Cuddalore Travel Guide

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Padaleeswarar Kovil

Padaleeswarar Kovil

Sathiyan Sugumaran


Cuddalore is a fast growing industrial city and headquarters of Cuddalore district in the Tamil Nadu state of southern India. Located south of Pondicherry on the Bay of Bengal.


The word Cuddalore literally means "Sea Town" in Tamil. Cuddalore is known for its picturesque beaches, particularly Silver Beach, and is an emerging tourism hub.


Cuddalore town

There are two large divisions in the town of Cuddalore: the Old Town, and the New Town (Thirupadirippuliyur). The Gedilam River flows through the town and separates the Old Town from Thirupadiripuliyur. The Old Town has been a seaport since ancient times; Cuddalore traded with the Roman Empire approximately 2000 years ago. Archaeological evidence of these ancient trade relationships can be found in the Cuddalore Government Museumin Manjakkuppam. Cuddalore was the first town in Southern India which came under direct European control. The Dutch were the first to conquer it, followed by Portugal, France and later Britain. The British built Fort St David in Cuddalore near Devanampattinam. Cuddalore also has some very well respected schools, the most popular among them being St.

Josephs Higher Seconday School, Manjakkuppam which is one of the oldest school, with all facilities. St. Mary's. St. David school also the other schools. All these schools were founded by Europeans in the 17th century and the oldest surviving schools in India.

The town is well-known for its temples. This is one of the rarest town with both Saiva and Vainava temples. The most famous of these is the temple of Shiva(saiva), one of the three principal deities of Hinduism. The incarnation of Shiva at Cuddalore is called Padaleeshwarar. The temple itself is located in Thiruppadirippuliyur center of the town. The other one is "Perumal" Temple in Thiruvandhipuram(Vainava) 7 km from Thiruppadirippuliyur. Chidambaram, a city also known for dance and temples, is only 43 km away from Cuddalore. Cuddalore has famous vishnavate temples in and around the city. Tiruvaheendirapuram, the Sacred Abode of Lord DEVANATHA, is one of the ancient Vaishnavite temples and also one of the 108 Vaishnavite shrines sanctified by the visit of the great Alwars and Acharyas, held in great reverence by the devotees. This place is one of the two Nadunattu Tirupathis. It is situated 7 km west of Tirupapuliyur (Cuddalore New Town) Railway Station. Srimushnam located 31 km from Chidambaram(Cuddalore), Srimushnam, the famous Vaishnava temple of Bhuvaraha. This is one of the eight Vaishavas shrines. The image in the temple is self created (Swayam Vyakta) representing Varaha Avator. The original image in marble is said to have been taken away by Krishna Deva Wodeyar of Mysore and installed it at Srirengapattinam.

Cuddalore's magnificent beaches are becoming a tourist attraction, especially the well-known Silver Beach. The boat house near the beach is known for its beauty. The Mangrove Forest in Pichavaram is considered one among the healthiest mangrove occurrence in the world. Number of islands interpersing a vast expanse of water covered with green trees and boating facilities gives special attraction to this spot(Pichavaram).


Cuddalore is connected to other parts of Tamil Nadu through a very good rail and road network. Frequent buses run to nearby towns like Pondicherry,Chidambaram, Panruti and Villupuram. Buses to major cities of Tamil Nadu like Chennai, Tiruchirapalli, Salem are also available from Cuddalore.


Cuddalore has two railway stations, Thirupadirippuliyur and Cuddalore Port Junction, with station codes TDPR and CUPJ respectively. The station code for Cuddalore Port Junction was previously COT, as the station is located in Cuddalore OT. Thirupadirippuliyur railway station is located in the Cuddalore new town and is at a walkable distance to Cuddalore bus stand.

Cuddalore is served by the railway line Chennai - Villupuram - Mayiladuthurai - Tiruchirapalli, popularly known as the Main Line. This line is currently closed for traffic as part of Villupuram - Mayiladuthurai Unigauge gauge conversion. This line is expected to open for traffic in Mid-2008.

Cuddalore Port Junction(CUPJ) has a second railway line going to Salem via Vridhachalam Junction. Currently there are daily passenger trains going to Tiruchirappalli and Vridhachalam at 6:00 AM and 08:40 PM respectively.


National Highway NH-45A (the Villupuram-Pondicherry-Cuddalore-Chidambaram-Nagapattinam Highway) passes through Cuddalore. Three state highways connect Cuddalore with other parts of Tamil Nadu. The state highways originating from Cuddalore are

·         SH-9, (the Cuddalore-Nellikuppam-Panruti-Madapattu-Thirukovilur-Thiruvannamalai-Polur-Vellore-Katpadi-Chittoor Road)

·         SH-10, (the Cuddalore-Vadalur-Neyveli-Vriddhachalam-Veppur-Salem Road)

·         SH-68, (the Cuddalore-Thiruvandipuram-Palur-Panruti-Arasur-Thirukovilur-Sankarapuram Road)

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May 14, 2008 new by kamban (1 point)

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