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Explore 8 Top-Rated Destinations of Madurai

Places in Madurai

Posted on Thursday, September 23rd, 2021 by MTI Team

About Madurai 

Madurai, the lotus city of Tamil Nadu, is overflowing with rich culture and traditions. The royal dynasty of Pandavas once was the ruling kingdom of the cultural capital. From enthralling temples to the most thrilling adventure sports at Kodai, you will indeed have a fun-filled vacation if you visit Madurai city of South India. While the adults have a spiritual trip, the young generation can have a fantastic trekking trip on the city’s ranges.  You will witness the amazing Madurai scenery and lush green environment. Most of the architectural murals of the town are of the Dravidian style that influences even the current architects. What’s stopping you? Grab your flights to Madurai and enjoy the fusion of adventure and culture showcased by Madurai’s famous places. 

How to reach Madurai 

  • By air: Madurai airport is very close to the heart of the city. Hence it will be very easy to travel by air. Get the help of an online travel agency to buy cheap tickets. 
  • By train: Among the major junctions in southern railways, Madurai is the important connecting point. So you will find many trains traveling to the Madurai location frequently.  
  • By car/bus/bike: The NH44 highway will take you to Madurai swiftly and smoothly. There are plenty of bus services connecting the city to the south.  

Best time to visit 

  • The best month to visit: Though the city faces summer most of the time, the professionals advise October to March will be the best time to witness Madurai’s beautiful places as is the case with most destinations of South India. It is advised to not visit Madurai in the monsoon season. 
  • Best weather to explore:  The monsoon seasons start from June and welcome winter around December, a perfect month for vacation. 

8 Top places to explore in Madurai 

Places in MaduraiFamous for
Meenakshi Amman TempleThe huge sculpture of the Nataraja
Gandhi MuseumHighlights of the freedom struggle
Koodal Azghar TempleDepicts the craftsmanship of the ancestors
Samanar HillsDrawing and carvings of Jain monks
Kazimar Big MosqueOldest mosque in Madurai city
Thirumalai Nayakkar PalaceGiant pillars
St Marys CathedralContinental architecture Christian church
Tirupparam Kunram Murugan TempleDedicated to Lord Murugan
Sri Mavoottru Velappar TempleHindu temple in the village of Poombarai

1. Meenakshi Amman Temple 

Meenakshi Amman Temple

The Meenakshi Temple on the banks of the Vaigai River was built during the 16th century inspired by Dravidian architecture. Goddess Meenakshi and Lord Shiva are celebrated at this temple. The domes and the gateways are inscribed with amazing backstories of the ancient city. Its amazing architecture and divine aura have made it one of the finest Madurai places to visit. The temple is known for Aayiram Kaal Mandapam and the humongous statue of Nataraja, which makes the temple even more special. 

  • Location: Madurai Main, Madurai, Tamil Nadu 625001
  • Timings:  9:00 AM – 7:00 PM
  • Entry fee: Nil

2. Gandhi Museum 

Gandhi Museum

Gandhi Museum is one of the famous Madurai tourist places, serving as a remembrance and tribute to Mahatma Gandhi. It was constructed in 1959 in his memory after 11 years of his demise. The galleries display the history of the pre-independent nation. However, other collections include historical stamps, rare photographs of Gandhi’s personal life, stained blood cloth, etc. 

  • Location:  Tallakulam, Madurai, Tamil Nadu 625020
  • Timings: 10 AM to 1 PM and 2 PM to 05:45 PM (closed on Fridays)
  • Entry fee: No entry fee

3. Koodal Azghar Temple

Koodal Azghar Temple

Even the temple’s name has a historical meaning translated as Beautiful Madurai. Devoted to Lord Vishnu, the temple depicts the craftsmanship of the ancestors. The stones and cuts are uniquely designed in the 16th century, from every wall to the floor, in the Dravidian style. The temple holds a spot among the 108 Divyadesams, and people pour into the temple during the Vaikasi month between May and June. 

