A few pics from Yelagiri and Vellore last month. First is a little village nestled in the Yelagiri Hill Station, 1700 m above sea level. My ears popped on the winding, hair pin studded, stomach churning ascent!
In Vellore we visited Fort Vellore (naturally), a structure spanning 133 acres, cut from large granite stones, built in the 16th century during the reign of the Vijayanagar Empire. The moat surrounding the fort used to contain about 10,000 crocodiles. I wish it still did!! 😁
The ground level of the fort has risen by 9 feet since it's construction and in 1806 the fort supported the first rebellion against the British occupancy.
The Jalakanteswarar Temple is a beautiful structure within the confines of the fort, possessing intricately carved gopurams (entrance towers), long corridors and mandapams (pillared halls). We visited on a full moon night when the atmosphere was heavy with reverence, while also light with celebration! Many come just to sit and chat in the temple grounds after having payed their respects to the deity Shiva in prayer and performance of pujas (ceremonies). In the surrounding region of Vellore, formally named Tondaimandalam, there is a scattering of ancient inscriptions that refer to the temple as Jwarakantesvara - "jwara" meaning fever in Sanskrit. So the full title would indicate God Who Destroys Fever (or Disease, "vyadhi") 🙏