Gigantic Nandi with lucky elephant
It was constructed between 1003 and 1010 under the reign of Rajaraja I, founder of the Chola Empire which covered all of southern India and neighboring areas, and was built to be a royal temple showing the power of the emperor. It is dedicated to Lord Shiva. The wall surrounding the temple is crowned by a multitude of bulls since this animal is the vehicle of Shiva . After construction it was expanded to other structures until the 17th century. It is constructed of granite and bricks and unlike most temples of South India is painted in colors.There is a tower 30 meters high and ceiling paintings are lovely and very well maintained, inside there is a statue of the bull Nandi, 25 tons, is one of the biggest statues of Nandi existing in India and is carved in 1 piece.