is situated in Tamilnadu State of India, which is famous for
its mythological and historical importance. Neyveli is surrounded
by a number of worth seeing places both of tourist and religious
attraction. Some of the many are listed below. For more details
one can see the web sites of Cuddalore and Villupuram Districts.
The Union territory of Puducheri (earlier known as Pondicherry)
is just 70 Kms from Neyveli. A French settlement prior to
independence this town still maintains the French Culture.
This town is planned on a grid system, which is to say that
the roads meet each other at right angles. In the heart of
the town lies the Aurobindo ashram housing the Samadhis of
Shri Aurobindo Ghosh and the divine Mother.
beach road is like the mall of a hill station, where everyone
comes for a stroll. The footpath is interspersed with trees,
flower beds and have lots of benches to sit on and enjoy the
evening. Overlooking the sea among the many mansions, the most
striking is the one called Marie. It is built in the French
style and is actually the Municipality office. The other buildings
which are reminiscent of the French architectural style are
the Samadhi, French Institute, Ecole Francaise, Raj Niwas to
name a few.The other attractions in Pondicherry are the Duplex
and the Botanical Gardens.
The town of Chidambaram where the famous Nataraja temple is situated
is about 40 Kms.from Neyveli. The temple is located in the
center of Chidambaram town and covers an area of 40 acres.
The roof of the sanctum sanctorum is covered with gold plates.
The presiding deity of the temple is represented by air,
one of the five elements of the universe and is known as
Akasa Lingam. This is the temple of the Cosmic Dancer, where
the presiding deity is called Nataraja. This temple has five
halls, of which two-the Kanaka Sabha and the Chit Sabha-have
gold-plated roofs. The main icon of Nataraja is in the Kanaka
Sabha. This to signify that God exists in vacant space too.
The Nritta Sabha or the Hall of Dance is the most beautiful
and remarkable of the five halls, built in the form of a
chariot on wheels drawn by horses. There are 56 pillars in
the hall depicting the 108 poses of Bharat Natyam, the classical
dance of Tamilnadu.
Mangrove Forest, Near Chidambaram
a seat of learning in disciplines like Engineering, Medicine,
Sciences, Humanities, Management, Philosophy, Finance, Oriental
studies etc., with a proud history of more than 75 years,
is also situated in Chidambaram
District Headquarters is having a beautiful Beach called silver
beach which is about 40 Kms. from Neyveli.
Nestled on three hills, and enclosed by a huge rampart 60 feet
thick, stands the majestic GINGEE Fort, in the Villuppuram
district, which is located on the Thindivanam to Thiruvannamalai
road about 25 kms from Thindivanam and 100 kms from Neyveli.
The indomitable courage and valour of its erstwhile rulers,
caused Father Pimenta, a Jesuit priest to call the GINGEE
Fort the Troy of the East. Besieged by the Mughals and battered
by the British, the fort still stands at 800ft. in height,
guarded by a moat, eighty feet wide. The small town of GINGEE
was once a capital city, with its province extending from
Nellore in the north to the Coleroon (Kollidam) in the south.
Nayaka line of Gingee built most of the structures, fortification
walls and temples. Chatrapati Shivaji, the great Maratha ruler,
who captured Gingee in 1677 A. D further strengthened the fortifications
and defenses. Gingee came under the hegemony of the Moghul
emperor Aurangazeb in 1691 A. D., and Sarup singh was appointed
as the chief of Gingee by the emperor, under the control of
the Nawab of Arcot. Sarup Singhs son. Raja De singh, revolted
against the Nawab of Arcot, and was defeated and killed in
the war that followed. The young and courageous De Singh became
a legend and his heroic deeds were sung in the form of popular
ballads. GINGEE today, with its ruined forts, temples and granaries,
presents a different picture from the glorious splendor of
its bygone days. But the remains of that valorous past, speak
volumes about the numerous invasions, warfare and bravery that
This temple town is roughly 100 Km away from Neyveli. This is
one of the places attributed to five elements viz., earth,
water, fire, sky and air. This place is dedicated to the
Fire element, whereas Chidambaram is Akasa sthala. It is
also said that one attains salvation by merely thinking about
Thiruvannamalai. Ramana Maharishi has glorified the place
with his penance and attaining samadhi here. His ashram at
the out skirts of the town attracts devotees and followers
by its serene, tranquil atmosphere. The beautiful hill at
Thiruvannamalai is said to be abode of sages and attracts
lakhs of devotees every full moon day for walking around
the hills (Giri Valam).
AN INTERNATIONAL TOWNSHIP
This town of tomorrow now in the making - supported and encouraged
by the Government of India, and endorsed by UNESCO - is sited
just across the Puducherry border in Tamil Nadu. Representing
an experiment in international living, it was launched in 1968
at the behest of the Mother of the Sri Aurobindo Ashram at an
inaugural function attended by representatives of 124 nations
and all the States of India. This "City of Dawn" is
still in its initial stages of development, though the Matrimandir,
the central building intended for silent concentration, is now
functional, as are many other major facilities, such as its Visitors
Centre, Town Hall, etc. The near-2000 Auroville residents from
some 40 countries live in 100+ scattered settlements spread around
the landscape, either in the city area or surrounding Green Belt.
The aim of the project is the achievement of an actual human
unity in diversity, while at the same time researching into new
approaches to education, health care, alternative energy usage,
environmental regeneration, and sustainable living in general.
Each inhabitant of Auroville contributes in his or her own way
towards building the township. For more detailed information
see the Auroville website www.auroville.org .