  • Location: Perumal Koil Sannathi Street, Near Periyar Bus Stand, Periyar, Madurai, Tamil Nadu 625001
  • Timings:  5:30 AM – 12:00 PM and 4:00 PM – 9:00 PM 
  • Entry fee: Children: INR 10
  • Adults: INR 20
  • Parking: INR 20

4. Samanar Hills

Samanar Hills

Samanar Hills is a popular tourist destination located at a distance of 10 km from the Meenakshi Amman Temple. This place is highly famous for the historical concept of Jainism, caves, etc. If you are a nature lover, this is the perfect place for you. It offers a spectacular view to the visitors. You can also spot an ancient fountain called Pechchi Pallam. It is one of the famous ancient temples of India.

  • Location: W2FW+2X6, Madurai, Tamil Nadu 625019
  • Timings: Open 24×7
  • Entry fee: No entry fee

5. Kazimar Big Mosque

Kazimar Big Mosque

From the impeccable beauty of the shrine to the spectacular Indo-Islamic architecture, the Mosque is very significant and the oldest in Madurai city. Kazi Syed Tajuddin took the initiative and laid the base for building the Mosque in the 13th century. The Mosque is very special because it is the first historical place allocated to worship the Muslim god. 

  • Location: Kazimar St, Periyar, Madurai Main, Madurai, Tamil Nadu 625001
  • Timings: 4:30 AM to 11 PM
  • Entry fee: Nil

6. Thirumalai Nayakkar Palace

Thirumalai Nayakkar Palace

Thirumalai Nayakkar Mahal is one of the best Madurai tourist places, the oldest and most iconic building. It is famous for its marvelous Indo-Dravidian architecture and captivating interiors. It was constructed by the first-ever king of the Nayak dynasty in the 16th century. As per the resources, the king hired an Italian architect for the construction of this monument. 

  • Location: Panthadi 1st St, Mahal Area, Madurai Main, Madurai, Tamil Nadu 625001
  • Timings: Open all days from 9 AM to 5 PM
  • Entry Fee: Nil 

7. St Marys Cathedral

St Marys Cathedral

Saint Marys Cathedral is one of the prominent churches of Madurai. The striking architecture, roman designs, and continental interiors make it one of the best churches in the city. The statue of Mary is there inside the church, dressed in a saree. You can visit this place anytime throughout the year, as it is always crowded. 

  • Location in: 150, IGNOU Main Rd, Block A 1, Neb Sarai, Sainik Farm, New Delhi, Delhi 110030
  • Timings: 4 Am to 10 PM 
  • Entry fee:  Free

8. Tirupparam Kunram Murugan Temple

Tirupparam Kunram Murugan Temple

The famous temple celebrates the almighty lord Shiva’s son Muruga. Dated back to the 6th century, the dome and interior style of architecture stands eccentric and marvelous. The hue and saturation of Madurai Beauty can be witnessed from the top of the Murugan Temple. The festivals of Vaikuntha Ekadashi, Brahmotsavam are celebrated with so many flowers and colors. 

  • Location in: Thirupparamkunram Murugan Temple, Madurai
  • Timings: 5:30AM to 12:30 PM and 4:00 PM to 9:00 PM
  • Entry fee: Nil

9. Sri Mavoottru Velappar Temple

Sri Maviittru Velappar Temple

On top of 300 steps, the sculptures of Lord Muruga are displayed. Paliyar is the local people around the area who are very much devoted to the temple. The peaceful ambiance captivates more tourists to visit and seek blessings from Murugan and Vinayakar. Thai and Adi Amavasya are richly celebrated here. There’s a belief all sickness can be cured if you take a dip in the pond and eat the food cooked here.

  • Location in: Mavoottru Velappar Temple, Varusanadu Hills, Mavoottru Road, Madurai
  • Timings: 6:30AM to 12:00 PM and 3:30 PM to 6:00 PM
  • Entry fee: Nil

Top 6 places for adventure near Madurai 

1. Kodaikanal 

Located almost 7000 ft above sea level, the hill station is a perfect honeymoon and holiday spot. The mist-covered scenic views and foaming waterfalls are worth the trip. Kodai is a faraway land from a chaotic and busy world secluded in between the Palani ranges. The place is famous for its astounding views and peerless scenery. 

traveling

Distance from Madurai: 116.1 KM

What to do: 

  • Trek to see the view from Green Valley and Dolphin’s Nose
  • Enjoy the sound of nature at Bear Shola Falls. 

