The lotus-shaped city of temples seems to be stuck on an unchanging itinerary. Even though its cultural, historic, and religious significance is an absolute highlight, the Madurai itinerary needs a few additions and we’re here to tell you about a few offbeat places in Madurai that aren’t quite heard about. However, having said that, we also agree that a visit to the Meenakshi Temple is still a must. By Shubhanjana Das

1. Bullion Bazaar:

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Temple Jewellery #templejewellery #templenecklace

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The Bullion Bazaar is Madurai is where you can buy all the gold and silver that you had seen on the TV ads, worn by famous South Indian stars. The style of gold jewellery in the southern part o India is quite distinct from the rest of the country. What other places can be better than Madurai itself to lay your hands on the age-old styles and designs of authentic gold jewellery?

2. Gandhi Museum:

Apart from being the safe haven of many historic relics from the southern states, this museum, as the name suggests, is dedicated to the years of struggle for independence by India and for India. It shelters many of Gandhi’s belongings like his shawl, dhoti, the signature round spectacles and, in fact, even the blood-stained dhoti which saw his assassin. It’s quite bone-chilling an experience to witness a relic from such a historic moment.

3. Potters’ Village:

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The first bobble head ever made. These are very famous and called 'Thanjavur Thalaiyatti Bommai' as they are native to the place Thanjavur, in Tamilnadu. Don't forget to buy these when you're there.. Vilachery in Madurai is one of the places in TN, where these dolls are made. _______________________________ Shot on Nikon D750 + AF-S NIKKOR 24-120mm f/4G ED VR Lens ISO 10000 | f/4 | 1/200s | 120mm _______________________________ #lotlclz #macrophotography #portraitphotography #portrait #portraiture #dolls #toys #thanjavurbommai #thanjavurthalaiyattibommai #madurai #vilacheri #lenscaptureofficial #shutterbugs #indiaview #indianphotographyinc #indiafeatures #photo_hub__ #photographersofindia #photo_pond #official_photographers_hub #abstractphotography #amateurphotographyindia #tntourism #streetphotographyindia #streetsofindia #streetphotography #streetsoftamilnadu #_oye #nikonindiaofficial #lonelyplanetindia

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At about a distance of 10 km from the city is the village of Vilacheri, most commonly known as the ‘potters’ village’. You may get to buy potteries and handcrafted products anywhere but it is only here that not only will you get to witness the process from scratch but also interact with the locals to know the awe-striking history of this artistic village. They are specifically known for two of their very special creation – Navratri golu dolls and papier mache dolls.

4. Puthu Mandapam:

This cavernous market nearby to the Meenakshi Amman Temple is an amazing option to buy handicrafts, paintings, and textiles as well as some jewellery. This is where we suggest you should go shopping for souvenirs.

5. St. Mary’s Cathedral:

The immense popularity of the Meenakshi Amman temple overshadows every other religious shrine in Madurai. But, it is time we throw a little light on the oldest known Roman Catholic Churches in the country, the St. Mary’s Cathedral. The Gothic build and the rich history of this church is an attraction both for Catholics as well as history-lovers.

6. Banana Market:

Now that’s something you don’t come across every day, right? Well, the Banana Market in Madurai is no ordinary fruit market. In fact, it sells only bananas and that too 16 different varieties of it! Even if you’re not a huge fan of bananas, this will make for an interesting tour to witness how a banana market functions. Make sure you bring your camera along!

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