The Sivaganga palace was built
in 1730, tt also called “Gowri Vilasam”, is
situated in the Sivaganga district about 40 km
from Madurai. It was once the seat of Marava
kings. At present the palace is in dilapidated
condition but the architectural beauty can still
be appreciated. The architectural style of the
palace reflects elements borrowed from the
Thirumalai Nayak’s period and infused with
The Temple of Sri Raja Rajeshwari The only portion intact at the Gowri
Vilasam is the temple of Sri Raja Rajeshwari. It
is the family deity of the royal family. Sri
Raja Rajeshwari temple is open for the public
only in the evenings and on auspicious days. On
the Southern part of the temple there is a huge
hall supported with numerous pillars. It is
believed that the entire royal household
functions used to take place there. There is a
palanquin in the front facade of the palace that
lies in a decrepit condition.
Nadai Kinaru : Nadai Kinaru is another important
and interesting feature in the Sivaganga palace.
It is actually a miniature swimming pool. It is
believed that the tank had direct connections so
that fresh water could be provided and also fill
two huge tanks beside the Nadai Kinaru. It was
apparently meant for the womenfolk of the royal
How to Reach Sivaganga Palace : Due to its close proximity to Madurai, Sivaganga
is easily accessible to the tourists. Buses and
taxis are easily available from Madurai. Madurai
is the nearest airport.
Home of the famous Athangudi tiles.
Visit a factory and see how these famous
handmade terracotta tiles are patterned and
sun-dried. They say it’s the local sand that’s
the secret behind the texure.
Chettinad Museum :
At Chettinad, don’t miss the
house-converted to museum next door to the
Raja’s palace. Among the Kitchen tools the best
is the travelling kit. No self-repecting
Chettiar would eat out, so this elaborate basket
housed everything from masala dabbas and
choppers to rice bins and ladle sets. Then
there’s traditional jewellery and clothing, huge
copper water vats and grain bins...everyday
items that trace the chettiar’s way of life. The
labelling isn’t too good and a guide comes in
handy. So far, entrance is free.
Devakottai is a town and a
municipality in Sivaganga. Devakottai is one of
the most popular and biggest cities of the
nagarathar community. Devakottai is also famous
for Nagarathar temples and bungalows. In
Devakottai there are two colleges, Sevugan
Annamalai Art college and Ananda College, run by
the R.C. Diocese of Sivagangai.
Deivam Wonderland :
1 km from Pillayarpatti. The
antiquity value of the temple is exhibited in
Deivam Wonder Land Museum. Timings : 9 a.m. to 9
p.m. on all days. Entrance fee Rs. 20/- Address
: Near Vairavanpati Arch, Pillaiyarpatti Post -
Edaikattur Church :
Idaikattur Church is the
Sacred Heart Shrine Built with full of arts in
Gothic architectural style on the model of the RHEIMS cathedral in France. All those beautiful
statues were brought from France 110 Years back
to Idaikattur. The reason is that only in this
shrine there are the Relics (things connected
with)of 40 saints kept on the main altar.
Secondly, there is a historical event which took
place 110 years back, when this Church was built
that 9 choirs (hundreds) of angels appeared and
solved a great problem. The Location of the
shrine is 36 Km away from Madurai on the way to
Ramnad or Rameshwaram main road.
Kamban Mani Mandapam :
To honour Kamban Mani Mandapam
was built by Nagarathars at Nttarasankottai and
programmes about Tamil literature are conducted
It was ruled by the Maruthu Pandiyar. There is a
very big Shiva temple, which they built Kalaiyar
Kovil is owned by the family of the Rajah of
Sivaganga. It is run by their devasthanam, and a
trust of the zamindar family of Devakottai.
Kalaiyar kovil derived its name from the
Kaleeswarar temple of the place. In the 9th
Century A.D. Saint Sundara moorthy nayanar
described the presiding deity in his devotional
songs as Kaalai. Located at 18 km east of
Sivagangai, 30 km west of Devakottai -
Manamadurai Road and 66 km South-East of Madurai
- Tondi Road.
Kaleeswarar Temple :
The holy temple Kalaiyarkoil is in Sivaganga District. It is 18
K.M east of Sivaganga, 30 km west of Devakottai
on the Devakottai – Manamadurai Road and 66 km
south – East of Madurai – Tondi Road.
