Kalidasa said, “Pushpeshu jati, purusheshu Vishnu; narishu Rambha, nagareshu Kanchi”. Of cities, it is Kanchi, he said. It is not a surprise he said that given the wonders that are strewn around this town that is a microcosm of India, its magnificent structures testifying to its glorious past as a melting pot of cultures and faiths. Kanchi was a cosmopolitan city even back then when it was the capital of the Pallavas. It was home to all major faiths - Shaivism, Vaishnavism, Jainism, Buddhism, which blossomed in all their glory. It is a city that witnessed the reign of many majestic kingdoms - the Pallavas, the Cholas, the Vijayanagara empire - that have all left their imprints in time in the form of the matchless pieces of architecture that be its temples.
Pallavas ruled a portion of southern India and dominated the Telugu and northern parts of the Tamil region for about 600 years until the end of the 9th century. Pallavas are most noted for their patronage of architecture, the finest example being the Shore Temple, a UNESCO World Heritage Site in Mahabalipuram. The Pallavas, who left behind magnificent sculptures and temples, established the foundations of medieval South Indian architecture.
This tour is a specially tailored itinerary to give you an immersive understanding of the Pallavas and their temple architecture. This tour will be across Kanchipuram and Mahabalipuram where we can find the finest examples of the architecture from the Pallava period. Kanchi is considered as the “City of Thousand Temples”, most of which, be it ancient or new, are living temples.
This tour will be led by Dr. Madhusudhanan Kalaichelvan, one of the most well informed and scholarly subject matter experts. An architect, conservationist, painter, epigraphist, he has been conducting guided heritage tours through Road Access to Temples Heritage And Monuments (RATHAM).