Tirucchirappalli (Trichy) via Erode
Checked into Kanchana Lodge.
Went to Rock Fort temple, saw it from a distance, walked to the entrance where a narrow passage leads pilgrims past sellers crammed shoulder to shoulder w/ all sorts of pujas (offerings) to buy. Here we encountered the obligatory 'take off your shoes' and we declined, seeing nothing that was amazing or amuzing ahead. Being the end of the day and sun setting we weren't going to climb the 100's of steps to the top anyway.
Opposite the entry street to the Rock Fort stands the impressive spires of the Lourdes Church...quite inspiring (that's a pun, for those of you not used to such things, ha!).
Day trip to Tanjore (Thanjarur) & Big Temple, as it is called locally. And it is! Very easy by bus and nice countryside in the delta area w/ lots of agric. & very flat! Takes 1 1/2 hrs exactly to the New Bus Station from whence it is another 6 km bus ride on #74/5 bus...round trip 66 r. ($1.50 US<) and NO ENTRY FEE, Hurrah!
Big Temple: Brihadishurara temple is the crowning glory of Chola architecture, built in 1010+ by (get this!) Raja Raja . A World Heritage Site & one of the largest sculpted Nandi's (bull) from a single rock in India.
Great fun had by all.