“Kalaiyarkoil” derived its name from the
Kaleeswarar temple of the place. The temple of
Kalaiyarkoil is a very large and handsome
building surrounded by a strong stone-wall about
18 feet in height. Kalaiyarkoil has two
Rajagopuram viz big and small one. There is a
big Tank on the Southern side of the Temple.
Chettinad Palace is an outstanding specimen of
the Chettinad architecture. The oldest surviving
building of this style, the Chettinad Palace was
built by Dr Chettiyar, founder of the Indian
Bank and the Annamalai University in
Chidambaram. Chettinadu extended 25 km from the
north to south and 15 km from west to east.
The basic style of
architecture reflects traditional
architectural style of Chettinad.
The woodwork and stonework
was inspired that of the houses in France
and other European destinations.
The verandah is just next to
the iron-gate and was converted into the
waiting area for the visitors. The flooring
of the waiting area is done with white
marble. The meeting hall is decorated with
several pairs of tusks.
The ceiling has artistic
patterns in vegetable dye over roofing
plates made of copper soldered with a
special variety of aluminum. The walls are
made 1.5 ft to 3 ft wide to keep the
interiors cool without the use of any
electronic equipment like the air
The no cementing agent was
used in the construction and the bricks are
bound together with a paste of egg white,
the extract of an unripe medicinal fruit
found in the hills of Kadukkai and lime
A puja room in a corner of
the courtyard is the place where Rani
Seethai Achi, wife of Dr Annamalai Chettiyar,
spent most of her time. Rows of aruamanai or
the iron blades are hung on shelves outside
the kitchen, meant for cutting vegetables
and grating coconut.
There is also a small dining
room for private dinners with an extendable
rosewood table. The room has photographs and
paintings of the British days. This dining
area has its own kitchen and a storeroom.
The first floor comprises mainly of bedrooms
and living rooms that are not open to
Ph : 04573-221371
Kannadasan Memorial :
He was born in Thiru
Mukkudalpatti in Karaikudi. He was a great
Lyricist. He raised the level of Tamil Film
Songs to Himalayan Heights. The memorial was
opened on 21-10-1992. Situated at Karaikudi -
Opp. to new bus stand.
(45 kms.) Karaikudi is the biggest
city in Chettinad and is famous for its Ganesha
Temple, Saris. This small town is known for its
magnificent mansions constructed by the
Chettiars - a caste known as much for their
prosperity as well as their hospitality. Though
the owners of these palatial wonders have long
scattered, having left for distant shore, the
beautifully carved wood work as well as the
stone and mortar work of these houses can still
be appreciated. Comprising about 72 villages of
which many of them were once the homes of
wealthy merchant families known as the Chettiars.
Today, it is an area of mostly deserted splendid
mansions. The place derives its name from the
famous plant “Karai” which abounds in the area.
The Alagappa College founded by the late Dr
Alagappa Chettiar has been upgraded now as a
deemed University and is known as Alagappa
Kandadevi Temple :
The Village Kandadevi is
situated 3 Km away from Devakottai Town. Here
the Temple is called as Arulmigu Sowarna
Moortheeswarar alias Siragilinathar. The Amman
is called as PeriyaNayaki Amman. This is 350
years old Temple. The Temple is maintained by
Sivaganga Devasthanam. It is here Hanuman told
to Rama ‘Kanden Deviyai’. Hence this place is
called as Kandadevi. The Aani Urchavam is very
famous festival for this temple, which is
celebrated every year, during the month of June
by the people of 75 Villages.
Kundrakudi Temple :
Holy Temple is situated at 10 Kms from Karaikudi,
Sivaganga District. Built around the year 1000
in Lord Shanmuganathan is the presiding deity
and the History is refered Mayuragiri Puranam.
Marudhu Pandiyars Kings of Sivaganga renovated
the Temple in their days. Important festivals
include Thaipusam in January, Panguni Uthram in
March, Thirukarthikai in November, and Kandha
Shasti also in November Prayers in this temple
bring relief from diseases and mental worries.
The Devotees are blessed with good Children.
Karpaka Vinayakar Temple
It is an ancient rock-cut cave shrine dedicated
to Ganesha, located at Pillayarpatti,15 km west
The Agama texts found on
stones in the temple help date the temple
between the years of 1091 and 1238. A unique
Tamil image of Ganesha found in the temple
helps to verify this dating. The presiding
deity of the temple is Karpaka Vinayakar or
Desi Vinayaka Pillaiyar.
