Kanchipuram, the temple city of Tamil Nadu famous for its hand woven silk sarees accommodates one of the most popular Shiva temples called Ekambareswarar Temple. The temple has an iconic mango tree which is believed to be over 3,500 years old. According to a popular legend, Goddess Parvati did penance under the tree to please Lord Shiva. Lord Shiva in Ekambareswarar temple is worshipped as Ekambareswarar that translates to the Lord of Mango Tree. The tree’s branches are known to bear four different types of mangoes every year.
( The four branches of this tree represents the 4 Vedhas and the tree bears 4 different type of mango fruits in 4 different seasons.)
The temple gateway tower (called Raja Gopuram) is a beautiful structure of 59 m. There are 5 big courtyards inside the temple that accommodate a number of shrines. Apart from the main shrine accommodating a Shiva lingam, there are shrines dedicated to Lord Ganesha and Lord Vishnu. Another highlight of the temple is the hall with thousand pillars with captivating sculptures. The temple’s walls feature 1,008 lingams and there is a holy pond within the complex.
Being one of the five Shiva temples representing pancha bhoota (five elements, namely earth, sky, water, fire and Air), the temple has great religious significance. The temple represents the element earth and is visited by the devotees from all over.