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Mahabalipuram Monuments (UNESCO World Heritage Site), Mahabalipuram


Mahabalipuram is a monument complex of splendid specimens of Pallava art which were built about 600 to 750 AD during the reigns of Narasimha Varman I and Narasimha Varman II. There are around 40 monuments including 14 cave temples, 9 monolithic rathas and three stone temples.

The sculpture area has been divided into Five Rathas, Shore Temple, Hill side caves and Watch towers, Tiger cave.

Five Rathas, also known as Panch rathas are assigned to Five Pandavas and their wife Daupradi. First ratha, Draupadi Ratha is dedicated to Goddess Durga, Arjuna Ratha to God Shiva, Bhima ratha to Vishnu and Dharmaraja Ratha and Nakul Sahadeva to God Indra. Rathas are intricately carved out of single rock with a Pallava school of sculpture.

Arjuna's Penance is one of largest and finest stone bas-reliefs, which have scenes from Mahabharata, sculptures of Shiva and Vishnu with animal and Supernatural creatures around it.

The Shore Temple was built by Narasimha Varman-II around 690 to 715 AD and one survivor among such other seven extra ordinary monument.

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Sculpture Museum, Mahabalipuram


Sculpture Museum of Mahabalipuram, near Mahabalipuram Monuments, has vast collection of sculptures Hindu Gods as well as Buddhist sculptures.

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