Brihadeeswara Temple, Thanjavur
Temple

Brihadeeswara Temple

Brihadeeswara Temple snapshot

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Ranked 1 of 38,
Sightseeing
in Thanjavur
Brihadeeswara Temple
Average Rating
6.7/ 7 1
37 Ratings & 28 Reviews

About Brihadeeswara Temple

94%
voted as clean
    • Not Allowed: Pets
    • Timings - Opening & Closing: Monday - Friday: 6.00 AM - 9.00 PM , Saturday: 6.00 AM - 9.00 PM , Sunday: 6.00 AM - 9.00 PM , Public Holidays: 6.00 AM - 9.00 PM

Brihadeshwar temple or the Big temple is the prime attraction of Thanjavur. Brihadeshwar temple was built in the early 11th century by Rajaraja Chola I. The temple is built in Dravidian style of architecture in granite.

Brihadeshwar temple, known also as Rajarajesvaram, is one of the well preserved Heritage Sites in Tamil Nadu. The temple dedicated to Lord Shiva has a 2.7 m high Shivalinga, which is about 7 m in diameter. The construction which encloses sanctum sanctorum is known by the name 'Periya Kovil' or the ‘Big temple’.  The 70 m high ‘Vimana’ of the temple is built in such an architectural precision, that its shadow never falls outside itself.  The Shikharam, which weighs about81.25 tons, is carved out of a single stone.

Brihadeshwar temple also features a massive idol of Nandi (bull), the mount of Lord Shiva. This idol, which weighs about 25 tons, has a height of about 3.6 m, length of 5.94 m and a width of 5.56 m.  This idol is seated in ‘Nayak Mandapam’, which is decorated with intricate carvings. The ceiling of this mandapam is noted for its 1000 year old frescoes. Portraits of Sevappanayakan and his son Achyutappa Nayak (the early Nayak rulers) can also be seen on the front pillars of Nandi Mandapam.
 

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What travellers are saying about this Sightseeing

Experience scale
  • Excellent 24
  • Very Good 4
  • Good 0
  • Average 0
  • Below Average 0
  • Poor 0
  • Terrible 0
Travellers recommend
  • Best Time:  During Sunset
  • Length of visit:  2-3hrs
Facilities available
  • Food available for purchase
  • Bathroom facilities
  • Camera/Video allowed
  • Wearing of shoes/footwear allowed
  • Lockers/Storage

28 traveller reviews for Brihadeeswara Temple

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Jothi Lakshmi

  • Scout
  • Jothi Lakshmi
  • Lives in Bangalore
  • 2 Reviews
  •  1 helpful vote
  •  271 readers

"One of the wonders to visit in lifetime" new review

  • 7.00/7
  • Posted 3 weeks ago
This temple is One of the wonders to visit in lifetime. It is a one of the UNESCO recogonised Temple. Please don't miss visiting if you are in Tanjore. Mind blowing architecture. Amazing Sculptures. Please don't miss the museum that is inside the temple. This museum gives you more knowledge about the architecture of the temple and also about the life and culture of the Kings who ruled this place.
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  • 1 vote

Nitin Chowdhary

  • Scout
  • Nitin Chowdhary
  • Lives in Anantapur
  • 1 Review
  •  302 readers

"Temple with amazing architecture"

  • 7.00/7
  • Posted 2 months ago
Brihadeeswarar temple is also called big temple. It is an amazing temple with beautiful architucture. Free WiFi zone is available there in temple. We can also carry phones and cameras. Cholas architecture was really superb.
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Srinivasan Ramachandran

  • Explorer
  • Srinivasan Ramachandran
  • Lives in Thanjavur
  • 4 photos
  • 6 Reviews
  •  11 helpful votes
  •  2764 readers

"Excellent ancient temple"

  • 7.00/7
  • Posted 3 months ago
One of the best temple I ever seen in my life, the big temple hight of 216 and the top is a 80 ton single stone. It was remade by the Cholas from a collection of villages into a major temple center 1000 years ago.
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Amitra Kar

  • Connoisseur
  • Amitra Kar
  • Highlander
  • Lives in Chennai
  • 105 photos
  • 22 Reviews
  •  156 helpful votes
  •  27825 readers

"Historical wonder with marvelous architectural brilliance"

  • 7.00/7
  • Posted 3 months ago
If you have not visited this so far you are simply missing one of the best place on earth! We have been twice here in 3 months and planning for a third round in Dec-Jan when all of 1000 dancers perform Bharatnatyam which is simply out of the world for sure.

