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Excursions

Neyveli (40 km)
This is one of the biggest industrial complexes in the country. The lignite mined here is used in the thermal power station. Apart from fertilizers and coal, a number of by products are also produced from lignite. Permission to visit the complex may be obtained from the Public Relations Officer. Regular buses are available from Chennai and Chidambaram.

Pichavaram (16 km)
This is an excellent picnic spot covering an area of about 3,000 acres of mangrove forests. A number of backwater canals criss-cross through them to form several islands. It is also an ideal place for boating and fishing. Regular bus services are available from Chidambaram.

Poompuhar (40 km)
This was once a major port of the Chola Empire and was known as Kaveripoompattinam. The original city was submerged by the sea and now only a small village remains. The greatness of this city has been brought out in some of the poems in the sangam literature and also in the great Tamil epics Silappathikaram and Manimekalai. In 1973, the Tamil Nadu Government recreated the life and times of Silappathikaram in this place. Worth seeing are the art gallery, Paavai Manram, Ilanji Manram, and Nedunkal Ninra Manram

Porto Novo (Parangipettai) (20 km)
This port, now defunct, was associated with several European powers such as the Portugese, Dutch, Danish, British and the French. One can still see the ruins of a Dutch cemetery (Hollander Thottam), the battle field where the British under Sir Eyre Cool defeated Hyder Ali and the French in 1781 in their last decisive fight, the remnants of a Danish factory and an English iron works. Porto Novo is now an important fisheries centre. Regular bus services are available from Chidambaram.

Sirkazhi (20 km)
The temple here has three shrines. One to Sri Brahmapurees- warer, Sattanathar and Thoniappar, another to goddess Tirunilai Nayaki and the third for the god-child Gnanasambandar.

Srimushnam (30 km)
The famous temple for Vishnu as Bhuvaraha is located here. The front mandapam, called the Purushasukta Mandapam, was built by the Nayaks in the 17th century and is noted for its architectural treasures. Purushasukta Mandapam shaped like a chariot, replete with carvings of figures of warriors mounted on horses and elephants. On the pillars on the centre of the hall are carved royal portraits of the Nayak family which was responsible for the building of the temple.

Tiruvengadu (35 km)
The temple here is dedicated to the fierce form of Shiva as Aghoramurthi. The worship of this form of Shiva is said to give victory and riches to the worshiper and the worst of sins like Brahmahatya are forgiven.

Vaitheeswaran Koil (27 km)
Here Shiva is worshipped as Vaitheeswaran, the healer of all diseases. A bath in the Siddhamritam tank is believed to cure all ailments. A shrine in this temple is dedicated to ubramanya as Muthukumara.


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