Mamallapuram, also known as Mahabalipuram, on the Coromandel Coast of Tamil Nadu, India, is home to the enchanting Shore Temple—a UNESCO World Heritage site that stands as a testimony to the architectural finesse of the Pallava dynasty. Built during the 7th century, the Shore Temple is a visual marvel that harmoniously blends religious significance with coastal beauty, making it one of the most iconic and well-preserved temples in South India.

Commissioned by Narasimhavarman II, a Pallava king, the Shore Temple is part of the Mamallapuram Group of Monuments, reflecting the architectural brilliance of the Pallava dynasty. Its construction is attributed to the 8th century, and the temple complex is believed to have once been a vibrant port city frequented by seafarers.

The Shore Temple is renowned for its distinctive Dravidian architectural style, characterized by intricate carvings, a pyramidal structure, and a shikhara (tower) that soars towards the sky. The temple is dedicated to Lord Shiva and Lord Vishnu and is constructed using blocks of granite, showcasing the Pallavas' mastery in stone architecture.

What sets the Shore Temple apart is its stunning location along the Bay of Bengal. Positioned right on the shore, with the waves of the sea lapping at its foundations, the temple exudes an ethereal charm, especially during sunrise and sunset. The juxtaposition of the ancient stone temple against the backdrop of the vast ocean creates a captivating and serene atmosphere.

UNESCO World Heritage Site

In 1984, the Shore Temple, along with other monuments in Mamallapuram, was designated as a UNESCO World Heritage site. This recognition underscores its global significance in preserving and showcasing the architectural and artistic achievements of the Pallava dynasty.

Three Temples Complex

Originally, the Shore Temple complex consisted of seven temples, out of which only three survive today. These three temples are dedicated to Lord Shiva and Lord Vishnu. Each temple is adorned with intricately carved sculptures and bas-reliefs depicting various mythological scenes, including tales from the Mahabharata and the Ramayana.

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    Timings and Guidelines

    • Timing : 6.00 AM to 6.00PM
    • Dress Code Men : Men the Dress Code is Shirt & Trouser, Dhoti or Pyjamas.
    • Dress Code Women : Women the Preferred Dress Code is Saree or Half-Saree With Blouse or Chudidhar with Pyjama.
    • No Mobile or Cameras are allowed inside the temple premises.


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