Sculptures of Mahabalipuram

sukkranStarred Page By sukkran, 3rd Jul 2013 | Follow this author | RSS Feed
Posted in Wikinut>Travel>Asia>India>Tamil Nadu

Some 1500 years ago, the monks of Jainism and Buddhism began to carve their living Cells and conference halls out of a giant hill rocks in eastern and central regions of India. Stone carvers of India were the greatest in ancient times. Mahabalipuram near Chennai is one of the most exhilarating rock carvings in south India. It is also one of the most celebrated tourist destinations India.

About Mahabalipuram

Once Mahabalipuram was a port city and designated as a provincial headquarters under the Pallava regime before 8th century. Now, it is a ruined ancient city notable for the magnificent temples and stone carvings.

They are internationally recognized as early masterworks of India and amongst the most impressive works of art in any place to be found in the world. No brick or mortar were used for the treatment of the carved structures, and without putting together of individual sections.

The works of Mahabalipuram are carved out of a single rock. The stage and raw material for these stone carvings were a small granite mountain and a smaller granite outcropping.

Myths also recommend that Divinities were envious of the elegance of the sculptures of Mahablipuram, as a result, they submerged by floods with most parts of the old city, excluding a few existing structures that are visible now.


The sculptures are glorious specimens of magnificent Pallava art. The most exciting carvings are the Arjuna’s Penance or Descent of the Ganges, carved over a huge rock of 30' high and 60' wide.

Which was constituted by cave temples, five monolithic rathas (chariots), and stone carved reliefs and temple structures. Most of them are mingled with Buddhist architecture similar rock-cut caves of Ajanta and Ellora; each Ratha is sculpted in a distinctive bravura some of them are oblong in size.

The pillars of the structures are of the Dravidian style. They are placed on the adjacent of the rock face near the sea shore. For good, there is a classic Shore Temple, with twin towers.

It is the earliest significant structural temple in South India all formed from solid single granite.

Shore Temple

Among the best models of temple art is the shore temple. It is standing up at the side of the Sea and covers up with intricate carvings, is generally regarded as the glory of its genre.

This shore temple campus was created in the middle of 17th century was the zenith of the architectural excellence. It is now supposed that this shore temple was the last in a series of temples that appeared to be in the immersed sea coast.

This is sustained by the presence of an outline of its collection of temples off the coast during the Tsunami of 2004. The great Chola Emperors, who governed Tamil Nadu after the Pallava kingdom were followed the designs and architecture of shore temples of Mahabalipuram.

How to Get There

Mahabalipuram is located 60 km south of Chennai. It is a living treat to the eyes that could justify a guide through its stimulating sculptures.

It can be reached out by bus or taxi from Chennai. Near by international Airport and Rail stations are at Chennai. A visually pleasing space of appreciation and marvelous sculptures which are no traveler to Chennai should avoid.

Photo Credits

About Mahabalipuram: Emmanuel Dyan, Flickr, under Creative Commons License
Shore Temple: Photobucket under free share license.


About Mahabalipuram, Chola, India, Mahabalipuram, Pallava, Sculptures, Stone Architecture, Stone Sculptures, Tamil Nadu

Meet the author

author avatar sukkran
I am sukkran aka sukkran trichy, from Trichy, India. I am an online writer, blogger, writing for many publishing platforms.

Share this page

moderator Mark Gordon Brown moderated this page.
If you have any complaints about this content, please let us know


author avatar LOVERME
3rd Jul 2013 (#)


Reply to this comment

author avatar sukkran
3rd Jul 2013 (#)


Reply to this comment

author avatar Mike Robbers
3rd Jul 2013 (#)

Impressive sculptures and an interesting location to visit.

Reply to this comment

author avatar sukkran
3rd Jul 2013 (#)

glad you love these sculptures

Reply to this comment

author avatar Johnny Knox
3rd Jul 2013 (#)

Wonderful article! The temple pics are amazing!

Reply to this comment

author avatar sukkran
3rd Jul 2013 (#)

thanks johnny know. for your nice comment. appreciate that

Reply to this comment

author avatar cnwriter..carolina
3rd Jul 2013 (#)

I love your exploration into another place of such beauty..

Reply to this comment

author avatar Sandyspider
9th Jul 2013 (#)

Very impressive place.

Reply to this comment

author avatar Grumpybear
24th Jul 2013 (#)

All history has interested me, India being one of them. This is a very informative page ty for writing it. :)

Reply to this comment

Add a comment
Can't login?