Thirukadiyur – a holy hamlet

Most of the temples are known either by the name of the Lord or His Consort. Nataraja is the name that rings in the mind when the word Chidambaram is uttered. Similarly, the name Madurai brings memories of Meenakshi. However, there are a few temples that are well-known for the Lord and his Consort and Tirukkadaiyur is one among them. The Amritaghateswarar – Abirami Temple of Tirukkadaiyur is associated with the legends of Markandeya and Abirami Battar.
Situated in the Mayavaram – Tarangampaadi branch of the Southern Railway, Tirukkadaiyur is a railway station about 250 km. from Chennai. It falls under one of the eight Veeratta Sthalams of Lord Shiva.
How to reach there
From Chennai
Thirukadaiyur – Just reach Mayavaram by State Express Transprt bus fromChennai and thee are lot of buses from Mayavaram to Thirukadaiyr (say every 15/20 minutes and you can reach in about 1 hour. This is about the only mode possible from Chennai as pending work on conversion of metre gauge into broad gauge train journey is not possible at the moment.
From Bangalore:
Apart from buses one could consider taking the Mysore – Mayiladuthurai express which leaves bangalore at 19:30 hours and reaches Mayiladuthurai at 0730 hours the following day. A very convenient mode considering that one could catch up on sleep in this overnight journey.Thirukadiyur is about 20 kms from Mayawavaram and this drive through the sleepy hamlet can be done in half hours time.

The temple:

In line with the grand temple architecture of the Cholas, the Temple occupies a very vast area of 11 acres, with five Prakarams, imposing temple towers and large and spacious Mandapams. Though the details of the king who consecrated the temple could not be ascertained, it is seen from the inscriptions in the temple that it has been in existence during the period of Raja Raja Cholan, that is, from the early 11th century.
It is a grand temple with 5 Prakarams, imposing towers and ornate Mandapams covering an area of 11 acres. Based on the inscriptions seen here, it is inferred that the stone base of the central shrine was in existence even during period of Raja Raja Cholan (early 11th century). It was during the period of Kulottunga Chola I (1075 – 1120) that the brick walls of the temple were replaced with stonewalls and the Mandapam in the front was constructed. The Rajagopuram is replete with images made of mortar, depicting the legends associated with the temple.

The temple’s gopuram, in line with the other temples of the era contains intricate carvings of various deities and the usual colour combination of red green and blue makes it visually very attractive.

Auspicious times:
The worship services are offered six times a day in the temple. Almost every day dawns with one celebration or other, as hundreds of pilgrims throng the temple to celebrate their 60th or 80th birthdays.celebration of 60th and 80th birth days (birth star) called as Sashti Aptha poorthi and Sathabishekam respectively is held very auspicious by the people as their longevity will increase. The annual ‘Brahmotsavam’ is celebrated in the month of Chithirai (April-May); the ‘Shankhabishekam’ celebrated in the month of Kartikai (November-December) is also of great importance here. Few other festivals being celebrated over here include Navaratri and ‘Aadi Pooram’ .

Months to Avoid:

The summers are terrible so avoid April to June

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