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Pudhu Mandapam is a major and busy shopping area situated in Madurai city, Tamil Nadu. Puthu Mandapam is situated just opposite to the eastern side of the world famous renowned heritage site, Sree Meenakshi Amman Temple. Pudhu Mandapam was built during the period of Thirumalai Nayakkar in 1628-35 to celebrate the spring festival or Vasanthosavam during ancient days.

Pudhu Mandapam The huge stone pillars in the Pudhu Mandapam are its attractive feature which have beautifully carved sculptures of Shiva, Meenakshi, scenes from their wedding as well as the figures of ten of the Nayak Kings and their consorts. The hall is 330 feet long and 105 feet broad over the plinth. It is 25 feet high with 124 pillars of four rows. On either side of the central corridor of this hall there are imposing pillars having the figures of 14 of the Naik rulers including Thirumalai Nayakkar.

But however now this has become the most crowded shopping area in and around the vicinity of the Meenakshi Amman temple with hundreds of shops manly dealing with fabrics, accessories, book shops and vessel shops mostly on the Southern side. This place is known for its heritage and age-old customs and there are number of shops which are of tourists delight. There are number of shopping areas in and around the temple which are more of antique and traditional items which are specific to the city of Madurai. The busy markets and the streets around the temple are fringed with readymade garments, brassware, handicrafts and stone carvings offering a completely engrossing shopping experience to the people here.

Chithirai Veethi, Maasi Veethi and Veli Veethi

Decorating Items The three main areas around the temple are Chithirai veethi, Maasi veethi and Veli veethi. Some of the narrow alleys in these streets brag with excessive pride of handicraft showrooms and emporiums that offer an array of local artifacts and handloom products. The three main areas around the temple attract a major crowd including the natives of Madurai and also a number of foreigners who come from different countries across the globe.

As already mentioned Pudhu Mandapam is a major shopping market in this area which has number of tiny dingy shops but selling beautiful excellent traditional products like brass, bronze, and aluminum vessels besides hoardes of tailors completely engrossed in stitching the clothes. Anybody visiting Madurai as a tourist can buy souvenirs for their friends, family members and loved ones. Pudhu mandapam is busting with crowd most of the time and it is a very much worth place to visit.

Pudhhu Mandapam is the Most Ideal Place to Buy Cotton:

Most Ideal Place Pudhu Mandapam Pudhhu mandapam is the most ideal place to buy cotton and printed fabrics. Pudhu Mandapam also has the option of getting your material stitched with the readily available tailors all busily treading away and capable of whipping up a good replica of whatever you're wearing in an hour or two. They usually charge Rs 150 - Rs 200 and depending upon the complexity of the design the rate keeps varying. The best mode of transport in and around the temple area is auto rickshaws and cycle rickshaws; however entry of four wheelers is restricted after a certain point.

Not only the vendors on the pavement but also the shop owners of small stores charging exorbitantly high because this is one place in Madurai which is always crowded with tourists from different parts of the country and the natives of Madurai. This place is noted for its cotton fabrics and Batik and Sungundi Sarees which adorn the wardrobes of Madurai women. But all we need to do is to pull up our socks and get ready for bargaining to strike a fair deal and carry our favorite item.

Prithu Mandapam is the Best Place to Buy Batik and Sungadi Fabric

Prithu Mandapam Prithu Mandapam is the best place to buy cotton like batik and sungadi fabric which is a very old pillared hall situated at the eastern entrance of Meenakshi temple. Some of the famous shops which sell handicraft items are Government Poompuhar Handicrafts Shop, Cottage Arts Emporium and the Madurai Gallery. Some of the main handicraft items sold here are hand-woven silks and cottons, bell-metal lamps, bronze images, wood and stone carvings. Some of the leading shopping areas are Chithirai, Avanimoola, Puthumandapam and Thevangu Chetty Choultry.

Some of the Shops:

Fabrics and Sarees Some of the shops in this area for fabrics and sarees are Hajeemoosa (East Chithirai Street), Kumaran Silks( Vengala Kadai Street ), Rajmahal Silks (Vengala Kadai Street), Adams (South Masi Street), Alankar Textiles -Sungudi Sarees (South Avani Moola ), Ranee Sarees - Sungudi Sarees (South Masi Street), Selections (South Chithirai Street), Designs (Nethaji Road), Nellai Dresses (Vilakkudhun), Co-Optex Sales Emporium (West Chithirai Street), Khadi Emporium (Town Hall Road), Sri Krishna (West Tower Street) and Benzers (Nethaji Road).

When it comes to handlooms the shops which deal with handlooms are Handloom House (East Veli Street), Co-Optex (West Tower Street) and Co-Optex (South Chithirai Street). The notable shops for handicrafts include Madurai Gallery Cottage Expo Crafts (North Chithirai Street), Cottage Industries Exposition Ltd (Nethaji Road,), Cottage Arts Emporium (North Chithirai Street), Poopahar Sales Emporium (East Avani Moola Street), Poompuhar Handicrafts (West Veli Street), Surabi Handicrafts (West Veli Street), Khadi Gramayog Bhavan (Town Hall Road) and All India Hanidcrafts Emporium (Town Hall Road ).