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Though it is no longer a port, Mamallapuram has retained its fame in stone, thanks to the great contribution of Pallava artisans. It is among the most outstanding examples of Dravidian art and architecture and a jewel in the crown of Tamil Nadu. In a land that is liberally strewn with some of the best in temple art, Mamallapuram holds its own, and stands as a silent yet eloquent witness to the glory of its creators.Unfortunately most of the work was left incomplete, and time and nature have also eroded the remains of this once great port.

Mamallapuram Bathers

Yet, Mamallapuram's wonders in rock leave visitors enthralled, conveying as they do, an impression of beauty and harmony. The monuments are floodlit at night and so it is possible to enjoy their beauty even after sunset. The Mamallapuram dance festival is conducted every year during Dec-Jan. It is a month long festival and dances take place during the weekends. Classical dances such as Bharatanatyam, Kuchipudi, Kathakali, Mohini Attam, Odissi, Kathak etc., are performed by well-known exponents of the art.

General Information

Area 8 sq. km.
Altitude Sea level
Population 12,000
  Max. Min.
Summer : 36.6ºC 21.1ºC
Winter : 31.5 ºC 19.8ºC
Rainfall 32.5 cm average
Clothing Tropical
Season Throughout the year
Languages spoken Tamil and English
STD Code 044

Places of Interest

Caves:There are nine rock-cut cave temples. The Mahishasuramardhini cave, contrasting the goddess fighting a demon on one side, and Lord Vishnu's cosmic sleep on the other, is a particularly remarkable.

Krishna Mandapam This cave has a big bas-relief, notable for its realistic representation. The panel relates one of the stories of Lord Krishna.


India Sea Shell Museum


India Sea Shell MuseumIndia’s first and largest ever Sea Shell Museum spread across a sprawling 1.5 acre campus close to the Five Rathas, a UN heritage Site, in Mamallapuram.

India Sea Shell Museum has on display a robust collections of over 40,000 rare and unique sea shell. The exhibits represent 2,300 different families of shells collected from around 60 countries in 33 years by single person, after so much of hard work and passion.

Please Visit India Seashell Museum for more information.


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