Today, the Pillayarpatti
Nagarathar worshipers are involved in
conducting daily worship services in the
temple, as well as maintaining it. People
from all over the state, as well as great
numbers of pilgrims, come here everyday and
gather for the Ganesh Chaturthi festival
held every year during the months of August
Like all Shivite temples,
Pillayarpatti temple also has Lord Shiva as
its presiding deity. Lord’s name is
Arjunapureeswarar. This temple is more
famous for the rock cut Vinayagar (Ganesha)
sitting majestically inside a cave.
Shri Karpaga Vinayagar : The
Vinayagar sannidhi (Sanctom Sanctorum) is a
cave where the 6 feet Karpaga Vinayagar has
been carved inside. As this is a cave
formation, there is no provision to go
around for the pradakshina. The inner
sanctum is well illuminated with oil lamps
and the whole idol is covered with gold. Its
only during the Abhishekam or the holy bath
when we get to see the full idol in its
Temple timings: 6 a.m. to
1.00 p.m. and 4 p.m. to 8.30 p.m.
Ph : 04577-264240/41.
Lord Vetudayar kali amman temple:
It is situtated at Kollankudi about 15 kms away from
Sivagangai . It is maintained by Hindu Religious
Charity Endowment department.
Marudupandiyar Memorial :
They were not afraid
of Britisher’s bullets and fought for the
independence of our beloved country. The Maruthu
brothers are the descendents of Sivaganga Velu
Nachiar who ruled efficiently. For the sake of
their citizens, they surrendered to the
Britishers during 1801 and then hanged. Periya
Maruthu was born on 1748 and Chinna Maruthu was
on 1753. Both were hanged on 08-10-1801.
Maruthupandiyar’s memorial is located in Swedish
Mission Hospital Campus. The memorial was opened
for the visiting public on 21-10-1992.
Ilayankudi Mara Nayanar was one
among 63 saivite saints. He was a farmer.
Maranar was his name and lived here. He was a
great devotee of Lord Siva and His devotees. He
took greatest pleasure in serving them.
Thirukostiyur Temple :
This is important out of
108 Vaishnava temples. The Alwar Ramanujar
has visited and prayed God Sri Vishnu. The God’s
name is “Sowmiya Narayana Perumal”. The God is
in five floors. This is also known as ‘South
Thiruppathi’. Each year, ‘Masi Magam Deepam’ is
celebrated with pomp and enthusiasm here.
Thiruvenkadamudaiyan - ThenTirupathi :
to Lord Srinivasa Perumal, is a vast temple
complex with a 100 year old history and referred
to as “Then Tirupati” and “Arulmigu Ariyakkudi
ThiruvenkadamudaiyanTemple”. This temple was
build by Nattukkotai Nagarathars. After 100
years, this shrine was renovated by the cost of
Rs.10 million and Consecrated recently on 16th
AMM Nattukottai, Pallathur :
The AMM Nattukottai
of the Murugappa Group in Pallathur (on
Aranthangi Road) is a private yet collective
residence. In keeping with the times, the family
has built bungalows behind the old Nattukottai,
in the same architectural style, for each of the
sons. This village is home to a Vairavar Temple.
It’s known for its musical pillars, each of them
producing a different note of the saptaswaram,
the septave of Indian music. Do observe the
sculptures, especially the horses and elephants.
Pallathur is 12 km north of Karaikudi on NH210,
via Kottaiyur, towards Trichy.
Sivan koil :
There are two Siva Temples at this
place. Sree Viswanatha and Sree Subramanian
temple, bigger of the two is an important
temple. The Maruthu brothers (1783-1802)
originally built the Thirugnana Subramaniyan
temple, Lakshmiammal, a poor Brahmin widow
brought a lingam from kasi sometimes before 1852
and installed it in the temple. The decendents
of Lakshmi Ammal handed over the temple to the
Rajah of Sivaganga for maintenance. Since then
the temple is known as Sree Viswanathan Sree
Subramanya temple. The another Siva temple is
Sasivarneswarar temple situated near busstand.
There are other small temples viz.Perianayaki
Amman temple, Perumal Temple, Pillaivayal kali
koil, Kaliamman koil, Velayuthsami koil,
Saneeswaran temple and Gowri Vinayaga koil.
Sivanga is the birth place of poet Sudhananda
barathy who is known to the world over as