In Thanjavur, it is the great living chola temples that attract the most attention, but amidst these temples, the Tanjore Palace or the Thanjavur Maratha Palace has managed to stand its ground and has managed to attract its share of visitors.
The Tanjore Palace, which is built in both Nayak and Maratha style architecture is famous for its library that contains archaic documents, a museum that contains artifacts from the yester era, rich designs and a bird’s eye view of the Brihadeeswara temple and the rest of the Thanjavur town.
This palace was first built during the rule of the Thanjavur Nayaks and then maintained and enhanced by the Thanjavur Marathas.Today, this Aranmanai, as it is known locally exists partly as the Bhonsle family residence and partly as a tourist spot.
After buying the entrance tickets for self and camera, one crosses a small temple and enters a large quadrangular courtyard. This large courtyard leads to a pillared hall and a small courtyard. It is here that the main zones are.
The popular sights here are the two Durbar halls of the Nayaks and the Marathas, the Saraswathi Mahal Library and the Madamaligai tower. Out of these, the tourists are not allowed to enter the Madamaligai tower as it was damaged in a lightning strike. But, the tourists can get a good aerial view from one of the vimana like buildings in the southern side.
The Tanjore palace is definitely a place that will give you a good idea about Thanjavur’s rich history coz everything is so well preserved here.