Mahabalipuram was under control by Pallava kings from the Third Century to Ninth century AD. Mahabalipuram , a world heritage site, famous centre of Pallava art and architecture in South India, was also a seaport right from the beginning of the Christian era. The epigraphical sources confirm Pallava kings' active contacts with Ceylon, China and the Southeast Asian countries. A few Roman coins of Theodosius (4th century AD) found from the region suggest that Mababalipuram also had trade contact with the Roman world around Christian era. It came to the glory only after the Pallava started building the structural and monolithic temple architecture in this area.
Shown below are pictures taken during recent visit to the Valiankuttan and Pidari Rathams at Mamalla Quarry at Mahabalipuram.
1 & 2: Bas Relief of Hindu elephant god Ganesha.
3 & 4: Unfinished Valiankuttan rathas (chariots) carved from monolithic granite blocks
5,6 & 7 : Quarried blocks of granite - unsuitable because of cracks & fissures
8 & 9: Shows how the rocks are dressed
10-15: Unfinished Pidari rathas - not completed because of defects in rock
16: View of Light House Mahabalipuram from Quarry