Wednesday, 13 July 2011

Coimbatore, Tamil Nadu

Coimbatore is the third largest city of the Tamilnadu state of India. As one of the most industrialized cities in Tamilnadu, Coimbatore is known as the textile capital of South India or the Manchester of the South India. 

Situated on the banks of river Noyyal, Coimbatore existed even prior to the 2nd or 3rd century AD, ruled by Karikalan, the first of the early Cholas. Among its other great rulers were Rashtrakutas, Chalukyas, Pandyas, Hoysalas and the Vijayanagara kings. 

When Kongunad fell to the British along with the rest of the state, its name was changed to Coimbatore and it is by this name that it is known today, except in Tamil, in which it is called Kovai. 

Located in the rain shadow region of the Western Ghats, Coimbatore enjoys a very pleasant climate all the year round swept by the fresh breeze that flows through the 25 km long Palakkad gap. The rich black soil of the region has contributed to Coimbatore's flourishing agriculture industry and, it is in fact the cause for the successful growth of cotton that served as a foundation for the establishment of its famous textile industry. The first textile mill came up as far back as 1888 but there are now over a hundred mills. The result has been a strong economy and a reputation as one of the greatest industrial cities in South India. 

Coimbatore serves as an entry and exit point to neighboring Kerala and the ever-popular hill station of Udhagamandalam (Ooty). It is the disembarking point for those who want to take the Mountain train that runs from Mettupalayam, just 35 km from Coimbatore. There are also regular bus services from Coimbatore to Ooty.
Places to See:

Perur Temple

Those in love with ancient art and architecture may well visit the Perur Temple. Built by Karikala Cholan, this temple is situated 7 Kms west of Coimbatore near river Noyyal. It is dedicated to Lord Siva. The presiding deity of the temple is known as Patteeswarar and His Consort, Pachai Nayaki. The exquisite sculptures in the hall , Kanagasabi, attract on e and all. It is also known as Mel Chidambaram. 

Maruthamalai Temple

Dedicated to Lord Murugan, the presiding deity is known as Dandayuthapani. This temple located on a hillock is 12 Kms from Coimbatore Railway Station and Bus Stand. 

Agriculture University

About 5 Kms from the Coimbatore Railway Station, this is the sixteenth Farm University in independent India. Though it came into existence on June 1, 1971 its ancestry is much older than that of the earliest started Agricultural University in the country. 

Forest College

One of the oldest institutions of its kind in India, the Forest College is situated 3.5 Kms north of the Railway Station. The College Museum is worth a visit. 

Black Thunder

It is Asia's number one theme park based at the foothills of gigantic Nilgiris. The Water park spread over 65 acres at Mettupalayam has a number of thrilling water games and land games. 

The VOC Park

Dedicated to the memory of the freedom fighter VO Chidambaram VOC Park has mini zoo, children train and gardens with the replicas of pre-historic dinosaurs.


Vellore, Tamil Nadu

Vellore, that is situated 140 kilometers from the city of Chennai, has a very vibrant past. The city that was established somewhere around 6th century has grown till date. The city has seen the rule of a series of dynasties ranging from Pallavas to British. The city has remained the seat of the Pallava, Chola, Nayak, Maratha, Arcot Nawab, Bijapur Sultanate and British Empire in the course of history. The Vijaynagar Fort that was constructed in the 13th century is an example of the formidable military technique of the Peninsular India.

The fort is the main attraction of the city. This fort was considered infallible during the Carnatic wars of 17th century. The fortified double walls of this fort were copied later in other forts of the northern India. The fort has always been the center of action in the region. It was the site of the famous Sepoy Mutiny of 1806 A.D that shook the British establishment in the south India.

The city that is situated on the confluence of Pallar and Ponnar Rivers has grown to be a bustling town of the peninsular India.

Places to See:

Government Museum

Government museum of Vellore is actually a museum cum archive. The Government of Tamilnadu maintains this museum that treasures ancient and present day curios relating to Anthropology, Geology and Numismatics. Historical monuments of the erstwhile Arcot district have been depicted through some beautiful frescos. 

Jalagandeeswarar Temple

Jalagandeeswarar Temple is situated inside the Vellore Fort only. The temple is renowned for its sculptures and speaks volumes of the exquisite craftsmanship of that period. Many consider the sculpture, in the porch on the left of the entrance, a masterpiece. The temple encloses a big wedding hall that is adorned with elegant relief and monolithic sculptures. The temple was earlier used as an arsenal. 

Muthu Mandapam

Muthu Mandapam is nothing but a rock memorial. This has been constructed around the tombstone of Vikramraja Singh who was the last Tamil ruler of Kandy, in the present Sri Lanka. The memorial is just a kilometer off the town near the banks of river Palar. 

Vellore Fort

Vellore Fort was built in the 13th century. The fort is a major attraction to the tourists. The fort was the most formidable one during the Carnatic war of 17th century and it was said that it was infallible. This historically famous fort retains the past glory and is still enact along with its ramparts, basements, turrets, posts, and gates. The outer wall of this fort is built of granite blocks where as it is fortified with another wall as well. The fort was the site for the Sepoy mutiny of 1806 that is seen by some as the prelude to the Pan-Indian one that broke out in the year 1857............
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