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India, a city of colors, festivals, full-of-life crowd, temples, cultures, and a never-ending spirit of liveliness, all reside in the heart of this beautiful city. Mahatma Gandhi is known as the father of the nation. He played a significant role in bringing freedom to the country. Mahatma Gandhi is an evitable part of India and so is Madurai in his life. Pious city of Madurai has played a crucial role in the life of Mahatma Gandhi. The city is witness of his struggle against the colonial system and peculiarities of the country. Home to the stunning Meenakshi Sundareswara temple, the city is also famous for its symbolic museum called the Gandhi Memorial Museum. The iconic museum boasts many important facets of the leader's life and depicts important events which framed the Indian Freedom Struggle. Established in 1959, this masterpiece finds in place in the Tamukkam Palace which belonged to Rani Mangammal of Nayak Dynasty. This building has seen many rulers with the changing decades and represented the transition of history from one phase to another. When on a Madurai Tour, The Gandhi Memorial Museum is certainly not a place to miss.
A Memorable Trip to Gandhi Memorial Museum
Taking pride not only for its rich collection, but the Gandhi Memorial Museum also boasts an alluring exterior and interior. Admire the beautiful structure of the building with an open heart. As you enter the main building, to the south of it stands the 'Gandhi kutir.' The small hut is a replica of the original hut in Sevagram. At the ground floor, you can see a section of Khadi and Village Industries which showcases the various cottage industries revived by the 'father of the nation.' A rich collection of more than 20,000 books finds its place in a library which lies to the north. There is also an open air theater which is located to the south of the main building. Various cultural programs, meetings, and shows embrace the grounds of this theater.
With its massive collection of innumerable items, the museum is an important tourist attraction. Divided into various sections, the museum represents the head-turning events of Mahatma Gandhi's life. 'India Fights for Freedom' is an important area of the museum which consists of about 265 exhibits in thirty panels. It showcases a wide array of illustrations which depict various significant events of the Indian Freedom Struggle. A few of these panels include Wages of Slavery, On the Eve of Independence-1945, Mysore Resists-1767, The Challenge from Tamil Nadu-1795, etc. There is a section named Visual Biography of Mahatma Gandhi that finds its place in the museum. It consists of nearly 124 photos of Mahatma Gandhi's life. Various manuscripts, paintings, sculptures, quotations, Photostats of letters all form part of this section. One of the most fascinating sections of the museum is the Relics and Replicas section, which is home to nearly 100 artworks. The main highlight of this section is the replica of the bloodstained cloth which was used by Mahatma Gandhi on the ugly day of his assassination. Other important collection of this section includes a letter written by Mahatma Gandhi to Adolf Hitler.
Charkhas played an important role in the life of Mahatma Gandhi. He gave a boost to the Khadi industry with his magical spinning wheels. Spinning Wheel Gallery is a dedication to this great iconic device, through its impressive collection of twenty-three models of charkhas, ranging from the traditional ones to the portable versions and the mechanized versions. It also houses two models of looms, samples of various components of hand-spinning, samples of yarn handspun, letters written by Gandhi Ji, and also photographs of Gandhi and various prominent leaders working on the spinning wheel.
How to Get Tickets?
No entry fee is required to visit the museum.
How To Get Around?
You can easily explore the museum on foot.
What Should I Wear?
You can wear anything of your choice. As it is a museum, it would be preferable to choose simple, sober yet stylish clothes. Jeans with a stunning blouse or long flowy pants with a shirt tucked in will make you look classy. Boys can go for trousers or jeans with a t-shirt. For footwear embellished flats, sneakers, gladiators will make you explore all day long with ease.
Best Time to Visit
The best time to visit the museum is between 10 am to 1 pm if you are visiting in the afternoon, and from 2 pm to 5:45 pm, if in the evening. The museum remains closed on Friday.
How To Get There?
Madurai has a well-developed transport system. You can reach the city via airways, railways or roadways. Madurai International Airport is the main airport serving the city. Inside the city you can use bus, car, taxi, etc. to explore.
If you want to carry a camera then Rs. 50 charge is to be paid.