Nearby places to stay: Zostel Kodaikanal, Villa Retreat – Boutique Hotel, Cloudwalks, etc

2. Vagamon 

The most isolated, cozy, nestled hill station in Kerala is Wagamon. Every year the International Paragliding Festival is famously conducted at this spectacular peak. Vagamon is the perfect getaway to paradise and an adventure island. Vagamon is highly attractive because of thrilling adventure sports like paragliding, trekking, mountaineering, etc.

Distance from Madurai: 185.1 KM

What to do: 

  • Explore wildlife at Ulipooni
  • Walk into the woods of pine hills. 
  • Pack a picnic bag to Vagamon Falls.

Nearby places to stay: Chrissie’s Hotel, Periyar Inn, Kairali Palace Home Stay, Zostel Vagamon, etc. 

3. Kolli Hills

The Kolli Hills are one of the best places to visit in Madurai. To date, it is preserved from any chemical invasion, and nature is left untouched. Located at Namakkal district, the location tops the chart of places to visit in Madurai and around the city. Bounty of Medicinal herbs and shrubs are available at Kolli hills, making it the most important hill station in India. 

Distance from Madurai: 208.8 KM

What to do: 

  • Enjoy the picturesque location at Siddhar Caves.
  • Wet your legs at Agaya Gangai Waterfalls.  

Nearby places to stay: RJ Grand Resort, Lotus Adobe, Comfort Inn, etc.

4. Munnar 

Munnar is the mini Kashmir in the south. The weather, blanket of greenery, and smell of earth remain fresh in the depths of the hill station. The tip of Munnar is 1600 feet above sea level, and it is the most famous hilltop in Kerala. The aroma of tea estates and the backdrop of western ghats make Munnar very special and more pleasing. 

Distance from Madurai: 154.1 KM

What to do: 

  • Enjoy the chirping of birds at Echo Park.
  • Get mesmerized by the lush greenery at Top Station.

Nearby places to stay: Landy Queen, Kaivalyam Wellness Retreat, The Panoramic Getaway, etc. 

5. Idukki 

Idukki has the highest peak in the south, making it one of Madurai’s best places to visit in this region. The lush hills are home to a wide variety of Fauna and rubber plantations. The transportation and things used here are all eco-friendly to let the wildlife remain undisturbed. Idukki is entirely a wildlife reserve with rare flora and Fauna wandering around without any hindrance. 

Distance from Madurai: 174.1 KM

What to do: 

  • Walk along the trails of the Kulamavu dam.
  • Dive into the scenic beauty of Hill-view Park. 

Nearby places to stay:  Hill Town Hotel, Rexon Residency, Wind Valley Homestay, Eagle Rock Holiday Villa, etc 

6. Kovalam 

When you book Madurai tour packages, include Kovalam en route to spend a day or two on the shores relaxing with the seagulls. The area has been a top-rated tourist attraction since the 1930s because of all the ayurvedic spa centers and resorts. Kovalam is a coastal city known for the shallow tides and mouth-watering seafood platters. 

Distance from Madurai: 303 KM

What to do: 

  • Be a part of all the water sports at Kovalam Beach, one of the pristine beaches of South India.
  • For stunning lake views, have a peaceful evening at Vellayani freshwater Lake.

Nearby places to stay: The Raviz, Taj Green Cove, Niraamaya Retreats, etc.

FAQs

Q: Are there any international cuisine restaurants in Madurai?

Ans: Barbeque Nation, Chopstix Multicuisine Restaurant, and many other multi-cuisine restaurants are available in the city. 

Q: Where is the Gandhi Museum located?

Ans: Gandhi Memorial Museum is situated at Collector Office Rd, Tamukkam, Madurai, Tamil Nadu 625020

Q: Where to buy wide varieties of bananas in Madurai? 

Ans: The city has a particular Banana Market whew you can buy yummy and top-quality bananas. 

Q: Can I take personal belongings inside Madurai Meenakshi Temple?

Ans: You can have a small bag and water bottle when you visit Sree Meenakshi Amman Temple for emergency purposes.

Q: Are there any direct flights from Chennai to Madurai? 

Ans: Yes, numerous flights connect this route directly. Some of the top airlines include Air India, Indigo, Spicejet, and Go Air. 

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