Thirumalai Nayakar Mahal in Madurai

Posted Date: 09 Mar 2011      Author: Latha Jayaprakash    Member Level: Gold (Rs 40)

Thirumalai Nayakar Mahal is located in the city of Madurai adjacent to the Madurai Meenakshi temple (It takes just 20 minutes to reach the palace from the temple), in the state of Tamil Nadu in India. Most of the palace has been demolished by the son of the King himself and the precious stones and gold were removed.

Thirumalai Nayakar Mahal is located in the city of Madurai of the state of Tamilnadu in India. Madurai is well known tourist destination with so many places to visit, one of them being Thirumalai Nayakar Mahal which was the palace of the King Thirumalai Nayakar.

About Thirumalai Nayakar and his Palace in Madurai

The Palace was built in the 17 th century by Thirumalai Nayakar with the valuable assistance of an Italian architect. There are two parts in the Palace named Swarga Vilasa and Ranga Vilasa. You could see that there were royal residences, apartments, shrine, theatre, armoury, palanquin place, royal bandstand, pond, garden and the quarters etc in these two parts of the palace.
Thirumalai Nayakar was an ardent devotee of Madurai Meenakshi Amman. He had structured Rajagopuram at the entrance of the temple with the help of the Italian architect. The time when Thirumalai Nayakar ruled can be called as a Golden Era of Madurai, as you could see merchants and travellers from as far as Roma and Italy were roaming in the streets in those days along with the locals.
Thirumalai Nayakar excavated a large area of land for the mud to be used in the construction of the Mahal. That area has become another place of tourist attraction and a huge pond named Mariamman Theppakulam, where Theppam Thiruvizha ot the Float Festival of Meenakshi amman takes place. Theppam / Float festival takes place every year in the month of January / February with a lot of fan fare.
Thirumalai Nayakar seems to have celebrated many festivals in Madurai, namely, float festival, Sceptre festival, Chithirai festival, Navarathri and Masi festival. He had also conducted daily musical and dance performances in the Thirumalai Nayakar Mahal. It is said thet Chokkanatha Nayakar son of Thirumalai Nayakar demolished most of the palace and took away all the precious jewels and other materials to build another palace for himself inThiruchirarpalli.

Part Renovation by the British in the 19th century

During the 19th century Lord Napier who was the then Governor of the Madras Province renovated some parts of the Thirumalai Nayakar Mahal but now only the spacious rectangular courtyard called the swarga Vilasam and a few adjoining buildings survive. The area of the courtyard is about 3900 sq meters md is surrounded by gigantic circular pillars and the throne chamber lies to the west of the court yard, which is a vast room with a raised eight sided dome, leading into the dance hall. After indepedence, the Thirumalai Nayakar Mahal has been declared as a National Monument and is under the care of Archaeological survey department of Tamil Nadu.

Timings and Entrance Fee Details of Thirumalai Nayakar Mahal, Madurai

The timings for visiting the Thirumalai Nayakar Mahal is from 9 am to 5 pm all days
Entrance fee – Re.1/-
Camera fee: Rs.50/
Light and Sound show about Thirumalai Nayakar and Silapathikaram (Tamil Epic)
English 6.45 pm and Tamil 8.15 pm
fees – Adults Rs.10 and Children Rs.5/

How to Reach Thirumalai Nayakar Mahal in Madurai

You can see How to Reach Madurai for more information
If you are travelling by flight you can reach Madurai airport which is connected to most of the cities in and around the area namely, chennai, Kochi, Trichy, Coimbatore, Thiruvananthapuram and bangalore
There are trains connecting madurai with many of the cities in India through a well connected network of railways.
If you are travelling to Thirumalai Nayakar Mahal from inside madurai, you can get cabs, auto rickshaws as well as cycle rickshaws.
Bus Routes – 11, 11A, 17 and 38 from Periyar Bus-stand
1 kilometer southeast of Meenakshi Temple, it takes about 20 minutes for walking from the temple.

Accommodation Facilities in Madurai

Taj Gateway Hotel Pasumalai Madurai
No. 40 TPK Road,
Madurai - 625 004,
Tamil Nadu, India
Tel: 0452 2371601 / 6633000
Website :
Please visit to see more accommodation facilities in Madurai

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