Wednesday, 15 January 2014

5 Things To Do in Thiruvaiyaru

If you are  in Thiruvaiyaru during the aradhana, explore the small town during the day and visit some interesting places close by.

Here are a few tips

1. Of course, the main attraction is to enjoy the concerts while sitting on the sand - concerts happen from 9 am onwards. Be there beyond 10 pm when the nadaswaram vidwans take the stage and their music carries on into the night. Take a shawl along to brave the chill breeze from the riverside.

2. Walk down to the other side of the Cauvery- on its dry-wet bed. Or take the road to Thiruvaiyaru bus stand and walk down south on the Thanjavur road. After crossing the Cauvery bridge, take a left turn after the petrol bunk. And visit the Pattabhirama Temple, where Thyagaraja and Muthuswamy Dikshitar worshiped. It is said that this was the deity on which Dikshitar composed the Manirangu raga kriti 'Mamava Pattabhirama'. This is a small and well kept temple. Observe Lakshmana's image holding two bows - one of his and the other of Rama's!

3. Go to the Pushya Mahal ghat on the same shore on which Thyagaraja's samadhi is located. Stand on the platforms of the ghat built in a unique architectural style and gawk at the slowly flowing streak of Cauvery. Also visit the Govt. Music College campus, a 100 + year old building and visit a few departments like Sanskrit and Tamil. Great sights for a heritage buff.

Pushya Mahal ghat on the left and the Govt. Music College on the right
4. Visit Panchanadeeswara Temple before dusk and walk around the huge campus with 5 prakaras (outer precincts). Don't miss the colourful wall murals in the second prakara and the Surya Pushkarini, the huge temple pond.

5. Taste the Thiruvaiyaru special Ashoka halwa. This bright orange colour sweet made of green gram (moong dal or payatham paruppu) is something every tourist wants to pick up. Head to the well-known Andavar Sweets Shop in South Street. The traffic is heavy and flows continuously on this narrow road, so you need to get down quickly, grab the packed halwa in a jiffy and get into your vehicle. Caution - this is a high-calorie sweet with ghee dripping from the pack!

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