About Trichy, Tamil Nadu India
Tiruchirappalli, Rock City is situated on the banks of river Kaveri. Trichy is a fine blend of temples and monuments and is a great travel destination. Dominated by the granite rock soaring 84 meters into the skyline, Trichy also hosts the Golden Rock Locomotive Workshop, an Ordinance Factory and REC. The Rock in Rock Fort is one of the oldest in the world-approximately 3,800 million years, which makes it as old as the rocks of Greenland and older than the Himalayas.
Rockfort Temple Trichy
The Rock Fort Temple, or Ucchi Pillayar Koil, situated in Trichy, a small city in Tamil Nadu is a combination of two famous 7th century Hindu temples, one dedicated to Lord Ganesh and the other dedicated to Lord Shiva. It is located on top, and carved into, a huge rock in Trichy. Rockfort temple history says that, the temple was built by Pallavas on hundred million years old hill in 580 AD. The 83m high rock is said to be one of the oldest in the world, dating over 3 billion years ago, predating Greenland and the Himalayas. We were told that the biggest part of the work to carve out the rock and associated temple construction took 300 men eleven years of effort. To visit the temple is a big climb, up the 437 steps cut into the stone, to the top, but well worth the effort.
The Rock Fort temple complex in Tiruchirappalli is a collection of three temples - the Manikka Vinayaka temple at the foot of the hill, the Uchhi Pillayar Kovil at the top of the hill and the Taayumaanava Kovil (Shivastalam) on the hill. This Shivastalam is a rock cut temple on a hill in the most prominent landmark in Tiruchirappalli (Trichy); reached by a flight of steps on the way to the famous Ucchi Pillayar temple.
Ucchi Pillayar Koil Temple History
Tiruchirappalli itself has a long history, going back to the centuries before the Christian era, when it was a Chola citadel. The Pandyas and Pallavas held sway over the region for short periods. In the 12th century, Cholas were subverted by the Vijayanagar kings of Hampi, who proudly withstood the invading Muslims. Less than fifty years later, the Nayaks of Madurai came to power, constructed the Rock Fort, and firmly established Tiruchirappalli as the trading city.
About the Rock Fort Temple
This shrine houses Kangaala Moorthy, one of the 64 manifestations of Shiva. The approach to the temple is through a flight of covered stairs. Towards the end of the climb, the Tayumanavar temple is towards the west and the Uchipillayar temple towards the east.
There is a rock cut Pallava temple - Lalitankura Pallaveswaram in this hill temple complex, with several inscriptions here attributed to Mahendravarma Pallavan. In addition the Cholas, the Vijayanagar rulers and the Nayaks of Madurai have made extensive contributions here. The two storeyed Taayumaanava temple, built on (in!) a hill is a masterpiece of construction. The Chittira Mandapam (also spelt as Mandapa) houses a granite chain with nine loops.
Rock Fort Temple Architecture
The Rock Fort Temple stands 83m tall perched atop the rock. The smooth rock was first cut by the Pallavas but it was the Nayaks of Madurai who completed both the temples under the Vijayanagara empire.
The temple complex is composed of two parts: a Shiva temple (Thayumanaswamy) carved in the middle of the rock and a Pillayar (Ganesh) temple at the top portion of the rock. The Shiva temple is the bigger one, housing a massive stone statue of Shiva in the form of Linga along with a separate sanctum for goddess Parvati. The temple is mystic in its nature with an awe-inspiring rock architecture.
The Ganesh temple is much smaller with an access through steep steps carved on the rock and provides a stunning view of Trichy, Srirangam Ranganatha Swamy Temple and the rivers Kaveri and Kollidam. Due to its ancient and impressive architecture created by the Pallavas, the temple is maintained by the Archaeological Department of India.
This steep rock is a distinct feature in the otherwise flat Trichy landscape. It has some exquisitely carved rock-cut cave temples from the Pallava dynasty.
Festivals at Uchhi Pillayar Kovil
Brahmotsavam festival is celebrated every year at the Rockfort Temple, during the months of April-May. The venue of the festival is the Chittira Mandapam, which houses granite chain with nine loops. Then, we have the Aadi Pooram and the float festival in Panguni that attract tourists. Mohini Alangaram, Vaikunta Ekadasi, Garuda Seva, Flower Festival and the Car Festival are the other major festivals celebrated the temple.
How to Reach Tiruchirappalli
By Air : Trichy has an airport, 7-km away from the city and is connected by regular flights with Chennai, Madurai and Bangalore.
By Rail : Trichy is an important junction on the Southern Railway. It connects Chennai, Thanjavur, Madurai, Tuticorin, Tirupati and Rameswaram etc...
By Road : Trichy is connected by road to Chennai (320-km), Madurai (124-km) and to all major cities in South India by bus services.
Rock Fort Temple (Ucchi Pillayar Koil) Photos
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