Gangaikondacholapuram, a Great Living Chola Temple
The city of Gangaikondacholapuram (GKC) was founded in the 10th Century AD by Rajendra Chola to commemorate his victory over the Ganga empire. The name literally means ‘The town of the Cholas who defeated the Gangas’.
GKC is home to the magnificent Gangaikondacholisvaram temple which is part of the UNESCO World Heritage site of the Great Living Chola Temples.
The Great Living Chola Temples include
a) The Brihadisvara Temple at Thanjavur
b) The Gangaikondacholisvaram temple at Gangaikonda Cholapuram
c) The Airavatesvara temple at Darasuram
View of the Vamana and Nandi from the Mahadwar
Chola rulers were avid patrons of fine arts. In fact, the beautiful Nataraja figure was first conceived during the Chola dynasty.
The Vimana is flanked by smaller temples on either side.
Simhakeni well in the background
Shrine to the south
The North Gateway into the temple
The temple exteriors have a series of intricately sculptured panels.
Paneled exterior of the Shiva Temple
The 182 feet tall Vimana