At a short drive from Trichy, is the temple city of Thanjavur. The old name still used to address this city is ‘Tanjore’. It is mostly visited for its famous temple known as ‘Brihadeswara Temple’. The city is considered to be a Royal city ruled by the Cholas and Nayaks dynasty.
A famous legend associated with Tanjore mentions that the city has been named after a powerful demon named ‘Tanjan’and the word has been derived from ‘Tanjan-an Asura’ (Asura means giant). He was killed by the Hindu God Vishnu and just before the giant was about to die, he made a wish for the city to be named after him. Hence, his last wish was granted by the god, giving the name of ‘Tanjore’ to this city.
What to See
The Chola temples of Thanjavurhave been listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The Brihadeswara temple is dedicated to the Hindu God Shiva. There is a huge stone statue made of a single stone wighing around twenty five tones. This statue is of the bull Nandi, who is the considered to be the transport of Lord Shiva. Besides the temple, the city is famous for its rice cultivation and hence often known as the ‘Rice Bowl of India’. Agriculture is a major scene in this city. Thanjavur also holds great reputation for its famous Thanjavur paintings. In recent years, Thanjavur has emerged as a significant art and culture centre in the state. The city of Thanjavur houses several museums and an exhibition centre too.
Best Time to visit
The best season to visit Tanjore is the winter periodfrom November to February. The temperatures rise from April onwards but one can also consider visiting in September when the monsoons get mild.