Meenakshi Amman Temple is a historic Hindu temple located on the southern bank of the Vaigai River in the temple city of Madurai, Tamil Nadu, India. It is dedicated toParvati, known as Meenakshi, and her consort, Shiva, here named Sundareswarar. The temple forms the heart and lifeline of the 2500 year old city of Madurai and is a significant symbol for the Tamil people, mentioned since antiquity in Tamil literature though the present structure was built between 1623 and 1655 CE. It houses 14 gopurams, ranging from 45-50m in height. The tallest is the southern tower, 51.9 metres high, and two golden sculptured vimanas, the shrines over the garbhagrihas of the main deities.
The temple attracts 15,000 visitors a day, around 25,000 on Fridays, and receives an annual revenue of sixty million. There are an estimated 33,000 sculptures in the temple. It was on the list of top 30 nominees for the “New Seven Wonders of the World”. The annual 10-day Meenakshi Tirukalyanam festival, celebrated during April and May, attracts 1 million visitors.
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