• History of the Nattukottai Nagarathar Community

    Also known as the Nattukottai Chettiars, the Nattukottai Nagarathars are believed to have settled in Kaviripoom Pattinam, also known as Poombugar, a coastal city during the 2nd century AD of the Chola Empire. They were basically traders with great business acumen and dealt with gems, silks, pearls, spices and salt. Early records show that this community travelled to Colombo in 1805, to Penang, Singapore in 1824, to Moulmein in Burma in 1852 and to Mandalay in Myanmar in 1885. Some of the other countries visited include Indonesia, Malaysia, Vietnam, Cambodia and Thailand and established money...

  • History of Pudukkottai

    Pudukkottai district was carved out of Tiruchirapalli and Thanjavur districts and forms one of the smaller districts of the southern state of Tamil Nadu. It has an area of 4,661 sq km and a coastline of about 39km. The region has a traumatic history as it was the site of many wars waged by kingdoms of the past that ruined its economy and brought misery to the inhabitants. Interestingly the villages here have ancient foundations and are strongly believed to have been home to prehistoric mankind. This is by virtue of the unearthing of numerous artefacts and a large number of burial sites in th...

  • Ekambareswarar Temple Kanchipuram

    Ekambareswarar temple is one of the five Hindu temples dedicated to Lord Shiva and is located in Kanchipuram in the southern state of Tamil Nadu. The five Shiva temples represent a primordial natural element – water, ether, fire, wind – with the Ekambareswarar temple representing earth. This vast temple is famous for its huge ‘Gopuram’ which dominates the skyline of the temple town of Kanchipuram. This town is among the seven most important pilgrimage centres in India and attracts numerous tourists. The temple gains further significance as it’s historically among the most ancie...

  • The Story behind the Chettinad Wooden Pillars

    Gone are the days when the Nattukottai Chettiars of the famous Chettinad region lived like royalty in their huge mansion-like homes with numerous luxurious rooms, opulently carved teak front doors and pillars, and walls that gleamed like silk even in the dim light. The homes boasted of highly embellished multiple central courtyards and décor that was collected from various countries and bespoke the owner’s wealth.This banking and trading community has been in existence for more than two thousand years now. Earlier they lived along the coast, but after being insulted by one of the Chola dy...

  • The History of Chettinad

    Chettinad is the name of a region located in the Sivagangai and Pudukottai districts of Tamil Nadu in South India. This area is synonymous with many things grand and outstanding. It has been the home of the prosperous Nattukottai Chettiars since around the 13nth century. This prosperous trading and banking community made the region popular for its famously architected opulent mansions, its local cuisine, it’s world-famous, handmade Aathangudi tiles as well as the Chettinad saris. The Chettiars were basically wealthy traders dealing in silks, gems, pearls, spices and salt and were earlier set...

  • Places to Visit in Chidambaram

    The scenic town of Chidambaram lies in the Cuddalore district of Tamil Nadu. This small town spread over 5km sq is about 250km from Chennai and has a history going back to the Chola kingdom. It is well-known for its temples, arts and culture and is famous with pilgrims for its Shiva temple. The word Chidambaram literally translates into ‘sky infused’ with reference to wisdom and intelligence. Chidambaram is also known as ‘Thillai’ and is located in the Coleroon River valley located on the main Thanjavur-Madras road. Thillai could have been derived from the presence of the ancient Thi...

  • Chettinad House Interiors

    The Chettinad region of Tamil Nadu in the Sivagangai and Pudukottai districts is home to about 75 settlements comprising 2 small towns and 73 villages. They are famous for many things – especially their cuisine and their huge sprawling mansions. Most of them were built in the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries when the Nagarathar Chettiars were still having it good in their business ventures. The Chettiars belong to a lineage of wealthy traders and financiers who roamed and settled in parts of South-east Asia in quest of their business interests. They were at the peak of their ec...

  • The Varaha Cave Temple in Tamil Nadu

    Varaha Cave Temple – Chidambara Vilas Located atop a hillside village close to the ancient city of Mahabalipuram is the exquisite Varaha Cave Temple. It is dedicated to one of the ten forms of Lord Vishnu and easily makes for being one of the finest examples of a rock-cut temple. In fact, it is the oldest standing monument in Mahabalipuram and believed to have been built around 630-668 AD. Carved from a low rock outcropping of granite of a mesmerizing pinkish hue, it is just a little higher than the temple itself.However, this ancient gem of South Indian architecture doesn’t see muc...

  • The Famous Chettinad Mansions

    The Chettinad region of Tamil Nadu represents opulence, grand living and architectural splendour beyond dreams. This region is made up of 74 towns of well-planned formal grid streets, water supply and drainage systems, and homes designed to withstand the inherent hot summers, even as far back as the eighteenth century. The Nattukottai Chettiars of Chettinad were globe-trotting traders and bankers who thrived during the colonial era. They lived lives lavish beyond belief and spent most of their money in building huge grandiose mansions to show off their wealth. A Chettiar’s mansion was suppo...

  • Athangudi Tile Factory

    Located in the Chettinad region of Southern Tamil Nadu, Karaikudi is the largest township in the Sivagangai District. Karaikudi is also the capital of Chettinad and is famous for its culture and impressive tourist attractions. With magnanimous mansions and palatable local cuisine along with colourful cultural heritage, a holiday spent in Karaikudi will definitely be a time well-spent. Apart from all of these aspects, what makes Karaikudi an important destination for people from all over the country is the Athangudi tiles. Travelling about 24 kilometres on the occasionally potholed and otherw...