located 335kms from Chennai 55 km east of Trichy)is also known as Tanjur.
Thanjavur is the headquarters of the district of Thanjavur. It is considered
the rice bowl of Tamilnadu.
was once the capital of the Chola kings from the 10th to the 14th century.
Thanjavur has had a splendid past. In and around it were born many
an illustrious god-men, who heightened the glory of our sacred land, by
establishing and propagating the diverse creeds of Hindu Dharma.
It was the centre of enlightening forums famous for holding several remarkable
mellifluent concerts and literary contests.
The Chola kings
were great patrons of the Tamil language, various art forms as well as
great temple builders. There are close to 74 temples built during
their time in and around Thanjavur.
It is famous
for various art and craft items such as papiermache dolls (Thalayatti bommai
for children), Thanjavur Plates (with sombu, coconut), brass and bronze
idols, bowls, vessels. It is also famous for silk, carpets, jewellery
and musical instruments such as the veena, tambura and mridangam.
temple, an imposing structure was built by Raja Raja Chola I.
He had conquered the Chera, Pandya kings & also crossed the oceans
to gain victory over many overseas lands. Impressed by the huge magnificent
temples & idols of Buddha, he dreamt of erecting a massive temple in
his native land for Lord Siva. This temple is also called by various other
names such as Rajarajeswaram, Perivudayar Koil, Adavallan Koil, Peria
of the Brihadeeswarar Temple
temple is located 6kms from Thanjavur.
This vast palace,
also known as the Great Fort was built by the Nayaks around 1550 and the
Marathas. Beyond the ditch inside the fort is the palace built by
King Vujaya Raghava Nayakkar. There are two towers in this palace,
one of which was used to store weapons & to keep watch on enemy approach.
From the other tower the king offered obeisance to the deity of Srirangam
The Art Gallery
was started in 1951 and is located in the Audience Hall or the Durbar Hall
of the palace. On display are the bronze and granite sculptures of
the Chola period from the 9th to 12th century.
The Maharaja Serfoji's
Saraswati Mahal Library is located in the palace.
are over 30,000 palm leaf and paper manuscripts on different subjects such
as science, medicine, engineering, astronomy, painting, dancing, etc. in
various languages such as Sanskrit, Tamil, Telugu, Marathi and some European
languages. Around 8,000 of these are on palm leaves. This is the
result of the efforts of the Nayak and Maratha rulers for over 300 years.
This palace library was originally developed by the Nayak rulers.
The Maratha rulers
especially Raja Serfoji made a major contribution, organising a massive
collection of good books.
Mahal or the Hall of Music is located in the first floor of the Palace.
This is a fine auditorium with perfect acoustics, revealing the engineering
skill of the ancient builders.