Famous as the land of the Lord Nataraja (the Cosmic Dancer), Chidambaram is one of the pilgrimage centers and holy places in India. It is 240 km south of Chennai and a well-known industrial city in eastern Tamil Nadu. This place is the home of eminent Nataraja Temple built during Cholas dynasty. The temple is distinctive not only for its devotion solely to the Bharatanatyam, but because of being among the rate temples where Lord Shiva is depicted by a statue rather than the traditional lingam.
The holy place is stretch over an area of 40 acres along with a gopuram on all sides. The eastern gopuram is located at a height of 40.8 m. and 108 dace poses and postures have been carved on it. The western tower also contains similar carvings whereas the northern gopuram is the tallest that is 42.4 m. high.
The statue of Lord Nataraja is placed in the kanaka sabha, the top of which is coated with gold plates. The idol of Lord Shiva is a striking piece of figurine, which evokes a sense of constant movement. All the prominent dancers of India get together during the Natyanjali dance festival. They offer their dance and performances to Lord Nataraja.The celebration takes place on the occasion of Maha Shivaratri.
The Annamalai University is also located here, which is another attraction.
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