Weekend Darshan - 7
For the new year, I wanted to go as far away from the crowds in the temples of Chennai and Nanganallur in particular. So we headed towards Tiruneermalai and from there on went to Manimangalam.
Tiruneermalai is near Pallavaram. This place is one among 108 divya desams. There are two temples, one on top of a small hill and the other at the foot of it. One special aspect of this temple is that the Lord can be seen in four different positions vis Nindra, Irundha, Kidandha and Nadantha Tirukkolams. More info abt the temple here
Neervanna Perumal temple and its aerial view from the hill
From there we went to Manimangalam. It is about 10kms from Tambaram. To reach here take the right from NH 45 near Vandalur. After travelling for some 4-5kms there is a right which takes to Manimangalam.
This place has got lots of historic importance. The temples here depict Pallava and Chola architecture. More about Manimangalam's history here.
We could find three temples here which date back to 950AD. One is dedicated to Lord Shiva. Narayanan sir once told me that there is a secret underground passage in this temple that goes to Somangalam, a nearby place. Not sure about that.
Rajagopala Swamy temple (main and side view)
There is a Vaikunta Perumal Temple which is in a dilapidated state. The pick of the three is the Raja Gopala Perumal temple, which is supposed to be built by Mamalla after his victory over Chalukyan monarch, Pulikesin II.
Mandapam for Urchavam
Notable feature in this temple is that the Chakra is held by the Lord at a perpendicular angle to symbolise the war. There are a few miniature staues along the side walls of the temple, which are beautifully and expressively carved. They are hardly 10-15cms high.
A beautiful small statue on the walls. Observe the Chakra being perpendicular in this Narasimhar sculpture
There is a beautiful garden around the temple blooming with roses. Altogether it was great to spend time in a serence ambience.