on the banks of the Vaigai river in the 2500 year old temple city of Madurai. Legend has it that the king of Gods, Indra, discovered a scared Suyambulingam at Kadambavanam and later enshrined it in the city of Madurai.

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Thirugnanasambandar, the famous Saiva Saint, pays homage to Parvathi (whom he calls Aalavai Iraivan) seated in this temple. In fact descriptions of this temple appear in Tamil literature over the last two millennia. Mother Meenakshi has many names as Pachai Devi, Maragathavalli, Thadathagai, Abishekavalli, Abhiramavalli, Kayarkan Kumari, Karpooravalli, Kumari Thurayal, Komagal, Sundaravalli, Pandipiratti, Madurapuri Thalaivi, Manickavalli, Mummulai Tiruvazhumagal.

Muslim invaders from in the early 14th Century (1310) ransacked the temple and the Nayaka kings took the initiative to reinstall the glory of the Madurai Meenakshi temple. The present structure was built between 1623 and 1655 CE. Sundareswarar and his fish eyed spouse Meenakshi are enshrined in twin temples. Enclosing these two shrines are the four huge gateways.   This feature can only be found in a few other temples in Tamil Nadu. The city of Madurai was also redesigned as per the rules of architecture (Shilpa Shastras) and constructed in a square shape with its concentric streets finishing at the temple.

Please refer to the following websites if you would like to read in further detail about the greatness of this temple and its architecture:

Website references:

360 Degree Virtual Tour of Madurai Meenakshi Amman Temple:

Meenakshi Amman Temple Architecture

Beautiful painted carvings

If you cannot visit the temple personally you can order puja by clicking here:
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Festivals

There are festivals celebrated at the temple every month however the Chithrai Thruvizha in April-May is the most important one. This festival includes the wedding of Meenakshi Amman to Lord Sundareswarar. Other aspects of the festival are as follows:

  • Day 1: Flag hoisting, official start of festival
  • Day 8: Coronation of Meenakshi Amman
  • Day 9: Procession of the goddess
  • Day 10: Celestial wedding (Thirukalyanam) of Goddess Meenakshi and Lord Sundareswarar
  • Day 11: Chariot procession (Ther Thiruvizhah)
  • Day 12: Float procession (Theppa Thiruvizhah)

Other festivals include Navarathri in September-October, Aavani Moola festival in August-September, Thai float festival in January-February, Aadi Pooram in July-August, Pongal in January-February, Deepavali, Tamil and English New Year days and Vinayaka Chaturthi.

Getting to the temple:

This Wikitravel website gives you comprehensive information about the city of Madurai, getting there, restaurants and accommodation.

Please refer to the this website for information on details reaching Madurai.

Information about Daily Puja Schedules:

Puja Name Days Time
   Thiruvanandal pooja Morning 05 : 00 AM – 06 : 00 AM
   Vizha pooja Morning 06:30 AM – 07 : 15 AM
   Kalasandhi pooja Morning 06:30 AM – 07 : 15 AM
   Kalasandhi pooja Morning 06:30 AM – 07 : 15 AM
   Thrikalasandhi pooja Morning 10:30 AM – 11:15 AM
   Uchikkala Pooja (Noon Pooja) Morning 10:30 AM – 11:15 AM
   Maalai pooja Evening 04:30 AM – 05:15 AM
   Ardhajama Pooja (Night Pooja) Night 07 : 30 PM – 08 : 15 PM
   Palliarai pooja Night 09 : 30 PM – 10 : 00 PM

Temple timings:

Worship Hours 5.00am to 12.30pm & 4.00pm to 10.00pm

Address:

Sri Meenakshi Sundareswarar Temple, Madurai – 625 001.

If you cannot visit the temple personally you can order puja by clicking here:
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