The temple is really BIG and is the second largest in India. The sheer size of it makes you spellbound. And when you explore more on the architectural brilliance of Chola dynasty that too 1000 years ago, you simply get mesmerized! It's a huge temple so have at least 2-3 hours in the morning and another 2-3 hours in the evening as it gets lit up wonderfully by the evening.

The surface gets really hot, so wear socks and carry sun glasses during summer days. Carry a bottle of water all the time, though you can buy 'prasadam' inside the complex. Its a photographer's delight as you can carry tripods as well for the night shots. There are toilets outside the main entrance, in case you need one.
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  • 1 vote

Palani Appan

  • Scout
  • Palani Appan
  • Lives in Chennai
  • 3 Reviews
  •  1 helpful vote
  •  1189 readers

"Worlds beautiful architecture"

  • 7.00/7
  • Posted 3 months ago
The way the temple and statues built is marvelous. It took 3 hrs to see this beautiful place. Guide explained the history of this temple very nicely. Now the trustee of this temple and Tourist department built a parking facility and Novelty shops near to the temple itself.
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Sambath

  • Scout
  • Sambath
  • Lives in Delhi
  • 2 Reviews
  •  675 readers

"Beautiful temple and attracts tourists"

  • 7.00/7
  • Posted 3 months ago
Must see place, marvelous structure known for religious and architectural beauty attraction for many foreign and local tourists. You can carry cameras also.
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Rajan M

  • Scout
  • Rajan M
  • Lives in Bangalore
  • 2 Reviews
  •  1114 readers

"Not to miss the great architecture"

  • 7.00/7
  • Posted May 11, 2015
We can not compare any other temple with this, must see one. What a great architecture, do not miss to visit better to see this on unseasoned time.
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Muthu Kumaran

  • Scout
  • Muthu Kumaran
  • Lives in Chennai
  • 1 photo
  • 2 Reviews
  •  2 helpful votes
  •  1056 readers

"A must see in Thanjavur"

  • 6.50/7
  • Posted Apr 16, 2015
Good place to spend more than three hours. During the sunset the temple looks great. Wind flow was wonderful in the evening time. There is lot of space for children to play. Don't miss to take pictures of the temple which looks great in the photos.
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  • 2 votes

Navaneeth Lavisetty

  • Scout
  • Navaneeth Lavisetty
  • Lives in Delhi
  • 2 Reviews
  •  4 helpful votes
  •  1004 readers

"Great architecture, never miss this place"

  • 7.00/7
  • Posted Apr 16, 2015
Here the temple has biggest Shiva lingam, Dwarapalakas, Nandi, Parvathi Devi idol and Garbhalayam, hence the name Brihadeeshwara temple(Big Temple). The amazing sculpture and lush green gardens around the temple makes the day memorable. The 8000kg single stone tomb on the temple is the main one should know about it.
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  • 2 votes

Dr. lakshmi  G.

  • Connoisseur
  • Dr. lakshmi G.
  • Lives in Delhi
  • 13 Reviews
  •  25 helpful votes
  •  3183 readers

"Wonderful Heritage Temple"

  • 7.00/7
  • Posted Apr 15, 2015
Excellent monument by 9th century Raja Raja Chola. But archaeological survey should take deep interest in maintaining well with enthusiastic guides and explain the tourist its importance and its beauty of 1000 years. It is not just Shiva temple for free entry and exit. It carries yester years history and the marvellous contribution of many many kings, maharajas, empires and sculptors. It should not become money making place. People have contributed and shed their heart and soul in those centuries.
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  • 2 votes

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