Cave Temples of Mahabalipuram
April 22, 2016 by
Mamallapuram was the earlier name of Mahabalipuram. The name Mamallapuram was coined as Lord Vishnu killed the demon king Mahabali. Mahabalipuram is geographically distributed on the Coast of Coromandel facing the Bay of Bengal. This is one of the historical and elegant places in South India to visit by the tourists. It is famous and popular for the cave temples. Temples shows the value of culture and heritage of a place. So is the case with Mahabalipuram which is rich in culture and heritage with lots of cave temples located in the hillock of the town. The rocks and caves of Mahabalipuram are beautifully carved and excavated to build beautiful temples.
Mahabalipuram is famous for the eleven mandapas among which Mahishasuramardini mandapa, Krishna Cave temple, Varaha Cave temple and Panchapandava Cave temple are the most notable and popular one’s. These cave temples are well crafted with so many scriptures and statue’s which symbolizes different meanings and examples. All the temples, art sculpting work had been done by art skilled people who were so talented in those days. The mandapas are also called as rock- cut caves which is covered with bas–reliefs. The traces from past shows that these caves were used in the Buddhist period.
The following are some of the famous cave temples in Mahabalipuram:
Varaha Cave: The prominent sculptures built in the 7th century. The most beautiful sculpted of this cave is where Lord Vishnu is incarnated as lifting mother earth from the ocean. The entry of this mandapa has two lions on the pillars. The other beautiful displays include Gajalakshmi sitting on the lotus and bathed with the help of elephants. Lord Durga with four arms and Trivikrama overpowering the demon Bali.
Mahishamardini cave: This cave has its mandapa with two pillars and pilasters with a triple cell. There are two large panels on the either side of the mandapa. These two panels represent Lord Vishnu and Mahishamardhini. The panel in the center is intended for Shiva linga. The walls, which are sculpted with beautiful architects represent Somaskanda.
Panchapandava mandapa: One of the largest of Mahabalipuram cave temple with six pillars having lions in each, with pilaster finished at all the ends. The pillars and pilaster have a vyala base which is mounted on the square pitha. The decorations on the pillars is done with lion and griffins with human riders. It is said that the cave is still unfinished.
Koneri Mandapa: This mandapa is an unfinished one with five celled rock cut temple. The temple has four pillars supported by the lions with a center cell.
Trimurti Cave: The term Trimurti means “Three Idols”. This cave temple is dedicated to Lord Brahma, Vishnu and Shiva of the Hindu Pantheon. It has a narrow panel.
Since Mahhabalipuram is one of the attractive place to visit for all the tourists around the world, it has many good and best hotels for the tourists to reside. Hotels at Mahabalipuram serves the best south Indian food with good hospitality.